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Total number of comments: 493 (since 2012-12-04 18:20:15)

I am Israeli

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  • 'Why this bullsh-t?' Video of Israeli navy flotilla takeover
    • Zionist national pastime
      I don`t know, I actually think this is a pretty smart country, But I could be biased

    • No, no, on the contrary. These people are trying to produce a for-media scenario where Israel is designed to come out as they want it to be seen - while taking no real risks themselves because they know that they know who they deal with. Should Israel play into their hands and allow this cynical script?
      It would be utterly foolish to do so and it has devised its own way of undoing this ploy while sticking to its norms, namely making all that is possible to let them out unharmed. That should be praised not scorned and I am sure that`s how responsible people around the world (obsessive anti-Israel circles excepted) see it - just note the total silence and zero support despite the artificial hype these guys try to create. Plot failed.

    • So what did these “political voyagers” think? That Israel will allow a bunch of adventurers to make fun of it just because they describe themselves as “human rights activists”? The middle-East is too dangerous a region for such games and the fights there are for real – not “political theater” for the global media.
      The important thing, and the luck of these nut-heads, is that there are no casualties or injuries and that they will be all safe home soon, because it is Israel that they are playing with and wasting time of – and that makes all the difference.

  • New report details UK complicity in Israeli human rights abuses, calls for arms embargo
    • The military export of the UK to Israel has little to do with how it views Israel`s actions and is a matter of how it sees its general interests. The killing of the British tourists in Tunisia is the most recent manifestation of a quasi-WW3 that goes on continually even if by other name. It`s a continual low-intensity warfare, which only keeps getting worse, with all Western countries seeing themselves threatened by it – so have no choice but cling together. Indeed, it includes Western allies in the Arab world, which are also under threat – e.g. Hamas is not just a problem for Israel but also for Egypt and likewise with Jordan. So it is geo-strategic not part of the old and no-end-in-sight Israel-Palestinian conflict.

  • 'NYT' finally acknowledges that 'growing number of American Jews' support BDS
    • This is part of the “normalization” of both the “Jewish world” and Israel. In real crisis times or major historical developments there is a clear necessity to close ranks, “circle the wagons”, and the establishment of a Jewish state and its embryonic phases certainly belonged to this category.
      Are we still in that phase? Of course we are not. Almost a century after the beginning of that process Israel is now a mature state – it has its problems, but who doesn`t? So what we see now is really of little surprise – different people, Jews included, have different attitudes to what they see. Israel has a tremendously committed constituency in the US, composed of Jews and non-Jews – the so called Christian Zionists being a conspicuous part of that - and also people, again Jews and non-Jews, that don`t like it (or what it does for survival in extremely hard conditions – as what goes on in the wider region that it is in clearly demonstrates).
      This development is actually a healthy one an d it`s high time to stop being “surprised” when a Jew is critical of Israel, even denounces it sharply, and give it undeserving prominence. Jews are “normal people” too. In fact, they used to be known for having a huge variety of views and sharp internal disputes about them, as expressed by a traditional “classical”: “Two Jews, three opinions”.

  • Netanyahu issues 'welcome letter' as Gaza flotilla is seized by Israeli navy
    • Well, it`s never too late to set yet another UN Human-Rights-Council investigation committee to look in great detail and maximum scrutiny of this major, major human-right violation affair – right in the Middle-East. After all there are plenty of celebrity witnesses here: European parliamentarians, intellectuals, artists, peace-campaigners, academics, which know exactly where the source of all evil lies – they have too long a historical experience to be fooled or distracted by other quasi-important arenas and world problems

  • When will justice's 'thunderbolt' come for Palestine?
    • @Kris
      I understand the spirit of the article but can also see in the very many ways the 2 cases differ. Primarily, following MLK, black people`s struggle for rights in the US was nonviolent. Now how exactly that compares with the hyper-violence that has throughout emanated from Palestinians?

    • @BBS
      Wrong predictions and misreading of the political map. This feeling that “change is just around the corner”, which I think I prevails on this thread for many years now, is due to a self-inflated bubble that comes from all in it being cooked all the time in the same juice. The people in position and strength in the US, likely the general population too, see urgency elsewhere. Not saving Hamas in Gaza or changing the balance of power in a minuscule West-Bank - all that is yesterday`s big story. Put yourself in their shoes and look at what goes on in the Mid-East at large, nukes getting in the hands of rogues, Putin`s ambitions in Europe, the immense growth of China just to name some – and draw your conclusions.

    • So, let me understand: Is dealing with the Palestinian issue the natural sequel of the response to the killings in the Church? How exactly the 2 are linked - apart from abstract humane notions that in fact links it to a thousand of other issues in today`s world? And even if so and we just restrict our attention to the Mid-East - isn`t what goes on in Syria, Iraq, Libya, The Sudan, Yemen and other countries in this region infinitely bigger in scale and severity?

  • We must break out of the paranoid survival myth
    • @Peter Hindrup
      I don`t agree with the analysis here. Waiting for the US to get weakened so as Israel will too, perhaps undone (as tacitly suggested), is completely misguided. One can see it as a wish, which is common in Europe (where there is a never dying hope, especially in Germany, to reverse the outcome of WW2 and become again the top dog).
      The fundamental flaw in this wish is that it relies on the “all other things remaining the same” false assumption (which people often make when focusing solely on what mainly matters to them). But the weakening of the US, given other geo-strategic forces, will be not just about the US (or Israel). This is not the place to elaborate on what will happen with our world if or when that happens, but you can bet that at that moment the last thing that anyone will be concerned with is Israel. So, as they say, be careful (and this case very careful) with what you wish for.
      Another false assumption is that the US will be compelled to abandon Israel - who is that giant force that will do that or is interested in that? Europe is continually weakening – its ambition to turn the EU into a superpower is getting continually buried in front of our eyes and it is in fact likely that Europe will become even more dependent on the US. As for the eastern powers, as China, Japan or India, they could not care less about the Israel-Palestinian conflict – it`s not part of their agenda. Indeed, some of the bigger and more important Arab countries (as Egypt and the Gulf countries) are beginning to see utility in Israel (e.g. due to their rivalry with Iran and the general Sunny-Shia gulf) so that front can get transformed too.
      Finally, Israel, despite being geographically small, is a mini superpower on its own – let`s never forget that!. We live in an asymmetric-war era and being geographically and population-wise small matters far less now than in the past.

