Commenter Profile

Total number of comments: 79 (since 2010-06-04 23:06:21)

Election boycott advocate. If you delegated your power to this government by voting in its elections, knowing you couldn't hold them accountable, you consented to whatever they do.

Website: http://medialeft.net

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  • Poet Joy Harjo responds to boycott demands over Israeli performance by adding a West Bank visit
    • How can she visit the West Bank? Will Israel allow it? They will have to provide a driver, as she would never be allowed to board a Tel Aviv bus. They will have to provide an escort, or she wouldn't be allowed back across the checkpoints. Israel will say where she can go and who she can talk with. Why doesn't she try to visit Gaza? Or given the season, maybe she could try to bring some frankincense, myrrh, and sage to Bethlehem without getting shot by the IDF. I don't think she'll really be visiting the West Bank, any more than going to a casino is visiting an Indian reservation in the U.S.--Foxwoods isn't Pine Ridge.

  • 'Savage' NY subway ads get a make-over-- revealing their true character
    • Unlike many modern people, I still retain a bit of a survival instinct.

      So, if by "civilized man" Geller means, "the one with nuclear weapons," and by "savage," Geller means "the one without nuclear weapons," in any war I'll support the savage, as there's bound to be less fallout and less collateral damage.

  • Ali Abunimah KO's Jonathan Tobin in 'Democracy Now' debate
    • Yes, Phil, at about 7:50 in the video when Tobin interrupts Abunimah to say that Israelis are indigenous to the area, which is absurd. Ali Abunimah would never interrupt anyone unless they persist in trying to talk over him.

      Ali is a sweetheart--one of the most polite, patient, respectful, nonaggressive, and easygoing people you'll ever meet, unless you try to step on him.

      I saw an article a few days ago about a jar of 180 gold coins unearthed by Israeli archaeologists. The coins are not in Hebrew, the area was being fought over at the time by Christians and Moslems, and it was called the Mamluk era, which doesn't sound like a Jewish name to me. Of course the Old Testament says that there had been Jews there earlier, but on the basis of previous habitation we'd certainly have to give the US back to the Native Americans. Bulldozing houses to which Palestinians have held the deed and title for centuries, and moving in Jews from Brooklyn and Russia, is most definitely a foreign invasion and the newcomers can only truthfully be described as foreigners.

    • Saying that the Palestinians are unwilling to share, shows that even Tobin admits that the land belongs to the Palestinians. You can't share something that isn't yours.

  • 'This is awful,' Bush said, coming into Bethlehem
    • "Puppets. Faces. Cheney and Rummy decided everything." --seafoid

      Cheney & Rummy worked for Poppy Bush. Poppy was a Rockefeller man. And when people say "Rockefeller/Rothschild interests," as if Rockefeller-Rothschild was a hyphenated surname, there's probably a reason.

      They have their courtiers and viziers, but the 1% make the decisions, dictate those decisions to their appropriately named "policy-making bodies," like the Trilateral Commission and the CFR, and the candidates present themselves before these bodies to bid for their rulers' approval.

      Decisions are not made at the level of puppets and advisors. A Kissinger can ingratiate himself and be well-rewarded by the 1% for helping them continue to expand their rule, but advisors, consultants, and puppets never have the final say.

      And 1% is inaccurate. There are only two or three countries left that don't have a central bank, a private corporation owned by the Rockefeller-Rothschilds, that controls their economy, and therefore controls their politicians and their military. An accurate assessment of who owns, controls, and runs the world would probably have to put a string of zeroes between a decimal point and the one in 1%. All I can deduce is that they are wealthy and racist beyond anyone's imagination or comprehension.

  • 'Occupy Boston' takes on the the occupation of Palestine
    • If five wars haven't raised the approval rating of this Wall Street-owned government, two or three more won't either. Excessive military expansion is the mark of an empire about to fall.

  • New Dem panic: If Obama's such a great friend, why didn't he go to Israel?
    • The vote is the least important thing in the US. Al Gore won the popular vote in 2000, John Kerry won the popular vote in 2004, but Bush took office both times. The US Constitution says the popular vote doesn't have to be counted and it often isn't. Those with big money behind them don't have to worry about the popular vote. The popular vote is a sham, a mere formality, and it doesn't decide the outcome of elections. link to fubarandgrill.org

    • The JFK, RFK, and MLK assassinations mean that moral US leaders should be afraid to stay in the US.

  • Michael Lerner says We need a Jewish state b/c Jews continue to face vulnerability, hatred
    • Agreed. But not just non-Jews. Many Jews in the US have begun to look at our Jewish families, friends, and neighbors and ask if they are "...the kind of people who would shoot little girls on the way to school, threaten little boys with rape, and bomb defenseless families they have imprisoned in a concentration camp? Are they the kind of people who would steal from the poor and defenseless? Are they the kind of people who look aside while 'never again' is revealed to be just another lying slogan?"

      And in many cases, as distressing as it may be, the answer is yes, they are.

    • Right on, Dex.

      As world population burgeons and the value of human life cheapens, we see more and more genocides and holocausts and more and more millions dying in resource wars and p0wer grabs.

      Unfortunately both Israel and Palestine have more than their fair share of patriarchal pricks like Lerner. If we really want a better world we have to focus on dignity, equality, and justice for all. And all means everyone with no exceptions.

      Germans were drawn to Hitler because the Treaty of Versailles pauperized them and threatened their survival. They looked for scapegoats and found them. How many peoples are we pauperizing today, including our own? Won't these people also be drawn to bellicose leaders and scapegoating?

      The best way to ensure Israel's security is to ensure Palestinian security, not under some phony separate but equal scheme, but in a truly inclusive and democratic way where harm to anyone is treated as harm to everyone. Hillel said that the essence of Torah was not to treat your neighbor in hateful ways. That also happens to be the essence of long-term survival.

  • DNC agenda: 1, jobs, 2, healthcare, 3, 'Jewish messaging'
    • Most US Jews are neither Orthodox nor Zionist. But most Jews who are active in or donate to the Democratic Party are Zionist--their activism is on behalf of Israel, not on behalf of the US.

      Zionism is not compatible with democracy because it is racist. The United States is not compatible with democracy because the government does not allow public opinion to influence policy decisions--only big donors can influence policy decisions. The US is a plutocracy, not a democracy or a republic. It is ruled by the rich, and the rich happen to have a desperate craving for blood-diamonds from the Congo that are distributed by Israel to US politicians as a reward for putting Israeli interests before US interests.

      Blood diamonds are easily concealed and easily smuggled, but always show up adorning the plutocrats and oligarchs when they have their black-tie dinners, fancy balls, and photo-ops. Both Hillary Clinton and Michelle Obama wear blood diamonds. Read Glitter & Greed by Janine Roberts to learn the history.

  • The people demand the return of the old regime
    • In our courts money usually carries the day, and our government is controlled by those with the most money, but in Venezuela the rich are the opposition and despite all sorts of money and weapons from the US, they can't carry the day against the majority.

      In the case of a democratic government where power is vested in the hands of the people, money can only prevail by bombing the country to rubble and killing as many millions of people as possible the way we're doing in Libya. It can't buy elections and courts the way it does here.

      You're right about the slaves being asleep, but I think that's a form of masochism. ;)

    • Thank you, Haytham. It is encouraging that a legal mind agrees with much of my response to Keith below. But we may have some difference in opinion regarding the Constitution.

      I haven't really given much thought to power, other than how to avoid it and how, should it be thrust upon me despite my best efforts, to avoid being corrupted by it. But since the definition of whether or not a government is democratic depends on whether power is located with the government or with the people, the means by which power is located and distributed becomes a central question.

      In a law of the jungle world, power is located and distributed by means of brute force. Where there is the rule of law, power is located and distributed by means of a Constitution. Our Constitution not only didn't vest power in the hands of the people, but it vested power in the hands of the government and sought to ensure that this power would never revert to the hands of the people. To accomplish this, it not only created a Supreme Court, an unelected body with the virtual equivalent of the Divine Right of Kings in that its edicts were not subject to appeal, but it specifically gave the Supreme Court the sole right to interpret the Constitution. That's what made our Constitution meaningless, as the Supreme Court can "interpret" the Constitution to mean the exact opposite of what it clearly says and there is no appeal from such an irrational interpretation.

      Because it vested supreme or absolute power in the hands of a branch of government, rather than in the hands of the people, the Constitution isn't merely flawed, but is inherently and totally corrupt, undemocratic, and counterrevolutionary. The revolution against corporate rule by a King and his trading company, was fought to free the colonies of that kind of tyranny, and it was undermined by a Constitution that reestablished tyranny in a slightly different form instead of ensuring the freedom from tyranny which had been won at the cost of many lives.

      In Venezuela and other countries that have freed themselves from oligarchal tyranny, their Constitutions have to be put to a direct vote by the people. Since their Constitutions actually vest power in the people rather than in government, they meet the definition and requirements of establishing a democratic form of government.

      Since it is power that determines the meaning of a Constitution, a Constitution that establishes a democratic form of government has to vest power in the hands of the people, rather than in the hands of government, and our Constitution did not.

      When President Zelaya suggested that Honduras hold a referendum as to whether the people would prefer a new Constitution that vested power in the hands of the people and freed them from tyranny, the US supported a military coup to prevent it from happening.

      I know I'm going to enjoy reading Wolin's book and that I'll learn a lot from it. But I don't think I'm a masochist or that you are either. A masochist would simply prefer to remain enslaved than to endure any temporary pain or hardship necessary to break free.

    • LOL Not likely. Check this out: link to fubarandgrill.org My brief discussion of our counterrevolutionary Constitution. I'd be very surprised if Wolin has that much of a grasp on the problem. From the reviews, which could be misleading, he appears to locate the problem in subsequent developments rather than in the Constitution itself.

    • Keith, in order to understand why protest voting won't help and an election boycott would, you have to understand the meaning of hope and the meaning of power. It was Derrick Jensen who gave what I think is the clearest explanation of what hope is, a definition that is crucial if we are to be able to distinguish between a democratic form of government where power is vested in the hands of the people, and a tyranny where power is vested in the hands of the government.

