Commenter Profile

Total number of comments: 337 (since 2010-06-07 16:01:48)

I own a small business and although I'm Jewish, I've never been a member of any Jewish organization.

Showing comments 337 - 301

  • Israelis go to the polls today--and nobody knows who will win (Updated)
    • Here is what this election means for the Palestinians: If Bibi wins, the current reign of terror and intimidation against the Palestinians will continue, probably reinvigorated. On the bright side, the kooks he has in his government will continue to keep this issue in the news because they keep saying things like how they should behead their enemies. On the other hand, if Herzog wins , there will be a softening of rhetoric, perhaps a minor change of tactics-perhaps allowing a few more morsels of food into Gaza-or allowing a few more privileges to selected Arabs(which would aid dividing and conquering Palestine as well as sanitizing their image). This softer image will appease liberals and cause Palestine to drop off the world's radar-and a slow silent strangulation will continue until there are a few colonies of cheap laborers left in historic Palestine.

      It is a tough choice...actually, one not worth making.

  • Israel's Foreign Minister calls for beheading Arab citizens and it's not anywhere in the New York Times
    • One of the effects of statements like this is that anyone in Israeli politics who is to the left of Atilla The Hun seems like a "moderate", but when you look at the reality of the situation, Lieberman is actually the moderate. He is suggesting that only the actual dissidents one at a time, while last summer, thousands of people were bombed and shot to death-and you can be sure there were several heads blown off...and it wasn't only the actual dissidents who were blown to pieces, but anyone who lived nearby.

  • Paris university reverses decision, allows Israeli apartheid event with Blumenthal
    • Considering the West's respect of the right of free speech no matter who it offends, I guess it is only a matter of time before we start seeing a lot of "je suis Max" signs around.

  • 'American Sniper' is an antiwar movie
    • From what I can tell, Citizen-since I didn't see the movie-it's about Dirty Harry as an angry old man...and The Bridges of Madison County is about Dirty Harry stopping off during a road trip to bang some housewife.

    • Personally, I don't think I'll ever take two hours out of my life to see a Clint Eastwood movie. He said everything he has to say in Dirty Harry...everything else is commentary. Besides, nothing is more cringe worthy to me than when a perfectly fine entertainer like Jerry Lewis, Stephen Spielberg, or Woody Allen decides to show the world his serious side.

      And it is hard for me to get past the fact that the movie is based largely on fiction. It would be like if Jane Fonda made a movie about a fictional Charles Manson, a sensitive older folk singer who was trying to mentor wayward teenagers, but he was unsuccessful-and guilt ridden he couldn't stop the murders. No matter how good the film was, I'd be wondering why Jane made this movie in the first place.

      Then there is the whole thing about feeding into anti Muslim violence....Sure, Birth of A Nation was about the character of Nathan Bedford Forrestor, and the plight of ex-slaves didn't really have anything to do with his bravery...but a lot of black people were lynched in the climate that film helped create.

  • The moral hysteria of Je suis charlie
    • It is ironic that in this time of celebration of free speech in France, it would probably be pretty dangerous to go out on the street wearing a sign that says, "I am not Charlie."

  • Sony email chain on behalf of Israel joined Russell Simmons and Michael Lynton with rightwing Zionists
    • You can get an idea about how much these people actually read about these issues by the misspelling of "Holocaust". I'm not a stickler about spelling, but when someone can't even spell the thing they are most concerned about, it leads me to believe they don't see the word written out because they don't do a lot of reading about it. Rather than developing an informed opinion, they are operating from a place of pure emotion.

  • Israel has always been crazy
    • I realized something was seriously off-crazy, if you will, many years ago during the first Intifadah when Rabin-the dovish alternative to Likud was voted in, and he ordered the army to break the bones of protesters instead of shooting them. That was his big humanitarian gesture...and he was shot because he was too easy on the Arabs.

  • West Bank protesters cross separation wall in effort to get into Jerusalem
  • Pittsburgh's 'Conflict Kitchen' is latest battleground over Palestine, free speech and criticism of Israel
    • As 2014 is nearing its end, Zionists must feel pretty good about how the year has gone-They managed to close the Conflict Kitchen, they got Steven Salatia fired, they destroyed half of Gaza, including an historic mosque, killing 2,100 people including over 500 "little snakes", plus they created the "fog of war" in Jerusalem where anything can happen. On the other hand, in the next few years they will have to say they really didn't mean any of it and can we try to form some type of Palestinian-Jewish government and all try to lead normal lives.

  • Malala and the Nobel Peace Prize: Why Rachel Corrie would never win
    • Her 50,000 dollars may be a drop in the bucket, but she had millions of supporters around the world-from affluent liberal feminists to rural schoolchildren-and a lot of them will follow her example-and they can truthfully say they gave because of Malala, and not because of Hamas propaganda. There are a lot of people who never heard of BDS, Nakba, Palestine Solidarity, etc...but they did see films of the devastation in Gaza and they just want to help-and in a sense, Malala gave them permission to.

    • Malala's story WAS devoid of controversy. No more. She is very influential and a lot of people respect her. And I don't know if I'm thinking she is more clever than she is, but a definitive statement in support of Palestinian civilians had to wait until after her Nobel, or she never would have got she just held her tongue until the opportune moment.
      I just wonder how the usual suspects will go after her. Will she get the Tutu treatment where they call her a Nazi and antisemite? Maybe they will say this is proof that no Muslim can be trusted...or they may say she had brain damage by the bullet she survived...My guess, though, is all her phony admirers in government and the media will just ignore the f--k out of her.

  • 'Village on the volcano' is latest effort to change the subject from the occupation
    • "Village on a Volcano"? What happened to "A good kid in a bad neighborhood"? I guess after Gaza calling Israel "a good kid" is a bit of a stretch....besides, they blew up the neighborhood.

  • Allegations of anti-Semitism used to cover up anti-Palestinian hate crime in Brooklyn
    • Hophni: If you ever watch boxing, you know that not every punch is captured by every camera angle. A famous example of this is a "phantom" knock out punch thrown by Ali against Frazier at 4:03 of this clip:
      link to

      Also, the shock of the assault and robbery may have made her thought an unintentional jab was a punch. It is hard to tell what is happening in much of the video-since the one taking the video was intentionally obscuring the identity of the assailants. He wasn't entirely successful and around 3:06-3:10 in the video it is possible to freeze the screen and get a look at the assailant. It's a bit blurry, but it certainly looks like Petlakh-enough to wonder what he was wearing that night.

      The video also shows that Petlakh lied to the police, arena security, the press when he said there was a group of protesters waving a flag and cursing and he merely asked them to move out of the way. I can't help wondering how much more of the story is a hoax. Did he report the punch in the nose at the scene or did he wait? Also, I am interested to see the emergency room records from that night....and speaking of hoaxes, there is nothing about Petakh on the Hunter College website and no reviews of him as a professor anywhere. It turns out he co-taught a class on Jewish History,,,supposedly.

      The end of this case will probably bring another big settlement to Shraeder because of his treatment at Barclay's and the way he was extradited back to New York-six detectives for a brawl outside a sports arena. I think before anyone involved wants to explain how that and other decisions and policies happened, they will quietly pay for the case to go away.

    • On second 39 of the video, if you freeze the video at the right instant you can get a good view of the guy who snatches the flag. I have my opinion of who it looks like-Petlakh-does anyone agree? There are lots of pictures of him on Google.

  • Israeli rightists wave ISIS-style flags in protest of African asylum-seekers
    • The #JSIL hashtag started as a satire of sorts just a few days ago. It's getting harder and harder to satirize Israel.

  • Desperately seeking Jewish settlers, at $136 a day, to colonize Palestinian neighborhood
    • Getting paid $136 a day to sit there and be Jewish-now I understand why they can celebrate a holiday every two weeks and still have time to harass Palestinians.

  • Read the genocidal sermon a notable Atlanta rabbi gave this Rosh Hashanah
  • 'Jews Against Genocide' take the blood bucket challenge at Yad Vashem
    • Jon s,
      You are parroting Israeli propaganda by ignoring the thousands of deaths caused by the IDF onslaught, and snickering at hypothetical Palestinian friendly fire incidents. Furthermore, you parroted the old canard that Palestinians kill their own children to make Israel look bad. The ratio of IDF casualties to Israeli civilian deaths speaks for itself, as far as your charge that Palestinians target civilians.

