Israel would use nuclear weapons to keep refugees from returning — Noam Chomsky

US Politics
on 137 Comments

In April, Noam Chomsky spoke at length on his opposition to the BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) campaign and said that advocating for the right of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes in Israel is “not a… moral position.”

BDS campaigners create false hope because return will never happen, Chomsky said; Israel would would use nuclear weapons to prevent the return of the Palestinian refugees, if it came to it:

“If there ever were serious support [for the right of return], Israel would go all out– using nuclear weapons, anything else– to prevent it. So it’s not going to happen.”

We are continually told that Iran and North Korea cannot be trusted with the bomb. What does it say about Israeli leadership and political beliefs that the most prominent leftwing scholar in the U.S. says they would deploy nuclear weapons to defy global pressure re return of refugees?

Chomsky was interviewed last April by Doug Richardson, the executive director of the American Association of Geographers, after the AAG gave Chomsky an award. I’ve transcribed his comments in full below because Chomsky is a legendary leader in leftwing thought; and his position has been at odds with the Palestinian solidarity movement.

Richardson brought up BDS (minute 50). “You were quoted in the Chronicle of Higher Education recently, noting that you had come out against the BDS, Boycott, Divestiture, and Sanctions, arguing that failed initiatives, which is how you characterized much of the BDS movement, harm the victims doubly, by ‘shifting attention away from their plight to other issues, such as anti-Semitism and academic freedom, and by wasting opportunities to do something meaningful.'”

 

Richardson asked Chomsky to elaborate. Chomsky said:

In mentioning boycotts, we shouldn’t overlook the fact that, again, as you all know, there is a boycott movement right here of distinguished geographers who have called for a boycott of the American Geographical Association in protest against the kind of regulations and procedures that the Trump administration is instituting. The case of the Syrian, actually British writer of Syrian origin who I mentioned before is an indication of what’s happening. That’s an issue to certainly be thought about. How should professional societies react to this sort of thing. For example, should professional society meetings take place in the United States.

It’s a serious question. Should they take place in a country where people from designated countries, designated by the authorities, are not allowed to come freely? The Latin American Studies Association years ago began to have conferences elsewhere because of the restrictions against Cuban scholars. I think those are all things to be thought about.

Now the BDS movement is a different matter. First of all, we have to make a distinction between the BDS tactics and the BDS movement. They happen to be quite different things. So, BDS tactics in the Israel Palestine case, were actually initiated in 1997 by an Israeli group, Gush Shalom, Uri Avnery’s group, a strongly anti-occupation, militantly  anti-occupation group played a very significant role, still do. They proposed boycott of the settlements and divestment from anything involving the settlements. And I myself have been involved in– it’s really BD activities, there are no real sanctions, that’s a state matter. But I’ve been involved in these things since the late ’90s, when it took off, aimed at the settlements.

Now here questions arise. The BDS movement, which developed in 2005, has a different approach. That’s the movement, not the tactics. Their approach calls for– if you read the list of principles, there is a set of principles, if you take it literally, they’re calling for boycott of Israel, divestment from Israel, and sanctions on Israel until, and then comes a long list of conditions, some of which everyone knows are totally unrealizeable. Like one of the conditions that’s listed in this almost-catechism is return of the refugees, in accord with international law. Well, first of all, it’s not in accord with international law, that’s a separate question. But return of the refugees. You can think whatever you like about the morality of that, but everyone knows it is not going to happen. There’s no international support for it. If there ever were serious support, Israel would go all out– using nuclear weapons, anything else– to prevent it. So it’s not going to happen. And dangling this hope in front of people living in miserable refugee camps in Lebanon and Jordan is not a good idea or a moral position in my view…

BDS is not a principle, it’s a tactic. Just as it was in the case of South Africa, it’s a tactic. Now tactics have to be designed so that they’re going to have favorable effects for the victims. Tactics aren’t designed so that the person who undertakes them can feel good, that’s not a way to design tactics. At least if you have ethical imperatives, you ask yourself, What’s the impact on the victims? And if you take a look, there’s a record of significant success, very significant success, of really BD tactics aimed at the settlements. Say the Presbyterian church, for example, big organization– has taken a very strong stand on divestment and boycott of anything having anything to do with the settlements and, crucially, they aim also at US institutions, US multinationals that are involved in the occupied territories. That’s very significant, both for educational reasons and tactical reasons. And that’s been a big success, and there are other successes like that. And I think those are very good, sensible tactics.  The European Union has taken some steps in that direction. The human rights groups, like Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International have advocated similar things. All of that makes a lot of sense I think in principle, and it’s tactically effective, and it should go way beyond–

If there’s ever going to be any significant progress in Palestinian rights, it’s going to require a major change in the United States. As long as the United States continues, as it has been doing for decades, to provide economic, diplomatic, military, even ideological support for the settlement projects, they’re not going to end. They may use different words, but they’re not going to end, they’re going to continue.

And the U.S. does not have to do that, American citizens can prevent that. In fact, one critical tactic that I think ought to be pursued, I’ve been advocating this for years, is simply imposing American law. American law, the so called Leahy amendment, bans any military aid to any military unit or group that is involved in systematic human rights violations. Well, I don’t have to go through the record, but anyone who’s looked at the wars in Gaza and what goes on in the West Bank, and Lebanon as well, has no doubt that the Israeli army has been engaged in systematic human rights violations. So therefore by American law we ought to cancel military aid to them. Even a move in that direction could have significant implications, very significant. It’s a little bit like the [Bernie] Sanders story. Or the press [rise of alternative media].

There are plenty of things we can do if you think them through, ask what the consequences are, what the possibilities and opportunities are, and then pursue them, seriously. Not because something makes you feel good, but because it’s beneficial to the victims. That’s the question that should be uppermost, all the time.

Folks on the left will have many responses to this answer. For my part, I’d observe that Chomsky, now 88, exhibited a range of attitudes in the interview from liberal to conservative. For instance, he endorsed a progress narrative of recent American history in celebrating the civil rights movement and the waning of anti-Semitism, and when he lauded the ability of students to read about the real nature of U.S. slavery and the extermination of Native Americans, a history that he said was not taught in the 1960s. “It’s now possible… to learn what really happened.” We have become a more civilized society as a result, he said.

Chomsky’s comments about the role of the military in fostering the internet, and the use of the internet to foster the alternative press, such as Glenn Greenwald and Amy Goodman, was also a progress narrative. And he noted that his own department at MIT was a hotbed of anti-Vietnam War organizing during the 1960s, though it drew much of its funding from the Pentagon (something, I would say, that it is impossible to imagine in the context of the Israel lobby on campus). Chomsky’s BDS commentary strikes me as conservative.

About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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137 Responses

  1. Tom Suarez
    August 8, 2017, 12:46 pm

    “… return of the refugees, in accord with international law. Well, first of all, it’s not in accord with international law…”

    Huh?

    • just
      August 8, 2017, 5:52 pm

      Ay yi yi! Such a linguist, eh?

      Unbelievable, and terribly disappointing…

      • Arafatbastard
        August 9, 2017, 8:26 am

        Oh baby, did the man hurt you?

      • Misterioso
        August 9, 2017, 11:49 am

        @just

        Throughout history the “right of return” was so universally accepted that it was not codified until 1215, in Chapter 42 of the Magna Carta: “It shall be lawful in the future for anyone…to leave our kingdom and to return, safe and secure by land and water….”

        Following World War II the right of return was further enshrined in international law when in accordance with its Charter, the United Nations adopted The Universal Declaration of Human Rights of which Article 13(2) states: “Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and return to his country.” The United Nations adopted The Universal Declaration of Human Rights on 10 December 1948 (Resolution 217 A III), the day before Resolution 194 was passed.

        After being denied admittance twice, Israel again sought UN membership in 1949. This time, however, in order to be considered, Israel formally agreed at the United Nations to obey the UN Charter and comply with General Assembly Resolution 194, which is based on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Israel also signed the Lausanne Protocol at the 1949 Lausanne Peace Conference and thereby reaffirmed its commitment to Resolution 194.

        Israel’s pledge to abide by the terms of Resolution 194 as a basis for negotiations and the UN Charter was made legally binding by including it in General Assembly Resolution 273 (11 May 1949) granting Israel UN membership.

        Israel is the only state admitted to the UN on the condition that specific resolutions would be obeyed.

        Needless to say, Israel’s refusal to comply with Res. 194 should have long ago resulted in suspension of its UN membership.

      • Jon66
        August 9, 2017, 12:46 pm

        Mist,
        “Throughout history the “right of return” was so universally accepted that it was not codified until 1215, in Chapter 42 of the Magna Carta: “It shall be lawful in the future for anyone…to leave our kingdom and to return, safe and secure by land and water….””

        I guess no one told the King.

        “The Edict of Expulsion was a royal decree issued by King Edward I of England on 18 July 1290, expelling all Jews from the Kingdom of England.”
        https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edict_of_Expulsion
        “The edict was overturned during the Protectorate more than three centuries later, when Oliver Cromwell permitted Jews to return to England in 1657.”

      • YoniFalic
        August 9, 2017, 1:01 pm

        The Protectorate did not overturn the Edict of Expulsion. The Protectorate determined that the Edict was dead letter because it applied only and specifically to the Jews present in England in 1290.

        I have tried to explain before that Jewish communities served as a contractual commercial & financial class. When they violated the terms (in this case wrt usury and slaving) under which they were invited in, they were invited out.

        There was no return in 1657, but Jews began to immigrate into England.

      • Mooser
        August 9, 2017, 1:35 pm

        “Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and return to his country.”

        Let us hope Israel always recognizes that right. If Israeli Jews are frightened or insecure or don’t see enough opportunity, or don’t want to serve in the IDF or just go over the cliff with the Zionist fanatics, or fear for their children’s future, they have the right to leave, and seek a better life.
        And if the future of Israel should hold, or even threaten to hold, redress, return, or even equality for Palestinians, Israelis have the right to leave.

        You got any way to keep them there, “Jon 66”? Just thought I would ask.

      • Jon66
        August 9, 2017, 3:03 pm

        Yoni,
        The point is the concept of the “right of return” that Mist described as being universally accepted and then codified was neither universal nor followed. The words of the Magna Carta did not apply to the Jews.

      • MHughes976
        August 9, 2017, 4:06 pm

        I understand that Cromwell was not too keen to have more Jewish people around and informed the petitioners that they had to be discreet – but he had received the legal advice that Yoni mentions. And both sides in the Civil War had borrowed from Jewish financial institutions in Amsterdam, owed them something and could see what benefit would ensue if they opened branches in London. Less than a decade later the restored Charles II, presumably finding the same legal advice in a bottom drawer, quietly brushed aside objections to a greater Jewish presence. We don’t remember the ‘Jew free’ centuries with pride. The moral is that excluding people from their homes is remembered for a long time as a disgrace.

      • YoniFalic
        August 9, 2017, 5:49 pm

        The “English” Jews were Spaniards granted temporary residence as a privilege that could be suspended at any time if they disobeyed the English law and violated the restrictions under which they were granted temporary residence in order to fill certain financial and commercial needs of the English state.

        If they had a right of return, it was to Spain.

        At other times Tuscans, Lombards, Greeks, & Armenians filled the same financial/commercial contracting role under exactly the same rules.

      • RoHa
        August 9, 2017, 7:24 pm

        Jon, if you think the return clause in the Magna Carta applies to people who have been expelled, then the moral principle behind it applies also to the Palestinians who were expelled.

        If you think it only applies to people who leave voluntarily, then either you accept that the English Jews had no right to return or you take issue with those Zionists who claim that the Palestinians left voluntarily.

      • RoHa
        August 9, 2017, 7:35 pm

        “We don’t remember the ‘Jew free’ centuries with pride. ”

        Actually, most people are not aware that those centuries were “Jew free”, and are inclined to think with pride about Cabot, Drake, Bacon, Donne, Harvey, Hobbes, and Milton, according to taste. They think that Shakespeare knew of Jews first hand.

      • jon s
        August 10, 2017, 6:08 am

        Leave it to the Jew-hater and self-confessed war criminal Yonifalic to once again blame the victims: The Jews are to blame for their expulsion from England , for the Farhud in Iraq…you name it…

      • Keith
        August 10, 2017, 2:25 pm

        YONI FALIC- “The “English” Jews were Spaniards granted temporary residence as a privilege that could be suspended at any time if they disobeyed the English law and violated the restrictions under which they were granted temporary residence in order to fill certain financial and commercial needs of the English state.
        ….
        At other times Tuscans, Lombards, Greeks, & Armenians filled the same financial/commercial contracting role under exactly the same rules.”

