Jewish newspaper admits that Israel has become an ‘embarrassment’ for liberal Jews

Israel/Palestine
on 117 Comments

It’s a real slow wake up going on. Gary Rosenblatt in the NY Jewish Week:

[T]he current Israeli government has become a source of embarrassment to many liberal American Jews.

Prime Minister Netanyahu better not wait until late May to come to the U.S. and present a new proposal for advancing the stalled peace talks. With the situation deteriorating on the hasbara front, something must be done a lot sooner than Netanyahu’s scheduled appearance at the annual AIPAC conference, which begins May 22, and it better be more substantive than past efforts.
Most American Jews want to feel proud of the Jewish State, not frustrated or ashamed. It doesn’t help when they read of continued settlement growth, the flotilla debacle…

Federation fundraisers say that even big givers worry aloud about Israeli policies and the negative impact such policies are having on their children, a generation that does not remember Israeli feats like Entebbe, much less the Six-Day War.
My gut tells me that the status quo is not good for Israel, and more creative ways must be found to convince the world, starting with American Jews, that Jerusalem really wants a two-state solution before the option becomes moot.

117 Responses

  1. Saleema
    March 10, 2011, 10:20 pm

    Not all liberal Jews. Witty is still very satisfied with the way things are going.

    • Richard Witty
      March 10, 2011, 11:01 pm

      You’d have to ask me, rather than projecting.

      Have you read my blog?

      • Sumud
        March 11, 2011, 1:04 am

        I think 30,000 comments on Mondoweiss (am I right about that number? Maybe it was 15,ooo; anyway – it was a lot) are enough to give us a fair idea of your thinking.

        I’m bothered you aren’t willing to examine your love of motherhood statements and hostility towards tried-and-true non-violent methods of bringing about change, such as Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS). Like it or not you come across very much as fan of the untenable situation known as the “status quo” when you condemn even non-violent resistance.

      • Citizen
        March 11, 2011, 7:20 am

        Yes, Witty has repeatedly argued in effect that BDS is not effective as a way of changing hearts and minds, that it is an attack which only causes well-intentioned Jews yearning for peace to dig in their heels and defend Israel as the only lifeboat in the endless sea of blatent or latent Gentile anti-semitism. He repeatedly argues that BDS is opposed by many American Jews and Israelis who support an end to the Occupation. He argues that calling for BDS, alienates those Israeli allies and in effect strengthens the right wing.
        Thus Richard Witty effectively ignores that the Palestinians have the ultimate right to decide on the best method for attaining their own freedom. Instead he assumes that the role of international and Israeli supporters is to dictate the terms of the struggle, despite the fact BDS is the Palestinians’ chosen form of resistance and is a nonviolent form of resistance. He ignores further that
        there have always been many Israelis opposing the Occupation, but that has never translated into real change, because—like the majority of Americans who oppose the Iraq War—most do nothing about it. People are more likely to take action when they feel personally affected. Polls have shown Israelis are more worried about boycott than diplomatic pressure or violence.

        As in the South African case, at first external pressure may indeed bolster the shift to the right in Israel, but only at first. When the boycott starts biting, many Israelis—like their Afrikaner predecessors—will rethink whether occupation and apartheid are worth maintaining.
        A growing number of Israelis support BDS, including academics, activists, cultural workers, and more. The Coalition of Women for Peace and Boycott!; Supporting the Palestinian BDS; Call from Within are just some of many Israeli groups and individuals who support some form of BDS.

        BDS is a morally sound and effective means of struggle and it is already exerting more pressure on Israel than the Israeli Left or UN resolutions ever have. In short, unlike anything else, for example Obama’s recent lonely veto in the UN Sec Council, BDS is slowly working, picking up steam. Despite Rice’s veto, Israel is alarmed at the US’s contextual statement accompanying it, a statement in line with BDS goals. These factors should be the most important consideration for morally consistent individuals supporting genuine peace. Richard Witty is anything but morally consistent under universal principles.

      • James North
        March 11, 2011, 11:06 am

        Very well put, Citizen.

      • Richard Witty
        March 11, 2011, 12:28 pm

        So you haven’t read what I describe to the world at large, only my reactions to folks that post here?

      • Richard Witty
        March 11, 2011, 12:44 pm

        Sadly, BDS is not consistent, as I’ve outlined in numerous blog posts of my own, and here.

        I’ve stated consistently that I’m strongly supportive of BDS goals stated as applications of law (color-blind, with equal due process), and I’m strongly critical of BDS goals stated as vague and changing polemical demands.

        Again, the three rational interpretations of BDS demands:

        1. End Israeli occupation of West Bank and Gaza – green line as border (with the sole exception of Jewish portion of the old walled city), sovereign Palestine and sovereign Israel.
        2. Equal rights for all citizens and residents of Israel (and of Palestine, when it becomes a state)
        3. Right of return of anyone born in Israel to Israel, Palestine can set its own immigration criteria. Repeal of 49-51 Israeli laws prohibiting return, access to Israeli courts for land/property claims, and “abandoned” property laws. Compensation for all land taken.

        That differs from the polemic maximalist interpretations, even though proponents use the same language of “human rights” to describe a buffalo as they do an elephant.

        The maximalist interpretations
        1. declare all of Israel/Palestine and probably some of Jordan as historical Palestine, occupied, so in seeking the end of the occupation, they seek the end of Israel as Israel.
        2. Describe the expedited Jewish immigration to Israel as not equal rights, not Israel’s right to determine its own immigration policy
        3. Declare that the right of return means that any descendant of anyone from “historic Palestine” (Israel, West Bank, Gaza, East Bank) can reside, acquire citizenship, restore property ownership to land anywhere in historic Palestine.

        The moderate BDS goals leave Israel as Israel and in peace, transforming the status of property from contested to consented.

        The maximalist forms, use BDS as a trojan horse for actual war on Israel, with a very violent below the water reality (like an iceberg).

        The maximalist demands that advocate for revolution functionally use the principled advocates for change in Israeli policy as dupes.

        Some Palestinians are in the moderate demand camp, some in the maximalist. Enough are in the maximalist camp to make the demand nothing new under the sun.

        They have to convince newby anti-Israeli activists that their parents and grandparents suffering, and then liberation, (or uncles/aunts) were of no consequence, and didn’t represent anything but cynical power-grubbing. But, if those people respect the path that led them to this day, they would have to acknowledge the liberatory nature of Israel’s existence, and not only adopt revisionist approaches to history.

      • MRW
        March 11, 2011, 1:50 pm

        I agree, James North. Kudos, Citizen.

      • Shingo
        March 11, 2011, 2:49 pm

        So you haven’t read what I describe to the world at large, only my reactions to folks that post here?

        Those are your views are they not? God kows you’ve written more than enough garbage on this forum to illustrate your views.

      • Polly
        March 11, 2011, 2:51 pm

        Richard all of your provisos to BDS add up to NOTHING CHANGES. For the Palestinians to get ANYTHING they want from here it’s going to be messy, complicated and painful for everyone concerned. More importantly it’s going to be uncharted territory (Just ask the folks on the Marvi Mamara).
        You want every possible eventuality figured out and pre-addressed and it’s NEVER going to work like that.
        There have to be some leaps of faith made. You have talked a lot on here but as far as I can recall you have given your blessing to precisely NOTHING that would advance the cause of the Palestinians.
        I wouldn’t put you in the same boat as the Foxman’s and Dershowitzes but EFFECTIVELY you are.

      • Shingo
        March 11, 2011, 3:01 pm

        Sadly, BDS is not consistent, as I’ve outlined in numerous blog posts of my own, and here.

        No, you’ve lied about it, but never presented a case. Every time you;ve been challenged about it, and asked to produce evidence to suport your claims, you’ve skulked away and refused to answer the question.

        The demands and goals of BDS are clear, consistent and unequivocal. You continue to pretend that this is a vague issue, and requiring calirification, but it isn’t. There are no maximalist interpretations, only those that propaghandists like yourself like to invent as a means to opose and discredit BDS, becasue as a Zionist, you cannot stomach the very idea of punitive measures being directed at Israel, under any circumstances.

