Weiner repeatedly lied (about Israel and Palestine– does anyone care?)

If the Anthony Weiner scandal has an upside, let us hope that it will unearth the countless lies, stretchers, and bodacious and rabid falsehoods that the congressman told three months back at the New School in a debate about the Goldstone Report that we set up between him and former Congressman Brian Baird, moderated by Roger Cohen of the New York Times.

Here are five of those lies: There is no Israeli occupation of the West Bank, the Goldstone Report was not based on the laws of war, Israel is at war with 20 neighbors, American progressives should support the absence of free speech in Israel when it comes to its character as a Jewish state, and Egypt is an Islamic state. To the videotape:

Lie #1. There is no Israeli occupation of the West Bank, no Israeli military presence there:

WEINER: You can see a difference in the development in the West Bank with 11 percent year over year growth, with no Israeli occupation there either, with increasing access to checkpoints…

COHEN: No occupation in the West Bank, did I hear you right?

WEINER: Yes.

COHEN: Have you been to the West Bank lately?

WEINER: Yes.

COHEN: You didn’t see the IDF there?

WEINER: In Ramallah? No. In Nablus? No. Now can I tell you there might be some people in this room who think Jerusalem is occupied.

COHEN: Well hold on a second there, let’s stick to the West Bank. You’re saying there is no IDF presence there?

WEINER: Yes.

Lie #2. The Goldstone Report was not based on the laws of war. 


COHEN: Do you accept the idea that [Israel's] self-defense can become grossly disproportionate? 

WEINER: I will say that whether or not grossly disproportion– it is not something that is subject to the rules of international law. It is subject ot the rules of war. The Geneva Convention was followed scrupulously and I didn’t see anywhere in the allegations that even the rules of war were even considered for this report. Because quite the opposite. Goldstone said we’re looking at this through the laws of justice. Unfortunately and this pains me to say, when you’re at war it’s because the laws have broken down…

This is a flatout misrepresentation.

The Goldstone Report repeatedly invokes the laws of war. The largest body of law on which it is based are the numerous conventions of international humanitarian law (IHL) how states are supposed to behave toward non-combatants.  For instance, paragraph 270:

All parties to the armed conflict are bound by relevant rules of IHL, whether of conventional or customary character. International humanitarian law comprises principles and rules applicable to the conduct of military hostilities and provides for restraints upon the conduct of military action so as to protect civilians and those that are hors de combat. It also applies to situations of belligerent occupation.

And Goldstone repeatedly cites violations of the Geneva Conventions. Paragraph 1919.

The intentional strike at al-Quds hospital using high-explosive artillery shells and white phosphorous in and around the hospital also violated articles 18 and 19 of the Fourth Geneva Convention.

Lie #3. Israel is at war with 20 neighbors.

WEINER: We have a problem, we being progressives, have a problem that large numbers of us have come to turn the story of David and Goliath as relates to Israel on its head and have lost sight of the fact that Israel is the democracy in the middle east, in that region which is at war with 20 of its neighbors. Not that she declared war, the 20 neighbors declared war against her. She is the one with the judiciary, she is the one that puts out reports… that are critical of its own military

This is an absurd statement. Egypt and Jordan have treaties with Israel that permit trade and travel. And as Brian Baird promptly pointed out, the Arab League has repeatedly offered to recognize Israel on the ’67 lines. “This idea that Israel is surrounded by countries intent on driving it into the sea is just not accurate.”

Lie #4  American progressives should support Israel limiting free speech about its character as a Jewish state.

Weiner said that he had come to the debate to show that progressives in New York must support Israel. “We have to start pushing back on the notion that it is somehow anathema to progressive thought to support a democracy in the middle east, that is Israel, and im proud to be a progressive that supports that.”

Baird said, “It is an inequal democracy by any standard,” and said that when he was at the Knesset, he watched a bill being passed on first reading to make it a criminal offense to suggest in public that Israel should not be a Jewish state. “A criminal offense. Just to say it. So much for first amendment, so much for separation of church and state. All the things that we value as progressives. You can’t even say it, or you go to jail…”

WEINER: I do see discussions and debate and votes in the Knesset, the democratically elected legislature of Israel, I do see good ideas and crazy ideas. When my friend Brian Baird describes the First Amendment, it’s a Jewish state… The idea of a First Amendment, that shows a little bit of a blind spot…The idea that somehow Israel is not a jewish state is part of the problem here. Some people believe that it shouldn’t be. They have their rights, but it is, it’s going to be..

Whatever these ideas are, they are not progressive.

Lie #5. Egypt is an “Islamic state.”

WEINER: It’s a Jewish state and that’s the way it’s created to be, and it’s a right to be that, just like in Egypt it’s going to be an Islamic state… [hooting from the audience] Let me stipulate that Egypt probably will be… It’s going to have many of the precepts of Islam and I’m sure that’s going to be the prevailing religion. It’s not? [to Roger Cohen] You were there. I’d certainly be surprised if it emerged as a Coptic Christian state.

