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Total number of comments: 204 (since 2011-02-12 17:07:28)

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  • A Jew who visited Palestine responds to 'NYT' assertion that Palestinians want to kill all Jews
  • Long ago, Bill Buckley and Woody Allen agreed on occupation
    • Ha ha, Buckley. Bad childhood memories, horrifying man. I first saw Buckley on tv as a kid, right around the time when I first came to live here from Italy (early 80's). His whole demeanor and arrogance and speech pattern made me shudder. I hated being here at first, and hearing that man speak confirmed for me all of my (unwarranted + self-manufactured) prejudices about the States. I've since evolved (as we all must and should) but Buckley is still such a potent symbol of the WASP culture that I encountered when I first came here (not that Italy doesn't have it's own Italian version). Just glad that I can now laugh about it :-) Thank you Bill Buckley for making me a more tolerant person.

      PS: I had seen that clip before, and it is very funny. It doesn't hurt that Buckley was so wrong vis-a-vis Israel; but then again, when was he ever right?

  • 'NYT' abided by Israeli gag order even as 'EI' scooped it repeatedly
    • Am I sponsoring slave work if I do order there?

      I stopped buying from amazon after I became aware of how badly the warehouse workers are treated. If you're interested, the article below does a pretty good job of exposing the labor conditions in their warehouses.

      link to motherjones.com

  • Palestinian youth say the talks with Israel are futile
    • It's all lost on debakr, Kay, any reasoning, any compassion, any human feeling.

      Debakr Deconstructed: Bonsai-lover. Happy beneficiary of stolen property and goods. This land was bestowed on my people by the God of Israel. Buggers to the 'terrorists' we steal from. Anti-Israel = Anti-semite.

      Debakr is a simple soul, poor dear, we must be patient with his limitations.

    • Page: 2
    • Great to read this, it's a reminder to all of us why our solidarity is so important, and why we must continue to support the BDS movement. I firmly believe that our activism on the outside will act as an invigorating force for the Palestinian civil society that is currently being violently suppressed by both their own "Oslo" leaders/puppets and by the IDF. If we keep up the pressure those "leaders" will be discredited for what they truly are: Traitors plain and simple. They need to move out of the way and the sooner we can help do that the better.

  • Stephen Walt: publishing 'Israel lobby' ended any thought of serving in US gov't
    • Thanks for the link Kathleen, awesome reading and photos. The comments (especially toward the end) were very enlightening.

    • Points well taken debakr. I was too quick on the trigger there, thanks for explaining :-)

    • Surely debakr, Sharon's war crimes surely must be taken into consideration when assessing the man, no? Are you equating Walt's book to Sharon's military actions? Has Walt committed the same crimes against a defenseless population?

  • Resurrecting Passover?
    • Unfortunately no religion does Walid. Case in point, the history of Christianity. Brutal stuff all around. This God Disease is lethal stuff. May we find the cure one day.

  • Haaretz joins Rush Limbaugh and company in trying to link Max Blumenthal to KC shooter suspect
    • Hophmi says: "First of all, Israel is not in any way an ethnically exclusive state. It is multiethnic and multiracial. Its representative body is not exclusively Jewish. Its Supreme Court is not exclusively Jewish. Its universities are not exclusively Jewish."

      In this multi-ethnic/multi-religious paradise that is known as Israel, why does it then insist that it be recognized as a "Jewish state"?

    • MJ and so may other liberal-but-committed-Zionists (+ add in 2-staters) are going through emotional turmoil, literally. They never in their wildest dreams imagined that Israel would lose it's shiny veneer, or that BDS would grow in strength. Let's not forget that for quite a number of decades now they lived in a cushy PEP cocoon and nobody disturbed their equilibrium. So they never had to confront the inherent contradictions of Liberal Zionism, and this is traumatic for them.

      Expect to see a lot more writhing and angst and collective moaning. anger and baseless accusations and drama born of their trauma. Never in a thousand years did they expect Israel to be so questioned, challenged and threatened by the progressive community here in the states.

      Our task is to ensure that they don't shut down nor dominate the conversation. We just have to keep repeating: "Ok, understood, but what about the Palestinians, what about their rights? What about equality? Apartheid needs to end....." Over and Over and Over again.

  • Updated: Remote-control gun installed atop wall near Bethlehem -- Ma'an
    • what I find fascinating is that ymedad makes claim to a land without any actual documentation or proof that his lineage actually goes back to ancient times. What if some of his family members way back in his lineage converted to Judaism and thus had never originated from the Levant region? It is possible, isn't it? How can one either prove/disprove this? And the Palestinians, surely many of them today are descendants of the original tribes that co-existed (beautiful word, btw!) with the Hebrew tribes.

      And if Rome dispersed the Jews, what about all the other tribes and peoples that Rome dispossessed, dispersed and massacred, from Anatolia to Carthage? Don't they get to go back in time and reclaim their rightful homeland? Or perhaps we need to geographically recreate that period in time when the original Jews were dispossessed, this way we start from scratch. Everyone can be reconstituted, restituted, restored and made whole.

      Why did the vast majority of people move on from antiquity and why did one remain stuck in the past? And why are the Palestinians paying the price for Caesar? Should the current day Rome answer for their ancestors' crimes? Perhaps you can ask for compensation from Italy?

      So many questions. Where are the ancient scribes & sages when we need them.

