Feeling the loyalty to the Jewish state

The Israeli Knesset is debating a bill proposed by David Rotem of the extreme right Yisrael Beiteinu party that would require all Israeli citizens to swear loyalty to Israel as a “Jewish and democratic state.” This bill is targeted at increasing pressure on the twenty percent of Israelis who are Palestinian citizens while forcing the ultra Orthodox Jewish minority who reject the legitimacy of any state not based on Jewish biblical law to accept Zionism. If passed in its proposed form, citizens unwilling to take the loyalty oath would be at risk of losing citizenship.

Israeli leaders committed to a classic secular political Zionist platform have always fought at all costs to guard Israel’s “Jewish character,” even while they reveal their inability to properly define exactly what it is. The loyalty oath and push for a two-state solution are the most profound examples of the insecurity that has roiled beneath the surface in Jewish Israeli society since the state’s inception. Without a Jewish majority exhibiting clear legal and political dominance over the non-Jewish or non-Zionist minority, the Zionist movement becomes meaningless. So as the Palestinian-Israeli minority actively resists its dispossession and the ultra-Orthodox stubbornly reject the concept of a Jewish state, the Israeli establishment feels increasingly compelled to seek draconian measures to salvage its vision of Zionism.

The loyalty oath was one of the main platform issues for Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman’s far right Yisrael Beitenu party when it campaigned in 2009. “No citizenship without loyalty,” was among Lieberman’s most effective campaign slogans (his other slogan: “Only Lieberman speaks Arabic”), helping guide his party to an astonishing third place, with 15 of the 120 seats in Israeli Parliament. The draft bill currently debated in the Parliament would allow the Interior Ministry to strip even native Israelis of their nationality if they refused to swear allegiance to the Jewish state and “its symbols and values,” and failed to profess their willingness to perform military service. Abraham Foxman, the national director of the Anti-Defamation League, has explicitly endorsed the bill.

After the proposed law failed its first reading in the Knesset due to opposition from a handful of liberal members of the ruling Likud party, Yisrael Beiteinu released the following statement: “Yisrael Beitenu will continue to act for Israel’s basis as a Jewish, Zionist and democratic state and will fight against disloyalty and the negative exploitation of Israeli democracy.” In July, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s cabinet has approved a similar bill requiring all new citizens to take an oath of loyalty to the Jewish state. The measure would make attaining citizenship nearly impossible for Palestinians residing inside Israel.

The following month, we met the loyalty bill’s author, David Rotem, at his home in the illegal West Bank settlement of Efrat. A self-described “very Zionistic” politician with a hulking frame and a pronounced limp resulting from a bout of polio, Rotem described in a gravely voice his vision of Israeli democracy. “Tyranny of the majority is the heart of democracy,” he declared. “Call it what you want but democracy is the rule of the majority. And it’s not a tyranny if the majority decides against the minorities.”

Besides the loyalty oath bill, political factions ranging from far-right settler parties to opposition leader Tzipi Livni’s centrist Kadima Party have proposed no less than 14 pieces of legislation this year which the Association for Civil Rights in Israel defines as anti-democratic. (Rotem is the author of six of the bills). They include laws that would send citizens to jail for encouraging the rejection of Israel as a Jewish state, strip filmmakers of state funding if their work was deemed anti-Israel, and prosecute any Israeli who publishes material calling for a boycott of Israel. Other lesser-publicized bills have been introduced to block Palestinian residents of Israel from returning to confiscated land or from reuniting with family members from the West Bank or Gaza.

While leftist Israelis chant, “Fascism will not pass!” at demonstrations in East Jerusalem, former Knesset member and commentator Yossi Sarid entitled a recent column, “Fascism is already here.” Citing the swath of anti-democratic bills being debated in the Knesset, the support Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his cabinet have offered for most of them, and the near total lack of opposition from the Israeli mainstream, Sarid remarked, “Israeli democracy is mainly for decoration, like a tree grown for its beauty, not to bear fruit. Few people actually use it or the rights it affords.”

Of all the anti-democratic bills recently introduced in the Knesset, Rotem’s loyalty law carries the most disturbing undertones, recalling some of the darkest periods in recent history. Well before the Nazi government initiated its campaign of genocide against Germany’s Jewish minority, its political leadership introduced the “stab-in-the-back” legend, accusing Jews in a virtual mantra of disloyalty to the German army and a general lack of patriotism. During the anticommunist furor of America’s McCarthy era, teachers and lawmakers in several states were forced to sign loyalty oaths to prove they were not “subversive,” prompting a crackdown on public servants, including a disproportionate number of Jews, who believed their constitutional rights were being violated.

In Israel, a right-wing student group called Im Tirtzu which has gained endorsements from Netanyahu and his education minister Gideon Saar has demanded a purge of all “post-Zionist and anti-Zionist” professors from the university system. To support Im Tirtzu’s campaign, a popular Israeli singer named Amir Benayoun recorded a song hectoring Israeli leftists and Arabs for “knifing” Israel in the back. It contained the following lyrics:

After they failed to kill me from the outside You come and kill me from inside
I always charge forward with my back to you But you sharpen the knife

An Experiment In Fascism

With a fascist mood permeating Israeli government and society, we set out into the streets of central Jerusalem to engage young revelers on the issue of loyalty. Because Israel is debating legislation claiming that it is alone the Jewish sovereign state and has the authority to speak in the name of the “Jewish people,” we thought that the opinions of supporters of Israel from the Jewish diaspora were an essential element in any discussion about the proposed loyalty bill. Given the already simmering controversy over ‘dual loyalty’ in the United States, the topic needed to be explored thoroughly and unflinchingly. Did the Zionist loyalty oath represent a fulcrum point in the ‘dual loyalty’ debate for diaspora Jews? Would diaspora Jews have any objection to taking an oath to defend the Jewish state? If so, did that put their allegiance to their country of residence in question?

Ultimately, we sought to determine the extent to which the Jewish public in Israel and abroad was ready to accept fascism in any form. To get a better sense of public opinion — an incomplete snapshot, but a sense nonetheless — we asked interview subjects if they would swear before our camera an oath of loyalty to the Jewish state. Our oath was deliberately crafted with the most provocative language possible, based almost word-for-word on the Führereid, or the oath that Wehrmacht soldiers had to swear to Adolph Hitler from 1934 to 1945.

The Wehrmacht oath read as follows:

I swear by God this holy oath, that I want to offer unconditional obedience to the Fuhrer of the German Empire and people, Adolf Hitler, the commander-in-chief of the Wehrmacht, and be prepared as a brave soldier to risk my life for this oath at any time.

And here is the oath of loyalty to the Jewish state that our interview subjects read on camera:

I swear by Hashem [the Jewish God] that I want to offer unconditional loyalty to the Jewish state of Israel, to its leaders and the commanders of its Jewish army. I am prepared as a loyal supporter of the Jewish state to risk my life for this oath at any time.

Were we suggesting that the Jewish state of Israel represented a new incarnation of Hitler’s Third Reich? Of course not. We repudiate sweeping comparisons of Israel to Nazi Germany as shallow and ahistorical. Instead, we imagined our video project as a version of the “Third Wave” experiment undertaken by history teacher Ron Jones at Cubberly High School in Southern California in 1967.