      Derrick was explaining what hope is, and although I don't recall his exact words, what he said was something like that when he is home, is hungry, and has food in the house, he doesn't hope he'll have something to eat, he goes to the kitchen and fixes himself something to eat. That's because he has the power to do something, so he does it. But when he is a passenger on a commercial airplane, he is not flying the plane, he has no control over the weather conditions or the way that the plane is piloted, so, because he has no control over the situation, all he can do is hope that the plane won't crash. In explaining what hope is, he also explained what power is. Hope is what you do when you don't have power. When you have power, you don't have to hope because you have control of the situation. Hope may spring eternal, but it is not the same thing as power.

      In a situation like ours, where we have a tyranny instead of a democratic form of government, where power is vested in the hands of the government instead of in the hands of the people, we have no power or control, so we can only hope that our votes might be counted and hope that our officials will represent our interests. In a democratic form of government where power was vested in the hands of the people, we would be in control and we wouldn't have to just hope, we could ensure that our votes were counted and that our officials represented our interests. Our Constitution ensured that we wouldn't have that power or control by specifically vesting power in Congress, the President, and the Supreme Court, and by specifically not vesting power in the people.

      In a democratic form of government, if, as happens to be the case now, the majority of the people were opposed to wars, we could vote to end the wars or vote to direct our representatives to end the wars, and not only would our votes have to be counted, but they could not be ignored because we'd be able to hold our officials accountable.

      In a democratic form of government, voting is the most precious right of all because it is the right by which all other rights are obtained.

      In an undemocratic form of government, or tyranny, voting has less than no value and is counterproductive, because by voting in elections where their votes don't have to be counted and cannot be verified, for officials they can't hold accountable, citizens waive their right to have a voice in government, and delegate their power and authority to government officials whose decisions are likely to violate the rights of their constituents. Many people who voted for Obama hoped that he would end the Bush-Cheney agenda and prosecute Bush and Cheney. Instead he expanded their agenda while protecting them from prosecution.

      Whether Obama is reelected or whether some lunatic like Michele Bachmann or Rick Perry becomes President, the corporations who fund the elections will continue to remain in power and their agenda and that of the military-industrial complex will continue. We shouldn't make the same mistake that the Egyptians made and mistake the figurehead of a regime for the regime itself. After they forced Mubarak to step down, his regime remained in power and there were more protesters arrested, more military trials, and more torture of prisoners than before. The corporations that rule the United States will remain in power no matter who becomes President, so it will be the corporations themselves, not their figureheads, who will determine how their agenda is continued. People can vote for whoever they want, but even if they get an overwhelming landslide for their candidate, their candidate can still concede as Kerry did, or the Supreme Court can nullify the election and seat their opponent as happened with Gore in 2000. But even at the local level, the popular vote is meaningless, because even if a good person is elected and attempts to do good things for their community, the federal government can defund state programs, forcing the state to defund county and local programs, and with our economy in desperate straits, the money to do good things simply wouldn't be available. Hierarchy functions from top down, not from bottom up.

      It is important not to confuse hope with power. You can hope that your vote will be counted and that the people in power will get the message. But you don't have the power to ensure that your vote is counted or to ensure that those elected will take it into account, you can only hope that they might. That hope may be comforting, but it is not even the tiniest remnant of any vestige of a shadow of democracy, it is what people do when there is no democracy at all and they have no power whatsoever. Only if we had a democratic form of government where power was vested in the hands of the people instead of in the hands of the rich, would it be possible to get corporate money out of politics, ensure that our votes were counted, and force our representatives to represent us.

      92% of ballots in the US are "counted" secretly by computers called central tabulators and are totally unverifiable. These computers are easily programmed to allocate the votes by percentage, so that, for example, 55% of the votes are given to candidate A, 45% to candidate B, and the remaining 5% distributed among the minor candidates. So it really doesn't matter how many people vote or who they vote for--the only thing that matters is who owns the corporation that programs the central tabulators.

      Voting has had no impact whatsoever since 39 slave-owning plutocrats drew up a Constitution that established a plutocracy and ensured that the popular vote would not be the final say in US elections. Voting will continue to be worthless until we get a new Constitution that establishes at least minimally democratic form of government that vests power in the hands of the people instead of in the hands of the rich. Like Stalin said, it doesn't matter who votes, what matters is who counts the votes. And if they don't bother to count your vote, like the millions of votes that went uncounted in 2000 and 2004, or if they count your vote towards a candidate you didn't vote for, you have no way to prove it and no power to do anything about it.

      What does matter is the turnout. That's the consent of the governed that legitimizes a government. That's why corporations spend billions of dollars getting out the vote and donate almost equal amounts to both major parties. No matter who wins, they want the government to be able to say that there were sufficient numbers of votes that the government can claim the consent of the governed. When there is an election boycott and fewer than 20% of the people vote, a government can make no such claim, and it certainly cannot claim that 80% of the public is apathetic.

      Apathy is when people vote despite knowing that their votes don't have to be counted, aren't verifiable, aren't the final say, and do not determine policy.

    • Thanks for the book rec, Haytham -- just reserved it at the library and will read it ASAP.

    • Hear, hear, Haytham! Well said!

      It really doesn't matter who wins the election. Whoever it is will have to obey the dictates of the military-industrial complex or be assassinated, and cater to the wealthy and the big corporations or risk losing the big donations their political party needs in order to survive.

      I don't believe in LOTE voting either, but I certainly don't believe in voting third party or casting protest votes when we know beforehand that only one of the Two Evils has any chance of winning. I think we should boycott the election, but political party operatives accuse me of being against voting. I'm not against voting any more than I'm against breathing, but for breathing to sustain life there has to be oxygen and for voting to be meaningful there has to be a democratic system of government, something we don't have. link to fubarandgrill.org

      Isn't it about time that the people stopped being fooled by regime changes and started to demand democratic forms of government?

  • Libyan triumph exposes the west's double standard for Palestine
    • Thank you, Brewer.

      Here's a picture of the beautiful city of Tripoli before the barbaric NATO bombing:

      link to t.co

      Incredible how ignorant and misinformed most people in the west are, but of course that's due to corporate-owned media and government disinformation.

      Here's a more accurate news source:

      link to globalresearch.ca

    • That's wrong. It is not at all evident that Gaddafi has lost or will go or that the NATO-led Al Queda terrorists have triumphed.

      Well, unless you believe the mainstream media or can see it from your house.

      Lizzie Phalen reporting from Libya says otherwise: link to libya360.wordpress.com

      As for those scenes from "Tripoli," they're fake too, filmed in Doha:
      link to youtube.com

      Remember the WMDs in Iraq? Remember the babies thrown from incubators in Kuwait? Along with bombing civilians, NATO is waging an all-out media disinformation campaign. And you keep getting fooled again and again and again.

    • The US is the world's biggest military power but it happens to be broke and it requires a lot of oil, coltan, uranium, copper, and other minerals, most of which come from Africa, to produce and use its weapons.

      Recolonizing African has been the purpose of the US military command in Africa, called AFRICOM. AFRICOM's headquarters was in Europe because no country in Africa would allow it.

      If Gaddafi falls, Africa falls. The US will build the biggest military base in Africa, possibly in the world, AFRICOM HQ, in Libya. Pity poor Egypt, if Israel should decide to secure its border and Egypt is simultaneously invaded by both Israel and the NATO-controlled military in Libya.

      Under Gaddafi, Libya had achieved the highest standard of living in Africa. There were no homeless, there was no poverty, health care and education were free, and he spent billions to build a man made river to bring fresh pure drinking water to Libyans--a system that NATO has deliberately bombed.

      I hope Gaddafi prevails, because if he falls Africa will know darker days than the Congo under King Leopold. And with US control of most of the world's rare minerals, no other power will be able to resist US domination.

      The depths of this tragedy has yet to unfold but if NATO prevails it will be much worse than Iraq.

      It is interesting, however, that despite all the NATO bombing, and the numerous media reports that Gaddafi had fled the country or was captured or killed, he is still there and still defending Libya. Like Fidel Castro, who survived hundreds of US assassination attempts, Gaddafi has the support of most of the Libyan people because they know what life is like in other African countries and in Europe and the US where there is enormous poverty, widespread homelessness, and millions of desperate people.

      Reports from people on the ground in Libya differ greatly from the disinformation spread by the mainstream media.

      Those who support US and Israeli imperialism want Gaddafi to fall. I do not.

  • Activist files suit against Netanyahu supporters who attacked her in Capitol
    • Just as Jews were not able to obtain justice against Nazis in the courts of Nazi Germany, I really doubt that a Jew can obtain justice against Zionists in the Zionist courts of the United States. Politicians are elected and judges appointed here on the basis of their loyalty to Israel, not to the U.S. or our Constitution. I expect the Capitol Police investigation to turn out to be nothing more than a cover-up. If there was a semblance of justice in this country, Rae's attackers would have been arrested on the spot. They knew, as the state of Israel knows, that they can act with impunity and the US will stand back and do nothing.

      Rae Abileah and CODEPINK continue to mistakenly think that they can work within our totally corrupt system instead of opposing it. I'm sorry that they will have to learn otherwise the hard way, but I hope they will learn.

  • Tent protests panic Netanyahu (and just might shake foundations of occupation)
    • The crucial pressure on De Klerk didn't come from boycotts, protests, or outside influences, although these things certainly helped. He was forced to reassess his position when there was a successful election boycott in South Africa with only 7% turnout. Once De Klerk saw that he only had 7% support and that his regime could no longer claim to be a legitimate government with the consent of the governed, he had no choice but to begin making concessions.

      I doubt if such a thing could happen in Israel (or in the US for that matter), but I will persist in advocating the only proven nonviolent solution I know of. Only when a government sees that it lacks the support of the people, can it be forced to change. As long as people vote, no matter who they vote for, the regime holding the election can continue to do whatever it wants with no fear. Nonviolent protests can be suppressed, violence can be met with greater violence, and economic boycotts can be weathered with the financial support of the big multinational corporations. The only tactic that cannot be dealt with is when a government can't succeed in getting out the vote.

