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Total number of comments: 70 (since 2010-10-13 04:43:58)



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  • Citing MLK, Florida students call on school to divest
    • It would be alienating if it were a kind of appropriation, as in when LGBT activists uncritically and reflexively use the language of black liberation to talk about same sex marriage (which some activists consider as landing somewhere on the spectrum between impolite and downright racist/privileged).

      Annie is right to say that MLK holds significance not just for black students but as icon , that is, his image and words are a kind of cultural currency in the same vein as words like "freedom" and "democracy" or the words of Gandhi. But ritzl, your suggestion is a good strategy to follow in general -taking care not to appropriate is an essential part of any kind of solidarity work.

      Interestingly, I'd point out that SJPs have a rich history of working with communities of color with the understanding that all struggles are intertwined. At UC Berkeley, one of our biggest divestment advocates was the Black Student Union. Nationally, MeChA (Movimiento Estudiantil [email protected] de Aztlán) has endorsed BDS.

      And in one of my conversations with a student activist working on his remarks to introduce our divestment resolution to the student senate, he told me that he and a lot of his friends actually make a conscious effort to quote leaders *other than* MLK because of how whitewashed and uncontroversial his image has become -stripped of all potency and relevance to actual liberation. Just some food for thought.

  • What comes next: Why secularism fooled me into thinking the two-state solution was likely
    • This article as nonsensical. The argument does not support the conclusion. In fact the author didn't bother substantiating half of his claim, namely that religious sentiment is driving Palestinian unwillingness to "compromise" (what the hell does that mean anyway?) .

      His only discussion of religion re Palestinians is about Hamas' alleged "intransigent ideology" yet it should be common knowledge at this point that Hamas does indeed endorse a de facto two-state solution. Pointing to its out-of-date charter is not only a hasbara canard but weak scholarship. Political movements develop over time, and Hamas' pragmatism and ideological flexibility are evident to anyone who is paying attention -just look at their history of ceasefires and the statements of leaders like Khaled Meshal. Does the author use google? This list took me about two seconds:

      From 2009
      "Khaled Meshaal has endorsed the idea of a two-state solution, accepting the creation of a Palestinian state within 1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital."

      From 2011
      "A day after agreeing to form a Palestinian unity government with rival faction Fatah, Hamas leader Khaled Meshal (pictured above) has told The New York Times that he will work toward a two-state solution"

      "This isn't the first time Hamas has called for a two-state solution. In 2006, Hamas leader Mahmoud Zahar expressed support for such a plan as a new Hamas-led Palestinian government came into being. Two years later, former U.S. president Jimmy Carter announced that the Islamist movement would accept a two-state solution so long as it was approved by a Palestinian referendum or a newly elected government."

      From January of this year

      "Khaled Meshal, head of the Syrian branch of Hamas’ political bureau, has reportedly accepted the idea of a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and has authorized King Abdullah of Jordan to convey the message on his behalf to U.S. President Barack Obama. His new stance marks a dramatic shift in Hamas' position on the long-standing conflict. "

      This isn't to say that Hamas as an organization has a monolithic, fixed view of the two-state solution (or that its ideas of what that means are the same as Israel's). Nevertheless, it is categorically false that Hamas outrightly rejects it.

      At the same time other major players in Palestinian society -the PLO, Palestinian "civil society," the diaspora, and even Palestinian Muslim groups inside the green line, do not use religious arguments to explain their unwillingness to "compromise." In fact, the main currents in Palestinian society either endorse the two-state solution fully or rally around BDS. None of this represents any kind of religiously-motivated intransigence.

      More fundamentally, whether couched in religion or not, (and as many people on this forum have already said), Palestinian claims are completely grounded in law and *even more importantly* in basic notions of morality. That this author would characterize insistence on liberation as an unwillingness to "compromise" says more about him than it does about Palestinians.

      The only impression I get from this article is that its author sees religious supremacism in service of ethnic cleansing as somehow equivalent to (largely non-existent) religiously-motivated liberation ideology, and that he thinks insisting upon one's rights is "intransigent."

      What utter trash.

