Commenter Profile

Total number of comments: 49 (since 2012-06-25 16:50:34)

American convert to Shia Islam.

Website: raceforiran.com

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  • The best U.S. 'strategy' to combat ISIS? Stop supporting religious states
  • CNN headline: "100 people killed today in Israel, Gaza fighting"
    • American: "Israel is a threat to America –at least the America this group/generation thought they knew and sacrificed for—once they learn the truth about this they are incensed."

      I agree and believe this is a good tactic on which to focus limited energy. Convince the Tea Partiers, random patriots, and fly-over America of the threat that Israel is to the United States. Convince enough of them, and the discourse on Israel in America shifts from being dominated by Jews to one being dominated by patriots. Once they are convinced, they will provide the energy to move the rest of America. This will be good for America, good for the Palestinians, and, no doubt kicking and screaming the whole way, this will be good for the Israelis.

  • Haaretz joins Rush Limbaugh and company in trying to link Max Blumenthal to KC shooter suspect
    • Donald,

      "Can you imagine how the US press and government would react if Israelis had trouble obtaining medicine? It’s a back page story for Iran–if it was done to Israel then the BDS movement would be the Second Coming of Adolf Hitler. "

      How do you extract general principles/guidelines out of an inequality in power among any set of activists? Palestinian request for sanctions against Israel is okay because the activists are not powerful and could never hurt Israelis enough to matter. On the other hand, Israeli request for sanctions against Iran is NOT okay because the Israeli activists (and their counterparts in the world at large) are powerful and can actually hurt Iranians. What i am hearing is that sanctions against one nation are only valid if those who desire the sanctions could never harm the target country to a considerable degree to begin with.

      In a free society, an activist can support whatever cause he or she wants. The problem though is that the success of that cause is not necessarily a function of the righteousness of that cause. Case in point: Zionists in America. Most here would say the cause is unjust, and yet look just how successful their cause is.

      If you want to limit the power of Zionist activism, then you have to change the paradigm for activism generally. If you want to prevent the ability of powerful groups within powerful governments to do injustice in the world, then you have to curtail the power of groups generally, not just the powerful ones. Activist groups calling for siege warfare against nations in my view is not the function of citizens, but rather the function of accountable officials within government deliberating on a clear and present danger to the country's security. There is no clear and present danger that Iran poses to the US, and so the sanctions against Iran (i.e. siege warfare) are unjust and Israeli friends in America should not be able to bring those sanctions about.

      The clear and present danger posed to America by Israeli actions towards Palestinians is a matter of fact to me, but to me that means American officials, not American activists, need to deliberate (with the voices of the citizenry allowed in that deliberation) what needs to be done about it. And yes, American officials are failing that deliberation, in no small part due to the corruption of the American system by rich and powerful activists. Activists got us into the Iraq war, activists have succeeded in their sanctions war against Iran and have almost succeeded in launching a hot war with Iran, and now those against the abuse of power that enables such warmongering are now trying to add on to that activist corruption through their BDS? NGOs (or even NG non-Os) have no business declaring war. The only check and balance in this set-up is defined by those who have money and those who don't.

      If an activist wants to encourage the international and Israeli recognition of Palestinian human rights, an act of war (sanctions) is not the way to go about that, it is just not the mandate of the citizenry.

    • Ali Abunimah, rather. typo, or dyslexia.

    • Ellen,
      The difference in various sanctions regimes then is in the amount of social, media, and political power any one group has towards their government? Where would the Iran sanctions be without the concerted efforts of the friends of Israel in the US media to demonize Iran? Where would those sanctions be if those same friends did not wield the undue influence they have in the US congress and State Department?

      If American supporters of BDS could influence the US government towards its own direction, would they do so? How harsh should those sanctions be if it could do so (gain official US support), and who in charge of BDS would temper the sanctions if a few punishing sanctions were passed against Israel? Should sanctions against only some Israeli imports/exports be enough, or would BDS supporters go full throttle with all sanctions conceivable until Israel capitulated? Which medicines should be sanctioned? Which banks should be sanctioned? Whose bank accounts frozen, what technologies halted, which foodstuffs prevented from entering Israel? Who determines when enough is enough, Ali Abuminah?

