Commenter Profile

Total number of comments: 30626 (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 30626 - 30601

  • Seven days in Hebron
    • i thought it was amusing that the manager of a rehabilitation center was a zionist palestinian. was this the purpose of the center, to rehabilitate palestinians? what other kinds of rehabilitation was provided? and who paid to have a zionist palestinian manager? the israeli government? very interesting!

  • Women elected student body president at three West Bank universities
    • what a fantastic uplifting article. and super congrats to Dana as well as Nawras and Bahader. i hope they all have long and fruitful political careers in palestine. hopefully, an unoccupied palestine.

      thanks so much Sheren.

  • Holocaust survivor and activist for justice Hedy Epstein dies at 91
    • she was a courageous woman with a lot of personal spunk and charisma who was continually working to make the world a better place -- right up to the end.

      she will be missed and remembered.

      and she will be smeared by those who seek to limit holocaust remembrance and sympathy for only zionist speakers -- which is disgusting.

      in my last conversation with hedy i mentioned to her that her legacy would way outlast her -- she said she didn't know about that.

      one of her deepest regrets was being separated from her grandchildren, which is very sad, because she was a special woman. it's too bad they grew up without her. perhaps someday they will grow to appreciate her.

  • Tom Friedman needs to get an inoculation (attacking BDS) before he can say how bad Israel is
    • he's a coward for opening with a figleaf to israel's big defenders. bds has nothing to do w/this story but he thinks it gives him some creds or something. sorry tom, trains left the station and there's no turning back.

  • Acclaimed Irish literary festival's refusal to accept Israeli state funding welcomed by artists and human rights campaigners
    • anytime ossinev. and i'll just amend that to say the east coast is culturally a little of different than the west coast and i'm not much of expert on it. but i do recall the first time i ever visited there when i was 18 (which was many years ago and may not reflect the scene now), most people first time we met (certainly everyone's parents) asked me my last name and what my father did for a living. that was something i was really not used to at all growing up in northern california.

    • thanks bumblebye, checking out now. hmm

    • Steady on Annie. I did say that I was happy to be corrected.

      sorry if i sounded harsh Ossinev, that was not my intent. let me rephrase my impression wrt your statement referencing irish americans having a "fairly strong “lobby” population or group." first off, i wouldn't be surprised if they did in a place like boston. but as a californian who grew up here i never heard of any kind of local irish american lobby. certainly surrounding the issue of the ira back in the day, pertaining to ireland/uk -- no doubt they had one. but as far as having a fairly strong lobby, that video i linked to had 900 views. i don't know about legislation they lobby for either wrt the environment, global warming, privatization, minimum wage, the nra, etc etc. so as a group, i don't know where they stand or if they stand together politically (albeit i think most are dems). and we have LOTS of irish americans in SF. and no doubt there are plenty of irish americans active in a many political activists groups, i just do not know if they identify within those groups actively as irish americans.

      and if they were a strong lobby, don't you think i would have heard of their appeals? unlike say the israel lobby, which everyone is aware of whose pressure is felt by all our politicians. and i think this kind of "non ethnic" participation is common, at least out here in california. whereas sometimes there are definitely ethnic groups who make a political stances (for instance the mormons were very active in lobbying against proposition 8 in california - against gay marriage) many (probably most) californians participated in activism for or against prop 8 via groups who were not ethnic specific. there are of course many exceptions (like immigration wrt hispanics) but i think this model extends to many white americans whether they be german, english, french, swedish, norweigian, italian, and the list goes on. so for example if you were to ask a passerby on the street what an italian american lobby group might advocate wrt school vouchers, i doubt anyone could tell you. and i lived in seattle for 10 years, lots of swedish there, but i have no idea where they may stand politically on most issues. of course, i could be wrong.

      and, in our local pro palestinian group, i have no idea what many of the non jewish white american activist ethnicities are with the exception of one woman with a british accent. in fact, i don't know the ethnic background of one of my best friend since college who i see all the time. maybe she told me once but i forgot. i doubt any of the people i know who are not in my family even know what my family's cultural background is. because we're a multi cultural society (in the bay area at least) people often advocate in multi cultural political groups.

    • i'm going to google the american irish lobby, maybe i am clueless.

      oh looks see:

      link to

    • My impression is that in all other respects they appear to be a fairly strong “lobby” population or group.

      really? please enlighten me. i am out here on the west coast and it seems to me like they just blend here (except on st paddy's day of course). what issues to irish americans lobby for as a group. i sort of thought they were all over the map politically except being primarily dems vs gop (but i could be wrong there). there are irish americans in the palestine movement for sure, they just don't have badges on identifying their ethnicity (like most other white americans i presume).

    • maybe it's the new new knew anti semitism.

    • thank you again gamal!

    • huge shout out to all the activists and festival participants who persevered, ireland soooo rocks!

  • 'Why should we give Israeli investigators a gun to shoot the victims again?': B'Tselem ends cooperation with Israeli military citing total lack of accountability
    • wow -- Felicia Langer. thanks for the links shmuel and gamal. i had never heard of her before.

  • Thank you, Chief Rabbi. Now I know: Judaism is to blame for the Nakba
    • you're a coward hophmi.

    • We will pray about jerusalem, pray about a return to the land, but refrain from any political activity in that direction.

      you lost me on this. jews refrain from any political activity in the direction of jerusalem? am i missing something?

      The need to undo the Nakba is implied and is frankly difficult to imagine.

      you can't undo the nakba anymore than one could undo the holocaust. but it can be stopped. are you saying it's difficult to imagine a time without occupation/apartheid?

  • 'NYT' blames Hamas for civilian deaths in front-page article that sounds like Hillary Clinton
    • If you think this was ad hominem you’re being mildly silly

      ha! dude, essentially suggesting someone is a liar is definitely of an ad hominem nature .. that's not silly it's reality.

      it would have been more accurate to accuse him of hasbara.

      your apology is accepted -- even tho i can't really accept an apology meant for james :)

    • It seems like occupation law rejects the idea Hamas would be responsible for illegal Israeli attacks on areas above tunnels. Maybe I’m wrong

      i don't think you're wrong. and your other comment re hamas. if i were palestinian, i would vote for them if the election was today.

    • have you seen any polls in the last few years that support the notion fatah is more popular amongst the palestinian people than hamas. because i have not. only when you factor in marwan barghouti does hamas popularity shrink and since he's imprisoned by israel there is no option to vote for him anyway. otherwise hamas is either ahead or the 2 parties are neck and neck (within 1% of eachother).

      is omitting this minor factoid is a mild form of lying? or do those kinds of ad hominem accusations only work on your ideological opponents? or are you a liar?

    • it is a good nymag article phil

      A 2014 poll found half of all Democrats under 30 supported punishing Israeli settlement expansion with economic sanctions. The vast majority of this demographic also preferred the United States to remain neutral in the Israel-Palestine conflict. But among those who wanted America to pick a side, more wished for their government to support the Palestinians, a stance shared by no other age group in either party.

    • "And my big beef is: this is on the front page of the New York Times"

      it makes perfect sense. it wasn't just phil writing about i/p being a big deal at the convention and a thorn in clinton's side yesterday. link to

      wapo, nymag and haaretz also covered it. plus, bernie's been saying as much on the campaign trail. so the nyt is probably getting ready for the showdown and softening the target.

  • Palestinian jailed for Facebook post casts light on PA attacks on free speech
    • thanks allison.

      as an aside, i love the part about Kifah's brothers and roommates giving him explicit instructions that his cat was to birth her litter of kittens outdoors! cats don't take instruction very well. ;)

  • Joint List MK: Lieberman deal reveals 'the real face of Netanyahu'
  • Clinton campaign is 'nervous' Sanders will push 'divisive' battle over Democratic platform on Israel
    • his campaign is raising money for her challenger, Tim Canova. i got an email, a fundraising appeal from the sanders campaign this morning asking for a donation he'll split w/canova. i'm going to donate. i would so love it if she lost her congressional seat.

      remember when virginia voters took out cantor? pff! he was gone so fast and it caught everyone by surprise -- the highest ranking aipac stooge in the gop. of course florida is not virginia and the dems are not the gop but still, it's not impossible.

    • the nays were louder, otherwise they would not have vote 3 times. either way "the matter requires a 2/3 vote in the affirmative" which it definitely did not have.

    • Why didn’t the blacks and latinos vote for him?

      lots of them did, and more will in the upcoming primaries:

      link to

      Young Latinos convert parents into supporting Bernie Sanders

      ....Their family is not alone. The clear enthusiasm among young people for the Sanders campaign is slowly having a double return within the Latino community— fired-up millennials with immigrant roots are going home to their families and convincing them to buy into Sanders’ revolution.

      “Older Latinos are already established in the political system. But the young people voting for Bernie are having an influence on how their parents vote,” said Anahi Tapia, 26.

      The dynamic factors into almost shocking results in Illinois, where according to the latest NBC News/Marist/WSJ poll out this week, Sanders is leading Clinton by 34 points with Latino voters, claiming 64 percent to her 30 percent. This, while he is still trailing overall in the state by six points [he lost by 1.3 percent in illinois].

      “It’s all because of the grassroots. It’s the young millennials that refuse to be anyone’s firewall,” Cesar Vargas, a national Latino outreach strategist for Sanders, said of the campaign’s success.

