Moshe-Mordechai van Zuiden
Psychology, Medicine, Science, Politics, Oppression, Integrity, Philosophy, Jews -- For those who like their news and truths frank and sharp

On spotting liars in the news

Fake news is nothing new, but it’s rising to new ‘heights’ for sure

Top liars first share a bit of truth to entice us to gain access to our brains. Stop listening as soon as they start lying! First, three examples of this.

Reverse Causality

“I feel for the Jews who went through the Holocaust, but why make innocent people, the Palestinian People, pay for that?” While the Muslim-Palestinian leadership became allies with Hitler (but was never punished for that), modern Zionism predates the Holocaust by 100 years. It was Arab Antisemitism that prevented a bi-national State. The Land is large enough for everyone as long as there is no attempt at genocide.

“Jews do to others what was done to them (the Holocaust).” The opposite is true. Old Antisemitic myths are made more robust to counter Holocaust guilt. “It’s the Jews who mass murder babies, commit genocide,” etc.

A sad but powerful example of this trick we saw recently. Chamas killed and maimed the largest number of Jews in one day since the Holocaust. Their barbarianism shocked the whole world. So, what did Antisemites do? They started demonstrations against made-up “war crimes” by Israel and its “crimes against humanity.” Incensed marches shouting for revenge for Israel’s atrocities. Right in front of our eyes, executed by the international media, Antisemitic dictators, intellectuals, and Jew-hatred in general.

Professional Liars

I agree, we failed Israel’s safety,” says the right-wing minister. What a clear admission. Until you read the rest. “Of course, we must go back and judge what role the [failed] Oslo Accords played in this [blaming the left.]”

False Moral Equivalence

I agree, it was monstrous what Chamas did. It’s forbidden in Islam to target civilians or even risk hurting civilians.” So, you think: A reasonable person, I’m listening. Then he continues: “But the IDF does the same.”

Proportionality and Occupation

She says: “The IDF response is not proportional.” What would be? “We have been suffering under the Israeli occupation for seventy-five years.”

You need some background knowledge to spot the nonsense here.

First, proportionality is not a measure of revenge. It’s a military term regarding ‘collateral damage.’ It is a relative measure to establish if the amount of damage to civilian stuff and people is in reasonable proportion compared to the military installations and fighters you’re after.

Second, seventy-five years ago was 1948, when the State of Israel was proclaimed. But Gaza belonged to Egypt until 1967, the Six-Day War, the united Arab attempt to kill all Jews in Israel. The last Israelis left Gaza at the Disengagement in 2005. Then, the Gaza Strip became independent. Yet, Gazans chose, in free elections, a bunch of Nazis to rule them (and, like the population of Nazi Germany, bear responsibility for what this regime did), which obligated Israel to isolate the Strip so that articles for genocide could be blocked. It didn’t help completely because iron and cement to build houses were used to build terror tunnels and rockets.

Is what the IDF does regarding Gaza reasonable? It certainly is. While the terror groups tried to hide safely among the 1.7 million civilians and under hospitals, the IDF is separating the two to go after the terrorists net.

This is always a problem for dismantling lies: You can put six lies in one sentence, while the truth about each lie might consist of six paragraphs.

Blaming the Victim

I summarize: “How did Israel fail here? Israel strengthened Chamas and the PA to divide them. Its policy exploded [sic] last week. The US wrecked the delicate balances [sic] in the Arab world. By defeating Saddam Hussein, it reinforced Iran. The US is a stabilizing force in the world [the opposite of the above] and must engage.” He always has Anti-Jewish dog whistles.

If she would have dressed more decently, would she have been assaulted? How did the Jews cause the Holocaust? Same kind of questions.

And this: “But didn’t Israel bring this upon itself?” Jews suffered genocide for millennia and never took revenge. Often, the ones hating Jews with a vengeance never met a Jew. Like all racism, evil needs no justification.

Playing Victim

How brutal that the IDF makes innocent Gazans lose their homes.

After WW II, Germans did not have the audacity to play victim. Japan did. The most brutal murderers of the century were suddenly forgotten via two atomic bombs (a clear war crime by the standards developed after WW II).

Wars Don’t Erupt

People declare, make war. This phraseology is employed a lot to hide the culprits. When Israel declared Statehood, war didn’t erupt. It was declared. Wars are started by parties for reasons, often with excuses and with goals.

