Commenter Profile

Total number of comments: 3552 (since 2014-03-24 03:22:06)

JLewisDickerson

B.S. Ga. Tech ~ J.D. (law) Mercer U. [Also see - http://mondoweiss.net/profile/dickerson3870] • One of the reasons I began following developments in the Middle East has to do with the happenstance that I was away from Atlanta visiting my grandfather (with little to do but read) in June, 1967. In that part of Georgia, the television reception with a rotating antenna was much better for the Augusta and Macon stations than it was for the Atlanta stations, but since the programming of the Augusta and Macon stations was not up to Atlanta standards, the television was seldom used. This time though, as luck (or not) would have it, one of the two Augusta stations preempted its daytime programming with the deliberations by the UN General Assembly of proposals that might lessen the likelihood of war. I very much enjoyed watching several days of this, and I was very disappointed when I got up on June 5 and the station had reverted to its customary daytime programming because Israel had bombed the Egyptian air force on the tarmac in Egypt. Needless to say, I did not at all see Israel's action(s) as defensive. All told, this made quite a lasting impression (unfavorable as to Israel) on me! • I recall one particular Six Day War joke that was told by a classmate of mine (not one of my Jewish friends, who were much less chauvinistic) during my senior year of high school here in Atlanta (the year following the Six Day War). Actually, to be more accurate, I only remember the gist of the joke at this point. As I recall the joke (told by a Jewish female), there was a busload of Egyptian children somewhere in the Sinai. The punchline was that the mighty Israeli military virtually vaporized the entire bus full of Egyptian children. [Riotous laughter here, excepting me.] There wasn't a single survivor! ["Ha, ha, ha" (excepting me) ! ! ! ] •Another reason I began paying close attention the Israel/Palestine issue was because Israel's actions/behavior seemed so very much unlike the actions/behavior of my Jewish friends. Consequently, I have spent decades trying to understand the incongruity. • Lastly, since the U.S. unfortunately seems to emulate Israel in many ways (preemptive wars, Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo, for instance), I have come to be especially concerned about Israel's behavior (which might unfortunately be adopted by our own government). I tend not to worry quite so much (though perhaps I should) that the U.S will emulate Rwanda, Uzbekistan, Belarus or Myanmar/Burma. This "monkey see, monkey do" phenomenon that seems to occur between the U.S. and Israel illustrates my fear that Likudnik Israel (specifically by virtue of its inordinate sway over the U.S.) with its Revisionist Zionism might very well be an “existential threat” to the values of The Enlightenment ! ! !

Website: https://www.facebook.com/jlewisdickerson

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  • Hundreds of Palestinian prisoners held without trial or charge launch boycott of Israeli courts
    • RE: They [i.e., Palestinian prisoners] have lost huge chunks of their lives to this oppressive apparatus [i.e., administrative detention] for no crime. The occupation is not only restricting their movement, it is stealing precious moments with family and friends. Addameer has claimed that administrative detention “constitutes an act of mental suffering” inflicted by Israeli authorities “as a form of punishment, intimidation, or coercion” as defined by the Convention Against Torture. The group says the psychological, physical and mental effects of indefinite detention without trial “cause the detainee to live in limbo without knowing their fate.” ~ Yumna Patel

      MY COMMENT: Detainees being made to "live in limbo without knowing their fate" is very much akin to Ariel Sharon's philosophy of ‘maintained uncertainty’ being used to induce in the Palestinians a sense of 'permanent temporariness'.

      SEE: "Permanent Temporariness" | by Alastair Crooke | London Review of Books | March 3, 2011

      [EXCERPT] . . . It was [Ariel] Sharon who pioneered the philosophy of ‘maintained uncertainty’ that repeatedly extended and then limited the space in which Palestinians could operate by means of an unpredictable combination of changing and selectively enforced regulations, and the dissection of space by settlements, roads Palestinians were not allowed to use and continually shifting borders. All of this was intended to induce in the Palestinians a sense of permanent temporariness. Maintaining control of the Occupied Territories keeps open to Israel the option of displacing Palestinian citizens of Israel into the Territories by means of limited land swaps. It also ensures that Israel retains the ability to force future returning refugees to settle in their ‘homeland’, whereas a sovereign Palestinian state might decline to accept the refugees. It suits Israel to have a ‘state’ without borders so that it can keep negotiating about borders, and count on the resulting uncertainty to maintain acquiescence. . .

      SOURCE - http://www.lrb.co.uk/v33/n05/alastair-crooke/permanent-temporariness

  • Keep seeing Mondoweiss in your news feed following changes at Facebook
    • RE: "Follow us on Twitter. It’s where all the most stable geniuses hang out." ~ Reed

      MY COMMENT: Not to denigrate MSGs (Most Stable Geniuses), but I generally prefer to 'hang' with VFPs (Very Fine People). That is, when I'm not workin' up a good sweat on my new Trumpoline Delirium!

  • Palestinian activists shut down Bethlehem meeting with US officials: 'you are not welcome anymore!'
  • Trump calls Egypt, Afghanistan, Turkey and Jordan 'enemies of America' for Jerusalem vote
    • RE: "Apparently the Google censors at YouTube decided the B’Tselem video 'Exploiting Palestinian Land for Treatment of Israeli Waste' constituted 'incitement', and dropped it down their 'memory hole'." - me, above

      Israel-Google-YouTube Censoring Palestinian Videos

    • RE: Btselem just published this video today: “Exploiting Palestinian Land for Treatment of Israeli Waste” ~ Kaisa of Finland
      AND RE: "This video is unavailable." ~ YouTube

      MY COMMENT: Apparently the Google censors at YouTube decided the B’Tselem video “Exploiting Palestinian Land for Treatment of Israeli Waste” constituted "incitement", and dropped it down their "memory hole".
      Fortunately, I did find a recent B’Tselem video on the same topic. Hebrew is spoken, but there are English subtitles.

      Also, here is the B’Tselem report (in English) being discussed in the video:

      Related Media:
      Download full report, PDF
      Download summary as PDF

      Adam Aloni: Exploiting Palestinian Land for Treatment of Israeli Waste

      btselem
      Published on Jan 31, 2018
      SUBSCRIBED 10K
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      Israel turned the West Bank into a garbage dump: exploiting its power and the fact that the Palestinian population is completely excluded from the decision-making process, to divert a significant part of the waste and hazardous substances produced within its borders for treatment in the West Bank.

      In this way, Israel is effectively having it both ways: seemingly increasing the amount of waste it treats, it actually does so by diverting the risks and pollutants onto Palestinian land and people.

      Waste treatment in the West Bank is simply one more facet of the exploitative policy Israel has practiced consistently for fifty years now, using Palestinian space and people to further its own interests.

      Category: News & Politics

      License: Standard YouTube License

  • A Jewish 'sickness': Israeli journalist explains young American Jews' support for Palestinians
    • REVISED/ENHANCED VERSION:

      With tonight’s superb, historic ‘State of the Union’ address, Donald Trump truly became “America’s President”! ~ John-Lewis Dickerson of Atlanta, Georgia

      P.S. • Wasn’t that a phenomenal speech, folks?
      People, I can’t *hear* you! [NOTE: "*hear*" means 'hear' is said with emphasis.]
      • Once again, wasn’t that a phenomenal ‘State of the Union’ address?
      OK people, I still can’t *hear* you. Consider yourselves to have been warned twice now!
      • One last time, wasn’t that legendary, phenomenal, superb, historic ‘State of the Union’ address by President Donald Trump absolutely the very best ‘State of the Union’ address ever given, bar none, since the beginning of all time, so help you God? [Before you answer, a word (i.e., reminder) to the wise: you've been thrice warned, now!]

      You’ve been warned! | The Warning | TEDxUniversityofNevada

    • With tonight's superb, historic 'State of the Union' address, Donald Trump truly became "America's President"! ~ John-Lewis Dickerson of Atlanta, Georgia

      P.S. Wasn't that a phenomenal speech, folks?
      I can't hear you!
      Again, wasn't that a phenomenal 'State of the Union' address?
      OK people, I still can't hear you!
      One last time, wasn't that a phenomenal, superb, historic 'State of the Union' address by President Donald Trump?