        JON S- “Leave it to the Jew-hater and self-confessed war criminal Yonifalic to once again blame the victims: The Jews are to blame for their expulsion from England , for the Farhud in Iraq…you name it…”

        Folks, do you see what is going on here? Yoni Falic has presented historical facts which contradict Zionist myth-history. Now one can challenge Yoni’s facts and/or his interpretation of these facts. Jon S has done neither. Jon S has made a typical fact free Zionist ad hominem libel of Yoni as a Jew-hater and an unsubstantiated claim that the Jews were “victims.” In Zionist myth-history, Jews are always victims and failure to adhere to the Zionist meme makes someone a Jew-hater. Basically, Zionists reference their ideology as proof and attach the “anti-Semite” label to anyone who disagrees.

        While I am unfamiliar with this particular incident, Yoni Falic has in the past presented historical data consistent with my reference sources. So, for example, Yuri Slezkine states that “There was nothing particularly unusual about the social and economic position of the Jews in medieval and early modern Europe. Many agrarian and pastoral societies contained groups of permanent strangers who performed tasks that the natives were unable or unwilling to perform.” (p4, “The Jewish Century,” Yuri Slezkine) Now, does that not support Yoni’s statement that “At other times Tuscans, Lombards, Greeks, & Armenians filled the same financial/commercial contracting role under exactly the same rules.”? I leave the last word to Israel Shahak:

        “All modern studies on Judaism, particularly by Jews, have evolved from that conflict, and to this day they bear the unmistakable marks of their origin: deception, apologetics or hostile polemics, indifference or even active hostility to the pursuit of truth. Almost all of the so-called Jewish studies in Judaism, from that time to this very day, are polemics against an external enemy rather than an internal debate.” (p22, “Jewish History, Jewish Religion,” Israel Shahak)

      • Annie Robbins
        August 10, 2017, 7:02 pm

        keith, i noticed how jon66 seems to have left the conversation rather than respond to RoHa’s aug.9 7:24 pm Magna Carta point, and jons’s comment/accusation came after that. i noticed how yoni’s point (“The Protectorate did not overturn the Edict of Expulsion”) was ignored — it seems Jon66’s wiki link has no source for the “overturned” quote but there’s this, regarding the WhiteHall conference in 1665:

        https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whitehall_Conference

        Most prominent legal scholars agreed that “there is no law against their (the Jews) coming”. This was correct, as Jews had been expelled from England by the Edict of Expulsion in 1290 on the basis of a royal decree, not on the basis of parliamentary legislation. This finding would prove crucial to the eventual readmission of Jews in the 1660s.

        so it appears Yoni’s information is accurate on this point at least and this info is easily accessible at the same source (i found Whitehall link prominently displayed at the base of jon66’s link). but it seems rather than discuss the topic or the implications of these points (of which i do not feel informed enough to be qualified to contribute), accusations/divert followed.

      • Mooser
        August 10, 2017, 7:53 pm

        “Leave it to the Jew-hater and self-confessed war criminal Yonifalic” “Jon s”

        Yes, the fact that Israeli-born “Yoni Falic” was deeply sickened and disturbed by his IDF draft service is what bothers “Jon s” so much. I wonder why, but it sure seems to bug him:

        “The Anti-Semitic meshumad and self-confessed war criminal Yonifalic is allowed to explain why he hates Judaism” “Jon s”

        “Yonifalic , the Anti-Semitic meshumad, is also a self-confessed murderer. Why not encourage him to surrender himself to the appropriate authorities to stand trial for his crimes?” “Jon s”

        “I recall that he has also confessed to being a murderer of Palestinian civilians. He should turn himself in” “Jon s”

        “Absolutely, Yonifalic, I suggest that you surrender yourself to Palestinian authorities. Preferably Hamas.” “Jon s”

        “If you think yonifalic is not an Anti-semite, and is trying to “save ” Israel, you probably haven’t been reading his comments.”“Jon s”

        “Yonifalic is therefore a self-confessed war criminal and should be prosecuted.” “Jon s”

        “YoniFalic wants to expel millions of people , based on ethnic identity and skin color. That’s pure racism.
        I recall that he has also confessed to being a murderer of Palestinian civilians.”
        “Jon s”

        “The sewer has overflowed with with YoniFalic’s latest Anti-Semitic comment” “Jon s”

        “YoniFalic’s bizarre crackpot theories, genocidal intentions and Anti-Semitic propaganda reach a new low” “Jon s”

        Here come the Judge! Gonna render his judgement:

        “In my opinion the comments of YoniFalic and echinococcus fall under the definition of Hate Speech.” “Jon s”

        Ah, but the writ of the Israeli Supreme Court only runs so far. In fact, if I’m not mistaken, the Israeli government is quite capable of ignoring it.

        “Yet Yonifalic, the Anti-Semitic meshumad and self-confessed war criminal, is tolerated by the moderators.” “Jon s”

        Life isn’t fair, is it “Jon s”? There wasn’t supposed to be an ex-Israeli here, was there?

      • Mooser
        August 10, 2017, 8:41 pm

        “Folks, do you see what is going on here?”

        Are you referring to the Israel;i-American “Jon s”, who never served a day in the IDF, that is denigrating “Yoni Falic” for the wounds “Yoni Falic” got as a conscripted Israeli soldier, following orders, ostensibly to protect “Jon s” pasty little ass?
        Yes, I see it, but I have a hard time believing it. I would have thought chicken-hawkery was an American commodity.
        But this chicken-soup hawk, “Jon s” takes the biscuit.

      • Jon66
        August 10, 2017, 8:48 pm

        Roha,
        I really haven’t given it any thought. My point was simply that the reference that Mist made to the Magna Carta was poor. Using it as an example of the right of return is inherently flawed as you point out.

        As to the edict being “overturned”, is it really material if it was formally removed or deliberately unenforced? Same result. I guess Wiki simplified it. A distinction without a difference in this case.

      • Annie Robbins
        August 10, 2017, 10:34 pm

        the reference that Mist made to the Magna Carta was poor. Using it as an example of the right of return is inherently flawed

        while it may have been incorrect to state the right of return was “universally accepted” i don’t think using it as an example is inherently flawed, i think it’s a good example even though it was broken time and again. if you have not given the principle much thought, why not think about it now? do you think the english jews had a right to go back to england? or should have had that right?

        is it really material if it was formally removed or deliberately unenforced? Same result….. A distinction without a difference in this case.

        even tho the result was the same, that jews were allowed back in england, i don’t think it was a distinction without a difference. because making the point it was a royal decree and not an act of parliament is sort of like saying “we didn’t decide that, the king did”. and you stating it was “deliberately unenforced” implies the decree was still in effect. if that’s the case i wonder if it was ever formally decided by law to end the edict or did it just linger on indefinitely deliberately unenforced? yikes!

      • jon s
        August 15, 2017, 6:54 am

        Keith,
        I don’t have to “claim” that Yonifalic is a Jew-hater, he’s said so himself numerous times. Search his archive for “hate”.
        And while you’re at it, see how he’ll always blame the Jews . Not only for the expulsion and for the Farhud. He blames them for the Holocaust, calls it “blowback”. Enough said.

      • YoniFalic
        August 15, 2017, 9:10 am

        I invite readers to execute http://mondoweiss.net/profile/yonifalic/?keyword=hate to judge for themselves whether Jon S is libeling me. If Mondoweiss were my website, I would ban commenters that engage in libel and thus expose the owners legally.

      • amigo
        August 15, 2017, 9:14 am

        “I don’t have to “claim” that Yonifalic is a Jew-hater, he’s said so himself numerous times. Search his archive for “hate”.” jon s

        I took your advice and searched for “hate” in Yoni,s archives.
        I came up with numerous use of the term hate but never did he write that he “Hates Jews”.

        He states his hatred for Israel and zionism/zionists –I do too.Does that make me a Jew hater.

        I challenge you to bring forth “proof ” he is a Jew hater.In my opinion , he cares more about the welfare of Jews than you do sitting in your illegal squat on stolen Palestinian land making excuses for and defending the Zionist entity.

        I notice you are moving further to the right and are clearly showing the strain of defending the indefensible.Resorting to lies and zionist Hasbara.

        It,s going to get tougher jon s but you get no sympathy from this side of the house.

        BTW , where is your refutation , to our link to BG ( Jewish terrorist ) clearly stating he wanted the Palestinians “expelled”.

      • catalan
        August 15, 2017, 10:32 am

        “I notice you are moving further to the right” Amigo to Jon S
        He has finally understood that an agreement based on the 1967 lines is a delusion; rather, it’s a first step towards demanding the 1947 borders, followed by the whole region from the river to the sea. And that the Palestinians would never compromise on the issue of the return of the 7 million refugees and their descendants – they can’t even if they wanted to because the Arab states would never grant the refugees full citizenship. Mondoweiss is very enlightening to those on the Israeli left who think that there is a solution other than a continuous war. Just like all else in life, you fight, or you die. Well, of course, the boycott of Ben and Jerry ice cream might have devastating consequences for the Israeli economy so there is hope for you.

      • echinococcus
        August 15, 2017, 10:50 am

        I notice you are moving further to the right

        says Amigo to… John S.

        Once you’re a Zionist, Genghis Khan and Attila are on your left. All shades of Zionist want Palestinian land period.

      • jon s
        August 15, 2017, 11:06 am

        Hate is a recurring theme in Yonifalic’s comments.
        One example: “There are not words for me to describe how much I hate Rabbinic Judaism as a religion even if I find it interesting as an historical phenomenon.” Does anyone really think that he hates Judaism but doesn’t hate the Jews?
        And blaming the Jews themselves for being persecuted and expelled and for the Holocaust, like any good Anti-Semite…
        Accusing me of libel, after writing that I’m “like Hitler”.

        I must say that by now I find this whole topic , discussing Yonifalic, what he means and why he’s tolerated on Mondoweiss, extremely distasteful.

      • amigo
        August 15, 2017, 11:39 am

        “I must say that by now I find this whole topic , discussing Yonifalic, what he means and why he’s tolerated on Mondoweiss, extremely distasteful.”Jon S

        I imagine you do but why do you keep raising the subject if you find it so distasteful.

        See post at 6,08 am .

      • Keith
        August 15, 2017, 12:13 pm

        JON S- “I don’t have to “claim” that Yonifalic is a Jew-hater, he’s said so himself numerous times.”

        You continue to ignore the content of Yoni’s comment to engage in libelous ad hominem attacks.

        JON S- “Enough said.”

        I suspect that you will in the future attack people as anti-Semites rather than counter the substance of their comments. You are guided by ideology and myth-history and cannot rationally deal with empirical reality. As Yoni has pointed out, in real history Jews played an important role in the development of the modern economy in Europe, something to be proud of yet which doesn’t fit with the Zionist narrative of never ending powerlessness and persecution, hence, is downplayed or denied.

      • Mooser
        August 15, 2017, 12:25 pm

        Unbelievable! “Jon s”, an American-Israeli, who never had to lift a finger for Israel, lives in Beersheba, derides “YoniFalic” a sabra who was drafted to fight for Israel, and did so. And “Jon s” hates him because “Yoni” didn’t enjoy the experience.

        An experience “Jon s” has no way to judge. Except maybe IDF video games.
        There is nothing lower than a chicken-soup hawk.

      • Mooser
        August 15, 2017, 12:38 pm

        ” Just like all else in life, you fight, or you die.” “catalan”

        Or you wield a pencil, and do battle with columns of figures.

        Gee, it just occurred to me. If “Jon s” was an American, he would be deriding as a “murderer” American soldiers who came back from Iraq or Afghanistan disturbed or harmed by the experience. Or even just changed by it.

        I’m telling you “Jon s” is a cracker who thinks he’s a matzoh.

      • Mooser
        August 15, 2017, 12:51 pm

        “I must say that by now I find this whole topic , discussing Yonifalic, what he means and why he’s tolerated on Mondoweiss, extremely distasteful.”

        “Jon s” shall I copy-n-paste my 7:53 pm comment again? You want to talk about distasteful?

        Beersheba is full of hot-houses, right? That must be where they bring you guys up. So the IDF guys who come back bragging about killing civilians are your heroes, “Jon s”? That’s some “Israeli Left” you got there, “Jonny”

      • Mooser
        August 15, 2017, 1:04 pm

        ” Just like all else in life, you fight, or you die..”

        ROTFLMSJAO!! As long as it’s “Yoni Falic” doing the fighting, and not “catalan” or “Jon s”.