    • guess you overlooked this Steve: "it being clearly understood that nothing should be done which might prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine" (link to en.wikisource.org)

  • American citizen, translator and student—Mariam Barghouti arrested and detained in West Bank
    • Thanks for clarifying what the Privacy Waiver Act is.

      Quite farcical though that the spox uses this paper formality as an excuse for not discussing the matter of an imprisoned American citizen, especially one who was described as looking distraught when she appeared in the Israeli military court. I wonder if the spox would reply in the same manner if an American citizen were imprisoned by Iran, let's say.

      As Ritzl said: "How convenient".

    • Imagine if an American citizen were arrested by the PA security forces? It would be all over the msm news. But when Israel does it, the silence formula kicks in.

      One thing I'm not clear on (and not heard of before), the "Privacy Act Waiver". Can someone explain what this is?

      Please continue to keep us updated Alison, given how our (continually irrelevant) msm doesn't.

  • Alterman says BDS is helping Netanyahu
    • JustJessetr - so glad you support free-range chickens and imprisoned Palestinians. So positively progressive of you. Cheers.

  • 'Secret' London conference seeks to link BDS to... terrorism
    • Izzy Raelly built a great wall,
      Izzy Raelly had a great fall.
      All the rich pockets and all the "intelligent" minds
      Couldn't put Izzy Raelly together again.

  • 'Not a single person in this room would accept living as Palestinians do, generation after generation'
  • Amira Hass predicts Israel's 'colonial project' will eventually fail--but at what cost?
    • Your question picqued my interest and I did a quick search and found a us.gov page on "doing business with the west bank". As this is not my area of expertise, I have no way of ascertaining whether or not the information stated is factual and correct, but it does seem to be about right based on experience and observation while in the West Bank, This is the website (link to export.gov), and I pasted below an excerpt from it:

      In 2012 Palestinian imports of goods and services reached $3.83 billion, and exports were $739.1 million. West Bank and Gaza imports come mostly from Israel, Turkey and China; imports from Jordan have risen in recent years.
      The Palestinian market relies heavily on Israel as a trading partner; it accounts for 72% of total Palestinian imports and 90% of Palestinian exports. Business people within the West Bank are eager to diversify the number and location of their trading partners.
      In 2012, imports from the U.S., both direct and indirect, were estimated by the U.S. Commercial Service at $200 million.

    • I hope Amira will read these comments and know that her life's work was NOT a waste. My copy of her book, Drinking the at Gaza, was devoured first by me then passed on to family and friends. It made a huge, huge impact on them.

      Amira's words have not been wasted. But I can understand why she would think like that, for so many years conditions in the territories worsened and she saw the worst of it, as well as an Israeli society that has become more militant (if that is possible!) and more right-wing. So yes, darkness all around for so long, and finally, some rays of sunshine.

    • Agree with you Seafoid, it will be the external pressure that will be the have the most weight. I could be wrong but I don't recall anti-apartheid South Africans doing internal boycotts, how could they? Their resistance was on a different level, in a different arena. However, every situation of oppression and apartheid is not the same, their are various dynamics, various weaknesses and strengths that must be understood.

      As for Palestinians boycotting internally, there is a long history of it. During the 1st Intifada, in 1989, Beit Sahour stopped paying taxes to Israel (to stop self-financing their own occupation!) and it caused quite a militant reaction from Israel. Albeit this was pre-Oslo so different municipal structures, etc, but my point is that Palestinians have coordinated internal boycotts in the past, and today's economic structures are different but am sure that as BDS builds up steam externally, Palestinian orgs and movements inside will also start participating in a way that is conducive with their particular circumstances. Is it a synergistic feedback cycle between the external and internal.

      So just because Palestinians are now buying Israeli products or going to Israeli universities should have no bearing on our decision to BDS. After all, the Dutch funds that divested their portfolios of Israeli financial institutions/instruments aren't asking Palestinians to do the same.

    • Indeed, James. She forged a lonely path and we have learned so much from her.

  • American Studies Association adds over 700 new members since Israel boycott call
    • Yes, Hophmi, I am sure that the scheming ASA's intention all along was to plot this "evil" in order to gain members. (rolling my eyes....)

  • 66 years ago today 42 members of my family were slaughtered in Deir Yassin
    • Oh goodie, JeffB, I like that world where murder is justified and no one is punished. Yippee. Let's keep on colonialising, let's keep on holocausting, let's keep on genociding. Chuck the laws of civil society out the window, burn all the land deeds.

      JeffB's logic: Pointing to unsavory practices of the past to justify the crimes of zionism. So if slavery was once a common practice, and many are byproducts of it in one way or another why shouldn't it be tolerated today? Why should women have the vote today? Why should there be child labor laws today?

      In such a world Jeffie that you condone there is no DIALOGUE dear. Sorry to spoil your day.

    • Wars can't end debakr if you keep stealing the sand in my sandbox and then trying to kick me out of it.

    • What you always wanted to know about Zionist Propaganda Tools & their true meaning:
      emphasizing dialogue = Israel is starting to feel the pressure
      trying to present the conflict as balanced = whitewashing zionist colonialist crimes
      blaming your victims = easing the implementation of ethnic cleansing
      neighborly relations = steal land & water, displace the legal inhabitants, shoot and kill any resistors, bomb a besieged territory, confiscate homes, settler-only roads, destroy olive groves that ffarming amilies depend on, and the list goes on.

      You want dialogue JeffB? Look in the mirror and tell yourself that you are aiding and abetting the murder of people, the destruction of the theft of their lands & livelihood all because they aren't Jewish, and that you willingly condone these actions so that you can safeguard your access to the spoils of colonialist crimes.

