Commenter Profile

Total number of comments: 586 (since 2009-08-02 08:11:58)

Brewer

69 yr old male 5th generation New Zealander.

Website: http://brewerstroupe.blogspot.com/

Showing comments 586 - 501
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  • An ominous warning: 'Netanyahu needs a war with Iran. And he needs it soon'
    • "Derfner does not believe Hezbollah or Iran would start the conflict, “because they know they’d get crushed.” He explains, “The only one I see starting it is Israel, because Israel is both strong and paranoid.”"
      Neither Hezbollah nor Iran will start a War and Israel would be foolish to. For all its bluff and bluster, Israel suffers the aversion to body bags that comes with being a technologically oriented aggressive force. A War with a now battle-hardened, better equipped Hezbollah will involve casualties in Israel cities and IAF losses. I suspect you will see the end of Netanyahu and a more circumspect Israeli foreign policy, possibly the return of Shebaa and the Golan.
      The Syrian War has not gone as planned.

  • Dangerous signs that Trump, Netanyahu and the Saudi Crown Prince are planning wider Mideast war
    • The man is not just an ass, he's a dangerous ass.

    • Israel Shamir has an interesting article called "The Dog That Didn't Bark" - highlighting the media's absence of coverage of what is actually a sensational story - billionaires including Prince Al-Walid bin al-Talal, a billionaire 18 times over, an “important partner” to Bill Gates, co-owner of 21st Century Fox and Twitter, of Paris’ Hotel George V and London’s Savoy Hotel being hung upside down, Mussolini-style until they cough up. As he puts it:
      "Not a single voice, neither from liberal left nor from authoritarian right objected to this amazing deed of mass torture and extortion. While the co-owner of Twitter has been subjected to daily beatings, the prime voice of liberal conscience, Tom Friedman of the New York Times, eulogised MBS as the bearer of progress. In an article as panegyric as they come, titled Saudi Arabia’s Arab Spring, at Last and subtitled “The crown prince has big plans for his society”.

      Tom Friedman does not use the word “extortion”, saying that [MBS’s] “government arrested scores of Saudi princes and businessmen on charges of corruption and threw them into a makeshift gilded jail — the Riyadh Ritz-Carlton — until they agreed to surrender their ill-gotten gains.” No condemnation at all! Can you imagine what he would say if Putin were to arrest his oligarchs “until they agreed to surrender their ill-gotten gains”?"

  • Israel has more legitimacy than US because the bible mentions Jerusalem, not New York -- says David Harris
    • Actually, that question is very interesting. Russell Gmirkin has a strong case:

      " he is perhaps best known for his research on the late date and Greek sources of the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament and its laws. His 2006 book called Berossus and Genesis, Manetho and Exodus: Hellenistic Histories and the Date of the Pentateuch was one of the first to discuss specific Greek sources used by the biblical authors. His latest book, Plato and the Creation of the Hebrew Bible, identifies Plato’s Laws as perhaps the most influential such Greek text, a source for many of the Laws of Moses and for the very notion of an approved national literature (the Bible).

      Some of the key innovations found in Gmirkin’s writings include the identification of the authors of the Pentateuch (Genesis–Deuteronomy) as the same group of Jewish scholars that tradition said translated these books into Greek for the Great Library of Alexandria around 270 BCE"

      https://www.routledge.com/authors/i15023-russell-gmirkin

  • Israel's top diplomat spouts anti-Semitic criticism of American Jews -- 'having quite convenient lives'
    • Most reasonable folk finding themselves in that position would give some thought to the possibility they might be on the wrong side Jackdaw.

  • Israel to move checkpoint deeper into West Bank, cutting off Palestinian access to spring
    • So utterly preposterous I am reluctant to even reply Jack.
      The Assyrian captivity AKA the Lost Tribes ??
      An biblical event with not one shred of archaeological or Historic evidence.
      Tudor Vernon Parfitt is a British historian. He is Emeritus Professor of Modern Jewish Studies in the University of London at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), where he was the founding director of the Centre for Jewish Studies.
      Here is what he says about this fable:
      "the Lost Tribes are indeed nothing but a myth"
      - Parfitt, Tudor (2003). The Lost Tribes of Israel: The History of a Myth. Phoenix. pp. 1, 225.

      My understanding of the (again probably mythical) Babylonian exile is that it lasted about 70 years then they returned.

      The Romans we have dealt with. You can find references to anything from 100s to 100s of thousands of slaves taken by the Romans. The logistics of moving captives at the time argues against a large number. No one has a clue how many but since Vespasian gave permission for the Sanhedrin to be moved to Yavneh at that time, we can be certain a great number remained, many of whom became Christian and Muslim during the subsequent couple of millennia. There was no general expulsion, as Israel Bartal explains. Any slaves were taken from the Zealots to whom the majority of Jews were opposed. That you cite the Menorah in Titus' Triumph as "proof" of 20,000 slaves makes me question your fitness to debate these issues. There is a trumpet next to the Menorah. Does this prove Satchmo was among the captives? There is an equivalent logical connection - i.e. none whatsoever.

      Is this the best you can do? Are you seriously suggesting these events (even if they were fact) justify the expulsion of a populace descended from the very same stock and who had lived on the land for thousands of years? Please address that question.

    • Jack.
      The "crime" you refer to is regarded by the foremost Historian of Israel as a myth. Did you not read the words of Israel Bartal, Avraham Harman Professor of Jewish History, former Dean of the Faculty of Humanities at Hebrew University and the chair of the Historical Society of Israel.
      I shall put them in bold type this time:
      "Although the myth of an exile from the Jewish homeland (Palestine) does exist in popular Israeli culture, it is negligible in serious Jewish historical discussions. Important groups in the Jewish national movement expressed reservations regarding this myth or denied it completely……."
      Above you state:
      "There were earlier expulsions"
      - which indicates that you do not rely on the mythical Roman expulsion. I asked you to provide evidence of these but you have ignored my question - among many others.

      A terrible crime has indeed been committed however and the victims are readily identifiable. It began in 1948 and was achieved by massacre and rape:

      Ari Shavit: According to your new findings, how many cases of Israeli rape were there in 1948?

      Benny Morris: About a dozen. In Acre four soldiers raped a girl and murdered her and her father. In Jaffa, soldiers of the Kiryati Brigade raped one girl and tried to rape several more. At Hunin, which is in the Galilee, two girls were raped and then murdered. There were one or two cases of rape at Tantura, south of Haifa. There was one case of rape at Qula, in the center of the country. At the village of Abu Shusha, near Kibbutz Gezer [in the Ramle area] there were four female prisoners, one of whom was raped a number of times. And there were other cases. Usually more than one soldier was involved. Usually there were one or two Palestinian girls. In a large proportion of the cases the event ended with murder. Because neither the victims nor the rapists liked to report these events, we have to assume that the dozen cases of rape that were reported, which I found, are not the whole story. They are just the tip of the iceberg.

      Ari Shavit: According to your findings, how many acts of Israeli massacre were perpetrated in 1948?

      Benny Morris: Twenty-four. In some cases four or five people were executed, in others the numbers were 70, 80, 100. There was also a great deal of arbitrary killing. Two old men are spotted walking in a field - they are shot. A woman is found in an abandoned village - she is shot. There are cases such as the village of Dawayima [in the Hebron region], in which a column entered the village with all guns blazing and killed anything that moved.

      The worst cases were Saliha (70-80 killed), Deir Yassin (100-110), Lod (250), Dawayima (hundreds) and perhaps Abu Shusha (70). There is no unequivocal proof of a large-scale massacre at Tantura, but war crimes were perpetrated there. At Jaffa there was a massacre about which nothing had been known until now. The same at Arab al Muwassi, in the north. About half of the acts of massacre were part of Operation Hiram [in the north, in October 1948]: at Safsaf, Saliha, Jish, Eilaboun, Arab al Muwasi, Deir al Asad, Majdal Krum, Sasa. In Operation Hiram there was a unusually high concentration of executions of people against a wall or next to a well in an orderly fashion. That can’t be chance. It’s a pattern.

      http://www.logosjournal.com/morris.htm

      A million people (most likely the descendants of Jews) were driven off their land at gunpoint in 1948 and 1967. There is no dispute about that and the list of massacres is growing. Tantura has been confirmed.

      Perhaps you might like to explain to me on what rational basis you can possibly assert that the rights of descendants, a hundred generations removed from a mythical expulsion, should take precedence over the rights of a populace expelled within living memory.

    • Jack. Took you a while. Was consultation necessary?

      "There were earlier expulsions."
      Tell us about them. You obviously disagree with one of Israel's foremost Historians: "Although the myth of an exile from the Jewish homeland (Palestine) does exist in popular Israeli culture, it is negligible in serious Jewish historical discussions."