      And in terms of me parroting Hamas propaganda-first of all, I never read any Hamas propaganda. Second of all, my original post was a criticism of a very public protest against Israel. That is a very poor example, in my estimation, of someone who goes along with the crowd.

      I don't remember reading any of your posts where you bemoaning the fate of Gazans. I just know what you posted here. And that post speaks for itself.

    • jon s was kind enough to give an example of the idiotic way "lovers of Israel" absolve Israel of responsibility for its crimes and blames its victims. Thank you Jon...the parroting of official propaganda, the complete lack of empathy, the total ignorance really captures the way Zionists can be so annoying.

    • Honestly, I like this better as a protest against stupid fads like the ice bucket challenge. And I think I know why-pouring a bucket of blood on yourself kind of fits into the whole Israeli wail that they aren't to blame for the bombs being dropped on Gaza-the Palestinians are in essence dropping bombs on themselves-which I find kind of infuriating. Anyhow, it still keeps the message out there.

  • Netanyahu heads to New York to ‘refute all the lies’ and praise ‘the most moral army in the world’
    • When I first saw that picture I thought it was Sandra Bullock with the Prime Minister coming to Israel to show her support for the Jewish State.

  • Champaign-Urbana holds Rosh Hashanah service for Professor Salaita
    • Mooser:

      What I meant was the Amish had a religion that forced them to separate from mainstream society, and in the years that they lived separately they developed a distinctive way of life. In that way they are similar to the Yiddish.

    • Ziusudra:

      I guess I am using the words Jewish and Yiddish interchangeably, which is usually done in America. Yiddish applies to the Jewish community from Eastern Europe. Yiddish is Yiddish for Jewish. Their religion was Judaism, but since they lived separately from Gentiles, they developed a distinctive culture-partly their own, partly borrowed from their neighbors. For example, when spoken the Yiddish language resembles German, but it is written with Hebrew letters. Perhaps the situation is similar to the Amish.

    • Mooser:
      When I say theoretical, I acknowledge that there is a difference between having a prayer for Israel into a Passover Service and having your house blown up and your sons taken to prison.

      Well now a big part of Jewish culture is making excuses for Israel, but I am old enough to remember my great aunts and uncles playing pinochle in the kitchen, telling jokes in Yiddish, with the smell of chicken soup in the air...

    • It's a little melodramatic to compare the plight of Palestinians to the intellectual dilemma of non-Zionist Jews, but on a purely theoretical level Zionism has colonized Jewish culture as much as it has colonized Palestine...and in that scenario services like this are the Gaza Strip of Judaism.

  • 'Civility' is for dancing classes, not universities, and is tool of pro-Israel political operatives -- Franke
    • This sudden clamor for "civility" on campuses seems orchestrated and has the focus group stench. Having worked briefly in market research and also having been paid fifty bucks to participate in a focus group about long distance service, I can imagine market research professionals trying out different words to a carefully selected sample of the group they are trying to reach. My guess is they are trying to figure out the best word to get middle class educated Jews to tune out Palestinian voices. I can almost hear the discussion about how "civil" scores against another vague word like "respectful".

  • The pinkwashing of 'Out in the Dark'
    • I don't want to judge this film without seeing it because it does seem like it could have some classic when Roy comes out to his parents and tells them his boyfriend is a Palestinian living illegally in Israel. In my mind I picture Shelley Winters and Sid Ceaser as the parents.

  • Israel carries out extrajudicial killing of two Palestinians suspected in Israeli youths kidnapping
    • Assuming Israel had the right to kill these men, will someone please tell me what the pulverization of Gaza was about?...oh yeah, terror tunnels, raining rockets, and other alliterations as yet unthought of.

  • The rabbi at the shitshow
    • What a hip rabbi! She cusses! She hangs around young people! She leads demonstrations on campuses! All the window dressing a self anointed progressive youth leader needs. Who would have thunk that someone like that would support mass murder of unarmed civilians in Palestine, stifle free speech on campus, bully students, and in general bring the Zionist occupation to Ohio? Who would have thunk all that? Only anyone who has been following Israeli PR campaigns for the past few years.

  • Hamas is just as bad as ISIS and worse than Boko Haram -- Israeli government propaganda
    • amigo-
      You write like Shakespeare in that I need foot notes to understand what you are saying.

    • JJ Goldberg wrote a column about ISIS and I wanted to comment, but most of my comments are removed by the moderator there. I think I would have made a good point. The first paragraph is:

      Something absolutely astonishing is going on right now in northern Syria along the Turkish border: refugees streaming on foot across the barbed-wire frontier by the tens of thousands, fleeing the advance of the terrorist army known as the Islamic State. As many as 100,000 refugees, mostly Kurds, have crossed the border in the past week — up to 60,000 on Saturday alone — while ISIS enters and occupies village after village with tanks and heavy artillery.

      My comment was:

      Funny how history repeats itself:

      Something absolutely astonishing is going on right now in Palestine along the Egyptian border: refugees streaming on foot across the barbed-wire frontier by the tens of thousands, fleeing the advance of the terrorist army known as the Jewishc State. As many as 100,000 refugees, mostly Moslems, have crossed the border in the past week — up to 60,000 on Saturday alone — while Israel enters and occupies village after village with tanks and heavy artillery.

  • The end of 'Operation Protective Edge'
    • I know there is a show of euphoria in Gaza now, and a sense of victory because they withstood the Israeli onslaught=but we must remember how this trauma will continue to effect people for years to come. We can see the demolished buildings and many of the physical wounds, but we cannot see the emotional scars that millions of people now carry inside them. I have been following this 51 day rampage on Twitter through the posts of Gazans in the middle of the slaughter. They seemed like rocks to me, reporting what was being bombed around them, how close the bombs were falling, some type of new weapon they had never seen before...Now these same people are saying they have insomnia, headaches, nightmares...The buildings of Gaza will be rebuilt in the next 20 or 30 years, hopefully in the context of a free and equal state, the euphoria of survival will wear off a lot sooner...and when it does, there will be a lot more tears.

  • Dead American soldier in IDF signed up to fight global jihadists plotting 'Holocaust 2.0'
    • Ok, if he was so offended by Poles giving Nazi salutes, why did he join up to kill Palestinians? If that sight caused an ethical homicidal rage to boil up in him, he should have killed the people giving the salute...No this brave soldier went to volunteer for one of the most highly armed forces in the world thousands of miles away from the incident, ...which makes as much sense as donating money or giving aid to the wealthiest country in the region.

  • 'We are all Palestinian'
    • I just saw that Obama ordered the bombing of ISIS in Iraq to free a besieged civilian population. I wonder if these protests will inspire him to bomb the Jewish separatists besieging civilians in Palestine...actually, I wouldn't like that...I'm tired of America bombing everywhere.

  • A Palestinian defends violent resistance to occupation
    • The thing is, discussing Palestinian violent resistance is largely theoretical. Except with resistance fighters engaging in combat with invading murderous soldiers, we are usually talking about the threat of violence-which rarely hurts anyone, but tends to interfere with people's daily routine and has the actual effect that most civil disobedience actions have-stopping traffic and slowing down commerce. When Hamas shoots rockets blindly into Israel, even if no one gets hit, everyone has to stop their car and lay down on the ground. A pain in the ass to be sure, but is it violent? Borderline, in my opinion. Even when kids throw stones at soldiers, the effect is to interfere with the routine of occupation. The soldiers aren't going to get hurt unless they engage the protesting civilians-and even then, they are most likely only to get bruised.

      If we are going to discuss violence, we should be less generic-or else we fall into the trap of conflating suicide bombings with throwing rocks.

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  • Jodi Rudoren and Abe Foxman mull over 'the Arabs' owning New York hotel
    • Here's another video from someone who hasn't realized the world has changed and you shouldn't even be thinking some things, much less saying them on video. Joan Rivers latest analysis of the Gaza assult:

      link to

      When this first came out, at first on Twitter when I did a search for Joan Rivers, most of the tweets were about her jewelry franchise and some one liners, with a few comments about her latest outburst. Just a half hour later, all the tweets about her are calling her all kinds of bad things.

