State Dep’t official’s ‘Are you Jewish?’ question to US citizen keeps rattling Foggy Bottom

Video from today’s daily press briefing at the State Department. The portion from the transcript below begins around the 9:30 mark.

The deportation of Sandra Tamari at Ben Gurion airport and the American embassy’s response to her case — “Are you Jewish?” — continues to be a news story.  The Associated Press’s Matt Lee brings it up with the State Department spokesperson every day. “Let me get the facts,” says he. Yes, let him get the facts.

Here is Tamari’s recollection of the call from the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv. She provided it to us today. 

Chris Kane [from the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv] was contacted by the organizers of my delegation visit about my detention, and given a delegation leader’s cell phone number.  He phoned at about 6 pm.  I had landed at 3:30 pm and was with the delegation leader in the waiting room at the airport.
 
CK:  Hello.  I got your number from _____.  You are being questioned by the Israeli authorities, I understand.  
 
ST:  They are threatening to deny me entry and to deport me.
 
CK:  Are you Jewish?
 
ST: No
 
CK:  Have you been in contact with the Israeli government or military in the past?
 
ST:  No
 
CK:  Have you been here before?
 
ST:  Yes, several times. I am a Palestinian with family in the West Bank.
 
CK:  Oh, you have family in the West Bank.  Then there is nothing I can do to help you.  In fact, if I interceded on your behalf, it will hurt your case with the Israelis.
 
ST:  I don’t understand.  You are saying you can’t speak with them.  You have no influence.  They are demanding to access my gmail account.
 
CK:  If they have your gmail address, they can get in without your password.
 
ST:  What do you mean?  How?
 
CK:  They’re good!
 
ST:  This is crazy.  You mean you know about these requests to access emails and you have no problem with it.
 
CK:  It is in our travel warning.  They won’t harm you.  You will be sent home on the next flight out.I hope I have been of good service to you.
 
ST:  Frankly, you have done nothing for me.
 
CK:  Well at least you can say I did it kindly.

Here’s the relevant warning, also dug up by Tamari. Note that it says nothing about going into your email.

Security-related delays are not unusual for travelers carrying audio-visual or data storage/processing equipment, and some have had their laptop computers and other electronic equipment confiscated at Ben Gurion Airport. While most items are returned prior to the traveler’s departure, some equipment has been retained by the authorities for lengthy periods and has reportedly been damaged, destroyed, lost or never returned. U.S. citizens who have had personal property damaged due to security procedures at Ben Gurion may contact the Commissioner for Public Complaints at the airport for redress by fax to 972-3-9752387. In such circumstances, travelers should have no expectation of privacy for any data stored on such devices.

Today, Lee pressed the State Department’s Mark Toner on Tamari’s experience (video above):

QUESTION: More on Israel. Yesterday you said you were aware that the Privacy Act waiver had been signed by Ms. Tamari. I’m wondering if you can tell us exactly what the State Department or the Embassy’s version of the conversation was, whether in fact that she was told that they couldn’t help her because she wasn’t Jewish.

MR. TONER: And actually I’m not sure if we’ve released – we should have; I apologize if we haven’t already released the Taken Question on this. But we can confirm that an official from U.S. Embassy Tel Aviv spoke via telephone with this individual to check on her safety and welfare while she was detained at Ben Gurion Airport. We remain in contact with local authorities until a decision was made regarding her entry into Israel. And of course, decisions about entry are the purview of the Israeli Government.

QUESTION: Did this person ask her if she was Jewish?

MR. TONER: Well, I don’t have an answer for you on that. What is very clear is that we would never deny assistance to any American citizen, regardless of their religious or ethnic background.

QUESTION: According to her account, the conversation, which is pretty much a verbatim transcript, he did ask, “Are you Jewish?” She said, “No.” Then she – then he asked, “Have you been here before?” She said, “Yes. Several times. I’m Palestinian. I have family in the West Bank,” to which he replied – and I won’t use his name, but I have it – “Oh, you have family in the West Bank. Then there’s nothing I can do to help you. If in fact I interceded on your behalf it would hurt your case with the Israelis.”

Is that correct? Is it that U.S. intervention on behalf of one of its citizens would actually hurt the case with Israel, a democratic ally?

MR. TONER: Again, I don’t have a transcript of the conversation. I don’t know where you were able to obtain one from.

QUESTION: From her.

MR. TONER: Again, this is a little bit of a –

QUESTION: I’m not trying to –

MR. TONER: — he said, she said. All I can say is that we –

QUESTION: Well, it may be. I want to know, regardless of that, is it correct that if you are a – that the position of the Embassy or the consular officers at the Embassy is that if you are a Palestinian with family in the West Bank and not Jewish that there’s nothing that they can do to help you. The actual verbatim words of the conversation I’m not –

MR. TONER: Verbatim words of what? A transcript that she presented or she produced?

QUESTION: Well, but –

MR. TONER: Again –

QUESTION: — is it correct that there is nothing that you can or nothing that the Embassy can do to help someone –

MR. TONER: That’s not correct.

QUESTION: That is not correct. Okay.

MR. TONER: We certainly stand to – we stand ready to support any American citizen, regardless of their religious or ethnic background.

QUESTION: Okay, okay. And then she says that she told them that they were trying to get into her email account – which goes to a different part of this story – on her laptop. He said that if they have your Gmail address, then they can get into your – they can get into the account anyway. She says, “How can they do that?” He says, “Well, they’re very good at this kind of thing.” And he says that they – that the Embassy is aware that the Israelis go in and check people’s email account – emails on their laptops. She says that she can’t understand why you don’t have a problem. He implies it’s in our Travel Warning.

Okay. Now, it’s not in the Travel Warning. The Travel Warning says that people who are carrying laptops or other audio-visual equipment could – have had these items confiscated. But there’s nothing in the Travel Warning – because I just read it now – that says that people might go into your computer and then demand access to your private email account. So I’m wondering, was I looking at an outdated Travel Warning, or is this just wrong?

MR. TONER: I don’t believe so. I think that’s accurate. But again, I’m not going to speak to a transcript of a conversation that’s unofficial at best.

QUESTION: Okay, well, it’s not so much the actual words that were said. I just want to know whether or not – and you answered the question – it is policy not to help someone –

MR. TONER: That is not our policy.

QUESTION: And also, if you are aware that they’re going into people’s emails, do you plan – would that be something that one – that you would –

MR. TONER: Again, I’d have to speak with our Consular Affairs, but I’m not aware that that’s reflected in our current Travel Warning. It’s not, I don’t think.

QUESTION: No, it isn’t, but I’m wondering if it would be now because this has become an issue quite separate from –

MR. TONER: It’s a hypothetical. I would assume we’d look at it.

Yesterday, Lee had a similar exchange with  Toner:

QUESTION: Have you managed to find out what happened with this woman from St. Louis? Was she told by the Embassy that they couldn’t help her because –

MR. TONER: Right.

QUESTION: — she wasn’t Jewish?

MR. TONER: Matt, I tried to get more information on that. I should have – I don’t have it in time for this briefing. My understanding, as I said, is that she did contact the Embassy and the Embassy did provide her with support. But I’m not aware of the exact exchange that she had with the Embassy personnel, so I’ll try to get you details on that.

QUESTION: Well –

MR. TONER: I appreciate I should have had it today. I don’t.

QUESTION: And so you do know that she has signed the Privacy Act waiver?

MR. TONER: I do know that and I have duly noted that –

QUESTION: No, but not just for me –

MR. TONER: And I have duly noted that to our friends in the Consular Affairs Bureau.