Seeking to demonstrate the susceptibility of average citizens to fascism, Jones ordered his students to accept a regimen of strict discipline and community including sig heil salutes, responding to questions while standing and in three words or less, and carrying membership cards at all times. “Strength through discipline,” was the motto of the movement Jones claimed to be promoting. By the fourth day of the experiment, the students’ enthusiasm for the project had spread to other classes throughout the school. Finally, Jones ordered his students to attend a rally where a presidential candidate from their “Third Wave” movement would announce his candidacy. When the students arrived, however, Jones revealed to them that they had been subjects in an experiment about the appeal of fascism, and that they had eagerly replicated the structure of Nazi German society.

Our own experiment exposed an equally disturbing trend among the young Israelis and Jewish supporters of Israel we spoke to. In some cases, our interview subjects eagerly requested to read the loyalty oath on camera without any prompting, and added their own personal touch to it — usually they emphasized phrases like “Jewish state” and “Jewish army.” These subjects were generally new immigrants who had left their families behind in order to join the army and a brand new life in Israel. Jewish internationals (most were studying at Jerusalem-area yeshivas for the year) who took the oath defended it on the basis that Israel was a state for the Jews, and therefore did not have to comply with the regulations of normal Western democracies. Only two interviewees refused to take the oath. Though they based their refusal on the possibility that Israel might commit grave human rights crimes in the distant future, they were admittedly unable to define the nature of the abuses that would turn them against the state.

If our interviews demonstrated anything, it is that anyone in any country can fall prey to the psychological lures of fascism. Jews are no exception.

This article originally appeared on Alternet. Max Blumenthal is an award-winning journalist and bestselling author based in New York City. Joseph Dana is a writer and filmmaker living in Jerusalem.

Posted in Israel/Palestine | Tagged , , , , ,

{ 126 comments... read them below or add one }

  1. syvanen says:

    Well Max has done it again. This is brilliant and what a simple way to make the point.

    • idiocr4cy says:

      neocons contempt for America/Canada is revealing in these videos. Likudniks are teaching ordinary americans to describe american muslims as muslims first and american second, while in actuality they themselvs put the Likud party above all.

      • Kathleen says:

        So willing to reveal their bigotry and arrogance. Amazing that these kids from the U.s. are so willing to shed their blood for the state of Israel and not so willing to join the military of the country they live in. Height of hypocrisy.

        The one young lady said that she had done her research on the Palestinians. Bullshit.

        the other kid said he would go fight in the West Bank. Either has no idea or does not care that the West Bank is internationally recognized as Palestinian land. who cares let’s go get it.

        Thanks for your work Max

        • eljay says:

          >> the other kid said he would go fight in the West Bank. Either has no idea or does not care that the West Bank is internationally recognized as Palestinian land. who cares let’s go get it.

          He understand that once he’s done fighting, killing and looting, all he has to do is promise not to do it again and he’ll get to keep his loot and walk away a free man, thanks to the “humanist” idea of “justice”.

          Who couldn’t get behind a deal like that?!

      • Citizen says:

        Farrakhan’s reasonable analysis of the koran book burning incident, and the war on Muslims, the importance of PNAC & the neocon agenda still
        key now under Obama’s regime, appeal to native-born American muslims
        to protest the neocon agenda because muslim immigrants here hold vulnerable green cards… Hard to believe Obama himself thinks Farrakhan is just a rascist kook.
        link to english.aljazeera.net

    • MRW says:

      I agree, Syvanen. I wish Max would put his current work in Israel together with the Republican Gomorrah work and really sock it home. The yeoman’s work that Rabbi Beliak (of jewsonfirst.org) did on the Christian Zionists is exhaustive. He has a small report that I am always quoting but the longer one is key to read.

      Beliak quotes American Jewish groups attempting to do peace work in Israel and hampered by the Christian Zionist groups here at home who support the settlers as if their own and who are actively working against any and all peace efforts with Palestine. When you combine the extreme Yisrael Beitenu party (Israel) — as Rabbi Beliak chronicles, particularly in the case of the massive multi-million distribution of the the anti-Muslim DVD Obsession — with Hagee’s and similar groups, there is a powerful stench of racism and religious fundamentalism that both extremist Jewish and Christian groups are guilty of. (That Orthodox Jewish Anti-Muslim/Anti-Black guy David Y. — can’t remember his name — mentioned on another thread must be in bed with them.)

      Beliak quotes liberal Jewish groups in the US who complain vociferously about how Christian Zionists impede their efforts at peace overseas. Hagee likes to boast that his group are 70 million strong. If that’s true, that’s who we should be going after first.

  2. potsherd says:

    How can you ask anyone to take an oath that is meaningless? Until the promoters of the oath define “Jewish state” and this is made official by law, it is certainly meaningless.

    If Israel wants to be a “Jewish state,” it first has to define “Who is a Jew.”

    • sherbrsi says:

      Much like claims of Israeli democracy, the Jewish part of Israel’s purported “Jewish and democratic” nature, is just that: an undefined, unproven and subjective slogan.

    • Avi says:

      The oath is meaningless in legal terms, but in political terms the oath is a way to solidify the base against a minority. It is also a form of provocation aimed at generating all kinds of side effects.

      Even if every single Palestinian citizen of Israel took the oath and swore loyalty to a Jewish and Democratic state, it won’t suddenly open up the doors for the average Aravi (Arab in Hebrew) to equal treatment and equal rights.

      • potsherd says:

        The primary political use of it is as extortion in the “peace talks,” as an excuse to declare the Palestinians intransigent.

      • RoHa says:

        But Avi, the Arabs in Israel already have full equality and equal rights and swimming pools and cherry tomatoes and they hardly ever have their villages destroyed without full legal process.

      • Shmuel says:

        The oath is meaningless in legal terms, but in political terms the oath is a way to solidify the base against a minority.

        I agree. The Netanyahu bill refers to “prospective citizens living in Israel illegally”. As the Law of Return automatically grants citizenship to Jews and their non-Jewish relatives (including spouses), and “illegal” labour migrants are ineligible for citizenship anyway, the proposed law would only apply to Palestinian spouses/relatives of non-Jewish Israeli citizens, entitled to Israeli citizenship in theory, but currently denied this right by means of temporary legislation. If the temporary ban on Palestinian (note: only Palestinian!) family reunification is renewed, such an oath would be irrelevant. If the ban is not renewed, this bill could replace it as a more “aesthetic” means of denying citizenship and/or legal residency to Palestinians. The bill would thus accomplish 2 things: 1) gain electoral points by means of cheap, racist populism, and; 2) get the High Court, Israeli liberals and the international community off Israel’s back in the matter of Palestinian family reunification (“many countries demand that prospective citizens take a loyalty oath”).

  3. Citizen says:

    Orwell must be laughing his heinie off. Afterward he’d be very depressed at the lack of power in his politico-literary efforts. If memory serves, Orwell’s model was England during the Blitz. This fact was never dwelled on, if at all, in my college days. Satire what, whom? It’s not Israel undergoing a Blitz, but it was the Palestinians during OP Cast Lead. I went to a university that was 95% cosmopolitan American Jewish in student body.
    They always caught all the nuance in Orwell, and would apply it to the Nazi era in Germany and the US regime at the time. This is still a common experience of mine in my dotage. If Orwell’s scenario doesn’t apply to Israel now, what does? I guess that’s where always dreaming of the next
    anti-semitic Blitz gets you. Yet Orwell obviously knew what it was like
    to live during the real Blitz. He didn’t write a song to the British Spitfires.
    Too much competition there. So the international jews studying in Israel
    didn’t think what was good for the Western goosy democracies was good for the Israeli gander. Yet they have derived great benefit from the Western democracies they come from. There, the rule of the majority is curtailed by laws protecting the minorities. Must be nice to be a nuclear armed state, with one of the mightiest military forces in the world, and
    heavily supported by the sole superpower’s diplomacy and its foreigner’s tax dollars, and not have to concern yourself with fatal defects such as
    equal civil rights–I bet David Duke is green with envy.

