At New America Foundation, Max Blumenthal warns Israeli policy is to ‘finish 48’

Israel/PalestineUS Politics
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Max Blumenthal at the New America Foundation on December 4, 2013. (Video: UStream)
“We hear this cry,” said journalist Max Blumenthal at a much anticipated lecture for Goliath: Life and Loathing in Greater Israel at the New America Foundation (NAF) Wednesday afternoon. “Finish 48.” Blumenthal said the Israeli policy of home demolitions and evictions, that Palestinians often call the “on-going Nakba,” is part of a process that began in 1948 that Israel’s rightists want to finish today.

This cry, Blumenthal tells us, is from the World Zionist Organization as they court Jews to move into the predominately Arab regions of the Galilee and the Negev for the stated purposed of “balancing” demographics.

“We hear the calls to finish 48” from the Prawer Plan, where the Israeli government will evict 30,000 Bedouins from their villages—leaving them homeless and without a resettlement option. When foreign minister Avidgor Lieberman campaigned for Likud in 2009 under the header “No Loyalty, No Citizenship,” this was a call to “finish 48.”

The loyalty oaths of Lieberman were used decades ago against Mizrahi Jews whose citizenship was threatened away for organizing an Israeli version of the Black Panther Party. Blumenthal notes as law, “this was of course first introduced by Meir Kahane,” the formerly banned Knesset member whose organization is labeled a terrorist group by Israel and the U.S. for inciting a Jewish underground armed militia responsible for bombing Palestinian facilities. “When [Ehud] Barak supported this bill Haaretz declared that Kahane was the real leader of the Knesset that his legacy had triumphed.”

This victory of the right over mainstream Israeli politics makes Blumenthal’s book stand apart. He doesn’t give a typical national history of Israel, Goliath is more like a people’s history, for Israel’s non-Jews. He shows a country on the brink, coming apart after decades of internal political woes.  Most big-think books on Israel and the Palestinians focus on the occupation, the West Bank and Gaza as the moral stains to an otherwise justifiable shelter for the nearly exterminated European Jewry. Israel is then a monolith of moral judgement, an idea about redemption. When 1948 is addressed, since the publication of Benny Morris’s Righteous Victims (1999) it is presented in clear terms as an ethnic cleaning, but one that stopped when the armistice line was signed in 1949. Speaking to Ari Shavit who himself just published My Promised Land, another well-received “big think” Israel book, Morris said,

‘A Jewish state would not have come into being without the uprooting of 700,000 Palestinians. Therefore it was necessary to uproot them. There was no choice but to expel that population. It was necessary to cleanse.’

But Blumenthal double-stitches over 1948 and the next decade ruled by a military government. In his Goliath lecture he weaved the present with the past because Blumenthal says that’s what Israeli policymakers are doing. They are passing updated versions of laws that once were military codes for policing Arabs after a period of war and expulsion.

After the bloodshed of Israel’s war of Independence, the Palestinian catastrophe and expulsion subsided, Israel would not have been able to develop a Jewish majority without ensuring the Palestinian population remain small. So they banned the return of those who left during the conflict years. The anti-Infiltration act of 1954 took care of making it illegal for a Palestinians to re-enter hoping to claim their land that the nascent state had already nationalized. Blumenthal explains that the law has been updated and today it is used to imprison African asylum seekers so they may languish in a desert detention camp.

The facility, Saharonim is like a black site. It is known for its impenetrable walls preventing, among other things, journalists’ investigations. It warehouses thousands of would-be refugees for a year and a half, for no crime other than trying to access their United Nations-entitled right to file for protected persons status fleeing violence in their home country. The law also changes the state’s official terminology name for African refugees from “asylum seeker” to “infiltrator,” a throw to exactly how Israel views it’s non-Jewish victims of genocide in Darfur, and torture escapees from Eritrea.

Following the passage of the 2012 update to the law, Blumenthal says a firestorm took a hold of Tel Aviv. Miri Regev a Likud member of Knesset and a darling of the J 14 social protest movement praised for advocating cheaper housing from the inside of the tents, called Africans a “cancer.” The former Interior Minister Eli Yishai declared, “Israel is for the white man.” Then the Molotov cocktails came crashing into refugee-run businesses, a kindergarten and apartments.

During that winter, as Blumenthal continues in his barrage of policies and mob violence, settler leader and Knesset member Michael Ben-Ari organized an “anti-African” themed Hannukah party where hundreds of rightists stormed through the African neighborhood adjacent to Tel Aviv’s central bus station. They lit candles, they beat people, they called for women to be raped—the crime was being non-Jewish in a Jewish land. Back to Africa, they shouted. “Finish 48” Blumenthal tells us.

When he interviewed Ben-Ari later, Blumenthal asked the face of the Greater Israel movement why his political party had not passed any laws in the country’s parliament? Blumenthal says Ben-Ari replied, “because Likud is doing it for me.” And this therein captures the transitional period that Blumenthal writes of in Goliath and the thesis book tour for the past three weeks. The author doesn’t make any declarations on one-state, or two-states, or the occupation. He’s chronicling the Israeli systems to separate Jews from Arabs, and push non-Jews out of the country.

His critics, more recently Jonathan Tobin at Commentary Magazine called the book a “risible ant-Zionist rant” and said NAF had “crossed a line that no decent individual or group should even approach,” continuing, “they are also sending a dangerous signal in the world of D.C. ideas that talk about doing away with Israel is no longer confined, as it should be, to the fever swamps of the far left or the far right.”

Still the book talk went off without a hitch.

Also in attendance Foreign Policy’s John Hudson said that attempts to shut down Blumenthal’s events seemed “over zealous.” In Hudson’s review he teased out a bit of the controversy that was drummed up over the past few weeks:

In October, the conservative Florida Family Association called on members to flood the inbox of an Arizona hotel hosting an event featuring Blumenthal. “Americans who are concerned about Max Blumenthal’s propaganda … have the First Amendment Right to complain about this event,” read an FFA bulletin. (The group also organized against Electronic Arts for allegations about gay stormtroopers appearing in a Star Wars video game).

In a November book event at the Dallas World Affairs Council, Blumenthal said event staffers told him that the American Israel Public Affairs Committee “called and demanded the event be shut down.” A representative for AIPAC tells The Cable the charge “is not true — completely false.”