        No proponent of BDS has ever claimed that the aims fo BDS are seeking the end of Israel as Israel, expediting Jewish immigration to Israel, or even mentuioned right of return. These are blatant lies created by dsperate liars. BDS is not a trojan horse for war on Israel and there is no evidence to sugegst it is.

        Stop lying Witty and do us all a favor.

      • Richard Witty
        March 11, 2011, 8:04 pm

        So, Shingo which of the two interpretations presented do you regard as the demands of BDS?

        Or something different?

        Please clarify.

      • Sumud
        March 11, 2011, 10:20 pm

        Sadly, BDS is not consistent, as I’ve outlined in numerous blog posts of my own, and here.

        You could have saved yourself quite some time – starting with a false premise means the rest of your post is worthless.

        For the millionth time Richard: BDS is consistent, and has fixed and clearly stated goals which have not changed since the BDS Movement was launched in 2005. BDS is a rights-based approach and does not have a pre-determined idea of a final outcome in terms of a one-, two- or any other number of state- solutions. I know you know this (because I and many others have told you, many times) and I know that frustrates you, but pretending BDS has goals it doesn’t is merely you pushing square pegs into round holes, deliberately seeding misinformation.

        Exceprt from Palestinian Civil Society Calls for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions against Israel Until it Complies with International Law and Universal Principles of Human Rights, 9 July 2005:

        These non-violent punitive measures should be maintained until Israel meets its obligation to recognize the Palestinian people’s inalienable right to self-determination and fully complies with the precepts of international law by:

        1. Ending its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands and dismantling the Wall;
        2. Recognizing the fundamental rights of the Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel to full equality; and
        3. Respecting, protecting and promoting the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties as stipulated in UN resolution 194.

        Meeting the Palestinian call for self-determination can be achieved in a one- or two- state solution. You can restate it however you like, but those listed above are the fixed goals of the BDS Movement, and the only goals of the BDS Movement. They haven’t changed in 6 years, and I don’t imagine they will. Different people have different ideas about what a best resolution is, some think one state and some think two, but those opinions are independent of the BDS Movement.

        You said:

        I’ve stated consistently that I’m strongly supportive of BDS goals stated as applications of law (color-blind, with equal due process), and I’m strongly critical of BDS goals stated as vague and changing polemical demands.

        The first half is a load of rubbish; you’ve been against BDS for as long as I’ve been reading Mondoweiss, which is about 2 years. You’re welcome to quote yourself going back those two years supporting BDS – I eagerly await it. The second half is irrelevant: BDS is only about the application of law – “vague and changing polemical demands” is a straw man you’ve fabricated as an excuse not to support BDS and a cover for your ideology of jewish supremacism (where all animals are equal but some are more equal than others).

        Which leaves us with just this:

        I’ve stated consistently that I’m strongly supportive of BDS goals stated as applications of law (color-blind, with equal due process), and I’m strongly critical of BDS goals stated as vague and changing polemical demands.

        Are you willing to sign your name to that, Richard?

      • Shingo
        March 11, 2011, 11:25 pm

        We’ve been over this numerous times Witty.

        The stated aims of BDS are clystel clear Witty and unambiguous. Unless you can point to an alternative stated set of aims, I suggest you drop this subject and move on.

      • pjdude
        March 12, 2011, 9:05 am

        in other word your against the law. the only law that matter to you. is the law Israel created to protect its crimes. every decedent of a rightful resident of palestine should be allowed to return. that is maxilmist its what the law requires you bigoted freakshow. the reason you want the whole born in Israel thing is so you can prevent the people you have victimized to get their rights. witty your thug who opposes the law and morality.

        typical your “moderate” palestinians are those willing to give up their rights for bague promises. I’m really tired of you attacks against those who want their rights.

        2. Describe the expedited Jewish immigration to Israel as not equal rights, not Israel’s right to determine its own immigration policy it isn’t equal right. illegal resident conquering a state and bring the rest of their kind in to the area after expelling the legal resident is not equal rights. by giving them precedents of the legal owners and resident of palestine( which despite your rascist claim no is calling any part of jordan historic palestine. just one more piece of evidence in that most pro ISrael people lie through their teeth) you aren’t for equal rights in fact your eroding the fundemenatals of the rule of law.

      • Shingo
        March 11, 2011, 6:19 am

        No one reads your blog Witty. Why would anyone want to?

      • Richard Witty
        March 11, 2011, 2:06 pm

        It contains insightful perspective.

  2. Avi
    March 10, 2011, 10:33 pm

    a generation that does not remember Israeli feats like Entebbe, much less the Six-Day War.

    Sure, Gary Rosenblatt. Whatever you say.

    The six day war was a war of choice that Israel launched against Jordan and Egypt. But, hey, whatever floats your boat.

    I’m sure Chuck Norris fans like wanking off to the Entebbe operation. Such an amazing feat. Hey, I don’t blame you. Every Jewish kid likes to think of Jews kicking butt. Everyone needs a hero. Right?

    Let me know when you decide to mature beyond the GI Joe image and the founding myths of Israel.

    I’ll be here in adult land, waiting.

    Oh and by the way, Israel would have been defeated during the six day war if it weren’t for emergency shipments of American military hardware.

    • Sumud
      March 10, 2011, 11:00 pm

      Oh and by the way, Israel would have been defeated during the six day war if it weren’t for emergency shipments of American military hardware.

      Wasn’t that 1973 Avi?

      • Avi
        March 10, 2011, 11:53 pm

        Wasn’t that 1973 Avi?

        Both.

    • DICKERSON3870
      March 10, 2011, 11:17 pm

      RE: “I’m sure Chuck Norris fans like wanking off to the Entebbe operation.” – Avi
      MY COMMENT: I’m certainly no fan of the “slightly lispy”* Chuck Norris, but I’ll try anything once. Can you recommend a suitable Entebbe videotape or DVD (not too much Idi Amin, please**)? In the meantime, I’ll go ahead and see what YouTube has for free because I hate paying for sex.
      * h/t Pauline Kael, NYT
      ** The Last King of Scotland (2006) – link to movies.netflix.com

      • Avi
        March 11, 2011, 12:08 am

        DICKERSON3870,

        My apologies for the crude language, but there comes a point when I’m fed up with the nonsense that people with a platform peddle.

        There’s this child-like reverence for the Israeli army among many non-Israeli Jews like Rosenblatt. It’s nauseating. Perhaps it’s indicative of a deep sense of persecution, paranoia or inferiority. Are there any psychologists here?

      • annie
        March 11, 2011, 12:36 am

        Are there any psychologists here?

        have you seen the power of nightmares? they were certainly consulted! myths and narratives don’t write themselves.

      • Avi
        March 11, 2011, 12:40 am

        Absolutely. The Power of Nightmares is well worth watching every few years to remind oneself of the manipulation in which governments and media engage.

      • MRW
        March 11, 2011, 1:49 pm

        Avi,

        You don’t have to apologize for crude language. You have been consistently honest in every point you make, whether anyone likes the point or not.

        You fall back on the issue of being a hu-man above all else. You deserve a tip of the hat and a thank you.

      • Sand
        March 12, 2011, 6:31 pm

        Funny you mentioned ‘Power of Nightmares’ and the media — Adam Curtis did a recent blog entry on the rise and of creepy Mr Murdoch.

        link to bbc.co.uk

        Does anyone know if Media Matters has had lunch with the guy yet?

    • Shingo
      March 10, 2011, 11:38 pm

      My gut tells me that the status quo is not good for Israel, and more creative ways must be found to convince the world, starting with American Jews, that Jerusalem really wants a two-state solution before the option becomes moot.

      In other words, Rosenblatt wants Israel to get more creative with the PR side of things – better Hasbara. It’s an image problem you see, not a policy problem.

      • annie
        March 11, 2011, 5:36 am

        exactly..when you cut out the fluff..

        . With the situation deteriorating on the hasbara front, something must be done ……… and it better be more substantive ……American Jews want to feel proud …..not frustrated or ashamed……… fundraisers say that even big givers worry aloud about Israeli policies and the negative impact such policies are having on their children

        and don’t forget the palestinian children!!!

  3. pineywoodslim
    March 10, 2011, 10:41 pm

    My cynical opinion is that as soon as Netanyahu is gone–and he will be, mostly likely sooner than later–and replaced by someone deemed more “respectable” by liberal Zionists, such criticism of Israel will be return to the same-old-same-old “Israel has no partner for peace”, etc.

