Generational sea change within the Democratic party will also include policy towards Israel

US Politics
on 104 Comments

The biggest story to come out of the Democratic caucus in Iowa, beyond Clinton’s razor-thin margin of victory, was the overwhelming generational divide within the party. So far this split has been explained by political differences over health care and income inequality within the Democratic Party, but polling suggests a similar generational divide exists over Israel and could just as much define where the party is headed.

In announcing the “The Great Democratic Age Gap” Ronald Bronstein writes in The Atlantic, “The most powerful lesson from the Iowa caucus results is that Democrats are facing not just a generation gap, but a Grand Canyon-sized chasm.” The New Yorker declared “Bernie Sanders Just Changed the Democratic Party.” What those articles are referring to is this:

The results were striking and entrance polls to the caucuses seemed to point to a clear trend: Democratic caucus goers in Iowa under the age of 45 supported Sanders, and above it supported Clinton. This is not the first time we’ve seen polls with this stark divide within the party. For the last several years we have been seeing polls showing that the Democratic base is slowly divorcing itself from Israel, and much of that dropping support is happening along generational lines as well.

In December 2014 Shibley Telhami and Katayoun Kishi wrote in the Washington Post on a recent American public opinion survey on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. One of the trends they pointed out was the generational divide brewing within the party on the issue:

Generally, younger adults (ages 18 to 29) tend much more to want the United States to lean toward neither side. But among young Democratic respondents, the results are more striking: Among those who want the United States to lean toward one side or the other, more young people want the United States to lean toward the Palestinians than toward the Israelis (12 percent vs. 10 percent, respectively). This attitude is unique among this age group, as only 5 percent or less of Democrats in each older age group want the United States to lean toward the Palestinians.

This was also seen in the summer of 2014 while Israel was attacking Gaza. A Gallup poll taken at the time found young people and Democrats increasing saw Israel’s actions as “unjustified“:

51% of Americans 18-29 years old think the Israeli attack is unjustified. Most support from Israel comes from ages 50 and up

…the majority of Republican identifiers back what Israel is doing. Meanwhile, Democrats take the opposing view, with nearly half saying Israel’s actions are unjustified.

And this is was not the first time this trend was identified. A year earlier the late Leonard Fein reported on a Pew Research Center survey for the Forward and asked, “Is Israel Losing Young Democrats?” Fein wrote,

When it comes to Americans favoring Israel over the Palestinians, Israel wins by a wide margin — 54% to 8%. Alas, if that’s as far as you read, you will be woefully underinformed. For that number is only for Americans aged 65 and older (though the next age bracket down, 50-64, is pretty much the same). In the 30-49 age bracket, Israel drops to 47%, and the Palestinians inch forward to 11%. And in the 18-29 bracket, Israel is favored by 36%, the Palestinians by 19%.

This profusion of numbers can, I know, be daunting, but their gist is plain: A chasm separates Democrats and Republicans when it comes to sympathizing with Israel. And if, as some analysts believe, the Democrats’ general advantage with young people is likely to persist, that chasm may well grow.

Getting closer to the election year, last February Gallup produced several polls at the height of the controversy over Benjamin Netanyahu’s invitation to address Congress. Those polls also showed that Republican support for Israel was much stronger, with the percentage of Democrats sympathizing with Israel dropping almost 15% from the previous year, and that older Americans of both parties tended to have a more favorable view of Israel. Then, this past summer, pollster Frank Luntz made news with a survey of Democratic Party “elites” which found 47% of Democrats agreed that Israel is a racist county.

What does this mean today? It means the issues that Bernie Sanders has used to energize his young base should also include a fundamental rethinking of the U.S.-Israel relationship.

So far Sanders has stayed away from foreign policy beyond his opposition to the Iraq War. But challenging Hillary Clinton’s growing embrace of Benjamin Netanyahu offers him another opportunity to draw a progressive distinction between him and his opponent, and polling suggests that his emerging base would support him if he did. A November 2015 survey by Telhami found (PDF), “While Republicans overall have a much more favorable views of Netanyahu than unfavorable ones, Democrats have a more unfavorable view of the Israeli leader by a ratio of about two to one. In general, older Americans admire the Israeli leader far more than the younger ones.”

Back in 2014 Telhami and Kishi predicted this very moment, and the possibility that a candidate like Sanders could harness this shift in the Democratic base during the 2016 primaries,

While the Israeli-Palestinian issue is itself not so central [in Democratic primaries], it is part of a new Democratic identity and a subset of a broader human rights issue that Democrats care about. Just as with other issues that help mobilize Democratic voters, no aspiring politician can afford to look ahead to national elections by bypassing their Democratic electoral base in the primaries. If public opinion continues on its current trajectory, especially among Democrats, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict may very well play a greater role in electoral politics in the years to come.

So far it hasn’t. But all indications show that the age cohort that makes up the Sanders’s base is pulling away from Israel. The only question is whether the candidate himself will follow.

104 Responses

  1. echinococcus
    February 3, 2016, 2:50 pm

    You seem to be coupling two things that do not show any evidence of being linked: a change in the general perception of the Zionist entity (with very little evidence regarding the nature of the change, any increase in support to the Palestinian people, any change in the understanding of its illegitimacy, etc.) on one side and Sanders’ program regarding US Palestine policy on the other side.

    Do you have any evidence of Sanders’ intent to change anything in US policy for Palestine (or more generally and directly touching our topic, US imperialism in general)? Or is it maybe tea leaves, coffee grounds, or some hope predicated on the subjective wishes of the people voting for him, as you imagine them to be?
    The Obama catastrophe should have shown you how much that latter is worth!

    • Annie Robbins
      February 3, 2016, 3:08 pm

      You seem to be coupling two things that do not show any evidence of being linked: a change in the general perception of the Zionist entity …on one side and Sanders’ program regarding US Palestine policy on the other side

      for your review:

      It means the issues that Bernie Sanders has used to energize his young base should also include a fundamental rethinking of the U.S.-Israel relationship.

      So far Sanders has stayed away from foreign policy beyond his opposition to the Iraq War. But challenging Hillary Clinton’s growing embrace of Benjamin Netanyahu offers him another opportunity to draw a progressive distinction between him and his opponent

      he doesn’t show them being linked, he advised given the statistics, sanders should include a fundamental rethinking of the U.S.-Israel relationship into his campaign and that it would be an opportunity to draw a distinction betweem him and hillary, if he did.

      and there is a distinction between clinton and sanders wrt netanyahu. sanders was (as i recall) the first senator to announce he wouldn’t attend the iran deal speech.

      it’s not tea leaves, coffee grounds, or some hope he’s basing this suggestion on, he’s basing it on the evidence he presented. and it’s common sense.

      • joemowrey
        February 3, 2016, 3:57 pm

        “Do you have any evidence of Sanders’ intent to change anything in US policy for Palestine (or more generally and directly touching our topic, US imperialism in general)?”

        I think this is the point of eccinocochus’s comment. In my opinion, people who refer to Sander’s attitude toward Netenyahu as proof of a possible overall policy change are attempting to spin this issue. The commenter asks for evidence of any realistic possibility of a policy change from a Sanders administration. I too would like to see some. So far, I haven’t found any.

        One of the more popular spin jobs being done on this question is the quote from Sanders decrying the bombing of UN facilities during the last slaughter in Gaza. That’s a far cry from even the faintest notion that Sanders ever did or will oppose Israel or its war crimes.

        Same goes for U.S. Imperialism in general. Aside from a few minor criticisms of specific actions the U.S. has engaged in, Sanders has shown no inclination to challenge empire on any meaningful level. He has said he supports our illegal drone assassinations (claiming he would do fewer of them, and more carefully is a disgusting cop out) and he encourages the Saudis to kill even more innocent people in Yemen.

        Let’s keep these realities in mind if we choose to support Sanders. Losing sight of them would be the kind of subjective wishes eccinocochus is referring to.

      • echinococcus
        February 3, 2016, 4:28 pm

        Annie,

        he doesn’t show them being linked, he advised given the statistics, sanders should include a fundamental rethinking of the U.S.-Israel relationship

        I read that. And I said I don’t see a shadow of a shred of any evidence, presented or implied, that would allow the hypothesis of such a fundamental change in a committed imperialist and Zionist and asked if there was any such evidence.
        I am entirely agreed that if there is a single, faint chance of Sanders getting enough traction to make it past the primary, it would be thanks to a spectacular about-face on imperialism (also see link to google.com )
        But how is it common sense to expect an old fox to try new tricks diametrically opposed to his lifelong policy –in the absence of any signs that he ever would? The guy is scared shutless of even using the word “abroad”.