    • @citizen
      That`s clear - can a place be happy with continual warring? And also no doubt by now, after so many decades, all can see what`s goes on. But that`s not the point though. The key question is what people think should or can be done about it – and here comes the real twist. Seeing the general specter of the Mid-East region those every people understand the limited choices Israel faces if it wants to survive – and it is that which translates into the continual and unflinching political and security support for Israel. Is that likely to change? If at all it is bound to get even deeper as the Mid-East continues to slide into ever expanding chaos.

  • BDS will keep Israeli tanks from moving and F15 from flying, Oren says
    • @just
      That`s human nature - it is what decades of warring does to people. The Arab world and the Palestinians have turned Israel into a Sparta - or, rather, an Athena-Sparta mix.

    • @ lonely R, "curious to know"...:
      The star,
      Thunder
      The rain (or the shooter
      ....
      ...

    • @Grover
      Well, brother, that was my first reaction too. You look at that and you feel, as an Israeli, what a long way we have come in just 7 decades– a sense that nobody can beat us. So I second the thanks. The words that follow it are less pleasant but then we know that you can`t have it all – so let`s settle with what we have.

  • Leading NY writer likens Edward Said to monster in a horror movie
    • @JLD
      That`s the “existential threat” to the Enlightenment? What happened to your historical memory? Can`t anybody see that The Enlightenment ha has been undone in WW2 in Europe and that all in this regard is downhill since?
      There are acts that can`t be reversed by just an apology – “sorry, let`s put it all behind and continue as before”. Europe was the torchbearer of The Enlightenment and has utterly betrayed it with the Jews in its midst in the most horrific and imaginable way. Since then Everything “European” is losing ground – the formation of the EU notwithstanding - and it was History`s dictum that not only will they lose their influence on the new world-master, the US, but that also those they tried to annihilate will take their place as its “close friend” .

  • 'Obama coffee' is black and weak -- racist tweet from wife of Israel's vice premier
    • This is just what it is: a joke. Why see it as offensive? Or racist - it contains nothing defamatory about blacks? - Just used the visual fact that Obama is black. Indeed, you need to be racist not to see it that way. I bet Obama is laughing at it

  • Cycles of violence only begin when Palestinians kill Israelis
    • Trying to be as disgusting as possible in mocking somebody`s else greatest tragedy and trivializing it through mean analogies only achieves one thing: You can bet that an Israeli reading that gives up entirely on paying any attention to whatever is claimed in a media organ that allows the publication of such a cheap shot. It seems that some people`s hatred of Israel is only matched by their ill taste.

  • Journey through a fractured landscape
    • This is history in the making except that today, as different from the establishment of the US, Canada, Australia and NZ, it is covered incrementally by a continuous media of a globalized world.
      An also for those in Europe that confess broken hearts in this regard: Is the developing scene in their countries in the relations between locals and Muslim minorities nicer? Just last night an anti-Muslim party won the day in Denmark, joining a general trend. Something to consider before rushing to BDS - would you want that, in view of the above trend, for your own country?
      But even more importantly, what about the general specter in the Arab world around Israel? We live now in one global world now and everything is subject to comparisons, at least because they all usually appear within the same news-broadcast.

  • On anniversary of Gaza massacre UK activists plan to shut down Israeli drone factory
    • Correction: The sign in the picture says; “Stop arming Israel”, but this is not a British-industry factory that supplies Israel with arms. Rather it is a British factory that works for the Israeli industrial-defense complex, which as the article correctly says, has plants all over the world. In other words if the factory is moved elsewhere it will only mean lost jobs for British workers – not stoppage of British produced armament to Israel. That is why it didn`t work last year and this year will be the same.
      It must be understood that it is partly because of the BDS threats that Israel is forced to increase its focus on such industries as they are practically immune to people-level boycott (as agricultural products in stores). So the BDS may actually achieve counter results to what intended and indeed, as the article again correctly says, Israel is already at par with the superpowers of this world in these markets (as also in cyber-related ones, prominently cyber-security).

  • BDS could cost Israel $4.7 billion a year
    • As much as I can remember Israel`s relatively short history has been accompanied throughout with dire threats from its many opponents. Just few milestones (out of many):
      1948: The new country has no chance against 6 Arab armies
      !967: Nasser: The end of Israel is near
      1973: An Arab oil embargo and boycott threats to all countries and companies that trade with Israel
      2000: The rise of Hezbollah. Nasrallah: Israel is weaker than a spider web
      2001: Israel can have no answer to the Second Intifada given the easy access to it from the West-Bank and the flood of suicide-bombing volunteers.
      2009: The new US president, Obama, gives a speech in Cairo. The Islamic world: The Us is about to shift away from Israel.
      2011: Iran`s first nuclear plant is revealed. Iranian Parliament speaker: Tel-Aviv will burn
      2014: Hamas: Israel has no answer to the missiles and mortars from tunnels in Gaza

      And now 2015: The BDS will strangulate Israel`s economy. So if History is a guide…..

  • It's the borders, stupid (forget the BDS hysteria)
    • replace admit with deny

    • @just
      OK, I volunteer. He misspoke – caught in the web of the common anti-Israel propaganda lingo. What he meant to say is that the use of this slogan, in the usual robotic and mindless way that it is done by the legions of the blindly Israel-obsessed is just a mask for their real goal: the very existence of the state of Israel.
      I am sure you will be honest enough not to admit that this is in fact so.

