Commenter Profile

Total number of comments: 194 (since 2012-02-16 22:03:16)


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  • Woman and child killed in Iraq as US adopts Israeli 'knocker' bombs and leaflet drops
  • Sanders 'put everything on the line' for Palestine because BDS movement has changed US conversation -- Peled
    • Thanks for printing Peled's words Phil. He's one of the more direct, unflinching thinkers/writers/speakers on the subject. There's really no B.S. coming from Miko. Straight to the heart/truth of the matter. Very knowledgable, very direct. Very much in the line of Lamis Deek, imo. To me, they represent a sort of Israeli-American/Palestinian-American, one-two punch on the Palestine issue. Two sides of the same coin, if you will. They're both courageous. And more importantly, they're doing the right thing with that courage.

  • Tidbits from Reader Survey: Please Add Your Ideas To The Mix
    • @ Susie K: "Hi Theo and jd65."

      Ahoy :)

      "I’d love to be a badass or wotever Annie is..."

      I'm betting you exude your own version of badassery...

      "meanwhile, I’m “not” anything except a skeptic who believes our work matters even when liberation is slow –and wishes I could help more."

      That's likely a pretty apt way to describe most of the folks around here. As a matter of fact, that direct and terse description was kinda badass :)

    • aside from really not liking being referred to as “goyim”...

      In my conversations about you, I refer to you simply as badass.

  • Clinton will hold fundraiser in Tel Aviv
    • @ eljay: You’re right: He’d be better – and faster – than any of the other candidates at turning the U.S. into a pariah state.

      I don't really need to tell you this, but he doesn't need to be here to help turn the U.S. into a pariah state/country/nation/whateveryawannacallit. He's doing a heckuva job of it (brownie) from his own apartheid state, thank you very much. Why should he leave the comforts of his own "theo/ethnocracy" if he doesn't have to?

    • @ gamal: "...despite my RP McMurphy Islamic persona...

      That is maybe the greatest phrase I've ever read on this site. You are officially my hero, gamal :)

      Is Ratched Netanyahu? Yeah... This could go on for quite a while...

    • This article, from over a year ago, may be of interest to you, Steve:

      Speaker of the House John Boehner proposes Constitutional Amendment

      by John Dworkin - Jan. 23, 2015

      Washington, D.C - Just days after House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) extended his own congressional invitation to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu without consulting President Obama, Boehner has proposed legislation for the first constitutional amendment in 23 years.

      “I think it's the right time,” said Boehner of the proposed amendment. “If having an Israeli American President keeps us safe from Iran and the terrorists, then I'll do what needs to be done,” Boehner said. “If we can have an African American president, why can't we have an Israeli American president? I mean, Africa and Israel share a border. It's really just nitpicking.”

      The proposed amendment would allow Israeli citizens to run for the American presidency by creating a so-called 'exceptionalism provision' to the constitution granting Israelis 'dual natural born' citizenship status when requested. Asked whether the amendment conflicted with George Washington’s famous 'passionate attachment' concept from his farewell address, Boehner replied, “The terrorists cannot win.”

      “We feel the amendment is overdue given our Special Relationship with Israel. It's pure anti-Semitism to deny Israelis the right to run for our highest office,” an anonymous source from Boehner's office said. In tears, the source added, “Have we Jews not suffered enough?”

      The amendment is being drafted by legal scholar and The Case For Israel author Alan Dershowitz. “It should be seen as a natural extension of our two Nations' shared Democratic values and dedication to exceptionalism. This is the one I've been waiting for my whole life!,” Dershowitz said, bowing slightly and turning eastward.

      “Oh that'd be exceptional alright!,” former Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul said from his hospital bed. Now reported in stable condition, Paul suffered what doctors have termed a “mild, stress induced myocardial infarction” brought on by the news of the proposed amendment.

      Both Fox News and The New York Times have already confirmed their future endorsements of presumptive candidate Netanyahu. In a joint statement from the Times' writers Ethan Bronner (former Jerusalem Bureau Chief), David Brooks, and Isabel Kershner, they conclude, “...and since we all have, or have had, children serving in the Israeli Defense Forces, we consider our endorsement a show of support for our troops. God forbid anything should happen to our children. Je suis Israel!,” referencing the recent killings in Paris.

      Reports of waning support for Netanyahu’s upcoming campaign from inside Israel have prompted his aides to start “thinking outside the box,” an anonymous Likud party aide told this reporter. “The box being Israel,” added the aide.

      In their 87th interview to date, Netanyahu told Fox News interviewer Sean Hannity yesterday, regarding his possible run for the White House, “I just hope the American people appreciate what I'm doing for them.” Hannity replied, “So do I, sir. So do I. You're a great American.”

    • Note: I tried to post this under Lillian's post, but it kept getting rejected...

      @ Lillian: We must vote for her if she is the nominee. We cannot let Trump win. This is the mantra I've heard since I can remember. Every four years it's the same. I understand the thought process, AND I am completely against it. As often as not the "lesser evil" wins. And every time that option wins, that's exactly what we get: not as much evil. But it's the same direction. Essentially staying the course. That's not an ok option in my mind. For me, you vote for the candidate you believe is the best. P E R I O D. In my mind, there's no good argument that convinces me that's not what we all should do. No matter what. It's called democracy.

      If the candidates know that the electorate doesn't have the balls to vote for what they truly believe in, then what do they owe us? They've got no real reason to stop being corrupt if they know they'll still get the votes. The idea that those in power don't simply hand over their power without a serious challenge/struggle isn't a fairy tale. Voting the
      "lesser evil / least worst" (ie: Hillary Clinton) is like thinking a band aid will help a cancer patient.

      If Bernie doesn't become the democratic nominee, I will be voting for Jill Stein. Absolutely. I think she's the best candidate and that's why I'll be voting for her. If you wanna join the Todd Gitlin's / Eric Alterman's / Bill Maher's of the world who railed against Nader and blamed him for the Iraq War (what a crock o' shit that argument was/is...), be my guest. And that's the kind of stuff people will say about Stein and the folks who voted for her. That's fine. But just remember: After you vote for Clinton and she starts/escalates however many wars/conflicts (and you know she will), including, of course, going way overboard in her propping up of Israel and denigration of Palestinians, people who voted for Stein will be able to say that's what you voted for. And it won't be a crock o' shit...

      The Folly of the Least Worst (Long Version): link to

      The Folly of the Least Worst (short version): link to

    • Administrator/Moderator: Is there a reason the joke I made in response to a blah chick was rejected? Did you all determine it was offensive? Maybe there's a glitch in the system? I posted, saw that it was "awaiting moderation," now it's gone. I'm wondering...

  • Thousands of Israelis fill Tel Aviv's Rabin Square in support for soldier who executed Palestinian
    • Thanks Dan C. To me, this rally in Rabin Square is a freak show. I mean, come on. Let's be real. Let's call a spade a spade.

      F R E A K S H O W They're not inhuman, mind you. But freaks. And not the good kind...

  • 'Forward' columnist and Emily's List leader relate 'gigantic,' 'shocking' role of Jewish Democratic donors
    • "Sounds likes Clinton’s DLC sprint away from representing the interests of working people..."

      Clinton's sprint, eh? She won't have very far to run...

  • 'Any legislation having to do with Middle East has to be vetted and approved by AIPAC' -- Tom DeLay
    • Wow. That article is rather... Interesting. I had no idea. Thanks Kay24.

