‘New York Times’ picks up Bernie Sanders’s ‘socialist’ kibbutz but leaves out the ethnic cleansing

US Politics
on 98 Comments

It’s Bernie Sanders’s moment, which means that journalists are poring over his early years, including his travel overseas. Yossi Melman, a journalist, revealed yesterday the name of the kibbutz that Sanders famously worked on in the 1960s:

The kibbutz is not far from Haifa in Northern Israel. Here’s its Hebrew website. It was run by the socialist movement, Hashomer Hatzair. Haaretz followed up with a story describing the kibbutz period as a “mystery” because the Sanders campaign has refused to tell reporters where he stayed.

However, on Thursday an article was found in the Haaretz archive from 1990, written by former intelligence correspondent and analyst Yossi Melman. Sanders… told Melman that in 1963 he spent a number of months in Kibbutz Sha’ar Ha’amakim, in northern Israel, as a guest of the Hashomer Hatzair youth movement.
In the interview, published under the title “The First Socialist” during his first campaign to the senate, Sanders said he grew up “in a Jewish environment in Brooklyn, New York, in which the Holocaust and Israel were always important.” The article says that after spending time on the kibbutz, he seems to have lost his connection to Israel, Zionism and Judaism, but fails to offer any further details, instead asking the then-hopeful senator why he chose to settle in Vermont.

Sanders’ campaign refused to confirm the name of the kibbutz the senator had volunteered on. Now all that is left is to discover what happened during his time in the Galilee, after which he divorced his first wife.

Did the Sanders’ stay on the kibbutz have anything to do with the divorce?

The Forward has also gotten on the story. And Steven Erlanger has picked up the Haaretz story for the New York Times, second hand (as we are), with this cute headline: “Bernie Sanders’s Kibbutz Found. Surprise: It’s Socialist.” Erlanger describes the kibbutz’s ethos:

Mr. [Albert] Ely [told the Forward] that on Sha’ar Ha’amakim, “you care about your brother or your neighbor or whoever it is.” The kibbutz was founded in Romania in 1929 and established in pre-state Israel in 1935. It saw the Soviet Union as a model, and often flew the red flag at outdoor events. Volunteers like Mr. Sanders would have internalized a political imperative to improve the lot of other, Mr. Ely said.

“I know that we left an imprint on those people,” Mr. Ely said. “The imprint was believe in people, and be responsible for them. Not only for yourself.”

With all that imprinting you’d think that American journals would be pointing out the imprint that this kibbutz made on the Palestinians who had lived in the Jezreel valley. Leave that to former socialist Zionist Peter Feld, who documents the ethnic cleansing on twitter:

Feld points to this document dealing with the lands that became the kibbutz. At that time, the 1930s, socialist Jews were establishing tower-and-stockade kibbutzim across northern Israel to secure the Zionist future. No Palestinians were admitted into these communities, of course. More information from Feld:

People are bringing up this 50 year old episode from Bernie Sanders’s past for a good reason, because the youthful travels of presidential candidates are seen to reveal something core in them. Like Bill Clinton going to Moscow. But “Surprise. It’s Socialist” could read “Surprise. It was built on Palestinian lands.” The Palestinian dispossession and refugee issue are hugely important issues in the politics of the conflict to this day.

This is not the first time Erlanger has left out this part of the story. About ten years ago on reading a book by Ghada Karmi, he realized that the West Jerusalem house atop which the New York Times apartment was built had been owned by Karmi’s family and then stolen from them by Zionist settlers. Erlanger reached out to Karmi to visit the house. Karmi has written extensively about this incident because she felt Erlanger seemed to excuse the dispossession under a that’s-the-way-the-cookie-crumbles philosophy and shed any responsibility for the matter. Erlanger says he reached out to Karmi as a human gesture to a writer he admired.

Erlanger didn’t write about this incident, Karmi did. And that goes to the point: what is the responsibility of an American narrator in this situation?

Why isn’t the problematic history of Zionism part of the Bernie Sanders’s story? Why isn’t the American Jewish community’s commitment to supporting Israel part of the Sanders story? How long before the Times, and Sanders, even deals with this angle?

Update: Ronnie Barkan has tweeted this image of the former Palestinian village.

Bernie Sanders's kibbutz was built on ethnically cleansed Palestinian village

Bernie Sanders’s kibbutz was built on ethnically cleansed Palestinian village

And Ronnie has tweeted this Zionist song with a video that pictures Palestinian village ruins not far from Sanders’s kibbutz.

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98 Responses

  1. JWalters
    February 5, 2016, 5:49 pm

    Looks like Bernie may have been one of those people who became disenchanted with the negative side of the whole operation. That could plausibly have been a difference with his first wife, who might have had stronger emotional attachments and a less universal outlook. But like anybody in politics today, he would have to be very cautious and strategic in bringing up any differences with the Zionist Establishment’s vast power, especially in the media. He needs to be wrapped in a solid shield of public understanding and support on this issue.

    • Dan
      February 5, 2016, 9:37 pm

      JWalters

      Noam Chomsky also spent time on a Hashomer Hatzair (Kibbutz Artzi Movement) Kibbutz.
      Hashomer Hatzair was in favor of a bi-national state in the 40’s, and opposed the Biltmore Program.

      • Lillian Rosengarten
        February 6, 2016, 4:04 pm

        OMG! I was once part of Hashomer Hatzair and loved the idea of Kibbutz. So many of us did not know then of land grabbing and the violence against Palestinians. We were blind and believed in another form of Israel. For a time we bought a dream that never existed. There is nothing Bernie needs to be ashamed of. I am convinced he abhors the occupation and will eventually speak his truth. He has already alluded to it. He will be a fine president.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 6, 2016, 4:43 pm

        I am convinced he abhors the occupation and will eventually speak his truth.

        that’s what i think too.

    • kalithea
      February 6, 2016, 1:10 am

      But like anybody in politics today, he would have to be very cautious and strategic in bringing up any differences with the Zionist Establishment’s vast power

      Tsk-tsk; it’s anti-Semitic to bring up Zionist power.

      If he weren’t a Zionist he’d be excoriated; but since he’s a Zionist he won’t bring up anything.

      He’s not an anti-Zionist people! Stop dreaming.

      • Lillian Rosengarten
        February 6, 2016, 4:07 pm

        Kalithea, your conclusion is not based on fact and your comment is divisive.

      • echinococcus
        February 6, 2016, 5:14 pm

        Lillian Rosengarten,
        How so, not based on fact? Just have a look at his reaction at the Town Hall meeting in 2014 before you say Mr Sanders is not Zionist. Besides, there is absolutely no trace of his being anti-Zionist in his record. Au contraire, as they say over there.
        Also, that bringing up Zionist power would be immediately attacked as “anti-Semitic” is a fact that you would not contest.
        Could you expand on the word you used, “divisive”? Divisive between who and who, exactly?

      • rosross
        February 6, 2016, 8:24 pm

        Yes, if Sanders is who he claims to be then he would abhor the occupation but he would say so now! Otherwise he is just another ventriloquist’s dummy for vested agendas, delusional enough to think that once he has purchased the presidency he will be allowed to be independent.