QUESTION: Okay. So specifically my question then is about that conversation –

MR. TONER: Yeah.

QUESTION: — that exchange, if she was told that and if that is now a practice of the Embassy to tell people if it –

MR. TONER: Again –

QUESTION: — to ask people what their religion is, and regardless of what it is, to tell them that based on that –

MR. TONER: I’m certain it’s not –

QUESTION: — based on just their religion –

MR. TONER: I’m certain it’s not, but let me get –

QUESTION: Well, she’s –

MR. TONER: Let me get the facts. Let me get the facts before –

QUESTION: — she’s saying –

MR. TONER: Okay. Thank you. I appreciate it.

Posted in Israel/Palestine, Media, US Policy in the Middle East, US Politics | Tagged

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

  1. Elliot says:

    New directives are being issued to the Tel Aviv embassy as we speak. These will slow things down a bit. It won’t be: “are you Jewish?” but a series of questions that get to the same conclusion such as “What was your destination in Israel?”

    • Inanna says:

      Great to see Sandra Tamari really following up on this. Thanks Mondoweiss for getting the story out there.

      • seafoid says:

        It does look as though Israel picked the wrong Palestinian to abuse.

        The contrast between what is perfectly normal in israel -”what is your religion” and totally haram in the US -”what is your religion” is why it is so hard for Toner to be straight in this conversation.

        • yes, they definitely picked the wrong palestinian american to abuse. sandra tamari is an exemplary human being.

        • American says:

          Every time something like this happen it multiplies a hundred times……sandra’s co workers will know about it and resent how she was treated, her friends which no doubt include many non-Arab Americans will know about it and find it disgusting also.

          How do the friends of Rachel Corrie think about Israel and Jewishness now, or Triston Anderson’s friends or the friends of the Jewish girl who lost her eye, or the families and friends of the Turkish American killed by Israel or the friends of the British peace activists and the UN workers Israel killed?

          The media can treat Americans like mushrooms and try to hide the reality of Israel but it gets out anyway and in a personal way. You hear from a friend and tell a friend and a friend tells another friend.
          Take every person anywhere, online or off, that has ever made a critical comment on Israel and multiply it by even 10 of their friends and you have some idea of how it is spreading and spreading.

        • seafoid says:

          And every day there is something else that is utterly sickening that Israel does. And every day the Shoah is demeaned in defending it. And every day Dershowitz and his generation edge closer to the grave. And every day a child is born who will not take responsibility for what happened in the 1940s.

        • Taxi says:

          When you say ‘israel’ nowadays, people think Apartheid not holocaust.

        • seafoid says:

          When you say” name an Israeli” today people think Lieberman rather than another war criminal.

  2. Avi_G. says:

    Toner seems to be insinuating that Sandra Tamari’s account and subsequent transcript lack credibility.

    MR. TONER: Again, this is a little bit of a –

    MR. TONER: — he said, she said. All I can say is that we –

    MR. TONER: Verbatim words of what? A transcript that she presented or she produced?

    MR. TONER: I don’t believe so. I think that’s accurate. But again, I’m not going to speak to a transcript of a conversation that’s unofficial at best.

    And then

    QUESTION: — to ask people what their religion is, and regardless of what it is, to tell them that based on that –

    MR. TONER: I’m certain it’s not –

    QUESTION: — based on just their religion –

    So Toner is not going to comment on a conversation that is “unofficial at best”, but he’s more than inclined to assume that he’s “certain it’s not.”

    And then he contradicts himself and says: “Let me get the facts. Let me get the facts before –”

  3. Kathleen says:

    do you guys know the name of the man at the U.S. embassy?

    “QUESTION: Okay, okay. And then she says that she told them that they were trying to get into her email account – which goes to a different part of this story – on her laptop. He said that if they have your Gmail address, then they can get into your – they can get into the account anyway. She says, “How can they do that?” He says, “Well, they’re very good at this kind of thing.” And he says that they – that the Embassy is aware that the Israelis go in and check people’s email account – emails on their laptops”

    Reminds me of Fox News Carl Camerons report about Israeli communication systems having access too 95% of Americans phone calls. Amdocs, Comverse Infosys “Well they’re very good at this kind of thing”
    link to informationclearinghouse.info

    Cameron’s report about a back door being infiltrated into the Israeli communication system by a foreign nation has always been interesting to me.

    • lysias says:

      Chris Kane, apparently at the time a consular official with the title “Fraud Prevention Manager”, visited San Carlos, Costa Rica in 2010. The story appears to indicate that he was then stationed at the U.S. embassy in San Jose, Costa Rica.

    • They (isreali -firster) found the reason and spread the truth around why Carl was going after Israeli presence/connection to 911. According to these souls : he spent his childhood in Iran!!
      I read it somewhere in Counterpunch (I think )

      • lysias says:

        Michael Ruppert says in his book Crossing the Rubicon that Brit Hume revealed in conversation that Carl Cameron’s source for his series was none other than Dick Cheney.

  4. Kathleen says:

    Matt Lee is the best. Trying to get Chris Hayes people to pick this story up for their weekend program. Would be great to see Phil and Adam along with Sandra and the other young lady on Chris Hayes Up program..or at least a mention of this story Make a suggestion over at UP
    link to upwithchrishayes.msnbc.msn.com

  5. Fredblogs says:

    I find that fascinating. Especially the part where it wasn’t because she wasn’t Jewish that he couldn’t help her, but because she had family in the West Bank. So which is it?

    • Sumud says:

      The official’s question was “are you jewish?”, not “are you Palestinian?”

      In working out what type of help he could give her he’s going to ask the relevant questions first.

    • Inanna says:

      Please try to think before you type Fred. I’m sure that if she had family living in a Jewish settlement in the West Bank vs. a Palestinian village or city, she would’ve been treated differently. Bottom-line was her non-Jewishness.

      • Fredblogs says:

        Bottom line is that even according to her own story (now) it wasn’t until she said she had family in the West Bank (i.e. among people at war with Israel) that he said he couldn’t help her. So maybe if she had had only family (still not Jewish) in Israel proper he would have been able to help her.

        • Blake says:

          Fred doing as he always does splitting hairs until the cows come home defending the indefensible (Mind you it may be a female propagandist pretending to be a male).

        • Woody Tanaka says:

          “(i.e. among people at war with Israel)”

          False. They are people who are prey to israeli bigotry..

        • Fredblogs says:

          That’s not splitting hairs, that’s making a relevant distinction. This website in its previous story said that it was because she said she was Jewish that the Embassy said they couldn’t help her. Now we find out that that isn’t true.

        • Fredblogs says:

          “wasn’t Jewish” that is.

        • eljay says:

          >> So maybe if she had had only family (still not Jewish) in Israel proper he would have been able to help her.

          Then perhaps he should have asked her if she had family in Israel proper. But he didn’t. Or he could have asked her if she was Israeli or of Israeli descent. But he didn’t. He asked her if she was Jewish.

    • Kathleen says:

      Are you an American citizen? Get the relevant information..verify. Help

  6. American says:

    This is weird. Almost all other embassy’s web sites have a listing of their staff and names for contact people in various departments.
    The US embassy in Tel Aviv has none, nada…not a single name listed for any department.
    But I did find out googling around that the “Fraud” section has a Jewish head – Wisell, and the FBI lasion to the embassy is Jewish – Steinbach…I dare say there is not a single American anywhere to found in that embassy.

    But while looking I found this news that I missed back in May when I was gone for several weeks.

    Woman removed from Air France flight for not being Jewish
    link to mondoweiss.net

    Bad,bad,bad, cruising for a bruising..yes indeed they are.

