Commenter Profile

Total number of comments: 2332 (since 2010-09-16 16:15:33)

jon s

An Israeli history teacher,long-time activist on the Israeli Left.

Showing comments 2332 - 2301

  • Charlottesville is moment of truth for empowered U.S. Zionists (who name their children after Israeli generals)
  • On Charlottesville and Jewish memory
    • Herzl in his utopian novel Altneuland envisions a state which is liberal and secular. From the plot:
      Löwenberg and Kingscourt spend the following twenty years on the island, cut off from civilization. As they stop over in Palestine on their way back to Europe in 1923, they are astonished to discover a land drastically transformed. A Jewish state officially named the "New Society" has since risen as European Jews have rediscovered and re-inhabited their Altneuland, reclaiming their own destiny in the Land of Israel. The country, whose leaders include some old acquaintances from Vienna, is now prosperous and well-populated, boasts a thriving cooperative industry based on state-of-the-art technology, and is home to a free, just, and cosmopolitan modernsociety. Arabs have full equal rights with Jews, with an Arab engineer among the New Society's leaders, and most merchants in the country are Armenians, Greeks, and members of other ethnic groups. The duo arrives at the time of a general election campaign, during which a fanatical rabbi establishes a political platform arguing that the country belongs exclusively to Jews and demands non-Jewish citizens be stripped of their voting rights, but is ultimately defeated.

      Ben Gurion:
      WE APPEAL - in the very midst of the onslaught launched against us now for months - to the Arab inhabitants of the State of Israel to preserve peace and participate in the upbuilding of the State on the basis of full and equal citizenship and due representation in all its provisional and permanent institutions.(from the Declaration of Independence. BG wrote the final draft)

      We do not wish, we do not need to expel the Arabs and take their place. All our aspirations are built upon the assumption — proven throughout all our activity in the Land — that there is enough room in the country for ourselves and the Arabs.(from a letter to his son Amos, 1937)

      In our state there will be non-Jews as well — and all of them will be equal citizens; equal in everything without any exception; that is: the state will be their state as well. ...The attitude of the Jewish State to its Arab citizens will be an important factor—though not the only one—in building good neighbourly relations with the Arab States. If the Arab citizen will feel at home in our state, and if his status will not be the least different from that of the Jew, and perhaps better than the status of the Arab in an Arab state, and if the state will help him in a truthful and dedicated way to reach the economic, social, and cultural level of the Jewish community, then Arab distrust will accordingly subside and a bridge to a Semitic, Jewish-Arab alliance, will be built... (Ba-Ma'Araha Vol IV, Part 2, pp. 260, 265, quoted in Fabricating Israeli History, Efraim Karsh, p.67)

      Jabotinsky :

    • It wouldn't be difficult to provide numerous quotes by Zionist leaders expressing the desire to live in peace with the Palestinian Arab population.
      Indeed all the major "classical" mainstream Zionist leaders and thinkers such as Herzl, Weizmann, BenGurion and Jabotinsky - all of them expressed the intention to live in peaceful coexistence with the Arab population.
      As I've pointed out the quote from Herzl has nothing to do with Palestine and the Palestinians.

  • Racial supremacy and the Zionist exception
  • Chomsky still believes in the old Israel. I did too, once upon a time
    • emory riddle,
      That's a falsified quote. Actually Ben Gurion wrote the opposite: We do not want to and do not need to expel...

    • Elizabeth Block,
      Sodastream should be commended for pulling out of the WB and relocating in the Negev. Their facility is in Rahat, a Bedouin town (not far from where I'm writing this), so they have not "stolen" Bedouin land.
      I've got an idea: ask the good men and women of Rahat if they would want Sodastream to close their Rahat facility. Ask them, ask their elected leaders, take a poll. Tell them that you're boycotting Sodastream for moving to Rahat, see what they have to say.

    • Of course I'm aware of the expulsion from Lod and Ramle in 1948, as is anyone who knows a bit about the War of Independence /Nakba. I think that Ari Shavit has written about it recently.
      My point was -and maybe I should have elaborated in my earlier question/comment- that Ben Gurion never ordered the expulsion of "the Arabs" per se, all of them. There were places where expulsions occured ,other places where the Palestinian population fled the war without being expelled. There was no premeditated "master plan " of total ethnic cleansing. And even where expulsions occured, including Lod and Ramle, part of the population remained .
      There WAS a decision not to allow those who had departed, under any circumstances ,to return to their former homes. That was the crucial decision, in my opinion.

    • Rob roy,
      Where and when did Ben Gurion say "expel them"?

  • Israel would use nuclear weapons to keep refugees from returning -- Noam Chomsky
    • I'll leave it to the intelligent readers of Mondoweiss to determine whether the segment posted by Yonifalic contains the content he claims it to.

    • Annie,
      Sorry for not responding sooner, our Beersheva team was playing in the Champions League tonight...
      On topic: First of all novels and movies are not held to the same standards of historical accuracy as a professional history book or essay. You can't expect a feature film to cover all sides and all aspects of an historical event.
      Secondly, I agree with Prof. Shenhav:
      "In contrast, Jews from Arab lands came to this country under the initiative of the State of Israel and Jewish organizations. Some came of their own free will; others arrived against their will. Some lived comfortably and securely in Arab lands; others suffered from fear and oppression.
      The history of the “Mizrahi aliyah” (immigration to Israel) is complex, and cannot be subsumed within a facile explanation..."

