Commenter Profile

Total number of comments: 110 (since 2014-11-29 00:27:59)

rhkroell

researcher/writer

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  • Vic Mensa's searing piece in 'Time' on Israeli oppression is prefaced by clunky disclaimer re anti-Semitism
    • You are right to request clarification, Annie. The phrasing in my latest post (above) is tortuous, to be sure. Rereading my post, I find it (almost) impenetrable. Marcel Proust writes — by comparison — limpid prose.

      My assumption that contemporary American society stereotypes African-American rappers as antisemitic is daft, no doubt. When I endeavor to convey the message: “I realize I write from a position of white privilege,” I seem to suggest that all African-American hip-hop artists are antisemitic, somehow, without even realizing it.

      My thinking, like my writing, is muddled and misinformed, apparently. I forget that Matisyahu is a beatboxer who chills with African-American rappers. I’m just way out of touch. Sorry.

    • Thanks for sharing this great music video, Annie. I agree that it is unfortunate that Vic Mensa (or his editor) might feel compelled to preface an essay on “oppression and abuse” witnessed in Palestine/Israel by an African-American rapper only after inserting a conspicuous antisemitism disclaimer at the beginning of the essay.

      I would prefer that Mensa (or his editor) did not feel obligated to include this disclaimer. But since Mensa identifies himself as a black rapper (as opposed to a member of any other demographic group), it is understandable that he (and/or his editor) might feel that his (supposed) antisemitism — that’s an accepted stereotype, I would think — would be all but taken for granted by many of his readers in the U.S. and Israel.

  • Israeli soldiers shoot 3-year-old Palestinian child in the head during West Bank military training exercise
    • “i use these lists all the time for archival purposes. ie; last week i was searching for an attack in nablus from a few years ago. i had the general date. so i checked 2 of kate’s lists from that week, placed “nablus” in the search — and there it was!” — Annie [Jan. 2, 2018]

      Thank you, Kate — repeated, emphatically, zillions and zillions of times — for providing Mondoweiss’s readers/contributors/supporters with such great links to articles videos for our collective examination, research and analysis!

  • 'Curricularizing Israel'-- the Hebrew program in suburban Chicago schools
    • At the Birthright Israel events, organizers spike the punch with 200-proof grain alcohol, the same "stimulant" that is used at fraternity house toga parties in the U.S. But in Israel, they may also make crystal Zio-meth available to those youths who really want to experiment with something just a little more lethal.

    • “While the rest of the school was singing Yasser Arafat’s praises ……” Jill St. Cu

      “jill, what school offers classes singing arafat’s praises, singing palestinian songs? is this what the jewish students need to be protected from? really? because i don’t believe you. . . . ” — Annie

      Me neither.

      Zionists’s’ children are (apparently) encouraged to cultivate a taste for hyperbole/overstatement. This is unfortunate. They should be taught “critical” and/or what Karl Popper called “creative” or “inventive” thinking (UNENDED QUEST, rev. ed., New York, Routledge, 1992, p. 50) — along with foreign language skills and some foreign language “context” (if they want to learn a second or third language) — and not a “politicized [foreign ideology] curriculum.”

      Later in his intellectual autobiography, Popper writes of his childhood in early 20th-century Austria: Many Jews “did merge with the population: assimilation worked. Admittedly it is understandable that people who were despised for their racial origin should react by saying that they were proud of it. But racial pride is not only stupid but wrong, even if provoked by racial hatred. All nationalism or racialism is evil, and Jewish nationalism is no exception” (p. 120).

  • Israel issues BDS blacklist against 20 organizations-- 'badge of honor,' Munayyer says
    • "not sure what country lets its sworn enemies enter? Iran ? North Korea ? Saudi?"

      When compassionate Jews (and Gentiles) engage in forms of non-violent civil disobedience -- like economic boycotts -- to encourage the current Zionist regime to discontinue its ancient Maccabean ritual of committing war crimes and crimes against humanity -- they are not acting as the "sworn enemies" of Israel.

      These BDS activists are doing God's work. They are working to "save" Jews -- not this current outlaw Israeli regime -- but God's "chosen people," the Elect.

  • Haaretz smears the Tamimi family to counter worldwide solidarity with 16-year-old Ahed
    • “Israeli children share their thoughts on Arabs” [in a YouTube video posted by Annie].

      Yes, “it’s like a disneyland theme park — killing is so fun!” — Annie

      Mondoweiss readers need to remember that the fox-hunting crowd in Israel do not see Palestinian “foxes” as human, Annie. The children of the Zionist sporting set are trained to recognize the mysteries of “earth-stopping,” for example. They need to know that if an Israeli gamekeeper fails in blocking the burrow of a “fox” during preparation for the hunt, the incompetent blighter should be severely reprimanded. That’s the sort of thing they are taught from birth.

      You can’t expect Israeli children to be sympathetic to the “foxes” being hunted. Their knowledge of the chase is derived chiefly from their early reading of the novels of R.S. Surtees and stories of “good sport” they’ve viewed on the Israeli MSM. Israeli children will naturally sympathize with sportsmen like John Jorrocks, Master of Fox Hounds in the novel HANDLEY CROSS; or MR. JORROCKS’ HUNT, rather than the “foxes” being chased to ground by the Israeli gentry or IDF commandos.

  • A cultural oasis in the besieged Gaza Strip: Support the 'Edward Said Public Library'
    • What a great idea. Thank you for sharing this great story and the link to the Edward Said Public Library fundraiser webpage.

      There is no 20th-century scholar I respect more than Edward Said. He is a quite literally a must read . . . and I mean everything he wrote! Even his memoir, OUT OF PLACE, is distinguished by his extraordinarily cogent reasoning and eloquence. Every page is riveting.

  • Ahed and Nour Tamimi charged with assault, Nariman Tamimi charged with incitement for broadcasting encounter on Facebook
    • “i use these lists all the time for archival purposes. ie; last week i was searching for an attack in nablus from a few years ago. i had the general date. so i checked 2 of kate’s lists from that week, placed “nablus” in the search — and there it was!” — Annie

      Thank you, Kate — repeated, emphatically, zillions and zillions of times — for providing Mondoweiss’s readers/contributors/supporters with such great links to articles videos for our collective examination, research and analysis!

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  • Jewish activist who counseled Lorde on BDS gets the full 'kapo' treatment in the Israeli press
    • “Is all nationalism a cancer?” -- Jack Green

      Is civic nationalism, for example, necessarily cancerous? That is, does civic nationalism exhibit abnormalities characteristic of cancer? Undoubtedly. But it is not necessarily malignant. That’s the crucial question.

      Ethnonationalism — i.e. Zionism — is, however, patently malignant. Ethnonationalism/Zionism > or = racism, hence Zionism is indubitably a malignant cancer.

    • @ Annie: I understand your concern, Annie. But I would change your "little israels" to: "itsy-bitsy, Lilliputian Israels" and add: "full-spectrum dominance" is a wholly fraudulent concept. Strategically, these tiny little Zionist fortresses would be very vulnerable to "terrorist" attacks in the very near future (in my view). Just so you know my opinion on this particular topic.

    • Thanks, Annie! I appreciate you correcting my mistaken attribution of dbakr's Jewish sovereignty quote to you. I should have caught that myself. Your use of dbakr’s quote was written in italics, so I have no excuse for missing that one. I plead carelessness.

      I probably should have used the term “ethnic enclave" rather than "ghetto" because the latter term conveys negative associations for many people, obviously. If Zionists want their own homeland, I still think my suggestion of “spreading the pain” between nations/peoples is more reasonable than many solutions I have seen proposed. Oh well.