    • Page: 306
    • at this stage benign impotence in foreign affairs sounds like a gift from god and almost too good to be true. but as i've expressed before i'd prefer the american public suffer from a trump presidency than millions suffering abroad -- the likely outcome of a clinton presidency. either way, i'm over voting for the lessor of 2 evils and will vote for neither of them.

    • lots of people don't like hillary clinton and the dnc and others are trying to blame sanders for that. even if sanders begged me i would not consider voting for clinton.

      she's an unpopular politician the dnc is trying to pawn off on us, that's all. sure there are people who like her and don't find her toxic but to suggest people who don't like her and haven't for years are anti clinton because of sanders is just wrong.

      the dnc made a mistake by assuming the dems would unite over her, that's my opinion. many may, but many many many will not. personally, as horrible as trump is, i think the 2 party system is more dangerous for our country right now. i think the dem party takes us for granted and we need a new party that will make more of an effort to be inclusive of the left and independents. the idea that so many people will go on year after year holding their noses and voting for the lessor of two evils is wrong. we can do better. a hillary presidency will be two terms. that's too long and too dangerous for the country and way too dangerous for the people of the middle east.

    • point taken toivo, in fact just recently i wrote "hordes" in a comment and then deleted it and used another word thinking it might be construed as derogatory. and tho the author of the article -- whom phil was citing, didn't use the term "hordes" there was that vibe coming through from the clinton camp they were worried. you can sort of sense hillary supporters and the press consider his supporters a horde. me personally, i don't mind being considered part of his horde -- partly because i am pissed. but i can't see how it might be offensive.

      what really offended me today was joan walsh's article in the nation, as well as her tweet. the nerve, chalking up his support to a "male cult" vs black /brown and females (all ostensibly for clinton). that really pissed me off link to

      and in the comments to her article were a slew of women backing sanders but she RT's all the males who countered her and none of the women. it was outrageous.

      anyway, keep in mind phil was channeling wapo when he wrote that, but you're right the word does have negative implications. but i am angry so it suits me to be described as part of the hordes who support him (and i happen to know phil likes him too).

    • i agree david, and argued in a recent article about a proposal put forward by Dov Waxman and Dahlia Scheindlin, that it was both unrealistic and irresponsible at this juncture to put forward proposals without including a means to force israeli compliance. link to

  • Netanyahu-Lieberman deal tears 'mask off face of Israel' -- but 'NYT' keeps the mask on
  • 'Clinton scares the generals' -- Democratic Party divides over foreign policy
  • Whistleblower: US General Sean Swindell bears responsibility for deadly Kunduz hospital attack
    • sycamores, although i have not checked with either phil or adam they may have verified the identity of "frank".

      i think US military operations in the ME and events surrounding them, including iraq, iran, syria and afghanistan are all relevant to the site although we primarily cover palestine/israel.

      and on a personal note, i have spoken with ex military people who have similar stories -- some worse circumstances in fact.

  • Bill before Ontario legislature falsely claims ‘primary purpose’ of BDS is to boycott Jewish Canadian businesses
    • excellent video. here it is again

      link to

    • thanks tova!

      oh boy, this one politician guy is going on about the holocaust and holocaust survivors (his constituents). just imagine, in another few years there will be no more holocaust survivors. inevitably -- people won't be able to continually use these kinds of lame arguments.

  • Sharansky disses American Jews for assimilating, then tells 'major donors' to universities to stop BDS
    • It is negative bordering on hateful.

      only if you're a zionist. it's a positive statement for those who honor and respect equality and justice.

      zionism is an ideology, so the idea of dancing on its grave is symbolic and not violent. although of course i am sure there will be a lot of dancing. very sweet happy dancing, not hateful at all.

    • mark my words, they'd have no compunction against blaming jews for anything and everything. they're just scary sickos.

    • People on this site always, always, always, respond to antisemitism issues by denying that antisemitism is a problem or by suggesting that people are fabricating the claims.

      that's a lie. if anyone wants to witness some serious anti semitism go take a look at jonathan weisman's twitter feed. he's the "Deputy Washington Editor, The New York Times" and he posted a link to an anti trump article by robert kagan day before yesterday and all hell broke loose. i am no fan of the kagans, nor a trump fan. but the response was beyond gross. even .01% of the filth that follows is way too much. it's beyond gross.

      link to

    • and if i were palestinian i would certainly find the notion that "Jewish students at Vassar had suffered the most during the BDS campaign" very humiliating, especially if i had family suffering through the occupation:

      When a Jewish member of the student association’s council reminded the gallery that Jewish students at Vassar had suffered the most during the BDS campaign, a pro-BDS student responded that Jews on campus had a Jewish studies program and a rabbi, as if her concerns hardly mattered.

      link to

      i tend to agree that in the context of the ongoing nakba, the 'suffering' sentiments of pro israel jews on american campuses are just not that important.

    • mooser, the implication being -- israel is their religion? or zionism?

    • i've only heard this meme from team israel so it makes me very curious. the difference between hops and storch at tablet was "students here think of the Holocaust as an event that affected white victims rather than people of color, and they argue that it therefore receives too much attention compared to other atrocities" vs hops "should be given less prominence because the victims were “white.”" so the argument according to them is holocaust is given to much or should be given less attention.

      whereas, i wonder - if the argument exists which i'll presume it does giving the benefit of the doubt, is that because the holocaust of jews were primarily white (which european jews are and the other half of the victims are hardly discussed to the point most americans probably don't even know 1/2(or more) of the victims were not jews, so they are probably not the target of this argument) the holocaust is given more attention/prominence than other atrocities. which is probably true.

      and i'm really not sure why that should be considered bullying or even controversial. maybe it's just a situation where the holocaust is in a sacred cow category where advocates of israel can pull it out and use it (as a debate tool) at any given time to argue or justify israel's reasons for existing as a supremacists state, but no one else is allowed to go near or even mention it.

      but i seriously doubt it would be any kind of prominent topic in a i/p debate today if it wasn't used to justify the colonization of palestine -- the nakba.

    • hops: I’ve seen people write in campus newspapers that the Holocaust should be given less prominence because the victims were “white.”

      link please. your buddy Jason Storch made a similar claim but produced not a shred of evidence. so i'm glad you actually read this argument from the horse's mouth because i am very curious to read it. thanks in advance for linking to it.

    • and that's only the tip of the iceberg, it actually gets so much worse than that. the bullying the author has endured, just unconscionable. listen to this:

      I have been told – by a Jewish student leader, no less – that supporting Israel is tantamount to supporting oppression

      no student should ever have to endure this kind of humiliation, especially not a jewish student. they're in college for heaven's sake, this is not the real world. who's going to protect them? and can you believe their parents are shelling out money to this institution -- that fails to protect them from this kind of speech. like i said, tip of the iceberg.

    • mooser, i actually responded to him last night but didn't post it. (too cruel -i saved it tho). have you read that forward article? bwahhhh! it's just full of zingers like:

      Perhaps most damaging of all, they have divided the campus by portraying the territorial conflict between Israel and the Palestinians as a case of white colonialists oppressing people of color.

      shocking!! this sort of hard hitting commentary is much too alienating for young impressionable jewish college students. they shouldn't be having to deal with these kinds of critiques at such a young tender age. there should be trigger warnings and rules set up to prevent this kind of info from impacting their malleable minds. it's all so very sensitive.

    • Of course, it is inherently antisemitic to doubt any accusations of antisemitism.

      inherently, of course.

    • Right, because a single story about some Jewish student painting a swastika on her own door automatically discredits every other story of antisemitism on campus.

      as opposed to what? your claims which you have produced not even one supporting link? just allegations. and for the record, there have been more than one jewish student busted for producing swastikas on campuses. and in the glaring absence of even one incident of a non jewish student getting busted for vandalizing campus with a swastika (that i can recall anyway) i'd say the link very much discredits all your non supported claims.

      it might be a valuable lesson for you to review the children's fable "the boy who cried wolf". it takes a lot more than crying wolf to get the masses to stand up and listen after years of false alarms. you have to actually produce the wolf once in awhile. it's not to say the wolf is not out there because it is and can be deadly. but constant (and continually discredited) claims it comes from BDS does not an argument make.

  • How Eli Lake tricks readers so as to cast realists Walt, Mearsheimer and Freeman as anti-semites
    • Pushed Back doesn’t mean, or even imply, defensiveness. Defensive means overly sensitive, anxious to avoid criticism. “Pushed Back” just means a negative or unfavorable response. People can push back in a conversation with great confidence.

      pushed back implies 'in opposition' -- whether it's in defensive, negative, unfavorably or with great confidence, is not the point. eli lake still stated Ruger "pushed back on the idea that his think tank was providing a “platform” to Walt, Mearsheimer and Freeman" and that's not apparent in the quotes presented. listen to the words:

      "They are all very respected members of the foreign policy community and the academy," he said.

      it sounds to me like a reasonable answer to a question. neither defensive, negative or necessarily with great confidence. lake could have said 'when asked why they hosted the trio rugers said' or ruger stated, or ruger explained, or according to ruger. he didn't, he said he pushed back. and by framing it as such he set up rugers following response as then "backing off" from his previous statement -- when in actuality the following statement does not "back off" from the one that proceeded it.

      in fact if you take the too statements by rugers you can place them together or reverse them and they are perfectly compatible, like this (statements in reverse):

      "We're not endorsing anything or everything these people have said; we are trying to have a broad conversation about foreign policy, they are all very respected members of the foreign policy community and the academy,"

      by framing the 2 responses, one as pushing back and the other as backing off his previous statement, lake sets up rugers (as back and forth) -- but what lake doesn't do is frame himself as accusing rugers. lake positions himself as benign or neutral "When asked". but lake doesn't let rugers words speak for themselves -- he frames them as push back.