    • Thank you for sharing with us your families' story Tariq. Memories such as these pass between generations and leaves an indelible pain.

      I am glad that you addressed 'Dialogue', for I have noticed recently an increased trend amongst zionist propagandists in deploying the tactic of 'dialogue', they mention it here on this site, and at pro-Palestinian events they stand up during the question period and say "We need dialogue". As if after all these years and after all the zionists' crimes all of sudden, magically 'dialogue' is the key to peace, meanwhile ignoring/condoning/accepting the Israeli state crimes committed daily. They are insincere. They are trying to make themselves presentable to the world, trying to appear as if they are the rational, reasonable and peace-loving side in this conflict.
      Words are cheap, and the Zionists' actions are the farthest thing from good will. At the end of the day everyone must pay the consequences for their actions, and the colonialist Zionists must account for their crimes.

  • 'NYT' self-censors, axing headline blaming Israeli settlements
    • agreed Sean. For quite a while now (since Cast Lead it seems?, can't pin down a time exactly but it seems it all went dramatically downhill for Israel since then) the readers' comments online at the NYT have been overwhelmingly pro-justice for Palestinians, consistently calling out Israel's erroneous ways. The editors are certainly aware, but they are part of the life-support system for Israel so they keep on providing CPR. The body's stiff at this point, DOA.

  • Outspoken Rahm Emanuel goes off-the-record when asked about Israel
    • Au contraire Phil, this never gets old ---> "...What is he, an Arab? He’s not going to clean the floors of the White House."

      Above mentality manifests itself in society as such ---> Israeli teens dressed as the KKK on purim.
      link to mondoweiss.net

  • Where is Sarah Ali?
    • apparently installing an electrified fence with militarized towers around Gaza is not occupation. The lies is what will do them in.

    • Israel is so nice debakr, first it shoots and then it offers free medical assistance. One couldn't ask for a nicer, more generous and humane occupier.

      Here's a freebie: next time you want to spout your hasbarf lies, PROVIDE EVIDENCE.

    • Why should Sarah have to travel out of Egypt when Gaza is in Palestine (aka, Israel), the country she was born in and resides in? After all, when I need to travel out of the US, I don't have to go to an airport in Canada in order to fly to London.

      Hasbara attempt # 1 failed. Try again.

  • Apathy in Ramallah as negotiations with Israel dive
    • What opportunities exactly were the Palestinians given that they missed out on?

      AbbaCadabra Eban certainly made sure though that he provided cover for Israel when they NEVER MISSED an OPPORTUNITY to steal land and oppress its' legal inhabitants.

      Give me a break Mayhem. The world knows, but if you are happy lying to yourself go right ahead.

    • I'm getting the same impression Brenda & Annie that there is some backroom coordination going on, it can't just be coincidence that all of a sudden these large investment institutions in Europe/Scandinavia are applying pressure and following through on divestment. Not to mention civil society adding pressure via campus activism & greater awareness/abidance of BDS. While we are on the edge of our seat Israel is inching itself closer to the edge of the precipice.

  • No thanks for Zionist 'chaperones' --Wesleyan declares itself an Open Hillel
    • I wonder if Lord Lester would also advise that colonialising nations is Illegal? Or is he only against boycotts. The morality of some people leaves much to be desired.

  • Ehud Olmert's JNF-sponsored tour nixed after corruption conviction
    • Yonah,
      Have you no shame, an ounce of compassion, an iota of remorse for making such a reprehensible statement? Those are human beings in Gaza who live behind an electrified fence installed by Israel. You know and I know that no amount of resourcefulness can ever overcome the constraints that Israel has put on Gaza. Israel is choking Gaza, and you know it. Enough, you have gone too far.

  • Ultra-Zionists push back as Jewish establishment tacks toward center
    • Hophmi,
      it's so inaccurate that he should be convicted for Lies Against Humanity. For god's sake mate, own up to your crimes. Have you no shame in telling such lies, in condoning such lies? You aren't fooling anyone.

  • Five eggplants and a bulldozer
    • #1) Thanks for the updates, wishing you all remain safe.

      #2) These reports re-affirm for me why I participate in the BDS movement.

      #3) What are the chances that NYT will publish a report by Rudoren on how the IDF terrorizes this village?

    • Donna,
      thanks for your report, we often don't get enough information from the Northern area of the West Bank and for this reason it is so important. I didn't realize this village has been targeted for demolition by the Israeli Civil Administration, and your report spurred me to do further research. Thanks again for this update. Keep up the awesome work with the Rebuilding to Remain campaign!!

      I found a good summary on Al-Aqabah from Wikipedia: link to en.wikipedia.org

  • Both Sides: Anti-BDS concerns on campus vs. life in the occupied territories
    • JeffB, I just want to sincerely thank you for the laughs. I hope you appreciate the accolades, no one does hasbara like you, you are in a class all your own. Might we call your genre Hallucinatory Hasbara?

      HA HA HA HA HA HA-----> "...clearly is designed to just inflame tension rather than resolve policy issues." Are you describing Israel?

  • A British Jew warns US Jewish orgs to heed rapidly-shifting world opinion
    • JeffB:
      you made an assumption that the "opposition" I referenced in my comment was the Democratic party. That is not what I meant by "opposition". Again, it goes back to the GRASSROOTS organizing work that progressive communities are doing which is independent of the establishment Left, i.e., Democratic party. The establishment parties are simply too co-opted by big business and big-money donors and have not been answering to the needs of the people.