      I probably am not sufficiently sensitive to the Jewish horror and pain caused by the Nazi holocaust and thousands of years of persecution by Christians. The eternal victim role is undoubtedly not an easy role to assume vicariously (or even understand).

    • Hey Annie, good to see your always interesting comments. Happy New Year!

      “a nation where jews have sovereignty over their own affairs” — DaBakr

      I suggest we make an effort to offer the fanatical ethnonationalist citizens of Israel some alternative to living in a region where they are surrounded by peoples/nations who they claim want to “drive all Israeli Jews into the sea.” Why endanger the lives of more Israeli adults and children? Why prolong a policy of perpetual war with Arab and Persian Gentiles when there are other alternatives?

      Zionists are separatist Jews, clearly. They do not want to assimilate (or integrate) their “chosen” peoples with Gentile communities. They want to live according to Zionist laws (based partly on Jewish law/tradition and partly on modern secular laws). But continuing the failed policy of colonizing Palestine and pretending modern Jews have some possible impossible legal right to this land has not proven very successful.

      I suggest Jews propose building walled ghettos for ethnonationlist Jews in Germany, Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, USA, Canada, etc., where Jews will “have sovereignty over their own affairs.” Zionists like walls. They should be able to build adamantine walls as high and as thick as they choose.

      These separatist Jews should be encouraged to develop full-spectrum domination and control systems in their ghettos which would include C4ISTAR capable weapons, COMINT/SIGINT/OSINT/HUMINT, electro-optically guided missiles, phased-array radar, securocratic systems of control and whatever weapon systems they deem necessary to secure their safety from Gentiles.

      Does this seem like a reasonable proposal to solve the seemingly irresolvable Palestinian/Israeli conflict to you?

    • What did I do wrong? Why have you replaced my chosen profile picture with a hominid icon? Why will you no longer publish my comments? Do I need to make a donation this year to participate in these online discussions?

  • 'Want to boycott Israel? Be my guest, there will be a pricetag' -- Israeli official warns Europe
    • Is any criticism of Saudi Arabia — or the current ruling junta there — considered an example of (and the same in every respect as) hatred for, fear of and discrimination against Arabs? If not, why not? Is there a pernicious double standard embedded in this philosemitic legislation?

  • Dear Simon Schama, you need a history lesson on Zionism
    • Yes, absolutely. “Restoration [of the Jews] to a Palestinian homeland and their ‘fulfilment’ as Christians” is a fulfillment of Christian prophecy (THE ORIGINS OF CHRISTIAN ZIONISM, Lewis, Donald M., Cambridge, Cambridge UP, 2010, p. 43). The restoration of the “Jews” to Palestine is not primarily a Jewish development. It has always been for British and American hegemons a fulfillment of Christian prophecy. The conversion of Zionist Jews to Evangelical Christian doctrine is imminent.

  • Jewish leaders seek to shut down anti-occupation movie in MA because it 'sniffs of Nazism'
    • “Fails to inform people that Palestinian children are raised from childhood to hate Jews and Christians.”

      What a travesty of legitimate grievances!

      Palestinian children -- some of whom are devout, practicing Christians! -- are purported to be “raised from childhood to hate . . . Christians.”

      What an absurd claim!

      These “Jewish leaders” must take all American Goys/Gentiles to be clueless ignoramuses. This claim defies logic. Why do these anti-BDS “Jewish leaders” insult Gentiles in this manner? Do they actually imagine all Goys are this dimwitted and/or foolish?

      Palestinian “Christians belong to one of a number of Christian denominations, including Eastern Orthodoxy, Oriental Orthodoxy, Catholicism . . . Anglicanism, Lutheranism . . . and others. They number 6–7% of the 12 million Palestinians. 70% live outside Palestine and Israel. . . . Hebrew-speakers call them Notzri (also spelt Notsri), which means Nazarene . . . .” (Wikipedia).

      They seemingly single out Gentiles -- and “Nazarenes” in particular -- for being ignorant and obtuse. Why don’t they call Chomsky, Finkelstein and Medea Benjamin self-hating Jews? What’s up? Is there an anti-Gentile/Nazarene double standard at work here? Methinks this is indisputable.

  • 'Daily Californian' cartoon of Dershowitz dripping blood unleashes another furor over anti-Semitic canards
    • "That this should occur [Joel Mayorga and the Daily Californian are convicted by an impartial jury of their peers for creating/publishing an antisemitic cartoon] with repercussions for the Daily Californian and not for the irresponsible critics attests to the power of Zionism to set the parameters of discourse.”

      Can there be any question of which group(s) [Jews/white subject(s) vs. Arabs/black subject(s)] possess the power/influence in western societies to “set the parameters of discourse”?

      It’s perfectly acceptable for the western press to lampoon Muhammad as a fat, barefooted, dark-skinned Arab with protuberant eyes juggling 100 naked virgins -- that’s a free-speech issue -- but the western press cannot caricature Dersh squashing someone holding a Palestinian flag because the Dersh caricature is fat with spindly arms and/or legs and thus calls to mind grotesque antisemitic propaganda published during the Nazi era in Germany?

  • The problem with Miko Peled's 'Holocaust: yes or no'
    • To me, the bottom line is that Jonathan Ofir insists -- like Rebecca Vilkomerson and many other self-identifying "Jews" who criticize Zionist ideology and/or practices (while always conspicuously declaring they will renounce, root and branch, any potentially antisemitic language used by intellectuals who are seated on their side of the dais in a debate) -- that Miko Peled must walk on his tiptoes whenever he discusses the Nazi holocaust but not when he discusses any other subject whatsoever.

      There is for many self-identifying "Jews" -- as far as I can determine -- a double standard at work here. I quit supporting JVP after Rebecca Vilkomerson and others criticized Miko Peled for receiving better accommodations and higher speaking fees than other pro-Palestinian activists at some conference. That, to me, was so petty and small-minded it made me cringe. The JVP insists on scrutinizing every word of every speech Miko Peled makes to discover potentially antisemitic rhetoric. But they never seem to subject the language of other public speakers to the same kind of minute semantic criticism. I find this double standard to be both absurd and indefensible.

  • Malak Mattar dreamed of studying art abroad, now she is stuck in Gaza
    • It’s not possible to have a civil debate with someone who doesn’t have any grasp of history, much less of social, cultural or political theory. I made every effort to remain polite, JeffB, but you persevered in reciting the most banal falsehoods as if they were authenticated and corroborated facts without offering any scholarly support for your erroneous views of history.

      You have obviously swallowed whole all the lies they teach children in Israeli schools as history. You are like the young Israelis interviewed by Abby Martin of EMPIRE FILES [TeleSUR] posted by Kate in MW in her Oct. 5, 2017 article. You are completely ignorant of the things of which you speak. You refuse to think logically or listen to others who try to school you.

    • Ha! Ha! Ha! Don’t tell me Zionism is not a racist ideology/regime. Your reasoning is more specious than the blows delivered in a Punch-and-Judy show and less dangerous. Give me a break.

    • On rereading your earlier comment, I can see that I misread/misinterpreted what you wrote in your previous comment, JeffB. I guess I was simply assuming, wrongly, that you were rather obscurely trying to have it both ways while attempting to promote an essentialist ideology of human nature (and espousing a belief in sociobiological universals). While I strongly disagree with the position advanced by Edward O. Wilson in texts like CONSILIENCE: THE UNITY OF KNOWLEDGE, I find Wilson highly intelligent and am constantly surprised at his ability to frame arguments which seem at first reading quite compelling.