    • It is usually a mistake to blame a system on its chief spokesperson. Egyptians forced Mubarak to step down but his system remained in place. If Netanyahu is forced out will the Israeli economy be any less reliant upon blood diamonds from the Congo and global arms sales? If not, then the same policies are likely to prevail no matter who is in charge.

      Here in the US voters flip frantically back and forth between Republicans and Democrats, hoping for change despite it being obvious that both parties rely on the same corporate interests for funding that they couldn't get without betraying the interests of their constituents. If an economy is based in large part on war crimes, its leaders will always be war criminals.

      Remember all the people who thought that Obama might bring about change from the Bush agenda, only to find that he expanded upon that exact same agenda? The Egyptians who thought that once Mubarak was gone the detention and torture of civilians would stop?

      In capitalist countries, the political agenda is set by the wealthiest and most powerful multinational capitalists like the Rockefellers and Rothschilds. They let the ruling political parties know which candidates are most acceptable to them and will therefore get the biggest donations, and which are unacceptable and won't get any donations. And whoever gets the most money can dominate the airwaves and get the most votes.

      A protest that isn't political isn't a protest, it's a temper tantrum.

  • Daily Kos, anti-semitism, & the zombie peace process
    • In a way that's similar to saying that guns don't kill people, people kill people.

      While it is true that a car cannot have a religion, if a car were to be manufactured only in a state that called itself a Jewish state, by a company that only hired Jews and refused to sell its cars to non-Jews, I'd call it a Jewish car. And I'd sure as heck boycott it. ;)

    • Yes, those screaming that Muslims are trying to impose Sharia law on everyone, are fruitcakes. EXCEPT in the case of an Islamic state that imposes Sharia law on all citizens of that state. In that case it is just a statement of fact.

    • I don't let others define me or my thinking, Annie. For example, I define "science" as the business of taking things out of context so as to misunderstand them better.

      If a nation state is a state which coincides with a nation, then a religious state would be a state that coincides with a religion. As much as I would like Israel to be a political or nation state, it persists in defining itself as a Jewish state. And the Apartheid that the State of Israel practices as a matter of law, is Apartheid based upon whether or not a citizen is Jewish, which is logical for a Jewish state but wouldn't be logical for a democratic state. A democratic state is another definition omitted in that list, and it means a state where supreme power is vested in the hands of the people rather than in the hands of sovereigns, representatives, a bureaucracy, or any other group with more power than the people.

      I did give you an example of a person who wasn't white or Boer supporting Apartheid in South Africa, the author of the Sullivan Principles.

      BDS is boycotting a state that is commiting the crime of Apartheid, and also boycotting entities that facilitate that crime. But the crime is not white Apartheid because the state of Israel does not define itself as a white state or base its version of Apartheid on whether or not a person is white, the way that South Africa did. Israel defines itself as a Jewish state and bases its version of Apartheid on whether or not a person is Jewish.

      Indeed, Zionists who support Jewish Apartheid in Israel are quick to call supporters of BDS anti-Semitic, so the usual defense is that we aren't boycotting Jews, we're boycotting Apartheid. To the extent that we don't boycott Jews or anyone else who doesn't facilitate Apartheid, that is correct. But to the extent that advocates of Israeli ZionistApartheid call BDS supporters anti-Semitic, they admit that Apartheid in Israel is considered to be, by its supporters and facilitators, Jewish Apartheid. It's purpose is to purify the Jewish state of non-Jews and to privilege Jews over non-Jews. As hard as we've tried to separate the religion from the state, the state itself refuses to do so. That is not our fault.

    • I'm not sure I understand you, Annie. Are you saying that a state that calls itself a Jewish state is not a state because a religion isn't a state?

    • Some western countries did abandon white Apartheid. The US didn't do so until after the South African election boycott, when the Apartheid regime could no longer be described as a legitimate government with the consent of the governed, and of course Israel never did abandon South African Apartheid--at the time the regime fell it still had Israeli support.

      The way that capitalism works in the US and Israel, two of the world's biggest arms dealers, cannot be properly analyzed without using the term war profiteers. It would be like trying to analyze the psychology of those who commit or command military crimes against humanity without using the term war criminals. Capitalism itself is amoral and no analysis of capitalism can be useful if it doesn't take that into account. If you reject a phrase because it is moralistic, would you also reject human rights because they are also moralistic?

    • That's interesting, Annie. Are you in the US? Many Jews in the US benefit from white privilege without ever giving it a thought.

      But it isn't about defending (which I certainly wasn't doing) or condemning whiteness, or Jewishness, it is about condemning any Apartheid system that privileges some over others regardless of individual merit. It doesn't matter if people are white or Jewish or anything else, as long as they don't infringe on the rights of others.

      In return for being categorized as white, rather than as colored or mixed, the mainstream Jewish community in South Africa supported white Apartheid.

      When people benefit from a discriminatory system without being aware of it, it is called "deliberate ignorance." People don't seek the truth because it wouldn't be to their benefit to do so. But closing one's eyes and ears to the suffering of others, whether or not we benefit from that suffering, is the Pastor Niemoller fallacy. We cannot help but be aware of our own suffering--it is our empathy for others that makes us human.

      Calling South African Apartheid "white Apartheid" did not condemn all whites, it accurately described a system of Apartheid based on skin color that privileged whites over non-whites. Calling Zionist Israeli Apartheid "Jewish Apartheid" does not condemn all Jews, it accurately describes a system of Apartheid based on religion that privileges Jews over non-Jews.

    • Whereas the term white Apartheid didn't grate on your ears, and didn't give you enough pause to seriously consider your answer instead of posting a throw away comment?

      Could that be because you self-identify more as Jewish than as white?

      I used to have the same reaction, by the way. I had to start paying attention and to unlearn the racism I'd been taught.

      Both terms are equally applicable to the systems they describe. Neither one is more racist than the other. If one sounds racist to you, so should the other, but neither one is racist, both are just the truth that we deserve to know as much as anyone else.

      Sometimes our learned, habitual, and ingrained reactions can keep us from seeing the truth. Most of us don't object when we see written condemnations of discrimination against women in Islamic cultures, but react defensively when we see condemnations of discrimination against women in Orthodox Jewish culture. But some of us have gotten past that defensive reaction and support the right of Jewish women to equality. Some of us don't think Jewish women should have to ride in the back of the Orthodox bus any more than Rosa Parks should have had to ride in the back of the segregated bus. We think women should have as much right to remarry as men, and the right to pray wherever men pray. There was great astonishment in the early part of the Egyptian revolution when the crowds in Tahrir square were so great that it became necessary for Muslim men and women to pray together in the same space at the same time. That hadn't happened before, yet the world didn't end.

      The world won't end if Palestinians and other Arabs and non-Jews enjoy equal rights with Jews in a single democratic state either. But the continuation of Apartheid will never lead to any good end. It is a hateful system based on racism and discrimination and should never be tolerated no matter who benefits or who suffers.

      Saying that even valid comparisons are odious because it's not the same when we do it, is part of the problem. If the system is odious, it is odious no matter who does it.

    • Tree asked if you would object to the term "white Apartheid," Annie, and you said no. But South African Apartheid was a construct of the Boer government, it wasn't supported by all South African whites, and certainly not by all whites worldwide, so why wouldn't you object to calling it white Apartheid as being racist?

      Here's what I wrote:

      The Zionist Israeli government grants or denies different and unequal rights solely based on whether or not an individual citizen is Jewish. That’s Apartheid, so even if it is done by Israeli Zionists, it is Jewish Apartheid.

      In South Africa Apartheid was based on skin color rather than religion. In Israel it is based on religion because Israel calls itself a Jewish State. When an Israeli state practices Apartheid, it is Israeli Apartheid. When a Zionist state practices Apartheid, it is Zionist Apartheid. When a Jewish state practices Apartheid, it is Jewish Apartheid.

      To clarify, as Tree attempted to do, in South Africa Apartheid was based on skin color rather than religion. It was used by whites against non-whites and was clearly racist in nature. It was in fact, white Apartheid, which is apparently why you don't object to the term. Yet by your logic, calling it that would be racism against whites. Does calling it white Apartheid or not objecting to the term white Apartheid mean that you are perpetuating a false meme? Of course not. People deserve the truth, and while the truth is South African Apartheid did not represent all whites, it was still white Apartheid, Apartheid used by whites to oppress non-whites.

      If calling Apartheid used by some very racist whites to oppress blacks, "white Apartheid," makes sense to you, why doesn't calling Apartheid used by some very racist Jews to oppress non-Jews, "Jewish Apartheid," also make sense to you?

      Of course there are also non-Jews who feed off Jewish Apartheid, just as there were some non-whites who fed off white Apartheid--the author of the Sullivan Principles comes to mind as an example. Just because some non-whites supported and/or profited politically, financially, or otherwise from South African Apartheid doesn't mean it wasn't white Apartheid.

      If it doesn't offend you and you don't consider it racist to call Apartheid perpetrated by the Boer South African government, some whites, and some people of color, for the purpose of profiting in some way by privileging whites and oppressing people of color, "white Apartheid," then it shouldn't offend you and you shouldn't consider it racist to call Apartheid perpetrated by the Zionist Israeli government, some Jews, and some non-Jews, for the purpose of privileging Jews and oppressing non-Jews, "Jewish Apartheid."

      Welcome to humanity, Annie, where we are all people, regardless of historically suspect labels or categories, and no group is entitled to more human rights than another based on myths of exceptionalism.

    • Jaynot, capitalism is not based on logic or on consideration of whether or not the ends justify the means. It is based solely on profits.

      For example, if paying lower wages can increase profits, capitalists seek to pay lower wages. When US capitalists found that they could pay lower wages by busting unions and outsourcing jobs, that's what they did. Then they found that they could pay even lower wages by utilizing prison labor here in the US. If lower wages are good, then no wages at all, meaning prison, concentration camp, or slave labor is best. The social consequences are not calculated when capitalists add up the bottom line.