      • jon s
        August 15, 2017, 1:29 pm

        amigo,
        Don’t worry, I’m still firmly on the Left. I haven’t changed my fundamental positions, though I may now realize better -thanks in part to MW- what those of committed to Israeli-Palestinian peace are up against.
        Once again, I don’t live in an “illegal squat”. I live in a perfectly legal, normal, apartment, still paying the mortgage. You’re invited to visit, see the “squat”.
        If you’re also motivated by hatred -well,what can I say, that’s unfortunate.
        As to why I keep returning to Yonifalic, you may have a point. Maybe I shouldn’t bother.

      • amigo
        August 15, 2017, 2:01 pm

        “If you’re also motivated by hatred -well,what can I say, that’s unfortunate” Jon S to Amigo

        Followed by !!,

        “As to why I keep returning to Yonifalic, you may have a point. Maybe I shouldn’t bother.”

        Maybe you are motivated by hatred.

        Oh and just to clarify–my hatred is for those who perpetrate crimes against the Palestinians and the state that enables them.

        Namely , zionists and the state of Israel.

        As to your invitation , no thanks.Besides , I am a fervent supporter of BDS here in Ireland and don,t wish to waste my time taking a vacation just to be stopped at the border and refused entry.

      • Mooser
        August 15, 2017, 3:20 pm

        “As to why I keep returning to Yonifalic, you may have a point. Maybe I shouldn’t bother.”

        “ROTFLMSJAO!! As long as it’s “Yoni Falic” doing the fighting, and not “catalan” or “Jon s”.”

      • Annie Robbins
        August 15, 2017, 3:23 pm

        my hatred is for those who perpetrate crimes against the Palestinians and the state that enables them.

        hate is not a topic i revel in, probably my least favorite topic of them all. but at least if one is going to talk about it they should speak of their own (as amigo has done above). people pondering others alleged hatreds should take a look at their own instead of using inflammatory allegations about others alleged hatreds. i agree with yoni about banning these kinds of blatant accusations but it’s not up to me.

        the absurdity tho, the hypocrisy, of pro israel posters, so many of whom continually initiate and utilize the accusation of hatred, to claim “Hate is a recurring theme” of one of their ideological adversaries, is simply stunning.

        take the mote out of your own eye! if you want to talk about hate talk about your own. and if you claim to not hate, don’t accuse others of it. but using the accusation as a weapon to be bandied about to spam a comment section is really the lowest of the lows. and what is this:

        Does anyone really think that he hates … but doesn’t hate …?

        shall we ask the question and all dive in opening up for discussion what we all really believe you hate jon??? no we should not. can you just stop with this recurring obsession of yours. just ignore yoni if he drives you to such obsession. you’re not going to win any debates like this.

      • Mooser
        August 15, 2017, 5:29 pm

        “Don’t worry, I’m still firmly on the Left.”

        I bet “Jon s”! Involved up to your neck, a big supporter of “Breaking the Silence” and “B’tselem”

      • echinococcus
        August 15, 2017, 10:01 pm

        John S sez

        Don’t worry, I’m still firmly on the Left

        The Left my right *cheek. He is a common-or-garden Zionist, a raging racist, an invader, a participant in war of aggression, a profiteer from mass dispossession, mass misery and mass murder. Left indeed.

        Too thick to understand that the following means him?

        the same “settlers” have also invaded Mondoweiss and keep throwing virtual banana peels, rotten veggies, sewer material and the kitchen sink, relentlessly, in a more or less successful attempt not to let others turn their attention to discussing what they can or should do.
        Make no mistake, it’s all the same “settlers”, no matter if they call themselves liberal or cavemen.

      • YoniFalic
        August 16, 2017, 12:11 am

        “There are not words for me to describe how much I hate Rabbinic Judaism as a religion even if I find it interesting as an historical phenomenon.”

        Most of the Zio immigrants of the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd aliyot were secular and at the very least uninterested in Judaism. Scorn for Rabbinic Judaism may be the only area about which I agree with my paternal grandfather, who came in the third aliyah. My other grandparents and my parents have been at best indifferent to Judaism. Jewish Sovs and secular Yiddishists, who often scheduled Yom Kippur dances and parties, were at least as scornful of Rabbinic Judaism as I am.

        As I have written before, how does one know a Zio is lying? Check for breathing.

    • Nathan
      August 9, 2017, 8:03 pm

      Tom Suarez – In Oslo 2 (Sept 28, 1995), it was agreed that there are five issues that must be negotiated in the final status agreement that ends the conflict: 1. Palestinian statehood; 2. Borders; 3. Jerusalem; 4 Settlements; 5. REFUGEES. In short, the refugees issue must be negotiated AND the issue will be resolved only in the framework of ending the conflict. The position of the pro-Palestinian (or anti-Israel) activism is that the refugees have the right of return, period – and it is not conditionalized by an end-of-conflict deal. However, Mr Arafat himself signed the agreement in which it was established that the issue will be negotiated in the framework of ending the conflict.

      Misterioso – If you would read UNGA 194, you would notice that “refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbours should be permitted to do so at the earliest practicable date…” Wishing to live at peace sounds like an end-of-conflict condition (and “SHOULD be permitted to do so” is not exactly the same as “MUST be permitted to do so”). However, more importantly, you should read over UNSC 242 that mentions “a just settlement of the refugee problem” – and this, too, is in the framework of “the establishment of a just and lasting peace in the Middle East”. So, it sounds as if the topic at hand is (1) ending the conflict through (2) negotiating its outstanding grievances.

      It would seem that it has been agreed that the refugee issue is now a political issue (i.e. it will be negotiated). Even the recent Arab League peace initiative speaks of “a just solution to the problem of Palestinian refugees to be agreed upon in accordance with the UN General Assembly Resolution No. 194”. Amazingly, the very resolution that is perceived as being the basis of the right of return is regarded by the Arab League as an issue for negotiations in the framework of ending the conflict.

      • jon s
        August 15, 2017, 6:37 am

        Just to point out that the Arab side, all the Arab states REJECTED resolution 194 and voted against it in 1948.

    • Sibiriak
      August 9, 2017, 11:04 pm

      Tom Suarez: [Chomsky]“… return of the refugees, in accord with international law. Well, first of all, it’s not in accord with international law…”

      Huh?
      ——————————–

      Chomsky explains his position on that issue:

      The opening call of the BDS movement, by a group of Palestinian intellectuals in 2005, demanded that Israel fully comply with international law by “(1) Ending its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands occupied in June 1967 and dismantling the Wall; (2) Recognizing the fundamental rights of the Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel to full equality; and (3) Respecting, protecting, and promoting the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties as stipulated in UN Resolution 194.”

      This call received considerable attention, and deservedly so. But if we’re concerned about the fate of the victims, BD and other tactics have to be carefully thought through and evaluated in terms of their likely consequences. The pursuit of (1) in the above list makes good sense: it has a clear objective and is readily understood by its target audience in the West, which is why the many initiatives guided by (1) have been quite successful—not only in “punishing” Israel, but also in stimulating other forms of opposition to the occupation and US support for it.

      However, this is not the case for (3). While there is near-universal international support for (1), there is virtually no meaningful support for (3) beyond the BDS movement itself. Nor is (3) dictated by international law. The text of UN General Assembly Resolution 194 is conditional, and in any event it is a recommendation, without the legal force of the Security Council resolutions that Israel regularly violates. Insistence on (3) is a virtual guarantee of failure. [emphasis added]

      https://www.thenation.com/article/israel-palestine-and-bds/

      • Sibiriak
        August 9, 2017, 11:16 pm

        Tom Suarez on Chomsky’s RoR position:
        —————————————–

        Professor Chomsky argues that Resolution 194 (specifically regarding Right of Return) is a non-binding “recommendation” since it is from the General Assembly, not the Security Council. This is a straw issue. Right of Return is international law, above and beyond Resolution 194. 194 merely restates it in context of the aftermath of the 1948 war. Right of Return is an individual right that cannot be bargained away on someone’s behalf. Further, abiding by UN Resolutions (including 194) was a specific condition to which Israel agreed for admission to the UN. That was binding. Moreover, Right of Return is simply the antidote to ethnic cleansing. Ethnic cleansing, in this case Plan Dalet, is a war crime, and undoing it not merely a “recommendation”. (Ironically, it is UNGA Resolution 181, the Resolution upon which Israel claims statehood, that exists solely as a General Assembly “recommendation”, yet in that case the Jewish Agency argued that it carried binding force.)

        SEE MORE HERE:
        http://mondoweiss.net/2014/07/chomsky-and-bds/

  2. Paranam Kid
    August 8, 2017, 12:51 pm

    The BDS movement is not perfect, like most things in the world, but the response to that is not to walk away from it but to amend it, to improve it. So, if the issue to be tweaked or even ditched is the right of return for Palestinians, let’s do so.

    The other point is that at 1st he calls BDS a movement, and says it is not a tactics. In the next paragraph he says it is not a principle, it is a tactic, thus contradicting himself.

    He goes on to state that Israel would be prepared nuclear weapons to keep refugees out. That is a ludicrous argument because using that sort of approach to refugees does not make sense. Furthermore, the radiation fall-out would also affect Israel itself.

    So, the only issue he has against BDS is RoR, nothing else. So, in the apparent absence of other anti-BDS arguments, I wonder what his real motives are. Or is he a bit disoriented in his discourse?

    Also, he shifts the focus onto the US. That is certainly a valid argument, because at the end of the day the US has been the real obstruction of an agreement by virtue of (I should by “vice” of) its unfettered, blind support for Israel, which has subsequently stuck up its middle finger to the rest of the world & the Palestinians. Indeed, without a fundamental change in US policy there will not be an agreement. Nevertheless, that is a separate issue from BDS.

    Norman Finkelstein on the other hand, a Jewish scholar extremely critical of Israel, is also critical of BDS. Not that he opposes it, he actually supports it, but his issue is that the strategy is wrong, notably that BDS invokes international law in its action against Israel, thereby aiming for a 1-state solution, but actually ignoring international law that recognises Israel as is, a separate country. Of course the situation in the Stolen Palestinian Territories now is such that a single, viable Palestinian state is now an unrealistic proposition, and ignores the facts on the ground. Finkelstein even claims BDS has a hidden agenda with a wish to destroy Israel, and he has some other griefs.

    Finkelstein is not under discussion here, but, in the absence of any viable alternative, the starting point needs to be BDS & support for it, with the aim of equality for all citizens in Israel/Palestine, whether as 1 or 2 states, as [Robert Cohen– editor] pointed out in his recent address to a group of British Quakers. A re-evaluation of the principles, aims, strategy, and tactics might be useful in order to move forward faster & get more traction in society at large.

    • Tuyzentfloot
      August 9, 2017, 4:57 am

      It annoys me that the motives of Finkelstein and Chomsky are questioned. If anything they try to think in an intellectually independent manner, even if it disagrees with everyone around them.
      In that respect there is a tension with activism because there is always an element of conformism in that. That doesn’t make them right but it does make them courageous. It also makes them disciplined and reliable.

      There is a common practice of ‘psychologizing’ the other person in an argument. The other side of the argument is reduced to a product of a psychological state and therefore to something that can be dismissed. This can make sense but if the argument is valid then it is valid. On the other hand it’s a trap, an easy trick to dismiss whatever the others are saying without listening to it. A habit even.

      • Paranam Kid
        August 9, 2017, 9:08 am

        Why can the motives of Chomsky & Finkelstein not be questioned? Nobody in the world is perfect, nobody is infallible. The fact that their speaking out is courageous, does not mean it can therefore not be questioned. The moment you ban the possibility to question someone, you are elevating them to a personality cult.

        I have not dismissed their arguments, I take issue with some of their statements. particularly Chomsky’s because he only rejects 1 aspect of BDS, and goes on to reject the whole project on the basis of that. 1. I don’t see what’s wrong with addressing that thought, 2. I don’t see why I should not be able to put forward my opinion, it is a public debate.

        BTW, I have great respect for both men, I am impressed with their work & their views & opinions, but that does not make accept just anything they say, in contrast with you.

      • Tuyzentfloot
        August 9, 2017, 4:27 pm

        but that does not make accept just anything they say, in contrast with you.

        There, you’re doing it again!
        It’s not really a personal comment, you just happened to be the first in my line of fire. There’s plenty of others in this thread.
        My criticism relates to the general criticism of ‘ad hominem ‘ attacks although I mean to criticise the sincere convictions that come with psychologizing. not the dirty ‘ad hominem’ trick.

      • RoHa
        August 9, 2017, 7:11 pm

        “Why can the motives of Chomsky & Finkelstein not be questioned? ”

        But why bother? If they make good arguments, those arguments are good regardless of the motives for making them. And if their arguments are bad, the arguments are bad no matter how praiseworthy or contemptible the motives.

      • Lamont Cranston
        August 9, 2017, 10:20 pm

        Because its such obvious anti-Semitic trash?