      The establishment parties always align with $ (even more so now in light of the SCOTUS ruling), and the progressive grassroots movements act as the vanguard for social change.

      The way you see the political landscape doesn't incorporate these progressive (and increasingly pro-Palestinian) grassroots movements because a) you don't share their politics b) you don't have a grasp of the historical processes and the way social/economic changes occur) c) they are a threat to your priorities and so you erase them from the picture.

      You can continue to behave like an ostrich or pretend that the status quo will remain the same feeling secure in that the Israeli spin doctors bring out the PR & $ Cavalry, continue to use the same discredited lies & distortions, cry "anti-semitism" to the point it no longer has meaning, and of course deploy guns, violence and aggression against the restless natives to keep them in their place. These tactics won't work forever. In fact, their effectiveness are diminishing by the day.

    • JeffB,
      what you say has some truth to it but you are missing the greater picture and possible outcome with your "So what?". On one side we have the kochs, the adelsons, and their bought politicians, neocons, war & corporate profiteers; on the other side are those already opposing the kochs and the whole sordid entourage. The economy, job creation is still struggling, wages continue to stagnate, treasury continues to be pilfered. And the effects of neo-liberalism is creating alot of instability worldwide. People are weary. Add Adelson into the mix. With Adelson continuing to be a political kingmaker, a more intense spotlight will be put on him, and given his political ideology this will just create a greater awareness of the oppression/ethnic cleansing that he supports (+ supporting an unpopular war with Iran); compound that with the zionist narrative backfiring and spinning out of control before our eyes, the Palestinian narrative will become more focused and generate more mainstream awareness. It will be harder and harder to censor all of this.

      It's just plain risky to throw your lot in with the war mongers and corporate fiefdoms. And don't go counting on the evangelicals to save the day in the age of the internet.

  • BDS' big night: Loyola student government passes divestment, U. Mich votes it down
    • international relations professor, Yael Aronoff, spoke on behalf of Hillel and made a point of saying she supports human rights and opposes West Bank settlements. She said it was a complex conflict, and that the student government shouldn’t have to pick sides because it was a conflict of “right vs. right.”

      By UM investing in corporations that are instrumental in providing Israel with the hardware it uses to oppress Palestinians, isn't that picking sides? I would think that NOT picking sides (i.e., neutrality) would then logically be divestment?

  • Liberal Zionists turn on media darling Ari Shavit for promoting Netanyahu's bluff
    • It gives me the creeps whenever I hear anyone justifying the suffering of others. Absolute pathological rubbish.

    • seafoid,
      here's some info from a forward article re: Shavit's heritage. I included some of the sugary language for entertainment purposes and bolded his great-grandfather's name:

      Shavit, who will turn 57 later this month, is an urbane man with the mellifluous English of an Abba Eban and the manners of a diplomat. He comes by these things honestly. The narrative of “My Promised Land” opens with the Right Honorable Herbert Bentwich, Shavit’s great-grandfather, leading a group of Zionist pilgrims to Palestine from London in 1897. Bentwich’s children, Shavit’s grandparents, settled in the wine-producing colony of Zichron Ya’acov a century ago, tethering Shavit’s family to the Land of, and eventually the State of, Israel.
      So Shavit is pure sabra, with an Anglo inflection. He has risen to the top of the intellectual elite in Israel....

      (source: link to forward.com )

      PS: a wise reader left this comment about Shavit:

      "Secular liberals like Shavit have been buried by a right-wing tsunami. Now these fossils are disinterred occasionally for the purpose of prettifying Israel to young America Jews who are on the whole secular and liberal..."

  • U of Michigan student gov't meets tonight, amid anticipation of divestment vote
    • weareone, Very well said, and very true!

    • Diverse as long as they are Jewish

    • JeffB: "Bull. I have no problem taking a genuinely anti racist positions."

      Really JeffB? Really? Cross your heart? Scout's Honor?

      I find that hard to believe because YOU yourself, just yesterday, posted a link to an article to substantiate your criticism of Desmond Tutu (for the sin of preaching forgiveness and reconciliation) but in that very same article there was a notation that during his trip to Israel Tutu was slandered as a "Black Nazi Pig". I don't recall you taking issue with the racial slurs Tutu endured while a guest of Israel?

      My primary source EVIDENCE of your hyprocrisy -----> link to mondoweiss.net

    • I watched 5 hours of the meeting, missing only the beginning. One of the dominant themes that kept being repeated by the pro-Israeli students was how they feel "threatened" on campus, and some of the CSG members' comments also kept echoing this. In a way, the "fears" of the pro-Zionists effectively hijacked the and overshadowed the crux of the Divestment argument about the rights of Palestinians to live free of Israeli's state violence.

      We can expect more of these diversionary tactics, but the "feeling threatened for who I am" will without a doubt be the cornerstone of the pro-Israeli strategy to combat the progressive student movements. The pro-Zionist movements can't argue the facts so they will continue to use these tactics. This raises the issue of how the progressive student & civil society movements will respond, this is a critical discussion that must take place if we will effectively shut down this argument.

      One effective way is to insist that any threats be publicly disclosed and investigated, insisting on the evidence being made available to the concerned parties/public. We can't just sit idly by if a) the threats are based in fact or b) if the threats are proven fabricated.