  7. giladg says:

    Why do some Jews rate up there with the worst anti-Semites?
    I think I am beginning to understand how the minds worked of some of the Kapos.
    “We will keep the other Jews under control”.

    • seafoid says:

      Gilad

      Are you looking for a response or something?

    • American says:

      “Why do some Jews rate up there with the worst anti-Semites?”‘

      Because to the zios they are even worse than anti semites. The zios can call gentiles ‘natural’ anti semites but when Jews, members of the tribe, tell or expose a truth about Israel they are more dangerous to the Zios control of the tribe.
      They are the enemy ‘within’….even more hated (and feared) by the zios than outsiders.

    • We will keep the other Jews under control

      Isn’t that engraved and framed above Alan Dershowitz’s desk?

    • Mooser says:

      “I think I am beginning to understand how the minds worked of some of the Kapos.
      “We will keep the other Jews under control”.

      Giladg, intentionally or not (I wouldn’t know) has gone directly to the heart of Zionism.

  8. NickJOCW says:

    Does anyone have any idea how other nations’ consulates handle this? Do US immigration employees have a union? Perhaps Tamari’s experience would be a salutary story to circulate, a bit of quid pro quo would seem in order.

  9. Taxi says:

    State Department official: Are you jewish?

    Taxi: Are you American?

  10. irmep says:

    Kathleen is on to something. This little exchange is *very* illuminating:

    “CK: If they have your gmail address, they can get in without your password.
    ST: What do you mean? How?
    CK: They’re good!”

    Chris Kane seems to be saying either a) that the Israeli government can easily crack a Gmail password having access only to the email address b) that the Israeli government can somehow obtain user passwords from Google on an expedited routine basis, perhaps as a condition for Google to operate in Israel.

    Either way, this account, if accurate, clearly has implications for *all* Gmail users.

    • seafoid says:

      Google speak from both sides of mouth

      link to guardian.co.uk

      Google to warn users of ‘state-sponsored’ hackingSearch giant says it will alert Gmail users about targeted attacks, in move that could aid human rights campaigners

      • Citizen says:

        Google’s notice mentions its alerts to users will be as to attackers from “China, Russia and several Middle East autocracies”– Google and Facebook are in bed with US/Israel regimes. In great contrast, Twitter is defending in court its members from all government-sponsored abuses of their civil rights.

        • Citizen says:

          In the insider geek world Twitter is known as the one big social engine defending freedom of the internet and privacy rights of users. Here’s the wiki profile of its creator: link to en.wikipedia.org
          Notice anything when compared to the creators/owners of Facebook and Google?

        • seafoid says:

          You have it, Citizen. Facebook and Google bend over as necessary . So much for “do no evil”. The fact they do it for Israel is even more sickening.

          BDS has never made more sense.

    • Kathleen says:

      I have always been intrigued with how quickly special interest groups tried to shut down that Carl Cameron report about U.S. Israeli intelligence co-operation or Israeli communications systems having access to 95% of all U.S. phone calls, etc. The alleged co-operative data mining going on between the two countries etc. The infiltrated back door in that Fox News report. And now this “Well, they’re very good at this kind of thing.”

      Also very interested in the way former IAEA weapons inspector Scott Ritter “Target Iran” was taken down. The communications systems, the interest in him, the Judge that sentenced etc

      • American says:

        I wonder how good at it they are other countries? I doubt they have the access in other countries they have here….the US opens the doors for them.

  11. Kathleen says:

    Marcy Wheeler (Emptywheel.net) has a zinger up.
    link to emptywheel.net
    Gang Warfare to Protect Israel’s Secrets
    Posted on June 7, 2012 by emptywheel

    Easily the most overlooked line in David Sanger’s story on StuxNet is this one:

    Mr. Obama concluded that when it came to stopping Iran, the United States had no other choice.

    If Olympic Games failed, he told aides, there would be no time for sanctions and diplomacy with Iran to work. Israel could carry out a conventional military attack, prompting a conflict that could spread throughout the region.

  12. charleston says:

    here it is…..

    link to jerusalem.usconsulate.gov

    ” The American Citizen Services Unit of the U.S. Consulate General in Jerusalem provides information and assistance to U.S. citizens visiting or resident in Jerusalem, the West Bank, and Gaza. For local information outside those areas, please consult the website of the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv. The State Department’s website, travel.state.gov, also has a wide range of country-specific information.”

    by the way, I think Jews are not allowed to travel into certain areas of Judea and Samaria or Gaza, probably why people are asked if they are Jewish.

    • Elliot says:

      by the way, I think Jews are not allowed to travel into certain areas of Judea and Samaria or Gaza, probably why people are asked if they are Jewish.
      The U.S. does not have an official policy that limits the travel of U.S. citizens in a foreign country based on their religion.

      • seafoid says:

        “The U.S. does not have an official policy that limits the travel of U.S. citizens in a foreign country based on their religion.”

        Elliott

        apparently Israel is a US domestic issue so that would invalidate your theory

      • charleston says:

        You may not be aware, Jews are more likely to be assaulted and murdered if they have wondered into arab areas?

        • Woody Tanaka says:

          “You may not be aware, Jews are more likely to be assaulted and murdered if they have wondered into arab areas?”

          LMAO. Of course, the greatest percentage of jews in Arab areas are likely to be carrying weapons, wearing the uniform of the IDF stormtroopers and guity of war crimes against the native people. Retaliation against such I”D”F goons is a very, very good thing, indeed.

        • American says:

          charleston says:
          June 7, 2012 at 11:20 am

          You may not be aware, Jews are more likely to be assaulted and murdered if they have wondered into arab areas?””

          So what?
          Arabs are definitely murdered if they even wander on their own land.

        • Avi_G. says:

          charleston says:
          June 7, 2012 at 11:20 am

          You may not be aware, Jews are more likely to be assaulted and murdered if they have wondered into arab areas?

          You sound like an anti-Semite when you conflate colonizing settler thugs with Jews.

          So when you go around beating up Palestinians, burning their groves, uprooting their trees and shooting at their children, all the while presenting yourself as a JEW, don’t come back and whine that any response from Palestinians is anti-Semitic…As though it’s because they hate Jews.

          Baloney.

          Find yourself a different lie to peddle.

        • Hostage says:

          You may not be aware, Jews are more likely to be assaulted and murdered if they have wondered into arab areas?

          You may not be aware, but the government of Israel says this is all disputed territory. The Israeli Supreme Court has given its blessing to targeted killings, i.e. assassinations or summary execution of Palestinians without trial – even in cases where killing innocent bystanders is unavoidable.

          The government of Israel justifies those acts of murder on the grounds that the entire area of occupation is part and parcel of a continuous state of armed conflict. Under the heading “The General Normative Framework, A. International Armed Conflict”. The Court held:

          “that between Israel and the various terrorist organizations active in Judea, Samaria, and the Gaza Strip (hereinafter “the area”) a continuous situation of armed conflict has existed since the first intifada.”

          link to elyon1.court.gov.il

          Israel has refused to consider the 2002 Arab Peace Initiative or to even negotiate with the Palestinian armed militias operating in Judea, Samaria, and the Gaza Strip. So the “General Normative Framework” remains one of bloody fucking murder, just like any other war zone. It should come as no surprise to you that members of the opposing armed forces occasionally kill Jewish people who enter the “disputed territory”. You may not be aware, but the ratios of killed Palestinians are almost an order of magnitude higher than Jewish civilian casualties.

      • charleston says:

        sorry if this post is too long-

        “…. U.S. Government employees are prohibited from entering the Old City on Fridays during the month of Ramadan due to overall congestion and security-related access restrictions. U.S. citizen employees of the U.S. Embassy and Consulate General and their families are prohibited from using public transportation networks, including buses and light rail services, and their associated terminals.