      The whole idea of economic sanctions rests on collective punishment--make a society hurt badly enough and eventually (so the theory goes) the domestic political pressure in that society will force the target government to change its undesirable ways (undesirable to this or that grass-roots group who may or may not have political power in their respective national governments).

      So to me the argument needs to be made why collective punishment is moral. Collective punishment is not okay against the Palestinians, so why is it okay against the Israelis? Why is it okay against Iran? Against Cuba?

  • Friedman prepares American Jews for a divorce from zealot Israel
    • pabelmont,

      Without American cover for Israeli crimes, without American billions pouring into Israel on a regular basis, without American Zionist media moguls dictating the MSM discourse, how effective would Israel's colossal bluff been all these decades? Take away the gun, and the Israelis have no more gun to shoot.

      Why not then sanction Americans for our necessary and sufficient support of the continuation of Israeli crimes? Aren't Americans, Zionist or not, every bit as culpable as Israelis themselves? Instead of supporting collective punishment in the form of BDS, why not direct all this energy to ending criminal American support, financial or otherwise, to the apartheid state? BDS is a short-cut to the real problem--mis-directed wealth and power, along with lies, lies and more lies, in the American social and political fabric. Without criminal American support, Israel is cut down to size and would be forced to make peace or die.

  • How we can oppose the Assad regime and Western intervention at the same time
    • "This transcript verifies the allegation of Saudi Government support of ISIS in Syria. While mainstream media has never directly acknowledged this fact, this evidence directly ties the ruling Al Saud family with terrorist and extremist organization fighting in Syria."

      link to networkedblogs.com

      Omar is asking American citizens and liberals of the world to support wahhabi terrorism. We get thrown in jail for that, don't you know Omar?

    • Don't you have livers to eat, Omar?

      Maybe the reason the American public did not support you cannibals is because we are sick of your intolerance, sick of your lies, and sick of your insurrection. Yours is not a revolution, a revolution needs no help, a revolution is momentum and your side has none. This conflict has been manufactured from the beginning, whatever grievances Syrians may have have been tragically magnified by your insurrection.

      No more wars for ME dictators. No more wars for would be dictators, no more wars for cannibals.

      You have not defeated Assad, so quit asking us to behave as if you did.

  • In response to ASA boycott vote, Lawrence Summers calls academic boycotts 'abhorrent' and then calls for a boycott of the ASA
    • Mr. Summers indirectly admits to the presence of human rights abuses in Israel, but justifies those abuses because other nations also abuse.

      Where would the Enlightenment have taken Western civilization if reason and logic were rejected because other nations are irrational?

      this man's reasoning is absurd. 100% Hasbara as i know it.

      Israel never has to make peace with its neighbors.

      Israel, as sure as the US dollar, has unlimited resources to continue to fight their never-ending-war against their neighbors. Israel's never-ending-war strategy against their neighbors is built upon the need to keep those neighbors weak and impoverished so as to allow Israel and its US shadow to dominate a region in which they are severely outnumbered. By snuffing out the progress and hope of the nations surrounding Israel, Israel attempts to humiliate its neighbors into submission. Israel in its actions proves itself to be an anti-modern, retrograde force.

      Most importantly regarding this anti-modern strategy of Israel to keep its neighbors weak is that without US diplomatic, economic, military and ACADEMIC support of Israel, Israel would be forced to make peace with its neighbors as it would not have anywhere near the power to entertain themselves with the never-ending-war strategy of thiers.

      Therefore Americans are directly responsible for what happens in Israel and the Occupied Territories of Palestine. Americans are directly responsible for what happens in Afghanistan, at Abu Gharaib and Guantanamo, in countless other places across the globe where our drones obliterate the lives of people about whom we have no understanding.