    If it’s good for the Western nations, but not for Israel because Israel is the home of the Jewish people

  4. Avi says:

    But isn’t Israel an Oasis of Freedom™?

    Take a deep breath. Go on. Deep.

    Hold it for a second or two.

    Smell that?

    That’s what I’m talking about. Now that’s the smell of truly fresh cordite in the air. Nothing beats that, not the aroma of fresh ground coffee or fine Italian wine.

    Go on. Take a whiff.

    Breath in.

    And exhale…..ahhhhh

    Right? D’you see what I’m talking about?

  5. hophmi says:

    “Abraham Foxman, the national director of the Anti-Defamation League, has explicitly endorsed the bill.”

    That’s a lie. Read the article you cited again. Nowhere does it say that Foxman explicitly endorsed anything. It would be hard, since the bill is recent, and the article was written in February 2009. Foxman said nothing more than that Lieberman was right to be concerned about acts of disloyalty, not that he supported a piece of legislation requiring a loyalty oath and stripping people of citizenship if they refused to take one.

    At any rate, it is clearly untrue to say that Foxman explicitly supports this particular bill, and I hope you will do the right thing and remove that claim from your post.

    • tree says:

      Read the cite again yourself. It seems pretty explicit to me.

      <Some liberal Israeli and Jewish groups have condemned Lieberman</b? as a fascist — the left-wing Meretz Party even compared him to the late far-right Austrian politician Joerg Haider – for his proposal to require Israeli citizens to sign an oath of allegiance to the Jewish state in a bid to curtail Israeli Arab political power.

      But the Anti-Defamation League, an organization that is quick to spot instances of discrimination, says Lieberman is right to be concerned about apparent acts of disloyalty by Israeli Arabs.

      Abraham Foxman, the ADL’s national director, noted with concern the trips by Arab Israeli Knesset members to enemy states and expressions of solidarity with Hamas by Israeli Arabs during Israel’s recent military operation in the Gaza Strip.

      “There were a lot of people who said, ‘Hey, that’s disloyal,’ ” Foxman told JTA. “That’s what he’s talking about. He’s not saying expel them. He’s not saying punish them.”

      Lieberman, 50, has proposed requiring a loyalty oath as a condition of Israeli citizenship. Those who refuse — Arab or Jewish — would have their citizenship revoked, though they’d be permitted to remain in the country as permanent residents.

      “Arabs have all their rights in Israel, but they have no right to Eretz Yisrael,” Lieberman said last week at the Herzliya Conference, an annual summit on Israeli state and security.

      Morton Klein, president of the Zionist Organization of America, said he found Lieberman’s proposal “legitimate.”

      Foxman promised to speak out if Lieberman advanced any legislative proposals not in keeping with the spirit of Israeli democracy, noting that the ADL had criticized his proposals in the past.

      In 2006, the ADL issued a statement saying it was “disturbed” by Lieberman’s call for the execution of Arab legislators who met with Hamas leaders.

      So, Foxman promised to speak out if he found any Lieberman proposals “not in keeping with the spirit of Israeli democracy” but when Lieberman proposed the loyalty oath, Foxman defended it. That sound like a pretty explicit endorsement to your average reader.

      • tree says:

        sorry for messing up the formatting. Everything but the first wo sentences and the last two are from the cite. The top and bottom two sentences are mine.

      • hophmi says:

        Where in this does it say that Foxman “explicitly endorsed” the loyalty bill?

        All Foxman said was that Lieberman was right to be concerned about the issue of loyalty among Arab MKs who had visited countries that are enemies of Israel, not that he endorsed a bill calling for a loyalty oath as a condition of citizenship.

        Sorry, but there is no explicit endorsement of any bill here, and moreover, it is impossible to explicitly endorse a bill before it is actually created.

        • Chaos4700 says:

          All Foxman said was that Lieberman was right to be concerned about the issue of loyalty among Arab MKs who had visited countries that are enemies of Israel

          “Well, I don’t think the CIA should torture Muslims, but… all I’m saying is that the CIA should do everything they can to make sure Muslims in their custody are not terrorists.”

        • Shingo says:

          “it is impossible to explicitly endorse a bill before it is actually created.”

          Really? Was it impossible to support the idea of a Jewish homeland before it was created?

        • andrew r says:

          “There were a lot of people who said, ‘Hey, that’s disloyal,’ ” Foxman told JTA. “That’s what he’s talking about. He’s not saying expel them. He’s not saying punish them.”

          In other words, Foxman explicitly endorses whatever Lieberman does about disloyal Arabs. When you speak out of both ends, what you’re really saying will be known to people with brains.

        • Shmuel says:

          Where in this does it say that Foxman “explicitly endorsed” the loyalty bill?

          You’re right, Hophmi. Foxman merely defended Lieberman’s bill (“That’s what he’s talking about. He’s not saying expel them. He’s not saying punish them.”). Defending and endorsing are not the same thing. Max could have been a little more precise.

          Any comments on the substance of the article or the video?

        • Shmuel says:

          Correction: Foxman did not defend Lieberman’s bill (presented in May, 2009) per se, but the proposal he made in February 2009, to submit such a bill.

        • hophmi says:

          “Really? Was it impossible to support the idea of a Jewish homeland before it was created?”

          If someone said in 1947, “I think the Jews have a point about needing a homeland” would you say that that is the same thing as endorsing Israel between the River and the Sea and call it an “explicit endorsement” of that idea?

        • potsherd says:

          Which is to say, he supported it implicitly.

        • hophmi says:

          It is not just honest – it is amazingly honest. It is amazingly honest to attribute political positions to someone who doesn’t hold them. It is amazingly honest to go out to a place where young people are reveling and hand them pieces of paper to read and then accuse them of being fascists when all you did was get them to read something off of a piece of paper. It is amazingly honest to ask them what they think and then cut off your video when you get what you want instead of actually having a real conversation with them.

          It’s all amazingly honest. It’s all amazingly bullshit, and will float away like everything else Max does, because most thinking people who are not hardcore partisans either could not care less about Max, or because most thinking people know what bullshit this is.

          I declare that Kathleen supports killing small children because it is convenient for my political position. I didn’t bother to ask Kathleen before proclaiming this, but because she does not do enough to condemn suicide bombing, I am terming that an EXPLICIT ENDORSEMENT of child murder.

          Get it now, Kathleen? Get it now, all of you?

        • MRW says:

          hophmi,

          Your phony over-the-top outrage, your arch morality, at Max pales beside Israel’s real, tabulated and documented, actions. Give it a break, hophmi. The world is getting fed up with the likes, and lies, of you.

  6. eljay says:

    >> How can you ask anyone to take an oath that is meaningless?

    Israel must immediately:
    - Clearly define its permanent borders.
    - Clearly define what is meant by “Jewish state”. Is it religious, ethnic, cultural or a combination thereof?
    - Clearly state whether it is a democracy, with full equality for all Israeli citizens in all aspects of society, or a racist/supremacist Jewish state with special status for Jews.

