unpublished comments regarding Ken O’Keefe and “arbitration”

Posted: 08/06/2011 by editormary in Uncategorized

In case someone missed the latest post on Salem-News about Mary Rizzo’s dossier on Ken O’ Keefe, here is the link.


A few comments have been posted under the article, which you can also read via the above link.

However, if you are reading this now, you can consider yourselves lucky, as here you can also read a few comments left in the website several hours ago, that have not yet been posted by the moderators.

I blame the time difference between Europe and the Pacific!



Mary Rizzo:

for a site that has a huge ad SCREW AMERICA I STAND WITH ISRAEL, that is some pulpit. I don’t need to engage with an unsolicited arbitor to “settle” an account or a “kerfuffle”: If he is so talented, the doctor should offer his pro bono services to straightening out Israel, with Tim King’s kind approval! I am convinced that humans are free to have the right to question any and all methods, procedures and aims.

Limiting this restricts their freedoms. I had also asked and invited Ken O’Keefe to be interviewed and he agreed, until it was made clear to him that he would not have the right to obtain the questions before the interview. No other party made any such demands, and he himself declined to be interviewed so as to respond in full to any and all issues that were raised. Thus, the responsibilty is firmly on his shoulders if he feels that his press statements, tweets, FB messages and internet articles and video appearances were not fully representative of his view. I believe that the fact that he takes such issue and that not a single point raised in the dossier (and look up the word Dr, apparently, you are unfamiliar with the word since you repeatedly take issue with it!) was ever challenged with any evidence to exclude the points raised as being fully valid. As to the rest, the public will be the judge, and it seems that at this point, relying on Ken’s personality to carry through is not suffiently adequate. It seems he has surrounded himself with pitbulls in a circus that thrives on rumour, lack of fact checking and character assassination. To each their own!


Mary Rizzo:

Actually, I think I owe Salem News a big thank you! Your continual interest in the work of PTT and now http://www.wewritewhatwelike.com has brought new readers and I imagine that people’s interests have been piqued, so along with the renewed exposure of an older article, we have gotten a slew of supportive letters and compliments for our efforts. Some of them are also from those who believed the whole “persona” of Ken and who have felt severely taken for a ride by him and demand accountability. So, keep it up, you are helping keep this information in the spotlight!


Christina Baseos:

@ M. Dennis Paul

Yes, you are correct about the inverted quotes. It was a typing error for which I apologize.

With regards to the contents of your reply, I would like to raise some points, since, with all due respect, it contains numerous legalisms.

Myself being a shipping professional, I am very familiar with the concepts of arbitration/mediation and the proceedings. In fact the arbitration/mediation clause recommended by BIMCO is an integral part in all contracts drafted. (https://www.bimco.org/Chartering/BIMCO%20Clauses/Dispute_Resolution_Clauses.aspx)

Moreover, the arbitration awards published are always carefully studied by the shipping community in order for various principles to be adopted and for possible future conflicts to be avoided.

Therefore, you are barking up the wrong tree.

You say that it’s not your responsibility to address any claims against Ken at this point. I would highly appreciate if you could advise why you feel like having the responsibility of addressing any claims against Mary, at this point.

Furthermore, you say that the omission of the term “alleged” is what makes Mary a biased journalist. May I ask if you have made any attempt to personally contact Mary Rizzo in order to verify whether she does indeed have evidence in her hands that support her writings?

And just for the sake of good order, Mary Rizzo could not have used the term “alleged” for an action that she clearly states never happened. Mary writes there was no kidnapping whatsoever based on evidence. So, maybe it would be better for you to address your concerns for the lack of the term “alleged” to the person and/or entity, who actually claim that a kidnapping existed in the first place and up to this date the burden of proof still lies with them.

Frankly speaking, I find your proposal of creating an organization, which will establish a code of conduct and will set up mediation proceedings for the resolution of possible disputes BETWEEN THE MEMBERS OF THE ORGANIZATION, quite interesting. Surely it will help in putting an order to the chaos that prevails the activists movement.

I honestly hope that your proposal will be lent a favorable ear by the “major players” within the movement. Assuming that such an organization has been established, membership conditions and dispute rules have been set-up, what makes you think that Ken O’Keefe, as an individual or as a representative of one of his own companies will be accepted within the organization?