        As for the Yahoo visit and the Iran “deal”, again, Sanders is in line with the “Labor-liberal” Zionists and J Street, the more dangerous Zionists. That’s not proof of anything.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 3, 2016, 6:03 pm

        I read that. And I said I don’t see a shadow of a shred of any evidence, presented or implied, ….

        i read that, many times already actually.

        But how is it common sense to expect an old fox to try new tricks diametrically opposed to his lifelong policy

        adam didn’t say he expects it.

      • hophmi
        February 4, 2016, 12:32 pm

        The US-Israel relationship was never reliant on general polling data, and won’t be in the future. Support for Israel in United States is strong, and will remain that way, because Israel is a country that largely reflect our values of openness and tolerance, and even you argue otherwise, it’s indisputable that no other country in the region reflects our values as much as Israel does. Israeli and Americans work closely together at the highest level every day, and that will continue, because it’s ultimately important to the national security of the United States. The Palestinians have nothing remotely similar to offer us.

      • Keith
        February 4, 2016, 7:34 pm

        HOPHMI- “…Israel is a country that largely reflect our values of openness and tolerance….”

        Israel is just like us? A seething cauldron of anti-Semitism and Jew hatred, dormant but restive, waiting to explode? A place to flee from? Jeez, I always knew that Israeli Jews were virulently anti-Gentile, but anti-Semitic as well? Then why make aliyah if Israel reflects our values?

      • upsondundas
        February 4, 2016, 8:21 pm

        Somebody was talking about Israel being open and Tolerant and Reflecting American values,Fucking Hell Fire!!!! Thank God I’m not a Yank then!! Is this Guy on the same Planet or what??If this bloke is telling the truth I will show my Bollocks on’t Town hall Steps

    • italian ex-pat
      February 3, 2016, 6:32 pm

      @ echinococcus

      You are right, Sanders has not indicated any intention of reshaping US policy re: Israel – then again, neither has he said he supports the status quo. And I think it’s the wise thing for him to do. In my heart, I believe he is for justice and human rights, and everything he has done in his entire life seems to confirm this. It follows that his lifelong beliefs would extend to the plight of the Palestinians and the injustices they are suffering under the Israeli brutal occupation. But why should he advertise any plans to change US foreign policy vis a vis Israel and its rightvwing government, right in the middle of a strong presidential campaign? It would only alienate most Jewish voters and kill his chances to defeat Hillary and, if nominated, the Republican candidate. The less this issue is brought up, the better – not least because it should have NO BEARING on the qualifications for President of the USA. Which is a fact that Hillary, the Reps and a certain segment of our population obviously disagree with. Keep them guessing. And please, let’s not have a repeat of the Chuck Hagel confirmation hearings! (thank you SNL)

      • joemowrey
        February 3, 2016, 7:44 pm

        Your argument sounds like a replay of the apologist rhetoric of those who projected their own hopes and dreams onto Obama. Everything Obama wrote and did prior to running for president foreshadowed his actions once in office. But the dreamers refused to listen to the warnings of those of us who actually looked at what Obama had said and done as opposed to what people wanted to believe he “might” do once in office.

        I don’t believe there is any comparison between the sociopathic liar that Obama is and Bernie Sanders. Sanders does have a reputable record on many of the issues he talks about now. But on Israel and on U.S. Imperialism the same holds true. We know what Sanders stands for and how he has voted and behaved in these areas. As echinococcus points out, to suggest that he will suddenly change direction on these issues is nothing more than projection and magical thinking.

        Support for Sander has its merits. But only if at the same time his legions of followers demand that he change is attitudes toward Israel and our corrupt foreign policy overall. Without those caveats, a vote for Sanders will gain us nothing on those issues and probably much less that expected on his domestic agenda. Because eason and logic dictate that unless Sanders turns the ship of Empire around and redirects the obscene spending which fuels it none of his domestic pipe dreams stand of change of being realized.

        The likelihood that he will do that is very slim. It just isn’t in his history or his attitude.

      • echinococcus
        February 3, 2016, 8:53 pm

        Expat,
        If one believes that in the face of Sanders’ record the word “belief” is particularly appropriate

  2. Annie Robbins
    February 3, 2016, 3:01 pm

    this reminds me of the 2014 Google Consumer Survey sponsors by IRmep. in the 25-34 year-olds bracket over 65% said we were giving either “too much” or “much too much” to israel. figures being much the same for the 18-24 yr old bracket. and almost 60% for 35- 44.

    link to google.com

    another thing, recently i was checking out a poll, and i can’t recall which but i think it was gallop. their results for the overall relationship were different but not too much. funny thing tho, when i checked up their demographics they were questing a fairly equal amount of people in the 2 brackets above and below 50 years. but there are so many more young people, i realized it slanted the outcome of the results. it may be because more older people vote, but to get a fair idea of american sentiment it would require asking more people under 50 than above.

  3. Tom Callaghan
    February 3, 2016, 5:03 pm

    Bernie is the real deal. He’s one of the few politicians that believes his own oratory.

    I love the fact that he does well with those who have 60% of their lives in front of them. Rubio is strong with 80 year old Billionaires…Sheldon Adelson and Norman Braman.

    To have a real chance Bernie is going to have to expand the electorate and put increased emphasis on young African Americans.

    Bernie is the anti-neocon. Rubio is the last best hope for a return of the neocons.

    Peace.

    http://www.wednesdayswars.com

  4. ckg
    February 3, 2016, 5:44 pm

    I doubt Sanders will challenge Hillary’s support for Netanyahu. He seems to want to say as little as possible about the Israel/Palestine conflict. It’s not a priority for him.

    What puzzles me is why Martin O’Malley, who threw in the towel this week, didn’t recognize an opportunity to woo the growing number of Israel critics in the party base. He blew his chance. In fact, he was the only one of the three to mention his support for Israel in the debate that focused on foreign policy.

  5. Keith
    February 3, 2016, 6:43 pm

    ADAM- “What does this mean today? It means the issues that Bernie Sanders has used to energize his young base should also include a fundamental rethinking of the U.S.-Israel relationship.”

    What does this mean today? It means that these young people are working for Bernie instead of Jill Stein or some other Third Party candidate. It means that these young people are working on behalf of an establishment candidate who fundamentally supports business as usual, including support for Israel. It means that the capacity for self-deception is overwhelming potent such that these young folks can delude themselves that they are working for change even as they do the opposite. What is the difference between BO (Barack Obama) and BS (Bernie Sanders)? Bernie is a lot older.

    • yonah fredman
      February 4, 2016, 5:12 am

      Keith- I do not think Sanders will be elected president so we will never get to see how different he would have been from Obama. That being said, I think your advocacy for third party candidates exemplifies the far out nature of your attitude. Yes, some day a third party may arise and change the fabric of America to include a permanent third party, but today is hardly that day. Advocating change is one thing; waiting for a third party to arise is another thing. Maybe you have the vision to think 20 to 40 years ahead and see the emergence of an american social democratic party (you can name it something different if you wish to clarify) but the history of the last 100 years if not longer would indicate that this vision is a long shot and advocating third party candidates as if they are viable as the more solid alternative to backing Sanders as “establishment” really marks you as an outlier in your vision.

      • rugal_b
        February 4, 2016, 5:31 am

        Nah Yonah, I am willing to bet my life savings that Bernie is going to be the next president of the USA. In fact, I’d say the chances of him losing the election based on current trends and future projections are well below 10%, iow he is not going to lose.

      • yonah fredman
        February 4, 2016, 7:08 am

        rugal- I’ll bet you five dollars. i think anyone who would bet their life savings on a sanders victory is out to lunch or someone who should visit gamblers anonymous.

      • rugal_b
        February 4, 2016, 9:27 am

        You’re too pessimistic. Only Bernie is talking about the real issues faced by Americans, not issues that the ruling class are manufacturing as the real issues. Most Americans don’t care about Iran or China, or immigrants or Muslims. They just want to feel safe, be safe and live life without unreasonable burdens and expectations out of them. The malaise and the primal sense of dread among Americans is a real thing that no one apart from Bernie is talking about. Maybe Trump, but he is doing it in the most arrogant and lazy manner, making it look like self-sabotage to me. All I know is, if it was a true case of one person, one vote, Bernie will win this 100%, over and over again.

      • Keith
        February 4, 2016, 11:56 am

        YONAH FREDMAN- “That being said, I think your advocacy for third party candidates exemplifies the far out nature of your attitude.”