    • Here's an English translation of the segment that Yonifalic copied. Does it contain what he says it does?

      Rav Judah stated in the name of Shmuel: Just as it is forbidden to leave the Land of Israel for Babylon so it is forbidden to leave Babylon for other countries. Rabbah and R. Joseph both said: Even from Pumbeditha to Be Kubi.
      A man once moved from Pumbedita to Be Kubi and R. Joseph placed him under the ban.
      A man once moved from Pumbedita to Astunia and he died. Abaye said: “If this young scholar wanted, he would still be alive.”

      Rav Judah said: Whoever lives in Babylonia it is as if he lived in the Land of Israel; for it is said, “Ho, Zion, escape, you who dwell with the daughter of Babylon” (Zechariah 2:11).
      Abaye stated: We have a tradition that Babylonia will not witness the birth pangs of the Messiah. He [also] explained it to refer to Huzal in Benjamin and they called it the Horn of Salvation.

    • I recommend the film mentioned in Annie's comment, "The Dove Flyer", based on the book by Eli Amir:

    • An anecdote that I heard about (not something that I have a source for at the ready...):

      Iraqi Jewish Communists were dragged from their prison cells, directly to the planes taking the Jews away. In effect they were expelled to Israel. (in Israel they joined the local Communist Party).

    • Annie,
      The point is that Nuri Said was PM at the time, and that was the policy he was pursuing, getting rid of the Jews.

    • Annie,
      Let's assume, just for the sake of the discussion ,that the synagogue bombings in Iraq were carried out by Zionist agents. In that case, why didn't the Iraqi government take steps to calm the Jewish community, to reassure the Jews that they were welcome to remain, as Iraqi citizens?

      That didn't happen because the the Iraqi authorities were busy kicking the Jews out.

      Since this issue has come up before, I'll recycle a previous comment of mine:
      The historical fact is that the Iraqi regime took steps to make life in Iraq impossible for the Jewish community: they were dismissed from the civil service , boycotted economically, bank accounts were frozen , access to public facilities, including schools and hospitals – denied. Then the regime declared that the Jews could leave, within a one – year deadline, while relinquishing their property. In this situation the Jews scarcely needed “encouragement” (in the form of bombings ) to leave. It was pretty clear that they had to, before the door would slam shut.

      Looking up Nuri al-Said in wikipedia:
      “Nuri al-Said, the Iraqi prime minister, was determined to drive the Jews out of his country as quickly as possible,[8][9] and on August 21, 1950 he threatened to revoke the license of the company transporting the Jewish exodus if it did not fulfill its daily quota of 500 Jews. On September 18, 1950, Nuri al-Said summoned a representative of the Jewish community and claimed Israel was behind the emigration delay, threatening to “take them to the borders” and forcibly expel the Jews[10]

    • amigo,
      Don't worry, I'm still firmly on the Left. I haven't changed my fundamental positions, though I may now realize better -thanks in part to MW- what those of committed to Israeli-Palestinian peace are up against.
      Once again, I don't live in an "illegal squat". I live in a perfectly legal, normal, apartment, still paying the mortgage. You're invited to visit, see the "squat".
      If you're also motivated by hatred -well,what can I say, that's unfortunate.
      As to why I keep returning to Yonifalic, you may have a point. Maybe I shouldn't bother.

    • Hate is a recurring theme in Yonifalic's comments.
      One example: "There are not words for me to describe how much I hate Rabbinic Judaism as a religion even if I find it interesting as an historical phenomenon." Does anyone really think that he hates Judaism but doesn't hate the Jews?
      And blaming the Jews themselves for being persecuted and expelled and for the Holocaust, like any good Anti-Semite...
      Accusing me of libel, after writing that I'm "like Hitler".

      I must say that by now I find this whole topic , discussing Yonifalic, what he means and why he's tolerated on Mondoweiss, extremely distasteful.

    • amigo,
      Thanks . As I said it's good to know that the Jewish community is thriving. Do you have anything more up-to-date than a link from 2007? and are those who so wish free to leave?

      As to the Iranian regime's attitude towards Israel, it seems to me that the slogan "Death to Israel" is pretty clear.

    • Keith,
      I don't have to "claim" that Yonifalic is a Jew-hater, he's said so himself numerous times. Search his archive for "hate".
      And while you're at it, see how he'll always blame the Jews . Not only for the expulsion and for the Farhud. He blames them for the Holocaust, calls it "blowback". Enough said.

    • Just to point out that the Arab side, all the Arab states REJECTED resolution 194 and voted against it in 1948.

    • 1. It's good to know that the Jewish community in Iran is "thriving". One question: are they free to leave?