      Where is America to go when so many of America's brightest, most promising intellectuals get led by people like Mr. Summers who hold such anti-modern, retrograde views? All in the name of Zionism, at the expense of the Enlightenment and anything that might be good in modernity.

  • A Thanksgiving from Hell -- US 'native foods' at the UN feature Snickers and Oreos
    • If only Sam Walton were here to see the success of his cultural coup d'état! Cheap cheap cheap cheap cheap cheap cheap cheap! Didn't the Americans invent the internet and i phones?

  • Israel and its apologists can no longer defend the country on its merits, instead they must try to suppress debate
    • No good can come of Israel until they achieve a fair and lasting peace with the Palestinians. Until then, Israel is a nation of authoritarian occupiers blinded by the delusions of their ideology, thinking themselves a democracy all the while stealing the life, liberty and vote of the people they occupy.

      Added to all this of course is the stranglehold the friends of Israel have over American government policy and the corporate discourse. As Israel creates is tiered society with second and third class citizens, as well as non-citizens, clearly the friends of Israel, if they really want to be effective, need to reverse the American civil rights movement and roll-back the gains for minorities and out-groups everywhere. And surely since 9/11, isn't that what we have seen?

      If 9/11 (and the ensuant erosion of the public's rights, especially certain ethnic groups) was good for Israel, does that mean Rosa Parks and the Montgomery Bus Movement were bad for Israel?

      It sure as hell looks like it from my vantage point.

    • When have the Israelis ever been able to defend Israel on the basis of its own merits? When have the Israelis and their friends NOT tried to deceive and rewrite history to fit their own unjust ambitions? Was there once a time when Israel and their friends were noble and good? What decade?

  • Kerry reassures Israel as Congress grumbles about a deal
    • From the Times article:

      "“There is a fundamental difference of understanding between this Israeli government and this U.S. administration, and it’s reflecting in the reality that’s emerging on a variety of tracks,” said Jonathan Spyer, a senior research fellow at the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya, Israel. “This Israeli government, even though it won’t say so openly, regards this administration as bungling across the Middle East.”"

      This is some pretty tortured phrasing by Mr. Spyer. He should say it like it is, that there is a fundamental difference in understanding between Israel the Nation, and America the Nation, to say nothing about the governments. The American Nation, domestically, is on a trajectory to realize more, not less, of our liberal ideals. Can this be said of Israel the Nation? Ethnic cleansing and tiered citizenship are not liberal ideals. It wasn't until America the Nation gave up our own domestic ethnic cleansing and our own slaves and second class citizens that we could begin to reverse our own downward spiral to disenlightenment. How many decades before enough momentum can be created in Israeli society to bring them out of the spiral of their own racist dogma? How long before Americans drop this dead weight? Israel is nothing like America.

  • Reports say peace process is 'fantasy' and 'worst' since Oslo-- but blame falls on Israel this time
    • Yeah right, like Palestine has anything to offer Israel. These negotiations have been doomed from the start. I blame Turkey, Egypt and Iran for not sitting at the table with the Palestinians, and I blame the Palestinians for not insisting that representatives from Turkey, Egypt, and Iran sit at the table with Palestine and be included in the negotiations. It has long been known that the US cannot be an impartial actor in the peace process, so why does Palestine keep falling for the ruse? The negotiating table itself is not balanced. Other Middle Eastern powers will balance it out. Expecting the US to play a neutral role keeps everyone locked into this insanity.

  • Dennis Ross says US must undertake 'new military deployments' against Iran and support Israel if it strikes
    • it is predictable that the ross solution is to increase pressure, essential as it is to "coercive diplomacy".

      if the Ross trio are speaking for the Israelis, it appears a total end to enrichment is no longer an Israeli demand:

      "This will require limits on size and enrichment level of its uranium stockpile, number and type of operating and installed centrifuges, design of enrichment facilities and possible plutonium production at the Arak heavy-water reactor."

  • Journalists should tell their readers if they're Zionists
    • Who oh who is buried in Grant's tomb?