    • Still pushing this poisonous Jewish cabal idea.

      That type of overblown, silly remark in response to ideas/information like this is soooo played dude. And is not taken seriously by people who are informed and relatively honest in their discourse on the subject. You likely don't realize this, but it's how it is.

    • Lemme guess: Your nickname in college was "Mr. Rose Colored Glasses?" :)

    • Nice catch Phil. I hadn't heard of this. It's important.

      Maybe, just maybe, ten years after the publication of The Israel Lobby,... the Israel lobby’s corruption of Congress will be fodder for the mainstream media?

      Or maybe 30+ years after Congressman Paul Findley's publication of They Dare to Speak Out? :)

  • Sanders slams Clinton for ignoring Palestinian needs and thinking Netanyahu is 'right all the time'
    • @ Bryan: "No reason at all to become frustrated or cynical or to retreat into... celebrity culture..."

      You leave my Jennifer Lawrence alone!@#$%^&

      :) :)

    • @ CigarGod: It looks more like the MW (and very human) tendancy to feel great hope at every thin and wispy word...

      Yeah. I can see that. And in some cases that's a good thing. But personally, I don't think this is one of those cases. Color me skeptical. There's a middle ground of healthy skepticism born out of experience that lays between wearing rose colored glasses vs. nihilistic cynicism.

      And you may be right about the "tendency" mentioned. But as far as I can tell, "human tendency" is all over the map. Is what it is...

    • Of course, all this assumes that a “rain” of rockets is actually considered a problem by the GoI. I think a compelling case can be made that it does NOT consider them a problem. As Clinton’s words show, [Israel-instigated] incoming rockets appear to be an extremely valuable political asset for Israel-the-fake-victim.

      This Î Î Î

      Your description of the rockets being used as a "political asset" by Israel and it's unconditional supporters reminds one of Israel's relationship to anti-Semitism. Israel needs it as its raison d'etre. So it creates it and it also creates false stories about it. At the moment, Israel and anti-Semitism crave one another and they feed off one another. And, at the moment, the main source of energy perpetuating this cycle is, of course, Israel.

    • @ ritzl: Meta is as meta does :)

    • And Zimmerman goes the way of Salaita. She should be damn proud of herself. Whether you're working for the provost or the politicos, speaking aggressive truth to power is almost always forbidden on this subject. I believe I got fired from my last job for expressing my views on this subject (and other domestic U.S. political issues). If I was w/ Zimmerman right now I'd buy her a drink :)

    • @ kalithea: What she (he?) said. I basically agree w/ you. And well put.

      I'm unfortunately unconvinced that, when truly pressed with the right questions, a majority of American Jews would actually reveal themselves to be anti-Zionist. I don't necessarily think it's an overwhelming majority like yourself, kalithea. But in my experience speaking to other American Jews on the subject, my impression is that most would side w/ "Israel Security" first, and only backing justice for Palestine second. And this equation, with that hierarchy, there can never be real justice for Palestine. It's gotta be top of the food chain. Right of return is paramount. I'm also convinced that many Jews who initially state that they are all for true justice and equal human rights for Palestinians, even possibly referring to themselves as anti-Zionist, don't realize what that actually means and when pressed with the hard, revealing questions would be found to be relative "Israel-Firsters." I've experienced this phenomenon firsthand on a number of occasions and it's, of course, always disappointing. At least it's becoming less surprising...

    • @ don't drink the water: "This sort of cheerleading makes Mondoweiss look like controlled opposition.

      Unfortunately, I can't say I totally disagree w/ this sentiment. But I think you've overstated it a little. And I honestly don't really understand (or necessarily appreciate) how some folks use the term "controlled opposition" in this context; since many label people like M. Blumenthal, A. Abunimah, or Y. Munayyer with this term implying they're some kind of Israeli IDF covert ops operatives.

      Maybe Phil is aware of this "cheerleading" thing, but writes these things anyway with the hope that it will somehow have some kind of snowball effect or something, and that it will eventually somehow "trickle up" to reach policy makers. Kinda like Lennon's “the war is over” (if you want it) campaign. A sort of visualization, if you will. Not that I think it works, mind you. But I guess you never know...

    • “Describing the problem is a lot easier than trying to solve it,” Clinton responded.

      This is a reasonable statement, Mrs. Clinton. Not sure I completely agree with it, but it's a reasonable thing to say. However, you are not even willing to honestly describe the problem; which you say is “easier” to do. So how could we possibly trust you to honestly solve it?

    • Kudos Bryan. Perfect. Not only is this well written, funny, and consistent and appropriate in tone, I believe it highlights a main reason many suffer from exhaustion when it comes to challenging those who support Israel unconditionally (politicians, pundits, writers, family/friends, etc). The reason being this: all too often, within a single sentence of pro-Israel blather there will exist multiple fallacies/lies/distortions/manipulations that take time, energy, knowledge and practice to counter. So when it comes to FULLY responding to, let's say an article or speech by someone like Beinart/Brooks/Clinton, it's a MAJOR undertaking even for someone who has the experience, knowledge and time to deal with it. Your excellent post above is a great example of this phenomena. You dealt w/ just a small paragraph of what Clinton said, yet you wrote a somewhat lengthy post. And of course you could've written at least another 3-4 full pages (or much more of course...) debunking and ridiculing her tiny paragraph. So when it comes to the task of FULLY exposing and contextualizing the lies, distortions, and manipulations contained within an entire speech or article of this kind of trash from Clinton (or whoever), one either is in a position in their life to devote serious time to it, or there's not really anything one can do. Yes. It's exhausting. I often get to the point where I tell myself I need to stop following the information on the conflict because it's merely frustrating for me since I know I don't have the time needed to be truly involved. But i'm never able to make myself tune out. So I am, unfortunately, perpetually frustrated. But my frustration is NOTHING compared to what Palestinians must feel in the face if Israeli repression.

  • Tell Us What You Think: The 2016 Mondoweiss Reader Survey
  • '3000 Nights' and stories from behind prison bars
    • Thank you for writing Abdul-Razeq. Myself, and many others here at this site, hope for peace and justice for you and Palestine. You write, "Yet, jailers forget that prisoners are never alone in this battle. The prisoners’ families live every moment alongside them and continuously inspire them." Yes! And I hope that the spirit and energy of others who want justice for Palestine reaches all those who are unjustly imprisoned and detained by the IDF and held in Israeli prisons. We are with you, Abdul-Razeq...

  • How I discovered what Phil Ochs thought about Israel
    • @ Jackdaw: "Propping up a stiff in order to take a swipe at Israel.

      You had nothing better to do?"

      Ain't nothin' wrong with taking a swipe at Israel. They deserve it. And anyway, my guess is that Feld can walk and chew gum at the same time. How 'bout you? Yes, I like a Gershwin tune.

      Thanks for writing Peter Feld. Ochs was uncommon. In a very good way...

  • The Jewish-Israeli navel-gazers
  • Video: Israel demolishes every home in West Bank Bedouin village
    • JLewisDickerson: When the formal incorporation finally occurs (by Israeli proclamation or annexation), the U.S. will merely feign surprise.