      I'm not certain of the timeline, but I do know that when the US-installed Shah was in power in Iran, most US businessmen and politicians were happy to do business with Iran. Once the Shah was overthrown an Islamic government took over. Since Islam forbids the charging of interest, this would not sit well with US financial interests.

      I don't agree that US politicians kiss up to Israel because of the power of the lobby. I think they do what is in their own best fiscal interests. Even if they theoretically don't know exactly what is in their investment portfolios, their financial managers are selected for the ability to obtain good returns on investments. How could politicians possibly not know that when their investment portfolios increase in value every time they vote for war, there must be a lot of defense stocks in those portfolios? The Democratic Party applauded just as enthusiastically for Bush as for Netanyahu because during the Bush administrations their investment portfolios doubled and tripled in value.

      The US doesn't want to do business with the Islamic world any more than it wants to do business with Fidel Castro, Hugo Chavez, or Gaddafi. The US wants to overthrow all governments that don't put US interests before the interests of their own people, in the same way that US politicians put their own interests before the interests of their constituents. When you put limits on capitalism, it is called socialism. When you don't put limits on capitalism, it is called predatory capitalism or fascism. The business interests (including the military-industrial complex and multinational corporations) that bankroll and control the US government aren't capitalist, they're predatory capitalists. The Rockefellers have always used the US military, funded by taxpayers, as their own personal army in the cause of defending their global business interests. How many countries have we invaded, how many foreign leaders have we overthrown or assassinated, and how many brutal dictators have we installed in the interests of United Fruit, Standard Oil, Exxon-Mobil, and Chevron?

      And what the hell is a peace profiteer?

      There's an old fable about a king who became ill and nobody could cure him. Finally his wise men told him that the only way he could be cured was if he wore the shirt of an honest man. The king's minions scoured his realm but couldn't find a single honest man until somebody told them that there was one honest man living in a cave at the top of a high mountain. They climbed the mountain but when they got to the cave they found that the man didn't own a shirt.

      A quick google search found this definition on wikipedia: "Profiteering is a pejorative term for the act of making a profit by methods considered unethical." There is nothing unethical about peace.

    • Annie, when you say that you "see a distinction at least idealistically between the US government and the capitalist class," do you mean theoretically rather than idealistically, i.e., that while the US government and the interests of the capitalist class have, in reality, totally merged so as to be indistinguishable, fulfilling Mussolini's definition of fascism, in theory this should not be the case?

      You (and Max, despite his snark and condescension) are correct that support for Israel serves the interests of the capitalist class well, particularly with regard to Middle East oil, the blood diamond trade in the Congo, and the global arms trade. and Jaynot is wrong on that point.

      Being anti-fascist, I am always disappointed when struggles against neo-colonialism and imperialism do not join the greater struggle against neoliberalism and capitalism. It is tragic when the oppressed are sold on consumerism and materialism and seek money and possessions, just as the wealthy do, instead of fighting for equality, dignity, respect, and justice for all. My personal goal isn't to exchange one set of capitalists for another, but to oust all oligarchies and establish socialist governments of, by, and for the people everywhere. Ending oppression doesn't mean trading one set of oppressors for another, the way we trade Democratic and Republican corporate panderers back and forth with no obvious benefit to the majority, but creating governments that actually vest power in the hands of the people and put people before profits.

      I support BDS because it is aimed squarely against the capitalist interests of Apartheid, imperialism, colonialism, and war profiteering, but I haven't forgotten that ending Apartheid in South Africa did not end the economic oppression of the South African poor. Janine Roberts' book, Glitter and Greed, explains exactly how that happened, and it is no coincidence that the interests of Israel and the United States coincided with the interests of the South African Apartheid regime, and that the US and Israeli governments supported South African Apartheid for as long as they possibly could.

      Those who believe that the US is a democracy or a republic rather than an unabashed tyranny where politicians serve the interests of business and do not allow public opinion to influence policy decisions, are easily misled by CIA propaganda, and the results can be disastrous, as in Iraq, Afghanistan, and now Libya, where the US, Israel, and their allies wantonly kill civilians and destroy a country's infrastructure for the purpose of securing its natural resources. The first step in solving any problem is to understand the nature of the problem. As far as I can tell, most people in the US and many Palestinians have yet to reach that level of social consciousness.

    • So what is Zionist and Israeli Apartheid based upon, if not on being or not being Jewish?

      The Zionist Israeli government grants or denies different and unequal rights solely based on whether or not an individual citizen is Jewish. That's Apartheid, so even if it is done by Israeli Zionists, it is Jewish Apartheid.

      In South Africa Apartheid was based on skin color rather than religion. In Israel it is based on religion because Israel calls itself a Jewish State. When an Israeli state practices Apartheid, it is Israeli Apartheid. When a Zionist state practices Apartheid, it is Zionist Apartheid. When a Jewish state practices Apartheid, it is Jewish Apartheid.

      I do detest the Israeli Zionist practice of pretending that they represent all Jews, even Reform Jews whose marriages they don't recognize and whose rabbis don't have the same rights as Orthodox rabbis in Israel, and I detest the way Israeli Zionists conflate Israeli Zionism with Judaism by calling anyone who criticizes Israeli Zionism anti-Semitic. But since Israeli Zionists won't allow any distinction between criticism of Israeli Zionists and hatred of Jews, the two completely different things become one. I think Israeli Zionists do that intentionally, and while it may or may not be good for Israel, I really don't think it is good for the Jews. It certainly isn't good for those who think of themselves as anti-Apartheid Jews.

    • It was proven in court that the US government was involved with the assassination of MLK. They gave him a bad check and never intended to let him cash it. The condition of people of color in the US has continued to worsen, it has not improved, not even under the Uncle Tom President.

      "it is imperative that you believe things can get better." Really, Annie? The right belief system is imperative? And if I act to try to make things better without adhering to the proper belief system, things won't get better? And if you think lovely thoughts and dream beautiful dreams, things will get better? That no matter how many innocent people have been tortured and killed, revolutionaries must always respond with nonviolence because self-defense isn't permitted to the oppressed?

      When Palestinians responded with nonviolence, Israel criminalized nonviolence. When people of color responded with nonviolence in the US, the government increased policy brutality and imprisonment to levels previously unimaginable.

      Some Jewish Israeli Zionists really are glued to their mindframe forever. It is a belief system that they consider mandatory and imperative. Most of them served or served in the military and can't say that they don't know about the oppression of Palestinians. The settlers not only know, they are in great part gleefully responsible.

      There's an old POV documentary which still might be available from PM Press called Maria's Story. Okay, just googled and found it: link to secure.pmpress.org You really should watch it.

      Positive thinking and magical thinking are what got Obama elected. Since then the wars of aggression based on lies have expanded and new ones begun, the economy has further declined, and he not only dashed the hopes for change of his followers into the pavement, he has been grinding them under his expensive shoes as he giggles maniacally with his fellow millionaires.

      The US and Israel are two of the world's biggest arms dealers. Their primary business is genocide for profit. Both nations were founded on genocide and have continuously pursued that policy since their founding. They don't dream of peace, they spend trillions of dollars on weapons on mass destruction because they depend upon war and the murder of innocents to sustain their economies. They aren't concerned with justice, only with market share.

      It is not only possible to move forward without magical thinking, it is the only way that real progress has ever occurred. Apartheid wasn't ended in South Africa because of dreams, it ended though boycotts.

      I too engage in positivism to a certain extent, as I believe along with all opponents of neoliberalism, neocolonialism, imperialism, capitalism, fascism, tyranny, plutocracy, and oligarchy, that we WILL win. But I'm not foolish enough to think we'll do it by dreaming or that our common enemy will become our friend. Patriarchy and hierarchy have taken away the power that we need in order to become, once again, as we were for tens of thousands of years, an ecologically viable species. The planet is not a possession given to men for their pleasure and profit, it is our only habitat and our only sustenance.

      I highly recommend that you get hold of Maria's Story if you can, and also that you read the book Glitter & Greed by Janine Roberts. Along with weapons, one of Israel's other major exports is diamonds. But there are no diamond mines in Israel. The diamond mines are in Africa, primarily in the Congo, and the diamonds are obtained through deliberate genocide. Why do you think that Israel never opposed Apartheid in South Africa and even sold nuclear weapons to the Apartheid regime? Where do you think Michelle Obama's and Chelsea Clinton's diamonds come from? Why do you think Members of Congress gave Netanyahu so many standing ovations?

      Those who believed in Obama kept saying that if we give him more time, change will come. And as they stalled for time, every day his drones continued to murder innocent women and children in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and now Libya. Positive thinking, if it is in the form of believing that things will get better in the future without action in the present, is deadly. If you were a young mother in Afghanistan, clutching your children as bombs fell all around you, how much time would you give Obama to turn you and your babies into the skeletal ashes of collateral damage? If you were one of the innocent people being tortured right now in Obama's secret prisons, knowing that you are totally innocent and knowing that the Obama administration is also fully aware that you are totally innocent but is continuing your torture so that bloated corporations can profit from the secret prison and torture defense contracts, how much more time would you give Obama?

      Zionists don't just attack, censor, and ban people who support human rights for Palestinians, they also murder. Rachel Corrie's parents are pacifists just like Rachel was, and every day they spent in Israel seeking justice through the courts, I feared for their lives.

      Do you remember the Biblical story of Sodom and Gomorrah? There were good people in the corrupt city. Maybe not fifty, but maybe forty. Well, maybe not forty, but maybe thirty. Okay, maybe not thirty, but perhaps twenty. And when it turned out that there were only a small handful, they were saved, on the condition that they leave and not look back, but the city itself had to be destroyed.

      When the Israelites had forsaken their God and started worshiping a golden idol (money, gold, diamonds), God wanted to destroy them but was persuaded to give them another chance. But not even God's own positive thinking could change them. I know you believe that Jewish Israeli Zionists are capable of change, but how many more thousands of years do you think it would take?