  • Ohio State Hillel member calls Desmond Tutu a 'neo Nazi' for criticizing Israel
    • Shingo,
      one of the most beautiful aspects of the anti-apartheid movement was the diverse community of activists it engendered within South Africa itself, and many in the leadership were Jewish South African nationals. The fact that JeffB attempts to slander, sully and distort that history and the people involved in that struggle reflects his true values (or rather lack of any).

    • Don,
      with regards to #5, I believe that JeffB is referring to a pray service that Tutu delivered at Yad Vashem. So, yes, Tutu did lead a pray service (fact) but how the Zionists interpreted it is where fact becomes hyperbole. I found a reference to this pray service on wikipedia, and everyone can judge for themselves whether or not Tutu was leading a prayer service for the Nazis in the way that the Zionists interpreted it.

      What JeffB does not take into consideration when making these libelous assertions is that this is the same man who was instrumental in bringing about the Truth and Reconciliation Committee so that South Africa can begin the post-apartheid road to healing as a nation. Desmond Tutu's message has always been one of forgiveness. But all of a sudden, Tutu, an internationally beloved and esteemed figure is transformed by the Zionists as Israel's mortal enemy because he dared to preach forgiveness, or more likely because Tutu also advocates on behalf of the oppressed Palestinians.

      TUTU'S PRAYER SERVICE at YAD VASHEM:
      Tutu preached a message of forgiveness during a 1989 trip to Israel's Yad Vashem museum, saying "Our Lord would say that in the end the positive thing that can come is the spirit of forgiving, not forgetting, but the spirit of saying: God, this happened to us. We pray for those who made it happen, help us to forgive them and help us so that we in our turn will not make others suffer." Some found this statement offensive, with Rabbi Marvin Hier of the Simon Wiesenthal Center calling it "a gratuitous insult to Jews and victims of Nazism everywhere." Tutu was subjected to racial slurs during this visit to Israel, with vandals writing "Black Nazi pig" on the walls of the St. George's Cathedral in East Jerusalem, where he was staying.
      (source: link to en.wikipedia.org)

  • Iymen Chehade fights Chicago school's cancellation of his class
    • UPDATE: AAUP rules in favor of Iymen Chehade.

      After conducting an independent investigation, the A.A.U.P. has issued a finding that Columbia College was in violation of Professor Iymen Chehade’s academic freedom by cancelling a section of his course on the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict! In part, the A.A.U.P. stated:

      . . . Professor Chehade has the right to show the film, 5 Broken Cameras. His academic freedom gives him the right to introduce controversial course-related topics, and materials into his classroom. He need not insure that equal time in the name of balance is given on every topic brought into class. A course on slavery need not proffer arguments for and against the racist, dreaded institution. A course on gay rights or the history of genocide need not “balance” the number of arguments in favor of gay rights and in opposition to genocide with those that support discrimination against homosexuals and mass murder.

      Read the full text of the A.A.U.P.’s opinion below and at this link. link to docs.google.com

      This is huge victory but the fight for academic freedom is far from over. Please continue to spread the word by circulating this petition. Here is the link to send around and as always, thank you so much for your support! link to change.org

    • Betsy and Annie,
      credit to you both for taking the time to reply to JeffB with solid facts. When I read his post I rolled my eyes, shook my head and realized that he lives in a reality all his own where he just makes stuff up. How does one even have an adult conversation with people like that who espouse such nonsense?

  • Ariel Sharon and Juan Gelman: Two responses to the legacy of the ghetto
    • The spirit and verse of Juan Gelman will always overshadow the deeds of warriors. It is individuals of his caliber that give me faith, each and every day. This was beautiful to read and will be savored and re-read long after.

  • Obama doesn't talk to Jimmy Carter -- because of Israel
    • Seafoid,
      the problem with "unfolding events" is that it is usually so much messier, chaotic and violent than a rational approach to solving a problem. Unfortunately, history provides so many examples of "unfolding events'..... tragedies upon tragedies. So tragic.

  • 'Nobody knew where I was, nobody… I was simply disappeared': An Italian tourist's Ben Gurion nightmare
    • well-done Hostage for defusing the lies the hasbarists like to tell themselves and the world. As if they don't know that Israel has border security at the Jordanian crossings that determine who can come in and out of the Occupied Territories. Every time I crossed into the OT from Jordan my passport was scrutinized and stamped by Israeli border officials, and my belongings were searched by them, and I had to answer their intrusive questions (what is the purpose of your visit, who do you know there, what are their names, where do they live, etc). All the borders into the West Bank are under Israeli control in any way you wish you to look at it, unless maybe I parachuted in.

    • Brian,

      there were so many tourists from China that they DON'T even figure on this chart:

      Foreign visitor arrivals in 2011 - Top 21:
      United States: 633,868
      Russia: 491,469
      France: 300,566
      United Kingdom: 221,095
      Germany: 220,692
      Italy: 151,252
      Ukraine: 137,342
      Poland: 95,958
      Canada: 76,636
      Netherlands: 63,053
      Brazil: 56,889
      Spain: 56,204
      Nigeria: 45,095
      Switzerland: 40,912
      Romania: 40,255
      India: 38,870
      Belgium: 37,039
      Austria: 35,166
      Australia: 34,203
      Argentina: 33,538
      South Korea: 32,718

      (Source: link to en.wikipedia.org)

    • It doesn't appear that Italian nationals need a visa to enter Israel. But apparently if you plan to visit the OT then you are persona non grata at Ben Gurion (aka Apartheid Central) Airport.

      source: link to mfa.gov.il

    • oh NormanF, how utterly tragic you are.