  • Is BDS practicing a double standard with respect to Arab countries?
    • @echin
      Don`t forget to boycott also Intel, Google and all the rest of the hi-tech/Internet giants - their contribution to Israel`s economy even transcends the Pitas and the sodas. And to be on the safe side also throw away all electronic gadgets you have – they are all likely to have some Israeli-made part (almost all Internet security related ones are one way or another originate in or linked to Israel).

  • Obama's disgust for Netanyahu's 'stink' signals coming era of Jewish persecution in the U.S., says 'Tablet'
    • For a change, I agree with the general sentiment here. It is either pseudo-dramatization journalism or manipulation of the anti-Semitic charge where it doesn`t belong.
      As for the prediction that the “golden era” for Jews is over, hat reflects an already genetically-programmed fear of Jews in the diaspora given “old world” experiences – there is always the fear of the elusive stability. But then the “new world” immigration countries are fundamentally different as they are multi-ethnic, multi-religious, built with embedded inclusion of all immigrants whatever their origin country or religion, so “old world”-like bigotry is unacceptable.

  • Human rights organizations condemn Sheldon Adelson-led anti-BDS meeting
    • This is pretty strange. You run a BDS campaign, which clearly wants to hurt Israel and object that people try to counter nit. So even opposing the move is a legitimate cause of criticism? To me that`s contrary to everything democracy is about
      Simply put, today`s anti-Israel campaign has moved from the Mid-East physical arena into the global economic one. You can bet that just as in the former, with its many violent clashes, the same will happen here except that it in the warring here violence will be replaced by other means. But you can also bet since this involves a threat to Israel, a wish to have it strangulated economically, it is not going to be less nasty and this Las-Vegas meeting is the opening salvo here.
      If history is a guide then like in all previous rounds the hitherto one-way nature of this one will soon be replaced by an all-out warfare on the US turf with Israel`s many strong supporters in the US hitting back heavy-handedly. They have the political and economic means to do that.

  • Despite differences, US showers Israel’s new right-wing government with arms and favors
    • @Doubt
      I think you are mixing 2 different issues here. That the modern world is nowadays is run by multinational corporations is a serious subject for discussion – but the part of Israel in that is negligible.

    • Cook is playing naïve here. Throughout history relations between countries were defined by interests – so what else is new? It is impossible to cover the range of realms where the US and Israel are on the same page and cooperate productively. Even if clearly the US is the big brother here the smaller brother has already amply demonstrated that in is an efficient partner, e.g. the assistance it gets is used efficiently, and in the particular US culture that is appreciated and rewarded. What and who serves you best is always retained - yet the writer here is perennially “surprised” by that.

  • Turning Lebanon into Gaza -- Israel's hole card against Iran deal?
    • @oldgeezer (last sentence): Change “common enemy” "a threat”.
      But the point is that the conflict is just less than a century old, a sea drop on historical time scale, and already there have seen huge changes (as you also say) and given the fluid Mid-East that is likely to continue. So no point to rec-chew the old slogans, as many here do as a routine - and keep being “surprised” that what is hoped for never materialize.

    • @bint
      I hate to be the guy with the cold water but you must realize that despite all the talk to the contrary Israel is not “the common enemy” of Arabia – if at all it is the other way round. But some Arabs have talked themselves into that for so long that it is hard to shed.
      The good news is: it appears that unlike in this blog the Arabs on the ground are changing track and Israel is far lower on their list of priorities – some even can see common-interest potential with it.
      As for Nasrallah despite all the brave talk I think he reads the map well and see no pint at all in another round with Israel. He is paid by Iran, the common enemy of Israel and Saudi-Arabia (so it is not just a Sunny vs Shia issue but mainly political/security/inter-national) but he is not going to commit suicide for it.
      So those who wait for him to do their bidding, namely hurt Israel, can continue to wait….

    • The point is that right now all those missiles that Hezbollah accumulated don`t help it given its main present worry with IS. I don`t think it has any attention slack left for Israel now. Some people here so much want to see Israel hit that got blind to the changed circumstances in Lebanon and the region. Israel is Hezbollah yesterday` worry or main target - it is that Assad loses is Syria and Lebanon is overrun by IS, helped there by its many internal antagonists that wait years for this opportunity (some of them Sunnis).

  • Like it or not, Obama is a liberal Zionist
    • Seems more appropriate to ask: Who will save the Arab world from itself? The sheer focus here on what`s wrong with Israel kind of benignly neglects the other side of the equation – but conflicts are inherently between two parties

  • Zionism is tired
    • Well, nobody knows what lies ahead of us but you may certainly consider the past. Whatever will happen you may ask yourself: Did it really worth it? Was the “struggle” beneficial for the Arab world given all the efforts and consequent costs?
      So before you get self-excited about that you might consider that as well as possible future costs too - and perhaps reach another conclusion.

  • Understanding the 'S' in BDS: It's time to demand sanctions on Israel
    • I wonder. Entire Arabia is burning, which can partly be attributed in direct and indirect ways to how it misdealt with the Israel-Palestine conflict, and yet people are still into… sanctions on Israel. A kind of historical-scale blindness is playing-out here. Fortunately, not everybody is afflicted by that.

  • The U.S. is at last facing the neocon captivity
    • Here is a very simplistic explanation for the Iraq war. Since the dawn of History the rule was that you don`t dare attack a world superpower – it must keep its image to function. Bin-Laden did that and the usual response did come. Afghanistan first and then another target in the Arab world from which the attack on the US originated. Iraq was a “target of convenience”: Saddam was already on the hit list for a long time, nuclear proliferation fears, there was the oil potential and yes, as politically incorrect it is, assisting Israel in different ways. Saddam subsidized terror in Israel, the Iraq war removed Israel as the main instability cause in the region and if Iraq turns pro-West and democratic it would be on good terms with Israel.
      For these reasons you can bet that despite what is said here the Iraq issue will fade (rather than kept central) – overtaken by a host of far more actual and urgent ones.