        What can I say? You are right, of course. In the America of 2016, holding politicians and political parties accountable for their actions is a “far out” act of rebellion. And, in a way, it is pointless. In capitalism, elections are basically marketing extravaganzas which manufacture consent for elite policies along with legitimization of elite rule. As a bonus, they allow the people to pretend that they are part of the political process. In effect, the empire has the support of the citizenry. The citizens, in effect, voted for the inevitable policies of those establishment candidates they voted for. As such, in my opinion, they have totally abdicated their responsibilities as citizens. And I am sick to death of all of the excuses and rationalizations. The Republican and Democratic parties should have been voted out of business a long time ago. And the oligarchs and corporations cut down to manageable size, nuclear weapons eliminated, the military reduced, and an eco-friendly sustainable society constructed. I simply refuse to go along with destructive neoliberal business as usual. It seems that I suffer from a far out attitude. The odd man out. Something I have to live with.

      • Theo
        February 4, 2016, 12:50 pm

        rugal b

        Looking at that line of sorry individuals wanting to be the president, my choice also would be Bernie Sanders, obwohl I realize his chances are minimal.
        About your bet. Do you have a grand total of $10 in your savings account, to be so brave with your bet? I certainly would not risk a larger amount, you are betting against huge odds just to double your money.

        The next president of the USA will be the one who has the largest financial support. The nation will be bombarded with ads and all kinds of advertisements, and the american people, being so uneducated in politics, will elect the one whose face they see the most. It will be either Hillary or Trump, Cruz was not born in the USA and in one of this days this will come to the attention of his opponents.

      • rugal_b
        February 5, 2016, 3:24 am

        Theo, right now people really can’t give a shit about money anymore, not when around 60 people own as much wealth as the half of the entire human population combined. I think most people who dismisses Bernie are too privileged to see the reality of the situation. Most Americans are in dire circumstances, one paycheck away from being homeless, and losing everything they own in turn. These are not people who can afford to care about complicated trade policies or foreign relations and unfortunately, they form the majority of the voters. People who are lost in the desert just want water, over palaces of gold and diamonds. Bernie is saying he knows where the water is, why wouldn’t people believe him?

    • Sibiriak
      February 4, 2016, 11:16 pm

      Saw this headline this morning at HuffPost and had a fit of laughter:

      Hillary Clinton: Under Bernie Sanders’ Definition, ‘Obama’s Not Progressive’!!

      • Keith
        February 5, 2016, 2:44 pm

        SIBIRIAK- “Hillary Clinton: Under Bernie Sanders’ Definition, ‘Obama’s Not Progressive’!!”

        The reality that dares not speak its name! A clever ploy by Clinton to get Sanders to either backpedal or alienate some of the delusional Black voters.

  6. kalithea
    February 3, 2016, 7:06 pm

    You know, if you compare where the rest of the world is on the issue of Israel, those statistics are actually abysmal.

    So the sea change isn’t really a sea change unless that change starts to trickle down from the top. For some strange reason Americans are not independent thinkers like the rest of the world. Americans allow the media and politicians to dictate the narrative. This has to change before the sea change is actually that. Sure the internet helped quite a bit; but it’s as if people still don’t trust what they read online, they need the big machinery to reassure them. That’s bad, because a lot of that machinery is run by Zionists and these gatekeepers understand the American public’s addiction to their political system and the media and they milk that addiction heavily.

    So this is the moment for people to phase out the media and push for integrity in their candidates. This is the time when the internet has to push the narrative in a direction that pardon the pun trumps the direction that big media wants to take it. This is the moment where you hold those candidates feet to the fire because now is when they’re most vulnerable to the will of the people.

    So now you’re simply asking that Sanders draw a progressive distinction between him and his opponent on the relationship with Netanyahu. But you, and I and everyone knows that this test is waaaaay too easy. Netanyahu is not a likeable man. Most Democrats can’t stand him; you stated so in this very article. So how does drawing that distinction demonstrate or prove anything when it comes to Sanders position on Israel?

    He has to go way further than Netanyahu at this point. The rule of law, international law is fundamental in progressive values; he can’t pretend that it doesn’t extend to Israel; that Israel is above the law, and we all know that the majority of the political class in Israel believe that Israel is above the law. Bernie has to challenge his Zionist progressive counterparts with the rule of law and set the example for them. He must prove that his progressive values extend to include Israel and the Palestinians; he’s obligated to prove this if he wants to pretend he’s a real progressive and especially draw a distinction at this point between Hillary’s moderate, centrist position and his. Otherwise he comes off as a hypocrite plain and simple. The Netanyahu test proves nothing at all, but that like most of the world we dislike Netanyahu and not just because he’s a right-wing Zionist but because he’s arrogant, a liar and a relentless fear- and warmonger amongst other things.

    This bar is too low for a man who’s looking to start a political revolution. This is not holding his feet to the fire or challenging him on his core progressive principles at all.

    The irony is that he’s actually challenging Hillary on her progressive values; when he should be challenging the authenticity of his own.

    • italian ex-pat
      February 3, 2016, 8:09 pm

      I hate to repeat myself, but here goes.

      There is no advantage for Bernie to confront Hillary right now on her support for Netanyahu, nor the nominated Republican candidate later on. I don’t know if the I/P issue is a priority for him or not, but I certainly hope he doesn’t come out and blast the Israeli government in his public speeches, at least until after the November elections. What would you like him to say, that if elected he’ll cut all aid to Israel unless the settlers are evicted from the WB and the Palestinians get their State? While that might get him cheers from most Mondoweiss readers, it would also be the end of his presidential race and possibly his political life.
      Look, we all know where Hillary and the clown car stand on Israel, no hope for change there, in the best of cases. With Bernie at least it’s an open question, so as far as I’m concerned, I choose to be optimistic and support him, trusting he’ll do the right thing.

      • dx
        February 4, 2016, 1:46 am

        Ex-Pat,

        I understand and agree with what you’re saying. I don’t think it really makes sense for Sanders to talk about Israel/Palestine on the trail unless someone else brings it up. Totally agree with your point about that.

        I think most democratic voters (and voters in general) are more interested in stuff that directly affects them every day like the bread and butter economic issues that Sanders is very clear and consistent on. He should stick to that. Israel is not most people’s top priority issue–it’s not even for me. And making a big thing about it will probably just rile up Republicans and lead to Clinton going on again about how impractical (or radical) Sanders is. (As though equality in a democracy is a radical notion…)

        I think the less Sanders says, the better–both for him and for he actual issue itself. I’ve read a whole slew of Clinton vs. Sanders articles today (because everybody needs a productive hobby), and I’m impressed with how deftly Sanders handles questions that could be “gotcha” moments. He seems to have some skill with that sort of thing. So if Israel comes up for some reason, it’ll be interesting to see what he says.

      • Theo
        February 4, 2016, 1:03 pm

        x-pat

        You are correct, Sanders is jewish and there is no sense to get the tribe in uproar at this early stage, he may loose a lot of support from them. I would make a bet that if he would really lean on Israel before elections, even many MW readers would refuse to vote for him.
        He should avoid the issue of Israel and if directly asked, give a diplomatic answer, meaning he did not commit himself to anything. After in the WH, what in my opinion will not happen, he can deal with this issue.

      • csutter
        February 4, 2016, 2:21 pm

        Totally agree. Most voters don’t know much or care about foreign policy. It would be suicidal for Bernie to open up that issue now. If you think he has integrity, his record speaks for itself. He is a smart politician.
        And note to Hillary: he doesn’t need “on the job traing” or lessons on “how to get things done.”

      • Kathleen
        February 7, 2016, 10:08 am

        agree ex pat

  7. Kathleen
    February 3, 2016, 8:14 pm

    Terrific analysis Adam, However I don’t think people are so much leaning away from Israel based on internationally recognized borders but towards real justice for the Palestinians. Turning towards justice.

    If Israel had not and was not continuing to steal Palestinian land, destroying homes, imprisoning children, killing so many Palestinians, humiliating Palestinians…..the problem would not be so catastrophic.

    I really don’t know what I base my feelings on because Bernie’s voting record is not much different than Hillary’s when it comes to bending over to Israel and the I lobby. Has to be his vote against Iraq invasion and his early support for the Iran deal. He just seems like a much more reasonable and honest person. Clearly he has a keen intellect but also real compassion. There is something so Walter Cronkite about him…however do not think Cronkite was so progressive on so many issues.