      Right. Or... The U.S. won't even feign surprise (which I don't really think it does anymore...) and it will react the same way it does to every other Israeli provocation/crime: Give milktoast lip service to it damaging the prospects for peace, call it regretful, while simultaneously couching the maneuver in rhetoric of Israel's need for security and Palestinians needing to recognize the right of Israel to exist, etc. Then proceed to support the full annexation in every other meaningful way. This move will be Israel writing home to Mommy and Daddy from their Junior year in college: Having a great time and getting decent grades. Still haven't decided on my major. But I'm pretty close. Please send money and bombs. Love you, Israel.

  • Birthright ends trips to Israel -- 'American Jews are better off imagining Israel than seeing it'
    • That sounds about right. Did you know that Jerry is actually an immortal shapeshifter? I spoke w/ him a couple weeks ago. Adding to what you've mentioned, he told me he now does two weeks touring, and then two weeks off. Recently, he's been touring as Katy Perry's microphone. Nice gig. His "off" weeks are the janitorials (he prefers the term "custodial").

  • Wit, Conflict and other Entanglements: A discussion with Palestinian filmmaker Muayad Alayan
    • Very interested in this film and I hope I will be able to see it. Some of the descriptions/dialogue/ideas spoken about in this article remind me of Elia Suleiman's brilliant films (Chronicle of a Disappearance and Divine Intervention). I assume many here know these films. For anyone who posts here frequently, considers himself/herself a film freak, and hasn't seen these films, definitely check 'em out. From the look of the trailer above, Suleiman's films I've mentioned may be a bit more... let's say absurdist/surreal/non-linear. So be ready for that. Thank you for the article Silvia :)

  • Eric Alterman contradicts himself about anti-Semitism on campus
    • "Eric Alterman is a liberal columnist I respect"

      Stopped reading.

      LOL :)

    • Steve Grover: Alterman’s statement below is an understatement to everyone but the leftofascists aka the Mondoweiss folks.

      niass2: Um no were not lefto fascists, were Jews.

      I didn't know that all the "Mondoweiss folks" were Jews. Color me schooled...

    • Your exaggerated certainty (idiotic internet-age name calling and all...) about Alterman's exaggerated statement, belies your intellectual dishonesty. Alterman's intellectual dishonesty, in my mind, is unquestioned. Since witnessing his hysterical and boorish bile thrown at Ralph Nader I've unfortunately been able to take him seriously. To me, he's an arrogant asshole.

  • A 'longtime activist for social justice,' Booker worries his anti-BDS stance will 'rankle' and 'upset' people
    • oldgeezer: No sane or moral person can be aware of the factual history, international law, international humanitarian law, Geneva Conventions and still support Israel as it exists and operates today. You just cant.

      Jon66: OG, “You just cant.” Yet many bright, compassionate, well-meaning people have come to the opposite conclusion. Are they all wrong, or just holding a contrary opinion?

      They're all wrong.

    • Good points Dan. Many who unconditionally praise and support Israel (politicians, pundits, huckster activist/writers like Geller, etc.) leave anti-Semitism intentionally undefined so that they can pick and choose how, and when, to cry it out as it suits their needs and agenda. In this regard, it is akin to Israel's, and the United States's, use of the term terrorism. Sticks and stones may break your bones, but words cause permanent damage.

  • Testifying before the City University of New York's Task Force on Anti-Semitism
    • @ Sarah: That in fact, this impulse to force all Jews into one opinion is ahistorical and not Judaic. I am the classic "non-practicing" Jew. Never got into Judaism. Yet still, to this quote of yours, I must say, amen.

    • @ Dan Walsh: What's an anti-Semite? I used to think it was someone who didn't like Jews. Turns out, it's someone Jews don't like (cue rim shot...).

  • What if Bernie Sanders had delivered his speech at AIPAC!?
    • Good post, genesto. Agreed on all points. This particularly: "...his insistence on recognizing Israel’s ‘right to exist’ – whatever the hell that REALLY means." It, of course, basically means nothing. It's purposeful gobbledygook. One of many creative, and carefully crafted phrases from Israel's Lexicon of Intentionally Obfuscatory Language. The intention of which is a state of permanent confusion: State of Emergency, State of Denial, State of Confusion - Israel As The Jewish State.*

      *Copyright notice - this is intended as the title of my book on Israel/Palestine, if it's ever finished. Please don't steal it. Honor System is in effect...

    • @ xanadou: Nice post. This in particular is interesting to me, and is something I've noticed and thought about for years: Is the criticism expressed in his AIPAC speech genuine or an act? Was the peculiar stunt by AIPAC that barred Sanders from appearing in any form a clever ploy intended to create an illusion of a rift in the pro-Israeli camp, or the real thing? "Intended to create an illusion of a rift in the pro-Israel camp..." I agree w/ what you seem to be asserting. As conspiratorial, or paranoid, as it may seem, I believe this type of rift is regularly conjured in the media but is not nearly as real as how it is manufactured to look. It gives Israel and it's staunch supporters a type of "plausible deniability," if you will. And whether Bernie has more chutzpah than his predecessors on this issue of course remains to be seen. His rhetoric has surpassed them by a bit in this speech. But as you write, if, or HOW, he will act on this rhetoric is an open question.

      As to your suggesting of the manufactured "rift," look at these quotes by/about Obama just after his initial inauguration:

      “[Israel] is a stalwart ally of the United States… As the only true democracy of the Middle East it is a source of admiration and inspiration for the American people… [W]hen it comes to my policies towards Israel and the Middle East, [Israel's] security is paramount… It is in U.S. national security interests to assure that Israel's security as an independent Jewish state is maintained.” – President Obama’s press release remarks from the Oval Office, May 18th, 2009.

      “President Obama, thank you. Thank you for your friendship to Israel and your friendship to me. [You're] a great friend of Israel, and someone who is acutely cognizant of our security concerns. And the entire people of Israel appreciate it, and I speak on their behalf.” - Prime Minister Netanyahu’s press release remarks from the Oval Office, May 18th, 2009.

      “Obama is the most hostile sitting American president in the history of the state of Israel.” - Anne Bayefsky, advisory board member of JINSA (Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs Jerusalem Post), 7/19/2009

      Bayefsky's "most hostile" talking point was repeated throughout the media echo chamber regarding Obama. And there's the "rift": Netanyahu and Obama talking points stating one thing, and Bayefsky and many others stating essentially the opposite. I personally don't believe that the folks repeating/spreading the "most hostile" talking point believed it was genuine. They state it to create the illusion of danger, all the while really knowing that Obama will continue the money/arms/diplomatic support stream. So there you have it: both sides of the coin played. Kind of like the U.S. fueling both sides in many wars. Everything is covered. Or, call me crazy. They've got their cake and they're eating it...

    • Just read Bernie's speech. With respect to Katie Miranda, and I do have a lot of respect for her and very much like most of her work, I think the three pull quotes below would've been more effective, and appropriate, in her above piece:

      Israel controls 80 percent of the water reserves in the West Bank. Inadequate water supply has contributed to the degradation and desertification of Palestinian land. A lasting peace will have to recognize Palestinians are entitled to control their own lives...

      Peace will require strict adherence by both sides to the tenets of international humanitarian law. This includes Israeli ending disproportionate responses to being attacked...

      Peace will mean ending what amounts to occupation of Palestinian Territory... and pulling back settlements in the West Bank, just as Israel did in Gaza...

