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Total number of comments: 2782 (since 2010-01-28 18:12:58)


An average Israeli

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  • Just wars-- and civilian casualties
    • Jerome,

      I do not know how to define a situation in which from time to time each side lobs rockets at the other except to call it low intensity war. Are Israel's weapons more effective than the Palestinian ones? Sure. But how is this applicable to the point? No rocket is futile. It harms the communities that are shot at even when no one gets hurt.

      I don't see Israel's war on Gaza as a war of aggression. I just don't see a way to stop rockets coming from Gaza without waging this war. I don't believe that even if Israel would have unilaterally withdrawn to the 67 lines the rockets would have stopped. It would be merely interpreted as a sign of weakness by Hamas and they would continue firing rockets. Maybe if you could propose a realistic way to get Hamas to stop shooting rockets, I would change my mind.

    • "There is nothing extreme in my position. I call for full human rights for all people. You want them for yourself and your fellow Jews and wish to deny them to others. It is you who is the extremist."

      My honest assessment is that the right of return will lead to a civil war and the complete trashing of Israel. It will severely impact the quality of life of Israelis. Therefore, when you insist on it, I find your position extreme.

      It is a fact that Hamas can easily end Gaza'a isolation by accepting the conditions of the Quartet. These are very reasonable conditions in my opinion. You think Hamas should not accept them. Therefore, I find your position extreme. The Palestinians would not be accepting anything the PLO has not already accepted and the situation in Gaza would improve significantly.

      And I can give you more examples.

    • Jerome,

      Perhaps you can give an example of some myth or lie I accept, and we can discuss it. I accept all of Benny Morris' history so I have no illusions regarding Israel's founding. So I am just curious, where am I deceiving myself?

      I think in the end you will see that what we disagree about is the probability of different scenarios in the future and the interpretation of events especially regarding the intent of the people involved. And these are things reasonable people can disagree about.

    • N49,

      Native Americans are less than 4% of Canada's citizens. The Palestinian refugees as defined by the UN roughly equal ALL (100%) of Israel's Jewish population. The problems are completely different.

      Furthermore, 90% of the land in Canada is owned by the Canadian federal and provincial governments meaning that at least 90% of the land of the Native Canadians was taken from them:
      link to

      So how exactly is Canada a role model?

    • "who was threatening a “minority group” (I assume you’re talking about European Jews) with genocide in 1890? In 1906-1913?"

      And if someone was not threatening the Jews at that time how is that any evidence or proof that they would not be threatened in the future as in fact was the case? Things change, you know.

      But in fact Jews were threatened. In Russia 2,000 Jews were killed between 1903-1906:
      link to

    • Jeffery,

      What is the point of your argument? That because you think American history books are biased I should care more about non-Jews than Jews? What American kids study is not relevant to the question what I should care about more, the Russian dead in WW2 or the Jewish dead.

    • "But let us consider this for a second."

      Yes, let's consider this.
      The problems with your argument Woody are their extremism. Since you are wishing for miracles anyway, why not just wish that we have a change of heart instead of dying painlessly? Or that we are moved miraculously to some wasteland and are confined there? Taking care of your own, does not mean wishing the worst on the other.

    • "I think we should stick the Jews in a demilitarized state and let them exist at the mercy of their opponents. That would be fair, right?"

      We need something workable. If a peace treaty quickly deteriorates to war, what is the use of have a peace treaty? Just as in the case of Lebanon, it would be easy for Iran or other entities to fund radical groups that would smuggle weapons into Palestine and target Israel.

      "Then you must agree that an assault on Israel which is as deadly and murderous would be likewise “justified” because the Israeli occupation and the blockade of Gaza are strangling the Palestinians economically more than the Palestinians could ever hope to achieve. So they should be justified in slaughtering more of you people, right?"

      What do you mean? Israel and Gaza are at war, albeit a low intensity one. I guess either side think they are justified. Clearly the Palestinians aren't justified in using violence against Israel because violence has been proven to be a losing strategy for them.

    • Donald,

      "Have you seen his “better” argument where he justifies Israel by pointing to the treatment of the Native Americans in the US, where he says that if we want to be consistent all whites should leave the country?"