    • Andrea,
      your story is a nightmare, and I am glad you are safe now and outraged enough to write your story. You were harassed, detained and jailed w/out any rights because Israel views peaceful, law-abiding internationals who make contact with their prisoners (i.e., Palestinians) behind the walls and electrified separation fences to be a "threat". The fact that your embassy could not help you because "...you simply don’t exist for us if you are in that place" reinforces even more why the international community increasingly puts economic/diplomatic pressure on Israel.

      Just yesterday I commented in reply to Hophmi (he who enjoys all of Israel's privileges thanks to his religion) that the harassment experienced at Ben Gurion is not limited to Palestinans/Arabs/Muslims only. Many, many, many International travelers have experienced Israel's draconian security tactics and have been "disappeared", Andrea's apt description for what happened to him at Ben Gurion airport. Thankfully, more and more are speaking out about their experiences and documenting it.

      I googled Tent of Nations, Andrea's destination in the West Bank but couldn't access the website, although the google listing for it did show this:

      Tent of Nations – People Building Bridges
      link to tentofnations.org

      I was able to find a description of "Tent of Nations" at the website for "Friends of Tent of Nation":

      Daoud Nassar is a Palestinian farmer living and working in the fertile hill country south of Bethlehem. The Nassar's farm, in the family for four generations, is ringed by Jewish settlements and the encroaching Separation Wall. The family has been offered millions for the land, but they remain steadfast. "This land is our mother," says Daoud. "Our mother is not for sale." Under his leadership, the family has taken the case to establish the family's land rights to the Israeli Supreme Court. To demonstrate their commitment to peace and coexistence, the Nassar family has established "The Tent of Nations" providing arts, drama, and education to the children of the villages and refugee camps of the region. In addition, Daoud and his family have also established a Women's Educational Center offering classes in computer literacy, English, and leadership training.

  • Israeli settlements depend on 500-1000 Palestinian child laborers
  • The battle over Palestine is raging--and Israel is losing: Ali Abunimah on his new book
    • Krauss,
      you articulated a critical factor that gave the early Zionists a clear advantage. A really interesting historical observation, and one that I would love to see analyzed further.

      History students take note!

  • Israeli teens dressed as KKK and in 'black face' for mock lynching at school Purim party
    • But surely HasbaraHophmi,
      if the "kids" didn't know then their parents/teachers/school should have stepped in to explain the ramifications of their choice of costume, and the history which it is associated with, no? These poor kids have been morally failed by their state, their institutions and the adults in their lives.

    • Hophmi,
      according to a Ha'aretz article from 2005 wrt Prince Harry's choice of costume (link to haaretz.com): "Jewish groups have demanded Harry, who is Queen Elizabeth's grandson, make a symbolic visit to the Auschwitz death camp to atone for his mistake..."

      Perhaps African-Americans should make a similar demand of the Israeli students who dressed up as the KKK. The students could be asked to visit the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in D.C. as an act of atonement to acknowledge how their chosen costumes may cause pain to the people who suffered from the KKK's acts of violence.

  • Ululating at Vassar: the Israel/Palestine conflict comes to America
    • And let's not forget. it is not only Palestinians and individuals of Palestinian or Arab or Muslim heritage. The tactics are also used against individuals that have visited the OT. Ben Gurion security will subject these individuals to some the most intensive questioning that goes on forever with various security personnel , strip-searching, invasive and thorough searches of belongings, checking laptops, phones, etc.

    • LOL ----> The plural of kibbutz is dispossession.

      Can't argue with that.

    • Ellen,
      that has been my observation as well, I saw the transformation with my own eyes whilst living in the West Bank. Some were friends who came to visit me, some were members of delegations, and others were solo adventurous travelers. The common denominator amongst this group of individuals is that they were a product of an American education and mainstream culture, what they saw traumatized many of them, they were in shock, the reality they witnessed did not reconcile in any way with the distorted information they received at home. Of those individuals, all except one, left with pro-Palestinian sentiments, many became active within activist groups that work on Palestinian rights, and a few changed their life path and began working for NGO's in the West Bank. The contrast of seeing it in person is that dramatic and witnessing the transformation has been a life-long lesson for me.

    • Does anybody remember when the NYU students did a sit-in back in 2009? When I read their lists of demands back then I knew that the tide had shifted and slowly and surely the Palestinian issue would come to the forefront:

      The N.Y.U. students created a Web site (takebacknyu.com) where they published their demands, including thorough annual reporting of the university’s operating budget, expenditures and endowment. They also want the university to provide 13 scholarships a year to students from the Gaza Strip and give surplus supplies to the Islamic University of Gaza.
      (source: link to nytimes.com)

    • The problem w/ your last paragraph Brian is that the "nation" that is being offered to the Palestinians is a set of non-contiguous bantustans w/out sovereignty over their natural water resources and borders. The Matrix of Control (see ICAHD) that has been put in place and is continuing to shape the restrictions on Palestinians or any future "state" will not lead to peace. They will be landlocked and at the mercy of Israel, same as now. That "nation" that Israel is offering is one that is worth fighting against, not for.

  • Israel wages war on universities because it's lost control of the narrative -- Hedges
    • Walker,
      Hedges has spoken widely on this topic in the many interviews and lectures he has given. He does not mince his words when it comes to this topic, he calls out the journalists as careerists for pandering to the status quo. If you recall, Hedges was basically put on warning by the NYT after he gave a University graduation commencement address in which he was overtly and severely critical of the US govt's war on Iraq. There are many many examples of this, just google or youtube and you will find it.