      These quotes have a bit more teeth than what most American politicians/presidents regurgitate. Miranda's leaving out the "just as Israel did in Gaza" portion of the quote she did use seems particularly odd since it's the only part of the quote that departs from usual rhetoric. And if you take it to mean what it reads/seems to mean, it's actually quite a statement for an American politician, let alone a presidential hopeful, to make.

      The quotes used in her actual piece above are too similar to talking points we hear daily from “liberals” who say they're tough on Israel but never back up their words w/ action. My two cents...

    • I dunno. The 2nd and 3rd quote Miranda uses in her piece above, while somewhat laudable on their face, don't seem any different from the lip service we've heard from every U.S. administration for the last few decades. I can't imagine it'd take more than 10 minutes to google similar quotes from Obama, Bush I & II, Bill Clinton, Hillary, etc... Particularly the 3rd quote, which is supposed to be the one that blows the AIPAC minds: "Pulling back settlements," "Amounts to the occupation of..." He can't even straight up just say it's occupied. He has to qualify it as "amounting to" occupation. What does that even mean?"Hey honey. I need to talk w/ you for a minute. I had a doctor's appointment today and the doctor told me my tests amounted to me being pregnant."

      I'm somewhat of a Bernie supporter, but you can mark me down as semi-unimpressed w/ this speech if these quotes are the ones that are representative of his "challenging the status-quo"...

  • Hanan Al Hroub's 'Global Teacher award' is a victory for all Palestinian educators over Israeli occupation and PA corruption
    • @ Mayhem: How 'bout you tell that to Prince William and the Pope: link to Or maybe you just list them as more "Jew Haters?"

      This award is spectacular, and anyone who feels otherwise, as far as I'm concerned, can shove it.

  • Can we take 'Avi does the Holy Land’ seriously?
    • Yo echinococcus. 'Nother interesting post. Thanks...

      First off, ID’ing Zionism is not a wormhole at all. Two elements only: 1. positing that “Jews”, however defined, are a people, and 2. have a right to some homeland. Only these...

      A small part of me understands and agrees w/ you on your “definition” of Zionism. And it's a reasonable, thoughtful entry point. But a larger part of me disagrees and thinks its merely a simplistic starting point. It would take up way too much space and time for me to parse out my reasons and thoughts on this here. The issue is too big to meaningfully deal with on a message board like this. So for now, I'll leave it at let's agree to disagree on the “definition of Zionist.”

      Not that this applies to you, but the whole “What is Zionism / a Zionist?” discussion reminds me of the hilarious, if problematic, Finkelstein quote I heard him say at an NYU discussion: “For most people, Zionism is a hairspray.” Gotta luv it...

      Funny, now, that you should drag in the highly uncomedic Max. No, I don’t think he is a Zionist but he sure has kept tribal reflexes. He was not the one that Atzmon properly labeled controlled anti-Zionist Zionist opposition. That was the bunch sitting on the BSD board that silently switched the definition of occupation to post-67 only and strangely made the witchhunt against a still-undefined “anti-Semitism” to main goal of the solidarity movement, excommunicating the most consistent anti-Zionists. Somewhat like JVP here. Max got into that tribal defense act, calling Atzmon (a Palestine-born Ashkenazi who even wore the uniform)… an “anti-Semite”, still no definition of the term. Thereby defining the limits of both his logical functioning and sentimental tribal attachment.

      I completely acknowledge the seemingly infinite intricate and interconnected problems and issues concerning the solidarity movement, JVP, IAK/Weir, Atzmon, Max, infighting, backstabbing, etc. These are as easily unpacked as the definition of Zionism :) and too giant for me to want to get into in this thread. However, if you're interested in a bit more of my thinking on these issues (Zionism, JVP, Weir, anti-Semitism, etc.), you can go to my “blog” (link below) and read my letter titled “On Leaving.” It's too long to post here.

      Rock on...

      link to

    • Hey again echinococcus...

      I identify all three of these in the first seconds as typical Zionists. It’s so friggin obvious! Well, when you check them later, bingo! one has a sister in Zionist entity politics, the other one is a cousin of Chuck Shumer and so on…

      Hmm. While I'm not saying these folks are not Zionist (leaving aside the wormhole discussion of even defining that term), that's the 2nd time in this thread you've called them "obvious" Zionists without showing/stating anything specific about them that would lead anyone to think so. I'm unfortunately left w/ the idea that you feel they're "obviously Zionists" because they're Jews? That's, of course, offensive and ridiculous. I'm assuming that's not what you think, but your comments in this thread could lead someone to get that impression. And that's unfortunate.

      As for Schumer and Silverman having relatives who are clearly Zionist (C. Schumer for certain) or likely Zionist (I don't know much about Silverman's sister) being some kind of proof showing Amy and Sarah to be Zionists, that's associative nonsense. Does this mean that Max Blumenthal is a Zionist? I don't think he is, and every time I hear Atzmon and his followers refer to him as some sort of "controlled anti-Zionist Zionist opposition," I wanna puke and scream...

    • @ echinococcus: Thanks.

      ...what is at all funny in the performances of Schumer, Silverman, and Ali G... Well, aside from me being a fan of the truism "deconstruction is the enemy of comedy," actually explaining my thoughts on your question "what is at all funny..." would be very time consuming and likely fruitless. When one person thinks something is funny and another doesn't, does it ever happen that the first person explains why they feel it's funny and then the second person busts out laughing saying "I get it now!"? Pretty much never happens. I will say this though: my appreciation of Schumer and Silverman basically comes from one long stand up performance by each: Mostly Sex Stuff from Schumer, and Jesus Is Magic from Silverman. They're both a bit "uneven" maybe, but for me there was enough killer stuff in each to make them worthwhile for sure. They both gave me a good amount of big laughs. And when I say "laugh," I mean laugh. Not sitting stone face while somewhere in my mind I'm thinking to myself, "That was funny." If you care to, I'd say watch those two full stand ups from Schumer and Silverman to see them at their best. And realize that you have to mine the entire piece as the payoffs are intermittent, but worth it. Then decide.

      The 3 Avi Canadian Jewess shtick videos I watched gave me a total of (drum roll please...) 1 laugh. Her line "I thought pinkwashing was when I put a red sock in with my white laundry," got a laugh out of me. I like that one :) Aside from that, I did pretty much nothing but squirm through her bits. So for me: No laughs = Not funny.

      As for this: ...all obvious Zionists... - Honestly, I have no idea on whether/how Schumer/Silverman/Cohen would be, or wouldn't be, Zionists. That'd be news to me...

    • Smarter? There are different forms of intelligence, and I wouldn't assume she's generally too much "smarter" than you, Annie. Although she's quite obviously pretty savvy in an attention-grabbing, marketing kind of way.

      So far, I've only seen 3-4 of her videos and read the interview from +972. I've had a very different reaction to her than you have. She impresses me as a relatively shallow opportunist. A product designed with its highest priority being consumption. She wants views, and she doesn't much care what she says, means, or how people perceive her. It's "Look at me, look at me, views, views, attention, shock, attention, marketing, demographics, hopeful money streams." She fancies herself a combination of Schumer, Silverman, and Ali G but lacks the talent and wit.