Last week, Podhoretz attempted to shame the New America Foundation out of hosting Wednesday’s book chat. “NAF has crossed a line that no decent individual or group should even approach,” he wrote. “By doing so they are also sending a dangerous signal in the world of D.C. ideas that talk about doing away with Israel is no longer confined, as it should be, to the fever swamps of the far left or the far right.”

Hudson’s piece is straightforward without narration. But there’s one point where I would urge him to narrative. Hudson writes, “With chapter titles such as ‘Concentration Camp’ and ‘Night of the Broken Glass,’ critics charge that Blumenthal is implying an equivalence between the Jewish State and Nazi Germany.” Blumenthal clarified in his NAF lecture that he is not equating Israel with Nazi Germany, but many of the Israelis he interviewed did. The chapter titles reflect their views, not his. Blumenthal’s comparisons all were U.S. specific. He calls Israel the “largest sundown town” in the world today for a law that says Africans have to sleep in a detention facility and three times during the day. Saharonim  prison, he said, conjured the image of Manzanar, a Japanese detention camp that as a young journalist Blumenthal asked internment denier and Fox News presenter Michelle Malkin to sign a picture of the facility. (One of Malkin’s champions for her book In Defense of Internment: The Case for ‘Racial Profiling’ in World War II and the War on Terror was Ron Radosh who also balked NAF for hosting Blumenthal).

This may seem a minor point, but I want journalists like Hudson to differentiate themselves from Tobin and not repeat slander that was first articulated by Eric Alterman in the pages of the Nation, a takedown of the book without reference to its content. However the quiet NAF event and weeks of gigs where Blumenthal has spoken on Israel’s right-wing takeover without interruption shows that while the author may have critics, any campaign to shut his events is failing. And the critics he does have are not warmly echoed by progressives.

Max Blumenthal will travel to California where he will continue his book tour next week.

 

 

About Allison Deger

Allison Deger is the Assistant Editor of Mondoweiss.net. Follow her on twitter at @allissoncd.

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76 Responses

  1. irishmoses
    December 6, 2013, 10:47 am

    Allison (or anybody else):

    Do you have any specifics on Max’s California book tour? There is nothing about it on his or The Nation’s websites.

    We went to Ari Shavit’s book event at the Skirball Center last Wednesday. It was a real letdown. I really want to see Max in person.

    • Allison Deger
      December 6, 2013, 12:13 pm

      They are not yet listed online, but we’ll post them when they are.

    • Kathleen
      December 6, 2013, 7:41 pm

      In person Max is as no nonsense, fact based, dry wit which I so appreciate and knows his material really well. Listens closely to questions asked and not afraid to answer them with facts. Clearly not easily intimidated. Go go Max

  2. American
    December 6, 2013, 11:30 am

    From what I am seeing in the coverage of Goliath and Max’s book presentations at various venues the critics are being ‘brushed off’.
    The Free Bacon reporters showed up at Max’s NAF appearence and were politely but curtly told no cares what they think and to f’off.

    Imo there is a definite change in some well placed think tankers, publication insiders and etc.. They are, as was recommended by some long ago, no longer playing ‘defense’ they are now playing offense.

    The smears and threats of I Firstdom no longer work like they use to, not even on the gentile WASP in the fray.

  3. Nevada Ned
    December 6, 2013, 12:02 pm

    Good piece, Allison.

    You mentionoed Ron Radosh in the third-to-last paragraph. You might have identified him as a former leftist (Red-diaper baby), now a neo-conservative, who followed a similar trajectory to David Horowitz.

  4. talknic
    December 6, 2013, 12:16 pm

    That was the plan outlined by the Israeli Govt on 31st August 1949 to Conciliation Commission http://wp.me/pDB7k-l5#israels-intentions

    Note especially

    5, I venture to point out that paragraph 3 above is to be read in the light of the observations offered in paragraph 4, and to request that in any use which the Commission may make of this statement of the Israeli Delegations position, shall not be cited without the addition of paragraph 3.

  5. Allison Deger
    December 6, 2013, 12:29 pm

    That’s right, thanks for bringing it up.

  6. German Lefty
    December 6, 2013, 3:48 pm

    Different topic: On the German queer news website, I just read an article with the headline “Shimon Peres supports marriage equality”. One commenter wrote: “I didn’t think that I could love Israel even more but it happened.” Puke! The good news is that the pro-Israel comments to the article got bad ratings.
    http://www.queer.de/detail.php?article_id=20578

    • Shingo
      December 7, 2013, 4:53 pm

      I just read an article with the headline “Shimon Peres supports marriage equality”.

      While supporting marriage and ethnic inequality in Israel.

  7. Citizen
    December 6, 2013, 6:20 pm

    Max isn’t the only one who’s noticed Israel First folks inevitably paint Israel’s regional enemies as at least similar to Hitler and the Nazi regime, if not identical, while they simultaneously object to any criticism of Israel, especially criticism noting similarities with historic racist ideology or historic racist regimes such as Germany’s or S Africa’s, as anti-semitic in nature, or in the nature of historic blood libel.

  8. Philip Munger
    December 6, 2013, 7:10 pm

    Allison,

    I put the link you use here up on my blog as soon as it was available. People complained about it loading slowly. When a version of the talk came out yesterday on youtube, it seemed to load a lot more quickly. I used that version for a diary about the talk at firedoglake. No more complaints about slowly loading video.

    http://my.firedoglake.com/edwardteller/2013/12/05/max-blumenthal-addresses-the-new-america-foundation-in-the-national-press-club-ballroom/

    • piotr
      December 6, 2013, 7:59 pm

      Alterman seems to be like an unhappy mother of a son that “mother only could love”. And this cruel Blumenthal is badmouthing him again! And those awful people let him do it!

  9. Rusty Pipes
    December 6, 2013, 7:39 pm

    Any word about how the National Press Club event went?

  10. Kathleen
    December 6, 2013, 10:47 pm

    Great talk, interview, Q&A. So glad the New America Foundation hosted. Max outdid himself once again. So clear, no nonsense, facts on the ground, listed the efforts to shut down the debate, discrimination. We should all be spreading this interview around and around.

  11. yonah fredman
    December 7, 2013, 12:09 am

    Again Max asserts a falsehood: Azmi Bishara was NOT exiled by Israel. Bishara chose to leave Israel rather than face trial on charges of espionage for Hezbollah.

    Did the US exile Snowden? No. Did the US exile Roman Polanski? It did not. Those people left the US rather than face trial.

