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Total number of comments: 221 (since 2011-08-05 19:15:54)

Exiled At Home

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  • It's official: Israeli govt confirms Jews are no longer the majority between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea
    • Well, then it would seem that the demographic relationship is normalizing. With the exception of a very small chunk of time in which Israeli Jews outnumbered the non-Jewish indigenous populations of Palestine, perhaps between the 1980s-2010, the region between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea has had a Muslim/Christian majority for nearly 2000 years.

  • No room for racism in a movement working for equality and freedom
    • Ale

      Slandering someone as a "racist" for posting a controversial anti-Zionist
      link is neither principled, nor honest.

      Mondoweiss seems unconvinced that Berlin posted the link without knowing the contents of the video. Fine, press her on that point.

      Mondoweiss wen belligerently too far posting a statement denouncing Berlin as an antisemite and lashing out against her supporters.
      There's nothing defensible about ruining someone's career because you're unconvinced as to her claim not to have known the contents of a stupid video.

      She posted the link, claimed not to know its full contents, issued a statement saying she did not support the contents, and apologized.

    • Park Slope,

      That's patently absurd. It's not antisemitism, but it's Jew-bashing? Stop dressing everything in a Jewish perspective. We oppose Israel because it's a colonial entity occupying another's land. It is a Palestinian narrative, not a Jewish narrative, that should take priority.

      The only Jewish question involved is this: can the Jewish foreigners in Palestine learn to live among the Palestinian natives, as equals in a pluralistic society? If not, they must be opposed, not for their Jewishness, but for their foreign , uncompromising chauvinism.

      It's as simple as that.

    • Israel is different in that its very existence is derived from a post-war 'consensus' that rejects territories conquests of land, and yet presides over the longest sustained colonial occupation in modern history. Israel's 60 year occupation, judged by today's norms, is far more sinister than any of history's many forms of colonialism as judged by their era's norms.

    • Keith,

      Chomsky always links Israel's crimes back to the US, and in doing so apportions the majority of culpability on the US government as if Israel is being used by American imperialists.

      He rejects the influence of AIPAC. He opposes BDS. He used Israel's abuse of the Palestinians as another vehicle to attack American imperialism. He does us all an disservice by deflecting attention away from the root cause, Zionism and pursuit of Etetz Israel. Jeff Blankfort has written extensively on this, you should read his work with an open mind about Chomsky's deflections.

    • Greta,
      You've risked your reputation and your life in defense of Palestinian liberation.

      Those who denounce you over a controversial link have no such courage.

      They protect their own reputations by slandering yours. This is the reality of "solidarity."

      Shameful.

    • 'Tis true...

      Chomsky's passionate support of Palestinian rights always, always culminates in him pointing the finger at the US, to the point that he rejects boycotts directed toward Israel because he believes that the US is the tail that wags the Israeli dog. His Jewish, Zionist upbringing blinds his ability to see reality, and as such he has become massively damaging to efforts to force fundamental reformation of Israeli society.

      Finkelstein, too, has these failing at times.

      Others, such as Avi Shlaim, while recognizing the dark path Israel has embarked upon, always find ways to romanticize early Zionist history, they long for the 'good old days.' It's revisionism, even if well-intentioned.

      Ilan Pappe seems to be that rare beacon of intellectual honesty, willing to make the ultimate and difficult sacrifice in indicting his own country. He has not shied away from laying Israel's dark history in full view of western society. He supports economic and academic boycotts directed at Israel, not the United States, and calls the 2SS a flawed Zionist idea. He's honest, brave and correct. He's not blinded by tribalism. Unfortunately, he's an anomaly in the Jewish community and he's paid dearly for his integrity. Denounced in the Knesset, essentially stripped of his academic credentials and facing death threats against him and his family, he was forced to leave Israel, his country, his homeland, for his efforts to inject equality, honesty, liberty and compassion into the society that he grew up in...

      I thought Phil had come around when he recently posted that he was giving up his efforts to redeem the Jewish community, recognizing the futility of trying to sway those who do not want to see what you have come to show, and is focusing more on speaking to average Americans...

      His deference to the cries of anti-Semitism indicates that this has not occurred.

    • It's really quite troubling that there is so much distortion, subversion, mistrust and deflection within the alleged solidarity movement...

      We have socialist internationalists who have co-opted the Palestinian narrative as a vehicle to attack US imperialism. Fine, but insincere.

      We have feminist, LGBT activists who claim to be pro-Palestinian, yet who constantly deride Palestinian culture.

      We have those who reject any discussion of the Lobby, or US interests, as white supremacism or anti-Semitism...

      With a misfit coalition of allies like us, no wonder Palestine can't make any progress...

    • Hear! Hear!

    • Phil and Adam,

      Please consider; if the anti-Zionist movement spends a great deal of time and energy dissecting and articulating the difference between Judaism and Zionism, then how can we characterize commentary such as that ensconced in the Greta Berlin linked video (which is focused on the role of Zionism in the atrocities of WWII) as anti-Semitic?

      The linked video did not suggest that Jews brought the Holocaust upon themselves. The video did not deny the Holocaust occurred. The video suggests that Zionism contributed to the Holocaust. If we recognize Zionism as an ideology, then how can such suggestions be racially or religiously intolerant or hateful, as the accusation of anti-Semitism implies?

      What's more, how can Greta Berlin be so vehemently and abusively denounced for merely posting this video, especially taking into consideration her statement that she does not support the suggestions made in the video?

      This is tortuous, destructive logic, and it's being stirred up by people who want to destroy the movement for justice in Palestine by sowing the seeds of division within its ranks.

      You've participated in the slander of a woman's name to protect yourselves from the intolerant, unethical and disingenuous slanders you expect to come your way if you do not denounce her. That's not principled.

      Your initial hesitation to disabuse yourselves of association with Greta was based in your support of her work. Why not let that work speak for itself? Why now succumb to the mounting surge of emotional, reactive intolerance that seeks to cripple the reputation of well-intentioned individuals for simply linking to something that some find offensive? We must be more restrained in how we critique the sharing of information in the digital age...

      We cannot denounce everyone who ever posted a link to something controversial...

      It's disheartening to see you join the chorus of this unsubstantiated witch-hunt...

      It's an injustice against Greta Berlin who has never said anything that I am aware of that would suggest intolerant views of Judaism or Jews. It's destructive toward the mission for peace, as Greta has led the way in the movement to undo the blockade of Gaza, and by dragging her name through the mud, the movement itself has suffered.

      It also signifies the ease with which minor things such as a video link can fracture the coalition and turn us against ourselves... Is it not obvious how simply this can be manipulated by those who wish to put an end to this movement for peace and justice? There is a vibrant debate raging over at Electronic Intifada over an article that accuses Ofer Engel of being a provacateur amid all of this controversy. I do not know of him, and will hold judgment on that. However, what I see in the thread is a great many people casting the Council for the National Interest as a neo-nazi, white supremacist outfit, which is ludicrous.

      There are some very radical people within the Palestine solidarity movement who are denouncing the very important strategy of addressing the American people in respect to America's interests in the ME and how our alliance with Israel does not serve those interests. CNI takes this approach because it's a message that resonates with American voters who don't understand the history of I/P. It's not white supremacism, it's prudence. It's effective. It can counter AIPAC. Oh, yes, those who speak of the power of the Lobby are also anti-Semites.

      Can't you see how easy it is for people to denounce and delegitimize these very reasonable positions?

      I fear Greta Berlin has fallen victim to these dark elements within our own movement.

  • Russell Tribunal has placed Palestinians in tradition of Frederick Douglass and Rosa Parks
    • I'm sorry, but Sherry Wolf is far too much of an ideological activist to be so closely associated with the Tribunal.

      This was supposed to be a exercise is legality as enshrined in international agreements.

      That mission is jeopardized by having a panel that includes Angela Davis, Alice Walker, Dennis Banks and others with no background in international law.

      The Tribunal suffers from a destructive schizophrenia, on the one hand exalting the Tribunal's basis in international law, on the other hand packing the jury panel, as well as several speakers, with known activists from a wide array of controversial backgrounds.

      The reason the lobby hasn't denounced the Tribunal more ardently is because the Tribunal set itself up to not be taken seriously.

      This could have been so much more effective had the organizing committee done more to ensure the image of objective jurisprudence.

