Commenter Profile

Total number of comments: 422 (since 2015-02-03 14:07:28)

Lifelong seeker after justice and peace

Showing comments 422 - 401

  • It turns out Jews are as stupid as everyone else
    • The fact about this country club tsimmis is that it's a tempest in a teapot. Obama hasn't requested membership; I'd be astonished if the thought had even crossed his mind.

      As a past POTUS he'll be able to choose from any US military course in the world and play for free any time he likes (there are some good ones here in the DC area). I also doubt he'd have the slightest difficulty getting membership in, say, Burning Tree -- though he'd probably decline that one because it doesn't allow women to join.

      The Woodmont members are only making such a shanda fur de goyim.

    • Yeah, but his has more racial memory than yours.

    • Swiss Miss? Two-bit ramen packages ("soups") are the customary prison currency. But I guess that'd be too hard on poor Bernie's cholesterol.

    • A lot of us will be down there and perhaps will have the opportunity to see if they're so tough when they're thousands of miles from their home turf. This is our corner, homies.

  • On eve of Paris talks PA support for two-state solution not shared among Palestinians
    • The Palestinians are the only ones who have the authority to make the final decision in this matter. I really have no say in it since I have no skin in the game, and on that day I'll get down off my soapbox.

      However, from an objective standpoint any 1S solution will deny them any chance at their own nation and their own government. This causes me great sorrow and pain because it's so unjust.

      Justice demands an end to the Israeli occupation. Let them leave -- lock, stock and barrel -- then they can "stand in line and wait their turn to get back in again" just like the GOP has demanded that illegal immigrants in America should do.

      No peace without justice.

  • Origins of a golden shower
    • Well, I dunno. He might have, for example, the proverbial "little birdie" so when anyone inquired as to his sources, he could simply reply "a little birdie told me".

  • Against Israel, Hamas and Fatah
    • I'll say only that one of the most pernicious effects of blockading and isolating the people of the West Bank and Gaza is that Israel -- to some extent -- eventually succeeds in setting Palestinians against Palestinians. Can't you hear Israeli leadership cackling with glee? Stand strong against their evildoing, brothers and sisters!

  • How I got over the Milk-and-Honey-and-Chosen-People place
    • " The Palestinians and the Iraqis taught me, and Black Lives Matter and the Standing Rock Native American water protectors are teaching us"

      ... and the people of Syria ...

      Intersectionality. It's really just a catchy word that means "You have to stand for the most oppressed."

  • Everyone shares the blame in Gaza electricity crisis
  • Jared Kushner fired me over Israel ten years ago
    • It's instructive when someone becomes irritated enough to let their mask of rationality slip and speak their true feelings, because thereafter the mask is useless.

    • Of course, it was precisely JFK's appointment of Bobby as AG that a few years later was the impetus for the anti-nepotism legislation passed by Congress. (While LBJ may well have been motivated to stump for the law because he still had a grudge against the Kennedys, apparently there was sufficient merit to the bill for Congress to approve it.)

      Thus to say Kushner's appointment "doesn't seem much worse" acknowledges that it is in fact worse than the "index case" that resulted in passage of that law. That's damning with faint praise indeed.

  • Netanyahu has 'promise' from Trump to be 2nd foreign leader invited to White House
  • Booker slams UN resolution as 'anti-Israel,' while Saban says it's anti-American
  • After Israeli soldier is convicted of manslaughter, Times and Post portray case as isolated incident
    • May your every night's dreams be haunted by the ghosts of Palestinians with their brains splattered on the ground, and Gazan babies torn limb from limb in their beds in the middle of the night by US weapons fired from Israeli drones. And may you join the murderers for whom you're an apologist -- in Sheol.

  • John Kerry picked the wrong timeline for the Jewish state
  • Love in the age of Trump
    • It's been said before here, but apparently still bears repeating, that it's most often counterproductive to be a single-issue voter. While IP is one of my ongoing top concerns, domestic issues are equally important (and frequently more so). This should hardly come as a surprise, and was abundantly the case in the late election.

      To repeat another old but true saw, "Politics is the art of the possible". I learned many election cycles ago, through bitter experience, that a third-party vote is almost always a futile, wasted vote. Most of my recent votes have been for the lesser of two evils. Despite your attempt to set up a false equivalence, I'm not about to reconsider my votes.

      Changing the current two-party oligopoly will likely take an upheaval -- perhaps a cataclysmic change. I'm more than ready to help precipitate that, but in the meantime I'm not going to abdicate my vote just to make a useless point that would go unheard anyway.

    • "Imagine the TC and the Rockettes get top billing for an inauguration"

      And even with the Rockettes, individual members have asked and been granted the option of declining to perform for him. Under the circumstances, you might rename the remnants the "BottleRockettes".

    • Drumpf's room reminds me of nothing so much as the "Amber Room" of the Tsars. Perhaps the similarity won't end there.

  • Adelson delivered! Now it's Trump's turn
  • Trump and Clinton campaigns both send message that Muslim loyalty to US hinges on condemning terrorism
  • Palestinian anti-racist struggle against Zionism and Black anti-racist struggle against White supremacy are crucial to building a just world
    • "On this basis, the JCRC states, it 'cannot and will not align ourselves with organizations that falsely and maliciously assert that Israel is committing ‘genocide'."

      JCRC. you say that as if you expect someone to care. Go ahead, take your dreidel and go on home.

      Although my preferred term isn't 'genocide' but rather 'slowlocaust'.

    • Page: 4
  • Chosen indeed: all 7 letters run by 'NYT' on Mideast article are by Jews
    • "...portray Jews as white and Palestinians as people of color, when neither is true."

      Yes, in line with your argument, many members of both groups have a certain quantum of Semitic DNA and therefore "anti-Semitism" has a rather broader definition than that usually advanced.

      There are Jews whom the average eye would perceive as "white", just as there are Jews (e.g., Beta Israel) whom other Jews might label "cushim". One likewise finds both light and dark skin tones among Palestinians.

      So it'd probably be more accurate to say "when both are true" rather than "when neither is true".

  • Boycott, from within and without
    • Oh, but my friend, haven't you noticed? The Israeli government is already doing all those things -- been doing them since 1967.