      First, I'm perplexed by the fact that highly intelligent Jewish Americans would choose to identify with the racist ideology of Zionism while claiming to be opposed to racism/antisemitism.

      Second, I also puzzle over why anyone with Jewish ancestry would choose to identify themselves with the “Jewish people” of history, an only mythically coherent race/nation/people/culture in my view. This makes no sense, to me, in a post-Enlightenment world and seems particularly bizarre, I guess, in the 21st century.

      I don’t understand Jewish ethnic/tribal loyalties anymore than I am able to understand any person’s belief in ideologies like pan-Germanism, pan-Slavism or pan-Arabism. Those kind of sentimental loyalties seem, to me, totally bankrupt to be quite honest. The whole idea of feeling “rootless” or “homeless” in the world and thus in need of some sort of tribal/ethnic identity in order to feel “rooted” seems completely illogical, irrational and intellectually vapid in the “climate” of our time (the 21st century). People are no doubt able to find meaning for their lives in the most bizarre ways. I don’t expect to help you understand my confusion because you are not confused, but I appreciate you taking the time to respond to my questions, something other devoted MW readers have avoided.

    • Actually, JeffB, the imagined/supposed genetic link(s) between ancient Judaeans and/or Israelites and Ashkenazi Jews has been definitively refuted by scientists despite what you may have read, seen or heard in the MSM. Shlomo Sand offers a brief overview of recent findings in THE INVENTION OF THE JEWISH PEOPLE, Trans. Yael Lotan, London, Verso, (2009): pp. 273-279:

      “Like the field of physical anthropology in the late 19th and 20th centuries, which released dubious scientific discoveries to the race-hungry public, the science of molecular genetics at the end of the 20th and the beginning of the 21st century feeds fragmentary findings and half-truths to the identity-seeking media. . . . what little is known about the methods of selecting test subjects [in these unreliable studies] seems very questionable. Moreover, the hasty findings are all too often constructed and supported by historical rhetoric unconnected to the research laboratories. The bottom line is that, after all the costly ‘scientific’ endeavors, a Jewish individual cannot be defined by any biological criteria whatsoever” (p. 279).

      Thanks for taking the time to respond to my somewhat rambling, at times, comments. I appreciate any feedback I can obtain from MW readers because my research has left me genuinely perplexed.

    • JeffB: Thank you for responding to my question. MW is, for me, one of the few forums in which thorny topics associated with the Palestinian/Israeli conflict can be debated by people in a civil manner.

      Recent years have seen an explosion of theoretical works on the topic of nationalism which have dramatically changed the way academics discuss this technical term of art. An interdisciplinary debate involving many fields of study, as you probably know, have been the result. Universities have created numerous graduate programs and wealthy patrons have established various policy institutes to study/examine this topic.

      Without attempting to reduce the great body of work produced on this subject to an argumentum ad absurdum, I feel it’s fair to say that the various sides of this debate are currently at loggerheads. Some scholars assert the primordial character of nations, usually based on their belief in sociobiological or cultural universals, while others tend to treat “nationalisms,” today, as fluid and multiple, involving socially-constructed identities which all adults choose (rather than inherit).

      As early as 1813 a French-born Prussian writer, Adelbert von Chamisso, wrote a famous novella, PETER SCHLEMIL, dealing with the conundrum of which I have spoken in my comments above. During the French Revolution in 1790, his parents were driven from their ancestral French estate across Europe, finally settling in Berlin. The son of the Count of Chamisso, Peter Schlemil, entered a Prussian infantry regiment as an ensign to train for a career as an army officer.

      The French Revolution had stripped Peter of his inheritance, national and cultural identity, so the Prussian state provided him with what he saw as a serviceable substitute. After the Peace of Tilsit (1807), his parents returned to France but Peter remained in Prussia.

      Without presenting my MW readers with a lengthy plot summary, or considering the many possible ways of reading this text, I think it is fair to say that the novella is generally considered as a parable. Peter becomes “the Man without a Shadow” and people shun him for his bizarre deficiency. He provokes revulsion.

      Do you honestly believe in the primordial integrity of nations and identities or do you believe that social identities are mixed, multiple and fluid?

    • To help MW readers better understand the question I posed in my previous post -- and to help you believe that I am absolutely sincere in asking this question -- it may help if you are familiar with the Ingmar Bergman film, WILD STRAWBERRIES. When I chew over the question posed in my comment above, I feel, at times, more than I'd like to admit, like Professor Borg in the early dream sequence in this film, the one where he is walking in a small town/village/city, sees an analog clock face on a building without a minute hand or second hand on the display, then sees a coffin fall out of an old hearse and approaches the mussed/disheveled coffin only to be grabbed by a doppelgänger figure lying in the coffin. But Professor Borg is much older than me, 78-years-old, and somewhat senile, I would say. I have all my wits about me, I like to believe, but when I reflect on this question it still befuddles me. Any thoughts?

    • I do not understand how American "Jews" can choose to identify themselves with any notion they are able to construct of a "Jewish people" (or an ethnic/cultural group with a history like that of the Jewish people), much less a rogue/criminal nation-state like that of the state of Israel. I am a gentile/Gentile and have been paranoid all my adult life about ever saying anything that might sound remotely antisemitic chiefly because, I believe, I have been massively conditioned/propagandized/indoctrinated -- like all Americans -- by what Norman Finkelstein has shrewdly/incisively identified as the "Holocaust Industry." I sometimes feel like I have only recently been able to understand my bewilderment over this perplexing dilemma then my befuddlement returns with a vengeance! I've been working against this indoctrination for many years, and it has been -- I believe -- an exacting and debilitating experience. Can anyone who chooses to identify him/herself as a "Jew" help me understand this baffling conundrum? Please believe that I am sincere in asking this question.

  • Israeli soldier-medic-killer 'endured a lot' -  so short sentence is cut by four months
    • The summary execution of Eastern-born/educated ethnic/cultural “inferiors” (Palestinians, Lebanese, Egyptians, etc.) by Ashkenazi Jews cannot be judged in the same manner as the murder of a member of a Western-born/educated and ethnic/cultural ”superior” Ashkenazi Jewish community anymore than the expedient demise of African-Americans in the U.S. can be judged in the same manner as the unlawful termination of an American possessing bona fide (that is, racially- and ethnically-undiluted, or semi-pure, documented) European-American genes. The discretion of Solomon must be employed when judging categorically disparate branches of the human family for similar misconduct.

      In judging (and/or commenting upon) criminal cases like those of Elor Azarya, it may help to consider the historical evolution of the political philosophy of nationalism. John Breuilly describes nationalism as a “more or less purposeful effort to revive primitive tribalism [a term Karl Popper uses to distinguish closed/traditional societies from open/modern societies in his classic, THE OPEN SOCIETY AND ITS ENEMIES] on an enlarged and artificial scale.” Nationalism is,” according to Breuilly, a militant form of modern political philosophy whose “first definite doctrines to such effect were put forth in the eighteenth century” (qtd. in Breuilly’s “Introduction” to Ernest Gellner’s NATIONS AND NATIONALISM, 2nd ed., New York, Blackwell Publishing, 2006, p. xvii). After WWII (and the brutal forms of nationalism espoused by Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan), ethnic and/or racial forms of nationalism were sometimes seen as rather crude and unsophisticated by historians, apparently, but Israeli ethnocentrism (and Zionist ideals/doctrine) suggest that ethnic forms of nationalism are anything but crude and unsophisticated. Ethnic nationalism appears, today, as quite modern (or even postmodern) given the U.S.’s and Israel’s current manner of dealing with distinct racial and/or ethnic minorities.