        Travel Restrictions for U.S. Government Personnel

        Personal travel in the West Bank for U.S. government personnel and their families is allowed in the areas described below. They may travel to Bethlehem from 6:00 a.m. to 11 p.m.; to Jericho; and transit through the West Bank using only Routes 1 and 90 to reach the Allenby/King Hussein Bridge or the Dead Sea coast near Ein Gedi and Masada. They may also travel north on Route 90 from the Allenby/King Hussein Bridge to the Sea of Galilee during daylight hours. Personal travel is also permitted to Qumran off Route 90 by the Dead Sea and all areas south of Highway 1 and east of route 90 in the Dead Sea area.

        U.S. Government personnel and family members are permitted both official and personal travel on Route 443 between Modi’in and Jerusalem. All other personal travel in the West Bank, unless specifically authorized for mission-approved purposes, is prohibited.

        General Safety and Security

        Israeli authorities remain concerned about the continuing threat of terrorist attacks. U.S. citizens are cautioned that a greater danger may exist around restaurants, businesses, and other places associated with U.S. interests and/or located near U.S. official buildings, such as the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv and the U.S. Consulate General in Jerusalem. U.S. citizens are also urged to exercise a high degree of caution and to use common sense when patronizing restaurants, nightclubs, cafes, malls, places of worship, and theaters, especially during peak hours. Large crowds and public gatherings have been targeted by terrorists in the past and should be avoided to the extent practicable. U.S. Government personnel have been directed to avoid protests and demonstrations and urged to maintain a high level of vigilance and situational awareness at all times. U.S. citizens should take into consideration that public buses and their respective terminals are off-limits to U.S. Government personnel.

        Since December 2009, two U.S. citizens have been murdered in separate incidents while walking in the woods in the Beit Shemesh area near Jerusalem. Israeli authorities characterized the murders as terrorist attacks.

        A bomb blast near the Central Bus Terminal in Jerusalem on March 23, 2011, injured several U.S. citizens.

        There are live land mines in many areas of the Golan Heights, so visitors should walk only on established roads or trails. Near the northern border of Israel, rocket attacks from Lebanese territory can and have occurred without warning.

        A terrorist attack on two commercial buses and two private vehicles on Route 12 north of Eilat killed eight and injured nearly 40 on August 18, 2011.

        Entry/Exit Difficulties

        U.S. citizens planning to travel to Israel or the West Bank should read carefully the detailed information concerning entry and exit difficulties in the Country Specific Information sheet. U.S. citizens in Israel, the West Bank, and the Gaza Strip are strongly encouraged to enroll with the Consular Sections of the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv or the U.S. Consulate General in Jerusalem through the State Department’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). Occasional warden messages issued by the Embassy and the Consulate General are e-mailed to registered U.S. citizens and are posted on State Department websites to highlight time-sensitive security concerns….”

        from the U.S.State Dept

        link to travel.state.gov

        This is really a non issue. People wanting to go to the PA areas can certainly travel through Jordan. Many people are unaware that after the arabs attacked Israel, a cease fire was imposed……..which has never ended……..because it seems impossible to agree on a peace treaty.

        Following the 1967 war, the arabs

        link to en.wikipedia.org

        ” The 1967 Arab League summit was held on August 29 in Khartoum as the fourth Arab League Summit. The summit came in the aftermath of the Arab defeat to Israel in the Six-Day War and is famous for its Khartoum Resolution known as “The Three No’s”; No peace with Israel, no recognition of Israel, no negotiations with Israel.[1] The summit also resolved that the “oil-rich Arab states” give financial aid to the states who lost the war and to “help them rebuild their military forces.”[2] The final communique of the meeting “underscored the Palestinians’ right to regain the whole of Palestine—that is, to destroy the State of Israel.”[3] The outcome of this summit influenced Israeli foreign policy for decades.[4]”

        ………….this was and remains the true agenda of the arabs, no matter what fantasies they construct.

        • Shingo says:

          The summit came in the aftermath of the Arab defeat to Israel in the Six-Day War and is famous for its Khartoum Resolution known as “The Three No’s”; No peace with Israel, no recognition of Israel, no negotiations with Israel

          The 2002 Arab Peace Initiatice meets all of these conditions and then some.

          Israel has said no it a lot more than 3 times. That tells us exactly what Israel is all about.

        • weindeb says:

          The 1967 action was a brilliantly choreographed land grab both in the military and propaganda sense, the latter still actively in play, never having ceased, even unto the point now where said propaganda has morphed into historic truth barely ever challenged.

        • MHughes976 says:

          And how the moral theory of preemptive action has influenced and corrupted the western mind ever since!

        • Citizen says:

          Hitler’s justification for his program was based on preemptive action theory, although it was not known as such at the time. Basically, as a response to not being able to protect yourself until somebody directly attacks you in the most obvious way, the preemptive war justification allows you to anticipate the attack and kill it before it has gained strength. Anybody want to make an analogy with Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” defense to murder? What both justifications have in common is that both demand the most minute details of the incident come into play, right along with credibility, to wit: he said, she aid, and who, if any are the credible witnesses. In a world of power where narrative is all about what actually “went down, ” all I see is endless cowboy conflict on the street. Those lacking power or influence just pay for it all in both blood and treasure; the elite waltz off behind their privately gated and secured homes. Perhaps it’s never really been any different?

        • Hostage says:

          Many people are unaware that after the arabs attacked Israel, a cease fire was imposed……..which has never ended……..because it seems impossible to agree on a peace treaty.

          You may not be aware of this, but the UN Security Council imposed the terms of the armistice agreement as a provisional measure under Article 40 (Chapter VII of the Charter) pending a final settlement. The IDF carried out a massive invasion of Jordanian territory in the Hebron area where it carried out an attack on the village of Es Samu in November of 1966 in violation of the armistice. The IDF crossed the armistice lines again in February in the Latrun area and used armored tractors to plow the land in no man’s land and inside Jordanian territory. Israel unilaterally declared its sovereignty over the DMZs in violation of the armistice agreements. It declared the Arab cultivators that inhabited the villages a security threat and declared the DMZs security zones that were closed to the Arabs. The IDF then sent armored tractors into the DMZs to plow in hopes of retaliating if they were attacked by the Syrians. In April of 1967, the IAF shot down six MIGs including one that was downed in a dogfight over Damascus, well inside Syrian airspace. When Egypt deployed its own army on its sovereign territory in the Sinai, Israel launched a preemptive attack and simply lied when it claimed the Arabs had attacked it first.

        • Shingo says:

          Many people are unaware that after the arabs attacked Israel, a cease fire was imposed

          Many people? What makes you think this is new material to this forum Charleston? Is it becasue you discovered it only recently and think it’s a new revelation?

          You’re way over your head.

        • Hostage says:

          Anybody want to make an analogy with Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” defense to murder? . . . Perhaps it’s never really been any different?

          The Allies cited the 19th century Caroline test as a controlling precedent during the Nuremberg trials. It only allowed for preemptive self–defense in cases where the necessity was “instant, overwhelming, and leaving no choice of means, and no moment for deliberation.”

          On the other hand, the Babylonian Talmud, Berakoth 58a, advises that “If a man comes to kill you, rise early and kill him first.” The justifications for killing someone else first, have parallels in Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” defense, but they also allowed preemptive killings in cases where another Jew could only technically be considered to be “pursuing” other Jews to murder them, i.e. a rodef.