    The stir about Netanyahu is no more than concern about his PR and public persona, not his substance. He is not the kinder, gentler face of zionism.

    Reminds a bit of Bush being replaced by slick, hip Obama–and promptly continuing the same old policies–and roping liberals in.

    • Citizen
      March 11, 2011, 7:33 am

      Well, actually, Obama has expanded the war in Afghanistan, moving our troops as he moves the walnut shells on the table. His drones are doing a great job of changing hearts and minds in the Afghan/Paki hills. Great way to cut Federal spending too. Still trying to get one hiding man, a man who the US has never claimed planned and executed 9/11 to my knowledge.

      • pineywoodslim
        March 11, 2011, 9:51 am

        Soon, it will be “Livni, change you can believe in”.

      • IranContraClanDidNineEleven
        March 11, 2011, 2:06 pm

        “a man who the US has never claimed planned and executed 9/11 to my knowledge.”

        We know who did 9/11 Citizen, the cat is out the bag but people are too terrified to stand up and say anything. 19 ay-rabs with box cutters and MS flight simulator out of a supercave in afghanistan….LOL

  4. Sumud
    March 10, 2011, 10:56 pm

    My gut tells me that the status quo is not good for Israel, and more creative ways must be found to convince the world, starting with American Jews, that Jerusalem really wants a two-state solution before the option becomes moot.

    Talk is cheap. What needs doing is “doing” instead of talking. “Real slow” is right Phil, Rosenblatt should have said:

    My gut tells me that the status quo is not good for Israel, and Jerusalem [sic: Tel Aviv] must do everything in it’s power to enable the creation of a viable, secure, and independent Palestinian state based on the June 4 1967 borders, in accordance with international law.

    Rosenblatt laments not the absence of a Palestinian state, but that hasbara designed to convince American jews Israel wants a Palestinian state is no longer persuasive. He wants Netanyahu to come to US before the AIPAC conference in May with new proposals to restart the peace process. I have to wonder if Mr. Rosenblatt has heard of the Palestine Papers? After the revelations they contained (that the Palestinian negotiating team has offered concession after concession and the Israelis have refused to take yes for an answer) why is he still talking about the peace process?

    I can only hope that Netanyahu’s government falls sooner rather than later, so that the Rosenblatts of the world come to understand the problem is not just the Netanyahu government, but decades of Israeli governments operating with remarkable consistency. Netanyahu and Lieberman is they’re just a little more brazen about it than the rest.

    • Sumud
      March 11, 2011, 5:11 am

      whoops:

      “Netanyahu and Lieberman’s problem is they’re just a little more brazen about it than the rest.”

  5. fuster
    March 10, 2011, 11:06 pm

    avi has spoken… the Six Day War was chosen by the chosen.

    horrrrrssssehittttt

    smellllllls

    better

    • annie
      March 10, 2011, 11:49 pm

      biting off more than you can chew again eh?

    • Avi
      March 10, 2011, 11:59 pm

      fuster March 10, 2011 at 11:06 pm

      avi has spoken… the Six Day War was chosen by the chosen.

      horrrrrssssehittttt

      smellllllls

      better

      The 1967 war was discussed several times on Mondoweiss and each time several sources and proof were provided.

      If one needs to argue over the same points each time an Hasbara idiot comes along, perhaps it’s time to put a permanent “Common Myths” article on Mondoweiss. You know, so as to spare ignorami like you the embarrassment. But, you don’t feel embarrassment. You’re like a robot, spewing whatever you’ve been told to spew from early childhood.

      • justicewillprevail
        March 11, 2011, 2:20 pm

        Excellent suggestion re a Common Myths link. It is one of the hallmarks of the hasbarists that they ignore well-argued and documented rebuttals and merely repeat ad nauseam their preferred myths and lies. I suppose it is better than having to confront the spurious basis of their beliefs, or engage in debate based around evidence, as opposed to manufactured PR.

    • straightline
      March 11, 2011, 12:17 am

      “The thesis that the danger of genocide was hanging over us in June 1967
      and that Israel was fighting for its physical existence is only bluff, which
      was born and developed after the war.” Israeli General Matityahu Peled,
      Ha’aretz, 19 March 1972.

      “In his excellent book, “Wars don’t just happen” the historian Motti Golani
      describes e.g., how the June war of 1967 evolved out of an Israeli provocation
      on the Syrian border (I can confirm his description with my limited
      perspective as a simple soldier at that time). Through a misinterpretation of
      the Israeli steps, the Arab countries were convinced that Israel intended to
      attack Syria. In order to neutralize this threat the Egyptian president Gamal
      Abd al-Nasser closed the Strait of Sharem El Sheikh and kicked the UN forces
      out of the Sinai Peninsula. There are many proofs that the Egyptian army in
      Sinai, notwithstanding the aggressive Nasser’s rhetorics, was in a defensive
      set up and was not going to attack Israel.” (Shraga Elam, 14 February 2003)

      “I do not think Nasser wanted war. The two divisions he sent to The Sinai
      would not have been sufficient to launch an offensive war. He knew it and we
      knew it.” (Yitzhak Rabin, 28 February 1968)

      “In June, 1967, we again had a choice. The Egyptian army concentrations in the
      Sinai did not prove that Nasser was really about to attack us. We must be
      honest with ourselves. We decided to attack him.” (Menachem Begin, 8 August
      1982)

      “Motti Golani argues convincingly that prior to the attack of June 1967, the
      Israeli High Command organized a ‘silent’ putsch, blocked up all political
      solutions for the crisis and launched the war in order to expand.” (Shraga
      Elam, 14 February 2003)

      “I know how at least 80% of the incidents began there. In my opinion, more
      than 80%, but lets talk about 80%. It would happen like this: We would send a
      tractor to plow someplace of no value, in the demilitarized zone, knowing
      ahead of time that the Syrians would begin to shoot. If they did not start
      shooting, we would tell the tractor to keep going forward, until the Syrians
      in the end would get nervous and start shooting. And then we would start
      firing artillery, and later also the airforce and this was the way it was. I
      did this and Laskov and Tzur (two previous commander-in-chiefs) did it,
      Yitzhak Rabin did it when he was there (as commander of the northern district
      at the beginning of the sixties), but it seems to me that it was Dado, more
      than anyone else, enjoyed these games.” (Moshe Dayan, 22 November 1976)

      “In a series of interviews that Dayan gave journalist Rami Tal in the
      mid-1970s, and which were recently published in the Israeli daily Yediot
      Achronot, Dayan stated that the years of cross-border violence between Israel
      and Syria that preceded the war were largely a result of Israeli
      provocations. According to Dayan, some 80 percent of the pre-war border
      incidents were the result of Israeli initiatives.” (David Landau, 6 June
      1997)

      • fuster
        March 11, 2011, 1:31 am

        straight, I agree that Nasser and company were never going to be able to achieve those ‘collective military preparations’ for the ‘final liquidation of Israel’ that the Arab League called for.
        Nasser certainly did bite off more than he could chew.

        What did you expect to happen after Nasser threw out the UN peacekeepers?

      • Sumud
        March 11, 2011, 2:31 am

        Nasser certainly did bite off more than he could chew.

        I would say it was Israel that bit off more than it could chew in 1967, not Nasser.

        The Six Day War was Israel’s great gamble that the land grab and ethnic cleansing it undertook in 1947/48/49 could be repeated again in 1967; big mistake – and now the settlements have all but guaranteed there will never be a Palestinian state, but instead a single state in mandate Palestine w/ equal rights for all, and a large Palestinian majority.

        Vive la France.

      • Hostage
        March 11, 2011, 3:32 am

        What did you expect to happen after Nasser threw out the UN peacekeepers?