    • Sibiriak
      February 8, 2016, 1:00 am

      Philemon: I ain’t voting for either of ’em.
      ——————

      Fine. But that won’t prevent you from getting either or ’em, or a ferociously Zionist Republican.

      There is no viable anti-Zionist option in his election, so if you don’t choose the lesser evil, you will surely get the greater evil.

      • Philemon
        February 12, 2016, 10:13 pm

        I don’t care to vote for the lesser of two weevils, either. Gives ’em to much credence. Far preferable to abstain and withdraw my countenance from both.

        Which of ’em we get, and what evil they do, is the luck of the draw and no doing of mine.

      • Philemon
        February 12, 2016, 10:24 pm

        “too” of course!

  2. lysias
    February 5, 2016, 6:35 pm

    We learned on one of the threads here today that Carol Sanders, one of the leaders of Jewish Voice for Peace, is a first cousin of Bernie’s. It’s been widely reported that Bernie’s brother in the UK supports BDS.

    And his wife is Catholic, which could help to explain Bernie’s admiration for Pope Francis.

    By the way, it was announced today that Pope Francis is going to meet with Metropolitan Kiril, the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, so that together they can work out a strategy to stop the massacres of Christians in the Middle East.

    • Krauss
      February 6, 2016, 7:19 am

      Yeah, Bernie’s probably the most right-wing in his close family on Zionism, but when you’re around people who are in JVP and are pro-BDS, that’s much better than when you are selling your soul for shekels, in the case of Clinton slaving away for Saban. Literally, she’s the tool of monied interests, Wall Street will control her domestically and the Israel lobby will control her Middle Eastern foreign policy.

      For people who keep claiming “they are just the same”, I literally don’t understand how someone can say that in the face of the facts.

      • echinococcus
        February 6, 2016, 1:54 pm

        The facts show that they aren’t exactly the same. The empress is personally a mass murderer and criminal against peace; Sanders not yet –he ‘only’ supported all the actions by his vote and/or statements. Also, the Empress has no qualms but Sanders must always have some hand-wringing, soul-searching, sometimes a No vote where it doesn’t count for much, after which he always does fall in line. Finally, as you said, the Empress sells herself for hard cash while for Sanders it’s a matter of peaceful coexistence with the owners of the country (and possibly some childhood loyalties, judging by his emotional reaction at the 2014 Vermont Town Hall meeting)

      • Stephen Shenfield
        February 7, 2016, 11:43 am

        I see nothing unacceptable in what kalithea says. It is very easy to fall into wishful thinking (“wishful daydreaming” may be closer to the mark) and I suspect that I too have been indulging in it. There really is no evidence that Bernie is a closet anti-Zionist. His kibbutz experience may have formed a deep emotional tie to Israel that he has never broken.

        That said, he is obviously a moderate Zionist as Zionists go. If as president he were to speak his mind and act in accordance with his convictions he might force the Israelis into concessions that would give the Palestinians a little more hope. But he is a politician. He is cautious and “realistic.” Not only has he not questioned Zionism, he has not even voiced any open criticism of the Netanyahu government.

        How do we know that he will start to act differently if he becomes president? We don’t. Remember Obama? He too aroused our wishful daydreaming. He too had left-wing associations in his youth. There were signs that he too might moderate the US bias toward Israel. And when he was elected that expectation seemed to be vindicated by his Cairo speech. And then two whole terms and absolutely nothing. A few words of timid criticism of Israel by his underlings, presumably with his approval, but never the slightest hint of real pressure. What reason do we have to expect Sanders to do better?

      • Philemon
        February 7, 2016, 10:48 pm

        Not exactly the same, no.

        But Winnie the Pooh, living under the name of Sanders curls up like a piece of cellophane whenever Israel gets mentioned. I ain’t voting for either of ’em.

  3. yonah fredman
    February 5, 2016, 6:50 pm

    Here’s one definition of ethnic cleansing:
    Ethnic cleansing is the systematic forced removal of ethnic or religious groups from a given territory by a more powerful ethnic group, with the intent of making it ethnically homogeneous.[1] The forces applied may be various forms of forced migration (deportation, population transfer), intimidation, as well as mass murder and rape.

    if you agree with this definition,
    To use the phrase ethnic cleansing to describe a legal purchase of land and a legal eviction of tenants is a misuse of the term.
    Journalists of what sort would use this term in this context?

    • echinococcus
      February 5, 2016, 11:57 pm

      Reb Fredman,
      Still no understanding of the difference between land and sovereignty? After all these years?

    • tokyobk
      February 6, 2016, 12:33 am

      Its a fair concern and there are certainly Jews who were living in and immigrated legally to Palestine, but here is the thing with all colonial movements; legitimate transactions of one time are obscured by larger, state sponsored grabs of a later time.

      Take the many Japanese farmers and merchants who legitimately bought land and property in Manchuria and various South Sea Islands decades before the Pacific War. The Imperial grab of entire countries by force (and with support of most of those early settlers) creates a kind of complicit responsibility.

      In that case, all the Japanese, except some blended families and many of them too, were expelled. In the case of a future Israel/Palestine I would hope all legitimate deeds were respected but that would mean an awful lot of Palestinian returnees making fair claims.

      • echinococcus
        February 6, 2016, 12:44 am

        Tokyobk,

        Very good observation. Kibbutz settlers, in their majority if not entirety, can be seen as immigrated with hostile intent re sovereignty, starting 1897 at the latest.

      • jake42
        February 6, 2016, 1:08 am

        a better definition?

        Ethnic cleansing is the systematic removal of ethnic or religious groups from a given territory with the intent of increasing the dominance of the removing group. The forces applied may be military or paramilitary violence, forced migration, intimidation, and social or economic pressures designed to accomplish this goal

        (Ethnic cleansing is usually accompanied with the efforts to remove physical and cultural evidence of the targeted group in the territory through the destruction of homes, social centers, farms, and infrastructure, and by the desecration of monuments, cemeteries, and places of worship.)

      • Fritz
        February 6, 2016, 5:14 am

        What means “legitimately bought” or “legally to Palestine” in this case? You have the anglo-saxon idea of property and you have the quite different Ottoman rules of property and century long tenants.
        The pre-48 Zionists (e.g. Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael) bought land from the “legal” landowners, mostly sheikhs in Lebanon and Jordan, who never had seen the land they sold to Zionists. Their right to the land they “possessed” was limited, particularly it did not include the right to cancel the tenants or even to force them to leave the land.
        The Zionist took the property titles (until today as you can see in the Hebron houses) to force the century long tenants to leave it. It is also a colonial habit to decide on what is legal and what not. The anglo-saxon property rights are a very special case and differ from most definitions of property in the world.

      • gamal
        February 7, 2016, 3:23 pm

        “mostly sheikhs in Lebanon and Jordan”

        as far as I am aware almost all the “absentee landlord” property was bought from two Lebanese one Sursuk and one called something else, two guys.

      • Philemon
        February 7, 2016, 9:43 pm

        jake42: “Ethnic cleansing is usually accompanied with the efforts to remove physical and cultural evidence of the targeted group in the territory through the destruction of homes, social centers, farms, and infrastructure, and by the desecration of monuments, cemeteries, and places of worship.”