  • Crisis in Rafah: Palestinian civilians trapped trying to escape Israeli onslaught (Updated)
    • Here is a twitter feed from a woman who seconds ago escaped over the Egyptian border from Rafah. I have been following her since the beginning of the assault, and now the inferno has engulfed her and almost took her life.

      link to

  • Will 'Protective Edge' galvanize the US mainstream, as 'Cast Lead' galvanized the left?
    • The mainstream is trending younger, darker, and poorer plus women are gaining power. According to the poll you sited the other day, these are precisely the groups that are sympathetic with Palestine. Right now this shift is showing around the edges as reflected in the above examples, but as this demographic trend continues, change will come like a tidal wave. It has already happened with gay rights: what was the mainstream ten years ago seems ridiculously out of date now.(That example has mainly to do with a younger generation gaining power, but it does foretell what will happen with other issues). These changes can't be stopped with walls, bombs, or propaganda-and I believe the liberation of Palestine will be only one change that happens as these changes continue.

  • 'Children killed in their sleep': Israeli artillery fire hits UN school, killing at least 20
    • The First Lady made a personal appeal for the safety of the 200 Nigerian school girls. Would it kill her to do the same for the million kids held captive in Gaza?

  • As night follows the day, deaths of 10 Israeli soldiers lead to deaths of 30 Palestinian civilians
    • The NBC website did a profile on a young woman whose twitter feed is one of the ones I have been following to keep track of what is going on in Gaza. Her posts have been particularly heart wrenching because of her youth and eloquence. At first I was using Twitter to get accurate information about the madness in Gaza now, but it has turned into a totally different experience: going on line every few hours to see if people I admire are still alive. It is maddening that this carnage is going on. I was reluctant to link to the Gaza Twitter feed because they started to warn each other to turn off their GPS signals because Israel was using those signals to find people to bomb. But since Farah's story is on the NBC site, I guess it is safe to link to that.

      link to

  • Video: Celebrities, artists and activists call for Palestinian freedom in #GazaNames project
    • Speaking of celebrities and Gaza, Zayn Malik of the boy band One Direction posted a #freepalestine tweet and it got 160k likes and retweets. There has been an Israeli backlash with hashtags like #zaynyouhavefansinisrael which are kind of amusing until you realize that a lot of Israeli kids are more upset about this tweet than 1,000 people being slaughtered a few miles away.

      Also, Madonna tweeted of facebooked a picture of flowers and said that they were for the children of Gaza...a statement of support a little more discreet than the display she put on in Israel the last time she was there.

  • Israeli embassy puts Mona Lisa in a hijab -- 'Israel now, Paris next'
  • Destruction of Gaza's children is something 'every one of us must confront' -- Jon Snow
    • I think this unrelenting bombardment of defenseless refugees for the past several weeks have changed things forever. It was too public, too long for the usual excuses to seem anything but obscene. There will be fewer people in public and private who will jump to Israel's defense, and the ones who do will be crazy or seem crazy. Israel will be associated with slaughter instead of sandals or hummus from now on.

      And on the Palestinian side, I hope there will be less vague talk about ending the occupation(all of Palestine? half of Palestine?) and more definitive talk about a Palestinian Revolution in Palestine. And I also think the BDS movement is going to finally move out of the Soda Stream stage and start getting people more active in civil disobedience and protest now that passion and awareness is heightened.

  • Survivors of massacre in Khuza'a say Israeli forces used Palestinians as human shields
    • We have all seen grainy black and white images of the Nakba. But I think we are getting an idea of what it was like for the people who lived though it with the images and videos that are coming out now. The differences I see is that it is 500 towns and a year condensed into one city and a week and that the motive in 1948 was to terrorize the civilian population into fleeing while today the motive is not that clear.

  • Fox's Hannity abuses Yousef Munayyer, says he has a 'thick head'
  • Joan Rivers slams CNN and BBC coverage of Gaza -- 'you're all insane'
    • I wish there was some way to take all those facelifts and skin stretches that she had done and turn them into responsible reconstructive surgery for the Palestinian children that were disfigured in this latest massacre. It would probably be enough surgery to fix half the Gaza Strip.

  • Israel's actions 'unjustified' in eyes of women, non-whites, Dems, indy's, and those under 50 -- Gallup
    • Perhaps, but I think there is also an element of the "shared values and interests" we hear that Israel has in common with the US, at least the affluent among us. Look who went to show his support in Israel's time of need: Ol' Stop and Frisk Bloomberg. Although Israel has shown mixed results in actual battles, it has become the go to guy when it comes to controlling large unruly civilian populations. And I think that firmness appeals to many of our suburbanite and yuppie friends-and I think that sentiment is reflected in the poll.

    • The two most interesting numbers in the poll are the 51% disapproval rating among young people and the 49% disapproval rating among non-whites, because those young people are going to be around for a long time and their numbers will be growing, while the older Israel-firsters will be dying off...and America is becoming less and less white and more and more brown and black. Both trends speak to hard times for Israel PR in the future....also I found the fact post-graduate respondents were most approving of the slaughter pretty interesting. Could it be they are smarter and know best? Or could this number speak to the fact that the slaughter is driven by elites who see the Zionist model of crowd control as something that could work here?

  • Jews Say: End the War on Gaza — No Aid to Apartheid Israel!
    • Come on be fair...there is democracy in a way....The Knesset often debates and votes whether the best way to handle the Palestinians is to starve them or bomb them into submission. They usually end up doing everybody wins.

    • Here's a Jewish kid who tried to speak out for Palestinians in Israel. His message was not warmly received, as you will see if you watch about a minute and a half into the video.

  • Berkeley rabbi mounts a soapbox in my living room
    • I saw this essay on The Forward website-and I was going to comment, but I noticed a lot of my comments there are automatically deleted...but what I was going to say that if he thinks the big issue is whether he apologizes or not is not the issue except in his inflated ego. This is not about Rabbi Creditor. This is not about him struggling with his commitment to Israel. This is about stopping a massacre that is being reported as it is going on.( If I am struggling with anything myself, it is the impotence I feel that I am powerless to stop the murders. )And anyway, it's too late for apologies...or too early, maybe after the killing has stopped and some type of justice is restored, an apology and acknowledgement of what Israel has done to Palestine over the years will be helpful...but for crying out loud, how heart felt can an apology be if you are still doing what you are apologizing for?

  • 9 Reasons why Israel is under rocket attack 
    • Also, all non-violent attempts to address Palestinian grievances are ignored, met with brutal suppression, belittled, conflated with terrorism and Nazism, and in the case of negotiations, negotiated to death.

  • It's time for liberal Jewish bodies to take a stand
    • Speaking of liberal Jews, here is a debate from Democracy Now between JJ Goldberg and Ali Abunimah...JJ is glib and his usual witty self, his comment about "the monotony of massacres"(explaining the lack of coverage of the Gaza massacre) was a real knee slapper. Ali wasn't laughing though....just because his country is being destroyed is no reason he can't enjoy a good chuckle.

      link to

  • 'Telegenically Dead': Israel’s crumbling media war
    • There is a subtext to this whole story that the wanton slaughter is overshadowing. It is born out by this graphic:
      link to

      When you don't count the civilians, the actual number of dead soldiers is a lot closer on both sides: 86 to 25. And that is with a virtually unarmed population fighting the fourth largest military on the planet. It may explain why Israel is increasing the body count-to make it seem like more of a victory when they finally are forced to retreat. This incompetence speaks to the fact that Israel has concentrated its efforts on fighting unarmed civilians, and is really unable to fight an organized force.

  • Dear American media, I’m asking you to simply tell what’s happening in Gaza
    • As far as I can tell, the rockets from Gaza amount to little more than a nuisance most of the time. People have to interrupt their shopping spree to spend a few minutes in a shelter, or they have to pull over and get out of their car. Occasionally, the effects of the rockets might reach the level of vandalism when a shed is hit-or even arson, when a building burns down-and then there is the rare "lottery" winner.....but no sane person could equate this with families being incinerated in their sleep, hospitals being shelled, and...oh well, everyone here knows what is happening in Gaza.

