There’s no room on campus to be progressive and pro-Israel

Activism
on 78 Comments

The hand-wringing about the alienation of pro Israel Jewish students from progressive spheres on American campuses continues. At the Forward, Seffi Kogen, the American Jewish Committee’s Assistant Director for Campus Affairs, has authored a wildly inaccurate portrayal of campus intersectionality bemoaning this alienation titled “How BDS Is Pushing Jewish Students Out of Social Justice Activism”.

For starters, throughout the article Kogen conflates “Jewish students”, who are ideologically diverse, with the group of primarily pro Israel advocates. He ignores the Jewish students who are thriving in social justice activism on campuses across the country in groups such as Jewish Voice for Peace, Students for Justice in Palestine, and Open Hillel’s to name just a few. And he ignores them to his own chagrin. 

He starts out linking favorably to an article which claims students have “effectively politicized” fighting a culture of sexual violence and rape “by making anti-Zionism a primary tenet of its platform” and therefore “disqualified itself from being our school’s much needed supportive group and community for students across the board.” By these same standards, wouldn’t Hillel, the pro Israel (decidedly Zionist, effectively politicized) student organization also disqualify itself from being a supportive group for students across the board?

Kogen claims that the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign has frozen “American Jews out of the crucial social justice conversations of our time”, yet arguably, equality for Palestinians and ending the Israeli occupation of Palestine is the crucial social justice issue of our time, and the BDS movement is teeming with American Jews.

Kogen demonstrates his utter lack of research and awareness by claiming the Movement for Black Lives (M4BL) Platform “most prominently and provocatively” gives “Israel the dubious distinction of being the only foreign country called out by name in a document that otherwise focuses on racial discrimination in the United States.”

He needs to learn to scroll. The platform, under a large bolded font headline reading “A Cut in US Military Expenditures and A Reallocation of those Funds to Invest in Domestic Infrastructure and Community Wellbeing” calls out the U.S. for military interventions that have “coincided with some of the worst genocides in the world,” lambasting the U.S. “arming and training of soldiers in places like Uganda, Burundi, and Kenya” as well as interventions in Libya, Somalia, Mali, Chad, Gulf of Guinea, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Niger, the Seychelles, Central African Republic, South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo and “accommodating future “surges” of troops; legions of mercenary spies”. Aside from the U.S. militarization of Africa (AFRICOM), the Movement for Black Lives platform denounces U.S. destabilization in Central America.

The very the same page-and-link in that M4BL platform that addressed U.S. support for Israel (and the billions of dollars funneled to the state from US taxpayers) mentioned almost 20 other countries. This is the same document Kogen claims, aside from mentioning Israel, “otherwise focuses on racial discrimination in the United States.”

It begs the question, why would he even be concerned with a social justice conversation and/or alignment with people he can’t hear or listen to?

Kogen claims BDS has “led to the erosion of traditional ties on which Jews have long relied.” But Jewish support for an apartheid state has eroded those traditional ties, not BDS. And what does “on which Jews have long relied” even mean? Relied on for what? Friendship? Support for Israel? He doesn’t say.

Kogen:

Though much has been made of the need to protect Jewish students on campus, little has been done to address the underlying cultural current that allows BDS to thrive.

The underlying cultural current that allows BDS to thrive is the occupation and the continued unwillingness of Israel to end that occupation, end inequality, end discriminatory practices and laws, and stop settlement expansion. If the pro Israel Jewish students wanted to improve this situation, why focus on BDS instead of directing their activism towards ending Israeli policies that further entrench occupation and inequality? 

As one student attendee at the AJC Global Forum 2016 put it: “I want to be a part of the progressive fights my generation is currently waging, but I am deeply troubled and challenged by the anti-Israel sentiment rising amongst the far left.”

So you want to be a part of progressive fights your generation is waging while supporting a state engaged in decades-long human rights abuse. We get it. But it’s hypocrisy. You can’t get into the cool human rights club when you support crimes against humanity. And why are you more concerned with “the anti-Israel sentiment” rising on the left than you are with apartheid, home demolitions,  administrative detentions? When you support, empower, advocate for, and protect a state that carries out these routine abuses, including routine extrajudicial executions, it’s natural progressive students won’t want to align with you. It’s not because you’re Jewish, it’s because of your support for a state deeply entrenched in crimes against humanity. 

But they suffer nevertheless as their peers make it clear to them that their Zionism disqualifies them from the progressive activist community and, in some instances, from campus leadership roles in general.

Like a male chauvinist suffers from being disqualified from feminists circles. Do we sympathize with their plight of rejection?

Kogen thinks it’s not to late to turn the tide on campuses:

The American Jewish community, the venerable organizations and the progressive upstarts, must work to empower today’s Jewish students to reverse these troubling trends among their peers, to strengthen old coalitions and build new bridges.

The American Jewish community could empower today’s Jewish students by directing their focus on the State of Israel, pressuring the state to reverse Zionism’s “troubling trends”. This would be the most effective way to empower Jewish students, by giving them concrete progressive policy changes to advocate for, not tossing them into dialogue groups to defend decades of injustice with their increasingly informed  peers — it’s a losing battle. 

If young American Jews can be equipped and encouraged to form friendships with their progressive peers, to restore their Jewish voices to the social justice conversation, and, at the same time, to stand up for Israel, then this moment of progressive antipathy toward the Jewish state will be remembered as a blip on the historical record of liberal support for Israel.

I really don’t see how it’s possible to “stand up for Israel” in this climate and be accepted as part of the progressive community.  Because policies of the state of Israel (occupation) is about as far from “progressive” as imaginable. 

Youth of all stripes will continue to distance themselves from Israel, and support for Israel will further drift out of mainstream American political opinion. The only way to change this is to end the occupation. 

Seffi Kogen finds it “exciting to take part in the ongoing Zionist project”.  He was a 2015 delegate at the World Zionist Congress for Mercaz, the Zionist membership organization of the Conservative Movement whose goals include “advancing Zionism as the progressive movement of national liberation that it set out to be”. He’s got his work cut out for him, because whatever Zionism set out to be, today it is not a progressive movement. And those who activate in support of it will likely continue to be isolated by people of conscience until we see Israel change its apartheid policies.  

About Annie Robbins

Annie Robbins is Editor at Large for Mondoweiss, a mother, a human rights activist and a ceramic artist. She lives in the SF bay area. Follow her on Twitter @anniefofani

Other posts by .


Posted In:

78 Responses

  1. jd65
    September 5, 2016, 3:54 pm

    You can’t get into the cool human rights club when you support crimes against humanity. LMFAO. That’s classic…

    …Mercaz, the Zionist membership organization of the Conservative Movement whose goals include “advancing Zionism as the progressive movement of national liberation that it set out to be”.