        Well, that’s Israel alright. And hey, how about theft of historical texts and artifacts on the flimsy excuse that they’re somehow related to your, well, not religion in Israel’s case, more like a bunch of different myths and legends from other people, which somehow got adopted and transmuted into a “history” of sorts. Personally, I can’t thing of anyone I’d trust less with historical texts or artifacts than Israel.

        And the regional cuisine, of course? That gets appropriated, too?

        The Israeli complex of fear and vaunting gets so tiresome after such a short time.

      • YoniFalic
        February 8, 2016, 9:31 am

        Sometimes ethnic cleansing (a euphemism for genocide) is accompanied by appropriation (theft) of cultural product of the ancestors of the natives in order for invaders to claim legitimate ownership while the natives are described as interlopers.

        We see such nonsense when Serbs claims certain monuments and medieval buildings were constructed by Albanized Serbs.

    • kalithea
      February 6, 2016, 1:20 am

      To use the phrase ethnic cleansing to describe a legal purchase of land and a legal eviction of tenants is a misuse of the term.

      Z-leazy misinterpretation of the truth. Guess what the Z stands for?

      Zionist-supremacy.

    • RoHa
      February 6, 2016, 3:21 am

      Not a misuse.

      “Ethnic cleansing”, as you have defined it, is a moral term. Application of legal pressure is a way of forcing removal even if law officers do not physically remove the tenants, and that is not excluded by your definition.

      The fact that it is legal in no way makes it moral. The law can be made by the powerful group that desires the ethnic cleansing, but even if it is not, that is no guarantee that the law is morally acceptable.

      • ritzl
        February 7, 2016, 2:20 pm

        I think this underscores your point RoHa. There was a SCOTUS case a few years back – Kelo v. City of New London – where the court held:

        The governmental taking of property from one private owner to give to another in furtherance of economic development constitutes a permissible “public use” under the Fifth Amendment. Supreme Court of Connecticut decision affirmed.

        https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kelo_v._City_of_New_London

        I don’t know if other countries have this type of immoral built-in “taking” (private to private/profit use), but we sure do in the US.

        As you say, just because it’s legal doesn’t make it moral or right.

        I just finished Howard Zinn’s book “A People’s History of the US” and it’s littered with that sentiment – to the point that it should be a subtitle, and could be the actual title without much argument.

        Your observation has great company. Sadly.

    • CigarGod
      February 6, 2016, 4:56 am

      “…a legal purchase…”?
      Would that include property sold under duress, coersion, etc?

      • MHughes976
        February 6, 2016, 5:46 am

        Yonah is entitled to his definition, though as Ro)Ha explains, this doesn’t get him off the hook. It might anyway be convenient to define the term just as the conjunction of its two halves, so that it covers any kind of ethnic or population shift brought about because those causing it regard the others as in some way dirtying the area. At that rate e-c occurs even if the cleansers go the extra expense (which they would probably think proved they were wonderful people) of paying a substantial sum to all those cleansed and in practice encountering very little opposition.

      • echinococcus
        February 6, 2016, 6:34 am

        No need. We have the document to establish that the buyers of any such property immigrated into Palestine with the declared intent of establishing themselves as a hostile majority with the intent of seizing sovereignty, no later than 1897. As confirmed by the British Crown in 1917.

        By the way, “ethnic cleansing” is a non-official, ambiguous description. It is fully covered as part of genocidal practices in the Convention against Genocide and had been discussed here by Hostage, who knows his stuff.

      • CigarGod
        February 6, 2016, 10:35 am

        Good point, MHughes.
        Had not thought of that.

    • edwin
      February 6, 2016, 10:31 am

      The Highland Clearances come immediately to mind. Another example – not quite the same, but with a resemblance – would be the treatment of Francophones in Quebec.

      In fact, what is a misuse, is the belief that through some form of technicality, or through carefully concocted definitions, what Israel does can be made to be ok.

      • RoHa
        February 6, 2016, 12:19 pm

        I was thinking of the Highland clearances and the enclosure of common land in England when I wrote that post.

        And you are correct. No legal technicality can excuse Zionists.

      • lysias
        February 6, 2016, 4:58 pm

        A great song about the Highland Clearances (at least their earliest phase after the Battle of Culloden) is Robert Burns’s Highland Widow’s Lament. (The movie The Wicker Man opens with a rendition of some of this song.)

    • Misterioso
      February 6, 2016, 10:36 am

      Some relevant facts apropos the first wave of ethnic cleansing of Arab Palestinians by Jewish militia and the IDF (late 1947 to late 1948):

      John H. Davis, who served as Commission General of UNRWA at the time: “An exhaustive examination of the minutes, resolutions, and press releases of the Arab League, of the files of leading Arabic newspapers, of day-to-day monitoring of broadcasts from Arab capitals and secret Arab radio stations, failed to reveal a single reference, direct or indirect, to an order given to the Arabs of Palestine to leave. All the evidence is to the contrary; that the Arab authorities continuously exhorted the Palestinian Arabs not to leave the country…. Panic and bewilderment played decisive parts in the flight. But the extent to which the refugees were savagely driven out by the Israelis as part of a deliberate master-plan has been insufficiently recognized.” (John H. Davis, The Evasive Peace, London: Murray, 1968)

      Mr. Davis’s observations are confirmed by the IDF Intelligence Branch Report dated 30 June 1948, entitled “The Arab Exodus from Palestine in the Period 1 December 1947 to 1 June 1948.” After studying the document, Israeli Jewish historian Benny Morris stated that “the Intelligence Branch report… goes out of its way to stress that the [Palestinian] exodus was contrary to the political-strategic desires of both the Arab Higher Committee and the governments of the neighboring Arab states. These, according to the report, struggled against the exodus – threatening, cajoling, and imposing punishments, all to no avail.” (Benny Morris, “The Causes and Character of the Arab Exodus from Palestine: The Israel Defense Force Intelligence Board Analysis of June 1948,” Middle Eastern Studies, Vol. XXII, no. 1, January, 1986)

      For the record: In 2004, when asked by Ha’aretz journalist Ari Shavit what new information his just completed revised version of The Birth of the Palestinian Problem 1947-1949 would provide, Benny Morris replied: “It is based on many documents that were not available to me when I wrote the original book, most of them from the Israel Defense Forces Archives. What the new material shows is that there were far more Israeli acts of massacre than I had previously thought. To my surprise, there were also many cases of rape. In the months of April-May 1948, units of the Haganah were given operational orders that stated explicitly that they were to uproot the villagers, expel them and destroy the villages themselves.” (Ha’aretz, January 9, 2004)

    • Pretext
      February 6, 2016, 11:40 am

      When an occupying power creates hardship and economic duress for the occupied so that they must eventually sell, it might be “legal” under the laws imposed by the occupying power, but A) it still falls violates international law and B) it’s just ethnic cleansing cloaked under an onionskin pretense of fair trade.

      Capitalism’s legitimacy is inversely proportional to the weight of the thumb on the scales, and in the OPT, that thumb is a 500-lb gorilla.