      "It’s like adoption. If a couple adopts a child that child will have the same inheritance rights as the couple’s children who were not adopted."
      Quite possibly - if such inheritance rights existed. You are begging the question. Can you point to any codified law or precedent for such rights applying to any person or people by virtue of their unsubstantiated claim to be a member of a race or religion. My native land (NZ) is a World leader in the restoration of indigenous land rights:
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Waitangi_Tribunal
      ......yet the process of identification of both individual and land ownership is both rigorous and specific.

      "Why would “Rebels who were taken as slaves by the Romans” result in loss of inheritance?"
      Didn't suggest that they did. If such inheritance rights existed, they would quite possibly be first in line. The fact is they don't and neither you nor any of your fellow Zionists has the first clue as to your descent from slaves, converts, slave-masters, collaborators, Zealots, Turkomen, landowners, tinkers, tailors, soldiers or sailors.

      "Jews who migrated of their own accord & Jews who sold their plot before departing would not be entitled to inheritance, but over the years they’ve mixed with descendants of Jews who did not leave of their own accord."
      You have some evidence of this? Point me to it.

      "Even if we had perfect records, there’s a problem in saying that this plot of land belongs to a particular individual. "
      Precisely, which is exactly why the laws concerning inheritance simply do not apply.
      "If all nations would suddenly claim territories in which their forefathers had lived two thousand years ago, this world would be a madhouse. …"
      - Eric Fromm.

    • You might have a point Mooser. Is myopia a symptom? It seems Jack has paid a visit and failed to see my question. At least I assume he didn't see it. If he had he would have answered would he not?

    • Both. They are not mutually exclusive.

      Now I have answered your question, how 'bout answering mine:
      Jack.
      “If you are just taking back your own land, that’s not stealing.”
      I am sure the police would agree with you but first they would want to see some proof of ownership. What do you or your fellow Zionists have Jack? Can any of you point to a plot of land and truthfully state that this is where my ancestors lived? How do you know that they did not sell that plot before departing? Bear in mind that few Historians believe that there was a general expulsion of Jews around 70 AD.
      In fact, the so-called "diaspora" began much earlier:

      "As early as the middle of the 2nd century BCE the Jewish author of the third book of the Oracula Sibyllina addressed the "chosen people," saying: "Every land is full of thee and every sea." The most diverse witnesses, such as Strabo, Philo, Seneca, Luke (the author of the Acts of the Apostles), Cicero, and Josephus, all mention Jewish populations in the cities of the Mediterranean basin. See also History of the Jews in India and History of the Jews in China for pre-Roman (and post-) diasporic populations." - Wikipedia.

      Let me now quote Israel Bartal, Avraham Harman Professor of Jewish History, and the former Dean of the Faculty of Humanities at Hebrew University. Since 2006 he is the chair of the Historical Society of Israel.
      "No "nationalist" Jewish historian has ever tried to conceal the well-known fact that conversions to Judaism had a major impact on Jewish history in the ancient period and in the early Middle Ages. Although the myth of an exile from the Jewish homeland (Palestine) does exist in popular Israeli culture, it is negligible in serious Jewish historical discussions. Important groups in the Jewish national movement expressed reservations regarding this myth or denied it completely.......
      ,,,,,,The central book of the Zionist "Jerusalem School," "Toldot am yisrael" ("History of the Jewish People," published in 1969), speaks extensively of the Jewish communities that existed in the Diaspora before the destruction of the Second Temple in Jerusalem and whose total population exceeded that of the tiny Jewish community in Palestine. As one would expect from a work that reflects a profound knowledge of scholarly studies in the field, the Zionist "Toldot am yisrael" explains that the number of Jews in the Diaspora during the ancient period was as high as it was because of conversion, a phenomenon that "was widespread in the Jewish Diaspora in the late Second Temple period .... Many of the converts to Judaism came from the gentile population of Palestine, but an even greater number of converts could be found in the Jewish Diaspora communities in both the East and the West "

      https://web.archive.org/web/20090416045211/http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/999386.html

      My question to you is, which group retain title to real estate and which do your ancestors belong to?
      Jews who migrated of their own accord?
      Converts to Judaism?
      Rebels who were taken as slaves by the Romans?

      Do you know? Any Land Court in a sane society would surely need to know before issuing judgment.
      http://mondoweiss.net/2017/11/palestinians-recovered-emergency/#comment-897444

    • And so it goes - ethnic cleansing by unrelenting pressure, incremental theft. How anyone can imagine it is not a deliberate policy of expelling the indigenous people is beyond my comprehension.
      But then most do not know.
      How did that come about?
      How is it that some of the wealthiest, most influential people in this World support this dastardly enterprise?
      It will end but it will not end well.

  • Video: Living Under Fire
  • Prince Charles decried White House's failure to take on 'Jewish lobby' over Israel
    • Can never hear "Talk to the trees" without thinking of Prince Charles' favourite comic Spike Milligan whose version goes:
      "I talk to the trees, that's why they put me away"

    • You piqued my curiosity Bumblebye. Nothing to do with Zionism however according to Wikipedia. She was deeply religious (Greek Orthodox):

      " before she died she had expressed her wish to be buried at the Convent of Saint Mary Magdalene in Gethsemane on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem (near her aunt Grand Duchess Elizabeth Fyodorovna, a Russian Orthodox saint). When her daughter, Princess George of Hanover, complained that it would be too far away for them to visit her grave, Princess Andrew jested, "Nonsense, there's a perfectly good bus service!"[52] Her wish was realized on 3 August 1988 when her remains were transferred to her final resting place in a crypt below the church"

      .....though she is "Righteous Among the Nations" for her work with Jewish refugees in Athens during WWII.

  • How Avi Shlaim moved from two-state solution to one-state solution
    • Avi Shlaim is a true gent. I had a query concerning the History once and ventured an email to him. His response was prompt, courteous and kind though we had never met.

  • Five Palestinians bodies recovered from tunnel bombing after Israeli court ignores emergency rescue petition
    • Goodness me. This thread is still going.
      Jack.
      “If you are just taking back your own land, that’s not stealing.”
      I am sure the police would agree with you but first they would want to see some proof of ownership. What do you or your fellow Zionists have Jack? Can any of you point to a plot of land and truthfully state that this is where my ancestors lived? How do you know that they did not sell that plot before departing? Bear in mind that few Historians believe that there was a general expulsion of Jews around 70 AD.
      In fact, the so-called "diaspora" began much earlier:

      "As early as the middle of the 2nd century BCE the Jewish author of the third book of the Oracula Sibyllina addressed the "chosen people," saying: "Every land is full of thee and every sea." The most diverse witnesses, such as Strabo, Philo, Seneca, Luke (the author of the Acts of the Apostles), Cicero, and Josephus, all mention Jewish populations in the cities of the Mediterranean basin. See also History of the Jews in India and History of the Jews in China for pre-Roman (and post-) diasporic populations." - Wikipedia.

      Let me now quote Israel Bartal, Avraham Harman Professor of Jewish History, and the former Dean of the Faculty of Humanities at Hebrew University. Since 2006 he is the chair of the Historical Society of Israel.
      "No "nationalist" Jewish historian has ever tried to conceal the well-known fact that conversions to Judaism had a major impact on Jewish history in the ancient period and in the early Middle Ages. Although the myth of an exile from the Jewish homeland (Palestine) does exist in popular Israeli culture, it is negligible in serious Jewish historical discussions. Important groups in the Jewish national movement expressed reservations regarding this myth or denied it completely.......
      ,,,,,,The central book of the Zionist "Jerusalem School," "Toldot am yisrael" ("History of the Jewish People," published in 1969), speaks extensively of the Jewish communities that existed in the Diaspora before the destruction of the Second Temple in Jerusalem and whose total population exceeded that of the tiny Jewish community in Palestine. As one would expect from a work that reflects a profound knowledge of scholarly studies in the field, the Zionist "Toldot am yisrael" explains that the number of Jews in the Diaspora during the ancient period was as high as it was because of conversion, a phenomenon that "was widespread in the Jewish Diaspora in the late Second Temple period .... Many of the converts to Judaism came from the gentile population of Palestine, but an even greater number of converts could be found in the Jewish Diaspora communities in both the East and the West "

      https://web.archive.org/web/20090416045211/http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/999386.html

      My question to you is, which group retain title to real estate and which do your ancestors belong to?
      Jews who migrated of their own accord?
      Converts to Judaism?
      Rebels who were taken as slaves by the Romans?

      Do you know? Any Land Court in a sane society would surely need to know before issuing judgment.