    Interesting, you might say, that on Mercaz’s own page, they use the phrase “that it set out to be…” to describe Zionism’s “progressive” nature. That sounds past tense to me. Which would, of course, still be a HUGE compliment to Zionism, because whatever Zionism set out to be…”, as far as I’m concerned, it was never anything really close to “progressive.” People who try to spin that are neck deep in the mythification of Israel & Zionism. Wait… Not neck deep. Sunken…

    Good piece, Annie.

  2. K Renner
    September 5, 2016, 5:35 pm

    LOL and once again we see in all this kvetching and hand-wringing over the BDS movement– demonization of simply stating the facts about Israel’s actions towards Palestinians included– that the pro-Israel element simply doesn’t want to see anyone standing for the Palestinians in any way whatsoever.

    • Krauss
      September 6, 2016, 10:48 am

      The entire piece has a stench of whining Jewish privilege. For too long, people like him could pretend to be liberals in the US because support Apartheid abroad.

      That moment has collapsed, and now he’s crying. He is disgusting.

  3. Talkback
    September 5, 2016, 5:38 pm

    “advancing Zionism as the progressive movement of national liberation that it set out to be”

    ROFL. Just another ludicrous Zionist trying to paint settler colonialism as anti colonial “liberation movement”.

  4. eljay
    September 5, 2016, 5:46 pm

    … [Seffi] Kogen finds it “exciting to take part in the ongoing Zionist project”. …

    Of course he does – he’s a Zio-supremacist.

    … He was a 2015 delegate at the World Zionist Congress for Mercaz, the Zionist membership organization of the Conservative Movement whose goals include “advancing Zionism as the progressive movement of national liberation that it set out to be”. …

    Zionism was and is all about Jewish supremacism in/and a religion-supremacist “Jewish State” in as much as possible of Palestine. There’s nothing “progressive” about religion-based (or any other type of) supremacism.

  5. ritzl
    September 5, 2016, 6:10 pm

    Great article Annie.

  6. pabelmont
    September 5, 2016, 6:13 pm

    I should think PEP Zionists could continue to support all other (or many other) progressive causes (that is, except Palestine). Why not? I have many friends who support Hillary Clinton and did so when there was a choice to support Bernie Sanders; and others who adopted Hillary after Bernie lost within the (hardly progressive) DNC. They are still my friends and they continue to support many worthy causes.

    My guess: the PEP Zionists are seeking to demand support for Zionism from progressives in groups unrelated to I/P. Sorry, I mean P/I. Gosh, what a slip.

    • Annie Robbins
      September 6, 2016, 2:08 pm

      PEP Zionists could continue to support all other (or many other) progressive causes …. Why not?

      pabelmont, i didn’t choose the title (i think mine was along the lines of “freshman alert: supporting israel is not progressive”). i think a student could carve out a place for themselves advocating for other progressive causes while supporting israel. but whether they will attract progressive allies while being overtly pro israel is another story.

      and i think that sentiment (of not aligning oneself with another student or group who advocates for something diametrically opposed to ones core beliefs) is born out in the quote i picked up from the student in kogen’s article:

      “by making anti-Zionism a primary tenet of its platform” and therefore “disqualified itself from being our school’s much needed supportive group”

      and let’s remember who was in the front line of this shunning years ago.. it was hillel who refused sponsorship of events co sponsored by jvp or sjp or non zionist groups or anyone supporting boycotts. hillel director even refused to address the j street conference. so they’re all about shunning — they just squeal when they are not included and imply (or outright state) it’s anti semitism. they see equal rights for palestinians as inherently anti israel. well, clearly zionism is an inherently anti palestinian stance, since it require the deconstruction of palestine for it’s own manifestation. total double standard.

      • Citizen
        September 8, 2016, 11:26 pm

        Yep, thanks, Annie. Good whole article!

      • Annie Robbins
        September 9, 2016, 1:53 am

        thank you citizen ;)

  7. MHughes976
    September 5, 2016, 6:20 pm

    You have a pretty picture of Oberlin College at the top of this article. I’ve been following the Joy Karega business there. The disciplinary process is now in its seventh month. It is extraordinarily cumbersome and the outcome may still be some way off, but I suspect she has paid for her (in my view, wild) 9/11 allegations with her career. I don’t believe that wild allegations against (say) Nigerian, Indonesian or French targets would have caused much more than a ripple. It seems that the cultural barriers and connections which Mr, Kogen believes in are not as badly damaged as he fears.

    • Annie Robbins
      September 6, 2016, 12:59 am

      i used the same photo as the forward article i was reviewing. re oberlin/ karega, she’s been suspended >> https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2016/08/04/months-later-oberlin-suspends-professor-who-made-anti-semitic-remarks-facebook

      Johnny Coleman, professor of art and Africana studies, wrote in an email to fellow faculty members that it was “difficult to overlook the dynamics unfolding here in which black students’ demands for systemic institutional change are effectively dismissed — while a call to denounce anti-Semitism and bigotry in all forms has been composed and circulated in a manner that specifically targets an early-career black female colleague. … Moving forward, we need to engage a more nuanced and constructive process.”

      either way, i fail to see how this reflects poorly on bds or pro palestine movements on campus . they didn’t hire her nor is there an indication they share her views/opinions. (re 9/11).

      • Citizen
        September 8, 2016, 11:35 pm

        Doubting the official version of JFK’s murder and 9/11 is the majority position in USA today. Further, a prestigious group of Europe’s best scientists fairly recently announced that the 9/11 was a controlled demolition. Of course the main media hasn’t covered the fact most informed folks now view the official version of these events as the conspiracy–by governmental operatives, not crazy loons. Another similar item in the making is the Truck Massacre in Nice France. Just as the US government has never released its hoard of video captures of 9/11 as it happened, the French government has never released its videos of the truck terrorism–in fact, I think it’s in process of destroying them.

    • MHughes976
      September 6, 2016, 3:49 am

      No bad reflections there, certainly. There is an indication that the traditional inhibitions on anti-Israelism in a liberal environment, which Kogen thinks are endangered, are still quite strong. Perhaps my ‘pretty picture’ sounded disparaging – wasn’t meant to. The trees look beautiful and caused, though I’ve never been to Oberlin, nostalgia for student days.

  8. yonah fredman
    September 5, 2016, 8:51 pm

    “There’s no room on campus to be progressive and pro israel” reads the headline.