  • NBC reverses; Mohyeldin to return to Gaza to cover 'Palestinian side of story'
    • It looks like she has a couple accounts,,,or a mirror account with less followers...Bianca Jagger also is very supportive on her Twitter thing about Twitter: I have been following this attack mostly on Twitter, generally following about a half dozen Gazans at a time to get first hand accounts of what is going on. It is very chilling as they are describing the bombs getting closer as they tweet. When someone stops tweeting for a few hours it brings the reality of this bombardment home because you don't know if the silence is because they are dead.

    • And here is another crack in the silence: (I may have missed this on this site. If I have, then sorry for the redundancy.) The pop star Selena Gomez, with 154,000(presumably young)followers on Twitter has been tweeting out support for Gaza:

      link to

      And of course there has been the usual back and forth about it...

  • To my fellow American Jews
    • Personally, I'm not religious, but I have not been able to participate in any Jewish community activities at all for years-mainly because of the whole Palestinian thing. At its heart, since we are supposed to be a religious community, moral issues should be confronted, especially ones of life and death-but in this case the hard liners cheerlead for the Israeli military...and the "liberals" equivocate and bemoan man's inhumanity to man. And then we learn the proper way to light candles and hear a lecture about how interesting we are. Now I am not talking about all Jews, I am relating my experiences with mainstream religious and community institutions. A lot of Jews who are outside of that scene are very hip to what is really going on.

      Although I do not equate my discomfort at going to a Purim party with a family having their home blown up, these two hashtags are related:



  • Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder says Israel is using our taxes to 'drop bombs on children' and take land
    • On a similar note, the other day while I did a search for Gaza on Twitter to see if bombs were falling-The pop group One Way sent out a "pray for Gaza" tweet. It's kind of sad that such a brief mention of human suffering would seem such a big deal, but maybe it shows the wall of silence is crumbling.

  • Gaza under attack again
    • I just noticed in her bio she is only 16. It didn't even occur to me she is only a girl because she is so focused on what she is reporting. I guess kids grow up fast in Gaza.

    • Here is another good source on Twitter for first hand real time information on what is going on in Gaza. Farah is tweeting as bombs are going off around her house:

      link to

      She is one of several Palestinians who have the presence of mind to report attacks as they happen. It is a little chilling though to not know that if someone I follow isn't active for a day or two, there is a possibility they may have been killed. It brings the whole thing closer to home.

  • Terror in Gaza: 57 seconds after 'warning,' Israel destroys a house
    • I agree it makes no sense that people from all over Palestine, including the town that stood in the present location of Sderot, were forced out of their homes because of their religion. But those angry people locked up in Gaza are the rightful owners of Sderot and the rest of Palestine. So if you talk about the citizens of Sderot truthfully, they are confined on the Gaza Strip.

    • Mahane-
      The true citizens of Sderot are confined on the Gaza Strip.

  • Eyewitness to Israeli beating of teenager Tarek Abu Khdeir: It was 'an ambush'
    • This video pretty much encapsulates 70 years of Palestinian history in three minutes: Someone is standing in his own back yard. Suddenly, he is attacked and has the shit beat out of him by heavily armed soldiers, and then dragged to prison for being a terrorist. The rest is commentary.

  • Three of six accused Israeli murderers said to confess
  • Chomsky and BDS
    • I think there is an element of Chomsky being old and wanting to see some sort of resolution to this issue before he dies-and since there is some sort of framework for a two state solution, he feels that is the most realistic. Personally, I don't feel a two state solution is any more realistic than a single state-and lately I'm thinking a single state solution is actually more realistic. It is certainly more desirable to me, the whole everyone being equal thing appeals to, I'm Jewish, but my whole life doesn't have to be Jew Jew Jew.

      And about BDS, I think it could stand some improvement, but it's really the only game in town and criticism should be directed to make it more effective, not start another movement over from scratch. It is quite an accomplishment that a pro-Palestinian somewhat mainstream movement has been able to coalesce around this concept, and that is something that should be noted by Chomsky et al.

  • Family of Tarek Abu Khdeir calls for his immediate release after brutal beating and arbitrary arrest
    • Walid:
      I don't know if any of the Israeli soldiers involved in the beating have dual U.S./Israeli citizenship, but if they did, could they be sued as an individual? If two Americans are overseas and one beats another senseless, it seems like the victim should have some recourse when they get home. I don't know what the law is-but a trial like this would help educate the public plus it would help the Abu Khdeirs with what is sure to be a very expensive physical and emotional recovery.

    • Citizen:
      Besides winning damages, which admittedly is unlikely, a trial would give publicity to the Palestinian cause-and Israel would be on trial for once. Sometimes trials capture the public interest- like O.J.-if it deals with important issues, is easy to understand, and has a lot of strong personalities. I'm just saying I hope the Abu Khedeirs are considering it.

    • My point is that the boy's status as an American citizen may give him status to take action in an American court, and the court's ruling could have some meaning if any of the soldiers beating him is also an American. (I know a lot of Americans do the Birthright thing and then take some time off to live in Israel and run around Palestinian villages in body armor-until they come home to America and settle down. )I think that there is some law that makes it illegal to harm an American anywhere in the world. Even if the U.S. government doesn't prosecute anyone under that law, the kid's family should be able to sue any American involved and collect damages-I mean, in reality if there was a Birthright alum involved, both he and the boy would essentially be Americans on vacation. If these same two Americans were on a cruise and one pushed another overboard, I would think the family of the victim should be able to sue. So why not in this case?

    • I wonder if any of those soldiers are also Americans, and if so can they be held criminally or civilly responsible because the child is also an American.

  • Photo Essay: Israeli soliders destroy Qawasmeh and Aisha family homes in retribution attack
    • Kristallnacht. That's what I see here. A murder in the context of soul crushing racism that unleashes an organized rampage on an entire undefended population.

      And not even any lip service from Washington to show restraint.

      One other thing: Gaza has often been called a large open air prison. I have called it that myself. But now it is apparent that the people of Gaza...and the West Bank...are not merely prisoners; they are hostages.

  • What evidence is there that teens were abducted?
    • Well we know this much about their mothers, Yonah: They allowed their children to be brainwashed and sent them into hostile territory for their brainwashing by some of the most obnoxious religious fanatics on the planet. And they allowed their kids to hitchhike through this hostile territory.

      I'm glad you mentioned their mothers, Yonah, because whenever I hear about Israeli kids, either in uniform or out, who are captured or killed, I can't help thinking what horrible parents they had to involve their kids in this nationalistic/religious cult that constantly antagonizes its neighbors.

  • I am Palestinian, and I am human, and I am here
    • Sarah-
      Your speaking out about a just but unpopular cause is extremely admirable. It's also admirable that a movement accessible to Americans has coalesced and is now gaining traction.
      The one comment I have is that in America the Palestinian cause seems to be too centered in elite institutions. There is nothing wrong with trying to educate Ivy Leaguers about Palestine, but there is a whole world of people who are denied the opportunity to hear both sides of the story. There are also people who would show solidarity but they don't really have a way. I've talked about this on this site before-that in BDS, the only one an individual can do who is not on the board of directors of some university is participate in the B,which instructs individuals what NOT to do. But what can someone actually DO to show some support?
      One thing I thought of is perhaps on Nakba day, people who sympathize with Palestine should be encouraged to wear a black armband. It would be interesting to see how many ordinary people would be brave enough to make a statement like that.
      That's just one thought, but I think it is time for the BDS movement to have a sister movement that is more geared to action than to saying what actions people shouldn't do. Maybe call it Bumper Stickers, demonstrations, speak up!
      Anyway, thank you once again for having the courage to be part of this historic movement.

  • John Legend derides portrayal of Palestinians as 'demographic challenge' in speech at Penn
    • What a world we live in these days: It takes exceptional bravery to suggest it is wrong to kill children.
      ...but he said it, which is certainly a sign of changing times. I guess if we compare this struggle with the gay rights struggle, this would put us probably at the Matthew Sheppard point-when there was a consensus that it is wrong to kill someone because he is gay. (The First Intifada would be Stonewall, probably.).

