Commenter Profile

Total number of comments: 26949 (since 2009-07-30 20:11:08)

Annie Robbins

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

Showing comments 26949 - 26901

  • A response to the 'Washington Post' blogger who calls me an anti-Semite
    • honestly, where does he come up w/this crap about phil's life:

      phil was born into a jewish world.

  • Obama's role model to journalists -- Dorothy Thompson -- turned against Zionism and was silenced
    • ;) thanks!

    • thanks gil, it's good to be back. and thanks for the great article!

    • She angrily wrote to a colleague at the American- and Saudi-funded organization - See more at: link to

      a lone casual unsourced mention by Susan Hertog does not a credible source make. is that all you've got to establish American Friends of the Middle East is saudi funded?

      link to

    • that book you quoted was written by susan hertog, wife of neocon roger hertog. link to

      Hertog has been associated with various conservative and neoconservative think tanks and publications. He is a chairman emeritus of the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research and board member of the American Enterprise Institute and the Club for Growth. He also helped found the Shalem Center in Israel. He was a part-owner of now-defunct The New York Sun, was a part-owner of The New Republic, and is a board member of Commentary. Inspired by John Lewis Gaddis and Paul Kennedy's Grand Strategy Program at Yale University, Hertog funded similar programs at Duke University, William E. Macaulay Honors College at CUNY and elsewhere.[2]
      Hertog has also funded the Hertog Global Strategy Initiative, a research program Columbia University that uses historical analysis to confront problems in world politics. Participants include high-ranking government officials, scholars, and graduate students.[3]

      perhaps she had a particular agenda when she wrote the book.

  • Palestinian teenager is shot dead at a checkpoint outside Jerusalem
    • Gaza is a war torn territory almost entirely dependent on foreign assistance

      and therefor the people are not like us? is that your point? but you don't really know any gazans! lol

    • have you ever met anyone from gaza?

  • Using the dead: the 'NYT' works with Israel to justify military service
    • My Rabbi introduced our shul to Mondoweiss in her Shabbos sermon about preparing your college bound children


  • Accusations of anti-Semitism roil Stanford campus as student coalition denies discrimination charges
    • i think it's molly who has problems with telling the truth link to

      Additionally, the accusation that we asked endorsees to sign a contract prohibiting them from affiliating with Jewish or Israeli groups is categorically false. Shortly after hearing this rumor, we published the contract we ask endorsees to sign, and it makes clear that we do not prohibit affiliations with any community. In fact, two SOCC-endorsed candidates were also endorsed by the Jewish Students Association.

    • and doesn't it seem a little odd someone would be running for student senate and not be familiar with the senate committees?????

    • Isn’t that really what you want? To force Zionist Jewish students to be marginalized unless they support BDS?

      no one is forcing Zionist Jewish students to be marginalized. i do think in social situations on campuses or anywhere it is natural for people to stay clear of, or isolate, people who support racist politics. i don't think this necessarily means a demand for everyone to support bds, it means not supporting a zionist agenda. but i don't think people should be forced into financially supporting war criminals and crimes against humanity and that's what using student funds to invest in corporations that invest in apartheid amounts to, a forced investment of student funds.

      I wonder how many people would find it objectionable for a student who is a fundamentalist Christian, to be asked how his or her Christian identity would affect their position on gay marriage rights

      if a student runs on a platform of being a proud fundamentalist Christian, then it's not only acceptable to ask what those values mean to them it's prudent to do so. they should not mention it in their profile unless they plan on communicating what that means and how it pertains to their candidacy. and that doesn't just go for religion it pertains to anything someone highlights about their identity in their platform.

      btw, i'm not sure if everyone opened the links. but this is instructive, it sounds like molly didn't do all her homework : link to

      SOCC, like several groups on campus, annually endorses election candidates. Any candidate may apply for an endorsement. We base our endorsements on the following criteria: (1) knowledge of senate functions, (2) nuanced understanding of campus issues currently impacting the communities that make up our coalition, and (3) a commitment to advocating on behalf of our communities. During our endorsement process, we offered an oral interview to all 31 applicants.

      Molly Horwitz did not receive a SOCC endorsement due to her lack of knowledge about the role of the ASSU Senate and lack of familiarity with SOCC communities. In particular, when asked to name the six organizations comprising SOCC, Ms. Horwitz was unable to correctly identify a single group. Her lack of familiarity with our organizations, from whom she sought endorsement, demonstrated a failure on her part to conduct basic research about who we are. Furthermore, when asked what Senate Committee she envisioned herself being a part of, Ms. Horwitz replied, the “Mental Health” Committee -- a committee that does not exist. It was these responses that led SOCC not to endorse her candidacy.

      In contrast, Ms. Horwitz provided well-thought out responses to questions about divestment. We asked 26 of the 31 candidates interviewed, including Ms. Horwitz, a standardized question regarding the Senate’s handling of divestment and sometimes follow-up questions. Other candidates were asked about other major campus issues like sexual assault or mental health resources at Stanford. The question served as a means for us to assess the candidates’ ability to evaluate a problem and design an action plan to resolve it. The question was not a litmus test for candidate views on divestment; indeed, SOCC endorsed candidates who did not sign the divestment petition.

      i recommend you read "Divestment doesn’t foster discrimination — Hillel and the ADL do" link to

    • They also dispute other claims, aired in the conservative publication Stanford Review, that student candidates were asked to sign a contract forbidding her and other candidates from partnering with Jewish groups on campus.

      this is a total lie. SOCC released the doc that all potential endorsees were asked to sign. the word "jewish" was not even in it.

      read it yourself: link to

      I agree to the Privacy and Confidentiality of Information of Materials...

      more at the link.

    • What a starling coincidence. One week after the explosion of press generated from the UCLA judicial review -- accusations of anti semitism "surge of hostile sentiment against Jews’ nationwide" that made it's way into the pages of the NYT, Morning Joe, Huff Post -- huge shitstorm on UC campuses across the state, allegedly, according to Molly Horwitz, (who's mother happens to be an ardent supporter of Stand With Us), a panel from SOCC just happens to ask Horowitz the exact same question ???

      maybe the members of SOCC all live under rocks and don't read the nyt or follow the latest accusations about anti semitism on californian campuses?

      Horwitz: I think that there’s no motivation for them to tell the truth, like at all.

      i think this was a set up. i think there was no reason for SOCC to do a repeat of UCLA during the very same week it was exploding in the press.

      On the evening of March 13th Molly Horowitz wrote this email (pdf) to Stanford University Election commissioner Sijjan Sri-Kummar ..... it reminded her of the "Rachel Beyda (Google for more information) fiasco":


      I had my SOCC interview today and one of the questions was literally this, “Given your Jewish identity, How would you vote on divestment?” I don’t know if other applicants were asked a question about divestment or whether it was just me. I also don’t know if it was recorded or not. They didn’t inform me that it was, but people were taking notes during it. It reminded me of the Rachel Beyda (Google for more information) fiasco at UCLA. I also asked my friend on the judicial affairs committee whether that was proper conduct. Please let me know if you need more information.


      It reminded her of Rachel Beyda? maybe ms horwitz and her mother w/stand with us wanted molly's face in the new york times. maybe she wanted national attention during her candidacy for Undergraduate Senate, and when she didn't get the much coveted SOCC endorsement she decided to make up a story.

      It's almost mana from heaven the way this incident just plopped itself right into the middle of big campaign alleging anti semitism is running rampant on california campuses.

      Here's a photo of Molly Horwitz in the New York Times, looking downright traumatized. She said she was "horrified" by the experience.

      please. this is a bunch of BS.

  • Marking Memorial Day in Tel Aviv with Kahanists and Combatants for Peace
    • I’ve tried to disentangle your angry, and mostly valid, attacks on Israel to find tactics that make sense, I just can’t find any.

      i engaged with you respectfully addressing your specific argument. initiating a response with an unsubstantiated reference my so called "angry" attacks is weak, diversionary, and duly noted!

      of course Palestinian violence is not “responsible for the perpetuation of the conflict. ” He most certainly did NOT imply that.

      tip: refuting an argument that's logical and sourced requires more than a mere refutation, capital letters won't help. Wishnitzer's quote "If I were Palestinian, I would have several different choices. But what I can do as an Israeli?” very much does imply that he thinks future available options rest solely with palestinians, not with israelis. and that, in turn, implies the responsibility for perpetuating or ending the conflict rests with palestinians. i welcome you deconstructing his statement otherwise. but "of course" and "NOT" is not an argument with merit, not in my book anyway. you should have stopped at "tried to ...find tactics that make sense, I just can’t find any."

      What he clearly knows, as do his Palestinian counterparts, is that Palestinian violence has played A ROLE in the perpetuation of the conflict, and Israelis are not the ONLY people who have agency in this ongoing tragedy.

      hmm, i'm not sure anyone is making the claim palestinians have no agency.

      But they most certainly did not want to rule over another people.

      given tho options of ruling over another people or treating them as equals, evidence suggests you are wrong. but of course i do recognize the founders of the state as well as the majority of zionists wanted the land without the people on it and would have much preferred they (palestinians) simply had disappeared vs all that maiming, killing, imprisonment, torture, home demolitions and wiping villages off the map (which is still going on, read allison's recent article) and global response to decades of zionist war crimes and human suffering . so in that regard, point taken. but so what? i could as easily say i didn't want to run you over with a truck, i just wanted you dead and gone.