      I always assume a mainstream American journalist is a zionist until there is evidence to the contrary.

      Is America's Zionist media Zionist?

      Yes.

  • Corey Robin calls on American Jews to reflect on their 'power and status' and deep differences with Israeli Jews
    • Kathleen,

      "
      Come on the media etc have never allowed the people around the world to not know about the power and status that Jews have attained throughout the world.” In fact this tribal promotion has been persistent, often exaggerated and in many ways gross. NPR andTerri Gross being a few of the big promoters."

      Power is in large part mental, so their narcissism serves a function. Unfortunately these people forgot their principles along the way. Consciously or unconsciously, they are aware of the shallow and artificial nature of Israel's power. They think they are helping Israel (and themselves) with their sensationalism, but in reality they are enabling the Israeli nation's deluded world view. Gross and the others have let their self-service and tribal mentality ruin America's media and misguide their home government's foreign policy on the grounds that it is good for Israel (and their careers).

  • Obama and Netanyahu discuss the colonial question of questions on Iran
  • Netanyahu is the wolf in wolf's clothing
    • Yes Kathleen, exactly right. The propaganda has been piled on so thick over the decades we may need some paint stripper to clean up the discourse. No equivalancy in actions at all between Israel and Iran, none.

  • Major 'NYT' piece calls two-state negotiations 'phony'--and catastrophic
    • Freud on illusions:

      Freud defines religion as an illusion, consisting of "certain dogmas, assertions about facts and conditions of external and internal reality which tell one something that one has not oneself discovered, and which claim that one should give them credence." Religious concepts are transmitted in three ways and thereby claim our belief. "Firstly because our primal ancestors already believed them; secondly, because we possess proofs which have been handed down to us from antiquity, and thirdly because it is forbidden to raise the question of their authenticity at all." Psychologically speaking, these beliefs present the phenomena of wish fulfillment, "fulfillments of the oldest, strongest, and most urgent wishes of mankind." (Ch. 6 pg.38). Among these are the necessity to cling to the existence of the father, the prolongation of earthly existence by a future life, and the immortality of the human soul. To differentiate between an illusion and an error, Freud lists scientific beliefs such as "Aristotle's belief that vermin are developed out of dung" (pg.39) as errors, but "the assertion made by certain nationalists that the Indo-Germanic race is the only one capable of civilization" is an illusion, simply because of the wishing involved. Put forth more explicitly, "what is characteristic of illusions is that they are derived from human wishes." (pg. 39) He adds, however, that, "Illusions need not necessarily be false." (pg.39) He gives the example of a middle-class girl having the illusion that a prince will marry her. While this is unlikely, it is not impossible. The fact that it is grounded in her wishes is what makes it an illusion."

      link to en.wikipedia.org

      In order for a more perfect illusion to come about in Israel-Palestine, the "wishes" of the various groups must be aligned. The "Jewish State" might be a "wish" in Zionist lore, but it does not resolve with populations on the ground. Democracy is first and foremost about inclusion, without inclusion you do not have democracy. The creation dis-autonomous enclaves in a Swiss cheese fashion in Palestine is not inclusion and is not democracy. It is an impossible illusion.

  • AIPAC on an island: 'Politico' report says Israel lobby alone in pushing for war in Syria
    • What IS the objection to bringing Syria before the International Criminal Court?

      If the US government utilized the Court in such a high profile case, would that then expose the US government itself to the rulings of the court? Will it expose Israel? Is this why the US government is not suggesting this route instead of immediately resorting to cruise missiles?

      "Punishment" could come from the court, couldn't it?

      (some questions for those knowledgeable in law)
      (

    • The Lobby is now caught in the headlights. If they back down and do not press for US military action, the untouchable lobby will have been defeated. If they succeed in getting this war started, they get all the blame for the war and its destructive effects. Lose lose for Israel.