  • Peace process: Aaron Miller moves from 'too big to fail' to 'rock and roll will never die'
    • Actually, Donald, Zionists have always have had a lot to feel good about: they settled an uninhabited country, they fought off millions of crazy homicidal Arabs, they invented hummus, plus they have the creative imagination to make all of that up. I think the point of the peace process is to divide the Palestinians, and keep the more compliant ones "tied up in court" for years-actually decades by this time-while illegal settlements are built.

    • If the "peace process" never dies, that means there will never be peace...because if the goal of the process is met, the process won't have a reason to exist. Without realizing it, Miller admitted the truth-the goal of the process is not to finally have real peace, but to go on forever with these endless negotiations and diplomacy.

  • Fiddler on the Nakba
    • Fiddler on the Roof is about as realistic as Ozzie and Harriet was. It's the way a lot of Jews want to think they used to be like because the reality of our own families is a lot more dysfunctional. That's why they take their kids to see it. (I don't mean to single out Jews as wanting to gloss over all sorts of dirt, but this discussion is about Fiddler.).
      At least in my family old style European patriarchs were pretty violent. On both sides of my family it was pretty common for fully set dinner tables to be turned over by pop in a fit of rage. And that's just the public stuff. There are all sorts of things that go on in families that are never spoken of and are forgotten when the people involved all die.
      I guess burying the past is a self preservation technique of the human race, so we don't all end up killing each other. But it is this layer upon layer of myths that make people not know who they really are that make ideologies like Zionism be able to flourish.
      Personally, I felt that Call It Sleep by Henry Roth is a realistic depiction of the European/American Jewish experience. When I read that, I felt as if I was uncovering memories in my bones. The way he described his father-with an angry furrow in his brow reminded me of pictures of my great grandfather as a young man. Tevye didn't remind me of anyone who I actually ever met-although I have encountered many people who sort of adopt his persona sometimes. But it was an entertaining musical-although about 45 minutes too long.

  • Haaretz joins Rush Limbaugh and company in trying to link Max Blumenthal to KC shooter suspect
    • Personally, I am sick of every tragedy like this that involves a Jewish person being shamelessly by "lovers of Israel". Now they are using it to smear Blumenthal as well, blaming him for inspiring this nut. The obvious response to this-at least to me-is if you want to look for Jews who are inspiring anti-Jewish violence, you don't have to look further than the Knesset.

  • Alleged K.C. killer: 'If Jews can have a state of their own, why can't we have a White Christian state?'
    • Studying this guy's political writings makes as much sense as analyzing John Hinckley's film critiques of Jodie Foster. He was no advocate for Palestinians, as his writings indicate that he wishes America was more like Israel. But even that observation does not deny the fact that there was a lifetime of insanity that led up to this crime. Personally, I think the fact that he targeted an older woman and a grandfather and grandson. It reminds me of how the snipers around Washington D.C. targeted happy black families-and it turned out to be two lost souls who were black and felt left out of all the family joy. I believe-and I have read several dust jackets of Freud's works-that he was bitter about left behind in his life because of a screwed up family and that got mixed up with Jews in his psychotic milieu.

  • To reach the 'moveable middle' in Jewish life, you must be inside the tent
    • I would be interested in asking these people if they can point to any specific successes with their strategy of creating change by going along with the flow. I don't see anything coming out of the Israeli side that would indicate they are under some kind of moderate influence.

      I suspect the reason a small number of slightly moderate groups are included in the conference is similar to the reason that a small number of Arabs are allowed to vote in Israel-to give the whole thing the appearance of inclusion and democracy.

  • 'There's a lot of anti-Semitism out there' -- Johansson reviews her role as 'new face of apartheid'
    • Apartheid is an important point of reference, but my point was that it is different way that is actually worse for Palestinians. In South Africa under Apartheid, things were kept as bad as whites could keep them but still have blacks stay and work in the mines. Under Zionism, the goal is to make life absolutely impossible for Palestinians.

    • The use of apartheid as a synonym with modern Israel is used a lot here, but there are some fundamental structural differences. First of all, the Israeli perception of a demographic time bomb wasn't as prevalent in Apartheid South Africa. True, whites severely restricted the rights of blacks, but they accepted that they were the minority. Israel explicit policy is to keep the Palestinian population down through onerous laws and restrictions. This aspect adds an ominous dimension to Palestinian existence. Not only is the Palestinian future being erased, but so is their past. As far as I know, there was no South African policy to erase the fact that blacks had been living there for centuries. Finally, Israel's policy of expansion is taking the form of more or less moving in on top of existing Palestinian communities to the extent that they will eventually have nowhere to live. South African Whites merely wanted their victims out of sight, not out of the country.

  • Journalistic malpractice: Washington Post suggests Abbas doesn't recognize Israel's right to exist
    • Trevor:
      That is an interesting recap of the creation of Israel. When I was growing up, two details were included in that story that you omitted: 1. The Jews begged the Arabs to stay. 2. Despite this, the Arabs insisted on leaving-as if by a miracle-presumably so they wouldn't be in the way while the 843 Arab armies massacred the Jews. Why do you think those details have been quietly dropped from Zionist folktales?

    • So let's see: several hundred uninterested, uninformed people are interrupted at dinner and asked to judge Obama's ability to read Abbas's mind about what he would do if he had the power to confer on Israel the right to exist. And the results are useful in what way?

      First of all, Abbas is President of the PA and in the election that chooses that position, Israel and the United States get 51% of the vote. Abbas will be amiable to the people who installed him in office, or not only will he be removed from the presidency, he very likely will be removed from the planet. If we want to know what the Palestinian people want, we have to listen to the government THEY elected.

      And honestly, I don't know why the Palestinian side always gets sucked into debating Israel this way the conflict is articulated. What does it mean? It sounds like there's a court somewhere deciding whether to drop an atom bomb on Israel.

  • BDS' big night: Loyola student government passes divestment, U. Mich votes it down
    • Well, at least in the time you took to post how useless BDS is, you could have been bulldozing a house or uprooting olive at least some good was accomplished. Furthermore, next time you have a clean shot at kids playing soccer, you may think about BDS and hesitate long enough for him to get away.

      Yep, BDS is young and still finding its legs, so it will take a while to get more effective. I do have a complaint about it though: There doesn't seem to a role for someone who doesn't go to an Ivy League college or who doesn't sit on a board of directors of a big church...Maybe there should be a companion BDS, something like Bumper stickers, demonstrations, and speaking up to give something for people to do who aren't connected to an elite institution.

  • US Jewish leaders blast Harvard students on pro-Israel trip for taking photo at Arafat's tomb (Update)
    • Annie:

      All that may be true, but it is still a racket. I just checked on Wikipedia, and the budget for Birthright Israel is 650 million a year. They send over under 40,000 kids a year. That works out to over $16,000 a vacation. That seems a little pricey, even for Ivy League kids who expect the finest accommodations.

      Charity scams are nothing new-even if it is billionaires who are being soaked....although is this case, terms like "charity" and "philanthropist" don't seem appropriate...I mean, after all it is billionaires paying for vacations for kids of millionaires for the most part.

    • My first impression of the picture was more like they were posing with a trophy, not paying their respects. Maybe I've been reading these blogs too long...or maybe all the grinning faces threw me.

      I think this whole thing is a turf war in the aliyah racket, as in this new outfit is moving into Birthright Israel's territory so there has to be some kind of controversy to say they are soft on the Arabs. There is only a limited number of super rich fanatical Zionists who are willing to bankroll these trips, so competition has got to be pretty tight. And I wonder how much money was raised to send these fifty kids to Israel. I don't know, but I suspect a lot more than the cost of air flight and hotel rooms. There has got to be a lot of cash and nice salaries floating around.

      And the whole thing is a farce anyway. These kids don't need charity to go to Israel. They're Harvard students, for crying out loud! They're loaded! If they were true blue Zionists, they wouldn't want to study books in the Ivy League. What kind of new Jew is that? They would have quit school, picked up a shovel and start digging irrigation ditches in Israel!