    Words have meanings and Max is using the word “exile” in a propagandistic sense rather than as Noah Webster has intended.

    • Sibiriak
      December 7, 2013, 6:19 am

      yonah fredman:

      Did the US exile Snowden?

      Effectively, yes.

      Words have meanings and Max is using the word “exile” in a propagandistic sense rather than as Noah Webster has intended.

      Mirriam-Webster:
      http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/exile

      exile noun: a situation in which you are forced to leave your country or home and go to live in a foreign country […] verb: : to force (someone) to go to live in a distant place or foreign country : to force (someone) into exile

      To threaten politically-motivated prosecution is one way to force a person to leave (or not return to) a country.

      Azmi Bishara was NOT exiled by Israel. Bishara chose to leave Israel.

      If I put a gun to your head and say “leave”, and you do leave, then you chose to leave–but that doesn’t mean you weren’t forced to leave.

      It comes down to whether or not you believe the espionage charges against Bishara are legitimate, or whether they were trumped up in order to silence him.

      So, your real dispute with Blumenthal is about the facts of the case, not the meaning of the word “exile”.

      • yonah fredman
        December 8, 2013, 2:43 am

        Sibiriak- How would Max be able to conclude that the accusation against Bishara was/is spurious? Has he seen the file? Nope. He is merely stating he was exiled, because it fits into his spiel, not because he knows the facts of the case, any more than you or I do.

      • Sibiriak
        December 8, 2013, 4:40 am

        yonah fredman:

        Sibiriak- How would Max be able to conclude that the accusation against Bishara was/is spurious? Has he seen the file?

        You believe all the facts of the case are hidden away in a top secret “file”?

        Well, even if true– I until that secret file is opened up, we won’t know if Bishara was forced out via trumped up charges, or whether he fled after committing espionage.

    • Ecru
      December 7, 2013, 8:26 am

      @ Yonah

      Oh I am SO glad you posted this. SO very very glad. Thankyou ever so.

      I can then take it that from your statement that we can now stop referring to the “Jewish Exile” from Palestine in the Roman period since there is NO, NADA, ZERO, ZILCH evidence that the Romans evacuated Palestine of its Jewish population at any time? Not after the Great Jewish Revolt. Not after Bar Dick-head. Nor is there ANY evidence, at all, that modern Jews are descended from the slaves to Romans did take by force.

      Thank you again but, friendly warning, prepare yourself for the hate-mail from the Ziombies for denying them one of their favourite excuses.

      • yonah fredman
        December 8, 2013, 2:46 am

        Ecru- As I have stated before: there was no exile from the land (Judea was what the Jewish inhabitants called it) but there was an exile from the city, the name of which is Jerusalem. Exiling people from the capital city has a political effect even though there was no exile from the land.

      • Ecru
        December 8, 2013, 3:06 am

        @ Yonah

        Well thank you for that I didn’t know that was your view.

  12. yonah fredman
    December 7, 2013, 12:51 am

    The African refugee situation has been an occasion for shame by certain Israeli politicians.
    But a country of 6 million confronted by 60,000 refugees is as traumatic as a country of 300 million would be if it was confronted with a refugee population of 3 million and the US would not shine under those conditions either. (The inference that the Africans fled to Israel because they know about how Israel was designed to accept refugees, is total bushwa, propaganda. It is just a chance for Max to stick it to Israel. The refugees came there because Israel has a high standard of living and it is that same standard of living, or those Israelis who do not have that high standard of living that causes a clash between the poor citizens and a refugee population.) But comparisons to how the US treated its black population in sundown towns and the Japanese during WWII are totally off base, totally symptomatic of Max’s penchant for overstatement and propaganda: for the black population was granted citizenship by the amendments to the US constitution and the Japanese population was interned despite citizenship or residency rights, whereas a refugee population is an entirely different situation.

    • Walid
      December 7, 2013, 4:29 am

      “But a country of 6 million confronted by 60,000 refugees is as traumatic as a country of 300 million would be if it was confronted with a refugee population of 3 million and the US would not shine under those conditions either.”

      Yonah, your self-pittying about those “traumatic” numbers is chicken-shit if you compare them to what’s happening to Israel’s neighbour to the north due in good part to Israel. For a population of about 4 million Lebanese, there are now in the country, half a million Palestinian refugees and 1.5 million Syrian refugees that fled the civil war. Add to those, the 300,000 foreigners (domestic and construction workers) there legally. Lebanon that already suffers from an inadequate supply of water, electricity, medical care and subsidized food programs is welcoming these new refugees the best it can with its very limited resources and keeping its borders open.

      I hope this leaves you a little less “traumatized” about your 60,000 Africans about to be shipped off to the UN refugee camps of Uganda. That says a lot about the most democratic state in the neighbourhood.

    • Shingo
      December 7, 2013, 4:39 am

      But a country of 6 million confronted by 60,000 refugees is as traumatic as a country of 300 million would be if it was confronted with a refugee population of 3 million and the US would not shine under those conditions either.

      In which case a country of 1 million confronted by 300,000 refugees would have been far more traumatic, which is what the Arabs were faced with in 1948 – yet you and your ilk label the Arabs are being unreasonable and rejectionist.

    • Woody Tanaka
      December 7, 2013, 1:48 pm

      that is a bunch of crap. A few years ago, the israelis were able to accommodate 1 million Russian refugees. Don’t give me this nonsense that they can’t now deal with a tiny percentage of that number now. Oh, right, these African people are non-Jews and have black skin. That makes all the difference to this “trauma “

  13. yonah fredman
    December 7, 2013, 1:27 am

    The 2nd intifada did not come out of thin air, it was in fact a reaction to the lack of progress of the Oslo accords. (It is possible to blame the Israeli overreaction in the first few days of the intifada or to blame Sharon’s visit to the Temple Mount. It is also possible to blame the Palestinian’s concept that Zionism is a weak thing, due to the withdrawal of Israel’s troops from Lebanon in 2000, and all that was needed was an intifada and the Zionists would fold up their tents and move away.) Also I admit that the intifada was not the birthplace of Israeli anti Arab attitudes.

    Yet those youth who now support Naftali Bennet or Lieberman, had to worry about boarding buses or going to the mall and had to call their parents whenever a bomb went off during the second intifada to ensure their parents that they were still alive. This is where much of the anti Arab feelings come from and the anti peace feelings come from. But it would be too much walking in the other guys’ shoes (because to Max, the Israelis, unless they are Arabs or agree with him are certainly the other), to relate to the Jewish Israeli reaction to the intifada with any element of seriousness. It was certainly quite a serious time when the minds of the young were pushed away from thoughts of peace, but it doesn’t fit neatly into Max’s propaganda spiel.