          There would undoubtedly have been similar technical grounds raised by a Jewish audience listening to the King parable in Luke 14:31-33 to justify rising up early and killing the adversary first:

          Or what king, going to make war against another king, sits not down first, and consults whether he is able with ten thousand to meet him that comes against him with twenty thousand? Or else, while the other is yet a great way off, he sends a delegation, and desires conditions of peace.

        • Citizen says:

          Thanks, Hostage.

    • Woody Tanaka says:

      “Judea and Samaria”

      No such places exist. These zio-supremacist terms are up there with German neo-Nazis labelling parts of Western Poland as “Prussia”; pathetic displays by fascists to deny reality.

      • charleston says:

        dear woody- here is reality and history

        link to en.wikipedia.org

        ” Judea or Judæa ( /dʒuː.ˈdiː.ə/[1]; from Hebrew: יהודה‎, Standard Yəhuda Tiberian Yəhûḏāh “Tribe of Judah”, Greek: Ιουδαία, Ioudaía; Latin: Iudaea) was the name of the mountainous southern part of the historic Land of Israel (Hebrew: ארץ ישראל‎ Eretz Yisrael) from the 8th century BCE (Assyrian rule) to the 2nd century CE, when Roman Judea was renamed Syria Palaestina following the Jewish Bar Kokhba revolt.”

        ………..so you see Judaea it was and it is.

        Palaestina/Palestine was the name imposed by the Romans-and became widespread in the Christian west because of Jesus…but even the Bible

        ACTS: 1-8
        ” But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”

        so Woody, you are wrong.

        • Woody Tanaka says:

          Sorry, hasbarist, the fact that a piece of land was once called by a name does not mean that it proper to still called by that name. For example, I note that you don’t call the land “Canaan.” So if you want to put any credit to long ago dead names, then call the land by it’s ancient name, “Canaan” or go stick the zio-racist names of Judea and Sumaria.

          So who gives a fig what some long-ago dead people called it. It’s the West Bank, now, except to the Jewish equivalent of the Klan. And the opinion of those racist lunatics should be discarded.

          Further, the name “Palestine” has been associated with that land basically for as long as there have been records. For you to suggest that it was something the Romans imposed is racist garbage. It was there before the pathetic Israelite polities of old, and will be there long after the current zionist monstrosity fades into history.

        • charleston says:

          Hysteria and venom are not rational arguments and do not confirm your erroneous (ignorant) position no matter how often or forcefully you chant your mantras.

          Calling me names, will not deny the truth or historicity of facts, in fact it demonstrates how shallow and bankrupt are your arguments.

          But as they say, conclusions not based on reason, cannot be rationally upheld or defended.

        • Woody Tanaka says:

          Sorry, hasbarist (and that’s not calling you a name, that’s labeling what you’re doing: mindlessly repeating worn out hasbara), there is nothing that is hysterical, venomous, erroneous or ignorant in pointing out that the land in question (and various portions of it) have had many names in the past few centuries, none of which are more than arbitrary conventions. (For example, my personal favorite name applied to the city of al-Quds was “Colonia Aelia Capitolina” and, indeed, the people from that city must have been proud (or should have, anyway) that the great Roman Empire once lowered itself to notice the then-provincial backwater long enough to to name it after the great god, Jupiter Capitolinus.)

          Further, there is nothing illogical or irrational in noting that “West Bank” is the modern, accepted label for that land in English, except among Judeo-supremacist fascists, who, like the Fascists in Italy in the 20th Century, use symbolism that is millenia out of date, in order to give a veneer of legitimacy to their crimes.

        • Cliff says:

          No Jew today or yesterday or tomorrow or from the advent of the Zionist movement has any concrete connection to the ancient Kingdom of Israel or the Kingdom of Judea. Furthermore, in the case of Judea – it was a CLIENT state of Assyria, which was eventually conquered by one of the Babylonian civilizations.

          This all happened in the BCE – during the early history of urban civilizations.

          The Jews who stole Palestine from the indigenous Palestinian Arabs were from Europe. They had no right to the land because self-determination does not belong to your warm and fuzzy religious feelings.

          Self-determination belongs to the people of a land. Those people were predominantly Palestinian Arabs – both Muslim and Christians. They were usurped and immediately prevented from returning to their rightful homes. Their condition as refugees has been perpetuated by racist, fascist Jewish nationalist zealots (and traitors, in the case of those Zionist Jews who campaign for Israeli interests above American interests while they hold American citizenship) and Christian eschatologists who want to bring about the second coming of Christ wherein all those Jews who do not repent and accept Jesus Christ as their Lord and Saviour will burn in an ever-lasting lake of fire.

          Zionism is hate. Zionism is a lie. To prop up something so fundamentally illegitimate (like any other colonial ideology such as Manifest Destiny for example) – amateur hasbarats like you and Freddy pollute the Internet. Much as you do real-life with your fear-mongering and/or supremacist verbiage.

          You simultaneously portray Jews (as through a Zionist lens, because anti-Zionist Jews are considered traitors unless they squabble amongst their own allies – as is the case with Finkelstein at present) as perpetual victims while they machine gun down white-flag waving and unarmed elderly Palestinian women in Gaza.

          Israel’s laundry list of crimes is plenty bad and plenty ENOUGH – but fifth column traitors like Fredblogs (who are only tolerated at MW because so few Zionist commentators post here, i.e. Phil takes what he can get) will justify anything and everything it does. Whether its an American Arab citizen who is a member of SJP who is thrown out of Israel (but not before she is harassed and mistreated) to something more severe like the ongoing protests at Silwan(sp) or Bi’iln or the murder of Rachel Corrie – this time a WHITE American.

          Yet, the common thread is that for our fifth column anti-American, Israel-firster fascists – is whether or not you sympathize with the plight of the Palestinians.

          This begs one question with regard to the deportation of the Arab-Americans on the basis of their TEPID emails and political associations (wholly legitimate BTW).

          Israel should simply say it is a democracy for Jews. Not for anyone else. The reason this conflict has dragged on for so long is due on part to the constant lies by the Zionist fifth column in the West and their ethno-religious constituency who are raised to be virulently anti-democratic, Islamophobic, anti-Arab and laden with all kinds of cognitive dissonance involving the values of the American dream/ideal (no, for the last time, your racist, apartheid ‘shitty little Levantine country’ is NOT LIKE US).

          But your tribesmen are sure as hell trying to increase the overlap (contrived overlap). Making your enemies, ours by instigating conflicts and by perpetuating an intellectually dishonest discourse on this issue through prominent media outlets – whether it be through word association, lack of coverage when an issue would be unflattering, political framing, deference to the Israeli authorities over the victims of their ongoing occupation.

          See: Ethan Bronner or Jennifer Rubin or blah blah, the list that Sean always has ready to post when some Zionist liar acts as if the world is flat, the media is impartial and everyone hates Israel for no reason (other than Nobel prizes, tomato cherries and IDF women in Maxim magazine).

          Short answer to your crappy, third-rate hasbara, Mr. RandomNewZioBot #3974747 (who we have seen in one form or the other a zillion times before and will calmly dismantle and inevitably force to tuck tail and run back to safer pastures, such as Pam Gellar’s hate-festival or the hate-emporium over at JihadWatch):

          Get. New. Material.

          You are BORING.