    • yonah fredman
      February 6, 2016, 2:00 pm

      To clarify: When I read the headline I was sure that Bernie Sanders’ kibbutz would be like some other kibbutzim established on land of people who were exiled (expelled or fled) during the nakba period. (47-49). That fits my definition of ethnic cleansing (and also as far as I can tell the UN’s definition as well). Instead I read that the removal of Palestinians was of tainted morality but not ethnic cleansing of the warfare of the nakba. Thus the use of this term to me reads as propaganda. To those who are of the choir and agree with the propaganda the term fits. i think the use of this term fits in with propaganda rather than history.

      The history of the pre nakba Zionists is full of flawed wishes and deeds which are justifiable (in my view) based upon the Jewish desire to survive rather than die in Europe. Whereas the nakba having occurred in the aftermath of WWII has no external basis for it, the attempt to settle the land before WWII, so as to strengthen the size and strength of the Jewish community in Palestine was justified by the history of what occurred to those left in Europe. I accept those who reject Ari Shavit’s justification for the exile of Lydda, for that occurred after WWII was over. But in the case of Sha’ar Ha’amakim: The Zionist Jews sought to help the survival of the Jews through building a community in Palestine. The tainted morality of purchasing from absentee landlords is far from perfect, but in the 1930’s the urge to survive suffices for me to justify the building of this kibbutz at that point in history.

      • echinococcus
        February 6, 2016, 2:19 pm

        You clarified more than enough, Reb Feldman. Invasion with hostile intent and ethnic cleansing are justified as long as the perpetrators are not only Jewish, but the right kind of Jewish.

      • Mooser
        February 6, 2016, 3:39 pm

        “but in the 1930’s the urge to survive suffices for me to justify”

        Yes, you are in good company “Yonah”. That’s exactly what Hitler always stressed, Germany’s “urge to survive suffices to justify”.

        Why shouldn’t we use similar rhetoric? Can you think of any reason?
        But you keep on pushing the line that the “the urge to survive suffices for me to justify” eliminating others, when it comes to the Jews. After all, we, like 1930’s Germany, have the power to make our survival a world priority.

      • RoHa
        February 6, 2016, 8:06 pm

        Could you clarify that clarification for me, please, Yonah?

        You seem to be suggesting that a strong Jewish community in Palestine was a way of helping European Jews to survive. How was that supposed to work? How was building a kibbutz going to help Jews in Europe?

        I will add that the results showed that it did not work very well. Millions of European Jews did not survive.

        And, of course, this was survival at the expense of the Palestinians. What makes Jews so important that others must suffer to enable Jews to survive?

      • rosross
        February 6, 2016, 8:31 pm

        Many European Jews emigrated to other countries and did not choose to become colonists in Palestine. One of the largest of such groups went to Australia and many of course went to the US and UK and elsewhere.

        There was never any justification for European Jews to go to Palestine as colonists and since most Jews do not live in UN mandated Israel or Occupied Palestine, never did and never will, then the premise that a State for followers of Judaism is required, was and is fantasy and propaganda.

        Since Jews lived safely and securely in many countries during WWII, patently most were not at risk anyway.

        And since, in recent years, many are emigrating back to the countries their parents and grandparents left, particularly Russia and Germany, it is pretty clear that there is no requirement for a Jewish colony in Palestine. I find it heartening that one of the largest groups of Israeli Jewish immigrants is in Berlin.

      • Mooser
        February 7, 2016, 10:50 am

        “What makes Jews so important that others must suffer to enable Jews to survive?”

        “RoHa”! I’m shocked! If reading “Yonah’s” comments doesn’t answer that question for you, it must be because you are anti-emetic.

      • yonah fredman
        February 7, 2016, 2:22 pm

        The axioms are as follows: 1. Survival is a valid goal. 2. Jews were doomed to be slaughtered in Europe, so all actions that were mass movements to move Jews out of Europe were inherently survival oriented. 3. One such movement was the Zionist movement. 4. The Palestinian Arabs were opposed to Zionism.
        5. Strengthening the Jewish settlements in Palestine were a promotion of Zionism. In a way that opening a candy store in Tel Aviv did not strengthen Zionism, the setting up of nonurban communities throughout the land strengthened the Zionist movement.

        The limited moral failing of evicting longtime tenants after a purchase from absentee owners is acceptable for the goal of survival. the nakba with guns and killing after the danger of Hitler was gone is a different story both because of the historical moment that had already passed and the type of eviction involved.

      • Mooser
        February 7, 2016, 2:45 pm

        “The axioms are as follows”

        First of all, you need to look up “axioms”. It doesn’t mean ‘retrospective Zionist myth-history’. Our self-serving mythology is not the world’s “axioms” “Yonah”.

        Unless, of course, you think we have the power to make it stick?

        “The limited moral failing of evicting longtime tenants after a purchase from absentee owners is acceptable for the goal of survival.”

        Umm, excuse me, “Yonah” you lost me. It is acceptable for who’s survival? Those with ‘stars on thars’?

        Anyway, I’m glad you realize what’s in store for Jerusalem and the occupation, as you say: “The limited moral failing of evicting longtime tenants after a purchase from absentee owners is acceptable for the goal of survival.

      • MHughes976
        February 7, 2016, 4:05 pm

        Axioms are propositions taken to be true without supporting argument. If we take all those 5 as axiomatic the presumably desired conclusion, that Zionism, at least in pre-Nakba form, was justified, still does not emerge. There is no proof that all measures to promote survival, even the wildest, most desperate and most cruel – or even the merely misjudged – are justified even if there are alternatives which may be, on morality or in effect, be better.

      • amigo
        February 7, 2016, 4:20 pm

        yonah , give it a rest.You can polish the turd that is zionism all you like but it will still stink to high heaven as do those who labour to justify ethnic cleansing and outright murder.

        Your survival does not give you the right to deny others their survival , at least not until you have worked to try to survive together.But the zionist criminals you keep trying to apologise for ad infinitum and ad nausea um had no interest in working together with anyone.I am beginning to think you are just another zionist criminal trying to look like a normal human being.

      • oldgeezer
        February 7, 2016, 4:28 pm

        @yonah

        Your point 1 is valid. Point 2 is a leap in logic and unsubstantiated by any facts. The rest is self serving bs and has no basis in any logic or morality. Typical supremacist fail and ziocaine lackoflogic.

        Truly a disgusting and immoral position.

      • oldgeezer
        February 7, 2016, 5:30 pm

        @amigo

        Only now beginning to think that of yonah? While I haven’t been here as long as many people I have never seen him not attempt to normalize and rationalize criminal acts and crimes against humanity. All the the name of zionism. I will concede he is very quick to hold Palestinians to a higher level of morality. Obe which his people long for but which must be overriden in the ne of survival. You know how it is eh?

      • Mooser
        February 7, 2016, 7:50 pm

        “Your survival does not give you the right to deny others their survival”

        “Yonah” goes from pleading for Jewish “survival”, to lauding a project which is an assertion of power and aggression (colonizing, ethnic-cleansing, declaring state) and can only ever be such.