      Reply|
      Today, 10:36 PM

  • Naked justice
  • Israel, are you a real state?
    • RE: And then Sharon of course pushed for the 1982 invasion called “Peace of Galilee”, which turned out to be the devastation of Lebanon – all in order to foil a “Palestinian peace offensive”, as military analyst Avner Yaniv phrased it. At the time the PLO was moving dangerously close to the international consensus regarding the peaceful solution to the ‘Israeli-Palestinian conflict’, which posed the ‘danger’ of leading to a Palestinian state on 22% of historical Palestine. Sharon would not have it. He wanted Palestinians chased away to Jordan to make it a ‘Palestinian state’, hence forcing any Palestinian claims to areas within Israel’s control to be relinquished... Once, a private aircraft Arafat was believed to have boarded was almost downed over the Mediterranean. It was not Arafat, but rather his brother, whom the Mossad mistook to be Arafat; and aboard the plane were 30 wounded Palestinian children who had survived the massacres of Sabra and Shatila. Sharon would have massacred them twice, that is... My jaw is dropping. Despite all that I’ve read and seen before, I still can’t believe it. It’s so surreal... The horrors mentioned above are not just aberrations. They are logical consequences of nationalist madness. ~ Ofir

      THE CONSPIRACY THEORIST SEZ: Might Ariel Sharon have had an interest in arranging for the "Christian" Phalangists (or, at least, allowing them ) to perpetrate the Sabra and Shatila massacres (under the watchful eyes of Sharon and the IDF) AFTER Arafat and the PLO had already left for Tunisa? Also, might Ariel Sharon have benefited from having Bachir Gemayel assasinated (which is said to have caused the Phalangists to seek to avenge Hariri's assasination by carrying out the Sabra and Shatila massacres)?

      To be a bit less oblique, were the Sabra and Shatila massacres (which an official Israeli investigation found Ariel Sharon "indirectly responsible for") supposed to be Lebanon's Deir Yassin , thereby causing the Palestinians in Lebanon's refugee camps (who no longer had the PLO fighters to protect them) to flee pretty much 'en mass' to Syria, and then ultimately to Jordan* [likely leading to the demise of the Hashemite Kingdom that Golda Meir had made an agreement with back in 1948 to divvy up Palestine --- with King Abdullah taking (only temporarily, whether he knew it or not) the West Bank]? And then, after the demise of the Hashemite Kingdom in Jordan, might the Palestinian majority take over the government, making Jordan all the more attractive to Palestinians under occupation by the IDF in the West Bank. Lastly, if some of the more militant settlers in the West Bank were to perpetrate a massacre or two of their Palestinian neighbors, might most reasonably sane West Bank Palestinians naturally flee (sumud be damned) to Jordan, and have so little expectation that Israel would ever allow them to return (no matter how often the UN might insist it was their right) that they would be thankful for even a pittance of monetary compensation?

      * SEE: "The War of Lies", by Uri Avnery, gush-shalom.org 09/06/12

      [EXCERPTS] Thirty Years ago this week, the Israeli army crossed into Lebanon and started the most stupid war in Israel’s history. It lasted for 18 years. About 1500 Israeli soldiers and untold numbers of Lebanese and Palestinians were killed.
      Almost all wars are based on lies. Lies are considered legitimate instruments of war. Lebanon War I (as it was later called) was a glorious example.
      From beginning to end (if it has ended yet) it was a war of deceit and deception, falsehoods and fabrications.
      THE LIES started with the official name: “Operation Peace in Galilee”.

      If one asks Israelis now, 99.99% of them will say with all sincerity: “We had no choice. They launched katyushas at the Galilee from Lebanon every day. We had to stop them.” TV anchormen and anchorwomen, as well as former cabinet ministers have been repeating this throughout the week. Quite sincerely. Even people who were already adults at the time.
      The simple fact is that for 11 months before the war, not a single shot was fired across the Israeli-Lebanese border. A cease-fire was in force and the Palestinians on the other side of the border kept it scrupulously. To everybody’s surprise, Yasser Arafat succeeded in imposing it on all the radical Palestinian factions, too.
      At the end of May, Defense Minister Ariel Sharon met with Secretary of State Alexander Haig in Washington DC. He asked for American agreement to invade Lebanon. Haig said that the US could not allow it, unless there were a clear and internationally recognized provocation.
      And lo and behold, the provocation was provided at once. Abu Nidal, the anti-Arafat and anti-PLO master terrorist, sent his own cousin to assassinate the Israeli ambassador in London, who was grievously wounded.

      In retaliation, Israel bombed Beirut and the Palestinians fired back, as expected. The Prime Minister, Menachem Begin, allowed Sharon to invade Lebanese territory up to 40 km, “to put the Galilee settlements out of reach of the katyushas.”
      When one of the intelligence chiefs told Begin at the cabinet meeting that Abu Nidal’s organization was not a member of the PLO, Begin famously answered: “They are all PLO”.
      General Matti Peled, my political associate at the time, firmly believed that Abu Nidal had acted as an agent of Sharon. So do all the Palestinians I know.
      The lie “they shot at us every day” has taken such a hold on the public mind that it is nowadays useless to dispute it. It is an illuminating example of how a myth can take possession of the public mind, including even of people who had seen with their own eyes that the opposite was true.
      NINE MONTHS before the war, Sharon told me about his plan for a New Middle East. . .
      . . . His design for the region, as told me then (and which I published nine months before the war), was:
      • To attack Lebanon and install a Christian dictator who would serve Israel,
      • Drive the Syrians out of Lebanon,
      • Drive the Palestinians out of Lebanon into Syria, from where they would then be pushed by the Syrians into Jordan.
      • Get the Palestinians to carry out a revolution in Jordan, kick out King Hussein and turn Jordan into a Palestinian state,
      • Set up a functional arrangement under which the Palestinian state (in Jordan) would share power in the West Bank with Israel.
      Being a single-minded operator, Sharon convinced Begin to start the war, telling him that the sole aim was to push the PLO 40 km back. . .

      ENTIRE ARTICLE - http://zope.gush-shalom.org/home/en/channels/avnery/1339170910/

  • Palestinian ambassador reveals details about Trump's meetings with Abbas, accuses the U.S. of 'backstabbing'
    • P.P.S. ALSO SEE:
      Post-truth politics
      From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia ~ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Post-truth_politics
      [EXCERPTS] Post-truth politics (also called post-factual politics[1] and post-reality politics[2]) is a political culture in which debate is framed largely by appeals to emotion disconnected from the details of policy, and by the repeated assertion of talking points to which factual rebuttals are ignored. Post-truth differs from traditional contesting and falsifying of truth by rendering it of "secondary" importance. . .

      • History
      . . . The term "post-truth politics" was coined by the blogger David Roberts in a blog post for Grist on 1 April 2010, where it was defined as "a political culture in which politics (public opinion and media narratives) have become almost entirely disconnected from policy (the substance of legislation)".[18][19] The term became widespread during the campaigns for the 2016 presidential election in the United States and the 2016 referendum on membership in the European Union in the United Kingdom.[10][11] Oxford Dictionaries declared that its international word of the year in 2016 is "post-truth", citing a 2,000% increase in usage compared to 2015.[9] . . .

      • Description
      A defining trait of post-truth politics is that campaigners continue to repeat their talking points, even if these are found to be untrue by the media or independent experts.[22] For example, during campaigning for the British EU referendum campaign, Vote Leave made repeated use of the claim that EU membership cost £350 million a week, although later began to use the figure as a net amount of money sent directly to the EU. This figure, which ignored the UK rebate and other factors, was described as "potentially misleading" by the UK Statistics Authority, as "not sensible" by the Institute for Fiscal Studies, and was rejected in fact-checks by BBC News, Channel 4 News and Full Fact.[23][24][25] Vote Leave nevertheless continued to use the figure as a centrepiece of their campaign until the day of the referendum, after which point they downplayed the pledge as having been an "example", pointing out that it was only ever suggested as a possible alternative use of the net funds sent to the EU.[26] Tory MP and Leave campaigner Sarah Wollaston, who left the group in protest during its campaign, criticised its "post-truth politics".[21] . . .