      • Tuyzentfloot
        August 10, 2017, 8:04 am

        Because its such obvious anti-Semitic trash?

        .
        That would be another example. But since your name sounds as if it was generated by a spambot I assume it’s not a witty snark.

      • Paranam Kid
        August 10, 2017, 9:18 am

        @Tuyzentflood
        Whilst I agree that ad hominem attacks are not correct, and I even go as far as admitting I sometimes revert to them too, I do NOT agree with you that my remark “…. in contrast with you” represents an ad hominem attack.

        I am merely contrasting my views & appreciation of Chomsky & Finkelstein with yours. If you want to participate in any discussion you have to expect to be compared with others, esp. in terms of your views. In fact, disagreeing or agreeing with someone is a judgment of the other’s views. If you cannot take that, what is the point in participating in a discussion, or do you expect people to not disagree with you?

        Your aversion to ad hominem attacks is understandable, laudable even, but you have to remain realistic about it, which you are not in this case. And this last remark is NOT an ad hominem attack on you, just an expression of my disagreement with your opinion, if I may.

      • Tuyzentfloot
        August 10, 2017, 9:57 am

        NOT agree with you that my remark “…. in contrast with you” represents an ad hominem attack.

        It is not ad hominem, I was talking about psychologizing. You deduced that I was obviously defending Chomksy because I was some kind of acolyte (an amanuensis?). Someone who considers everything Chomksy says as gospel.
        At hominem that’s me responding to the other guy here in the thread. Or is that at nominem.

      • Paranam Kid
        August 11, 2017, 9:15 am

        @Tiyzentflood
        Psychologising is a big word for me just noticing your sympathy with Chomsky. But whatever term you use, fact is that you are entitled to sympathise with whomever you like, and I am entitled to notice that. Can’t see anything wrong with that.

      • Paranam Kid
        August 11, 2017, 9:19 am

        @RoHa
        Not quite. I assume that someone of Chomsky’s or Finkelstein’s calibre offer a public discourse, that they do so with a sincere motivation. If they don’t then they are hypocritical, and as far as I am concerned I have no time for hypocrites, among others.

        Note: I am NOT saying Chomsky is disingenuous, just questioned his sincerity here in view of his earlier stance on Israel.

      • RoHa
        August 11, 2017, 9:54 am

        So you do not take arguments on their merit, but on the merit of the person making the argument.

        My father’s doctor was a heavy smoker, but when he told my father to give up smoking, my father followed the advice, and lived a bit longer.

      • Paranam Kid
        August 12, 2017, 9:03 am

        @RoHa
        And what would your reaction have been if he would have said to your father that smoking is not so bad for one’s health? If he would have given an example of an uncle who was a heavy smoker & lived to 95. Would you or your father have decided that smoking isn’t really dangerous, or would you have decided to go see another doctor for a 2nd opinion?

      • RoHa
        August 20, 2017, 10:20 pm

        Sorry, I’ve been busy, so I missed this one, and it does require attention. It combines bad grammar and bad logic.

        “And what would your reaction have been if he would have said to your father that smoking is not so bad for one’s health? If he would have given an example of an uncle who was a heavy smoke”

        That should be “if he had said…” and “if he had given…” No “would have” in the “if” clause.

        Of course, the doctor was not making an argument, but giving advice. The point is that, when considering the advice, my father ignored the contrast between the advice and the doctor’s conduct. If the doctor had said “keep on smoking”, I expect my father would have ignored the congruence.

        If the doctor had given an example of an uncle, then he would have been making an argument to support the advice. The right thing for my father to have done would have been to consider the argument on its merits.

        And that is how you should consider all arguments.

    • Lamont Cranston
      August 9, 2017, 10:21 pm

      >Also, he shifts the focus onto the US. That is certainly a valid argument, because at the end of the day the US has been the real obstruction of an agreement by virtue of (I should by “vice” of) its unfettered, blind support for Israel, which has subsequently stuck up its middle finger to the rest of the world & the Palestinians. Indeed, without a fundamental change in US policy there will not be an agreement. Nevertheless, that is a separate issue from BDS.

      He’s not shifting anything, he’s an American and that’s his first responsibility and it is America that is Israels backer. Without its support it would not be able to do this.

  3. Pippilin
    August 8, 2017, 1:25 pm

    I point something out in probable ignorance: it seems doubtful to me that Israel would use nukes to prevent Palestinians from returning to Palestine, considering that most current refugees live in close proximity to the Israelis– and that the Israelis would suffer /extinguish themselves with radiation fallout.
    Then again, the Israelis have promised to bring the rest of the world down with them, should it come to that.

    • Misterioso
      August 9, 2017, 10:25 am

      Agreed.

    • JWalters
      August 9, 2017, 10:26 pm

      I don’t think we can entirely ignore the “Samson Option”, unfortunately. Consider the Jonestown cult’s mass suicide. There are truly crazy people in this world.

    • Annie Robbins
      August 11, 2017, 10:15 am

      doubtful to me that Israel would use nukes to prevent Palestinians from returning to Palestine, considering that most current refugees live in close proximity to the Israelis

      it occurred to me chomsky’s reference to the use of nukes to prevent ror does not necessarily mean they would use them against palestinians.

      • catalan
        August 11, 2017, 10:50 am

        -it occurred to me chomsky’s reference to the use of nukes to prevent ror does not necessarily mean they would use them against palestinians-
        He is saying, simply, that only a full scale invasion and occupation of Jerusalem and Tel Aviv by foreign powers (by Egypt, Jordan, Iran, whoever) would force Israel to agree to a right of return. Surely, if Israel loses a conventional war so bad, that’s what nukes are for – a last resort. Its an end of times scenario and that’s why so many of those demanding ROR are old – they have less to lose in case of a nuclear war potentially engulfing the world. Also people who are not close to their children or just unhappy people.

      • Mooser
        August 11, 2017, 12:08 pm

        “Surely, if Israel loses a conventional war so bad, that’s what nukes are for – a last resort”

        Exactly. What else could a Jewish State do? Masadadammerung!

      • Mooser
        August 11, 2017, 12:19 pm

        “does not necessarily mean they would use them against palestinians.”

        Well, if Israel perceived certain countries or a united bunch of nations as forcing the “right of return” on Israel, those would be the people to threaten with a bomb.

        Always with a level of deniability, like, say… “How were we to know settlers made up the entire crew of a submarine”? sort of thing.

  4. catalan
    August 8, 2017, 2:04 pm

    What does the “return of refugees” mean in practice: Israel would allow, under this scenario, millions of Palestinians who now live in Gaza, Lebanon, Jordan, etc, to “return”. Presumably, provide them with housing, healthcare, and welfare benefits. This is such lunacy on so many levels but the main problem is that these people are Muslims, many of them adherents of Hamas, Islamic Jihad, etc. For one, they could immediately vote themselves to live in some kind of a Muslim state, since they would have a majority. What would be the role of Jews in this now Islamic state? Chomsky is right, this is a red line and nuclear issue that would cause a new world war. But this issue has been a boon to the Israeli right wing who can now say – see, that’s what they really want. All that talk of 67 is just bs, what they truly want is a full-scale invasion.

    • eljay
      August 8, 2017, 3:53 pm

      || catalan: What does the “return of refugees” mean in practice: Israel would allow, under this scenario, millions of Palestinians who now live in Gaza, Lebanon, Jordan, etc, to “return”. Presumably, provide them with housing, healthcare, and welfare benefits. This is such lunacy on so many levels … All that talk of 67 is just bs, what they truly want is a full-scale invasion. ||

      Why worry? As you put it, “Israel will continue to destroy the enemy with an iron fist and without mercy. I love it.”

    • Talkback
      August 8, 2017, 4:40 pm

      Catalan: “All that talk of 67 is just bs, what they truly want is a full-scale invasion.”

      That pretty much sums up the history of Zionism. So why do you have a problem if this would go the other way around? The usual Zionist hypocracy?

    • Mooser
      August 8, 2017, 5:44 pm

      “All that talk of 67 is just bs, what they truly want is a full-scale invasion.”

      Don’t worry, “catalan”! The IDF remains on the alert 24/7 for an overwhelming attack by the Palestinian Air Force, or a sudden landing by an Palestinian armored brigade and Naval Task Force.

  5. catalan
    August 8, 2017, 5:05 pm

    “That pretty much sums up the history of Zionism. So why do you have a problem if this would go the other way around?”
    What makes you think you have a problem? That means that the status-quo remains. Israelis will go on vacation in India; Gaza will be without power; and the BDS folks will buy Dairy Queen instead of Ben Jerry’s because that’s really scary. Everyone wins, right?

    • Talkback
      August 9, 2017, 3:59 am

      catalan: “What makes you think you have a problem? That means that the status-quo remains. ”

      catalan, you seem to be a little confused. Is a repatriation of refugees an “invasion”? And if so, what would you call an immigration of foreign settlers enforced upon natives within a framework to take over their country?

      • catalan
        August 9, 2017, 10:17 am

        “catalan, you seem to be a little confused. Is a repatriation of refugees an “invasion”?”
        Yes, if the refugees are members of Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and Hizbollah, that would be an invasion. Their primary goal would be the destruction of Israel as a state and the elimination of its Jewish population. As to what happened in the past – yes, the Jews invaded. However, they left a sizable Arabic population within the border of Israel. Despite the occupation, there are Arabs in the West Bank too. Under the scenario you propose – the “repatriation” of seven million members of an extremely hostile group to Israel, there would simply be a complete breakdown of social order: there are no resources or housing for doubling the population. Are there supposed to be judges in the future state who are members of Hizbollah and Hamas? What would the police force look like – Hamas guys and Jews patrolling the street together? Are terrorists going to be on welfare? The whole thing is like a bad movie plot – it will never happen, it’s like these conversations college students have about hypotheticals. It’s so stupid it’s not worth the discussion. It’s like, let’s take the people who hate each most at work, who can’t stand to look at each other, and lock them up in the elevator together. You know, for a social experiment. Because it would be so funny when they go at each others’ throats.

      • oldgeezer
        August 10, 2017, 10:08 am

        @catalan

        After mommy changes your depends, take a deep breath, there is not, nor has there ever been, a call or proposal to return 7 million Palestinians to Israel. Get Israelis back inside Israel’s borders and you will be just fine. Yes it does climb to 7 million when Israel covets and attempts to steal land that is not theirs. I am sure they find it difficult to be a criminal state but maybe rehab would help.

      • Mooser
        August 10, 2017, 9:50 pm

        “After mommy changes your depends, take a deep breath, there is not, nor has there ever been, a call or proposal to return 7 million Palestinians to Israel”

        Don’t see why “catalan” is so worried. He’s in New Mexico, enjoying a little Zionist vicarious brutality.

  6. CitizenC
    August 8, 2017, 8:31 pm

    Chomsky’s views on BDS are those stated in the 2014 exchange in the Nation, and earlier. The Nation exchange was followed by a panel on BDS with Harvard Arab alumni that fall. His talk of “realism” and “practicality” is just defending Israel, and “the Jewish people” generally, lowering the bar morally. He repeats the apologetics that were made for apartheid South Africa over sanctions.

    If he believes that Israel would use nuclear weapons to oppose the right of return then he should condemn Zionism in the most forthright terms, as a genocidal racist ideology, and oppose it root and branch, in its Israel Lobby manifestation in the US also. He still defends Zionism, still extols the kibbutz as “anarchism” when it was a racialist instrument of Ashkenazi Jewish settlement, and still dismisses any consequential role for the Israel Lobby.

    Here is 20,000 words on the 2014 exchange in the Nation and the Harvard panel. Because of his opposition the Nation could not manage to endorse BDS, pathetic.

    https://questionofpalestine.net/2013/01/31/noam-chomsky-and-bds-the-responsibility-of-intellectuals/

    • Lamont Cranston
      August 9, 2017, 10:18 pm

      His argument is people should look at their countries governments supporting Israel and businesses operating in the Occupied Territories and profiting from the Occupation. What don’t you understand about that?

  7. CitizenC
    August 8, 2017, 8:34 pm

    On Chomsky’s defense of Zionism, see p 32 ff in this. He has abandoned the classical liberal values of the Enlightenment and Jewish emancipation, that categorically rejected Zionism, has attempted to Judaize secularism, and impose an equivocal critique.. This is a stupendous failure, comparable to the failure of the left in Germany to mobilize effectively against Hitler for ideological reasons

    https://questionofpalestine.net/2013/01/15/the-end-of-modern-jewish-history/

  8. Ronald Johnson
    August 9, 2017, 10:31 am

    Noam Chomsky is an admirable person, who composes essays that simply baffle me: a course of hurdles placed at irregular intervals that break up the rhythm of understanding. He would advocate for justice, but Alas, justice is so impractical ! Killing the Palestinians, destroying their homes and infrastructure, and taking their land is a bad idea – that might have worked if started 100 years sooner, during the age of European supremacy and slow communications. The Palestinians are not a primitive people to be displaced like the fauna of the land.