  • Exile and the Prophetic: The 'Free Gaza' tweets and the challenge for those seeking justice for Israel/Palestine
    • "Trying to counter anti-Semitism by labeling it racism or prejudice as the resigning former Board members do, or referring to Jews simply as an ethnic group as Norman Finkelstein did at the American Jewish relationship with Israel forum at the New School a few days ago, is to tread a politically correct line that goes nowhere."

      Oh, brother...

  • Russell Tribunal conclusion: U.S. facilitates Israeli immunity and impunity
    • I can't speak to her absence, but I confirmed she was not invited as either a jury member or speaker.

    • Alex,

      I think 90%+ of Americans would disagree with your description of Angela Davis and Alice Walker as "luminaries."

      One of my largest complaints with the Tribunal is that they packed the jury panel with individuals who can so easily be dismissed by the Lobby as biased leftists.

      Are CodePink, Blank Panther and Communist Party members really the best candidates to bring this issue to the American people?

      Alison Wier was not invited, nor was anyone from the Council for the National Interest, why? Because this was an event more about attacking American imperialism than it was Palestinian suffering. CNI's emphasis on America's best interests doesn't really resonate with a panel of socialist, communist, progressive radicals (I don't mean that as a pejorative) that, I believe, essentially has co-opted the Palestinian narrative as a vehicle to critique the United States. This is the Chomskyite strategy, and it doesn't appeal to Americans. CNI could appeal, if only it were given a voice; instead it was marginalized. A CNI volunteer handing out literature outside the Tribunal was told that Alison Wier wasn't welcome.

      It's not a very sincere tribunal if it doesn't seek to actually address the power of the lobby, or the speak to the American people.

    • Then you must not have been present at the hearings. I was taken aback, actually, by the number of speakers who, while condemning the failed framework of the established international community (UN), criticized Palestinians for not effectively utilizing this ineffective tool.

  • Tel Aviv and the failure of the Zionist dream
    • I'm not sure racial, cultural harmony was ever a goal of Zionism. Nor is that the suggestion Allison is making, in my opinion.

      She's pointing out that the city exists in a vacuum of collective amnesia and blindness to the Palestinian roots of the city. And, more directly to the point of the city representing the failure of Zionism, Allison points out the stagnation of Tel Aviv, the dilapidation, ghettos and growing social welfare problems, the chasm between segments of the population, the ills of an overburdened capitalist enterprise with no soul, no tradition, no history, no beliefs. Hardly the apogee of cultural Zionism's pursuit of a Jewish social oasis in the desert.

  • 4 arrested for 'correcting... poisonous ad'
    • Sassan,

      The government intervening to remove or cover the ads would, arguably, be stifling free speech and free expression.

      Individuals intervening to remove, cover, deface or shout-down the ads and its supporters is, actually, free speech and expression.

      The government intervening and arresting those exercising their rights is an affront to free speech and expression.

      I can't believe you support governmental suppression of free speech and expression.

  • Change of plan
    • Phil,

      This is great. I've long believed the conversation needs to break away from the Jewish margins, where, as you note, people do not want to know.

      I spend most of my time discussing this with average, uninformed Americans. And, it's been a successful, though tumultuous, endeavor.

      One note of importance: I'm not in the slightest bit a supporter of the Obama administration, and view his administration as completely unresponsive to the needs of progress and back-bone in Israeli-Palestinian discourse. However, Netanyahu has inexplicably made Obama a target of his ire. Which is good. Obama has such a cult of personality surrounding him that Netanyahu's insulting behavior has awakened Obama's base. I work with several politically engaged guys who are ardent supporters of Obama. They have never been especially interested in the Middle East, nor conscious enough, or willing, to criticize Israel. Yet, I have seen an awakening recently, and they are quite pissed of with Netanyahu, his meddling in the election, his war-mongering over Iran. They've openly expressed their anger of late, and have touched on the issue of American unwavering support for Israel, and Netanyahu's disrespectful insolence. The conversation is moving inward from the margins, in large part because of Obama's cult of personality. For once, a good thing.

  • Israel's version of the two-state 'solution' is anything but dead
    • But are they?

      Yes, of course, 'natural and unobjectionable' do not even come close to the reality of these grossly immoral land grabs.

      But, are they not 'permanent and irremovable,' realistically speaking? The West Bank will never be free of Israeli settlers. Jerusalem will never be released from Israeli dominance (not without the collapse and destruction of Israel, either by outside hands or by megomaniacal Israeli hands themselves).

      Do you really think Israel can be arm-twisted to abandon its settler project or abandon Jerusalem? I'm not so sure.

    • Henry,

      Smart, realist assessment. I think it is clear, and has been clear for some time, that the Israeli leadership's ultimate aspirations lay maliciously somewhere in between the idea of the traditional 2SS and the idealist 1SS. The densely concentrated mass of Israeli settlers in Area C (especially in comparison to the ever thinning Palestinian population of Area C) indicates quite clearly Israel's intention of annexing Area C into greater Israel, probably sooner rather than later as the "facts on the ground" won't get much more amicable for Israel than they are today.

      As you note, absorbing Areas A and B is unrealistic, given the proportionally small amount of land and the high concentration of Palestinians (a demographic threat to "the Middle East's only democracy") absent some form of unacceptably visual and high-profile ethnic cleansing.

      And then, of course, we all know that the notion of a traditional 2SS along the '67 borders is not only unrealistic, given Israel's huge investment in Area C, but also entirely unacceptable, unrealistic and non-viable from a Palestinian perspective.

      That really only leaves either a single bi-national state (ideally) or a hugely expanded Israel (including Area C) with a smattering of ineffectual Palestinian Bantustans in Gaza, Area A and Area B.

      Obviously, the latter is immoral, unacceptable and must be opposed at all costs. The former is little more than a lofty dream, currently.

      So, what do you propose? For decades Palestinians have aired their grievances as a list of demands relating to borders, the status of Jerusalem and the right of return. For Americans, who know nothing of the context, the Palestinians appear as pushy, demanding squatters. I've long held that the Palestinian movement must be framed in human terms, with demands of equality, freedom, justice, human rights, dignity as these are the ideals that resonate with average people across the world, including America. As much of a long-shot as it may be, I sincerely believe the only acceptable end is a bi-national state, where millions of Palestinians may not have their own autonomous state, but at least are treated fairly and equally, with voting rights, basic property rights, freedom of movement from the Jordan Valley to the Mediterranean Sea. It's the only acceptable conclusion to nearly a century of gross inhumanity. I know Israeli leadership will never accede to this model on its own... so, the need for forceful, public demands for equality in all of Palestine across the world is more necessary than it has ever been. We need mass demonstrations, we need BDS, we need more and more American courts striking down the efforts of AIPAC to silence 1st Amendment rights, we need pressure on the American Congress. There simply is no other way, other than all out war in the region, and mark my words, Israel is marching itself down that path currently. There is only so long the region can restrain itself before a broad military alliance manifests itself against the Jewish colonial state.

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  • Sheldon Adelson's daughter rams 'Democracy Now' crew as it questions her dad
    • I've asked this several times, never received a reply.

      Why do I see with such frequency this use of 'G_d' instead of 'God' among commenters and bloggers on this site and a great many other Jewish-centric sites?

  • The boy on the horse
  • NY state senator puts on Israeli uniform to play soldier on Syrian border
    • Is there really anything more to say? This photograph, and accompanying press release, should indicate with perfect clarity a corrupted and unacceptable display of disloyalty; high crimes, in all honesty. Yet, the dismissive and 'oblivious' atmosphere will no doubt be palpable. This will not raise the slightest of establishment eyebrows, nor their millions of scores of witless supporters.

  • StandWithUs' revisionist history train campaign
  • After home demolition, Israel criminalizes Palestinians' UN emergency housing
    • Allison,

      Any indication as to why the original home was destroyed? Under what pretext? Was it simply that that land wasn't allocated for residential use? Since when? Under what authority? Could you provide any back-story on the original incident? Thanks.

  • The world according to Sheldon Adelson
    • Hebron is deep within "sovereign" Palestinian territory.

      In a city of 180,000 there are 500 or so fanatic Jewish settlers and a garrison of 3000 Israeli soldiers (in a Palestinian city), who have uncontested dominion over a portion of the city. Their racist, violent theology makes them unfit for introduction into a normal population. They live an insulated existence, only coming from the confines of their ivory tower to ridicule, harass and maim their Palestinian neighbors.

  • Can you pass the Hezbollah quiz?
    • "...Olmert wanted to stop but the US and some Arab leaders wouldn't let him and pressed Israel to continue the bombing."