    Anyone familiar with mw and the comments section here is unsurprised by this sentiment. The question that comes to mind is the college kids with sufficient energy motivation for some involvement in politics. That is: If you are playing all or nothing, “if you like israel, get lost,” then those who are political through and through can be given this ultimatum, and will be forced to study and choose, but I assume many on campus have a less motivated outlook, as in, yes I am concerned, but I’m no fanatic, not like the gung ho extremist unreasonable types (if your gonna carry pictures of chairman mao, you ain’t gonna make it with anyone anyhow ) and when you start telling these people: no room for pro israel and progressive, this type of student will say sayonara, or l’hitraot, as in “later, dude.”

    • Marnie
      September 6, 2016, 12:41 am

      “……and when you start telling these people: no room for pro israel and progressive, this type of student will say sayonara, or l’hitraot, as in “later, dude.”

      ‘later dude’ isn’t the definition of l’hitraot – it means ‘see you later’.

      What is a pro israel and progressive yonah? Is that your code for PEP? It seems to me the words ‘pro israel’ and the word ‘progressive’ don’t belong in the same sentence, much less universe. That smells like ‘liberal zionist’ and ‘democratic jewish state’. More Newspeak nonsense from a great practitioner.

    • jd65
      September 6, 2016, 12:51 am

      Well – I was gonna write a comment about your having missed your Lit. 101 class’s discussion on Irony back in the day, but then I decided otherwise.

      And your forced Lennon reference is kinda lame too. Come to think of it, I have no real idea what you’re trying to say in that post. Hmmmm…

    • eljay
      September 6, 2016, 7:51 am

      If “pro-Israel” meant “in favour of a secular and democratic Israel that respects international laws and human rights”, pro-Israel + progressive would make sense.

      Unfortunately, since “pro-Israel” almost invariably means “pro-‘Jewish State'”, pro-Israel + progressive = hypocrite.

    • Mooser
      September 6, 2016, 2:04 pm

      ,” this type of student will say sayonara, or l’hitraot, as in “later, dude.”

      No great loss. What is it a person like that could contribute?

      Besides, “Yonah” I have a great faith in the ability of organized Judaism and Zionism to alienate Jews in the first place.

  9. Keith
    September 5, 2016, 9:08 pm

    ANNIE- “Kogen claims BDS has “led to the erosion of traditional ties on which Jews have long relied.”

    Over at Counterpunch, Jeffrey Blankfort has a very informative article exploring the nature of the ties to the Black Congressional leadership on which Jews have long relied. It seems that organized Jewish support for programs which benefit low income Blacks is contingent upon Black support for Israel. So, in addition to campaign funding, these progressive programs are held hostage to support for Israel. A quote followed by a link to the highly recommended article. The quote is from “A Jew in America” by Arthur Hertzberg, president of the American Jewish Congress.

    “In the course of our talks over the dinner table, we had little difficulty in understanding one another. We agreed that the continuing need for Blacks in national politics was and would remain the welfare state. Only through welfare programs for the poor could a large number of Blacks live in some minimum decency.

    On the Jewish side there was one concern that united all the factions of the Jewish community: the defense of Israel. As a lamb among the wolves of the Middle East, Israel needed sufficient American support to defend itself. Therefore Jews needed friends and allies in American politics who would help make Israel more secure.

    The three of us quickly saw the obvious conclusion: let an alliance be made between the Black congressmen and the Jewish congressmen so that each group would vote for the agendas of both sides. Jews would remain committed to the welfare state, even as it meant higher taxes for the middle class, and Blacks would support Israel.

    The alliance that was defined that day has lasted many years. It represented a quiet consensus both among Jews and among Blacks.” (p.361, “A Jew in America,” Arthur Hertzberg, president of the liberal American Jewish Congress, quoted by Jeffrey Blankfort) http://www.counterpunch.org/2016/09/05/congressional-black-caucus-deep-in-the-israel-lobbys-pocket/

    • Annie Robbins
      September 6, 2016, 1:47 am

      okkkkay

      • Mooser
        September 6, 2016, 2:38 pm

        “okkkkay”

        Hertzberg should have thought twice before he wrote that, but indeed, why would he? Wow.

      • Mooser
        September 6, 2016, 9:23 pm

        Hertzberg wrote that in 2002! What idiots we have become.

    • Marnie
      September 6, 2016, 2:00 am

      I heard years ago, maybe it’s an urban legend, maybe it’s the truth, not sure, but kind of following along your information, that the NAACP was an organization invested in and closely monitored by Jewish folks, who, I don’t know, just heard. This had been in response to someone saying that Jewish people have always had a connection to African Americans and their struggle to which someone replied yeah, that’s right and it’s because they want to keep close tabs on everything we do and say. That seemed a bit odd at that time, but not anymore. Thanks Keith.

  10. Sally Parker
    September 6, 2016, 12:45 am

    The life you save may be your own.
    I can think of one much needed progressive cause that ought to unite both Zionists and anti-Zionists–all the military maneuvers in Europe and Syria that could start WW3. NATO has put first strike anti-missiles right at the edge of Russia’s borders and Victoria Nuland has done her best to provoke Russia by promoting Neo-Nazi leaders in the Ukraine. So far, the Ukrainian war has sent a million refugees streaming into Russia like a European Nakba and killed 9,000 people–more than twice as many as died in Operations Blast Dead and Dalkon Shield combined.
    Nuland’s fun and games put Hamas and Likud on the same page and could put them both in the same grave. If Nuland and NATO start WW3, Israel will be ground zero. All lives matter.

    • echinococcus
      September 6, 2016, 2:55 am

      Sally Parker
      So the latest trick to get anyone to make nice to Zionists is to threaten them with a Zionist-initiated WW3 wiping out Palestine?
      You know, it’s not such a bad idea after all. The same threat may be used to get the Zionists out of there and back to Brooklyn.

  11. Al2Sultan
    September 6, 2016, 1:06 am

    The devil is in the details. One must ask why does israel maintain control over the land captured from Jordan who attacked her in the 1967 war? why have the Arabs residing in that area rejected numerous peace offers that would have ended occupation and given them a state on 96-99% of the land they claim to seek? Why have these same Arabs initiated suicide bombing campaigns even during the begining of the Oslo process aimed at creating a two state solution? Why has Gaza turned into an Islamic terror enclave after israel withdrew all settlements certified by the UN? Why did Gaza initiate three missile wars with israel and why do they divert humanitarian aid to build attack tunnels? Israels weapons blockade on the strip was initiated only after the Hamas takeover. Why won’t the Arabs of the West Bank sit in direct talks with Israeli leaders and have consistently avoided this for years? And why won’t this author state clearly that the BDS platform does not call for two states for two people. But rather will continue its campaign until israel is dismantled as the home of the jewish people. And it is this extreme position most western governments call anti Semitic that progressive Jewish students who support israel are reacting to. Does this author want peace between two states? Or does th author want to see israel dismantled? I’d like a clarification.