        General Rabin blamed U Thant for that. In The Rabin memoirs
        By Yitzhak Rabin, pages 69-70 :

        [W]e learned that the Egyptians had stepped matters up another notch by demanding that the UN forces stationed along the Sinai border be removed from their positions and transferred to Gaza and Sharm el-Sheikh. This move was a radical departure from the pattem of Operation Rotem and sufficient reason for alarm. Still, it was a calculated step and did not necessarily call for an immediate, belligerent response. First of all, as many people throughout the world expected, rather than respond to Nasser’s dictates the UN might categorically refuse to remove its forces. At the very least, it would take time for the General Assembly or Security Council to meet and debate the matter, which would slow down the momentum of developments. … …Commentators and historians have spent much ink on speculations about what would have happened if Secretary-General U Thant had agreed to Nasser’s demand for a limited withdrawal of UN forces. But on May 17 we learned that U Thant had presented Nasser with only two options: either the UN troops remained in all their positions or they withdrew from the Middle East entirely. Given that choice, Nasser was left with the problem of saving face. His reply was quick in coming: the UN force was to withdraw from all its positions. In the chain of events that drew Nasser into war — perhaps contrary to his original intention — U Thant’s action proved to be a vital link.

        link to books.google.com

        That of course is only half the story. U Thant blamed the Israelis. “The Making of Resolution 242″, by Sydney Dawson Bailey, pages 21-22, says:

        Thant raised with Gideon Raphael the possibility of deploying UNEF on the Israeli side of the armistice demarcation line, but this was rejected by Israel as ‘entirely unacceptable”. … … Thant believed that if only Israel had decided otherwise, ‘the course of history would have been different.

        link to books.google.com

        Here is the report to the Security Council from Secretary General U Thant, S/7906, 26 May 1967. It explained Israel’s permanent state of bellicose intransigence:

        6. It may be relevant to note here that UNEF functioned exclusively on the United Arab Republic side of the Line in a zone from which the armed forces of the United Arab Republic had voluntarily stayed away for over ten years. It was this arrangement which allowed UNEF to function as a buffer and as a restraint on infiltration. When this arrangement lapsed United Arab Republic troops moved up to the Line as they had every right to do.

        7. If UNEF had been deployed on both sides of the Line as originally envisaged in pursuance of the General Assembly resolution, its buffer function would not necessarily have ended. However, its presence on the Israel side of the Line has never been permitted.The fact that UNEF was not stationed on the Israel side of the Line was a recognition of the unquestioned sovereign right of Israel to withhold its consent for the stationing of the Force. The acquiescence in the request of the United Arab Republic for the withdrawal of the Force after ten and a half years on United Arab Republic soil was likewise a recognition of the sovereign authority of the United Arab Republic. In no official document relating to UNEF has there been any suggestion of a limitation of this sovereign authority’…. …’President Nasser and Foreign Minister Riad assured me that the United Arab Republic would not initiate offensive action against Israel. Their general aim, as stated to me, was for a return to the conditions prevailing prior to 1956 and to full observance by both parties of the provisions of the General Armistice Agreement between Egypt and Israel.’

        link to un.org

        BTW, why is it always the Arabs fault? When Israel invades another country it always demands that the other guy turn his territory into a buffer zone or kill box, i.e. Lebanon South of the Litani, the Sinai, & Gaza. Logic would tend to dictate that Israel should be demilitarized and that their armed forces not be allowed anywhere near the frontiers.

      • Hostage
        March 11, 2011, 3:58 am

        Fuster,

        *During the discussion in the Pit the General Staff was only worried about the loss of prestige and deterrence. General Peled said

        “We have heard something regarding Tiran, which lost its significance long ago. It was not important to start with and is even less important now.” The entry of an Egyptian force into Sinai was nothing new for the IDF, having been anticipated and planned for in various exercises and war games. The only surprise, he stressed, was Nasser’s audacity, since it was well known that his army was not ready for war.”

        ISRAEL’S DECISION TO GO TO WAR, JUNE 2, 1967, Ami Gluska link to meria.idc.ac.il

        Accounts published by the Israeli decision makers, Israeli historians, and Israeli political scientists agree that the decision to go to war was made on the basis of the IDF’s ”Doctrine of Deterrence”, not because they seriously thought that they were ”preempting” an impending Arab attack.

        *Greg Cashman said that in late May 1967, Egypt had complained that the false Soviet report caused them to send troops into the Sinai. see An Introduction to the Causes of War: Patterns of Interstate Conflict from World War I to Iraq, page 185

        *The Egyptians had already provided categorical assurances to Israel through the US Secretary of State and the UN Secretary General that they did not intend to initiate hostilities, and that they were willing to make concessions to avoid a war. see Cashman; Foreign Relations, 1964-1968, Volume XIX, Arab-Israeli Crisis and War, 1967, document 132; and paragragh 9 of the report to the Security Council from the Secretary General of the United Nations, S/7906, 26 May 1967.

        *Christopher Gelpi says that the government of Egypt had let it be known that their tough statements were “mere words designed for public consumption.” see The power of legitimacy: assessing the role of norms in crisis bargaining, page 141

        *David Rodman said that since the early days of the State, Israeli military doctrine placed a premium on offensive, rather than defensive warfare. Military leaders felt that there was a better prospect of deterring the outbreak of hostilities if the IDF transferred fighting to enemy territory as soon as possible. That strategy also compensated for limited finances and the absence of alliance partners. see Between war and peace, editor Efraim Karsh, page 153

        *Dan Kurzman said Rabin was not concerned with the Sinai build-up. see Soldier of peace, page 202

        *Rabin said the IDF GHQ Intelligence assessment was that Israel was facing a repetition of Operation Rotem (see the discussion above), and that Egypt would eventually withdraw. He characterized the Sinai troop build-up and the closure of the Straits as “humiliating pinpricks” that would render the IDF’s long term ”deterrent capacity” worthless. During the meeting in “the Pit”, he and the other military leaders said they were afraid that it would appear that the government had lost confidence in the IDF, and that the significance of the closure of the Straits lay in the effect on Israel’s ”deterrent” capability. see The Rabin Memoirs, page 80-81; Israel in the Middle East: Documents and Readings on Society, Politics, and Foreign Relations, Pre-1948 to the Present, edited by Itamar Rabinovich, Jehuda Reinharz, pages 212-213; and Israel’s Decision To Go To War, June 2, 1967, by Col. Ami Gluska

        *Avner Yaniv said that IDF doctrine was based on the assumption of the inherent disability of Israel to win a decisive strategic battle and impose peace on the Arabs. The leadership felt that Israel could not subdue the Arabs. It could defend itself, cause the Arabs pain, and destroy their armies for a while, but they felt that solving the problem once and for all was beyond Israel’s capacity. The IDF relied on a strategy of active conventional ”deterrence” that emphasized punitive and demonstrative use of force and the accumulation of dissuasive power not through one military victory, but through a succession of quick decisive blows to Arab military power. see National security and democracy in Israel, page 90.

        *Avi Shlaim said there is general agreement among commentators that Nasser neither wanted nor planned to go to war with Israel. He said the Israeli economy would survive the closure of the Straits, but ”the deterrent image of the IDF” could not. see The Iron Wall, pages 236-237.

        *Yagil Levy says that the tendency to use force and generate escalation in order to bring about counter-reaction by the Arabs, ruled out possible options to settle the crisis other than by war. Israel’s doctrine of ”deterrence” called for “flexible retaliation” designed to deter the Syrians or provoke them so that Israel could launch a full scale response. He said that Israel became trapped in its own formula of ”deterrence”. see Trial and error: Israel’s route from war to de-escalation, page 107

        *Re’uven Pedatzur said that any erosion of Israeli deterrent power is an impediment to peace in the region. He said that Israeli deterrence is greatly dependent on the IDF’s capability to inflict great and painful damage to the enemy — “deterrence through punishment.” and that in the absence of comprehensive peace in the Middle East, deterrence will remain the chief component in Israel’s national defense doctrine. see Limits of Deterrence, Ha’aretz, 28 March 1995 p B1

        *Uzi Benziman described Israel’s doctrine of strategic deterrence and Ariel Sharon’s role in launching cross-border attacks into Jordan or Egypt where his forces would strike targets and disappear. see for example Sharon: An Israeli Caesar, pages 42-44

        I hope that answers your question.

      • annie
        March 11, 2011, 4:58 am

        thank you hostage

      • Shingo
        March 11, 2011, 6:21 am

        I think you might have drowned the frog Hostage.