      Eh, come again?

  • Syrian crisis moves into the camps: 20 Palestinians killed in Damascus refugee camp
    • Al-Akbar is a known mouthpiece of the Assad government, has been for quite some time.

    • Dan,

      I appreciate the response. My little dig was a tad harsh, I definitely don't subscribe to the "Jews are the problem" philosophy, do I can appreciate your perspective.

      Annie et al,

      Why such skepticism regarding widespread Syrian support for the rebels? Is there a tangential, at the least, hand of foreign influence? Of course. But, that shouldn't truncate the fact that Syria is a largely Sunni nation ruled for decades by a fringe Alawi minority that even most Shia theologians reject. I find it puzzling that you find it so puzzling that the majority Sunni population might seek greater representation of their Syrian national affairs.

    • Walid,

      Everything turns ugly under oppression.

      One, I suppose, could dismiss Hamas as ugly, Islamic fundamentalism.

      I, on the other hand, would rather look to the conditions and influences which have created Hamas' hardline approach.

    • Dan Crowther, Mr. Defender Against Anti-Semitism Everywhere, is lecturing me about the finer nuances of ethnic/sectarian discernment?

      Pardon me, but I believe I agreed with Danaa's assessment of the FSA being backed by Saudi Arabia, Yemen and Qatar. That's not what i take issue with, hence my statement:

      Your commentary would be useful...

      ...followed by my comment that:

      I understand your skepticism at not supporting the foreign-funded FSA subversion of Syria.

      ...and:

      Sunni revolutionaries, and their foreign backers, pose a palpable threat to Shia, Alawis, and Christians alike in Syria.

      However, with that said, Danaa and others' depictions of the FSA and associated rebel groups as nothing more than fundamentalist Salafists and jihadists is no better than the US caricature of rebel groups in Iraq and Afghanistan as "terrorists."

      Assad dismisses the whole opposition as foreign-backed terrorists. Danaa appears to agree. That sort of myopic caricature is exactly the sort of modus operandi employed by US-Israeli leadership in dealing with their "atrocious, barbaric salafist/jihadist rebel" problems.

      It's a complex situation, and the US and Israel have made their plans quite clear in terms of wanting Assad to fall. However, our opposition to Israeli-American hegemony shouldn't get in the way of our ability to more accurately portray the entire rebel opposition movement in Syria.

      They are not all "nasty" little fundies.

    • And I 'd add, there are legitimate concerns that I share regarding the potential for this to end in sectarian bloodshed should the Assad government fall. Sunni revolutionaries, and their foreign backers, pose a palpable threat to Shia, Alawis, and Christians alike in Syria. But, let's not dismiss wholesale these elements as crazed jihadists.

    • Danaa,

      Your commentary would be useful if it wasn't so riddled with anti-Sunni zeal, regurgitated Assad rhetoric about "terrorist jihadists, etc.

      I'm tending toward not supporting the overall "democracy" movement, given my extreme distrust of the Saudi/Yemeni/NATO backed Free Syrian Army. However, the Syrian government's rhetoric -which you so deftly parrot- is drenched in the language of westernized power concepts, where violence of the privileged is in the name of security, and violence of the weak is terrorism. I don't know what terrorism is, nor what a terrorist looks like, but to hear you, or Assad tell it, it's Sunni, fundi, militant, jihadi aggression. Rhetoric eerily similar to US euphemisms abused on a daily basis.

      I understand you're skepticism at not supporting the foreign-funded FSA subversion of Syria. But, I'd caution you against parroting Assad's highly prejudicial anti-Sunni diatribes.

    • Not that they were "totally" justified? In other words, shelling refugees could be somewhat acceptable or understandable, based in what? Your perception of Palestinian refugee camps as being "hotbeds" of radicalism?

      When did Palestinian existence become so monolithic that one could find justification (karma) for shelling refugees based on Black September, support for the Brotherhood or even anti-Assad protests in Gaza?

      Quit spinning.

    • Whoever was behind this, whatever their motives (perhaps this was not an intentional shelling), yet another tragedy in the morose Palestinian saga.

  • While Palestinians in the West Bank barely have enough water to drink . . .
    • But, but, but... one can be a Zionist and still oppose occupation! BS!

      The very realization of Zionism, even within the pre-1967 borders, necessitated terrorism, ethnic cleansing and occupation.

      There is no benign face of Zionism. It is purely nationalist, racist, violent. Evil.

  • To understand the history of Palestinian dispossession look to the words of Zionist and Israeli leaders
    • Freddy,

      Did you not just chide Colin for suggesting that Ben-Gurion's use of the phrase "we must not expel the Arabs" would have been out of character for him? Essentially, your point was that whether or not something is out of character is not evidence of anything in and of itself.

      But then you turn to Benny Morris' analysis which relies on the fact that Ben-Gurion rarely made corrections to his writings as evidence that he wasn't the one to cross out the word "not" in his letter. Are you not relying on whether or not something was out of character for Ben-Gurion as your own evidence?

      It would seem to me that none of us should rely on whether or not something is out of character, and take the letter at face value, hand-written corrections and all. In which case, the original letter, handwritten, with scribbles and corrections reads:

      We must expel the Arabs and take their land.

  • Romney bombs at the King David
    • Wishful thinking, I'm afraid. President's don't really matter, it's Congress that ensures Israel remains at the forefront of US policy in the region. Congress ensures funding and arms deals, Congress gives Israeli politicians a platform for speeches, Congressmen from various walks of ideological life give the cliched, but effective, AIPAC responses to various media outlets, town hall meetings, and public speeches. Occasionally, Congress will also rally together to pressure the President on matters of diplomatic vetoes at the UN, or public policy aims voiced by the President. Kennedy. Nixon, Reagan, Bush I, Bush II. All of the Presidents took a hard-line toward Israel on matters of nuclear weapons, settlements, intransigence and arrogance. All of these Presidential efforts were shut down by Congress.

  • The blatancy of apartheid
    • This site openly admits to censorship (see comment policy). There are no claims to value freedom of expression.

      Incidentally, the majority of censorship is of opinions and expressions critical of Israel that this site deems as unproductive, in so much as it "sullies" the good image of Mondoweiss.

    • The notion that we do what we do, say what we say, and continue to press for openness, justice and peace is all some concerted effort to save the image of Judaism is a disgustingly narrow-minded and typically ethno-centric Jewish perspective.

      I do what I do, say what I say, and press for openness, justice and peace because it's the right thing to do, it's the only thing to do, if I want to consider myself a responsible part of humanity. I do what I do for Palestine, for the Palestinians. Nothing more.

  • Romney's instructive criticisms of Obama's support for Israel
  • Russia's foreign minister claims US justifies terrorism in Syria
    • We condemn all terrorist attacks, all bombings of targets, of civilians. The bombing of the Defense Ministry, however, targeted senior military and security officials.

      I actually agree with this perspective. However, I wonder, does the U.S. State Dept. conduct such parsing when Israeli "military and security officials" are killed?

      Who is the one who is using now fixed-wing aircraft against their own people – helicopters, artillery, gunships, et cetera? It is the Assad regime. And as we’ve said, it is unfortunately not surprising that people are trying to defend themselves now.

      I wonder if the State Dept. is willing to apply that rationale to Palestinians defending themselves, for example, during the Cast Lead catastrophe. I mean, "who is the one who is using fixed-wing aircraft against an occupied people - helicopters, artillery, gunships, white-phosphorous, et cetera? It is the Israeli regime. And as we've said, it is unfortunately not surprising that people are trying to defend themselves now."

  • Adelson-backed ad campaign features Jewish Dem claiming Netanyahu represents 'all' Jews
    • The 1922 League of Nations British Mandate for Palestine and the Transjordan Memorandum laid out British administrative rule over Palestine and an independent Arab Emirate of Jordan east of the Jordan River.

      Within British-administered Palestine, the Mandate called for "the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, it being clearly understood that nothing should be done which might prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine."

      Leaving aside for a moment that neither the League of Nations nor the British government had any right to establish a Jewish colonial state in Arab lands, let's look at the demographics strictly within the Mandate of Palestine.

      1890- 43,000 Jews, 57,000 Christians and 589,000 Muslims.