      It also feels to me like she's got her priorities upside down: to her, being "provocative" is more important than being funny, interesting, or having a solid point. That's ass backwards. Seems to me that Ali G, Schumer, and Silverman (and for that matter Lenny Bruce, Dave Chappelle, etc...) all had something to say and were/are hilarious and interesting FIRST, with their provocativeness being a natural outgrowth of their talent and attitude. But then again, as Silverman says, "Deconstruction is the enemy of comedy." I guess we'll see...

  • Palestine and the anxiety of existence
    • Ahoy Annie: "the symbolization of rocks…which i have given a lot of thought to..." As have we all. In my mind, Amira Hass nailed it a while back:

      Throwing stones is the birthright and duty of anyone subject to foreign rule. Throwing stones is an action as well as a metaphor of resistance. Persecution of stone-throwers, including 8-year-old children, is an inseparable part − though it’s not always spelled out − of the job requirements of the foreign ruler, no less than shooting, torture, land theft, restrictions on movement, and the unequal distribution of water sources...

      Steadfastness ‏(Sumud‏) and resistance against the physical, and even more so the systemic, institutionalized violence, is the core sentence in the inner syntax of Palestinians in this land. This is reflected every day, every hour, every moment, without pause...

      Often hurling stones is borne of boredom, excessive hormones, mimicry, boastfulness and competition. But in the inner syntax of the relationship between the occupier and the occupied, stone-throwing is the adjective attached to the subject of “We’ve had enough of you, occupiers.

  • Viral video says BDS supporters want to shoot the bible and Dannon yogurt
  • Israel detains Washington Post bureau chief in Jerusalem accusing him of ‘incitement’ --updated
    • Hey Broadside:

      Good article, but may I be allowed to make one small correction, please?

      The word “nonplussed” is to my knowledge the most misused word in the English language...

      I don't think Allison misused the word here (unless something was edited before I read it). But thank you so much for name dropping Cockburn and randomly marketing your book here...

  • The list of foreign policy experts Bernie Sanders should be consulting
    • Hey MRW. I listened to the excerpts you provided/suggested. I don't see how they relate, in any way, to what I asked you. Could you explain it to me?

    • Hey MRW. For Bernie Sanders not to know about the Kissinger/Putin relationship terrifies me, and obliterates any support I may have had for him. Absolutely inexcusable. I saw most of the debate last night and saw what I thought was the exchange re: Kissinger. I don't recall anyone mentioning the fact that Bernie was ignorant of the relationship between Kissinger and Putin. I'm not saying he's not ignorant of that relationship, but I don't recall it being mentioned. Are you referring to something else mentioned in the debate, or maybe some other event/thing? I'm interested...

  • 'Let the one-state era begin'-- Tom Friedman explains there will never be a Palestinian state
    • Annie: "...he just makes me grind my teeth. Ha! Exactly. I can see how folks who may be relatively new or uninformed would be taken in by his spiel. But to me, after years of following the issue and hearing/reading his columns and interviews, it's rather transparent that his "balanced/moderate" rhetoric is simply designed to entrench the status quo. And not just on Israel/Palestine. Seems to me he's a major supporter of keeping the status quo on globalization, and thus corporatism/hyper-capitalism/free-market worship/etc...

    • Yes Boomer. Friedman is a (not so) thinly veiled U.S.A. cheerleader. He's a jingoistic, authoritarian power loving one-percenter posing as a "moderate" peace advocate. Friedman is likely the best representative to show how conservative politics and attitudes on the I/P conflict are now being called liberal/progressive, or at best moderate. Phil's above article does nothing but contribute to this slide to the right (Phil is widely seen as "progressive" on the I/P conflict, yet he praises Friedman, opening his article w/ "Hat's off to Thomas Friedman.") What makes Friedman particularly frustrating - aside from his clever-clever, self-amused, glib, and often simply confused style of writing - is the fact that he’s so widespread throughout the media spectrum that you know he’s effecting the minds of a large portion of the population with his transparently Israel-first ideas.

      I’m far from alone in this view of Friedman’s rhetoric and writing. Lawyer, writer for The Guardian newspaper, and author Glenn Greenwald wrote this of Friedman’s writing:

      He literally negates his own principal claim… in the very same column in which he advances it… But incoherence is the least notable aspect of this column. This is to say nothing of the warped imagery Friedman often uses of the invading U.S. as a 'midwife' — as though Muslim countries are our little babies who need and pray for our parental imperial guidance out of their primitive wombs. If I had to pick just a single fact that most powerfully reflects the nature of America’s political and media class in order to explain the cause of the nation’s imperial decline, it would be that, in those classes, Tom Friedman is the country’s most influential and most decorated 'foreign policy expert.' (1)

      Or this from Rolling Stone’s political writer/reporter Matt Taibbi:

      …This is Friedman’s life: He flies around the world, eats pricey lunches with other rich people and draws conclusions about the future of humanity by looking out his hotel window and counting the Applebee’s
 signs… [Re: Friedman’s method of creating an argument or making a point]: “It’s crazy, a game of Scrabble where the words don’t have to connect on the board, or a mathematician coming up with the equation A B -3X = Swedish girls like chocolate.” (2)

      1 - Glenn Greenwald, The Value Of Tom Friedman, Salon, July 25th, 2012.

      2 - Matt Taibbi, Flat N All That, New York Press, Jan. 14th, 2009.

    • "So I don’t think Friedman deserves any credit here..." I couldn't agree more, Donald. Weiss writes, "Hat's off to Thomas Friedman." Really? I want some of what he's smokin'. This Friedman article is just more of the same glib, jokey, status-quo "balanced" B.S. we've seen from Friedman on Israel forever. He's a master of writing/talking a whole lot without really saying much. He's my poster boy for the "Conservative is the New Moderate" movement.

  • 'This is a totally political arrest, they will not thwart human rights!' Guy Butavia tells the courthouse
  • My one word interrogation at Ben Gurion airport
    • Bumblebye writes:

      “Yahud” in Peled’s piece is not being used by Palestinians to reference people of faith or background but as nationality. It is a “nationality” zionist leaders conferred on a particular sector of the population. They could instead, have chosen “Hebrew” (perhaps), a nationality that could have expanded to include people who don’t come from any kind of Jewish background…maybe that’s why they didn’t chose it.

      Iow, the use of “yahud” isn’t done to cast a slur on all Jews, but a consequence of Israeli zionist decisions.

      Yahtzee! Well put, sir/ma'am.

    • Hey Stephen. I appreciate the reply.

      Well... At first I was gonna get all indignant about how that's not what Peled means (that it has to be one or the other), and how could you think blah blah blah... But I guess I can see your point and how someone may read what he's written to mean what you've taken it to mean. And, of course, who am I to say what Peled meant anyway, right? But I don't believe Peled thinks it has to be one or the other like you've implied. The above excerpt from the piece Peled's written may just come off that way to certain readers. But I feel that's a narrow interpretation.

      For me, Peled's “spare them” challenge means that when you have a full understanding of the history of the conflict, combined w/ a deep understanding of the personal experiences of many in the West Bank and Gaza, you can understand why certain Palestinians may (wrongly) see Jews in general as their enemy, instead of more specifically Israelis, IDF, Zionists, etc.