  • How Israel is silently transferring Palestinians from East Jerusalem
    • Jerry:

      FYI the 7th-century Jewish people living in Judea and the surrounding regions were not dispossessed of their so-called “holy land,” Eretz Israel, their “Promised Land,” the state of Judea, the “Jewish kingdom,” or any other large piece of real estate by the “Arab expansion” (or Arab conquests). They had already lost any rights they might have possessed during their brief rule as an independent kingdom (the Hasmonean Kingdom: 110-63 BCE).

      Don’t blame the Muslim hordes for dispossessing the Jews of a piece of real estate they had lost to the Romans in 63 BCE. The Roman Empire -- believe it or not -- ruled Palestine “with three very brief interruptions (one caused by native revolt, the other two by foreign invasions) from 63 BCE until the Arab conquest of Palestine in 638 CE” (THE ANCIENT JEWS FROM ALEXANDER TO MUHAMMAD, Schwartz, Seth, Cambridge UP, 2014, p. 55). Sorry to have to inform you of this, Jerry.

    • "By punitively revoking residencies, civil society organizations say Israel is illegally engaging in a “silent transfer and colonization” of Palestinians with the aim of maintaining a Jewish majority in Jerusalem."

      "Israel has sought to preserve its domination by maintaining a demographic balance of 60 percent Jews and 40 percent Palestinians in Jerusalem, according to its master plan."

      There is a more pointed way of describing this continuous process of Israeli colonization which gets at the crux of the problem in starker terms. Many outside observers cannot help but identify what they are witnessing in Palestine as greed, avarice or covetousness. Lying behind Israel’s ever-expanding colonization of Palestinian property in the West Bank and East Jerusalem lurks the Israeli peoples’ insatiable hunger for more land, more territory, a ravenous desire for more and more, something bigger and better, something more lavish and luxurious, a voracious hunger which can never be satisfied.

      This satisfies an antisemitic stereotype which is difficult to ignore. Shlomo Sand describes Simon Maccabees’ hunger for land in a similar manner: “Simon the priest’s territorial hunger grew increasingly insatiable with every new victory on the battlefield. . . . the kingdom of Judea would try to expand its borders as much as possible and would be successful in its efforts. At the end of the Hasmonean kings’ continuing campaign of conquest -- which is to say, at the height of their rule -- the Land would contain Samaria, the Galilee, and the region of Edom. Thus would the kingdom of Judea come relatively close to the dimensions of the pharaonic land of Canaan” (THE INVENTION OF THE LAND OF ISRAEL: FROM HOLY LAND TO HOMELAND. Trans. Forman, Geremy. New York, Verso, 2012, p. 93).

  • Why the split inside the Democratic Party over BDS needs to happen
    • Marnie:

      1. Thanks. I’ll take that as a compliment.
      2. By using the term “brothers,” I meant: black (or African-American) men. By using the term “tony Hollywood brothers,” I meant: stylish/chic “brothers” in the public imaginary (of privileged non-black men/women who by and large have never known any African-American men, I would think, except indirectly through the mainstream mass media as celebrities). Guys like: Morgan Freeman, Will Smith, Jamie Fox and not guys like: Tupac Shakur, Spike Lee, Ice Cube, Mike Tyson).
      3. It’s telling me that I don’t like Morgan Freeman because he seems kind of lame in trying to be posh/cool/sexy/swank/trendy.
      4. I think fascists look much better in black leather.

    • Did you notice that Morgan Freeman -- in the video posted above by Keith -- is wearing similar lifestyle enhancement jewelry on the lobes of his ears to those that Rebecca Vilkomerson of JVP is wearing in the photo above? Do tony Hollywood brothers have similar style preferences to those of liberal Jewish women? What (if anything) does this tell you about his professed fear of Russia's meddling in U.S. elections? Do his right-wing, Zionist fearmongerings clash with his fashion choices?

    • I would like to believe that Phil and Annie are correct in suggesting that it’s about time (or long long overdue) that members of the Democrat Party establishment in the U.S. examine their official position with respect to Israel’s illegal policy/practice of “endless expansion” of Israeli-only settlements in the West Bank. This anti-BDS legislation may actually present U.S. politicians with an opportunity to make clear their position on things like universal human rights and U.S. citizens' constitutionally-protected freedoms. I’d like to think so.

      It’s encouraging to see NY Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand withdraw her support for this anti-BDS legislation. I didn’t anticipate that change of position.

  • The alleged peace process reaches farcical lows
    • An English translation of Berthelot's article is available online at OpenEdition Books:

    • I agree. A good example of the latter: JOSHUA: MIGHTY WARRIOR and MAN of FAITH, Keller, W. Phillip, (1992); a.k.a. JOSHUA, MAN of FEARLESS FAITH (1983).

    • “Why do Palestinians consistently choose to honor mass-murderers”? -- [quotation from the video posted above by Phil of Israeli PM Benyamin Netanyahoo in which he criticizes Palestinians for “honoring terrorists.”]

      The late British classicist, numismatist and author of more than 25 books on ancient Greek, Roman and Israelite history, Michael Grant, CBE, Litt.D., Cambridge University (b.1914- d.2004), paraphrases Manetho, an Egyptian priest who lived during the Ptolemaic era in the early 3rd century BCE, as follows:

      “Manetho “censured the Hebrews for cruelty, hatred of other people’s customs, and deliberate segregation.” Manetho is a source from ancient history, Grant suggests, who -- along with a host of other writers of that period -- characterized the ancient Israelites in this manner. “Nowhere else in the world,” he continues, “as far as we know, were there such virulent manifestations of racial prejudice at this period” (THE HISTORY OF ANCIENT ISRAEL, New York, Scribner’s, 1984, p. 203).

      “Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose.”

  • Youtube sensations, the Khaldi twins, explain 'why Eid is special' from Gaza City
    • "The happiest people don't have the best of everything, they just make the best of everything." -- curiano.com. See also : /Users/cyberspacelab/Desktop/Quote.2.webarchive

  • Gideon Levy calls out Israel's fundamental, racist religion: Zionism
    • Thanks, I appreciate the apology, Mooser. Also, I agree that the adage works both ways (as you suggest) as a concept (and or maxim). Echino: Why don't we agree to disagree and not waste each other's time by debating? For me, your arguments are ginormously flawed, illogical and/or nonsensical -- and you apparently feel the same way about mine -- so there are no grounds for us to debate in the future.

    • Wow! it's hard to understand why Mooser and Echino . . . . misrepresent my comments and then harangue me for believing that Israel is a rogue state (meaning: a terrorist state) that commits war crimes and crimes against humanity every day and should be debased and “violated” by the U.S., Europe, and the international community for its many crimes and violations of international law.

      In my view the U.S. should dismantle all of Israel's nuclear facilities, put U.S. troops on the ground in Palestine, dispossess Israelis of their businesses and homes and bring Palestinian refugees back home from around the world -- on Israel’s dime -- to take back their property, and collect damages (with compound interest added to the principal) for having been dispossessed of their property (in the years 1948 - 2017).

      But I’m (apparently) “soft” on Israel, in their view, for identifying Israelis as an occupying military force who must be persuaded to disarm and surrender all land in historic Palestine to an international tribunal which will decide their fate.

    • “This is where impudence becomes almost criminal: who asked you to “grant” the Zionist goal of “Israelis”, illegal interlopers and invaders, having any say in anything? The owners of the entire territory are the Palestinian people and no one else decides. And what is a ‘Palestinian/Israeli conflict’?” --Echino . . . .

      Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha!