      The only issue is, they're doing them only for the illegal squatters, not for the indigenous people. For the latter, they're demolishing what little infrastructure they have; uprooting their centuries-old olive groves; stealing their water; etc, etc.

      One hand washes itself -- to hell with the other.

  • Israeli settler leader, rejected by Brazil, gets warm welcome in New York
  • Sanders-backed candidate in FL says Wasserman Schultz won't 'protect' Israel
  • Google blames bug for removing 'West Bank' and 'Gaza' from Israel/Palestine map
    • Google's claim stretches the definition of "bug" past the snapping point. given the fact that the labeling was apparently correct prior to approximately July 25 and went missing thereafter. A bug is an inadvertent programming error. The deletion couldn't have occurred inadvertently any more than Yonkers would suddenly disappear from the map as the result of an inadvertent error. Underneath Google beats the heart of an immense database, and data don't just vanish from it.

      This was either an inside job or an outside hack. In any event, not a "bug".

  • Anti-occupation activists stand with Black Lives Matter as Jewish orgs attack movement over Israel criticisms
    • “To conflate the experiences of African-Americans and Palestinians oversimplifies complex matters"

      Israel has long been delighted with most black churches' unexamined good feelings toward it, prompted largely by black Christians' understandable historical identification with the Exodus narrative. In former times, this identification stood up quite well to scrutiny, nevertheless being more intuitive than complexly reasoned.

      Its instinctive carryover to the nation of Israel was equally uncomplex, but throughout the last 50 years we certainly haven't heard the Israeli government term it an "oversimplification of complex matters". On the contrary -- when it crossed their minds at all -- they reveled in it.

      Now black people and black churches have begun to examine the sociopolitical situation much more closely, and they've discovered that the old analogy no longer holds water. Indeed, they've begun to apply it to the distress experienced every day by the new Israeli millennium's "hewers of wood and drawers of water", today's Palestinians (and kushim.)

      There's nothing complex about this at all. It's patently obvious to even the most casual observer. But trust Israel to insult people of color everywhere by claiming spuriously that it's too deep and subtle for our feeble powers of comprehension.

  • Video: Israeli soldier throws 8-year old Palestinian girl's bike into bushes
    • This is simply a case of courageously putting a stop to creeping terrorism: Allow one Palestinian to ride her bicycle down a street, and in no time at all, the streets will be choked with Palestinians driving tanks toward Jerusalem!

  • Deporting Solidarity: One activist's experience being detained in Ben Gurion airport
    • They're getting to the point where they're afraid of their own shadows. And when they deport their shadows, they themselves will have become duppies.

  • Jerusalem municipality 'taking advantage' of US elections to expand settlements
    • The settlers probably stay up all night working each month when the moon is full too. 'Cause that's just how they roll.

      They'd better watch out though -- some night the werewolves'll get 'em.

  • Hatim, King of the Natufians
    • It seems your answer must be contingent on Qarim's clever shift to the past tense in the very last part of his exegesis, which begins in the present tense. That linguistic dodge fools nobody. If Torah "permitted" it -- but now, of course, it's forbidden -- why did not the good rebbe emphasize the shift in interpretation and offer the rationale for it? Well of course, it's because he doesn't actually believe the interpretation has changed.

      As for your whataboutery, the issue isn't about what happened in 600 CE but what's considered acceptable behavior today -- and specifically Buchris's clearly unacceptable behavior. Let's just speculate for the sake of discussion that perhaps it wasn't forcible rape. Sex with subordinates isn't acceptable in the military, business or academic worlds any more. It's an abuse of authority, of the type so well illustrated by the story of David and Bathsheba.

  • Israelis take on Facebook 'monster' with claims it knowingly incites Palestinian attacks
    • Last week, an Israeli news station conducted a Facebook experiment in which a Jewish Israeli and an Arab Israeli with existing Facebook pages were each asked to put up a post complaining about violence on the opposing side and asking readers to avenge it.

      Shadi Khalileh's post was answered by friends, family and even Palestinian parliament members asking him what was wrong, had his account been hacked, etc. It received only 12 likes, but Khalileh was soon arrested and interrogated at length before convincing the authorities that he was part of this experiment.

      Daniel Levi's post -- stating that he "wanted to kill a Palestinian soon" -- eventually received over 1000 likes and numerous comments complimenting him and urging him forward. The authorities never came knocking.

      The result of this experiment reveals Shurat HaDin's lawsuit to be the height of hypocrisy. As usual, Israel is trying to enforce a double standard, this time not by military force but by arm-twisting in the courts. I pray they fail.

      It's entirely reasonable to argue that Facebook needs to do more to combat hate speech. It's outrageous for one side to use legal blackmail to squash their opponents while pretending that it isn't at least equally guilty of propagating hate on Facebook.

  • Powerful new game 'Liyla and The Shadows of War' dramatizes 2014 Israeli attack on Gaza
  • Bible justifies rape in times of war, despite rabbis' efforts to spin or hide the teaching
    • As a progressive Christian who grew up in the '50s and formulated my youthful beliefs about Israel based on the Leon Uris "Exodus" model (before being thoroughly disabused by Israel's conduct in the new millennium), I'm deeply interested in what the IDF's chief rabbi has to say on this particular subject and I do in fact care about "the subtleties of this exegesis". How insulting that you imagine only rabbis have an interest in pilpul -- particularly that which concerns basic human rights and the sanctity of the human body.

      If anything is "weak", it's Qarim's equivocation and feeble attempts at rationalization when confronted with his previous statements:

      "How easily, almost unconsciously, rabbis like Qarim lapse into dishonest apologetics once they realize something they’ve said didn’t have the desired effect on an unfamiliar group of readers."

      Again I emphasize it's not just rabbis, but anyone who's capable of parsing an argument and recognizing its speciousness, who will judge Qarim accordingly. There's nothing at all subtle about his original exegesis or his subsequent pathetic failure to try to make it more palatable. I hardly need the consensus of tens, hundreds, or thousands of distinguished rabbis to validate my conclusion. It's as plain as the nose on a camel's punim.

  • 'I Am a Human Being': A visit with Dareen Tatour
    • "The State of Israel has established a rich tradition of persecuting Palestinian writers and poets."