  • Slim Peace’s slim chances for justice
    • Hophni:

      The people here as well as BDS are into dialogue. You just don't like what they have to say. You would rather the dialogue be about losing weight. They want to talk about the occupation and the refugees. But don't worry, I believe once the odious system of separation, discrimination, and exclusion is replaced with a modern democratic state, Palestinians will be willing to share all their diet tips in a nice friendly shmooze.

    • Who wouldn't want two enemies to come together and talk about common human problems everyone shares? But with the Palestinian hunger strikers in Israeli prisons, along with the "put Gaza on a diet" comment the author mentions, this whole thing seems like a sick Hermann Goering getting weight loss tips from Anne Frank.

      It's perfectly fine if some Arabs and Jews want to get together and lose weight, but please don't try to make it a substitute for a real solution to the occupation and refugee problems. The naive idealist propose that once they talk about losing weight, then they will talk about the important issues. But they don't realize the Israelis and Palestinians have been talking for years. The Israelis usually say something like: We are bulldozing your home today. You have ten minutes to get some things and leave. And the Palestinians say something like: We aren't going far and we intend to come back.

  • Johansson got career boost from 'comic farrago' over SodaStream -- 'New Yorker'
    • I'm not sure if it is me who talks "to" little with real people, but I think you were trying to insult someone. Perhaps it is your experience with advanced academia that makes you incapable of expressing a simple idea-an interesting autobiographical tidbit to include in the context of accusing someone of trying to impress people.

      As to your suggestion that anyone should rehearse a comment on a blog, there is already far too many rehearsed comments and prepared statements. There should be somewhere where people can write off the cuff how they are feeling or what they think about what's going on in the world. The comment section of a blog is a good forum as any.

    • Citizen:
      I don't think you give Scarlett enough credit. Someone has to be very focused and very smart to know how to avoid learning about the Israeli occupation of Palestine. You have to know which Palestinians to talk to-because the overwhelming majority do not aspire to work at an Israeli seltzer bottle factory on land that was stolen from them. You have to know which scholars not to talk to, and which websites not to visit. You have to not to give in to the temptation to google certain words, such as Palestine, West Bank, etc. Crooked politicians call this "plausible deniability"-like how Governor Christie of New Jersey's staff was punishing towns whose mayors did not endorse him, and it was supposedly done without his knowledge....
      It is really our job to put the history and facts about Zionism and Palestine out in the open as much as possible, so people like Scarlett do not have plausible deniability.

    • If Scarlett finds resistance to occupation "comic", the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising probably had her rolling in the aisles laughing.

      I guess time will tell if Palestine becomes a popular cause. (And if you think that is impossible, I have two words to say to you: gay marriage.) If it does, then Scarlett's career will indeed suffer.

      Anyway, at least I learned a new word today: farrago. So it wasn't a total waste of time.

  • 'Forward' lives up to its name, bashing denial of Palestinian narrative and donors' control of Hillel
    • I was looking for a chance to post this link to the Forward in a thread where it would have some relevance. This is a video of a settler who climbs onto a Palestinian's roof in Hebron to take down a Palestinian flag-and he got stuck in the barbed wire the Israelis put up...and he needs the Palestinian homeowner to free him. It's quite an enjoyable video...and fairly allegorical to the situation Zionists are in now...tangled up in their own barbed wire.

      link to

      There may be hope for the Forward after all. Emily Hauser, who reported the incident represents the real peace movement among Jews far better than IDF sniper JJ Goldberg.

  • Johansson sees greater wrong in Oxfam than Israeli settlement
    • I don't agree with the people here who say that Johansson is not smart. I have dealt with many people who are very intelligent but work to maintain a willful ignorance on this subject. Take, for instance, where she says:

      Until someone has a solution to the closing of that factory to leaving all those people destitute, that doesn’t seem like the solution to the problem.”

      All she would have to do would be to Google "Palestine" to see there are other ways to cure the destitution of the Palestinians. allowing the right of return with compensation. There are other solutions to their plight besides making seltzer bottles for Israel. Someone has to have some brains to be so involved with the West Bank and know how not to be confronted with that fact.

      Part of her brand is being a role model for young liberals. This episode is damaging her brand, It will discourage similar celebrities from being so publicly identified with Israel. In that way, it can be counted as a win for BDS. My one comment is that so much attention has been paid to Oxfam that the Palestinians are getting lost in the shuffle. They are her real adversary...after all, she is cashing in on resources that were stolen from them.

  • Does Israel Have a Right to Exist as a Jewish State?: An excerpt from Ali Abunimah's 'The Battle for Justice in Palestine'
    • Reading this analysis, I can't decide if the Palestinians' is a civil rights struggle or a national liberation struggle...or in other words, whether the one who will solve the problem will be a Martin Luther King or a Ho Chi Minh. Having grown up in late 20th Century America, and being influenced by what was happening, I lean toward Martin. But the Palestinians, who have had a different perspective.

  • A War on Campus: 'Democracy Now' covers the Northeastern SJP suspension (Updated)
    • Dersh forgot to mention Jewish collaborators, such as the Jewish Councils, Ghetto Police, and others. I guess when he considers the implications of that-using his logic-his hair catches on fire.

    • In that case, yonah, you must find Zionism's obsession with Jewishness absolutely confounding

  • Anti-Defamation League exploits fear of Muslims to undermine anti-gay bill
    • It's amazing how short people's memories are. I grew up in a Jewish suburb of Philadelphia in the 1970s and I can tell you if there was a rumor that someone was gay, his life was hell. Really, you could say anything or do anything to him. I remember a popular pretty mean girl challenged this effeminate kid to a fight and the whole school showed up to watch it. Of course, no one told any teacher. The pretty girl kept slapping the effeminate kid and he couldn't do anything or he would really get beat up...then there was a game called Smear the Queer...and the best a gay kid could hope for if his secret got out would be that it would be a big tragedy. It's just so slimy that they are picking gays as the big humanitarian issue to champion forty years after the fact. How about championing people who no one pays attention Palestinians?

  • Gov. Jerry Brown brags on signing historic agreement with Netanyahu in Silicon Valley
    • The label "progressive" sneaked back into political discourse a few years ago, and there is no clear definition of its principles. As far as I can tell, it's a euphemism for right off, there is a little deception-not a very good start. And the reason the label "liberal" fell out of favor, despite its humanitarian rhetoric, is that its practical program is: We will keep all the power and wealth...if you defy us here or abroad, we will crush you economically or militarily. However, we aren't selfish people, and we will share a few things we don't want, as long as we aren't inconvenienced in any way and can make a profit...and for that we heartily congradulate ourselves over and over and over again.
      So why the shock that a progressive politician isn't worrying about Palestinians?

  • Thought experiment. Dateline Ukraine
    • But to what end, sir or madam, to what end? Those types of historical explanations never make sense to me. I call it the "no soap, radio" school of history because everyone pretends to understand but no one does. Were the Western powers sympathetic to the Ottoman Sultan or was it more of a scenario like one hyena(Russia) trying to keep a mortally wounded wilderbeast(Ottoman Empire) from other hyenas(European Alliance) so he could have a big meal all for himself? And of course, the other hyenas were not interested in the well being of the wilderbeast, but wanted a dinner for themselves. And lo and behold, even as we speak, hyenas are still fighting over the leftovers.

    • I think something like this happened in the 1850s with the Crimean War. Europe saw the Ukraine as a vulnarable part of the Russian Empire and the Russians disagreed. I don't really understand that war, except as a clash of empires under the pretext of religious rights and other noble causes.

  • Jewish day school student first learned about 'occupation' when he got to college
    • Yonah-
      The young lady was not in a flood, or an inferno for that matter. She went to Hebrew Day School-not the most pleasurable experience, to be sure-but one that led to her "love" was a result of indoctrination-not being rescued from a traumatic experience.

      And to answer your question-in that scenario you present-Yes, the love for the boat would be a fetish-and that wouldn't be a problem-unless the boat belonged to someone else and you wouldn't return it.