    • Hard to picture creative mobile people when I have a brother living in an illegal settlement surrounded by sexist, racist, low I.Q. bigots like himself who went there from Brooklyn to get free housing. Oh, they do make crafts and music, but so do many non-Jews all over the world.

      I do follow and support Anarchists Against the Wall and other Israelis calling for an end to the brutal occupation and illegal siege, but most mainstream Israelis consider them traitors and the Israeli government would love to strip them of their citizenship.

      Since WWII was within my lifetime, I'm not going to say, as many Jews did in Germany, that these are good civilized people so it can't happen here. It is already happening and has been for decades.

      Positive psychology is just magical thinking. The guy who invented it also invented many of the torture techniques used in Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo, and other prisons. It's nothing but a fancy name for denial.

      As for multi-faceted and varied, you can't have a multi-faceted and varied Jewish state any more than you can have a democratic Jewish state. You either have equality, dignity, respect, and justice for all, Jewish or not Jewish, or you don't. Israel doesn't. Israel has Apartheid.

      I'm not the one fearing revenge. I don't think that Arabs will rise up and take revenge on Israel any more than Jews rose up and took revenge on Nazi Germany. It is the Israeli Zionists who fear revenge and think they have to continue the oppression of Palestine until the whole world rises up against Israel. They may not remember their history, but I've studied it and I do.

      Instead of looking for a way out of "this mess," Israeli Zionists are digging themselves deeper and deeper into it, such as with the new law attempting to criminalize support for BDS. When I saw pictures of the wall, I could only visualize the Warsaw Ghetto. When I heard about the Mavi Marmara massacre, I could only think of how the Nazis killed anyone who tried to smuggle food to Jews in the concentration camps. I was steeped in that history all my life and couldn't blot it out.

      And now Israelis are protesting about high rents and cottage cheese? While Israeli F16s flying menacingly over Gaza and could begin strafing it with another Operation Cast Lead at any time, not because of anything the Palestinians have done, but because they're getting global support and the old Zionist Hasbara is wearing thin?

      One of the many reasons I was viciously attacked, censored, and/or banned from Democratic Party websites like DU, dKos, and the chimp, was for asking Zionists how they'd like it if the US right wing succeeded in making the US a Christian nation. They couldn't and wouldn't answer, so they attacked me. It's a valid question. Particularly since many of them are reform Jews who wouldn't even want to live in Israel.

      The regulars on dKos call themselves Kossacks with good reason. The Zionists on dKos and similar websites are today's Cossacks and they're proud of it when they should be ashamed.

    • You're right, of course, Annie, "The responsibility of a holocaust is never with the victims because there is no excuse for it."

      My problem is that I'm having a bit of difficulty distinguishing victims from perpetrators. According to Zionists, the disregard for the human rights of Palestinians, is due to the fact that the Zionists responsible were victims of similar treatment many years ago. To break the chain we have to stop repeating it. In this case the onus is on Israel to stop treating its Palestinian neighbors in ways that Israeli Jews themselves would find hateful. I'm not religious any more, but I was for long enough to learn that some Orthodox Jews believe that when Jews stray from Torah, the consequences don't come from their neighbors seeking revenge, but from Ha-Shem punishing Jews for straying from Torah.

      Judaism is not the only patriarchal religion that believes in an omnipotent deity who puts out contracts on disfavored people and gets favored people to carry out the hits. I think if an omnipotent deity wanted somebody dead, they'd be dead, and there would be no need for human hitmen to do the job. Zionist Jews are experts on debating 'what the meaning of "is," is.' It doesn't violate the Commandment not to kill if you're just following orders from the deity who said not to kill. Neighbors aren't neighbors if they aren't Jewish. And similar absurdities.

      There are many cases of people who were abused as children growing up to become abusers themselves. But there are also many cases of children who break the chain and don't repeat the pattern of abuse. Zionist Israeli Jews should have broken the chain--I can't do it for them no matter how much I'd like to. All I can do is point out that they're repeating a pattern that is likely to end badly, and to do everything in my power to stop them--if for no other reason than just to try to save myself, my children, and my grandchildren from the almost inevitable consequences of their inability to break the chain.

    • When I saw the words "treacherous money printers," I immediately thought of the Federal Reserve, not of Jews. The criticisms of the Federal Reserve, corrupt greedy bankers, and of our monetary system appear to me to be valid. However while many of the people responsible for our current monetary system and many corrupt greedy bankers are not Jewish, the suggestion that "treacherous money printers" is code for "Jews" reminded me that with one exception the position of head of the Federal Reserve appears to have been reserved for Jews. So if the shoe fits, wear it.

      Having been born and raised Jewish myself, I used to be extremely careful to separate Jews from Zionists, and to limit my advocacy of BDS to products produced from illegal settlements. Lately, however, I've begun to realize that the illegal settlements couldn't exist without support from the state of Israel, so I think boycotting Israel is legitimate, particularly since the US neglects the needy here at home to send unneeded aid to Israel. And as for separating Jews from Zionists, I've made it very clear that I'm anti-Zionist and I think that any Jew who respects human rights should do the same. Those who don't must be assumed to be Zionists.

      I recently had a brief exchange with a noted Jewish Zionist on Twitter. When I mentioned that Zionists had no respect for human rights, his response was to joke, "Perhaps so, but you should see us dance the rhumba." I replied that I'm old enough to remember WWII when we didn't consider human rights to be a joke, and how soon we forget. This is incredibly important to me, as I was brought up to believe that even a group that is widely hated and discriminated against, as we Jews were at the time, is entitled to human rights. Now that it is the Palestinians who are subjected to hatred and discrimination, Zionists seem to feel that the old values no longer apply. Okay, if human rights aren't necessary for Palestinians, then they aren't necessary for us either.

      I remember how angry I got when somebody at work years ago said that he'd been "Jewed down," when he'd been overcharged for something. I thought that was a hateful and bigoted sterotype. Now, every time I see videos of Israelis uprooting or burning Palestinian olive trees and lemon groves, I think back to all the money I sent to plant trees in Israel and realize that I was Jewed down--by my own people who I'd foolishly trusted.

      I was raised to fear anti-Semitism and the possibility of another Holocaust. Now I think that even if I should become a victim of it myself for having Jewish blood, it won't be the goyim who are responsible--not even the Anders Breivik types, who are overtly fascist while remaining fiercely Zionist--but Jews like that Zionist on Twitter who think that human rights are a joke. Like my parents used to say (and I apologize if it is another sterotype--I think it came from an old radio program), "T'ain't funny, McGee."

    • Has the smirkingchimp begun allowing discussions which mention Israel again? If so, I would assume that they either censor comments that are not pro-Zionist, or allow their Zionist team to make coordinated vicious attacks on anyone who isn't 100% Zionist, as they did before their ban.

      Years ago I got so fed up with the censorship, personal attacks, and Hasbara on Democratic Party websites like DU, dKos, and the chimp, that I stopped reading even the ones that hadn't banned me. Anyone who checks out the blogroll here can find plenty of websites that aren't ideologically opposed to human rights.

  • U.S. State Dep't to American flotilla passengers: Drop dead
    • Yes, Obama and Hillary will be immensely pleased if the US activists on the flotilla are killed by Israel. I suspect that many of these activists are already on Obama's secret assassination hit list of US citizens he doesn't like, and that Israel will be richly rewarded if they carry out his contracts.

      Since the Magna Carta was signed in the 13th Century until now, no legitimate leader has assumed the right to kill their own citizens without due process. Obama is much more barbaric than any other world leader, and the billions spent on propaganda to demonize them and absolve him should not be allowed to dominate the mass media.

      But it was when Obama renounced the Nuremberg Principles and adopted the Eichmann defense, that those who commit crimes against humanity should not be prosecuted if they were just carrying out orders, that his true Zionist/fascist colors were revealed.

      While I agree that it is better to be martyred than to continue to exist in a fascist country, I don't expect people in the US to care. Capitalism fosters a selfish materialism that precludes things like compassion or conscience.

      I agree with Israel that the flotilla is a provocation. I've heard that snake handlers sometimes provoke the snakes into expending their venom by giving them objects to attack until the snakes have no venom left, when they become safe to handle. I wish we could send an unmanned flotilla for Israel to vent its murderous wrath on. If I was a billionaire I'd get a large submarine and figure out some way to surreptitiously get the activists off the boat and replace them with lifelike dummies so that when the IDF finished firing and began boarding, they'd find nothing but mannequins full of bullet holes. Then let's see them try to say that they were being attacked and acted in self-defense.

  • U.S. Flotilla to Obama: Protect Us From Israel
    • Since the FBI is on a witch hunt against peace activists, I would assume that all US and foreign peace activists are on Obama's assassination hit list and he will pay Israel for each one killed. When Israel kills peace activists, they are just doing contract killing for Obama. The US is the world's biggest arms dealer and peace is the greatest threat to the US economy. Peace would also devalue the stock portfolios of most US elected officials. Since most other jobs were outsourced, war is not just our business, it is almost the only business the US has left.

      Gandhi once wrote to Hitler to ask him to close the concentration camps, erroneously assuming that Hitler might have a shred of humanity in him. Warmongers, arms dealers, imperialists, capitalists, and Zionists care only about money. That's why BDS is the most effective way to break the siege. But Israel is apparently paying astronomical sums to artists who are willing to sell their souls to the Apartheid devil and perform in Israel. Ambitious, materialistic people are easily bought.

      Israel is thinking logically the way that any corporation would. Israel is another global arms dealer, just like the US. Nothing is more threatening to the bottom line of war profiteers than peace. And since the US and Israel happen to be in the business of killing, what I call the genocide-for-profit industry, how else could they react when threatened with peace than by killing people?

  • Our demands (designing placards for a demonstration)
    • I tried those arguments on people who self-identify as Progressive Democrats and peace activists, but are basically Zionists. They just went blank and refused to respond at all. Between American exceptionalism and Jewish exceptionalism, they cannot make the connections between what they claim to support and what they actually support, or what they find acceptable when Israel does it to Palestinians but would not find acceptable if the US did it to them.