Egypt’s official religion is Islam. It does not have the same separation of church and state that we have in the U.S., but it is not an “Islamic state.” Till recently, Egypt sharply limited the role of Islamist parties. Israel, by contrast, does little to limit religious political parties.

About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.
Posted in Israel/Palestine

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

  1. Donald says:

    You know there is almost no chance this will be brought up. Most of Congress is with Weiner on this. And even the Obama administration said there was no evidence of Israeli war crimes in Gaza.

    Maybe Glenn Greenwald would point these things out if he knows about them. But that’s about as close to mainstream as it is going to get.

    Well, I take part of that back–Roger Cohen himself might write something. But that will be in the NYT international edition–Cohen’s column doesn’t usually appear in the US version.

    • American says:

      On MSNBC this am I heard two different commentators say, while discussing Weiner, that they didn’t agree with his views, (going against Obama for Netanyahu) on Israel.
      Israel is getting out to the mainstream in drip and drabs, but it’s getting out.

      • Donald says:

        That’s better than I would have expected (obviously). Who were the commentators?

        Of course on the negative side Obama isn’t exactly a champion of evenhandedness on this issue. But still, it’s nice to see someone criticizing Congress for their craven support of Netanyahu.

  2. seafoid says:

    The difference between what Wiener says about Israel and what really goes on is the difference between this

    link to newyork.cbslocal.com

    and this

    link to youtube.com

  3. kalithea says:

    I have been waiting patiently for this article to appear. The wheels of justice grind too slowly. Weiner, that lying Zionist jackass is getting his due and as far as I’m concerned it’s not enough. This is not a fall from grace, because Weiner and Grace never met no matter how much he tweeted her his biceps, she wanted NOTHING to do with that skinny shyster! This is KARMA baby, and I never loved karma so much!

    This fool should resign because he has zero credibility although I’m sure should he be pushed out, because his monumental ego would never succumb to common sense, then the first thing he’ll do is run to Aipac’s doorstep blubbering like a silly school boy in wet short pants just like he pretended at regret yesterday blubbering for the cameras at that press conference. And then knowing how stupid they are at Aipac, they’ll make him head of the Porn-surfing department, that issues letters condemning pressure on Israel, encouraging mollycoddling of settlers, and pushing for war with Iran IN THEIR SPARE TIME!

    This turkey is the king of idiots and there are a bunch of other Zionists in Congress who behaved like jumping jacks every time the Israeli emperor Yahu spittled out some outrage who also need their asses handed to them!

    Hallelujah! There is a God after all!

    • pabelmont says:

      He should be brought down, but for the right reasons. This sexual muck is so unimportant (not like rape, for instance). I’d like to see him trashed by someone important for lying about Palestine.

  4. Mooser says:

    We need an “expert in international law” to discuss this!
    And somebody who has “learned from history” would be helpful, too, don’t you think?

    • Bumblebye says:

      Aawww, poor guy’s just been blubbering over the airwaves!
      Brought down by Weenygate.

    • mig says:

      Lie #1. There is no Israeli occupation of the West Bank, no Israeli military presence there:

      ++++ It is irrelevant, is there in “presence” any IDF soldier or not. Lets look what international law says about that :

      SECTION III
      MILITARY AUTHORITY OVER THE TERRITORY OF THE HOSTILE STATE

      Art. 42. Territory is considered occupied when it is actually placed under the authority of the hostile army.
      The occupation extends only to the territory where such authority has been established and can be exercised.

      link to icrc.org

      Legal conditions for the beginning of occupation

      Military occupation triggers the application of the law of occupation. IHL follows a very practical approach in defining military occupation. Under IHL, occupation refers to the factual control of a foreign power over a territory or a population. It does not require any form of declaration or intent of the invading forces. The IHL rules pertaining to occupation apply as soon as:

      1. There is an international armed conflict;
      2. A foreign military force has made an incursion on enemy territory; and,
      3. This force exerts any form of control over the population of that territory.

      The overriding concern of IHL is to regulate the behavior of the occupying forces toward the civilian population living in the territory their control, independently of the duration or motives of military operations. Article 42 of the Hague Regulations of 1907 provides that:

      “A territory is considered occupied when it is actually placed under the authority of the hostile army. The occupation extends only to the territory where such authority has been established and can be exercised.”

      The language of the Hague Regulations in this respect is clear. According to a renowned international lawyer, “only when, and where, the occupying power has attained unquestioned control does hostile territory become subject to the legal restraints of the law of occupation.” In IHL literature this test for the beginning and the end of occupation is often referred to as effective control. The test is not per se the military presence of the occupying forces in all areas of the territory, but the extent to which the Occupying Power, through its military presence, is exerting effective control over the territory and limiting the right of self-determination of the occupied population.