      I haven't the slightest doubt that this sentence was written in bitter irony. Nevertheless, irony aside, one can only describe this tradition as both morally and spiritually impoverished.

  • New York Times's breathless story on landing interview with Netanyahu reads like 'the Onion' on crack
    • First allow me to commend you for the surpassingly-rare correct usage of "fulsome" in your second sentence. It could serve as the example in the dictionary's definition.

      As for "Yoni and Bibi" as an inescapable pairing -- honestly, I'm much more familiar (and much more comfortable) with the propitious pairing of "Yoni and Lingam". And rather than "pressing the muzzle against the flesh", I greatly prefer the simpler and much more human "pressing the flesh".

      Further, deponent sayeth naught.

  • Israeli police initiate 'friction activity' on quiet streets in East Jerusalem
    • Well, let's see. Any time a shot is fired, the impact of the firing pin against the primer creates friction among the primer grains, which then ignite and set off the rest of the powder in the cartridge.

      So perhaps "friction activity" simply refers to going out and shooting a few more Palestinians in furtherance of the Palestinian Slowlocaust. See, nothing deceptive about the term at all.

  • Poetry Is Not a Crime: Nine Pulitzer-winners among 150+ literary figures calling for Israel to release Palestinian poet
    • "and people fucking hate poetry”

      Yes, people fucking hate the Psalms.

      With me, it's stuff like this four verse 180-degree turnaround, found in Psalm 149, 4-7:

      "For the Lord takes delight in his people;
      He crowns the humble with victory.
      Let his faithful people rejoice in this honor
      And sing for joy on their beds.

      May the praise of God be in their mouths
      and a double-edged sword in their hands,
      To inflict vengeance on the nations
      And punishment on the peoples."

      May the praise of God be in their mouths -- and a double-edged sword in their hands to inflict vengeance and punishment!

      Who but some hypothetical murderous triumphalist wouldn't hate that!

  • Israeli rabbi who advocated rape of 'comely gentile women' during war becomes chief army rabbi
    • "the values of the IDF and the spirit of the IDF, especially values of human dignity towards all.”

      Long-form oxymoron.

  • BDS is a war Israel can't win
    • BDS: What we term a "movement", Israel calls a "war". This allows them to apply the dictum "All's fair in war" and act accordingly. They believe "taking off the gloves" will gain them the upper hand, much as they believe their asymmetric assaults on Gaza and individual Palestinians will bring them victory.

      Obviously the Israeli government fails to see or understand that unrestrained warlike tactics, when used against moral movements, historically strengthen rather than destroy such movements.

      They're determined, it seems, to discover that truth the hard way. And they shall.

  • Israeli scholar refuses to shut up despite university punishment for saying settlers exhibit 'psychosis'
    • "Students sought his termination by the university, which ultimately punished him by exempting students from his examination."

      The university and its students are punishing themselves by closing their minds to an issue crucial to the survival of Israel and by claiming free credit for work they haven't done.

      This action will harm the credibility of Bar-Ilan's diplomas, putting them into the same class as those conferred by Trump U. The traits they are fostering are not ones which will serve their students well in adult life.

  • As Dems vote against Palestine, Cornel West warns it is the 'Vietnam War' of our time
    • Despite the understandable claims of modern Americans that "I don't own slaves" and "My parents immigrated after the Civil War and never owned slaves", white privilege is real. And to the extent that the Democratic Party is led by and composed of whites, yes, of course, white privilege is very much at play and must be addressed.

      But to compare the treatment of Indians and Blacks in the first two hundred years of American history, with the treatment of Palestinians today, is to create a patently false equivalence and blatant double standard by which you apparently seek to excuse the Israeli government's present-day abuses. Not gonna work.

    • I feel really bad that you feel really bad. But any Narr can see that the tables have been turned.

      Most Americans, when they think of Israel at all, think of Charlton Heston as Moses. They should picture instead the Palestinians, stripped of their land and property, stripped of their precious natural resources, stripped of their human rights, as today's slaves -- and they should picture Bibi as Pharaoh, demanding that his slaves make bricks without straw -- as though the Palestinians could make a life with no economic base, no resources, and no rights or protection under the law.

      Most Americans, when they think of Israel at all, think of that stirring melody and bombastic lyrics:

      "This land (Dum-da-dum-dum!)
      Is mine! (Dum-da-dum-dum!)
      God gave this land
      To me! (Dum-da-dum-dum!)"

      God gave it in the Book, yes, and took it away in the Book. Twice.
      God gave it contingent upon the people living morally with each other and with neighbors.
      God took it away -- twice -- because the people trampled God's morality and God's commandments into the dirt.
      You don't really think the third time will be the charm, do you? Why so? Nothing's changed.

      And your Holocaust certainly doesn't justify your Palestinian Slowlocaust.

      Surely you can't be surprised at the growing intersectionality between the causes of American blacks and Palestinians!

    • Here we go again with that conflated, overblown definition of "antisemitism". A definition that's so stretched and distorted as to be almost unrecognizable -- a veritable political goatse.

  • Modern-day lynchings: an international view
    • I'd offer only one small correction, namely to change "breast cancer" to "brain cancer" as it is well known that Israeli corporations have become the new trainers of police "brains". And we should venerate rather than impugn breasts since, after all, we libruls have imbibed "antisemitism" with our mothers' milk, amirite?

    • The "sniper" meme indeed highlights the slapdash journalism of today's media, which latches onto a term and repeats it ad infinitum without a moment's thought as to its accuracy.

      "Sniper" is hardly an appropriate term for someone who opens fire with a Russian assault weapon, firing as fast as he can pull the trigger, emptying oversize magazines one after another in an attempt to create the proverbial "wall of lead". That is no "sniper".

      A sniper, e.g., would be whitebread ex-Marine Charles Whitman, who 50 years ago almost to the day climbed the "Texas Tower" at the University of Texas - Austin. Who, with a hunting rifle and scope, slew 13 and wounded 31 others before firing his final shot.

      We should also fact-check the media statement that this was "apparently the first police use of a bomb delivered by a robot". First, it was not an independent "robot" but an ROV (remotely operated vehicle) controlled by a human. And we shall see, when police robots do arrive, whether Asimov's First Law was nothing but an idealist's pipedream!

