Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Amnesty International: Israel Is A State Of Creeps--Not Scum (Update: AI Has A One-Track Mind)

I'm glad we got that straightened out.

Tundra Tabloids first blogged yesterday that the Chairman of Finnish Amnesty International Calls Israel a scum state. That would be Finland's AI chairman Frank Johansson, who wrote the following in his blog:
"A friend of mine who works in Israel, was visiting while piling wood in the shed, we got into his favourite topic. Several years of residence in the holy country, he has come to the conclusion that "Israel is a scum state". On the basis of my own visit, which occurred during the 1970s and 1990s for the final time, I agree."
Now we find out that Johansson was mistranslated:

Also Tuesday, a spokeswoman for Amnesty International’s headquarters in London, Susanne Flood, told the Post in a telephone interview that “Amnesty would never use an expression like this toward the State of Israel, or any other state.”

Flood said that Johansson used the phrase “creep state” to describe Israel, rather than “scum,” as the initial English translation of the Finnish word found. Native Finnish speakers from Tundra Tabloids said the Finnish term used by Johansson to denigrate Israel is a “highly derogatory term,” and is frequently translated as “scum,” “scum bag” or “douche bag.”
Google translation doesn't help:

So it looks like Johannson now joins Ahmadinejad as a member of those whose comments are about Israel are misunderstood and mistranslated.

Johannson is reminiscent of ambassador Daniel Bernard, who in 2001 referred to Israel as "that sh***y little country Israel"--the difference being that Bernard didn't apologize.

Well, Johansson didn't actually apologize--he just took down the post, which can be seen in all its glory on Tundra, and can also be seen in a cached copy, while it lasts.

And as for Johannson, he serves as one more reminder of the professional objectivity we have come to expect of all (self-proclaimed) human rights groups and activists.

Hat tip: Yaacov Lozowick's Ruminations

UPDATE: I hear that Amnesty International has now admitted that the word Johannson used means scum, and have completely disassociated from his statement.

That being said, I wonder what AI will say about this post from the Amnesty International Finland site:
Eurooppalainen ihmisoikeusongelma: Romaneja kohdellaan kuin roskaa
According to google, it translates as:
European human rights problem: the Roma are treated like crap
AI Finland seems to have a one track mind.

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