      I use this argument to justify one thing only, why I am against the right of return. Just as no one expects the US to return the plain states to the Sioux, Crow, Comanche etc., it is unreasonable to expect Israel to return the land Tel-Aviv University is build upon. Yes, in 1924 after centuries of prosecution, the US allowed Native Americans to live anywhere and vote. Did it move any non-native Americans off their land? No. Did it allow Native Americans to sue for their lands in court? No. Also, by 1924 Native Americans were a small minority in the US. They were not the same number as other Americans as in the case of the Palestinians and Israelis. So really, you are not comparing apples to apples. If the number of Palestinians was 10,000 instead of 7 million, there would be no issue, and that is what happened (in proportion) in the US.

    • seanmcbride,

      Are you claiming that an interventionist war can never be just? What are you trying to say?

      Furthermore, if nations go to war only to purse their interests, how can you deny that the Jews need to be able to protect themselves against a genocide? What if it is the likely case and it is not in any country's interest to help us or it takes forever to get them to act? You are articulating a strong argument for why a Jewish state is required.

    • What self interest does Jerome Slater have in Libya?
      Are you arguing by the way that no war intervention ever is justified?
      If you are against all arguments that try to decided if a war is just or not, what are you for exactly? Only going to war if one is attacked?

    • Jerome,
      "Eee: Ok, so let’s issue a challenge to eee–he likes challenges, so I’m sure he will respond. What, exactly, is your position on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in general, and on the occupation, Cast Lead, Netanyahu, and what would be a fair settlement of the conflict, in particular?"

      I am on record supporting any solution based on the Clinton Parameters. For example, I like the Geneva Initiative.
      As for Cast Lead I think it was justified. The Kassams were strangling the south of Israel economically. Imagine that in NY city one Kassam would fall once a day somewhere in Manhattan, occasionally injuring someone and rarely killing someone. What would happen to tourism to NY city? What would happen to commerce? Would firms leave the city? Would people want to work for companies with offices in NY? People do not understand the effects of terror. Physically the Kassams did relatively little, but their psychological effect was crippling the economy of Sderot and the whole region.

    • "Which not to pick on the Just War morality theory again..does point up the fact that some morality is considered to expensive to pursue."

      Again, the Just War Theory states that to be just a war must a priori be deemed winnable. Otherwise it is not only immoral to fight the war but also quite stupid. You would be wasting people's lives for nothing.

      Your logic is the following I guess: If you cannot or will not intervene when China perpetuates a genocide that means you should never intervene when a genocide is happening. I find it quite faulty.

    • "60 million people died in WW2, eee, 20 million of them Russians. Do you think their lives were of any less value than the Jews who perished? Why do you think we never hear about them?"

      I never understood this point of yours. Do you not go to your relative's graves because you believe you should go to all people's graves? Why is it strange to mourn people close to you and not strangers? That is just normal human behavior. I feel closer to the Jews that perished. That doesn't make the Jews more or less important than the Russians. On what day exactly do you (Blankfort) commemorate the Vietnamese that died in the Vietnam war? Are they less important than the American dead? Are you trying to build a memorial for them in the US?

    • The informative thought experiment you should do is the following. It is 1935 and the Nazis are firmly in power. It is clear Germany is building its military power. Is a preemptive war just and smart? My answer is yes and yes. What is yours? Let's wait till the Germans take Poland?

    • "Do you believe the US should have ‘militarily intervened’ to stop Israel in these cases of clear collective punishment and unproportional warfare?"

      Since even your criteria include asking whether every other option was tried before war was initiated, then clearly this was not the case in Gaza. Did the US threaten sanctions on Israel as an attempt to stop it? No. Therefore, a US intervention in Gaza would not have been just. So you should rephrase your question to Jerry perhaps and ask if the US should have threatened sanctions on Israel. I am sure he would answer yes.

      Furthermore, since you believe Israel is a nuclear power, initiating a war would be too dangerous since both countries could turn out losers. Therefore war on Israel is not just.

    • “The very idea of a just wars is luxury that only states that enjoy military superiority can even consider. Even if it was true you are not assuming the premise of American exceptionalism, you are ignoring that they cannot be just if only possible for states with military superiority.”

      Total BS. One of the criteria of a just war is that you have a good chance of winning it. Otherwise, the war is not just. So naturally, only stronger countries can wage just wars. And that is also why a war against Russia or China would not be just. It can't be won. That is why developing a strong military is a very moral thing to do if you can do it. It allows you to help in cases of genocide for example. You also need to have the will to do it.