      International jurisprudence helps to outline the circumstances in which the conditions of “effective control” are met. Article 42 of the Hague Regulations conceives of situations where the authority of the Occupying Power “has been established and can be exercised.” These conditions were further elaborated in various decisions by international tribunals, such as the United States Military Tribunal at Nuremberg. In the Hostages case (USA vs. Wilhelm List et al.), the Tribunal had to decide whether Yugoslavia, Greece, and Norway were occupied territories at the time when the German defendants committed acts of murder, intimidation, and terrorism against civilians. The Court considered that the question of criminality might hinge on whether the actions were committed when invasion was in progress, or in the context of an accomplished occupation. The Court then explained the difference:

      “The term invasion implies a military operation while an occupation indicated the exercise of governmental authority to the exclusion of the established government. This presupposes the destruction of organized resistance and the establishment of an administration to preserve law and order. To the extent that the occupant’s control is maintained and that of the civil government eliminated, the area will be said to be occupied.”

      Later on, in the same decision, the tribunal considered a territory occupied even though the occupying army had partially evacuated certain parts of the territory and lost control over the population, as long as it could “at any time” assume physical control of any part of the territory:

      “While it is true that the partisans [resistance movement against the Germans in Yugoslavia and Greece] were able to control sections of these countries at various times, it is established that the Germans could at any time they desired assume physical control of any part of the country. The control of the resistance forces was temporary only and not such as would deprive the German Armed Forces of its status of an occupant.”

      Under this jurisprudence, effective control is understood as a combination of military and administrative measures:

      Effective military control of the occupied territory is ultimately a factual military issue. For the purposes of establishing effective military control, the size and distribution of the occupying forces in the territory is immaterial. In other words, an Occupying Power can exercise effective control without being physically present in all parts of the territory it occupies. It suffices that it can project military power over the whole of the occupied territory by keeping forces in only parts of the territory, and conducting, for example, military operations from the air. Yet, some form of military presence on land remains a necessary condition for an occupation, i.e. a military occupation cannot be solely imposed by the control of the national airspace by a foreign air force (e.g. no fly zone over Southern Iraq), or of the national seashore by a foreign navy. The law of occupation belongs historically to the law of land warfare which requires, at its core, a land-based security presence.

      Effective administrative control does not preclude local authorities from playing a major role in the administration of the territory. The Hague Regulations, as well as the decisions of various international military tribunals, have given considerable scope to the ability of the Occupying Power to carry out normal administration in cooperation with local authorities and to preserve law and order as an objective indication of the existence of effective control.

      The Fourth Geneva Convention presumes a much less stringent test for application of the law of occupation. While the Hague Regulations refer to situations where “a territory is actually placed under the authority of the hostile army,” the Fourth Geneva Convention focuses on the interaction between foreign forces and the civilian population. In particular, it regulates all points of contact with the population as soon as this population falls under the control of the invading army. According to Article 6 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, though the general application of the Convention in occupied territory ceases one year after the general close of military operations, selected provisions of the Convention continue to apply thereafter to the extent that the Occupying Power continues to exercise the functions of government. In this context, key functions of a government include:
      Ability to manage the internal and external security of the territory.
      Ability to control the international borders of the territory and regulate entry and exit of persons and goods.
      Ability to engage in political, security, economic and cultural exchanges with other states.

      Legal conditions for terminating an occupation

      The conditions to bring an end to occupation to a great extent mirror the ones triggering the application of the law of occupation. The legal regime of occupation law was designed to continue regardless of whether the initial international armed conflict ended, as long as two criteria are met:

      1. There is a foreign military presence in the territory, and

      2. This military presence is inherently exerting some form of effective control (albeit not exclusive) over government affairs without the approval or invitation of the sovereign authority over the territory (i.e. this presence limits the right of self-determination of the occupied population, etc.).

      As these conditions are cumulative, an occupation may be considered to have ended when one of the two elements no longer holds true.

      Under the framework of the Hague Regulations, a territory is no longer occupied when the occupying power can no longer exercise its authority. The end of occupation typically occurs when “an occupant withdraws from a territory or is driven out of it”. It could also end with a peace treaty that settles the fate of the occupied territory. Finally, and this became particularly salient after the Second World War, occupation may end as a result of the exercise by peoples of their right to self-determination. In any case, and regardless of the means through which the end of occupation comes about, the relevant criteria from an IHL point of view always remain factual: whether the occupying forces have effective control over the given territory and population.

      A key aspect of the Nuremberg jurisprudence cited above is the recognition that the occupier’s military evacuation from an area within the territory it occupies does not necessarily signify the end of occupation for that specific area. Such evacuation does not relieve the occupier of its responsibility for the welfare of the occupied population living in the evacuated area, especially when this withdrawal is implemented solely as to limit the occupier’s responsibility toward the occupied population while maintaining its security control over the evacuated territory by other means (i.e. encirclement, military control of airspace, etc.)

      link to opt.ihlresearch.org

      The position that the law of occupation is fully applicable in conjunction with the Oslo Agreement stresses the fact that the actual end of the occupation will happen when all powers will have been surrendered by Israel over the whole of the OPT, including area A (where Israel still maintains ultimate security jurisdiction),61 and when Israel will not hold even any theoretical control over the OPT.

      In short, the transfer of authority from Israel to the PA under the Oslo Process, and the correlative restrictions upon Israeli intervention in PA-controlled areas, may have reduced, but did not extinguish, the scope of Israel’s obligations under the laws of occupation.