        • American says:

          You know Charleston, what irritates people so much is the liberties you take with ancient history. That is one of the things I dislike most about you zionist — this babble gook you apply to history trying to prove you existed” before” or existed ‘more so’ or in some way that entitles you above any others in the region in ancient or modern history.
          Let’s go by what real history and science and archaeology experts say about the land and people in question.

          link to news.nationalgeographic.com

          Archaeology says the city of Jerusalem was founded about 3000 B.C., probably by the Canaanites [a Semitic people of the ancient land of Canaan].
          We’re not sure what the original city looked like or how big it was. The Egyptians mention it, using the name Jerusalem, in their records 4,000 years ago. Around 1350 B.C., Abdi-Heba, the governor or mayor of Jerusalem writes to the Egyptian pharaoh, asking for help. He says the city is under siege. This is the earliest record we have of a conflict.
          We get various mayors in Canaan writing to the Egyptians at this time, asking for soldiers to defend their cities. It seems to be local conflicts between rulers of the various Canaanite city-states. They would all have been vassals to the Egyptian king, so he’s basically trying to keep peace among the various factions.

          When did the Israelites first appear?

          It depends on where you think the Israelites came from. You have the Exodus [the departure of the Israelites from Egypt], but we can’t prove that it took place.
          There are several theories. One is that the Israelites were always in the land of Canaan, and they were peasants who slowly emerged from under the thumb of an overlord. Another is that they were nomads who gradually settled down.

          We also don’t know if the modern Israelis are actually related to the ancient Israelites. Ask any Jew today if he’s a descendant of the Israelites, and he’ll say ‘of course.’ But that’s a question still to be answered by genetic studies.

          So is it possible for anyone in the area today to prove a historic link to any of the original inhabitants?

          It is important to keep in mind both the tumultuous history of this region over time and the massive waves of migration that have taken place during the past 4,000 years. As a result of assimilation, annihilation, and acculturation, it is highly unlikely that anyone living in the area today, whether Palestinian or Israeli, can provide a legitimate pedigree definitively extending back to any of the original inhabitants of [this land]’’

          Here’s another good article about the archaeology digs in Palestine by Israelis that are funded by certain Jewish orgs that want to prove some Jewish kingdom existed and how if they find some olive pits they claim they are ” Jewish olive pits!” ..so the Jews were there 1000 years ago!…LOL….are there Jewish tooth marks on the olive pits?..that will be next…Jewish tooth prints discovered on olive pits!! Bingo!…gawd…it’s so bizarre. NO ONE has yet proved to the archaeology community of their peers the things the zios and Israelis claim about their history …not even the exodus from Egypt.

          link to ngm.nationalgeographic.com

          Doesn’t matter how you cut it, the bottom line is Canaan existed first as a name for the region and it was known by many other names even before then according to what different empires and tribes called it. The Jews, where ever they came from were a small group that had a kingdom, which most archaeologist now think was more like a cow town than a glorious kingdom, and they got swept away in the constant invasions and comings and goings of warring tribes and invaders of that era like many others did.

          THE only thing the archaeology community has totally agreed on is that the skulls of Neanderthals have been discovered in Israel, which proves that the Neanderthals were the first and original inhabitants of that region before the Ice Age eclipsed them and homo sapiens rose to migrated in.

          Now, if you want to claim all Jews all over the world are throwbacks to the original Neanderthals, who are now defunct, and so were there first and therefore entitled to return, go ahead. Claiming to be direct descendants of those neanderthals would be the only way you could assert first dibs on the land by virtue of your ‘origins’.
          Actually there are some rare people today who do have the verifiable skull structure of ancient nethandetrals…maybe you are one of them…go get your skull x-rayed and find out.
          If you want the whole Nat Geo article on the neanderthals skull discovery google it or use my name to find it, I posted it here a year or more ago.

        • Hostage says:

          ACTS: 1-8
          ” But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”

          That’s just a summary of the events that are described in the remaining chapters of the Book of Acts. The Christian Crusaders certainly didn’t infer from that passage that the Jews had a valid claim to Judea or Samaria. The latter was inhabited by the Samaritans throughout the era of the 2nd Commonwealth. The Maccabees destroyed the Samaritan Temple on Mt Gerazim, but they didn’t colonize or inhabit the area. The accounts in the Christian’s scripture record the fact that Samaritans were not members of the Jerusalem Temple cult or part of Jewish society.

          Archeological excavations on Mt. Gerazim by Magen and others in the modern era have confirmed that many of the ancient Jewish traditions and legends about the Samaritans and their Temple are based upon ancient libels and hasbara.

          1st Kings Chapter 9:11 claims that Solomon gave King Hiram of Tyre 20 cities in Galilee. This old legend may have been invented to explain the actual facts that Jews encountered on the ground. In any event, there is very little ground for a modern-day Zionist to assert a claim to that territory. The references to “Galilee of the Gentiles” contained in 1st Maccabees 5:15 and Matthew 4:15 are allusions to the legend and the fact that the majority of the inhabitants during the 2nd Commonwealth were not considered to be proper Jews.

          Modern day Zionists are careful not to trespass on the supposed site of the Holy of Holies purchased and established by their mythical Kings, David and Solomon. They claim all of the region of Hebron, simply because their legends claim that Abraham purchased a field there. But Zionist aren’t nearly so careful about trespassing on the ancestral lands of non-Jewish inhabitants mentioned in their own scriptures and legends.

        • Ellen says:

          Cliff, thank you for taking the time to post, thank you for writing.

          Charleston’s wikipedia links to tainted information in a sad and pathetic attempt to present “facts” says so much about the training and mind of a hasbarist sock puppet. Thoroughly uneducated and brainwashed people can be filled with stories of ancient kingdoms and rulers to justify modern days crimes against humanity.

          Mussolini had his grand and ancient Italian kingdoms, the criminal Nazi regime had their Germanic Ayrian heros and kingdoms. Zionism was born in this same narcissistic, racist and sick nationalistic world view.

          And always, it is the charlestons of the world — the ignorant and energized followers who suddenly feel important with a fanatasy self identity over others — that support what is inevitably a criminal enterprise.

        • flyod says:

          “If it is proper to ‘reconstitute’ a Jewish state which has not existed for two thousand years, why not go back another thousand years and reconstitute the Canaanite state? The Canaanites, unlike the Jews, are still there.” H.G. Wells, quoted in Palestine Dilemma: Arab Rights Versus Zionist Aspirations, by Frank C. Sakran, Public Affairs Press, 1948, p. 204.

        • Blake says:

          Good replies to that Charleston character guys. Patience is a virtue.

        • Theo says:

          Cliff says: ” Israel should say it is a democracy only for jews”

          Yes, but those jews must be european decendents, also ashkenazies, who are known to originate from the khasars, a turk not semitic people. Great percentage of them have absolutly no semitic roots.
          Jews from Africa and Asia are discriminated against, they are second class jews, and recent events show that jews from Ethiopia, who are brown/black, are attacked on the streets and asked to go back to “Sudan”.
          And all this happens in the only democratic and free nation in the ME!!

        • Shingo says:

          The Bble and Torah are fiction Charleston.

        • MHughes976 says:

          They’re interpretations of history, I’d rather say. I don’t think there’s much doubt that the terms ‘Judaea’ and ‘Samaria’ were in use in ancient times, but then parts of my ancient country have been known by many names and you couldn’t found political claims by saying that this region was the land of the Brigantes, this of the Iceni.
          Note that Herodotus, visiting the area around 450 BCE, noticed Palestinians but not Israelites or Jews.
          The non-Jewish element in Palestine is about as old and as complex as the Jewish/Isrealite one and the Jewish element has no special right to say that its specific tradition should be dominant in the assignment of names and of political rights.

        • seafoid says:

          Judea and Samaria unfortunately fell under the absentee property law of the late Roman Empire which was carried over into Byzantium. Anyone who uses the terms now is a Jewish irredentist.

        • American says:

          Seems like I read somewhere that the bible was written 300 to 800 years after some of the events it describes.