      It is so easy to ignore this moral dimension by purposely not building a force that can be sent overseas. But basically by not having such capabilities, one is deciding to do nothing if a genocide happens (except talk of course). What does "Never Again (for everybody)" mean if no one is prepared to enforce this?

    • "So the job of the US is to save foreign Jews, even at the expense of the lives of its own citizens?"

      So you want to have it both ways I see. Who's job is it then if you also deny the Jews a country? You either accept the notion that the leading countries of the world need to protect minorities from genocide or you accept the notion that minorities need to have a way to protect themselves by having countries and armies. It is time you got your story straight.

    • Only in your dreams Israel is a supremacist state. When you are willing to actually implement justice and equality in the world let me know. You had plenty of chances since the Holocaust but still horrific episodes in Cambodia and Rwanda and other places occurred. So tell me, why should I trust someone like you who only talks? In this world, if you don't take care of yourself, you are in big trouble. At least this lesson most Jews have learned. And your support of Ron Paul only compounds this. If the US would have joined WWII earlier, many Jews would have been saved. If the US would have developed nuclear weapons earlier, many Jews would have been saved. But with idiots like Ron Paul, the opposite would have happened, and that is what you want for the future. How can you be trusted at all?

    • Mooser,

      How can anyone prove that you are wrong? You don't ever pronounce an opinion. I haven't read ONE constructive from you. All you are good at are ad hominem attacks. You fart in the wind and think you are singing.

    • Mooser,

      I was 10 years in the IDF and like most soldiers, risked my life while performing my duties. Where have you served, coward? Did you ever even visit the West Bank or Gaza? Thought not.

    • Isn't it great than I am an atheist? I don't need to worry about the "other side of the river".

      In short, you are not willing to make any sacrifice. But that does not stop you from criticizing others that try making the world a better place.

    • "I’ll pose a more “simple-minded” test for just war. Are you willing to send your precious sons or daughters to fight the “just war”? If you are not, it’s not just."

      So apparently most of you here do not think that the Palestinian fight against Israel is just because you are not willing to send your kids to fight it. Or maybe I am wrong, and you will send your kids to fight besides the Palestinians in the next intifada?

      The fact is that a war can be just even if people are selfish and do not want to send their kids to fight it. A war to stop the genocide in Rwanda for example would have been worthwhile but unpopular in the US. It is ok to say: The war is just but I don't care enough about that cause to sacrifice my life or my kids' life.

    • The point is that there are some ideas and goals worth dying for. Would you have been willing to die to stop the genocide in Rwanda? Would you be willing to die to stop fascism in the US? In Europe? I hope so, otherwise what you write on this blog is pure hypocrisy.

      I am willing to die in order to maintain a Jewish state in Israel. I believe it is an idea worth sacrificing your life for. Naturally, you would disagree, and that is why wars happen also, because humans are willing to give their lives for ideas.

    • The stench of desperation is overwhelming Mondoweiss. Initially I was very surprised to so many people would support a right wing radical like Ron Paul, but the more comments I read, the clearer it became that most of you are just desperate and clutching at straws. That is why you are willing to even think that Ron Paul is an answer to anything.

      And desperate you should be if you can't even dialog with and understand the position of Jerome Slater. What are you chances of convincing the vast majority of people? About zero.

      The Just War Theory is imperfect for many reasons, but it is a good start for discussion. Its problems lie in in a completely different area than those described here and are related to the fact that humans view wars over ideas as justified. If you try to analyze the American War of Independence using the just war theory, you would see that it is not justified from either side. The average American was not oppressed by the British and in fact Americans were richer on average than British citizens. But still Americans thought it worthwhile to go to war over ideas.

      Also, it is hard to see how the just war theory justifies the American Civil War. Without the war also slavery would have been abolished. But most Americans believe that 600,000 military dead and countless civilians was a worthwhile price to pay to end slavery (that the war was not about slavery initially is another matter).

      There are also many people (including me) that believe that dying for your country is a great honor. The Greeks and Romans believed this also. Not that you should commit suicide for your country, but that dying while risking your life for your country is a good death and one of the most unselfish things you can do. Everyone dies anyway. So this whole view of death being always bad is incorrect also.

  • National park land-grabs from two East Jerusalem neighborhoods
    • Annie,

      No need to whitewash anything. Israel has said over and over again that it views the area of Jerusalem as part of Israel in any border settlement. Just as the Palestinians do not want to negotiate while Israel eats the pizza, Israel will not wait for the pizza to get cold while the Palestinians decided when they are willing to negotiate. The parts of the pizza that Israel believes will belong to it, will be exploited.