      2. The Jews in the Arab countries did not immigrate because of "Zionist false flag attacks". They were compelled to leave because the authorities were implementing anti-Jewish policies, making it virtually impossible for the Jews to remain (as in Iraq) , combined with murderous mob violence. In addition, many Jews were, simply, Zionists. They wanted to live in a Jewish state, in the Jewish historic homeland.

    • Leave it to the Jew-hater and self-confessed war criminal Yonifalic to once again blame the victims: The Jews are to blame for their expulsion from England , for the Farhud in name it...

  • Palestinian-American denied entry to West Bank for summer skateboard program
  • New poll shows 2/3 of Jewish Israelis want death penalty for Palestinian attackers
    • This is huge news.
      Over the last couple of weeks Netanyahu has made a series of incredibly foolish decisions, even from the point of view of his own ideology and agenda, leading to speculations that he's distracted by the various investigations closing in.
      Now Ari Harow is turning state's witness, a guy who supposedly knows "everything" about Netanyahu's financial affairs.

  • As Israeli soldiers crushed Gaza, world Jewry united, and sent Ben & Jerry's ice cream to the front
    • Annie,
      I was just looking for some logic and consistency where there apparently isn't any.

    • Talkback,
      Asolutely, that's what I meant . Just like there's Google Israel, CocaCola Israel, Intel Israel , McDonald's Israel, etc.
      Or another example, Microsoft:

      They all do business here. What's so special about Ben&Jerry's?

    • Annie,
      "Ahava" products come from a West Bank settlement , Ben& Jerry's facility is in Kiryat Malakhi, inside the Green Line ( I go by there quite often). So boycotting B&J isn't "impressive", in my opinion, it just doesn't make sense.

    • talkback,
      As I said I'm puzzled by what makes Ben & Jerry's special. They sell ice cream to the settlers, same as Toyota sells them cars, Kellogs sells them cornflakes, Turkish Airlines sells them tickets and so on.

      I don't recognize what you call "Judea and Samaria" including Hebron as a part of Israel.

      Civilian facilities such as hospitals, mosques and schools should not be targetted . However, if they are being used as launching sites, weapons depots and such -they may lose their immunity.

    • Page: 23
    • talkback,
      We're not thieves in our historic homeland.
      "Mutually agreed" means just that. Adjustments agreed to by both sides.
      I don't think that the settlements should become part of Israel. That would pretty much prevent the two state solution.
      As to your gory simile , I'd rather not comment.

    • Elizabeth,
      Then you should also boycott Google, Microsoft, Intel, unilever, nestle, all the car makers, all the major airlines...

    • Amigo,
      As you should know by now I oppose the occupation and the settlements and support the two state solution, which is based on the pre-1967 lines, with mutually-agreed adjustments.
      The settlements are indeed illegal under international law. I've never said otherwise.
      What are zioapollos?

    • 1. Tisha B'Av is not a "holiday". It's a day of fasting and mourning , a day for reflecting on the disasters asssociated with the day.

      2. There are no Jewish-only roads in Israel.

      3. The Hamas terrorists bear a large measure of responsibility for the civilian deaths in Gaza because of their strategy of using schools, hospitals, mosques and civilian residences for military purposes.

      4. Ben & Jerry's plant is in Israel, not in the settlements. Many other international corporations have such facilities here: Coke and Pepsi, Unilever and Nestle, Intel and Google and Microsoft and so on. Why pick on the ice cream? As to selling in the settlements: everyone does. All the corporations I mentioned, all the car makers... I haven't heard of any companies who won't sell their stuff there (except for McDonald's, thanks to the owner).
      I don't understand the focus on Ben & Jerry's.

  • 'Transferring' Palestinian citizens of Israel to a Palestinian state goes from outrage to Netanyahu policy
    • MHughes,
      Thank you, but I was just trying to point out the context of that Herzl quote. My background is probably closer to the Socialist-Zionist tradition than to Herzl's political Zionism.
      In any case, I happen to think that Herzl is overrrated, that his importance and contribution have been exagerrated. After all, the First Aliyah pre-dates Herzl, and Herzl's entire Zionist career lasted only eight years, from the publication of" Der Judenstaat" in 1896 to his death in 1904.
      But I suppose that every movement needs a figurehead.

    • Herzl's utopian novel Altneuland describes a society in which Jews and non-Jews enjoy equal rights. From a summary of the plot:

      Löwenberg and Kingscourt spend the following twenty years on the island, cut off from civilization. As they stop over in Palestine on their way back to Europe in 1923, they are astonished to discover a land drastically transformed. A Jewish state officially named the "New Society" has since risen as European Jews have rediscovered and re-inhabited their Altneuland, reclaiming their own destiny in the Land of Israel. The country, whose leaders include some old acquaintances from Vienna, is now prosperous and well-populated, boasts a thriving cooperative industry based on state-of-the-art technology, and is home to a free, just, and cosmopolitan modern society. Arabs have full equal rights with Jews, with an Arab engineer among the New Society's leaders, and most merchants in the country are Armenians, Greeks, and members of other ethnic groups. The duo arrives at the time of a general election campaign, during which a fanatical rabbi establishes a political platform arguing that the country belongs exclusively to Jews and demands non-Jewish citizens be stripped of their voting rights, but is ultimately defeated.