  • In new era of cooperation, Israeli drone kills '5 jihadis' in Egypt
    • Isn't whether the coup does or not benefit Israel sort of irrelevant from the standpoint of the Egyptian public? I'm still working out my feelings on the issue, and find it really hard to get to the bottom of things. But still, the primary criterion should be whether the changes in Egypt benefit people *in Egypt.* While Palestine is surely a salient issue in Egyptian politics, and Mubarak et al's role in the siege of Gaza etc partly created the animus against him, it surely wasn't the only or even the primary reason for the revolution. Undoubtedly Egyptians shouldn't have to choose between hurting themselves or hurting Palestinians, but when it really comes down to it, the Egyptian people have their own internal politics to worry about first.

      Speaking against the coup primarily because it benefits Israel ignores the importance of ordinary Egyptians in their own politics, in the same way Israel-firsters speak of American politics only in terms of how they benefit Israel.

      The MB was not inherently worthy of support simply because it was ostensibly pro-Palestine for the same reason the military isn't inherently worthy of animus because it is anti-Palestine.

  • McCain and Graham flipflop on aid to Egypt-- after AIPAC speaks up
    • I'm not reading too much into your comment. You didn't think about the implications of your little joke and how it is bigoted. That's the nice thing about being privileged though isn't it? You don't have to think about how your words have a larger meaning and hurt people in a lesser position than you.

      I have a question for you, Taxi. Are you gay? I'm guessing no, but I apologize if I'm wrong. Because here's the thing....if you aren't, you don't get to run your mouth about gay people, whether we do or not. Like black people reclaiming the n word, women reclaiming the word bitch, or speaking freely and frankly about our social condition. People who belong to cultures founded on oppression finding humor in our predicament is not the same thing as a straight (or white, or cisgendered, or able-bodied, or whatever it is) man using his privilege to make jokes at our expense.

      Like I said before, you're an ally. I respect that. You should respect the fact that people who are different from you in myriad ways are also a part of this community and you owe it to them to treat their identies with dignity. We are not here to be the butt of your jokes.

      There are plenty of ways of insulting McCain and Graham without resorting to childish bigotry. Stop being lazy and apply yourself.

    • Taxi, you might just be "dicking" around but it isn't funny. It's offensive. It's offensive to me as a lesbian, as a woman, and as a human being. You were attempting to mock Senator Graham by implying he was female. What, exactly, is funny or insulting about being a woman? Or being feminine? Were you trying to imply his passivity? And if so, what is the link between female gender and passivity?

      Your second comment was even worse. They make a cute couple? What is funny about that? Third graders run around calling each other gay. It's juvenile and bigoted. Grow up.

      Here's a tip. When someone calls you out for being homophobic or sexist, don't laugh it off. Apologize instead. We are all supposed to be allies here, and Palestinians need all the solidarity they can get. So help build a stronger movement by not alienating people.

      And rensanceman, using slut-shaming words like "whore" isn't any better.

  • The evidence that Bradley Manning helped start the Arab Spring
    • Bradley Manning's courage and accomplishment aside, do any of you not find it completely repugnant to try to credit the uprising of millions of brown people struggling under oppression to one white American guy? This reeks of white messiah. I'm not arguing that wikileaks, and by extension, Manning, didn't play a role. But this:

      "Of course, it is impossible for me to establish whether the man whom everyone credits with starting the Arab Spring, the noble fruitseller Mohamed Bouazizi, who immolated himself in a provincial city, read those cables. But they were widely available when Bouazizi lit himself on fire on December 17, 2010. He died January 4, 2011."

      This is ridiculous. Really, Phil? "I can't prove that Mohamed Bouazizi read the cables, but he might have," as if he needed to in order to have the courage or motivation to set himself on fire, as if the entire Middle East were just waiting for Manning and Assange to enlighten them about their own rulers. Insulting.

      And Ratner's comment that manning "actually sparked the Arab spring" is even worse. Talk about overstating your case. How about us white people stop trying to lay claim to everything? Have some damn respect.

      There is an argument to be made about the role of information, including wikileaks, in the Arab spring. But in this overstatement, or more importantly focusing on Manning's role in the Arab Spring at all, you are doing what all colonizers have done to the Middle East -placing whiteness at its center. It's a shameful topic to be obsessed with.