    • I think you can a love a city, land, or country, particularly if you have cherished memories with loved ones that happenned there. However, in this context, when her love for the country comes via ideological indoctrination, I have to wonder how much of the love is for the ideology. And I am sure she made good friends who she loves, but if the friendship is based on adhering to the ideology, how much of a real friendship is it? It's like having a drinking buddy, and when you stop drinking, you may discover all you had in common was booze.

  • Jewish community commits intellectual suicide before our eyes
    • yonah-
      If that is how you ignore someone's comment, I wonder how you respond when you have something to say. When discussing the Christian narrative, it usually is stipulated that the New Testament is generally accurate-because it is the only version of the events described-no writings from Jesus-apparently he was illiterate-no records from the Romans-not even a tweet from the crucifiction. But within that context, it should be remembered that besides the Roman occupiers, everyone in the story is Jewish: the working people, the lepers, the prostitutes, the good guys, the bad guys....So it can't really be called anti Jewish. The goyem really like this story, which speaks to the universality of the themes expressed...truth versus power, greed versus charity, etc., good guys being punished, need for foregiveness.

    • yonah-
      Thank you for your reply to my comment. Now take a deep breath and go back and read what I wrote. I didn't say that all Jewish intellectuals who made a large impact were crucified or excommunicated. I wrote that for most, the continuum of their association to the Jewish establishment generally ranged from minimal involvement to outright conflict. Certainly, if a quote here or a fundraising letter there can be dug up from a Freud or an Einstein, the main body of their work has nothing to do with Jewishness or the Jewish community, except for Jesus, whose interpretation of the Bible was at odds with the establishment...and look where it got him. I would also postulate that if a Freud of an Einstein was totally intellectually loyal to the establishment, their breakthroughs never would have happened. And after they die, the establishment claims them as great Jews.

    • Who knows Phil, maybe in a hundred years the Jewish establishment will claim you, and your work will be held up as an example of Jewish humanitarianism.

    • I think you fail to make a distinction between the organized Jewish establishment and Jewish intellectuals....or more accurately, intellectuals who happen to be Jewish. Many in the Jewish establishment point to such giants as Einstein, Freud, Jesus, Spinoza, and others as examples of Jewish intellect...but all of these, as well as many others in the arts and academia were disowned by the Jewish establishment, were in conflict with the Jewish establishment, or at the very least could hardly be called active members of the Jewish community. Of course, after their dead and their accomplishments are embraced by the world, then they become retroactive Superjews. So if the sensibilities of rich donors influence the intellectual discussion in the Jewish community, it is nothing new...or unique to this particular group.

  • Scarlett Johansson's 'scholarship' and 'intelligence' cited by Mike Huckabee
    • I wonder what the governor would have to say about Scarlett's scholarship on other rights. for instance.

      ...but I would say this endorsement could be considered a small victory for BDS because it helps to define the Israel/Palestine conflict in a light that would not be Zionist-friendly to the type of person who would buy yuppie seltzer. They would prefer the vision of Israel as a secular, modern, progressive state, not one championed by a far right wing windbag.

  • 10,000 Israeli teens follow mother-hen of extremist settler movement in anti-Kerry protest
    • I wonder how Texans would react if 10,000 Mexican teenagers marched into Texas and claimed it as their homeland. So many people have guns down there that all the teenagers would be shot before the Army had a chance to do it. ..and the TExans would be considered heroes....But I know the situation is different in the Mideast....I just don't remember why.

  • At Sochi Olympics, Israel is in... Europe!
    • Sir or Madam:
      I assure you I do not hate Europe or any other land mass. First, to respond to the history lesson you generously shared with me, true, Europeans did not create the institutions I mentioned-which is true of much else they are given credit for. However, they did carry out plans of imperialism and exploitation to a degree that ancient emporers could not even imagine. And they did so using cruelty andgunpowder, justifying it with twin ideologies of racism and religion.

      But it is true that genocide and enslavement have occured without European involvement, but my comment was made in the context of Israel wanting to maintain the status of being a European country. If they wanted to claim they were an Ausralian country, my speculation about their reasoning would be different.

    • Why shouldn't Israel be considered European? After all, "Europe" is an ideology(of racism and world domination)-it certainly isn't a continent. Anyone who looks at a map sees that it is an Asian peninsula. The barbarian hordes that raped and pillaged their way through Europe were eventually able to establish kingdoms and dominate the world through ruthlessness, the creativity of their sadism, and later, gunpowder. Their status as a continent is really the most benign result of their rise to power. Look at everything they have shared with mankind: imperialism, racism, exploitation, and more!. At least they learned that taking a bath wouldn't kill them(which they did for centuries).

      ...anyhow, Zionism is one of the most European ideologies I can think of. So why not?

  • France to perform CPR on Scarlett Johansson's image -- award for film career!
    • Just:
      The choice isn't between begging celebrities to notice people suffering or doing nothing. And right now BDS is pretty much doing nothing. Its whole focus is what not to do-with no way to express support.

    • I don't know how much depends-or should depend- on the whims-or more likely, career calculations-of some high priced actress Hollywood actress, even if she has a humanitarian image. Even if this whole chapter damages her brand, there are several dots to connect before it has any positive effect on the lives of Palestinians. Other stars will probably avoid the whole Palestinian issue quietly rather than make a stand for Palestians-unless the paycheck is fat enough. And if there is a silent boycott of A list celebrities in Israel, how will that help Palestians. I see a similar flaw in much of the BDS project-there are a lot of things we aren't supposed to do, but how is not buying Sabra hummus sending a clear message? There's a lot of reasons why someone wouldn't buy Sabra hummus.

  • (Updated) Senator Chuck Schumer promises more Iran sanctions, vows to 'defeat' Arab world and Palestinians
    • "The one existential threat to Israel’s existence is a nuclear Iran.”

      I think Strunk and White would have a fit if they saw this quote. The word " existential" is redundant and unnesseray. Israel supporters like to use that word a lot I notice, probably because they think it makes them sound smart. I guess it works though, because they keep inserting it wherever they can.

  • 'Quietly, with no fanfare,' Israeli army delivers Philippine baby alongside NBC's Dr. Snyderman
    • If Israelis want that good feeling, they don't have to wait for a typhoon-the Gaza Strip is right there and there are boatloads of good deeds they can do for people in need.

  • Max Blumenthal responds to latest critique of his book, in the 'Forward'
    • It bugs me the way Goldberg positions himself as some kind of Bohemian intellectual in the Forward with his cheap suits, sporting a goatee in his column picture, essays on popular music, and the inclusion in his biography that he once drove a cab in New York-as if it gives him "street cred." But for all his intellectual pretensions, he never questions Zionism-and ridicules and belittles anyone who does. He sort of reminds me of a Jewish intellectual version of a Christian Heavy Metal band-an imitation of his opposite in order to trick people into following an ideology.

      And I find it distasteful that during his youthful search for himself he moved across the world to become a sniper, shooting at the native population. The whole image brings to mind the 19th Century European colonialists who shot Africans for sport. I guess that is why he is afraid to really address Zionism-because in all liklihood, he has crossed the moral Rubicon in his role as sniper, and killed a man to serve his ideology.

  • Pat Boone sells tiny plots of Israeli land to Christian Zionists
  • Natalie Portman and Woody Allen see anti-Semitism as pervasive
    • I actually see things completely opposite as Woody-I believe unqualified support for Israel is a cover for anti-Semitism. You take all the stereotypes about Jews being clannish, ruthless, devious, etc.-accept them-then turn it into something positive. The attitude is that it is better to have such a cunning race on your side since you can't beat them. That is why when I hear an Evangelical say how much he loves the Jewish people and loves Israel I am a bit dubious.

      On the other hand, while people like David Duke suddenly have loads of compassion for Arabs because of Israel, I take it as a sign of respect when someone is willing to speak honestly about Zionism.

  • Hillel director slams Birthright for refusing students' requests to meet Palestinians and see checkpoints
    • I don't see why if these students want to meet Palestinians they need to have the visit arranged by Birthright Israel and have someone there to hold their hand. I'm sure there are many Palestinians who would love to share their stories with potential Israeli immigrants...And these students who spoke up are the most couragous and clear thining of the crew. Most of these kids don't give a thought about Palestinians except as a security risk.