Someone who offers his services as an arbitrator/mediator for the resolution of a dispute, requires first and foremost mutual acceptance by the opponents. When a possible future arbitrator publicly writes his thoughts and opinions (or comments on the merits of the case), either against or in favour of one of the involved opponents, before all information and evidence having been made available to him by both parties, then this action immediately constitutes grounds for his exclusion from the position of becoming the arbitrator of the case. Can you imagine a judge making comments publicly or writing articles about a case prior to the verdict?

You say “In the case where an organization is involved, this outcome is, most often, necessarily biased in favor of the organization’s operation, needs and success.”.

I second that, however given the prerequisite that justice and truth are fundamental principles of the organization and that these values will be served no matter what. Without this prerequisite both justice & truth are at risk of being sacrificed in the name of the organization’s scopes, widely known also as “cover-up”.

As if there is anything that Ken has or has not done that seriously affects the movement, from the second that there is a significant number of people doubting his actions (and this is not about majority) by raising questions, then it’s imperative for answers to be given. Depending on the answers provided, then you, me, anyone will be able to come to a conclusion of whether he has “seriously” harmed the movement or not. For the time being, he is creating “splitting” with his own actions by avoiding to give answers.

To conclude, you claim that “What she has written, and the manner with which it was written joined with the fact that it was offered publicly has harmed the movement and the Palestinians”.

What is it that you imply here? That one should only praise a movement and the actions taken by its members when everything goes fine & works out properly and successfully, but when there are mishandlings , failures & fiascos to remain silent, not make them public, ignore them and act as if nothing has ever happened and just keep on with our lives?

I fail to understand why one who makes serious allegations and accusations of penal nature, in public, is not considered as harm to the Palestinian movement, while at the same time when one of the movement’s own members is being publicly criticized about his actions and code of conduct, this is considered as harm to the movement.

The lack of criticism and silence in perpetuity are what actually cause harm, not only to the Palestinian movement but to any movement. Lack of transparency is what discourages people from joining movements. And last but not least, it takes a lot of courage and most importantly integrity to be ready, willing and able to stand up and point out mistakes made by your own people, but, fortunately or unfortunately, this is the only way that will ensure that Truth will always prevail and co-exist with Justice & Peace.

N.B: Please allow me a comment of personal nature. When someone, who writes an article and comments on a dispute between two parties, chooses to embellish it with a picture of one of the two involved parties showed in a ceremony, then he is at great risk of being accused of indulging in cheap marketing tricks and his objectivity and equal treatment become questionable.

  1. Mary Rizzo says:

    a new comment: Tim, are you a conspiracy nut or do you truly and honestly believe that criticism of a person who you like is the work of Israel? I would like proof of it, I think that everyone would. In the world I come from, we allow ourselves the intellectual honesty to expect that there is accountability / rights to criticise. You seem to forget that there are many Palestinians who truly believe Ken is a bane to them. This is their business, and they have presented reams of argument to support their view. Are they too being set up by Israel? Isn’t this kind of smearing straight out of the Hasbara Handbook? If you have proof, you are required to come out with it. Otherwise, it is only smears. You seem to have tremendous difficulty in understanding that throughout Ken’s past, he has severely turned off many activists. I imagine you never saw the Journeyman video where they voted him out of their sight. He was considered as a negative element to the others who feared for their safety. He pretended he was kidnapped (the event I investigated). It was false! If you have proof he was kidnapped, you must present it. You already published conflicting things on it, which were included in the report that gives you the shakes, because it demonstrates you do not use journalistic standards such as fact checking and cross verification. You take as truth anything said by someone you like.

    you ask who else refused to be interviewed? I don’t know why this interests you particularly, but only one person wanted it dearly, the spokesperson of RTH, but she wanted it only after it was published because she wanted to explain her quotes, all taken from public venues. During the actual investigation, she did not respond to my solicitiation. However, I have a long letter from her when she is informed that the entire conversation will be taped, as is my habit, and she then refused to be interviewed. So, apparently, having one be fully on record is not in her interests, she wants to invent that she is misquoted, perhaps? I don’t know. But of the others who were interviewed, none of them set any conditions at all and all of them were totally in the dark of the content of the report until they saw it published. I did not work with them, I had no side to favour and I wanted facts to emerge. Facts emerged and they are evident to any honest human being.