      The final proposal by the United Nations to partition Palestine called for roughly 55% of Palestine to be apportioned for a Jewish state and 45% to become an independent Arab state. Even with aggressive immigration to Palestine of European Jews, by 1947 the foreign-born Jewish presence of 630,000 was outnumbered by 1.1 million Muslim and 143,000 Christians. That's a ratio of 3:1 in favor of indigenous Arabs over immigrant Jews. Yet, the Jewish state was to claim 55% of the land?

      Overlooking the land inequities which unjustifiably favored Jewish settlers from Europe over centuries-long Arab lineage in Palestine, let us also not forget that Jewish militias desiring a greater piece of Palestine began attacks against British personnel and Arab civilians. Successive operations, such as Plan D, aimed to violently and brutally cleanse areas beyond the proposed Jewish state of the Arab residents. Massacres in Jaffa, Acre, Tiberias, Safad and al-Tira, among countless others including the infamous Deir Yassan massacres, effectively forced 700,000+ Palestinians to flee their homes. This is ethnic cleansing, Terry. And it directly violates the principles laid out in the League of Nations' Mandate "that nothing should be done which might prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine."

      The very idea of an exclusive, Jewish state violates the League of Nations Mandate, which never called for a Jewish "state," but rather a Jewish home in Palestine. In other words, Jewish immigration was encouraged so that Jews may build a community in Palestine, not so that they may supplant the Arab presence there. Once it became apparent that Jewish militias would not assimilate, the United Nations stepped in and recommended partition, with two distinct state. But, even then, Jewish groups such as Irgun, Haganah and Stern Gang were violently gaining territory beyond those partition lines. The final declaration of independence by Israel in 1948 extended well beyond partition lines, into the proposed areas of a Palestinian state. Every step of the way, Israeli actions have desecrated and violated both the spirit and the letter of international agreements to find some form of Jewish reconciliation in the Holy Land. The entire existence of Israel is null and void under those stipulations, not to mention the illegitimacy that stems from the lack of authority for the international community to reach such agreements regarding Arab lands to begin with.

      For all its faults, Jordan is not the cause of this conflict. Zionism, the belief that Jewish Europeans have a right to a state in the Middle East, in Arab land, is at the core of decades of violence, death, instability and inhumanity. Colonialism was unjustifiable --and is now widely condemned-- when it was enacted by European powers. It should be no different in regard to Jewish colonialism.

    • Should we congratulate or consider as "fresh" the sudden realization that Israel's military occupation has gone too far? Because that's the essence of Terry's "essay." There is no recognition of the gradual escalation of occupation; no recognition of Israel's abusive and oppressive history; in fact, there is no recognition that Israel has ever done anything worthy of criticism, apparently up until Netanyahu's reign.

      Terry's piece completely washes away decades of Israeli brutality, intolerance, war and land theft and lays the preponderance of culpability at the feet of Arab intransigence and Netanyahu's right-leaning reactions to this perceived intransigence. I have no respect for those who clamor for peace in an effort to save Israel's "Jewish, democratic" character. Terry has no remorse for what Israel has done because of how it has impacted the Arab community of Palestine, but rather Terry's regret comes from the fact that Israel's image is now sullied. It's self-preservation which Terry calls for, not humanity, not compassion, not legality. In fact, it's more ethnocentric babble about Israel standing all alone, about the Jewish people having no one to turn to save for themselves. Terry argues that peace must be imposed by Israel, for Israel, because no one else is up to the task of aiding the Jewish people's tireless pursuit of peace.

      It's actually a nasty, racist, paranoid piece that deserves nothing more than derision.

    • Terry,

      While I suppose I should applaud the fact that you seem to have shed the yoke of 'circle-the-wagon' tribalism that so frequently ensconces the majority of your tribe, that's about as far as I can bring myself in terms of congratulating or appreciating your point of view. You are against military occupation. Brilliant. Welcome to humanity.

      As for the remaining litany of misconceptions, poor metaphors and historically contemptible nonsense that fills the pseudo-Zionist ramblings encountered in your link, I should say you're much more like Mr. Netanyahu than you seem to realize.

      While I'm sure you've given yourself quite the proverbial pat on the back for your unyielding compassion and generosity in proclaiming that Israel cannot exclusively have the land "now primarily populated by Muslims and Christians who call themselves Palestinian," you've of course miserably misconstrued, and as such misconveyed, the realities of rightful land ownership in Palestine. Jewish attachment to the land is, as you say, but a metaphor for a deeper, I suppose spiritual, connection to Palestine. Palestinian attachment to the land is most certainly not metaphorical. It's a reality. An undeniable truth. The historical demographics of Palestine have been overwhelmingly Arab, both Christian and Muslim, since the 5th century. As of 1800, only 7,000 Jews lived in these lands. By 1890, it had risen to around 43,000, compared to 57,000 Christians and 432,000 Muslims. Only after this did a Jewish presence begin to gain strength, and only because of aggressive immigration from Europe. Even when Israel declared its illegitimate independence, the (foreign) Jewish presence was half that of the 1.1 million Muslim and 143,000 Christian indigenous. Palestine, (or as you state, the "part" of Palestine) did not suddenly enjoy a Muslim/Christian presence, or a even a majority. It's been such since well before the blight on humanity known as Zionism infected the mind of Theodore Herzl.

      If anyone, it is the existential Palestinian people who should be so gracious to offer to share portions of their land, not you speaking up as some delusional humanitarian offering the scraps of Israel's colonial project; though I see no reason why Palestine should offer anything to the flee-bitten fanatics of the illegal settlements or their brutal, ideologue overlords in Tel-Aviv.

      Your romantic attachments to the idea of Israel have blinded your ability to even recognize cursory realities of Israel's despicable history. Far from being some recent fringe cliff-dive by the far-right Netanyahu regime, the policies that you seem to so despise define the very fabric of Israel, a belligerent, greedy, colonial entity that has supplanted a diverse and vibrant cultural mixture with an ethno-centric driven society of fanatics, racists, chauvinists and sociopaths. The Israel you lament today is the very Israel that violently carved itself out in successive wars, aggression and occupations since even before its unilateral declaration of independence in 1948.

      By the way, I'd like to introduce you to Lebanon, the Middle East's oldest and most inclusive democracy, despite Israel's best efforts to manifest sectarian bloodshed. If you're going to come here, commenting about your sudden epiphany regarding the ills of occupation (especially in such a proud, self-congratulatory manner), a good tip might be this: avoid linking to your Hasbara-laced social commentary that fires off canard after Likud canard that can so laughably be dismissed by the Mondoweiss commentariat.

      Good day to you, Terry.

    • Sometimes I feel as if I'm living in a dream, certain that at any point I'll awake from this fantastical hallucination to a world of reason and truth., where things really are as they seem, or as they should be.

      The idea that Mr. Obama has been anything less than in intractable enabler of Israeli intransigence and belligerence epitomizes absurdity. When I hear people parrot these claims that Obama is anti-Israel, I want to slap them in the face, douse them in cold water, and rouse them, and hopefully me, from this sickening irreality.

  • Gaza, Get an Airport or Get a Life
    • I was supposed to attend an orientation meeting in Turkey/Istanbul; that is, I had to travel once again. This time, I needed not wait at the border or cross the Sinai desert. I was a normal traveler, at an airport, flying from Valencia to Turkey, no dehumanization or humiliation whatsoever. Yes, I was a normal human being traveling from one place to another, smoothly.

      It's utterly unacceptable that those simple freedoms we take for granted are nearly unattainable luxuries, sometime little more than dreams, for the people of Gaza and the West Bank. Traveling is one of life's greatest, and simplest, joys. The fact that the Israeli government and military (with the intermittent assistance of the Egyptian authorities) dictate that the 1.5+ million Palestinians of Gaza have no right to travel is a crime against humanity.

      Thanks for a glimpse into your world, Fidaa.

  • Is the mainstream press ignoring the Congo because there is no ‘Islamic threat’?
    • Les, grow up. No one benefits from genocide in the Congo.

      Abhorrently wrong.

      http://www.theinternational.org/articles/89-blood-minerals-continue-to-finance

    • Very little changes. From 2009:

      Though rising awareness of the violent malaise surrounding conflict minerals has led to some self-censorship by electronic companies and mineral processing plants, there remains a vibrant market for tantalum, especially in Eastern European and Asian technology industries. In 2002, the United Nations named 85 corporations (http://tinyurl.com/yce4l75) that were not in compliance with the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises in their mining related activities in DR Congo. According to the OECD, the guidelines pertain to “disclosure of information, anti-corruption, environmental protection, respect for core labour standards, protection of human rights and taxation.” The brutal exploitation of mining labourers by rebel and government forces in DR Congo clearly prohibits companies from dealing in the minerals obtained through such illegitimate means.