  • Jewish power + Jewish hubris = 'moral catastrophe of epic proportions'
    • "I guess that depends on whether or not you are a Palestinian, yes?"

      Or a Native American or an African American or the many Americans who were born dirt poor and died dirt poor after working themselves to death.

      Most Americans think America is a good thing. Maybe Native Americans do not share this view. So?

    • "but the good doesn’t somehow cancel out the bad"

      Very well, just shut down the US and move elsewhere.

    • Come off it Phil. You and Haber are just extremists. For example, you would describe American history till the American Civil War as a long corridor of darkness because of slavery and how Native Americans were treated and from the war to the mid sixties as a long corridor of darkness because of Jim Crow. From the mid sixties till now you would describe American history as a long corridor of darkness because of American imperialism and the millions of people the US killed. You look at things through a distorted lens, you will get a distorted picture. This is how you view Zionism.

      But in fact, American history is a lot of good combined with some bad, just like the history of Zionism and Israel.

  • F. W. de Klerk on why apartheid will fail in Israel/Palestine
    • American,

      You are such a liar and you do not know what you are talking about. Intel, Microsoft etc. invest in Israel because of our innovation:
      link to

      Is the Seattle Times a Zionist mouth piece?

      Take a look at this:
      link to

      Are Gates and Buffet Zionist mouth pieces?

    • "They’re called “Palestinians” you bigot."

      I talk with Arab Israelis often and that is what they call themselves also. So you know better than them?

    • "Zionist hubris and racism keeps the Israelis from realizing that they are not chosen because they’re smart when in reality they are chosen because they’re cheap. This is the same impulse that drives things to India and China."

      You are so wrong it is hilarious. Anobit was bought because of its patents, know how and technology, not because of its cheap labor like in India and China. And the owners and employees of Anobit have become quite wealthy through the stock and stock options they owned, unlike their Chinese counterparts that continue to receive low pay.

    • "Yes the arrogance and racism is simply stunning."

      The truth is just the truth, it is not arrogance or racism. Let me repeat it: The Jews do not need the Palestinians from an economic point of view like the whites needed the blacks in South Africa.

    • "Finish, for once?"

      Sure, first we are going to enact the Palestinian Removal Act
      ( link to )
      which for the Palestinians safety means they will all be moved to Jordan Valley. Then we will grant them land and reneg on the deals and make them poor and miserable. And then when most of them leave or die of disease, we will grant the few that are left citizenship. And then we will preach to others how great we are.

      No, it is not what Israel is going to do, but it is what Canada and the US did, and now you are using what you did as a great example: "Look how great we are, we gave Native Americans citizenship in 1924". Yes, after killing them over hundreds of years while stealing their lands and continually breaking treaties and agreements with them. Next you will tell me how great you are allowing them to build casinos even though Native Americans still are second class citizens in the US.

      Israel is going to negotiate a two state solution with the Palestinians as soon as they become reasonable and accept a plan based on the Clinton Parameters. Unfortunately, the Palestinians insist on the right of return and therefore there is no deal to be had.

    • Munger,

      Arab Israelis have just as much rights as Native Americans.

      The Palestinians in the West Bank will eventually have a state of their own. You granted citizenship to the Native Americans in 1924 which was 148 after the US was founded and 432 years after Columbus landed in the New World. Don't worry, we will sort things out much quicker than you did.

      And I am sure that many of the people on the tundra would be happy with a house in Ramallah. Maybe they like eating in the organic restaurant that Phil ate at? And as for Hebron, most people there have a decent life. You should visit and see for yourself.

      The point is very simple. What Palestinians want is the equivalent of Native Americans asking back the plain states. That is what the right of return means. And that they will never get, just as the Native Americans will not get their land back. Or are you in favor of giving it back to them?

    • Tree,

      You shouldn't be talking about things you know nothing about. Avi claimed Anobit was purchased because:
      it "was manufacturing computer memory at costs lower than Samsung and other manufacturers from whom Apple purchases its memory "

      Anobit does not manufacture computer memory at all. It is a fabless company, in fact it doesn't manufacture anything. It designs chips that other manufacture.

    • Richb,

      I am in the technology business and have seen quite a few acquisitions and their consequences in Israel. Most turn out good, some do not. We shall see.