    You just want to hug Bernie hoping his clarity and commitment to what is good for our nation (know he is not all we want in the middle east) rubs off on all of us. The man is brave….because the forces he is pushing up against ( Wall Street, Big Pharm, Insurance companies will be gunning for him. I actually worry about his safety. There are some greedy fucks out there who he poses a real threat to.

    Hoping folks are sending his campaign money and volunteering. His team makes it all so easy to do.

    • kalithea
      February 3, 2016, 8:59 pm

      Has to be his vote against Iraq invasion and his early support for the Iran deal.

      That’s it? That’s your benchmark for trusting him? That’s the same sum total of Obama’s progressive foreign policy. So then you’re really saying that Sanders is an old, white version of Obama and you’re ready to rush in, no questions asked, to make the same mistake twice. So based on that barometer he’s off the hook and has your unconditional vote.

      And Obama was also way more progressive than Hillary on those domestic issues you separated with one bracket and we were fed the keen intellect and compassion bit too in 2004; and Obama even went further than Sanders with the tear in his eye.

      For now what I see here is more of the same repackaged with messy white hair; except this one’s not going to win unless you demand and expect more from him…nowwww, instead of giving him the benefit of the doubt like you did with Obama. And he doesn’t even have what Obama had going for him: desperation on the left, right and centre and the rousing eloquence to milk it.

      So unless Sanders grabs everyone now with something real compelling outside the box that’s gonna rally those on different sides of the political spectrum terminally jaded by destructive foreign policy; he’s done.

      Hopeless.

      • Theo
        February 4, 2016, 1:22 pm

        We had enough presidents who tried to change this world and cared more for foreign peoples than for his own, who elected them.
        Sanders should concentrate on domestic policies, the well being of our nation, rebuilding America to what it once was. Not with military might all over the world, but with new schools, roads, bridges and jobs at home. Bring home our troops, or at least most of them, we still have around 120,000 in Germany and military bases in 80 countries, costing billions each year. Why?
        He should stop the tax avasion of huge corporations and wealthy persons, make sure everyone pays their share, not just the employees who have no choice. Part of the country looks like the 3d world, Detroit is our Calcutta. Bernie is a liberal, he has enough to do for the next 50 years!!

      • Kathleen
        February 5, 2016, 8:57 pm

        For those of us who have worked our asses off on the P/I issue for decades and tried like hell for truly progressive candidates, marched in the halls of congress, put together petitions having to do with not invading Iraq signed by thousands, petitions sent to Rep begging, demanding foreign aid stop being fed to Israel etc etc etc. What the hell do you suggest?

      • echinococcus
        February 6, 2016, 12:00 am

        Kathleen,
        All that is nice and good but obviously not leading anywhere. Ever thought of getting out of the single party system?

  8. Kay24
    February 3, 2016, 8:50 pm

    I guess Netanyahu and his merry zionists must thank the media, for the high favorability among Americans. Either that or the polls are skewed. It would be interesting to see if these polling companies are influenced by pro Israeli elements, just like the media.

    We must face reality – we will never, ever, see a US President be neutral in this issue, and hold Israel responsible for the endless crimes against an occupied people. We will never see the occupation end, and the Map of Palestine will show not even a sliver of land that they can call their own. Whether it is Sanders or anyone else, they will not do the decent thing for the Palestinians, and will dance to the merry zionist tune.

  9. Kathleen
    February 3, 2016, 9:18 pm

    Classic comment over at Huff Po

    Iowa Caucus Deals Death Blow To The Establishment

    link to huffingtonpost.com

    “Glenn Klotz · University of California, Santa Barbara
    Elizabeth Warren it’s your moment to be at the pivot point of history. You can stand by and let the battle rage for the soul of this country and watch as the enormous power of the still very powerful establishments crush the building Rebellion on the left or you can jump into the fray now and endorse Bernie and rally your following to his banner. Or you can sit tight and wait for another moment some time in the future that might never come. CARPE DIEM !!”

  10. Qualtrough
    February 3, 2016, 9:30 pm

    Sanders has been disappointing on Israel, but at least there exists the possibility that he could come around, however slim. With Clinton there would be no hope at all of any change unless it is for the worse.

  11. fullyrecoveredzionist
    February 3, 2016, 10:18 pm

    Bernie does not support business as usual in US domestic policies. That’s clear to anyone who listens and has listened for years, if not to the poster who said he does support it, definitely to the >80% of the 17-29 year olds in Iowa who just caucused him into a tie with HRC. He is mobilizing people, not for hope and change but for real changes in policy – against TPP, 100% support for reproductive rights, tax increases on the wealthy, to name just 3. Let’s get him elected and then fight with him on foreign policy, including US support for its special friend, Israel.

    • echinococcus
      February 4, 2016, 4:09 am

      Fully Recovered (?)

      You forgot to go through Sanders’ public record, vote by bloody vote and statement by statement.
      Nope, there was no “change” in foreign policy last I checked.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 4, 2016, 7:42 pm

        we all get you’re completely anti bernie echni, are we going to be listening to this all the way up to the election if he wins the primary? because this is at least your hundreth comment trashing him. i can’t even keep up.

      • echinococcus
        February 4, 2016, 10:31 pm

        Annie,

        I don’t see open, wall-to-wall electoral propaganda trashing facts getting berated –as long as it is for one side. Do a count of the endless repetitions where his performance on Palestine is repeatedly either excused or outright denied, often by the same posters. Take it out on the guy who responds. So what do you want me to do, just shut up and listen to the carpet bombing?

      • Annie Robbins
        February 5, 2016, 2:10 am

        so that would be a yes, we going to be listening to this all the way up to the election if he wins the primary. whoopie.

      • echinococcus
        February 5, 2016, 3:27 am

        Nope. Because his job is not that, first, and it will be such a depressing time for the BS hopium smokers –more than it is now for us anti-single-party people for the huge missed opportunity. No need then to twist the knife in the wound. If there is some miracle and the owners of the country let him past the post, no need to say anything: the hope-full will be treated even worse and, as the Obama thing shows, will yet again fail to learn. All this applies fully to Palestine and Middle East policy.

    • kalithea
      February 5, 2016, 6:20 pm

      First, congratulations on being fully recovered!

      Let’s get him elected and then fight with him on foreign policy, including US support for its special friend, Israel.

      That’s basically what everyone said on Obama. Once they’re in the big chair, forget it! Now’s the time to get Sanders to man up; not when it’s too late and he wastes all his energies fighting Republicans on domestic issues.

  12. kalithea
    February 3, 2016, 11:07 pm

    Okay, I intentionally watched the Bernie Sanders part of the town hall. Hillary’s I refuse to watch because I already know what to expect. And after watching Bernie’s part; I’ll never listen to another word that comes out of his mouth again.

    This town hall more than solidifies what I’ve been writing here. There was not one foreign policy question addressed to Sanders in the whole session. That’s ridiculous! The questions totally pandered to his domestic progressive comfort zone.

    But I did pick up a few comments that did nothing but confirm my suspicions about him.

    1. Someone asked him how he would relate to people to whom ethnicity and religion are important, something to that effect.
    On the religious part he replied basically that he’s not a practicing Jew but that he’s still religious as in very spiritual and that this informs his belief that the pain of one and others impacts him very much and should impact everyone.

    So therefore I would stand up and challenge him with this: Mr. Sanders where is your spirituality when it comes to Palestinians’ pain? How can you be in government for 40 or more years and remain silent as you witness people of your faith inflict terrible pain for decades on these occupied people?

    2. He was answering a question regarding legal injustice against blacks in America stating: If a police officer breaks the law that police officer must be held accountable!

    And I would stand up and challenge his integrity this way: So what about if Israel breaches the Geneva Convention every single day to ethnically oppress and systematically cleanse another people; shouldn’t Israel be held accountable by international law and be imposed sanctions seeing as you think it right that the officer should be held accountable and suffer legal consequences?

    3. He talked about being a kid and being very disturbed by big kids picking on little kids and injustice bothering him a lot and how much he dislikes injustice.

    My challenge to him is – What about Israel using disproportionate force on Palestinians a perpetually occupied people and what about justice for Palestinians, Mr. Sanders, why does this injustice never bother you enough to speak out on it and use your influence in government to bring about justice once and for all to these people oppressed by people of your own faith?

    4. And then Anderson asked him if he really believed Hillary was not progressive and this is the most telling part of his hypocrisy. He stated that while she has accomplished some good progressive things; she’s selective and inconsistent; she’s not always progressive; she reverts to being moderate and centrist on some issues.