    • I’m the Shabbos Yid. I do the job the Goyim are just too nice or (too frightened) to do.

      maybe, maybe not. because unless your editors ask you to tone it down, it could be they're just more comfortable hearing it from you. safety in tribe and all that.

  • New Jersey anti-BDS bill is an affront to the first amendment and basic human rights
    • Do other states have the right to exist as a Muslim state? Yes or no?

      as far as i know is no "right to exist" for states. if anyone thinks otherwise please link to it.

      existence is a fact of being, it is not a right in and of itself.

  • Israeli 'chutzpah' versus Palestinian 'sumud'
    • talknic, just checked out your links. thank you so much for everything you do ;)

    • Are you going to be doing a lot more projection vomiting?

      because denial here is so like -- "rampant"(according to our new commenter, no doubt an expert on what's rampant on mondoweiss).

    • Before I keep talking, let me inquire about other ‘sensitive issues’ and where this place stands on them

      let's not, you're spamming. how about let's get on topic (scroll up to the article) and not try to lead the discussion off in some inflammatory argument for the sake of "my comments don’t get moderated".

      God Forbid any Jews alive today are of Israelite descent.

      triple yawn.

    • You take the govt definition and apply it to the entire possible spectrum of any discussion.

      no i did not. i posted the wiki quote which included both the gov posture as well as common usage at the end. this is a political website therefore the spectrum of commentary tends towards the political. if you can't win the argument you won't win by accusing me of "engaging in semantics" when i post an official as well as common definition.

      I am disagreeing with Jonathan Ofir’s analysis of a primary source.

      really? by making up false facts (soundbites like israel said they'd take in the refugees arab states being responsible for palestinians in limbo)? like i said earlier -- your archives are available to everyone. i'll hand it to you tho, you're not handing out leaflets.

    • When I said “fair share of problems” I meant Israel’s moral failings, not its problems in the sense of having to deal with the consequences of its actions

      "fair share" is an idiom with a specific meaning link to

      the amount of something that one is due relative to what other people are receiving.

      so it doesn't just mean 'israel has moral failings'. a share of something is in relation to others or sometimes very much in relation to "the consequences of its actions" (what "one is due"). for example, if someone kidnapped a woman and raped her in the basement for 20 years saying "the rapist has his fair share of problems" -- like yeah, having to hide her from the neighbors and pay for her food out of his paycheck. not much of a fair share of problems compared to the sadist's victim. but sure, the sadist has moral failings -- that sort of goes without saying. and it doesn't even approach addressing what he's due (iow: consequences).

      in an environment, either globally or locally, israel is not having its "fair share" of problems. you pointed out earlier "the US gives it almost complete immunity." plus they provide a qualitative military edge (not 'fair share').

      when you oppress another people for decades and imprison 40% of the male population over time and bulldoze homes and murder them like dogs in the street, israel is not receiving it's fair share of problems.

      i'm just explaining that not because i am "engaging in semantics" but because words matter and idioms have meaning. eventually israel will get it's just deserts, but it doesn't have a fair share of problems now, not what "one is due relative to what other people are receiving". iow, not relative to palestinian problems due to israel's oppressive sadistic (greedy and thieving and war criminal) behavior.

    • it's also a war crime. and no amount of "reducto ad absurdium" hasbara will change that.

    • Stop editing my comments or just don’t post them you intellectual cowards and authoritarians

      I’m debating Annie and the mods edit mine as we debate. What a sham this place is

      alright, in the future instead of "[..]" i will delete your comment. i am not always the moderator here but i moderated that comment and advised you afterwards to review the comment section. again:

      if you’d like to argue there was no intention to expel palestinians from their villages to create a jewish majority state — try another site.

      you may think that's intellectual cowardness and authoritarian but we don't publish nakba denial. we've moved on. we don't debate whether hitler intended to kill jews either. step up your game because we're not debating that regardless of how much you're itching for it.

    • what "cognitive bias of the radical Left argument" are you referencing? quit shooting from the hip and relying on strawman arguments. are you familiar w/copying and pasting? cite someone before spewing nonsense. hasbara can have valid points "by definition", it doesn't mean you have any valid points.

    • i left the link for you above, yes there is an instructional hasbara handbook published and produced by WUJS, the World Union of Jewish Students.

      i'd urge you to review our comment policy link to

      this is propaganda:

      Civilians flee during fighting .... because civilians flee during fighting. Look at conflict everywhere in the globe - civilians flee.

      this is nakba denial. if you'd like to argue there was no intention to expel palestinians from their villages to create a jewish majority state -- try another site. because here, it's a "settled issue" -- pun intended.

    • . This is obviously a huge difference than my original claim

      yes it is. as was your claim it was the arab states who left "the refugees" in limbo -- implying israel's expulsion (nakba) wasn't responsible for their "limbo" status. ever seen the movie sophie's choice? who's fault was it her children died? sophie's? i didn't think so.

      I never stated any zionist hasbara

      uh huh. are you aware anyone can click on your name and read all your comments in your archive? why not read the hasbara handbook: link to specifically the section on "7 basic propaganda devices" and "point scoring". this technique my dear, is straight out of the hasbara handbook:

      to paint it as the epitome of all evil in this world takes a truly dedicated commitment of negative energy and fanaticism.

      your commentary is sprinkled throughout with basic tactics listed in the handbook. you can feign innocent all you like -- but it (your commentary) is classic zionist hasbara.


    • The problem here is anything that casts Israel in a positive light is by definition zionist hasbara propaganda according to you and others.

      do you know what the definition of hasbara is? link to

      Public diplomacy in Israel (also hasbara, Hebrew: הַסְבָּרָה‎ hasbará, "explaining") refers to public relations efforts to disseminate abroad positive information or propaganda about the State of Israel and its actions.[1][2] The term is used by the Israeli government and its supporters to describe efforts to explain government policies and promote Israel in the face of negative press, and to counter what they see as delegitimisation of Israel around the world. Hasbara means "explanation", and is also a euphemism for propaganda.[3][4][5][6]

      hasbara is, by definition, intended to casts Israel in a positive light ("public relations efforts to disseminate abroad positive information"). it's not just "according to you and others" it's also according to the israel government.

      I actually didn’t engage in hasbara

      oh please!

      IDF attack villages because of ALA units there.

      denial is not a river in egypt. jewish forces attacked villages to clear them of non jews so they could make a majority jewish state. it's called ethnic cleansing and it's a war crime.

    • i don't agree israel has a "fair share" of problems. fair would be US/UN/Russia (and all other bric countries -china/brazil/india/) /Germany/UK/france, sanctioning israel. and that's just a start.

    • ohplease, talknic ask you to source your ridiculous allegation yesterday and you have not done so. maybe it slipped your mind. several posters are awaiting your response. so could you provide a source for this please:

      link to

    • ohplease, why not answer the question. are you nauseous?

    • yada yada yada, ohplease we've heard it all before from hasbara central, could you get more original please. and you and sila should get together w/your lame epitome of all evil in this world claim because what's clear is you're unable to argue w/out the strawman crutch.

      btw, not that it has anything to do w/zionism, but what do you think of the "binary options" Scam industry in Tel Aviv that's bilked 10's of thousands of french citizens out of their retirement? the times of Israel has done a series of (15 since march so far) articles about it link to . Here's one of the articles:

      The wolves of Tel Aviv: Israel’s vast, amoral binary options scam exposed: link to

      and another: link to

      As Israel turns blind eye to vast binary options fraud, French investigators step in Tens of thousands of French victims have lost some 4 billion euros to online investment scams in the past six years. Much of the cynical theft originates — and is still flourishing — in Israel

      here's an interview with the journalist who broke the story: link to starts at 23:29 (scroll to "Reporter’s notebook”).

      and there's more! guess what, they recruit new immigrants -- people who've just made aliya because it's so hard to make a living wage in tel aviv. check out the vampire recruitment add: link to

      "predators work at night"

      and it's not just france either. seriously this story is hot. albeit, it isn't the "epitome of all evil in this world" but here's someone who worked for the scam (and there are over 100 israel firms doing this employing thousands of people ripping off billions annually):

      “Many forex customers have no idea that the company operates from Israel, especially when we’re talking about the Arabic-speaking desks. Their complaints never reach our justice system and so the industry is not exposed. How is it possible that this has been happening for years, with no local regulation? What happens when thousands of Turks, Russians, Spaniards, Italians and French figure out that the scam they fell for was carried out from here, in Israel? Are our regulators waiting for synagogues to start blowing up all over the world to shut this thing down?”

      yeah, what will happen?

      but the good news is, israel recently passed legislation to make it illegal to target investors from Israel, so at least israelis won't lose their life savings. but investigators in france are all over this, apparently 26% of french have been targeted.

      just curious what you think -- speaking of MO -- and chutzpah.