      Apple had the option of licensing the technology from other American companies but it decided to go the much more expensive route and buy an Israeli company. They know something about the technology that you don't. And if the technology is going to be relevant for only a couple of years, then their decision to buy it instead of license it is really stupid. But of course, Apple is smarter than all the naysayers on this board who just can't bring themselves to admit the obvious truth, that Israel is a tech powerhouse.

      There is a reason Oracle, IBM, Microsoft, Google, Intel and now also Apple have R&D centers here and often purchase Israeli companies, and it is not the Israel lobby.

    • Richb,

      Go read the reviews of Anobit's technology. It is the best in the world.

      As for the number of people hired in Israel, you will be surprised. It will be a few hundred. That is part of the agreement according to what I heard.

      But you a missing the point. Anobit is just one example out of many. You are just not willing to accept the simple truth, that Israel is a tech powerhouse.

    • Kathleen,

      Palestinians can decide if they want to shot rockets from Gaza. They decided in the past to pursue the second intifada like they did. They decided to reject the UN partition plan and try their luck at war. They decided not to ask for a state in the West Bank and Gaza between 48 and 67. Palestinians have made many bad decisions. And they are paying the price for them.

    • Avi_G,

      You have absolutely no idea what you are talking about. I know the company that was bought well. It does not have manufacturing plants. What it has is a ground breaking technology based on DSP to make reading and writing from flash memory much better.

      In the company's words:
      "Anobit's MSP™ (Memory Signal Processing) technology significantly improves endurance, performance and cost of flash storage products
      and systems"
      link to

      In fact, it SELLS its technology to flash manufacturers. It is not a flash manufacturer itself. Apple is buying them because of their world leading technology.

      And again, you have been shown to be a liar.

    • "We didn’t do that"

      It is never too late. When do you plan doing it? And if you don't plan doing it, why are you preaching to others?

    • Yeah, right. The Palestinians are blameless victims. They are responsible for their situation just as Israel is responsible for its situation. The Palestinians chose their goals and methods and are paying the price of their shortsightedness, extremism, internal strife and other assorted failures.

    • anonymouscomments,

      The only thing in the way of the 2ss is the Palestinian demand for the right of return. That is what Arafat could not agree to in 2000.

      1ss will never happen. Just like in the case of Gaza, in the worst case solution, Israel will unilaterally withdraw from areas with large Arab populations.

    • So let me get this straight, since the US is also a high tech country you plan soon to give back all the plain states to the Sioux, Crow, Comanche etc and Florida back to the Seminoles. When is New Jersey going to be given back to the Lenape?
      link to

    • It is a fact that Israel developed technology that Apple did not have and therefore they acquired it. Yes, Israel is a high tech economy. I know this does not fit with your distorted picture of the world, but the facts are the facts.

      "Israel’s economy will tank shortly thereafter."
      Israel is a high tech power house and huge amounts of gas were just discovered off shore, but our economy will tank. Yeah, right.

      "What Palestinians need is for Israel to fvck off and stop stealing their resources and choking their economy."
      Ask Palestinians and they will readily admit that they need access to Israeli markets and the ability to work in Israel if they are to be economically independent.

    • You are just completely wrong. The percentage of GDP that Israel gets from the West Bank is negligible relative to the total GDP. Israel does not need the Palestinians at all.

      Contrast this with South Africa where industry in general and mining in particular was based on black labor and a strike would bring the economy to a standstill. That is just not the case in Israel. Many, many Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank would love to get back the jobs they lost in Israel. But they have only themselves to blame for their support of the intifadas.

    • Carllarc,

      What are you talking about? How does anything you say support the argument that Israel needs the Palestinians?

    • You miss the most salient thing de Klerk is saying:
      "And we failed because we became economically totally integrated. We became an economic omelet and you can never again divide an omelet into the white and the yellow of the egg. "

      This is not the case in Israel/Palestine. The Palestinians need the Israelis economically but the Israelis have zero need of the Palestinians. The whites were 12% of South Africa and needed the blacks as workers in the mines and in industry. The Jews in Israel are 70% and we do not need the Palestinians to support our high tech economy.

      As for his other two reasons, they are not applicable either. Israel is no demanding too much land and most Palestinians support a two state solution.

  • Several thousand US troops headed to Israel for 'unprecedented' joint missile defense exercise
    • Libra,

      Cosmetics in general are such a small part of what Israel manufactures that it is very strange that you see those as defining Israel. I also have not purchased Ahava products in years as my wife does not like them.