  9. James Canning
    August 9, 2017, 1:40 pm

    Most Arab leaders seeking a resolution of the Israel/Palestine problem comprehend that there will be virtually no “right of return” to Israel within its pre-1967 borders, for descendants of non-Jews who fled what became Israel.

  10. peter
    August 9, 2017, 1:48 pm

    Use nuclear weapons??
    Where? On Beirut? In Jordan? In the West Bank (how many settlers would be killed?) In Gaza? Or perhaps it might use them against any European state which supported the right to return?

    What would happen after that? Say it used a nuclear weapon in Lebanon? Then what kind of international support would Israel have? What would the end game be?

  11. Ossinev
    August 9, 2017, 2:00 pm

    ” But return of the refugees. You can think whatever you like about the morality of that, but everyone knows it is not going to happen.”

    To put it mildly extremely disappointed by this comment in particular and other comments made by Chomsky. He is basically saying that the criminal is going to be allowed to get away with his crimes so the Palestinians both in Palestine and in exile and their supporters worldwide should get over it and move on. The logic of this is brutal – genocide , ethnic cleansing , ongoing crimes against humanity committed by Zionists just get over these and move on. A throw away argument made from the comfort of his pied a terre in America but condescending , dismissive and depressing for those native Palestinians abandoned in the squalor of their refugee camps.

    As I say disappointing but perhaps to be kind at age 88 his mind is beginning to wander a bit.

    • MHughes976
      August 9, 2017, 3:51 pm

      ‘Thinking what I like’ about the morality of it, it certainly seems to me that the difference between a home and a prison is that you can come and go from a home without permission, that excluding people from their homes is a terrible crime and that its results ought to be negated. Every settlement that disregards all the rights of excluded people is an encouragement to those who might plan to commit the same crime in the future.
      Perhaps there is in practice no hope whatever, not a shred, of finding a settlement which would negate the crime of 48 and perhaps those who try to keep the hope alive are deluded, even dangerous obstacles on the path to peace. That point would mean more to me if I thought that there was any more realistic peace proposal with an obvious prospect of acceptance. Until there is I think that it is more helpful than dangerous to keep the requirements of morality in mind.

    • Sibiriak
      August 9, 2017, 10:01 pm

      Ossinev: [Chomsky:] ” But return of the refugees. You can think whatever you like about the morality of that, but everyone knows it is not going to happen.”

      To put it mildly extremely disappointed by this comment in particular.
      ——————————-

      You should be disappointed by reality, not Chomsky’s assessment of it.

      It’s quite reasonable to argue that any kind of massive return of millions of Palestinian refugees/descendants to Israel is extremely unlikely, to put it mildly.

      Walid, one of MW’s most eloquent and informed Arab commenters put it this way:

      ROR is an abandoned cause by Palestinian and other Arab leaders; even tbe UN is now hesitant to bring it up.. This was confirmed by the leaked Palestinian Papers, which provoked not much more than the usual bogus threat of resignation by the chief Palestinian negotiator. After a cooling-off period of a few months, the man was back in the saddle and to business as usual, negotiating nothing with ardent Zionists like Indyk or Ross.

      The Palestinian president has himself admitted to having no further claim to his natal village from which he was evicted so what to expect from the man as to the ROR of others. ROR is dead in the water. In any event, the jailed Barghouti is not much different than what the Palestinians currently have, he’s from the same school. [Dec. 28, 2014]

      ——————-

      Legal scholar Hostage also makes some important points on the RoR issue:

      All of the Palestinian refugees have an unqualified personal right to opt-out of the so-called “right of return” and accept compensation instead in accordance with the explicit terms of UN General Assembly resolution 194(III).

      Opinion polls indicate that the majority of refugees desire compensation, not residency inside the borders of the State of Israel. That may not set too well with some activists, but it really isn’t a communal decision.

      http://mondoweiss.net/2013/04/takeaways-return-conference/

      The resolution [194] used the term final “settlement” and did not establish a completely unqualified right of return. A good faith interpretation requires as a minimum a clear relinquishment of any belligerent rights on the part of the repatriated individuals as a condition of return.

      The General Assembly established a new subsidiary organ, the PCC, charged with facilitating 1) repatriation; 2) resettlement and economic and social rehabilitation of refugees; and 3) the payment of compensation.

      People who are repatriated are no longer refugees. Any arrangement regarding compensation for citizens is a matter essentially within the domestic jurisdiction of the State. People who are resettled elsewhere and provided with economic and social rehabilitation are still considered refugees. Any arrangement for compensation of refugees is essentially an international matter that has to be addressed in a settlement.

      Resolution 194 (III) does not address the subject of subsequent generations. While they remain refugees and are entitled to opt for resettlement and compensation, it isn’t clear if family unification remains a determining factor for purposes of right of return after displaced parents have passed away or in cases where no other close family members remain in Palestine.

      Finkelstein uses Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International as examples of the “limit of opinion”. Both organizations are discussing return to the territory of Israel and stressing cases of refugees or descendants who have “maintained links with the territory”. In Demopoulos and Others v. Turkey et al, decision of 1 March 2010, — ECHR 2010 the EU Human rights Court rejected a petition based upon the right of return to occupied areas of northern Cyprus. The Court’s decision was based upon the passage of time, the arrival of new generations, and the lack of any remaining links to the territory. The Court instructed the victims to present their claims to the compensation commissions of the de facto government:

      *http://humanrightsdoctorate.blogspot.ru/2010/03/property-tribunal-in-northern-cyprus-is.html

      *[link to korbelsecurity.wordpress.com no longer working]

      http://mondoweiss.net/2012/06/finkelstein-stands-by-bds-cult-accusation-says-its-historically-criminal-to-not-support-the-two-state-solution/#comment-459620

    • Sibiriak
      August 9, 2017, 10:11 pm

      MHughes976: Until there is [a peace proposal with an obvious prospect of acceptance] I think that it is more helpful than dangerous to keep the requirements of morality in mind.
      —————-

      There is nothing wrong with keeping the requirements of morality in mind. But one of the requirements is to take reality into consideration when making moral calculations.

  12. Spring Renouncer
    August 9, 2017, 7:11 pm

    How disappointing. He’s probably lost his wits with age. I don’t understand why he would feel the need to say any of this; it would’ve been better to stay quiet. Those who have been in the spotlight for decades lose perspective and the ability to truly empathize. They end up becoming more interested in defending their opinions and preserving their relevance than helping anybody else.

  13. Nathan
    August 9, 2017, 9:20 pm

    “What does it say about Israeli leadership and political beliefs that the most prominent leftwing scholar in the U.S. says they would deploy nuclear weapons to defy global pressure re return of refugees?” Well, the answer to this question is very simple: It says absolutely nothing about Israeli leadership and political beliefs. If the most prominent leftwing scholar in the US raises an idea, then the only fair question would be if that prominent leftwing scholar has uttered a true or a false statement. It’s very unfair journalism to leave the impression that the issue at hand is “Israeli leadership and political beliefs”. True, Philip Weiss has not made a statement about “Israeli leadership and political beliefs”; rather, he put the issue in the form of a question. That’s a method of avoiding honest reporting. If you wish to leave the impression that the Israelis might be insane (which was the intention of the question), be a fair journalist. The article should then state: “If Prof. Chomsky’s assessment is true, what does it say about…..” Leave room for the possibility that the assessment is false (or even totally absurd).

  14. Lamont Cranston
    August 9, 2017, 10:15 pm

    Chomskys position is very simple and straightforward, and it is not ‘liberal’ or ‘conservative’ -whatever is meant by these terms that now get as abused by left as much as the right have been.

    1) tactics must do good, not simply make you feel good.

    2) people should look at their own countries first. i.e. American businesses working in the Occupied Territories and supporting the Occupation, like Caterpillar supplying the infamous armored bulldozers used for house demolitions – getting them to stop would have far more effect than protesting some Israeli chocolate shop. And then of course there is the American government and its support that can be influenced.

    Why do people get so angry and upset about Chomsky and this? I think it is because people like the writer of this article obscure Chomksys position and people read it rather than his own words.

  15. Jonathan Ofir
    August 10, 2017, 4:12 am

    So then, Noam Chomsky is suggesting that Israel would “go all out” and use nuclear weapons to prevent Palestinian refugee return.

    Hmm hmm… Sometimes great intellectuals manage to utter the madness that even the despots they criticize have not.

    Regardless of the bizarre suicidal concept of nuking refugees in your vicinity, if that’s what he actually meant –
    what is this statement actually serving? Indeed, the notion that “it’s not going to happen”.

    I wonder if opposition to Hitler at the time should have been stopped because Hitler might “go all out” against the Jews.

    Chomsky might have an unintended point here about Israel being a genocidal regime. But Genocidal regimes require fierce opposition.

    • Tuyzentfloot
      August 10, 2017, 9:46 am

      Hmm hmm… Sometimes great intellectuals manage to utter the madness that even the despots they criticize have not.

      I guess that is a downside of thinking independently. Failing feedback from others can lead to crazy thinking.

      Regardless of the bizarre suicidal concept of nuking refugees in your vicinity, if that’s what he actually meant –

      It looks like a more general statement of Israel considering return of refugees as an ‘existential threat’ justifying going all out, whatever that entails. It could just as well meaning going to war with Iran . In war situations,however unrelated they are, there will be no return of refugees.

      Chomsky might have an unintended point here about Israel being a genocidal regime. But Genocidal regimes require fierce opposition.

      I don’t think it’s unintended, it’s drawing a distinction between making a ruthless assessment of the situation while still sticking to more ‘realist’ policy recommendations. Chomsky said he would vote for Clinton over Trump. I think concerning BDS he is advocating more modest aims.

      Personally I don’t know enough to have a solid opinion but I don’t see the urgency in Chomsky’s comments. Yet. If you consider the BDS aims as staking out a position by listing everything that is justified, then you can include things that are negotiable. If the right of return can be converted to some extent to the right for compensation then that could be part of the negotiation.

  16. wdr
    August 10, 2017, 7:04 am

    Whatever is said about Palestinian refugees on this site (and dozens of others), the overwhelming majority of Palestinians are not refugees, only those who actually fled in 1948, not their descendants. If a young Jewish couple fled from Nazi Germany after Kristallnacht in 1938 and came to America, they would certainly be considered refugees. But if they had children in America- say a boy born in 1946 and a girl born in 1950- the children would not be “refugees,” just Americans. Their children, born in the USA say in the 1970s and 1980s, are obviously not “refugees,” and have no more right to “return” to Germany than to Outer Mongolia. They may well have a right to reclaim property that was left behind in Nazi Germany, but that’s all. Exactly the same thing applies to the Palestinians. The only Palestinian “refugees” are those who fled in 1948. If around 650,000 Palestinians fled at the time, probably no more than 25-50,000 are still alive, with their numbers decreasing all the time. A 25 year old who fled in 1948 would be 94 today. Their descendants born outside of Israel are not refugees and have absolutely no right to “return” to Israel, which in any case is absolutely impossible politically. They may well be entitled to compensation for property left behind, but so, too, are the one million Sephardic Jews who were kicked out of the Arab/Islamic world after 1948, most of whom now live in Israel.

    • JosephA
      August 10, 2017, 9:09 am

      I have to use restraint here in responding to your nonsense. Have you any concept of internationally accepted law (and human decency)?

      For example: https://www.un.org/press/en/2017/ga11919.doc.htm

      You are nit-picking about nomenclature, and spreading fallacies.

      I should add a few corrections to what you have stated:

      1. I have been to Iran, and have personally witnessed the thriving Persian Jewish community there
      2. Thriving Jewish communities throughout the Middle East, but especially in Iraq, were targeted by Zionists in false flag attacks in order to encourage immigration to Palestine
      3. I would DEFINITELY support compensation for those forced to move, meaning those Sephardic Jews should certainly receive recompense by the Zionist state that forced them to leave their homelands (so, we agree there, the Sephardic Jews are entitled to compensation)

      A final note: if you had any rational concept of history you would know that the Jews were kicked from pillar to post in majority Christian countries for ages, and they thrived in the majority Muslim countries for well over 1,700 years.