    • tree
      December 7, 2013, 3:03 am

      But a country of 6 million confronted by 60,000 refugees is as traumatic as a country of 300 million would be if it was confronted with a refugee population of 3 million and the US would not shine under those conditions either.

      And yet a country of 1.5 million in Palestine was expected to accept with open arms a confrontation of over 600,000 immigrants wishing not only to join them but to replace them. And if they din’t they were labeled “Jew haters”. Absolutely no acknowledgement on your part of the trauma inflicted upon Palestinians, even though it was of multiple magnitudes greater than the “trauma'” of African refugees in Israel today, and even though, in relation to Israel, you make the point that the treatment of a “refugee population is an entirely different situation” from the treatment of citizens.

      And also note that all those Palestinians who were made refugees by the ideology of the leaders of those Jewish immigrants were, by all rights, citizens when their rights were denied – a massive denial by Israel of the rights of citizens based purely on their ethno-religious identity. But, G-d forbid we don’t recognize Jewish Israeli trauma while simultaneously ignoring and/or justifying Palestinian trauma.

      And yet all you are doing is making excuses for Zionist Jews, while judging Palestinians far, far more harshly, and grousing about Max because he’s not buying into your hypocritical apologetics.

      The 2nd intifada did not come out of thin air, it was in fact a reaction to the lack of progress of the Oslo accords.

      It wasn’t just the “lack of progress”, it was the easily discernible fact that things were getting worse and not better during the course of Oslo. The pass and permit system was getting stricter and stricter, settlement building was continuing unabated, economic conditions for the Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza were progressively getting worse, and there was no light at the end of the tunnel, to use a phrase, as the promised “final status” was continually pushed into the never-arriving future.. To label it as merely “lack of progress” is to grossly understate what was happening,

      And you ignore the greater violence committing during the whole of the occupation, well ahead of any violence incurred during the second intifada. According to you Max must take into account the Jewish Israeli worry over the lesser violence inflicted by Palestinians but ignore the much greater and more sustained institutionalized violence against Palestinians by Israel that both preceded it and accompanied it.

      But it would be too much walking in the other guys’ shoes (because to Max, the Israelis, unless they are Arabs or agree with him are certainly the other), to relate to the Jewish Israeli reaction to the intifada with any element of seriousness.

      I’m sure you’ve heard of the phrase, “people in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones”. You seem incapable of “walking in the other guy’s shoes” yourself. You are full of excuses for Jewish bigots and racists, but permit none for anyone else, nor do you even contemplate that perhaps Max has in fact a more principled stand than you do, and is not engaging in a “propaganda spiel” just because you disagree with his principles.

      • tree
        December 7, 2013, 3:27 am

        Further point to be made with respect to this:

        But a country of 6 million confronted by 60,000 refugees is as traumatic as a country of 300 million would be if it was confronted with a refugee population of 3 million and the US would not shine under those conditions either.

        Number one, the population of Israel is not 6 million, it is nearly 8 million. You managed to excise the nearly 2 million non-Jewish Israeli citizens from your calculation.

        Number two, if one does the math, you are saying that an immigrant population of less than 1% of the population of the host country leads to “trauma” and thus explicates some of the horrid things being done to African refugees in Israel. In my earlier comment I compared that to the trauma caused by an immigrant population of 40% of the host country of Palestine. Now I’d like to likewise compare it to the US.

        Between 1908 and 1920, over 4,600,000 immigrants came and remained in the US. (Slightly over 600,000 of them were Jewish). The US population in 1920 was approximately 106.000.000. The number of immigrants over those 12 years as a percentage of US population was over 4%, or over 4 times the percentage that you claim causes “trauma” to the host country. The US severely restricted immigration starting in 1924. Are you willing to excuse this restriction as a similar reaction to “trauma” in the US, or does this “trauma” defense only apply to Israel? We know you don’t think it applied to Palestine under much more overwhelming figures, and I believe you’ve claimed in the past that the immigration restrictions imposed in 1924 were inexcusable. Does the singularity of excusing something done by your affinity group while condemning something similar done by the “other” bother you at all?

    • Woody Tanaka
      December 7, 2013, 1:45 pm

      nonsense. The second intifada came from the same exact place is the first. Specifically, it came from the fact that zionism is built on the oppression of Palestinians. Those anti-Arab racists should look inward and blame themselves because they are to blame for any bus bombing or anything that the Palestinians have done in reaction to the crimes of zionism.

  14. bilal a
    December 7, 2013, 1:28 am

    What is most disconcerting to ‘The Lobby’, and perhaps to some of MaxB’s supporters, is to what this appearance signifies in terms of elite discussion if not support, for Goliath’s conception of the Zionist enterprise.

    The NAF is funded by a who’s who of major family foundations, some linked to manufacturing consent in the national security sphere:
    http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=New_America_Foundation#Top_Donors.5B3.5D

    • bilal a
      December 7, 2013, 2:57 am

      Just finished the whole talk. Don’t know why NAF is involved but nonetheless.

      Monumental. This book will save lives, not just in Palestine-Israel, American lives, humanity. God willing.

  15. yonah fredman
    December 7, 2013, 2:39 am

    What is it called when Max mocks the way Jews pronounce Hamas? Reporting? No, it’s called propaganda.

    • Walid
      December 7, 2013, 4:52 am

      It is propaganda, Yonah, but so is everything else that has to do with the Middle East and that’s by both sides, but this discussion is about whether or not there is an Israeli plan to finish the job started in 1948 and one of the indicators of this actually happening is the Prawer Plan that would kick out thousands of Palestinians from their natural habitat to make room for some future incoming Jews. Do you disagree with the plan (as jon s does) or do you feel towards those bedouins the same as you you feel towards the 60,000 Africans that traumatize you?

      Getting back to the issue of finishing the 1948 job, new historian Benny Morris had initially admitted the wrongs of Zionists having ethnically cleansed the Palestinians, along with Plan Dalet, Tantura, the rapes, and the whole ugly kit. A few years later, the retreaded and more up to date Morris changed his opinion and said that Ben-Gurion had erred by not having kicked the rest of the Palestinians when he had the opportunity to do it, and this was why Israel today was in deep shit with its growing Palestinian-Israeli population.