      The law of occupation applies whenever, during an armed conflict, the territory of a state comes under the control of a foreign power.

      Annexe 1: Conference of High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention
      Declaration

      Geneva, 5 December 2001

      1. This Declaration reflects the common understanding reached by the participating High Contracting Parties to the reconvened Conference of High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention. The Conference of 15 July 1999, recommended by United Nations’ General Assembly Resolution ES-10/6 in an Emergency Special Session, issued a statement as follows :

      “…The participating High Contracting Parties reaffirmed the applicability of the Fourth Geneva Convention to the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem. Furthermore, they reiterated the need for full respect for the provisions of the said Convention in that Territory. Taking into consideration the improved atmosphere in the Middle East as a whole, the Conference was adjourned on the understanding that it will convene again in the light of consultations on the development of the humanitarian situation in the field.”

      link to icrc.org

      Annexe 2 – Conference of High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention: statement by the International Committee of the Red Cross

      Geneva, 5 December 2001

      1. Pursuant to the relevant provisions of international humanitarian law and to the mandate conferred on it by the States party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) established a permanent presence in Israel, the neighbouring Arab countries and the occupied territories in 1967 with a view to carrying out its humanitarian tasks in the region and to working for the faithful application of international humanitarian law.

      2. In accordance with a number of resolutions adopted by the United Nations General Assembly and Security Council and by the International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent, which reflect the view of the international community, the ICRC has always affirmed the de jure applicability of the Fourth Geneva Convention to the territories occupied since 1967 by the State of Israel, including East Jerusalem. This Convention, ratified by Israel in 1951, remains fully applicable and relevant in the current context of violence. As an Occupying Power, Israel is also bound by other customary rules relating to occupation, expressed in the Regulations annexed to the Hague Convention respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land of 18 October 1907.

      3. In general terms, the Fourth Geneva Convention protects the civilian population of oc cupied territories against abuses on the part of an Occupying Power, in particular by ensuring that it is not discriminated against, that it is protected against all forms of violence, and that despite occupation and war it is allowed to live as normal a life as possible, in accordance with its own laws, culture and traditions. While humanitarian law confers certain rights on the Occupying Power, it also imposes limits on the scope of its powers. Being only a temporary administrator of occupied territory, the Occupying Power must not interfere with its original economic and social structures, organization, legal system or demography. It must ensure the protection, security and welfare of the population living under occupation. This also implies allowing the normal development of the territory, if the occupation lasts for a prolonged period of time.

      And here is interesting part :

      8. Demonstrations against the occupying forces by the civilian population under occupation or stand-offs between them are not acts of war. They should therefore not be dealt with by military methods and means. When faced with the civilian population, Israeli forces must exercise restraint : any use of force must be proportionate, all necessary precautions must be taken to avoid casualties, and the lethal use of firearms must be strictly limited to what is unavoidable as an immediate measure to protect life.

      ( protest againts Israel in border example )

      link to icrc.org

      link to unispal.un.org

  5. hughsansom says:

    Philip Weiss forgets that Lies in the Service of the Israel Delusion (LSID) are exempt from scrutiny, the standards of truth, or anything resembling the standards of journalism overtly endorsed at The New York Times or NPR or CNN. Donald Rumsfeld has been among those asserting that Israel does not occupy the West Bank. My guess is that a check of the records of Chuck Schumer, Joe Lieberman, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Alan Dershowitz would turn up similar assertions. Netanyahu certainly made the assertion before Congress.

    This is a term of Art and Newspeak. It does work. Weiner’s twist on the statement (that there are no IDF troops in the West Bank) just marks im has either not particularly intelligent, even more delusional than most in the Israel Lobby, or a really stupid liar.

    To assert that Israel does not occupy the West Bank is to assert that the West Bank is _already_ Israel’s, which is of course exactly the claim made by the Lobby. This is the unifying delusion: the West Bank is already Israel’s; therefore, ANY concession of ANY land is a great gift to the Palestinians.

    That American media so readily relay the assertions of Israel bigots also does work. (Roger Cohen’s question — not an actual refutation — is the furthest any at the Times or CNN or NPR will take an objection to an Israel Lobby lie.) This work is that of establishing a point of view in the minds of grossly ill-informed Americans. Then, when Palestinians claim what is theirs by right, Israelis, US politicians and ‘journalists’ rally in condemning the Palestinians as unreasonable.

    • pabelmont says:

      Some of them adopt the Israeli line that there is no “occupation” in the sense of Fourth Geneva Convention because Jordan (and Egypt) were merely occupiers and not sovereigns in the land. Never mind [1] that the entire international community and ICJ disagree and [2] that Israel has no better “title” to pre-1967 Israel than Jordan had to West Bank — that is, military occupation. I guess they think all of Palestine was “terra nullius” after GB left in 1948 and there was no sovereignty except what military force could establish. (But this doesn’t explain what was flawed about Jordanian sovereignty.)