    And my challenge is this: Mr. Sanders you yourself are selective in your progressiveness. You want justice for all, but not for the Palestinians, you feel the pain of others, but not the pain of Palestinians, you believe that no one should be above the law, except Israel. So Mr. Sanders, how can you point the finger of shame at Hillary’s inconsistencies, when you yourself have no integrity? How can you be totally blind to your own hypocrisy?

    Oh, and he was asked how his wife would describe him in one word; and he asked her to answer, and she replied: integrity.

    Aye! It’s a sad day when he is the standard for integrity. He doesn’t even rise to the values he professes, and he’s in denial and runs from foreign policies issues which are paramount right now with the hot mess that has been created especially by the Bush and Obama administrations and pandering to Israel’s paranoia on foreign policy. And he thinks he’s igniting a political revolution? Not even close. He’s done.

    • echinococcus
      February 4, 2016, 4:05 am

      Kallithea,

      Thanks. That’s the best capsule summary of the diversion by Senator BS until now.

      • kalithea
        February 5, 2016, 11:27 pm

        I really think he’s ignoring the elephant in the room; foreign policy and when Hillary addresses foreign policy he just nods his head. If he’s going to brush off foreign policy he should at least not nod or demonstrate he’s of the same opinion as her.

        I’m glad he’s attacking Hillary on her special interest funding but he never goes as far as naming her biggest funder Haim Saban, the uber-Zionist.

        It’s disappointing.

    • Kris
      February 4, 2016, 12:44 pm

      @Kalithea: “And then Anderson asked him if he really believed Hillary was not progressive and this is the most telling part of his hypocrisy. He stated that while she has accomplished some good progressive things; she’s selective and inconsistent; she’s not always progressive; she reverts to being moderate and centrist on some issues.

      This is what was said, according to the CNN transcript:

      COOPER: There’s been some back and forth on the campaign trail today about is Hillary Clinton a progressive. We’re going to get to that later on because we’ve got some questions from the audience about that, and some other questions.

      But Sen. Barbara Boxer, a supporter of Clinton, came back, fired back basically at your campaign today, at you, saying of course Hillary Clinton is progressive and asked you know — said that Bernie Sanders is a Democrat on some days. You had said that Hillary Clinton is a progressive on some days. Is that fair? Because there are some Democrats who — I mean in your heart are you a Democrat?

      SANDERS: Sure. I have made a decision to run for the Democratic nomination to be president of the United States. I was for 16 years in the House Democratic Caucus, for nine years in the Senate Democratic Caucus.

      Right now I am the ranking member of the Budget Committee, appointed by the Democratic leadership and membership. A couple of years ago I was very proudly the chairman of the Senate Veterans Committee. So of course I am a Democrat and running for the Democratic nomination.

      In terms of Sec. Clinton, I know the media is kind of making a big deal about this. All that I said, which is simply true, is I think it was in November in Ohio. You may recall this.

      COOPER: Yes.

      SANDERS: I don’t know the context of it, but Sec. Clinton said some people call me a — paraphrasing, some people call me a moderate. And I proudly say that I am a moderate. That’s what she said.

      So all I said you can’t go and say you’re a moderate on one day and be a progressive on the other day. Some of my best friends are moderates. I love moderates. But you can’t be a moderate and a progressive. They are different.

      Later in the debate, Anderson Cooper played a video of Clinton saying: To really think hard about what the Democratic Party stands for and what we want the future of our country to look like if we do our part to build it. I am a progressive who gets things done for people.

      Cooper followed up with Sanders:

      COOPER: There were a lot of your supporters who, when they heard that, didn’t think or expressed their belief that she’s not a progressive. We talked about this a little bit at the beginning.

      But just so we’re clear, do you believe Hillary Clinton is a progressive?

      SANDERS: Let me just say this. I have, um, enormous respect for Hillary Clinton. I’ve known her for 25 years. And it’s unfortunate, you know, in politics — and everybody should know this. What media often wants you to do and you’re asked this question, I’m sure it’s the same for Secretary Clinton, beat her up. Tell me something terrible about her. Attack her, because that will make the news.

      I have tried my best not to do that. You’re looking at a guy who has been in politics a long time.

      (APPLAUSE)

      SANDERS: And I have never run a negative ad in my life and I look forward to never running a negative ad in my life, OK. I don’t think people deserve that. We have to — as Secretary Clinton just said, that’s what politics is about. It’s a debate on the issues.

      Secretary Clinton has a long and distinguished public career. She has worked with children when she began, and God only knows that we need a lot of work, given the fact that we have the highest rate of childhood poverty of any major country on Earth.

      So I respect it. I thought she did a good job as secretary of State. I served with her in the Senate. We worked together on some issues.

      But there are other issues, Anderson, where I think she is just not progressive. I do not know any progressive who has a super PAC and takes $15 million from Wall Street. That’s just not progressive.

      (APPLAUSE)

      SANDERS: As I mentioned earlier, the key foreign policy vote of modern American history was the war in Iraq. The progressive community was pretty united in saying don’t listen to Bush. Don’t go to war.

      Secretary Clinton voted to go to war.

      Virtually all of the trade unions and millions of working people understand that our trade policies — NAFTA, CAFTA, permanent normal trade relations with China, etc. — have been written by corporate America and the goal of it is to be able to throw American workers… millions of working people understand that our trade policies, NAFTA, CAFTA, Permanent Normal Trade Relations with China, et cetera, have been written by corporate America.

      And the goal of it is to be able to throw American workers out on the street, move to China and other low-wage countries, and bring their products back into this country. And that’s one of the reasons why the middle class of this country and the working class is struggling so hard.

      Secretary Clinton has been a supporter in the past of various trade policies, NAFTA and PNTR with China. Reluctantly, and after a lot of pressure on her, she came out against the TPP, and I’m glad that she did.

      Every sensible person understands that climate change is real. It is caused by human activity. And we have got to transform our energy system away from fossil fuel.

      For a long time, Secretary Clinton was talking about the benefits of the Keystone pipeline. Well, there are no benefits to excavating and transporting some of the dirtiest fossil fuel in the world.

      I was in the lead in opposition to the Keystone pipeline. I’m in opposition to the pipeline right here in New Hampshire and the pipeline in Vermont. I think we have got to move aggressively away from fossil fuel if we’re going to leave this planet in a way that’s healthy and habitable for our kids.

      So those are just some of the areas…

      link to cnn.com

      • kalithea
        February 4, 2016, 1:27 pm

        I was summarizing, not quoting; if you notice I didn’t italicize or put in quotes deliberately. I wasn’t about to quote everything, I believe my comment was long enough as it is, but my understanding is that he picked out the fact that Hillary accepts special interest money as one of the exceptions that makes him critical of her progressive integrity. And therefore my challenge to him stands in respect to the Palestinians; he’s progressive on all issues EXCEPT when it comes to human rights for Palestinians, the pain of Palestinians and the injustice against Palestinians, and that’s why we’re here isn’t it? Aren’t we here to raise awareness and to expose such hypocrisy with U.S. politicians that denies justice indefinitely for Palestinians or are we here to pretend that we don’t see the obstacle presented by those politicians who make a bunch of promises that cater to the U.S. electorate, and that’s real nice of them as far as promises go, but who lack the guts and integrity to make the world a better place for others too.

  13. niass2
    February 3, 2016, 11:37 pm

    Pearly’s Been True, True To Me, True To My Dying Days Here.

  14. Krauss
    February 4, 2016, 11:45 am

    Good, data-driven analysis. I would add, however, that Obama won 57% of the youth vote in the Iowa 2008 caucuses but that vote was also distributed over a MUCH wider field of candidates than the three in Iowa(and in reality, just two major ones).

    So if it had been just Obama and Hillary in 2008, Obama would likely have gotten numbers close to that 84% and yet would that have signified a lot of change in the coming years after his election?

    Don’t get me wrong, I agree with your general premise. I just caution at the immediacy of the argument, because the young would have chosen Obama at similar levels in 2008 had the field been much narrower and it didn’t do much on the issue for the next eight years. Really, it will take at least a decade until this becomes a general election issue. You guys have your work cut out for you in spreading more information to liberal grassroots.

  15. lysias
    February 4, 2016, 12:30 pm

    Des Moines Register calls for audit of Sanders-Clinton result in Iowa.

    Remember how the Iowa caucus was originally called in 2012 for Romney? It wasn’t revealed that it was actually Santorum who had won until three weeks later.

    • Theo
      February 4, 2016, 1:28 pm

      According to my information in three districts Clinton/Sanders were a tie up and tossed coin decided who won. All three times Hillary was the lucky one, however it is a hell of a way to decide an election!