      • MHughes976
        August 10, 2017, 6:11 pm

        Thanks for the reference to that UN document, Joseph. I wish the UK government spoke with that sort of clarity in other areas.
        However my thoughts on hereditary refugee status are that the child of a refugee is a refugee if (s)he does not want citizenship anywhere else: citizenship of the UK (or wherrver) should not be ascribed to someone whose parents and culture come from elsewhere against personal preference: people should not told – which would be a kind of insult – to forget such things. On the other hand if someone chooses to accept UK citizenship he accepts the rights and duties that I have, neither more or less, and my rights do not include becoming a citizen of Palestine or going to live there.
        However I don’t think that the crime of dispossession goes away when there are few people left to whom direct redress can be made.

      • Nathan
        August 14, 2017, 9:42 pm

        JosephA – Palestine refugees are defined as “persons whose normal place of residence was Palestine during the period 1 June 1946 to 15 May 1948, and who lost both home and means of livelihood as a result of the 1948 conflict” (see https://www.unrwa.org/palestine-refugees ). This official definition of Palestinian refugees does not include the descendants of refugees.

        Since you mentioned the thriving Iranian Jewish community, I’d be curious to know how you could possibly know what a thriving Jewish community is. Is there an important book written by the thriving Jewish community in Iran that you could name?

        Now that you have established that the Jewish communities in the Islamic world were thriving, perhaps you would find it interesting to learn that all thriving Jewish communities throughout the world yearned to return to the ancient Land of Israel (i.e Palestine). It really is the abc’s of the Jewish civilization. All those communities that migrated to Israel from the Islamic world were not forced to do so. They were traditional Jews, and they saw themselves as participating in “the redemption of Israel”.

      • RoHa
        August 15, 2017, 1:48 am

        “all thriving Jewish communities throughout the world yearned to return to the ancient Land of Israel (i.e Palestine).”

        It is a shame that they attached themselves to so foolish and pointless a desire. But their yearning neither gave them a right to do so, nor placed any obligation on anyone else to accommodate their yearning. And since it seems that the yearning could only be satisfied by evil means, I am inclined to say that the desire itself is morally questionable.

        “the Jewish civilization.”

        There’s no such thing.

      • jon s
        August 15, 2017, 6:21 am

        1. It’s good to know that the Jewish community in Iran is “thriving”. One question: are they free to leave?

        2. The Jews in the Arab countries did not immigrate because of “Zionist false flag attacks”. They were compelled to leave because the authorities were implementing anti-Jewish policies, making it virtually impossible for the Jews to remain (as in Iraq) , combined with murderous mob violence. In addition, many Jews were, simply, Zionists. They wanted to live in a Jewish state, in the Jewish historic homeland.

      • eljay
        August 15, 2017, 8:37 am

        || jon s: … 2. The Jews in the Arab countries did not [emigrate] because of “Zionist false flag attacks”. They were compelled to leave … In addition, many Jews were, simply, Zionists. They wanted to live in a Jewish state, in the Jewish historic homeland. ||

        The geographic region of Palestine was not the “historic homeland” of all people in the world who chose to hold the religion-based identity of Jewish. (And it still isn’t.)

        But thanks for clarifying that “many Jews” in “the Arab countries” were simply supremacists who felt entitled to participate in the theft, occupation and colonization of territory in geographic Palestine so that they could enjoy Jewish supremacism in/and a religion-supremacist “Jewish State”.

      • amigo
        August 15, 2017, 9:42 am

        . It’s good to know that the Jewish community in Iran is “thriving”. One question: are they free to leave?” Jon S

        ” Iran’s Jews reject cash offer to move to Israel
        · Expats offer families £30,000 to emigrate
        · Our identity is not for sale, say community leaders”

        https://www.theguardian.com/world/2007/jul/12/israel.iran

        BTW , Jon S , I thought you might find this enlightening–don,t forget to pass it along to your students.

        “The following correction was printed in the Guardian’s Corrections and clarifications column, Saturday July 28 2007

        In the article below we reported that last year President Ahmadinejad said (quoting the late Ayatollah Khomeini) that Israel should be “wiped off the map”. A more literal translation of the statement he made in 2005, at The World without Zionism conference in Tehran, is “the regime occupying Jerusalem must vanish from the page of time”.

        Note ! it is to be found at the same link provided above.

      • Annie Robbins
        August 15, 2017, 11:21 am

        are they free to leave?

        this reminds me — remember when israel tried to get iraq to trade their jews for palestinians and they said no. i guess there wasn’t any rush to emigrate from iraq. but zionist agents took care of that — by false flag bombings of some strategic jewish targets so that iraqi jews would feel unsafe and insecure and leave.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1950%E2%80%9351_Baghdad_bombings

        The allegations against Israeli agents had “wide consensus” amongst Iraqi Jews in Israel.[3][4][5][6][7] Many of the Iraqi Jews in Israel who lived in poor conditions blamed their ills and misfortunes on the Israeli Zionist emissaries or Iraqi Zionist underground movement.[8] The theory that “certain Jews” carried out the attacks “in order to focus the attention of the Israel Government on the plight of the Jews” was viewed as “more plausible than most” by the British Foreign Office.[9][10][11][7][4] Telegrams between the Mossad agents in Baghdad and their superiors in Tel Aviv give the impression that neither group knew who was responsible for the attack.[10]

        anyway, not sure why i thought of that… and then there was the lavon affair. same thing in eqypt, bombings and hangings of perps.

      • jon s
        August 15, 2017, 10:44 am

        amigo,
        Thanks . As I said it’s good to know that the Jewish community is thriving. Do you have anything more up-to-date than a link from 2007? and are those who so wish free to leave?

        As to the Iranian regime’s attitude towards Israel, it seems to me that the slogan “Death to Israel” is pretty clear.

      • amigo
        August 15, 2017, 11:13 am

        “Thanks . As I said it’s good to know that the Jewish community is thriving. Do you have anything more up-to-date than a link from 2007? and are those who so wish free to leave?”Jon S

        Would 2016 be recent enough for you Jon S.Now you can pass the latest news about Iranian Jews on to your students and correct any zionist yarns you may have infused in their young minds.

        “Morsadegh, a 50-year-old hospital surgeon, is one of the candidates who benefited in the liberal swing to get re-elected. He is the only Jew in the Iranian parliament, the Majlis, winning the seat reserved for the Jewish community against two other candidates. “The fact is, Iran is a place where Jews feel secure and we are happy to be here,” he says. “We are proud to be Iranian. I know this doesn’t follow the Zionist script, but this is the reality.”

        But are his expressions of patriotism and castigation of Israel intended to ensure self-preservation in the Islamic Republic? “No one forces the Jews to stay here,” says Morsadegh, a large figure, full of energy, at his office in the Sapir Medical Centre in Tehran. “The Israelis offer money to Jewish people to emigrate to Israel, but we choose to stay. My view is that the actions of Netanyahu and his government, the way they behave towards the Palestinians, cause problems for Jews everywhere. I am not the only one holding these views. Am I not allowed to say it because I am a Jew? ” He waves his arms amid a haze of smoke from his constant chain of Winston cigarettes.”

        http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/irans-jews-on-life-inside-israels-enemy-state-we-feel-secure-and-happy-a6934931.html

        “As to the Iranian regime’s attitude towards Israel, it seems to me that the slogan “Death to Israel” is pretty clear.” Jon S

        Can,t say i blame the Iranians , given the endless threats the Israeli regime sends their way.

        You get what you ask for.

      • Mooser
        August 15, 2017, 6:06 pm

        “2. The Jews in the Arab countries did not immigrate because of “Zionist false flag attacks”. “

        Snake-eyes, again, “Jonny”

      • Mooser
        August 15, 2017, 6:13 pm

        “They were traditional Jews, and they saw themselves as participating in “the redemption of Israel”

        “Nathan” you aren’t supposed to brag at how easily Jews can be hoodwinked by religious fantasy and double-talk. Especially when it is done by other Jews.

      • jon s
        August 16, 2017, 1:22 am

        Annie,
        Let’s assume, just for the sake of the discussion ,that the synagogue bombings in Iraq were carried out by Zionist agents. In that case, why didn’t the Iraqi government take steps to calm the Jewish community, to reassure the Jews that they were welcome to remain, as Iraqi citizens?

        That didn’t happen because the the Iraqi authorities were busy kicking the Jews out.

        Since this issue has come up before, I’ll recycle a previous comment of mine:
        The historical fact is that the Iraqi regime took steps to make life in Iraq impossible for the Jewish community: they were dismissed from the civil service , boycotted economically, bank accounts were frozen , access to public facilities, including schools and hospitals – denied. Then the regime declared that the Jews could leave, within a one – year deadline, while relinquishing their property. In this situation the Jews scarcely needed “encouragement” (in the form of bombings ) to leave. It was pretty clear that they had to, before the door would slam shut.

        Looking up Nuri al-Said in wikipedia:
        “Nuri al-Said, the Iraqi prime minister, was determined to drive the Jews out of his country as quickly as possible,[8][9] and on August 21, 1950 he threatened to revoke the license of the company transporting the Jewish exodus if it did not fulfill its daily quota of 500 Jews. On September 18, 1950, Nuri al-Said summoned a representative of the Jewish community and claimed Israel was behind the emigration delay, threatening to “take them to the borders” and forcibly expel the Jews[10]

      • Annie Robbins
        August 16, 2017, 3:53 am

        Nuri al-Said was a british puppet:

        Throughout most of his career, Nuri was a supporter of a continued and extensive British role within Iraq, which was against the popular mood.

        Nuri went into hiding, but he was captured the next day as he sought to make his escape disguised as a woman (but with men’s shoes). He was shot dead and buried that same day, but an angry mob disinterred his corpse and dragged it through the streets of Baghdad, where it was hung up, burned and mutilated, ultimately being run over repeatedly by municipal buses, until his corpse was unrecognisable.[12]

      • jon s
        August 16, 2017, 6:09 am

        Annie,
        The point is that Nuri Said was PM at the time, and that was the policy he was pursuing, getting rid of the Jews.

      • YoniFalic
        August 16, 2017, 6:20 am

        Moshe Gat, who is an historian at Bar-Ilan University and who in my opinion writes Zionist history or history that tries hard to avoid threatening Zionist dogma, has argued that Nuri al-Said initially opposed Jewish emigration from Iraq because he considered it detrimental to the Iraqi economy.

        Gat tells us that later American and British Zionists bribed Nuri al-Said to create an Iraqi Jewish exodus, and they included a performance component to the bribe by tying it to the number of Iraqi Jews that arrived in Israel.

        Gat suggests that elements of the British government hostile to Iraq aided the Zionist orchestrated exodus. From my study of early Zionist government policy its not clear to me whether the British and American Zionists acted at the behest of Ben Gurion and other senior Israeli government officials.

        The white racist genocidal Euro Zio invaders were clearly of two minds with regard to Jewish Arab immigrants. Euro Zios generally considered Jewish Arabs racially inferior and feared they would do cultural damage to the Jewish settlement and harm it racially. But the Zio leadership was also extremely aware that Israel could not be held by the Euro invaders without an influx of Jews.

        Many Euro Zio leaders believed that the harm that Jewish Arabs would do to the Jewish state could be mitigated by putting Jewish Arab immigrants on front lines, where there would be high mortality. Children who did not appear too Arab could be taken from their parents and raised by racially superior Euro parents. This idea seems to have taken root before the arrival of many Jewish Arabs because Zionists had strong belief in using eugenics to improve European Jews racially.

      • jon s
        August 16, 2017, 6:42 am

        An anecdote that I heard about (not something that I have a source for at the ready…):

        Iraqi Jewish Communists were dragged from their prison cells, directly to the planes taking the Jews away. In effect they were expelled to Israel. (in Israel they joined the local Communist Party).

      • Annie Robbins
        August 16, 2017, 12:50 pm

        Iraqi Jewish Communists were dragged from their prison cells, directly to the planes taking the Jews away. In effect they were expelled to Israel.

        jon, none of this happened in a vacuum. here is a review of a fictional account:

        At times, “The Dove Flyer” becomes a tedious and hard-to-follow accounting of the disputes of the community’s competing power brokers. It becomes clear that Amir wants to explain the great battle going on within the Jewish community of the time between Zionists and communists, and to prove the ultimate superiority of the Zionist outlook. Those who belong to neither camp and want to stay rooted in Baghdad, like the narrator’s bourgeois cousins, are portrayed as having sold their souls – people who essentially survive by paying protection money to the most powerful neighborhood gang.