Double Standards, Cutting off History

The UN did not proclaim Chamas out of order but is warning Israel and judging Israel’s response unfavorably.

A strong Anti-Zionism, anti-truth trick is to focus on the countermeasures that monstrous Israel takes for protection and leave out what prompted Israel to need such. Ask yourself, whenever Israel is accused, if it’s exaggerated, if it’s true at all, and if so, what forced Israel to act like that.

Chamas is the Problem

No, they’re just the soldiers, but the enemy here is Iran. Yes, Chamas’ inhumanity was a bloody eye-opener, but the real problem is the regime of Iran vis-à-vis Israel and Iran’s neighbors.

BTW: It is impossible to kill off all of Chamas because they are everywhere.

Uneven War and Morality

The IDF has a morality higher than International Law. Their actions aren’t conditional on whether the enemy is moral. However, if, while discussing or reporting on the Middle East, you hold one party (Israel) to morality and not the other, you are spreading falsehood and baseless hatred. BTW: War crimes by guerillas (not regular soldiers) are still war crimes. I believe that, in a letter to the editor of the Jerusalem Post, I was the first person who called shooting rockets from Gaza to target Israeli cities a war crime.

Warning Civilians

Israel has no obligation to warn civilians close to military targets. But as the only army in the world, it does that. It even found a way to separate terrorists from the civilian population by warning the latter if they were in harm’s way if they didn’t relocate. “War crime,” the Antisemites scream.


Putting a siege on an enemy army is a kinder thing to do than starting urban fighting when terrorists use civilians as human shields.

No army in the world has an obligation to feed an enemy army. It may allow aid to be distributed on condition it won’t go to the militants. But we know that Chamas would take it all and since it doesn’t care about the well-being, prosperity, or life of the population under their occupation.

Being kind to the wicked ends in being wicked to kind, the Talmud warns.

Lying by Timing

These methods are simple but effective and spread falsehood like wildfire.

Giving a ‘balanced’ report, but the headline, byline, and 90% of the rest of the item are from Palestinian sources, and a token soundbite from Israeli’s side is then added at the end of it, preferably with quotation marks. What’s worse is that all the Palestinian quotes are made up but get a pass.

Another trick is to publish something blatantly false. The sensation is then quickly carried by all the media. Later, you issue a retraction or correction, but the lies are circulated already, and outlets will leave it like that.

Big lettering accusing Israel, tiny letters saying it’s not clear if Israel did it:

And printing the words of terrorists above those of a democratic State.

When the IDF and the TOI come with proof of the truth after four hours, cyberspace is already saturated with the lie that we bombed a hospital.

Yet, proof doesn’t matter. Even if the bombing was a terrorist’s mistake, it’s all because of a correct effort to eradicate all Jews, so they are guilty.

False Reasonableness

“War is always terrible. Let’s get to a ceasefire.” You don’t say after a bank robbery to the pursuing police: Enough violence, already; let’s stop now.

October Seven was an Inside Job

Israel could not have failed so much unless it wanted to.” Probably an offspring of “Jews are a malicious, all-powerful cabal that runs the world.”