  16. Boo
    February 4, 2016, 1:19 pm

    I’ve said it before in here, and will say it again as often as needed. Politics is the art of the possible.

    Come November, the US will elect its next President. Our next President will be chosen from one of those folks who are currently in the running for nomination by their respective parties.

    Is Bernie the progressive of our dreams? No. Is the progressive of our dreams (whomever that might be, if he or she exists in 2016 America) running for President in 2016? No, certainly not.

    In US Israel policy, the possibility of an incremental step in the right direction is preferable to the certainty of no meaningful change — let alone a change for the worse. Sanders, of all the candidates actually in contention, provides the only hope of positive change.

    Moreover, US Israel policy is only one of many factors in my assessment of who gets my vote. It may be the preeminent factor in this forum — and rightly so — but it’s not necessarily determinative when I step into the voting booth in November.

    I’m a pragmatist, and if my only choice is a Hobson’s choice, I’ll still exercise my franchise rather than sit on my hands and forfeit any say in the outcome.

  17. xanadou
    February 4, 2016, 2:45 pm

    “84% of the 18-29 y/o support Sanders.”

    Of course, this is a generation that has grown up with the internet and, however tentatively, is connected to the rest of the world and knowledge thereof free of the US media whose calendars still show the 1980s.
    The 18-29 y/o also comprise the generation of unprecedented uncertainty about their own future in a country whose once flourishing economy is sliding backwards into the rank of the also-ran. Just consider the US National debt:
    US National debt = $19+Trillion
    US total debt = $64+Trillion (the above+personal+student+mortgage debt
    v. GDP = $18Trillion
    link to usdebtclock.org

    The 18-29 y/o are at the mercy of the insanely insatiable pathocrats and the inevitable economic disaster.
    link to pathocracy.wordpress.com

    Those with the wherewithall to grasp this are learning other languages, applying for a passport and applying for jobs in other countries, joining the massive flow of global emigration. Those who have no such options, have the prospect of a looming violent revolution that will put them in the crosshairs of a trigger-happy police force armed with grenade launchers, tanks and a variety of heavy duty pentagon refuse.

    In view of this who really cares about Israel? Once the massive US stipend is gone, reality may likely step in and take care of that thorn in the planet’s posterior, ending the ghastly, even if unrealistic prospect of a thousand-year Israel that will be left to its own devices when the massive US military base will be emptied of gun fodder.

    • xanadou
      February 4, 2016, 9:25 pm

      Oh, and the most respected economists, i.e., Stiglitz, Krugman et al expect the crash to happen during the forthcoming presidency. Unless Sanders wins the election, selects Elisabeth Warren as his veep and together they follow the glorious example of FDR following the latter’s first presidential win, and force thru the necessary changes during their first 100 days. Which may require a reduction in the hand-out for Israel, but that is a different story that ought not to concern us as this country struggles to stay afloat and relevant.

  18. genesto
    February 4, 2016, 5:29 pm

    According to my friend, Carol Sanders, who is Bernie’s first cousin, Bernie has been mostly ignorant on the issue. He, like many of his generation it seems, has preferred to fall back on the narrative he was taught from the time he was a child, without giving it much independent, critical thought. However, I do believe he is a fundamentally decent man who, hopefully, will listen more and more to his progressive base, figure out what’s really going on and act accordingly – or, at least as much as the power structure and the prevailing mood in this country allow him to.

    • Annie Robbins
      February 4, 2016, 5:45 pm

      carol, from berkeley?

  19. manfromatlan
    February 4, 2016, 11:47 pm

    Remind me again: how old is Bernie Sanders, exactly? :-)

  20. kalithea
    February 5, 2016, 6:23 pm

    All this is moot anyway. Sanders is not gonna win. He’s toast outta N.H. So the time to challenge him on Israel is while he thinks he’s still got hope.

    70% of blacks and I’m being modest are not voting for him. Beats me why, since Hillary is really not in their best interest, but without the black vote in his corner; he’s toast from hereon in.

  21. David Doppler
    February 6, 2016, 2:39 am

    Since Hillary has promised to invite Netanyahu on the first day, and Bernie, as I recall, lived on a Kibbutz, shouldn’t a debate line of questioning focus on what their policies are? Settlements? BDS? Assassinations of Iranian scientists? Aid and comfort to al Nusra?

    The notion of not saying anything unless asked seems like deference to war criminals. Force them to confront the issues! Americans only seem ignorant because so-called elites practice self-censorship. A sorry state when two progressives won’t address such an Important islet of issues.

  22. shalom
    February 6, 2016, 8:48 am

    There was a time when support for Israel was bi-partisan. Obama challenged that as much in his way as has Netanyahu and Palestinians have been making the human rights-justice argument to a UN membership that is now largely made up of nation’s opposed to Israel. Whether you follow Beinart’s premonition or an increasing number of polls young people here in American see Israel as a social justice negater and Mondo is more than happy with the political ramifications of that even if it only proffers part of the story…

    • Mooser
      February 6, 2016, 12:45 pm

      “and Mondo is more than happy with the political ramifications of that even if it only proffers part of the story… “

      Oh no, not this again! Apres moi the ellipse?

      Never before have three dots been such an insidious harbinger of social and political disintegration! The … is coming!

    • Shmuel
      February 7, 2016, 5:26 am

      There was a time when support for Israel was bi-partisan. Obama challenged that as much in his way as has Netanyahu

      How so? If you are referring to the Iran deal, disagreeing with the Israeli PM, in and of itself, does not constitute withdrawing support. Do the Israeli Atomic Energy Commission and head of the Israeli space agency (both of whom praised the deal) not “support” Israel? Netanyahu and his Republican allies decided to make it some sort of test (each for their own reasons), and Obama refused to play. Was there any other area in which you think Obama “challenged” bi-partisan support for Israel? Did he withdraw funding? Withdraw support in international institutions? Express harsh criticism of any of Israel’s actions?

      It seems to be some sort of article of faith with right and even centre Zionists that Obama has been terrible for Israel, but when asked to explain, they never seem to come up with anything more than wacky conspiracy theories, expectations that even an Israeli-leader (let alone a US president) would be hard-pressed to meet, or flimsy innuendo.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 7, 2016, 6:16 am

        he nominated chuck hagel and openly pitted congress against the lobby. he also crossed his red line and instead of bombing syria he threw it back at congress who had to make a choice; kowtow to the lobby or piss off their constituents. hagel was a long drawn out fight and the syria deal.. he actually asked the lobby to come out of the closet on syria (they had been claiming they were neutral) and make a grandstand about it, and it was very unpopular. chances are he never wanted to bomb syria anyway — and knew the CW attack wasn’t assad. but he didn’t have to say that. it exposed the lobby, and both of those incidents were before the iran deal. who could forget snl fellate the donkey? he helped exposed them. look at the difference between the discourse when he first took office, then and now. he was part of that.

      • Shmuel
        February 7, 2016, 6:52 am

        Thanks annie, but you are reinforcing my question. When Shalom or others go on about how bad Obama is for Israel, they are not referring to anything substantive (Obama has been at least as supportive if not more so than his predecessors on every issue that really counts), but to the fawning attitude (which SNL didn’t even need to parody, as it is a parody of itself) adopted by both parties in relatively recent years. When Shalom talks about “bi-partisan support for Israel” he is doing a “from time immemorial” on a fad that has little to do with actual support, and didn’t really become entrenched until the Clinton and Bush Jr. administrations.

        You are “on the ground” (albeit very much among activists), but I don’t get the feeling that there has been any real change, and to the extent that there has, I am not convinced that it has much, if anything, to do with Obama. He has been just another super-pro-Israel president, whose actual record has been distorted by Teabaggers and spoiled, radicalised, paranoid Zionists.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 7, 2016, 7:01 am

        yea, he has been very supportive. i didn’t mean to imply otherwise. mostly i was addressing “Was there any other area in which you think Obama “challenged” bi-partisan support for Israel?”, because, wrt “bi-partisan support”, it was during his term that israel became more of a right or gop issue. the polls back this up. it got flushed out or something.

      • yonah fredman
        February 7, 2016, 2:59 pm

        Shmuel-

        Hardcore supporters of Israel have never been satisfied with a president in my lifetime, so that is not really radicalised, it’s more like the same old same old. Hardcore supporters of Israel did not like Clinton’s wife’s kowtowing to Suha Arafat, they didn’t like Clinton backing Barak against netanyahu and they certainly didn’t like the content of the Clinton parameters. So this is not radicalised, it’s the same old same old.