  7. yourstruly says:

    Max Blumenthal resists calling Zionist Israel a reincarnation of Nazi Germany. Let’s see, there’s hypernationalism, a corporo-government alliance, militarism and expansionism, racial supremacy with a persecuted scapegoat, and now this 3rd-Reich-like loyalty oath. Something about if it looks like and ostrich, walks like an ostrich and buries its head in the sand like an ostrich, maybe, just maybe……….

    • Kathleen says:

      Wish Max would ask the young people from Canada and the U.S. if they would pledge that same type of allegiance to the U.s. and lay their lives down for the countries they live in? Obviously not. Were any of those young people serving in the military in the countries they are from? Telling

  8. Seham says:

    And so the lesson here is…

    You can stop random Zionists on the streets of Jerusalem and they overwhelmingly believe that Arabs should live in absolute subjugation of their twisted ideals, but, they overwhelmingly believe that the same should not be applied to Jews elsewhere. What a repulsive bunch of criminally minded, entitled, spoiled, hoodlums. Especially the ones from the U.S. and Canada who are unappreciative of the amount of a$$ licking that their governments do for the Zionist apartheid regime.

    • Hardly random Zionists. Religious American kids 18 and 19 year old, studying in Israel for the year. (for the most part). That’s who you find on Ben Yehuda and who Max interviewed (for the most part).

      • Chaos4700 says:

        So basically, barely adult-age American citizens who are being compelled to take an oath to a foreign state at the expense of their patriotism and duty to their homeland in the US?

        • RoHa says:

          “One of the oldest Antisemitic staples is that Jews are not sufficiently loyal to the countries where they reside and instead are more loyal to Israel”

          link to antisemitism.org.il

          (At least this site calls it a “staple” and not a “trope”. “Tropes” seem to have become the latest Zionist buzzword.

          And of course, it is not old at all. It hasn’t been around longer than Israel. )

      • Seham says:

        Actually, they were random. Blumenthal walked up to random people and that’s what he got. And please don’t make it seem like you have no idea how or why those little American and Canadian fascists got to Israel, you know how they got there–same way the settlers got where they are.

        • Seham says:

          I might have accidentally reported someone’s comment, didn’t mean to do that. It’s just that the report comment thingy is right above the reply button and it’s just intuitive to hit it instead of reply.

        • If you stand at Ave. M and east 14th Street in Brooklyn you won’t get a random New Yorker, you’ll get a specific slice of New Yorker who lives in that neighborhood. If you stand at 116th street and 3rd avenue in Manhattan you won’t get a random New Yorker you’ll get a specific slice of the population. If Gallup worked this way we would get no guidance as to how elections will turn out. Blumenthal went to a specific part of Jerusalem where young religious students from America hang out. That’s not called random. Ask any pollster.

        • Shingo says:

          “And please don’t make it seem like you have no idea how or why those little American and Canadian fascists got to Israel, you know how they got there–same way the settlers got where they are.”

          Notice their disdain for multi culturalism, ethnic diversity and religious freedom? Israel is like fly paper to these people. After all, they all seem to think that Israel is awesome. I doubt that would be the case were it ethnically diverse and multi cultural.

        • AM says:

          Still not fully random ;) A SRS can be biased if it doesn’t consider location and time. Perhaps you can generalize these results to young American Jews who have spent time in Israel, but we can’t statistically say its representative of all Zionists. Of course I’m arguing on technicality, I’ve read more than enough Zionist garbage to know that these views are often the baseline among Zionists….statistics isn’t need there at all ;)

        • hophmi says:

          It is ethnically diverse and multicultural, more than any state in the region. Have you ever been there?

      • Avi says:

        Hardly random Zionists. Religious American kids 18 and 19 year old, studying in Israel for the year. (for the most part).

        Nineteen year olds get to serve in an army, carry guns, drive tanks, fire mortars, drop bombs and throw grenades. They’re hardly “kids”.

        Anyway, what you’re saying is that the problem with these “kids” is that they’re too honest and blunt. What Max Blumenthal should do — in your view — is perhaps interview “smarter” and older Zionists, like say I don’t know witty and you. After all, you two are good at spinning the truth while engaging in mental gymnastics all in an effort to make the crimes of Zionism more palpable.

        But, if by “kids” you mean, “dumb, arrogant and self-absorbed”, then I agree wholeheartedly. Just look at the trash that the “diaspora” sends to Israel, and the trash that Israel attracts. And every day I’m thankful that I’m not part of that cesspool anymore.

        Luckily for humanity’s sake these idiots are the leaders of tomorrow which makes it all the more easier to defeat them and their sick world views.

        Incidentally, where do “kids” like that get their sense of supremacy and bigotry? Don’t say “video games” because America’s suburbia has the market cornered on that excuse for their children’s fits of rage and shooting sprees.

        Is it possible these Zionist hoodlums pick up the hatred and ignorance from the very institutions that are responsible for the Jewish American community’s participation and support of this 21st century colonial project?

        What’s that?

        No?

        Well, how about their homes, their parents? I mean, how were YOU indoctrinated into believing in this ideology? Worse yet, you MOVED and took advantage of the benefits with which the Israeli government and the Jewish agency showered you. So, you’re actually worse than them. At least they’re there for “a year” as you claim.

        • andrew r says:

          This is a good opportunity to mention that while these kids may have spent their time back home in a bubble, their community couldn’t have maintained that bubble without the indulgence of their home countries. The political culture of the USA and Canada created these monsters as much as Jewish exceptionalism. That guy who said fuck them both is just cutting the umbilical cord.

          I very much roll my eyes at anti-Zionists who seem to think our support for Israel’s racist violence is an aberration. The USA supports an entity like Israel because it is an entity like Israel.

        • Seham says:

          I very much roll my eyes at anti-Zionists who seem to think our support for Israel’s racist violence is an aberration. The USA supports an entity like Israel because it is an entity like Israel.

          Exactly.

        • Avi says:

          I very much roll my eyes at anti-Zionists who seem to think our support for Israel’s racist violence is an aberration. The USA supports an entity like Israel because it is an entity like Israel.

          That’s quite an oversimplification of the facts. The fact is that when examining the laws and the policies of each of these countries, Israel is the equivalent of 1940s US. But, Israel is actually worse than the US of that era; (1) about two million Palestinians in the occupied territories are under Israeli martial law, they pay taxes, but are not even considered citizens of Israel. Furthermore, while the US has a constitution, a document that guaranteed every person equal rights before the law, Israel has no constitution and has laws that specifically favor Jews over non-Jews, and systematically discriminate against non-Jews.

          At the very least, the civil rights movement had the law on their side, and it was merely a matter of the US Supreme Court weighing the constitutionality of various laws. Look at Plessy v. Ferguson, Brown v. Board of Education, Gideon v. Wainwright, Miranda v. Arizona.

          No such avenues exist for the average Palestinian in the West Bank. Worse yet, those who are considered citizens, Israel’s 20% Palestinian minority, have no recourse regarding the law of return, family reunification, or land ownership rights as do the Jewish citizens of the state in the year 2010.

        • andrew r says:

          The USA still persecutes native Americans although most Americans at large are clueless. There’s a web of legislation which divides the reservation Indians into separate nationalities within the US which should remind you of another system (Which was copying the US to begin with). The reservations have the lowest average life expectancies in the world.