  • A brief history of the 'Nakba' in Israel
    • regarding the expulsions before may 15, i was reminded of walid khalidi's Plan Dalet: Master Plan which gamal linked to the other day. >>> link to

      if you scroll down to "the real problem" on pg 14 (sorry i can't copy paste it) it explains that the zionists determined they needed to "dislodged" palestinians before the british left the country and the arab armies entered (which they [zionists] anticipated would happen on the same day may 15) which they [arab armies] would be able to do with legal immunity because the british had left leaving a "juridicial vacuum". and if the arab armies entered palestine and the palestinians were still "in situ" the forces "in support of the status quo in the country (ie: against the UN partitian decision) would be over whelming"

      therefore the most urgent problem was to "dislodge" palestinians before may 15th and to do it with the british still in the country. then it goes on to list the "operations".

      and i think the zionists used this to their advantage in their ongoing propaganda because they knew when the british left the arab armies would enter given the flood of refugees and the obviousness of what was going on so timing the declaration of state on the same day (may 15) and then claiming the arab armies "invaded" because of the declaration of state (vs when the british left and in response to the expulsion/ethnic cleansing). and to this very day they make this bs claim. and it's emphasized by the changing of the name of the ongoing war on that day, when there was no break. it was the same war.

      it was a stroke of (pr) genius changing the name of the war beginning on may 15th which perpetuates the myth the war began when the arab armies entered palestine and that they did it because israel declared statehood.

    • Relating to your condescending observation

      there was nothing condescending in WH's comment.

      “A Brief History of the ‘Nakba’ in Israel” is deceptive to the reader who is not as “well read” as you are.

      actually, most of our readers are well read. the headline is accurate (not deceptive) and the first sentence of the article lays out (clearly) what the article addresses, as 2 readers pointed out. furthermore, mondoweiss always reserves the right to write the headlines here. albeit, you're frequently criticizing the site anyway so this is just par for the course.

      I think you need to be reminded of the fact

      scrolling thru your comments in your archives it appears to me it is you addressing people with a condescending tone -- frequently.

      My point again: brutal, ruthless, genocidal, ethnic cleansing, fascist Zionists perpetrated the Nakba on Palestine, not Israel.

      you seem to be ignoring that the article is not about your point, it's about the discourse surrounding the nakba inside of israel:

      This text deals with the attitude towards the Nakba in Hebrew almost exclusively and does not attempt to describe the attitudes and changes it went through in Arabic and in the Arab world.

      if you do not think that's a worthy endeavor explain why. others here have made worthy critiques (ie: the nakba began earlier -- the author excludes mention of this, as it pertains to hebrew discourse or otherwise ) but your critiques seem to address nitpicking over the use of the term "events". either way, accusing someone of condescension without addressing their point at all is ad hominem in nature. unless you consider 'readers are not as well read as you or myself' a counter argument (which it is not -- relying on the idiocy of the masses as cover).

  • Hillary Clinton supported Iraq war because of Israel, say Matthews and Landler
    • in the MW universe anyway.

    • bandelero, sila says "I’m just focused on dismantling white supremacy" but hillary is "a fairly OK person trying to do good in a hellishly evil, corrupt political landscape". she gets a pass and "People need to understand" she "was" (past tense) an ardent zionist when "Arabs / Islam / Muslims were genuinely despised" (again, past tense... as if the islamophobic fury taking place currently is long gone).

      so much hypocrisy it's hard to comprehend. as if she doesn't have the back of the kagans and other powerful white neocon supremacists. and he tries to improve his endorsement by mockingly referencing all her detractors ("everyone") claiming she's "demonic spawn of Satan" what bs. there are millions of people such as myself who can't tolerate her aggressive WAR footing and -- don't even believe in satan. what a hasbara tool.

      she also managed to have her jihadi stooges killing the leader of that nation by sodomizing him with a knife

      we came we saw he died, cackle cackle cackle. gross.

  • The Making of Israel: Zionist settler colonialism in historic Palestine
    • why would anyone take Kontorovich seriously? he's a right wing settler. listen to him address the radical israeli group 'women in green' at the link.

      Two years ago, Kontorovich emigrated to Israel from the US, and moved to Alon Shvut, an Israeli colony south of Bethlehem. According to his listing at the Jerusalem Centre for Public Affairs, Kontorovich now lives in Neve Daniel, another settlement within the Bethlehem governorate.

      But Kontorovich is not just a settlement resident; a video that has come to light shows him expressing support for a notorious right-wing settler group that sees all of the West Bank as “the exclusive possession” of Jews.

      - See more at: link to

    • Phil and Adam, the Zionists who “founded” Israel did not purchase Palestine from its rightful owners, the Palestinians. The “founding” of Israel is grounded in massacre, brutality, racism, ethnic cleansing, ongoing grand theft and horrific military occupation of virtually all of Palestine.

      james, i'll make sure they get this message in case they don't read all the comments today, this really is startling information, i'm not sure i've ever heard it expressed with such conviction. thanks for sharing.

      oh, and about that dull grey computer screen. see if you can download flash or some app like that. it's an interactive and working fine for me.

  • Michael Ratner was dedicated to radical social change, with humor and humility
    • omg, i just saw this. i can't even read. what horrific loss. how did this happen? oh what a loss -- oh i am so very very sorry. what a wonderful man. a giant among the best of men, amongst the best of all of us, a giant. this is devastating news. just tears.

      and of course my heart goes out to lizzy, and his whole family for their tremendous personal loss.

  • Sabeel BDS conference pits local church against Jewish community leaders
  • 'Either Assad or we'll burn the country' - An excerpt from 'Burning Country: Syrians in Revolution and War'
    • The peoples of China, Russia and dozens of other states, while often holding serious grudges against their regimes, would not so easily stand by in the face of plausible evidence of foreign incursion.

      neil, where did you get the idea syrians, while often holding serious grudges against assad, "so easily stand by in the face of plausible evidence of foreign incursion"? maybe you're not aware of the syrian arab army. they are doing their best to extract them from the country and there are a lot of them (syrians) who've joined the armed forces and died for their country. and the syrians who support the opposition don't "so easily stand by" either, but many of them embrace the foreigners fighting their government because they want to oust him. but syrians are not "easily standing by". nothing is easy there.

    • rather international engagement and work to bring all sides to a ceasefire and end of conflict agreement.

      unfortunately many of those who expound this solution (like our government) are also the ones supplying arms to the region.

    • This theory that Assad is the best option assumes that we need to support a particular current side, that we need to push for a return to Assad and that supporting the government is what will bring change. It is to say that one side in the conflict needs to be pushed to win the conflict. We need to pick a winner, the one we find (for whatever reason) the least objectionable and then we can accept their violence as tragically needed.

      This is terrible logic

      assad is not gone so there is no so called "theory" that "assumes" a "need to push for a return to Assad". and if one believes the best current option is leaving assad in power currently it doesn't "assume" one has to "support a particular current side". in fact many people (like me) just believe in non intervention. It is not to say one side in the conflict needs to be "pushed" to win the conflict.

      where is your so called "theory" coming from? because what i hear is the anti assad side saying we should be 'pushing' them (see the article above blaming non us intervention for the continuation of hostilities just like jeffrey goldberg does). arguing on a basis of claim about what one side's position "assumes" without establishing that assumption is sort of like straw-manning it. you're not really arguing against what they've said, you're arguing against what you claim their beliefs allegedly "assume".

      and i don't know who you're addressing but i stated clearly "it’s the syrians job to get rid of their dictator" -- there's no push to support assad from me, so i don't know who you are addressing wrt this theory. i think we should stay out of it and hopefully we'll see some stabilization in syria.

    • danaa, i think the 'i/p is legit and syria/iran/russia isn't' is not accurate. i think it's more a matter of people write about what they know about. and phil very much covered the iran deal so i don't think he's adverse necessarily, it's just that i don't think he's followed events in syria hardly at all. it's very time consuming for one thing.

    • danaa, there are other threads and discussions too (not too long ago this one -- and excuse me if i've already linked to it in the thread >> link to )

      i'm fairly certain as a staff writer what i report is more scrutinized by the site (editors) because there's an expectation i represent site -- understandably. wheras someone else could write heavily opinionated articles, i think i would be discouraged from that over controversial topics (syria is very controversial within the movement).

      so, for example that article i just linked to i wrote on a saturday -- it was breaking news as i recall, that the 2nd batch of "US trained rebels" had entered syria from turkey and immediately flipped over to AQ. now, even tho i had not been reporting about all this i already knew about the previous division 30 troups, how they got pounced immediately etc, and the congressional testimony that after we'd spent 500mil to train a bunch of them we only had 4 or 5 to show for it. so i got the new news thru twitter of the new batch folding to AQ and i thought they were solid sources (arab press i researched it in arabic via google translate). but my article wasn't published til tuesday. after multiple western sources reported it, it got picked up by msm, state department discussed and acknowledge it, and everyone and their brother was talking about it. etc etc. therefor it wasn't controversial hence not a risk to the site. and all my original sources were scrapped and replaced by current monday sources. but for me it felt like a (somewhat) waste of time because it's way more fun to have breaking news, it had to be written several times over, and by the time we published very few people even read it because they already knew the news. (plus, i can't recall as i would have to review the article but i don't think any implication the US could anticipate arms and weapons meant for so called "moderate" US trained soldiers would inevitably (purposely) end up w/the bad guys, was included in the article. that's the sort of editorializing that's not appreciated (albeit it's happened at such an alarming rate one would have to be foolish not to anticipate it -- imho).