      • CK MacLeod
        March 11, 2011, 1:56 pm

        Abstractions like “offensive” or “defensive” are over-simplifications, as the old saying about the “best defense” acknowledges.

        All that the assembled quotes on the Six-Day War prove – or suggest – is that Israel acted pre-emptively against the perceived ongoing deterioration of its strategic situation. The alternative would be for Israel to wait until the correlation of forces against it were intolerably disadvantageous – when the fight would be one that it could lose, or, put somewhat simplistically, the pan-Arab alliance under the sponsorship of the Soviet Union would be in a better position to make good on its bluster.

        Instead, the Israelis reached the military-strategic conclusion that it couldn’t afford a “fair fight,” and, furthermore, that Nasser’s actions and rhetoric provided a more than adequate pretext. The course of the war and subsequent history, including Israel’s transformation from a failing project into a relatively secure and wealthy state firmly embedded in the neo-imperial alliance structure, suggests that their calculations were rather sound, just as the conduct of the war itself, as a feat of arms, remains impressive.

        Try Segev’s 1967 for a broader but quite critical view of Israel’s total predicament and its conduct. Segev seems to believe that the war and especially the occupation put Israel on an unsustainable and morally dubious course, but that’s not the same thing as saying that the strategy was wholly unjustified or mistaken, from the point of view of the Israeli state, compared to other alternatives.

      • fuster
        March 11, 2011, 2:00 pm

        It could be that it is the Arab’s fault, my dear Hostage, for lobbing bombs into Israel from the Heights.

      • fuster
        March 11, 2011, 2:05 pm

        It could well be Hostage that Nasser didn’t really want to go to war but merely wanting to keep screaming that he did.
        It could well be that he merely wished to threaten Israel with destruction, and to demand that his officers commend the armies of Jordan and to stir Syria into action and encourage PLO bombardment into Israel and to mass his troops at the border after demanding that the UN peacekeepers leave and to close the Gulf of Aqaba to Israeli ships despite the US telling him meant war.
        Could be.

      • Philip Weiss
        March 11, 2011, 2:05 pm

        blockade of tiran straits was seen as act of war, right ckm
        so what does that justify on part of gazans?

      • fuster
        March 11, 2011, 2:06 pm

        Philip, Hamas already is at war with Israel. Had you overlooked that?

      • Richard Witty
        March 11, 2011, 2:09 pm

        It justifies them working to become part of a sovereign Palestinian state that has the rights under international law to open ports, unlike a militia which does not formally.

        Too “legalistic”?

      • IranContraClanDidNineEleven
        March 11, 2011, 2:44 pm

        “Try Segev’s 1967 for a broader but quite critical view of Israel’s total predicament and its conduct. Segev seems to believe that the war and especially the occupation put Israel on an unsustainable and morally dubious course, but that’s not the same thing as saying that the strategy was wholly unjustified or mistaken, from the point of view of the Israeli state, compared to other alternatives.”

        Does Segev explain why Arthur Krim’s wife, a former Irgun operative, was servicing LBJ in the White House the night the war broke out? That’s a pretty unfortunate coincidence that she would just happen to be there.

      • Shingo
        March 11, 2011, 2:52 pm

        Philip, Hamas already is at war with Israel.

        No, Israel is at war with Hamas. Hamas have proposed numerous ceasefires and treaties and Israel has either rejedted them or violated them.

      • Shingo
        March 11, 2011, 2:54 pm

        It justifies them working to become part of a sovereign Palestinian state that has the rights under international law to open ports, unlike a militia which does not formally.

        Hamas already has that right. The fact that Israel is blocking it or making it impossible has nothing to do with international law.

        Too “legalistic”?

        Why don;t you ask a lawyer rather than making stuff up?

      • Shingo
        March 11, 2011, 3:03 pm

        It could be that it is the Arab’s fault, my dear Hostage, for lobbing bombs into Israel from the Heights.

        Why are you playing dumb on this topic fuster? Surely you’re familiar with Moseh Datan’s mea culpa on this issue?

      • Shingo
        March 11, 2011, 3:09 pm

        All that the assembled quotes on the Six-Day War prove – or suggest – is that Israel acted pre-emptively against the perceived ongoing deterioration of its strategic situation.

        On the contrary CK. All that the assembled quote reveal that the was was a preventitive war, perceived as a means of stealing territory and braking the back of Pan Arabism.

        The alternative would be for Israel to wait until the correlation of forces against it were intolerably disadvantageous

        Absurd. Israel were gaining in strength with each year, and Egypt was on the deceline. The simple fact is that Israle had been tryign to trick Nasser into a war since 1955.

        Israel’s success is based on exapsionism, therfore 1967 was necessar to kick statrt that enterprise. The fact that Israel were almost defeated in 1973, but for the intervantion of Nixon, debunkes the myth of the feat of 1967. Israel caught Egypt unaware in 1967 and Egypt returned th favor in 1973.

      • annie
        March 11, 2011, 3:10 pm

        yes he has been informed repeatedly shingo even on this thread. it’s a repetitious circular fustercluck we can’t rid ourselves of.

      • Shingo
        March 11, 2011, 3:10 pm

        It could well be fuster that you’ve been informed abot this al before and have no intention of debating this issue honestly, but have an ideological block about accepting the historical record.

      • Hostage
        March 11, 2011, 3:14 pm

        There is no right under international law to launch wars against other states because of a deterioration of a states so-called “strategic situation” or to obtain defensible borders.

        Every State has the right to exist and the right to protect and preserve its existence, but that right does not imply that a State is entitled to commit, or is justified in committing, unjust acts towards other States in order to protect and preserve its existence.

      • CK MacLeod
        March 11, 2011, 3:17 pm

        PW: I’m a well-known softy and symp Hamas-wise, therefore totally disqualified from being taken seriously in mainstream American political discourse, and worthy of condemnation to whatever small extent I am taken seriously. Being willing to see things from Hamas’ point of view isn’t the same as agreeing with Hamas in all particulars, however, or knowing what the best way for Hamas to secure its “state interests” would be.

      • Shingo
        March 11, 2011, 3:29 pm

        Very good point Hostage. I’m sure Hitler would have argued that he attacked Poland because of a deterioration of a states so-called “strategic situation” .

      • CK MacLeod
        March 11, 2011, 3:33 pm

        Your reply is confused and self-contradictory, Shingo. You claim that Israel’s “success” is based on expansionism, that the war was “necessary,” and use 1973 as proof of its vulnerability. You even call the war “preventive.” How does that contradict anything I wrote? As for tricking Nasser into attacking, I won’t pretend to have familiarized myself with the entire history and development of Israeli strategic thinking, but, absolutely from a strategic perspective, it’s better to have a relatively unprepared enemy act first and expose his vulnerabilities.

        Whether Israel was really “gaining in strength with each year” is a complex question whose dimensions include power relative to actual and potential enemies. We don’t know what would have happened without the Six-Day War, but it seems to have effectively aborted the Pan-Arab project even as a matter of effective alliances, while solidifying the relationship with one actually existing great power, and setting back the designs of the competing great power – all classic objectives for a small state.

      • CK MacLeod
        March 11, 2011, 3:40 pm

        International law, Hostage, is a tool of states, maintained by states for their own sake. No state on Earth that is interested in its own survival will ever sacrifice its survival interests out of greater loyalty to “international law,” or enforce international law against other states against its own interests.

      • CK MacLeod
        March 11, 2011, 3:47 pm

        Hitler might well have argued that, Shingo. Hitler might also have argued that the sky in Spring, even in Germany, was often blue.

        Germany’s strategic situation started becoming untenable well before WWI, which Germany sought an excuse to launch before the development of Russia especially rendered its strategic vulnerabilities ineradicable. Hitlerism was in part a psychotic fantasy that the end of Germany’s great power/imperial aspirations could be reversed. So, while WWI was a low odds gamble, WWII was a “Hail Mary!” in the same losing game – made superficially more credible by the disarray among the Western powers and the also traditional underestimation of the U.S. The strategic situation hadn’t fundamentally changed, and in that sense the German interest in suppressing Poland – which still exists today, incidentally – was as valid for Hitler as it was for his predecessors.

      • fuster
        March 11, 2011, 3:50 pm

        Shingo, get real. Hamas declared war.