  • Mainstream press openly addresses Israel lobby's role in US policy re Syria
    • I agree, but she is on the defensive with the "American lobby" blurb. She knows more and more Americans are aware that this lobby she speaks of is actually Israeli. But even that couldn't be said without the bs comment by Ari Shavit:

      "Ari Shavit, a columnist for the left-leaning daily newspaper Haaretz, said that Israel and others in the Middle East were being left with a “feeling of orphans,” wondering “if there is still a reliable parent in Washington who is really committed, who understands what’s going on and who is willing to act.”"

      I don't know about the children in DC, but the adults in the rest of America are wising up to what is really going on in Palestine. We know, and it is not good for Israel and its current projectory.

      I saw waay too much of Bill Kristol extolling the virtues of war over the weekend on MSNBC and CNN. All he wants to do is get the damn war started, confident he is the initial chaos will inevitably lead to Israel's desired war of aggression against Iran. After his aiding and abetting the Iraq war, why are not he and his neo-con and liberal zionist ideas consigned to the dustbin of history?

  • D.C. thinktank pushing Iran war got $19 million in one year from Israel supporters
    • What a bunch of liars. Why is there never any accountability on these people? Their lies lead to wars which end up killing thousands and millions of people, and still no accountability. That the neo-cons have any influence beyond the darkest corners of the net is beyond wonder.

      Excerpts from Christiane Ammanpour's interview of Mohammad Javad Larijani in March of 2012:

      Christiane Amanpour : The Prime Minister of Israel believes that Iran has a nuclear weapons intent, and one that will be aimed at Israel. Therefore, this talk and this feeling of crisis and war is all around.

      Is Iran preparing for war?

      Mohammad Javad Larijani: We are fully prepared to defend ourselves. And everybody knows in the region that Iran is not an aggressor but Iran is a fierce defender. ..Netanyahu should be worried about the policies in the region. They are in real crisis. I think the real, the real bomb is not the atomic bomb of Iran, the real bomb is the great failure of Israel to prove its legitimacy and to define meaningful relation in the region.

      Amanpour: Meantime, everybody talks about what President Ahamdinejad said a few years ago, that Israel should be wiped from the face of the map. People believe that that means militarily. Is that what the President meant? Is that Iran's intent?

      Larijani: Definitely not. I think neither the president meant that nor is that the policy of Iran.

  • Obama seems to think the road to Tehran runs through Jerusalem
    • The hyped up Iranian nuclear threat has been a diversion all along by the PM of Israel to take American focus off the illegal settlements and the decades long occupation of Palestine by Israel.

      As the President said, it would be difficult for Israel to negotiate when under immediate threat. How convenient then for Netanyahu to keep hyping the so-called Iranian threat. The greater the external threat, the less pressure there is on Israel to make peace with its neighbors.

      So i agree, peace in Palestine is the answer to an agreement with Iran (not to mention it being the answer to many other things in the Middle East). An agreement will be an end to occupation, with an end to occupation Israelis will no longer "need" to divert attention from it.

  • Netanyahu says Iran threatens US mainland, and AIPAC and Congress cowboy up for war
    • Apparently no one gave the Prime Minister the memo that his September performance at the UN was a flop. lol.

      Benjamin Netanyahu, the leader of a foreign government is advising agents of that government (AIPAC) to push America into a war neither the American President nor the American people want. This is extremely foul behavior. Our politicians should be having hernias over this man's ingratitude toward the security guarantees the American nation provides to Israel. And to be urging us into a war that would be financially and militarily disastrous for America. Who is the real enemy here? Some person of high standing should lecture Mr. Netanyahu about how damaging his incessant war crying is to Israeli interests in the US.

      If anyone thinks the Iraq war was a disaster for the US position in the region, an Iran war will end in a tenfold disaster and the eventual US retreat. It is ludicrous to be speaking of a war against Iran, clearly a war not in the US interest in terms of economics or prestige. America in the Middle East is already the bully that no one likes, we already have soldiers who cannot deal with their PTSD, we already have Abu Gharaib and extraordinary rendition, we already have an NSA recording and violating the details of our ordinary lives, what new forms of insults to the American people and our ideals will this new war for Israel bring?