    • CigarGod
      September 6, 2016, 3:41 am

      I’d like to know why new grad’s from Hasbara U continue to fling themselves onto the bayonets of the Mondo Wise.

      • Kay24
        September 6, 2016, 7:27 am

        They must be the dropouts who make up for substance with persistence. They keeps turning up like gnats and only make a nuisance of themselves. I doubt a single mind has been convinced, or changed, because of the crap they spew.

    • eljay
      September 6, 2016, 7:25 am

      || Al2Sultan: The devil is in the details. … ||

      Yup, and those devilish details include:
      – Jewish terrorism and the ethnic cleansing of Palestine’s indigenous population from their homes and lands;
      – the establishment of Israel as a religion-supremacist “Jewish State”;
      – a decades-long and on-going Israeli military occupation and colonization of non-Israeli territory (i.e., territory outside of its / Partition borders);
      – Israel’s refusal to honour its obligations under international law (including RoR of refugees);
      – Israel’s refusal to accept any responsibility or accountability for its past and on-going (war) crimes; and
      – Israel’s refusal to enter into sincere negotiations for a just and mutually-beneficial peace.

      || … But rather will continue its campaign until israel is dismantled as the home of the jewish people. … ||

      Israel has no right to exist as a religion-supremacist “Jewish State”. No state has a right to exist as a supremacist state of any kind.

      • MHughes976
        September 6, 2016, 4:35 pm

        A Ciceronian sequence of increasingly angry questions. I would say that Israel remains in control because if thinks it is the legitimate sovereign. Reasons are given, not necessarily consistent. They are, I think, all mistaken – to mention two, there is no operative divine mandate and there is no right to gain territory in a defensive war. (It is hard for thiose, Jewish, Chrustian or other, who claim a divine mandate and are heavily armed, to claim plausibly to be fighting defensively.).
        There is no obligation to accept offers – that is the difference between offer and dictation. Talk of offers rejected in the past, even if true, is just talk about the past. What liberal-minded Israelis need to do is press their givernment to make an offer now. Please do this.
        Mondoweiss is a site where advocacy of violence is forbidden but we can note that some ‘Arabs’ – mind you, it is racist to draw attention to their actual race when the important fact is that they are subject to a sovereign power that disfranchises them not because they are of this race or that, but (as per Beinart) ‘just because they ate not Jewish’ – have considered that the injustice done to them justifies bombing campaigns. Would things were better, would they were different. The best way to make them different would be that realistic offer.
        Many of us consider that the idea of a state ‘for the Jewish people’ rather than ‘where there is no discrimination against people who are Jewish or anything else’ illegitimate but are aware that the Palestinians have a right to accept a 2ss if offered. Offer it! How long will you abuse our patience?

    • talknic
      September 6, 2016, 10:27 am

      A few tines for the Hasbara newby to squirm on

      @ Al2Sultan September 6, 2016, 1:06 am

      “One must ask why does israel maintain control over the land captured from Jordan who attacked her in the 1967 war?”

      One must ask if you’ve ever read …

      UNSC Resolution 228 of 25 November 1966
      The Security Council,

      Having heard the statements of the representatives of Jordan and Israel concerning the grave Israel military action which took place in the southern Hebron area on 13 November 1966,

      Having noted the information provided by the Secretary-General concerning this military action in his statement of 16 November 1/ and also in his report of 18 November 1966,2/

      Observing that this incident constituted a large-scale and carefully planned military action on the territory of Jordan by the armed forces of Israel,

      Reaffirming the previous resolutions of the Security Council condemning past incidents of reprisal in breach of the General Armistice Agreement between Israel and Jordan and of the United Nations Charter,

      Recalling the repeated resolutions of the Security Council asking for the cessation of violent incidents across the demarcation line, and not overlooking past incidents of this nature,

      Reaffirming the necessity for strict adherence to the General Armistice Agreement,

      1. Deplores the loss of life and heavy damage to property resulting from the action of the Government of Israel on 13 November 1966;

      2. Censures Israel for this large-scale military action in violation of the United Nations Charter and of the General Armistice Agreement between Israel and Jordan;

      3. Emphasizes to Israel that actions of military reprisal cannot be tolerated and that, if they are repeated, the Security Council will have to consider further and more effective steps as envisaged in the Charter to ensure against the repetition of such acts;

      … and then ask why Israel attacked Jordan first?

      “why have the Arabs residing in that area rejected numerous peace offers that would have ended occupation and given them a state on 96-99% of the land they claim to seek?”

      Why should they relinquish ANY non-Israeli territory to Israel?

      “Why have these same Arabs initiated suicide bombing campaigns even during the begining of the Oslo process aimed at creating a two state solution?”

      Maybe because they don’t have war planes, tanks, war ships, artillery, guided missiles, helicopter gun ships, satellites, billions in military aid from the US

      ” Why has Gaza turned into an Islamic terror enclave after israel withdrew all settlements certified by the UN?”

      The UN considers Israel to be the Occupying Power over Gaza

      8 January 2009 UNSC Res 1860
      Recalling all of its relevant resolutions, including resolutions 242 (1967), 338 (1973), 1397 (2002), 1515 (2003) and 1850 (2008),
      Stressing that the Gaza Strip constitutes an integral part of the territory occupied in 1967 and will be a part of the Palestinian state,

      “Why did Gaza initiate three missile wars with israel … “

      A) If Gaza’s home made rockets are ‘missiles’? What are Israel’s high tech guided missiles?
      B) Gaza is under occupation by Israel they have a right to attack the occupying power

      ” … and why do they divert humanitarian aid to build attack tunnels? “

      Because they’re under occupation. Our Jewish fellows dug tunnels with whatever they could when resisting the Nazis

      “Israels weapons blockade on the strip was initiated only after the Hamas takeover

      A) Bullsh*t! Israel has always blockaded weapons from Hamas
      B) Hamas was the legal & democratically elected Government of Palestine

      “Why won’t the Arabs of the West Bank sit in direct talks with Israeli leaders and have consistently avoided this for years?”