      The Palestinians cannot do mass non-violent protests. It is a myth that they can. You think Israel will do anything if thousands of Palestinians will march in Ramallah? And if they march on Jerusalem, they will be met by tens of thousands of Jews also marching "non violently". And then hundreds of thousands of Jews will march on Palestinian towns, villages and cities. You see where this is going, and the Palestinians know it. When both sides are of equal numbers, the mass protests just don't work.

    • Libra,

      The more interesting question is: Are you going to stop buying Apple products? You know, BDS and all that.

    • "Israel has nothing anyone but third world countries want–except what they can steal from the US and pass on"

      So why has Apple just purchased an Israeli company for $500 million and will have in Israel its only R&D center outside the US?

    • What is dopey is to point to idiotic resolutions that can easily be manufactured by an automatic majority against Israel instead of looking at the actual ACTIONS of the players. So what speaks louder?

    • It is quite simple. If the Russians, Chinese, Indians, Europeans etc. really thought that what Israel is doing is egregious, they would have put sanctions on Israel years ago. But the fact is that all these countries know that the UN resolutions are nothing bot hot air. The Arab countries can muster a majority in the General Assembly and pass whatever resolution they want, just as was the case when the the UN "decided" that Zionism is racism.

    • Ramzi,

      You realize I hope that like in the case of Syria, you do not need a UN resolution to sanction Israel. The US is not the issue. The Russians, Chinese, Indians, Europeans etc. can sanction Israel without a UN resolution, like is the case in Syria. So, why are they not doing it if Israel is violating so many UNSC resolutions as you claim? If Israel is so wrong, where are the sanctions? Go complain to the Russians and Chinese. Why are you complaining about the US?

  • Santorum is a one-stater-- he says all of West Bank is Israel
    • "For goodness sake eee, this is pitiful stuff even by your low standards. Everyone else, and I mean EVERYONE else, knows where their borders are."

      You would pull out any lie out of the hat just to say something, wouldn't you?
      There are many border disputes in the world:
      link to

      Even the US and Canada have several territorial disputes.

      And again you have failed miserably to come up with ONE human development measure that Israel lags its neighbors. Why is that so difficult for you?

    • "you guys write Israel’s wiki entries"

      You are scraping the bottom of the barrel. What Israeli wiki entry did I link to?

      In short, you have lost this discussion badly. Thanks for playing.

    • "Can you spell the words ‘Cabinet’ ‘posts’, 3e? "

      What are you talking about? The Haredim do not have cabinet posts.
      Here is the makeup of the Israeli government:
      link to

    • Patm,

      Having a discussion with someone who won't acknowledge basic facts is impossible. Most Haredim are perfectly nice people just like most settlers. Just like in every group there are extremists. You seem to focus on them and generalize which of course leads you to very wrong conclusions. I gave you ample statistics showing that 1) Israel's scientific output is growing and it is ranked 1 in the middle east and 15 in the world in this regard 2) Israel's gdp per capita is by far larger than any of its neighbors and the gap is growing. You have chosen to completely ignore those facts.

      Would you like more statistics? How about patents per country:
      link to

      Again, this is not per capita. Per capita Israel is number 2 in the world right after the Swiss.

    • "The ultra-religious fanatics will rule the Knesset."

      The Haredim have never had more than 6 members out of 120 in the Israeli Knesset. What are you talking about? Secular parties have a commanding majority.

    • patm,

      You really should face up to the truth which is simple. The Israeli education system has room to improve but it is very good relative to most countries in the world. You only want to focus on statistics that "prove" your distorted point of view and completely ignore all other statistics that I provide.

      About our "dim" future, we have been hearing that for years but EXACTLY THE OPPOSITE happens. So when will you learn to stop making fools of yourselves?
      link to

    • Annie,

      Now who is coming up with excuses? What is the problem, why can't you come up with ONE human development measure in which Israel lags its neighbors? In every country there are communities that are behind, so what? Only in your distorted world does this make Israel an apartheid country.

      Since African Americans are so over represented in American jails, does this make the US an apartheid country? African Americans get 100 points less on average on the SATs than whites in the US, does this make the US an apartheid country? Blacks in the US are much more likely to be unemployed than whites in the US, does this make the US an apartheid country? Yes or no?

    • Taxi,

      The hard facts are quite simple:
      link to

      For 60 years you and your ilk have been preaching the end of Israel. But lo and behold, Israel just keeps getting stronger relative to its neighbors. So who exactly is in denial?