    • An excerpt from an essay by Efraim Karsh (criticizing Benny Morris):

      Consider, for example, Morris's charge that Herzl wished to dispossess Palestinian Arabs because of his fear that the Jewish state would lack viability if it were to contain a large Arab minority. Morris bases this assertion only upon a truncated paragraph from Herzl's June 12, 1895 diary entry, which had already been a feature of Palestinian propaganda for decades.[16] But this entry was not enough to support such a claim. Below is the complete text, with the passages omitted by Morris in italics:

      When we occupy the land, we shall bring immediate benefits to the state that receives us. We must expropriate gently the private property on the estates assigned to us. We shall try to spirit the penniless population across the border by procuring employment for it in the transit countries, while denying it any employment in our country. The property owners will come over to our side. Both the process of expropriation and the removal of the poor must be carried out discretely and circumspectly … It goes without saying that we shall respectfully tolerate persons of other faiths and protect their property, their honor, and their freedom with the harshest means of coercion. This is another area in which we shall set the entire world a wonderful example … Should there be many such immovable owners in individual areas [who would not sell their property to us], we shall simply leave them there and develop our commerce in the direction of other areas which belong to us.[17]

      By omitting the opening sentence, Morris hides the fact that Herzl viewed Jewish settlement as beneficial to the indigenous population and that he did not conceive of the new Jewish entity as comprising this country in its entirety. This is further underscored by Herzl's confinement of the envisaged expropriation of private property to "the estates assigned to us"—another fact omitted by Morris. Any discussion of relocation was clearly limited to the specific lands assigned to the Jews, rather than to the entire territory. Had Herzl envisaged the mass expulsion of population, as claimed by Morris, there would have been no need to discuss its position in the Jewish entity. Morris further ignored context. There was no trace of a belief in transfer in either Herzl's famous political treatise, The Jewish State (1896), or his 1902 Zionist novel, Altneuland (Old-New Land).[18] Nor for this matter is there any allusion to "transfer" in Herzl's public writings, his private correspondence, his speeches, or his political and diplomatic discussions. Morris simply discards the canon of Herzl's life work in favor of a single, isolated quote.

      Most importantly, Herzl's diary entry makes no mention of either Arabs or Palestine, and for good reason. A careful reading of Herzl's diary entries for June 1895 reveals that, at the time, he did not consider Palestine to be the future site of Jewish resettlement but rather South America.[19] "I am assuming that we shall go to Argentina," Herzl recorded in his diary on June 13. In his view, South America "would have a lot in its favor on account of its distance from militarized and seedy Europe … If we are in South America, the establishment of our State will not come to Europe's notice for a considerable period of time."[20] Indeed, Herzl's diary entries during the same month illustrate that he conceived all political and diplomatic activities for the creation of the future Jewish state, including the question of the land and its settlement, in the Latin American context. "Should we go to South America," Herzl wrote on June 9, "our first state treaties will have to be with South American republics. We shall grant them loans in return for territorial privileges and guarantees." Four days later he wrote, "Through us and with us, an unprecedented commercial prosperity will come to South America."[21]

      In short, Morris based his arguments on a red herring. He not only parsed a quote to distort its original meaning, but he ignored the context, which had nothing to do with Palestine or Arabs.

    • The quote from Herzl is way out of context. He wrote it in June 1895 when he thought that the Jewish state would probably be established in Argentina . In the next day's entry he writes "I am assuming that we shall go to Argentina" (13th June entry). Note that there's no mention of Palestine or Arabs at all .
      When Herzl finally came around to the idea of establishing the Jewish state in Palestine he envisaged Jews and Arabs enjoying equal rights.

  • Bill making it a federal crime to support BDS sends shockwaves through progressive community
    • For all the adolescents excited by the mention of sex, I'm referring to what's known euphemistically as the laws of "family purity". For those who are ignorant of the subject, I'll pass on explaining them myself.

      See here:

    • Keith,
      What I mean is that in medieval Europe the Jew was the ultimate OTHER. They were different: in their beliefs, customs , rituals, in the food they ate, the wine they drank, even their sex life. That's where we may find the sources of anti- Jewish sentiments.

    • Dr. Fincham,
      Even assuming that the role Jews played as bankers caused resentment in the medieval world, that hardly explains the persistence and intensification of anti-Jewish attitudes in later periods.
      In Spain and Portugal the Jews were persecuted and ultimately expelled despite the fact that they were not typically money-lenders or bankers in those lands.

      In my view the Jew is not hated for what he DOES but for what he IS.

      As to "Zionist money" or "Jewish money" : in a democracy, citizens have the right to organize and lobby for causes they believe in. So we have a gun lobby, an oil lobby, evironmental lobby, pro-choice and pro-life lobbies and so forth. And many of those lobbies raise lots of money for their causes and play hardball politics . I don't see what makes Jewish lobbies unique.

    • Yonifalic is now citing the comments policy because I called him a meshumad. I thought he was proud to be one.

      Imagine a commenter writing that Islam is "silly and repugnant". Or Christianity, or any other faith. Imagine a commenter explaining why he hates Islam, or any other faith. But Yonifalic is free to do so regarding Judaism.