      Why should they? Israel is in breach of binding International Law, the UN Charter (binding on all member states in its entirety), GC IV (ratified by Israel) as emphasized and re-affirmed by the UN in numerous UNSC resolutions reminding Israel of its legal obligations to end the occupation. Try UNSC 476

      Resolution 476 (1980) Adopted by the Security Council at its 2242nd meeting on 30 June 1980
      The Security Council,
      Having considered the letter of 28 May 1980 from the representative of Pakistan, the current Chairman of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, as contained in document S/13966 of 28 May 1980,
      Reaffirming that the acquisition of territory by force is inadmissible,
      Bearing in mind the specific status of Jerusalem and, in particular, the need for protection and preservation of the unique spiritual and religious dimension of the Holy Places in the city,
      Reaffirming its resolutions relevant to the character and status of the Holy City of Jerusalem, in particular resolutions 252 (1968) of 21 May 1968, 267 (1969) of 3 July 1969, 271 (1969) of 15 September 1969, 298 (1971) of 25 September 1971 and 465 (1980) of 1 March 1980,
      Recalling the Fourth Geneva Convention of 12 August 1949 relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War,
      Deploring the persistence of Israel, in changing the physical character, demographic composition, institutional structure and the status of the Holy City of Jerusalem,
      Gravely concerned over the legislative steps initiated in the Israeli Knesset with the aim of changing the character and status of the Holy City of Jerusalem,
      1. Reaffirms the overriding necessity to end the prolonged occupation of Arab territories occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem;
      2. Strongly deplores the continued refusal of Israel, the occupying Power, to comply with the relevant resolutions of the Security Council and the General Assembly;
      3. Reconfirms that all legislative and administrative measures and actions taken by Israel, the occupying Power, which purport to alter the character and status of the Holy City of Jerusalem have no legal validity and constitute a flagrant violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War and also constitute a serious obstruction to achieving a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East;
      4. Reiterates that all such measures which have altered the geographic, demographic and historical character and status of the Holy City of Jerusalem are null and void and must be rescinded in compliance with the relevant resolutions of the Security Council;
      5. Urgently calls on Israel, the occupying Power, to abide by this and previous Security Council resolutions and to desist forthwith from persisting in the policy and measures affecting the character and status of the Holy city of Jerusalem;

      What’s to talk about except when and how Israel will withdraw from non-Israeli territories. Further ‘talks’ mean only one thing, Israel wants the Palestinians to forgo even more of their own territory to Israel

      ” And why won’t this author state clearly that the BDS platform does not call for two states for two people.”

      Why should it? All BDS asks is that Israel end the occupation and allow Palestine the freedom to develope their own state, already recognized by the majority of the UN Members States

      ” But rather will continue its campaign until israel is dismantled as the home of the jewish people”

      Quote the BDS movement, verbatim … thx … I’ll wait

      “And it is this extreme position most western governments call anti Semitic “

      No it isn’t, most governments according to the UNSC resolutions, want Israel out of all non-Israeli territories and an end to occupation, same as BDS.

      “I’d like a clarification”

      No you wouldn’t, it’d spoil your wholly holey moldy old Hasbara

      • Annie Robbins
        September 6, 2016, 12:29 pm

        A) Bullsh*t!

        it was all bullshit. including the claim hamas initiated the 3 wars. 2008, israel broke the ceasefire by entering gaza and killing forces in a bunker on the day obama won the election , it was reported on the front page of the nyt. that’s what set off the war, israel breaking the ceasefire. 2012, same thing, and same use of US election to hide israel’s initiation of the attack — israel bombed a soccer field and killed a boy — that’s what set off, i documented it at the time/with supporting links:

        http://mondoweiss.net/2012/11/did-israel-provoke-rockets-from-gaza-to-pressure-palestinians-to-back-off-un-bid/?preview=true

        As we reported earlier, on the evening of November 7 in Israel, 10 hours after Obama was elected to his second term in office the Defense Minister of the Israel, Ehud Barak went on the radio and said the Palestinian UN bid had to be delayed “immediately.” The next day a Palestinian child was dead, killed in Gaza by invading Israeli military forces. That news has been erased from the narrative rapidly developing over the last 72 hours.

        At dawn, the morning after the Defense Minister’s radio address, Israel military forces crossed over the border into Gaza with tanks and bulldozers sparking off a new round violence when 13-year-old Ahmed Younis Khader Abu Daqqa was killed by rounds of live ammunition fired by an Israeli military helicopter on Nov, 8. The Popular Resistance Committees responded by firing rockets into southern Israel saying they were a “revenge invoice” for the increased Israeli attacks on Gazans, making it clear they viewed the Israeli attacks as a provocation. Still, the Palestinian response has served as a PR-friendly casus belli to “prepare international public opinion for an Israeli operation in Gaza.”

      • Annie Robbins
        September 6, 2016, 12:42 pm

        and here’s the “revenge invoice” article in full (my bold). after israel killed the boy, they attacked the funeral for the boy killing 4 more people: http://www.maannews.com/Content.aspx?id=535855

        Israeli tank shells kill 4, wound 30 in Gaza
        NOV. 10, 2012 5:32 P.M. (UPDATED: NOV. 12, 2012 9:43 A.M.)
        GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — Israeli tank shells killed 4 Palestinians and wounded 30 in the Gaza Strip on Saturday, medics and witnesses said.
        Ahmad al-Dardasawi, 18, and Muhammad Hararah, 17, were killed in Gaza City, and two unidentified men later died from injuries sustained in the attack.
        At least 26 people were wounded in the shelling, with 10 said to be in a serious condition.
        Residents said a crowded mourning tent in the al-Shujaiyeh neighborhood near Gaza City was full of people paying respects to a bereaved family man when a shell struck.
        Four people were also wounded in Khan Younis as Israel’s army targeted an area east of city, witnesses said.
        The occupation’s targeting of civilians was a grave escalation that must not pass in silence,” said Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum.
        “Resistance must be reinforced in order to block the aggression.”
        The casualty toll is one of the highest in a single incident in Gaza in recent months.
        Israel’s army said four soldiers were injured when an “anti-tank missile was fired at an IDF patrol along the security fence in the northern Gaza Strip.”
        Two soldiers were seriously wounded and two moderately injured, Israeli media said.
        Israeli forces targeted several sites in response, the statement added.
        The Popular Resistance Committees said it had fired four rockets at communities close to the border and the towns of Sderot and Netivot in southern Israel, in what it called “the revenge invoice” for the deaths in Gaza.
        The attacks took place during a period of increased violence along the Israel-Gaza border.
        Hamid Younis Abu Daqqa, 13, was killed on Thursday after Israeli forces targeted houses and farms east of Khan Younis, according to Ashraf al-Qidra, a medical spokesman in Gaza.

        On Tuesday, three Israeli soldiers were wounded by an explosive device in the southern Gaza Strip, Israel’s army said.
        A day earlier, Israeli soldiers shot and killed a 20-year-old Palestinian man who approached a fence near Gaza’s border with Israel, medics said.