  • Jews without Israel
    • Maybe you should look up "wandering Jew". Whatever you call people who have Jewish parents or grandparents and don't participate in any Jewish activities, I think there's a lot more of us than those who have following Jewish traditions as a big priority in their life. I don't even know how a poll could measure a trend like this. But where are all these wandering Jews? Well, forget about that recovery rhetoric. Start with Jews For Jesus, then maybe the Communist Party, then try your locar ashram or punk rock show, basically anywhere. Although Phil and AIPAC disagree on much, they seem to agree that you don't count as a Jew if you don't belong to some organization with Jewish in the title and make a point of announcing you're Jewish at least 43 times a day.

    • Religion-not just Judaism - seems to be about money and power. And it seems to attract more than its share of perverts, especially for such a godly institution. And when it gets down to the actual practices, they usually seem either pointless or ridiculous to me, unless things get scary...but every once in a while I think I must be missing something, and I look into Judaism, which is where my roots are-sort of-it just seems too close to Zionism for me. For instance, when the internet first came out, I looked up the Kaballah and I found a site that explained it in easy to understand terms, and I could see why Madonna was so enthralled by it. Then I looked to see who published the web site-and it was a settler group from Hebron. And I thought to myself, no matter how interesting the insights the Kaballah might be to read, these settlers do nothing but study it and they act like a--holes. And on, they had this app to find a New Year service close to where you live-and when I looked to see who put it up there, it was Birthright Israel. I don't like the feeling I'm being tricked into supporting a political ideology I disagree with by doing a benign activity like attending synagogue.

  • John Kerry invokes apocalyptic 'domino theory' in call with House Democrats
    • First of all, if we attack, probably ten times the ammount of people will end up dying than if stay out. And if our attack was successfull, we would just install our own dictator and the Syrian people will be where they were when this whole uprising started.

      Second of all-and I'm surprised it hasn't been mentioned more often-can we afford another war? I mean, can the country literally survive one? Twelve years of war, and a half century of global conquest has really depleted this country financially and morally. Even though lately the wars have been kept largely out of sight, the effects on the country cannot be ignored-from the huge cost, the dead and wounded soldiers, the corruption to the political process in order to keep the wars and hostile involvement in other countries going-as well as the corruption of the media to the economic and social problems that are being ignored because of the focu$ of the government on world domination. Another quagmire could mean big trouble for us.

      And it will only be a short involvement if they don't respond.

  • Israel's dancing soldiers
    • Judging from the exagerated enthusiasm of the Palestinians and the awkwardness of the soldiers, my opinion is that when the soldiers came in the club the Palestinians dealt with it by being extra gregarious to put the soldiers off their gaurd a little-and the soldiers got swept up in the moment. The sad fact is that because of the underlying relationship of the people involved, if someone made a wrong move the whole thing could have ended tragically.

    • I got a kick out of the video also, but something didn't seem quite right about it. Maybe it was the gun or that the soldier seemed a little stiff. And the Palestinians seemed too happy that he was dancing with them. Was it a case of people reaching out to people or was it bored teenagers with a lot of power crashing a party? This comment on the video by a former IDF soldier may add a different perspective on the video:
      link to

  • Alice Walker reinvited to speak at U of Michigan, which regrets her dis-invitation
    • I think in one way this episode can be considered a victory for the Palestinian cause-it not only shines some public light on their plight-it also exposes the bullying and intimidating tactics used against anyone who speaks up. The disrespect shown to one of the most respected African American women authors will not be soon forgotten. She earned this respect through producing an incredible body of work and it cannot be erased because she refuses to close her eyes to the suffering of her fellow human beings.

  • Reaching the age of entitlement
    • I am as responsible for this obnoxious display of wealth as an East End scullery maid is as responsible for the ostentatious royal weddings everytime one of the royal dysfunctionals find someone suitable to mate with. I couldn't even get within shouting distance of that bar mitzvah before I was stopped by security guards. And unless you have some secret stash of millions of dollars, the same thing applies to you too, Phil. And that's all very fine with me-I can't stand bar mitzvahs-the ceremony or reception. Even humble ones.

  • (Updated) For calling Israeli speaker a war criminal, Boca Raton school forces 3 students to take 'reeducation' program from Zionist org
    • At least you only had to attend one workshop-most Jewish kids have to endure years and years of that crap. It's pretty annoying, isn't it? At least you didn't have to have a bar mitzvah.

  • Israeli liberals call for federation of two equal peoples
    • ...or else they could start a state with 10 million equal people. Of course, some effort would have to be made to mitigate the fact that half of those people were robbed of everything by the other half. And there would be some psychological adjusting while former enemies are forced to mix on a daily basis-but it's better than the endless fighting and cruelty.

  • A solution to the conflict won't come from the Israeli Jewish public
  • Jews are smarter, and funnier too
    • There are a lot of Jewish comedians. I think part of the reason is tangental to the centuries of being peddlers in Europe. If you were dragging a cart of rags from town to town trying to sell them, being able to make people laugh with a few jokes would help with sales...and survival. Eventually, the humorous banter became a tradition to itself and some Jews didn't need to even have rags to sell if they were funny enough.

  • Video: Israeli soldier suffering 'flashbacks' brutally attacked Palestinian workers near settlement
    • The two month sentence speaks to Israel's enlightenment and humanity, taking the soldier's PTSD into account and tempering justice with mercy during his sentencing. I just wonder if that enlightenment will be evident if one of the victims of his rampage has his own battle with PTSD and throws a stone at a car sometime in the future. Or does PTSD only effect those who commit attrocities, and not their victims?

  • Jewish success-- is it ever a story?
    • Phil-Thank you for reading my comment and taking time to reply. I'm not really sure what a materialist is in this context, and I'm not trying to talk past you. First of all, at this point I am not sure who is even considered a Jew anymore. There are family members who I am not sure if they are officially Jewish or not. I don't even know if I am considered officially Jewish. I don't think I have any papers. They probably got lost over the years. So first of all I don't know who you are considering to be a member of this very influential group.
      Also, you imply that the only Jewish people who count are the ones who live a statistically typical existence. This absolutely typical Jew is as mythical as the typical suburban family with 2.5 children. And anyway, it's not the typical people that really matter-it's what's going on around the edges where change is first noticeable.
      Finally, there is a lot that the statistics you rely on for your argument leave out. Jews may not be quite so remarkable as some of us think. While Jewish income may be marginally higher on average while compared with the national average, it would be interesting to see what happens to that margin if only other white people were included in the sample. Also wouldn't the few extremely successful Jews bring up the general income average for the mass of Jewish wage earners, thus skewing the numbers higher. Finally, many ethnic groups have followed a similar path-start poor, work your way up, then try to balance a liberal viewpoint with being invested in the system.

    • I have issues with Lawrence Summers, Ben Bernake and some of the others you mention not because they are Jewish but because they help perprtrate a system where so many live in poverty and so many others are struggling to stay out of poverty. Most of the people you mention are really paid functionaries, front men, or propagandists for the very rich. And some of the very rich are also Jewish, Phil may note also. But a lot more aren't. And to pick a few extremely successful people and say they are typical of all Jews is just as silly as saying Einstein had the typical intellegence of a Jew. This ethnocentricism is really a distraction and in bad taste. It would be like if a UN reporter started writing about the breast size of the female diplomats-it has nothing to do with anything important.

  • Kagan went hunting, and assimilating
    • Being Jewish isn't the determining factor on why every Jewish person does everything. Although I've never hunted, there were a lot of things-some stupid-I did as a young man, not so much to break out of Jewishness, but to break out of childhood. Kagan is screwing around with guns for the same reason that Clinton did(remember the photo op of him duck hunting)-to make their political decisions about guns more acceptable to gun hobbyists.

  • Why so shy, Lieutenant T?
    • They used to make Golda Meir type statements about how much they hate being forced to kill their they don't even pay that type of rhetoric lip service. These guys are nothing but happy to be dropping bombs on people. My one question is: We know how Lt. R learned he enjoyed heights and adventure-carving up the slopes on snowboard...but when did he discover he enjoyed killing people?

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