Toronto Sun Columnist Lies about Golan Heights

The Hasbara Project, brought to you by Michael Hess, the editor of BBSNews.

Illegal Israeli colonies located within the Syrian Golan Heights all the way back in 1992. Image source: University of Texas Libraries, The University of Texas at Austin.

Illegal Israeli colonies located within the Syrian Golan Heights all the way back in 1992. Image source: University of Texas Libraries, The University of Texas at Austin.

You can usually tell right wing Web sites with the crazy popup, popunder, new-window, new-tab annoying ads that they all have because they are short on money and common sense; so they’ll take any click that they can get to get a few pennies from the unsuspecting reader.

The Toronto Sun is one of these Web sites. I originally was simply trying to read the story behind the provocative headline, “Israel may be next target.” A misguided but I’m sure very nice person at the ‘Sun wrote a breathless and dramatic article on Friday about Israel, as right-wingers are wont to do, apparently because she is all het up about the possibility that Islamic State may have Israel in their sights.

Candice Malcolm made a mistake common for right wing extremist Web sites when she wrote:

“I joined members of the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) for a briefing from an outpost in the Golan Heights, a region in northeast Israel along its shared border with Syria.”

The obvious problem of course is that the Golan Heights is not in Israel. It’s in Syria. All of the actions that Israel has taken in the Golan Heights since the 1967 war, that Israel started, are not only illegal but also “null and void.” This is indisputable and verifiable fact.

Every single time that you read a news source that claims otherwise, it is so factually incorrect that it’s easy to make the assumption that all of the other content should be suspect as well.


Things are changing now that American Jews are losing their fear and acting on the notion that only the truth and rule of law can save Israel, anything less spells imminent disaster for the Jewish state.

Most people around the world expect nations that are members of the United Nations to respond and act in accordance with Security Council resolutions directed at their nations. There is certainly no lack of a clamor when the world community expects Iran or North Korea among a number of nations to respect the rule of law and Security Council resolutions, no less must be expected of the state of Israel.

I wish Candice Malcolm and the editor’s at the ‘Sun would have availed themselves of the United Nation Web site and read the resolutions regarding Syria and Israel. UN Security Council resolution 497 is a good place to start. I’m accusing her of lying because these facts have been known for decades, there is no excuse for this type of willful ignorance.

On December 17th, 1981 the UN Security Council firmly decided that Israel’s “annexation” was an illegal act. “…the Israeli decision to impose its laws, jurisdiction and administration in the occupied Syrian Golan Heights is null and void and without international legal effect.”

Many right wing extremists often see the the world through a lens of ‘might makes right’ or that there is some imaginary ‘right to conquest.’ Candice Malcolm for the ‘Sun sits firmly in that constellation of extremist right wing writers when she waxes poetic about Israel’s theft by military force of the Golan Heights. It is fawning admiration that she obviously would not have if Syria was coming over the border of the actual state of Israel.

Right wing columnists often believe that Israel “won” the Golan Heights. She sprinkles her propaganda liberally with Hasbara code words and phrases like “sparsely populated” presumably implying, “hey, there’s hardly no one there so Israel can steal it, why should anyone mind?”

And “buffer zone.” Like most Hasbarians1 she probably does not even realize how out of touch with reality she is when she admits things like the following:

“Golan is incredibly important to Israel’s security and serves as an important buffer zone between Israel and its enemies.”

She tacitly admits that the Golan Heights does not belong to Israel yet the cynical meaning is clear and often made about the West Bank as well; the Golan Heights is a means to an end. It is stolen territory to strengthen fortress Israel.

For writers like Candice Malcolm, and for the state of Israel, basic customary international law is meaningless. In addition to ignoring Security Council resolutions, the underpinnings of those resolutions are also ignored. For instance, Article 2, paragraph 4 of the UN Charter:

“All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.”

Stealing another nation’s territory is an obvious violation of the UN Charter. And it also violates the bedrock international legal principle embodied in the UN Charter and in many resolutions not the least of which is UNSCR 242, that as Lord Caradon, the principle author of the resolution strongly noted, the “inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by war” rendered Israel’s intended annexations of such seized land untenable.

This is the position of the US government as well, having just been clarified in the last couple of days when US State Department spokesman Edgar Vasquez said, “We do not believe that labeling the origin of products is equivalent to a boycott. And as you know, we do not consider settlements to be part of Israel. We do not view labeling the origin of products being from the settlements as a boycott of Israel.”

That’s because the Golan Heights (and Palestine) is not in Israel. Every adult who can read understands this. The question is, where are the adults at the Toronto Sun? Why did Candice Malcolm’s piece glorifying Israel theft by military force of the Golan Heights get through the editors?

Where is the journalistic integrity?

1 A Hasbarian is a purveyor of Hasbara propaganda that is designed to cover up war crimes or crimes against humanity by the rogue state of Israel against occupied indigenous people. For instance, more than 500 dead children in the Gaza Strip last year were killed out of “self-defense.” Shooting children in the modern equivalent of the Warsaw Ghetto is not “self-defense” – it is collective punishment of a captive and subjugated people who are being punished for making a wrong vote in “democracy” brought by Ariel Sharon, George W. Bush, and Condi Rice.


Editor’s Note to Hasbara trolls. You have had your run all over the Internet with your antisemitic views and lies, but you will not enjoy a free ride here at BBSNews. It’s my view that you have already damaged the Jewish state most likely beyond redemption on the Internet. You get one chance, and one chance only to address the material. If you cannot be an adult, and discuss verifiable, very basic facts as opposed to Hasbara propaganda, you will be banished. The Hasbara Project is news intended for an adult audience for adults that are literate enough to talk about the inevitable future of Israel and Palestine, and reality-based solutions firmly grounded in the rule of law and UN resolutions. Here at BBSNews, you will not be allowed to disrupt a comment thread with tired lies that have been debunked for decades if not a century or more. You Have Been Warned.

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Michael Hess

Michael Hess

I started writing and editing BBSNews in 1990. Before the 'web, back in the Bulletin Board System (BBS) days. My pursuit of factual and reality based information informs my worldview. The ever evolving BBSNews contains New Mexico news, South Florida news and features, national and international news, politics, space, foreign policy and in particular; news and facts about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I have a long background in technical engineering, I hold several patents including on Disaster Recovery based on work after Hurricane Katrina and I am dedicated to finally seeing the rule of law properly and across the board evenly applied and enforced in the Middle East, particularly with respect to the state of Palestine. See our About Us page for more details.