      • United States
      . . . In 2016, the "post-truth" label was especially widely used to describe the presidential campaign of Donald Trump, including by Professor Daniel W. Drezner in The Washington Post,[11] Jonathan Freedland in The Guardian,[10] Chris Cillizza in The Independent,[29] Jeet Heer in The New Republic,[58] and James Kirchick in the Los Angeles Times,[59] and by several professors of government and history at Harvard.[20] In 2017, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and others, have pointed out lies or falsehoods in Trump's statements after the election.[60][61][62][63] President Barack Obama stated that the new media ecosystem "means everything is true and nothing is true".[64] ...

    • P.P.P.P.S. ADDITIONAL "CREATING REALITY" RESOURCES:
      ■ Creating Reality - Halexandria
      http://www.halexandria.org/dward003.htm
      Creating Reality. Update 1 September 2004. Simply put, “The best way to predict the future is to create it.” Our thoughts determine the present and future of what is contained within our lives. It's all about our choices. How and what we choose, upon what we focus, concentrate, or direct our attention, and where we spend our ...

      ■ Thought Power - Your Thoughts Create Your Reality
      http://www.mind-your-reality.com/thought_power.html
      Thought power is the key to creating your reality. Everything you perceive in the physical world has its origin in the invisible, inner world of your thoughts and beliefs. To become the master of your destiny, you must learn to control the nature of your dominant, habitual thoughts ...

      ■ 'Creating Reality, by Andy Kaufman,' at Maccarone - The New York Times
      http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/09/.../creating-reality-by-andy-kaufman-at-maccarone.ht...
      Feb 8, 2013 - A lesser-known persona of Andy Kaufman — stand-up innovator, satirist and cult figure — is on view in “Creating Reality, by Andy Kaufman.”

    • P.P.P.S. ALSO SEE:
      How America Lost Its Mind | by Kurt Andersen | theatlantic | Sept. 2017
      The nation’s current post-truth moment is the ultimate expression of mind-sets that have made America exceptional throughout its history.

      “We risk being the first people in history to have been able to make their illusions so vivid, so persuasive, so ‘realistic’ that they can live in them.” — Daniel J. Boorstin, The Image: A Guide to Pseudo-Events in America (1961)

      LINK ➤ https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2017/09/how-america-lost-its-mind/534231/

    • P.P.S. RE: "Time has a fascinating interview with Trump about his use of lies" ~ New Republic (excerpted above)

      Read President Trump's Interview With TIME on Truth and Falsehoods
      LINK ➤ http://time.com/4710456/donald-trump-time-interview-truth-falsehood/

    • P.S. RE: Trump and Netanyahu are “creating reality”! - me (above)

      IN OTHER (i.e., Rove's*) WORDS: Trump and Netanyahu are "history's actors".

      * SEE:
      Reality-based community
      From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia ~ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reality-based_community

      [EXCERPTS] Reality-based community is a political label used to refer to those on the American Left who make political judgments based on present reality, in contrast with opposing factions which do not. The phrase can be pejorative or positive. It was first used by the George W. Bush Administration to criticize their opponents for limiting their vision to the way things were rather than including what the Administration's actions made possible. The phrase was quickly reappropriated to criticize the Administration for "faith-based" wishful thinking.[1] This meaning of reality-based community eclipsed the phrase's original intention and is used this way by both the political left, which uses it in a positive sense, and right, which uses it ironically.

      • Origin
      The phrase was attributed by journalist Ron Suskind to an unnamed official in the George W. Bush Administration who used it to denigrate a critic of the administration's policies as someone who based their judgements on facts.[2] In a 2004 article appearing in the New York Times Magazine, Suskind wrote:

      The aide said that guys like me were 'in what we call the reality-based community,' which he defined as people who 'believe that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality.' [...] 'That's not the way the world really works anymore,' he continued. 'We're an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you're studying that reality—judiciously, as you will—we'll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that's how things will sort out. We're history's actors...and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do'.[3]

      The source of the quotation was later identified as Bush's senior advisor Karl Rove,[4] although Rove has denied saying it.[5]. . .

      • Evaluation
      Though some on the left side of the United States political spectrum considered it as a badge of honor,[2][6] the term and the piece of writing where it was revealed to the public were not perceived as significant by conservatives.[7][8] It was given a second life by growth of the so-called post-truth political culture.[9][10][11]

      Zbigniew Brzezinski in his book, Second Chance: Three Presidents and the Crisis of American Superpower considered the manner in which "the senior Bush aide derisively dismissed criticism from what he called "the reality based community" as demonstration of the "arrogance that swept the Bush White House".[12] International Relations scholar Fred Halliday wrote that the phrase reality-based community (in contrast to faith-based community) was "a term of disparagement in the Bush Administration for those who did not share their international goals and aspirations".[2] According to liberal media critic and journalism professor Jay Rosen, "Many on the left adopted the term. 'Proud Member of the Reality-Based Community,' their blogs said. The right then jeered at the left's self-description."[13] . . .

    • RE:"That morning Trump said Palestinian leaders had abandoned pre-talk discussions, making the claim while seated next to Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu in Davos at the World Economic Forum." ~ Deger

      MY COMMENT: Trump and Netanyahu are "creating reality"!

      ■ Donald Trump: "I'm not lying, I'm creating reality." | New Republic
      https://newrepublic.com/minutes/141548/donald-trump-im-not-lying-im-creating-reality
      Mar 23, 2017 - Time has a fascinating interview with Trump about his use of lies, falsehoods, untruths, and exaggerations, especially on Twitter. (It's part of an interesting and sober feature on the same subject.) The interview is a window into Trump’s brain and the result is more or less what you’d expect—Trump is essentially convinced that he can shape reality by tweeting it. He freely admits, for instance, that many of his tweets are simple speculation and proudly tells Time’s Michael Scherer that he has been proven right again and again. Trump does not seem to realize that, as president, his “predictions” provide powerful incentives to people to provide corroborating information—like Devin Nunes, who brought Trump “evidence” that he was surveilled by the Obama administration, even though this had nothing to do with Trump’s original claim, on Twitter, that he was “wiretapped.” . . .

  • Norman Finkelstein's new book on Gaza is a meticulous account of Israel's crimes
    • RE: "Besides having missed the many Hamas declarations vis-a-vis the ultimate fate of Israel, apparently you don’t know anything about the Islamic Brotherhood (the parent organization of Hamas)." ~ Nathan (above)

      SEE: "How Israel Helped to Spawn Hamas" | By Andrew Higgins | The Wall Street Journal | January 24, 2009

      [EXCERPTS] Surveying the wreckage of a neighbor's bungalow hit by a Palestinian rocket, retired Israeli official Avner Cohen traces the missile's trajectory back to an "enormous, stupid mistake" made 30 years ago.

      "Hamas, to my great regret, is Israel's creation," says Mr. Cohen, a Tunisian-born Jew who worked in Gaza for more than two decades. Responsible for religious affairs in the region until 1994, Mr. Cohen watched the Islamist movement take shape, muscle aside secular Palestinian rivals and then morph into what is today Hamas, a militant group that is sworn to Israel's destruction.

      Instead of trying to curb Gaza's Islamists from the outset, says Mr. Cohen, Israel for years tolerated and, in some cases, encouraged them as a counterweight to the secular nationalists of the Palestine Liberation Organization and its dominant faction, Yasser Arafat's Fatah. . .

      . . . When Israel first encountered Islamists in Gaza in the 1970s and '80s, they seemed focused on studying the Quran, not on confrontation with Israel. The Israeli government officially recognized a precursor to Hamas called Mujama Al-Islamiya, registering the group as a charity. It allowed Mujama members to set up an Islamic university and build mosques, clubs and schools. Crucially, Israel often stood aside when the Islamists and their secular left-wing Palestinian rivals battled, sometimes violently, for influence in both Gaza and the West Bank.

      "When I look back at the chain of events I think we made a mistake," says David Hacham, who worked in Gaza in the late 1980s and early '90s as an Arab-affairs expert in the Israeli military. "But at the time nobody thought about the possible results." . . .

      ENTIRE ARTICLE - http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123275572295011847.html

  • Israel as a perversion of Judaism and the modern nation-state
  • 'He wants to kill us'— Gazans fear for the worst as Trump severs aid to Palestinian refugees
    • P.S.
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    • RE: [W]e pay the Palestinians HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS OF DOLLARS a year and get no...respect,” President Donald Trump wrote on Twitter while most of the Middle East was sleeping two weeks ago.“

    • RE: “With the Palestinians no longer willing to talk peace,” he added, “why should we make any of these massive future payments to them?”