      so reporting on syria is very challenging for me because the anti assad activist within our movement can be very loud and mean! lol. seriously tho, when i wrote this article back in the day >> link to -- (mild, not too controversial one might assume!) some pro palestine activists went ape shit and started HOUNDING the site and telling us to shut up about syria and what did we know. so there are serious gatekeepers within the movement on syria. and many of them don't do that for any other reason than they have firm beliefs. palestinians are very divided on syria -- understandably, they have suffered a lot as a result of the war but at the same time syria offered a lot of palestinians refuge for a long time (including hamas). they are not unified wrt aspects of syria advocacy. and recall how max blumenthal left that one publication saying they were a mouthpiece for assad or something? he really saw what was going on there in a certain vision he was being true to. whereas, i think i came about my activism in a way in which i inherently did not trust US intervention because of iraq and i could see the patterns. so i trusted my own hunches. but my hunches are not necessarily shared by the editors here, hence the requirement to back up my sources in a way that's completely not require at all in this article (ie the allegation assad unleashed CW -- same claim as goldberg w/no source what so ever) which btw, is not an "article" per se -- it's an excerpt from a book. and not too long ago we got some emails asking why we were not reporting syria from the FSA ptv (or something -- that's paraphrasing) and i explained we covered a range of views on syria. and clearly, this (above) is one of them.

      i'd guess we definitely don't get submissions about syria very often except from the perspective of those who believe the official story of a genuine unfiltered uprising amongst the people sans western intervention. it was a long haul getting people to realize the US was (inadvertently or not) supporting unsavory actors over there. of course once they officially joined AQ and/or isis that became a less sustainable position that's best avoided (as the authors did above). none the less, people w/my ptv we're regarded as conspiracy theorist nut jobs. so for the main part i stay away from reporting on syria because it's not worth it for me, it takes its toll energy-wise. but i think others not on staff could get published here for sure. i think they are very open to different pts of view.

    • To say that is the best that can be respected under the circumstances is to expect that Syrians should accept brutality.

      i agree. but unless there's a viable alternative then isn't it a matter of deciding which brutality is worse? for example, saddam was brutal but after a few years of war, overwhelmingly iraqis felt life was better under saddam then the brutality of war and what's come out of it. at least that's what i heard from many of them. do you think if you polled iraqis right now if they could take away the 2003 american invasion of iraq as if it had never happened they would vote yes?

      the US should be pressuring our allies not to pour mercenaries and weapons into syria and stop supplying weapons ourselves. it's not our job to police the middle east and syria was a bastion of stability during the decade before war broke out in comparison to what was going on elsewhere in the ME. they took in millions of iraqi refugees. it wasn't perfect but it was way better than the last 5 years. the intent of the designers of chaos in the ME was to break up syria. it's the syrians job to get rid of their dictator and if they choose to do it with fanatical foreign jihadists then its not our business to support those jihadists -- which we've been inadvertently and covertly doing for years. billions a year is not chump change, and contrary to suggestions in this article that we have not been doing enough for syria, we've been doing too much. and where's the syrian leader supported by the opposition whose going to lead this forthcoming democracy?

      if taking out assad leaves the country vulnerable to being overtaken by fanatics how does that help syria? so yeah, he may be brutal, but he's living in a brutal terrain. there was no AQ in iraq before our invasion (because saddam was brutal towards them), they came afterwards. so they are being used by foreign powers to get rid of assad just like they were used to get rid of gaddafi. and the people supporting them would be all too keen to march assad's head thru the street at the end of a stick and hillary no doubt would like to laugh on mainstream media that we came we saw he died.

      so yes, right now, assad is better than the alternative in my opinion. and if the overwhelming majority of syrians wanted him overthrown he would have been.

    • The comments in here are terribly disrespectful and reeks of arrogance....

      Feel free to argue against any of the points or facts as presented in the article, but...

      don’t derail away from the subject matter...

      I am always open to having my stance challenged with hard facts...

      People here are throwing fits ... Most comments don’t even address the content of the article, but are rehashing unverified conspiracy theories ....

      I think some moderation of comments must take place in order for us to have a fruitful discussion...

      say sil, pardon me for interrupting your continued pompous attempts to set the terms/boundaries of the conversation ..just thought i'd mention you don't need to keep claiming "I support the Syrian government by the way" and "I am personally biased in supporting Syria’s government as opposed to the rebels" while you continue to your attempts to curtail speech of people who critisize this article, while you defend/protect the authors -- which is what you're doing.

      just thought i'd mention! and contrary to what you imply, there already is "some moderation of comments" taking place.

      also, we've already been through these conversations about syria over and over and we've hashed and rehashed over this topic time and again. and no one here is required to proffer "hard facts" regarding what's occurred in syria -- on your demand. but if you want them, there's a discussion in this recent thread with lots of hard facts as well as supporting links to them in comments and the body of the main text:

      Goldberg on Obama’s Syria credibility ‘crisis’: link to

      and for more "hard facts" and supporting links here's our extensive 2013 conversation (see comment thread for "hard facts" supported by links):

      Do’s and don’ts for progressives discussing Syria: link to


    • it was a lot more than 12 million mike. cheney's daughter headed up the syria democracy project for the state dept (that was not the name of it -- i forget what it was) but i think she had a 200k budget going back to 06.

      edit: the 200 mill could be over years and it included iran- here's more: link to

      this one says 80 million link to

    • and this from DoD link to

      COLONEL STEVE WARREN: .... it's primarily al-Nusra who holds Aleppo, and of course, al-Nusra is not part of the cessation of hostilities. So it's complicated. We're watching it. Our focus, though, as the Combined Joint Task Force, is ISIL. And so don't forget that, that's our focus. The cessation of hostilities, the diplomatic and political processes -- while they certainly have -- are of interest to us and potentially could influence our operations peripherally, our focus remains ISIL.

      so during the (last) ceasefire -- who was the US was shoveling weapons to? you guessed it. the so called friends of nusra.

      link to

      “After the regime collapses, there is no pretext for any group to be armed," he added, optimistically believing that a unified national army would be able to disband groups like Al Nusra.

      Colonel Abdul Jabbar Akaidi, the former head of the Aleppo military revolutionary council, said there will be no place for Al Nusra or like-minded groups after the war is over.

      “After Bashar Al Assad is gone, those who still have Salafi-Jihadist thoughts, they must go to Kandahar. They cannot stay in Syria," he said. “We want to topple Bashar Al Assad, rebuild our country and bring social justice, not stay in a continual fight."

      But Mr Malahefji and Col Akaidi’s feelings are far from universal among rebels.

      “Jabhat Al Nusra are our brothers," said Hajj Bakri, a rebel leader in Hama. “We have no problem with them."

      how are they going to get rid of the people who, according to our defense department, "holds aleppo" (the opposition controlled part)? the so called "moderates" are not holding aleppo -- because they are unable to. but after assad is toppled they can push them out? please, this is illogical. and our cia covert program is a billion a year -- as well as our overt program, another billion a year >> link to . so that's not chump change.

    • b's been doing excellent reporting on syria. i was reminded this morning (from this article just one of many of his astute posts on syria link to ) of the video he linked to of the so called "white helmets" assisting the execution of a person link to gross. this is the same group that the US has given 23 million to (who one of the co authors mentioned favorably in a blog post not long ago). plus, even tho we (the US and the UK) support this group we've banned the head of the organization from entering the US. link to

      there's no mention of nusra in this article, it's as if they do not exist.

  • Israel imposes travel ban on BDS movement co-founder Omar Barghouti
    • Anyone saying that such a society can be changed by anything other than outside pressure is delusional.


    • Omar was scheduled to give a speech at the sabeel conference i attend a couple weeks ago in santa cruz and had to address us via skype instead. this was right after the “targeted civil eliminations” threat.

  • Don't say the Z-word
    • Whilst Zionism does not represent all Jews, it seeks to create a monopoly upon the usage of the term ‘Zionist’, and its pundits are seeking to stifle debate about it. The aim of this is obvious – if it would be impossible to discuss Zionism and Judaism separately, Zionism could become an unchallenged representation of Jews all over the world.

      while this may be true, that Jews seek to "create a monopoly upon the usage of the term ‘Zionist’," i don't think this attempt to ban the word from common usage is so that "Zionism could become an unchallenged representation of Jews all over the world " -- i don't think that's where this comes from.

      and perhaps jonathan never heard (or forgot) about frank luntz's "words that work" powerpoint ( here: link to ), but i'm surprised no one in the comments recalled it. this push to get us to stop using this term originated from none other than luntz, recognized as the guru of hasbara and selling israel to the world. phil wrote about it here: link to

      he found out by surveying americans (maybe he did it in britain too) -- not american jews, but americans -- in sept 2014, after the 2014 summer slaughter -- to change US public opinion which had taken a downturn that summer. it's called "communicating the truth about israel" and it's just a way to formulate effective propaganda.

      divided into "students" and "opinion elite" and he asks them

      What's your reaction to the word: " Zionist/Zionism "

      dividing into those who felt favorably, neutral, or unfavorably about the word. and as it turned out too many people looked unfavorably on the word. so this is just an attempt to ban it from use because people respond negatively towards it. had everyone liked it, there would be a push to use it. and like everything else in hasbara land, the most effective way to ban something is to call it anti semitic.

      so if you think about it, prior to the summer slaughter there were no efforts to ban the word -- this is the new frank luntz hasbara effort coming to fruition -- nothing random about it. just a result of the study on words that do not work in US public opinion. zionism has gotten a bad wrap so ban the word. it didn't come from an "aim" to make it impossible to discuss Zionism and Judaism separately, although that may be one outcome of it.

      as luntz says, in big bold letters at the very top of the powerpoint:

      These are merely bookends…
      the opening/closing language

      1. You decide which facts matter
      2. You decide the length of response
      3. Just remember: your opening
      words set the tone and your final
      words determine your success.

      those who own the words determine the outcome. and i will decide for myself my own "opening/closing language". we need to own the words and speak honestly about their meaning -- as we see fit.