      Second, they seem to have forgotten 1985, when the Philadelphia police helicopter (piloted by a human) dropped two homemade bombs on MOVE's home/headquarters rowhouse. The explosion and ensuing fire killed eleven MOVE members -- including five children -- burned 65 buildings to the ground and left more than 250 homeless.

      Perhaps this is why police departments have avoided the use of military ordnance since then? In any event, it seems they also anticipated Assad's much-beloved "barrel bombing" tactic by a good thirty years and should take credit where due.

  • How Israel accidentally validated my activism
    • "boycotts have no economic ability to bring a strong nation or its government, regime, dictator , etc to their knees. Nada. Nothing."

      So in short, then, the Israeli government isn't terrified of a mouse -- it's terrified of a mouse's shadow.

      Gee, who'd've guessed? Such shtarkers, such cravenness!

  • Smile -- it's the Upper West Side
    • Is there a particular reason that you say the author "can't" provide this information? She elected to leave the church, pastor and councilman anonymous because she states (rightly) that this is not an isolated situation.

      Indeed it is not. My church in DC put together a similar program and faced similar pressure either to cave and cancel, or to pay fealty to the Moloch called "false equivalency" and allow a representative of the Israel lobby onstage. Episcopal and other churches on the Upper East Side are not the only ones to have their arms twisted in this way, so the author does well to generalize her specific case.

    • May as well ask whether six-year-olds believe in Santa Claus. Some do, some don't. All I know is, Bibi better watch out for Struwwelpeter (although who can say, he may enjoy a good birching).

      "When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. But when I grew up, I put away childish things."
      -- 1 Corinthians 13:11

  • By stressing accused Orlando shooter's Muslim name, Trump can gain upper hand on Clinton -- Michael Oren
    • False equivalency. Weiss isn't an agent of a foreign power trying to influence the US presidential election.

    • Oren's kinda clueless about what's going on here. A vote for HRC is a vote for licking Bibi's boots. A vote for Drumpf is a vote for pulling the rug out from under our "special relationship".

      Drumpf's a pure nativist who detests all furriners equally -- distrusts Zionists as much as he despises Islamists. Careful what you wish for, Oren.

  • The Results Are In: What we learned from the Mondoweiss Reader Survey
    • I'd be fascinated to hear from you the details of the survey questions or responses that led you to conclude that its respondents are "conveniently neutral when it comes to white supremacism and the current Western social order that vastly privileges white at the expense of POC".

      I don't recall anything in the survey, nor do I see anything in the article above, that supports this contention of yours. Please feel free to enlighten me, because you seem to be fabricating it from whole cloth.

    • Presumably this is important to you because misery loves company...?

  • Front-page play for Israel battle shows that Israel has lost the Democratic Party base
    • Sell? Au contraire, mon vieux. Offer it gratis to anyone open-minded enough to take an interest in it.

  • French premier says 'loathing of Jews' is behind BDS
    • A government that falsely equates anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism on the one hand, and prosecutes someone for wearing a t-shirt bearing a pro-BDS message on the other, is a government profoundly at war with its own foundational principles.

  • Thank you, Chief Rabbi. Now I know: Judaism is to blame for the Nakba
    • “…one can no more separate it from Judaism than separate the City of London from Great Britain.”

      The proper corollary to this, as far as the Chief Rabbi is concerned, must necessarily be that one can no more separate the City of Jerusalem from Eretz Israel than one can separate the City of London from Great Britain.

      That may be logical to him, but of course it flies in the face of UN Resolution 181. Perhaps a small matter to the Chief Rabbi, but significant to every civilized nation with one notable exception.

    • One might also ask whether it makes Willie Pete the agent of a holocaust (in its original Old Testament meaning, of course).

  • 'NYT' blames Hamas for civilian deaths in front-page article that sounds like Hillary Clinton
    • Chuckie Cabbagepounder has long been deprecated as a source of anything remotely resembling truthiness when it comes to P/I. It's a travesty that there's still a paper out there who will give him column inches for his codswallop. Perhaps they do it for their dog-owner readers who need something to take along when they walk Fido.

  • Netanyahu-Lieberman deal tears 'mask off face of Israel' -- but 'NYT' keeps the mask on
    • “The Hope is Still Here, We Just Have to Make Room for It.” claims the NYT.

      Simple, then. Just bend over.

  • 'Clinton scares the generals' -- Democratic Party divides over foreign policy
  • Bill before Ontario legislature falsely claims ‘primary purpose’ of BDS is to boycott Jewish Canadian businesses
    • When they do build those prisons, they'll be privatized parts of the Prison-Industrial Complex, owned and staffed by G4S. And the guards will be flown to Israel for their training.

  • How Eli Lake tricks readers so as to cast realists Walt, Mearsheimer and Freeman as anti-semites
    • "Add the Star of David to the Stars and Stripes!" But of course! And it would have to be in the center of the blue field, with all the other stars gathered around it in a circle and paying it homage.

      It reminds me of this scripture, Genesis 37:5-9.

      Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brothers, they hated him all the more. He said to them, “Listen to this dream I had: We were binding sheaves of grain out in the field when suddenly my sheaf rose and stood upright, while your sheaves gathered around mine and bowed down to it.”

      His brothers said to him, “Do you intend to reign over us? Will you actually rule us?” And they hated him all the more because of his dream and what he had said.

      Then he had another dream, and he told it to his brothers. “Listen,” he said, “I had another dream, and this time the sun and moon and eleven stars were bowing down to me.”

      Of course the world has changed since then -- nowadays, instead of eleven stars bowing down, it's fifty.

  • New Jersey anti-BDS bill is an affront to the first amendment and basic human rights
    • @ JustJessetr, does North Korea have the right to exist? What about Pol Pot's Kampuchea?

      What about Nazi Germany? Most other nations at the time had reservations about that.

      Is this right to exist an absolute right, or is it conditional? If so, what are the conditions?

    • "This clause says that 'Boycotts…should be opposed as an impairment to the soundness of commercial contracting performance.' Business interests should not be all that matters, and certainly not when human rights are at stake."