    You label me as a liar. I would like you to specifically state where in the article or in any of the comments I lie. I do not believe that it is sufficient for you to state it. You are not a reliable person and you have a loyalty issue to Ken that refuses to allow anything to tarnish the hero image that you believe is giving you a reason for living, by reading what you write. Palestine existed long before Ken, and it will exist in spite of Ken causing issues that damage their cause by his recklessness and character. Your appraisal of Anna Oleary by the way is extremely humourous. I have a FB note that is open for anyone. I hope you do take a look: http://www.facebook.com/note.php?note_id=10150392235956959 you will see that she is overjoyed that the other person Ken has ordered to harass his “enemies” has “found” a picture proving I am paid by Israel. Too bad the joke is on her. She also claims that since my site is called P T T that it is part of the Washington think tanks and many other incredible things. I am sure that since she is so busy smearing, she has no time to actually look anything up, but certainly, she could do a little bit better, perhaps you should train her some. you both have the hero worship down pat!

  2. Christina Baseos says:

    Let’s see when this will reach the Pacific!

    Dear Tim,

    As I am a person who prefers positive thinking, when I have a discussion with someone I try to first find things that we actually agree on and then I find the ones that we disagree about. To my surprise, however gladly, I realized from your comments that we actually agree on more things that I would have thought.

    With regards to your first comment.
    Agreed! You are absolutely right that one example of gathering information is to ask the person one is writing about to respond to questions. In case you’ve missed it, Ken was asked to answer questions regarding the RTH convoy. He was actually asked to be interviewed. The exchange of messages is documented, I trust you have read it!
    It is no one’s fault though that Ken decided to flatly reject the proposal. It goes without saying that it was his right to reject but what’s the point of crying over spilled milk now?
    As for the “sake of clarity”, if something is unclear to you from what Ken himself has written in his numerous short/long/old/new/updated biographies in various websites, may I suggest you take advantage of your “personal ability” and ask Ken directly to clarify anything that is not clear or sounds vague to you?
    The fact that you know Ken O’Keefe very well, as well as members of his family, is not a counter-argument that provides answers to questions, doubts and concerns about his actions nor is it proof supporting the opposite of any allegations made against him
    Ken is a “great reporter”! Agreed!
    I’ve got no reason not to believe you. Indeed it takes tremendous skill and talent to record yourself holding the camera with one hand, while walking and talking at the same time. Not to mention the audio/visual effects inserted in his “reports”.

    I applaud you for being a supporter of freedom of speech and for your democratic views for someone, who is an Associate Editor in your website, to “feel free to add” his thoughts on a subject.
    We agree on that as well!

    Mary’s article was damaging. Agreed!
    And the purpose of it was to reveal the truth about the RTH fiasco. Truth can be damaging and can hurt sometimes.

    Ken is a “hero” and “sort of the ultimate one man band for humanity”. Agreed!
    After all he is an ex-marine, a licensed captain, a survivor of the MMM, a survivor of a “kidnapping”, an official “body identifier” since he “identified Vik’s body”, an excellent reporter, leader of convoys, entrepreneur and probably many other things. It takes a lot of “heroism” to do what Ken does!
    You claim I’m no advocate of Palestine. As Luigi Pirandello would say, “it is so, if you think so”. There is nothing I can do to change your opinion on that. But since you asked, I am an advocate of truth, justice and yes, peace. I believe that Ken hasn’t copyrighted these terms, so I also am allowed to be their advocate. I am taking liberty of using a sentence written by your colleague, Mr. M. Dennis Paul: “That I am not a “name” in the “game” such as yourself is solely due to my having had need to keep things subdued to a level acceptable to me and not ever having need or desire to be in the limelight”.
    I don’t see why this can work for Mr. M. Dennis Paul and not for me as well.

    With reference to what you claim that attacking Ken is like an attack on Palestine itself, do you happen to know if the Palestinians share your views of identifying themselves with Ken? Do they agree with the identification of their struggle with an individual?
    It would be reasonable for Israel to waste time & money in attacking/destroying/sabotaging organizations or their members with a proven successful track record, such as the VP, the FGM, the ISM, etc. What is not reasonable is for Israel to waste time & money in sabotaging an individual with a proven track record of failures, who whenever engages into a project, this is doomed to fail anyway, due to a number of reasons. The negative publicity that follows those failures & fiascos has such a damaging impact to the movement that even a Zionist with the wildest imagination wouldn’t have thought!