  • Why Ship to Gaza is sailing again
    • @just
      Why don`t you read also the positive news?
      There are continual talks between Israel and Hamas (secretly though) on all kinds of cooperation agreements.
      Israel now also allows import of building material to Gaza and they are used for civilian purposes (not digging tunnels).
      There is a split in Hamas between the political wing and the military wing where the former advocates accommodation with Israel, realistically so given present-day general circumstances.
      Gaza may end ep going the West-Bank way in practical truce with Israel in Gaza and shift to civilian efforts – relinquishing grandiose but imaginary (and costly) struggles and instead doing what the population there really needs. That is, coming to terms, at long last, with realities.
      Now where do the political voyagers from N. Europe, which come “to save” Gaza, fit in here?

    • The point is that what is sensational and attention attracting when new may later become a non-event. You can bet that the dramatic events that followed previous attempts will not repeat themselves. I find it hard to believe that Israel will succumb to “the demands” of these political voyagers and I also believe that the whole episode will pass this time barely noticed. Surely, there will not be a violent overtaking scene, as in the past – a mini superpower must be able to find more creative and intelligent ways to deal a civilian ship. So, as an example, would I be utterly surprised if at some point in the cruise the engine of the ship will “mysteriously” fail? I don`t think so. If that happens there will be of course “dramatic” pleas for help from the voyagers – but would I be surprised if nobody would paid attention? I don`t think so. The world has no patience and attention-slack left for such childishly fabricated “dramas”.

  • The 'New York Times' is now a pro-Israel weapon. Who decided that, I don't know
    • @just
      “Just as Israel continues to delegitimize itself, so….
      That`s ridiculous just. With this logic you could also add the US congress to this list. Delegitimizing in the eyes of whom? Who are the objective arbiters? I hope you are not going to make that “the international community” – a pretty empty notion as it includes China, Russia,… Are they intrinsically legitimate?
      What I am trying to say is that people got so much used to using cliché`s that they don`t notice anymore how vacuous they are.
      Concretely, what is taking place is that the Arab/Islamic world (or, more precisely, a large part of it – Palestinians included) lost their argument merely by how they conduct their affairs – the two are intrinsically intertwined. With that they are also, gradually, losing their Western audience.

  • 'NYT' plays shameless propagandist for Israel's threats to kill Lebanese civilians
    • Relevant comments:
      Right now Hezbollah is bogged down too deeply in Syria where the party it is supporting, Assad, has entered a losing streak. So the last thing it may want to do is to start another serious front.
      Hezbollah in fact violated its promise in the aftermath of the previous war and rearmed itself.
      Better warn and avoid bloodshed. Hezbollah bases its calculations on the asymmetry that they can bomb civilian targets in Israel and Israel will not do that – deterred by the “international community” outcry. But they are extremely vulnerable to that given that they population stronghold is merely a neighborhood of Beirut. Indeed, there is no real need for Israel need to have civilians killed - just hitting the supplies infrastructure can paralyze a neighborhood (and people all will need to flee from there).
      It took the Shia a long time to get ahead socio-economically in Lebanon - they used to be at the bottom of that ladder there. Why on earth should they risk all that for a fight that they cannot win (just cause damage to Israel)? That is still so even if that is what the Iranians might expect in return for the billions they invested there but in.

  • It’s time to boycott Ben & Jerry’s
    • Yeah, boycott them all and don`t forget just about all the US high-tech and military-industrial giants. But perhaps the move here does make some sense – can help with people`s waistlines…

  • Ilan Pappe on the western awakening and what it means for Israel/Palestine
    • @mooser
      I don`t really buy that argument of Pappe (that Israel is behind it all) – it`s too far-fetched. But perhaps Israel was a catalyst in the process partly due by its perceived own survival needs and partly due to what Arab leaders did in their continual struggle with Israel, which indirectly (or as a secondary effect) caused that - and if so that was a big price to pay for Arab countries for their stubborn refusal to accept Israel as another country in the region. The good news: the latter shows signs of changing, mainly in improved ties with some pro-Western Arab countries in the region (out of common interest), which to one degree or another are out of the mayhem.

    • The first reason, Pappe claims, that this conflict should remain central is that it is at the roots of all the upheaval in the region. One can dispute that but even if true there is still a basic logical flaw in the conclusion of Pappe. Clearly what followed has taken life of its own and is already moving independently of that alleged cause and if so why should leaders whose concern is what happens in the present (or will happen in the future) place such an emphasis on the I/P conflict given that its extent and impact are already dwarfed by other troubles in the region?

  • Rudoren covers up Shaked's genocidal statements in 'NYT'
    • Some people fail to understand that over time things become symmetrical and reciprocity prevails. For a long time the field was solely about the Palestinian “victims (and Arabs/Muslims supporters) having a card-blanche for attacking Israel in all kinds of ways: terror, slander, UN resolutions, call for boycott and what not. That cannot last forever. The Jewish world is small but it has its punch-back capabilities - Pam Geller in the US, Jewish ‘new philosophers” in France and of course a much hardened position in Israel itself.

  • AIPAC-backed legislation targeting BDS movement advances in Congress
    • A key element here, even in the considerations in Europe in regard to boycott actions vis-a-vis Israel, is the generally shrinking power in the world of what is collectively known as “The West”. Until a century or so ago European countries ruled the world, later joined by an even bigger power, the US, but now gradually this global dominance is slipping form their hands. The newcomers to power are explicitly or tacitly hostile to “The West”, both as an entity and as a concept, and have many partners in that, in the many countries that harbor resentment to “The West” due to past negative experiences under it (or its influence).
      In such conditions “The West” cannot afford anymore to be too choosy and any entity that operates within the general confines of what The West” stands for must be protected. Hatchets need to be buried (as is mainly the case with Europe) in the name of the common cause - the very survival of “The West” and what it stands for. It is also clear to all that there will be little and short-lasting gratitude to “The West” for the abandonment of Israel - the US know that all too well and understands it much better since it got involved intensely in the Mid-East and came closer to realities there.