      I don’t see what is gained by denying that Palestinian violence and the fear it created was an important factor.

      this is a strawman, primarily because we're not discussing "important factors" regarding israeli fear. we're talking core issues (causes) for the conflict. you didn't answer my question:

      they could elect leaders who would stop building on palestinian land! Despite the obvious asymmetry of power and the asymmetry of suffering, despite the fact the gov of israel routinely ‘mows the grass’ in gaza slaughtering hundreds of civilians, despite the bulldozed homes, imprisonment of thousands of palestinian people and continued land theft, “they” (presumably combatants for peace) acknowledge israelis fear violence.

      so what?

      get it? i did not deny Palestinian violence or israeli fear. both so called "liberal" zionist and right wing gov coalitions have all operated as colonial expansionists. the release of the palestine papers exposed israeli intransigence wrt the "peace process."

      there's only so much coddling of israeli fear people can take. evidence suggests even if israelis didn't fear palestinians they'd still want all the land. it runs against human nature to do nothing when when your land and rights are denied. assuaging israeli fear is a diversion that perpetuates the conflict.

      Even if you think those fears are completely unjustified, do you honestly think any change is possible if they are completely ignored?

      yes, i do. in a situation of crisis put out the flames before tackling the therapy. if a kid with a box of matches is standing in the living room screaming his head off in fear of the fire that is raging in the bedroom where people are sleeping you don't focus your attention on the fear of the child. that comes later. in fact, in that circumstance it's irrelevant whether the child's fears are justified. you put out the fire. this is a no brainer.

      as long as you're prioritizing israeli fear you're part of the problem. as long as the house is burning put "those needs" on the back burner. they are not part of the immediate critical solution, they are part of future resolution. in fact, the action of putting out the fire will go a long way to assuaging the screaming child's fear. this require adult supervision. it requires the global community to fix it. support bds. fire requires oxygen to burn. stop giving the fire oxygen. suffocate the flames. stop expanding the state.

    • A group that refers to “violent struggle for Palestinian freedom” is not, as you write “portraying Palestinian armed resistance as responsible for perpetuation of the conflict rather than the colonial violence that has always defined Israeli policy to Palestinians.” But they are acknowledging what you have apparently decided warrants no attention of any kind: Israelis DO fear violence. Despite the obvious asymmetry of power and the asymmetry of suffering, that is a reality that can’t be blithely dismissed by anyone who wants to end the occupation.

      dan fleshler, merely because they referenced a "violent struggle for Palestinian freedom" on their website does not refute what cohen wrote regarding the responsibility for perpetuation of the conflict.

      let's review what cohen wrote before deconstructing the basis of his logic: (my bold)

      Wishnitzer denied that the event portrayed symmetry between the deaths of Israeli soldiers and Palestinians who resist but asserted that, “There is always a choice for [Israeli] soldiers and for those [Palestinians] who fight the occupation. If I were Palestinian, I would have several different choices. But what I can do as an Israeli?

      This narrative turns reality on its head, portraying Palestinian armed resistance as responsible for perpetuation of the conflict rather than the colonial violence that has always defined Israeli policy to Palestinians.

      first of all, when cohen writes "this narrative" he is referencing a revealing quote by Wishnitzer not something on their website, so i am not sure this represents the official position of the group. that said, the framing of (paraphrasing the bolded section above) 'as an israeli my options are limited whereas palestinians have multiple options for ending the conflict' does flip reality on it's head and does imply Palestinian armed resistance as responsible for perpetuation of the conflict rather than the colonial violence.

      "But what I can do as an Israeli?" --- to begin with they could elect leaders who would stop building on palestinian land! Despite the obvious asymmetry of power and the asymmetry of suffering, despite the fact the gov of israel routinely 'mows the grass' in gaza slaughtering hundreds of civilians, despite the bulldozed homes, imprisonment of thousands of palestinian people and continued land theft, "they" (presumably combatants for peace) acknowledge israelis fear violence.

      so what? every human being fears violence. if israel's main concern was the fears of israelis they would end the actions that perpetuate that violence but they won't do that. do you know why? because expansion of their state is more important to them. the colonial enterprise is worth more to the powers that be than peace and it has always been so since the founding of the state.

      so why is it you think acknowledging israeli fear is so important in ending the occupation? palestinian fear, due to the asymmetrical dynamics you have acknowledged, has by far more basis for pronouncement. and yet Wishnitzer, denying a portrayal of symmetry between the deaths of Israeli soldiers and Palestinians, asks "what I can do as an Israeli?" and thinks palestinians have lots of choices!

      you're not seeing the forest for the trees. if everyone on the planet acknowledges israeli fear then what? if palestinians ended all violent resistance then what? there are already laws in israel making the non violent action of sanctions and boycotts a crime. as well as legislation promoted in this country. the cause of the conflict is the zionist expansion of the state. that has to stop. no people anywhere on earth will be pacified when a ruling authority is bulldozing their homes, imprisoning their family, and denied their civil rights. the very word "resistance" means it is a response. that is a reality that can’t be blithely dismissed by anyone who wants to end the occupation, not "israeli fear." this whole obsession with fear and hurt feelings and jewish or israeli emotions (including all those oh so sad pro israel jewish students on campuses having their feelings hurt) is a diversion. a decades long diversion and no, it simply is not at the center of the conflict, israel aggression, violence, domination and colonial expansion is.

      wake up.

  • In defense of Cornel West's prophetic voice
    • thanks philip!

    • there are 2 highly recommended embedded videos in this text, one ( embedded in "strongest public commentary by a nationally known figure on the American scene") we just added to the base so you can watch it below the text of the article.

      the other is part one of west's recent interview with dave letterman (embedded in "Black and lacking the moral fortitude to speak truth to power")

      for some reason i find it really hard to see these embeds, but i hope people watch both the excellent videos. here's pt 1 of the letterman interview:

      link to

    • I strongly disagree joe. I did not just vote for him because of his color.

  • Will Graham's gaffe about 'all-Jewish cabinet' get the MSM to talk about pro-Israel money?
    • maybe you are on the wrong thread steve. what are you talking about? lots of rich people are "good in finance', it has nothing to do w/being jewish.

    • The best defense as we all know, but you, is pre-emption

      no we definitely do not all know that. besides, "pre emption" is offense not defense.

    • It’s antisemitic to mention it, unless you are Jewish and bragging about it.

      i opened the jta article phil linked to "Who are the Republican candidates’ Jewish donors?" link to and they list each candidate with 3 sections underneath each one boldly titled.

      the headings being,

      Campaign status:

      His Jews:

      His views:

      his jews? i thought that was weird. but then it was published in jta so i guess they can get away w/it.

  • Defending the Iran nuclear deal from Israel and its supporters
    • amigo, israel knows very well it won't be a cakewalk and they don't care. they are using the quick and easy promotion to convince americans to go to war, not because it relates to the truth.

      once we invade, like iraq, they want iran to burn for a long long time. they want to destroy it just like iraq was destroyed. they want to send it back to the stone age. they know it won't be quick. they lie w/impunity all the time.

    • Suissa copies former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak to say that bombing Iran’s nuclear facilities will be more like the assassination of Osama bin Laden

      this is hysterical, comparing taking out all of iran's nuclear facilities to invading one domestic home/compound in pakistan! ah, but it's all relative:

      than the U.S. invasion and occupation of Iraq.

      iow, it won't be a ten year war? and they know this how? don't they think iran has the capability to retaliate? or are they so confident that if iran does retaliate the US/IS is capable of making a desert and calling it peace.

      on a scale from 1 to 10, one being the (alleged) assassination of bin laden and 10 being the invasion and occupation of iraq, Suissa is claiming this would be a 4, 3 or 2 (closer to 1 than a number over 5)? what kind of idiots speculate like this?

  • Leaked Sony emails reveal Hollywood execs efforts to support Israel
    • “a really good director who on the face of it doesn’t seem completely biased, so that we can show something that gets the message across without making it seem like propaganda.”

      fat chance of that.

  • If Not Now, When?: Jewish anti-occupation activism and accountability to Palestinians
    • Then about 9-10 years ago knowledge of and criticism of Israel’s policies began to seep into the American public and suddenly we have J Street, Jewish Voice for Peace, etc.

      jvp started 19 years ago. j street was founded 7 years ago. they are very different orgs.

      i'd urge you to poke around:

      link to

  • The grave danger of derailing the Iran deal -- an interview with Chas Freeman
    • i love how he's such a straight talkier.

      people in the Middle East are not in the least surprised that the flea directs the dog

  • Israeli racism takes center stage at Manhattan JCC
    • just goes to show you can't tell a book from it's cover. her hippy dippy hairdo w/the scarf and glowing smile and twinkling eyes --- and she's a friggin racist. blatant as the sky is blue.

    • dealing w/zionism -- it's a completely different standard of what's acceptable under other circumstances.