      By that I mean this: Peled writes of “...a Palestinian [saying] the 'Yahud' killed my family, the Yahud took my land, the Yahud put my father in prison, the Yahud forced my family into exile...” It's entirely possible, likely even, that the Palestinian saying those things #1) Did in fact have all those horrific crimes committed against him/her by Jews, and only Jews. And maybe more importantly, #2) Has never met a Jew who wasn't part of the oppressive Israeli soul crushing machine. I would respectfully say that in those instances/contexts (ie: responding to a Palestinian from Gaza who's just told you of their parents deaths in Operation Cast Lead and their brother's ongoing years-long incarceration for being accused of throwing a stone, etc.), it's entirely inappropriate to chastise them for not making the distinctions between Israel / Jew / IDF/ Zionist / Liberal Zionist / Cultural Zionist / on and on and on... This is the context, I believe, Peled is referring to in which we should "spare them." Time and place, man. Time and place. To truly try and understand what they've been subjected to, and by whom. This, I believe, is what Peled is getting at. Or, maybe that's what I'm getting at.

      You write, "Solidarity with Palestinians doesn’t require us to accept guilt for crimes in which we took no part." No. It doesn't. But it does require us to do our best to understand what's happened to them. To empathize with them. And to give them every benefit of the doubt after we understand that we are, sadly, eternally associated with the People who have ruined their lives, stolen their land, killed their families, and perverted their People's history in the eyes of the world. In my book, that will occasionally mean not lecturing them after they say "Jew" instead of "IDF Soldier."

      To be clear... On the other hand, if you're having a conversation w/ a diaspora Palestinian who was born in Queens, grew up in The Bronx, and is currently a Political Science graduate student at Columbia University, then it's all fair game :)

    • Hey Stephen. Since there's no indication in your post, I can't really tell what you're referring to in general. Or if you're directing your question to me, Michael Rabb, Adam Horowitz, or Miko Peled. So I'd say this: I don't understand your question "Is it allowed?" Allowed by whom? And the point of the brief remark you've written has been made by many, to many. Certainly by myself and Miko. Maybe not on this board/forum, but many times in many places to many people. I obviously can't speak for Michael or Adam on that point...

    • That is a tremendous quote, and one I had not read before. Thank you Michael.

  • New Jersey teenager threatened with legal action by high school over pro-Palestine activism (Update)
    • Bless you for this comment, Yonifalic:

      It is delusional to believe that “ethnic identity” correlates with “values”. Does English, German, or Russian identity correlate with “values”? Hitler considered himself an avatar of “German values” against “Jewish values”?

      Yes. The twisted, marketing-like use of "values" is insidious and I personally hate it. It warps the mind, and perverts meaning. I recently felt the need to leave the organization JVP and their use of "Jewish values" as marketing (though I basically have no issues w/ their espoused positions) was part of what drove me away. The letter I wrote to them had a graph about it that is related to your comment here. Maybe you'd be interested in it, Yonifalic:

      Another language issue for me is that labeling your values as “Jewish” hints at the need or belief in attaching some sort of cultural/ethnic/religious ownership to a “value” or set of values. I consistently hear Jewish activists (not just JVPers) state that valuing social justice, equal rights, etc. is a Jewish thing. That they are “Jewish Values.” Well, they're not. They're a conscientious person thing. Labeling these values as Jewish nearly comes off as a type of marketing to me; a kind of “branding” of Jewishness. That's offensive to me and, quite unfortunately, it's rather Israeli-like. Whether it's with conscious intent or not, labeling these “values” as Jewish (or Christian, black, feminist, whatever...) is narrow, exclusionary, self-serving, and maybe more importantly, very possibly counterproductive. It's another way of placing the messenger above the message. And like the word “power,” I can understand someone feeling I'm simply being semantic here about labeling “values.” But the term “Jewish Values” really doesn't sit well with me. And because it's used so consistently, it's a problem.

      Perhaps my thoughts here can essentially be boiled down to something written by Benjamin Beit-Hallahmi. In his Original Sins: Reflections on the History of Zionism and Israel (New York: Olive Branch Press, 1992-1993), Beit-Hallahmi writes about the relatively high level of Jewish success in the modern world, due in part to many Jews' gradual secularization. He points to Marx, Freud, and Einstein as examples of this phenomenon and writes that, “They are Jews minus Jewishness[.]” While I personally represent the opposite of the type of modern success represented by the likes of Marx, Freud, and Einstein, I may have something in common with them yet: Being a Jew minus the Jewishness.


    • "jd65, she was raised in new jersey. and i think her parents were too but am not certain... she’s got israeli citizenship and has relatives there. that’s all i know."

      Thanks Annie. That doesn't make anything more clear, but I guess it is what it is. If this young woman keeps getting attention and keeps up with ideas and information she's putting across, she'll likely sooner or later (I'd assume sooner) have to be clear about her statement that she's "an Israeli Jew." I'd hope/assume that if she keeps getting interviewed by other news sources, someone will ask her if she is "an Israeli Jew," like she tweeted. Or how is she defining "Israeli." Is she using that label as some sort of personal identity marker vs. using it for its normal legal/citizenship type of purpose? etc. Some people might think that this is not an important detail. I'm not one of them. She's young. She'll work it out.

    • I'm confused. "16 year old teenage activist from Fair Lawn, New Jersey studying at Fair Lawn High School..." And then "When Zionists expect me to be in favor of the Palestinian genocide because I'm an Israeli Jew." I probably just missed something in the article, but which is it? Is she an Israeli, or is she from Jersey and currently going to H.S. there?

  • The candidates debate the U.S./Israeli relationship
    • I'm not familiar enough w/ his output and reception to have much of an opinion on whether he's "overpraised" or not. But I would say that compared to other pieces I've seen by Latuff, this cartoon is lazy.

  • Open letter to Rabbi Susan Talve from St. Louis Jews
  • West's war against terrorism is Israel's war, Chuck Schumer says
  • The American colonization of Palestine
    • I also may sound patronizing Yoni. But, to me, your comment here is complete evasive gobbledygook. It seems to be some sort of criticism of the article while making no references to anything specific in the article itself. I don't doubt that you've got something relevant to contribute here. But your above comment, in my opinion, doesn't actually say anything. It's hedging all the way...

    • Bravo Mr. Elmor! You've written a thoughtful, and for its size, reasonably thorough article (re: the U.S. settler/aliyah connection, I'd have briefly mentioned Meir Kahane as well...). You've made some connections, and have used some language, that some folks don't like to see/acknowledge. So depending on how much attention this piece gets, you may receive some relatively ugly communications from reflexive Israel supporters, and maybe even some from folks within the solidarity movement. Don't let it get you down. You're on the right path. All the best to you...

  • Israel gets to use violence. Palestinians don't. That's the rule
    • Good article Donald. This, I think, is particularly relevant: "Yes, Obama has folded, but his position was never as strong as some wanted to think." Bingo. And this parallels the mythification of Israel's past. "Oh, remember when Obama was so liberal and progressive on Israel...," equals "Oh, remember when Israel was so liberal and wonderful..." And as for your question, "Why is anyone surprised by Obama's..." Well, anyone who is surprised by that is simply not truly paying attention. I wrote this, Obama's Hat Trick, about three years ago so I certainly wasn't surprised:

      link to

      It's way too long to post here so there's the link. Maybe you'll be interested. Yeah, that's right: Obama is Oatmeal Man. Thanks for the article...

  • Karmah Elmusa rocks Elle Magazine
    • Keep at it homingpigeon. You're doing the right thing.