    • Jack.
      I strongly recommend that you read the articles to which you have linked as well as the Eran Elhaik work I linked to above (which is the most recent and comprehensive, taking into account other factors such as linguistic geography) if you are interested in the topic for its own sake for it is extraneous to the main issue.
      As I said above:
      It is very complex and, in the end, a really rather stupid argument when applied to the Israel/Palestine question.
      Who, in their right mind, can assert that a tract of land belongs to them by virtue of their DNA?
      Perhaps you might like to comment on that. Do you believe that land ownership is somehow connected to genetics?

    • "The genetic studies reinforce the historical, archaeological & religious claims."
      Simply not so.
      All, including Ostrer have found that Palestinians and Mizrahi are virtually identical and that Ashkenazim are quite distinct.
      http://www.patheos.com/blogs/epiphenom/2009/01/shared-genetic-heritage-of-jews-and.html
      The latest research has re-vitalized the Khazar hypothesis:
      https://academic.oup.com/gbe/article/5/1/61/728117

      It is very complex and, in the end, a really rather stupid argument when applied to the Israel/Palestine question.
      Who, in their right mind, can assert that a tract of land belongs to them by virtue of their DNA?

      "It is often said that the Arabs fled, that they left the country voluntarily, and that they therefore bear the responsibility for losing their property and their land. It is true that in history there are some instances — in Rome and in France during the Revolutions when enemies of the state were proscribed and their property confiscated. But in general international law, the principle holds true that no citizen loses his property or his rights of citizenship; and the citizenship right is de facto a right to which the Arabs in Israel have much more legitimacy than the [European] Jews. Just because the Arabs fled? Since when is that punishable by confiscation of property and by being barred from returning to the land on which a people’s forefathers have lived for generations? Thus, the claim of the Jews to the land of Israel cannot be a realistic political claim. If all nations would suddenly claim territories in which their forefathers had lived two thousand years ago, this world would be a madhouse. … I believe that, politically speaking, there is only one solution for Israel, namely, the unilateral acknowledgement of the obligation of the State towards the Arabs — not to use it as a bargaining point, but to acknowledge the complete moral obligation of the Israeli State to its former inhabitants of Palestine."
      - Eric Fromm.
      Jewish Newsletter [New York] (19 May 1959); quoted in Prophets in Babylon (1980) by Marion Woolfson, p. 13.

    • You mean like most of the the justifications for massacre given by Israel?

    • Again Jack, you should read the articles you cite. From your latest, right after the misleading quote you posted:
      "Curiously, a 2013 study of the maternal origins of Ashkenazi Jews suggests that their ancestors were prehistoric European women from the Northern Mediterranean—and not the Middle East or the Caucasus, as other research has posited. The study analyzed mitochondrial DNA (loops of genetic material passed down from mother to child in tiny organelles carried by their eggs).

      Led by Martin B. Richards of the University of Leeds in the UK, the research suggests that 40 percent of the variation in Ashkenazi mitochondrial DNA can be traced to prehistoric Europe, indicating that the maternal ancestors of most modern Ashkenazi Jews converted to Judaism some 2,000 years ago."

    • I wonder if Jack reads the stuff he posts. From the preamble to the article:
      "The existence of some eastern Eurasian haplotypes in eastern Ashkenazi Jews supports an East Asian genetic contribution, likely from Chinese. Further evidence indicates that this connection can be attributed to a gene flow event that occurred less than 1.4 kilo-years ago (kya), which falls within the time frame of the Silk Road scenario and fits well with historical records and archaeological discoveries. This observed genetic contribution from Chinese to Ashkenazi Jews demonstrates that the historical exchange between Ashkenazim and the Far East was not confined to the cultural sphere but also extended to an exchange of genes."

    • Jack.
      Most of us try to deal with the real World of deeds and actions, not paranoid fantasies.
      Do you have an example of such a Doctor ?

    • Very simple to explain " the ratio of civilian to combatant deaths in Gaza was by far the lowest in any asymmetric conflict in the history of warfare".
      Israel counts every Hamas death as combatant. 90% of Hamas revenue is spent on social services however so the vast majority of Hamas people are teachers, nurses, cleaners, office workers etc.
      This also explains why so much Hasbara is dedicated to branding Hamas as blood drinking terrorists which they are not. 90% of their revenue is spent on social services.

    • Well I mean...., golly....., gee, I don't know what to say Jack.
      A quote from an unnamed, purportedly Hamas operative boasting of "capturing Israel" on Rosh Hannah 2014 in a book authored by a loony fundamentalist Christian Zionist pommy twat whose end-times scribblings explain "the logistics of understanding God's plan for Israel".
      Impressive.
      I must have missed reporting of the 2014 Rosh Hannah attack Jack. Apart from a few patently absurd echo-chamber reports of "Hamas plans" citing an "unnamed source" around that time, tell us what happened. How many civilians have been killed using tunnels? How many IDF soldiers?

      If you truly are frightened by unnamed sources who describe "Hamas plans", try Mooser's remedy. He reckons Ziocaine is good for Pre-traumatic Stress Disorder.

    • @loeste
      "they are there for one reason only—to kill jews "
      Shockingly inefficient then.
      Tunnelers have taken a toll of about one Israeli soldier per year. That is about one twentieth the annual suicide rate in the IDF. The primary cause of death in that outfit:
      http://www.ibtimes.com/suicide-rates-more-doubled-among-soldiers-serving-israel-defense-forces-1772338

    • Vanity Fair had the full story:
      "After failing to anticipate Hamas’s victory over Fatah in the 2006 Palestinian election, the White House cooked up yet another scandalously covert and self-defeating Middle East debacle: part Iran-contra, part Bay of Pigs. With confidential documents, corroborated by outraged former and current U.S. officials, the author reveals how President Bush, Condoleezza Rice, and Deputy National-Security Adviser Elliott Abrams backed an armed force under Fatah strongman Muhammad Dahlan, touching off a bloody civil war in Gaza and leaving Hamas stronger than ever."
      https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2008/04/gaza200804

    • "Tunnels played a crucial role in the Warsaw Ghetto uprising. Tunnels were used to bring in food and weapons. Without tunnels, the earlier death rate in the ghetto from malnutrition and consequent disease would likely have been higher. In the end, many of the fighters used the tunnels to escape the fate of those who did not fight: transit to a death camp.

      The various groups in Gaza did not build tunnels because they like to dig. They were dug for the same reasons the Jews had in Warsaw: to get supplies. And both some of the Jews and some of the Palestinians used the tunnels to get the weapons they needed to fight the army of the nation that had put them in their respective ghettos."
      http://www.iiipublishing.com/blog/2014/07/blog_07_26_2014.html

  • Thousands march to UK parliament calling for justice on Balfour centenary
    • Dear Greta. Lovely to see you here. I still miss our friend Earl, was with him in KL not long before he passed. Mike (Angelgabriel) stayed with me here in Kiwiville for some months and is currently visiting his home state. How time flies. Truthout is a long time gone!
      Regards to you and gratitude for all the good work.

    • "the Palestinian Arabs 1,400 year occupation and colonization of the land "

      Mr Hirsch not only doesn't understand the "terms occupation and colonization", he has not read any reliable History of the region, contemporary genetic analysis of the Palestinian and Middle Eastern Jewish origins or linguistic History and displays a disposition towards belief in fantasy, indicating (I suppose) that Israeli schools must teach this nonsense along with nursery rhymes at a very early age for it to have taken root in his consciousness in spite of all the contrary evidence and in defiance of common sense.

      In Biblical times, the people of this area were a collection of closely related (genetically speaking) tribes whose main differences were found in their belief systems. For a very brief period (mostly mythical), Judaism prevailed. In the post-Roman era, these myths were overlaid with a narrative largely invented within Judaism but also promoted by the emerging Christian adherents who, by the twentieth century, comprised about 20% of the Palestinian population. This narrative included the now utterly refuted idea of a Roman expulsion of Jews and confused belief systems with racial/tribal concepts.

      Leaving aside the Muslim faction for the moment, just who were these Christians? Their language (Aramaic) was also the language of parts of the Hebrew Bible, indicating that even within Judaism, rifts and schisms were already appearing. It is reasonable to assume that the Christian Palestinians were descendants of Jews who adopted this branch of Judaism.

      Might it not also be reasonable to suspect that when Islam came (and with it release from the oppression of Judaism under the Crusaders) many Christians and Judaics embraced this second offshoot? Bear in mind that the "conversion by the sword" is now a discredited myth although power has always played a part in the spread of belief systems.