      Despite these ethical guidelines and amidst rampant violence and human rights abuses, in the late 1990s and early 2000s, governments in need of minerals like cobalt and coltan encouraged corporations “to invest in and facilitate production of the needed materials,” according to a report by Dena Montague and Frida Berrigan published by the Arms Trade Resource Centre. During heightened violence, American Mineral Fields (AMF) brokered a $1 billion deal with President Kabila in 1997 allowing staggering access to DR Congo’s many mineral resources. In 1999, Citibank provided a $5 million loan to SONEX, the financial wing of the Rwandan insurgency group RCD. Other corporations and financial institutions in various industries, such as technology, mining, oil, and gas, engaged in similar activities whereby they obtained direct rights to conflict resources and financed or encouraged the exploitation of resources to increase cheap global supplies, often at the detrimental expense of Congolese workers.

      Though general trends have suggested a lessening of foreign investments and corporate involvement in the war-driven industries of the DR Congo, a 21 June 2009 report published by Global Witness concluded that many American, European, and Asian companies continue to import conflict minerals. According to the report, Afrimex, based in the UK; Trademet, based in Belgium; and THAISARCO, based in Bangkok, all obtain minerals directly from the DRC. Global Witness corresponded with 200 companies and reported that the majority have no preventative measures in place to ensure that conflict minerals are not integrated into their supply chains. Even those companies that obtain their supply from legitimate exporters often indirectly finance the conflict. According to Patrick Alley, Director of Global Witness, “It is not good enough for companies to say they buy only from licensed exporters, when they know full well that their middlemen buy from armed groups. The failure of governments to hold companies to account, of Burundi and Rwanda to restrict the trade across their borders, and of donors and diplomats to address explicitly the role of the mineral trade, have all contributed to the continuation of a conflict that has killed millions and displaced many more.”

      http://www.theinternational.org/articles/89-blood-minerals-continue-to-finance

  • Homage to Alex Cockburn
  • 'We well understand' what you're experiencing -- Netanyahu to Colorado
  • Syria watch
    • Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Yemen --all of whom have quietly but brutally suppressed their own civil protest movements-- are clamoring for intervention and/or the collapse of the Al-Assad government. They want to cripple the Alawite power structure in Syria, and have been linked to efforts to fund and arm the Free Syrian Army. Israel and the U.S. see Syria as an extension of the Iranian sphere of influence in the Middle East, and thus they too want to see the collapse of Al-Assad's government. The power vacuum that remains will inevitably be filled by Sunni influence, which will sever Syria's link to Iran. This, too, is the hope for Lebanon.

      I see a domino-effect plan, with the collapse of the Al-Assad regime in Syria leading to the targeting of Hezbollah in Lebanon. The U.S., Israel and Saudi Arabia want to see the dissolution of the Shia Crescent from Tehran, to Damascus to Beirut, and with that the revocation of Russian influence in the region. All that starts with Al-Assad.

  • How many of you are uncomfortable with the phrase 'oppression of Palestinians'? In the packed room, just a few heads nodded
    • The Two-State "Solution" based on the pre-1967 borders is no solution at all, for it nullifies the legitimate right of return for millions of Palestinian refugees whose homes lie on the Israeli side of the Green Line, it legitimizes Israel's acquisition of land by military force in the years just prior to its unilateral declaration of independence on foreign lands as well as during the 1948 war, and forever solidifies as acceptable the farce that the state of Israel can be both Jewish and democratic. The idea of an exclusive Jewish state in Palestine is abhorrent given the displacement of millions of indigenous non-Jews necessary for such a state to be realized. The only path to a just resolution is a single state of Palestine, democratic and heterogeneous with equality for all, Muslims, Jews, Christians and all. Zionism must never be cemented as a legitimate or moral cause.

    • You'd like Tom Segev's "One Palestine Complete." He posits the claim that the British supported the Zionist movement as a means of depopulating Europe of Jewish communities.

  • Krugman's coverup
    • David,
      Israel, its collective voters, its collective politicians, the very ideology that brought it into being, is at the root of all its abhorrent policies since 1948. Likud is but one facet of this. Proclaiming that one shouldn't oppose Israel, or that BDS isn't the answer because it's just right wing politics to blame is naive, if not downright disingenuous. Don't play those identity politics here. There is very little daylight between Israel's political left and right.

  • Netanyahu adopts Facebook strategy to claim sovereignty over Jerusalem for the Olympics
    • Fortunately, having an attachment to and love for a piece of land doesn't justify war, ethnic cleansing, colonialism and apartheid.

      The Jewish people, whose love for Jerusalem is apparently so strong, have every right to settle in the Holy Land... as individuals, not as an armed conquering force fresh off boats from Europe. Incidentally, Jerusalem's sephardic Jewish population (the ones who actually had a legitimate and physical attachment to the land for centuries) opposed the colonial aspirations of a Jewish state as envisioned by Zionism.

    • Why would it be deleted? Not only is the analogy apt, but it's also entirely unoffensive to anyone with the ability to view the history of Israel with even a modicum of clarity.

    • 2) Resolution 181, the basis for an Israeli state, does not include Jerusalem under Israeli sovereignty;

      3) the self-declared state of Israel proclaimed independence over west Jerusalem in violation of Res. 181 and without consent of indigenous Arab majority of the city after exerting militant force to aquired "control" of the city, and countless other locales beyond those borders stipulated in Res. 181;

      4) not a single government of the world accepts Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, whereas a great many acknowledge east Jerusalem as exclusively Palestinian (for the aforementioned reasons).

    • Actually, that's exactly what is being posited. Let me be abundantly clear, no part of Jerusalem is sovereign Israeli land for the following reasons:

      1) the city was privately owned overwhelmingly by Palestinian Arabs who were promised independence by British and French for revolting against the Ottoman

  • Settler college granted Israeli university status
  • Bulgarian Foreign Minister: Mistake to blame 'any country or organization' for Burgas attack at this point
  • Liberal Democrats casually smear the Muslim Brotherhood
    • I'm in no way, shape or form associated with "The Left." A common misconception by self-righteous liberal progressives who think they hold a monopoly on compassion and respect for human-rights.

      I'm liberal in the classical sense of the word, which encompasses both the American Right and the American Left, by the way. Neither of which I pledge my allegiance to. Partisanship (or ideological purity) is the scourge of any democratic society.

      Now, as for the Muslim Brotherhood's founder, Hassan al-Banna was a "vicious, yet intelligent, anti-Semite?"

      From Richard Wolin, a professor of history and political science at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York:

      "One of [Jeffrey] Herf's crown witnesses is the Muslim Brotherhood founder, Hassan al-Banna, whose well-documented anti-Semitic tirades in Herf's view represent the missing link between the Nazis and the leading representatives of contemporary political Islam. But as Matthias Küntzel demonstrates in Jihad and Jew-Hatred: Islamism, Nazism and the Roots of 9/11 (Telos Press, 2007)--a book for which Herf wrote the foreword--'it would be wrong to characterize the Muslim Brothers as ardent followers of the Nazis.' Here there is simply no squaring the circle; too many aspects of Nazi ideology--its paganism, its Aryan racial doctrines, its conception of Germanic geopolitical supremacy--are incompatible with the key tenets of political Islam. As Küntzel rightly concludes, Hassan al-Banna was too devout a Muslim to latch on to someone as impious as Hitler as a political role model. Such facts speak volumes about the tenuous nature of some of Herf's 'continuity' claims."

      http://chronicle.com/article/Islamo-Fascism-an-Exchange/49205/

    • Hear! Hear!

  • 7 dead in terrorist attack in Bulgaria
  • Responding to 'the Atlantic' smear on Mondoweiss
    • How could anyone know such a thing? You must have some evidence to be so thoroughly convinced... yes? (Again, I don't believe Mossad was behind this, but I wouldn't say that I "know" they weren't behind it.)

    • Zionist,

      Whether or not Annie --or anyone, for that matter-- believes that Mossad was behind Vittorio Arrigoni's murder is irrelevant. It is actually a reasonable possibility as Mossad is a covert, intelligence and counter-ops organization that has a long record of assassinations, kidnappings and torture. If Mossad is willing to assassinate scientists, then I see no reason to be shocked that Mossad would be willing to assassinate activists, as well. I'm not saying that is what happened here; actually I don't believe that they were behind Arrigoni's kidnapping and murder. But, it's a plausible scenario.