      • MHughes976 says:

        Unless might is right the true sovereign of territory which has inhabitants, but for a moment no sovereign, is whoever the inhabitants elect, not whoever can march in with flying spears or blazing guns. An uninhabited territory, I suppose, could receive a sovereign only from general international agreement.

  6. Theo says:

    Amen, amen, amen, I second every word spoken above.

  7. Kathleen says:

    Have been posting these lies of Weiners on numerous other blogs about Weiners weinergate. Appreciate so much about Weiners votes and stances on domestic politics. But as so many so called liberalJewish congress people as well as non Jewish liberal congresspeople’s votes they go blind on Israel. Facts disappear and only their blind allegiance is apparent.

    What is up with Weiner and these folks who do not get very little about their lives remains private. Just goes to show once again guys think with your other head

  8. eGuard says:

    Brian Baird is worth listening to. Actually, is what the 90 minute video make listenable.

    Lie #1 is from 46:00, quite devastating.

    Adding Lie #3. At 53:00, WEINER: “There is disagreement. There are people who believe that settlement activity is going on in Palestinian Territories. There are people who believe that. I don’t believe that”.

    • Citizen says:

      He uses the right terminology for him, a factual discussion is a matter of faith, Zionist faith. This guy is a street rat. Unfortunatly for Americans, he’s a Zionist street rat & they always get a pass. But there’s nothing to the notion of ZOG because it’s just David Duke’s delusion and we alll know Duke is not a real American. When will rats like Weiner get pushed to the fringe of US cultural & political acceptancel ike Duke & his ilk? Meh. That won’t happen until it’s too late for both the US & Israel; it’s already way too late for the Palestinians. That icon of the Palestinian kid’s back should be on every US vehicle bumper sticker. Anne Frank demands it from on high. And Rachel Corrie paid for it. And her parents are paying again. Have you ever seen an American bumper sticker “Rachel Corrie?”

    • marc b. says:

      “There is disagreement. There are people who believe that settlement activity is going on in Palestinian Territories. There are people who believe that. I don’t believe that”.

      incredible. you would think he was debating the existence of god or the Easter bunny. no. there is no disagreement amongst reasonable persons about settlement activity in the palestinian territories.

  9. American says:

    Weiner needs to, but evidently doesn’t have the decency to resign and quit dragging his wife and the dems thru this slime.
    Or even admit his “mistakes” as he calls them, aren’t just mistakes but a sick problem right along with his brazen calculated lying.
    There is much more out there about Weiner and this will go on and on.
    There are plenty of decent people who are dems and liberals for the dems to run to replace him. This keeping politicians who have shamed them just because they are already in office is stupid,…we need more turn over, not less, to prevent the sense too many of them have that they are ‘entitled” to be in office forever no matter what they do.

    • marc b. says:

      weiner is a pig, but his wife, who was school at the feet of ms. clinton, knew what she was getting into. all pols are necessarily compromised. so much easier to ‘out’ their misconduct if they should start to think for themselves, or, worse, for their constituents.

      • lobewyper says:

        Hey, Marc,

        Give his wife a break! I think it’s extremely possible for a woman (or man) to misjudge a potential marital partner. (I’ve seen it happen in a couple of instances to women I know very well and believe to be pretty psychologically together people.) It is likely that he said all the right things (and none of the wrong ones) and she fell for him. Were she to stick with him, however, she would be foolish. His behavior showed that he was unable to establish a healthy and committed relationship with her. And last, being schooled by Hilary isn’t exactly the road to mental health and marital happiness…

        • marc b. says:

          lobe, these people are not like us. every option, including ‘matters of the heart’, is weighed cynically. i don’t believe that this behavior comes as a shock to weiner’s wife, any more than arnold’s peripatetic pr*ck was news to ms. shriver-kennedy.

        • lobewyper says:

          I hope you’re wrong about this, Marc. It would be another major blow to my faith in humanity…

  10. BradAllen says:

    THAT”S who this was…..duh!!!!, I tottally forgot that was the Weiner who was in that interview.

    I watched that interview and was obssessed by one thing, “how can I a guy in such a responsible position lie so openly and so convincingly without batting an eye”. Well now I know. If you can hide your sick behaviour from your wife, family and country you sure as hell can lie about what someone is paying you to say. Weiner, raised and weined by Schumer, gotta make you wonder, what is Schumer hiding?

  11. Chu says:

    make a video of those remarks that Weiner stated during the debate. Strike while the iron is hot, and perhaps people can see another charming side to this man’s complex personality. His dishonesty is quite apparent.

  12. yourstruly says:

    meanwhile in another part of the world…

    “RESTIVE TROOPS QUIZ GATES ON EXIT” – lead story today’s la times

    but gates tells them “too early to end the war”

    a first?

    american soldiers pressuring their commander to get them out of the hell that is war?

    also, that there’s a closed door debate going on in the white house on the how soon and how fast this socalled drawback is to be, and that president obama is on the fence on this

    checking the weather forecasts, no doubt

    closed door debate?

    when what’s being talked about concerns us all?

    life on earth?

    war or peace?

    yet it’s a closed door debate? -

    open the door*, president obama

    open the door, president obama

    open the door and let us in

    open the door, president obama

    president obama, why don’t you open that door and let us in?