      What Hirsch calls colonialism was in fact the movement of ideas, not people. The DNA record confirms it, the Historical record confirms it both positively in the literature of the day but also in the absence of any descriptions of population movement at the time. The belief that Jews have held strictly to one faith is a fantasy exposed by the various sects within Judaism, the changes within it and, in this modern era, the growing numbers of non-religious Jews both in Israel and Worldwide.

  • Jewish leaders seek to shut down anti-occupation movie in MA because it 'sniffs of Nazism'
    • May 19, 2016 On Reality Asserts Itself with Paul Jay, legendary musician Roger Waters and Sut Jhally discuss their new film about the Israeli public relations campaign to influence U.S. public opinion

  • Cartoon of Dershowitz mingled appropriate satire and anti-Semitic imagery
  • Gerard Butler, Gene Simmons, and Pee Wee Herman help raise $53.8 million for the IDF
    • "For 2,000 years, we were a stateless people....."
      Hmmmmmm.
      "Larry Ellison was born in New York City, to an unwed Jewish mother. His biological father was an Italian American United States Army Air Corps pilot.
      Although Ellison was raised in a Reform Jewish home by his adoptive parents, who attended synagogue regularly, he remained a religious skeptic. Ellison states: "While I think I am religious in one sense, the particular dogmas of Judaism are not dogmas I subscribe to. I don't believe that they are real. They're interesting stories. They're interesting mythology, and I certainly respect people who believe these are literally true, but I don't. I see no evidence for this stuff." At age thirteen, Ellison refused to have a bar mitzvah celebration.[11] Ellison says that his love affair with Israel is not connected to religious sentiments, but rather due to the innovative spirit of Israelis in the technology sector"
      - Wikipedia.

      Watchu mean "we" white boy ?

    • "Star studded" ?
      Must refer to the piercings. I've seen more talent at my granddaughter's school play.

  • 'Daily Californian' cartoon of Dershowitz dripping blood unleashes another furor over anti-Semitic canards
  • 'It being clearly understood…': What the Balfour Declaration tells us about Israel
    • "British Colonial Secretary Lord Cavendish also wrote about this agreement and its result in a 1923 memorandum to the British Cabinet, stating: “The object [of the Balfour Declaration] was to enlist the sympathies on the Allied side of influential Jews and Jewish organizations all over the world… [and] it is arguable that the negotiations with the Zionists…did in fact have considerable effect in advancing the date at which the United States government intervened in the war.”Former British Prime Minister Lloyd George similarly referred to the deal, telling a British commission in 1935: “Zionist leaders gave us a definite promise that, if the Allies committed themselves to giving facilities for the establishment of a national home for the Jews in Palestine, they would do their best to rally Jewish sentiment and support throughout the world to the Allied cause. They kept their word.”[xxiv]

      Brandeis University professor and author Frank E. Manuel reported that Lloyd George had testified in 1937 “that stimulating the war effort of American Jews was one of the major motives which, during a harrowing period in the European war, actuated members of the cabinet in finally casting their votes for the Declaration.”"
      https://israelpalestinenews.org/wrote-balfour-declaration-world-war-connection/

  • Balfour and Britain's broken promise
    • @DaBakr
      Sorry old mate. From where I sit your post looks like 90% gobbledegook, the balance being the outright falsehood contained in:
      "mistakes the Arabs have made in avoiding negotiations"

  • US Jews need to stop criticizing Israel if they want two-state solution -- Israeli liberal
    • "you can’t build something healthy on a criminal foundation"
      - Avigail Abarbanel.
      Ain't that the truth. The rot permeated colonial and imperial enterprises more slowly before the information age but it is swifter now.

    • "I think the dangers of the middle east are very real"
      Yes, things have changed a lot since Gertrude Bell, an unaccompanied European lady, was free to wander around the place advising Sheiks and potentates:
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gertrude_Bell
      Something must have happened. Any clues yonah?

    • "but he didn’t say anything not even one word about the Palestinian responsibility for the conflict. About the incitement, about the terror, about the opportunities they missed every time! Nothing. It was like they didn’t even exist. "
      Obviously he did not say anything about the massacres, rapes and dispossession either.
      Lets see now. A mass of immigrants invades and expels an indigenous population by massacre and mayhem and this woman speaks of "the Palestinian responsibility for the conflict".
      I am forced to believe Atzmon is correct about liberal zionists.

  • Maryland governor's order against BDS is sure to backfire, boycott advocates say
  • Balfour anniversary drives a wedge into British consensus on Israel
    • Wheels within wheels:
      "British Colonial Secretary Lord Cavendish also wrote about this agreement and its result in a 1923 memorandum to the British Cabinet, stating: “The object [of the Balfour Declaration] was to enlist the sympathies on the Allied side of influential Jews and Jewish organizations all over the world… [and] it is arguable that the negotiations with the Zionists…did in fact have considerable effect in advancing the date at which the United States government intervened in the war.”Former British Prime Minister Lloyd George similarly referred to the deal, telling a British commission in 1935: “Zionist leaders gave us a definite promise that, if the Allies committed themselves to giving facilities for the establishment of a national home for the Jews in Palestine, they would do their best to rally Jewish sentiment and support throughout the world to the Allied cause. They kept their word.”[xxiv]

      Brandeis University professor and author Frank E. Manuel reported that Lloyd George had testified in 1937 “that stimulating the war effort of American Jews was one of the major motives which, during a harrowing period in the European war, actuated members of the cabinet in finally casting their votes for the Declaration.”"
      https://israelpalestinenews.org/wrote-balfour-declaration-world-war-connection/

  • Trump plays to the neocons and Netanyahu to get some establishment support
    • It is little more than a gut feeling at present but I think Putin may have planned his legacy - the taming of Israel and the neo-cons.
      It was the Russian AT-13 Saxhorn-2 that disabled 50 Merkava tanks forcing Israel to a cease-fire in 2006 despite Hezbollah having virtually no anti-aircraft defense. During that affray, an Iranian modified missile severely damaged an Israeli Sa'ar 5-class corvette 10 miles off the coast.
      The other day an Israeli aircraft was reportedly hit by a Soviet era S-200 (the IDF admitted damage but said it was "bird-strike").
      Good analysis of 2006 here:
      http://www.conflictsforum.org/2006/how-hezbollah-defeated-israel-2/
      Nasrallah has stated that Hezbollah now has the capability to target all major cities in Israel with missiles and he is not known to issue idle threats. I'd love to know if Israeli civilians are moving out of Bekaa and the Golan. I think it highly likely.
      Right now I think that the IDF will be very nervous about attacking anyone or even possibly defending the Golan if Syria and its allies decide to take it back.
      The incremental nature indicates a chess-player's mind in back of these events. If the cooperation between Hezbollah, the SAA and Iran holds, Israel is between a rock and a hard place - particularly if Jordan grows a pair and joins up.
      I believe this is why the push is on to degrade Iran. How Putin would respond is anybody's guess but no doubt he has a contingency plan.
      Interesting times.

  • Balfour at 100: A legacy of racism and propaganda
    • Sorry to put you to the bother of writing yet another obfuscation Nathan. My post was what the British call a piss-take, the point being that Israel is all bad faith negotiations, no change in behaviour. Amigo puts it in context.

    • Interesting style you got there Nathan. Let's try it out:

      Well, to be quite frank, I don’t have a clue what Nathan means.
      "the founding of Israel"
      Does he mean a State, as in a territorial Government for and of a people within certain recognized borders? Hasn't happened yet so far as I know.
      "It’s not going to be undone. "
      What does he mean by "undone" ?
      Is it ending policies that are either theocratic or racist (I've never been able to figure out whether a "Jewish State" is for a religious identity or blood).
      Is it allowing the rightful owners of the land to return to their homes?
      Is it ending the occupation?
      Is it ending the apartheid-like policies?
      In the real World of politics these are achievable objects - all been done before at the behest of "the International Community". Far from being the "undoing" of Israel, it could be the making of it.
      I would suggest that the Nathan define specifically what he means by these terms. That way we (and the International Community) can continue arguing for another one hundred years while the blatant injustice continues on the ground.

  • Trump's speech on Iran deal is an orgy for Israel and its US friends
  • The low-rent bullying of the Zionist ideologue
    • "As to Iran and Hizbullah- they were responsible for the single deadliest anti-Jewish atrocity since WW2, the AMIA bombing in Buenos Aires."
      Twaddle.
      The whole Hezbollah/Iran thing was blown out of the water years ago.
      "The central piece of evidence cited in Nisman’s original 900-page arrest warrant against seven senior Iranian leaders is an alleged Aug. 14, 1993 meeting of top Iranian leaders, including both Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and then president Hashemi Rafsanjani, at which Nisman claims the official decision was made to go ahead with the planning of the bombing of the Argentine Israelite Mutual Association (AMIA).