      Where do you stand on this issue?

      • yonah fredman
        December 7, 2013, 11:03 pm

        Walid- I’ve written a comment regarding the nakba a little further down on the thread. It is not as absolute as you might wish, but it expresses my feelings vis a vis the nakba: I wish I could imagine a world without it, but it is difficult to imagine a past that does not include it, for the past does include it. I think it is useful to engage in thought experiments like the one I propose at the least to try to imagine a different past and thus imagine a different future.

        If I were attempting to rewrite the past, I would also try to imagine the Weizmann Feisal agreement in place of Balfour. What is your reaction to their ill fated agreement.

        As far as Prawer I am not as absolute as you would wish either. Modern societies tend to limit the nomad habits of those from traditional ways of life. The clash between modernity and the nomad is a “natural” clash. As far as the ethnic element of the clash, that is undeniable and puts the Israeli plans into the same light as America’s history vis a vis the Native Americans. (The clash between modernity and the nomad does not mean that I automatically come down on the side of modernity. I would wish to study how other societies have dealt with the clash before concluding that some plan, not the Prawer plan, but some plan might be appropriate. But because of the ethnic element the idea of allowing any limits on the nomads becomes toxic and that’s my take on the situation.)

      • Walid
        December 8, 2013, 3:48 pm

        “Weizmann Feisal agreement in place of Balfour. What is your reaction to their ill fated agreement.”

        Yonah, it was the first attempt at stabbing the Palestinians in the back, and it hasn’t stopped since back then. The Palestinians weren’t even consulted about the deal, and Faisal was trying to be more European than the Europeans in getting into bed with the Zionists. He was giving away the whole of Palestine and a good chunk of right bank to the Zionists in exchange of helping him sway the British in keeping their promise for a greater Syria over which he’d be proclaimed super king. The deal collapsed because it appeared as if Weizmann got a better offer from the Brits.

        It didn’t stop with the aborted agreement. The Saudis went on to try on a couple of occasions to make a deal with the Zionists to transfer Palestinians to Iraq for cash (doesn’t sound nice, does it?)and these too failed because of the bickering over the price. The list is long and ugly. Suffice to say that the Jews weren’t the only ones to screw the Palestinians.

    • Philip Munger
      December 7, 2013, 5:10 am

      What is it called when Max mocks the way Jews pronounce Hamas? Reporting? No, it’s called propaganda.

      That’s what I might have thought when I read the colloquial dialogue in Mark Twain’s Tom Sawyer when I was a kid. Where were you back then, when I needed your guidance and deep wisdom, yonah?

      Do you realize what you just wrote?

      • yonah fredman
        December 7, 2013, 10:38 pm

        Philip Munger- Greetings. We have never talked before, n’est-ce pas? So why start off on a bad foot?

        I think rather than Mark Twain, an appropriate analogy is the way some Jews used to make fun of the way Gentiles attempted to pronounce Chanuka, or l’chayim. It is the fodder for a stand up comic rather than a reporter.

        I think that Max Blumenthal is a polemicist. An anti Zionist polemicist.

        A further point. When summing up his usage of Nazi era code words for his chapter titles, Max states that his uptake from the Holocaust is universalist rather than segregationist. Without referring to Webster, it seems to me that the opposite of universalist is particularist. To pose the opposite as “segregationist” is to pass sentence on particularism as being as odious as segregation. (This is the art of the polemicist.)

        When asked about his view for the future, Max acts surprised. Why am I being asked of my view of the future now in regard to this book when I was asked no such question with regard to my first book about the right wing of the Republican party. Thus it is clear, Max feels as much “belonging” to the Jews who live in Israel-Palestine (those who do not agree with him) as he feels towards the Republican party, which is none.

        It is interesting that unlike Phil who exudes a deracinated, Harvard air (thus making his sister-in-law’s “I’m tired of the Jews” imitation hit home), Max drops in Jewish terms, “minyan”, quotes Woody Allen, can speak a bit of Hebrew and by no means gives off an air of deracination.

      • Shingo
        December 7, 2013, 10:49 pm

        You can be a anti Zionist polemicist and still be right.

        Blumenthal certainly is.

    • Woody Tanaka
      December 7, 2013, 1:41 pm

      it’s excellent reporting. Again it demonstrates the fact that these people do not belong in the region as that pronunciation is a clearly European one. Specifically, and Ashkenazi one.

  16. yonah fredman
    December 7, 2013, 2:40 am

    What is it called when Max bothers to mention Ben Gurion’s name before he changed it? Reporting? No. It’s propaganda.

    • bilal a
      December 7, 2013, 3:05 am

      Imagine if American emigres had changed their names to native American, and started spelling english in an ancient native script, while claiming eternal rights based upon the Book of Mormon.

      Equally comical.

      • MahaneYehude1
        December 7, 2013, 10:19 am

        bilal a:

        Imagine if American emigres had changed their names to native American

        David Green changed his name to Ben-Gurion after the name of one of the leaders of the Jewish great revolt against the Roman Empire, Yossef Ben-Gurion, in years 66-73 CE. The name change by Ben-Gurion was a sign of renewal of the people of Israel in its ancient homeland.

      • Annie Robbins
        December 7, 2013, 2:28 pm

        yes, i think that was bilal’s point mahane.

      • Shingo
        December 7, 2013, 4:51 pm

        The name change by Ben-Gurion was a sign of renewal of the people of Israel in its ancient homeland.

        No it was a desperate attempt to reinvent these people as having some connection to a land none of them had any connection or link with.

        It was simply a PR stunt to obtain legitimacy for illegitimate aims.

      • Ellen
        December 7, 2013, 8:01 pm

        MH1, changing your name is changing your identity. These guys changed their names to create non-existent realities. You know, “renewal of a people,” and mythical ideas an imagined past identity by a bunch of Eastern Europeans.

        It was ultimate propaganda. Max called it out.

      • Shingo
        December 7, 2013, 8:10 pm

        Yes changing their names is about a credible as changing the names of Arab towns and villages to Hebrew names. It’s pure theater and make believe.

      • Woody Tanaka
        December 7, 2013, 8:23 pm

        “David Green changed his name to Ben-Gurion after the name of one of the leaders of the Jewish great revolt against the Roman Empire, Yossef Ben-Gurion, in years 66-73 CE. ”

        Yes, pure lying propaganda. If was being truthful and trying to draw analogy to the situation during the First Roman-Jewish War, he should have called himself Vespasian or Titus. He was a European man leading an invading force seeking to conquer and oppress the native population to take over the native populations’ land.