  • EU must take stronger action to sanction Israel following high court decision banning boycott
    • The EU is not in a position now to start a new front – it has too many open issues. The Greece saga is heating up and by all indications approaching explosion, with unpredictable impacts not just on the Eurozone but also the EU itself – there is no telling how far this can go. Ukraine is at boiling point too and Putin looks more menacing than ever.
      The rise of Euro-sceptic parties in many European countries will surely weaken the control of the Brussels headquarters on foreign policy issues. These new parties are also anti-immigrant and with that less inclined to support a yet another case of alleged discrimination, or likewise, of Muslims – they know “the story” only too well from their own turf.
      The now negotiated Trans-Atlantic trade pact of the EU with the US, a major economic move, includes a clause, demanded by the latter, which prohibits economic boycott of Israel. Peculiarly the Israeli hi-tech is now so advanced and omnipresent that the EU actually needs some Israeli-produced items – so reluctant to get into a boycott war with Israel.
      And finally, Germany, the EU economic bosses, invested too much in establishing normal relations with Israel to see it going down the drain – accused of participating in another boycott type versus Jews (especially so given how the Greeks are resuscitating now the Nazi era in their economic struggle with Germany).

  • Iran deal is important to 'keep really big bad things from happening,' Bill Clinton says
    • Just about the only way to understand the apparent contradicting statements from many key figures is to see this move with Iran as a huge gamble that necessarily comes with ambiguity. So, inevitably, there are a lot of good cops and bad cops whose positions represent the many aspects of the deal and this game will be with us for a long time.

  • Israeli racism takes center stage at Manhattan JCC
    • @Oldgeezer
      Such organizations were established in the New Land as a reaction to true and real bigotry in the Old World – rampant anti-Semitism for centuries – and they still monitor that. I am not claiming that all historical issues vanished altogether – relics of that still exist for sure - just highlighting the scene and main driving forces of this era of ours. Indeed, the ADL itself has been affected by that too – having become far more political than it used to be.

    • An important distinction is in place here: racism would be relevant only if it was directed against Arabs per se but that`s already not the case at all. There are increasingly strong ties between Israel and Gulf countries, even with the Jordanian elite and with Egyptian military. The dividing line is not ethnic but political so the racism charge is totally misplaced – a throwback to the past (that some just cannot let go out of mental inertia). The world now, in its advanced globalization phase, is an arena where political rivals compete for power and the confines of these new camps is what matters. That`s the only interpretational tool that really clarifies what goes on – not letting it cluttered with worn out slogans. Move on guys.

  • The Second Coming of Holocaust remembrance
    • Trivializing the Holocaust by comparing it to events that, even if painful, are in another league altogether will only act to remove an important warning sign for Humanity. The Holocaust has many aspects that are unique to it - there is no need to repeat them as all are aware of that – which, in turn, had profound consequences on many.
      The continent of Europe, which for a millennium dominated the world, has lost its center-podium status. Germany, which was a center of cultural and an academic power, has lost both. Europe now has to struggle with a vast population of immigrants that don`t accept its own core values (as different from the Jews that use to be there), it has had to accept the general lead of the US (to where the Jews from Europe fled and contributed meaningfully to its rise) and recognize that without it, it has little in the way of defense against an once again ambitious Russia. The Holocaust was a key factor in the establishment of Israel and that had a big impact on the region that it is in and indeed beyond – likely, a big part of that is still to come.
      And let`s not forget: it was the Holocaust that motivated a group of Jewish scientists, pacifists in personal inclination, to get into the development of The Bomb so as to try to stop Nazi Germany in Europe . The Bomb may still get us all.

  • When it comes to untrustworthiness, the U.S. trumps Iran
  • No Palestinians need apply to program on 'Palestinian issue' at Center for American 'Progress'
    • If I read right this conference is about US and Israel relations not US and Palestinians relations…
      Suppose a person decides to sit down and discuss his relationship with his girlfriend with the logic here he should invite also the other women in his (romantic) life since they will be clearly affected…

  • Obama's long & passionate Monday with Saban, Foxman, Hoenlein and other Jewish leaders demonstrates power of Israel lobby
    • I refuse to accept seriously the argument about a mystically great influence of the Jewish/Pro-Israel lobby on US politics. This apparent power of it, or 90% of it, stems from compatibility with goals and standpoints of others. There are deep reasons why support of Israel not only sits well with many Americans but appears to them as an essential interest of the US itself - not necessarily in the direct physicals sense of things but in more fundamental, conceptual and psychological, ways. That is why the Israel lobby and Netanyahu have such disproportionate impact – they simply serve, or are useful for, the advancement of broader interests and goals of others.
      It has been lucky for Israel to hit this concurrence of interests, or it (and US supporters) has been clever and effective enough to have it highlighted well.

  • 'United States of Israel' has compromised U.S. 'sovereignty' on Iran policy -- Gideon Levy in D.C.
    • @DeBakr
      Right, keeping a person like Levy (and others too) in a mainstream Israeli newspaper when what they actually do is, in the eyes of the majority of Israelis, fostering anti-Israeli propaganda, could indeed have pretty rational reasons behind it. One is what you point out, namely a vibrant democracy benefits from the free floating of (even far-flung) views and, indeed, it is only a self-confidant democratic society that can afford this luxury – one that is not afraid that such propaganda will have real demoralizing effects on it. There is then the added benefit, from the very acceptability of allowing such views to be aired in public, of further assuring the society in feeling that it can withstand such apparent self-harming talk - so a kind of immunization effect - as well strengthening its image abroad as free and democratic. That in turn helps with the appreciation (and support) from the US (or Canada and likewise) so the overall trade-off might in the end come out positive.