  • Ohio State says boycott would 'limit human potential' (What about Palestinians'?)
    • Absolutely Seafoid. Israel's policy of limiting and hindering economic development in Gaza was brilliantly analyzed and documented by Sara Roy.....link to palestine-studies.org

      This isn't a recent phenomenon, it has been Israel's long-standing policy.

  • Tony Benn, who said there is no moral difference between a stealth bomber and a suicide bomber
    • Try I as might, I can't think of anyone contemporaneously comparable to Tony Benn amongst our political class who serve(d) in Congress or the Senate. Can anyone?

      If there isn't, that speaks volumes about our politicians.

  • A War on Campus: 'Democracy Now' covers the Northeastern SJP suspension (Updated)
    • I find Israel's demand that it be recognized as a "Jewish" state questionable.

    • thanks Susie for the info.

      Max Geller mentioned in the interview that they are currently planning an action to deliver the petition to the university president. I've reached out to SJP asking if the public (i.e., non-NU students) can join them when they do so and am waiting for a reply. I am sure, given the support that they have received via the petition (close to 4,300 signatures in 48 hours), that many individuals who are in the immediate area would like to join their petition delivery as a way to further show our support.

  • 'Northeastern SJP will not be silenced or intimidated': SJP responds to suspension from Northeastern University
    • Real Jew,
      I think this link will be helpful w/ regards to your question, it is NU SJP's webpage and it has all the specific information, including the letters from the administration detailing the alleged infractions, and NU SJP's response.

      link to northeasternsjp.org

    • Thanks Just for pointing this out, I didn't read it so I had no idea they were back to defending their village, and of course the IOF there as well doing their evicting and demolishing.

      It is all so frustrating and grossly unfair that govts/ppl behave so inhumanely. I will probably be able to understand the meaning of our existence on this dot in the vast galaxy before I can understand human cruelty.

    • As these students are fighting NU's draconian silencing techniques for trying to highlight the systematic and ongoing evictions faced by Palestinians, the IOF this morning demolished the home of a blind Palestinian man in al-Eizariya, right next to the notorious Ma'ale Adumim Settlement.

      link to maannews.net

      Mock evictions are being punished
      Real evictions are going unpunished

  • Northeastern University SJP chapter suspended as members are subjected to police interrogation
    • Thanks Kris, glad it proved helpful.

    • actually, Oleg, this isn't good news for you. Events like this have the flip side of raising awareness amongst a broader audience and galvanizing greater public opinion and action on behalf of Palestinians.

      Same tactics were used against students during the S.Africa campus protests. Don't gloat too soon.

      That is beautiful and poetic irony of fighting for justice, they more the other side fights back, the more you know that you are getting closer to justice. You need to read up on your history Oleg.

    • there is though a clear distinction between MOCK evictions and REAL evictions

    • according to one of the SJP members, 600 fliers were distributed under doors at random.

    • One of the members of Northeastern Univ SJP tweeted that they are launching a resistance campaign and will need all the support they can get in order to succeed.

      Some ways we can help:

      This is NU SJP's webpage that provides info for contacting university administration ---> link to northeasternsjp.org

      There is also a petition that was just started and it has already received more than 1,000 signatures in just a few hours ---> link to change.org

      Bottom line is this: the more that Northeastern University administrators try to suppress free speech and attempt to censor and punish the SJP activists, the greater and broader will be the backlash against their clearly unlawful actions.

  • Grindr in Hebron: A dispatch from the last debate
    • OlegR,
      as usual, your (lack of) reading skills betray the challenges you endure w/ regards to a functioning cerebrum. If you bothered to read Max's post (and learn something), you would have read him clearly stating:

      "I have not been able secure permission from the event’s planners to release video of the debate."

      Read, Oleg, Read!

    • JewEgg,
      Ellen raises very interesting points w/ regard to your assertion about Max's dogmatism and irrelevance. Can you address her questions?

    • Max, as always a coherent and thought-provoking read. It is a truly unfortunate that the organizers won't release the video of this debate. If they change their mind please do post it.

      On a related matter, during the Q&A session of Ali Abunimah's book event at the New School this past Friday evening, a pro-Israel audience member claimed that she was recently harassed at a BDS event and was allegedly called a "Jew bitch", and used this alleged occurrence to claim that BDS was anti-semitic. This disturbed me on a number of levels: 1) if it occurred we must be vigilant of any anti-semitic remarks/actions by any BDS members. 2) if it didn't occur, this may be an example of how the pro-Israel crowd will try to slander and undermine BDS. It also made me think of the recent report on MW w/ regards to StandWithUs tactics.

      Ali's response and tone was exemplary, he was very respectful of her concerns and told her that BDS is NOT anti-semitic, the issue at hand is Zionism, and that any such actions will never be tolerated. He spoke at length on it and explained the reasoning behind BDS.

      On a personal level and from my own experience as an activist who has taken part in Palestine justice campaigns in NY and DC, I have rarely come across any overt anti-semitic actions or comments, and have always steered away from or ostrasized any "provacateurs". I can recall a few times (and by few I mean not more than 3 or 4 instances ) when demonstrating/tabling some people approached us wanting to know more and making comments about "the Jews", and we could already sense from the tone that the individual had a bigoted angle; either we tried to explain that the issue concerned human rights, or we simply stopped any further interaction as a way of shutting off the individual. This is an issue to which the activists I have worked with are very sensitive about, primarily because a) many activists are themselves Jewish and b) anti-semitism goes against the values we uphold and fight for. It is as simple as that.