      MY COMMENT: Those payments are made to buy time for the Israelis to "manoeuvre"* (i.e. finish colonizing the West Bank, thereby eliminating the possibility of a Palestinian state).

      * SEE: "Permanent Temporariness" | by Alastair Crooke | London Review of Books | 03/03/11:

      [EXCERPT] . . . Israel’s vice-premier, Moshe Ya’alon, was candid when asked in an interview this year: ‘Why all these games of make-believe negotiations?’ He replied:

      Because … there are pressures. Peace Now from within, and other elements from without. So you have to manoeuvre … what we have to do is manoeuvre with the American administration and the European establishment, which are nourished by Israeli elements [and] which create the illusion that an agreement can be reached … I say that time works for those who make use of it. The founders of Zionism knew … and we in the government know how to make use of time. . .

      SOURCE - http://www.lrb.co.uk/v33/n05/alastair-crooke/permanent-temporariness

  • Trump's line on 'shithole countries' is a mainstream view in Israel
    • I always enjoy seeing that wonderful photo of Bibi and The Donald amid the glittering splendor of Trump's "deeeeee-luxe apartment in the sky". I wonder if Michelangelo" really did paint that fabulous ceiling. I read somewhere that Trump is really proud of it, and likes to boast of its beauty.
      The woman who bought the apartment immediately below Trump's appeared in a documentary** made in the early 90's, and said she never got a moment of peace because there was always construction going on up there. I believe she said she finally had to file a lawsuit against Trump over the noise.

      * Michelangelo Noriega, that is

      Suppressed Documentary Part 1 of 12: The Documentary on Donald Trump He Tried to Suppress [05:44] ➤ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VX53maHeqlE

      LINKS TO ALL 12 PARTShttps://whowhatwhy.org/2016/01/19/the-documentary-on-donald-trump-he-sued-to-suppress/

      "Suppressed Documentary Part 1: The Documentary on Donald Trump..."

    • RE: The far-right news website Bretibart ran a piece headlined “How to Successfully Stop Illegal Immigration: Follow Israel’s Model.” According to Breitbart, the following was Israel’s five-step process: 1. Build a barrier; . . . 5. Crack down on employers who hire illegals.

      MY COMMENT: But . . . but . . . but, just last month, Trump commuted the sentence* of one of these employers who had hired hundreds of illegals (nearly 400 illegals out of 800 employees total)! So, intsead of "cracking down" on employers who hire illegals, Trump actually commuted the sentence of a 'poster boy' for employers who hire illegals.
      What's the deal?
      What the hell's going on?

      * SEE: "Trump and the Meat Tycoon: Backstory to a Commutation" | by Martha Rosenberg | CounterPunch | December 25, 2018

      After he served 8 years of a 27-year sentence for money laundering, kosher meatpacking executive Sholom Rubashkin had his sentence commuted.

      On May 14, 2008, hundreds of officers from US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) swooped down on Agriprocessors, the nation’s largest kosher slaughterhouse in Postville, Iowa, with helicopters in the largest single-site raid in US history, arresting half of the eight-hundred-person workforce. Two hundred and ninety Guatemalans, ninety-three Mexicans ["rapists", according to Trump, two Israelis, and four Ukrainians were marched off to a waiting phalanx of buses and vans and a makeshift detention center.

      Initial charges against Agriprocessors’s employees included harboring illegal aliens, use of child labor, document fraud, identity theft, physical and sexual abuse of workers, unsafe working conditions, wage and hour violations, and shorting workers’ pay. According to the search warrant, one thousand discrepancies between worker names and social security numbers occurred in three years. There was even a methamphetamine production plant existing within the slaughterhouse, sanctioned by management. At the time Barack Obama, then an Illinois senator, weighed in on Agriprocessors. “They have kids in there wielding buzz saws and cleavers. It’s ridiculous,” he said during a campaign stop in Davenport, Iowa.

      Three hundred workers served federal prison sentences of five months for identity theft, and human resources managers and floor supervisors were convicted of felony charges of harboring illegal immigrants. Agriprocessors itself filed for bankruptcy. While thousands of child-labor charges were initially filed against Agriprocessors’s owner, Aaron Rubashkin; his son Sholom; and others, the charges were dropped as prosecutors unspooled elaborate financial wrongdoing at the plant, which they pursued instead.

      In 2008, Sholom Rubashkin was convicted of eighty-six counts of federal-bank fraud in connection with loans to the company, including fabricating fake collateral for loans, ordering employees to create false invoices, and laundering millions through a secret bank account in the name of Torah Education, reported the New York Times. Sentencing documents also suggest the Postville mayor, Robert Penrod, may have received or extorted money from Agriprocessors to discourage unionizing at the plant.

      The immigration raid was not Agriprocessors’ first troubles. In 2004, an undercover video showed cows very much alive after being “slaughtered” and having their throats cut, and it led to a USDA investigation that “reported many violations of animal cruelty laws at the plant,” says the New York Times. A year and a half after the cruelty video, the Forward paid a visit to Postville and reopened public scrutiny. Hundreds of semi-indentured immigrant employees were working ten- to twelve-hour shifts, six days a week, for $6.25 to $7 a hour, wrote the newspaper calling them “the impoverished humans who do the factory’s dirty work.”

      Before the immigration raid, Agriprocessors had six Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) violations in one year, and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) complaints that supervisors extorted bribes from workers. Employees were untrained and unprotected from dangerous equipment, reported the Forward. Two workers required amputations in one month, and one was still working at the plant with a hand missing when the Forward visited, “hoping to collect enough to pay off his debts back home.”

      After the immigration raid, prosecutors asked for a life sentence for the young Sholom Rubashkin, citing his lawlessness and lack of remorse, more than one dozen former US attorneys cried to the judge: Unfair! “We cannot fathom how truly sound and sensible sentencing rules could call for a life sentence—or anything close to it—for Mr. Rubashkin, a 51-year-old, first-time, nonviolent offender,” said a letter signed by former attorney generals Janet Reno, William Barr, Richard Thornburgh, Edwin Meese III, Ramsey Clark, and Nicholas Katzenbach.

      Nonviolent if you leave out what happened to the workers and the animals at Agriprocessors.

      ENTIRE COMMENTARY - https://www.counterpunch.org/2017/12/25/trump-and-the-meat-tycoon-backstory-to-a-commutation/

      P.S.
      ■ ALSO SEE: "Kosher Industry’s Woes Reach a Poor Village in Guatemala" | By Summer Harlow | Forward.com | December 24, 2008
      LINK ➤ https://forward.com/news/14768/agriprocessors-raid-shatters-dreams-in-guatemalan-03014/

    • RE: Barak said of Palestinians: . . . They see themselves as emissaries of a national movement for whom everything is permissible. There is no such thing as “the truth.”

      URI AVNERY:

      [EXCERPT] . . . On the eve of the last election, just now, Netanyahu announced that there would not be a Palestinian state as long as he was in power. When the Americans remonstrated, he repudiated himself. Why not? As his Likud predecessor, Yitzhak Shamir, famously said, "It is permitted to lie for the Fatherland."

      SOURCE - https://www.outlookindia.com/website/story/bibis-daddy-issues/294239

  • What MLK's 'Letter from Birmingham Jail' tells us about Ahed Tamimi in a cold Israeli cell
  • Ahed Tamimi should stay in prison because she might slap again -- Israeli ethicist
  • Liberal Zionists can't talk about the shooting of Mohammed Tamimi
    • RE: "Bret Stephens of the New York Times likes to say that Trump’s December 6 Jerusalem announcement has not roiled the Arab world, as feared." ~ North & Weiss

      MY QUESTION: Why does Mr. Stephens like to say that Trump’s December 6 Jerusalem announcement has not roiled the Arab world, as feared? Is he preparing us for something that's in the works? Is he implicitly saying there is no reason to fear that Israel's announcing the annexation of "Judea and Samara" (i.e., the West Bank, whether occupied or disputed) will roil the Arab world? In other words, is he implicitly opining that Israel is now free to annex the West Bank because the "Arab world" really doesn't care?