    • russgreen,
      Yonifalic has repeatedly stated his hatred of Judaism, of Israel and of his own family. Check his archive and search for "hate".
      In his comment on this thread he wrote that " the “antisemitic” stereotype is true" . If he's not an Anti-Semite , I don't know who is.

    • jeff davis, (President of the Confederacy?)

      What you're doing is blaming the victim. You assume that the persecutions the Jews suffered over the centuries were somehow caused by their actions. And you repeat the tired theme of "Jewish money", subversion and control. As a Jew yourself ,it looks like you've internalized the anti-Jewish stereotypes.

    • Mondoweiss comments policy specifically prohibits Anti-Semitism, and other forms of racism.
      Yet Yonifalic, the Anti-Semitic meshumad and self-confessed war criminal, is tolerated by the moderators.
      What's the point of having a "comments policy"?

  • 'Irreplaceable bedrock' of U.S. backing for Israel is threatened by -- intermarriage
  • Four Palestinians, two Israelis killed, and Israeli forces blockade Al Aqsa mosque
  • Attacks on Israeli police in East Jerusalem are not terrorism
    • zaid,

      1.Benjamin of Tudela made his journey when the country was under Crusader rule, but don't worry, there are plenty of other references to the significance of the Western Wall ,including under Muslim rule.

      2.The location of the temple on the Temple mount is not in question. The dimensions of the compound have varied . The present Haram a-Sharif is probably much larger than the temple compound during the 2nd temple period.

      3. Herod was an Arab? Herod was a Jew of Edomite origin . Years before his birth, the Hasmonean ruler John Hyrcanus had forced the Edomites to convert.

    • In 1948 the Jews were ethnically cleansed from the Jewish Quarter in Jerusalem . The Hurva synagogue - where my grandfather and great-grandfather used to pray - was blown up by the Jordanian Arab Legion. In fact in every location in which the Arab side gained the upper hand not one Jew was left. The ethnic cleansing was total.

    • zaid,
      The Western Wall is not a Jewish site? Are you serious? I wonder why all those Jews are praying there? Even if you were right about it not being considered significant before the 19th century -and you're not!- those last 200 years should mean something.

      Anyway here's Benjamin of Tudela, writing in the 12th century:

      "Jerusalem[80] has four gates—the gate of Abraham, the gate of David, the gate of Zion, and the gate of Gushpat, which is the gate of Jehoshaphat, facing our ancient Temple, now called Templum Domini. Upon the site of the sanctuary Omar ben al Khataab erected an edifice with a very large and magnificent cupola, into which the Gentiles do not bring any image or effigy, but they merely come there to pray. In front of this place is the western wall, which is one of the walls of the Holy of Holies. This is called the Gate of Mercy, and thither come all the Jews to pray before the wall of the court of the Temple."
      (Benjamin was of course misinformed in attributing the wall to the Holy of Holies. It actually was one of the outer walls of the temple complex.)

  • 'I am not your goy' -- chaos at a liberal Zionist conference
  • The Israelis
    • amigo,
      I'm not sure that El Al qualifies as a "national airline" anymore, since it was privatized. It's a privatly owned business now (by the Borowitz brothers).
      Many Israelis prefer to fly on Turkish and other airlines.

    • It's good that at least Phil got to talk to some Israelis, from both the Right and the Left.
      Next time, Phil , come to visit the Negev (and learn how to focus your camera...)

      And for the most part Israelis don't live in fear. At least not more than residents of New York, London, Paris and so forth. I'm sure that Phil felt reasonably safe here.

  • Westchester legislature prepares bill saying BDS 'maligns the Jewish people,' and opponents organize
    • The BDS campaign hasn't had much impact on the Israeli economy . At least not yet. But if, in the future, it will cause harm - it won't be good news for the Palestinians. This is not a zero-sum game. It's not that what's bad for Israel is good for the Palestinians and vice versa. The Israeli and Palestinian economies are inseperable and what's bad for one is bad for the other. A healthy Israeli economy is in the Palestinian's best interest and it's in the Israeli interest for the Palestinian economy to thrive. And this will remain true when , hopefully , peace is achieved in the context of the two state solution.

  • Making the crossover from Elie Wiesel to Marc Ellis
    • echinococcus,
      I'm not an invader, I live in my people's historic homeland. No Jew is an invader in the Jewish homeland.

      I'm not a war criminal .

      I also support freedom of speech. "Veterans Today" can say whatever they want on their website.
      Including Anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial.

      As for the definition, the standard, conventional , definitions are good enough for me.

      The Webster defines Anti-Semitism as : "hostility toward or discrimination against Jews as a religious, ethnic, or racial group".

      The Oxford definition: "Hostility to or prejudice against Jews."

      Besides, Echinococcus, you can always look in the mirror.

    • echinococcus wants proof of Anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial on VT. Assuming that he isn't kidding:

      ...and so on.

    • Annie, I've never heard of Miklos Gruner. He seems to being saying that Elie Wiesel stole the identity of another prisoner who had the same name . How mush sense does that make?It's obvious that the Holocaust deniers like to cast doubt on the credibility of iconic figures, such as Anne Frank and Elie Wiesel.