      That’s hilarious. I haven’t “granted” Israelis anything! You are being politically naïve, Nihil [Echino . . . .] Homine.

      Have you never heard the old legal adage: Possession is 9/10ths of the law? (“Possession is nine-tenths of the law — and don’t Aboriginal people know it?” Fourmile, Henrietta in G. Amareswar (ed), Bulletin of the Conference of Museum Anthropologists, No. 23:1990).
      Why don’t you try to lay some ground for your incorporeal claims, seriously. Be realistic, practical, pragmatic.

    • @ echino... I will grant you that some people may read my comment above as coming from an "arrogant" (Western/western) viewpoint, and since I was raised in the Global North and identify myself as a religious pluralist, there are probably some grounds for believing that. I was a religious skeptic for quite a few years, but I now feel the grounds for any religious skepticism are somewhat weaker than those of the religious pluralist position. For many, many years, I was a dogmatic atheist, but then I finally “advanced” (in my view) beyond any and all dogmatic epistemologies. That has been a choice I have made, personally, and is not considered by me to be a value judgment.

      Everything written in the paragraph above may qualify me as being an (almost) intolerably “arrogant” (Westerner/westerner) in my beliefs to some people nurtured in other environments and/or geographies on the planet Earth. But I doubt seriously that you can find any evidence whatsoever to support your claim that I am both a racist and a "patronizing" supporter of Western/western colonialism. You have no grounds for those claims (in my view).

      I also grant you that Israelis and Palestinians are the peoples who should ideally choose between some kind of a one-state or two-state solution to the Palestinian/Israeli conflict. They had better hurry up, however, in my view, because this conflict seems to becoming more and more a geostrategic global problem that will, finally, be determined by the economic and political hegemons of our World System.

      If the Israelis continue to refuse to come to terms with the Palestinians (those who live in the open-air prison of Gaza, those living under Israeli occupation in the West Bank and those who live in exile), make equitable restorations to them, and evolve/advance into the 21st-century as a negotiating member of our present-day economic and political World System, then the Deep State -- and/or some U.S. president, chief executive or dictator -- may decide it/he/she must intervene and solve the problem for all the rest of us on the planet.

    • I would concur with Jonathan that the term "righteous Zionism" as used by Yonah in his comment above should be read ironically, not that Yonah necessarily intended to employ the term "righteous Zionism" in an ironic manner. In tragic irony the writer often uses words that mean one thing to the narrator/writer, but mean its opposite to some character(s) in (and/or readers of) the work. That is precisely why in one of my "qualifications" of Yonah's revision I suggest that the term "post-Zionism" would be a better term to employ than retaining the older term Zionism, much less the term "righteous Zionism."

      Also, readers should without a doubt distinguish Herzl's characterization of the official term Zionism he employs in his deadly serious political pamphlet Der JUDENSTAAT [THE JEWISH STATE] (1896) from the "New Society" Herzl described in is his later utopian novel ALTNEULAND [THE OLD-NEW LAND] (1902).

    • “We can admit that the Jew’s right to a state contradicted the Palestinian’s right to their land and that righteous Zionism gave birth to a terrible national wrong that has never been righted; that there are ways to resolve and atone for this contradiction, but the [overwhelming majority] of Zionist Israelis won’t agree to them.”

      I agree with Yonah’s revision of a passage from Gideon Levy’s article (with a few minor qualifications of my own):

      “Bibi and Shaked and Jonathan Ofir wish to define Zionism as Bayit Yehudi Zionism and [indeed this brand of Zionism] . . . is in the seat of power, but Levy also speaks of . . . [a] righteous [form of Zionism which] gave birth to a terrible national wrong that has never been righted . . . [T]here are ways to resolve and atone for [Bayit Yehudi Zionism or, better post-Zionsm] but the overwhelming majority of Zionist Israelis won’t agree to them.”

      How? Israel must become disengaged from the ideology of racism and colonialism and reclaimed as an ideology of emancipation, one which can be redeemed through the recognition of the Palestinians’ equal rights, their right of self-determination, and the Palestinian refugees’ “right of return” to Palestine/Israel.

      I’ve always argued that the mere fact that Theodor Herzl was a believer in European colonialism, and apparently did not believe in either racial equality, democracy or universal human rights, does not mean that Zionism should be consigned to the archives of some national history museum.  Far from it.  In fact, I would suggest that many Zionists who emigrated to Palestine advocated working with the native population to establish a modern, social democratic state in which the indigenous peoples would have equal rights with the Jewish immigrants (like Herzl did in his futuristic novel ALTNEULAND [THE OLD-NEW LAND).

  • Blunt references to Israeli apartheid are published by 'Peace Now' and 'The New Yorker'
    • @ Yonah: This may sound a little wacky (or weird), but there are a few people in Trump’s and Bibi’s Idiocracies (or Idiarchies) who actually spend most of their lives doing historical research. I would recommend that you do your best to identify these types -- and read them -- before debating complex historical problems like the Palestinian/Israeli conflict on social media. It may help you avoid stepping on your Balfour in future debates.

      For example, the journalist Abby Martin in an interview posted above discusses her 30-day trip to Palestine/Israel and the “horrors” with which she was compelled to grapple. She reports on that experience. But when she veers off into discussions of the Sykes-Picot Agreement (1916), she stumbles. She should not, in my view, bring up the Sykes-Picot Agreement if she cannot even situate it in its precise historical context. Instead, she should report on/discuss only those things with which she is familiar (like her experiences in Palestine/Israel).

      One important historical fact, in my view, which is often overlooked when discussing the ideology of Zionism: Zionism was conceived, in my view, by Theodor Herzl (1860-1904), Max Nordau (born Simon Maximilian Südfeld, 1849-1923), and a few other prominent European intellectuals as a direct response/answer to a World-System which was increasingly becoming dominated/plagued by the ideologies of Pan-Germanicism and Pan-Slavism. You probably already know this. However, I would suggest that you not bring up Herzl and Nordau when debating the Palestinian/Israeli conflict unless you can situate these historical figures accurately in their specific historical context. You maybe even should avoid referring to them in a debate without having first read some of their published work.

    • True. After the editors of major periodicals in Great Britain finally decided to print one early version of Norman's critique of Peters' book, FROM TIME IMMEMORIAL -- in which he revealed the many cases of spurious source documentation -- many prominent Israeli and American intellectuals joined Norman in condemning Peters' book. But Norman could not get his critique of Peters' book published anywhere in the U.S. He shopped it around. That is an important part of the story.

      The MSM in the U.S. refused to publish Norman's review of Peters' book. In fact, Norman was blacklisted in the U.S. when editors got word of Norman's critique. Only after Norman finally got some brave editors in Great Britain to publish his broadside, was Peters' book finally exposed as a fraud, scam, hoax . That's another important part of the story: mess with Israel and your name may be placed on a blacklist. You may be faced with abundant rejections, evasive answers to all your questions, stonewalling and -- yes -- maybe even intimidation. Major periodicals may not seriously consider anything you submit for publication. You probably will not be able to find work in the U.S. academy (regardless of your intellectual credentials). You've been forewarned.

    • “Today we see the word [apartheid] cropping up more and more in mainstream coverage of the legal arrangements inside Israel and Palestine.”

      True. Today we have Norman Finkelstein, Noam Chomsky, the editors/journalists of Mondoweiss, the USCPR, Anna Baltzer, Josh Ruebner , BLM and a few other intellectuals/groups willing to risk major career advancement challenges and/or widespread social rejection by the mainstream Jewish community for using the a-word in their writing. But people my age remember the Joan Peters’ fiasco.