        And expects nobody will notice the contradiction. Are we pleading for survival, or are we assertively demanding and going after our rights as a nation? Which is it?

      • bryan
        February 8, 2016, 4:22 am

        Surely Yonah recent events suggest alternative axioms: e.g. “2. Jews are doomed to be slaughtered in Palestine, so all actions that seek to move Jews out of Palestine (i.e. end settlements and occupation) are inherently survival oriented (for Jews).” This version at least has the merit of consistency with your further axiom: 4. The Palestinian Arabs are opposed to Zionism.” And why no mention of the axiom that Palestinians are doomed to be dispossessed, oppressed and slaughtered in Israeli-occupied Palestine so moving Jews out of Palestine is inherently survival oriented for the Palestinians? Or is it just that Palestinians don’t matter and don’t meet axiom number 1 that Palestinian “survival is a valid goal”? Or do you not give any thought to things before you go off on your flights of illogical fantasy?

      • RoHa
        February 8, 2016, 7:33 am

        1. By “valid” I assume you mean “morally acceptable”. Yes, survival is a morally acceptable goal, but that does not mean that any and every action taken to achieve survival is itself morally acceptable.

        2. I will agree that, sometimes, it is morally acceptable to impose some injustice on an innocent third party, even without that party’s consent, in order to survive. I will further agree that it is not easy to determine how much injustice can be imposed, but I will insist on at least the following conditions.

        (A) The injustice must be necessary, in that there is no alternative route to survival.

        (B) The injustice cannot be such that the survival of the third party is itself endangered. (Jumping the queue at the bus stop is permissible if necessary for survival. Pushing someone else under the bus is not.)

        (C) If possible, apology and restitution be made.

        Now it is by no means clear to me that either evicting longtime tenants after a purchase from absentee owners or pre-war Zionism in general fulfils any of those conditions. Certainly the third condition has not been met.

        But there is a further problem. As far as I can tell (and I expect others more familiar with the history will comment on this), the motive of the pre-War Zionists was to establish as much control over the land as possible for themselves. Saving European Jews from the coming slaughter was not their aim.

        So even if their actions did contribute to saving some European Jews, I am reluctant to accept this as a justification for their actions. This sort of post hoc moral justification seems highly dubious to me. I would not justify the Afican Slave trade on the grounds that it resulted in many of the descendants of the slaves being citizens of the rich USA rather than impoverished Upper Volta.

        As far as I am concerned, then, your attempted justification for the earlier Zionists is a total failure.

        Do you have anything better to offer?

  4. Atlantaiconoclast
    February 5, 2016, 8:54 pm

    Didn’t you get the memo? Only Jews in Israel are allowed to be racist nativists.

    • Mooser
      February 6, 2016, 12:07 pm

      “Didn’t you get the memo? Only Jews in Israel are allowed to be racist nativists.”

      Don’t despair! You can always convert and make hialeah!

  5. Rowan
    February 5, 2016, 10:09 pm

    My own research suggests to me that the entire pro-Soviet stance of Hashomer Hatzair in the kibbutzim was a calculated display, intended to deceive Stalin into the rather strange view that an independent Israel would join the Soviet bloc. The two deceivers who went to Moscow in 1947 to persuade Stalin of this, the first of whom paid dearly with a prison sentence after the Prague trials almost a decade later, and the second of whom did not, were MAPAM’s Mordechai Oren and Shmuel Mikunis of MAKI, the then-‘Palestinian’ CP. The reports submitted by MIkunis and Oren concerning their secret mission are at Beit Berl. I have a feeling there is some sort of inability to explore them and publish the results in public.

    • Misterioso
      February 6, 2016, 1:02 pm

      The kibbutzim were/are also a huge financial disaster.

    • Dan
      February 7, 2016, 11:03 am

      Rowan,

      HH had a large pro Soviet contingent in those days. It wasn’t calculated. That was the ideology.
      Many on the left had not unreasonable expectations that Israel would align with the Soviet bloc, or at least be unaligned, considering the background and ideology of its founders, the fact that the USSR had helped midwife Israel into the world (Gromyko’s speech at the UN in 1947), and had provided military aid in 1947/1948.

      Much of the anti Israel sentiment amongst communist/proletarian solidarity types in the west, starting in the 50’s, can be traced, I think, to feelings of betrayal when Israel aligned with the US during the cold war, the Korean War being the breaking point.

  6. kalithea
    February 6, 2016, 2:12 am

    I’d be ashamed too to disclose I’m a Zionist supremacist. I guess he realized that the victims commiserating in the kibbutz in the Promised Land, weren’t the real victims after all. There’s only so far you can push the Holocaust card with reality staring you down.

    It’s hard to betray the tribe even for universal human values. How can a conflicted Zionist admit that Zionists had supremacist intent when they wrapped themselves in something so profoundly tragic as the Holocaust? Those Zionists were/are a clever lot aren’t they? I’d compare it to an Omerta covenant; a bond of silence to protect the crime; with the caveat of exploiting great historical tragedy to secure that bond.

    Zionism is truly the ultimate most powerful form of supremacy and ultimate challenge to moral conscience. Like all forms of supremacy, the most renown being Nazism, it begs the question: what kind of force in the universe inspired this cult that pits a man against his soul?

    • Kay24
      February 6, 2016, 6:40 am

      The zionists who keep perpetrating these horrible crimes against helpless civilians, have no soul.

      They have no compassion, no tolerance, and certainly no mercy, for those they occupy, steal from, massacre in large numbers, and mete out collective punishment, just to get their thrills.

      Obviously they have not learnt lessons from the past, and have in fact taken the role of those who once tormented, and killed their people. They have become sadists, who keep lying to justify the crimes that the rest of the world keeps condemning. I am sorry to say the US has become complicit in these crimes, by sending tax payer money to support and arm them.

      As usual the victims are the innocent men, women, and children, in the Palestinian territories.

      • kalithea
        February 6, 2016, 11:56 am

        All sadly true. But the U.S. has become complicit because Zionism has infiltrated American government power and media structures using gatekeepers to ensure the legitimacy of Zionism at the expense of Palestinian rights and to justify these crimes you outlined with the historical tragedy that Zionists milk to excuse this injustice that Zionism perpetuates.

        Yes, it’s true that U.S. addiction to power through military dominance that requires securing the unlimited supply of fossil fuels in the Middle East also helps to generate this injustice and so many more injustices provoked by unnecessary wars and intentionally-incited conflicts meant to weaken the players in the region and empower the actor who is strategically placed to impose hegemony.

        But which came first the chicken or the egg? Because the U.S. was never as obsessed with the Middle East historically until Zionists started to exert influence moving U.S. interests and foreign policy in that direction.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 6, 2016, 4:59 pm

        Because the U.S. was never as obsessed with the Middle East historically until Zionists started to exert influence moving U.S. interests and foreign policy in that direction.

        oil wasn’t discovered until 1908. my hunch is US would have exerted influence moving U.S. interests and foreign policy in that direction had israel existed or not. how is another story, but they definitely would have done it and were doing it before israel came along.