        • Taxi says:

          The bible was written some 200 years after the death of christ, commissioned first by Constantine.

        • Mooser says:

          “Sorry, hasbarist (and that’s not calling you a name, that’s labeling what you’re doing: mindlessly repeating worn out hasbara),”

          I think his (or her) real name is ‘Rip Van Winklewitz”

        • Mooser says:

          Thank you Ellen. You just did something I wish would be done more often; you gave a cogent and sensible ezplanation of the phenonema of Zionism without ever mentioning the word “Jewish.” And it makes more sense to me than many of the others which do.

        • Hostage says:

          Seems like I read somewhere that the bible was written 300 to 800 years after some of the events it describes.

          The tradition that the Torah was produced by Moses would require it to have been recorded long after the events of the creation contained in Genesis and hundreds of years after the days of the three Patriarchs.

          There have been many attempts to produce a time line, like Archbishop James Ussher’s, which is incorporated in many Christian bibles and countless theories have been proposed about the origins of the texts. Most are based upon either form or textual criticism and legends about the long period of oral transmission and possible alterations introduced by redactors and the scribes who produced copies or translations.

          The bible was written some 200 years after the death of christ, commissioned first by Constantine.

          The Councils didn’t write the original manuscripts. The members just debated the inclusion of the more controversial works and established the canonical status of well-known existing works. For example, the Mishnah (circa 3rd Century CE) records the dispute over the Song of Solomon and Ecclesiastics by a Jewish Council in Yavneh around 80 A.D. That sort of debate was repeated by the Christian Council in Nicaea in the early 4th century CE. Although the Jewish authorities rejected the accuracy of the translation, most of the Tanakh, aka “Old Testament”, had existed in a Greek translation, the Septuagint (LXX). It predated either council by 300 or more years.

          Many scholars theorize that portions of the Torah were produced and introduced in the era of Josiah, the King of Judah (See II Kings Chapters 22-23). There is also a Jewish tradition which holds that Ezra the scribe dictated the 24 books of the Tanakh from memory after the return from the Babylonian captivity.

        • Blake says:

          And if you believe in that, Moses Himself said that in your final days God will rise up a Prophet and you must listen to Him and in the Books of Moses through to Revelations reinforce this idea that there would be a new religion of Christ that would replace the temporary religion of Moses.

    • tree says:

      by the way, I think Jews are not allowed to travel into certain areas of Judea and Samaria or Gaza, probably why people are asked if they are Jewish.

      No, its Israelis that are not allowed to travel into certain areas of the West Bank and the one doing the prohibiting is the Israeli government. Jews of all backgrounds regularly go into those areas, often as support to non-violent resistance by Palestinians. And a certain number of empathetic Israelis violate the Israeli ban and do the same thing. They face more threat of violence from Jewish settlers and the IDF than they do from Palestinians. The murder rate of Jews in the occupied territories these days is less than the murder rate within the Green Line.

      In any case, Ben Gurion Airport is not in the West Bank. And the US Consulate has absolutely NO BUSINESS asking an American citizen seeking their help whether they are Jewish or not. Its unconstitutional.

      • Fredblogs says:

        @tree
        ROFL. If I had a nickel for every time someone said “It’s unconstitutional” just because they don’t like something, I’d be richer than Bill Gates.

        Nothing unconstitutional about asking whether someone is Jewish. Or for that matter, in asking whether someone has family in the West Bank.

        • Hostage says:

          Nothing unconstitutional about asking whether someone is Jewish.

          Of course not, but you’re still engaging in dissimulation. Everyone knows that it would be unconstitutional for a US government official to ask citizens if they are Jewish and then claim that no further assistance will be given if the citizens reply in the negative.

          FYI, you’d be much richer if you had a nickel for every time the Courts have explained the way the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment works.

        • Fredblogs says:

          Even if it had been because she wasn’t Jewish, rather than because she has family in the West Bank, there is nothing in the Constitution that requires a U.S. official to lie about being able to help someone when they can’t.

        • Hostage says:

          there is nothing in the Constitution that requires a U.S. official to lie about being able to help someone when they can’t.

          Fred, I’ve already cited the State Department guidance which says the consulate can do quite a lot more than it did in these cases. It can lodge an official protest over mistreatment of Americans on the basis of non-violent political or religious opinions, give travelers emergency loans, and provide them with lists of local lawyers who are much more qualified to advise on the legality of the email searches the security officers conducted and the proposed deportation of Quaker Peace activists as “undesirables”.

          FYI, Under the Basic Law: Judicature, when sitting as the High Court of Justice (HCJ), the Supreme Court is competent to order State and local authorities and the officials and bodies thereof, and other persons carrying out public functions under law, to refrain from doing any act. So the notion that border entry officials can do any damn thing they want is just hot air.

        • Fredblogs says:

          None of which would actually help the woman who was trying not to be denied entry to Israel, she was getting sent home that day. And you haven’t shown anything from the state department or anything else that says that someone is, in general, entitled to a hearing before being sent home when denied entry to a country. In fact, the only source you tried to provide made it clear that it is so unusual to provide a hearing that the equivalent of the Supreme Court heard a hearing for one particular person, and that was a Nobel Prize winner. And they refused to override the judgement of the border control officials who denied her entry.

          I didn’t say the Border entry officials were the final word, only that the country has the right to exclude whoever they want and usually leaves it to the border entry officials. Straw man argument, Hostage. Of course the Supreme Court of a country, and other high officials can override the border entry officials on the scene, but if they have a history of not overriding the border entry officials, then there is nothing that the U.S. embassy is going to do for some non-VIP that would get them to do so. The embassy shouldn’t waste its time on trying to get Israel to let some ordinary American anti-Israeli activist into the country when Israel simply doesn’t do that after deciding to exclude them. They have finite resources and can’t make a (almost certainly losing) federal case out of it every time some disgruntled anti-Israel activist gets denied entry. Even that Nobel Prize winner (and anti-Israel activist) spent her time in Israel in a cell near ben Gurion before being sent home. Not what I would call “help” to someone who could just be deported right away. The Embassy quite rightly decided that if you want to waste Israel’s time and resources fighting denial of entry, use your own resources to fight a hopeless case, not American Taxpayers’ resources.

        • The Embassy quite rightly decided that if you want to waste Israel’s time and resources fighting denial of entry, use your own resources to fight a hopeless case, not American Taxpayers’ resources.

          so, the embassy should be concerning itself with protecting israel’s time and resources and even tho we pay for our embassy if israel decides to deny entry our embassy shouldnot waste the taxpayers dollars serving an american’s interest.

          thanks for sharing fred/not. chomp chomp chomp.

        • Citizen says:

          “ST: They are threatening to deny me entry and to deport me.
          CK: Are you Jewish?”
          Why is an American official asking this right off the bat of an American asking for help?
          So we American tax payers now pay for our ST to work only for Jews?

        • Hostage says:

          None of which would actually help the woman who was trying not to be denied entry to Israel, she was getting sent home that day.

          Fred the Courts in Israel can prohibit the government from deporting someone without a hearing. That would mean that these women might not have been been removed from the country the next day. You keep trying to use circular logic and its laughably childish.

          You still can’t deny that the Courts in Israel obviously have entertained motions on deportations in the past, like the one that I cited above in the CNN report. The Courts have overruled the government on the subject of deportations in the past too. e.g. Israeli High Court Forbids Deportation of Pregnant Migrant Workers link to migrant-rights.org

        • Fredblogs says:

          re:CNN report
          Yeah, and what was the result? She sat in a cell for a week and then got deported anyway. And after she went to all the trouble of throwing a temper tantrum when they tried to put her on a plane so she could delay deportation long enough for her lawyers to fight it in court, which failed. What I find most interesting about that was that her lawyer was all ready to go to court over a 10 year deportation order that she claimed in court she didn’t know about. I guess lying to the court (as Israel’s highest court found that she did) just goes with the territory for anti-Israel activists.