      “There was this best-seller a few years ago [in 1984], it went through about ten printings, by a woman named Joan Peters . . . called FROM TIME IMMEMORIAL. It was a big scholarly-looking book with lots of footnotes, which purported to show that the Palestinians were all recent immigrants [i.e. to the Jewish-settled areas of the former Palestine, during the British mandate years of 1920 to 1948]. And it was very popular -- it got literally hundreds of rave reviews, and no negative reviews: the Washington Post, the New York Times, everybody was just raving about it.”

      “Saul Bellow, Barbara Tuchman, everybody was talking about it as the greatest thing since chocolate cake. Well, one graduate student at Princeton, a guy named Norman Finkelstein, started reading through the book . . . . He’s a very careful student, and he started checking the references -- and it turned out that the whole thing [i.e. the book] was a hoax, it was completely faked: probably it had been put together by some intelligence agency or something like that” (“The Fate on an Honest Intellectual,” UNDERSTANDING POWER: THE INDISPENSABLE CHOMSKY, Chomsky, Noam, The New Press, 2002, pp. 244-248).

  • 'Auto-anti-Semitism!' Naftali Bennett declares war on Jewish self-hatred in Israel
    • “The far left makes up terms just as absurd as anything on the right.”

      In a few isolated cases, perhaps. Give us some examples, please. I tend to believe that that particular kind of intellectual “folly” is pretty difficult to duplicate. To political reactionaries, by contrast, that type of lunacy seems to come natural: as in the alt-right, neo-Nazis, the K.K.K., or "instantaneous-antisemitism." It’s not only natural. It is routine and time-honored among "blackshirts." It seems to appeal to a particular kind of “primitive” mindset, I would guess.

      That’s one of the most appalling consequences of promoting concepts like “Muscular Judaism.” You don’t want to encourage guys who latch on to ideologies like white supremacy and begin worshipping at those kinds of altars (or in their temples and synagogues).

      Prudent people don’t nurture and or stimulate that kind of loony thinking. The very idea of associating antisemitism with automaticity is intellectually sloppy and irrational.

      “Two peas in a pod.”

      Here we go again: The “far left” is virtually indistinguishable from the “far right.” Your binary reductionism is ham-fisted and mushier than a bowl of porridge.

  • On boycotts, Palestine, and resistance: a review of 'Assuming Boycott'
    • “Kindly point out what is so hard to understand; when that’s done we can continue.” -- echinococcus

      Your first sentence -- “Pro-BDS doesn’t mean a thing” -- is intelligible and unambiguous, but your claim in that sentence is nonsensical. The prefix “pro-” means favoring or supporting something, the something connected to the prefix with a dash. So pro-BDS means: favoring or supporting BDS. Why would you claim that pro-BDS doesn’t mean a thing (or anything)? It does mean something very specific. It means: favoring or supporting the BDS movement, obviously.

      The first clause of your second sentence is intelligible (“There are any number of Zionists supporting ‘BDS’”), but the remainder of the sentence (“ie the current practice of the official organization – limitedly to post-67 occupation”) lacks coherence, so your meaning is extremely obscure (or makes no sense). The term “official organization” lacks any antecedent (subject, object or noun phrase) to which it refers. You might be referring to: the WZO, the ZOA, the Zionist state, the present administration in the state of Israel, etc. Who knows? Then you add: “limitedly to post-67 occupation.” There is no word “limitedly” in the English language, so I must (rightly or wrongly) assume that you probably meant: limited to the post-67 occupation.

      As a reader, I’m forced to guess what you meant to write. Did you mean to write: There are any number of Zionists supporting BDS. That is the current practice of the official organization, and that support is limited to their post-67 occupation position? Your meaning is by no means clear. Believe me.

      Finally, you conclude your first paragraph with a sentence fragment: “In the interests [sic] of continuing the Zionist invasion and occupation of Palestine.” It is by no means clear how this sentence fragment connects with the preceding sentence or any antecedent (subject, object or noun phrase) in the entire paragraph.

      So if I can’t figure out what you mean by using the term “official organization” or how the phrase: “limited to the post-67 occupation” is connected (refers to, or is linked, logically) to this obscure “official organization” to which you (apparently mean to) refer, how can I determine what you are trying to say?

      Give me a break.

    • I'd respond to your comment, echinococcus, if I could decipher the code which you are employing. I can't hope to refute an argument written in some weird personal cipher. Sorry.

      I have no idea what it is you are trying to say. Are you intentionally writing in a disjointed and incoherent manner?

      I put scare quotation marks around the term "Jews" because it has become a polyvalent term in journalism, the academic world, and intellectual discourse more generally today. It’s used as an identity marker of some sort, certainly, but one which can be used in so many different ways today -- to refer to religious beliefs/practices, ethnicity, some (supposedly) distinct cultural practices, ancestry, tribal affiliation -- that the meaning of the user is often obscure, equivocal or ambiguous, at best. The same goes for my use of scare quotation marks around the words “foul,” “radical,” “far left,” “far right” and “Nazis” in my comment above.

      To be consistent in my usage, I probably should not have used scare quotation marks around the term “Nazis” in my post above because that term is normally used to refer to a specific political regime in German history. I should have used the term neo-Nazis without quotation marks instead. That was careless of me.

      Sorry if you were confused by my choice of words, my reference to Aristotle, or my employment of scare quotation marks in my comment. I’ll try to write simply, clearly and cogently in any future responses to comments directed towards me by you.

    • The nine-minute "Planet of the Arabs" video clip is hilarious! Thanks for posting that from YouTube, Annie. I've never seen that compilation before. What a farce. Great satire of Hollywood's depiction of the Arab world. Priceless!

    • “My opinion is they have no grounds to claim any moral superiority . . . .” -- DaBakr

      Actually, Annie is absolutely right. She, RoHa and I do have a right -- and a duty (or the responsibility) -- to call “foul” on any Bozo who argues that all “far right” and “far left” views are essentially equivalent (or synonymous).

      It’s absurd to argue that the racist views held by “Nazis” (on the Right) and those supposedly “radical“ views held by the pro-BDS “Jews” (on the Left) are morally analogous. That’s an old chestnut that has been employed by optimates against populares of all stripes since Cato argued that democracy = mob rule. The views of pro-BDS Leftist “Jews” are quite distinguishable from the views of Nazis (and/or revolutionary Bolsheviks for that matter). That’s a reductio ad absurdum logical fallacy as old as Aristotle’s PRIOR ANALYTICS.

    • Great review! I wish you would review Louise Linton's IN CONGO'S SHADOW: ONE GIRL'S PERILOUS JOURNEY TO THE HEART OF AFRICA. It's never too late to "promote" a haunting memoir which has become a must-read "classic." Since BDS activists "must navigate issues of power imbalance, cultural difference, and distance in order to engage [the boycott, divestment and sanctions strategy] ethically and authentically," a critical analysis of Louise Linton's text would assist MW's readers in negotiating the BDS ethical minefield, right?

  • Jews argue whether Zionism is racism -- in the Forward!
    • That's what I call a classic Zionist rebuttal: situating each and every one of Einstein's quotes in their specific social, cultural and historic context. Stalwart Zionists consider Einstein to have been faithful to the Zionist project -- in all of its historical manifestations -- throughout his life. He simply chose his words carefully. He "qualified" his wholehearted support of Israel, at times -- as we all do, surely -- by choosing his words cautiously, words which always demonstrate that he was concerned as we all are with the safety, security and well-being of all humans, regardless of their (supposed) tribal affiliations.