    • @ MaxNarr, who writes this:

      "@Annie, the fact that you had to dedicate so many paragraphs to this shows the mental gymnastics you have to do to repress the natural feeling of remorse for your words and deeds. People always accuse Jews of being in a cabal, a conspiracy, paying others to do their dirty work, JIDF and megaphone shills.

      The fact of the matter is, no matter how many paragraphs you use to try to suppress it: Your people are murderers, your co-conspirators are Jew haters, and you can’t even bring yourself to condemn the murder of the elderly and children for the “crime” of living in Jerusalem, the eternal capital of the Jewish people."

      It's a given that on any given day, one can go to the internet and find limitless nonsense written on the Israel-Palestine conflict. Some days it gets to me, others I can somewhat let it go and realize a posting on an internet forum is likely not something to get too worked up over. And I guess I'm having a pretty mellow day today, because right now, reading that post from MaxNarr is actually making me laugh. That shit is so ridiculous you just gotta laugh. I mean just off the charts. What a goof...

    • @ RoHa: "Don’t get so worked up about the Liberty. Yes, it was unfortunate, but it was just one of those momentary mental hiccups I mentioned earlier. [etc...]" I just wanna say that I can't tell whether this this post is supposed to be sarcastic or not. I know everyone has different ideas about humor, and comedy isn't a science. But if this is supposed to be funny, we've got different ideas about what's funny. And if the post isn't sarcastic, that's of course much worse...

    • @ RoHa. Yeah :) I hear you. But it's an expression, so I consider it relatively gender neutral in terms of its meaning and use it broadly (pun not intended). To cite an even more crude example of this type of cross-gender expression usage: Demi Moore in GI Jane, anyone? What can I say? My brain is packed w/ 75% film information, 22% Palestine Conflict information, and 3% miscellaneous. It's funny this came up right now, 'cuz I'm uploading a ridiculous iMovie edit of Colonel Frank Slade laying into Netanyahu to my youtube channel later tonight. Yes... I'm nothing if not ridiculous.

    • Yup. Another good article from Annie :)

      A lot of stuff in the discussion on Palestine-Israel is on permanent loop. So for myself, the last sentence of your article was, in a way, the most meaningful and engaging/interesting: "Thanks to Elle for publishing this thoughtful article." YES! Pardon my french but Elle has huge balls to publish this article. "Brass balls," as Alec Baldwin might say. I'm not aware of any other major fashion magazine publishing anything like this article. It may have happened before, but I didn't hear about it (I don't really keep up on the fashion journalism world...). Giant kudos to them.

      One could say, "It's just a fashion magazine. It's not a serious publication," and write off their inclusion of Elmusa's piece as inconsequential. And in a way, I'd say that's partially correct. But in a more important way, it's wrong. My assumption is that Elle has a huge readership. Elmusa's piece is readable, short, and on point. It's entirely likely that thousands (maybe tens of thousands...) of people who would have never seen such a thing otherwise, will read her piece. That's important. I emailed Elle to support their decision to publish it. I'm sure they knew what they were getting into.

  • Video: Israeli military tells Palestinian refugee camp, 'We will gas you until you die'
    • @ Kathleen: "Why does the conversation almost always shift to the Holocaust?" I hear you Kathleen. But in this case, folks here are discussing Annie's piece above which quite clearly, and rightly, is about (at least in part) the grotesquely ironic reference by the IOF to their "gassing" Palestinians to death. So in this case, it's the IOF who "shifted the conversation to the Holocaust." People here are simply commenting on how fucked up that shift was made.

  • J Street has nothing to say on 'the current situation'
    • Yo! First things first: Excellent article by Nikles here. He's absolutely right about J Street not being serious about Peace & Justice. They're serious about peace FOR ISRAELIS. But they couldn't care less about justice for Palestine. Nikles points out two major things that make this obvious: their milquetoast "stand" on settlements, and their total opposition to BDS. But Nikles left out what I feel is J Street's biggest tell: Their denial of the Palestinian Right of Return. J Street doesn't fool me for a second.

      As for niass2's mentioning of JVP in his post - It reads to me like it was mistake, and he/she simply meant to write J Street again. Brain fart :) Otherwise, niass2 is just wrong about that. Everyone is wrong about something sooner or later.

      Now for the really important niass2 issue: that Grateful Dead thing... Not sure what's going on there. That band was pretty apolitical as a general rule; aside from of course being broadly "counter-cultural." And as far as I'm concerned, that's as it should've been. They were an occasional much needed break from all this/that crap. Wish they were still w/ us...

  • Israeli gov't used my image for propaganda purposes without my consent
    • @ Mondowise: Well put.

    • Excellent piece Mukarram! Thank you for writing. I'm glad you were able to get where you wanted to go ("where the wind comes sweeping down the plain..."). Welcome to the U.S.! Obviously there are many problems here. But at this site we're all (most anyway...) aware of our country's facilitation in the occupation of Palestine and the abuse of your people there (and here...). But hopefully you are enjoying yourself and are finding that there are a good amount of folks here who realize what's been happening to your country for the last century. We are with you. We wish peace and justice for you...

  • Jewish community must 'welcome' anti-Zionist, pro-BDS Jews, Beinart says-- but Shavit says, Excommunicate them
    • Hey again Ian. I think I shoulda taken my own advice and not engaged in this forum. I really think this type of format - forums generally - is simply not something I function well in. And that's on me. Or maybe I'm just something of an idiot.

      If I tell you I'm "not Buddhist," what does that tell you about my attitude toward Buddhism? Right. Nothing. And it sure doesn't tell you that I'm an "anti-Buddhist." If I tell you I'm "not from Iowa," what does that tell you about where I'm from? Right. Nothing. And I don't think the context of the conversation necessarily changes that. Particularly when we're talking about pull quoting in a piece of journalism.

      Don't really know what else to say, and I don't really wanna spend more time on it. I guess shouldn't've brought it up in the first place seeing as no one has re-iterated any thoughts on the main issue in my mind: a misquote in the TITLE of the article. Peace to you Ian...

    • @ echinococcus: "You are right about Beinart, of course... Thanks for letting' me know I'm not alone in how I perceive Beinart.

      can you imagine any Neo-Nazi Jewish people who are non-Zionist? If there were something more fictional than fiction that would be it." Ryan Gosling in The Believer, anyone? Scary shit...

    • Hey Ian, this reply is coming from my email notification of comments to this thread. I tried to reply to you before after my last post, but the reply function at this site is weird and problematic (as I think/hope others know). Arrrgggghhhhhh... :)

      I touched on your request for me to clarify a little bit in my post to Hostage... (i.e.: "not" isn't necessarily "pro" or "anti." It's just... not. Ha!)

    • Exactly: "...“anti-Zionists” are included as a subset of “not-Zionists.” This is correct. In fact, the subsets of who would be considered "not Zionist" are quite vast. One such subset would be neo-Nazis. And I think it's a reasonable assumption that that particular subset would not be welcome at Beinart's Jewish Community table for a seder. They certainly wouldn't be welcome at mine. So, assuming he didn't mean all people no matter what so long as you're "not Zionist," Beinart would have to "include a caveat" for us to know that he would also welcome anti-Zionists.

      Looks like this is gonna get weird language-wise, so maybe I'll say this: My guess is that Beinart is not comfortable saying that he would welcome anti-Zionists to his table because he believes anti-Zionism is generally "over the line." And this is why he carefully said "not Zionist" and not "anti-Zionist." At the same time I'm admitting that, yes, this is absolutely an assumption on my part and I could be totally wrong. If someone can direct me to something written by Beinart or a talk he has given where he sates that he's ok w/ anti-Zionists I would absolutely want to see it.