      But the document, recently available in English for the first time, shows that his only sources for the claim were representatives of the MEK or People’s Mujahideen of Iran. The MEK has an unsavoury history of terrorist bombings against civilian targets in Iran, as well as of serving as an Iraq-based mercenary army for Saddam Hussein’s forces during the Iran-Iraq War."
      http://lobelog.com/indictment-of-iran-for-94-terror-bombing-relied-on-mek/

      "In an interview last May James Cheek, Clinton's Ambassador to Argentina at the time of the bombing, told me, "To my knowledge, there was never any real evidence [of Iranian responsibility]. They never came up with anything." The hottest lead in the case, he recalled, was an Iranian defector named Manoucher Moatamer, who "supposedly had all this information." But Moatamer turned out to be only a dissatisfied low-ranking official without the knowledge of government decision-making that he had claimed. "We finally decided that he wasn't credible," Cheek recalled. Ron Goddard, then deputy chief of the US Mission in Buenos Aires, confirmed Cheek's account. He recalled that investigators found nothing linking Iran to the bombing. "The whole Iran thing seemed kind of flimsy," Goddard said. "
      https://www.thenation.com/article/bushs-iranargentina-terror-frame/

  • Miko Peled on free speech and Zionism
    • "Freedom of speech for Nazis ends up in Charlottesville with the death of an anti-fascist woman."
      Sorry Tony. Cannot agree. Apart from the fact that here is no causal link in your example (you might just as well assert that freedom of speech for MLK caused his death) creating a category of citizen excluded from a universal right is an abomination - utterly unworkable. You place yourself in company with the very people you deplore.

      The far right and the far left of Politics has been with us since forever, will remain with us forever. Ad Hominems such as "Nazi" "Holocaust Denier" and "anti-Semite" are the weapons of weak minds unable to discuss logically with civility. Such labels should be tossed on the garbage pile along with racial epithets and suchlike. Throughout History, every time such labels have become etched in the public mind, aberration follows. Consider the History of the labels "Heretic" and "Witch" for example.
      I view the advent of laws regarding Holocaust Denial and anti-Semitism with great concern, especially since the push from Israel and Israel-firsters in both Britain and the U.S. to have criticism of the Israeli State defined as the latter.

  • The problem with Miko Peled's 'Holocaust: yes or no'
    • This is a fine kettle of fish. Lots of disparate ideas being conflated.
      There is a vast difference between Holocaust Denial and Historical Revisionism yet the two are rolled in together as one, both here and further abroad.
      History is constantly being revised. Dozens of books are published every year concerning Historical events and characters from a past far more distant than WWII. One can read accounts that paint the likes of Napoleon, Julius Caesar and King John as saints or as tyrants. This is non-controversial and serves a good purpose in questioning narratives that are formed by popular fictions.
      So should we ban Historical Revisionism? My answer is an emphatic no. Should we confine it to those who possess qualification? I am sure the unlettered Thomas Macaulay, whose 5 volume "The History of England from the Accession of James the Second" was the standard text for many years would object as would the highly qualified Howard Zinn.

      There is a spectrum of thought on both sides of this (almost non-existent in any serious sense) debate. Respected Historians' estimates on the numbers vary greatly. Raul Hilberg for example knocked a million off the commonly accepted six. He also stated that he found some revisionist points instructive yet he is not considered a “denier”. David Irving is not far behind, having stated that “a huge number” of Jews (about 3 million) were killed – yet he is vilified as a “denier”.

      For the sake of this post, let me characterize a Holocaust Denier as someone on the spectrum's extreme who, without serious study, has fixed on some anomalies bandied about on the net and and expanded them into total denial. This is balanced by extremists on the other side who have simply invented stuff for personal gain – I refer to the likes of Zisblatt, Defonseca, Wilkomirski, Grabowski etc. Elie Wiesel with his geysers of blood and "Some stories are true that never happened" assertion probably fits with this group.

      Somewhere between these extremes lies the truth but are we likely to reach a consensus while a taboo exists? I doubt it for the taboo serves only the two extremes mentioned above. It is the two extreme fringe groups that benefit if debate is not engaged. It feeds directly into the deniers’ narrative of Jewish control and allows the hoaxers license to invent. Legitimate, sincere voices on both sides are silenced.

      The reaction to Miko’s statement illustrates why legitimate Historians refuse to engage even if they agree with some of the revisionist points. The taint can destroy reputations and livelihoods. I for one think this is a bad thing.

      Danaa makes a good point: “these discussions seem to be more evocative of a theological dispute”. The treatment of revisionists and the taboo closely resembles the Church’s attitudes to heresy in the past. I think the World is better off without it. By the same token, although Religion is an appropriate analogy it is illogical to posit that because heretics in the past (I’m thinking Galileo, Tyndale etc) have proven to be correct, all heretics are likely to be – that is a fallacy. There were many heretics who were dead wrong.

      Much of this brings to mind a theme that has intrigued me in recent years. Man is not a rational creature. It is very easy to demonstrate that much of what is accepted as fact, including scientific, Historical and philosophical, is actually the product of “weight of opinion” rather than analysis. The fact that contradictory religions have millions of adherents is testament to this. Medicine is rife with contradiction and fallacy, as are other branches of science. In the absence of information, man’s default position is to go with the crowd.

      I like iconoclasts, be they right or wrong. Whether or not we agree, their activity helps us to focus and consider from possibly new angles. If, in the end we prove (to ourselves at least) that they are wrong, we are better off for the exercise.

  • 'A blot on Judaism, Jewish history and ethics' -- British Jews regret the Balfour Declaration
    • Good to see you here Israel. I remain grateful for your help in the past and your work which, with very few reservations, I heartily endorse.

    • "“The Balfour Declaration of 1917 was built on air.” "
      Precisely.
      The Balfour Declaration had no legal status whatsoever. It was a letter from Balfour to his friend Lord Rothschild advising only that His Majesty's Government favored a "National Home" for Jews in Palestine. The term "National Home" and the proviso that "nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine" were rigorously debated and deliberately chosen.
      The question as to whether "National Home" meant sovereignty is a non-issue. It certainly did not as is very clear from the debate. Churchill (and the Zionist Congress) confirmed this in the White Paper published a month before the Mandate document:
      "....It is also necessary to point out that the Zionist Commission in Palestine, now termed the Palestine Zionist Executive, has not desired to possess, and does not possess, any share in the general administration of the country. Nor does the special position assigned to the Zionist Organization in Article IV of the Draft Mandate for Palestine imply any such functions. That special position relates to the measures to be taken in Palestine affecting the Jewish population, and contemplates that the organization may assist in the general development of the country, but does not entitle it to share in any degree in its government."
      .....and in the Mandate itself:
      "ART. 7.
      The Administration of Palestine shall be responsible for enacting a nationality law. There shall be included in this law provisions framed so as to facilitate the acquisition of Palestinian citizenship by Jews who take up their permanent residence in Palestine."

      I wrote Did the Brits really screw the pooch" nearly a decade ago. It still stands up - nothing that has come to light since alters the very clear fact that a Jewish State was never the intent of either the Balfour Declaration or the League of Nations Mandate. Everything I have read of the B.D. indicates it was a sop to powerful interests - expected to disappear down the memory hole. The participants in its genesis would be astonished at the misuse of the document today.

    • Two completely separate issues Yonah. I do not see how you can justify subjecting the People of Palestine to precisely the same "specific circumstances" in order to deliver Jewish people, unless of course you apply a different value to the latter. Furthermore, there was another, non-controversial option - the Jewish Autonomous Oblast. I would also argue that by the end of WWII, before the expulsion of the Palestinian people and the major movement of Jewish people to Palestine, Europe was a safer domicile for Jews than was Palestine, given the perfectly understandable resistance to Zionism in that land.

    • Good to see the History re-visited. Unable to alter the facts, the Zionist narrative has endeavored to push History into the background but it remains the core of this problem.
      Israel is a dysfunctional State in the same way a traumatized adolescent becomes delinquent - repressed memories of, say, parental abuse create a paradox - a conflict between experience and ideal. The traumatic event becomes unresolvable because "parents do not behave that way!" Resolution is impossible without clear acknowledgement of the facts by both parties.
      Analogies are not valid arguments, they are simply illustrative. This one illustrates the nature of the problem as I see it. In my experience, no-one who becomes aware of the History of Palestine can remain unaware of a great injustice. While the Israeli education system continues to teach a false History, its behavior will become increasingly aberrant (as we are observing). As reality is more and more distorted, reactions become more unrealistic.
      There is only one way out.