      SEE: "Bravo, President Trump, for Standing Up to Palestinian Blackmail on Jerusalem" | By Elliott Abrams, | Haaretz.com | December 07, 2017
      · Trump is not destroying his own peace efforts but grounding them in reality: Jerusalem is the capital of Israel. And he’s reacted to Arab and Palestinian ‘predictions’ (read: threats) of violence with the contempt they deserve

      [EXCERPT] President Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel is absolutely the right decision for one reason above all others: because Jerusalem is the capital of Israel.

      Whatever the final municipal borders Israelis decide upon, whatever final municipal borders and arrangements might emerge from peace negotiations, whatever else Jerusalem may some day be (including a Palestinian capital) there is one thing that is absolutely certain: Jerusalem is the capital of Israel.

      The anomaly is not that Donald Trump recognized this but that it has not happened until this week. The reason is obvious: the fear that Arab states and Palestinians would object.

      In the Bush administration we confronted a similar issue when President George W. Bush contemplated stating, as he finally did in his April 14, 2004 exchange of letters with Ariel Sharon, that Israel would keep the major settlement blocks and that there was no "right of return" to Israel for Palestinian "refugees."

      We knew there would be ferocious objections, but we also knew that Bush would be stating facts - he would be telling the truth. Critics said: "You will make peace impossible" - but we knew the opposite was true: lies and evasions make peace impossible. Telling the truth brings it closer.

      Once the angry speeches have been made by Abbas, Erekat, and others, once a bit of time passes, negotiations can continue just as they did after the Bush-Sharon letters.

      Trump is not destroying his own peace efforts but grounding them in reality. And he has done one other important thing: reacted to Arab and other Palestinian predictions of violence with the contempt they deserve. Those "predictions" were in fact threats, and the President was absolutely right to face them down. . .

      SOURCE - https://www.haaretz.com/middle-east-news/.premium-1.827122

  • When Zionism is the essence of life, a break has huge consequences
    • RE: "When Zionism is the essence of life, a break has huge consequences"

      MY COMMENT: Wow, that explains (nearly) everything! It should be lengthened to a few hundred pages, and titled Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Zionism, But Were Deathly Afraid to Ask!

      ✡ Moses of Crete
      From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia ~ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moses_of_Crete

      Moses of Crete was a Jewish Messiah claimant and apocalyptic prophet in the 5th century C.E.

      After the failed Bar Kokba war, there was an end to Messianic movements for several centuries. However, the hope of a coming messiah nonetheless continued. In accordance with one interpretation of the Talmud, the Messiah was expected in 440 (Sanh. 97b) or 471 ('Ab. Zarah 9b).

      This expectation in connection with the disturbances in the Roman empire attendant upon invasions may have raised hopes in a messiah claimant who appeared about this time in Crete, and who won the Jews there to his movement. He called himself Moses, and promised to lead the people, like the ancient Moses, dry-shod through the sea back to Palestine. His followers, convinced of his claim, left all their possessions and waited for the promised day; upon which they followed Moses to a promontory overlooking the sea and at his command cast themselves off - where many drowned or were destroyed on the rocks below.[1]

      Then Moses himself immediately disappeared.[2] Socrates of Constantinople states that Moses fled, while the Chronicle of John of Nikiû claims that he perished in the sea. Others claimed he had been a demon, sent to lead the Jews astray. While he called himself "Moses", the Chronicle gives his actual name as 'Fiskis'.[3][4]

  • Ahed Tamimi offers Israelis a lesson worthy of Gandhi
    • P.P.S. RE: But more troubling is a media debate that has characterised the soldiers’ failure to beat Ahed in response to her slaps as a “national shame”. The venerable television host Yaron London expressed astonishment that the soldiers “refrained from using their weapons” against her, wondering whether they “hesitated out of cowardice”. But far more sinister were the threats from Ben Caspit . . . he said Ahed’s actions made “every Israeli’s blood boil”.

      MY COMMENT: So, the soldiers’ failure to beat Ahed in response to her slaps (i.e., actions that made “every Israeli’s blood boil”) has been characterized in the Israeli media as a “national shame”. A venerable television host Yaron London expressed astonishment that the soldiers “refrained from using their weapons” [no cigar jokes, puh-lease!] against Ahed, wondering whether they “ hesitated out of cowardice”.

      The aforesaid is so 'heavily laden' (and arguably heavily-laden) that I'm afraid to even begin trying to suggest what all might be going on. Not to mention that I am in no way qualified to do so, but here goes.
      To begin with, reading this stuff makes me feel like I need to do a bit of learnin' on BDSM, especially the 'BD' part. 'D' just came to me (Domination), but 'B' doesn't seem to ring a bell. [Googling BDSM] Oh yeah, bondage! How could I have forgotten? And , 'D' sometimes is related to 'Discipline'. Likewise, 'S' can stand for "Submission". Geesh, and I thought Yiddish was difficult!
      [Note to self: S&M is associated with certain types of narcissism, and I am wont to say that the U.S. is actually "The Great Sadist" rather than "The Great Satan".]

      On second thought, I think I'll opt instead for an explanation involving 'Ye Olde Cognitive Dissonance'. Fortunately, I have already discussed the Israeli 'core belief' (referred to by Johnathan Cook) that they are little "David fighting an Arab Goliath", and how this belief was contradicted when the video of Ahed was screened repeatedly on Israeli TV (thereby inflicting a very unpleasant/uncomfortable amount of cognitive dissonance on many Israelis).

      The 'national shame' meme suggests another possible Israeli 'core belief' that has been contradicted by the video of Ahed Tamimi confronting/slapping the IDF soldier/dominator/inquisitor. One contradiction is that the soldiers "refrained from using their weapons” [no cigar joks, puh-lease!] . The 'core belief' being contradicted might be something like,: "If force doesn't work (i.e., bring about the desired result) with 'an Arab', then the remedy is 'more (i.e., greater) force'. [Ariel Sharon’s dictum: that "force is the only thing the Arabs understand. And the only alternative to force is more force." The Second Intifada . . . "he (Sharon) did crack in the end, with force, force, and more force".] Any hesitation (in using force, or 'more force') on "Arabs" (and no telling how many others) is traitorous, and will likely lead to the demise of Israel, and result in the extinction of the "Jewish race".

      An Israeli soldier has absolutely no choice but to 'do the deed' WITHOUT HESITATION, and then he may shed a few tears if he certifiably must. He who dominates (or 'must dominate'), dare not hesitate! The teeny-tiniest hesitation, and there will be 'hell to pay'; and not just 'hell to pay' "over there", but 'hell to pay' right there in River City Jerusalem , Tel Aviv, Ariel, Ashdod, Hebron, Jerico, etc. (not to mention the sleepy neighborhoods of Galilee, the Jordan Valley, the Negev., etc. ). So, to hesitate is inexcusable, and the perpetrator will be ostracized by his fellow solders from then on; but to hesitate out of cowardice is a shanda, and merits summary execution via 'friendly fire' (an 'honor killing', of sorts).

      Now for a little reading on BDSM . . .

    • P.S. To 'complete the thought', so to speak, Israel's epidemic of acute cognitive dissonance should subside as various 'defense mechanisms' are employed by the populace. The prosecution/persecution of Ahed Tamimi in a military court with a 99% rate of conviction will greatly. assist in this process. In fact, when you look at some examples of common defense mechanisms (see below), you might notice that a few of them are considerably akin, in this instance, to the prosecution/conviction of sixteen-year-old Ahed Tamimi.
      [THOUGHT EXPERIMENT: Was Ben Caspit's infamous commentary (in which he contemplated payback being administered to Ahed) associated with (e.g., a product of) one or more common defense mechanisms?]

      * FROM WIKIPEDIA AS OF 2/27/14:

      Defence mechanisms
      From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia - https://web.archive.org/web/20140227185512/https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Defence_mechanisms

      [EXCERPTS] . . . In Freudian psychoanalytic theory, defense mechanisms are psychological strategies brought into play [primarily ~ J.L.D.] by the unconscious mind[4] to manipulate, deny, or distort reality in order to defend against feelings of anxiety and unacceptable impulses to maintain one's self schema [and to minimize cognitive dissonance - J.L.D.].[5]

      These processes that manipulate, deny, or distort reality may include the following: repression, or the burying of a painful feeling or thought from one's awareness even though it may resurface in a symbolic form;[3] identification, incorporating an object or thought into oneself;[6] and rationalization, the justification of one's behavior and motivations by substituting "good" acceptable reasons for the motivations.[3][7] Generally, repression is considered the basis for other defense mechanisms.[3]

      Healthy persons normally use different defences throughout life. An ego defence mechanism becomes pathological only when its persistent use leads to maladaptive behaviour such that the physical or mental health of the individual is adversely affected. The purpose of ego defence mechanisms is to protect the mind/self/ego from anxiety and/or social sanctions and/or to provide a refuge from a situation with which one cannot currently cope.[8]

      Defence mechanisms are unconscious coping mechanisms that reduce anxiety generated by threats from unacceptable impulses.[9] . . .