        Reuters contributed to this report

      • Kay24
        September 6, 2016, 1:39 pm

        Israel bombs, steals, and kills with impunity. It is ironic that it keeps playing victims, while getting away with such brutal treatment of UNARMED CIVILIANS, and that these horrible crimes are played down, and hardly mentioned in this nation. No reasonable person can keep believing the damn lies, subterfuges and justifications that sound lame, and not realize that this is all part of the zionist plan to keep the status quo and occupation going as long as they want, and that they have absolutely no desire to have a 2SS or give the Palestinians their freedom.

        They have shown time and time again, that they are a vicious nation and killing unarmed civilians is easy, especially when we keep giving them the ammunition to do so.

        No wonder they are considered one of the most disliked nations in the world.

    • Mooser
      September 6, 2016, 2:27 pm

      ” I’d like a clarification.”

      Ok. “Sultan”, Don’t blow your wad in three comment’s worth of premature ejaculations

      “Or does th author want to see israel dismantled?”

      Fair question, not. So why don’t you start by showing us exactly where this Israel is?

      • eljay
        September 6, 2016, 2:46 pm

        || Mooser: Ok. “Sultan”, Don’t blow your wad in three comment’s worth of premature ejaculations … ||

        He is the sultan of “Schwing!!”

        (with tremendous apologies to Dire Straits)

    • Mooser
      September 6, 2016, 9:28 pm

      “I’d like a clarification.”

      Sure! Everything you need to know about Jewish self-government in Palestine happened between AD 66 and 134. You can go through that again if you want to.

    • Marnie
      September 8, 2016, 12:12 am

      “But rather will continue its campaign until israel is dismantled as the home of the jewish people.”

      That is a false statement from the get go. And it is the zionist state, not Burger King, that’s the home of the Whopper.

      And that’s only the tip of the iceberg of lies and BS your post dropped here like a hot load of horseshit. “Islamic terror enclave’, “Oslo process” and “And why won’t this author state clearly that the BDS platform does not call for two states for two people. But rather will continue its campaign until israel is dismantled as the home of the jewish people.”

      “Israel” isn’t the home of the Jewish people. The ancient Hebrews may have lived here, only if you believe the words of the torah to be absolute truth, but most of them left. Not 70 years ago, not 700 years ago, but over 2000 years ago. This isn’t the 1800s ‘A12Sultan’ and the colonization of Palestine is a crime. You’ve got a whole lot of questions that I’m thinking you really don’t want any answers to, but you could start here:

      BDS Movement |
      https://bdsmovement.net/

      What is BDS?

      ‘Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) is a Palestinian-led movement for freedom, justice and equality. BDS upholds the simple principle that Palestinians are entitled to the same rights as the rest of humanity.

      Israel is occupying and colonising Palestinian land, discriminating against Palestinian citizens of Israel and denying Palestinian refugees the right to return to their homes. Inspired by the South African anti-apartheid movement, the BDS call urges action to pressure Israel to comply with international law.

      BDS is now a vibrant global movement made up of unions, academic associations, churches and grassroots movements across the world. Eleven years since its launch, BDS is having a major impact and is effectively challenging international support for Israeli apartheid and settler-colonialism.

      Ending its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands and dismantling the Wall.

      International law recognises the West Bank including East Jerusalem, Gaza and the Syrian Golan Heights as occupied by Israel. As part of its military occupation, Israel steals land and forces Palestinians into ghettos, surrounded by checkpoints, settlements and watchtowers and an illegal apartheid Wall. Israel has imposed a medieval siege on Gaza , turning it into the largest open air prison in the world. Israel also regularly carries out large-scale assaults on Gaza that are widely condemned as constituting war crimes and crimes against humanity

      Recognizing the fundamental rights of the Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel to full equality.

      One-fifth of Israel’s citizens are Palestinians who remained inside the armistice lines after 1948. They are subjected to a system of racial discrimination enshrined in more than 50 laws that impact every aspect of their lives. The Israeli government continues to forcibly displace Palestinian communities in Israel from their land. Israeli leaders routinely and openly incite racial violence against them.

      Respecting, protecting and promoting the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties as stipulated in UN Resolution 194..

      Since its violent establishment in 1948 through the ethnic cleansing of more than half of the indigenous people of Palestine, Israel has set out to control as much land and uproot as many Palestinians as it can. As a result of this systematic forced displacement, there are now more than 7.25 million Palestinian refugees. They are denied their right to return to their homes simply because they are not Jewish.’

      I hope this helps you. And if you look back some 70 odd years and see that what happened to the Jews at the hands of the nazis isn’t something that should have been replicated by the zionists to the Palestinians, who had nothing to do with the extermination of most of Europe’s Jews, but that’s what happened, without gas chambers. What Lehi, the Stern gang and the Haganah perpetrated against a civilian population as ordered by ben gurion and witnessed by the British, were crimes against humanity and continue to be. And the right of Palestinians to return to their country isn’t some claim from a religious book going back to antiquity FFS – their removal was an event that took place in modern times and in the memory of many survivors of the creation of the zionist state.

  12. mcohen.
    September 6, 2016, 2:32 am

    a12sultan says

    “bds does not call for 2 states”

    did not know this.you sure.what do they call for?

    • Talkback
      September 6, 2016, 10:23 am

      It’s indirectly antisemitic, mcohen. They call for equality. Which could be the end of Jewish hafradaheid.

      • eljay
        September 6, 2016, 10:32 am

        || Talkback: It’s indirectly antisemitic, mcohen. They call for equality. … ||

        And equality is anathema to (Zio-)supremacists.

  13. mcohen.
    September 6, 2016, 7:22 pm

    so bds calls for what.

    a sunni arab state
    a secular state
    what constitution do they call for.

    there is a bds call for change but to what specifically.

    the devil is in the details

    • Annie Robbins
      September 6, 2016, 7:38 pm

      google bds movement and find out yourself.

      btw, it’s similar to why black citizens of Port Gibson, Mississippi boycotted local white businesses in march 1966 that led to the longest boycott in US history resulting in the supreme court case naacp vs claiborne hardware. first, they presented a list of specific demands, when they were denied, they boycotted.

      i’d urge you to focus on what their demands are, instead of what they are not.

