Light, Light, Light Is Coming Into Our Lives (on Israel/Palestine)

US Politics
on 20 Comments

Last night at the Brecht Forum, I heard Joel Kovel, author of Overcoming Zionism, and this morning I need to shout that There is light coming into Americans’ lives on this issue. Everything I’ve said on this blog, about "The tide is ours," and "There will be a robust debate about this issue in America soon" is coming to pass. I feel this way because Kovel made the following points:

–He participated in a forum two weeks back in Chicago, with two other Jews, one of them Tony Karon, on Post-Zionism. 150 people were in the room, many of them young Jews. This would never have taken place two years ago.

–The campaign to commemorate the Nakba would also have been unheard of a couple years back, in American alternative culture. It is now a big deal on the left. Events in Brooklyn on May 21, at Columbia University next Monday with Nadia Abu El-Haj, lately in the New Yorker, plus "No Time to Celebrate," the Jewish campaign to recognize the Nakba. Major progress.

–A "chipping away" has taken place over a long time, with the help of the New Historians, that is finally making a difference in the discourse on Israel, Kovel proclaimed. He has done about 100 events in the last year or so, he said, and things have changed. He still gets the "catcalls" and venom from pro-Israel supporters. But it’s subsided. "They more or less leave you alone. They don’t know what to say, or they’ve gone under their flat rock." I’ve noticed that too. Fewer enraged deniers…

–The Establishment is fracturing before our eyes. An important discussion has begun inside the foreign policy elite about whether Israel is in our best interest. Walt and Mearsheimer was a huge event. It signalled the end of consensus in the elite. I complain all the time on this blog about the marginalization of Walt and Mearsheimer. But Kovel is saying, and I agree, that their ideas are seeping, seeping in, like water into a rock, that will break down a mountain. Believe me, soon this issue will make the mainstream media.

–The neocons are ultra-Zionists. They built the Iraq war. The debacle is also feeding this process.

The world is changing, let me say it again. Light is coming into American lives!

20 Responses

  1. jonathan ekman
    April 23, 2008, 11:15 am

    The views of the elite (Jews and Judaized
    non-Jews) are not changing. The three
    candidates, the political power-brokers,
    the Wall Street money-men, the molders of
    opinion, the owners of the corporate media,
    as well as the leaders of Jewish organizations will not be influenced by small
    numbers of informed but powerless American
    voices crying in the wilderness.

  2. bondo
    April 23, 2008, 11:30 am

    a light is coming but the darkness is extreme. life cannot wait.

  3. Jim Haygood
    April 23, 2008, 11:45 am


    Just as the economy has leading and lagging indicators, so does social change. Events that pick up significant under-30 participation are a leading indicator, for sure.

    Among lagging indicators, the MSM places next to last. Even its audience — we Boomers — are freaking old and out of it. Newspaper reading is a geriatric habit — no young adults get ink-stained fingers anymore from flipping the gray pages of the Slimes.

    Government, of course, is the caboose on that slow-moving train. It will notice that supporting zionism was a bad idea, after the oil runs out and the lights go off. Then we can all sing Kumbaya together in the dark, LOL! But the kids won't know the words …

  4. Richard Witty
    April 23, 2008, 12:21 pm

    Support of Israel, in word and deed, is the light.

    Support of Palestine, in word and deed, is also the light.

    Thats what peace is.

  5. Jim Haygood
    April 23, 2008, 12:24 pm


    Here's what happens when leading indicators slam head-on into lagging indicators — CHAOS!


    A Brown University student was apprehended by Brown University police last night after allegedly throwing a green pie container filled with what appeared to be green whipped cream at a New York Times columnist who had been invited to speak to students about energy.