      Netanyahu is full of it if he thinks he hasn't yet lost this argument. There is no will to fight his stupid war here in America. He needs to go back home and learn to live in peace, not through domination, but through mutual agreements-- Just like everybody else.

      It is Netanyahu and his government who must yield. It is he and Israel who must offer up concessions. He and they are the obstacle to peace.

  • It's time for the media to talk about Zionism
    • Mooser, i think got the wrong drift from what you said. I am with you on the medical patients and offering them better prices. There was a RAND study done just before California's Proposition 19 (to legalize cannabis) went up for a vote in 2010 (unsuccessful). The study concluded that the prices could drop by as much as 80% in California if it were to be legalized.

    • @Mooser about the opium. There are many difficult questions ahead, but just ask the people of Latin America if the US needs drug policy reform.

      If there was not so much money in heroin, would the people in Afghanistan be growing so much of it?

      Personally i think every substance should be judged based on its own merit or detriment. I see alcohol as coming at a much greater negative cost to society than cannabis use. Marijuana is marijuana, and alcohol is alcohol, and never the twain shall meet, except in very broad generalizations.

      I have never been able to convince myself that marijuana is an intoxicant. It just gets me 'normal.' A brain functioning without thc for me would be the same as a brain functioning without serotonin or dopamine. Well, maybe not quite that extreme, but you get the idea, it's just another neurotransmitter.

      Also, the medicinal efficacy of cannabis is well established, there is nothing hypocritical about it.

      Anyway, absolutely did not mean to derail the discussion of Philip's essay. so apologies;)

    • On the issue of liquor, i have been bone-dry for many years now. I stand by liberal principles as a matter of survival. I voted in favor of the liquor laws. And i voted in favor of gay marriage. I am a minority within a Muslim context with many of these issues. But again, and as Phil's essay covers, it is a matter of survival at its core.

    • here is some great reading on the issue. i have noted the Israelis are progressive on the issue of medical pot.

      link to alternet.org

    • Thanks Mooser. The legalization of pot is very much a social justice issue world-wide. As for being Muslim and smoking pot (and the future of cannabis is so much more than smoking), i have a rational, scientific understanding/perspective of the cannabis plant. The superstitions against it must end, when that happens, we will see how much benefit this God-given plant brings to humanity.

      I do not have a shop, i currently deliver to Medical Marijuana patients. I am not sure what is going to happen in two days, but only medical patients are allowed to grow. So it seems we (mmj patients and providers) can be of help to those over 21 looking for primo buds. The state has a year to develop a licensing structure. Will be exciting whatever happens. Still waiting on a position from the Obama administration.

    • "I like liberal traditions of personal freedom in the United States, including the tradition of tolerance of religious and ideological claims I find preposterous. These liberal principles have guaranteed my freedom as a minority in the U.S. and granted me a darn good life, including jobs in the First Amendment business and marriage to someone who is not Jewish"

      My own upbringing is such that i am not a minority in American society. I grew up 'swimming with the current' and so do not know directly what those early experiences as a minority are like.

      I did however convert to Islam in 1998 at the age of twenty-five. Since then, and especially since 9/11, i have gained a much deeper appreciation of America's liberal principles and how those principles directly relate to my own survival as a 'free' person here.

      On top of this, and perhaps to some extent because of these principles, i have i also involved myself with the budding legal cannabis industry here at home in Washington State. In two days, recreational use of cannabis becomes legal. As a member of the industry, i am again relying on American liberal traditions to (hopefully) remain a 'free' person.

      Anyway Phil, I have often asked myself: "How can i be a liberal and a Muslim at the same time?" This essay comes very close to answering that question.

  • Israeli hasbara cartoon features white man fighting jungle animals
    • What good are city walls in the era of gunpowder? What good are delusions in the era of the internet? Israel is protecting itself with obsolete technology.