    • Any instances of Anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial?
      You're joking, right?
      Have you ever looked at ""?

    • Anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial are specifically prohibited according to the "comments policy " of this forum. Rather loosely enforced, I would say...
      As to Elie Wiesel, he became world famous not only as a writer and Holocaust survivor , but as an outspoken voice for human rights all over the world, earning him the Nobel Peace Prize. He did, apparrently, have something of a blind spot regarding Palestinian rights, for which he deserved criticism. That blind spot doesn't cancel all the good that he did.

    • Citizen is unashamedly citing two blatantly Anti-Semitic, Holocaust-denying ,websites.

  • Leonard Cohen song is anthem of Jewish exclusivists
    • Halleluyah is a beautiful song and is not the "anthem of Jewish exclusivists".

      "First we take Manhattan, then we take Berlin "- now there's a Zionist plot for you!

  • 'Unexpectable' Trump makes Netanyahu, and Adelson, very happy
    • All in all , following the visit was a nauseating experience. The Trumps and Netanyahus look like they deserve each other. Although I admit that I feel a bit sorry for unhappy Melania.

  • Trump's Jerusalem
  • Trump may want a deal, but Israeli Jews are not interested
  • PLO source denies Abbas plans to propose large land swap deal during Trump visit
    • Douglas Reed was a racist (white-supremacist) and virulently Anti-Semitic propagandist.
      Commenter "Rensaceman" spouts the same old Anti-Semitic garbage.

  • The US and Israel: 'An integrated political system'
  • Why are Israeli children brainwashed to hate?
    • The video does look authentic, unfortunately.
      The woman is probably not their teacher, she's a guest, maybe a reporter.
      Horrible, reminds me of Hamas.

  • After mob attacks alternative Memorial Day ceremonies, Israeli education minister criticizes ceremonies not mob
    • The Anti-Semitic meshumad and self-confessed war criminal Yonifalic is allowed to explain why he hates Judaism, in violation of Mondoweiss comments policy. I wonder if a commenter would be allowed to explain hatred for Islam or Christianity.

      And the passage from the Haggadah is not only recited, it's sung:

    • The event was organized by two remarkable groups:

      You can see the event on the cfpeace website

    • Amigo,
      I've written about the Beersheva bus station attack in previous comments. There's also a much-praised documentary:

      People can quote Jewish sources to support the occupation and racism , but also to support peace justice and democracy, There isn't one voice that speaks for Judaism as such.
      Mr. Smotrich gives the Palestinians a choice: transfer, apartheid or genocide while quoting and interpreting Jewish sources. Others such as myself. reach diametrically opposite positions also based on Jewish sources. As you said it depends on who's interpreting.

    • talknic,
      In one brief comment you used all of the following:

      full of bullsh*t

      Way to go, talknic, great debating style. Classy.

    • eljay,
      This is what you asked on that thread:
      "Does Judaism emphasize that Jews should or should not deliberately and unapologetically do terrorism, land theft, military occupation, colonialism, oppression, torture, murder and supremacism? "
      ...and I didn't think that you were asking seriously.
      Of course "Judaism", as such, does not condone any wrongdoing, while there are Jews who are terrorists and thieves and murderers and such. There are Jewish criminals, same as there are criminals among all nations, religions and ethnic groups.

      As to elian kteily not replying, by now I'm more curious about his non-reply than interested in what it may be.

    • elian kteily,
      Still no reply...

    • elian kteily,
      Still waiting for a reply...

    • elian kteily,
      Who exactly are "they" and how are "they" supposed to go back tho where "they" came from?
      Please elaborate.

    • Instead of focussing on the ugliness of the hecklers and disruptors, why not focus on the event itself? The 4000 Israelis who gathered to honor the sacrifice on both sides and the hundreds of Palestinians who attended parrallel events , represent those of us seeking a peaceful future for both peoples.

  • Map map on the wall, who's most existing of them all?
    • gamal,
      1. I'm not a settler. In fact , I've always opposed the settlements. I even boycott them.
      2. I'm not sad, especially since our Beersheva football team just won a consecutive championship!
      3. "it's a country, not a cult". I agree.

    • I know of at least one Jewish source which refers to "Palestine". To be precise: "Palestini".
      Midrash Breishet Rabba (the midrash on Genesis), chapter 90, paragraph 6, refers to three countries which suffered famine: Phoenicia and Arabia and Palestini.
      ויהי רעב בכל הארצות בשלש ארצות בפנקיא ובערביא ובפלסטיני

  • Gilad Atzmon’s attack against me – the 'merchant of JVP'
  • New York rabbi links Jewish Voice for Peace to Osama bin Laden and Assad
    • catalan,
      A few weeks ago, we invited a young couple to our seder, new immigrants from Bulgaria. It so happens that their opinion on this topic is much like yours: that the perception of the Bulgarian regime at the time "saving the Jews" is wrong.