          Also, if you’d agree persecution doesn’t end when the agent technically stops, but gets off scottfree, forced sterilization happened as late as the early 70′s.

          To name a more recent example, a Lakota on the Pine Ridge res got three years for vandalizing a BIA vehicle while someone who killed two Lakotas in a drunk driving accident got a shorter sentence. (See one of Russell Means’ weekend updates from last year.)

          Also the structural violence against Indian lands is still functionally equivalent to Israeli land theft. This could be Palestine (see bottom).
          link to canku-luta.org

          The USA is still a colonial-settler state although it has liberalized to some extent for those who were forced over here to be exploited. However, Indians are not protected by the constitution until they leave the res (And if the original constitution made blacks 3/5 of a person, Indians weren’t even counted).

    • Saleema says:

      What a bunch of dumb racist kids. I thought Jews were supposed to be smart? :)

      Anyways, that’s what privilege will do to you. Too much leisure time will kill your critical thinking skills.

      • Kathleen says:

        “I thought Jews were supposed to be smart? ”
        Not hard to notice that many Jewish families put a great deal of focus on education. A good thing. But the Jews are so smart is another myth repeated over and over again. More hooey

  9. Mooser says:

    ‘Splain it to us, Witty. ‘Splain it to us. I’m sure this is a step forward in the hearts and mind department, another glowing facet of the jewel of Zionism, but I’m too stupid to know quite how.
    Wait a minute, maybe I got it! When Arabs take the oath, Israelis, sure of their loyalty, will welcome them with open arms. And those that won’t take the oath? There’s a word for them, and it begins and ends with “t”. I mean, who wouldn’t want to take an oath which specifically excludes them?
    Sounds like trying to extract a promise of submissive behavior from hostages to me, but as a summary, Witty tells me that’s a load of “crap”

    • Chaos4700 says:

      Witty assiduously avoids articles such as this one. I suppose we might luck out, and he’ll show up just long enough to berate Phil Weiss and/or Max Blumenthal for being self-hating, go off on an anti-Palestinian tirade couched as an anti-Hamas tirade, and then condemn the non-Jews among us as “radical” “fascists.”

    • What do you think is the most effective way to do something about the trend?

      What heals it?

      What do you propose?

      • Citizen says:

        I dunno, Dick Witty; perhaps that Jewish-Canadian kid who says “F*** USA, F*** Canada!”
        is your answer? Or maybe the only thoughtful one, the one who says he wouldn’t be loyal to any nation right or wrong? But he added that he didn’t know if dropping white phosphorous on Palestinain kids was right or wrong. Most of those wholesome–looking, fresh–faced kids reminded me of young Germans
        in historical films taken in Germany during the Nazi era. The Hitler Jungend, the Bund Deutsche Maedels, etc. Full of a perverted idealism or simply thoughtless, going along with the crowd. The young reds of Russia and Mao’s kids projected the same idealistic, naive robustness, nubile in body, wooden in mind. How do you tell the goldfish in the round fish bowl that the world outside actually looks different than what that little fish sees? The problem is the circular curvage of the transparent bowl. That bowl is manufactured and sold by Zionism.
        I propose that you, Dick Witty, look into the little details making up
        Zionism in practice. What limits, if any, do you see in “self-governance?” When its applied to an individual, and when it is applied to a group of people?

        • Kathleen says:

          When Max said “you mean like dropping white phosphorous on Palestinians” They young man said “no not that” Demonstrated the bigotry felt towards Palestinians. Dehumanized

        • I would think that you would want to fix the problem, not just rant about it.

          Me asking about your proposal, is that. It is not a rhetorical way of saying “nothing is possible”.

          Nothing is possible though if people don’t act, and in a way that changes hearts and minds, not just harrasses.

        • sherbrsi says:

          I would think that you would want to fix the problem, not just rant about it.

          So Witty, how many Zionists have you convinced that there has been “enough Zionism,” and that “ethnic cleansing is not currently necassary?”

          By your own admission, are not members of your family settlers? When you cannot even convince them, what makes you think you have any purpose or significance in lecturing people here?

        • “By your own admission, are not members of your family settlers?”

          You are believing Chaos’s lies. NOONE that I know of in my family is a settler. I don’t even know anyone personally that’s been to a settlement.

          “So Witty, how many Zionists have you convinced that there has been “enough Zionism,” and that “ethnic cleansing is not currently necassary?””

          Literally dozens. I’ve led discussion sessions in my local shuls in which we informed our congregation of what was going on on the ground, and historically. Particularly the condition of isolation and absence of self-governance of the West Bank and Gazan Palestinians.

          You are one gullible person to conclude that I am a “type”.

      • annie says:

        what do i propose? the people are being brainwashed from an early age. zionist fervor has taken on cult like features. the brainwashing begins at an early age. Civics textbook slashed for being too civic.

        i’d advise non violent resistance. bds. i don’t know any other way to change the state but i think it requires international intervention.

      • James North says:

        Richard: Here’s something we propose: BDS

        • Shmuel says:

          Richard: Here’s something we propose: BDS

          Non-violent, proactive, consciousness-raising. Who could ask for more?

        • Do you think that organized shunning of a people (in its vague form), changes hearts and minds for the better?

        • For example, if Max mentioned, “you know, we are planning an organized European and American boycott of all things Israeli, especially of Israeli artists, musicians, filmmakers, authors” do you think the numbers of enthusiasts for the oath (not Max’s “I swear by Hashem…”) would be smaller or larger?

        • Saleema says:

          You are right Witty. Dropping bombs on them from the sky changes their mind.

          That’s what should be done to Israelis.

        • eljay says:

          >> Do you think that organized shunning of a people … changes hearts and minds for the better?

          It doesn’t require anywhere near the disturbing mental contortions necessary to believe that ethnic cleansing is “currently not necessary” or that absolving criminals of on-going occupation, oppression and theft equates to “justice”.

        • Shmuel says:

          Ah, the old your/my game:

          Your actions: shun, harrrass, punish, rant, are militant, radical, violent, ineffective, etc.

          My actions: change hearts and minds, bring people closer, promote understanding, are effective, heal, etc.

          Thanks for playing.

        • Bumblebye says:

          RW
          And when your kids were small, did continuing to give them candy when they misbehaved have any effect on their behaviour? Or did the threat of withholding have more effect? How often did you (or Mrs Witty) have to take away the toys they were squabbling over, until they came to their senses? (well you use dumb analogies, so why can’t I?)

        • Its not a game.

          I asked what do you propose? What do you think will be effective at changing hearts and minds, and why?

          And your response is to say nothing. Why is that?

        • Avi says:

          Richard Witty September 17, 2010 at 11:03 am

          Which version?

          Why?

          The radio remix version, because it’s more catchy than the original.

        • eljay says:

          >> And your response is to say nothing.

          The master of “saying nothing” (while, often, blathering far too much) has spoken. What a joker.

        • Shmuel says:

          Richard,

          You remind me of an old trick a friend taught me when my Italian was still poor. When caught in the middle of a conversation you don’t understand, look intelligent and, every once in a while, say “in che senso?” (in what sense), which is always apt, sounds deep and, most importantly, keeps the other person talking.

          Your phrase for all seasons is “what do you propose?” You are not an activism coach, and that question has been answered countless times at this site. You don’t like the answers, you don’t like the perspectives and you don’t like the goals. That’s fine, but your constant litany of supposed methodological criticism is the work of someone who does not understand the conversation or does not really wish to participate.