      It has nothing to do with Mossad's "Jewishness," (I doubt many of its covert assassins, kidnappers and torturers actually adhere to Jewish scruples), and everything to do with its well-documented track-record.

      You can't fall back on the absurd "blood libel" defense every time someone makes an accusation against a Jew or a Jewish group without any evidence that the accusation is based solely on the Jewishness of the accused. In this case, it is not.

  • What Israeli settlement bus routes teach us about the occupation
    • Great visuals posted here recently. They are incredibly powerful in opening people's eyes in a way that even the most impassioned rhetoric is incapable of.

  • Arthur Koestler's Zionist recruiters used anti-Semitic ideas
  • Republicans woo the settler vote
    • Romney is Mormon. He needs an appeal to the Christian Dispensationalist base, which is why he's stirring the pro-Israel pot. Republicanism can only bring him so far with these people.

      As for the Democrats, Americans, they're no better than the Republicans; chock-full-o-Zios.

  • Defining 'occupation' with Israeli Consul General Akiva Tor
  • 'IDF Ranks' transforms pro-Israel Facebook users into 'virtual soldiers'
    • At the risk of being misinterpreted, I think there is a considerable disconnect between reality in Gaza and the perceptions of a great many well-intentioned pro-Palestinian activists. Life in Gaza is actually markedly more optimistic than many might think, though not in the way that Israeli propagandists would have you believe.

      Israel maintains a criminal air, land and sea blockade of the Gaza Strip, with arbitrary and illicit control of the free movement of people and goods. Sonic booms, sporadic fly-overs and intermittent disruptions in power and water supplies are psychological tactics to remind the people of Gaza of their subservient dependence on their Israeli overlords, and ultimately their vulnerability. Then of course, there is always the constant threat of a crippling and deadly Israeli incursion or bombardment that makes Gaza far from a pleasant place to live, certainly nothing like the flourishing suburbia Israeli hasbarists would lead you to believe.

      However, despite all of this, Gazans do enjoy something that is often overlooked: a sense, false perhaps, of autonomy and freedom on a day-to-day basis. The Israeli presence is known, but not necessarily always tangible. Gazans are free to enjoy their own streets, with vendors selling their wares, celebrations, festivals, soccer games, and much more. The people have retained a sense of pride in their culture despite seemingly insurmountable odds. The people of Gaza are truly inspiring, and optimistic. For Gazans, travel from Khan Yunis to Gaza City is feasible in a way that travel from Hebron to Bethlehem or from Jericho to Jerusalem is not for the Palestinians of the West Bank.

      And this is of fundamental importance. For all the talk of investment in and development of the West Bank, it is still one of the most restrictive and repressive regions of the world. Life in the West Bank is draped in the facade of autonomy, however in actuality is consists of military check-points and patrols, night-raids, arbitrary arrests, beatings and killings, indefinite detentions, militant and fanatic Israeli settlers, destruction of property, arson, theft of lands, assaults, rapes and murder. There is a sense of utter hopelessness and helplessness, of complete restriction. The Palestinians of the West Bank are a disillusioned people, nearly broken. They have no freedom, no say in their own affairs, and are "represented" by the feckless collaborators of the Palestinian Authority, at times equally brutal as their occupying counterparts. The Gazans, however, have leadership and governance, a sense of community unmolested by the daily presence of Israeli troops.

      Every few years or so, Israeli leadership deems it necessary to inflict devastating inhumanity on the people of Gaza of the Cast Lead variety. They must be reminded of where power truly lies. However, something entirely more paralyzing occurs every day in the West Bank. It's an utter shame that the majority of the world's press only seems to have a piqued interest in Palestinian suffering during those dark days of Israeli invasions of Gaza.

      I think this is a more poignant articulation of what I'm trying to express...

      "Until the headlines stop focusing on just the devastation and systematic oppression perpetuated by the Israeli occupation and start recognizing or at least acknowledging Gaza’s audacity to become what the occupation is designed to prevent it from becoming, the population of the Gaza Strip will continue to harbor feelings of discontent towards foreign journalism and justifiably so." ~Sami Kishawi

      http://electronicintifada.net/content/theres-more-gaza-broken-slabs-concrete/10144

  • Exclusive: Garcia says, Let's call this occupation exactly what it is
  • Soccer's tragic flaw made a farce of Euro Cup final
    • If unlimited substitutions will fundamentally change the game, then the answer is to retain the 3-sub limit, with the exception of being able to substitute for injured players beyond the 3-sub limitation.

      This will not lead to endless subs, as the frequency of injuries after having already made 3 substitutions is an aberration.

      Forza Gli Azzurri!

  • Auden wrote 'by far' the best book in 1945, but was denied the Pulitzer for alleged Communism and aloofness from WW II
    • What ever are you talking about Marc? I agree, better photos could have been used. But, really, "the damage has been done?" Symbolism? What damage? What symbolism?

      This is a post about how Auden's Pulitzer may have been sacrificed by the Committee on political grounds. Phil happens to be on Auden's side. If Phil wanted to inject symbolism into the narrative, he would have made Auden look more youthful and energetic, you know, to win over all of us buffoon readers who need pictures to make judgments...

      Putting a youthful picture of Shapiro is nothing more than pure happenstance. If it were more, doesn't it go against the intended grain of the actual post?

  • Connecticut Senate hopeful calls congressman a ‘whore’ for AIPAC in televized debate
    • Oh, good grief...

      What does the use of the word "whore" have to do with feminism?

      Whore, noun: a woman who engages in sexual acts for money; a man who engages in sexual acts for money; a venal or unscrupulous person.

      In the case of Rep. Chris Murphy's enslavement to the demands of the contemptible and subversive AIPAC, the term is not only apt, but politically correct. What the hell more do you want?

  • The Clementi family's compassionate statement
    • No one who claims to have compassion, who exhorts on the need for humanity, can rightly support a 10 years sentence for Ravi. What he did was cruel, but invoking hate-crime and tossing him in prison for 10 years is equally cruel.

    • Yes, Annie, and it is called 'invasion of privacy.' Ravi was charged and convicted of such, in addition to a hate crime. That is 10 years in prison for humiliating someone. How can you support that?

  • Gaza scoreboard
    • Hear! Hear!

      Look to Rwanda... to Serbia... to Palestine... to Iraq... to Iran. Nothing in contemporary history is really as it has been presented.

      If they can so thoroughly and so effectively revise events that are still so fresh, so real, and get away with it, of course they could have done the same to events long past...

    • The reader commentary around here is excellent. And the subject matter of the posts themselves have crucial information, whether they are from Alex Kane, of Phil, or Adam, or any of the other guest writers.

      While, I agree that there is at times a cringe-worthy Zionist apologist feel to some of Phil's work, especially... I don't see that as a reason to stop visiting the site and contributing in opposition to those apologetics.

  • 86 Republicans to Obama: 'You have already waited too long' on Iran
    • Disgusting.

      ...regarding one of the greatest threats Israel has ever faced...

      Oh, for God's sake...and humanity's...someone with an influential platform call out this bold-faced, and dangerous, lie.

  • Jon Stewart's Triple Threat
    • On the one hand, this is the Daily Show formula for all their interviews. I've seen many serious, and annoyed, people sit through the Daily Show interviews. So, this wasn't something especially crafted for the Palestinian ambassador. Also, there is something to be said for an absurd interview of this style demonstrating the absurdity of Israel's demands. Perhaps the ambassador found it refreshing. Probably not though.

      I also believe, on the other hand, that unless the ambassador was 100% aware and supportive of the interview before hand, then this was distasteful fun that cheapens the struggle this man and his fellow Palestinians have endured.

  • Queer Arab women stage reading of 'real stories from real people'
    • Pabelmont,

      In Arabic there are several accents/sounds that cannot be expressed in a single Latin letter. Therefore when writing Arabic phonetically in English, numbers are substituted to represent these sounds.

      They are:

      2 = أ (hamza) - glottal stop

      3 = ع ('ain) - a "choked" letter sounding like an "a" you can't represent with the English alphabet

      7 = ح (haa) - sounds like an aspirated "h" like the "y" when whispering "yes".

      5 - خ - German and Scottish "ch" - sometimes transliterated as "x" or "kh."

      6 - ط - hard "t" sound - otherwise transliterated simply as "t."