  • Kristol frets that he walked into Obama's 'trap,' and Rubio says he'll demand Iran recognize 'Israel's right to exist'
    • link to

      The strongest disagreement came from Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, who argued that although the U.S. would prevail in any conflict with Iran, such a course of action would be dangerous. “I think a military attack on Iran opens up pandora’s box,” said Graham. “You’ve got to assume the worst, not the best. They could attack our bases in the region. They could cause disruption in the Gulf of Hormuz [sic — the Strait of Hormuz connects the Persian Gulf and Gulf of Oman]. It would be a messy affair.”

      Former Hewlett-Packard chief executive Carly Fiorina said, “I think a bombing campaign would be very difficult … as you may well know it’s not clear we could even reach a lot of the facilities.” Fiorina stressed that she would prefer increased unilateral sanctions over a military strike. Ohio Gov. John Kasich declared that, “I don’t think anything is quick and easy there but to me this deal is unacceptable.”

      In addition, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal asserted that while he is “a strong supporter of Senator Cotton,” when “it comes to this specific issue, I don’t know what the military believes in terms of how long it would take them,” emphasizing that such a call would be determined by classified intelligence.

      Most military experts disagree with Cotton’s assessment, and believe an attack on Iran would carry “significant costs and dangers.” In 2009, the Center for Strategic and International Studies found that “Any strike on the Bushehr Nuclear Reactor will cause the immediate death of thousands of people living in or adjacent to the site, and thousands of subsequent cancer deaths or even up to hundreds of thousands depending on the population density along the contamination plume.”

  • Understanding the Jewish National Home
    • excuse me? my archives are available to everyone by clicking on my name. why don't you try producing that which you allege?

      btw: link to

      Hamid Dawud Mohamed Khalil al Zawi, most commonly known as Abu Abdullah al-Rashid al-Baghdadi (ابو عبدالله الراشد البغدادي), and also known as Abu Hamza al-Baghdadi and (About this sound pronunciation (help·info) ah-boo oh-mahr ahl bahg-dahd-ee[needs IPA] Abu Omar al-Qurashi al-Baghdadi,[1][2] (died 18 April 2010) was presented as the leader of the Mujahideen Shura Council (also translated as "Council of Freedom Fighters",[3] "Consultative Council of Mujahedeen",[2] and "Council of Holy Warriors"[4]), an umbrella organization composed of eight groups that oppose the United States' military presence in Iraq, and its successor organisation, the Islamic State of Iraq.
      The U.S. however since July 2007 consider this person to be fictional.[5]

      fictional. get it. that means "he" could have been "created" by any number of intel psyops orgs, national or otherwise. (including the cia).

      not to be confused with Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi link to

      p.s. ISIS (successor of ISI circa 2013) did not exist when the illusive omar al baghdadi character was purportedly to have existed, therefore he could not have been the "leader" of ISIS.

    • Zzzzzz. You got anything else, Professor, other than old discredited zionist screeds. You’re unbelievable, man. Just unbelievable. It’s sad.

    • Hop… did you provide links to articles, evidence that demonstrate that Bolton is a neo nazi and a Holocaust denier?

      not that i am aware of, just the links alleging he was. he also provided a link written by bolton refuting this allegation. i thought neo nazis were proud of being neo nazis. why would he refute it?

      there was reference to some secret 3 hour tape recording him when he was in college with 13 minutes of clips edited from the tape -- that allegedly prove he was a holocaust denier. but nobody has provided any quotes of anything. ( as i recall -- i have not read all of the comments)

      anyway, i'd never heard of bolton until this thread and don't know much about him at all. but what i can't figure out is the massive amount of pushback against the man instead of the (unsurprising) allegations in the link, about the desecration of christian sites. this is still going on today, as well as advocates for blowing up the temple, so none of it is that controversial as far as i am concerned. and the people killed, either they were or they were not. it makes sense to refute the allegations in the bolton article would be to simply find counter narratives about what happened to those dead people. why not just prove he's a liar by countering the allegations? seems like it would be easy if it was true.

    • thanks hostage

    • I’m not interested in whether or not they were anti-Semites.

      I’m interested in whether their conclusions were true or not. And the truth of their conclusions does not depend on their ideology.

      roha, ahhhh! don't even go there, it's clear they are not interested in the conclusions -- which are impossible to refute anyway. note how they don't accuse jabotinsky of being a virulent anti semite. as hostage points out (w/quote):

      Jabotinsky’s interpretation of the meaning of the Balfour Declaration/Mandate and his written assessment of the military situation in 1923 were in total agreement with the initial impressions reported by the King-Crane mission

      all they have is ad hominems.

    • “Kg. [King] and advisers” met “with the Syrian Commission, less Rihbany [an American Arab] who went home. They do not want a Zionistic State-no instructions beyond.”

      i'm shocked!!!!

      by the time of their departure, the commissioners were nothing more than rubber stamps for Arab opinion and that their findings were predetermined days before they left.

      and do you think the standing ovations for netanyahu during the last congressional speech were predetermined or a la naturale? and are they all virulent racists because they support the zionist state?

    • hops, is there anything specifically in bolton's article that david linked to you'd care to refute? because the zionist harassment mentioned in which you've provided sounds all too familiar. i've only gotten to the end of page two but it sounds as though 2 people, bing and green, are encouraging students to write their master thesis focusing on smearing their adversaries. that in itself sounds fairly bizarre. if they act anything like some of the cohorts we have here in the US, who frequently lie with impunity, i'm not sure how this builds your (new) case.

      i was just wondering if there was something specific in either of those bolton articles you care to refute? or perhaps another bolton article. since allegations of anti semitism and holocaust denial tossed around so liberally, perhaps you'd care to quote the man himself other than the allegations made against him. your complaint seems to be limited to ad hominem in nature.

    • yonah, here's a book with a passage that might interest you: Future of the Middle East - United Pan-Arab States
      By Sam A. Cohen

      link to

      link to

      Sam A. Cohen is a naturalized American citizen with deep roots in the Middle East. He earned two master’s degrees and a doctorate before working as a scientist for 50 years. Cohen is now retired living in Montecito, California.

      i have not read the book.

    • irishmoses, accusations of "jew hater" and "jew hatred" is the mother's milk of israel hasbara. it's the big tamale, numero uno ad hominem. they just wear it out, day in and day out. boring ritual.

  • Just like the Nazis, Iran 'plans to exterminate six million Jews' -- Netanyahu
    • jon, as i recall, Yehouda Shenhav wrote about it. i have linked to it here before. no time now...

    • yes, i assumed it was "informed" by his personal experience too jon. since he left iraq when he was 13 it's likely his perceptions of events going on around him in iraq have been severely impacted by political opinions as an adult. after all, he was born in the 1930's, memories generally morph with adulthood.

      if you scroll on that haaretz link under the heading of "Political agenda" the author mentions the final chapters are the most poignant, probably because he more matured when he experienced these events over time and therefore can write about them with more authority.

      Surprisingly for me - a reviewer who relishes any opportunity to visit Baghdad, whether in person or in fiction - it is the book's closing chapters, when the family finally makes it to Israel, that are most poignant. The description of the breakdown of Kabi's proud father, who experiences enormous disappointment after years of dreaming of life in Zion, is perhaps the most touching of all. It is here we see the odd mismatch of cultures, and feel for a people who had a sophisticated, urbane and ancient culture but are now reduced to living in tents and eking out a new existence due to Ashkenazi discrimination and the raw newness of a state ill-prepared to absorb so many immigrants.

      could it be that he was piecing together his understandings of his past experiences, tinged with his political views in recreating events in his youth? and not to beat a dead horse, but when the author writes "It becomes clear that Amir wants .... to prove the ultimate superiority of the Zionist outlook" i wonder how much and otherwise interesting story might also be a bit of indoctrination with huge gaps in history) like israel's involvement in the fate of iraqi jews and why they left. i'm sure it probably is an interesting story, but it reeks of agenda, an agenda i am not sure i need to be privy to for the sake of art.

    • asherpat, all the israelis on the streets screaming death to arabs, should they be bombed? and how many sweet ways can america say we were not making war on the iraqi people as we blasted falluja? so what if a chanting mob says "death to america"? we do it with live ammo, which is worse? words or a drone taking out your family?

      grow up. we're responsible for the deaths of 4 million muslims in the last few years. so they have every right to say death to america as our leaders plan their demise.

    • based on the the writings of Eli Amir

      based on his (fictional) novel by the same name. Amir left bagdad for israel with his family when he was 13. later worked for the Jewish Agency, and as a special advisor on Arab affairs to the Israeli president. i would be interested in whose writing Amir's story was based on unless it is autobiographical.

      link to

      The novel drags, however, when it attempts to capture so many trials and tribulations that it seems it will take forever for the Jews to leave Iraq for Israel, as some 80 percent of them did in 1950-51. Some scenes border on the didactic, as if the writer is trying to give the reader more of a history lesson than a plot-driven novel.

      ....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.

      that was probably left out of the movie too.

      the zionists were certainly motivated to get iraqi jews to come to israel as they had tried to set up a deal w/the british puppet gov to "trade" iraqi jews with palestinians way before the immigration/expulsions. one wonders to what efforts they took to make life so unbearable for iraqi jews they would leave after centuries.

      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 do to begin with. really evil shit if you ask me. did they mention any of that in the movie? or was it primarily framed as anti semitism?