    The two rushed the stage with the pies, and then threw fliers into the crowd which aired their criticisms of Friedman’s views on the free market and climate change. Thomas Friedman ducked the pies, which were thrown by two people who rushed the stage just after he stepped to the microphone. He avoided the brunt of the contents, stepped off stage for a few minutes, and returned to deliver his speech.

    link to


    Damned green fanatics! Maybe this is what upset them:

    "Ann and Thomas Friedman live in Bethesda, Maryland, a suburb of Washington, D.C. The July 2006 issue of Washingtonian reported that they own 'a palatial 11,400-square-foot house, currently valued at $9.3 million, on a 7½-acre parcel just blocks from I-495 and Bethesda Country Club.'"

    link to

  6. Ed
    April 23, 2008, 12:45 pm

    I hate to dampen the bonfire, but even if Obama wins, what, exactly, is he inheriting other than a bad war, a ton of Bush debt and a "bitter" American populace? Obama isn't smart enough to overcome all that, as his truly stupid crack in front of a bunch of San Francisco left-wing dilettantes, deviants and metro-sexuals demonstrated.
    Are we just switching the Marxist Jewish lobby for the Marxist black one? The Democrats, after all, were the party that ushered the Jewish Zionists into power. Maybe Obama will invade Africa.
    We need a strict constitutionalist leader who knows how to get America back on sound financial footing, restore American morality, and take back control of the US military from the hands of these stunted Marxists, tribalists and money worshippers who suffer from poor impulse control and an oversized victim complex.
    Black-Marxist Obama vs Insane McCain in the general? This may be an election where a third party candidacy can strike a painful blow to the two-party scam.

  7. LeaNder
    April 23, 2008, 12:49 pm

    Interesting use of "Neues Kabarett"(New Cabaret)for music!?!

    link to

    We use the term Kabarett for political cabaret mainly, that may include songs or music but must not.

    link to

  8. Charles Keating
    April 23, 2008, 1:14 pm

    Support of Israel, in word and deed, is the light.

    Support of Palestine, in word and deed, is also the light.

    Thats what peace is.

    So the accountant labels his accountant baskets. Accounting, the profession that masks at least or more as much it illuminates, depending on who pays the accountant, and how much. Similarly, stock appraiser, home appraiser, congressmen, lobbyist. What a joke.

    The only thing funnier is the insurance industry.

    And the boys without legs.

  9. Richard Witty
    April 23, 2008, 1:32 pm

    Is there a reason that you ridicule so much?

    I'm an accountant that is committed to candor, in all respects that I conduct any accounting of anything.

    There is a difference between candor and condemnation.

    Condemnation constructs humiliation. It is too great an irony for those that claim to be seeking the greater good, to adopt condemnation and ridicule as their means to that.

    Whether that is Norman Podhoretz, Phil Weiss, Richard Witty, or Charles Keating.

  10. Richard Witty
    April 23, 2008, 1:36 pm

    Are you sincere in describing the neo-conservative desire to protect Israel, rather than the conservative (neo and old) desire to protect the supply chain of oil, as the primary motive to invade Iraq?

  11. Polly
    April 23, 2008, 1:50 pm

    I hope Phil's enthusiasm is justified but I fear that the Israel lobby is like a computer virus that once removed will simply re-launch itself.
    How do you beat the organized zealotry? How do you attack the withering obfuscation of Perle/Dershowitz et al? How do you deal with AIPAC or the fact that the average person probably knows next to nothing about any of this.

  12. Charles Keating
    April 23, 2008, 2:05 pm

    Israel's supply of oil depends entirely on the USA, so there's no
    inconsistency here. The USA has a Memorandum Of Understanding (we have tons of them with Israel as distinguished from, e.g., treaties or other publically vetted pacts)
    that guarantees oil for Israel, even at the expense of USA domestic needs. Check it out; info easily available on the internet.

    I'm more for the greater good of ordinary Americans than the whole world. First things first, especially when it comes to those Americans who most pay the piper proportionately in blood and money sweat. So, Witty, you're most interested in all humankind? Maybe, you should start more locally, just to firm up a base for your humanitarian idealism. Tell your son to join the US Army, not the IDF, if you think we are involved in a war of simple good and evil. If you think differently, I fail to see what issue you have with

  13. Charles Keating
    April 23, 2008, 2:12 pm

    PS: Not so long ago on this blog, to your credit, Witty, you admitted you cut some corners early in your accountant career to assure your family would be in the style to which you all felt you were entitled to–so, since you say you are an an accountant that is committed to candor, in all respects that you conduct any accounting of anything, why do you have a problem with Phil, who continually puts himself on the line in the interest of candor, and at his own expense, and being subject to tar-brushing from all ideological sides? Phil's the real moral accountant. As a Jew, you should be especially proud of him. Your kid should join the US Army or Marines to protect him. What could be more idealistic? More humane, looking at all humans as one tribe?