      By employing the same logic and argumentative adroitness, Zionist zealots must indubitably regard Hannah Arendt as a righteous Zionist who "qualified" her wholehearted support of Israel -- as we all do, surely -- in her published work, at times.

  • Charlottesville is moment of truth for empowered U.S. Zionists (who name their children after Israeli generals)
    • “Deep in their hearts, liberals know that we are in a different age from the mid-20th century, and that Zionism is an untenable ideology in an era in which the country is seeking to solidify minority rights and other progressive achievements.”

      “[W]hy, in his opinion, zionism is different than white nationalism . . . . [I]t is because of the context in which one filled a need and the other didn’t[,] but this doesn’t explain why what spencer is saying is a lie — because spencer didn’t even address the context in which it came about. nor did rosenberg note that the context today is not the same . . . .”

      Philip Weiss, Annie Robbins and other MW “cohorts” suggest that the Palestinian/Israeli conflict will be resolved only by examining the ideology of Zionism in its social and historical context.

      Rosenberg shuns discussing social and historical context in a manner which suggests that he believes opposing Zionism is tantamount to condoning Hester Prynne’s adulterous relationship with Arthur Dimmesdale. Zionism, like racism, white nationalism, and/or committing adultery, should be examined in the context of Judeo-Christian moral absolutes rather than confusing the “real issue” -- antisemitism -- by scrutinizing it, in some improbable, impossible historical context.

      People who prefer reading MW to the Tablet, TPM, the NY Times and other journals/periodicals do so, in part, I would think, because historical context is, for them, relevant, even critical, to understanding a topic in its full complexity. They don’t live in a world defined by thinking in terms of black versus white or Jewish versus gentile. They live in a world composed of multiracial, multiethnic peoples. A world composed of racially and/or ethnically “pure” peoples is, for them, not only an anachronism, it is the world of petty little Shelumiels.

  • At town hall, Sen. Warren says Israel Anti-Boycott Act 'violates our basic constitution'
    • Stop kvetching about Yonah's canny comment! She is employing mellow, honeyed rhetoric in her post (as opposed to pompous magniloquence or bombastic cant). So . . . give her a break. Why kvetch when she's serving fresh knish?

  • Jew and Israeli: Solomon Schechter and Shlomo Sand
    • If you are finding it difficult to unravel Yonah’s argument, the fault lies not in your inability to comprehend a cogently-formulated argument with valid premises and a logcally-sound conclusion. Yonah is cutting and pasting together -- in a haphazard manner -- different arguments she chooses to employ to identify herself as “Jewish” without clearly distinguishing between what philosophers since Aristotle have differentiated as “accidents” (something contingent) from “essences” (something necessary/essential).

      She attempts to make an essentialist argument by employing “accidentals” in an indiscriminate and arbitrary manner. For example, she implies that she would prefer (as a “Jew”) to chow down a pastrami on rye sandwich at snack time while a typical goy (like Annie or me) would undoubtedly choose to snack on some kind of sandwich made with white bread and mayonnaise [N.B. Goys always trim off the bread crust and slice the bread into bite-sized squares, rectangles and/or triangles when preparing cucumber sandwiches at tea time].

      Essentialists distinguish between properties which are essential to being and those things which are not. For the essentialist, a Jew would cease to be a Jew, for example, if she did not possess that mythical gene which distinguishes her as a Jew. In the Bible, Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha that genetic marker is identified as “the holy seed,” something which differentiates YHWH’s “chosen people” from all other tribal peoples and is an absolutely essential component of being a Jewish human being, the “crown jewel,” so to speak.

  • State Dep't is 'bigoted, anti-Semitic, Israel-hating' for saying Palestinian statelessness fosters violence
    • Great article. Mondoweiss furnishes me with some much needed hope, at times. Our “favorite” shameless, racist state has taken another major "hit" today. The truth will be revealed (in the end). The truth about Zionist treachery and war crimes will be disseminated to the masses worldwide (eventually).

      If you are “Jewish” (what does that mean: Jewishness is a socially-constructed identity marker that needful little “intellectual infants” subscribe to, in my view), you need only distance yourself from Israel and Zionism’s racist ideology to side with the truth over lies, blatant war crimes (the Six Day War), and crimes against humanity (incremental genocide). To choose a Closed/Tribal Society (Israel) over a Open/Democratic Society (any modern secular, democratic state) is -- Karl Popper suggested many years ago -- to place yourself “squarely” on the wrong side of history. “Jews” around the world need to wake up from their long, Rip-Van-Winkle-like sleep and join the modern world.

  • At NY premiere, David Grossman will join Netanyahu minister who boycotts Darwish
    • In his book, THE INVENTION OF THE JEWISH PEOPLE, Shlomo Sand sketches the trajectory of race theory in Europe in the second half of the 19th century. The belief that Jews and gentiles are distinct racial types was “the norm” in the scholarly community, he reports. "The murals in the tombs of the pharaohs depicted . . . human types whose physiognomy was identical with modern Jews. The Jewish race . . . has retained its integrity . . . and the Jewish type has conserved its purity throughout the centuries."

      The Jewish race has “retained its integrity” because it was believed that the Jews possess "the holy seed" (THE INVENTION, Sand, Shlomo, New York, Verso, 2009, p. 77). Intermarriage cannot eliminate or dilute “the holy seed.” “The Jewish type is indestructible.” “Assimilation is impossible . . .” (79).

    • Yonah admits to not knowing the 2000 year history of the Jewish people -- only “some headlines” -- yet she scolds any readers of Mondoweiss who have not read one book by Oz, Yehoshua and Grossman. “How can you have a war of ideas if you have not read them?”

      Yonah is confused, as usual, because she has been traumatized by the horrors of the Shoah, browbeaten by the endless profiteering of the holocaust industry (an ideological weapon which portrays Israel as the “eternal victim” of antisemitism), and the popular misrepresentation of the history of the Jews -- and of the history of Zionism -- by the MSM in Israel, the U.S. and elsewhere.

      A better place to begin forming and educated opinion on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict than reading Oz, Yehoshua and Grossman would be to read Heinrich Graetz’s HISTORY OF THE JEWS FROM THE OLDEST TIMES TO THE PRESENT (published in the 1850s) because he argues that Isak Markus Jost’s HISTORY OF THE ISRAELITES FROM THE TIME OF THE MACCABEES TO THE PRESENT (first published in 1820) misrepresents the Jewish people as a religious civilization rather than an eternal people, tribe, or Volksstamm with a common lineage and inherited traditions reaching back to a mythic past.

      Graetz’s HISTORY was the first Jewish nationalist argument, of which I am aware, that characterizes Jews as a chosen moral people with a specific historical beginning and a legitimate historical teleology (as documented in the Torah). It was written at a time when different ethnic groups (especially in Central Europe) were staking claims to particular pieces of real estate, so it’s not surprising that some Jews would begin to formulate that ideological argument at that particular time (given that historical context).

      But identifying the crux of the Jewish nationalist argument is really only a necessary beginning, unfortunately, to becoming an informed student on this particular topic.

  • With white nationalism on the rise in the US, JCC bomb threats stoked fear and solidarity
    • Americans should insist on a professional (meaning: not-"enhanced" but adroit and exhaustive) interrogation of this "terrorist." We need to understand and expose his probable motivation(s). Nothing less than a rigorous and methodical investigation of these hate crimes are required.