  • Moroccan government turns to AIPAC in effort to defend occupation in Western Sahara
  • Coalition says investigations into campus Palestine activism chill student speech rights
    • Yep, Brian. You're right, we do chant from the river to the sea. While SJP itself does not feel it has the authority to dictate to Palestinians what a final status solution would be, we are sure about a few things. Palestinian in Israel face second class citizenship. Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza are under occupation. And refugees have been denied their fundamental right to return to their homeland. From the river to the sea means that every part of this territory will be liberated so that justice will be denied to no one. Some of us think that necessitates a one state solution, one person/one vote, others think if a two state solution included the eradication of ethno/religious Jewish supremacy and a recognition of the nakba then tht would work too. But regardless, the truth remains that freedom, justice and equality are the ideals and goals that drive this movement. And they are so powerful, so animating, and so fundamentally right that so long as we keep fighting we will attain them. From the river to the sea Palestine will be free!

  • When 'J' means 'Jewish' not 'Justice'
    • I understand the thrust of this article but have lingering questions. I don't see the problem with Jewish Values as a reason to engage in activism. I don't see why anyone expects people who identify religiously to make their motivating animus "universal" political principles...why does it matter? What do you have to say to Islamic or Sikh feminists whose anti-sexist work is rooted in what they perceive to be their faith's ethical tradition? What do you have to say to Christian humanitarians who believe they need to engage in social justice issues because of Jesus' message? 'Sorry, go home and try again'?

      And I also don't see how saying something is one's religious value makes any claim to exclusivity or uniqueness. Do unto others and you would have them do unto you is certainly not an exclusively Christian idea, but that doesn't mean for some people it isn't a central part of their Christian identity and the reason they work for justice.

      I see the "special connection" as a produced one that ideally shouldn't exist but as a matter of fact it unfortunately does, because Jews are a target of Zionism in America, that is, the Zionist lobby/community feeds on the Jewish community as ammunition. I personally feel a "special connection" to combating pinkwashing as a gay woman, knowing that that connection is completely artificial and a result of the pinkwashing narrative itself. But since the San Francisco LGBT community is the target of many pinkwashing activities by the Israeli government and Zionist groups, being an active voice of dissent *as a member of that community* is very important.

      I really want to understand all of this more. There has been a lot of discussion and argument in some groups I'm in around these issues and I really feel like I'm missing something. So someone please reply.

  • Washington Post's racism map omits Israel
    • Racism is a hell of a lot more complex than who you want to live next door to. Structural racism anyone? Having a black friend or a Muslim neighbor or a gay nephew doesn't mean you aren't bigoted, that everything is good and fair and there aren't structural barriers to equality that must be addressed. This survey is a b*llshit whitewash of oppression.

  • After all-night debate, Berkeley student senate calls on university to divest from 3 companies profiting from occupation

      Guys, the battle isn't over. We still need to convince our ASUC president not to veto the bill, and at the same time make sure we continue supporting the senators that stood up for Palestinians this morning. Some senators even broke with their parties to do the right thing, and if our divestment attempt in 2010 is any indication, they will be feeling immense pressure to change their minds should the bill be vetoes.

      The senators who voted in support of SB 160 are:
      Chen, Jacobo, Kadifa, Lieu, Majd, Pacheco, Gilbertson, Pack, Pepito, Saifuddin, and Vertiz

      you can find their contact info here:

      Or to email all ASUC senators, use this address: [email protected]

      Our president is Connor Landgraf, and you can email him here:
      [email protected]. Ask him to respect the ASUC's decision!

  • 'Palestinians for Dignity' reject Obama visit as effort to stave off pressure on Israel, placate Palestinian street
    • I don't really know who you think you are, dictating to Palestinians what form their resistance should take. Palestinians are an oppressed people fighting colonization, and as such can choose their own terms of struggle. Whether your opinions on the efficacy of military resistance and your assessment of the reception of such resistance are indeed correct is completely irrelevant. It is not your struggle. You have no right to lecture anyone.