  3. M. Dennis Paul, Ph.D. says:

    I do know the meaning of “dossier” which is precisely why I addressed your inappropriate use of the word “in the classical sense”. I have been preparing appropriate dossiers for over 20 years. Absent all of your blog commentary, and presented in an accepted “dossier” format, you could more accurately call such presentation a dossier. What you have offered would never gain acceptance as a dossier in any proper venue of review.

    Ludicrous comments, among which is this most recent “If he is so talented, the doctor should offer his pro bono services to straightening out Israel, with Tim King’s kind approval! ” aside, it remains that resolving any issues will not occur through some misguided belief that “evidence” is equal to proof and that the appropriate venue for resolving such claims is the blog from which emanated the initial accusations/allegations. The degree of rabid insinuations and claims regarding ex-military, Zionist sleepers, and the like that have been generated through responses from all quarters to this blog evidences the inability of this blog to act as an effective venue for resolution. Personally, I find this level of exchange so distasteful and unproductive.

    Where a “journalist” acts in the guise of prime investigator, prosecutor, judge and jury it is absolutely appropriate that the accused NOT subject themselves to such an ego driven self authorized tribunal. Personally, even in the event that you had afforded a series of questions in advance to Ken, I would have advised him to not respond.

    I have clearly stated that both parties, Mary and Ken, may well have issues that warrant review and that ADR (Alternative Dispute Resolution) is the most appropriate methodology for effecting an honest and sincere resolution. In my mind, what remains is your (Mary) simple yes or no response to the following: Are you willing to place this matter before ADR (my services not offered here) and seek a genuine, sincere resolve?

  4. jayn0t says:

    I’m glad this has come up again. Mary is generally in the right, even if her sense of humor failed her when she saw the parody ‘Screw America – Stand With Israel’ on the Salem News website. Ken claimed to have been abducted on a Greek ship. He was lying. A person who invents stories like this is untrustworthy. That’s really all there is too it.

  5. Mary Rizzo says:

    jay, actually, you are not correct here for one good reason: it is that we have been for a very long time informing other activists that there are sites that are run by Israel or pro-Israel persons that utilise spyware and malware. I think that a person in favour of Palestine would not need to click on such a site to “know” what it is, if if were legit, that is, and thus there would not be much reason to visit it. The Better Safe Than Sorry policy for activists is one that has helped us avoid disaster, and thus a normal activist would avoid clicking on an obviously Zionist site, so humour or not, it is not effective because it untrains us in a safety operation we habitually follow.

    Dr.; read this in the meantime: https://wewritewhatwelike.com/2011/08/08/the-ken-okeefe-dispute-gatekeepers/ but let’s just respond to your question. I do not believe that a journalist is required to reconcile with the subject of their report! So, NO.
    Lastly, I am totally convinced you had not read my report or the comments. Thus I also do not seek to waste time with someone so hypocritical as yourself who dictates proper behaviour (do not do “trial by blog”, yet write not one, but two trials by blog when you have not even in any way engaged the parties that you are sentencing. I find this clearly hypocritical and find you to be extremely rude. That said, i am so surprised you have such trouble over the word Dossier. Evidently you do not recognise that the DOSSIER you wish to attack (by attacking its author) contains an article and a series of related lengthy documents in the form of footnotes, included in them, email exchanges, estimates for freight services, portions of interviews, extracts from other sources, a letter from Egypt and various definitions. Indeed, in the languages I speak, this is the appropriate term for such a presentation of an argument.

  6. Mary Rizzo says:

    but again Jay, you are indeed correct about your conclusion!!

  7. Mary Rizzo says:

    and the doctor insists that ignoring evidence is the way to go… I rest my case on his usefulness in arbitration!

  8. M. Dennis Paul, Ph.D. says:


    Please list the two trials by blog that you claim I have written. I believe it is important for people to have opportunity to read them. I’ve only written two articles in the past week so it should not be difficult. One has nothing to do with you, at least directly, and the other criticizes your diatribe and approach while appealing for a better approach. It is quite another example of your apparent dishonesty to attempt characterizing either in the same vein as your diatribe “dossier”. And, again, please show where I have ever stated that ignoring evidence is the way to go. “the doctor insists that ignoring evidence is the way to go”. I will expect a retraction of all such blatantly false comments.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s