  • Calling Israel a 'modern day miracle' and 'vibrant bloom in desert,' Clinton says BDS is anti-Semitic
  • A new proposal for confederated states (without any idea of how to get Israel to comply)
    • ;) too sweet!

    • thank you mooser.

    • As someone active in efforts to persuade Americans to support BDS and change Congressional support for Israel I think that having a potentially viable solution to promote can help motivate people to support BDS. It is easier to fight against goliath when you see a reasonable path forward.

      Seth, you say that as someone active in efforts to persuade Americans to support BDS. what alternate position do you think is a responsible one? do you think it's responsible to propose a plan with no reasonable prospects for how to carry it out? if there is no question that only BDS and a related cut in US military aid will have any potential to bring Israel to the table to ensure consideration of this or any other concept then what is the point of making proposals that make no mention of that?

      i think it's been decades seth. i think proposals have been made time and again. it's not just this proposal, it's any proposal. and i am not saying every proposal has to include advocating for bds. that is not my point (although i think it's the only realistic option -- some form of withhold or sanctions). my point is every proposal for an i/p resolution going forward, should include some way to ensure it will be carried out.

      for a moment let's suspend our attachment to this plan this article and these authors (who i acknowledged as having good intent). what do you think is a reasonable amount of time to look at varying plans w/no mention of repercussions. 5 years, 10 years, 50 years, 100 years, 500 years? when does one feel like a dupe?

      imagine a man beats his wife over and over and she goes to the marriage counselor and the marriage counselor says be nicer to him and see how that works. the wife tries that and he beats her up again and she goes back to the counselor who tells her to start cooking him nice meals and she does that and he beats her up again. so time and again the wife goes back and the counselor keeps making suggestions (some of them really excellent well thought out suggestions professionals spent a lot of time on). miraculously -- after ten years the woman was still alive after being beat up by her husband hundreds of times over the decade. and then the next decade too. so at what point might you think the counselor had been irresponsible by not including an action the woman should take if the husband would not comply? something like 'go to the police, move out of the house', etc. nor had the counselor ever taken any action herself to ensure the woman's safety. the first session, the tenth session, a year of sessions, a decade of sessions, 2 decades, a lifetime?

      if the woman finally dies from her injuries, had she given the counselor 100k over the years (or a million for that matter) could the family sue the counselor for not reporting the abuse or advising the woman to go to the police (actually i think there are laws in place that require professionals to report certain incidences to authorities if the woman is in danger or a danger to others)? it just seems seth, that at this point, it's unrealistic and irresponsible not including in any resolution plan -- repercussions. that's my opinion and i'm standing by it.

      and thanks for your activism.

    • ramzi, i agree the core is rotting from within, but i also believe, as diasp0ra pointed out in another thread today : link to

      Anyone saying that such a society can be changed by anything other than outside pressure is delusional.

    • For any resolution to occur the climate of opinion has to change, and has clearly to change first in America ...... Perhaps you ask the question because I can easily fall into a trap unless I watch my words, but tell me how many Americans of Palestinian, Arab, Moslem, European Christian or secular backgrounds have advised the President on Middle Eastern affairs.....The plain and obvious fact is that the very limited debate occurring in America is completely dominated by partisans of one side; that opening up public discourse to greater diversity, more accurate coverage and alternative opinions would be immensely valuable; that censorship and self-censorship are rife and corrosive because those presenting honest opinions can so easily be vilified....

      and your solution to this is to coddle american jewish opinion. you think everything will remain the same and stay on hold until we have permission from the jewish american community? this is why you placed it in "a" on your list to liberate them? because i'll tell you, this is the most dead set inflexible demographic group (on this issue) and the least likely to change course than any other segment of our society.

      if you agree "any resolution to occur the climate of opinion has to change, and has clearly to change first in America" and you are prioritizing the voices of 2% of americans, the smallest segment with the most influence at this juncture (on this issue) and the most inflexible, you're ignoring the potential influence of the masses. why do you think so many studies and polls are done on americans opinion of i/p? believe me, it's because american opinion matters. there are a lot more of us and we do have power if we mobilize.

      but even more striking is the belief -- which seems inherent in your suggestion -- that jews control foreign policy and if you want to change it, change the jews first. i don't buy that. just because something's business as usual in washington really doesn't mean we have to keep going down that road.

      i'd urge you to read "It is time to stop celebrating Jewish dissent in the Palestine solidarity movement" - See more at: link to

      plus, read the comments. ask yourself if you are not privileging jewish voices in this conversation. and if you are why are you? are you perpetuating the myth their voice is more important than others? and just because politicians may think they are and the media may think they are and even if 99% of americans may think they are -- that doesn't mean they are.

      so if you truly think "alternative opinions would be immensely valuable; that censorship and self-censorship are rife and corrosive because those presenting honest opinions can so easily be vilified" then start with yourself and start uplifting and empowering alternative opinion and one does not do that by privileging jewish voices.

      as an activist in this movement we need to lead public opinion, not follow. the only privileged voices in the liberation of the palestinian people are -- palestinians.

      liberate Americans from the taboo of criticising Israel. enhance articulated voices in the movement for a free palestine and stop the pattern of placing jewish voices first in that conversation -- because they are NOT more important -- we've just been programmed to think they are.

    • bryan, thanks for your response. don't worry about offending me or being critical of my article, that's fine. i appreciate your articulation. i think we fundamentally disagree on some important aspects required for resolution. let's start here:

      The general consensus seems to that the 2SS is not yet buried but unattainable because no offer is on the table, and no offer could be placed on the table which would be acceptable to the Palestinian people.

      on the contrary, in sept 2011 when the quartet requested palestinians hold off on going to the UN for statehood status they presented a plan which was accepted by both parties and that plan stipulated both parties submit a proposal within a few months (3 months originally deadline extended til jan 26 2012 >>> link to ) -- both agreed -- israel said they welcomed the plan. soon after (one day) israel reneged and stated they only agreed to a proposal for a framework in which to negotiate for 9 months in which this so called proposal would be worked out -- allegedly. (this was the precursor to the failed 9 month kerry negotiations in which israel would not agree to a proposal either -- final status issues like borders for example).

      as agreed abbas submitted their proposal to the quartet and israel refused to submit a counter proposal. israel then accused the quartet in "meddling in its affairs". they had no intention of ever making a proposal.

      this came after the palestine papers were exposed in early 2011 (one the eve of the arab spring) -- for all to see -- revealing that palestine and offered everything but the kitchen sink -- including almost all of jerusalem -- in 10 years of negotiations.

      so your concept that there's a general consensus that 2SS is unattainable because no offer could be placed on the table which would be acceptable to Palestinians is woefully misinformed. the exact opposite is occurring. people are realizing (finally) israel will never accept a 2ss -- as netanyahu let slip before the last election -- and this more than anything has led the mainstream to start discussing/publishing options.

      so i stand by my earlier statement wrt irresponsible. at this junction -- anyone under the illusion this is precipitated by palestinian recalcitrance is just wrong. everything they've tried, and they have bent over backwards, has been rejected by israel -- as this plan would be. the only thing Israel will accept at this juncture is total surrender.

      i'll be back to address another of your points. i urge you to open and review my link above before responding. here it is again

      Europe asks: Where’s Israel’s proposal?
      link to

    • stephen -- indeed.

    • Your “doubt” doesn’t cut it.

      yeah, there's just that little something about zionists speaking for palestinians that rubs me the wrong way. can't quite put my finger on it tho.

    • (1) You have it wrong that the article is addressing a British audience. This is extracted from a longer piece published in the Washington Quarterly.

      i didn't realize it was extracted from the washington quarterly, although they mentioned it was based on that article. it was their opening i referenced when i wrote the authors were "addressing a British audience and say, “people no longer know what to do about it”. here's the opening:

      Whether you regard the controversy raging in the Labour party as a long overdue reckoning with insidious antisemitism on the British left or just a smear campaign against Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership, one thing is clear: it has nothing to do with what is happening in Israel, the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

      While the discussion in Britain about antisemitism and the limits of acceptable criticism of Israel is important, Israelis and Palestinians continue to kill and wound each other. The preoccupation with ignorant and offensive statements and Facebook posts of Labour politicians won’t stop anyone’s suffering in the Holy Land.

      Perhaps part of the reason we’ve become so focused on how we talk about Israel-Palestine is because people no longer know what to do about it.

      excuse me for being wrong. either way, i don't think it alters my point. and if this was in fact extracted from the washington quarterly, my apologies.