          If you want to play that game, do it on your own dime, not the U.S. taxpayers’.

          As for overruling deportation, that’s for people already in the country, not someone being denied entry in the first place.

        • Hostage says:

          re:CNN report Yeah, and what was the result?

          She was given due process.

          If you want to play that game, do it on your own dime, not the U.S. taxpayers’.

          The taxpayers have employed these people and pay them for their foreign service in Israel. Among other tasks, they are supposed to earn their keep while they take-up space in our otherwise overcrowded civil service by assisting travelers who have been arrested. They are required to provide a list of local lawyers, provide emergency loans (not gifts), and can arrange for food and medicine under programs that our lawmakers have authorized.

          I have no idea what “game” we’re supposed to be playing here, since we’re talking about non-violent peace activists and a Quaker who haven’t been convicted of any crimes. All you’ve done is attempt to engage in defamation of the ladies’ character ever since your first post on the subject. Stay classy Fred.

    • Elliot says:

      Enjoyed reading the informative replies of Woody T., Ellen, Cliff, Flyod and Hostage.
      The State of Israel uses some biblical names for its regional townships: Lakhish, Benjamin and others. It does the same with villages and towns, inventing a biblical connection through reverse engineering. The Israelis take the Arab name of the Palestinian village that the Jewish settlement is replacing (or dominating) and point to a Biblical Hebrew cognate. That Biblical Hebrew name becomes the name of the new Jewish settlement. For instance: the West Bank Palestinian village of ‘Anata is now neighbor to the Jerusalem suburb ‘Anatot, birthplace of the prophet Jeremiah.
      The use of “Judea and Samaria” is doubly disingenuous. We don’t know what the boundaries of the biblical Judea and Samaria were and how that compares with the boundaries the British Mandatory government drew.
      Also, since the State of Israel never formally imposed Israeli sovereignty on the West Bank, there can be no name in Israeli Hebrew for the West Bank that does not acknowledge its extra-territorial status. Therefore , the settler camp has to use the regional, administrative names to bypass that fact. It’s like referring to the U.S. as a list of the 50 states. This is their attempt to divert attention from the obvious.

  13. CK: Oh, you have family in the West Bank. Then there is nothing I can do to help you. In fact, if I interceded on your behalf, it will hurt your case with the Israelis.

    Thats what happened when one side (Israel ) thinks other side (US) is its enemy.
    So much for shared values,natural ally,deep bondage,and fight against common enemy.

  14. American says:

    USS Liberty……let us not forget. June 8th, tomorrow is the anniversary of the Israeli attack.
    I can only imagine the bewilderment and disbelief at first of the cover up for the Israelis and then rage the survivors of the Liberty felt and still feel.
    The US government’s contract with Americans was voided right then and there and remains void to this day. Americans owe their government nothing . It needs to be destroyed and reconstituted.

    Good new book:

    What I Saw That Day” is a story of America turning its back on its service-men. It is a story about Israelis slaughtering in cold blood American sailors on the high sea. But it is also a story about a man who battles with wounds and scars that have refused to heal for forty five years. It is a book about the American serviceman being deceived and neglected by American political and military elite. “What I Saw That Day” is also a personal painful account of the tragic consequences of Israeli and Jewish lobby domination in America.”

    link to amazon.com

    • RoHa says:

      One account I read many years ago said that when the Israelis attacked Egypt, a Jewish officer on the Liberty ran through the ship shouting “My people have risen.”

      If this is true, I do not know why the captain did not immediately tell him that, as an officer in the US Navy, “his people” were all the people of the United States and only those people.

      The account did not mention what the Jewish officer said when the Israelis attacked.

    • Woody Tanaka says:

      “USS Liberty……let us not forget. June 8th, tomorrow is the anniversary of the Israeli attack.”

      Yes, on this day it is only appropriate to remember and mourn not only those Americans who were murdered by the israelis in cold blood, but to also remember the fact that it was the US’s own politicians who covered up that crime and have been traitors to this foreign power for the last 4 decades.

      Zionism must be destroyed, by any means necessary.

    • RobertB says:

      THE USS LIBERTY

      During the 1967 Six-Day War, Israel attacked and tried to sink the USS Liberty belonging to its closest ally, the USA. In the two-hour assault by Israeli warplanes and torpedo boats, 34 American servicemen were killed and 171 wounded.

      The Israeli story has always been that they mistook a modern US surveillance ship (flying the US flag) for an Egyptian boat. This excuse is not credible as this BBC documentary shows. A radio intercept officer recounts on camera that he heard the Israeli pilots twice warn their base that the ship was American. Fifteen years after the attack one of the pilots admitted this to the Washington Post and was arrested by Israel.

      In 1997, retired Adm. Thomas Moorer accused the U.S. and Israeli governments of covering up evidence surrounding the 1967 Israeli attack on the American intelligence ship. Just before his death he asked president Clinton to pressure Israel admitting their deliberate attack.”

      ~~~~~~~

      To watch video…click on link below:

      Dead in the Water

      link to informationclearinghouse.info

  15. lysias says:

    Mark Toner got a break today. No questions having to do with Israel at today’s State Dept. press briefing. I wonder if Matt Lee couldn’t make it.

    • lysias says:

      And I checked yesterday all the briefings through yesterday (June 11). Still no more mention of the Palestinian-American women.

      Have they excluded Matt Lee from the briefing meetings? Has he gotten an answer to his questions outside the briefings?

  16. seafoid says:

    Are you Jewish?

    Are you familiar with the Jewish holidays?

    How do you interpret Sukkot ?

    link to haaretz.com

    Israel’s Defense Ministry announced Thursday that it will erect between 20,000-25,000 tents for African migrants at various detention centers by the end of the year.

    According to an official statement, the Defense Ministry and the Israel Defense Forces will build the tent cities in five different detention centers within a matter of months. Once built, the centers will be run by the Israel Prison Service.

    Three of those detention centers will be built near the Ketziot prison in the near future, and will be connected to water, electric and sewage infrastructures which the Defense Ministry have been building over the last several weeks.

    The objective of the plan, according to the ministry, is to ensure that all African migrants who enter Israel will be directly transferred to a detention center where they will stay for long periods of time, in order to prevent their entry to Israeli cities.

  17. Taxi says:

    Matt Lee is supremely cool. His relationship with his pen and pad – how there’s a three-way charge between them before his mouth fires a question. And always with that unique breath of irony at the tail of every question.

    I especially love how he is so relaxed yet determined – never really satisfied with the first response, pressing on, rephrasing, re-rephrasing, re-re-rephrasing some more, always rejecting the absurdities of politicians and their mouthpiece.

  18. Talkback says:

    To make it sound less racist they are going to change the wording from “Are you Jewish?” to “Are you allowed to enter under the law of return?”. Isn’t this the main tool to differentiate between Jews and Nonjews in Israel’s law?

    • seafoid says:

      They are going to change the question from the frankly offensive “are you Jewish” to
      “On a scale of 1 to 10, how much do you love Ariel Sharon?”

  19. Jethro says:

    Sandra has an article on the rec list at Daily kos

    link to dailykos.com

  20. Citizen says:

    Looks like Israel didn’t like Sandra’s article pushing Divestment here: link to tampabay.com
    link to tampabay.com