      In order to depart from Torah and treat their neighbors in ways that they themselves would consider hateful if done to them, but still call themselves Jews, Zionist Israeli and U.S. Jews had to become schizoid. First they redefined "neighbor" to mean "a Jew who lives near you" so that they could discriminate against non-Jewish neighbors, and then they redefined "Jew" to mean somebody who supports Israel's violations of Torah.

      When confronted with the fact that their positions lack logic, schizoids don't reconsider their positions, they just stop talking to you. At least that's been my experience.

  • We planned the Purim party, then my partner actually read the Book of Esther...
  • Violence, hypocrisy and resistance
    • The same techniques used by the Bush administration are being used to an even greater extent by the Obama administration. Four of the top Democrats in the elections since 2000, Joe Lieberman, John Kerry, Hillary Clinton, and Barack Obama, are among the strongest proponents of the "Bush agenda" and the biggest defenders of Israel. In other words the Bush agenda is the Democratic Party agenda.

      I'm getting really tired of people blaming Bush for everything that the Democrats do. If those same Democrats hadn't put Bush in power by refusing to strongly oppose him and by conceding to him before the popular votes were even counted, and then voted for everything he wanted, it might be halfway reasonable to blame Bush. The fact is that the oligarchs who run this country are bipartisan colleagues, an oligarchy, a ruling class that does not have the interests of ordinary Americans at heart, and despite a small handful of Democrats and Republicans who shill for their parties by pretending to listen to their Constituents, neither party allows public opinion to influence their policy decisions. Only Israel can do that.

    • Here's a press release I just got in my email:

      FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

      Three Scandinavian ISM activists trapped by curfew in Awarta village following settlers' murder

      Today the village of Awarta, near Nablus, is facing the second day of a severe curfew imposed by the Israeli military, following Friday morning’s murder link to english.pnn.ps of a settler family in the settlement Itamar. Three ISM activists–Cinda, 23, Chad, 25, from Sweden, and Cissy, 53, from Norway–are currently trapped in the village. Anyone caught stepping outside of their house is arrested. Soldiers have said that they’ll maintain the curfew until they’ve apprehended the settler family’s murderer. The army hasn’t presented any evidence that the murderer was from Awarta, and villagers have said to the ISM that they strongly doubt the murderer was even Palestinian as the settlement is so heavily guarded it would be impossible to break in.

      Soldiers are beating people and continuing their house raids: destroying houses from the inside, cutting off electricity, and polluting the drinking water by throwing mud in the water-tanks. 30 homes were occupied by soldiers last night. Computers and phones have been destroyed and money and property were stolen by the soldiers. In the last two days soldiers have been throwing sound grenades inside and outside the houses, and shooting in the air. The ISM activists may be arrested soon, but they intend to stay as long as possible because they feel their presence improves the behavior of the soldiers, and villagers have asked them to stay.

      UPDATE:

      As of 12:30pm the ISM activists are locked in a room with the children of the family that they’ve been staying with while soldiers search the house. It’s difficult for the ISMers to confirm information they receive as they’re not allowed to leave the house, but they’ve heard that 100 village men were taken into detention at the school for interrogation a few hours ago.

      For more information:
      Cinda, ISM activist inside the village: +972 59 741 4023
      ISM Media Office, Ramallah: +972 59 760 6276
      -------------------------------

      Link to source: link to palsolidarity.org

      March 14, 2011

      ------------------------------------------------------------------

      The fact that the fence alarm didn't go off, leads me to believe that there was no break-in and the murderer was somebody from within the community itself.

  • NYU group cancels event set to feature Israeli Navy Seal who attacked the Mavi Marmara
    • @jon s As every responsible parent has to tell every spoiled brat sooner or later, I don't care what the other kids do, you are responsible for what you do.

    • Thank you, Sumud. If there's an entity with less credibility than the Israeli government, it would have to be the New York Times.

      While the sayanim trying to spread hasbara here and in many other forums, know that they are lying, there are many Israeli Jews and diaspora Jews who are too credulous to ever check things out for themselves and really believe the lies they are told.

      But it only takes one experience of the truth, such as in the many first-hand accounts from Israelis who visited Gaza fearing that the Arabs hated them and wanted to kill them, as they'd always been told, only to find that the Palestinians were warm and friendly and wanted only for Israel to stop its oppression, for people to learn to question and begin to look with their own eyes.

      The more lies Israel tells, the greater the chance that even the most credulous will accidentally stumble upon a truth and begin to understand that they've been lied to all along.

    • Yeah, and the IDF statement that they'd found ammunition aboard of a caliber that the IDF didn't use, only it turned out that they not only did use it, but used it aboard the Mavi Marmara.

      And the absurd story that they'd boarded armed "only with paintball guns," when it turned out that they'd not only had the types of weapons usually issued to Navy seals, but also personal sidearms, which were used in the point blank assassinations.

      So many, many, many lies. I'm reading the Goldstone Report and there are a lot more ridiculous alibis that Israel tried to put over which were disproven by the facts on the ground. It has gotten to where if the Israeli government said that the water was wet, I'd have to suspect that maybe Ha-Shem had created another miracle and the water had been dry that day. ;)

    • His friends grandmother? Many of my relatives DIED in, and did not survive the Holocaust. Not my friends' relatives, my OWN relatives.

      How do you think I feel when Zionists in Israel make death threats against a Holocaust survivor for renting to Arab students, knowing that my relatives in Nazi Germany weren't allowed to rent from Germans and were herded into ghettos and concentration camps? Because a Holocaust survivor doesn't want to treat his neighbors the way the Nazis treated him, the Zionists threaten to kill him?

      Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel was correct in telling Netanyahu that he's a known liar and that Israel has no more credibility in the world. Germany acknowledged the Holocaust and paid compensation, but Israel denies what it is doing to Palestinians and to humanitarian relief efforts right now.

      Nobody is more scarred because a friend's grandmother survived the Holocaust than I am scarred because my own relatives did NOT survive. Your pitiful attempt to play on the sympathy for Holocaust survivors, when Zionists themselves have no sympathy for Holocaust survivors who respect human rights, dignity, and equality for all, is disgusting.

      For many years, as I attempted to defend human rights, I was attacked by Zionists calling me anti-Semitic or a self-hating Jew. Eventually I began to realize that Zionists cannot reason, they only know how to lie and attack. The more that Zionists smeared decent Jews with vile epithets, the more decent Jews around the world because aware of the true nature of Zionism. You don't do yourself or Israel any good with lies, smears, and false appeals for sympathy.

      If you want people to respect you, follow Torah and do not do to your Palestinian neighbors, that which was hateful when the Nazis did it to Jews. The comparison is not only valid, it is inevitable.

    • So, hophmi, you think the Nazis were correct to kill anyone who tried to smuggle food into the Warsaw Ghetto, because it was a political rather than a humanitarian act?

    • Was this the guy who killed a US citizen, come to brag about how Obama also thinks it is okay to assassinate US citizens, as long as they're Muslim?

  • Why did a Democratic senator from California block Egyptian pro-democracy resolution last year?
    • Gosh, is NPR still around? I used to listen to them back before they started airing corporate "non-ads" that sounded just like ads to me. Come to think of it, they're very progressive, as they must have decided that corporations are persons long before the Supreme Court did.

      Once they started openly admitting they relied on corporations for part of their funding, I stopped listening because I knew they could never say anything that might offend a corporation. Everything I want to listen to is offensive to corporations, which pretty much limits me to podcasts by people without corporate sponsors.

      Old geezers like myself remember the days before the media iron curtain, before the last leftist talk show hosts were fired or assassinated. When the curtain fell I didn't have a computer, so I listened to the BBC, CBC, and other stations on shortwave radio for about ten years. No way I was going to subject myself to the right wing propaganda of corporate media, whether it is a tool of the Democratic Corporate Party or the Republican Corporate Party. Imperialism raises my blood pressure and disturbs my digestion. I truly believe that corporate media is more than a small factor in the declining life expectancy here in the U.S.

      Perhaps you could consider getting one of those new-fangled audio book players for your commute, Chaos? I don't know if they carry the newest and most controversial books, which are mostly all I read, but they must have some older audio books that aren't designed to desensitize people to violence or promote materialism. That way you can catch up on the news you want when you get home by following human rights activists on Twitter, and avoid the corporate "news" that will only make you sick with its obvious ignorance, lies, and omissions.

    • "....jeopardize U.S.-Egyptian cooperation on a range of sensitive national security issues" probably means that Feinstein's defense contractor husband had a contract selling arms to the U.S. government to sell to Mubarak.

      Of course the Democratic Party leadership, a/k/a Hillary Clinton, may have reminded Feinstein that the Mubaraks are among Hillary's dearest friends.

  • On the eve of the 'march of a million people'
    • I think this video is also important, because it shows the wide variety of people involved in the Egyptian revolution, but I don't know how to embed it here:

      A rough translation somebody posted as a comment on YouTube is:

      I thought this needs to be translated but it’s way too hilarious in Arabic since? he sings it in rhyme .. Alaa Mubarak, who demands royalties on every business he commissions, And they say he repented but he’s stuffing his face with meat (kababb lol), Guess It’s his daddy’s money. Money does what it wants, While people became dirty poor, No to Mubarak No to Sulieman, To hell with tyranny. We want a civil state, Not for sects or religious ideology (x2), Not for sects or for bandits!
      soulibmbm"

  • ‘It’s a revolution of the people, not of the Ikhwan, not of Baradei, not of Soliman, not of Facebook and Twitter, no this is a people’s revolution’
    • I show that video to everyone suffering from Islamophobia with regard to Egypt. Unlike many diseases, it is curable--one good dose of reality and it goes away.

  • American intifadah: We shake off the neocons
    • Don't you mean neoliberal Zionists?

      I'm not sure what a liberal Zionist is, or if there is such a thing, but I'd guess it is something like a moderate racist.

      Nobody should ever be willing to negotiate from a position of weakness.

      The war on terror and smearing people as terrorists doesn't impress me. America's founders were terrorists who pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor to a violent struggle against the legitimate king. And they were nowhere near as sorely oppressed as the Palestinians are right now.