    *to the tune of “open the door, richard”

    • yourstruly says:

      also that even though osama bin laden’s no more, the taliban is still out there in them hills.

      a “devil” we’ve dealt with before

      to the tune of how many taxpayers dollars to get them to eradicate poppy production?

      then there’s gates throwing around the terms counter-insurgency and counter-terrorism as if he believed he could fool the troops?

      but from the persistance of the questions re: troop exiting, could mutiny in the highlands of afghanistan be in the cards?

      while here in the homeland?

    • lysias says:

      Obama had his monthly meeting on Afghanistan in the White House yesterday. White House Blog has a photo of the meeting.

  13. It’s wishful thinking indeed to think that Weiner’s peccadillos are in any way going to reflect negatively on the pro-Israel to the death mindset of our politico class and the media/intelligensia. And truth be told, the lies Weiner tells in support of his errant spiritual homeland bear little relation or little relevance to the lies he tells in support of his kinky personl needs. All it proves in the end is that A.W. has trouble distinguishing truth from lies; and when he doesn’t, he simply doesn’t care about the difference.

    At worst, he’s totally embarrassed and his political career is ended [not likely, it's probably just going on hiatus for a while].

    While I perfer that he be repudiated for his politics, there’s no chance of that so i’ll take what i can get. [But why would a guy with such a great-looing wife do these things?]

    • Woody Tanaka says:

      “[But why would a guy with such a great-looing wife do these things?]”

      Because he probably has personality and emotional problems. This has nothing to do with her, except for the fact that he doesn’t respect and love her enough to not do these things.

  14. joer says:

    Weiner is an easy target now, and I know he has few sympathizers here-but this trial by pantie raid that public figures have to go through is sure going to eliminate a lot of people from public service…and with all the social networking nowadays making a permanent record of everything, things are just going to get worse and worse. I know I have written things on line in the context of some weird discussion that I would have a hard time explaining in front of a press conference. On this very site, I’ve seen normally reasonable people erupt into vitriol or discuss some ridiculous theory. Should they be disqualified if they want to run for political office?

    This whole thing would be newsworthy if Weiner was in the forefront of promoting internet censorship/decency or invasion of privacy. In terms of the Palestine/Israel conflict, I wouldn’t expect a pro-Palestinian congressman from Weiner’s district if he’s forced out of office.

    • joer says:

      What the Palestine Solidarity people should do is issue a statement to the effect that while they deplore Weiner’s stand on the Mideast, they condemn this intrusion into his private life and it’s just a distraction from important issues. That would be a classy approach, plus it would get Palestine in the news through the side door.

      • Bumblebye says:

        Does this kind of harassment of young women really come under “private life”? Better it be exposed than he continue exposing his bits and pieces!

      • Woody Tanaka says:

        “…they condemn this intrusion into his private life and it’s just a distraction from important issues.”

        What intrusion into his private life? He’s the one who chose to go out in public with this pathetic stuff. He sent the tweets and emails to people he didn’t know. If he wanted to keep it private, he never would have sent them. He didn’t. His problem, not the media’s. (And I am tickled because it is the political demise (hopefully) of a voice for Israeli brutality against the Native Palestinians.)

      • Kathleen says:

        I like your thinking Joer.

    • Chu says:

      He’s 47 years old and sending pictures of his shorts to young women? Nice behavior…
      I don’t think he is worthy of being a representative of anyone. The other congressional guy in upstate in Feb 2011 was gone after he took of his shirt and emailed it to a woman. Why should Weiner stay?

    • Kathleen says:

      “In terms of the Palestine/Israel conflict, I wouldn’t expect a pro-Palestinian congressman from Weiner’s district if he’s forced out of office.”

      Highly unlikely in New York. Really have appreciated when Weiner really rails on some of the Republican legistlation and road blocking. He can rip. But going into complete utter denial about facts on the ground in the I/P conflict is worst than many

    • American says:

      Well it’s not really about getting a ‘pro Palestine” in Weiner’s place.
      It’s about maybe getting someone with character…how few people even have any concept of the meaning of character anymore when it comes to their politics.
      So they say, well I would vote for him anyway cause he’s for this or that and so am I.
      So what’s the next step on the slippery slope….well ‘his being a wife beater is his own personal business’ and he’s for free school lunches like me so I will vote for him.
      Or have we already slid down it?

  15. chet says:

    Correct me if I’m wrong – he broke no laws; he had no personal contact with the women involved – just a bit of internet weirdness (admittedly to the great detriment of his marriage).

    While I couldn’t abide his lies and distortions about I/P matters, I never expected anything different from a congressman representing his particular district – OTOH, I loved his ability to skewer Republican bullshit with incisive arguments and wit.

    On balance, I’ll miss his strong anti-Republican voice.

    • Ellen says:

      Chet, no laws, but a display of obvious “issues” that have consequences when a grown man of 46 in a public and responsible office, has the need to send women pictures of his penis. Like some really deep issues about himself.