  • Obama's long & passionate Monday with Saban, Foxman, Hoenlein and other Jewish leaders demonstrates power of Israel lobby
  • Marco Rubio and AIPAC allied in effort to insert poison pill into Iran deal
    • one way to solve this issue once and forever is to pass legislation that demands any agreement the US makes with anyone anywhere, domestic and foreign have an amendment attached requiring all signatories to affirm israel's right to exist. then we wouldn't have to have these little debates all the time threatening to divide us.

      ....laid out their Iranian policy on Sunday and called for a “comprehensive, intimate and in-depth strategic discussion with the US” on nuclear talks between world powers and Iran, saying all issues on the table must be clarified with Washington before a final agreement is signed with Tehran.

      maybe the US should have “comprehensive, intimate and in-depth strategic discussion[s]" with israel about ...everything. maybe we shouldn't pass any legislation or make any kinds of decisions domestic or foreign without these kinds of comprehensive discussions with the israelis.

      we could probably simplify matters by just closing up shop and leaving everything to the israelis. since their such good managers. it just seems like a waste of time and money to have US elections when the knesset or aipac could run the show. they'd probably be up for it too. all we'd have to do is fork over the doe, heck let them run the friggin place.

  • 'United States of Israel' has compromised U.S. 'sovereignty' on Iran policy -- Gideon Levy in D.C.
    • how many non-Zionist Israelis have been killed or seriously injured because their political views?

      frankly hops, the way you've phrased your question is transparently deceptive. considering the government of israel has been engaged in a decades long occupation ruling over the entirety of israel/palestine, in making a fair assessment of how many non zionists governed by israel have been killed, imprisoned or seriously injured because their political views, aren't you forgetting a few people? or do only jewish people count?

    • john, elections in israel are not like here. remember last time when livni won the most votes in the election but didn't end up becoming prime minister? netanyahu needs (i think) 61 seats. so after winning the election the candidate with the most votes forms a coalition with other political parties. usually he has 30 days to do that and that's what's going on now. depending on how many seats the other parties have determines the value they have in that coalition and they bargain for ministries and other things. there's a link i read about it yesterday, "Netanyahu’s coalition dilemma: Bennett or Herzog" whether he will choose bennett or herzog.

      link to

      Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is signaling that he has not decided on the composition of his fourth government. He has two options: a right-wing and ultra-Orthodox government that includes Habayit Hayehudi; or a centrist and ultra-Orthodox government that includes Zionist Union. In other words, a government with either Naftali Bennett or Isaac Herzog.

      allison wrote a great article recently about the way it works. i recommend: link to

    • theralphuwe, fixed

    • Page: 269
    • The international BDS campaign will spawn an increasingly hostile resistance movement by Israelis and American Jews alike

      iow, the occupation supporters will be resistance to the resistance? just thought i'd mention, although you might like the word and want to identify with it generally the oppressor is not considered the resistance. just saying.

      but of course there is push back, that's to be expected. and they are already hostile. they even kill people all the time. lots of settlers are american - armed and dangerous. but they are not the resistance and will never be. they are colonizers and their supporters and support (financially and otherwise) for the oppression of millions of people.

    • It will fight tooth and nail and push back peace for decades if not generations.

      they already do that. so what's new? more out in the open that's all.

    • sorry but i just can't stop laughing! excuse me if someone has already posted this, i've been away from my computer. link to

      Habayit Hayehudi MK says 'extreme Israeli left' is like bacteria
      Yinon Magal warns columns by Haaretz's Gideon Levy are translated daily into English and read in capitals around the world.

      Habayit Hayehudi MK Yinon Magal criticized on Sunday what he termed "the extreme left" and blasted columns of Haaretz columnist Gideon Levy, saying they are "like a bacteria that harms the brain."

      On his Facebook page, Magal – former editor-in-chief of the Israeli news portal Walla – wrote: "Now that it has finished inciting Europe against Israel, the Israeli extreme left is working to do the same in the U.S. The people who invented a people, who decided [those people] need a state (on Israeli land, of course), encourage boycotts against the Zionist state, hatched false accusations, falsely determined that there is apartheid here, pushed condemnations of Israel, flew around the world to slander us at every conference on the globe (great job) … are now intent on damaging our relationship with the U.S."

      According to Magal, "one must read Gideon Levy's latest columns published by Haaretz to understand how far the madness has come. Like a bacteria that targets the brain." Magal attached a photograph of Levy's article (Hebrew) from April 9. The article also ran in English.

      "These columns are translated into English every day and are read in capitals around the world," added Magal. "It's hard to gauge the damage that this milieu did and does to Israel. Actually, you can see our situation diplomatically and in terms of security. The extreme Israeli left has a lot of responsibility for it."

      and you've got to see the photo of this guy, his expression looks so funny. plus, as i am reading it a sidebar pops up w/levy's article! haaretz must be loving this!

  • Video: Pressure mounts on Robbie Williams to choose between Tel Aviv and UNICEF
  • My personal journey of transformation
  • A 22-year-old Palestinian dies after imprisonment, then his cousin, 27, is killed at his funeral
    • nag nag nag link to

      on the front page now link to

      maybe we can clone alex and have his double or triple appear on campuses all over the US at the same time! of maybe one of U of M activists can send us a submission, we publish other people's work too. you're always complaining. find another site to rag on. i bet your friends love you for it/not.

  • Israel could reduce anti-Semitic violence by not calling itself the Jewish state, Finkelstein says
    • and attacks on palestinians? where does that fit into your scenario? if israel cannot stop attacks on palestinians then no policy statement by israel or by the mainstream jewish organizations in support of israel will improve the situation.

    • He is self described self-hating Jew.

      oh please.

      as such why would anybody take him as legitimate spokesman for Jewish people?

      he's not a "spokesperson for jewish people." where did you ever come up with this idea. he's a person, a scholar. that's who he is. his voice resonates far and wide.

      I challenge Norman to name one leader on palestinians side that deserves his admiration.

      why limit it to leaders? i am on palestine's side and i admire him immensely.

    • Utilizing the Christ killer meme to attack Zionism is classic antisemitism in the service of anti Zionism.

      yonah, there was nothing in walid's statement referencing zionism. other than hophmi's allegation, and now yours, there's just nothing there. if you're going to launch into another of your accusatory declarations about who is an who is not an anti semite could you be gracious enough to please copy/paste the sentence or phrase you are objecting to please.

      or, in the future, if you find your accusatory comment is trashed could you try re sending it after citing/including the exact phrase you're referencing as the basis for your accusation please.

      no one here (that i have noticed) is conflating judaism w/zionism or connecting this period in the bible w/zionism or "serving anti zionism" in the context of the biblical remarks. also this:

      Those who cite the new testament to condemn the Jews display an awesome blindness regarding the politics of the day in Jerusalem.

      where's the part about walid "condemning the jews". i think they are clarifying what the new testament says. granted i have not read it and am completely unknowledgeable about biblical times (and have expressed before i have serious doubts about all those allegations including the idea christ ever existed as a man - vs a movement but that another conversation) but i don't think people discussing (or clarifying as in the case of walid's response to john) the bible is related to zionism or anti zionism.

      so unless both you and hops are just on a kick of poisoning an otherwise interesting thread could you cease and desist please. or provide evidence other than your own hunch. a quote/ passage/ paragraph or something to substantiate your accusations please. thanks.

    • got it.

    • just saw your comment phil.

      xxxx ;)

    • jon, wasn't there compulsory military conscription? i'm not sure there was a way to opt out if they wanted you in the army. under these circumstances i don't see how there could not have been people who didn't agree.

    • hops, my comment referenced future generations. the 60's is irrelevant.

    • i've watched parts of it mrw but i don't have 4 hours right now. i also watched some of the livestream on friday. thanks for the link.

    • except no one said "control the economy" . there was this

      "important aspect of understanding the functioning of our political economy.

      - See more at: link to"

      use their “power” to “control the discourse and silence competing voices”

      are you referencing:

      a demonstration of Jewish power and the ability control the discourse and silence competing voices.


      for everyone's review:

      "PHIL- “Far from being a liability, being Jewish brings “cachet,” he said, tapping people into “networks of privilege and power.” In western Europe, Canada, and the U.S., being Jewish “opens many doors and it closes none.”

      I agree completely and feel that exploring this reality – both the causes and consequences – is an important aspect of understanding the functioning of our political economy. Claims that voicing this reality constitute an anti-Semitic trope are, in effect, a demonstration of Jewish power and the ability control the discourse and silence competing voices.

      - See more at: link to"

    • On the subject of keeping count of how many Jews go to Ivy League schools (plus Stanford) or win literary or Nobel prizes, while I’m happy for Jewish self esteem, is that really helpful in the US or for my poor victimized WASP self esteem.

      it's not wasp self esteem that concerns me, it's that those degrees determine who gets the good jobs -- that lasts a lifetime, generations. it also determines a heavy percentage of acceptance at top universities for future generations based on alumni, it's called legacy preference:

      link to

      The Ivy League institutions are estimated to admit 10% to 30% of each entering class using this factor.[3][4]

    • he/she is a cameleon.