  14. Ed
    April 23, 2008, 2:22 pm

    "Are you sincere in describing the neo-conservative desire to protect Israel, rather than the conservative (neo and old) desire to protect the supply chain of oil, as the primary motive to invade Iraq?"

    Richard, please read the following article, which convincingly argues that Israel, not oil, was the primary motive for the entire Bush admin, and probably the Democrats and Republicans who voted for the Iraq war, to invade Iraq. Here are two pertinent paragraphs: (note, the $3-5 trillion the author refers to is the cost of the invasion thus far).

    "Most U.S. oil comes from Canada, Mexico, and Venezuela. The best way for the U.S. to ensure its oil supplies would be to protect the dollar's role as world reserve currency. Moreover, $3-5 trillion would have purchased a tremendous amount of oil. Prior to the U.S. invasions, the U.S. oil import bill was running less than $100 billion per year. Even in 2006 total U.S. imports from OPEC countries was $145 billion, and the U.S. trade deficit with OPEC totaled $106 billion. Three trillion dollars could have paid for U.S. oil imports for 30 years; $5 trillion could pay the U.S. oil bill for a half century had the Bush regime preserved a sound dollar.

    "The more likely explanation for the U.S. invasion of Iraq is the neoconservative Bush regime's commitment to the defense of Israeli territorial expansion. There is no such thing as a neoconservative who is not allied with Israel. Israel hopes to steal all of the West Bank and southern Lebanon for its territorial expansion. An American colonial regime in Iraq not only buttresses Israel from attack, but also can pressure Syria and Iran not to support the Palestinians and Lebanese. The Iraqi war is a war for Israeli territorial expansion. Americans are dying and bleeding to death financially for Israel. Bush's "war on terror" is a hoax that serves to cover U.S. intervention in the Middle East on behalf of "greater Israel." — Paul Craig Roberts.
    link to
    Richard, quit trying to scapegoat oil companies for the lies and schemes of the Judaized Congress, Jewish and Christian Zionists, and the elitist, supremacist, hierarchical mentality they represent. Ye shall know them by their fruits, Richard. The Iraq war is their fruit. And it's poisonous. The schemers should be made to choke on it. Zio-Marxist lies won’t be able to prevent that.

  15. Jim Haygood
    April 23, 2008, 2:25 pm


    "So the accountant labels his accountant baskets." — Charles Keating

    Accountant baskets? Man, I thought it was Haiku. Tried to rewrite it in 5-7-5 meter, but it just don't scan. Help me, Richard:

    Israel is light
    Palestine also is light
    That is what peace is

    Om-m-m-m-m-m …

  16. Charles Keating
    April 23, 2008, 2:34 pm

    Anyone who ever had to keep a corporate budget fills in the catagory baskets one by one, item by item, on the spreadsheet. Talk about tailoring the thing for what result you want, it happens every day to keep the tailor in business, whether to avoid IRS taxes or bomb feeble places like Iraq, or, next Iran.

  17. Charles Keating
    April 23, 2008, 2:38 pm

    The question is, to what purpose? For American politicians, it's simply to gain, or stay in power, which is a concern in our plutocracy. For AIPAC, it's Never Again, or so they think, having learned nothing from Nuremberg and never caring about fairness. Blowback, in the end, doesn't lack. If you really care about individual humans, this is not the way to go. But politics isn't about individuals…

  18. Richard Witty
    April 23, 2008, 4:38 pm

    "PS: Not so long ago on this blog, to your credit, Witty, you admitted you cut some corners early in your accountant career to assure your family would be in the style to which you all felt you were entitled to"

    I said that like EVERY professional, I experienced pressures that challenged me ethically, which I successfully met.

    You like to demean habitually, and falsely. Why is that?

  19. Rowan Berkeley
    April 24, 2008, 9:09 am

    "light, light!"? more like self-induced hysteria. Still, it should help to discredit and distract from the efforts of JStreet & Co. to create some sort of focus in American Jewish zionism other than that of the manufacturers of ballistic missiles and fighter-bombers, so if you ask them nicely, Phil, these manufacturers should put you on their PR payroll.

  20. Charles Keating
    April 24, 2008, 12:39 pm

    Re: "I experienced pressures that challenged me ethically, which I successfully met."

    Ah, you had your cake and ate it too. Congratulations!

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