      I should also add that the fact that the use of military resistance would "destroy the enormous international credit which the Palestinian non-violent resistance has accrued as of now" is a testament to the way in which entrenched racism functions in our society. According to this logic Palestinians have no right to resort to violence, even justified violence in the face of oppression, while the Western world revels in the glory of the American Revolutionary War, the French Revolution, and so on. White people have every right to resort to arms to protect their homes and rights, but Palestinians don't. And you are justifying this view by lecturing Palestinians on how they should tailor their struggle to satisfy it, instead of lecturing others on how they should correct their latent (or manifest) racism.

      In summary, it doesn't matter if your assessment is right. It's not your place to lecture, and the reality is racist anyway.

  • Egypt allows 400 activists to enter Gaza
    • Dimadope, Let me ask you a question. If I locked you and your family in a cage for years, should I still get a pat on the back for giving you dinner while I beat your parents to death?

      Israel is the occupying power, which according to international laws requires that it provide for the occupied population. Israel has flagrantly violated international law in this regard, by instead putting Gaza under siege, causing inter alia a medical crisis where medications and equipment (not to mention electrical power, fuel and clean water) are scant.

      The amount of trucks it "allows" to enter Gaza (do you not see anything wrong with that statement in and of itself?? Israel "allows" Gaza to have food and medicine? OH WOW!) still doesn't meet the totals of what was imported before the siege began. See the work of the NGO Gisha to compare truckloads here:

      Israel should not be commended for "allowing" people to eat, especially when the supplies are still not enough, especially when Gazans wouldn't need so much medical equipment if Israel weren't attacking an occupied population stuck in an open-air prison with nowhere to run to, especially when Gazans wouldn't rely so much on the goodwill of their oppressor if they were allowed to have a functioning economy, especially when t Palestinians are revolting in the first place because of ethnic cleansing, occupation, collective punishment and the denial of their basic human rights.

      You are absolutely sick.

  • The light doesn't get much greener than this: Obama admin gives Israel the go ahead to escalate in Gaza
    • Denis, no one is implying Obama himself attacked Gaza. What the hell are you talking about? Obama was the president-elect during Cast Lead, and did not condemn the massacre though he commented on plenty of other issues during this time. Israel planned Cast Lead to end when Obama was first inaugurated for political reasons. Here he gave the go-ahead to the Israelis, and leveled primary responsibility on Palestinians.

      WJ postulating that perhaps Obama's staunch support for Israel was a favor to someone (to me this implies Pro-Israel donors, of which there are many with deep pockets, or to the Israeli public who was so against him, or that it was a bone to all of those other neo-cons who attacked him for being "too tough" on our ally) is not a conspiracy. It's a logical question. I disagree with him though, in that I don't think Obama's policy is a favor to anyone, rather it's just what he really thinks and we're seeing it now clearer than ever.

      I don't understand why saying any of this makes WJ a racist, or even a right-winger who wants to "secede." Why are you so intolerant to criticism of Obama's foreign policy positions? And why do you think any one who disagrees with you/him is automatically a right-wing racist? I voted for Jill Stein. I think a lot of people here did too. Even if we didn't, logical criticism grounded in facts or the rational exercise of one's brain =/= racism. Grow up.

  • Is the 'New York Review of Books' afraid of Islam?
    • "One reason is that liberal feminists are wary of Islamism"

      One reason is that liberal feminists don't actually know much about Islamism, Islamist women, Islamic feminists, Muslim women, or Muslims for that matter.

      Saba Mahmood - Politics of Piety: The Islamic Revival and the Feminist Subject
      Lara Deeb - An Enchanted Modern: Gender and Public Piety in Shi'i Lebanon
      Elizabeth Fernea - In Search of Islamic Feminism: One Woman's Global Journey
      Lila Abu Lughod - Remaking Women: Feminism and Modernity in the Middle East

      Just to start. As one of those "liberal feminists" this absolutely rocked my world.

      As for the clash of civilizations, Phil...I'm a bit disappointed. I know you're a journalist, and I know where your heart is, so I understand. But please, read more.