      Precisely. And the NJ legislature's ignorance of recent history is fully on display in that quote. Henry Ford Sr. was indisputably pro-Nazi and anti-Semite:

      Yet according to the Legislature's myopic position, it would've been unfair for Jews to boycott Ford automobiles -- because any such boycott would've constituted "an impairment to the soundness of commercial contracting performance."

      The mind boggles.

  • When the Knesset comes to town
  • Defying official censorship orders, Brown and RISD students hold Nakba discussion inside Hillel
    • Bravo! As I noted in a comment several days ago related to the recent SFSU events, when civil discourse is stifled, confrontation is a predictable result. It's terrific that these Brown students were clever enough to pursue a third path by "working around" the official cancellation and devising a strategy that allowed them to hold their long-planned event. Congrats to them for outfoxing the outside, third-party opposition!

  • Wide-ranging interfaith coalition backs 'Freedom of Religion' bill to stop Trump ban on Muslims
    • Trump has no ideology except for narcissism and greed. He's a political weathervane of expediency. He epitomizes the worst of American society and if he were in fact made into sausage (to use your imagery) I wouldn't feed it to the hogs.

    • I'm delighted my Rep is the main sponsor of this bill. I'm sorely disappointed that the Episcopal Church, USA (PECUSA) is not on the long and comprehensive list of supporters. I was a lifelong member until recently, now I belong to a union church (PCUSA and UCC) both of which are happily on that list.

      There's no room for fence-sitters like the Episcopal Church any more. Either you're for Palestinian rights or you're against establishing justice for all. It really is that simple.

  • Zionism threatens to bring anti-semitism full-circle
    • "Thus the sting is taken out of this word" This has been precisely my argument to Zionists, that by diluting the force of this term of opprobrium -- by applying it to folk who can easily refute it and differentiate themselves from true classical anti-Semites -- they're shooting themselves in the feet. They relive the old "crying 'Wolf!'" tale, and soon their assertions of anti-Semitism will be ignored because they've become so devalued.

  • Sabeel BDS conference pits local church against Jewish community leaders
    • We had the same thing happen when a local (D.C.) church scheduled a film and discussion on Palestine -- with the film's director leading the panel. The church was pressured to the point where it was afraid to host the get-together. We moved it to our church and laughed at the pressure they brought. We were in the forefront of LGBT inclusiveness and marriage equality for years, so this kind of attack is about as effective as spitting at the Sphinx. No turning back!

  • American musicians are 'scared sh*tless' their careers 'will be destroyed' if they speak up for Palestinians -- Roger Waters
    • Doubly ironic because Springsteen was so quick to cancel his North Carolina concert after they passed their anti-LGBT House Bill 2. PEPs really rankle me -- their moral fovea handicaps them severely.

  • Calling Israel a 'modern day miracle' and 'vibrant bloom in desert,' Clinton says BDS is anti-Semitic
    • Black Lives Matter and other black-justice groups are very clear that the anti-BDS movement is racist at its core. This realization is giving rise to increased intersectionality among these groups and pro-Palestine organizations.

      This is one big reason why we're seeing a shift away from the larger American black community's nominal support for Israel (based historically on the black church's long-standing embrace of the Exodus story), and a shift toward active support of justice for Palestinians.

      Israel's racist attitude toward the Mizrahim and the Beta Israel only heightens the distaste American blacks are starting to feel for Israel.

    • We need to make countering HRC a priority. There's still time and opportunity.

  • Reebok backtracks on Israel Independence Day-inspired sneaker (Updated)
    • What Reebok oddly neglects to mention is that this model comes with the street-proven "HushPuppy" soles -- guaranteed to make the least noise when sneaking up on Palestinian homes in the middle of the night to firebomb them. #1 selling point for illegal settler thugs.

  • Netanyahu announces 'seminar on Jewish history' in his office-- for European diplomats
    • It'd take something truly extraordinary to induce me to enter Bibi's office. This "seminar" would far from suffice.

      However, having entered it for whatever reason, I most certainly would never allow its door to close behind me.

  • Students explain why they protested Jerusalem mayor Nir Barkat at San Francisco State University
    • I remember well, back in the Vietnam era, when San Francisco State was renowned for the struggle between its activist student body and its then-President, S. I. Hayakawa. It seems, these many decades later, that under President Leslie Wong "the fight continues".

      The "civil discourse" Wong promotes can find no home at SFSU's Hillel -- nor at Hillels nationwide -- when any criticism of the State of Israel is barred from their premises. When civil discourse is rendered impossible, confrontation becomes the predictable next step.

      S. I. Hayakawa famously said, "We should keep the Panama Canal. After all, we stole it fair and square". (I acknowledge he may have had just the tip of his tongue in his cheek.)

      There's no doubt that Nir Barkat echoes the same sentiment -- but lacking any trace of irony -- when it comes to East Jerusalem and the Occupied Territories. Why should he not be confronted with that?

  • US and Russia talk peace, make war, in Syria
    • I'm no fan or proponent of decapitation strikes. But at a certain moment, long past -- a moment before the Salafists had targeted Syria, while the moderate rebels still dominated the rebel alliance -- a vacancy at the top might've offered a tipping point for the Syrian people.

      Justice deferred isn't always justice denied; that day will surely come (sic semper tyrannis). Assad will be shoveled into his own dustbin like Saddam and Qaddafi before him.

      But in the meantime, Syria's become the jousting-ground for outside neo-colonialists: America, Russia, Iran, Daesh. And no matter how this ends, it can't end well for the ordinary Syrian. How is it that the One is seemingly deaf to the agonies of Her peoples?

  • Meet the private contractors manning Israel's checkpoints
    • "The civilian agents do not wear identifying badges and often dress in uniforms that do not include a company insignia."

      Ah, yes. Blood brothers of Kosovo's "little green men".

  • Anti-Semitism is considered a serious moral failing. But no one calls out anti-Palestinian bigotry
    • "No other human rights movement I can think of is automatically accused of being racist."

      Black Lives Matter is frequently, though not automatically, accused of racism -- particularly by those who twist the phrase into a bogus rebuttal: "All lives matter."