        The future of the democratic party is in fact in the direction of a collision with Israel and its dominance by its Likud party (and worse) and Obama if not exactly a symptom of this collision, is a portent of that clash and that is keen vision and real.

        And don’t use the word paranoid unless it’s absolutely necessary which it is not in this context.

      • Mooser
        February 7, 2016, 3:20 pm

        “and that is keen vision and real.”

        That’s what we depend on you for, “Yonah”. “Keen vision”, the “real” and the “axioms” which undergird it.

        And don’t say “paranoid”! There is only one noid. There is, however, a paradox. You try to cross that river on a chicken instead of a paradox.

      • Shmuel
        February 7, 2016, 5:57 pm

        Yonah,

        I was not referring to the complaints themselves as a new phenomenon, but to the expectation that US administrations [insert crude SNL characterisation] when it comes to Israel. That expectation has, in some people’s minds become “traditional bi-partisan support for Israel”, which Obama has supposedly “challenged” — although nothing substantive in US support for Israel has changed (and certainly not for the worse).

        Those who make such complaints had been spoiled by 3 or 4 terms of unquestioning backing for virtually any Israeli actions and demonstrations of “love” for the country itself. At the same time, mainstream Jewish institutions (to some extent mirroring changes in Israeli society, but with unique dynamics as well) became radicalised in their own support for Israel and Israeli policies and far more sensitive to any criticism of Israel. The concept of “the new anti-Semitism”, for example, although not entirely new, has only really gained currency in recent years. I think it is perfectly reasonable to characterise a state of mind that has resulted from a combination of these factors (which I believe — and have argued — are not rooted in actual fact) as paranoia. Is it “absolutely necessary”? Nothing we write here is absolutely necessary. It’s just my opinion.

      • Philemon
        February 7, 2016, 8:52 pm

        But did Obama ever oppose any loan guarantees for Israel? Because then he would have been out after one term. When a U.S. President threatens to deprive Israel of any funding, that’s when the knives come out.

        “For many in the Jewish community, Bush’s presidency could be encapsulated in his offhand quip to reporters in September 1991 during an AIPAC lobbying effort on Capitol Hill in support of the proposed $10 billion loan guarantee to Israel: ‘I’m one lonely little guy’ up against ‘some powerful political forces’ made up of ‘a thousand lobbyists on the Hill.’ The comment triggered a spate of antisemitic letters and comments for which the president later apologized.

        “Bush had opposed the loan guarantees as long as Israel continued settlement in the West Bank and Gaza. The president finally agreed to a loan guarantee package in August 1992, requiring as a set-off any funds Israel spent to build housing or infrastructure in the territories. Despite this action, the political damage was done…”

        link to jewishvirtuallibrary.org

        Have to say, I’m with Shmuel on this one.

      • yonah fredman
        February 9, 2016, 10:44 am

        Shmuel- Go get a degree from uncle ziggy (or is he cousin ziggy to you) before you use the word paranoid, in my humble opinion. I won’t mince words: You want to hold hands and yuk it up with Charles Lindbergh apologists and even worse and then turn around and use the word paranoid, you have a lot of chutzpah. Can the “paranoid”. find a different word. It’s the word used by lazy people. Radicalised, okay. Spoiled definitely. But paranoid. Don’t use it. if you’re a vulcan don’t use it and if you’re half human, don’t use it either. Capeesh?

      • Shmuel
        February 9, 2016, 12:29 pm

        Yonah,

        I’m sorry if I touched a nerve, but you’ll have to do better than calling me names and giving me orders. If you think my characterisation is wrong, please explain why.

      • Mooser
        February 9, 2016, 12:55 pm

        “You want to hold hands and yuk it up with Charles Lindbergh apologists….”

        Thank you, “Yonah”. I hate to fly, will only get on a plane if there’s a death in the family, and I don’t have any family outside driving distance anymore.
        But now I have a good solid excuse not to get on an airplane. Besides naked, howling fear, anyway.
        I refuse to validate Lindbergh in any way.

        “Spoiled definitely. But paranoid. Don’t use it. if you’re a vulcan don’t use it and if you’re half human, don’t use it either.”

        Hmmmm, sounds like somebody got a diagnosis they didn’t like. And the word the clinician attached to “paranoid” was even worse, wasn’t it, “Yonah”?

      • yonah fredman
        February 9, 2016, 12:56 pm

        Shmuel- a misapprehension of reality is really insufficient to label a person or a reaction as paranoid. It is a loaded word and don’t pretend that it’s some innocuous word to be looked up in a dictionary. The word is 100 in toxicity, whereas you want a word (if you are seeking light rather than heat, accuracy rather than fervor) that measures between 37 and 50. overly fearful, misplacing their fears from the future on the present, as I explained.

        it is a word that reflects a desire to communicate with those who agree with your perception rather than those who might disagree. It is a word used to cut off communication rather than to encourage communication.

        You can use any words you wish to use, but if you are attempting to communicate with those who disagree with you, you might kindly consider the avoidance of certain words. if your goal is currying favor with the choir, go right ahead and use it.

      • Mooser
        February 9, 2016, 1:12 pm

        “if your goal is currying favor with the choir, go right ahead and use it. “

        While “Shmuel” decides whether to be a real mensch or a lousy moser (ONE “O”!) “Yonah” will favor us with a rendition of “Jews and Me Against the World” from “Little Orphan Fannie”.

        “You can use any words you wish to use”

        So you don’t mind if we characterize Zionist actions as, say, “schizophrenic”, too?

      • eljay
        February 9, 2016, 1:18 pm

        || yonah fredman: … a misapprehension of reality is really insufficient to label a person or a reaction as paranoid. It is a loaded word and don’t pretend that it’s some innocuous word to be looked up in a dictionary. The word is 100 in toxicity, whereas you want a word (if you are seeking light rather than heat, accuracy rather than fervor) that measures between 37 and 50. … it is a word that reflects a desire to communicate with those who agree with your perception rather than those who might disagree. … ||

        Thanks for explaining why you:
        – avoid words that fully describe the evils, the injustices and the immorality of Zio-supremacism, the “Jewish State” project and related past and on-going (war) crimes; and, instead,
        – use words that “measure between 37 and 50” and invite “dialog” rather than “scoffing”.

        Unlike you, your hardier co-collectivists – guys like ivri and MaxNarr – wear their hatefulness and immorality on their sleeves. It’s ugly, but at least one knows exactly where they stand.

      • Shmuel
        February 9, 2016, 1:28 pm

        Yonah,

        Thanks for the lesson in communication, although it seems to have taken quite a lot of “heat” to get to that “light”.

        As to the substance of your argument, yes “paranoid” is a harsh word (albeit not quite “100 in toxicity”, even after adjusting for hyperbole), but one I feel accurately expresses reality in this case. Effective communication is also about getting ideas across. Too much watering down and there is nothing left to communicate.

        I have used this word and harsher with people who disagree with me, and generally manage to get my messages across and keep lines of communication open. I will think about what you’ve said.

      • eljay
        February 9, 2016, 1:45 pm

        || Shmuel @ February 9, 2016, 1:28 pm ||

        I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: You are a class act!

        Much respect to you, Shmuel.

      • Sibiriak
        February 9, 2016, 2:09 pm

        yonah fredman: You want to hold hands and yuk it up with Charles Lindbergh apologists….
        ——————

        Call me paranoid, but I suspect “Charles Lindbergh apologist” could be a euphemism for “anti-Semite” (100% toxic expression/ tends to cut off communication.)

      • oldgeezer
        February 9, 2016, 2:10 pm

        @yonah

        Am I missing a post? Where did Lindbergh get brought into the discussion?

        Communication?

        You suggest he may not be human and wants to hold hands with antisemites while objecting to a single word which is possibly quite fittjng.

        This is the yonah method of communication?

        Or do you seek to control the conversation more than you wish to converse?

        Yer a riot alice.

      • Mooser
        February 9, 2016, 3:26 pm

        “Where did Lindbergh get brought into the discussion?”

        He’s never left.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 9, 2016, 4:57 pm

        yonah, way to totally blow off the point of shmuels efforts. to begin with he didn’t outright call you paranoid. and from my perspective, it’s unrealistic to ban the term “paranoid” regarding a reaction to a society that continually bandies about the idea of ‘the whole world is out to kill us’ — which we’ve heard more times than i can count. the PM just called for walls all around the state to drive off the beasts for heavens sakes.