    • why does Finklestein expect the BDS movement to respect the rights of occupiers when they constantly stamps on the Palestinian rights.

      any realistic resolution for the region will require reconciliation, respect, and equal rights for everyone. from my perspective i would change the question from why the BDS movement should respect the rights of occupiers, to asking why a dignified resolution would respect the rights of palestinians as well as jews. however, i don't think it's the responsibility of a movement to free a colonized people to focus on respect for their occupiers.

      ultimately it's a no go expecting activist to advocate for something they don't see as remotely possible. i advocate what i think is inevitable and i assume norm does too. it's a fundamental difference in belief of what's possible.

      do i think right now one state is more achievable today than 2? no. but at the same time i don't believe either is achievable today given the political climate. i think time is a factor and by the time a resolution materializes it will be in the form of one state. but if 2 states happened today and palestinians supported it i would also, of course.

    • sycamores, after transcribing parts of it (very rough) i wrote norm for his notes and he generously sent me what he referenced as his "manuscript". however, it wasn't exactly the same and hence i didn't like it as much. many of my favorite parts weren't in there. he did mention he may be publishing it as an article this month tho. so look out for it. you're welcome, but no need to thank me.

      one of my first articles on MW (from 2010 - time flies) was partly (somewhat) on this topic of one state/two state it's called "the trap" here: link to

      of course 2S becomes more and more remote all the time, it's been 5 years since i wrote the article . i'd recommend reading the entire thing, as to why i think one state is preferable and inevitable, however that i do support two states.

      later, in the comments i mention "I believe there is an inevitability factor of one state, therefore advocating for it is unnecessary and may only garner resistance"

      during an exchange in the comment section i stated:

      "I agree with you as a matter of principle the one state solution is preferable. However I support the two state solution for two reasons. The first being it conceivably would be easier to attain and bring immediate relief and opportunity to more people and there is an alleged general consensus within Israel, Palestine and the US that doesn’t exist for a one state solution.

      The second reason I support a two state solution is I think one state will likely emerge from the failure of a genuine concerted effort for two states, an effort that becomes transparently clear to everyone has failed because Israel won’t allow it. I think Israel is engaged in charade and extreme factions obviously wants no part in two states because they want all of the West Bank. I would love to be proven wrong. I think the path to one state or two is identical at this juncture. The only entity preventing the establishment of two states is Israel and that will become clearer in the near future. It makes more sense to me to take the path of least resistance to peace. Right now, the path is the same."


      "I am referencing the process, the path. It is an accepted path (because people conceive it will work and perceive there is a general consensus , neither of which I think is true ) and therefore can be used to facilitate an inevitable outcome. Use the path to expose the truth. Make the path work in your favor. Think Tai Chi, let the opponents force be turned against him."

      these are all part of the extended conversation and should be read in context to the 2010 article.

    • no need to apologize. phil might expand upon it. i have my own differences w/norm over this issue which i have written about in the past. it's been hashed out numerous times since the norm "cult" video/interview was released.

      you can certainly discuss it in the comment section. personally, as part of the q&a (as i recall) i don't really think it's the main focus of this particular presentation. but of course it set up real rankles within the community and as i mentioned it's been hashed out right here in these threads many times.

      as an aside, i did have an extended email conversation with norm about his views, but it was off the record.

    • actually this is mostly phil's work. i got a lot of exercise spinning in circles. but i'm very glad you appreciate it. one of the things i love about norm is his ability to crystalize ideas and make them simple to understand. i very much recommend watching the whole video btw.

      one of the things i would emphasize in the debate is that there is an orchestrated ad hominem campaign to tar the movement to free palestine as racist. like all ad hominem campaigns the focus is diversion - to move the focus from the issues preventing the freedom of palestine (an arena hasbrats cannot win because people have figured out israel won't allow a palestinian state) - to the character or nature of the movement. so this is a very big campaign and a lot of money has been invested in it.

      and, they lie all the time (case in pt, read this recent article: link to note how the author, infamous islamophobe link to who instigated gov investigation claimed "The coalition carried out a massive and successful campaign to pressure the U.S. Department of Education into dismissing civil rights complaints filed on behalf of Jewish students at UC Irvine, UC Santa Cruz and UC Berkeley.” without mention the gov dismissed the complaints because they found no merit!! )

      anyway, back to the one pt norm mentions he discussed w/the students directly prior to the event what they'd like him to cover first specifically - and it was the students who requested he discuss the charges of anti semitism on campus first because they were getting slammed with these accusations.

      so the claim of an (from my notes) “explosion of anti semitic incidents” on american campuses, is (in my opinion) a campaign that was designed by think tanks. imho, there were clearly decisions made to promote this idea and to tackle the bds movement by attacking the movement itself (as racist) and turning jewish students into victims. i think that's what's happening here.

      we can see the beginnings (seeds) of this tactic back at UC berkeley divestment years ago (and continuing thru many divestment initiatives on campuses throught the US system ) by instructions to students to be emotional and talk about their 'hurt feelings'.

    • hi memphis. i'd urge you to watch the whole video. i did, numerous times. fyi it's actually quite a challenge (and time consuming) to cram a lecture/presentation by norm into an article. after taking notes on all the valuable parts of norm's speech, which i thought were worthy of representation, i didn't know how to condense/contain it. plus, transcribing is time consuming. i'm not sure people understand how much effort or forethought might go into an article like this.

      furthermore, phil's idea on this topic would make a great separate article. i'm sorry you think you're owed more here, but you'll just have to be patient.

      btw, there were several instances in the article where phil stated he agreed, however he didn't elaborate why then either. ultimately this article is not about phil's response nor does it need to be.

      thanks for reading! ;)

    • ckg, perhaps norm was referencing the EU? link to

      (i have not checked their policy wrt 1 or 2 states)

  • French philosopher who shut down Paris BDS event as 'anti-Semitic' and one-sided will lecture in NY on 'Free Speech'
  • Stanford Hillel defied Hillel guidelines by hosting Gottlieb -- 'and no one burst into flames'
  • SJP activists call on California community colleges to divest from human rights abuses in Palestine
    • this is a tad ot, just thought i'd mention...viscerally speaking one thing pops way out on this article simply by virtue of the way it looks on the page.

      Companies such as RE/MAX directly profit from the selling of segregated housing, and these housing units are illegal under international law. Others, such as Veolia, also profit from segregated systems such as roads and bus-lines. Lastly, companies such as Caterpillar Inc. profit from the systematic and discriminatory bulldozing of Palestinian homes, rendering thousands homeless.

      new (targeted) kid on the block RE/MAX is going to take a long term hit for its involvement in apartheid. unlike caterpillar (regular people don't purchase their products very often), individuals , as opposed to corporations and gov entities, buy houses. especially kids who go to college. i wouldn't list my house on RE/MAX nor purchase one from a RE/MAX agent. and unlike soda stream or skin care every single transaction is generally in the thousands if not the tens of thousands. and people have long long memories.

      power to sjp! power to california community college students! power to BDS!

      free palestine

  • White House 'trolls' Netanyahu by co-opting infamous UN cartoon to sell Iran deal
    • The weapons that Iran gave the Houthis are not for fun.

      link please. where's you evidence iran is supplying weapons to the houthis

      The 100.000 missiles that Iran gave to Hezbollah are not for fun.

      nor are the weapons we give israel. i don't see israel turning them down. of course it would be so much more effective if the lebanese could be as easily slaughtered as gazans with no effective weapons, but alas that's not the real world.

      The question one might ask Anne is whether Netanyahu is paranoid if the Iranian leadership repeatedly threatens to destroy Israel?

      maybe a tenth of the time israel threatens iran. if anything iran has way more reason to be paranoid than netanyahu, since he's already got a nuke and the backing of the US is israel's ever attacked.

      iran doesn't even have a nuclear weapons program. so i think netanyahu is a bloviator. i don't even believe he's paranoid of israel being attacked. i think he wants israel to remain the regional dominator to he can continue threatening w/muscle and no retribution. he doesn't want to lose power (most war mongers don't want to lose power, that's normal)

      as any fool knows by now: daniella plekta VP of the infamous neocon American Enterprise Institute

      The biggest problem ... is not Iran getting a nuclear weapon and testing it, it’s Iran getting a nuclear weapon and not using it. Because the second that they have one and they don’t do anything bad, all of the naysayers are going to come back and say, “See, we told you Iran is a responsible power. We told you that Iran wasn’t getting nuclear weapons in order to use them immediately…” And they will eventually define Iran with nuclear weapons as not a problem. - See more at: link to

      “The goal of Israel’s destruction is non-negotiable,” Brigadier General Mohammad Reza Naqdi, head of Iran’s volunteer Basij Force, said during a recent conference. The Basij Force is a part of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps.

      you can hump this quote til kingdom kome for all i care. and can you please link to the initial report of him saying it, preferably in farsi. i keep asking people to do that but no one has yet. thanks.

    • joer, don't take it personally, we all have to endure it. and for heavens sake don't ever write loose if you mean lose it really sets him off. think of it as a form of tourette syndrome. and there are no loosers in this grammar thing. ;)

    • I will seek to establish this in court

      what court! the court of gaza? the pa?

    • bintbiba, smooch xx

    • the old boss? iow you're a fan of non democratic regime change and installing puppets. iraq would have had way over a 1 million less dead had we not invaded. and we don't have to go back over three decades either. that's over a million dead in this century alone. you wanna repeat of that eh. so yeah i'm like so convinced you care about millions of dead muslims ~ not.