    • Just another common (and quite elementary) projection by the Israelis. A defense mechanism to deal with its own dissonance. Israel cannot perceive itself to be a liberal democratic state without expunging its own contradictions. Benji uses projection all the time when he talks about his "enemies." These sorts of defense mechanisms are usually obvious to outsiders, but outsiders are not who the mechanisms are erected to protect. A defense mechanism in intended to protect the ego from the harsh realities of the outside world and as such only has to fool ego, not the outside world. A city's walls look different depending on where one stands.

  • Gaza vs. Israel: The legitimate and illegitimate use of violence in the Western discourse
    • "In Egypt, people are heading for Rafah. "

      Thanks for the Guardian link seafoid. That there are young Egyptians who are heading to Gaza is both beautiful and frightening at the same time.

      In the context of escalation, what is Israel going to do, start bombing Egyptian citizens who make it to Gaza? What responsibility will an accountable-to-their-people President Morsi and the Egyptian military have if Egyptian civilians are murdered by the IDF?

      And all Obama can do is console the aggressor. Things can so quickly spiral out of control here. My heart and prayers to all those young Egyptians striving for peace and of course to all the Gazans and other innocents who must be terrified.

  • Whether legal or political, the Holy Land Five struggle will continue
    • Good thing we aren't a nation of Muslims in the Middle East. If we were, America would be assisting us oppressed citizens to revolt against our regime.

  • Goldberg ignores decades of consistent Iranian statements on nuclear weapons for the sake of propaganda
    • You think a fatwa is the same thing as a PR message?

      I have lurked for quite a while and seen you write some pretty smart things, this not being one of them.

      You start from a prejudiced point of view if you think Iran's principled stand against nuclear weapons is a propaganda ruse. Iran has suffered greatly for its principles over the last 30 years, if they were inclined to acting against those principles don't you think they might tried to negotiate a better security environment?

      Basically Krauss, your argument is that we cannot believe Iran because we can't. And you call Nima's argument weak? Puh-leeze.

  • Iran wants nukes to deter attack
    • Below I have transcribed a question on the nuclear negotiations asked by Greg Tealman of Arms Control Associaton. The setting is a talk titled "Will diplomatic failure over Iran trigger war?" given by Mark Fitzpatrick at the International Institute for Strategic Studies--US (link below to the youtube video).

      Mark Fitzpatrick's answer illustrates that the demand that Iran shut down the Fordow site is demanded NOT because the US could not destroy Fordow, but because Israel could not destroy it, or, in other words, Israel cannot "contain" Iran with the existence of Fordow. Looked at from the Iranian point of view, however, Fordow is a deterrence against an Israeli attack.

      But let's be real, Israel cannot militarily "contain" Iran as it is, Fordow or not. Iran's nuclear program is too redundant, too much a part of the broader Iranian society for it to be erased.

      So clearly Israel already relies on the US for security from their perceived Iranian threat, Fordow does not change this equation, so why should Israel be so insistent this demand to dismantle Fordow be included in the negotiations?

      As Fitzpatrick says, the US can destroy Fordow, or certainly can destroy any usable entryways into it. And as we all know, the US has Israel's back. So why this demand to dismantle Fordow from Israel? Do they not think other nations have a right to defend against Israeli aggression or to protect their valuable assets?

      Is it merely an irrational demand by Israel knowing full well the rational actors in Tehran will reject such a demand?

      It seems clear to me the dismantling of Fordow is a strawman put in there so Israel can ensure the negotiations will fail.

      Anyway, here is the question and answer. I transcribed it, so my apologies for any errors. The question is asked @28:17 in the video (link below):

      Greg Tealman-Arms Control Association:

      "I wanted to focus on Fordow, and the, um, specifically on the demand that it be shut down. Um, I wanted your reaction to my interpretation that from an Iranian perspective, the 'shut-down demand' can only be interpreted as a provocation, as an indication of bad faith on the part of the six powers [P5+1 or E3+3] because it ultimately means that even if Iran were to accept limits at 3.5%, if they were to accept the Additional Protocol, if they were to accept everything else that we ask for, we would say "Fordow has to be shut down because we have trouble destroying it in an air assualt." Isn't that essentially what the demand is and how is that, how is that constructed to allow us in these very difficult negotiations to get over the hurdle of lack of trust and faith on both sides and get a confidence building agreement?"