  • NYT's Bronner to speak about 'My Israel' on behalf of liberal Zionist group
    • Sibiriak,

      It is a matter of degree rather than difference. Most iterations of the two state solution rely on ethnosupremacism, that is, the idea of a "Jewish" state, the same idea that Eretz Yisrael relies on. The fact that "liberal" zionists believe in the legitimacy of only partial ethnic cleansing (1948) rather than full ethnic cleansing shouldn't satisfy anyone, especially when their rationale for doing so has to do with ensuring a Jewish majority without having to worry about the "demographic threat" constituted by human beings of the wrong religion. The original sin was the creation of the refugee problem in the first place, and it must be atoned for just like everything else.

  • Judith Butler responds to attack: 'I affirm a Judaism that is not associated with state violence'
  • Another morphing Muni ad and a hat tip to Ayn Rand
    • I feel you, American. If you've ever read Atlas, the way she demonizes factory workers will make you want to scream.

      The "objective" concept in objective is essentially that reality exists independent of our observation of reality, i.e. so that it is apart from our subjective consciousness and therefore fundamentally knowable. Sounds like a decent premise, that is, until all of the sudden you're talking about the savage Muslim hordes, and the unequivocal right of big business to poison our food and water with impunity.

    • It's amazing, and embarrassing to me, that I used to consider myself an objectivist. Reading the Fountainhead and then Atlas Shrugged in high school helped me immensely in my battle to come out as a lesbian, to cast off my fundamentalist Christian upbringing, to get some perspective on some abusive family relationships. There was just this absolute cold logic to the entire thing. I own every single novel, play, treatise she's ever written. Every. Single. Thing. I even volunteered for the Ayn Rand Institute in Irvine, CA.

      But then I found out that Rand, and a lot of objectivists along with her, condemned homosexuality. I was disappointed, but pressed on. Then I realized both books idolized rape, not in a kink kind of way but in a "the only proper place for a woman is in complete subservience to a man" kind of way. I became uncomfortable. Then I found out objectivists denied global warming. I was beside myself. Then I found out objectivists were pro-Israel. I lost my sh*t. Then I found out objectivists were racists. I was done.

      I thought these things were perhaps coincidences, that the issues were with the people who espoused this philosophy, not with the philosophy itself. But I started to understand after a while that that wasn't the case at all. You see, objectivism stirs and strengthens a kind of intolerance in people. You start to cultivate a sense of rage at the world around you. Everyone is the enemy, trying to ruin you, trying to hold you back, trying to weigh you down. They are all ignorant, brainwashed. You lose your ability to listen to anyone or anything that in any way deviates from your already established beliefs. You lose your ability to learn. You lash out at everyone. You become a complete prick. I know, because I did it.

      After a long, long journey I came to understand that this rage, this abhorrence of anything different, directly relates to racism, xenophobia, misogyny, homophobia. I don't know if objectivism cultivated those things in me or if I had them before, but I realize without a doubt this philosophy encourages people's basest tendencies.

      Ojectivism is simply an excuse for self-entitled people to feel even more self-entitled, for racists to justify their racism, for the ignorant to justify their ignorance, for the selfish and greedy to justify their selfishness and greed. It is a way for rich people to absolve their guilt (if they ever had any) and put on the mantle of victimhood. It is a complete and total inversion of morality. And I'm so glad I'm out.

  • Terror war comes home: White supremacist kills 6 Sikhs in Wisconsin
  • Syrian crisis moves into the camps: 20 Palestinians killed in Damascus refugee camp
  • Alameda County, CA proclaims Palestinian Cultural Day despite opposition
    • Loubna, pictured up top, is an important member of and organizer for the Arab Cultural and Community Center in San Francisco. She is a brilliant and tireless advocate for Palestinians, Women, Arabs, and humanity in general. Glad to see her hard work paying off!

  • Travels with a former Zionist in Israel and Palestine, part 2
  • Shamir ordered Bernadotte assassination to save Jerusalem for Jews. But will his obits tell you that?
  • Finkelstein stands by 'BDS cult' accusation, says it's 'historically criminal' to not support the two state solution
    • Oh I get it. You're about ethnic supremacy in general, not just Jewish supremacy. Interesting.

      "Without the demographic distinction why even entertain such a solution?"
      Because it's not about ethnic nationalism, it's about homes. As in people were ethnically cleansed from their homes, and their homes were stolen by other people, and those homes happen to be in what is now called Israel, and they deserve to have them back.