    • speaking of Mohammad Javad Zarif, is he cute or what? i'm probably not the only american woman who's thought that -- at all.

      for steve and the men who spur us on:

      Won’t Be Fooled Again

      We'll be fighting in the streets
      With our children at our feet
      And the morals that they worship will be gone
      And the men who spurred us on
      Sit in judgement of all wrong
      They decide and the shotgun sings the song

    • my pleasure. i think it's a hysterical use/mockup of netanyahu's cartoon. way to go WH.

    • yes, absolutely thanks to eva!

  • Who cares what Jeffrey Goldberg and Netanyahu don't like about the Iran deal?
    • The just complained and coaxed advance weapons out of the US in exchange for silence

      silence for what? exchange for what? what did the US get again?

      It isn’t Israel who has troops, money and arms surrounding Iran but it is the other way around.

      why would israel spend their troops, money and arms when it has the US congress at it's beck and call? wouldn't it make more sense to use US troops, money and arms? so to adequately argue israel isn't "surrounding" iran you'd have to argue israel is not influencing their the US congress.

    • eva, check out the front page ;)

    • omg that's hysterical!

  • Faithwashing: the Muslim Leadership Institute and the academic boycott
    • Children following an evil idea that leads to their eventual death.

      hmm, your own link stated, in the opening sentence> "disappearance or death".

      iow, nobody knows, they just didn't ever see them again. symbolically i'm sure it felt like their death to the bereaved. but there's nothing in the legend confirming any of the children died.

      and clearly we view the legend differently, from your link:

      disappearance or death of a great number of kids from the town of Hamelin (Hameln), Lower Saxony, Germany, in the Middle Ages. The earliest references describe a piper, dressed in multicolored ("pied") clothing, leading the kids away from the town never to return. In the 16th century the story was expanded into a full narrative, in which the piper is a rat-catcher hired by the town to lure rats away with his magic pipe. When the citizens refuse to pay for this service, he retaliates by turning his power that he put in his instrument on their children, leading them away as he had the rats.

      and that's the story. they hired the man to lure the rats (the evil) from their town. there's no statement in the story claiming the piper was evil. he did what he was hired to do and they refused to pay him (taking something for granted, not paying up, being immoral, theft) and so, the piper, in turn, took from them that which they valued the most -- their children.

      it's a lesson.

      They fought the dogs, and killed the cats,
      And bit the babies in the cradles,
      And ate the cheeses out of the vats,
      And licked the soup from the cook's own ladles,
      Split open the kegs of salted sprats,
      Made nests inside men's Sunday hats,
      And even spoiled the women's chats,
      By drowning their speaking
      With shrieking and squeaking
      In fifty different sharps and flats.

      link to

      He advanced to the council-table:
      And, "Please your honors," said he, "I'm able,
      By means of a secret charm, to draw
      All creatures living beneath the sun,
      That creep, or swim, or fly, or run,
      After me so as you never saw!
      And I chiefly use my charm
      On creatures that do people harm,
      The mole, and toad, and newt, and viper;
      And people call me the Pied Piper."
      (And here they noticed round his neck
      A scarf of red and yellow stripe,
      To match with his coat of selfsame cheque;
      And at the scarf's end hung a pipe;
      And his fingers, they noticed, were ever straying
      As if impatient to be playing
      Upon this pipe, as low it dangled
      Over his vesture, so old-fangled.)
      "Yet," said he "poor piper as I am,
      In Tartary I freed the Cham,
      Last June, from his huge swarms of gnats;
      I eased in Asia the Nizam
      Of a monstrous brood of vampire-bats:
      And, as for what your brain bewilders,
      If I can rid your town of rats
      Will you give me a thousand guilders?"
      "One? fifty thousand!" -- was the exclamation
      Of the astonished Mayor and Corporation.

      and then after he emptied the town of the rats:

      With a, "First, if you please, my thousand guilders!"

      A thousand guilders! The Mayor looked blue;
      So did the Corporation, too.
      For council dinners made rare havoc
      With Claret, Moselle, Vin-de-Grave, Hock;
      And half the money would replenish
      Their cellar's biggest butt with Rhenish.
      To pay this sum to a wandering fellow
      With a gypsy coat of red and yellow!
      "Beside," quoth the Mayor, with a knowing wink,
      "Our business was done at the river's brink;
      We saw with our eyes the vermin sink,
      And what's dead can't come to life, I think.
      So, friend, we're not the folks to shrink
      From the duty of giving you something for drink,
      And a matter of money to put in your poke;
      But, as for the guilders, what we spoke
      Of them, as you very well know, was in joke.
      Beside, our losses have made us thrifty:
      A thousand guilders! Come, take fifty!"

      so who are you calling evil? he even asked politely. and at the end you can read the lesson of the pied piper:

      And I must not omit to say
      That in Transylvania there's a tribe
      Of alien people that ascribe
      The outlandish ways and dress
      On which their neighbors lay such stress,
      To their fathers and mothers having risen
      Out of some subterraneous prison
      Into which they were trepanned
      Long time ago in a mighty band
      Out of Hamelin town in Brunswick land,
      But how or why, they don't understand.

      So, Willy, let you and me be wipers
      Of scores out with all men -- especially pipers;
      And, whether they pipe us free from rats or from mice,
      If we've promised them aught, let us keep our promise.

      the town's people were wrong, and their children left never to return.

    • shorter hops "lecture lecture lecture ..but don't lecture me!"

      hops, as long as team israel is slinging around large daily doses of accusations of hatred and accusations of anti semitism (and i don't hear you complaining those passing moderation, or even acknowledging it) you're just gonna have to learn how to put up w/ the pushback. quit whining!

    • You mean, you’re not for creating crevasses in American minority communities to advance a political aim?

      n-n-n-n-no. i don't make that claim. i'd sorta like nothing better than dividing the zionists from the non zionists.

      I guess Muslims interested in promoting mutual respect and understanding with the Jewish community could find a way to do it without requiring members of the American Jewish community to boycott other Jews.

      it's not a requirement. but frankly, i'm not sure how mutual respect and understanding can happen between an oppressor and the oppressed. they've been dialoguing for decades haven't they, while settlements, lawn mowing, slaughters, imprisonment and bulldozed homes continue.

      Hartman offers a chance for Muslim American leaders to experience it.

      a chance to experience zionism? israel? uh huh. you mean like normalizing the occupation?

      Are anti-Zionists (a small minority of the Jewish community) now permitted to go on Hartman Institute trips? And do they wish to go?

      i guess that would be a 'no' since all you did was rephrase my question.

      And you’re conflating Islam with BDS by suggesting that Muslims and Arabs should not violate its picket line.

      no i'm not. if this was about judaism and islam you could do it right here in the US. it's political, it's about normalizing zionism, that's why it's taking place in israel. it's a ruse.

      no one forced these guys to go.

      i never said they did -- and no one is forcing american jews to boycott israel either. i look on the bright side, you've lot a tiny handful of american muslims heading off to israel for the zionist experience, and bds is having a pied piper effect across campuses all over the US, including american jewish youth. i'm not really worried about this program because i don't see it catching on - unlike bds.

      let's just call it what it is hops, faithwashing. later.

    • D'oh!

    • Maybe they think that there’s an advantage in trying to see the situation on the ground with their own eyes

      Or maybe they think that there’s an advantage in creating a deep crevasse within the american muslim (as well as arab christian) community and by choosing to hold seminars in Israel, knowing it requires disrespecting the Palestinian call for a comprehensive economic, cultural and academic boycott of Israel.

      If they were truly interested in merely promoting mutual respect and understanding in the Jewish-Muslim relations in North America, i'm sure they could find a way to do it without requiring members of the american arab community to disrespect that call.

      Unless, of course, the the Hartman Institute is not primarily interested in promoting mutual respect and understanding. Improving Jewish-Muslim relations in North America at the expense of Muslim relations in North America, is rather transparent.

      another point john, wrt 'seeing things from their own eyes' you must be aware by now if the situation were reversed and an interfaith group of american palestinian christian or muslim led group was planning on leading a trip for american religious leaders to see things "from their own eyes" like for example the christ on a checkpoint conference, the government of israel would be up in arms about it, many of the people would be harassed at the border (or turned away which has been done to members of interfaith groups) and it would be all over the press in the US.

      just saying.

      the idea this is primarily about "Improving Jewish-Muslim relations in North America" sounds like a crock of sh*t. more like improving zionist-muslim relations. or is there jewish anti or non zionists participation?

      there's a conflation here of judaism w/zionism. inevitably that will be to the detriment (at the expense) of judaism and jews.

    • thanks jon

      not sure i understand why they are hosting these in israel if:

      Can North America be the grounds for the beginning of a new and different relationship between Jews and Muslims? Can the soil of America incubate a culture of respect, friendship and learning between Jews and Muslims? Can an experiment in America serve as a model for the world? I don’t know. But it’s worthwhile exploring the possibility.

    • They are trained about how to dialogue about I/P in a way that I/P doesn’t derail the more important issue.

      what's, specifically, is the more important issue when dialoguing about I/P than the occupation, the decades long oppression of the palestinian people, and how to facilitate their equal rights?