      We're starting to see a new term being used: "intersectionalism". It describes the deliberate standing-in-solidarity of two or more distinct yet related justice movements. Every day the intersectional connection between BLM and the Palestinian struggle for justice grows more intertwined and hence stronger. A quick Google for "BDS Black Lives Matter" demonstrates this.

      Therefore, it's no surprise that the detractors of both movements rely on the same old hackneyed and misapplied epithets.

      That only serves to spotlight a core organizing principle from the turbulent '60s:

      "Five fingers. One hand."

  • Elor Azarya, King of Israel
    • Quite true. And the urge to travel from one's crowded, noisy city and spend a little time in a camp is universal and human, therefore Treblinka, Majdanek and Auschwitz are only accidentally cited as unfortunate examples from WW2 -- just as Sabra and Shatila are similarly mentioned as more modern ones.

  • 'Her absurd generals, her military junk' -- Daniel Berrigan's prophetic speech on Israel in '73
    • There aren't many left like Dan Berrigan. He put himself in the path of the war machine many times and paid the price for it, but he never backed off or let up. I remember how he and Phil took on the Vietnam warmongers back in the day -- fearlessly and with disregard for the personal consequences to themselves. He will be missed.

      Although "junk" didn't have its more recent meaning back in '73, to this very day, Israel is still obscenely flashing its junk in public.

  • Defending Israel, PEN says it can't support 'cultural boycotts of any kind' -- but it does!
    • Of course there's a double standard, because Israel is the specialest snowflake in the Mideast, if not the world.

  • Trump and the war for 'Western Values'
    • Drumpf is the human equivalent of the pig-iron protagonist in Victor Hugo's story.

    • I watched this speech livestreamed and was struck by how impossible it is for Drumpf to be anyone but Drumpf, or sound like anyone but Drumpf. This was purportedly a prepared speech and he used TelePrompTers, yet by five minutes into it he was already repeating himself using the same meaningless, empty phrases he spouts at every stump speech.

      Perhaps he believes everything he says, but his speeches are classic demagoguery. He panders to American voters' worst instincts and would be a disastrous President. While I agree with Brewer that quite a few Sanders supporters may not have the stomach to vote for Clinton, in no sense is Drumpf a viable "fall-back position".

      I simply cannot imagine this man with his stumpy fingers anywhere close to the Red Button.

  • Censorship in Brooklyn: Food Coop bars 'any events related to BDS or Israel' from meeting room
    • "Because of recent disputes about the content and purpose of events in the meeting room, the General Coordinators, in our capacity of chief administrators of the Coop, have decided to stop scheduling any events related to ... Israel ... in the meeting room."

      By adding Israel as one member of a comma-enumerated list, the Coordinators may have hoist themselves on the petard of Unintended Consequences.

      They have willy-nilly shut the meeting room door on any event having anything to do with Israel. No discussion of Israel, in a Brooklyn meeting room! It's as plain as day, and words DO have meaning.

  • Norman Finkelstein on Sanders, the first intifada, BDS, and ten years of unemployment
    • It strikes me that Finkelstein's a bit full of himself. He's delighted that young people are involved in politics this year -- but only when it's on his terms. "No drugs", none of that "Moonie-style" open mic malarkey or BLM-style "radical posturing, posing and preening." And "intersectionalism" ... these kids these days and their jargon!

      I'm an "alte kocker" myself, a Yippie back in the day, veteran of many a protest and with the scars to show for it. But just because I've paid my dues doesn't give me the right to get all sanctimonious and judgmental when today's young people chart a course that isn't entirely congruous with my generation's. After all, look how much work we've left undone.

      Finkelstein makes some good points, but his attitude casts a shadow on his words.

  • Donna Edwards ends insurgent campaign by taking on Democratic Party orthodoxy, and supporters vow to continue the fight
    • It doesn't look as though any of the commenters above are Marylanders as I have been since '97. I have a somewhat different perspective on this campaign to share.

      There's no question that Edwards has strong progressive values and, given her race and gender, represents the progressive goal of increasing minority representation in positions of political power. But those are not the only criteria.

      What's arguably more important is the ability to deliver actual results that advance the progressive agenda, and that seems to be Edwards' weak spot. She hasn't produced any significant legislative victories or initiatives, and has been persistently perceived as less than effective in addressing the needs and concerns of her constituents -- who point to the staff in her Congressional office as nonresponsive. It's not unreasonable for voters to weigh those perceived shortcomings against her acknowledged progressive principles in deciding whether to promote her.

      The portions of the article that focus more on Sanders, Clinton and Kamesha Clark are peripheral to this Senate race, so I won't go into those. But the issue of financing bears a little closer look, because the article paints a somewhat lopsided picture:

      "Edwards received money from Emily’s List, which support female candidates for office, but one of Clinton’s pro-Israel pals, Haim Saban, poured $100,000 into Van Hollen’s campaign. Van Hollen, using Saban’s money, massively outspent the progressive black candidate. 'She couldn’t even afford buttons,' said Gwen Moore, a representative from Wisconsin..."

      Saban's $100k doesn't go far in the pricey DC Metro media market. And it pales in comparison to the $2.4 million spent by EMILY's list on Edwards' behalf. Also of note was the $1.6 million spent on her behalf by a labor union PAC, "Working for Us", of which $600k came from S. Donald Sussman, a centrist Israel supporter who's perhaps best described as being of the "false equivalency" persuasion.

      Total money raised by the candidates outside of PACs in the six months prior to the election was roughly $3 million for van Hollen vs. $2 million for Edwards -- not outrageously lopsided, and Edwards could surely have afforded to have some "buttons" printed out of her share of those contributions.

      I'm not going to use this race as symbolic of any of the larger issues in US politics -- as some are doing -- nor am I claiming that a van Hollen win was an unalloyed victory for MD progressives or Palestine. But to paint Edwards' loss as a loss for local progressives and a defeat for Palestinian rights is to ignore much of the history and complexity of this particular contest.

  • Clinton will hold fundraiser in Tel Aviv
  • 'Forward' columnist and Emily's List leader relate 'gigantic,' 'shocking' role of Jewish Democratic donors
    • hophmi: "An average of around 100,000 Jews a month died during the Holocaust. How many Palestinians, on average, die in the West Bank or Gaza?"