    • Patm,

      And I am waiting for a reply from you: Which measure of human development is Israel lagging its neighbors? Can you point to one?
      Thought not.

    • Patm,

      A reply to what? Did you notice that what the article does is compare the 16 richest countries in the world? How is that indication of anything? It is a sensationalist article that shows nothing. And these tests are like any other, countries that teach to the test do better. Israel does not put emphasis on these tests. Sure, the education system in Israel has room for improvement, but its results are spectacular.

      What gives you real sense of where Israel is are statistics like the following:
      link to

      Or in the world where Israel is ranked 15:
      link to

      And remember that Turkey has 10 times the population of Israel. The table is in absolute terms and not per capita even.

    • Yes, getting stronger. GDP is growing nicely. The conflict between secular and religious Jews has always been an issue. The protests this summer where a great example of Israeli democracy at work. Was anybody injured or killed? No one. Was there police brutality? No. As for the peace treaty with Egypt, it is really more important for Egypt at this stage than for Israel.

    • Taxi,

      Israel is doing very well while Syria is on the verge of civil war and Iran's economy is crumbling as we speak. The Islamists are the clear majority in Egypt and unfortunately they will lead that country to oblivion. It is clear that strategically Israel is becoming even stronger as the countries around it are growing much weaker because of economic hardships and internal strife.
      So just start the war you are mongering and let's see who is left standing after it.

    • Santorum and Paul have proved in Iowa that your excuses on why you don' t have a candidate are BS. Santorum had little money and by hard work gained support. Paul also has gained support for his views through persistence and hard work. When will you admit that very few Americans support your views?

  • Arendt: Born in conflict, Israel will degenerate into Sparta, and American Jews will need to back away
    • Mooser,

      Have fun with your new friends. When you one time attempt a serious answer to a simple question, you will be taken seriously. Here I will give you another chance: Is assimilation of Jews good or bad?

    • "Do you , eee, think the assimilation of Bretons into French society and in turn French into European society is a good thing? What about Venetians into Italian society and again into European society?"

      I think you should ask the Bretons and Venetians and the French. Regarding the French they are quite keen on maintaining the French language and not introducing English words into it. How does that fit with your theory? The number of Europeans is going down and the number of Asians who are nationalistic is going up. So the trend in the world is exactly the opposite of what you are saying.

      As for the question at hand, I think that the fact that Jews exist is good and therefore Jews assimilating is bad. Do you think the assimilation of Jews is a good thing?

    • Tovios,

      Actions speak much louder than words. When Einstein died he left all his papers and the rights to his writing and image to the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, one of the leading Zionist institutions (that Einstein helped found by the way). Every time someone uses a picture of Einstein in a commercial, the Hebrew U gets royalties.

      Anyone that wants to claim that Einstein was not a Zionist has to explain why he gave this huge gift to the Hebrew U. I haven't heard a good explanation yet.

    • "The Haredis may become a larger segment of the Jewish population in the United States, since they are producing more babies than those in the Conservative and Reform movements, but they are not able to reproduce enough to make up for all the Jewish people who marry outside the faith and do not raise their children as full fledged Jews."

      Exactly, Jewish population in the US is growing smaller and more religious. This means that a large majority of Jews worldwide will be living in Israel in a generation. That means Israel will become even more important for Jews. It is true that monetary support for Israel is not going to grow or even become less, but that is not an issue as Israel is constantly becoming richer.

      The Jews that don't care about Israel will assimilate while those that want to retain their Judaism will forge even stronger ties with Israel since it will be the undisputed center of Jewish life.

    • Dahoit,

      Take any measure of human development you want to compare Israel to its neighbors, Israel will come out on top. Education, health, technology, human rights, you pick. And as for Israel's Arabs, they are much richer and much better educated on average than the Arabs in neighboring countries. So who is whistling in the dark? Israel is a huge success.

    • "the sheer numbers of Jewish critics of Israel"

      Based in what do you make this assertion? There have always been many Jewish critics of Israel. The number has not changed. There is just no data showing that Jews are becoming more anti-Israel. The opposite is true. As the number of Jews in Israel grows both in absolute terms and relative to the diaspora, it is clear that Israel is becoming a more important component of Judaism.

    • Mooser,

      You lie down with dogs, you wake up with fleas. Have fun with your new friends.