    • There is no way to do open dialogue when you close the door or pre-unqualify people and institutions that are trying to make a positive difference.

      do you think hillel is making a mistake by not engaging w/jpv and people like "The Jewish establishment has banned these four valiant Jews. Why?" - See more at: link to

      I do not believe BDS will bring peace. I do not believe BDS will stop the killing. I do not believe BDS with end the occupation.

      after decades of occupation do you have any evidence "dialogue" has been effective in ending the occupation? if it was you, your family, or people of your ethnicity suffering through no rights, no vote over the military junta ruling over it, if your children were hauled out of bed to have their photos taken at the whim of the people oppressing you, and sometimes hauled off to jail with no charges filed under administrative detention, while "dialogue" was going on for DECADES would you promote jews engage in feel good talks hosted by your jailers while they were bulldozing your home?

      just curious. if 2000 of your people were slaughtered last summer by their jailers would you be interested in discussing how your leaders were responsible for your oppression and the death of your children? how about your mother?

      leaders in the oppressor society have drawn red lines around what is acceptable speech. what right does the oppressor society have in determining what can and cannot be discussed and who can and cannot be allowed into the tent of discussion?

      everyone has a right to refuse dialogue if they do not think it will serve their lives. but it's hypocritical to place blame and guilt on people who refuse to engage you or advocate non engagement when the people and groups you support do the very same thing - shunning people who do not agree with your way of thinking.

      you should learn about what normalization is and why people reject it.

    • shorter jeff,

      it's anti semitic.

      jeff, try condensing your answers instead of couching them in a bunch of yada yada.

    • hops does a very convincing ad hominem without ever addressing the argument. it's a great divert.

    • In the interview with the late Rabbi Hartman it’s pretty obvious that he’s saying “these are the views I’m hearing, this is what’s being said”, not that those were his views.

      that was the same argument made in defense of rudoren's nyt article the other day. i'm curious what he said and how he said it. can you link to this interview please (sorry if someone else did, i don't have time to check the thread), i'd like to judge this allegation of yours for myself.

    • jeff, you're sending mixed messages:

      You are thinking of the MSI as being primarily driven to dialogue with American Jews about I/P. That’s not the aim.

      Then why take them to Israel if the aim is not to dialogue about Israel?

      The goal is understanding regarding Israel....Read the various posts by the MSI participants they talk quite openly about how without training I/P becomes the huge elephant in the room that neither side can talk about but that keeps naturally coming up.

      so, according to you, i/p keeps coming up and is an elephant in the room, MSI is not "primarily driven to dialogue with American Jews about I/P", but to "understand" israel. so they are trained to understand israel but not to dialogue about i/p.

      i think tree is correct in saying You are pulling arguments out your ass.

    • does that mean you won't be addressing the inconsistencies in your comment? you can't have it both ways that's all.

      you tell us all your bonafides in the outreach to lead up to supporting accusations about: horrified by the way people in the Muslim community and in the BDS movement have smeared them for political purposes.

      but none the less, you were tooting your own horn while claiming "real" outreach people didn't do that. and your melodramatic claims ("horrified") one assumes you have access to because of your engagement.

      here's another comment you made the other day

      This is not a blog that favors dialogue about Israel and Palestine unless it’s with people who already agree with the BDS perspective. That’s a major problem with the BDS movement – it eschews dialogue with anyone who does not already agree as unhelpful, and that basically forecloses any relationship with the vast majority of the worldwide Jewish community. And so, instead of interfaith dialogue, we have a dialogue of the deaf. - See more at: link to

      it's my recollection that the jewish interfaith people backed out of the interfaith dialogue with the presbyterian church after they divested from companies profiting off the occupation, not the other way around. i think they refused to attend some big yearly convention or something. and then at the top of this thread you said Ah yes, the BDS red lines. Exclude all Zionist perspectives - See more at: link to

      but wasn't it ruet who developed the "red lines" on acceptable speech and dialogue? no discussion of apartheid, no discussion of the non violent resistance of bds? (which led to hillel's red lines) so how can you complain about "basically forecloses any relationship with people you do not agree with", while the red lines already set up for interfaith dialogue or campus outreach, include a pre- acceptance of a zionist state?

      just seems odd. and when you talk about "horrified" what about people in the sjp community and in the BDS movement on campuses have been smeared as anti semites - by the organized hasbrats? - and purely for political purposes? you don't find that horrifying?

      i don't know hops it just rings hollow coming from you especially. and while i appreciate the theatrics ("Just wow.."etc etc), i'd rather you just respond to the questions.

    • roha, someone sent me that earlier. it made me upset:

      link to

      link to

      the times of israel needs to have someone on staff monitoring what gets published prior to publication. this same thing happened 6 months ago.

    • . Although there are exceptions, in my experience, the people who do real outreach are not the kinds of people who love to blow their own horns.

      so i take it you don't do real outreach. on account of you getting a kick out of blowing your own horn., albeit anonymously. but you're still here blowing your own horn.

    • mooser, don't push it.

    • hops, when you offer the information on the blog (in the past as someone linked to) about your participation on the board of interfaith organizations and tout your own horn for that participation it's a little disingenuous to then think only you can reference this information and from your own point of view. i could understand how it might seem unfair if someone knew who you were offline tried to out you, researched you to expose this information about you online, but that didn't happen.

      what mooser said "Must be a ‘covert outreach’ thing.” is not what i would consider a personal attack nor harassment. it's merely a matter of fact. by definition every person who comments here anonymously engages in covert outreach, vs non covertly. and contrary to your claims of victimhood (which you have made on this thread, not only about yourself but claims of muslims being victimized in their communities for their participation in interfaith groups)...the same could be said for those advocating for palestinian freedom who are sometimes targeted by zionist thugs.

      in fact, there's a very public campaign to smear all pro palestinian activism on american campuses as anti semitic! this is a vast broad brush claim of racism against an entire movement.

      so please, nothing like that is happening to you here. you can't dish it out and then scream foul when the information you provide is used against your argument. sorry. of course, you could challenge my opinion but we're not hosting a debate about moderation rules on the thread. take it off line if you feel persecuted against here, send adam or phil and email and see what they say.

  • Italian BDS activists call on Unicef to pull out of cartoon festival honoring Israel
  • Rand Paul greeted by neocon opposition, in $1 million ad calling him 'dangerous'
    • if you believe my comments are a reflection on how interested I am in hair styles

      uh huh, whatever. who's mr brady? listen, i don't think rand paul's hair is unusual, at all. maybe if he were his dad's age, but he isn't. my son's father's hair is just like that btw (and he's 50 now, born the same year as rand as a matter of fact, coincidence) only even fuller head of hair. it's just not that unusual not to have radically thinning hair. there are a lot of men who have full heads of hair at 50, including my dad and my brother. i can't believe we're even having this conversation. like what does it matter?

      I understand you are an issue oriented voter

      yes i am which is exactly why i have more than a few problems with paul's platform but then we are not even talking about that are we??? like you care!

      and it was intentional-unlike Chris Christie’s girth, for instance…he does something very involved with his hair to make it look like

      seriously, is this a joke? i could care less and so what? do you have any idea how many politicians think about their hair? lots of them! lots of people think about their hair!! very very common, that's why we have the saying "bad hair day". what is not usual is for people to obsess about other people's hair!!!

      and if you think my comments on this matter are a reflection on how seriously I take Rand Paul’s positions on Palestine…or anything else…you’d be correct.

      you sound like a nut. of all the people in the US who have thought about rand paul the ones who focus on his hair are probably .02%. seriously, get a grip. do you understand, i don't care! i'm beginning to think you're just spamming the thread. but frivolously sacrificing your own credibility to do it is unusual. i honestly can't think of another incidence like this ever in the comment section here.

      we get it, you have a hair fetish! what's next? elizabeth warren's feet? her shoe size?

    • you're such a flip flopper joer. only yesterday you were claiming he permed his hair and now you claim he has only one hair after an internet search! and now you're claiming his hair is "managed privately" (fyi, bias on my part, i too manage my own hair privately and actually cut my own hair having an aversion to hairdressers ~ but alas, don't most normal people manage their hair privately most everyday? most people can't afford to outsource daily hair maintenance) and he goes thru a "regimen" to appear "fully folicled."

      suffice to say this is evidence you're a tad obsessed with the man's appearance (jealous perhaps or do you think he's hot - or both?), hence, i do not believe your claim of non bias (even if you did feel the same way about al sharpton).

    • you're no fun eljay. we can't put this critical controversy to rest by a mere claim of the accused. besides, your link is over a year old. he could have suffered massive hair loss from stress over the last year. that 24 hour filibuster for example?

    • the bigger controversy is whether he is wearing a toupee or not.

      really? lol, whatever you say. somehow i missed that big controversy. frankly the thought (about his hair) had never occurred to me either way - permed or toupee. maybe you just have more baldness radar than i do. but i think the more pertinent issue here is did you feel the same way about Al Sharpton back in the day?

      when I see him on tv, all I can do is look for that toupee line and can’t concentrate on what he’s saying

      you mean since yesterday when you thought he had a perm? just out of curiosity how many times have you seen him on tv in the last 24 hours. i hope you're not losing sleep over this critical issue.

      and ultimately, do you think this (the toupee) is what prevented kerry from winning the presidential election? he did clinch the nomination tho. hmm. food for thought.