      • mcohen.
        September 6, 2016, 10:09 pm

        i focus on “right of return of 7.2 million refugees”

        everything else is more less possible….but 7.2 million

        climate change pushing global temperatures up.water shortages.that is an enormous challenge for israel.

        the devil is in the details

      • Annie Robbins
        September 7, 2016, 1:20 am

        water shortages.that is an enormous challenge for israel.

        yeah, thieving palestine’s water and rationing it back to them at a profit while settlers get an unlimited supply is really tough.

        see “Everyday Nakba” — excellent award winning documentary about water, filmed and directed by Mohammad al-Azza, the cameraman an Israeli soldier deliberately targeted and shot in the face: http://mondoweiss.net/2013/04/targeting-talent/

        you want to see enormous challenge? go to 7:30 in the video and consider every jewish israel settlement, town, city has 24/7 running water. not so for palestinians, so don’t pretend israel is challenged here, not when they can steal from palestine and make them thirst whenever they want. netanyahu has probably not gone one day in his life thirsty. not one. so spare us.

      • echinococcus
        September 7, 2016, 2:08 am

        Focus away, McCohen.

        do you think that this feasible.that would double israels population
        where would they be housed

        Where to house them?
        On their own land, of course.
        You bums are squatting on it and occupying their fathers’ and mother’s houses and fields.
        Simple: you get rid of the illegal squatters.
        That also will keep the population from doubling suddenly.

      • talknic
        September 7, 2016, 4:01 am

        “i’d urge you to focus on what their demands are, instead of what they are not”

        @ mcohen. September 6, 2016, 10:09 pm

        “i focus on “right of return of 7.2 million refugees” “

        Uh huh. That’s focussing (sic) on what they are not!

        Where does that 7 million+ figure come from? Out of the Hasbara hat or rrrrrrs?

        The UNRWA definition isn’t applicable. It’s only to ascertain who qualifies for assistance while they are refugees. UNRWA’s mandate does not include final status. http://www.unrwa.org/who-we-are/frequently-asked-questions#final_status

        Nor does Palestine’s plea for RoR reflect the UNRWA figure. The Palestinian claim is based on UNGA res 194 of 1948 adopted 12 months before UNRWA even existed. Seems some folk really don’t have a clue when it comes to the chronological order of events.

        Only displaced non-Jewish Israeli citizens have a right of return to Israel’s self proclaimed and Internationally recognized borders of 1948 at the time UNGA res 194 was adopted.

        Israel didn’t make any official claim to territories the Israeli Government itself claimed on May 22nd 1948 were “outside the State of Israel” … “in Palestine” until the 1st of September 1949 https://unispal.un.org/DPA/DPR/unispal.nsf/53936ddf3dd093a1852575530073f2e6/c96e0252e7710bce85256d95006bc157?OpenDocument

        “everything else is more less possible….but 7.2 million”

        It’s a nonsense figure. The greater majority of Palestine refugees have RoR to Palestinian territories, not Israel http://wp.me/pDB7k-jS

        “climate change pushing global temperatures up.water shortages.that is an enormous challenge for israel”

        Should have thought of that 70 years ago.

        Are we to believe the Jewish Agency, Jewish People’s Council and the Zionist movement really weren’t aware of Plan Dalet busy cleansing territories of non-Jewish occupants at the time they Declared Israeli statehood effective? And in their naivety invited non-Jewish citizens to stay?

        Or they did know about Pan Dalet and therefore were simply lying in the Declaration of statehood?

        Something doesn’t make sense. If they were allowed to stay in May 1948 per the Declaration of the Establishment of the State of Israel, why by only August 1948 were the same people a demographic threat were they to return?

      • eljay
        September 7, 2016, 8:17 am

        || mcohen.: … the devil is in the details ||

        Yes, Al2Sultan, you certainly are.

      • Talkback
        September 7, 2016, 3:07 pm

        mcohen: “everything else is more less possible….but 7.2 million … the devil is in the details”

        Sure it is in the details. Do you think that Jews have a right to expell others and keep them expelled because of their religion?

    • eljay
      September 6, 2016, 8:12 pm

      || mcohen.: so bds calls for what. … ||

      Freedom, justice and equality. Y’know, the sorts of things you Zio-supremacists thoroughly despise.

      BDS Movement: What Is BDS?

      || … the devil is in the details ||

      You’re repeating yourself, Al2Sultan.

    • talknic
      September 6, 2016, 9:04 pm

      @ mcohen. September 6, 2016, 7:22 pm

      “so bds calls for what”

      https://bdsmovement.net/what-is-bds

      “the devil is in the details”

      If there is such a thing/being as the devil, he/she/it is in the Zionist Movements vile pyramid scheme of 1897 to colonize, at a profit, the land of Palestine

      • Mooser
        September 6, 2016, 9:09 pm

        “mcohen” finds it impossible to believe that anything can be imposed on Israel, the biggest and most powerful nation on earth.

      • mcohen.
        September 6, 2016, 10:03 pm

        talknic your bds link …came across this

        “right of return for 7.2 million refugees ”

        do you think that this feasible.that would double israels population

        where would they be housed

        the devil is in the details

      • Annie Robbins
        September 7, 2016, 1:13 am

        do you think that this feasible.that would double israels population

        apparently the israeli gov thinks it’s feasible because they offer it to that many diaspora jews.

      • talknic
        September 7, 2016, 4:10 am

        @ mcohen. September 6, 2016, 10:03 pm

        “talknic your bds link …came across this

        “right of return for 7.2 million refugees ”

        do you think that this feasible.that would double israels population”

        You’re spreading Ziopoop for people who’ve given it little logical thought.

        Not all 7.2 million have RoR to Israel. Israel, the Occupying Power doesn’t allow ANY refugees RoR to Israel OR to whatever remained of Palestine after Israel was declared

        “the devil is in the details”

        The devil is in the bullsh*te propagated by the Zionist Colonial Enterprise

      • MHughes976
        September 7, 2016, 4:20 am

        On water supply, the Economist for July 30 had a really depressing and horrifying report, ‘Not yet a drop to drink’. Israel’s former problems are much relieved and a technological paradise of desalination and recycling is being created. Recycling in the WB involves mucky sinks. There is a major problem with rusting and leaking pipes. A committee supposed to address that problem has not met for 5 years. ‘You will live like dogs and anyone who wants can leave’ was a proposition attributed to M. Dayan by R. Ben Cramer in ‘How Israel Lost’ about a decade ago. Reading the Economist report you see what both clauses of this proposition really mean and how demonic certain details can be.

      • eljay
        September 7, 2016, 8:18 am

        || mcohen.: … the devil is in the details ||

        And Satan is in the supremacism.