    • @citizen
      Since I don`t assume that in the super-sophisticated political environment of the US most people, especially the “political class”, are not aware of what you claim, you must be asking yourself how indeed this is happening (and for decades now)? The pint is that there must be something deep that drives it all, conceptual and emotional, which you are psychologically incapable to grasp due to an incompatible ingrained mindset. So the problem lies with you (and others in that psychological condition) not with your fellow Americans.

    • Truly, the only “interesting” thing about Levy is that it is an Israeli citizen that says all that but the content of all what he writes is standard anti-Israel propaganda of some circles outside Israel. So he is actually making a living as a journalist on being “brave” enough to repeat that – a “valiancy” that is carefully nurtured by constantly mentioning threats against him and hate letters. Truly though, the fact that he can do that, and regularly so for very long time now (in a mainstream Israeli newspaper), is just about the best counterproof to his life mission - a completely darkened portrayal of the state of Israel.
      Indeed, his present venture: travelling to the US to lecture it about not being “independent” from Israel, must be seen there as some kind of a farce - an Israeli journalist embarking on a mission to the US “to open its eyes” and “clarify” things to it.

  • Does Schumer have any idea how angry his constituents will be if he torpedoes his president on Iran?
    • Well, if you are true to yourself and to how you interpret your Senator duty you wouldn`t place loyalty to a President from your party over deeper convictions and broader concerns for your country (and a collapse of the world security order is NOT just Israel`s problem even if it is the most threatened). If one cannot face anger from voters when it comes to beliefs than that`s not a virtue (as this article seems to suggest) but a serious flaw

  • Who cares what Jeffrey Goldberg and Netanyahu don't like about the Iran deal?
    • All I was trying to point out that assuming that all the major institutions of your country are occupied by blinded fools or immoral creatures that sell values for own interests is not only very degrading but also quite implausible. I think looking at the mirror would tell those that hold such views where blindness and immorality really lie.

    • So, let me understand. Congress is horrible, the media is inept, the Republican Party beyond pale, the American high-tech industry (with industrial plants all around Israel) doesn`t care, the CIA, NSA and American defense industry are in bed with Israel, and so on and on. But then not all is lost because there is a blog site that saves the day – it tears all masks and reveals it all to everybody.

  • Iran is 'congenital cheating' 'Islamic power bent on world domination' -- Netanyahu tells US media
    • @just: why do label Iran a “rogue country”?
      Well, in today`s world terms a regime that is a combination of a military dictatorship and theocracy is called rogue

    • Mr. Law
      Don`t get carried away by manufactured appearances and media hypes (including what Netanyahu said here). The specter of an omnipotent Iran, which “dominates” Syria, Iraq, Lebanon, Yemen and what not, is sheer nonsense. Just look at what goes on in these countries – anybody who is ready “to own” that mess (and an indefinite one) is more than welcomed. In a world with the US, China, Russia, the EU, just to name some, Iran can never even approach “dominance”.
      The only real worry here, which is indeed serious, is an Iran with nukes (and for that matter any other rogue country too) and it is this grave danger that troubles Israel (and others) greatly.
      As for Hezbollah it does not matter how many missiles it has because its stronghold is merely a neighborhood of Beirut - that practically means that a real war is a neighborhood fighting a country. It took the Shia forever to rise to prominence in Lebanon (they used to be the lowest socioeconomically) – would they risk all that in a hopeless war (one that they can never win)? And do that while engaged in an indefinite war with a real fierce enemy and danger – the Islamic State?
      Add one to one to one and draw the conclusions

  • Hurt by the Israel lobby, Obama kisses it goodbye
    • No, Mooser, we are already in the tech-era – no boots on the ground are needed here just adequate “advanced capabilities”

    • This is all show – a classic “good cop, bad cop” formation. The bad cop (in this case the pro-Israel lobby and even Netanyahu) always looks worse but is essential. More importantly, the REAL ties between the cops are unaffected – Obama continues to be pro-Israeli as he ever been and so are the multitude of ties between the US and Israel. In a peculiar way some apparent tension between “the cops” is even helpful for their performance, so such interviews are partly tailored - especially so here given how calculated a person Obama is. This is a tricky exercise vis-à-vis Iran, which no doubt has been thoroughly calculated for its prospects and risks, and critically it is not irreversible- the Iranians know very well that violations can mean annulment.

  • DEAL!
    • It is a complex dance here. Netanyahu is playing the (ever ungrateful) “bad cop” role (together with local Republicans) and the soap-opera of the “personal distaste” between him and Obama (the “good cop”) makes the cops-array more effective - the bigger is the apparent distance between the cops the more effective it is. Both the US and Israel want (and need) Iran to fight ISIS, which is now the regional trouble-maker, and doing that is crucial for Iran too so the fundamentals for a “deal” are indeed there. The Saudis are also on both sides of the game - they too dislike ISIS and fear Iran`s influence.
      So , indeed (as the title says), some deal is inevitable, but then this is Iran, the mother of the (carpet) Bazaars and therefore some hard-bargaining is inevitable too – coming with profuse ritualistic “walk away” threats, “critical” deadlines and alike.

  • Paris university reverses decision, allows Israeli apartheid event with Blumenthal
    • I meant over in the sense of tolerating violence in France, or even just public troubles, as an “understandable” reaction to what goes on here. They understand now that this cannot be calibrated. Once you accept violence or public disorder because presumably it only concerns “others”(which included French Jews) while and we are safe and OK, that is they will never do that to us (particularly because here in Europe we also don`t like Israel) - sooner or later it will move on to other “resentment” targets.

    • People underestimate the impact of the Charlie killings on French people and France. It is not considered there yet another terror attack but a watershed event that will gradually change very many things in the general attitude in France. Before that event, Blumental would have never been blocked – simply, nobody would have cared too much plus there was also some “understanding for the justified anger of Arabs for what Israel does to their Palestinian brethren”. That`s over now.