      So should someone struggling with stuff like that have the trust of the public for major decisions, including their own lives? (These are the same guys who vote on things like war or not.)

      Congress is pushed to do an Ethics investigation as disturbed behavior and then lying to the public about it compromises the integrity of a government institution.

      Then again, Congress is completely compromised anyway.

      • chet says:

        When did they have an ethics investigation for Vitter who actually committed the crime of soliciting prostitution?

    • Kathleen says:

      As Chris Matthews has said this is “juvenile” behavior. How do these characters not know that almost every move of theirs is going to go on public display? This is what I find odd

  16. chet says:

    Glenn Greenwald says it so much better than I can:

    “What makes the Anthony Weiner story somewhat unique and thus worth discussing for a moment is that, as Hendrick Hertzberg points out, the pretense of substantive relevance (which, lame though it was in prior scandals, was at least maintained) has been more or less brazenly dispensed with here. This isn’t a case of illegal sex activity or gross hypocrisy (i.e., David Vitter, Larry Craig, Mark Foley (who built their careers on Family Values) or Eliot Spitzer (who viciously prosecuted trivial prostitution cases)). There’s no lying under oath (Clinton) or allegedly illegal payments (Ensign, Edwards). From what is known, none of the women claim harassment and Weiner didn’t even have actual sex with any of them. This is just pure mucking around in the private, consensual, unquestionably legal private sexual affairs of someone for partisan gain, voyeuristic fun and the soothing fulfillment of judgmental condemnation. And in that regard, it sets a new standard: the private sexual activities of public figures — down to the most intimate details — are now inherently newsworthy, without the need for any pretense of other relevance.”

    • Woody Tanaka says:

      “the private sexual activities of public figures ”

      This wasn’t private. Even if we discount the fact that there were six other women, the intial story happened because he failed to keep this private, and then lied to everyone about it.

      • Chu says:

        I agree that this wasn’t private issue. And as an elected rep, he should know better. He just got caught and will have to leave office.

        What’s most annoying is while selling the act of vociferous liberal (except when it comes to Israeli fascism), he’s a closet perv in reality. I guess everyone has their demons, but I don’t think he deserves rehab and reelection. If so, they should reinstate the career of the other rep in New York who emailed a picture of himself to a woman last February.

        Not to mention Weiner’s new wife was only married to him for 11 months.
        She must feel like crap. She’ll divorce him, and she can do better than a creep
        like this.

        • Ellen says:

          “He just got caught…”

          He just showed the world he is a physiologically underdeveloped goof ball with mega issues about his man-hood, and who knows what else, who is unhinged — and not able to deal with reality.

        • annie says:

          it wouldn’t ever occur to me to send a picture of myself in my underwear to a high school student. maybe i’m just retro.

          i wonder if it occurred to weiner he had a lot to loose before he sent that. what are these people thinking? is it the risk factor that turns them on? what a freak.

        • lysias says:

          Imagine him being mayor of New York. At least New York has now been spared that fate.

        • Kathleen says:

          Was the young woman a high school student?

        • Chaos4700 says:

          Guys? This broke on Brietbart’s website! Seriously? The same one that posted those fake ACORN videos?

          Can we focus on real reasons to dislike and denounce Weiner?

          EDIT: So I’m behind on the news. Ew. Ew ew ew. Also, what a complete and total ass.
          Sorry for that undue criticism, guys, you were right. I can’t BELIEVE Maddow actually defended him! I’m disappointed she didn’t apologize.

      • chet says:

        “This wasn’t private.”

        The only reason that that this mess isn’t private is because some internet thug hacked Wiener’s PRIVATE hard-drive and made the material available to the loathsome Breibart who, for polically partisan reasons, was more than happy to make it public.

        None of the women who apparently received these messages ever said a word about them until they were tracked down by the muck-rakers whose only interest was to further sensationalize the story

        • American says:

          That’s nonsense.
          Weiner ‘mistakenly’ sent that picture out to 45,000 people who follow him on twitter instead of sending it only to the girl in quesiton.
          One of those 45,000 people that saw it called Breibert and told him and Breibert ran with it.
          Stick to the facts.

    • Kathleen says:

      “juvenile behavior”

  17. Keith says:

    Representative Weiner, like most Zionist elites, is a complete liar in regards to Israel/Palestine. Below is a link to Norman Finkelstein discussing this very situation in regards to Allen Dershowitz.

    Finkelstein video on Dershowitz as pathological liar
    link to normanfinkelstein.com

  18. yourstruly says:

    the israel lobby’s indifference to the congressman’s lewd behavior +

    its echoing his lies on the mideast conflict =

    corruption

    totally?

    both morally & spiritually

    who & what does he represent?

    money & power

    and justice for palestine?

    dawn

  19. Chaos4700 says:

    My favorite all-time Worst Weiner Moment is still when — right after the massacre of the Gaza flotilla — Weiner demonized Turkey as our former ally. Seriously! (I’ve been trying to find it on YouTube but haven’t had much luck and searching for nonsense from him is going to be harder with these stupid photo “scandal” canards floating about.)