About the Author
MM is a prolific and creative writer and thinker, previously a daily blog contributor to the TOI. He often makes his readers laugh, mad, or assume he's nuts—close to perfect blogging. He's proud that his analytical short comments are removed both from left-wing and right-wing news sites. None of his content is generated by the new bore on the block, AI. * As a frontier thinker, he sees things many don't yet. He's half a prophet. Half. Let's not exaggerate. Or not at all because he doesn't claim G^d talks to him. He gives him good ideas—that's all. MM doesn't believe that people observe and think in a vacuum. He, therefore, wanted a broad bio that readers interested can track a bit what (lack of) backgrounds, experiences, and educations contribute to his visions. * This year, he will prioritize getting his unpublished books published rather than just blog posts. Next year, he hopes to focus on activism against human extinction. To find less-recent posts on a subject XXX among his over 2000 archived ones, go to the right-top corner of a Times of Israel page, click on the search icon and search "zuiden, XXX". One can find a second, wilder blog, to which one may subscribe too, here: or by clicking on the globe icon next to his picture on top. * Like most of his readers, he believes in being friendly, respectful, and loyal. However, if you think those are his absolute top priorities, you might end up disappointed. His first loyalty is to the truth. He will try to stay within the limits of democratic and Jewish law, but he won't lie to support opinions or people when don't deserve that. (Yet, we all make honest mistakes, which is just fine and does not justify losing support.) He admits that he sometimes exaggerates to make a point, which could have him come across as nasty, while in actuality, he's quite a lovely person to interact with. He holds - how Dutch - that a strong opinion doesn't imply intolerance of other views. * Sometimes he's misunderstood because his wide and diverse field of vision seldomly fits any specialist's box. But that's exactly what some love about him. He has written a lot about Psychology (including Sexuality and Abuse), Medicine (including physical immortality), Science (including basic statistics), Politics (Israel, the US, and the Netherlands, Activism - more than leftwing or rightwing, he hopes to highlight reality), Oppression and Liberation (intersectionally, for young people, the elderly, non-Whites, women, workers, Jews, LGBTQIA+, foreigners and anyone else who's dehumanized or exploited), Integrity, Philosophy, Jews (Judaism, Zionism, Holocaust and Jewish Liberation), the Climate Crisis, Ecology and Veganism, Affairs from the news, or the Torah Portion of the Week, or new insights that suddenly befell him. * Chronologically, his most influential teachers are his parents, Nico (natan) van Zuiden and Betty (beisye) Nieweg, Wim Kan, Mozart, Harvey Jackins, Marshal Rosenberg, Reb Shlomo Carlebach, and, lehavdil bein chayim lechayim, Rabbi Dr. Natan Lopes Cardozo, Rav Zev Leff, and Rav Meir Lubin. This short list doesn't mean to disrespect others who taught him a lot or a little. One of his rabbis calls him Mr. Innovation [Ish haChidushim]. Yet, his originalities seem to root deeply in traditional Judaism, though they may grow in unexpected directions. In fact, he claims he's modernizing nothing. Rather, mainly basing himself on the basic Hebrew Torah text, he tries to rediscover classical Jewish thought almost lost in thousands of years of stifling Gentile domination and Jewish assimilation. (He pleads for a close reading of the Torah instead of going by rough assumptions of what it would probably mean and before fleeing to Commentaries.) This, in all aspects of life, but prominently in the areas of Free Will, Activism, Homosexuality for men, and Redemption. * He hopes that his words will inspire and inform, and disturb the comfortable and comfort the disturbed. He aims to bring a fresh perspective rather than harp on the obvious and familiar. When he can, he loves to write encyclopedic overviews. He doesn't expect his readers to agree. Rather, original minds should be disputed. In short, his main political positions are among others: anti-Trumpism, for Zionism, Intersectionality, non-violence, anti those who abuse democratic liberties, anti the fake ME peace process, for original-Orthodoxy, pro-Science, pro-Free Will, anti-blaming-the-victim, and for down-to-earth, classical optimism, and happiness. Read his blog on how he attempts to bridge any tensions between those ideas or fields. * He is a fetal survivor of the pharmaceutical industry (, born in 1953 to his parents who were Dutch-Jewish Holocaust survivors who met in the largest concentration camp in the Netherlands, Westerbork. He grew up a humble listener. It took him decades to become a speaker too, and decades more to admit to being a genius. But his humility was his to keep. And so was his honesty. Bullies and con artists almost instantaneously envy and hate him. He hopes to bring new things and not just preach to the choir. * He holds a BA in medicine (University of Amsterdam) – is half a doctor. He practices Re-evaluation Co-counseling since 1977, is not an official teacher anymore, and became a friendly, powerful therapist. He became a social activist, became religious, made Aliyah, and raised three wonderful kids. Previously, for decades, he was known to the Jerusalem Post readers as a frequent letter writer. For a couple of years, he was active in hasbara to the Dutch-speaking public. He wrote an unpublished tome about Jewish Free Will. He's a strict vegan since 2008. He's an Orthodox Jew but not a rabbi. * His writing has been made possible by an allowance for second-generation Holocaust survivors from the Netherlands. It has been his dream since he was 38 to try to make a difference by teaching through writing. He had three times 9-out-of-10 for Dutch at his high school finals but is spending his days communicating in English and Hebrew - how ironic. G-d must have a fine sense of humor. In case you wonder - yes, he is a bit dyslectic. If you're a native English speaker and wonder why you should read from people whose English is only their second language, consider the advantage of having an original peek outside of your cultural bubble. * To send any personal reaction to him, scroll to the top of the blog post and click Contact Me. * His newest books you may find here:
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