        Ceasefires and temporary truces are features of a state of war, not of peace.

        Too simple to misunderstand.

      • Hostage
        March 11, 2011, 3:59 pm

        It could be that it is the Arab’s fault, my dear Hostage, for lobbing bombs into Israel from the Heights.

        Fuster,

        In Six Days of War (starting on page 33) Oren explains that the path to war stated with the Israel attack on Samu. Rabin wanted to launch a retaliatory raid against Syria, but Eshkol was afraid that would lead to Soviet intervention, so it was decided to attack Samu in Jordan instead.

        General’s Dayan and Rabin both admit that it was Israel that started the cross border shooting incidents with Syria. The IDF used tanks to shoot the heavy equipment used in Syria’s water diversion project & etc. Israel unilaterally declared sovereignty over the DMZs and occupied them. Then it closed the DMZs to the Arab cultivators that lived there, and declared that they were a “security risk”. Next the Generals sent armored tractors in to plough hoping that the Syrians would retaliate. They finally used IAF fighter aircraft in Syrian airspace to their retaliatory strikes and shot down several MIGS in April of 1967 – including one over the capital city of Damascus. Tom Segev wrote that when the Syrian planes were shot down, Moshe Dayan’s response was “Have you lost your minds? You are leading the country into war!” Prime Minister Eshkol’s aide General Israel Lior said: “From my point of view, the Six Day War had begun.” See 1967: Israel, the War, and the Year that Transformed the Middle East, page 212.

        After the massive invasion and attack against the West Bank village of Samu in November of 1966, the Israeli authorities began crossing the Armistice Demarcation Line into the Latrun no-man’s land and ploughed areas situated in Jordan and in no-man’s land. You can read all about that in the Yearbook of the United Nations link to unispal.un.org

        Hope that clears up your misunderstanding.

      • fuster
        March 11, 2011, 4:31 pm

        Thanks Hostage it would help if it wasn’t such a misrepresentation of Oren’s book and of the truth.

        The cross-border shooting with Syria was started by Syria’s support for the PLO cross-border raids.

      • Hostage
        March 11, 2011, 4:39 pm

        The internal consistency of Israel’s thinking about the right of passage and freedom of navigation never made much sense. Israel attacked the USS Liberty and the Gaza aid flotilla in international waters and said the passage of Iranian ships through the Suez Canal was an act of provocation. So, it appears the Israel only respects its own right of innocent passage and freedom of navigation on the high seas or in international waters.

        There really isn’t any evidence that shipping through Tiran was ever interrupted. The UNEF Commander reported that Egypt had only stopped a few ships for inspection, but let them go on their way before suspending the practice and offering a U Thant a moratorium. Israel promptly declined the confidential offer of a UN-brokered moratorium while publicly calling for the formation of an international maritime force to break the blockade. Secretary Rusk noted that it would be hard to get Congressional approval, since the Liberian-flagged tankers that carried Israel’s oil had not requested any assistance. In any event the clousure of the Staits doesn’t pass the Caroline test, since the necessity for preemptive self–defense wasn’t “instant, overwhelming, and leaving no choice of means, and no moment for deliberation.”

      • Hostage
        March 11, 2011, 4:42 pm

        Fuster,

        Ben Gurion had declared the armistice agreements null and void; occupied the DMZs and unilaterally declared Israeli sovereignty over them. So, Israel was already at war with the Arabs. You must have forgot that.

      • Shingo
        March 11, 2011, 4:47 pm

        Correction fuster, that was what Israel claimed to be the reason for the bombing of Samu. There was no evidence that these particular raids took place, though the attack on
        Samu was undeniable.

      • Hostage
        March 11, 2011, 5:12 pm

        I guess you don’t understand Oren’s use of the English phrases “The Catalyts Samu to Sinai” in the chapter’s title? or “The Path to war”?

        There is no way I’ve misinterpreted Dayan’s 1974 interview with Rami Tal. Dayan dismissed concerns about Syrian aggression and insisted that all of the IDF commanders had made a game out of escalating tensions along the Syrian front. Rabin’s biography confirms that.

      • Hostage
        March 11, 2011, 6:09 pm

        Shingo,

        In fairness, I am reciting doctrine published by the UN International Law Commission and the League of Nations Lytton Report. The latter dealt with the Japanese attempt to use the right of preemptive self-defense to grant itself carte blanche in the Manchurian incident. You can read more about that here: link to books.google.com

        After the spate of tell-all newspaper and book accounts by retired Israeli Generals and politicians, the majority of legal scholars no longer view Israel’s attack on Egypt as a valid example of anticipatory self-defense. Here are some examples of articles which conclude that Israel violated the customary law prohibition of preemptive war:

        *A report published by the President’s Commission of the American Society of International Law Task Force on Terrorism: Mary Ellen O’Connell, “The Myth of Preemptive Self-Defense” link to asil.org

        *An article by James Thuo Gathii, “Assessing Claims of a New Doctrine of Preemptive War Under the Doctrine of Sources”
        link to papers.ssrn.com

        So even if “defensive conquest” wasn’t prohibited under international law, Israel would still be fighting an uphill battle to retain any of the territory that came under IDF control in 1967.

      • Hostage
        March 11, 2011, 6:20 pm

        CK MacLeod,

        International law consists of the rules that states have adopted to govern their mutual relations. Other states will eventually go out of their way to give notice and enforce those rules on pariah states like the Union of South Africa and Israel.

        For decades Israel has chosen to ignore the international community. Meanwhile it complains about the disproportionate amount of time the UN has been forced to spend on the illegal situations Israel has created. I don’t believe that its survival is under any serious threat at the moment, or that its survival has been threatened for many decades. I also don’t believe that the Jews living there would go to bed hungry at night if there were a change of sovereignty and a bi-national state established.

      • fuster
        March 11, 2011, 6:34 pm

        Hostage, you surely know that the government of Egypt informed the US government that they were going to close the straits to all Israeli ships.

        Informed that the US thought that it was an act of aggression,

        Egypt’s Foreign Minister stated that clearly and it was reported back in a telegram from Cairo dated May 23.

        Informed that the US thought that it was an act of aggression and would be viewed as such by the government of the US, he said that it would happen anyway.

        link to history.state.gov

      • Hostage
        March 11, 2011, 10:24 pm

        Hostage, you surely know that the government of Egypt informed the US government that they were going to close the straits to all Israeli ships.

        I am obviously aware of a lot more than that. The US was working with the UK on the maritime force and their declassified documents include a Cabinet Conclusion: Minutes and Papers: CAB 128/42, Formerly CC (67) 31 23/05/1967 which said that the real risk was that Israel would be tempted to launch a preventive war.

        Not a single state, including the US, ever supported Israel’s jus ad bellum legal argument. Only the Security Council could decide if an “act of aggression” had actually occurred, and that certainly never happened. The other members did not agree that Egypt’s right of inspection in its own territorial waters was an act of aggression or tantamount to a blockade. Eilat was seldom if ever used for Israeli-flagged shipping in the first place, and Israel’s other ports were all still open. The Indian delegate and many others supported Egypt’s legal position.

        Egypt asked to have the case decided by the International Court of Justice. The fact that (i) Israel had only occupied Eilat after it had signed a binding Chapter VII armistice agreement with Egypt; (ii) had subsequently declared the armistice agreements null and void; and (iii) had threatened and attacked Egypt’s Arab League allies, Syria and Jordan, legally triggered Egypt’s exercise of its rights of belligerency. It also meant that Israel and the US were trying to enforce access to the port of Eilat based upon a “prescriptive right” to the acquisition of territory on which it was situated.

        The navigation channels after the Straits were an inland waterway that passed through Egypt’s territorial waters. Egypt was not a signatory to any international convention that imposed an “international servitude” upon it at that time, and the 1958 convention had not yet obtained customary status. There is a discussion of some of the factors and divided legal opinion of the case in ‘Armed Attack’ and Article 51 of the UN Charter: Evolutions in Customary Law, By Tom Ruys starting on page 276:

        link to books.google.com

        The final settlement between Egypt and Israel was based upon the old fashioned (conventional) contract theory of “acceptance”, not upon any changes in customary law.

      • Sumud
        March 11, 2011, 10:40 pm

        Shingo, get real. Hamas declared war.