      And on top of that, what about all those Palestinians living inside Israel already? What do we do with them under this "Jewish" state? What happens when, through natural means, the Jewish population begins to wane in Israel? What just solution could you come up for that scenario? More ethnic cleansing? Preferential legal treatment for Jews? Unfair allocation of state resources to encourage Jewish immigration and discourage non-Jewish population growth? Alienation and discrimination of the non-Jewish community? Oh wait, that's what Israel already does to maintain its "Jewish" character.

      Nationalism is wrong in and of itself. But ethnic nationalism is even worse because it is inherently exclusivist, and by definition cannot provide for the needs of all of its citizens because it is primarily concerned with the needs and desires of only one class of people. Why the fuck am I still having to explain this to people in 2012?

    • *didn't spell the end of the United States

    • The end of Israel? Say what you actually mean Fred. Is the weight of too many non-Jews going to force the ground of Israel to crumble into the sea? Will a marvelous earthquake destroy all the buildings, roads, and cars the second a Palestinian grandmother walks into her childhood home? I don't think so. What RoR would mean, maybe, depending on how many Palestinians decide to come back rather than taking compensation, and may happen anyway if the non-Jewish birthrate in Israel outpaces the Jewish birth rate, is that Israel will lose its Jewish majority. Freeing the slaves didn't spell the end of Israel. And rectifying the injustice of the Nakba isn't going to end anything but ethnocracy.

    • Evets - when you say "different demographics" you mean Jewish supremacy, no? And what do you mean by "orientations?"

  • AP investigates the 'Made in Israel' label
    • *"My point is not the sovereignty over the West Bank, but who is the authority that has supervised the product," Palmor told The Associated Press. "Since the products of the settlements are made under Israeli regulations and standards, they are 'made in Israel.'"*

      Fascinating. Who would have thought he would give such a striking articulation of why Israel is an apartheid state?

  • 'We're not waiting for consensus' -- Rebecca Vilkomerson
    • Except, in context, my impression was Halper is just talking about a post-BDS failure of the Israeli state and what kind of society will form in its wake, whether that entity will include Israelis or not. And his idea seems to be that if Palestinian groups are separating from Israeli-led solidarity groups now, how does that inform the future? I think your analysis above is correct, but that Halper is just concerned about whether it's going to negatively impact the future, that is, whether it sets up for reconciliation or repudiation.

    • The ideas at play here are something I've had to wrestle with as a white American trying to become involved in anti-racist or anti-zionist work. I have to understand that as a white person my involvement in the struggle is and should be limited. It is my sense of entitlement and belief that I should be able to access anything and everything (in other words, my privilege) that makes me feel uncomfortable and somehow wronged when I am told I have overstepped by bounds. There are certain meetings I should not be a part of, certain groups I can defend but certainly not speak for, certain actions I can support but not call for myself. Because *shock* this isn't my battle to fight. The same goes for Jewish anti-zionists.

      The point of solidarity is not to lead. The point of solidarity is not to dominate. The point of solidarity is not to save anyone. The point of solidarity is to empower people to save themselves and to clear space for them to do so. To be effective in our solidarity we must be willing to weather any and all valid criticism of the larger group to which we belong. Otherwise what are we doing here?

      With reference to the excerpt you pulled from the Halper article, it is my understanding that he's talking about a slightly different topic. The excerpt falls into a section wherein is talking about the final status of Palestine, asking if BDS were successful what would happen next? He compares the situations of Algeria and South Africa. In Algeria the country was purged of its Frenchmen, whereas in South Africa that was not the case. What he is essentially saying is because of the nature of the conflict, that is, because it is protracted over a period of time in which 2-3 generations of Jews have now been born in Israel, whatever entity is left at the end of this struggle will have to address the reality of this group's existence, just as South Africa did. That's what he means by "inclusive."

  • US to differentiate between 'personally displaced' Palestinian refugees and their descendants
  • Nabi Saleh's Bassem Tamimi convicted by Israeli courts based on coerced testimony from 15-year-old boy
    • This is the best you can come up with? A child was interrogated, lied to, denied his rights and goaded into implicating Tamimi for "organizing a protest" against the confiscation of his land and possibly *gasp* *shock *horror* telling people to throw stones at the very people doing it, and this is your response?! WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU??!?!?!