  • State Dept to 'check out' vicious attack on Palestinian athletes
    • But this did happen and the evidence is clear that Israeli soldiers commit crimes against humanity.

    • What if this happened to Israeli players JeffB? Would you still be doubtful of the story? Honestly, your reply was so pathetic, it had not one iota of logic or reason to it. You didn't at all address the facts of this horrific incident because you can't. You know and I know (and I know because I witnessed your beloved trigger-happy, "Kill Arabs" helmeted cowards harassing/threatening/beating/humiliating Palestinians) that Palestinians have no recourse against the sadistic Israeli soldiers. The war crimes tribunal will one day catch up with these war criminals.

      How do you account for 10 bullets in the feet?

      In the meantime, BDS, BDS, BDS.

  • Judith Butler, Rashid Khalidi and over 150 other scholars condemn censorship, intimidation of Israel critics
    • Truth Central can handle their bigotry. And then we get a comment like Nation7697's and all one can do is pity them. We have to recognize that some species devolve, nothing we can do to save them.

  • Pelosi calls Israel's creation 'the most spectacular political achievement of the 20th century'
    • I just googled "greatest 20th century achievements" + "political achievements of the 2oth century," and lo and behold Israel is nowhere to be found. Granted, the search was done in English so it is Western/U.S.-centric, which may skew the results somewhat. Nonetheless, the miracle that is Israel is not on any of these lists of "greatest achievements". Only seems to be a "great" achievement at the AIPAC cult convention. Certainly a Palestinian who lost their land, home + livelihood to colonialism would never consider it an amazing accomplishment.

      And to test out the theory, this is the result based on a poll I just took with family members and friends, RE: 20th century political achievements (disclaimer: of course 8 ppl responding has no qualitative value whatsoever but it was fun to do and so here it is):
      Mass Education
      Electricity (it's not a political achievement but my great aunt insists that this is better than Israel :-)
      Civil Rights for African-Americans
      Immunizations + Infectious Diseases Control (public health domain but impact was profound)
      Victory over Nazism
      Women's Vote
      Labor Rights

      link to brookings.edu
      link to pollingreport.com
      link to people-press.org

    • so JeffB, you agree that helping the oppressed and brutalized is commendable work?

    • But the question JeffB is: Will BDS push Israel OVER the edge?

    • JeffB doesn't understand what grassroots is or how it functions. I don't mean this in a snarky way, it is evident in his reply as well as previous comments where he conflates organized lobbying with a functioning democracy, but never takes into account the role of grassroots organizing.

      e.g.,
      link to mondoweiss.net

      "Yes lobbies are the mechanism by which issue oriented coalitions petition the government for a redress of grievances."

  • Scarlett Johansson is featured at AIPAC, to applause
    • Shuki,
      that is one tent that we don't aspire to have membership to. No thank you.

    • I see what Shmuel did, such a masterful & subtle touch. Very good!

    • Hophmi,
      on behalf of the worldwide sister movement, we don't need the advocacy of tribalist bigots w/ vocabulary issues. We can take care of ourselves, thank you very much.

      Misogenistically yours,
      the sisterhood

  • 'It was clear to me as a black person just what I was seeing around me': Report from an African-American delegation to Israel/Palestine
    • I have read many many articles and books about the occupation, and witnessed it firsthand, and still Rev. Hagler's and Mr. Fletcher's descriptions of what they experienced just blew me away. Very powerful. I have nothing but deep respect for these gentlemen.

  • 'NYT' boycott debate features two Zionists, and excludes BDS
    • precisely lyn117.

    • Your Serene Highness Hophmi,
      as the debate gatekeeper par excellence, would Palestinians be allowed into this conversation or is this matter simply to be "settled" between liberal Zionists and conservative Zionists? It would appear from all empirical evidence that the Palestinian people are the ones who are so graciously providing their land for expropriation by the Conservative & Liberal Zionists, it would then stand to reason that they are participants at this esteemed gathering.

      Inquiring minds would like to know how your highness will rule on this matter.

    • LOL, Ritzl. I will gladly provide the art supplies if it keeps them occupied (no pun intended) and away from doing any further harm.

    • Something must be wrong with me, when I read JeffB's brain dump just now I actually started to feel sorry for him, the poor dear is reduced to blabbering.

      I'm going to have a strong cup of coffee now and then take a walk around the block so that I can hopefully regain my senses that were attacked by JeffB's attempt at false equivalence.

  • 'NYT' dismisses Wieseltier attack on Judis as tempest-in-a-teapot
    • Hostage,
      after reading this exchange (my compliments on your mastery and analysis of the documentation), for some reason I recalled the often-cited quote from Abba Eban wrt to the Palestinians: "The Arabs never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity." (The quote is attributed to Abba Eban after the Geneva Peace Conference with Arab countries, 21 December 1973).

      It struck me that the Palestinians were never actually given the chance to "miss an opportunity" given that Israel's publicly stated policies were just a ruse and smoke screen to obfuscate their actual intentions. This quote is therefore even more cynical, harmful and horrible in light of the actual intentions that you addressed.

      The only certainty in this context with regards to "opportunity" is that Israel has never missed one to further demonize and dispossess the Palestinians.

  • Making visible the Nakba: a US education project

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