    • rusty, just, it was actually a press release so if you're not on the dnc press listserve you wouldn't get it in an email. here is a screenshot of it on vox:

      link to

    • perm? i've seen photos of him when he was younger, he had really curly hair then. how long do you think he's been perming his hair? when do you think his natural curls collapsed?

      I’m not being biased-I felt the same way about Al Sharpton

      sure, nothing you have said would suggest otherwise.

    • ckg, that article by steve goldstein is amusing. it was written yesterday. see the donation amount in the corner of his screenshot? 29, 465. 98

      when i followed the link to paul's page the amount is now $1, 043 , 567 . 41

      actually it just went up 1k in the time it took me to write this.

      link to

      one might think all this "negative" press is making his campaign lots of money.

  • Fingerhut boycotted J Street because 'millions of dollars' were on the line
    • why shouldn’t there be compensation?

      because once you accept compensation there's an implied acceptance one has lost ones right to return. think about it. put a price on jerusalem jews would accept to leave it. you can't can you? so what's the difference for a palestinian?

      it's not about there shouldn't be, it's about the very idea as being distasteful and unrealistic. like, why shouldn't there be a financial compensation for selling your wife? it makes sense if you want to get rid of her. but if you don't no price will compensate your broken heart.

    • wow, that update is a great link. i'm surprised, pleasantly.

  • Israeli settlers attack 11-year-old Palestinian child in Hebron
    • In Arabic, “sabr” is mentioned 90 times in the Quran. While it means “patience” ....“endurance”, “tenacity” and “perseverence”, all of these qualities being attributable to the desert cactus.

      that's so interesting walid. another instance of cultural adaptation.

  • Iran is 'congenital cheating' 'Islamic power bent on world domination' -- Netanyahu tells US media
    • Clearly, having sanctions against you doesn’t help. That said, there are no sanctions against Egypt for instance and they are doing way worse than Iran. So the sanctions alone don’t explain why some countries do better than others in ensuring prosperity.

      do you have any idea how ridiculous you sound catalan?

      Clearly, having cancer against you doesn’t help. That said, there's no cancer against a victim of gun violence for instance and they are doing way worse than the cancer patient. So the cancer alone don’t explain why some people do better than others in ensuring proper health.

    • Are you serious Phil? Haven’t you signed up for Iran TV?

      but unlike iranian press airing congress objections and obama's ptv the american public doesn't hear much iranian opinion on the american press. especially when you compare it to how much foreign opinion we hear wrt israeli opinion.

      framework that is full of vagaries and inconsistencies?

      what specific vagaries and inconsistencies are you referencing? source.

      How does Iran get away with having illegally built the underground Fordow facility?

      How does Israel get away with having illegally built dimona? what should we do about it. aren't you concerned about the arms race in the ME?

    • cnn had a 7 minute interview (SEVEN MINUTES!!! link to ) up on their website yesterday plus another 3.5 minute video, both from their "State of the Union" sunday morning talk show. i mean please!!! does the american public need to hear these words again so soon? or look at that face? i swear, does the media have to give him this kind of attention? we don't do this for putin or merkel or rouhani any other world leader. enough with it!

  • Added adjustable font size
    • roha, where did you find this thread. this is the first time i have seen it following your comment. and i looked on the front page and didn't see it.

      this is great, thanks so much adam and phil! (if there was anyway you could extend that expansion to the comments it would be helpful too.)

      and roha, i agree it was easier when the dates on all the comments functioned and produced a url. but at least they work on the archives pages, thank goodness.

  • Finkelstein on God and Dershowitz
    • ;) yeah! i agree completely.

    • check out this great video Chomsky on Finkelstein and Dershowitz:

    • hmm, well, he's a controversial person and i can only speak for myself, but personally i especially like sentimental people. and as i already mentioned i love his SOH, his smile and warmth and think he’s a spectacular person. so i would say yes, for sure i think he's sentimental.

      plus, he's fun to be around.

    • ckg, timing coincidence. one of our readers sent me that link this morning and i've been checking out the latest response embed. it's fascinating. check this out:

      dersh waited 34 days (that’s a long time) to issue a supplement to the court (not his original response), but it offered nothing other than she’s “lying” (read "exhibit 1” at link) .

      "Four days after all of the pleading were filed on Dershowitz’s motion to intervene, the current victims filed an unrelated pleading. Specifically, on February 6, 2015, the victims filed a reply in support of a motion for Rule 21 joinder in the action (DE 310). That pleading included as an attachment an affidavit from Jane Doe No. 3 (DE 310-1). About five weeks later, Dershowitz filed the pending motion to file a supplement his previously-filed reply. He attached a proposed supplemental pleading attacking Jane Doe’s affidavit (DE 317-1).

      Dershowitz offers no reason why he waited a full 34 days to supplement his pleading. And his supplement does not cite a single case or argue a single proposition supporting the motion to intervene – but rather simply assaults Jane Doe No. 3. Dershowitz has not shown good cause for filing a supplemental pleading and his motion should be denied. "

      link to

      scroll, in the 3/24 requests for docs and two of the responses

      "7. Copies of any and all documents evidencing the presence of "members of Mr. Epstein's legal team", as described in paragraph 5 of the sworn Declaration of Alan M. Dershowitz.

      RESPONSE: Defendant objects to this Document Request as overly broad because Jane Doe #3 alleges in the filing titled "Jane Doe #3 and Jane Doe #4's Motion Pursuant to Rule 21 For Joinder In Action" (Doc. No. 279) (the "Joinder Motion") in the civil action captioned Jane Doe #1, et al. v. United States, Case No. 08-80736 (S.D. Fla.) (the "Federal Action") that she was "kept as [Jeffrey Epstein's] sex slave from about 1999 through 2002." Jane Doe #3 further alleges in the Joinder Motion that she "escape[d]" from Mr. Epstein and moved to Australia in 2002. Paragraph 5 of the sworn Declaration of Alan M. Dershowitz refers to plane travel by members of Mr. Epstein's legal team after 2002 and therefore Defendant further objects because this Document Request does not seek documents relevant to this action or documents reasonably calculated to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence.”

      9. Copies of any and all "absolute proof' as described in paragraph 8 of the sworn Declaration of Alan M. Dershowitz. 5 Case 9:08-cv-80736-KAM Document 319-1 Entered on FLSD Docket 03/24/2015 Page 20 of 34

      RESPONSE: Defendant objects to this Document Request to the extent that Plaintiffs seek to alter or shift any burdens of proof as a matter of law in this action. Subject to and without waiving the foregoing specific objections and General Objections, Defendant responds that he will produce all responsive, non-privileged documents currently in his possession, custody or control.

    • i just took the time, just an incredible video/discussion. fantastic. especially the q&a. thanks so much for linking just, really.

    • oh, i've read some of his (great) books too. forgot to mention.

    • "business as usual"?

      ha! his 'friend' got a 21mil check from the feds due to the legislation he sponsored or pushed thru or something. that's hardly business as usual.

    • I have heard him speak, and was very impressed

      kay, heard him speak, traveled with him, and logged hundreds of hours watching his presentations on video, i'm a die hard fan for sure. even if he does think i'm part of a cult. i can also be in the cult of norm can't i? (joke) i totally looove his SOH. and his smile and warmth. he's a spectacular human being, even with his one flaw.

    • personally, i'd be satisfied with dersh going down in history as a bloviating liar, plagiarist and pedophile. it wouldn't matter to me if his pedophilia was revealed via video or photo documentation after his untimely death. i wouldn't need to hear him try to squirm out of it.

    • harry, and dersh could also place his allegations -- denials -- in a deposition but he's thus far refused to do so. so what does that tell you? ;)

  • Hurt by the Israel lobby, Obama kisses it goodbye
    • more Pistachios ! where can i read about this "pistachio war"? anything current?

    • apartheid nullifies all claims of being progressive. oppressing millions of people in a decades long occupation is not progressive and can never be considered progressive. period. you can't qualify as 'most progressive' is you're not progressive in the first place.

      end the occupation then we can discuss the topic.

    • he's very very well loved here.RoHa, popular among the masses.

    • There has to be the ability for me to disagree with a policy on settlements, for example, without being viewed as … opposing Israel.

      This was an ability that Obama was denied for six years. After he stated in Cairo in June 2009 that the settlements must end, he had to eat his words, and nullify American policy at the United Nations. He will not do that again. - See more at: link to

      phil, i agree "He will not do that again", at least i hope so, but i'm not so sure i can agree with you obama has denied expressing this sentiment for 6 years (if that's what you meant). because of the "framework negotiations", and i think it was clear from kerry's congressional statements and the directions the US was taking during those negotiations, it was clearly a reflection - and expression - of obama's policy. i don't think he would have invested so much energy during his presidency had it not reflected his views on settlements.

      also, he made statements regarding 2SS during his visit to israel. not only that, he did not prioritize dealing with iran wrt a 2SS (settlements cannot be separated from 2SS focus) which was something netanyahu pressured him on during that first WH visit.

      so while he may not have made outward statements about them, his actions showed otherwise. of course i think he could have been tougher, of course it pissed me off - what we did at the UN.

  • Yarmouk camp reaches out to the international community for help against IS invasion

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