      • Mooser says:

        “What do you think is the most effective way to do something about the trend?
        What heals it?
        What do you propose?”

        Gee, Witty, considering the way your little progeny handled his exposure to these things, I’m not sure if you really want to ask these questions. What did you propose? How did you try to heal it?

  10. bob says:

    An American Jew in Israel complaining about American Multiculturalism?

    I thought there was a bunch of Jewish activism in the US to promote multiculturalism.

    Quelle Horreur !

    • Keith says:

      BOB- Excellent point! Progressive Jews fought long and hard to promote multiculturalism in the US (something I support), and these kids are bad-mouthing the consequences of this commendable activity. Likewise, in the US itself you have the likes of Pam Geller doing her best to destroy multiculturalism. Seems that these Zionist Jews have a problem with progressive Jews. Apparently fascism has its attractions.

  11. tommy says:

    Perhaps the settlers in Palestinian territory ought to be required to pledge loyalty to Islam and democracy in the state of Palestine.

  12. Kathleen says:

    “like bombing Gaza with white phosphorus”

    “No not like that”

    Demonstrates the bigotry and racism so clearly.

    “Fuck America” “Fuck Canada”

  13. Kathleen says:

    Max are there any interviews on the street that are more bigoted than the ones you show us? Ones that you will not put up?

  14. annie says:

    it’s a zionist cult. they’re brainwashed.

  15. Edward Q says:

    Excellent work.

    During the Iran-Contra hearings one of the controversial statements from Oliver North was that he owed his allegiance to Reagan rather then the constitution or the government.

    The kind of hypocrisy in these interviews seems to be all over the place these days.

    • The fiction movie Valkyrie reflects the same themes as the documentary “The Restless Conscience;” both discuss the German military officers and citizens who rose up in opposition to the policies of the National Socialist party and mounted attempts to overthrow the government.

      A trigger that motivated these groups was the enactment of a loyalty oath to Hitler, required of all German military members. The taking of an oath was taken seriously; Valkyrie drew attention to the conflict felt by officers who opposed the policies of the NASDP and were part of the attempt to overthrow it, but were mindful of the oath they had pledged.

  16. RoHa says:

    OT, but I’ve got two Australian stories with nowhere to put them. I’m putting them here so that people will have a chance to see them.

    First: Panic over the Greens. An Australian political party that isn’t wholly owned by Israel. (Pity they believe the Global Warming tosh.)
    link to thejc.com?

    Second: The article is standard-issue whining, but the comments show that a lot of people aren’t buying it.

    link to smh.com.au

    I particularly like
    “the bizarre childish 19th century romantic construct that is zionism itself. It is one that at its heart holds non elite Jewry and the rest of humanity in contempt. “

  17. I attended a meeting sponsored by J Street recently.
    I’m pretty sure I was the only person in the room who was not Jewish.

    In the course of the discussion someone said, sarcastically, “America is a Christian nation.” Several people leapt to oppose the notion; one person encapsulated the opposition: “If America is perceived as a Christian nation then we Jews are marginalized, so every time the idea of America’s Christian roots is raised, we must oppose it.”

    What Jews wish to do in Israel is their business.
    When Jews in the US presume to impose a stamp on American values, and to recast American history and tradition, I and every American has a right and a responsibility to push back.

    America’s roots are in the broadly Christian tradition stamped by the most significant revolution in thinking that emerged from the European Enlightenment.
    It is appalling to me that American legislators and leaders pledge their obeisance to Israel at annual AIPAC meetings.

    What would happen if the American people rose up and demanded that Jews, Muslims, Catholics, athiests, traditional Protestants and Evangelical Protestants and Fundamentalists ALL pledged a loath of loyalty to a Christian and Democratic United States of America? What would Jews do?

  18. Kathleen says:

    Hey Max if you go out on the streets of Jerusalem and ask this question again could you add the question would you swear your allegiance and be willing to sacrifice your life for the countries that you come from. Most of those young people were from Canada and the U.S.

    Many of them the same people who are willing to have young Appalachian kids go die for lies in Iraq and if the go get Iran folks (probably most of these young people if you ask them will be all about taking out Iran) have their way they would send often less privileged young people off to Iran to kill for Israel too.

    would these same young people serve in their own countries? Most likely not otherwise they would be.

  19. tommy says:

    American Zionists would probably object to taking loyalty oaths to a Christian United States, yet they have no compunction against requiring Palestinians pledging loyalty to a Jewish state.

  20. “I swear by Hashem [the Jewish God] that I want to offer unconditional loyalty to the Jewish state of Israel, to its leaders and the commanders of its Jewish army. I am prepared as a loyal supporter of the Jewish state to risk my life for this oath at any time.”

    Orthodox Jews aren’t permitted to swear oaths. Max and Leiberman should know that.

    The comparison with Hitler is a typical Blumenthal low blow.

    • Mooser says:

      “Orthodox Jews aren’t permitted to swear oaths. Max and Leiberman should know that”

      You are really something Witty! Thanks for pointing out exactly how much hypocrisy is inherent in the idea, apart from the unclear definition of Jewish.
      Another words, Witty, if Orthodox Jews aren’t permitted to swear oaths, why is anything even remotely like this being proposed in Israel.
      Gosh, it couldn’t be because that when push come to shove, the exigencies of running a colonial or state enterprise (insuring loyalty, weeding out the disloyal) takes precedence over any old religious objections, could it? So much for the “Jewish” part in Israel, when push, as I mentioned, meets shove, any pretensions of religiousity or democracy is abandoned.

      When you are arguing against yourself, it’s time to stop, Witty. And why are you so willing to let us enjoy your obvious discomfiture?

    • MRW says:

      Witty, you wrote, “Orthodox Jews aren’t permitted to swear oaths.”

      The tell that to the Shas Party, the ultra-orthodox Israeli party, because they, and extremist Yisrael Beitenu party, are behind the desire to create a loyalty oath law. You ought to use Google once in a while to verify your various claims.

    • RoHa says:

      Jews aren’t allowed to take oaths?

      Is that why the other feller said
      “But above all things, my brethren, swear not, neither by heaven, neither by the earth, neither by any other oath: but let your yea be yea; and your nay, nay; lest ye fall into condemnation”?

  21. Also,
    I recommend that Max undertake similar inquiries among dissenters, say whether they will defer to Palestinian vanguard, or commit to their own conscience.

    • Shingo says:

      “I recommend that Max undertake similar inquiries among dissenters, say whether they will defer to Palestinian vanguard, or commit to their own conscience.”

      Why do you make the bogus assumption that the two are not the same Witty?

  22. Just for reference,

    All new naturalized citizens of the US, swear a loyalty oath as part of their citizenship ritual.

    • sherbrsi says:

      All new naturalized citizens of the US, swear a loyalty oath as part of their citizenship ritual.

      To secular ideals, not to a religion or ethnicity.

      • To a nation, a polity.

        What is the standard of citizenship in Iran? France even? Lebanon?

        For naturalized citizens.

        I think it is a wrong-headed approach. It does deemphasize the democratic in the dual nature of the state: Jewish and democratic.

        • “What is the standard of citizenship in Iran? France even?”