        Missing is the background that would explain to the reader why this famous chapter of aliyah is so controversial, accompanied as it was by rumors that Mossad agents set off bombs in Baghdad to scare reluctant Iraqi Jews into signing up for immigration. Although there is a slight hint in the novel that fellow Jews might have planted the bombs, it isn’t at all clear in the narrative that Israel was likely involved in these events.

        read more: http://www.haaretz.com/life/books/fiction-tom-sawyer-on-the-tigris-1.343962

        my point, it wasn’t only a policy of the iraqi government, it was a zionist policy. so much so, zionist bombs were going off to force iraqi jews to emigrate. so, at the behest of whom were they dragged from their cells and put on the plane? merely Nuri Said? or Nuri Said and the british and ultimately the mossad? i’m not sure it’s helpful to pull one anecdote you heard in the melee of an era that included zionist cells it a bitter battle with communists jews and jews who clearly did not want to leave and a puppet government that made these arrangements (at the behest of ?) in conjunction with a new country that desperately need those jews to arrive. my understanding is, israeli-iraqi-jews, for the most part, do not primarily lay the blame on the government of iraq — nor do they consider themselves refugees http://www.haaretz.com/hitching-a-ride-on-the-magic-carpet-1.97357

        it’s not clear cut. so when you ask if iran’s jews are free to leave, perhaps they are grateful to the iranian government that they are free to stay. perhaps they are grateful to the iranian gov that there are not zionist cells in iran threatening and targeting their communities with bombs in an attempt to convince them they are not safe. just maybe.

        and as i expressed in an earlier comment about this same topic — either way the zionist got their wish didn’t they — at the expense of iraqi jews. and now they want to be compensated for what they set out to achieve to begin with.

        especially when one examines the extreme (and dangerous) efforts extended by zionists, that were later exposed, to get the remaining 60,000 egypian jews to leave egypt, how can anyone with any certainty lay the primary blame of the fate of iraqi jews on the iraq government or the people of iraq? israel needed those jews, they went to extreme efforts to get them there, efforts that included terrorism, and then they want to be compensated for those efforts after enjoying the fruits of their own labor. it’s really disgraceful.

      • Annie Robbins
        August 16, 2017, 2:03 pm

        this is a great article on arab-jewish “refugees”, an idea cooked up by politicians to counter the palestinian right of return.

        Hitching a Ride on the Magic Carpet

        http://www.haaretz.com/hitching-a-ride-on-the-magic-carpet-1.97357

        An intensive campaign to secure official political and legal recognition of Jews from Arab lands as refugees has been going on ….Bill Clinton launched the campaign in July 2000 in an interview with Israel’s Channel One, in which he disclosed that an agreement to recognize Jews from Arab lands as refugees materialized at the Camp David summit…..At Camp David, Ehud Barak decided that the right of return issue was not really on the agenda, so he thought he had the liberty to indulge the Mizrahi analogy rhetorically…..This hot potato was cooked up for Barak and Clinton by Bobby Brown, prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s adviser for Diaspora affairs, and his colleagues, along with delegates from organizations such as the World Jewish Congress and the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations….

        Shlomo Hillel, a government minister and an active Zionist in Iraq, adamantly opposed the analogy: “I don’t regard the departure of Jews from Arab lands as that of refugees. They came here because they wanted to, as Zionists.”

        In a Knesset hearing, Ran Cohen stated emphatically: “I have this to say: I am not a refugee.” He added: “I came at the behest of Zionism, due to the pull that this land exerts, and due to the idea of redemption. Nobody is going to define me as a refugee.”

        The opposition was so vociferous that Ora Schweitzer, chair of WOJAC’s political department, asked the organization’s secretariat to end its campaign. She reported that members of Strasburg’s Jewish community were so offended that they threatened to boycott organization meetings should the topic of “Sephardi Jews as refugees” ever come up again.

        …..

        The World Jewish Congress and other Jewish organizations learned nothing from this woeful legacy. Hungry for a magic solution to the refugee question, they have adopted the refugee analogy and are lobbying for it all over the world. It would be interesting to hear the education minister’s reaction to the historical narrative presented nowadays by these Jewish organizations. Should Limor Livnat establish a committee of ministry experts to revise school textbooks in accordance with this new post-Zionist genre?

        Any reasonable person, Zionist or non-Zionist, must acknowledge that the analogy drawn between Palestinians and Mizrahi Jews is unfounded. Palestinian refugees did not want to leave Palestine. Many Palestinian communities were destroyed in 1948, and some 700,000 Palestinians were expelled, or fled, from the borders of historic Palestine. Those who left did not do so of their own volition.
        In contrast, Jews from Arab lands came to this country under the initiative of the State of Israel and Jewish organizations. Some came of their own free will; others arrived against their will. Some lived comfortably and securely in Arab lands; others suffered from fear and oppression.

        The history of the “Mizrahi aliyah” (immigration to Israel) is complex, and cannot be subsumed within a facile explanation. Many of the newcomers lost considerable property, and there can be no question that they should be allowed to submit individual property claims against Arab states (up to the present day, the State of Israel and WOJAC have blocked the submission of claims on this basis).The unfounded, immoral analogy between Palestinian refugees and Mizrahi immigrants needlessly embroils members of these two groups in a dispute, degrades the dignity of many Mizrahi Jews, and harms prospects for genuine Jewish-Arab reconciliation.

        Jewish anxieties about discussing the question of 1948 are understandable. But this question will be addressed in the future, and it is clear that any peace agreement will have to contain a solution to the refugee problem. It’s reasonable to assume that as final status agreements between Israelis and Palestinians are reached, an international fund will be formed with the aim of compensating Palestinian refugees for the hardships caused them by the establishment of the State of Israel. Israel will surely be asked to contribute generously to such a fund.

        In this connection, the idea of reducing compensation obligations by designating Mizrahi immigrants as refugees might become very tempting. But it is wrong to use scarecrows to chase away politically and morally valid claims advanced by Palestinians. The “creative accounting” manipulation concocted by the refugee analogy only adds insult to injury, and widens the psychological gap between Jews and Palestinians. Palestinians might abandon hopes of redeeming a right of return (as, for example, Palestinian pollster Dr. Khalil Shikai claims); but this is not a result to be adduced via creative accounting.

        Any peace agreement must be validated by Israeli recognition of past wrongs and suffering, and the forging of a just solution. The creative accounts proposed by the refugee analogy turns Israel into a morally and politically spineless bookkeeper.

      • gamal
        August 16, 2017, 9:43 am

        “Gat tells us that later American and British Zionists bribed Nuri al-Said to create an Iraqi Jewish exodus”

        Also Yehuda Shenhav

        “The Arab Jews: A Postcolonial Reading of Nationalism, Religion and Ethnicity”
        https://books.google.ie/books?id=k7FoMi-qY4kC&pg=PA114&lpg=PA114&dq=nuri+es+said+and+ben+gurion&source=bl&ots=J_yl69hxyO&sig=x_I36woNunF9yE8JmVWUpVjtYMc&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwi3r9WC69vVAhUqBsAKHaZ7AJ0Q6AEIJzAA#v=onepage&q=nuri%20es%20said%20and%20ben%20gurion&f=false

        Majid Khadduri “Nuri Es Saids Disenchantment with the British in his last years”

        Iraq Under General Nuri Al Sa’id: My recollections of Nuri 1954- 58 : Waldemar J Gallman

        or even

        The Fadhil al Jamali Government in Iraq 1953-54. Michael Eppel

        and the somewhat melancholy, given the last 100 years

        “The Iraqi Revolution of 1958: A Revolutionary Quest for Unity and Security” by Juan Romero

      • YoniFalic
        August 16, 2017, 10:31 am

        Shenhav’s work is top notch. I will have to look up relevant articles of his. In the link he seems to miss the importance of Cousinhood of the wealthiest British Jews and the Cousinhood’s connection to some very wealthy Iraqi Jews, whose business interests extended from Iraq to China and who were very close to high officials within the British colonial bureaucracy.

        In pre-Independence days, the Zionists among the Cousinhood played in the UK more or less the same role that the Israel Lobby does in the USA today although the Cousinhood Zionists were a good deal lower key and less blatant.

      • Mooser
        August 16, 2017, 11:38 am

        “Looking up Nuri al-Said in wikipedia:”

        “Luck, be a Lady tonight!
        Luck, be a Lady tonight…”

      • Mooser
        August 16, 2017, 1:29 pm

        “An anecdote that I heard about (not something that I have a source for at the ready…):”

        C’mon, boxcars, baby needs a new pair of shoes…

      • YoniFalic
        August 16, 2017, 3:02 pm

        Worth a side comment. The Babylonian Talmud preserves some awareness that Mishnaic, Talmudic, and Rabbinic Judaisms are really Mesopotamian religions that never took deep root in Palestine.

        111-2 כתובות

        אמר רב יהודה אמר שמואל כשם שאסור לצאת מארץ ישראל לבבל כך אסור לצאת מבבל לשאר ארצות רבה ורב יוסף דאמרי תרוייהו אפילו מפומבדיתא לבי כובי ההוא דנפק מפומבדיתא לבי כובי שמתיה רב יוסף ההוא דנפק מפומבדיתא לאסתוניא שכיב אמר אביי אי בעי האי צורבא מרבנן הוה חיי

        …..

        אמר רב יהודה כל הדר בבבל כאילו דר בארץ ישראל שנאמר (זכריה ב, יא) הוי ציון המלטי יושבת בת בבל אמר אביי נקטינן בבל לא חזיא חבלי דמשיח תרגמה אהוצל דבנימין וקרו ליה קרנא דשיזבתא

        I have to ask once more. How do we know that a Zionist is lying? Check for breathing.

        BTW, Pumbeditha is Fallujah, which was destroyed at behest of fake “Jewish” Neocons.

      • jon s
        August 16, 2017, 3:28 pm

        I recommend the film mentioned in Annie’s comment, “The Dove Flyer”, based on the book by Eli Amir:

      • Annie Robbins
        August 16, 2017, 4:21 pm

        jon, what did you think of the reviewer’s comments. noticing you did not respond to it in our conversation

        Missing is the background that would explain to the reader why this famous chapter of aliyah is so controversial, accompanied as it was by rumors that Mossad agents set off bombs in Baghdad to scare reluctant Iraqi Jews into signing up for immigration. Although there is a slight hint in the novel that fellow Jews might have planted the bombs, it isn’t at all clear in the narrative that Israel was likely involved in these events

        iow, although this is fairly common knowledge, it was completely missing from the film. what do you think of that? and in the same conversation i linked twice to Yehouda Shenhav’s 2003 article in haaretz documenting the “intensive campaign” to recognize Arab Jews as refugees even though they said they were not!

        so how honest could this film be if it completely skips over central issues regarding Israel’s culpability and intent towards efforts to get iraqi jews to israel, including terrorism against them. and who were these zionist agents inside iraq setting off bombs and threatening the jewish community. can you think of any reason iraq might have executed some of these agents, aside from anti semitism?

      • jon s
        August 16, 2017, 4:56 pm

        Here’s an English translation of the segment that Yonifalic copied. Does it contain what he says it does?

        Rav Judah stated in the name of Shmuel: Just as it is forbidden to leave the Land of Israel for Babylon so it is forbidden to leave Babylon for other countries. Rabbah and R. Joseph both said: Even from Pumbeditha to Be Kubi.
        A man once moved from Pumbedita to Be Kubi and R. Joseph placed him under the ban.
        A man once moved from Pumbedita to Astunia and he died. Abaye said: “If this young scholar wanted, he would still be alive.”

        Rav Judah said: Whoever lives in Babylonia it is as if he lived in the Land of Israel; for it is said, “Ho, Zion, escape, you who dwell with the daughter of Babylon” (Zechariah 2:11).
        Abaye stated: We have a tradition that Babylonia will not witness the birth pangs of the Messiah. He [also] explained it to refer to Huzal in Benjamin and they called it the Horn of Salvation.
        http://learn.conservativeyeshiva.org/ketubot-daf-kuf-yod-alef-part-2/

      • YoniFalic
        August 16, 2017, 5:11 pm

        I wrote the following.

        The Babylonian Talmud preserves some awareness that Mishnaic, Talmudic, and Rabbinic Judaisms are really Mesopotamian religions that never took deep root in Palestine.

        There are other such passages scattered throughout the Judaic literature of late antiquity, but one must read them in the mindset of Semitic Hellenism to understand. Because it is so hard to understand that mindset today, I argue that Orthodox Jews are for the most part clueless with respect to Judaic scripture.

        BTW, this problem of reading the literature of late antiquity with the mentality of late antiquity is hardly specific to Judaic literature of that time period but also applies to Greek and Latin literature of the same time period. Generally modern Christians (Americans especially) rarely understand the issues that concerned the early Christians. It’s one of the reasons I warn people against attempting to learn morality or ethics from those literatures.