        Prove it fuster.

        Actually, it was Israel in 2007 that declared Gaza “hostile territory”*:

        NYT: As Rice arrives, Israel calls Gaza ‘hostile territory’

        Haaretz: Cabinet declares Gaza ‘hostile territory’

        *Which doesn’t mean Israel hadn’t already been killing massive numbers in Gaza: from the fake withdrawal in 2005 to December 2008 Israel killed about 1500 Palestinians in Gaza. The 2007 declaration of Gaza a “hostile territory” was merely legal manoeuvring in an attempt by Israel to avoid it’s Geneva Convention obligations as the occupying power in Gaza, and legitimise the collective punishment of the civilians population via an even tighter siege.

        Vive la France!

      • fuster
        March 11, 2011, 11:05 pm

        Sumud, august 1988.

        viva la guillotine!

      • Shingo
        March 11, 2011, 11:18 pm

        1.The blockade lasted 1 week. 

        2.5% of Israel’s shipping was affected.

        3. Egypt allowed Israeli ships to pass, so long as they agreed not to fly the Israeli flag. Israel said no.

        4. Egypt proposed that the World Court be asked to rule on the legality of the blockade to resolve the dispute. Israel said no.

        Some act of aggression hey? Israel were looking for any excuse to start a war, because there were plenty of opportunities no avoid it.

      • fuster
        March 11, 2011, 11:34 pm

        Shingo,

        The blockade lasted 1 week.

        and the war lasted only six days.

      • annie
        March 12, 2011, 12:11 am

        and the war lasted only six days.

        it only needed to last long enough to steal the land fussy, that was the point after all.

      • Shingo
        March 12, 2011, 12:56 am

        The blocksfe was over before Israel attacked.

        Any more stupidity you care to demonstrate Fuster?

      • fuster
        March 12, 2011, 1:28 am

        –Any more stupidity—Shingo

        no thanks, your demo will suffice.

        it was most dearly absurd.

        Egypt had closed the Gulf before and knew it to be an act of war in 67.
        it was a settled question after the UN declaration of ’58.

      • Sumud
        March 12, 2011, 3:01 am

        Sumud, august 1988.

        How is that proof of anything other than you knowing the month goes before the year, and not knowing to capitalise August?

      • Shingo
        March 12, 2011, 3:49 am

        Egypt had closed the Gulf before and knew it to be an act of war in 67.

        Not when they clearly communicated that it only applied to ships flying the Israeli flag and proposed that the legality of the blockade be deterined by an impartial body. Secondly, it had ended long before Israel attacked, so it ceased to be an act of war when Israel started the war.

        it was a settled question after the UN declaration of ’58

        Clearly it wasn’t which is why only Israel believed it to be an act of war.

      • pjdude
        March 12, 2011, 9:12 am

        why are you promoting a lie. saying he bit off more than he could chew implies he started the war. Israel did like almost every war its been involved in.

      • pjdude
        March 12, 2011, 9:15 am

        Every State has the right to exist and the right to protect and preserve its existence,

        both of these are false. a state has the right to exist solely through if the residence of its terriotries wish it to exist. and a state can only defend its self from without. it has no right to keep its self in existence againt the wishes of the legal resident of its territories.

      • Hostage
        March 12, 2011, 5:15 pm

        pjdude,

        I was not discussing the philosophy of legitimism or my own thoughts on that subject. I was discussing the rules of law that states themselves have adopted to govern the conduct of their mutual relations an in the principles of their international organization.

        So, you will find the principles I mentioned incorporated the public international of the American States, the EU, & etc. such as:

        *The Montevideo Convention on the Rights and Duties of States
        *The OAS Charter, Chapter IV, Fundamental Rights and Duties of States
        *Chapter 1 of the UN Charter

        Disputes involving these rights can be resolved in the OAS; the UN General Assembly; UN Security Council; or International Court of Justice

        OTOH the rights of people are found in the Universal Bill of Rights composed of:
        *The Universal Declaration of Human Rights
        *International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights
        *International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights

        Disputes concerning these rights are resolved through:
        *UN Human Rights Treaty monitoring bodies,
        *The International Court of Justice
        *OAS Monitoring Bodies
        *The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights
        *The Inter-American Court of Human Rights

        The EU and other communities have similar regional institutions.

        Certain acts of concern to the international community of states are crimes when they are committed against any civilian population or state. States can be held responsible for some crimes such as genocide in the International Court of Justice. Individuals can be held responsible for genocide, war crimes, or crimes against humanity in the International Criminal Court

      • fuster
        March 13, 2011, 8:10 am

        Shingo, the US considered it to be an act of war and told the Egyptians as much, and if Egypt considered the question not to be settled, then it was well and proper that the Israelis demonstrated to Nasser some more reasons why it should be considered settled.

      • Shingo
        March 13, 2011, 4:57 pm

        Shingo, the US considered it to be an act of war and told the Egyptians as much

        Actually they didn’t Fuster. 3 days before Israel attacked Egypt, the head of Israeli intelligence met with Johnson’s team in Washington, with both sides agreeing that Nasser was not going to attack.

        and if Egypt considered the question not to be settled, then it was well and proper that the Israelis demonstrated to Nasser some more reasons why it should be considered settled.

        That’s just infantile belligerence on your part and demonstrates that you’ve given up having a rational debate. Nasser was prepared to put the legitimacy to the Wporld Court to decide it’s legality. If Israel were so convinced it was an act of war, they woudl not have rejected the proposal.

        Face it fuster. You’re a frog way out of his depth on this topic.

      • fuster
        March 13, 2011, 5:05 pm

        shingo the Egyptian Foreign Minister was told that closing an international waterway to Israel was an act of aggression and would be treated as such in the view of the US in a meeting with US reps in Cairo on May 21 and the cabled report corfirming the meeting and the exchange was sent to the State Department and logged on May 23.

        dude, you’ll drown long before I.

      • Shingo
        March 13, 2011, 5:19 pm

        Fuster,

        3 ships were searched.
        The blockade was enforced for 1 week
        Israeli ships were allied to pass so long as they agreed not to fly the flag once they entered the Straights
        Less than 5% of Istaeli shipping was ever effected

        This was no act of war.

      • fuster
        March 13, 2011, 5:32 pm

        it is exactly an act of war. the Egyptians knew it to be and it was re-inforced by the US

        “[The Arab blockade of Israel shipping in the Gulf of Aqaba is] illegal and potentially disastrous to the cause of peace. …The purported closing of the Gulf of Aqaba has brought a new and grave dimension to the crisis. The United States considers the gulf to be an international waterway.”President LB Johnson May 24, 1967

      • Shingo
        March 13, 2011, 6:03 pm

        Johnson did not put the descision to the World Court so he wasn’t to know ifthe blockde ws legal or otherwise Fusty.

        Try again.

      • fuster
        March 13, 2011, 6:12 pm

        ” I can state that Egypt’s political leadership called Israel to war. It
        clearly provoked Israel and forced it into a confrontation.” —-Salah al-Hadidi, Egypt’s chief judge for the trials of the Egyptian officers held responsible for the defeat.

        Oren, Six Days of War, p.310

      • fuster
        March 13, 2011, 6:17 pm

        the UN had already declared it to be illegal in 1958, Shingo, after Egypt had previously closed it off.

        you’re down for the third time, Shingo.

        full fathoms five.

        Ding-dong.
        Hark! now I hear them — Ding-dong, bell.

      • Shingo
        March 13, 2011, 6:36 pm

        i said tryu again Fuster, I didn’t sugegst you ryun the lanmower over your flipper.

        The blockde began May 22-23. It was over By June. Israel attacked Egypt on June 6, 6 days AFTER the blockade was no longer in effect.

        Are you a burrowing frog? That hole you’re in is getting wefully deep.

      • Hostage
        March 14, 2011, 12:24 am

        fuster,

        the Egyptian Foreign Minister was told that closing an international waterway to Israel was an act of aggression and would be treated as such in the view of the US

        That is all true, but you forgot to mention that Nasser lifted the blockade and agreed to a conditional UN moratorium – which the Israeli side promptly rejected. Nasser’s sole demand for permanently lifting the blockade was for Israel to agree to comply with the terms of the existing 1949 Armistice Agreements. Zionists like to cite the policy contained in the Aide-memoire from Secretary of State Dulles to Ambassador Eban of February 11, 1957, while omitting the part that it could be overridden by a decision of the ICJ and that “the enjoyment of the right of innocent passage by Israel would depend upon its prior withdrawal in accordance with the United Nations Resolutions”.