  • It was a bad week for the Israel lobby
    • But things have changed since the initial period of his presidency: then he had 8 years to go and majority in both houses of the Congress and Syria and Libya were still stable. . Now he is a year away from the “lame duck” period and BOTH houses have moved to the hands of an assertive Republican party that is apparently determined “to run the show” (hence the invitation of Netanyahu) and his hands are full with highly problematic and violent other Mid-East arenas. Now add it all up and draw conclusions.

  • Over one quarter of Netanyahu’s speech to Congress consisted of applause and standing ovations
    • It was all gimmicks and symbolism. Netanyahu using it for the coming election and Obama using that too for the dame purpose only in the opposite direction - trying to convince Israel not to vote for him (as well as a retribution for Netanyahu`s support for Romney 6 years ago) and the Republicans using it to assert more influence on the conduct for foreign affairs now that they have majority in the whole Congress. The US and Israel are inextricably tied in fighting common grave threats but a little political “fun”, as the continual skirmishes between parties in the US, is always part of “the show”.

  • Palestine Advocacy Project goes national
    • I am surprised Annie that you don`t read the mood-map even in your own country. The comprehensive violence in Arabia or those involving Islamists all around the world has all but annulled the interest in this “old” story called Palestinians. They had been at the center podium for quite a few decades but that`s gone – even in Arabia (Egypt just listed Hamas as a terrorist group). I am sure Americans yawn when they see these ads – resurrected from the dead. These people might just as well start a Red Indians Advocacy Project.

  • Warren's out, as list of skippers surges, and White House offers Selma for Iran
    • It is possible that the Netanyahu “drama” masks a much more fundamental phase in US politics and conduct. It has been a received wisdom that foreign policy, unlike internal one, is by and large at the discretion of the president. In truth that has no base in the constitution and was rather a practice -and that is what is now to be challenged by the Republicans. They control both houses and will in the next 2 years try to navigate foreign policy too. Netanyahu was used here as a trial balloon and it also suited his own (perceived) election needs. Brushing him aside is easy because he is a foreigner but that is not so when it comes to the Republicans in the Congress. So let`s see if the latter will try on their own to block, restructure, and control the process with Iran. They would need to convince few Democrat senators, to reach the 60 mark, and that might be the real battles ahead. The Netanyahu affair will be soon forgotten because it is of no real essence in this broader process despite all the big (but artificial) noise around it – especially so if he loses the primeministership in the coming election.

  • 700 UK artists pledging not to go to Israel include Soueif, Ali, Waters, Eno, Leigh, Churchill
    • @Annie 12.36
      Israel does not invest in cultural events to improve its image but… for the sake of culture itself. I am surprised that this simple explanation did not cross your mind and perhaps that is because you have become so “politicized” – seeing everything through that prism.
      As for countering anti-Israel “intellectuals” in Europe I actually agree that it is waste of money. In my view those people will soon be busy dealing with similar issues (with Muslim minorities) in their own country - all the signs for that are there – and let see to where that will lead them.

    • I am afraid the delusional person here is not me. For almost 70 years now there is this prediction of destroying Israel by this country or another. This contact of Iran with china is very, very loose and the P5 is itself a loose association and Iran is now inclined to give up on n those nukes, not least because of its great interest to fight with the US the Caliphate guys, and then, well, at this moment the country that got the nukes is actually Israel.
      But the main aspect of the delusion here lies even more so in the distance between Iran and Israel. Firing even a missile (even just conventional) from Iran to Israel can hit, due to just half a degree deviation, Hezbollah or Gaza (the distances here are very, very small). When they had Syria it was a different matter, but where is Syria now? And that perhaps tells you why Israel decided to bomb that Hezbollah + Iranian group, which tried to set a missile base in Syria… Capito?

    • So let me understand Annie, you think that Israel is behind all that chaos in the region? (and I am too responsible for that?) Are we here are so powerful here that we can push countries in the region into turmoil? And/or can make the US act a proxy for for us in that?
      If so then surely a threat form a group of, mostly unknown, UK artists not to visit Israel must be the last thing that such an omnipotent country should worry about

    • Also let me ask: how many of those signed had anytime a contact with Israel? Reminds me of those corporations, which began to present their products as Green, even though that aspect has nothing to do with the nature of those products.
      I have a feeling that all these Israel- boycotting exercises are getting too ridiculous to be taken seriously. Remember the big fuss about a Soda drink company and a beautiful model? And didn`t I read on this site just days ago that the Trans-Atlantic trade agreement may preclude, commerce-wise, any of that?
      And also what about the succession of major Asian countries that are in close contact with Israel in increasing trade significantly? The leader of Japan just left Israel and India is already a close friend. China shows great interest too.

    • Gone are the times when an act like this has made any impression on Israel or, indeed, anywhere else. It is probably the opposite now – many would ask themselves how obsessed with Israel these people are if in the middle of an incredible, historical scale, chaos in the Mid-East, where what happens in one day dwarfs the entire Israel-Palestine saga, they cannot let their “baby” go. And what about their “home front”- where Europe is approaching battle-field conditions given what goes on now in France, Belgium and other countries in regard to similar issues? Pathetic, indeed.
      Besides, their threat is empty – who on earth will miss these people here.

  • My fellow Muslim-Americans, in the wake of Chapel Hill we can’t stop speaking out - even if our voices shake
    • It is certainly no fun to be at the receiving end of terror. The thousands trapped in those planes aimed at the twin tower and those inside them can attest to that.

  • Speech to AIPAC could give Netanyahu his out
    • #seafoid
      Man, you became an Israel addict. And you are not alone. I sometime think it is the sworn enemies of Israel and their obsessed focus on it that makes what is essentially a very, very small country look so big. After all if they are ready to spend so much energy on it, their whole life literally, there must be something exceptional in it - otherwise how could such a miniature country, stuck in the middle of the Middle-East, be so important? So should I be angry with this chorus or thank them? I don`t know - maybe angry because of the underlying bad intentions.