        Can the “paranoid”. find a different word. It’s the word used by lazy people. Radicalised, okay. Spoiled definitely. But paranoid. Don’t use it.

        because it’s your personal trigger word and we’re supposed to respect that? shmuel initially used that term in a response to me. you just do not get to determine how others comment here. and this is about people who continually talk about the “hatred” of those who oppose israeli policy and the occupation, a much more charged word.

        you should try actually responding to the points shmuel made. and if it’s too heavily charged for you, the term paranoid, step away from the computer. because the term paranoid is a completely apropo term as it relates to the topic of discussion.

      • yonah fredman
        February 9, 2016, 5:11 pm

        annie robbins- Shmuel is someone whom I respect and thus I object to his use of that toxic word. Shmuel has the potential to communicate with those who disagree with him and thus I feel his use of this type of rhetoric is beneath him, for the purposes of talking to someone other than the choir.

        I have never had any feeling that you value communication with those who disagree with you. Use whatever words you feel like, cuz you’re only talking to the choir anyway.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 9, 2016, 6:59 pm

        you can object to the use of that word all you want yonah, but ordering him to stop using it? please! and it’s rather contradictory to be saying you respect someone and then addressing him disrespectfully. and the term/word paranoia has a meaning. it’s not, per se, a “type of rhetoric”.

      • Mooser
        February 9, 2016, 7:21 pm

        “I have never had any feeling that you value communication with those who disagree with you. Use whatever words you feel like, cuz you’re only talking to the choir anyway.”

        “Yonah” did they stop making blogs recently? Less than 15 minutes, and you will never be troubled by Annie, or Shmuel again. Why be troubled by “a failure to communicate”, (as your hero put it.)?

        You have the right to self-determine your own blog, “Yonah”! No, more than that, your ‘ancestral homepage’ out there, all you have to do is go and claim it. God promised you a historic blogland.

      • yonah fredman
        February 9, 2016, 7:24 pm

        annie robbins- I treat Shmuel as if he were a beis midrash Litvak opponent. Beis medrash- house of study or study hall. Litvak- the equivalent of Vulcans- all cerebral no heart. In the beis medrash, one shouts (in order to be heard over the din of the crowd) and in order to give free rein to one’s opinions. Maybe I shouldn’t treat him as if he were invulnerable to name calling and insults, and if so, I apologize for hurting his feelings. I betcha he’s gotten over it already. if not i ask for his indulgence.

        I am impressed by the intellect of quite a few of the commentators on this web site, including some who I consider blatantly antisemitic. I do not consider Shmuel antisemitic and I consider him to be of quite an intellect. When he backs a position that i disagree with I quite often give it at least a couple seconds or minutes of added thought. His use of toxic language does not increase my respect for his opinion and just adds to the din of the rabble.

        I think a keen assessment of the dangers to the Jews and to Zionism is important to all Jewish intellectuals and thinkers. I think exaggerating dangers is foolhardy and dangerous as well. i think the toxic term paranoid is not helpful.

        Too many times I have encountered those who advocate alliances with Jew haters as helpful to the anti Zionist movement who at the same time wish to use the phrase paranoid to describe the Jews or israel. Give me a break. I feel that combining the palling around with Jew haters and the use of the term paranoid to be particularly obnoxious.

      • Mooser
        February 9, 2016, 7:54 pm

        ” Shmuel is someone whom I respect”

        “Yonah” you have an archive.

        I see a hell of a lot of condescension, a whole lotta point-missing, and an irritating presumption. Don’t see no respect at all.
        Of course, on the other hand, you don’t call Shmuel a “shtoonk“. That’s something, I guess.

      • Mooser
        February 9, 2016, 10:58 pm

        “Too many times I have encountered those who advocate alliances with Jew haters as helpful to the anti Zionist movement who at the same time wish to use the phrase paranoid to describe the Jews or israel.”

        What the hell are you talking about? Absolutely nothing, just making insulting insinuations. Which “Jew-haters” does Shmuel “advocate alliances” with?

        ” I treat Shmuel as if he were a beis midrash Litvak opponent.”

        You have an excuse for everything, don’t you, and all the excuses come from the same place?

        “I feel that combining the palling around with Jew haters and the use of the term paranoid to be particularly obnoxious.”

        Once again, “Yonah” you sniveling little coward, who is “palling around with Jew-haters”? In the context of the disussion, that could only be Schmuel, right?
        So “palling around with Jew-haters” and “advocate alliances with Jew-haters” is helpful, respectful speech?

      • Mooser
        February 9, 2016, 11:29 pm

        “I am impressed by the intellect of quite a few of the commentators on this web site, including some who I consider blatantly antisemitic.”

        I apologize for “Yonah”. That’s all I can do. I am very very sorry he does this. For some reason, I feel like I should apologize for him. I don’t think he knows what he’s doing.

      • gamal
        February 10, 2016, 5:54 am

        ““Yonah” you sniveling little coward”

        Behind the Fives Courts 6.pm, bring a second, good luck to you both, Honour must be satisfied.

      • Philemon
        March 6, 2016, 9:49 pm

        Mooser, I wouldn’t apologize for Yonah. I’m pretty damned sure he does it deliberately.

      • yonah fredman
        March 6, 2016, 11:42 pm

        philemon- another class act. raising a thread from the dead for the sole purpose of dissing me. school yard junior high school, anyone?

      • Mooser
        March 7, 2016, 9:58 am

        ” I wouldn’t apologize for Yonah. I’m pretty damned sure he does it deliberately.”

        In which case I need to apologize for him twice over.

        “school yard junior high school, anyone?”

        You went to public schools, “Yonah”?
        “Yonah”, one cannot leave (in most cases) junior high school during the school day. Gotta be there, by law, whether the playground is rough or not.
        That doesn’t apply here.

      • yonah fredman
        March 7, 2016, 9:48 pm

        Could Mooser summarize his bizzaro welcoming committee credo any more succinctly?

        “yeah, we’re seventh grade, but you can leave if you don’t like it.

        Congrats to mondoweiss for having a bizarro welcoming committee.

      • Mooser
        March 7, 2016, 10:19 pm

        “Yonah” I know it sounds very unlikely, but you can use Google, or other search services to find another website, a website not plagued by the deficiencies you find at Mondo. Try “Algemeiner” or the “Jerusalem Post” or a settler’s blog at Haaretz.
        And why would you need a welcoming committee? Everybody knows you. Heck, you’re one of the old lags around here.

      • Philemon
        March 8, 2016, 10:10 pm

        Yonah, baby, it isn’t “dissing” you to remark that you show every sign of doing what you do deliberately. It shows you’re a man who knows his own views and isn’t above airing them, no matter… whatever. And you already know I love you. Because you’re so classy! Also amusing. And didja notice that Obama never opposed any loan guarantees for Israel?

        But, actually, what prompted my comment was Mooser’s apparent need to apologize for you, which I thought was taking the T.U. thing to absurdity. And now he’s doubled down on it, which is absurdity on stilts.

        Mooser, I know you’ve got some sort of martyr complex, but, please, for those of us who only want you to be happy, give it a rest!

      • Mooser
        March 9, 2016, 11:28 am

        “please, for those of us who only want you to be happy, give it a rest!”

        “Philemon”, mon ami, (picked that up from Hercule Poirot! Classy, non?) do you think I like apologizing for “Yonah”? I don’t, it’s painful and embarrassing. I’d rather, personally, just point and laugh.

        But the demands of Jewish Tribal Unity are not to be lightly forsworn, or evaded. If a”Yonah” offends, I must apologize. (Or I will bring the Evil eye down on me. My Mom explained it to me, long, long time ago, and she was right, too)
        I wish “Yonah” would give that just a little consideration, when he composes his comments.

  23. kalithea
    February 6, 2016, 12:21 pm

    Okay, I know I’ve been really tough on Sanders (with good reason!), but here’s a positive note: I really, really like his appointment of press secretary, Symone Sanders! She’s sassy, smart as a whip, and really projecting his campaign brilliantly for her young age. Only 25 and front and centre with the media in the face of challenging talking heads!

    link to huffingtonpost.com

    link to cosmopolitan.com

    link to essence.com

    Hey, this girl is starting to impress! I may have to rethink my comment that Bernie’s toast out of New Hampshire.

    • Philemon
      February 7, 2016, 9:13 pm

      Yeah, I like her too. But I wouldn’t count on her lasting long as his press sec. if she doesn’t dance to the tune of the piper. And he who pays the piper calls the tune.

    • Annie Robbins
      February 8, 2016, 2:04 am

      impressive

      link to youtube.com

  24. Kathleen
    February 6, 2016, 12:29 pm

    Silencing Critics of Israel
    02/06/2016 07:54 am ET | Updated 3 hours ago
    link to huffingtonpost.com

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