  • 'Why do I not cry out for the right of return?' -- an exchange between Uri Avnery and Salman Abu Sitta
    • A personal memory:
      When I was 13 years old I read Uri Avnery's "The Other Side of the Coin", his unexpurgated account of his battleground experience. I read it cover-to -cover in one night and it had a huge , life-changing impact on me. After that , I read his weekly editorials, volunteered for his party and eventually met him in person. So maybe I'm not quite objective writing about him but I do think that he's an example of unwavering commitment to the ideal of Israeli-Palestinian peace. It's amazing that he's still around after all those years.

    • I wonder what Uri Avnery, author of "Israel Without Zionists" (1968), thinks of the irony of being considered a Zionist.

    • All of us on the Israeli Left owe a huge debt to Uri Avnery. Indeed, I can't even a imagine the Left without his groundbreaking efforts. In the aftermath of the 1967 war, proposing a Palestinian state co-existing with Israel (what's called today "the 2 state solution") was considered a weird idea of the lunatic fringe of the Left. Today that idea that he promoted 50 years ago is at the center of an international consensus.
      He's 93 years old now, respected as the founding father of the Israeli peace movement (and of modern Hebrew journalism in Israel!)
      I still remember the huge impact his writing had on me as a teenager.

  • I am not a jew
    • As to Yonifalic's alleged "eidetic memory":

      From the Brittanica:
      "Eidetic image, an unusually vivid subjective visual phenomenon. An eidetic person claims to continue to “see” an object that is no longer objectively present. Eidetic persons behave as if they are actually seeing an item, either with their eyes closed or while looking at some surface that serves as a convenient background for the image. Furthermore, eidetic persons describe the image as if it is still present and not as if they are recalling a past event. The incidence of eidetic imagery is very low in children (2–10 percent) and almost nonexistent in adults."

      Also see:

    • Absolutely, Yonifalic, I suggest that you surrender yourself to Palestinian authorities. Preferably Hamas.

    • Yonifalic , the Anti-Semitic meshumad, is also a self-confessed murderer. Why not encourage him to surrender himself to the appropriate authorities to stand trial for his crimes?

  • Sean Spicer needs to go to a Holocaust center
  • Passover has become little more than an act of communal hypocrisy
    • On Passover and Easter among other Jewish-Christian issues in medieval times I recommend this book:

    • Talknic,
      You wrote that Israeli Jewish children deserve to be murdered.
      If you're retracting, fine. But I didn't lie.

    • Marnie, I'm sure that we all have problems.
      What I can't understand is how anyone can say that children deserve to be murdered.

    • Marnie
      All children are innocent.
      No children deserve to be murdered.

      Who has a problem with that principle?
      (aside from talknic)

    • Annie,
      I wrote quite clearly that no children deserve to be murdered, from whereever.
      I specifically wrote Jewish children because they are the ones who deserve to be murdered , according to talknic's outrageous comment.
      I have always condemned the deliberate murder of innocent people, especially children. No matter where, when and by whom.

    • Yonah,
      Thanks for your thoughtful response.
      I was also thinking of the late Prof. Leibovitz. And I recall a discussion with an active Orthodox rabbi (with a connection to Leibovitz) who said that more than believing in Hashem , he believes in "avodat Hashem".

    • No children deserve to be murdered.

      No matter what nationality, ethnicity, religion, race, whatever...

      No children deserve to be murdered.

      Not even Jewish children, talknic.
      Not even Israeli Jewish children, talknic and Annie and everyone.

      I can't believe that what should be a universally accepted principle needs to be argued here.

    • Annie,
      Talknic wrote that they (Israeli Jews) "deserve... to have their children murdered..."

      You don't have a problem with his comment?
      You just have a problem with my calling it bloodthirsty?

    • Talknic,
      I was just shocked by your bloodthirsty fantasy, especially regarding the murder of children.
      Maybe I should not have been.

    • Yonah,
      I would be interested in your opinion on the issue of belief vs. deeds in Judaism.
      Hag Same'ah

    • RoHa,
      I don't mean that there's no belief involved. I was just pointing out the emphasis on what you do, not what you believe.
      And I agree that there's no point in living according to the laws and upholding the traditions- if it does not lead to a moral life.
      Of course this is only one possible interpretation of Judaism.

    • amigo,
      My comment contained a certain interpretation of traditional Judaism. It had absolutely nothing to do with Zionism.

    • RoHa,
      On "belief" vs. deeds:
      Since it's impossible to know what's really going on between your ears, since no one knows whether you sincerely believe what you claim to believe, Judaism said never mind about endlessly declaring your belief. Instead, here's a set of laws to live by and deeds to perform. Live according to those laws and you'll be fine. You'll find yourself living a good, moral, life, and you'll belong to a community based on shared laws and traditions.

    • RoHa,
      Your question is a very serious one ,difficult to answer without resorting to a book-length essay.

      One concise formulation which I've heard is : "it's not about believing, it's about belonging".

    • Wow, talknic, how bloodthirsty can you get?

    • I agree with JeffB on this.
      Judaism puts the emphasis not on what you believe, or claim to believe, but on what you do.