  • The Messiah's Donkey: Settlers fire on Palestinian villagers as the Israeli military watches
  • Growing chill between Obama and Muslims could prove a headache in November
    • This article raises a lot of crucial points. However, I do not believe Muslims will leave Obama en masse, unless they are willing to abandon the two-party trap or forfeit their participation in the voting process altogether. There is no Republican alternative. Romney is cowing to the right, not the left, and will not be interested in appealing to the Muslim community. If Obama wasn't good enough, and he isn't, no republican will be. So mainstream Muslim voters are left with two choices: 1) vote 3rd party -and that takes a certain kind of person, the kind of person I've realized I personally will be this election; or 2) not vote at all. I don't really think either of these scenarios is likely to occur in the majority.

  • Three score and four years ago our forefathers brought forth on this planet a new nation
    • I turned 18 in 2007, and Obama was the very first president I voted for. I was so excited I cried. Think I'm falling for him again? Not a snowball's chance in hell.

  • Bradley Manning could become the Ellsberg of our age (if the media would just stop marginalizing him)
  • 'Dear activist, first solve the real problems of the region' -- Netanyahu's sophomoric letter to visitors to Palestine
  • Wallace interview with Ahmadinejad was little more than deliberate demonization
  • Iran has 'promised' 'another Holocaust' -- CBS commentator
    • Ben Stein is an anti-choice republican, former speech-writer for Nixon, and most importantly, a rabid science-bashing creationist. You've got to be kidding me.

  • Connecticut Senate hopeful calls congressman a ‘whore’ for AIPAC in televized debate
    • Honestly, while I'm exceptionally happy that she's saying what she is, the feminist in me knows that a slur like "whore" just isn't appropriate, period. She could have made her point so much better, as apt as the term might seem.

  • The 'Jewbags' photo
  • Beinart gets a Jewish conversation going in the media (just don't call us a cabal)
    • "And you can understand the thinking. Israel was a concerted community project in the wake of the Holocaust, in which half of European Jewry was exterminated; and Israel's protection inside the U.S. power structure is such a crucial part of that project that there is the highest community taboo on any American Jew who would criticize it and give fuel to Israel's enemies. "

      This whole sentence annoyed the hell out of me.

  • Video: IDF caught in a lie about Tristan Anderson
    • ProudEthnicCleanser777, at the beginning of the video (around 0:10) you see the soldiers approaching and shooting. The area where they are standing is less than 100 meters from where Tristan was shot. Everyone involved in the investigation knows where Tristan was standing when he was shot, this was not disputed. What *is* disputed, is where the soldiers were. They claimed they were at a farther distance, "at another location on the other side of town" but this video clearly shows they were in the place the protestors described, too close to shoot the weapon, let alone straight at someone.

    • do you know anything about tristan or gabby? have you met either of them, know what they think or feel? did you know gabby's jewish? have you seen tristan?? ever met him or shook his hand, had a conversation with him? he's in a goddamn wheelchair. he is brain damaged because some thug in a uniform on STOLEN LAND shot a tear gas canister DIRECTLY AT HIM and fractured his skull. what the hell is wrong with you? "you can't aim these things"?! sure you can, that's how you kill protestors. it wasn't the first time, and it wasn't the last time.

  • Muslim activists give NYPD chief Ray Kelly the cold shoulder
    • Wrong homphi. Jasser is anti-Muslim because he advocates following, wire-tapping, and otherwise spying on people simply because they are Muslim. If that isn't anti-Muslim behavior, what is?

    • Homphi, why don't you take the time to read the article Alex linked to in his use of the term "anti-muslim" and see who Jasser is.

      An excerpt:

      "Unlike more wild-eyed anti-Muslim agitators like Frank Gaffney (with whom Jasser has collaborated) and Pamela Geller, Jasser comes across as calm, sober and professional. He gained notoriety in 2008, with the release of the Clarion Fund film The Third Jihad, which claimed that a fifth column of Muslim extremists have infiltrated America with the intent of establishing a theocratic state. The star of the film, Jasser helped promote the claim that has ricocheted all over the right—that a single document written by a lone Muslim Brotherhood member in the early 1990s proves that American Muslim charities and advocacy groups are part of a plot to subvert the Constitution and America and install an Islamic theocracy."