      . . . The list of defence mechanisms is huge and there is no theoretical consensus on the number of defence mechanisms. . .

      ● Vaillant's categorization of defence mechanisms [EXCERPTS]

      ♦ Level 1: Pathological

      The mechanisms on this level, when predominating, almost always are severely pathological. These six defences, in conjunction, permit one to effectively rearrange external experiences to eliminate the need to cope with reality. . .

      • Delusional Projection: Delusions about external reality, usually of a persecutory nature. . . [i.e., perceiving legitimate criticism of Israel as "Anti-Semitism" ~ J.L.D.]
      • Denial: Refusal to accept external reality because it is too threatening; arguing against an anxiety-provoking stimulus by stating it doesn't exist; resolution of emotional conflict and reduction of anxiety by refusing to perceive or consciously acknowledge the more unpleasant aspects of external reality (for example, convincing oneself that all of the Palestinian/Arab prisoners iincarcerated by Israel are "terrorists") . .
      • Distortion: A gross reshaping of external reality to meet internal needs.

      ♦ Level 2: Immature

      These mechanisms are often present in adults. These mechanisms lessen distress and anxiety provoked by threatening people or by uncomfortable reality. . .

      • Fantasy: Tendency to retreat into fantasy in order to resolve inner and outer conflicts. . . [i.e., the illogical belief that the interests of the U.S. and Israel are identical is a nice example of fantasy ~ J.L.D.]

      ♦ Level 3: Neurotic

      These mechanisms are considered neurotic, but fairly common in adults. Such defences have short-term advantages in coping, but can often cause long-term problems . . .

      • Intellectualization: A form of isolation; concentrating on the intellectual components of a situation so as to distance oneself from the associated anxiety-provoking emotions . . .
      • Withdrawal: Withdrawal is a more severe form of defence. It entails removing oneself from events, stimuli, interactions, etc. under the fear of being reminded of painful thoughts and feelings. . .

      ♦ Level 4: Mature

      These are commonly found among emotionally healthy adults and are considered mature . . .

      • Thought suppression: The conscious process of pushing thoughts into the preconscious; the conscious decision to delay paying attention to an emotion or need in order to cope with the present reality; making it possible to later access uncomfortable or distressing emotions whilst accepting them. . .

      CURRENT WIKIPEDIA ARTICLE - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Defence_mechanisms

    • RE: "The video of Ahed, screened repeatedly on Israeli TV, has threatened to upturn Israel’s self-image as David fighting an Arab Goliath. This explains the toxic outrage and indignation that has gripped Israel since the video aired... Ahed and Nabi Saleh have shown that popular unarmed resistance – if it is to discomfort Israel and the world . . . must hold up a mirror to the oppressor. antagonistic and disruptive." ~ Jonathan Cook

      MY COMMENT: Eureka! So, borrowing from James Carville during Bill Clinton's 1992 presidential campaign: "It's the economy cognitive dissonance, stupid!" That's why this particular incident/confrontation so "infuriated" the Israelis (i.e., "the toxic outrage and indignation"). The video of it being played over and over on Israeli television (and available world-wide thanks to Youtube and the internet) amounted to the holding up of "a mirror to the oppressor [i.e., the Israeli(s)] antagonistic and disruptive". And, because the "reflection" seen by the oppressors/Israelis in the "mirror" contradicts their long-held, core belief (i.e., their "self-image as David fighting an Arab Goliath"); the Israelis/oppressors unpleasantly experience the "discomfort" of acute cognitive dissonance, which is then manifested as "toxic outrage and indignation" (i.e., they become "infuriated", to borrow from Ben Caspit).

      ■ FROM BRITANNICA.COM [cognitive dissonance]

      • cognitive dissonance - the mental conflict that occurs when beliefs or assumptions are contradicted by new information. The unease or tension that the conflict arouses in a person is relieved by one of several defensive maneuvers: the person rejects, explains away, or avoids the new information, persuades himself that no conflict really exists, reconciles the differences, or resorts to any other defensive means of preserving stability or order in his conception of the world and of himself. The concept, first introduced in the 1950s, has become a major point of discussion and research.

      SOURCE - http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/124498/cognitive-dissonance

  • Let the two-state solution die a natural death
    • " (2) Israel created extensive facts on the ground that have definitively contradicted its professes intention to seek a sustainable peace based on the Two-State Solution; these developments associated with the settlements, road network linking settlement blocs to Israel references with Israel to the West Bank as ‘Judea and Samaria,’ that is, as belonging to biblical or historical Israel." ~ Falk

      MY COMMENT: It is important to remember that many of the roads enabling Israeli segregation by linking settlement blocs to Israel were paid for with USAID funds designated for the Palestinians.

      FOR EXAMPLE, SEE: "US Funds Apartheid Roads on West Bank" ~ by Mel Frykberg, Inter Press Service, 5/24/10

      [EXCERPT] RAMALLAH - The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is helping Israel to construct an apartheid road infrastructure in the occupied Palestinian West Bank by financing nearly a quarter of the segregated road system primarily for the benefit of Israeli settlers.

      USAID's figures state that the agency has financed 235 km of roads in the West Bank in the past decade, and is preparing to add another 120 km by the end of this year, reported Nazareth-based journalist Jonathan Cook in the United Arab Emirates paper ‘The National'*.

      According to an April report released by the Applied Research Institute of Jerusalem (ARIJ), USAID has helped build 114 km of segregated roads in the Palestinian territory despite assurances from Washington six years ago that it would not assist in the construction after the Palestinian Authority (PA) protested.

      Israeli human rights organization B'Tselem reports that 170 km of roads in the West Bank are either off-limits to Palestinians or highly restricted.

      After the Oslo Peace Accord in 1994, Israel requested the international community to finance 500 km of roads for the Palestinians, later termed ‘fabric of life' roads, including upgrading agricultural tracks and constructing many underpasses and bridges, at a cost of 200 million US dollars, reported Cook.

      However, donor countries rejected this request due to PA's protests that the entrenched apartheid-system infrastructure would strengthen the settlements and make their presence a permanent fixture while justifying more expropriation of Palestinian land.

      But it would appear that the PA has been railroaded, at the behest of Israel, into accepting USAID in a take it or leave it scenario. . .

      CONTINUED AT - http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2010/05/24-0

      * SEE: "US funds 'apartheid' road network in Israel"
      By Jonathan Cook | TheNational.ae | May 15, 2010
      LINK - http://www.thenational.ae/news/world/middle-east/us-funds-apartheid-road-network-in-israel

      P.S. ALSO SEE: "Palestinian Roads: Cementing Statehood, or Israeli Annexation?"
      By Nadia Hijab and Jesse Rosenfeld | The Nation | April 30, 2010
      New evidence indicates that the PA's ambitious road-building program--heavily funded by the United States and Europe--is being used by Israel to facilitate settlement expansion.
      LINK - https://www.thenation.com/article/palestinian-roads-cementing-statehood-or-israeli-annexation/

  • Palestinian-American gets last minute deportation reprieve thanks to community support and help from local congressman
    • P.S.
      ■ ALSO SEE: "Kosher Industry’s Woes Reach a Poor Village in Guatemala" | By Summer Harlow | Forward.com | December 24, 2008
      LINK ➤ https://forward.com/news/14768/agriprocessors-raid-shatters-dreams-in-guatemalan-03014/

    • RE: "Palestinian-American gets last minute deportation reprieve "

      MY COMMENT: How serious can Trump be about keeping out illegal aliens when he just commuted the sentence of an employer caught with hundreds of illegal aliens working for him (nearly 300 from Israel-worshiping Guatemala).*
      So, Trump is going to spend all that money on a wall to keep out illegal aliens, while letting off U.S. employers caught knowingly employing large numbers of illegal aliens?
      THE SHEER HYPOCRISY! (DARE I SAY CORRUPTION?)
      Think the Democrats will do anything?
      Fat chance!