      • jon s
        August 16, 2017, 5:25 pm

        Annie,
        Sorry for not responding sooner, our Beersheva team was playing in the Champions League tonight…
        On topic: First of all novels and movies are not held to the same standards of historical accuracy as a professional history book or essay. You can’t expect a feature film to cover all sides and all aspects of an historical event.
        Secondly, I agree with Prof. Shenhav:
        “In contrast, Jews from Arab lands came to this country under the initiative of the State of Israel and Jewish organizations. Some came of their own free will; others arrived against their will. Some lived comfortably and securely in Arab lands; others suffered from fear and oppression.
        The history of the “Mizrahi aliyah” (immigration to Israel) is complex, and cannot be subsumed within a facile explanation…”

      • Annie Robbins
        August 16, 2017, 5:47 pm

        i agree with that quote from Shenhav too.

        i agree covering all sides and all aspects of an historical event is a tall order for any film. however, some might perceive producing state funded films leaving out key historical context deeply relevant to times ventures into producing state propaganda.

      • YoniFalic
        August 16, 2017, 9:30 pm

        Haaretz on alleged Zionist terrorism in Baghdad.

        http://www.haaretz.com/now-it-can-be-told-1.184724

      • jon s
        August 17, 2017, 7:12 am

        I’ll leave it to the intelligent readers of Mondoweiss to determine whether the segment posted by Yonifalic contains the content he claims it to.

    • eljay
      August 15, 2017, 7:36 am

      || wdr: … If around 650,000 Palestinians fled at the time, probably no more than 25-50,000 are still alive … Their descendants born outside of Israel are not refugees and have absolutely no right to “return” to Israel … ||

      And yet Zionists scream that honouring the right of return of non-Jewish refugees to Israel is a doomsday scenario that would mean:
      – the end of “Jewish State” supremacism; and
      – the destruction of the internationally-recognized State of Israel.

      Go figure.

  17. Ossinev
    August 10, 2017, 1:42 pm

    @WDR
    “only those who actually fled in 1948”
    So they “fled” and weren`t in the least bit “ethnically cleansed” or driven out by Jewish militias.

    “Their descendants born outside of Israel are not refugees and have absolutely no right to “return” to Israel”

    But Harry and Sally living in a cosy apartment in Brooklyn who are descendants of who knows who and where being (currently) Jewish do have a right of return not to Germany or Outer Mongolia but to Zioland. Please do make up your mind. Like most Zionists your logic descends into hilarious ever decreasing circles.

    BTW the Palestinians and their descendants would be returning to Palestine which IS THEIR HOMELAND.

    @Sibiriak
    “It’s quite reasonable to argue that any kind of massive return of millions of Palestinian refugees/descendants to Israel is extremely unlikely, to put it mildly”

    Substitute foreign Jews for ” Palestinian refugees / descendants” and then reflect on what has happened since 1948. I am not suggesting for a moment that a mass return of ethnically cleansed Palestinians to their homeland will be easy or that it will be achievable but to simply write it off as Chomsky appears to be doing is a gross betrayal of the Palestinian people and an acceptance of Zionist criminality and multiple breaches of International Law. Israel sticks its middle finger up to the world community and simple acceptance = appeasement would on the face of it appear to be Chomsky`s response

    • Sibiriak
      August 10, 2017, 3:10 pm

      Ossinev: Israel sticks its middle finger up to the world community and simple acceptance = appeasement would on the face of it appear to be Chomsky`s response.
      ————–

      No, acceptance has been the world community’s response (led by the U.S. & co. of course, but including Arab states as well). Chomsky simply acknowledges that fact. Your anger is valid, but misdirected, imo.

    • MHughes976
      August 10, 2017, 5:47 pm

      The point is not that they fled but that they were not permitted to return, which was and remains a crime that cries out to heaven, though most people prefer not to think about it. There are all sorts of occasions in life when people have to accept much less than is their due: this acceptance is called realism, graciousness, forgivingness. This acceptance might be necessary for the Palestinians one day. Sibi has mentioned that there is a moral duty to be realistic, which is true enough. I think that in the moment of convergence, conciliation and negotiation reslism means readiness to compromise, maybe radically, depending on what the reality is. Before that moment realism means inter alia trying to explain to public opinion what violation of rights has occurred.

  18. yonah fredman
    August 10, 2017, 3:24 pm

    There were those who were opposed to Israel’s development of nukes, including Yeshayahu Leibowitz, though his reasoning on this issue remains opaque to me, (a brief perusal of relevant texts makes it seem as if his concern was with Ben Gurion and the Mapai party rather than the nukes themselves.)

    I think Chomsky is speaking in broad terms regarding trying to impose a solution on Israel, that Israel would prefer war rather than accept a solution that includes an unlimited right of return for the generations of children of the refugees. It is not as if the refugees will be lined up on Israel’s borders and the nukes will be used against the refugees themselves. It is imagining an attempt by various regimes to impose a solution and that Israel would prefer war, and winning that war by any means, rather than accepting a solution that spells the end of Israel (as most consider an unlimited right of return to be a recipe for such an end.)

    On another topic, regarding BDS movement and what it should or should not advocate: The BDS movement is clearly aimed at the hearts and minds of the Western masses and as such Finkelstein feels they should focus on international law, rather than casting all such thoughts aside. Those who advocate breaking up Syria into little pieces are not focused on winning the hearts and minds of the Western masses, they are focused on winning the hearts and minds of a handful of policy makers specifically in Washington. The dynamics are entirely different.

    When engaging in a battle of ideas, it is necessary to deal with practical considerations, and both Chomsky and Finkelstein emphasize practicality in their statements. Chomsky, the practicalities of Israel choosing war over an imposed peace that it would see as ending Jewish self determination. Finkelstein, the practicality of advocating a position that goes against international law when your goal is to win the hearts and minds of the masses.

    • Sibiriak
      August 10, 2017, 3:48 pm

      Good points, Yonah.

    • Mooser
      August 10, 2017, 4:40 pm

      “There were those who were opposed to Israel’s development of nukes”

      “Yonah” don’t you mean, ‘stole the technology and set up an illegal uncontrolled nuclear weapons program’, rather than “developed”?

  19. Mooser
    August 10, 2017, 4:38 pm

    “Israel would use nuclear weapons to keep refugees from returning “

    I only have one question…

  20. Danaa
    August 10, 2017, 7:18 pm

    My issue with Chomsky’s position is what it always was: he operates from a prism that is strongly colored by the israel that was once upon a time, perhaps 50-60 years ago. Chomsky was around then to hear and witness the many idealistic statements of the then Israeli intellectuals and political leaders.

    I don’t want to open a debate on whether that “old” Israel, that ephemeral citadel, that light unto the goyim, was ever real or not (well, we know there’s no light withut much darkness….right?). Fact is, it was real enough in the minds of many, both inside israel and outside it. Chomsky is old enough to have at least some of his opinions and judgements formed by those once-upon-a-time impressions.

    Unfortunately, while clearly he processed that Israel has changed greatly, and not for the better, he still tends to lay the blame at the “occupation” (in parenthesis, because it’s really an occupation of the mind that took place right along with the physical one). In that he finds confirmation among many of his fellow intellectuals, including the fine left-wing leaning ones in Israel. Their very existence continues to give Chomsky hope about fine things like “International law” and “Human Rights”. Sometimes, as much as I hate to say it, he sounds alsmot child-like, hanging on to these civilized concept, as if they were life rafts (perhaps they are. Not for me to say).

    Chomsky is probably too old to change his own paradigm just as many, including the founders of Gush Shal;om, are. Yet, there has been a major paradigm change – the Israel that is is not the one that was, or was imagined. The Israel that is is a different beast. One could say, it’s a monster. An insane one at that, or one rapidly becoming so. There is no talking to most israelis these days about fine concepts like “international law”. There is no convincing them that one needs to give a little to get a lot, because all they care about is how to make the “little” into miniscule. This israel has little use for human “rights” unless they are jewish rights, and not just any Jews but the “right kind” of jews.

    Little does Chomsky process just how depraved Israeli society has become in moral terms. probably because the people he knows do not appear depraved in the slightest. Little does Chomsky know what collective insanity looks like because he does not come face to face with its manifestations on a daily basis. Little does Chomsky know – except in the deepest recesses of his mind – what Gaza ghetto is all about, because to know what the plan for gaza is, is to give up on the endless chit-chat with fine israelis.

    I like Chomsky a lot for his clear-eyed views on many issues that are important to anyone considering themselves a progressive. But I find it difficult to deal with his refusal to look reality in the face on a whole host of issues; from BDS to Human Rights to the Rule of Law, be it in israel or the US. While he rails against the corporate state he still talks as if half-measures and fine talk will have any effect on its rapacious ascent. And while he rails against neoliberalism, he can see for himself how well we have all been doing battling it. More like batting our eyelashes and clutching our pearls while losing every skirmish, I’d say.

    Because of his rose-colored glasses I believe that Chomsky is simply not the right authority to take on something like BDS, be it as a tactic or a movement. Just as he may not be the right one to lead a Sanders-like revolt against the ruling classes. Perhaps ultimately, even sanders will not suffice for the revolt that needs to happen, if and when the time arrives for it. Which it will.

    And that statement about israel using nuclear weapons before allowing refugees in? that is very telling. I think Chomsky’s subconscious is sometimes wiser than his – oh so lucid – conscious mind. He should listen to what it’s telling him, perhaps.

  21. YoniFalic
    August 10, 2017, 11:26 pm

    One should keep in mind that Noah Chomsky comes from strong Zionist background — in some sense rather similar to my background although my grandfather emigrated to Palestine and Chomsky’s father emigrated to the USA.

    http://www.jta.org/1977/07/26/archive/william-chomsky-dead-at-81

    Chomsky never made the cataclysmic break with Zionism and Israel that I did.

    • Mooser
      August 15, 2017, 6:09 pm

      “Chomsky never made the cataclysmic break with Zionism and Israel that I did.”

      “Yoni” if you will excuse me for saying it, I don’t think Zionism asked the same things of Chomsky that Zionism asked of you. Maybe that’s why.

  22. wdr
    August 11, 2017, 3:03 am

    No group of refugees has been allowed to return en mass. In 1947, 10-15 million Hindus and Muslims living in the “wrong” part of India and Pakistan upped and went to the other country as refugees. None has been allowed to return, and won’t be. By the way, it was the Muslims of British India who wanted a separate state (Pakistan), which has no historical precedent whatever, while it was the Muslims in Palestine who opposed Partition. In 1946-7, 3 million Sudenten Germans were kicked out of Czechoslovakia by Benes, the democratically elected PM, and haven’t come back. What distinguishes the Palestinian case is that they settled largely in areas that were specifically supposed to become an independent Palestinian state, as part of the UN Partition plan. This is constantly obfuscated by leftists and anti-Zionists. They were supposed to settle there. No Palestinian state came into existence in 1947-8, not because of anything the Israelis did, but because the West Bank area was grabbed by Jordan and became Jordanian territory, and the Gaza area was grabbed by Egypt. If there had been a Palestinian state in 1948, there would not have been a conflict, or a war in 1967. As to zillions of Palestinians settling in Israel, Chomsky is correct: Israel would do literally anything to prevent it. They are not going to commit national suicide. It ain’t gonna happen, ever. They would be a permanent, seething Fifth Column of subversives within Israel who would be perpetually disloyal to their new country. The sooner their extremist supporters forget about this, the sooner there might be a real compromise peace.

    • eljay
      August 11, 2017, 8:33 am

      || wdr: … As to zillions of Palestinians settling in Israel … ||

      The notion of “zillions” of non-Jewish refugees from Partition-borders Israel returning to their homes and lands sounds like typical Zionist fear-mongering.

      || … Chomsky is correct: Israel would do literally anything to prevent it. They are not going to commit national suicide. … ||

      And what better way not to commit national suicide than to start dropping nukes on surrounding nations.

  23. gamal
    August 11, 2017, 7:59 am

    I am doing something on al awzay and it happens that i came across

    “Rebellion and Violence in Islamic Law” by Khalid Abou el Fadl, may not sound promising but it has a detailed rendition of the narrative history of the Levant in a time of legal controversy and evolution,

    messy link makes many interesting bits available, i’d read from the intro to at least ‘the survival and entrenchment of Juristic culture” (40 pages) very well written concise vast sweep of history and Shafi’i brought in chains to Raqqa…the struggle against the lawless “law” of the powerful seems eternal

    https://books.google.ie/books?id=JhvPnC5NnzMC&pg=PA68&lpg=PA68&dq=al+awzi+jurist&source=bl&ots=QtWZGen8UP&sig=S32ge3IQf518neZD_zIDQXH99bU&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwi1grK7iM_VAhWHK8AKHWgtCNwQ6AEIKjAA#v=onepage&q=al%20awzi%20jurist&f=false

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