  • Israeli plan to 'transfer' 300,000 Palestinians to West Bank is new normal -- Zoabi
    • JeffB can set Spencer to rights. According to him there are no universal moral criteria. What is moral and acceptable for Jews is not applicable to non-Jews. It is written thus and can only be questioned by a qualified Halachic scholar.
      White Zionism? Dream on. Ethnically pure States are the exclusive prerogative of "the people" as defined by the Torah. Logic that does not take this into account is herem. Gast your flabber if you will, one "people" alone, have earned this privilege through a special covenant with God (who makes different covenants with others) and by winning the all-time championship in the Oppressed Olympics (the African slave, Irish and Hindu contingents were disqualified - not mentioned in the Torah). This I have learned from JeffB.
      To sum up, White (whatever that means) Zionism is destined to fail because most of its potential audience are not racist and they have long forgotten Historic oppressions plus they do not have a covenant with God.

    • Transfer is in quotation marks to indicate irony. The apposite phrase is ethnically cleansed. That process began in 1947 and has never ceased despite the progression of the Zionist narrative as the truth comes out:
      1. We didn't do it, they ran away of their own accord.
      2. Well maybe we did but it was in the heat of battle.
      3. Well yes we did it deliberately but without it there could not have been a Jewish State.
      4. Everyone now knows so what the hell, let's do it openly.

  • A plea to Israel: Don't start the third Lebanon War
    • "The goal of the war was to depose the government of Lebanon and put in place a Christian government."
      Yep Aggressive War. Some guys were hanged at Nuremberg for that offense.

    • JonS.
      Thanks for the reply from which I deduce that you and I might have been able to advance understanding a little further than JeffB and I managed.
      Yes, it is in part " he speaks calmly , with a pleasant Australian accent." that so impacted on me (an antipodean). As I said, I have never quoted the likes of Ovadia Josef as typical (except to remind Islamophobes that intemperate rhetoric exists in fundamentalists of all stripes).
      It is the contrast between his urbane, reasonable-sounding delivery and the content of his address that gave me a jolt. I don't agree that one needs to be "qualified" (as Jeff asserts) to understand that what he says and backs up with copious scriptural references conflicts with contemporary notions of equality and Humanist values.
      I have had a quick look and bookmarked your link. Indeed there is some very good and universal sounding stuff that I can readily endorse. One question troubles me however, thanks to David Bar-Hayim. When a Rabbi makes a pronouncement regarding Human Rights, who does he mean by phrases such as "the people"? Is it humankind or the Jewish people?
      I think it is misunderstanding that distinction that leads many of us to argue at cross purposes.
      I think you may understand the nub of my question better than Jeff and why I think it important that this forum discuss it.
      Many of us are constantly astonished at the dis-proportionality of responses Israel makes to resistance and its refusal to acknowledge all that proceeds from the Nakba. David Bar-Hayim provides an answer that stems from a belief system. He states quite clearly that distinct rights and privileges apply to believers. Suddenly one understands why well-meaning people from both sides can arrive at an impasse. The sides have opposing, ingrained senses of what constitutes right and wrong - what the other side asserts is incomprehensible to the other because there is no shared sense of ultimate and all encompassing morality.
      That is why I think the question as to how deeply this alternative reality is embedded in the Israeli (not necessarily religious) psyche is an important one.
      As it stands, I now feel that in discussing what I consider inhumane in Israel's policies, I must not only point to barbarity but also explain why it is barbaric to people whose World-view is shaped by a belief system and culture that simply does not accept the universal application of such concepts.
      My previous assumption that "hey, we are all Humanists here" has been called into question by a respected Rabbi and teacher who clearly differs.
      I think I do understand the disputatious nature of Judaism. A Jewish friend (now long dead) once said: "You have seen pictures of bearded sages with the scrolls - they are arguing!" It made quite an impact on my thinking at the time as I was accustomed to thinking of a "Church" as a monolithic doctrinal structure.
      No doubt David Bar-Hayim has detractors within the religious community. My interest lies, not so much in them but in the extent to which these ideas have permeated society in general in the way that the Christian tradition, despite my atheism (Pantheism if you prefer) has permeated the very basic building blocks of my philosophy.

    • Obviously it is time for us to desist. It is useless for rationality to argue with the theism and obeisance to religious authority that rules your thinking. If you had stated at the very beginning that you are incapable of even expressing your personal opinion without reference to Biblical scholars we would not have come even this far. To conclude I will say this.

      I espouse no religion unless you count Pantheism which I interpret as the rule of nature. That is to say I believe that theism is simply one of the primitive attempts to understand the nature of the universe and it has failed in this endeavor. Its ability to predict reactions in the real World is far outpaced by a simple biologist who can explain leprosy and predict its course without reference to the supernatural. Embracing theism should surely be undertaken with a healthy dose of skepticism.
      Yet you do without qualm and you base your whole political scheme on it. What is more, you do so while acknowledging that you are not qualified to comment on matters concerning belief.
      So finally, unwilling or unable to debate without reference to arcane theistic authority that you confess to not understand, you resort to the anti-Semite smear.

      Took you a while.

      I beg to differ. This discourse has been enlightening.

    • "David Bar-Hayim’s influence is in your head. You introduced me to the guy. I’d never heard of him before."
      From what you have posted, your reluctance to criticize and your statement " God makes different covenants with different people" put the two of you on the exact same page.

      "An army operating on Lebanese soil was attacking Israel. That’s an act of war."
      You chaps need to get your stories straight. Ze'ev Maoz, Professor of Political Science at the University of California, and Distinguished Fellow at the Interdisciplinary Center, Herzliya, Israel tells us Israel invaded to 1) "Destroy the PLO infrastructure in Lebanon, including the PLO headquarters in Beirut." 2) "Drive Syrian forces out of Lebanon." 3) "Install a Christian-dominated government in Lebanon, with Bashir Gemayel as President." 4) "Sign a peace treaty with the Lebanese government that would solidify the informal Israeli-Christian alliance and convert it into a binding agreement. Sharon said it was an attack by Abu Nidal who was not even a member of the PLO.
      What ensued indicates that number 3 was the prime motive. Beirut was laid siege to and bombed for 7 weeks with a massive toll of Lebanese citizens killed and injured.
      PLO activity was minimal in the months leading up to the invasion. The Wikipedia article is long but reasonably accurate (emphasis mine):
      "In his report for the period of 12 December 1980 to 12 June 1981 on UNIFIL activities, the Security Council Secretary General noted that infiltrations into the border zone by Palestinian armed forces had decreased relative to the previous six months.[32] In contrast the IDF had launched various attacks on Lebanese territory often in support of the Lebanese Christian militia. In doing so Israel had violated UN Security Council resolution 425 on hundreds of occasions [paragraph 58]. Where the initiator(s) of attacks could be identified in the report, in 15 cases Palestinian militants were to blame while on 23 occasions the Militia and/or the IDF were the instigators, the latter also being responsible for the most violent confrontation of the period on 27 April [paragraph 52].

      In the subsequent period 16 June to 10 December 1981,[33] a relative quiet was reported continuing from 29 May 1981 until 10 July. This was broken when "Israeli aircraft resumed strikes against targets in southern Lebanon north of the UNIFIL area. (The Israeli strikes) led to exchanges of heavy firing between armed elements (Palestinians), on the one hand, and IDF and the de facto forces (Christian Militia) on the other. On 13 and 14 July, widespread Israeli air-strikes continued. Armed elements (Palestinians) fired into the enclave and northern Israel." Israeli-initiated attacks had led to rocket and artillery fire on northern Israel. This pattern continued in the coming days.