      • lysias
        February 6, 2016, 5:26 pm

        There was intense interest, if not obsession, in this country in the fate of the Armenians in the early decades of the 20th century. Children who did not clean their plates were urged to think of the starving Armenians, and eat all their food. This (and a lot besides about the American reaction to the Armenian massacres) is discussed in the book The Burning Tigris.

      • kalithea
        February 6, 2016, 6:06 pm

        @Annie

        This is true, the U.S. was the top oil producer

      • kalithea
        February 6, 2016, 6:43 pm

        @Annie

        This is true, but the U.S. was the top oil producer from the 1950s to 1990s and yet the focus on the Middle East steadily increased in intensity from Johnson’s presidency onward and even before that to get to the extreme point it finds itself in today. And I believe it was Zionist influence that caused this crescendo of entanglement.

        And now that U.S. oil production is on the rise again; the reason there has been such a sharp decline in the price of oil on the market; the U.S. is so mired in the mess created since and multiple fires created by Zionist-driven and inspired foreign policy that whether there is increased American oil production U.S. presence in that area is there to stay unless a wider catastrophic conflict erupts that changes the dynamics and balance of power there or Americans get fed up of investing trillions of their hard-earned tax dollars on a futile bottomless pit; like shaping the Middle East to conform to the neediness of Zionist paranoia and insecurity.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 7, 2016, 12:13 am

        kalithia, i didn’t engage with you earlier in an effort to dissuade anyone the impact of israel on our engagement on the ME has not been immense. i just don’t think it’s wise to make statements implying the U.S. would not have made huge effort to exerted influence in the ME if not for israel. because that is a fools game.

        oil as a finite energy resource and a reality of our time on this planet, to our detriment no doubt. a huge reality. israel not existing would not erase that. dominating global resources is something every power seeks to accomplish. therefore it’s not an issue of whether we would be engaged in the ME if not for israel, but how we would be engaged or how we might be engaged differently or less/more violently.

        And now that U.S. oil production is on the rise again; the reason there has been such a sharp decline in the price of oil on the market…..

        you’ll have to excuse me for not accepting your analysis on why the price of oil has gone down. i think it was greatly anticipated as well as heavily documented and watched around the world the week the iran sanctions were lifted. either way, i know it may be somewhat difficult for some to concieve, but there are other actors involved on the world stage.

        until such time as the oil runs out or an alternate energy dominates our geostrategic priorities, will be in the ME, with or without israel.

        ciao.

    • echinococcus
      February 6, 2016, 6:41 am

      How can a conflicted Zionist admit that Zionists had supremacist intent when they wrapped themselves in something so profoundly tragic as the Holocaust?

      How? By listening to the Zionists’ own statements.

  7. hophmi
    February 6, 2016, 5:03 am

    Just nonsense. This is land that was legally purchased. There’s nothing “Palestinian” about it. I wonder, Phil, whether it’s necessary to include in all profiles about you, that you live on Native American land in Westchester.

    • CigarGod
      February 6, 2016, 12:51 pm

      You didn’t need to preface your comment with “Just nonsense.”
      As with all your postings, it is understood.

      • Mooser
        February 6, 2016, 12:59 pm

        “As with all your postings, it is understood.”

        He’s the outreachmeister!

    • Mooser
      February 6, 2016, 3:42 pm

      “Phil, whether it’s necessary to include in all profiles about you, that you live on Native American land in Westchester.”

      “Hophmi” is claiming that Phil’s property now belongs to Israel.

    • rosross
      February 6, 2016, 9:03 pm

      If there is nothing Palestinian about it, why was it all called Palestine for thousands of years and why was a country called Palestine, cited, as being partitioned by the UN?

      Let’s just say that those Zionists who purchased land or homes in Palestine had every right to do so, just as people buy land and homes in countries around the world which are not their own.

      What the Zionists never had a right to do was to use the land they purchased as a stepping stone to colonising the entire country and setting up their own State.

      It would be the same as Zionists who own land and homes in the US and there are many of them, saying that because of it they have a right to set up their own State. Delusional. Or, to use your word, nonsense.

  8. watzal
    February 6, 2016, 10:05 am

    Hillary Clinton is a savvy politician and totally untrustworthy. Her presidency would be a recipe for further US-led wars. She is a representative of big business, the war industry, the Wall Street and the Zionist lobby. Haim Saban, the Zionist multi-billionaire is going to put tons of money in her campaign. She has done him already some favors: Inviting Netanyahu to the White House, if she is elected US President, which I hope never is going to happen, and she wrote an anti-BDS letter that supported the meanest Zionist propaganda campaigns against the Palestinians’ call for justice and their own state. Her servility towards this right-wing Israel government is just disgusting.

    The American voters should also not forget her support of Bush’s criminal war against Iraq. She, together with Susan Rice and Samantha Power, pushed President Obama into the putsch against Muammar al-Gaddafi, which created a chaos in the country that last until now. Her role in the killing of ambassador Christopher Stevens in Benghazi is still unclear. What did she want to hide during her four years as Secretary of State by using her private e-mail account?

    The American people have all the right to distrust her. Bernie Sanders is the right person to elect instead, although a smear campaign against him just started. Evil to him who evil thinks.

    • Qualtrough
      February 7, 2016, 8:05 am

      @watzal – Agreed. I also think she is something of a sociopath:

      • Philemon
        February 7, 2016, 10:13 pm

        “…[S]omething of a sociopath?”

        Any woman who would have stayed married to Bill Clinton for the sake of her political career must be a power-hungry psychopath. Stands to reason. And she has since given evidences that she is far from normal.

      • Mooser
        February 8, 2016, 11:15 am

        “Any woman who…”

        If Hilary had walked out of the White house, in an old housecoat, with a single battered suitcase, slamming the door behind her and announcing “Not another night under his roof, I’m a grown woman, I will not be treated like this, I can manage, thank you!” to the reporters, she might have been elected “Queen-for-a-lifetime” by acclamation!
        But she didn’t. She just acclimated.

      • Philemon
        February 12, 2016, 10:02 pm

        Mooser, representative democracy, whatever its merits, has the shortcoming that people vote for weirdos because they happen to be memorable.

        It would never have occurred to Hillary that walking “…out of the White House, in an old housecoat, with a single battered suitcase [ike Delta Dawn!], slamming the door behind her and announcing ‘Not another night under his roof, I’m a grown woman, I will not be treated like this, I can manage, thank you!’ to the reporters”, might have gotten her “elected ‘Queen-for-a-lifetime’ by acclamation!”

        If it had, she would have done it in a skinny minute, but it didn’t occur to her because she’s not the sort of person that that sort of thing occurs to, as she can’t think like a normal person, because she isn’t, and thus can’t know how normal people think.

        She did not need to be acclimated. She was already there, baby, five ways from jack and cooking with gas. I don’t think Bill being unfaithful was anything new to her.

        Unfortunately, Hillary gives every of evidence of having some serious personality disorder(s). I’m going with psychopath. A narcissist might have had a psychotic breakdown by now… But you never know.

      • Mooser
        February 13, 2016, 11:14 am

        Poor old Delta Dawn

        A faded rose from days gone by.