      I consider myself to be anti-Zionist; not a "non-Zionist." The prefix "non" is neutral. As in I'm also a non-opera listener, but that doesn't mean I'm anti-opera listeners. And I'm not comfortable w/ misquoting Beinart and making it seem, however unwittingly, like he welcomes anti-Zionists to his table when my guess is that he does not. Again, I may be completely wrong here and this is all conjecture based on listening to many of his talks and actually meeting him in person a couple times. But this all stems from what I see as a misquote used in the TITLE of this article above.

    • Hey Ian, thanks for responding to my post. I guess you're one that feels I'm being "semantic" and "nit-picky." And I gather you feel that the prefixes "non" and "anti" essentially have the same meaning. I don't agree w/ that. At all.

    • The title of this article reads, in part, "[Beinart says], 'Jewish community must welcome anti-Zionist [Jews]." In the article itself (I assume functioning as support for the article's title) Weiss quotes Beinart as saying, "[Our Jewish community]... is going to have to include the Jewish kids who are not Zionists..." Personally, I don't feel that "not Zionist," is the same as "anti-Zionist." Not by a long shot. Call this a "semantic" point. Call me nit-picky. But Beinart is usually very specific in his wording, as we all should be when possible. So I think it's important. I feel that saying that Beinart welcomes anti-Zionists, when he actually said he'd welcome those who were "not Zionists," gives Beinart the appearance of being more "progressive" than he actually is. In addition to, of course, the problem of it being simply incorrect. Or maybe Beinart explicitly stated what Weiss quoted him as saying in the article's title at another point in the discussion? But I didn't find that in the article. Just saying'...

  • Obama says peace talks are pointless because Netanyahu won't see the 'best' in others
    • Wow... As far as U.S. political rhetoric/posturing goes, that's actually pretty solid of Obama. "Solid" as in calling a spade a spade. At the moment I'm impressed. I'm currently pressed for time, so I've only read the quotes in the above article. Will watch the video and see if there's more to it later tonight. Thanks for the heads up...

  • One last appeal before a Bedouin village in the Negev is demolished and a Jewish town is built in its place
  • Why some BDS activists are buying stock in Boeing
    • Nice vid Annie. Who knew Whitman would cave so fast? :)

    • Excellent article Katy! And thank you for embedding my video. I wish it had better sound, but I think it works ok w/ the subtitles...

      Though I was aware that Joe and Kait were shareholders, I wasn't aware of the "shareholder activism" concept/tactic more broadly. Thanks you for specifically fleshing out this concept. I assume I'm not the only one who was not very familiar w/ this strategy having a longer history. Very cool. Sure, I can see why folks may have issues w/ it. But if it gets the job done...

      You mention AntiWarCommittee's participation in one of the "largest demonstration..." marches last year against Protective Edge. Yes, it was huge and inspirational. I followed it from start to finish and uploaded a video of it as well. The vid is intentionally kinda long, and shows the march moving through many different downtown locations, so as to give the viewer a better idea of the scope of the march. Thanks again Katy, and maybe I'll see you 'round Chicago:

  • Losing public opinion on BDS, activists turn to 'lawfare'
    • @ JustJessetr

      This post from you:


      And my friend lost a potential job due to his posting pictures of himself snorting cocaine. It was his legal right to inquire why he didn’t get the position, and when he saw why, he was put on suicide watch for real. He saw his whole life ahead awash in failure.

      If you’re going to do something publicly in the Internet age, expect people to find out about it. So much of what SJP does could be considered hate-speech, any potential employer would steer clear of it. They won’t spend time consulting with lawyers about it either. They’ll just quietly toss the application in the Delete folder.

      As we all know, anything you do on the ‘net stays on the net. You can’t get rid of it unless you’re a black hat hacker. So be prepared all of you for careers in janitorial services if you’ve been posing with kaffieyehs or posting under your real names when supporting Hamas.

      My prediction: any student who publicly supported the SJP in his/her college days will not be using their degree to the fullest because they will face life-long job discrimination. And I applaud that."

      ...makes it quite clear what you're about. Part of me wants me to thank you for your honesty. And the other part of me wants... Well, let's just leave it at that.

    • That's right Kris. Just a couple minutes of looking around this new site reveals it to be in the vein of Geller, Horowitz, Spencer, etc.

      However, this, from its "About" page, distinguishes it from many other similar sites/organizations as being particularly disgusting:

      "We believe in the right of employers to know which potentially threatening organizations prospective employees were affiliated with during their time on campus."

      I do my best to use appropriate language and try not to go over the line. But that is just scummy. IMO Scum is an appropriate adjective here, and I won't apologize for using it. And I'm not a lawyer, but maybe there's actually some legal issues in there. Openly and intentionally doing your best to interfere w/ someone's ability to hold a job and make a living because you disagree w/ their activism on Palestine doesn't seem like an activity that someone should be able to do freely. But I'm not a lawyer. However, I am a person who believes he recently lost job due, in part, to attitudes on the I/P conflict. This site now has my keen interest. Thank you for posting "Peaceful." Free Speech is one thing. Intentionally working against an individual's ability to support themselves w/ a job is another.

    • Hey there a blah chick.

      "If a company or financial institution decides to divest for purely economic reasons (it’s just not paying) how can you penalize them?"

      You have hit on, imo, a key element. From the bill itself:

      "Boycott Israel" means engaging in actions that are politically motivated and are intended to penalize, inflict economic harm on, or otherwise limit commercial relations with the State of Israel or companies based in the State of Israel or in territories controlled by the State of Israel.

      So I suppose in theory, if the divestment was done purely for economic reasons, as you suggest, it may not be affected by the bill; according to the bill itself. However, the political atmosphere being what it is in this country, the "trickle-down suppression" mentioned in the above article will, I suspect, pressure some organizations to stay invested in Israel - whatever their reasons may have been for wanting to divest. And the drafters of this legislation know that the passing of this bill adds to that trickle-down pressure - in a big way.

      But the more problematic issue, imo, is that the wording in the quote above from the bill infers that it's ok to legislate against a group/organization/business/or person merely because that group has a different political stance (thought/idea) than that of the ruling government, not because of an action taken. What other reason would there be to place the phrase "politically motivated" into the legislation? If the bill says it's ok to actively boycott for purely economic/business reasons, but not ok to actively boycott for political/ideological reasons (and I do think that's what the bill implies), then the bill is legislating against a thought process, and not against an action. That's, uhhh... pretty messed up.

      'Nother pertinent blah chick question:

      "Will there be some panel that will sit in judgement and decide if your reasons are valid?"

      Yes. It will be called the Illinois Investment Policy Board. But I will refer to it, un-lovingly, as the House Un-Israeli Activities Committee (HUAC - 2.0). The Board will be "retaining an independent research firm to identify... companies that boycott Israel." The Board will then compile a "list of restricted companies." My assumption (seemingly the same as yours?) is that even if the companies that end up on the Board's "list" state that they've divested from Israel for purely financial reasons and not for political/ideological ones, HUAC 2.0 will likely still spend energy and finances investigating this claim to make sure it is the case. It's all so bizarre...

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