        “The name change by Ben-Gurion was a sign of renewal of the people of Israel in its ancient homeland.”

        Well, it was no longer that people’s land; it belonged (and still belongs) to the Palestinians. He was pressing propaganda to cover his crimes.

      • yonah fredman
        December 8, 2013, 4:16 am

        Ellen- Guess what? People like Ben Gurion changed reality. If I could I would wish to fine tune that reality change that they accomplished. But they give birth to an army, a state and the rebirth of a language.

      • Annie Robbins
        December 8, 2013, 6:51 am

        Guess what? People like Ben Gurion changed reality.

        ethnic cleansing, genocide, it’s a reality changer alright. just not one most people would be proud of.

      • Sibiriak
        December 8, 2013, 7:16 am

        Ellen:

        “renewal of a people,” and mythical ideas an imagined past identity by a bunch of Eastern Europeans.

        Indeed! For irrational ideologues like Ben Gurion, Biblical history was utterly real and the key guide to the unfolding present of a ancient “Jewish People”.

        For example, Ben Gurion wrote in his diary, May 24, 1948 :

        We will establish a Christian state in Lebanon, the southern border of which will be the Litani River. We will break Transjordan, bomb Amman and destroy its army, and when Syria falls, and if Egypt will continue to fight, we will bomb port Said, Alexandria and Cairo.

        THIS WILL BE IN REVENGE FOR WHAT THEY (THE EGYPTIANS, THE ARAMIS, AND ASSYRIANS) DID TO OUR FOREFATHERS DURING BIBLICAL TIMES. [emphasis added]

        Dwell on the implications of that mindset for a while.

      • Shingo
        December 8, 2013, 7:49 am

        People like Ben Gurion changed reality.

        So did Hitler and Stalin.

      • Shingo
        December 8, 2013, 7:51 am

        Indeed! For irrational ideologues like Ben Gurion, Biblical history was utterly real and the key guide to the unfolding present of a ancient “Jewish People”.

        That’s debatable.

        He and the majority of the founders of the State of Israel didn’t believe in the God of the scriptures or offer prayers about returning the exiles to Zion.
        http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/Quote/bg6.html

        His references to the Bible were purely cynical.

      • Sibiriak
        December 8, 2013, 8:50 am

        Shingo:

        He and the majority of the founders of the State of Israel didn’t believe in the God of the scriptures or offer prayers about returning the exiles to Zion.

        I didn’t say he believed in God. As Sand has argued persuasively, Biblical history was secularized and used to as an ideological basis for a modern-type nationalism. That doesn’t rule out a cynical pragmatism, of course, so your point is well taken.

        One of Dinur’s many activities was participating in the regular Bible circle that in the 1950s met at the house of Israel’s first prime minister, David Ben-Gurion. The charismatic leader was not only a keen reader of the ancient Hebrew book; he also made cunning political use of it. Quite early he realized that the holy book could be made into a secular national text, serve as a central repository of ancient collective imagery, help forge the hundreds of thousands of new immigrants into a unified people, and tie the younger generation to the land.

        The biblical stories served him as a basis for everyday political rhetoric, and seemingly he genuinely identified with Moses and Joshua. Much as the leaders of the French Revolution felt they were assuming the roles of ancient Roman senators, so Ben-Gurion and other leaders of the Zionist revolution, senior military figures, and national intellectuals felt they were recapitulating the biblical conquest of Canaan and the construction of a state along the lines of David’s kingdom.

        Current action became significant in the context of paradigmatic events of the past. In both cases the revolutionaries dreamed of creating a completely new man, but the materials they used in his construction were taken from a mythical past.

        In Ben-Gurion’s imagination the new Israel was the kingdom of Third Temple, and when the Israeli armed forces captured the entire Sinai peninsula in the 1956 war and reached Sharm el-Sheikh, he addressed the victorious troops with messianic passion: We can once more sing the song of Moses and the Children of Ancient Israel … With the mighty impetus of all the IDF divisions you have extended a hand to King Solomon, who developed Eilat as the first Israelite port three thousand years ago … And Yotvata, called Tiran, which until fourteen hundred years ago was an independent Hebrew state, will become a part of the third kingdom of Israel.91

        The exclusive circle that met fortnightly at Ben-Gurion’s house, whose discussions were sometimes reported in the daily press, included professional historians, qualified Bible interpreters and political figures who were amateur scholars in their free time. Besides Dinur, the regular participants included the professors Yehezkel Kaufmann, the well-known fundamentalist Bible interpreter, and Binyamin Mazar, the leading biblical archaeologist; the then and future presidents of Israel, Yitzhak Ben-Zvi and Shneur Zalman Shazar (Rubashov); and many other scholars and senior public figures.

        It was a junction of intellectual and political exchange, and it not only directed academic research but shaped public opinion and spread its values and findings throughout the educational system. The issues discussed by the learned participants included such questions as the number of Israelites in the Exodus from Egypt, their way of life during the conquest of Canaan, the number of kings they defeated in the process, and the like. Not surprisingly, the Book of Joshua was the most popular in these lively debates, and Joshua son of Nun was the star of the show.92

        Ben-Gurion also took part in public Bible conferences; promoted the Bible Quiz, which became a national media festival; and encouraged a fever of archaeological activity, though he did not necessarily adopt its unforeseen discoveries.

        That a national leader should spend so much time being actively involved in historiographic issues is certainly unusual, and it may indicate the centrality of biblical mythistory in the construction of Zionist ideology.

        Reading Ben-Gurion’s collection of articles, “Bibical Reflections”, one is struck by the easy swings between manipulative political pragmatism and a special and sincere belief in the ancient “truth.”93 He keeps repeating that the Bible is the identity card of the Jewish people, as well as the proof of its claim to the Land of Israel.

        His concept of history is clear and straightforward:

        “When we went into exile, our nation was uprooted from the soil in which the Bible had grown, and torn from the political and spiritual reality in which it had formed … In exile, our nation was disfigured and the image of the Bible likewise deformed. Christian Bible researchers, with their Christian and anti-Semitic aims, turned the Bible into a plinth for Christianity, and even Jewish commentators, who had been removed from the environment of the Bible, its spiritual and material climate, could no longer understand the Holy Book properly. Only now, when we are again a free nation in our country, breathing once more the air which enveloped the Bible as it took shape, has the time come, I believe, in which we can perceive the nature and truth of the Bible, historical, geographical, as well as religious and cultural.”