      Israel doesn't want the Palestinians to choose their own leaders, but I don't happen to like the leaders that the Israelis have chosen. I don't like AIPAC's efforts to deny Americans a free choice of leaders. I don't care how an American official feels towards Israel, what concerns me is if they care about America. And it looks to me as if the more an American official cares about Israel, the less they care about America.

      Israel, a state that has nuclear weapons, shoots children for throwing stones. If the U.S. doesn't veto the next UN resolution against the illegal settlements, will Israel nuke the U.S. in retaliation? How can any Jew who supports the hotheaded, pigheaded, racist state of Israel, call themselves liberal?

      The release of the Palestine Papers has just begun. There's much more to come. If the fools who attacked the Al Jazeera office think that they can silence the international media, they're wrong. That's something that even Israel and the United States can't do, no matter how many people they arrest, persecute, and torture.

      Nobody should be allowed to become a politician without having studied Newton's basic laws of physics. For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. Progress is only made when people stop beating their heads against walls and start tearing down the walls.

      Israel: Tear down that wall!

  • Israelis target Macy Gray with racist diatribes after she agrees to play Tel Aviv (and who are the “assholes?”)
    • From the picture, I can see that Macy Gray is a very attractive person. But somehow she seems to have thought that just because people do disgusting things to others, doesn't mean that they might treat you the same way. I really hope she has better common sense in choosing relationships than she has in selecting performance venues. If you know that somebody has been violent towards others, in my book it is a clear signal to avoid them, not to assume that they'll be different with you.

  • You know the lobby's in crisis when Beinart gets microphone from Oren and Wiesel is trying to revive Zionism
    • Great catch, Psychopathic god. Michael Moore drove home that same analogy in "Bowling for Columbine" when he filmed a parent standing in front of one of the military missiles his company makes, asking where kids get the idea that things can be solved by violence.

      It's always, do as we say, not as we do, and there's always a double standard because it's different when the rich and powerful commit mass murder.

      I used to admire and respect Elie Wiesel, but the Holocaust survivor who braved death threats to rent to Arab students in Israel is much wiser. Never treat others in ways which would be hateful if done to you, or were hateful when done to you.

      The US and Israel kill innocent civilians, and then ask why people hate them. They aren't human enough to know that nobody likes having their babies, grandparents, and neighbors killed? Maybe they would be, if they weren't dependent upon corporate funding, because corporations aren't human and they don't recognize human suffering--they see only profits.

      Zionism = intolerance = racism = fascism.

      Had Israel learned the lesson of the Nazi Holocaust, and forsworn theories of racial superiority, Israel would have a right to exist. But if Holocaust survivors who are tolerant of non-Jews aren't safe in Israel, nobody worthy of a "Holy Land" is safe in Israel, so it has no right to exist.

    • I just gave them my definition: Zionism is a violation of Torah because Zionists treat Palestinians in hateful ways.

  • Available Now: The Goldstone Report: The Legacy of the Landmark Investigation of the Gaza Conflict
    • I've ordered the book and am looking forward to it. Since my local library system has been devastated by budget cuts, I'll probably donate it to the library after I read it.

      This evening I was thinking about how my parents and their generation were always talking about relatives who died in The Holocaust. I used to wonder why they hadn't sponsored those relatives and brought them here to the U.S. Could it have been that they didn't like them?

      Both my parents were the fully assimilated, U.S.-born children of immigrants, and had nothing but contempt for immigrants. Immigrants didn't speak English, didn't understand American ways, and were generally a nuisance. They dressed funny and tended to be very critical of American ways. Chances were that if you brought them here, instead of thanking you for saving their lives, they'd immediately start criticizing you because your kosher housekeeping wasn't strict enough, because you went to a Conservative or Reform temple instead of an Orthodox synagogue, because you drove your car on Shabbos, because you had non-Jewish friends, or other signs of decadence. Many of them would have been no different from today's intolerant ultra-Orthodox Israeli Zionists. They wouldn't have fit in with a modern American lifestyle.

      Besides, it would have cost money, and if you had barely struggled your way out of the ghetto and into middle-class suburbia yourself, it could have sent you right back to where you'd come from. This is just speculation, but I think there might be a grain of truth in it.

  • 'Daily Kos' banned me and smeared Rachel Corrie, but we can't give up on the Democratic Party
    • I wish I knew who said this, but I saw it on Twitter the other day and it bears repeating. A liberal is somebody who feels that our system is broken and needs to be reformed. A radical is somebody who knows that our system is working exactly the way it is supposed to.

      The bureaucracy we call a government claims legitimacy because approximately half the electorate vote. But it operates on behalf of the wealthiest 2%, so that means that about 48% are voting against their own interests.

      There are many reasons that people vote. Some vote to do their civic duty, that is, to show their submission and obedience to the oligarchy. Some vote because they think that casting uncounted, unverifiable ballots for candidates they can't hold accountable, is a precious right or a voice in government, which it is not. Some vote because they think that if they don't vote, the bad guys will win, and are always astonished to find that the bad guys always win whether or not they get the popular vote. We have basically two types of candidates, good guys and bad guys (this includes females) and they're like good cops and bad cops. They're doing the same job, working for the same boss, playing on the same team, and have the same objectives. They just have differing techniques for achieving their common goals.

      Third parties and independent candidates are no better than the two major parties and their candidates, as they too are seeking power within a corrupt system rather than opposing that system. You can't reform a bureaucracy from within--bureaucracies are formed and designed with the purpose of ensuring that change cannot come about from within. You can't reform the Mafia, the KKK, or the military by joining it and agitating from within. The same thing goes for our government. The U.S. government is a plutocracy, an oligarchy, a capitalist, colonialist, imperialist, fascist bureaucracy that is opposed to democracy. This country began with genocide of the Native Americans, grew wealthy through slavery, and exists today only by overthrowing democratic governments and using our military to enforce the exploitation of other countries by big corporations for private gain.

      Our mainstream media in the U.S. is owned and controlled by the big corporations that keep the Democrats and Republicans in power, and our alternative media, for the most part is owned by the same people. The big sites get big because they start out with the unlimited funding available to fascists and they have at their beck and call the thousands of people on the payroll of the p0litical parties.

      I've been banned from most large websites. I don't bother to read them. I subscribe to the organizations and websites that interest me. Democrats, liberals, progressives, and reformers are the biggest obstacles to change because their identities are based on the false assumption that fascism can be reformed and become democratic. If it was democratic, it wouldn't be fascism. And for all their blathering and apologetics, any system that tortures people it knows to be innocent, wages wars of aggression it knows to be based on lies, and kills millions of people as a means of creating jobs, is fascist. Not headed towards fascism, not almost fascist, but totally, thoroughly, and irredeemably fascist.

      You can't reason with fascists. Calling you names and banning you from their websites is the digital version of stomping on your face with their jackboots, which is what they'd really prefer to do. Fascists don't tolerate dissent. Sure, they'll tolerate a little bit, between elections, as a way to draw people in, but once they get the joiners, they eliminate any potential leaders who might detract from their goals.

      As Richard Parker pointed out, "Both parties are well to the right of any non-rightist party anywhere else in the world." In his classic book, "Indispensable Enemies," the late Walter Karp pointed out that the job of the Republicans is to represent the political rights, and the job of the Democrats is to co-opt the left so that there can't be any effective opposition to the political right.

      Some people understand how to bring about change. Those who are refusing to fly until and unless TSA harassment stops, understand. Those who support BDS understand. And those of us who don't vote understand. The rest, the "good Americans" like the "good Germans" are blindly granting their consent of the governed to whatever the government wishes to do. If you don't give up on them, they will eventually destroy you. What is it that you want or need from them that you cling to them so desperately no matter how stupid and ignorant they may be? Do you want acceptance? To be part of the mainstream majority?

      Because you were banned, Jim Harris, somebody thought that you had it in you to be a dissident. I hope they were correct. I hope that you will develop from somebody "inside the tent pissing out," to someone "outside the tent pissing in." Because as long as you want to remain inside the tent, you're of no real use to those of us in the global struggle for democracy--you'll never bring that tent down as long as you're inside it.

  • Wait-- Zionist uses choke-hold on Netanyahu protester... a woman... in the USA?
    • Zionist violence delegitimizes Israel. Apologists for Zionist violence delegitimize Israel. What sticks in people's minds is the guy putting a young woman in a chokehold, and the guy ripping up the sign with his teeth like a wild animal. Zionists give the world the impression that Jews are nothing but violent, amoral, fascist brutes. Thank goodness for these young people showing the world that Jews can be moral, ethical, nonviolent, humanitarian, and peace-loving, but, of course, only if they're not Zionists.

  • Video of activists disrupting Netanyahu at Jewish Federations General Assembly
    • Kosher? Fake Jews (Zionists) don't really care. They flaunt the external trappings of Judaism, but lack the morality, humanitarianism, and obedience to Torah of real Jews, who would never treat their neighbors in ways that would be hateful if done to them.

      Nothing delegitimized Israel more than the death threats against the elderly Israeli Jewish Holocaust survivor who rented to Arab students. If Zionists are going to kill Jewish Holocaust survivors, Zionists are not Jews, they are Nazis plain and simple.

  • Kufur Qassim, Rachel Corrie and premeditated forgetfulness
    • For years I'd been seeing the carefully constructed Hasbara lies about the big mound of earth that Rachel Corrie had supposedly climbed up on and then slipped down behind so that the murderous bulldozer driver couldn't see her. Now we see the photos and there was no mound of earth. The ground is flat. And there is no pool of dirt, unless you count the cesspool of dirty lies of the Israeli murderers. When I was a child growing up in the USA, I thought of making Aliyah as some of my relatives had. But how can you "go up" when Israel is a stinking pit of bigotry, Apartheid, and lies? For those who judge things by whether or not they are good for the Jews, Israel is not good for the Jews. By now most of the world hates Israel and it has the chutzpah to call itself a Jewish state, as if Jews would treat their neighbors, the Palestinians, in ways that they themselves would deem hateful if done to them. There are very few Jews in Israel--only the voices of dissent can be said to follow Torah. The rest are following their leaders and dragging world Jewry into another Holocaust, if not nuclear Armageddon.