      8 - ق (a guttural k sound - most commonly transliterated as "q." [cf. Iraq and Qatar]).

  • At last a leader, Obama fingers 'Israeli interest' in war
    • You have got to be kidding me! I would say "I told you so" when the bombs start falling, but that would be callous given the thousands of innocent lives at stake.

      The naive adoration of Mr. Obama is sickening. He's duping an anti-war community into blindly following him to war...

    • ...who upped the ante in Afghanistan, dragged his feat on Iraq, joined the NATO bombardment of Libya, stands silent on Syria, continues to send attack drones to Pakistan and Yemen, authorizes the assassination of American citizens abroad, authorizes the indefinite detention of American citizens at home by the US military, and only now, when he deems it politically expedient, does he offer up the most tepid rebuttal to those who intend to inundate the globe in a massive regional war in the Middle East for the sake of sustaining a false narrative of Israeli victimhood.

      But, yea, I'm sure he was fist-pumping at your anti-war scribble, Phil.

    • You're really delusional lately, Phil. Even if the speech itself marks a subtle change in language, even if that language might make AIPAC/Likudniks a little uncomfortable, you still point out the obvious, "But it's an election year, and so, politically, why did he do it? Ithink Obama sees a winner." How admirable! The gushing terms you use to refer to this President are hardly warranted for a man

  • Hasbarapocalypse at Ynet: 'Zionism will only cease being demonized when the West stops demonizing colonialism'
  • Blasting Obama as 'blurred,' McConnell assures Israel lobby that bipartisan Congress will authorize 'overwhelming force' against Iran
    • Hear! Hear!

    • Really, Phil? The fact that McConnell made the obligatory call-out against Obama's Iran policy "shatters" the notion that both parties share the same foreign policy goals? So, McConnel couldn't simply be blowing smoke to score political points with AIPAC for the GOP? You're providing cover for the Democratic party in their culpability for the US's "wag-the-tail" foreign policy. It's cheap, and transparent.

  • 'We are you and you are us,' Netanyahu says-- but Obama thumbs him with talk of Palestinians and diplomacy
  • Watch live video from OccupyAIPAC
  • In 45 minutes with Obama, Goldberg asks repeatedly about Iran, nothing about Palestinians
  • Finkelstein's prescription for a two-state solution is not realistic
    • The Palestinian response is reflexively emotional, that is why support for the Two-State Solution is so popular in occupied Palestine. After so many decades of oppression and subjugation, of utter lack of sovereignty, the notion of having their own state, their own society, and not seeing Israeli soldiers and armed settlers running rough-shod through their homeland must be an utterly blissful feeling, so blissful in fact, that they are willing to overlook the minuscule, incongruous and fractured sliver of actual Palestine that they'd ultimately be left with. Trying desperately not to sound condescendingly like a western academic who "knows better" than the Palestinians, I truly believe that the Palestinian collective is operating more on emotion than reason right now. A Palestinian state would not be sovereign and independent, nor even viable given the geographical divide between Gaza and the West Bank. It would be a demilitarized and fractured Bantustan society, geographically separated by Israel-proper as well as Israeli "settlement tentacles" into the West Bank. A Palestinian state is a fallacy, it would be nothing more than currently exists under the allegedly sovereign Palestinian Authority.

      This is why, in my opinion, the discussion must not be about land ownership, or borders, or statehood, or the status of Jerusalem, but rather, it should be a loudly passionate demand for equality, for freedom, for human rights. These will resonate with the world. This is why the BDS movement is so vital. This is why so-called delegitimization of Israel is so necessary.

  • Responding to commenters on recent bannings
    • Newclench,

      You're a parody.

      Whatever its intended meaning, the word is Anti-Semitism, and Semites are not "entirely, exclusively" Jewish. Quite the contrary actually.

      If we're going to invent words exclusively for anti-Jewish sentiments (as if "racism" or "bigotry" are simply too mainstream, too human, to encompass the "chosen" Jewish community), then why not Judeaophobia? That's much more accurate, as it refers to Judaism "entirely, exclusively."

      Furthermore, reserving Anti-Semitism "entirely, exclusively" for Jewish victim-hood is doubly insulting and outrageous in that few contemporary Jews are actually ethnically Semitic. The diaspora, my friend, has been considerably watered down to, let's say, at best, the square root of the Chosen people. Whereas, wholly Semitic people still live, in large numbers, throughout the Middle East, and they ain't Jewish, I can assure you of that.

      The politicization of the term "Anti-Semitism" is yet another example of how twisted the Zionist psyche can be... Up is down, white is black, evil is good, Anti-Semitism doesn't apply to... Semites?

    • Eh, Thomas....

      Christian dispensationalist theology is the root of Christian Zionism, and it is alive and well throughout politically influential Protestant denominations.

      See the work of Richard Allan Greene:

      http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/5193092.stm

    • I concur.

      As I stated earlier:

      Silencing Jeff Blankfort is no more principled or constructive than running interference for AIPAC. The outcome is the same: you help sustain the legitimacy of Zionism, in this case by removing an importantly vocal critic of Zionism.

    • Yes, eee and co. shall be pleased.

    • The term "Anti-Semitism," as it has been monopolized, appears to be exclusively reserved for racist commentary towards the Jewish people, of which I've seen nearly none on this forum. Mondoweiss knows better, in that Semitic people include Arabs; the racist vitriol emanating out of Israel is actually text-book "Anti-Semitism" toward Palestinians and other Arabs, both Christian and Muslim.

      But, we're not interested in censoring that speech, of which there is plenty on this forum. Instead, we're going to chase the illusion that there is somehow widespread Judeaophobic hate-speech circulating the commentary here and ban a few high-profile commenters to keep the appearance of that meme going.

      It's strategic. It's propaganda. It's the result of effective AIPAC/Likud/Zionist conversation control.

      Phil and Adam have succumb to these pressures, and have incidentally undone much of what they claim to be working toward.

    • “Also Jeff sought to have a discussion of the Jewish historical role in the rise of the Nazis in Germany here. As we have made clear, this is not a subject we want any part of. It generally leads to anti-semitism and Holocaust denial, which we won’t tolerate on the site, and unquestionably hurts our ability to reach out.”

      Is this really the discussion Jeff Blankfort was trying to have? Was he really linking a Jewish role with the rise of the Third Reich? Or, was he linking Zionism with the rise of the Third Reich?

      Phil, is there truth to what Jeff was trying to discuss, or do you believe his position to be patently false?

      If it’s the latter, I’d disagree with you, but at least your intention is to censor what you deem to be dishonest propaganda. If it’s the former, however, you’ve knowingly censored honest, well-intentioned and important discourse simply because it affects your ability “to reach out.” That’s wrong. That’s shameless. That’s a victory for Zionism. Zionsim only exists still because honest, well-intentioned and important discourse has been silenced out of irrational deference to the sensitivities of certain demographics. Worrying about who might be upset is no honest basis for censoring the truth, especially when this censorship directly contributes to the prolonging of an inherently racist political imbalance. Silencing Jeff Blankfort is no more principled or constructive than running interference for AIPAC. The outcome is the same: you help sustain the legitimacy of Zionism, in this case by removing an importantly vocal critic of Zionism.

  • Ten reasons why AIPAC is so dangerous
    • Stevez22,

      Your entire position lies upon a foregone conclusion that Iran having nuclear capabilities is a problem. It's not.

      Iran is a member of the NPT. It has allowed inspections of its facilities. Iran leadership has never threatened to use nuclear weapons, were they to reach that capability. Ahmadinejad has never threatened to "wipe Israel off of the map." His actual statements have called for the end of the Zionist regime, a perfectly reasonable and applaudable position to take considering the inhumanity of the Zionist regime. Why can the US demand regime change all over the world, but Ahmadinejad cannot call for regime change in Israel? Regimes refer to governments, not societies. Iranian leadership has never sought the elimination of the Israeli people, just a transformation of governance in Palestine, with equality for all.

      "Iran, Syria, the Palestinian Resistance and Lebanon are ready to meet any conditions, and we hope that the enemies of the nations of the region will change their course and instead walk beside regional states in cooperation. Insofar as the Zionist regime threatens Lebanon and Syria and prominent personalities of these two countries every day, it must accept its end and grant in their entirety the rights of the Palestinian nation." -Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

      Under what mandate can the belligerent, nuclear-armed Israel demand that Iran not acquire nuclear energy?