  9. Boomer
    February 6, 2016, 12:48 pm

    What a lovely place. No wonder the Europeans wanted it, and took it.

    The Zionists say, “that’s-the-way-the-cookie-crumbles,” or, “Just nonsense. This is land that was legally purchased. There’s nothing ‘Palestinian’ about it.” Thus they display their character by their words as well as their actions.

    I suppose Senator Sanders, once in office, might actually be better on I/P than Mrs. Clinton, precisely because of his background. I don’t see how he could be worse than what we have now. But I guess we can only wait to see: one certainly can’t expect an American politician who wants to get elected to say anything hinting at Pro-Palestinian sentiments.

  10. echinococcus
    February 6, 2016, 2:16 pm

    Congratulations, Phil, for the links and the writing, not infected in any point by personal sympathies.

  11. SQ Debris
    February 6, 2016, 3:59 pm

    This video provides a window on Bernie’s Israel view. Pick it up about 13:10. Pretty straightforward denunciation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TocimL0AT1w

  12. luckygoldsmith
    February 6, 2016, 4:05 pm

    According to Salman Abu Sitta’s book Return Journey (2007) p. 41 Sha’ar Ha Amakim was built on part of Sheikh Breik village. The kibbutz’ land is 2,676 dunum, its former population 360 in 1945, and 600 in 1995. It was established in 1935 on land bought in 1925 from tax collectors who owned it fraudulently: Alexander Sursouk, heirs of Tweiny family and heirs of Matta Farah.

  13. Jackdaw
    February 7, 2016, 1:16 am

    Today, Peter Feld and Mondoweiss raped Veritas, and a particularly ugly bit of work it was.

    The Arabs ‘ethnically cleansed’ by the Mandatory Government had been paid off, in full, years before this carefully orchestrated incident.
    This was nothing more that an attempted ‘shakedown’ of the Zionists, by the Bedouin.

    https://books.google.ca/books?id=8Teb4dKHQcoC&pg=PA156&hl=en#v=onepage&q&f=false

    • Annie Robbins
      February 7, 2016, 12:51 pm

      so jack, did you read this today: “Barbarism by an educated and cultured people” — Dawayima massacre was worse than Deir Yassin ? – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2016/02/barbarism-by-an-educated-and-cultured-people-dawayima-massacre-was-worse-than-deir-yassin/#sthash.lChCrjb7.dpuf

      • Jackdaw
        February 7, 2016, 2:11 pm

        Annie.

        Your attempted distraction is a subtle as a flying mallet.

        Please. Let’s remain focused.

        Were the Hartieh village Bedouin “ethnically cleansed”. Yes/No?
        If No, proceed to the next question?
        Were the Hartieh village Bedouin “forcibly evicted”. Yes/No.
        If No, proceed to next question.
        Were the Hartieh village Bedouin illegal squatters who violently attacked Jewish farmers and Mandatory police? Yes/No.

        Answer: Yes.

      • Philemon
        February 7, 2016, 10:01 pm

        It’s an odd thing, Jack, but, somehow, I don’t know why, when you accuse Annie, or anyone else for that matter, but Annie especially, of attempting distraction or whatever, I think that it’s all you, your mind, how you think, what your aims are.

        Maybe, it’s my reading of what you’ve written in the past. Gosh, maybe you’ve turned over a new leaf since then! But, still, there it is.

      • Jackdaw
        February 7, 2016, 11:51 pm

        @Philemon

        What the hell are you talking about?

      • Annie Robbins
        February 8, 2016, 1:30 am

        This was nothing more that an attempted ‘shakedown’ of the Zionists, by the Bedouin. link to books.google.ca

        jack, from the amazon description of your 1982 book by Arieh L. Avneri: http://www.amazon.com/The-Claim-Dispossession-Land-Settlement-1878-1948/dp/0878559647

        He demonstrates that there is no historical evidence for the eviction of the Palestinians from Israel previous to the founding of the state. Most of those who left afterwards did so on their own volition.

        this is not a viable source. it recommends “Frequently Bought Together” > joan peters infamously debunked nakba denying book From Time Immemorial. do you really think anyone takes these sorts of books seriously anymore?

        nakba denial is prohibited here.

        plus, the census data source was Roberto Bachi and British census data. but it appears bachi didn’t even think the census data was correct:

        however: http://www.sts-biu.org/images/file/Negotiating%20Methods.pdf

        As Bachi would write several years after the census, while the size of the Arab population was put at 69,000, entire geographical areas populated by Palestinians, such as the Western Galilee and the Negev, were not visited by the surveyors due to the war.42 Although these areas would be enumerated later, at the beginning of 1949, the data on the Arab population would remain incomplete even after 1949. Bachi offered several explanations for the incomplete figures for the numbers of Palestinians and Bedouins: firstly, the conditions of the war and the population exchanges among Palestinians prevented a full account of the non-Jewish population. Secondly, at the beginning of 1949, the territorial changes to Israel as a result of the war increased the non-Jewish population by 30,000. Finally, Bedouins were hard to count, due to their nomadic lifestyles. Robinson, who studies the naturalization process of Palestinians during and after the 1948 War, cites three major groups that were left out:

        »The Israeli census bureau counted roughly 69,000 Palestinians in November 1948. This figure excluded the 13,000-15,000 Bedouin residents of the Naqab/Negev desert, whom the Interior Ministry’s Registration Division secretly left out of the population registry altogether.

        It also excluded roughly 5,000 men and teenage boys then interned in Israel’s POW camps, roughly 14 percent of all Palestinian males left in the country between the ages of 15 through 60. Most of them were picked up by the IDF upon the occupation of their home locale simply because they were of ›military‹ age. The third major group that was not counted in the first census was some 40,000 residents of the Upper Galilee villages which the army had conquered just over a week before.«43

      • Jackdaw
        February 8, 2016, 9:47 am

        Annie tosses another book onto the bonfire. This time on the pretext that an Amazon blurb evinces ‘Nakba denial’.

    • Sibiriak
      February 8, 2016, 12:49 am

      Jackdaw: link to books.google.ca
      ———————–
      The book is “The Claim of Dispossession: Jewish Land-Settlement and the Arabs, 1878-1948” (1982), by Arieh L. Avneri.

      According to the Amazon description:

      He demonstrates that there is no historical evidence for the eviction of the Palestinians from Israel previous to the founding of the state. Most of those who left afterwards did so on their own volition. [emphasis addd]

      http://www.amazon.com/Claim-Dispossession-Jewish-Land-Settlement-1878-1948/dp/0878559647/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1454910302&sr=8-1&keywords=The+Claim+of+Dispossession%3A+Jewish+Land-Settlement

      Needless to say, the fled on their own volition claim has been thoroughly debunked and constitutes Nakba denial.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 8, 2016, 1:36 am

        oh i just saw this Sibiriak. whoops. sorry for the repost.

      • Mooser
        February 8, 2016, 11:20 am

        Wow, never seen anything like “Jackdaw”. If there isn’t a steaming pile for him to step in, he brings his own.