      Do you understand this? The man narrated the Third Jihad. The man is a "Muslim" who believes spying on and racially profiling people simply because of their MUSLIM religion is a fantastic model, and one that should be reproduced in other cities.

      Even if you do not consider him anti-Islam, which I do after seeing the Third Jihad, he is absolutely anti-Muslim. Again, he supports spying on people simply because they are Muslim. Oh, and his organization was partly founded by Tarek Fatah, who thinks all Muslim Student Associations should be investigated.

    • So when are we going to sue the NYPD?

  • Reflections After the Harvard One State Conference
  • Barghouthi and Erakat can reach young Americans
  • A boycott of their own? Settlers compiling list of businesses that employ 'Arabs'
    • "If BDS is an ok non-violent tool to fight for a cause, then you can’t complain when the other side uses it also."

      If it's alright to shoot someone in self-defense, then you can't complain when someone shoots you for sport.

    • No, eee.

      "When you say that BDS is a non-violent way to fight Israel and is legitimate, they can say that BDS is a non-violent way to fight the Palestinians and is legitimate."

      Boycott as a tactic is legitimate. That doesn't mean the motivation for boycott is automatically legitimate. Boycotting someone because of their race is wrong, you honestly don't understand that?

      Racism, in any context, is not legitimate. Anti-miscegenation, forced separation, apartheid...these things are not, and will never be, legitimate. How do you sleep at night?

  • Student leader who tweeted about Obama assassination spent last weekend w/ pro-Israel group StandWithUs
  • Police end Wall Street occupation-- for now
  • Romney and Obama battle it out in the primary for the Israel lobby
    • Are you saying that the US has its own legitimate and tangible interest in attacking Iran outside of the framework of benefiting Israel and that all this talk of "do it for Israel" is just pretext? If so, what are these interests, and how are they are own?

  • 'You lost' -- reporters at State say UNESCO vote isolates U.S. from world opinion (and possibly from intellectual property enforcement)
  • Tahrir tells Oakland-- 'Don't afraid, go ahead'
  • Occupy Oakland calls for general strike on November 2nd after police fracture Iraq War veteran's skull
    • I got a call last night from a friend at Occupy San Francisco around 230am. He said rumors had been circulating all night that there would be a raid at the campsite down in front of the Ferry building. I went down there right away.

      The crowd had swelled (usually it isn't as big in the middle of the night) and we were practicing techniques to protect the campsite, e.g., formations and non-violent resistance techniques. I left around 530, after the fear had dissipated and we were confident the camp would be fine. There were representatives from Occupy Oakland who announced the plan for a general strike, and everyone agreed it was a great idea. There will also be walkouts at UC Berkeley (Nov 9th) and SF State University (Nov 15th). Students at City College of San Francisco have set up a donation table to gather supplies for Occupy SF. And I'm currently trying to organize some solidarity efforts on behalf of CCSF Students for Justice in Palestine.

  • Occupy Wall Street movement is making room for Palestinian issue
    • "Analyzing the incredible power of the Lobby is not ‘superstition’. Denying it is."

      The author quotes at length from The Israel Lobby, do you honestly think that constitutes denial of the lobby's power? And just so we are clear, it is the Israel Lobby, not the Jewish lobby. Unlike what the Israeli government tries to do, you should not conflate Judaism with Zionism.

  • UNICEF pressures Israel on child detainees
  • Catch the spirit-- how Wall Street occupiers averted eviction
  • 'Rocks Falling from the Sky': Settlers attack Palestinians and internationals in Dura al-Kara
    • 3e,

      Throwing stones at soldiers with tanks, weapons and riot gear who have occupied your land isn't really on par with throwing stones down upon a village you are angry with because you have yet to steal everything they own. There is no moral or even physical equivalency. You honestly make me sick.

  • Could censorship of children's art prove a turning point?
    • We've been talking about this in class all week. A few students who didn't know much about the I/P conflict went and got an eye-full. I'm so excited that MECA is fighting back. I'm going to check the show out asap!

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