    So Israel is worth more than NATO? Seriously? If Weiner is willing to sacrifice NATO, then I don’t think it’s a far cry to say he puts Israel’s interests over the United States.

  20. dbroncos says:

    hughsansom:

    “To assert that Israel does not occupy the West Bank is to assert that the West Bank is _already_ Israel’s, which is of course exactly the claim made by the Lobby. This is the unifying delusion: the West Bank is already Israel’s; therefore, ANY concession of ANY land is a great gift to the Palestinians.”

    A 1ss is implied in claims such as these. Israel’s supporters seem not to understand this.

    • yourstruly says:

      their unifying delusion – that the West Bank is already Israel’s; therefore, ANY concession of ANY land is a great gift to the Palestinians?

      bravo!

  21. yourstruly says:

    are these biblical times?

    at the abyss, good against evil, life in the balance

    if so, what’s missing?

    a smooth talking dude?

    hasn’t there already been far too many of them in positions of power?

    what then?

    the spirit of those magical eighteen days in tahrir square

    with said spirit?

    invincibility

    but without it?

    why try?

  22. Kathleen says:

    Why do women in congress who allegedly have affairs get a free pass. Sibel Edmonds stated under oath that Congresswoman Schakowsky had an affair. Why did the press let her off the hook? Edmonds challenged her to take a lie dictators test.
    link to bradblog.com
    As reported exclusively by The BRAD BLOG last Tuesday, Schakowsky’s Communications Director Trevor Kincaid issued a formal statement on her behalf, following the AmCon cover story interview with Edmonds, using similar language. “A simple review of the facts would lead any responsible person to conclude that there is not a shred of truth to any aspect of this story,” Kincaid wrote, adding “not one of the events in this fantastic tale ever took place.”

    Edmonds replied in kind, offering direct questions to the Congresswoman, and a challenge to take a polygraph test in regard to the matter, if she would do the same. Today, while speaking to The BRAD BLOG, Edmonds upped the ante by challenging her to sue her for libel, if she denies the charges, but refuses to hold Congressional hearings as Edmonds also invited her to do last week…
    link to bradblog.com

    Why was Schakowsky alleged behavior not hammered by the press?

  23. Kathleen says:

    I think this is the best comment I have read so far about Weinergate. Over at Gleen Greenwalds blog at Salon
    “Exactly

    Just as during the Lewinsky non-scandal, there is a wave of sudden right wing hand-wringing and faux concern for women. He lied! His poor wife! We’re so violated! What will we tell the children?

    Here’s what you tell the freaking children: You tell them that these same faux moralists getting the vapors over an underwear crotch shot cheered on and defended vehemently the actions of an administration that was caught lying – in real time – in order to go to war with a country that posed no threat and had made no threat to the US, leaving hundreds of thousands dead, millions homeless, a nation destroyed, 4000 US service people dead, thousands more maimed for life, and taxpayers $3 trillion in debt.

    Tell them that these same people defended and cheered on an administration that outed a CIA operative and her entire front organization and who knows how many assets purely for political gain.

    Tell that that these same people got all up in arms about privacy when that administration got caught playing faux journalistic footsie with a male prostitute who had visited the White House 200 times on dubious “business” but cheered on the destruction of privacy rights and the 4th Amendment by this same administration.

    Tell them that morality isn’t about someone’s sexual peculiarities but about life and death matters, and that they shouldn’t be distracted from the latter by media hype about the former.
    —heller88 Read heller88′s other letters
    Permalink
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    My response to Heller 88
    “Hundreds of thousands are dead as a direct result of that “pack of lies” and we have to witness once again our media, congress spending hundreds of hours on Weiners weiner. Enough. Look at his lying statements about the I/P conflict. His dismissive attitude about the Goldstone Report. Pushing for the release of Jonathon Pollard.

    Pelosi taking “impeachment off the table” for the Bush administrations Iraq war lies that resulted in unnecessary and immoral death and destruction.

    This is what it takes our congress to get their justice juices flowing. Pathetic…and the whole world is watching”
    The joys of repressed voyeuristic titillation
    link to salon.com

    Glenn has a picture up of Chris Matthews on Weiners body. I have been encouraging Chris Matthews to have Glenn Greenwald on his program about different issues of importance. Glenn is always respectful and fact based. Would love to witness Matthews and Greenwald go a round or two. This issue would be a great start.

    Matthews keeps having Alex Wagner on a guest journalist. She nods her head to almost everything he says. On Chris Matthews Sunday show Chris asked a question about the New York Times and the future of national newspapers. Alex said something about doing the NYT;s cross word puzzle and how this will keep the bloody and complicit NYT around. How old was Alex Wagner when the NYT allowed Judy “I was fucking right” Miller to write up pages of lies about Iraq WMD intelligence?
    Matthews needs to start choosing some guest who can go a round or two with him instead of ass kissers who seem to know little about the history of the war in Iraq and who stuffed those lies down the throats of the majority of the American people