    • echinococcus
      September 6, 2016, 11:30 pm

      McCohen, good question in fact.
      Once people get the idea that a given country is to be boycotted and shunned, there is no way of controlling that. Of course there is an official organization, too, but it just depends on the individual practitioners of the boycott.
      There are the Zionists who are trying to get another lease on life for the Zionist entity by bringing pressure on the post-1967 occupation only.
      There are the “non-Zionists” who are trying to get another lease on life for the Zionist entity by bringing pressure on the post-1967 occupation only.
      There are those who want an effective withdrawal from the post-1967 conquests and a right of return law.
      There are those who ask for strict justice and undoing the invasion of Palestine.

      Take your pick. I’m sure there is even some form of boycott that would accommodate you, too.
      If and when anything worth mentioning happens, you’ll see who continues. Until then, good night.

      • Mooser
        September 7, 2016, 2:58 pm

        “Take your pick.”

        Of the myriad ways in which Jews today (well, except in Israel) can modify their relationship to Judaism, pick and choose which aspects of Judaism they choose to engage in, and in fact modify their Judaism to fit their circumstances in any way they see fit?

      • echinococcus
        September 7, 2016, 5:36 pm

        Mooser,

        Re modifying relationship to Judaism, I don’t know what you mean. I am not religious; I have family and friends but no tribe.

      • Mooser
        September 7, 2016, 9:12 pm

        ” I am not religious; I have family and friends but no tribe.”

        Exactly. You define your relationship to it. (Kids, don’t try that in Israel!)

  14. rhkroell
    September 6, 2016, 9:48 pm

    “The devil is in the details”: A few details Al2Sultan leaves out:
    In his political pamphlet, Der Judenstaat [The Jewish State] (1896), Theodor Herzl characterized the Middle East and Asia of his day as a wellspring of “barbarism” and suggested that the best form of governing the Jewish nation’s Promised Land would be a combination of “democratic monarchism” and “aristocratic republicanism” in order to preserve “a true balance of power.” “Nations are . . . not fit for unlimited democracy at present,” he wrote, “and will become less and less fitted for it in the future.” “Our people” (the Jews) who colonize Palestine, Herzl suggested, will “accept the new constitution it offers them. Should any opposition manifest itself,” he made clear, “the Society [of Jews] will suppress it.”

    Herzl made his strategy for the colonization of Palestine quite explicit in the concluding chapter of this political pamphlet in which he suggested that the first colonists must be primarily from the Jewish underclass: “It is precisely the poorest whom we need at first” because “only the desperate make good conquerors.” According to Herzl’s carefully-crafted political pamphlet, the principle of “[u]niversal brotherhood is not even a beautiful dream.” In point of fact, he argued, the Christian humanist and Enlightenment concepts of “universal brotherhood” — as splendid as they may sound in theory — have turned out to be ill-advised in practice. The father of modern political Zionism — Theodor Herzl — specifically rejected the Christian humanist, Reform Judaism, Muslim and secular versions of “universal brotherhood,” claiming that “antagonism [as opposed to cooperation or collaboration] is essential to man’s greatest efforts.”

    The very idea (conception/proposition) of a “Jewish State” can never be wrenched/twisted/spun into a progressive political policy objective, never could. Why dissimilate? If you are a political reactionary, Al2Sultan, why don’t you just fess up, and adopt neocon arguments from brilliant political theorists like Leo Strauss and Carl Schmitt. Why the games?

    • Mooser
      September 7, 2016, 3:02 pm

      “Why the games?”

      With only one move; fake left, and run hard to the right.

      • rhkroell
        September 7, 2016, 5:13 pm

        Ha . . . ha . . . ha . . . ha . . . ha. LMAO! Exactly.

      • Mooser
        September 7, 2016, 9:09 pm

        “Exactly”

        And you may notice, they are completely confident this technique will never fail them.

      • Citizen
        September 9, 2016, 12:29 am

        Funny!

  15. JWalters
    September 7, 2016, 5:15 am

    Thanks Annie, for this excellent contribution to the discussion – thorough, clear, and on-point all the way down the line. A superb take-down of the dishonesty and bigotry in the Zionist case on this issue. And all done with facts, without rancor, and with a light touch.

    And it stimulated a wealth of great comments, loaded with further, overwhelming facts. Thanks all.

  16. silamcuz
    September 7, 2016, 10:04 am

    My question is this. The average person is not pro-Israel, in the sense that they are grossly unaware of its history and politics, as well as the nature of its relationship with the US government. Yet, you could hardly call the average person a progressive, since many similarly are ignorant on social issues and the larger global picture that sustains the progressive movement.

    As such, would merely not being pro-Israel, iow neutral or indifferent towards it, enough to be considered a progressive?

    • Annie Robbins
      September 7, 2016, 1:11 pm

      do you mean ‘would merely being “grossly unaware of Israel’s history and politics, as well as the nature of its relationship with the US government” and “neutral or indifferent towards it”, be enough to be considered a progressive’?

      wow, tough question. let me think on that for awhile.

  17. rhkroell
    September 7, 2016, 2:28 pm

    I join other commentators in thanking Annie for her cogent analysis of Kogen’s “How BDS Is Pushing Jewish Students Out of Social Justice Activism.” I often wonder if pro-Zionist activists have taken the time to study the writings of Franz Rosenzweig, Martin Buber, Emmanuel Levinas, Tony Judt , Judith Butler and the many other respected scholars who have pointed out the menacing fault lines revealed by any careful scrutiny of Zionist ideology.

    • Annie Robbins
      September 7, 2016, 2:40 pm

      thank you rhkroell. btw, i look forward to reading more of your work in progress at your blog.

      • rhkroell
        September 8, 2016, 1:41 am

        Thank you, Annie Robbins.

  18. oldgeezer
    September 7, 2016, 4:55 pm

    I fully agree with your article and analysis with a wee wee exception. The American Jewish can empower today’s young Jewish students simply by telling them to stop advocating and making excuses for the human rights abusing state of Israel. It is that advocating and excuse making that places them outside of progressive groups and alliances. It’s a shame that Jewish groups use these young people as a shield for Israeli crimes.

    • Annie Robbins
      September 9, 2016, 3:14 am

      thanks for your comment old geezer, and please excuse my late response. while i do think it would be smart, strategic, and a vast improvement for young jewish students to simply stop advocating and making excuses for the human rights abusing state of Israel — i am not certain it would actually fit the definition of empowerment: “to give power to (someone)”.

      empowerment requires more than simply not advocating for the wrong thing, it requires advocating for something to the point of influencing (transforming) others to do the same. and stoping detrimental activities, while for some might feel self empowering, can be carried out by simply remaining silent. while i do think silence is an improvement over advocating for israel and making excuses for israel’s human rights abuses, i still think empowering today’s Jewish students by directing their focus on Israel and pressure the state to reverse Zionism’s “troubling trends” would be most effective.

Leave a Reply