  14. kalithea
    February 7, 2016, 2:37 am

    Bernie is a Zionist in denial of the word or ashamed of it. When asked if he’s a Zionist, he answered with a question: What’s that?. Really? He doesn’t know? Who’s he kidding? This amounts to Clinton’s: that depends on what your definition of is is? What other definition can there be, except for the truth?!

    Of course this means I was right that he’s conflicted and he’s not the only one. Deep down there’s a whole lot of Zionists who are, because it is a shameful word; they can’t deny what their lying eyes tell them that an entire nation of people are suffering because of Zionism and Jewish entitlement in Israel.

    How can one deny the truth? And he was already ashamed and conflicted 30 years ago! And here he is 30 years later and what has he done to better his conscience and improve the situation or influence his Zionist comrades to stop this insane crime against humanity? Not a damn thing, and there are so many like him witnessing the suffering year after year after year and doing squat about it. These types of Zionists are like the German people circa 1930s, just going about their business deluding themselves.

    And worst of all he’s for the fictitious, non-existent two-state. The excuse liberal Zionists use to soothe their conscience pretending there’s some distant solution called two state that’ll make it all right; when they’ve been sitting back allowing the facts on the ground to increasingly prove them wrong while they profess liberal compassionate values for other causes. It’s a disgusting spectacle of hypocrisy, is what it is.

    He’s mentioned using U.S. funding as leverage but with all parties: I’m assuming he means Israel, Egypt, Jordan etc. Poppycock! This is but deflective lip-service that amounts to nothing.

    It’s delusional liberal Zionist claptrap. I doubt he’d get tough on Israel; he’ll just do what every other President has done; look the other way; kick the can down the road; pretend he’s too busy with domestic issues and can’t get around to it…and whatever other excuse he can find under the sun not to deal with it.

    Meanwhile what? Let Palestinians suffer another 30 years, and on, and on…??? I really don’t know how Zionists live with themselves.

    • echinococcus
      February 7, 2016, 4:46 am

      Absoutely right, Kallithea.
      But now, so the story goes, he’s ready to ditch his Zionism: the proof of his new anti-Zionist strategy being that he’s never said any word or given any hint of his conversion because he expects to get the presidency first, by deception, and then slam it on the Zionists. Now let’s all go vote without discussing anything but the goodies he’ll bring to the American middle class.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 7, 2016, 1:00 pm

        so the story goes, he’s ready to ditch his Zionism

        can you source this story?

      • kalithea
        February 7, 2016, 2:22 pm

        I want to post the video where Bernie pretends not to know what Zionist means, minutes 26:07 and on:

        But if you notice, just before this he’s discussing about how Europe has a responsibility to address issues of genocide and atrocities which by the way in Rwanda the U.S. did nothing. My point is that he knows atrocities are happening in the Palestinian Territories for decades and he’s shrugging responsibility in that same sense therefore wearing his hypocrisy on his sleeve.

        Here is the video almost 30 years ago when he pretended to care but did not lift one finger or demonstrate political courage and influence to help stop the injustice against Palestinians since then.:

        And the thing is he’s talking about the atrocities going on for 30 years; but it’s 60 years since then! And these atrocities go back to the Nakba and before that to be honest. And the excuse he keeps using 30 years ago and up to the present is this: I don’t have a magical solution… and notice how he then shifts responsibility again to others i.e. the Arab states, as he did in the previous video in the context of stopping atrocities to Europe.

        Here’s my point: WE ALL HAVE A MORAL OBLIGATION TO END INJUSTICE, ATROCITY AND GENOCIDE AGAINST ANY PEOPLE.
        Even if it’s unpopular; even if there are risks it takes one lone voice to keep sounding the alarm of awareness.

        Each one of us in a small or larger way, depending on our power of influence and individual circumstances allowing us to contribute, even with the spoken and written word, to raise awareness has a God-given responsibility, a moral responsibility if you wish. This is not something that we shrug off and pretend is complicated and beyond our scope, or excuse with why isn’t the other guy doing his part?. Everyone should be using their God-given talents in some way to raise awareness; even walking with a sign. Everyone can and should act in some way pushing forward the narrative of justice for Palestinians shoulder to shoulder just like the massive shoulder to shoulder effort by the Civil Rights Movement; the Apartheid concerted effort and yes, the combined resistance to defeat the Nazis!

        Now, does this mean that Bernie as President would not act. I can’t honestly say with 100% certainty that he won’t, but what I can say is that he made those statements 30 years ago, that he stayed on a Kibbutz, years earlier, no doubt being exposed in some way to the oppression around him on occupied land. So, throughout maybe 50 years of his adult life and political service career he has done absolutely nothing consistent and even after those comments 30 years ago. So how then can I possibly believe that he will effect a constructive change that will lead to real and honest justice? How can I believe this if he hasn’t demonstrated the interest, incentive, courage and political will ever??? Unfortunately, whether he admits it or not, he is a Zionist; and I believe Zionism is like a cult for reasons I stated above. It compromises the soul, if you wish: moral conscience. Therefore unless someone divests themselves of the restraints that come with Zionism; it’s hopeless for that person no matter how human and moral he pretends to be.

        This is a man who stood shoulder to shoulder with the Civil Rights Movement. This is a Zionist who pretends not to know what Zionist means and is in denial of it and rightly, feels shame when confronted with it. This is a man who has done nothing, except make a few, very few comments when pressed on the issue and who still cannot be trusted on the issue of Israel and the severe injustice and yes atrocity that Zionism perpetuates.

        I can only hope your site is in his favorites because he needs to be challenged on this.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 8, 2016, 1:53 am

        he doesn’t pretend to not to know what Zionist means, he’s asked ‘do you view yourself as a zionist speaking of israel’ and says “what does that mean [meaning what does that question mean] — wanna define what the word means? do i think israel has a right to exists, yes i do. “

      • YoniFalic
        February 8, 2016, 9:52 am

        Too bad. A state founded after Auschwitz in post-Auschwitz genocide cannot have a right to exist. Otherwise the international anti-genocide legal regime has no meaning.

  15. echinococcus
    February 7, 2016, 4:10 pm

    Annie,
    I meant a more-than-hope expressed explicitly in at least a half-dozen posts, and if I remember well in more cautious terms in others, that Mr. Sanders deep in his heart harbors pro-Palestinian sentiments, more than just the usual lip service that even Bush has given re the occupation and the excesses, that Mr S is hiding that very deep so as not to lose the vote of divers Zionist constituencies and would, when and if elected, get the ship of state to correct its course in the direction of Palestinian rights.

    Just a couple recent examples:

    Lillian Rosengarten February 6, 2016, 4:04 pm

    There is nothing Bernie needs to be ashamed of. I am convinced he abhors the occupation and will eventually speak his truth. He has already alluded to it. He will be a fine president.

    Annie Robbins February 6, 2016, 4:43 pm

    I am convinced he abhors the occupation and will eventually speak his truth.

    that’s what i think too.

    – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2016/02/new-york-times-picks-up-bernie-sanderss-socialist-kibbutz-but-leaves-out-the-ethnic-cleansing/#comment-824017

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

    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…

    – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2016/02/generational-sea-change-within-the-democratic-party-will-include-policy-towards-israel/#comment-823973

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