      * COMPARE & CONTRAST:
      "Trump and the Meat Tycoon: Backstory to a Commutation" | by Martha Rosenberg | CounterPunch | December 25, 2018

      After he served 8 years of a 27-year sentence for money laundering, kosher meatpacking executive Sholom Rubashkin had his sentence commuted.

      On May 14, 2008, hundreds of officers from US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) swooped down on Agriprocessors, the nation’s largest kosher slaughterhouse in Postville, Iowa, with helicopters in the largest single-site raid in US history, arresting half of the eight-hundred-person workforce. Two hundred and ninety Guatemalans, ninety-three Mexicans, two Israelis, and four Ukrainians were marched off to a waiting phalanx of buses and vans and a makeshift detention center.

      Initial charges against Agriprocessors’s employees included harboring illegal aliens, use of child labor, document fraud, identity theft, physical and sexual abuse of workers, unsafe working conditions, wage and hour violations, and shorting workers’ pay. According to the search warrant, one thousand discrepancies between worker names and social security numbers occurred in three years. There was even a methamphetamine production plant existing within the slaughterhouse, sanctioned by management. At the time Barack Obama, then an Illinois senator, weighed in on Agriprocessors. “They have kids in there wielding buzz saws and cleavers. It’s ridiculous,” he said during a campaign stop in Davenport, Iowa.

      Three hundred workers served federal prison sentences of five months for identity theft, and human resources managers and floor supervisors were convicted of felony charges of harboring illegal immigrants. Agriprocessors itself filed for bankruptcy. While thousands of child-labor charges were initially filed against Agriprocessors’s owner, Aaron Rubashkin; his son Sholom; and others, the charges were dropped as prosecutors unspooled elaborate financial wrongdoing at the plant, which they pursued instead.

      In 2008, Sholom Rubashkin was convicted of eighty-six counts of federal-bank fraud in connection with loans to the company, including fabricating fake collateral for loans, ordering employees to create false invoices, and laundering millions through a secret bank account in the name of Torah Education, reported the New York Times. Sentencing documents also suggest the Postville mayor, Robert Penrod, may have received or extorted money from Agriprocessors to discourage unionizing at the plant.

      The immigration raid was not Agriprocessors’ first troubles. In 2004, an undercover video showed cows very much alive after being “slaughtered” and having their throats cut, and it led to a USDA investigation that “reported many violations of animal cruelty laws at the plant,” says the New York Times. A year and a half after the cruelty video, the Forward paid a visit to Postville and reopened public scrutiny. Hundreds of semi-indentured immigrant employees were working ten- to twelve-hour shifts, six days a week, for $6.25 to $7 a hour, wrote the newspaper calling them “the impoverished humans who do the factory’s dirty work.”

      Before the immigration raid, Agriprocessors had six Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) violations in one year, and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) complaints that supervisors extorted bribes from workers. Employees were untrained and unprotected from dangerous equipment, reported the Forward. Two workers required amputations in one month, and one was still working at the plant with a hand missing when the Forward visited, “hoping to collect enough to pay off his debts back home.”

      After the immigration raid, prosecutors asked for a life sentence for the young Sholom Rubashkin, citing his lawlessness and lack of remorse, more than one dozen former US attorneys cried to the judge: Unfair! “We cannot fathom how truly sound and sensible sentencing rules could call for a life sentence—or anything close to it—for Mr. Rubashkin, a 51-year-old, first-time, nonviolent offender,” said a letter signed by former attorney generals Janet Reno, William Barr, Richard Thornburgh, Edwin Meese III, Ramsey Clark, and Nicholas Katzenbach.

      Nonviolent if you leave out what happened to the workers and the animals at Agriprocessors.

      ENTIRE COMMENTARY - https://www.counterpunch.org/2017/12/25/trump-and-the-meat-tycoon-backstory-to-a-commutation/

  • Haass and Kristof can't cross the Zionist Rubicon
    • Jimmy Webb - MacArthur Park

    • P.P.S. On Sunday, January 7, 2018, the Israeli government published a list of six US organizations, including CODEPINK, and 20 organizations worldwide whose activists will be barred from entering the country because of their support for the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement (BDS) in favor of Palestinian rights.

      Included on the list is the American Friends Service Committee, a Quaker organization honored with the 1947 Nobel Peace Prize for assisting and rescuing victims of the Nazis. It is also one of the first US organizations to stand up against segregation in the United States. The six banned U.S. groups are:

      • American Friends Service Committee
      • American Muslims for Palestine
      • CODEPINK
      • Jewish Voice for Peace
      • National Students for Justice in Palestine
      • US Campaign for Palestinian Rights

      This is a disgraceful attempt to silence global voices working to stop the oppression and violations of international law against the people of Palestine.

      ► Join CODEPINK in calling on influential Senators Chuck Schumer and Ben Cardin to denounce this outrageous ban and tell Israel to lift it immediately. ~ http://www.codepink.org/blacklisted?utm_campaign=blacklist_1&utm_medium

      ✂ ✂ ✂ ✂ ✂ ✂✂ ✂ ✂ ✂ ✂ ✂✂ ✂ ✂ ✂ ✂ ✂✂ ✂ ✂ ✂ ✂ ✂✂

      The full list

      European organizations:

      ■ The France Association Palestine Solidarity

      ■ BDS France 

      ■ BDS Italy

      ■ The European Coordination of Committees and Associations for Palestine

      ■ Friends of Al-Aqsa

      ■ Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign

      ■ The Palestine Committee of Norway

      ■ Palestine Solidarity Association of Sweden

      ■ Palestine Solidarity Campaign

      ■ War on Want

      ■ BDS Kampagne

      American organizations:

      ■ American Friends Service Committee

      ■ American Muslims for Palestine

      ■ Code Pink

      ■ Jewish Voice for Peace

      ■ National Students for Justice in Palestine

      ■ US Campaign for Palestinian Rights

      Other groups:

      ■ BDS Chile

      ■ BDS South Africa

      ■ BDS National Committee

      read more: https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/1.833502

    • P.S. ALSO SEE:
      "Reality Check: Heavy-handed 'hasbara'" | B y Jeff Barck | Jerusalem Post | January 7, 2018
      • Boteach’s tirade against Lorde provides more oxygen for BDS.

      [EXCERPT] Last month, the government approved the allocation of NIS 260 million to set up a non-profit organization, in conjunction with deep-pocketed Diaspora donors, to combat anti-Israel deligitimization and the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement in particular.

      The brainchild of Strategic Affairs and Public Diplomacy Minister Gilad Erdan (does nobody in government see the irony of having the internal security minister, Erdan’s main hardline role, also the face of soft, public diplomacy?) this new organization is meant to provide fast and furious responses, unshackled by any government approval system, to combat attempts to smear Israel’s name.

      Imagine, one unnamed official told Yediot Aharonot, what would happen if immediately after Lorde’s move (the immensely popular singer recently canceled a performance in Tel Aviv following pressure from the BDS movement), she was the target of an Internet campaign and full-page adverts in leading international newspapers. This is something, the official went on to say, the government can’t do, hence the need for this new organization.

      Well, we’ve just had our first taste of such activities and my advice to the Diaspora donors (this government is a lost cause) is to find a cause more worthwhile for their donations.

      In one of the most embarrassing attempts ever at pro-Israel advocacy, publicity hound Rabbi Shmuley Boteach (remember his stint as Michael Jackson’s unofficial spiritual adviser?) followed the guidelines laid down above and published a full-page advert in The Washington Post, calling the 21-year old a “bigot.”

      In the wordy, rambling tirade protesting Lorde’s willingness to perform in Russia “despite [Russian President Vladimir] Putin’s support for Assad’s genocide in Syria” but not Tel Aviv, the American rabbi proclaims, among other things: “Let’s boycott the boycotters and tell Lorde and her fellow bigots that Jew-hatred has no place in the twenty-first century.”

      And then, after having accused Lorde of antisemitism, Boteach turns his ire on New Zealand . . .