      (2)a somewhat strange argument to hear on MW, which I thought embraced the “War of Ideas in the Middle East”, and often argues that any issue that raises public consciousness and develops debate is beneficial.

      did you also think phil's comment here was a somewhat strange argument to make because any issue that raises public consciousness and develops debate is beneficial:

      link to

      Waxman ended his talk by saying that Jews must learn to argue about this issue in a more tolerant manner so that the “poison” doesn’t destroy the community. I don’t buy that. That’s like saying, have dialogue with the White Citizens Council in Mississippi in the 1960s. This battle has to get more open and more critical.

      because talking about the issue in a tolerant manner, can still raise conscience and develop debate.

      For how long has their been discussion of a Two State Solution, without detailed analysis of the path to implementation

      a few decades i would imagine. there have been lots of plans both with detailed analysis and without detailed analysis. however, "discussing implementing acceptance" by the israeli government is a conversation less traveled -- and given what's become apparent to more and more people, that the israeli government doesn't want to find a solution (other than taking over all the land come hell or high water) i think it should include a range of discussion outside of the parameters of 'let the occupied and occupier come to an agreement'.

      Why should the bar be set higher for this proposal, and why does a similar implementation path not apply?

      the bar should be set higher, to include a path to pressuring israel -- concrete pressure -- with a detailed list of repercussions if israel does not comply, to any proposals going forward. just like when we negotiated the iran deal we included steps we'd take if they broke the agreement. and the reason we should do that is because one can discuss implementation plans til the cows come home and it will probably bring the same results we've had in the past -- nothing but more entrenchment.

      The flimsiness of the implementation approach to 2SS (esp. Oslo) has been go for confidence building measures now, and we’ll grapple with the serious issues (like borders, refugees. and Jerusalem) later on. -

      exactly. borders, refugees and jerusalem are always relegated as final status issues. that's why palestinian negotiators don't want any more 'peace talks' until israel issues a proposal for borders upfront -- which they've continually refused to do. and i can tell you right now what Israel would say to this current plan. they'd say no way. they'd say but lets talk about it for the next few years while we expand the settlements while we're talking.

      (3)Surely the first thing we need to is to agree what the plan is, before we talk about how to impose / implement it.

      no, i disagree. i think any plan should include an acceptance implementation procedure. there was likely never a time the US seriously considered any plan w/iran that didn't include how the US would respond if iran refused to comply. this is not more complicated than the marshal plan or the warsaw pact. it didn't take decades to plan them. you can't go on business as usual chatting about plans for the next few decades without considering ways to get israel to comply. there are a lot of smart people in the world -- if you put 20 geniuses in a room for a week they could come up with several working plans. there's no lack of brainpower here, there's a lack of will to carry it out in a meaningful way.

      The simple formula 1S1P1V works pretty well in dozens of countries, but the Zionist movement has fiercely opposed this approach for more than a century

      so what, they will fiercely oppose this plan too -- trust me, they will.

      Serious work to elaborate constitutional forms that might persuade and be acceptable to both Israelis and Palestinians are desperately urgent.

      really? you think constitutional forms might persuade and be acceptable to israelis. because i think more is needed than that. ask your self, what has persuaded palestinians to accept life under occupation for all these years? ok, granted they do not "accept" it intellectually, but they have accepted it because they are forced to. if you have a soldier standing in front of you pointing a gun at your child's head that's one way to persuade a parent to accept letting them take your child. i'm not suggesting we point guns at israelis, i am suggesting we expand our options wrt "accept" and persuade". bds is a non violent persuasion. i think this entire time we've been operating under the assumption a plan is what's needed when that is not the case. this is why bsd is neutral wrt one state or two. the log in the road is the realization israel won't accept any plan. so it becomes useless making one without figuring it out how to force them to accept one. this should be part of every dialogue about a "plan", not "agreed by both parties" -- for that's what the "magical incantation" is.

      I think you overestimate the power and influence of the global community.

      oh really. this is not syria, it's not iran. after the US, UK and europe as well as every state who voted for a palestinians state at the UN, refuses trade w/israel and sanctions them for their intransigence, then tell me i overestimate their power. i don't over estimate their power.

      all these liberal zionists who hound us for bds, and people like burston who chastize us, let's hear their plan for getting israel to comply.

      multiple interlocking processes, which will need to evolve in parallel. These comprise:
      (a) as per PW’s excellent article today: liberate American Jews from the taboo of criticising Israel. -

      why is this (a)? why is the liberation of american jews first on your list?

      (l) allow Israelis and Palestinians to work out and agree their own solution, rather than thinking that the global community can impose one.

      LOL. are you kidding me. now you sound like the israeli government.

    • BDS will lead the way


  • US Jews adopted 'deferential' relationship to Israel, and tabooed dissent so as to preserve US gov't support
    • hi david, wrt phil's "non mention" of weir in his review of waxman's presentation, i frankly doubt it occurred to him. but either way, as exampled in this short exchange here, conversations surrounding allison and if americans knew inevitably become highly polarized here very quickly (some of our readers love her and some can't stand her). i, for one, don't like these polarizations within our movement. and my experience is these discussions can lead to extended contentious arguments -- which is fine -- except that often times these discussions become unrelated to the article and can end up dominating the threads.

      our roundtable discussion generated more comments than any other article last year. i mention this because the discussion you've initiated here could be extended for days. i'd just like to encourage anyone wishing to carry on this discussion -- unless it's germane to this specific article -- to post on our round table which is still open. >>

      link to

      most of our commenters and people who follow the threads follow the "100 recent comment" thread > link to, so the comments/conversations will be read (in 'real' time).

    • thanks phil, really good read.

      Younger American Jews see settlers beating up Palestinian farmers, and soldiers harassing Palestinians, and they speak out against it.

      a tad off topic, but this reminds me of video released yesterday (story here: link to )

      link to

  • Another 14-year-old Palestinian girl is arrested, after occupying soldiers claim to find 'knife in her purse'
    • just, the police are refusing to release the footage link to

      A serious and disturbing doubt surfaces and becomes even more acute in light of the refusal by the Israel Police to make public the video footage that should shed light on what really happened.....

      The fact that the police are refusing to release the footage taken by the security cameras there has provoked strong suspicions. In other cases, where publicizing such footage served its interests, the police were quick to do so....

      The two lay on the ground, in an embrace, dead or dying – no one bothered to check their condition – for about an hour and a half before being taken from the scene.

      Kareem Jubran, field research director for the Israeli human rights organization B’Tselem, took the testimony of the Red Crescent ambulance driver, who arrived on the scene about 10 minutes after the shootings, at 10:50. The driver told Jubran that he was not allowed to approach the two until 12:20, that he was driven off with threats and that no one went to check the siblings as they lay bleeding on the road. Finally, personnel from Zaka, an Israeli emergency response organization, arrived, placed the bodies in plastic bags and removed them.

      they leave enough time for them to bleed out in case one is left alive.

      and this:

      Last November, the family mourned Yehya Tahah, a cousin of Maram and Ibrahim, who was shot in the head by soldiers while trying to get to work in a neighboring town; there had been a curfew at the time on his village. A photograph of Yehya, who was 20 at the time of his death, now hangs on the living room wall in this house of mourning.

  • On Holocaust Remembrance Day, NPR promotes Israeli army but Obama takes a pass
    • dabkr, you think christian zios and non jewish zionists are in the single digits? that's amusing.

      what's your definition of zionism lately? you think hclinton and biden are zionists or not? there are way more non jewish zionists in the US than jewish zionists.

    • zionist media? Sure kay…pass on some more classic antisemitic tropes. I guess ariana huffington is now jewish?

      kay, the troll thinks zionist means jew. leave israel alone!!!

      i remember when andrew sullivan asked if there were ANY non zionist journos w/regular column hired by the msm in the US. nobody could think of even one.

    • "Jewish communities abroad" is plural, it means all of the Jewish communities abroad. it doesn't reference or prioritize any state -- which i think was phil's point.

  • Democratic Party is now split over Israel, and Clinton and Sanders represent opposing camps, says Pew
    • why strip the context from the phrase james? do you know what a bleeding heart liberal is? try googling it.

      "A person who is considered excessively sympathetic toward those who claim to be underprivileged or exploited."

      this is how it is commonly understood. check out link to

      Political liberals are “bleeding hearts” because they empathize so strongly with the sufferings of others as did the late George McGovern. As Bill Clinton so succinctly phrased it, “I feel your pain.” When Republicans wanted to compete in the empathy department, they had to invent a new terminology to identify this strange bird. They called it a “compassionate conservative.”

      now review the context used in the article:

      The bottom line here is that liberal Democrats are leading the country on this issue. That’s where the movement is. Look at those lines crossing one another since 2014 among the bleeding heart liberals. The same liberals who drove change on: civil rights, feminism, same-sex marriage. Brace yourself.

      it's neither an insult nor derogatory.... not unless you buy into some conservative propaganda. i for one, am proud to be a bleeding heart liberal.

  • Donald Trump has one proposal to unite a fractured Republican party -- Islamophobia
    • If Sharia law is no threat, and nothing indicates that it is a threat here in America, why bring up the Talmud, except as gratuitous political incorrectness.

      it came up organically in the conversation -- it is not whataboutery nor was it the author (in the conversation he was relating) who brought up beheadings.