        […]Despite this “scientific,” secular approach, Ben-Gurion resorted when necessary to divine precepts. For example, he wrote that “the great event with a decisive significance in Jewish history was the promise of the Land of Canaan to the seed of Abraham and Sarah.”98 Certainly no external source could possibly challenge the biblical author’s clear and incontrovertible testimony about the divine promise.

        Guided by historians, the national leader with his intellectual and messianic temperament led an entire national culture. During the early years of the State of Israel, all the intellectual elites helped cultivate the sacred trinity of Bible–Nation–Land of Israel, and the Bible became a key factor in the formation of the “reborn” state.

        Civil servants were pressured to change their names to Hebrew ones, usually chosen from the Bible, and the rest of the population, seeking to emulate the established elites, did so willingly, even enthusiastically. The old “diasporic” family names were eliminated, and the children were given the names of mysterious, enchanted biblical figures.

        The process was applied not only to people; almost every new settlement was given an ancient Hebrew name. This served a dual purpose: erasing the local Arab name and leapfrogging over the long “exile,” which had ended with the rise of the State of Israel.

        But it was not the bureaucracy of the new state that imposed the worship of the Bible on the educational institutions. Long beforehand, both the pre-state institutions and the emerging Hebrew literature had made the Bible the locus for consciousness of the past. The broad intelligentsia, including teachers, writers, essayists and poets, had anticipated high academe in the “correct” interpretation of Jewish history, and thus had helped shape the ideological present.

        With the expanding settlement movement in the early twentieth century and the opening of the first Hebrew schools, the Bible became the national textbook…

        Shlomo Sand, “The Invention of the Jewish People”

      • MHughes976
        December 8, 2013, 5:35 pm

        Gabriel Piterberg’s ‘Returns of Zionism’ is good on the use made of the Bible and of archaeology.

      • RoHa
        December 8, 2013, 7:24 pm

        “give birth to an army,”

        Just what the world needs. Another army.

        “a state”
        Based on evil principles.

        “and the rebirth of a language.”

        Whoop-de-doo. Another language to cut people off from each other and generally make life difficult.

      • Ellen
        December 9, 2013, 12:35 am

        yonah – guess what? People like Jim Jones changed reality. He was one who gave birth to a new nation in the jungle with an army and even with a new speak. He must be a great man!

        Geeesh!

    • OlegR
      December 7, 2013, 5:50 am

      What did you expect Yonah from a dude that manged to get on the wrong side of David Grossman one of the more dovish and soft spoken writers in Israel.

    • Cliff
      December 7, 2013, 9:34 am

      Cool story bro.

    • Woody Tanaka
      December 7, 2013, 1:39 pm

      It is good reporting. They choose that the entirety of the zionist project is one big fraud, built on lies and deception. How many of them ditched the European names of their real homelands and assigned themselves made-up names to make it sound like they were natives to the region when they were not?

    • ritzl
      December 7, 2013, 9:59 pm

      It’s a highly apt contextual indicator that nothing is as it is portrayed with Israel and Zionism. It’s also a great gift Blumenthal has as a speaker, he carries the context forward at every point to give the listener little bits of background within which to evaluate the main points he presents. It’s a powerful skill, more powerful when employed in pursuit of understanding otherwise heavily masked reality.

      Aside, Phil seems to do this as well, from the couple of times I’ve heard him interviewed.

    • yonah fredman
      December 7, 2013, 10:41 pm

      Malcolm X was allowed to shed his name, but David Ben Gurion was not allowed to shed his name? No. I accept Ben Gurion’s name change.

      • Shingo
        December 7, 2013, 10:48 pm

        Malcolm X was allowed to shed his name, but David Ben Gurion was not allowed to shed his name?

        Did “X” refer to a previous tribe or civilization that he was trying to affiliate himself with in order to steal someone’s land?

        You are welcome to accept Ben Gurion’s name change, but it’s still a a fraud

      • yonah fredman
        December 7, 2013, 10:51 pm

        Ben Gurion certainly was not flawless.

        (Thought experiment. It is 1949 one day after the elections for the Knesset. Ben Gurion dies and leaves Sharett in his place. Sharett has a dream that inspires him to accept the necessity of allowing the Palestinian refugees to return. How would he implement it? Against the will of his colleagues and the population. How would Israel have evolved as a result of this move?)

        When I recently heard that a special I.D. card was printed for Ben Gurion with only Hebrew on it, without Arabic, as if he could not tolerate the fact that Israel was partly an Arabic speaking country, I lost a bit of respect for Ben Gurion. He was a hard headed ideologue. He was definitely in the mode of Stalin particularly in his ruthlessness towards the Palestinians particularly in the exiling of them and the refusal to let them back. But I thought this was mostly out of necessity. One must have the will to do what is necessary, I could imagine him saying. But the lack of Arabic on his i.d. card bespeaks an ideologue who could not conceive the Arabs having a presence in Israel.

      • Shingo
        December 7, 2013, 11:10 pm

        He was definitely in the mode of Stalin particularly in his ruthlessness towards the Palestinians particularly in the exiling of them and the refusal to let them back. But I thought this was mostly out of necessity.

        Ben Gurion was little more than a thug. He ran around Poland extorting funds for Palestine from wealthy Jews at gunpoint.

        See The Israeli-American connection: its roots in the yishuv, 1914-1945, Michael Brown, Wayne State University Press, 1996, page 198 http://books.google.com/books?id=UEQggnBIUUgC&lpg=PA340&ots=tIPwVKVYFM&dq=the%20abc%20of%20zionist%20policy%20by%20david%20%22ben%20gurion%22&pg=PA198#v=onepage&q&f=false

      • Sibiriak
        December 7, 2013, 11:35 pm

        Yonah Fredman:

        I thought this was mostly out of necessity

        Ah, “the necessity of evil”.

      • tree
        December 7, 2013, 11:51 pm

        He was a hard headed ideologue. He was definitely in the mode of Stalin particularly in his ruthlessness towards the Palestinians particularly in the exiling of them and the refusal to let them back. But I thought this was mostly out of necessity.