      Mark Fitzpatrick: "Yeah, Greg, that's a good question. I think though that, um, the pronoun is not the right pronoun in the way you framed the question. It's not that "we," that is to say, members of the E3+3, have a difficulty attacking Fordow. The United States could do it with its, um, its heavy gravity bombs, but Israel couldn't and that doesn't make it any easier for Iran obviously, it would make more of a problem but I mean this is realpolitik we're talking about here. "

  • Netanyahu is pushing world to WW3 -- Onion's 'joke'
    • the word "Zionism" is used in the Western press in connection to conspiracy theories and islamists. In this way, fear and ridicule is inspired and "Zionism" as a subject is never taken seriously by Americans who are not well informed on the issue. it is not a subject of polite, non-anti-semitic speech.

  • Michael Moore says Palestinians have gotten a 'raw deal'
    • After watching the incomplete documentary, i distinctly remember thinking to myself "How can anyone discuss the modern Middle East without considering Israel's role?"

      The pressures are real. Standing up for human rights in Palestine will cost liberals many of their dear friends.

      These liberals should be so much more pissed off than they are. But what can you do, Moore is just another victim of Israel's emotional blackmail.

  • Jon Stewart: We've finally discovered evidence of Democratic voter fraud Republicans are always complaining about
  • Dems have thrown two-state solution under the bus -- J Street and Beinart say
    • Thank you Philip. I enjoy your blog. Israelis may not know or appreciate it, but people like you are some of Israel's best friends.

    • The delusion of a two-state solution keeps Israeli apartheid alive.

      I see one state where more than half the population is treated as sub-human.

      No more make-believe. The world is too small for Israeli racism to have a place among us.

  • Romney and Pro-Israel Dems attack party platform, but insider says AIPAC reviewed platform language and had no problem
    • Actually, from the following wiki article, the Mormons believe themselves to be included in the tribes of Israel. I am guessing Mitt's love for Israel is real:

      "The official position of the LDS Church is that those who have accepted Mormonism or are a part of the Latter Day Saint movement are primarily from the House of Joseph. Adherents believe they are members of one of the tribes of Israel, either by blood lineage or by adoption, when the recipient is not a literal descendant of Jacob, also known as Israel. Individual church members are told their tribal affiliation through a patriarchal blessing. The LDS Church teaches that all of the tribes exist within their numbers, though not every tribe in every country. "

      link to en.wikipedia.org

  • Obama talks to Iran and washes hands of Israeli attack, Ynet reports
    • i presume the Israeli thought might be that if America attacked Iran, Iran would be so pre-occupied with defending against America, Israel will not have to worry so much about Iranian missiles and only have to defend against Hizbollah if they were to even enter into something aggressive. Israel was/is hoping to get this war on the cheap.

    • Probably not Sean, my personal belief is that this has been a hoax all along, and has been intended to coerce America into either attacking or into giving israel more money and weapons. imo, israel never had any intention of initiating anything other than their dirty secret wars and assassinations.

    • These comments will throw more uncertainty into Israel's calculation. Not knowing whether America will be there to finish the job Israel starts will considerably increase the perceived cost to benefit ratio for Israel.

  • My correspondence with NYT's Rudoren
    • Octavia Nasr is the prime example here. All she said was "Sad to hear of the passing of Sayyed Mohammad Hussein Fadlallah.. One of Hezbollah's giants I respect a lot..." and got fired for it.

    • Marc b. , I agree your cynical view is most likely true. Rudoren is part of the "Re-brand" Israel campaign and her function is known to her and her superiors.

      It is all part of the effort to spin Israel from the murderous, thieving apartheid state it is into some sort of Enlightenment gem.

      She is a refurbished relic from the pre-Internet era. The New York Times and the Zionists of America should update their strategy to avoid being so transparent.

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