  • You know your country's in trouble when you're afraid to put on a bumper sticker
    • Here's the Webster definition of racism:

      Definition of racism
      : a belief that race is the primary determinant of human traits and capacities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race
      a : a doctrine or political program based on the assumption of racism and designed to execute its principles
      b : a political or social system founded on racism
      : racial prejudice or discrimination

      The absolute opposite of what I think and believe.

    • Ossinev,
      Why would I appreciate manifestations of racism? I despise racism.

    • Do you think that intolerence only occurs from one side?
      What would happen to a pro-Israel sticker in a predominantly Arab neighborhood?

    • amigo,
      So it will be easy to find you when and if I visit Ireland. You're the guy driving around with the "Boycott Israel " sticker.
      Annie, "Free Gaza" can be understood as an anti-Hamas slogan.

  • Israeli Jews maintain the occupation because it is in their interest -- Noam Sheizaf
    • Maghlawatan,
      Why is voting for a better government "instead " of keeping kosher? Who says we can't work for a decent government and also keep a kosher kitchen?

      I don't recall ever attending a seder in which "Go Down Moses" was sung.
      The seder is a good opportunity to remind ourselves that the struggle for freedom is not a thing of the past, it's ongoing . "In every generation..."

    • Marnie,
      For people who maintain a kosher home-and are hosting the seder- the days before Passover really are rather busy,

    • amigo,
      I'm aware of the horrible killing of an innocent Eritrean man in the aftermath of a terrorist attack in Beersheva. I wrote about it on this forum at the time.

      I do try to discuss with my students the dangers of racism and fascism.

      As to the happiness index, I'm still trying to figure it out myself, sort of caught me by surprise.
      When I have more time maybe I'll try to think it through (this being a few days before Passover, very busy...)

  • Read the full translated text of the leaked Hamas charter
    • Helen4yemen,
      Jews in the Jewish historic homeland are not outsiders.

    • 1. If Hamas has moved beyond the vile Anti-Semitism of its present charter it's a positive development. On the other hand the new charter in article 10 mentions only Muslim and Christian holy places, ignoring Jewish ones. The text , in general , denies the Jewish presence.

      2. There's a clear contradiction in article 19. Establishing a Palestinian state on the pre-67 lines implies accepting partition and two states. However in the very same article there's the "from the river to the sea" formulation. If the pragmatic line gains the upper hand it may be possible for Hamas to become part of the solution.

  • New book by Larry Derfner, the American-turned-Israeli journalist, crushes liberal Zionism
    • James North,
      Aside from thanking me (you're welcome..) , I would be interested in any on-topic comments you may have on my comments...

    • talkback,
      "Israeli Left " means a commitment to democracy, social justice and peace.

    • Maghlawatan,
      I don't understand what you mean about there not being any Palestinians south of the Galilee?
      You're not ignorant. Unless you're trying to be sarcastic.

    • James North,
      No, I'm not in hiding. I just can't inhabit MW 24/7 and comment on every post, especially these busy days before Passover.
      However, since you asked:
      1.First, I confess that I haven't read Mr.Derfner's book. I'm responding to the excerpts you provided.
      2.I've never defined myself as a "Liberal Zionist" and would prefer the title "Israeli Left" which I use in my commenter profile. The various categories – liberal Zionist, non-Zionist, anti-Zionist- may be anachronistic these days. A so-called liberal Zionist who supports Meretz probably has more in common with a supporter of the non-Zionist Joint List than with , say, Lieberman and Bennet. The important distinction in my opinion is not between Zionists and non-Zionists . It's between those who seek a reasonable Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement which will end the occupation and terrorism and bloodshed and assure a better future for both peoples –and those who oppose any such option.
      3. There's a masochistic and defeatist trend, which Derfner's book may be part of, of people on the Left beating up on… the Left. "Why are we so small, why are we so weak? We're fighting a rearguard battle for a lost cause, etc." Well, I don't buy it. The Left has a lot to be proud of, has been correct in its predictions and analysis. The Right is leading the country to disaster, has no real answers , and it's up to us to be the alternative, to be the future. We need to go back to basic politics, organize and return to the streets.
      4. I agree with some of Derfner's ideas, such as his critique of the stupid, endless "peace process".
      5.On the other hand I disagree with BDS, both morally and tactically (although I support a boycott of the settlements). And my experience here in Beersheva is quite different from Derfner's in Modiin. I certainly don't feel that I live in a segregated society (I've never even visited Modiin).

  • The Jewish revolution
    • Annie, Yonah, Ok, if those groups are community-oriented, that's good news, in my view.
      I don't recall Phil Weiss here as ever expressing interest in sustaining the community.

    • Regarding Phil's interesting report: Jewish anti-Zionists don't have a chance of "winning the argument" in the American Jewish community, in my opinion, as long as they seem to be indifferent to the goal of sustaining the community as such. If anti-Zionists, people like Phil, would say "instead of supporting Israel, let us devote our resources and energy to stregthening our institutions (community centers, synagogues and such), to more Jewish education (more day schools, more Bible and Talmud study, more Hebrew and Yiddish, more Jewish history and culture)" - then maybe they wouldn't be perceived by the majority of the community as not caring about the community, caring only about opposing Zionism.

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