  • 'The New York Times' throws another sop to lovers of Israel
    • @Elliot
      There is no contradiction in that. Today`s “progressive” person, woman or man, is often the most aggressive creature around - every second word of theirs is some kind of a wild accusation (fascists, racists and worse), accompanied by some dire threats (as boycotts)…

    • @seafoid
      Don`t forget that the “Israel project” is also about “the normalization” of the Jewish people - part of that is being able to do to your sworn enemies what beforehand only the Goyim seemed to know….

    • A good looking woman, lawyer, politically skilled organizer, aggressive, eccentric – the media loves this kind of figures, makes a living out of them.

  • Tell your congressperson: Don't attend Netanyahu's speech
    • Excuse me guys. Does anybody really believe that Netanyahu has even a shred of the influence extent it takes to make decisions for the US - as serious as going to war. Adding his view on Iran is really only just that, namely another view heard. And please don`t turn things upside down – Netanyahu is merely a pawn in the internal politics of today`s superpower`s main parties. He may see in that a self-interest advantage in view of the coming election in Israel (and be therefore grateful for the event) but do I believe that those immensely knowledgeable and powerful senators and congressmen will not see what he says as just another view-input? Hearing what he has to say in accepting an invitation to do so from a highly respectable US politician?

  • Like the Wind, We Will Be Free: How being detained at Ben Gurion airport during a family trip to Palestine reaffirmed my identity
    • I hate to be the guy with the cold water but I came to believe long time ago that the limitless Palestinian capacity for rhetoric-based self-empowerment is not a virtue but perhaps the greatest problem of all – without a minimal sense of realism you only make your situation worse. It would have been far better, since 1948, to try to come to terms with the Jews in Israel rather than keep fighting them with fantasies in the head.

  • Netanyahu speech could turn Israel lobby into a political football
    • Annie, alright, let`s wait and see how it develops in practice and then we shall be wiser – it is just a matter of weeks.
      As for your comment on “posting on a US website” – I think the times for a national characterization of a website has passed. We are one world now - all the more so when it comes to the US, which is a (or the) “world center”. I remember somebody clever once defined New-York as the capital of the 20th century (it was decades back).

    • Take it easy. What really takes place here is almost like the usual internal political fights in the US. That`s how close the US and Israel has become and Netanyahu, in particular, is viewed as a “local” politician. There is little question that Obama views all that as part of the usual political theatre in the US, which is intensive and never stops, and Netanyahu just sues the opportunity for some much needed self-aggrandizing, which is especially useful given the coming elections here.

  • Pro-Israel parliamentary group in Europe says Israelis suffered 'worst' of Gaza conflict
    • @Cliff
      You can get angry with a person, me here, but that`s only proxy for the real cause of your problems: Mr. Reality. With that guy it`s harder to mess – although you and likeminded people just never give up doing that. It is already 70 years that people try to turn facts upside down in regard to Israel but to no avail. Mr. Reality keeps proving them wrong. That must be frustrating but still don`t go too far - among other assets Mr. Reality also owns hell.

    • On second thought it is perhaps better to view those that propagate this nonsense as conspiracy-theory fans (and propagandists)

    • @Annie
      I hope you don`t really believe that nonsensical argument - advanced by some crazy propagandists because it appears that temporarily there is something helpful for Israel in what the Jihadists do. But that`s all what into it and in reality the Jihadists are a huge headache for everybody, Israel included. Get serious. As for the clash with Hezbollah it is a different matter – just got conflated. It is simply impossible to be precise in the convoluted and chaotic conditions in Syria.

    • Israel may have claimed that long time ago but people in Europe didn`t want to listen. But in this era whatever has a global dimension – and few would deny that the issues with Islam today qualify for that characterization – can have the main focus (and headlines) be confined to just one of its global flashpoints only for so long. While it`s true that each flashpoint may have a local narrative and own history, it is also true that in a global era EVERYTHING within the same category get sooner or later linked. Globalization is not a cliché – it`s a reality and a process with intrinsic mechanisms (just watch for instance how strongly what goes on in faraway Syria or Iraq affects Europe). these type of realities must have their effect on Israel`s case too, the rhetoric to the contrary notwithstanding, simply because simply that`s how things work.

    • What we see here is inevitable and piling smears won`t change that. What goes on in Europe is now converging with what has been going with Israel for some time now. An instinctive anti-Israel European attitude cannot be reconciled anymore with Europe`s own worries and separating the European scene form the Israeli one (“Palestine is distinct”), a past favorite in Europe, is becoming too implausible to be sustained by serious people there. The left-of-center/liberal/human-rights-advocates, or whatever they like to call (or see) themselves will continue with the old tunes but with decreased following and influence.
      It is widely recognized now that Israel was just unlucky enough to be the first to encounter a global issue of our times, simply because of its physically proximity, and what happened there was a harbinger for things to come worldwide - a broader malaise that cannot be hidden anymore. The US understood that long time ago, followed later by Canada and Australia, and now it`s the turn of the last leg of the West - Europe.

  • French terror attacks contribute to Israeli's isolation
    • I don`t accept the thesis here. In fact there was a great desire in Europe to distance itself from Israel problems and even when Jews were assaulted there it was addressed as an internal Jewish/Israeli–Palestinian/Arab/Muslim conflict that they are not a part of. Sometime they even went further than that in “understanding the anger” among Arabs there in view of the “plight” of their Palestinian brethren (albeit the disturbing side of that in having directing that “anger” against their Jewish compatriots). It is that separation which is probably now over and paradoxically the parallel acts in this terror assault of in a French magazine and a Jewish store have accentuated the linkage – that is, Israel and Europe are really in the same boat here.

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