      Israel renewed its air strikes in an attempt to trigger a war that would allow it to drive out the PLO and restore peace to the region.[34] On 17 July, the Israel Air Force launched a massive attack on PLO buildings in downtown Beirut. "Perhaps as many as three hundred died, and eight hundred were wounded, the great majority of them civilians."[35] The Israeli army also heavily targeted PLO positions in south Lebanon without success in suppressing Palestinian rocket launchers and guns. As a result, thousands of Israeli citizens who resided near the Lebanese border headed south. There patterns of Israeli-initiated airstrikes and Palestinian retaliations with attacks on northern Israel are in contrast with the official Israeli version "A ceasefire declared in July 1981 was broken: the terrorists continued to carry out attacks against Israeli targets in Israel and abroad, and the threat to the northern settlements became unbearable."[36]

      On 24 July 1981, United States Undersecretary of State Philip Habib brokered a ceasefire badly needed by both parties,[33] the best achievable result from negotiations via intermediaries, aimed at complying with the decisions of UN Security Council resolution 490. The process was complicated, requiring "shuttle diplomacy between Damascus, Jerusalem, and Beirut, United States. Philip Habib concluded a ceasefire across the Lebanon border between Israel and the PLO. Habib could not talk to the PLO directly because of Kissinger's directive, so he used a Saudi member of the royal family as mediator. The agreement was oral – nothing could be written down since Israel and the PLO did not recognize each other and refused to negotiate with each other – but they came up with a truce. ... Thus the border between Lebanon and Israel suddenly stabilized after over a decade of routine bombing."[37]

      Between July 1981 and June 1982, as a result of the Habib ceasefire, the Lebanese-Israeli border "enjoyed a state of calm unprecedented since 1968."[23] But the 'calm' was tense. US Secretary of State, Alexander Haig filed a report with US President Ronald Reagan on Saturday 30 January 1982 that revealed Secretary Haig's fear that Israel might, at the slightest provocation, start a war against Lebanon.[38]

      The 'calm' lasted nine months. Then, on 21 April 1982, after a landmine killed an Israeli officer while he was visiting a South Lebanese Army gun emplacement in Taibe, Lebanon, the Israeli Air Force attacked the Palestinian-controlled coastal town of Damour, killing 23 people.[39] Fisk reports further on this incident: "The Israelis did not say what the soldier was doing ... I discovered that he was visiting one of Haddad's artillery positions (Christian militia) and that the mine could have been lain [sic] as long ago as 1978, perhaps even by the Israelis themselves"."

      "The Lebanese army killed Lebanese residents on Lebanese soil. Sure Israel knew about it. But I’d say your sense of responsibility is a bit off."
      Israel's allies, the Phalangists did the wet work while the IDF had Sabra and Shatila under siege. They had to pass through IDF lines to do it. That Israel was responsible is not in dispute - Sharon was forced to resign over the matter.

      "The right to invade attacking nations. Lebanon choose to engage Israel. I agree it was stupid."
      We have just seen in the Wikipedia article that the attacking prior to the invasion was done by Israel with very little retaliation from the PLO.

      "Yes. The Palestinians army operating on Lebanese soil was causing them trouble. Lebanon never should have permitted such a thing."
      The Palestinians didn't have an army.

      "The government of Israel says otherwise. As far as I’m concerned government has right to determine title."
      International Law says otherwise. Oh, I forgot. A Jew can claim title to a non-Jew's property right? I guess that goes for a Jewish Government also. Again you show solidarity with David Bar-Hayim.

      "They were driven out of Jordan into Lebanon by the Jordanians because they tried to flip the government."
      They were in Jordan because they had been driven out of their homes by murder and rapine perpetrated by Zionists.

      "Those people are mostly dead of old age. If you mean their descendants. Israel has agreed to go 51st in correcting mass deportations from generations ago. Just get 50 other countries involved to put it right and Israel will go next. Let’s start with the USA returning the country to the natives."
      Unbelievable coming from one who legitimizes the Zionist project citing a 2,000 year old fictitious expulsion.

    • JeffB.
      None of the links you provide offer any such prohibition. In fact they all give carte blanche by the simple trick of defining the type of War. The only prohibition without qualification seems to be against the destruction of fruit trees and poisoning of wells - a prohibition that is breached almost daily in the West Bank and Gaza.
      The Wikipedia entry contains this:
      "In 2007, Mordechai Eliyahu, the former Sephardi Chief Rabbi of Israel wrote that "there was absolutely no moral prohibition against the indiscriminate killing of civilians during a potential massive military offensive on Gaza aimed at stopping the rocket launchings".[60] His son, Shmuel Eliyahu chief rabbi of Safed, called for the "carpet bombing" of the general area from which the Kassams were launched, to stop rocket attacks on Israel, saying "This is a message to all leaders of the Jewish people not to be compassionate with those who shoot [rockets] at civilians in their houses." he continued, "If they don't stop after we kill 100, then we must kill 1,000. And if they don't stop after 1,000, then we must kill 10,000. If they still don't stop we must kill 100,000. Even a million. Whatever it takes to make them stop."[60]

      An influential Chabad Lubavitch Hassid rabbi Manis Friedman in 2009 was quoted as saying: "I don’t believe in western morality, i.e. don’t kill civilians or children, don’t destroy holy sites, don’t fight during holiday seasons, don’t bomb cemeteries, don’t shoot until they shoot first because it is immoral. The only way to fight a moral war is the Jewish way: Destroy their holy sites. Kill men, women and children""

      Your remarks on the Rabbinic courts serve only to cloud the issue and I am alarmed at this:
      "I’m not a Rabbi. I’m not qualified. And I haven’t studied the source material enough to have an informed opinion."
      - since I asked you where you personally stand with regard to David Bar-Hayim’s interpretation of the Torah and History. That is a pretty simple question that requires you to set aside Rabbinical guidance and confines the source material to the dicta found in the video which I presume you have watched and which is notable for its clarity.
      I can only conclude that you are hedging or so deeply immersed in a cult that you do not feel qualified to consult your own reasoning - the very definition of cultish behavior. This answer indicates that I should take David Bar-Hayim at his word for he is so qualified. We have therefore not advanced this discussion because his pronouncement of the written word conflicts with you statement: "Jews don’t claim a divine right to steal or kill non-members" - he says very clearly that they do.

      "God makes different covenants with different people"
      Well there we have David Bar-Hayim's philosophy in a nutshell. Precisely what you have argued against. One law for Jews, different laws for others.

      This post has only served to increase my alarm at the role Judaism has in Israel's abrogation of Universal Human Rights and disregard for the Laws of War. My only positive takeaway is an improved understanding as to why Zionists constantly accuse others of barbarity while utterly denying their own - God made a different deal.

    • "The airlift didn’t affect ’73."

      "Fortunately the airlift came just in time for Israeli ground forces to stabilize their positions and eventually turn the tide in the Sinai and Golan Heights. And it was all made possible by an operation that dwarfed the Berlin Airlift .."
      - Walter J. Boyne, Director of the National Air and Space Museum of the Smithsonian Institution

      Speaking in Washington three weeks after the cease-fire, Golda Meir said that, “For generations to come, all will be told of the miracle of the immense planes from the United States bringing in the material that meant life to our people.”

    • "key mistake was underestimating the Syrians / Hezbollah in 1983"
      Hezbollah did not exist as anything but anger in 1983. It was a direct result of Israel's invasion of 1982:
      " It was our presence there (1982) that created Hezbollah" - Ehud Barak.

      It is astounding to read what you fellows write. It is as if all that David Bar-Hayim says is so deeply ingrained that you cannot even conceive that Israel might be wrong, that its actions might have consequences.
      Israel invaded Lebanon on trumped up charges in 1982 and slaughtered 20-30 thousand indiscriminately. The massacres at Sabra and Shatila massacre were atrocities, huge crimes for which Israel was responsible. What were they thinking? By what possible right did they unilaterally invade a militarily weak sovereign nation? Because the Palestinians were causing them trouble?
      Let me remind you that the Palestinians, to this day, legally own most of the land Israelis occupy. They were driven from their homes at gunpoint and forced to become refugees in camps in Lebanon. You pull a stunt like that, trouble is what you get.
      You write as if none of that happened.

      I doubt whether you can comprehend how bizarre a sentence like:
      "Obviously Israel handled Lebanon poorly it went from a relatively friendly country to a hostile one between the 1930s-1990s." sounds to someone who lives in the real World where laws and rights are equally distributed.

      Every single situation Israel faces is a direct consequence of its illegal and immoral actions in dispossessing a million indigenous people. Put that right and the vast majority of Israel's problems will fade - plus it just might survive the next decade without a major War.

    • The game has changed considerably. In 1967, when Israel made its surprise attack, Egypt's main forces were bogged down in Yemen and Israel popped its air force before the off. In '73, only the largest airlift in History saved Israel.
      Times change, tactics and armaments change. Israel doesn't like casualties, has always depended on heavy armour and air strikes. Hezbollah countered the former in 2006 and is now better equipped to deal with the latter plus it now has longer range missiles - can probably reach Tel Aviv - I don't have much confidence in "Iron Dome".
      The layout of the map today favors asymmetric warfare. Fighting yesterdays wars has been the downfall of just about every army in History.

    • As the map changes, the nuclear option becomes less viable. At present there are numerous, de-centralised battle-hardened groups close to Israel's borders. If Jordan falls into line, Israel is virtually surrounded. It could possibly prevail in the short term using nukes but they will not help on the ensuing battlefield and with the inevitable backlash in World opinion.

      Furthermore, should Israel nuke Tehran, Beirut, or Damascus, consider what the response might be from Pakistan, Russia and the entire Muslim World. It is well-named "The Samson Option". The U.S. public will balk at Armageddon - not sure about the unpredictable administration.