        The UN Security Council had adopted Resolution 73 while acting under Article 40 (Chapter 7 of the UN Charter) and it required all of the parties to observe and execute the terms of the armistice agreements pending a final settlement. But Israel had declared the agreements null and void; unilaterally declared its sovereignty over the DMZs; and had illegally occupied them. It declared the indigenous Arab cultivators a security threat and declared the area “a closed security zone”.

        FYI, the International treaty that established the boundary between Lebanon, Syria, and Palestine provided that the inhabitants of Syria, Lebanon, and Palestine would have the same fishing and navigation rights on Lakes Huleh, Tiberias and the River Jordan and that the Government of Syria would have the right to a pier at Semakh on Lake Tiberias where Syrian goods would not be subject to any customs regulations. So those were inland international waterways. See the Agreement between His Majesty’s Government and the French Government respecting the Boundary Line between Syria and Palestine from the Mediterranean to El Hámmé, Treaty Series No. 13 (1923), Cmd. 1910, Page 7. The Israelis had used gunboats to patrol and attack the Eastern shore and Syrian fishing boats on Lake Tiberias for nearly a decade before the Six Day War. See for example The Arab News Agency, Mideast mirror, Volume 15, 1963, page 17.

        Israel was demanding that Arabs farm without land and fish without water in violation of the armistice agreements; Security Council resolutions, and the applicable international treaties. So, it wasn’t even fulfilling the necessary conditions to enjoy the right of innocent passage under the terms of the Aide-memoire. The likelihood that it would have prevailed in either an advisory opinion or contentious case in the ICJ without a full withdrawal was absolutely nil.

        I hope this clears up your confusion.

      • Hostage
        March 14, 2011, 1:41 am

        The purported closing of the Gulf of Aqaba has brought a new and grave dimension to the crisis. The United States considers the gulf to be an international waterway.”President LB Johnson May 24, 1967

        The President actually said the United States “feels that a blockade of Israel’s shipping is illegal”. Eisenhower said “believes” and noted that the US policy could be overridden by the ICJ.

        You’ve supplied words in square brackets that did not originate with Johnson. He did not say that the actions taken by the Arabs constituted a blockade of Israel’s shipping. The “purported closure of the Gulf of Aqaba” is a material fact that is still the subject of a genuine dispute. There are continuing disagreements over the applicable law. The only thing that’s certain (after the 1964 Tonkin Incident) is that only a damn fool would make a jus ad bellum determination on the basis of something that LBJ characterized as “puported”.

      • Shingo
        March 14, 2011, 1:52 am

        Thanks for that Hostage.

        I hope this clears up your confusion.

        Somethign tells me that there is no fixing the frog’s confusion.

      • Shingo
        March 14, 2011, 2:34 am

        Oren, Six Days of War, p.310

        Thanks for citing Michael Oren as a historian fuster, the comic relief is always appreciated.

      • annie
        March 14, 2011, 2:47 am

        lol! hysterical. oren the image maker.

      • fuster
        March 14, 2011, 2:54 am

        fourth time down, Shingo.
        The quotation is from the Egyptian chief judge, it’s not original with Oren.
        sorry and glub, glub.

        (completely unrelated, please accept my wish that your boy brings your family nothing but happiness for a very long time)

        and we can now resume our regularly scheduled snarling.

      • Shingo
        March 14, 2011, 3:07 am

        Thanks Fuster,

        You couldn’t have said a nicer thing (about my boy that is).

    • Avi
      March 11, 2011, 12:26 am

      fuster March 10, 2011 at 11:06 pm

      avi has spoken… the Six Day War was chosen by the chosen.

      horrrrrssssehittttt

      smellllllls

      better

      By the way, what exactly do you hope to accomplish with your incessant knee-jerk reactions?

      Are you hoping that one day Lady Luck will be at your side and your “LIAR LIAR” accusations will actually hold true?

      Is that your goal?

      I mean, look at you. You sound like a spoiled child who throws a hissy fit whenever something conflicts with his own delusions. You mean Elijah is not going to walk in through that door tonight? Waaaaaahhh, Waaahh.

      • Sumud
        March 11, 2011, 1:13 am

        By the way, what exactly do you hope to accomplish with your incessant knee-jerk reactions?

        I guess when the hasbara is easily disproved fuster has no choice but to resort to trolling-type behaviour.

      • MRW
        March 11, 2011, 1:53 pm

        You mean Elijah is not going to walk in through that door tonight?

        ;-) ;-) ;-)

    • Potsherd2
      March 11, 2011, 11:52 am

      Now I think fuster really must be yoni. No one else is so stupid to still think Israel didn’t start the 6 Day War.

      • tree
        March 11, 2011, 5:37 pm

        Now I think fuster really must be yoni. No one else is so stupid to still think Israel didn’t start the 6 Day War.

        No, I disagree. fuster is more sophisticated, or at least thinks he is. And he’s a New Yorker. If I had to place him as any other earlier poster, it would be Gellian, after he could no longer keep up the pretense. He was pretty ignorant too, although his self-image was of someone smarter than most. Fits fuster to a T.

  6. bijou
    March 10, 2011, 11:34 pm

    …and more creative ways must be found to convince the world, starting with American Jews, that Jerusalem really wants a two-state solution before the option becomes moot.

    And therein lies the rub: they really don’t (want it).

  7. annie
    March 10, 2011, 11:56 pm

    more creative ways must be found to convince the world, starting with American Jews, that Jerusalem really wants a two-state solution before the option becomes moot.

    calling revlon..estee lauder… new creative shade of lipstick for our pig!!! sparkling new name w/glitter..faster please!!!

    • Avi
      March 11, 2011, 12:18 am

      At this point, I don’t think change will come from American Jews. Recent events in the Middle East are proof that change can sweep the region faster than it will take to ‘deprogram’ American Jews and free them from decades-long indoctrination.

      • annie
        March 11, 2011, 12:29 am

        I don’t think change will come from American Jews.

        i agree w/you about the american jews that i think need deprogramming. but i do have faith in lots of american jews especially the youth. i just think the only way to ‘convince the world’ is to actually change policy in israel and i don’t think the american jewish establishment is willing to do that.

      • Citizen
        March 11, 2011, 7:42 am

        Well, annie, change won’t come from non-Jewish Americans either; they are much more concerned with the Muslims in our midst who advocate killing non-believers. Just try to convince any one of them they are brainwashed. At best, they will think you may be a well-intentioned American patriot, but your priorities are misplaced.

      • Potsherd2
        March 11, 2011, 11:55 am

        And why are they so concerned about Muslims, Cit? Who is cooking up this propaganda? Cui bono?

        Pamela Geller admitted it openly. the Jews I am working for in spreading Islamophobia.

      • annie
        March 11, 2011, 12:47 pm

        Well, annie, change won’t come from non-Jewish Americans either

        this is a global issue and requires a global solution. it isn’t going to be ‘fixed’ by any one group or country or religion. that said, please don’t tell me i don’t or can’t make a difference. i visualize a solution coming from us and who we are stretches across the wide breadth of humanity. the people leading this come from the strength in the region and we support them. but we are everywhere and each of us have a voice. that may sound silly and idealistic but that is what i believe. rebecca spoke of “total respect for Palestinian leadership”. the way we can best ‘change policy in israel is BDS, truth and exposure. we just have to keep on keeping on. we have the wind at our backs and they know it.

      • fuster
        March 13, 2011, 4:56 pm

        Pamela Geller is an obscure crazy person and in a 1000 years could do nothing to spread Islamophobia near to the extent that Al Qaeda has.

      • Potsherd2
        March 13, 2011, 5:03 pm

        Think you’re wrong there, fusty. I’ll bet half the yahoos out in the streets waving their flags to keep “sharia law,” of which they know nothing, out of the US wouldn’t even recognize al-Qaida. What they know is Glen Beck.

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