          No loyalty oath in France. No ceremony, no BS..(At least when I got it, decades ago) ..Not sure about nowadays though..
          ONTH, in Australia an oath, not to the state but to the queen and a ceremony are the procedure..

    • indeed

      notice that the Oath does not offer First and Second positions of loyalty, as the young people in Israel desire; the Oath of Allegiance to the US demands a Kierkegaardian choice, Either-Or: EITHER US or Israel, but no man can serve two masters.

      “I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state or sovereignty, of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen; that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform noncombatant service in the armed forces of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by the law; and that I take this obligation freely without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; so help me God.”

    • the other day Wondering Jew explained to us dumbells how smart Jews are, and that their smarts and elite status is the result of their hard work (no whiff of standing on the backs of either giants or other hard workers, by the way).

      Somehow, however, at least a small sample of young American Jews has failed to intellectualize the meaning of loyalty. Perhaps the liberties and opportunities that are made possible by the work of the OTHER 97.8% of American citizens is taken for granted by a 2.2% minority group.

      since allegiance to a nation state IS an either/or choice, the young Israelis should consider the implications of renunciation of US citizenship. In fact, it seems to me only equitable and just that affirmative renunciation of US citizenship should be required of any natural born or naturalized citizen of the US upon that person taking an oath of loyalty to another nation state.

      Renunciation of U.S. Citizenship

      A. THE IMMIGRATION & NATIONALITY ACT

      Section 349(a)(5) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) (8 U.S.C. 1481(a)(5)) is the section of law that governs the ability of a United States citizen to renounce his or her U.S. citizenship. That section of law provides for the loss of nationality by voluntarily performing the following act with the intent to relinquish his or her U.S. nationality:
      “(5) making a formal renunciation of nationality before a diplomatic or consular officer of the United States in a foreign state , in such form as may be prescribed by the Secretary of State” (emphasis added).

      B. ELEMENTS OF RENUNCIATION

      A person wishing to renounce his or her U.S. citizenship must voluntarily and with intent to relinquish U.S. citizenship:

      1. appear in person before a U.S. consular or diplomatic officer,
      2. in a foreign country (normally at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate); and
      3. sign an oath of renunciation

      Renunciations that do not meet the conditions described above have no legal effect. Because of the provisions of section 349(a)(5), Americans cannot effectively renounce their citizenship by mail, through an agent, or while in the United States. In fact, U.S. courts have held certain attempts to renounce U.S. citizenship to be ineffective on a variety of grounds, as discussed below.

      • There was a statement made on a different thread that when Zionism falls, the Jewish elite will fall as well. I asserted that the Jewish elite had earned its place, apparently to the chagrin of psycho god, whose belief regarding the Jews always remains at least a bit murky on issues other than Zionism.

        Apparently United States law allows dual citizenship for those that are born with American citizenship. If the United States wishes to change that law, which is apparently the wish of psycho god, then congress should enact such a change. I do not know when such a law allowing for dual citizenship was enacted and I do not know if those who support Israel would oppose such a change in law to disable dual citizenship.

        • Avi says:

          There was a statement made on a different thread that when Zionism falls, the Jewish elite will fall as well.

          You seem to be unaware, to put it mildly, of the fact that the only people flocking to Israel are the radicals, the uneducated and those looking for a good deal on housing (in the settlements).

          Meanwhile, the native born Jewish and non-Jewish elite in Israel is flocking OUT of the country. So, in twenty years time, the only groups left there will be the Ultra Orthodox Jews, Hamas and self-styled “liberal” Zionists like you.

          So, you guys can duke it out, all the while you continue to study at a Yeshiva or another, without ever producing anything of value that can sustain the economy and the state.

          Have fun.

          Oh, and by the way, read this article about the unproductive parasitic communities of the settlements:

          link to haaretz.com

        • I don’t consider “beliefs regarding the Jews” murky at all,WJ; my beliefs regarding “the Jews” is right in line with beliefs regarding Jews that Mooser has expressed. To paraphrase, “the Jews” are ordinary people just like everybody else only moreso.”

          It is you, WJ, who apparently seeks to define “the Jews” in a triumphalist, exceptionalist, and supremacist category. That position is repugnant to me.

    • Shingo says:

      “All new naturalized citizens of the US, swear a loyalty oath as part of their citizenship ritual.”

      That means having to forsake citizenship of any other country Witty.

  23. MRW says:

    Max, if you’re reading this: can you do a video on what these kids think of Christian Zionists?

  24. tommy says:

    The loyalty oath naturalized citizens take does not require them to pledge loyalty to a Christian US. American Zionists, however, probably would like to include a section to the oath requiring naturalized citizens pledge loyalty to arming Israel in order to expand its oppression of Palestinians, as Congress does.

    • Avi says:

      Exactly. Taking a loyalty oath to the government that is supposed to equally represent people of all creeds, is a valid part of John Locke’s idea of Social Contract, for example. It’s a fair trade, so to speak. But, to take an oath to a religion, is no different than swearing an oath to a cult or a fraternity of sorts. It’s exclusive, it’s not universal. And that’s the problem.

  25. It is a loyalty oath to the state nevertheless, per the law of the state.

    Its a horrible proposal by Leiberman. It used to be Likud’s position as well. I don’t know what they are saying about it.

  26. MHughes976 says:

    I guess that Locke, a Whig, was rather suspicious of oaths, at that time part of the apparatus of the absolute monarchists whom he opposed. He accepts the possibility of express consent to a form of government but thought that most people were bound by tacit consent, expressed merely by living peacefully under the society’s laws. On this showing the sovereign (such as the Israeli legislature) has also become bound to protect the life and property, hence in most cases the franchise, of those who have shown this degree of obedience.
    Mind you, I think that if we probed Locke on some forms of discrimination against those whose religion was socially dangerous he would not altogether have rejected it. Neither would John Rawls, the most important American political philosopher of recent years, who had a theory that society was constituted by an ‘overlapping consensus’ and those completely outside the consensus are dangerous. This train of thought leads to the idea that we might call on people to swear oaths that bind them to the consensus in some way.
    Isn’t an oath inherently a religious thing, whereby one calls on the divine power to punish any backsliding? Isn’t that what makes the difference between an oath and a statement?

  27. Danaa says:

    Here’s another thought. Witty above points out that new citizens to America are required to swear an oath of loyalty to the US. They also are supposed to agree to “foresake” other loyalties. Well, I know quite a few ex-Israelis who became “Americans”. They took the citizenship test (such as it is) and swore loyalty to the US. Only problem is, the ones I know (all 100 or so of them and many more I heard and read about) did not really mean it – their ultimate loyalty is still to Israel, though admittedly, most (of the ones I know) seem largely glad to be out of there. Is that what they mean when they say in Israel “It’s complicated”?

    Perhaps this explains why some suggest that such “oaths” need not be taken “too seriously”. For many, if not most, Israeli ex-pats, that was exactly the case – just because you swear it doesn’t mean you should [really] mean it. It’ difficult for them to imagine that there are those in the world for whom words actually matter.

    Interestingly, my ex-Israeli friends (yes, some are – we all live on more than one level) go nuts if I accuse them of “dual loyalty”. They seem to be genuinely offended. True, I must say it’s my special joy to do just that, usually around high holidays or passover – just in time for dessert. And yes, I am still invited after all these years, even though they know it’s coming (just not when and what exact form it’s gonna take). And no, I am no great cook – me and mine usually bring the wine – or we may go a far as supply a few boiled eggs (hopefully not burnt to a crisp – that too has been known to happen). So if culinary delights can’t be the reason, it leave us all to wonder what is (and yes, sometimes I wonder. Not for too long though).