    • "I’ve never understood why the Lebanese Christians and Druze tolerate the Shia dragging them into endless wars with Israel "
      One reason might be because Israel began bombing Lebanese civilians regardless of religious affiliation long before the Shia in the South unified under the Hezbollah banner. 2006 changed a lot of Lebanese attitudes to Hezbollah which is now a substantial part of the Lebanese Government with (I think) 13 seats in Parliament.
      You need to remember that over half of Lebanon is Muslim and many Christians and Druze are not sympathetic to Israel. Civilian bombing can change attitudes dramatically.

    • "Except that Rabbis do oppose the bombing of civilians. "
      I have not seen evidence of this. Can you link me please.

      "A rabbinic court doesn’t mean as much as you might think."
      I have always assumed they are equivalent to Sharia courts - ruling on ecclesiastical matters and disputes between parties who consent to their authority. Is that a fair assessment? To what extent are their rulings binding on all believers? How fragmented is Judaism?

      I am very curious as to where you, JonS and other pro-Zionist posters stand with regard to David Bar-Hayim's interpretation of the Torah and History. I have not yet seen you dismiss his dicta. I can say unequivocally that I find his interpretation repugnant and his History risible. Can you? How widespread is this notion that divine law is selective, i.e one law for Jews, another for Gentiles?
      To me it seems a denial of mono-theism - there is one God for Jews and another (or none) for the rest. That conclusion is at odds with Islam, Christianity and even Pantheism. It calls for a radical re-assessment of attitudes towards Judaism by those groups does it not? One disastrous outcome of that would be the legitimization of anti-Semitism for it is illogical to oppose a group purely for its blood or lineage, less so to oppose a group that claims divine right to steal from or kill non-members.

      One law for all is to me, the very foundation of Humanist thought and progress - I had considered it axiomatic.

    • "Hezbollah and Iran have been threatening such for decades."
      Codswallop.
      The Iranian administration and Hezbollah have been playing a purely defensive game since and because of their respective nascences (unless you bought the totally bogus "wipe off the map" BS).
      Some have argued that David Bar-Hayim's elucidation of the halachic (if that is the right word) injunctions I posted above does not reflect mainstream Israeli thought but what could better illustrate that barbaric mindset more than the Israeli campaign to inveigle the U.S. into a pre-emptive attack on Iran?
      The "fanatical tyrant mullahs" and the "tyrant nasrallah" have demonstrated unbelievable restraint and sanity during this period of what must have been immensely threatening, Israel-inspired, wars against their near neighbors. If the Israeli administration was equally sane it would realize that the Samson option is no longer viable. They played their remaining card in Syria and lost. The enemy is now too close for nukes without unsustainable losses to battle-hardened ground troops on Israeli soil. Their only option is to make peace and that starts with the Palestinians - the option lying idle since 1948.

    • Israel's strategy of fomenting War has been plain for all to see for decades:

      "Israeli strategists have long wished to balkanize the Middle East to make it easier for Israel to dominate the region. These efforts to break up the surrounding nations into smaller units were described by Moshe Sharett in the 1950s, by Yinon Oded in the 1980s, and more recently by the neocons in the Clean Break document. (See this article for more details.)

      Since dismembering Iraq has long been desired, it is no surprise to learn of Israel’s role in assisting the Kurdish independence movement."
      https://israelpalestinenews.org/secret-friendship-behind-israels-support-kurdish-independence/

      American politicians, nourished by Lobby funds, have been ready accomplices:
      http://dissidentvoice.org/Apr06/Blankfort11.htm

    • JeffB.
      I am not in the habit of posting the ravings of radicals for the very reason you reference - all sects have their fringe elements and it is an error to attribute their views to the majority.
      I posted the lecture by HaRav David Bar-Hayim because this was the first occasion I had come across what appears to be a mainstream, calm and seemingly reasonable voice explaining, with detailed references to scripture, why Rabbis do not oppose the bombing of civilians.
      Wikipedia tells us that HaRav David Bar-Hayim is:
      "an Israeli Orthodox rabbi who heads the Shilo Institute (Machon Shilo), a Jerusalem-based rabbinical court and institute of Jewish education......., he initially studied in Yeshivat HaKotel, and subsequently in Merkaz Harav Kook in Jerusalem. He studied under Rabbi Moshe Zuriel, and received rabbinic ordination from Rabbi Yosef Kapach.
      For a number of years, Bar-Hayim taught Talmud, Halakha, and Jewish philosophy in Yeshivat Nahalath Tzvi......In 2006, Bar-Hayim founded the Shilo Institute for the research, elucidation, and dissemination of the Torah of Israel.......Recently, Bar-Hayim established the Beth HaVa'ad rabbinical court to focus on actualizing the Torah of Israel and serve as an address for gentiles, particularly the growing Noahide community."

      I have yet to establish what position these institutions and individuals occupy on the spectrum of Israeli thought but I think that question is important and one that this forum should seriously consider.
      The "whataboutery" of some obscure Christian sect is a lame, irrelevant response. David Bar-Hayim appears to be mainstream, the audience was totally acquiescent, the Biblical references appear to totally support his argument. What can you tell us about him and the extent to which his view is reflected in mainstream Israeli thought?
      Here he is expounding some widely held shibboleths (Mark Twain, Joan Peters etc):

    • Thank you Catalan. As you will probably know, I have always leveled my criticism at "Zionism" and its political supporters and studiously avoided lumping Judaism in with it.
      I can't tell you how deeply this lecture has affected my current thinking. Although I now have no affiliation, I grew up in the Christian tradition which taught me not to even imagine that other belief systems could be - there is no other word for it - intrinsically evil. I had thought that no matter the creed or color, a basic humanity linked us all. HaRav David Bar-Hayim has dispersed that notion.
      I am still reeling.

    • Absolutely correct Keith. All Israeli military leave was canceled three months before Hezbollah grabbed two IDF who were, if memory serves, over the line.
      That it is militarily possible to launch such an attack at short notice is total fiction. "Kidnapping" soldiers is a quaint use of the term!
      The lecture by HaRav David Bar-Hayim above explains the situation very clearly. Unprovoked attacks are not only sanctioned, they are mandated by Jewish religious doctrine because all non-Jewish are a threat - per se. Carpet and nuclear bombing of civilians is perfectly fine because "we are right!"
      How can one reason with an ideology that claims a God-given right to kill innocents ? Hitherto I had thought this the preserve of fundamentalist loonies but when one listens to this fellow's reasoning one realizes the problem is in the heart of a moral scheme that pays no heed to universal concepts of justice and humanity.
      I am coming closer to Gilad Atzmon's view that the problem lies within Judaism itself, not just its offshoot, Zionism. When one listens to HaRav David Bar-Hayim, Zionism begins to appear as the inevitable expression of a deeply xenophobic belief system.

    • Of course there will be War.
      A religious ideology that sanctions the killing of, not just opponents, but any or all non-members of its lunatic cult on the grounds that they might pose a threat will always be at War. Add the fact that this particular cult takes theft as a fundamental, exclusive right and there will be perpetual War until either the cult is quashed or all non-members are killed or enslaved.
      I have sometimes cited the ravings of such as Ovadia Yosef as examples of overblown murderous rhetoric but had never considered taking them seriously until viewing this lecture by HaRav David Bar-Hayim.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=2155&v=6cePM18Yvp8

      In beautifully modulated cadence he lays it all out referencing scripture to back the thesis that all non-Jews are to be treated as snakes - killed because they might be venomous. He then teaches us that the sages ruled that theft of non-Jewish property (by a Jew) need not be restored to its owner because a Jew will use his ill-gotten gains for the benefit of humanity.

      There is a massive flaw in this primitive reasoning of course and I thought it confined to the lunatic orthodox fringes. The above video makes it chillingly clear that this ideology is more mainstream that I had ever dreamed however. It will be interesting to see if any posters choose to defend this psychopath.

  • UN takes first concrete step to hold Israel accountable for violating Palestinian human rights
    • I am sincerely interested in hearing your assessment as to the extent HaRav David Bar-Hayim's lecture reflects Israeli thought. You and I have our differences regarding History and Historiography but I have detected a common humanity and therefore respect your opinion.
      I may be over-reacting but there is something in his delivery that is at once so reasonable sounding yet perverse.

    • Enlightenment. For an extraordinary insight into the why the Zionist ideology cannot understand the non-Jewish World:
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=2155&v=6cePM18Yvp8

      Nothing I have ever seen compares with this presentation.
      Phil, Annie, whoever, please put it up as a lead.

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