      Under what law of reason would anyone listen to Israel, a nation that has 400 nuclear warheads and supports the "Sampson Option," in its hypocritical derision of Iranian nuclear aspirations?

      Israels' belligerent rhetoric actually is the a good justification for why Iran SHOULD obtain a nuclear weapon. One can certainly understand why Iran would want a MAD-deterrent when Israeli officials say the things they say.

      The hypocrisy is astounding. The US has some 8000 nuclear facilities and countless nuclear stockpiles. Israel has 400 nuclear warheads and exercises a Sampson Option. US and Israel seek regime change wherever it is deemed suitable. And yet, American and Israeli people take issue with Iran calling for regime change in Israel and seeking nuclear power? I feel as if I am in a twilight zone sometimes...

    • Taxi,

      Very sorry to see you leave...

      I understand your frustration at the way things have been going around MW. You're not alone in those sentiments. I feel compelled to stick around, though, contribute where I can, and at the very least continue to learn from the excellent commentary among the readers here.

      I wish you the best. Forza Palestina!

    • Linking to the Council for the National Interest! Always a sound idea.

      Thanks for the contribution, Jimmy.

    • If you believe Palestinian propaganda Martians arrived one day and forced innocent, peace loving Arabs out of their homes.

      Giladg,

      Hyperbole aside, you're on the right track. What you call "Martians," we know to be Jewish European immigrants. What you refer to as "one day" actually was a period of several decades of aggressive immigration that brought the Jewish population of Palestine (everything west of the Jordan River) from 43,000 in 1890 to 175,000 by 1931 to 630,000 by 1947 (See Sergio DellaPergola "Demography in Israel/Palestine: Trends, Prospects and Policy Implications"). Compare this to the local Arab population of Palestine at that time: 57,000 Christians and 432,000 Muslims in 1890; 89,000 Christians and 760,000 Muslims in 1931; and 143,000 Christians and 1.2 million Muslims in 1947. In other words, in 1890, before aggressive immigration by European Jews, Palestine was home to a minority of 43,000 Jews compared to 57,000 Christian Arabs and 432,000 Muslim Arabs.

      Remind me how this is Jewish land, without invoking Biblical dispensationalism or inside information as to God's will?

      Moving on, when you point out that these immigrants "forced innocent, peace loving Arabs out of their homes," you forget to mention the number, 700,000 forced to flee, plus you fail to mention the barbaric acts of terrorism at the hands of Jewish nationalists like the Stern Gang, Irgun and Haganah, plus you left out the British in pointing out who was the target of Jewish terrorism.

      But, all things considered, you're well on your way to understanding history. You just have to clean up your terminology a little bit. ;)

  • Israeli spokesman Mark Regev grilled on CNN International over Khader Adnan
    • Shorter Mark Regev: "He's been labeled a terrorist, therefore the rule of law is unnecessary."

      Sadly, the recently passed DAA has imported this philosophy to the United States.

  • The Jab'a accident and the infrastructure of occupation
    • Creep! ;)

    • I know I’m probably alone in thinking this, but I’ve done a little homework convincing me that the Israelites and Hebrews didn’t live in Palestine. If they did, it was only partially. Methinks they lived a little northward in Lebanon, Syria, and Turkey....Everything is always talked of being built with cedar from Lebanon. It would be a little bit hard hauling cedar logs over those mountains and down to Palestine.

      Very interesting. I want to look into this more. And, I assure you , Charon, you are in good company with such skeptical cynicism.

      This sounds a little radical, but I think all the Palestinians should convert to Judaism en masse. Not permanently, just to lie and take advantage of the Jewish law of return.

      Now, wouldn't that be something to behold. I wonder how quickly Israeli law would be rewritten if this were attempted?

    • From the entry:

      "For decades Israeli propaganda has by design dehumanized those they oppress. History has been rewritten. Villages have been renamed. Centuries old olive groves burned to make room for further illegal occupation by settlers, who then plant new groves and claim they’ve always done so. Mega-media campaigns are unceasingly launched claiming there are no historic Palestinians; there were no ancient peoples on the land renamed Israel. And this effrontery to the personhood of Palestinians is shamefully echoed in American presidential campaigns. “They are an invented people.” An astonishingly callous, dehumanizing cruel assertion. It further victimizes already shattered victims of atrocities in a highly visible public forum. It is no different from standing in a sex crimes unit to declare rape victims are really imported mannequins, therefore, pay them no mind. It is propaganda of the most hideous sort. The sort that is meant not to incite, but to produce apathy. And so it has. And so remains the still present crisis of the Palestinian state; the state of non being."

    • Seafoid,

      You may find this interesting: "The Right of Being: Palestine and Birthright"

      https://ofpeasantsandothermatters.wordpress.com/2012/02/17/the-right-of-being-palestine-birthrights/#comment-17

    • Chaos,

      Israeli culture already made that transformation a long time ago. Anyone denying that is either too emotionally weak to enter those choppy waters, or is engaging in intellectual dishonesty.

  • New York's Muslim community fights back against NYPD Islamophobia
    • Citizen,

      Not that I'm doubting you, but where did you get this figure: 80% of homeland security funds allocated for domestic security of American communities goes to Jewish communities? That's a fascinating statistic, if true, and I'd be very interested in seeing the documentation for that claim.

  • Both sides are wrong in the ‘Israel Firsters’ debate
    • JSW-

      Jewish "dual loyalty" is no canard. A significant number of American Jews do hold dual citizenship with America and Israel. This is a quantifiable fact. Dual loyalty is simply the logical progression of dual citizenship and it has nothing to do any "canard." Many Italian Americans have dual citizenship. Is it a problem to suggest that the people, and even Italian-Americans who only hold American citizenship, hold loyalties to Italy? No. So, why are you continuing to discuss the Jewish community with heightened sensitivity? You do this nation a disservice in attempting to downplay the very obvious fact that a great many Jews in America do consider Israel's interests as equal or superior to American interests.

  • Claptrap from Christian Israel lobby
    • That's not only a green tie symbolizing Islam, but actually a Hamas tie. The Hamas symbol is the Dome of the Rock, with crossed swords in the foreground, encircled by two prominently green banners with the flag of Palestine. At the top, where the banners meet is an image of the official borders of Israel, plus West Bank and Gaza with the inscription "Palestine."

    • This is actually pretty sickening.

      In the picture: Mr. Obama is pointing at the Western 'Wailing' Wall in Jerusalem, a site of prominent significance in Judaism, and calling for its dismantlement.
      The suggestion: Obama is an enemy of Judaism.
      In reality: Israel's apartheid wall that stretches the length of the West Bank, of no religious relevance whatsoever, is the actual wall of contention in Palestine. And, Mr. Obama has no intention of opposing its continued existence or expansion onto sovereign Palestinian lands.

      In the picture: A crow, perched on the President's podium, over the bloody corpse of a white dove.
      The suggestion: Obama's policies have killed the possibility of peace, and are precipitating a looming war.
      In reality: Israel's warmongering aggression toward Iran is threatening the stability of the entire region. It is the bellicose rhetoric of Israel's government and its 'politics of fear' governance that is threatening any possibility of peace. If war comes, it will be by Israel's hands alone.

  • Some elephants aren't fit to print: 'NYT' front-pages Adelson gift to Gingrich PAC without a word about Israel!
    • Phil, et al.

      Interestingly, another front page story in the NY Times on a training video shown in the NYPD that disparages Muslims actually does mention the Adelson/Israel linkage.

      http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/24/nyregion/in-police-training-a-dark-film-on-us-muslims.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1&hp

      "The 72-minute film was financed by the Clarion Fund, a nonprofit group whose board includes a former Central Intelligence Agency official and a deputy defense secretary for President Ronald Reagan. Its previous documentary attacking Muslims’ “war on the West” attracted support from the casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, a major supporter of Israel who has helped reshape the Republican presidential primary by pouring millions of dollars into a so-called super PAC that backs Newt Gingrich."

  • UK's deputy PM says Israel is 'vandal'-izing the two-state solution. Israel accuses him of 'gratuitous bashing'
    • The Two-State Solution has become a euphemism for sustaining the status quo: Gaza blockaded, West Bank occupied, while negotiations fluctuate between immutable stagnation and precarious frustration. All Israel needs to do is continue to dangle the idea of a second state in front of international observers, while behind the scenes, she continues her absorption of the West Bank. Perhaps, there will be a second state one day, but it won't include West Bank. It will be Gaza or nothing.

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