      That's why I refer to what Israel is currently perpetrating on Palestinians as "the Slowlocaust".

      Its current magnitude doesn't have to equal the worst days of the original for us to conclude that its intent, and its ultimate effect, are intended to be similar.

  • Sanders's leftwing base made him take on Netanyahu
    • "immigration and maternity wards are where the democratic strength derives from"

      To rephrase, then, the Democratic Party is the party of America's future. I won't quibble.

      Just don't leave out the universities -- when I say "future", I'm not speaking of the distant future.

  • Sanders hires a Jewish critic of Israel, as Clinton gets 'Daily News' nod as 'warrior realist'
    • Clinton called into question the innocence of dead Palestinian civilians, arguing, “They often pretend to have people in civilian garb, acting as though they are civilians, who are Hamas fighters.”

      Can't you just picture those devious Hamas terrorists, putting on nightshirts, or nightgowns -- or maybe teeny onesies -- and then lying down in some civilian's bed that they pretend is their own?

      Lying there ... just waiting for that knock on the roof, followed by the WHOOSH of an incoming Hellfire ...

      How damnably clever of them, to get themselves blown up by the thousands! How useful to the movement!

      How damnably idiotic of HRC to repeat the same old canard offered for years by AIPAC and neocons of every stripe. She willingly makes herself a dupe -- and tries to dupe America's voters -- merely for the sake of a few more lousy votes.

      Apparently she can't see that by trying to put a little space between herself and Bernie, she's eliminated the tiny space between herself and the GOTP candidates. And some claim that Bernie's "not really a Democrat". Well, who's the real Dem? Not Hillary, that fraud.

  • Trump supporters in New York take on ISIS
    • A serious discussion about universal military conscription (just like "guess where") would certainly get everyone thinking about what its potential consequences would be.

      Implementation is a different story. It's somewhat less than moral to "raise the consciousness" of a society atop the dead bodies of its young people.

  • 'NY Times' has double standard for Arab and Jewish reporters
    • So in a nutshell, Rudoren's justifying Hadid's hire 1) because her Palestinian advocacy work was really just a youthful indiscretion, and 2) because in the interim she's been sufficiently sanitized and de-loused.


  • As threats against BDS grow, it is time for 'sumoud' in activist communities
    • "the ‘zionist entity, with jerusalem as its capital’ is not going anywhere , period."

      Yes, back in the dark ages the Earth was the center of the universe and every other celestial body revolved around it. It was "not going anywhere".

      Eppur si muove!

      Time will tell whether the zionist entity is going somewhere. In circles? Circling the drain?

  • Washington Post propagandist for Israel warns Sanders to stay away from the subject, forever
    • I'm well familiar with Rubin's political stance and style, having read most of her columns since she joined the Post. They always reveal much more about her than they do about their ostensible topics. She apparently perceives herself as Krauthammer's successor -- Krautie Lite would be a better description. The present instance is no exception.

      She's a lapdog for the neocons and a rabid attack poodle on any subject touching Israel. Her nonsensical use of the term "blood libel" is a prima facie example. Post readers are well aware of this, and the breakout of replies to this op-ed (80% dismissive of her tripe) is quite representative.

      Perhaps the most common reaction is "I can't believe the Post keeps you on staff!" My assessment is that they need a useful idiot to write the kinds of things they'd never have the chutzpah to put in a top-fold editorial; Rubin fills the bill admirably.

  • Unitarian Universalists divest from companies profiting from Israel's occupation
    • Our community's UU congregation is sponsoring this year's Palestine-Israel film festival and they are showing strong commitment to justice and peace for Palestine and accountability for Israel. The DC Metro area has a lot of pro-Israel sentiment and this causes many mainstream Christian churches to shy away from hosting events such as this (the pro-Israel lobby puts pressure on them), so it's gratifying to see the UU group step forward and take the lead where others have historically been unwilling to.

  • Israeli army stations dedicated PR officer at site of Hebron execution
    • I'm 65 years old. How dare you insinuate that I'm "wet behind the ears"? I read "Exodus" at age 10. I was a big supporter of Israel as a youth because of the Holocaust narrative. We in the US weren't familiar with the events of the Nakba then.

      You talk about Vietnam -- a mere debating point for you, a life-or-death issue for me. I applied for CO status the day I turned 18. Unlike most such applicants, I was granted 1-O status with no hassle at all. Any idea how rare that was back then? But I didn't hesitate to put my body on the line. I got my head busted open by the Chicago cops in August 1968 in the streets of Chicago, protesting Vietnam during the Democratic convention. I saw Mayor Richard J. Daley on TV yelling at Sen. Abe Ribicoff "Get off the stage, you fucking kike!" And it infuriated me, because I still had respect for Israel. I still have no love for true anti-Semites, either. But I detest those who are doing their worst to conflate anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism.

      Yonah, have you been beaten up for your cause? How much blood have you spilled for your cause? Be specific as to times, places and circumstances please -- because the "wet behind my ears" was type AB.

      My love for Israel has become highly selective since then, because I have eyes and ears, and a moral sensibility to go with them. When I think of the USS Liberty, of Operations Cast Lead and Protective Edge; when I ponder the ruthlessness of the IDF who empties their magazines into teenage girls, or blows apart the head of a wounded man lying helpless in the street; when I see bulldozers destroying Palestinian homes and illegal settlers stealing Palestinian land and water; when I think about a sleeping family firebombed and murdered in its beds; upon consideration, it turns my heart and mind against today's Israel, its government, its religious radical right wing, and all its evil deeds.

      Israel has become less of a "moral beacon of the Mideast" and more of a stinking trash fire. And my former unquestioning love is long gone, never to return.

  • Eric Alterman contradicts himself about anti-Semitism on campus
    • Yeah, this same article was circulated yesterday on the UCC Palestine-Israel Network (which is very supportive of Palestine) with a comment that it was "balanced". In my reply, I picked out the exact same two sentences cited above as an example of phony "balance" in the NYT. This typical article is "balanced" in that it acknowledges that not every BDS supporter is "anti-Semitic" and not all Jewish members of JVP are self-hating Jews.