        So you are a Wittyist. You would have held your nose and accepted ethnic cleansing in 1948, because the outcome was “good” in your viewpoint. And ethnic cleansing may not be “necessary” at this time, but then again you don’t seem particularly upset with the Prawer Plan either. So tell me, would you have excused the Mufti in 1929 if he had urged a larger and bloodier uprising against the Zionist immigrants if he had felt it was a necessity to prevent the ensuing years of oppression and ethnic cleansing of Palestinians by the future Jewish State? It may well have avoided much future bloodshed on both sides. I’m sure you would never cut a non-Jew the same kind of slack when it comes to ethnic cleansing that you consistently give to Zionist Jews. Call yourself “particularist” if you want. You are certainly not a “universalist”.

      • Annie Robbins
        December 8, 2013, 7:07 am

        Against the will of his colleagues and the population.

        what about a few months before the election? i heard the population wasn’t all for expelling the palestinians. i think hostage described this period once before.

        I thought this was mostly out of necessity.

        no, crimes against humanity are not necessary.

      • just
        December 8, 2013, 8:18 am

        Neither is perpetuating those crimes against humanity a necessity…

        Yet, they do it anyway, with no discernible conscience or morality.

      • Woody Tanaka
        December 8, 2013, 10:56 am

        “But I thought this was mostly out of necessity. One must have the will to do what is necessary, ”

        Bah. This ends-justify-the-means mentality is held by evert monster in history. By holding it you are excusing the Holocaust, ultimately.

      • Walid
        December 8, 2013, 3:26 pm

        “I lost a bit of respect for Ben Gurion. He was a hard headed ideologue. He was definitely in the mode of Stalin particularly in his ruthlessness towards the Palestinians particularly in the exiling of them and the refusal to let them back. ”

        Yonah, you’d have even less respect for the man if you knew how he felt about the Jews that arrived from Arab countries and to what levels he stooped to make them lose their “Arabness”. He considered them as shitty as the Palestinians. De-licing by spraying them with DDT, experimented on them by irradiation, vanished their children to give them to childless Ashkenazi families and other such niceties.

      • tree
        December 7, 2013, 11:40 pm

        Malcolm X was allowed to shed his name, but David Ben Gurion was not allowed to shed his name?

        You are being silly, yonah. Both were “allowed” to change their names, obviously since they both did so. You just mentioned, as have many before you, that Malcolm X changed his name. Max mentioned that Ben Gurion changed his name. You are upset with Max for doing so. You are being hypocritical.

      • yonah fredman
        December 8, 2013, 12:02 am

        My point, tree, was that it is politically incorrect to refer to Malcolm X as Malcolm Little, or to say, “Malcolm X, when he was still known as Malcolm Little” because this would be an attempt to degrade Malcolm X or at least his decision to change his name. Which is what Max was doing here in regards to Ben Gurion.

      • tree
        December 8, 2013, 2:07 am

        The search term “David Ben-Gurion” appears 16 times in Max’s book. “Ben Gurion” appears 95 times. Some of those 95 refer to the Airport and a few refer to the University, or the Avenue, but a large number of them refer to the man himself.

        The one and only mention Max makes of B-G’s previous name is here on Kindle page 171:

        In 1953, Ben-Gurion (original name: David Gryn) moved to Sde Boker…

        That’s it! I’d make an educated guess that every book about Malcolm X mentioned at least once that his original name was Malcolm Little. You are straining so hard to come up with a complaint about Max’s book that you’re going to give yourself a hernia.

      • yonah fredman
        December 8, 2013, 2:35 am

        tree, I have not read Max’s book. (When it is available for free I will read it.) I was referring to the speech given to the American foundation, which believe it or not is included in this very post, and that was what I was referring to. He mentioned Ben Gurion once, and mentioned his golus name.

        By the way what does tree mean? “the tree of liberty that needs to be watered by blood” like your hero Gore Vidal admired in Timothy McVeigh?

      • tree
        December 8, 2013, 4:12 am

        He mentioned Ben Gurion once, and mentioned his golus name.

        Max mentions Ben Gurion at 1:00:51, in answer to a question about Israel’s relationship with Turkey:

        David Ben-Gurion, when he was named David Green, studied in Turkey, I think in the days of the Ottoman Empire, and he worked much of his adult life to build this relationship with Turkey…

        You are stretching to find some offense, any offense, that will allow you to justify your dislike of Max and what he is saying, and still you have nothing except Max’s mentioning Ben-Gurion’s given name in the time frame which he is discussing. Frankly its a pathetic attempt. And your use of the term “golus name” implies that you believe that Jews who aren’t in Israel are in exile, which seems to be a particularly anti-semitic phrasing you are using. David Green wasn’t his “golus name”, it was his given name. He wasn’t an exile from Israel or Palestine. He was a native of Plonsk, Poland.

        By the way what does tree mean?By the way what does tree mean? “the tree of liberty that needs to be watered by blood” like your hero Gore Vidal admired in Timothy McVeigh?

        Simple answer, yonah. No need to conjure up convoluted conspiracy theories, although I’d expect nothing less from you. I like trees and it is a variation on a nickname I had as a child. Sorry to disappoint you with the mundane meaning.

        And Vidal is not my hero. Someone doesn’t have to be my hero for me to defend them if I think they are being unfairly maligned. And I don’t have to hate someone just because I might disagree with them, or think what they do or did was wrong.. It might help you if you started looking at people in a less Manichean mindset.

  17. jon s
    December 8, 2013, 4:06 pm

    I would like to deconstruct the following paragraph:
    “The loyalty oaths of Lieberman were used decades ago against Mizrahi Jews whose citizenship was threatened away for organizing an Israeli version of the Black Panther Party. Blumenthal notes as law, “this was of course first introduced by Meir Kahane,” the formerly banned Knesset member whose organization is labeled a terrorist group by Israel and the U.S. for inciting a Jewish underground armed militia responsible for bombing Palestinian facilities. “When [Ehud] Barak supported this bill Haaretz declared that Kahane was the real leader of the Knesset that his legacy had triumphed.”

    “loyalty oaths of Lieberman” -I assume that means proposed by Lieberman.
    “used against Mizrahi Jews…- what are you (or Max B.) talking about?
    ..”an Israeli version of the Black Panthers” -not only was their citizenship not threatened, at least two former Panthers were elected to the Knesset.
    “Blumenthal notes as law…” what does that mean? is there such a law? a law first introduced by Kahane? did Kahane threaten the Panthers? Incoherence reigns.
    Kahane’s party was banned for being racist and anti-democratic, and was, indeed, declared a terrorist organization.

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