      The coward behind the screen should not be allowed to hide his face. It is the state of Israel that should hide its face in shame. Many thanks to Hatim Kanaanah for a moving and thoughtful description of a farce.

  • Reports from the Corrie trial in Haifa
    • Having the IDF soldiers testify behind a screen at the Corrie trial is silly. If they wish to hide their identities, they could just wear burqas in court.

  • Israeli representative attempts to influence local co-op board decision
    • Personnel matters cannot legally be decided openly in the usual corporate system.

      In a cooperative, personnel matters such as individual salaries, wages, the duties assigned to each specific job, evaluations, and hiring and firing decisions, cannot be made secretly. That's to ensure that there is no bias. If you don't want people to know how much you earn, what your job duties are, and why you were promoted or fired, you don't work for a cooperative.

      A private corporation's board can meet secretly in executive session, citing privacy regulations, for the purpose of giving one manager a big raise while not giving the same raise to other managers with better performance ratings. A cooperative cannot do that. All member-owners, including worker-member-owners, are entitled to know what decisions are made and the basis for those decisions, even with regard to personnel matters. That's to prevent board members from hiring their nephews or nieces, giving them a lot of raises and promotions they don't deserve, and voting to enable other board members to do the same for their nieces and nephews.

    • It does make me wonder.

      Since a closed meeting with the full board would have violated the by-laws, why couldn't the meeting have been opened to the member-owners, the public, and the media?

      Perhaps Witty is right. There are some issues that are so sensitive that they require confidentiality. With most cooperatives, however, both personnel and fiscal matters must be decided openly rather than secretly. As for politically sensitive issues, they would require even more openness.

      But potsherd may be on to something: "Bribes and blackmail always work best behind closed doors." Lustig may, for all we know, have offered Gibboney a lot of cash in a secret bank account in an offshore tax haven, plus a large home in an illegal settlement, along with similar offers to other board members (to be conveyed privately) in return for ensuring that the board doesn't vote for BDS. Or it may have been nothing more than a Clinton/Lewinsky-style amorous tryst. It's likely that nobody will ever know for sure except the conspirators themselves.

      But that is precisely why cooperatives don't usually conduct business secretly. If member-owners aren't allowed to participate, they aren't really member-owners, just customers like those of any hierarchical corporation where a board of directors excludes the public from decisions made on behalf of their shareholders. The idea behind cooperatives is to give member-owners a stake and a voice that they wouldn't have under the usual capitalist enterprise system.

    • It is an honor for Sam Gibboney to meet with a representative of the Israeli oligarchy, and the Co-Op member-owners should respect Israel's recognition of their board president's high status. By refusing to speak with the Israeli Deputy Consul General, the Olympia Co-Op demonstrated a total disregard of and contempt for elitism and a subversive populist orientation. Port Townsend shouldn't make the same mistake. Power to the privileged!

  • Are the settlers civilians?
    • If "there are no civilians in a war zone," and Israel considers the Palestinian territory it illegally occupies to be a war zone (an excuse it uses for killing peaceful protesters like Rachel Corrie), then nobody in such war zones, including settlers, is a civilian.

  • Martin Indyk on the peace process: hoping against hope
    • It makes me think of a typically dysfunctional family in a patriarchal culture.

      The bigger brother keeps hitting his little sister and making her cry. Each time she runs to her mother and her mother says, "Play nicely children."

      And then after the brother has hit her a dozen more times, the little girl puts up her arm to block the next blow, and the boy runs to their mother and says, "She hit me!"

      At this the mother comes running, grabs the little girl by her hair and drags her to her room, slapping her all the way, saying, "I told you to play nice--you have to respect your brother!"

      This is the same thing, played out on a national scale.

  • 'Firedoglake' is progressive-- just don't talk about Palestine
    • It won't do them any good. The change is going to come from within Israel. The 600 Israeli Jews who signed up to smuggle Palestinian women and children into Israel for a breath of freedom, even though they're risking arrest by doing so, represent the tip of a very large iceberg. For every person who is willing to risk arrest for a cause, there are hundreds, probably thousands, who support that cause but for personal, health, job, family, or other reasons, are not willing to risk arrest.

      Only 15% of American Jews are Orthodox, but the best estimates I can find say that only 25% of Israeli Jews are Othodox, so despite having power in government, the right-wing is not a majority in Israel either.

      The Knesset vote on the conversion law has been postponed until January, but it can't be postponed forever. The Israeli government appears to be committing suicide. The more support there is for the human and civil rights of Palestinians, the more desperate the Israeli right wing becomes to label humanitarians as "Arab lovers" (this has the same meaning and connotation that the KKK used to intimidate southerners who supported civil rights for African-Americans with the term "n-word lovers"), or "not real Jews."

      Once the conversion law passes, and it will, and American Jews who have been supporting Israel all their lives and defending Israeli government policies find out that they are no longer entitled to the right of return, which will be only for Orthodox Jews, the entire game will change.

      Those so-called liberals and progressives who keep telling themselves that it won't happen, fail to recognize that the government of Israel is neither liberal nor progressive. They're the same people who still support Obama no matter what he does. It is easy to ban or stifle the conversation, but history continues whether or not anyone is allowed to talk about it on gatekeeper websites. Once we were slaves in Egypt, but only some of us have ever gotten out of de Nile.

  • Eden Abergil responds to critics: 'I can’t afford Arab-lovers to ruin the perfect life I live! I’ve got no remorse and no regrets.'
    • Arab lovers? Is that like n-word lovers? Because I sympathize with the plight of the Palestinians, now I have to worry about the Zionists burning a Magen David on my lawn? Gevalt!

  • Talk to me, Harvard, what are you feeling?
    • This is interesting. When the United States is forced by world opinion to stop openly funding a regime guilty of human rights violations, Israel usually steps in and carries our water. The US and Israel have been partners in crime, so the US can't issue sanctions against Israel. But if world opinion forces the US to stop funding Israel, there's nobody to step in and be our proxy. So our government is going to resist sanctions.

      Divestment is taking off because Israel is not a stable democracy and they're too risky for any fund that has already taken hits from risks gone bad.

      But the boycott part of BDS should really take off shortly after the November elections in the US, when the Knesset is likely to vote on a proposed conversion law which would make 85% of American Jews, those who are not Orthodox, "honorary Palestinans," no longer entitled to the right of return. Among Conservative and Reform Jews, even the fiercest defenders of Israel are horrified at realizing that at the same time that Israel's actions are arousing global anti-Semitism, the Israeli government could deny non-Orthodox Jews a haven from the consequences.

      Whether or not a reason is given, no sane investment fund would keep money in a country that appears to be committing suicide.

  • Hedges's 2001 account of attack on Gaza boys anticipated Goldstone Report
    • Born and raised Jewish, I became an atheist at age seven, when I decided that no god worthy of the name would favor some children over others. I'm 70 now and I still think that is true.

      It looks to me as if the Israeli government and its defenders are trying to bring on another Holocaust. Maybe they think that they'll survive and be eligible for reparations. Maybe they believe that's the way to get their Messiah to appear. Whatever it is, I will suffer, my children will suffer, and my grandchildren will suffer for the hubris of others. As we are Americans, I guess we deserve it because our country supports Israel. But as an individual, I support human rights and I wish I wasn't going to be subjected to collective punishment the way the Palestinians are. With any luck, I'll die before it happens.

  • After killing Ziad al-Jilani, Israel now seeks to question his American widow (where is Congress?)
    • No, it isn't.

      Two relevant books are Agents of Repression by Ward Churchill and Secret Agenda by Linda Hunt.

      Although Hoover's FBI was originally opposed to Nazis, he later changed his mind and assisted in the various operations like Paperclip that brought approximately 1,600 Nazi war criminals to the U.S. by falsifying or covering up the records of their war crimes.

      If you haven't noticed, the Obama administration has also renounced the Nuremberg Principles and adopted the Eichmann defense, saying that those who commit crimes against humanity because they were only following orders, should not be prosecuted. This is only natural, as the orders they are following today are his own.

    • Correct, RoHa.

      Both Israel and the US have to do the bidding of BP.

      These days military empires run on oil, and they need the oil to wage the wars to get the oil to wage the wars to get the oil to wage the wars to get the oil, etc., etc. It's an endless loop from which neither Israel nor the US can escape.

      Israel and the US have already committed to getting Iran back for BP, so they're going to need even more oil than they're currently using to fuel their overt and proxy resource wars in Asia and Africa. The final steps have already been taken, disseminating propaganda that Iran wants or is hiding WMDs and forcing a resolution through the UN.

      That's why Obama can posture, but he can't really crack down on BP for the Gulf of Mexico oil catastrophe, because in fighting the AfPak war for the oil pipeline halfway around the world, Obama needs oil to supply the troops, and when Afghanistan repels the invaders as it has always done, he will need oil to evacuate the troops.

      BP, the wealthiest corporation in the world, calls the shots, and the US and Israel follow orders.

  • Report: Obama to call for independent inquiry of flotilla raid
    • Are they using the Mafia again?

    • Israel murdered 34 U.S. military personnel aboard the USS Liberty with impunity.

      Israel murdered Rachel Corrie, a U.S. citizen, with impunity.

      Israel murdered Furkan Dorgan, a Turkish-American U.S. citizen with impunity.

      It seems to me that Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton have no choice but to support Israel unquestioningly, because if they didn't, and the Israeli Mossad decided to assassinate them for not being sufficiently supportive of Israel, our U.S. State Department, Congress, CIA, and military are too closely tied to Israel to consider any form of retaliation or protest.

      The U.S. President and Secretary of State apparently support Israel of their own free will, but they may be similar to hostages with Stockholm syndrome because they really don't have any choice in the matter as far as I can see.

      --Mark

    • "...an independent commission, under UN auspices..." is an oxymoron.

      The U.S. can veto any UN findings or resolutions it doesn't like.

      If it is under UN auspices, it isn't independent.

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