      Can you answer a simple question in a straight forward manner:
      Do you think that the assimilation of Jews is a good thing?

    • "That unity is today being dissolved. The haredi-secular conflict in Israel that is getting so much attention here is one means of that dissolution."

      Keep on dreaming. The unity is only getting stronger as slowly but surely the Jewish population in Israel becomes the major Jewish population in the world and the percentage of orthodox Jews grows in the US as the less religious Jews assimilate.

      As usual, you ignore the facts on the ground. Can you point out ONE major Jewish institution that advocates cutting ties with Israel? In fact, these major institutions, like Hillel, have confirmed the strong ties of American Jews to Israel by refusing to accept fringe anti-Zionists groups like JVP.

  • Report: 'Joker' scratched Tel Aviv-- in BDS victory
    • You guys are completely off the mark. I am the same person and the only one who has ever commented under the "eee" moniker. But you are right about one thing, I am older. The tone of my comments changed when thankfully the comments here began to be moderated so I don't have to spend most of my time dealing with ad-hominem attacks.

      And of course I am not paid by anybody or affiliated in anyway with any institution whose goals are Israeli PR. In other words North, you are willing to make the most ridiculous accusations, anything except address the question you have been evading all along:
      How does the Joker “game changer” measure up against the Cornell and Technion joint venture?

      And let me add a bonus question: How about the fact that Apple just purchased an Israeli company and is opening in Israel its first ever R&D center outside the US? How does that fit into your BDS calculations?

    • "But, again, I don’t expect the same results. I expect a similar outcome. I fully expect that the results will be different so as to reflect the different situations. The only similarity I expect would be freedom and equality for all."

      Since outcome and result are synonyms, you are really outdoing yourself here. It is ok, I know you have no answer in this case and you are pursuing BDS because you cannot think of any other option you can accept. BDS will not work in the Israel-Palestinian context because the power relations are different. Just as BDS will not work to make China change its actions in Tibet. But go ahead, try it for 10 years and let's see what happens. Just like using violence, it will back fire on the Palestinians.

      Nobody is asking Palestinians to capitulate. But of course any solution will reflect the relative strengths of the parties. This is how diplomacy works. Because of thinking like yours the Palestinians rejected the UN partition and also did not create a state in the West Bank and Gaza between 48 and 67 when the Arabs completely controlled this territory. So, has this worked for them? They could have gotten ALL the territory they want now already then. So how smart was that? And the longer they are not realistic the longer they will suffer.

    • "Your profile reveals you have made 4486 comments since 1/28/10. Unless there are more than 1 of you, that doesn’t sound like “occasionally.”"

      Are you joking, of course this is occasionally. It takes me about 30 seconds to write a response. So I spent 37 hours over 2 years writing comments on this site. That is "occasionally".

    • "The point is that the goal of the BDS movements is the same"

      If you use the same strategy in two completely different situations as you admit is the case, it is irrational to expect the same results. Your hope that BDS will work will just postpone the real solution that can only be achieved by negotiations.

      "just like you seem to think that your European colony will."

      Israel is not a European colony. And of course, nothing lasts forever. But it is clear that Israel will be around for hundreds of years. How long do you give the US by the way? Australia? Canada?

    • "But the issue regarding BDS wasn’t the economics of the whites and blacks, but of the South Africans and the rest of the world."

      You are totally wrong. White domination was over the moment black unions were legally allowed to exist and given power. And they were allowed to exist because otherwise South Africa's economy would have been brought to a standstill.

      "Just what the previous set of crusader kingdoms thought. Why should your’s be different simply because it’s the latest?"

      What crusader kingdoms are you comparing Israel to? Those from the 13th century? That you think the analogy is applicable at all is laughable.

    • North,

      How is my approach contradictory at all? First of all, I don't spend hours on this site everyday. I comment occasionally when I have time. Second, you surely endow me with special powers even if your claim is true. Does the fact that one Israeli comments on this site often make BDS effective? It shows nothing except that I find commenting on sites in which my view is a minority one much more interesting than commenting on sites where people tend to agree with me.
      Thirdly, I do find it very interesting to argue with people who do not believe in evolution and do believe in conspiracy thinking. It offers a window to understanding human thought processes.

      And now to the question at hand that you are evading: How does the Joker “game changer” measure up against the Cornell and Technion joint venture? How about some objective analysis? You claim to be "logical" and "consistent"? Well, let's see how you assess the totality of the facts.

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