      “And even Dr. Ben Carson made a good point if you look at his Twitter account he said as long as you want to come here and abide by our laws then that’s fine but don’t come here and decide that you don’t want to abide by our law that you want to abide by Sharia law,” she said.

      But what about rabbinical courts in New York City. Crump replied that that kind of law was confined to the Jewish community. Sharia courts would mean everybody is subject to the long scimitar of the law

      “[Jewish law] doesn’t say anything about beheading,” she said.

      Here is a reference to Talmudic scholarship on when to behead people.

      is this what you mean by "an attack on the talmud"? why not ask 'If Sharia law is no threat, and nothing indicates that it is a threat here in America, why bring up the Quran'?

      we're talking about crazy people here, the crazy people trump is whipping up into a fury of crazy racist thought. so there's nothing 'gratuitously political incorrectness' about juxtaposing or contrasting crumps logic by asking about rabbinical courts in ny, as the author does. and then it was crump who brings up beheadings! -- as if any american iman has ever even suggested bringing beheadings to the US justice system! and then crump made the allegation there was nothing related to this beheading stuff in jewish law ---

      so if you're going to be lecturing anyone about "gratuitous political incorrectness" the person to go after is the trump supporter. the whole point (of the author) is reflecting the kind nutjobs we're dealing with here, and i think the conversation demonstrates that quite well.

      the same arguments that are made routinely in our current political discourse against sharia law (which have absurdly made their way into certain state's legislation) could be made about both judaism and christianity.

      i recall when bush cronies started packing the justice department w/graduates of liberty university (wacko christian fundamentalists) which made a number of us quite nervous frankly. these people have agenda written all over them

      link to

      many of these people actively believe in stoning gays and punishing adulterers w/death. there's never been a threat comparable from the muslim community like the invasion of christian fundamentalists embedded into our justice system during the bush years. nothing remotely like that -- and they actively believe in no separation of church and state.

      anyway, conversations juxtaposing religious fundamentalists should be fair game in a political climate that is demonizing people w/threats of death and expulsion. look at some of the toxic discourse in these tweets (scroll)

      link to

    • not enough Native English left in London to have an influence on the electoral result.

      really? that's not reflected in the demographics of greater london. link to

    • ISrael doesnt have the death penalty and is based on jewish law.

      they routinely and swiftly slaughter palestinians, some (many) might construe that as a death penalty. the same action or "penalty" doesn't apply to a jewish person.

      People ARE being sentenced to death and going to jail

      all the time in israel/palestine under the zionist regime, if you're of the wrong ethnicity.

      People are losing limbs for theft. Women are being beaten [killed]

      all the time in israel/palestine under the zionist regime, if you're of the wrong ethnicity.

      killings are ignored in islamic regimes because its a normal way of life.

      sounds very familiar wrt the zionist regime, if you're of the wrong ethnicity.

      maybe they should grow up, not make it illegal to build churches and not have the death penatly for someone’s belief in god. Just an idea.

      maybe you should grow up and check out that mote in your eye.

    • the talmud has separate Noahide Laws for non jews.

  • Meet the private contractors manning Israel's checkpoints
  • DC meeting between Israel and Saudi Arabia marks end of Arab Peace Initiative and two-state solution
    • teeth grinding news. and that photo reminds me of how much and why i can't stand elliot abrams -- that shit eating grin.

      and trump, the day he essentially clinches the gop nomination, announces he supports the expansion of the settlements.

      link to

      Trump: Israel should keep building West Bank settlements

  • Elor Azarya, King of Israel
    • hmm, so just private military circles?

      at the time of his conviction, yes apparently. as i mentioned in my last comment:

      2 years after his conviction and 5 years after the crime there was a rally of veterans and his family link to - See more at: link to

      i'm sure if there were spontaneously rallies in the street supporting Sgt Alexander Blackman when the news of the video leaked or during his trial and his conviction (dec.2013) there would be a record of it. try finding one and linking to it.

      otherwise, my point stands. and the photos of the rallies and news reports say most of the people protesting in 2015 were "mainly former Marines plus ex-servicemen".

    • The country rallies behind this soldier

      really? because i didn't get that from the news coverage. were there rallies or anything when the news came out? and was it really "much worse"? this article just says link to

      Privately in military circles there is unease and frustration that Blackman was given what many will consider a harsh sentence, and have huge sympathy for him and his family. Blackman's commanding officer, Lieutenant Colonel Simon Chapman, said he would continue to support the marine. He said: "Fundamentally he is not a bad man. In fact, in almost every respect, he is a normal citizen tainted only by the impact of war."

      "Privately in military circles" is not 'country rallying around'. 2 years after his conviction and 5 years after the crime there was a rally of veterans and his family link to

      Alexander Blackman has already served two years in jail and been thrown out of the Marines in disgrace.

      It’s enough. He shouldn’t have to spend another six years in jail when what he really needs is medical help.

      Not for his body, but for his tortured mind.

      so now they are saying he did it because he was sick.

    • they want a license to wantonly kill. 2 weeks later this happens link to

      it's gross

      the Ministry of Public Security was forced to admit that they were killed by outsourced security guards, employees of the security services company Civil Intelligence.

      On Monday it was reported that following an internal investigation, the company vindicated the killers of any wrongdoing. However, one crucial detail was missing in the investigation: the CCTV footage that recorded the incident was never published, and never given to the company. It is still being withheld by police.

      so now "the company" (of mercenaries) decides nothing went wrong, and they are protected by the police who hold the evidence.

      The outsourced security guards: Following queries from politicians and the media, the police admitted on Sunday that the initial reports that Maram and Ibrahim were killed by police were false. They also said that the police gave them a warning (which wasn’t necessarily supposed to lead to their death) and shot a bullet in the air, but the security guards ended up shooting them.

      a pregnant woman and her 16 year old brother shot dead/MURDERED for no reason.

  • Ringleader in Abu Khdeir kidnapping and murder given life sentence
    • i oppose the death penalty so i think life + 20 years is enough. you should have stopped right at the beginning because your only intent was to indict everyone here. no one is complaining about israel not having a death penalty because israel routinely kills any palestinian they want whenever they want, so they do have one -- just not for jews.

      and no one makes the argument "not having the death penalty as another form of oppression of palestinian rights."

      you're spamming. and you got top comment. why not take this opportunity to NOT thrash the family whose son had gas poured down his throat and turned into a human torch. you could have done that down thread. back off.

  • Saying Israel has no right to exist as a Jewish state is not anti-Semitic
    • which article sally? the essay sid linked to in his last sentence is working. is there another you're referencing?

    • m1945. please read the comment policy. there's no nakba denial here.

  • If it had been up to Hillary Clinton, there would be no Iran Deal
    • kalithea, only my first sentence related to hops. the rest of it was for anyone/everyone who didn't know or recall that part of the history of the iran deal. when i read the article and reference to oman i thought of it and was going to post it anyway. and i thought why not use the opportunity to rub salt in his wound at the same time. 2 birds w/one stone.

    • hops, the state dept is part of the executive branch and doesn't take marching orders from congress wrt foreign diplomacy.

      a little background, recall "The story behind the deal: Israel kept out of the loop as secret US/Iran meetings took place in Oman" ? >> link to

      secret meetings between the US and Iran via Oman began in march 2013 -- just 2 months after kerry became sec of state. clinton was likely kept out of the loop and resented it. it didn't happen under her watch but it could have:

      Details have emerged the U.S. had been holding secret meetings with Iranian officials in the Omani capital of Muscat since last March, facilitated by Sultan Qaboos of Oman. Qaboos offered himself as a mediator for U.S.-Iran rapprochement after playing a key role in the release of American hikers who were imprisoned by Iran - See more at: link to

      the hitchhikers were released by iran in sept 2011. so if Qaboos offered himself as mediator at that time, clinton dropped the ball. AP reported:

      "talks were held in the Middle Eastern nation of Oman and elsewhere with only a tight circle of people in the know " also:

      Kershner speculated in the New York Times Israeli “outrage may have been fueled” by revelations they were kept out of the loop on the extent of the secret high-level engagement taking place in Oman.

      she could have been kept out of the loop because of her close relationship w/israel and fear she could have spilled the beans.

  • Advice to British leftwingers on kicking racism out of their anti-Israel rhetoric
    • you can't read it because she made her account private, but if he's quoting her i believe him. the twitter tirade she went on was just horrendous. #AzealiaGotSuspendedParty is trending on twitter (over 50 million tweets) -- i wasn't even aware she had pissed so many people off in the past. many, but this is an amazing response. i will find a link later to her cached tweets, which are all deleted now.

      i'm listening to michael ratner now. it's hard to comprehend he's gone. gotta go

      link to

    • speaking of anti whiteness, has everyone been following azaelia banks freak out on zayn malik?

      i am a huge malik fan (literally) and intercepted this early on. wow. anyway, today she got banned from twitter so she's took to instagram and "says she'll be publishing an essay titled "Whiteness is a mental illness." - then she made her instagram account private. just google her name or malik's name, it's all over the place from buzz feed to the atlantic to cnn to usatoday.

      but here's her response to being banned:

      link to

      there's something about being lectured on whiteness by a flaming racist that's challenging for many people. the atlantic wrote "you never want to offend is One Direction fans", but there were a lot more people than that she pissed off.

    • non-white privileged people and non-white oppressors

      eljay, are you referencing (jewish) zionists, because lots of them are white. anyway, i'm done here.

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