    So is this is what’s really meant by the [in]famous “It’s Complicated”!?

  28. Danaa says:

    Avi, if you are an American citizen now – please don’t take offense. Generalization are just that – but still, so irresistable…..

    Or anyone else who might be offended.

    It’ just that it sometimes bugs me that too many (not just israelis) come not so much TO the US but to be AWAY from some place else.

  29. pjdude says:

    does any one else get the feeling that the same people and kinds of people that want a oath of loyalty to Israel as a jewish state are the ones who get angry when it suggested that maybe some jew in the US put ISrael’s interests ahead of the USA interests

  30. Kathleen says:

    Max your amazingly honest work is getting attention
    link to seminal.firedoglake.com

  31. hophmi says:

    This video is like everything else Max does – a silly and dishonest failure.

    Like the other ones, Max depends on young people who are out having a good time to read his laughable oath, the kind of thing he could almost certainly get anyone in any country of a similar age to read under similar circumstances.

    The first guy on the video modifies the oath to include democracy, exploding the entire experiment from the beginning.

    The oath is not too dissimilar from the oath given to members of the US Army:

    “I, _____, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God.”

    Most of those saying it have not thought about (or been given time to think about) the oath, so the point Max makes is not particular to Israel, but particular to everyone who subscribes to any form of nationalism the world over.

    The comparison of Israel with America is ridiculous for all kinds of reasons, none of which, of course, cannot be explained in three second conversation. The first, of course, is that America does not face the constant threat Israel does, and America does not have the issue of elected representatives meeting with people with whom America is at war. And that America is protected by two oceans.

    Max should go try and do this in Arab countries – if they allow him to do it, that is. He is still the little bad boy of youtube journalism, a man of failed projects and little notoriety, good or bad.

    • occupyresist says:

      “Most of those saying it have not thought about (or been given time to think about) the oath”

      Right, they haven’t thought about it, to the extent that some of them decided to add their own flair and ad lib.

    • Shingo says:

      This video is like everything else Max does – a silly and dishonest failure.”

      Correction: You want desperately to believe its a silly and dishonest failure, when in fact it hits a bullseye.

      “Like the other ones, Max depends on young people who are out having a good time to read his laughable oath, the kind of thing he could almost certainly get anyone in any country of a similar age to read under similar circumstances.”

      Yeah sure, Homphi. I bet if you went into New York and spoke to a couple of drunk people, they too would be denouncing multi culturalism and ethnic diversity.

      “The first guy on the video modifies the oath to include democracy, exploding the entire experiment from the beginning.”

      Umm on the contrary, it demonstrates how the Zionist mindset perceives apartheid and democracy as one and the same.

      “The oath is not too dissimilar from the oath given to members of the US Army”

      On the contrary, the oath is to the US Constitution, not the state, not the US government and not the US military.

      In fact, the oath clearly acknowledges that the enemy could indeed be the government itself,

      “Most of those saying it have not thought about (or been given time to think about) the oath..”

      Most of them have not thought about Zionism and the war crimes of Israel either. That’s the problem with Zionist indoctrination and fascism.

      “The comparison of Israel with America is ridiculous for all kinds of reasons, none of which, of course, cannot be explained in three second conversation.”

      One is a demoncracy and the other is an ethnocentric apartheid state. Simple.

      “The first, of course, is that America does not face the constant threat Israel does”

      False. Israel faces no threat whatsoever.

      “America does not have the issue of elected representatives meeting with people with whom America is at war. ”

      False. America does not have the issue of elected representatives meeting with people with whom America is stealing from.

      “And that America is protected by two oceans.”

      And America is not protected by the worlds lone superpower.

      “He is still the little bad boy of youtube journalism, a man of failed projects and little notoriety, good or bad.”

      He’s a huge success. After all he drives fascists nuts.

      Case in point.

      • hophmi says:

        Oh Shingle, how blissful it must be to believe your own propaganda.

        “You want desperately to believe its a silly and dishonest failure, when in fact it hits a bullseye.”

        No, it’s pretty silly and dishonest. If you don’t believe me, go out to a bar with your friends, stick a camera in the faces of 20 year olds who are there, and see what kind of stuff you can get them to say.

        “Yeah sure, Homphi. I bet if you went into New York and spoke to a couple of drunk people, they too would be denouncing multi culturalism and ethnic diversity.”

        Yep, I’m pretty sure some would. But that was one person among many on this video. The point of the video to get people to read a piece of paper Max handed them.

        “Umm on the contrary, it demonstrates how the Zionist mindset perceives apartheid and democracy as one and the same.”

        Not really, Shingle. That’s just your reading into it.

        “On the contrary, the oath is to the US Constitution, not the state, not the US government and not the US military. In fact, the oath clearly acknowledges that the enemy could indeed be the government itself.”

        Guffaw. Did you read it? It is an oath to follow orders and defend against all enemies foreign and domestic. I’m sure most people who take the oath thing that “the enemy could indeed be the government itself.” Man, you really will say anything, won’t you?

        “Most of them have not thought about Zionism and the war crimes of Israel either. That’s the problem with Zionist indoctrination and fascism.”

        Bark, bark, bark, fascism. Bark, bark, bark, fascism.

        “One is a demoncracy and the other is an ethnocentric apartheid state. Simple.”

        Both are democracies. Simple.

        “False. Israel faces no threat whatsoever.”

        Who cares about your opinion on the threats Israel faces? You don’t live there, you make all kinds of ridiculous claims, and you think it’s a fascist state. Your opinion on the issue is worthless.

        “False. America does not have the issue of elected representatives meeting with people with whom America is stealing from.”

        Who is stealing from Bashar al-Assad?

        “And America is not protected by the worlds lone superpower.”

        Guffaw. America is the world’s lone superpower.

        “He’s a huge success. After all he drives fascists nuts.”

        Yes, Shingle, I’m aware that anyone you subscribe to is automatically a huge success. Max does not drive me nuts. He’s not that important. But his dishonesty does, and his shtick is getting old.

  32. ymedad says:

    Heck, who needs a loyalty oath or a slide into fascism when you have the death penalty for selling land:

    “The decision came in response to a ruling by a Palestinian court according to which such acts were only a “minor offense.” PA Prosecutor-General Ahmed al-Mughni appealed against the ruling to a higher court, arguing that the sale of land to Israelis was a “major offense” punishable by death.
    The appeal was accepted.”
    link to jpost.com

    Oh, sorry, that bit of state regime was in the PA.

    • Shmuel says:

      Welcome back, Mr. Medad. Always a pleasure. Thanks for the link to the JP story. Israeli methods for “acquiring” land and keeping it in the hands of the dominant group are far more humane (once most of the owners have been chased off and prevented from returning, of course). Pliah Albek, the Israel Lands Authority, the JNF, Judaization policies – all far more effective and civilised than directly sentencing someone to death in a court of law. But then again, one would expect such things from the only democracy in the Middle East.

      Now, how about that loyalty oath?

    • Shingo says:

      Good point Ymedad,

      Why bother with the formalities of selling when all one needs to do is wait for Israel to come along and steal it?

      Meanwhile, your delightful foreign minister is already wanting to discuss the next pogrom.

      link to israelnationalnews.com?