      I don't think it's possible for a self-described "[longtime] vocal opponent of BDS" -- who "helped to found a national organization of academics to fight it" -- to write a balanced article in which BDS is so central. For instance, he states that the intent of BDS is to "boycott, divest from and sanction Israel" -- rather than businesses operating in the illegally-occupied territories. Coming from someone who claims a long familiarity with BDS, this betokens at best a woeful ignorance, at worst a willful misstatement. I was far from impressed by his purported "evenhandedness".

  • 'We don’t want to find ourselves in a position like apartheid South Africa': A report from Israel's first national conference against BDS
    • " He closed his remarks by saying that, 'the Israeli flag should be held high and we should be proud'. The crowd cheered."

      Perversely fascinating and somewhat amusing (akin to watching two dogs humping in public), the parallels between American and Israeli triumphalism. Grab an armful of lies, wrap 'em in the flag, and cheer! cheer! cheer!

  • Senior advisor to Clinton calls Obama's rationale for withdrawal from Mideast 'strange, bizarre, illogical, odd'
    • It's amusing that HRC is doing everything she can to hitch a ride on Obama's coattails, while still criticizing -- either herself, or by proxy as in this case -- the foreign policies that she was tasked with carrying out. There's a considerable cognitive disconnect at work here, and I don't think it's endearing her to the fellow she hopes will jump out and offer his support even before the convention. Her ongoing snipes are turning that into a forlorn hope.

  • The occupation of the American mind, documented
    • Seeing videos such as the recent one in which an IDF medic callously shoots a helpless, wounded, downed Palestinian in the head is definitely starting to open some American eyes and change some American minds.

  • 'Road to South Africa has never been shorter' -- as U of Chicago launches divestment campaign
    • I guess that's the "commenting" equivalent of being too close to a demonstration and catching a rubber bullet, eh?

  • We were not allowed to hear Palestinian peers -- Rachel Sandalow-Ash on American Jewish censorship
    • "Hillel has standards of partnership that they established in 2010 that say they won’t work with anyone who is deemed to ... apply a double standard to Israel"

      This must be the most exclusive group on campus. They won't even work with themselves!

  • Israeli medics are leaving wounded Palestinians to bleed to death
    • The principle of medical triage has always been straightforward and has always been devoid of concern for "friends" and "foes". There are many examples of battlefield medics tending to the wounded of both sides, and these examples do honor to the concept of triage.

      To reiterate the obvious, triage simply categorizes the injured into three groups: those not in need of immediate intervention; those whom no on-the-spot intervention is likely to help; and those who need immediate intervention who can reasonably be expected to benefit from it. These decisions must be made exclusively on medical grounds.

      Any care provider who feels justified in ornamenting this simple, straightforward algorithm with political caveats simply has no business providing care. They should put down their little black bag -- pick up a big black gun -- and quit being a hypocrite.

  • Palestinians in Gaza are drinking contaminated water
    • If your intent is to convince us, you might want to consider posting a link that doesn't begin its homepage header with the phrase "Israeli Security". Just sayin'.

  • Zionism is finally in the news, as officials seek to conflate anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism
    • An interesting choice of imagery considering Joshua 10:13. So what you're saying is that this condition will endure until justice is done for Palestine? I'd be delighted to credit Obama with that position.

    • While protesting Drumpf's AIPAC speech two days ago, I was approached by a (self-identified) American Jew who asked me whether I was "anti-Trump but pro-Israel". I answered, "I'm pro-Judaism and pro-the Jewish people, but I'm against the current Israeli government and its policies vis-a-vis Palestine, and I'm anti-Zionist."

      He replied, "If you're anti-Zionist, you're anti-Semitic."

      I told him, "No, that's precisely why I'm making such a clear distinction. Anti-Semitism has traditionally meant religious or ethnic bigotry against Semites; the term means exactly what it says. The philosophy of Zionism is secular and political. Nor is it ethnically based, any more than Jews are all of the same ethnicity. Therefore it's incorrect to conflate the two."

      I reminded him that furthermore, those who inhabited Palestine prior to 1948 were largely ethnically Semitic, so that particular sword cuts both ways -- one can make a case that Israel's current policies are themselves anti-Semitic.

      I might as well have been talking to a stump. But we're not living in Wonderland where words mean whatever we choose them to mean on a given day. Quit trying to move the goalposts.

  • Trump abandons 'neutral' Israel position, Sanders adopts it
    • Drumpf is nothing more than a political weathervane that, on any given day, always points to opportunism and expediency.

  • Read the speech Bernie Sanders planned to give to AIPAC
    • "Just don't vote" is part of the problem, not the solution. Politics is wet work. A battleship can't be turned 180 degrees in its own length. Any solution will be incremental, and to decline the privilege of voting because on one issue -- albeit a major one -- we don't have any perfect candidates is to perpetuate the problem IMO.

  • Why Shmuley Boteach was banished from Cory Booker's memoir
  • 'Do we get to win this time?': Trump foreign policy appeal based on revenge for Iraq War failure
    • I look forward to seeing Hair Drumph leading from the front lines in the coming war. Surely, now that he's grown up to be so rash and aggressive, he's left the reticence and timidity of his Vietnam years far behind him?

  • Illinois lists 11 companies banned from doing business with state due to BDS
  • Trump 'has no business being president' because he would be 'neutral' to Israel -- Clinton tells AIPAC
  • Why is AIPAC legitimating Donald Trump's bigotry?
    • Well, I don't get a two-fer like this very often. At 4 pm EST we'll be protesting BOTH Drumpf and AIPAC. One side of my sign: "Zionism = Apartheid". The other: Pictures of Bibi and Drumpf, caption "Demagogues 'R' Us". Hope to see one or two of you there!

  • Rubio's defeat means the downfall of neoconservatives
    • MRSA is bacterial, Ebola is viral. They're both virulent and potentially fatal. I wouldn't call Netanyahu a fascist, but both he and Trump are demagogues.

      It is OK for both countries to have strong borders, but to think either country can achieve them by building walls is foolishness. The wall of Jericho came a-tumblin' down and all it took was some 3000 BCE punk rock.

  • With hasbara robot, the 'startup nation' enters its decadent phase
  • What Bernie Sanders should say at AIPAC (and cause a political revolution)

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