      . . . The fact is though, as long as the occupation continues and deepens, protests against Israel and pop-star concert cancellations will continue, no matter how much money the government pumps into to hasbara efforts that are clumsy and ineffective at best, harmful at worst.

      • The writer is a former editor-in-chief of The Jerusalem Post.

      ENTIRE COMMENTARY ~ http://www.jpost.com/Opinion/Reality-Check-Heavy-handed-hasbara-533066

    • RE: "Israel’s true friends should fight the trends undermining the potential for a 2 state solution. The Trump administration sees itself as a friend of Israel but has done nothing to halt the drift..it has contributed to it with its recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital." ~ Haass

      ■ TAKE HEED:
      MacArthur's Park Dream Castle Israel is melting in the dark
      All the sweet, green icing flowing down
      Someone left the cake out in the rain
      I don't think that I can take it
      'Cause it took so long to bake it
      And I'll never have that recipe again
      Oh no!

  • Stop talking about Ahed Tamimi's hair
    • RE: One may be reminded of how, during Israel’s summer 2014 Gaza onslaught, Prime Minister Netanyahu accused Hamas of using “telegenically dead” to further “their cause” ... Michael Oren has fostered such notions concerning Ahed Tamimi and her family. Following Ahed’s arrest, Oren suggested that the Tamimi family may “not be a real family”, that the kids (are they even Tamimis??) were simply dressed up in “American clothes” and “paid to provoke IDF troops on camera”. - Ofir

      "Reality Check: Heavy-handed 'hasbara'" | B y Jeff Barck | Jerusalem Post | January 7, 2018

      [EXCERPTS] Last month, the government approved the allocation of NIS 260 million to set up a non-profit organization, in conjunction with deep-pocketed Diaspora donors, to combat anti-Israel deligitimization and the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement in particular.

      The brainchild of Strategic Affairs and Public Diplomacy Minister Gilad Erdan (does nobody in government see the irony of having the internal security minister, Erdan’s main hardline role, also the face of soft, public diplomacy?) this new organization is meant to provide fast and furious responses, unshackled by any government approval system, to combat attempts to smear Israel’s name.

      Imagine, one unnamed official told Yediot Aharonot, what would happen if immediately after Lorde’s move (the immensely popular singer recently canceled a performance in Tel Aviv following pressure from the BDS movement), she was the target of an Internet campaign and full-page adverts in leading international newspapers. This is something, the official went on to say, the government can’t do, hence the need for this new organization. . .

      . . . This heavy-handed approach to countering pro-Palestinian propaganda is also the hallmark of official Israel, with the Ahed Tamimi case being the prime example. We’ve all seen the video of the blonde 16-year-old Palestinian girl slapping and provoking a pair of soldiers on duty outside her house and the two men responding with admirable restraint.

      But rather than allow the world to digest this image of IDF soldiers behaving humanely and ignoring a staged provocation – following IDF chief-of-staff Lt.-Gen. Gadi Eisenkot’s instructions that he doesn’t “want a soldier to empty a magazine on a girl with scissors” – the Israeli establishment has managed to turn Tamimi into a wronged victim.

      Instead of simply bringing Tamimi in for questioning the following day, and then releasing her until military justice takes its course, as was the case with Kiryat Arba settler Yifat Alkoby, who slapped and scratched a soldier earlier last year, the IDF launched a dramatic nighttime operation to arrest Tamimi and she has been kept behind bars ever since.

      Tamimi is no existential threat to Israel, and all the authorities have achieved, in their desperation for revenge on a young girl who in some people’s eyes humiliated two soldiers, is to turn her into the perfect poster girl for Palestinian protest against the occupation.

      The fact is though, as long as the occupation continues and deepens, protests against Israel and pop-star concert cancellations will continue, no matter how much money the government pumps into to hasbara efforts that are clumsy and ineffective at best, harmful at worst.

      • The writer is a former editor-in-chief of The Jerusalem Post.

      ENTIRE COMMENTARY ~ http://www.jpost.com/Opinion/Reality-Check-Heavy-handed-hasbara-533066

    • RE: "Stop talking about Ahed Tamimi’s hair"

      MY RESPONSE: Sure, no problemo.

  • Israel detains 313 children-- but State Department says it has no 'information on that'
    • Stable geniuses unite!
      Are you a "stable genius"?
      Have you been tested?
      Stable geniuses are often misunderstood.
      They often have a really tough time of it'.
      Perhaps you should try a Stable Genius Support Group!

  • Thank you for helping equip Mondoweiss to take on the challenges of 2018!
    • MY SENTIMENTS , EXACTLY (if only I could carry a tune):
      Harry Styles - Sign of the Times

      "Sign Of The Times"

      Just stop your crying
      It's a sign of the times
      Welcome to the final show
      Hope you're wearing your best clothes

      You can't bribe the door on your way to the sky
      You look pretty good down here
      But you ain't really good

      We never learn, we've been here before
      Why are we always stuck and running from
      The bullets, the bullets?
      We never learn, we've been here before
      Why are we always stuck and running from
      Your bullets, the bullets?

      Just stop your crying
      It's a sign of the times
      We gotta get away from here
      We gotta get away from here
      Just stop your crying
      It'll be alright
      They told me that the end is near
      We gotta get away from here

      Just stop your crying
      Have the time of your life
      Breaking through the atmosphere
      And things are pretty good from here

      Remember, everything will be alright
      We can meet again somewhere
      Somewhere far away from here

      We never learn, we've been here before
      Why are we always stuck and running from
      The bullets, the bullets?
      We never learn, we've been here before
      Why are we always stuck and running from
      The bullets, the bullets?

      Just stop your crying
      It's a sign of the times
      We gotta get away from here
      We gotta get away from here
      Stop your crying
      Baby, it'll be alright
      They told me that the end is near
      We gotta get away from here

      We never learn, we've been here before
      Why are we always stuck and running from
      The bullets, the bullets?
      We never learn, we've been here before
      Why are we always stuck and running from
      Your bullets, the bullets?

      We don't talk enough
      We should open up
      Before it's all too much
      Will we ever learn?
      We've been here before
      It's just what we know

      Stop your crying, baby
      It's a sign of the times
      We gotta get away
      We got to get away
      We got to get away
      We got to get away
      We got to get away
      We got to—we got to—away
      We got to—we got to—away
      We got to—we got to—away

    • It's been a long time coming but here is the long awaited #19 edition of Aux Radio. It's been an incredible year for us here at Aux, all thanks you to guys & your endless support for our mission to bring your new and exciting music. We hope you all have an incredible new year and we wish you and your families all the success & happiness for the exciting new year.

      We cannot wait to show you what we have been working on for 2016. Just do us one favour today and make sure you get this mixtape playing loud whereever you plan to celebrate NYE. From all of us here at Aux, Happy New Year!

      ■ Bring on 2016, - https://soundcloud.com/auxlondon/aux-radio-volume-019-2016-new-year-new-vibes

    • Yeah everybody, ¡Muchas Gracias!
      u hermana es muy bonito.
      Tú tienes un catarro. ¿cuáles son tus síntomas?
      Su hermana es muy bonito.
      Arroz con pollio?
      Two years of Español, and that's just about all I remember.
      Anyway, thanks for listenin'
      Here's your reward!

      ▼▲ Radio Mawimbi - Live stream @ Djoon (21/10/16) ≈

      Mawimbi
      Published on Oct 25, 2016
      ≈ Radio Mawimbi live @ Djoon 21/10/16 ≈ Merci Cercle ≈
      00:00 = SSCK
      27:25 = L'enfant Loup •
      44:25 = ALT
      56:49 = Pouvoir Magique

      Mawimbi
      › @wearemawimbi
      http://www.facebook.com/wearemawimbi
      http://www.youtube.com/user/wearemawimbi
      › wearemawimbi.bandcamp.com/
      http://www.discogs.com/label/834049-Mawimbi
      http://www.instagram.com/wearemawimbi/
      › twitter.com/wearemawimbi

      Around The World
      › @atw0rld
      http://www.mixcloud.com/atworld/
      http://www.facebook.com/atw0rld/
      http://www.instagram.com/instatworld/

  • Israel prevents Omar Barghouti from accompanying his mother to Jordan for critical surgery
  • Gaza’s airport, once a symbol of statehood, is now a wasteland

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