  • The Quebec mosque shooting and the Zionist connection
    • In Louis Lipsky’s book, A GALLERY OF ZIONIST PROFILES, Lipsky has this interesting thing to say about Ze’ev Jabotinsky (1880-1940), Menachem Begin’s (1913-1992) mentor: “[Ze’ev] was doubtless influenced by his admiration for Mussolini, not as a political theorist but as a performer. In fact [Ze’ev’s] opponents were personally greatly attracted to [Mussolini]. At one time, even Dr. [Chaim] Weizmann established cordial relations with him on a social level. The same was true of David Ben-Gurion, who on several occasions was on the verge of making peace with him, but was held back by his own party. . . . [Ze’ev] would have distinguished himself and his party [the Revisionist Party], had he lived to the days when the Yishuv rose in conflict with the [British] Mandatory regime, and the power of the Revisionist Party was taken over by the Irgun (NewYork: Farrar, Straus and Cudahy, 1956, p. 100).

      I’m sure I don’t need to tell anyone who reads Mondoweiss who Bibi looked up to as a mentor (before he passed away in 1992).

  • Despite international pressure, Finkelstein gives talk on Gaza's 'martyrdom' at German institute
    • Thank you diasp0ra. I was going to comment that allowing Norman Finkelstein to speak in Germany is a big step forward. This could not have taken place in Germany just a few years ago. The BDS movement, and publications like Mondoweiss, are making it possible for scholars like Finkelstein to debate the Palestine/Israel conflict --- even in Germany. This is, for me, progress. The word is getting out. Despite the efforts of Bibi, and public intellectuals like Bernard-Henri Lévy, Germans are beginning to rethink their uncompromising policy of: "Never challenge Israel -- right or wrong. Our Nazi past prohibits any and all criticism of Israeli. That's just the way it is. We have to hold our tongues. We can never criticize Israel."

  • 'Morality within the army is becoming less important among Israeli society': Azaria conviction reveals divisions across Israeli society
    • Yeah right. That makes good sense, AddictionMyth. Give a white nationalist mass murderer a "life in prison" sentence for mass murder when Black men are executed all the time for lesser crimes. That does not make sense to me. How do you justify that, logically?

  • Netanyahu's holy war, and the coming Jewish schism
    • Hasbara culture dictates that any criticism of Israeli policies makes the critics permanent "enemies of Israel." U.S. President Barack Obama and his Secretary of State, John Kerry, join former President Jimmy Carter (and millions of other Americans) as permanent "enemies of Israel" because “a deep and wide moral abyss separates us" [Israelis] from any critics of Israeli policies.

  • Netanyahu accuses Obama of betraying 'commitment' to Israel and initiating U.N. resolution
    • It is time to start having public debates in the U.S. about terminating the war against Islam in the U.S. and Europe by dismantling the the late-19th-century, race-based state in Israel and creating a democratic multinational state, a home for all peoples regardless of their birth mother's roots/origins. States constituted according to principles based on biologically-determined, "tribal" identities have no place in the modern World System.

    • It is time to start having public debates in the U.S. about terminating the war against Islam in the U.S. and Europe by dismantling the the late-19th-century, race-based state in Israel and creating a democratic multinational state, a home for all peoples regardless of their birth mother's roots/origns.

  • Why a Texas rabbi keeps losing a debate over Israel with a white nationalist leader
    • I see Spencer as one prominent leader of a “new breed” of semi-covert racists and antisemites (a.k.a. anti-Semites). Many Americans have a difficult time challenging Spencer in public debates because -- like Rabbi Rosenberg -- they support some version of a “Jewish state” (even if they do not agree with all of Israel’s present-day policies and/or actions).

      Spencer uses some Israeli policies and/or actions to promote hate in the U.S. Many Americans -- for good reasons in some cases -- refuse to criticize Israeli policies (and/or actions) simply because they do not want to be branded as an antisemite or "self-hating Jew." This is, in my view, unfortunate.

      The fear of being branded an antisemite (or "self-hating Jew”) opens a space in political discourse for white supremacists like Spencer to promote antisemitism in a backhanded manner by suggesting that some Israeli policies and/or actions are “exclusionary” and therefore may be as “racist” as Spencer’s views. The fear of publicly criticizing Israel is, in my view, wrongheaded.

      Today, more than ever, Americans must take a stand -- with or against specific Israeli policies/actions -- just as they do with those policies/actions of Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Somalia, Yemen, Iran and other countries with which they disagree. Political outspokenness should not be condemned. Fear of standing up for, or speaking publicly about, what you believe in, is (in my view), ultimately, detrimental to the United States’ political stature in the world. It also encourages American "adventurism," heavy-handed overt and covert military operations, endangers our cherished freedoms and, most importantly, perhaps, the lives of our people in uniform and innocent civilians who are the victims of U.S. military "collateral damage."

  • New anti-Semitism legislation may stifle campus activism for Palestinian rights
    • If the history of modern German literature can be said to begin "on a day in 1743 when a 14-year-old Talmudic student named [Moses] Mendelssohn entered the city through the gate reserved for Jews and cattle" (THE PITY OF IT ALL: A PORTRAIT OF THE GERMAN-JEWISH EPOCH, Elon, Amos, New York: Henry Holt and Company, 2002, p. 4), then the history of the new Christian Anglo-Saxonism in the U.S. may at some future date be ironically identified by the introduction of the Anti-Semitism Awareness Act by the U.S. Congress on Nov. 30, 2016.

  • Tulsi Gabbard's screw-the-neocons meeting with Trump sparks anger, derision, encouragement
    • Anything is possible, Atlantaiconoclast, but I'm not holding my breath.

    • Rep. Tulsi Gabbard is the first American Samoan and the first Hindu member of the U.S. Congress. As a U.S. Army National Guard combat veteran, she's seen the cost of American adventurism in the Middle East up close, so she is staunchly anti-war. She quotes Mahatma Gandhi routinely. She's a hard-core environmentalist and defender of the rights of indigenous peoples around the world. She is a voice for women's rights, minorities, the marginalized and the dispossessed. She is a close ally of Bernie Sanders. She openly opposed Hillary Clinton and spoke out in favor of including 3rd-party candidates in the 2016 U.S. presidential debates (and got smacked down for it by the DNC). You can't ask for more than that from a U.S. Congresswomen. I think it is best for Americans to stay out of Indian politics. We can't pick leaders for the Indian people and don't know all of her reasons for maintaining a dialogue with Narendra Modi and/or the BJP, please!

  • Trump aide blows off Zionist gala, and Dershowitz warns that politicizing Israel means 'we could lose'
    • Yonah is being historically accurate in pointing out that "Herzl was happy to assimilate, but [many] nonjew[s] w[ere] not happy to have him around." It's absurd to claim that "anti-goyism was the main generator of Zionism." Logic demands that correct conclusions be based on valid premises. Herzl was neither a "Jewish supremacist" nor a "segregationist." His motive for establishing a Jewish State must be understood in the historical context in which he lived, which could be described as a period in Europe when Jews were experiencing the consequences of a surge in Pan-Germanism, Pan-Slavism and anti-Semitism." He was himself guilty of entertaining some of the stereotypes of Jews spread by ant-Semites. For example, he was so angry at the Sassoons, Montagus, Warburgs and other wealthy Jewish families of his time for not supporting his Zionist project that "it triggered an outburst on his part that would have delighted the troglodytes of the Jew-baiting gutter press but which he published in Die Welt [The World] [in] October 15, 1897, under the heading of Mauschel (Yid, or kike)." In "a diatribe [which] sizzles with primitive rage," he identified the "Yid [as an] anti-Zionist" (qtd. in THE LABYRINTH OF EXILE: A LIFE OF THEODOR HERZL, Pawel, Ernst, Farrar, Strauss & Giroux, NY, 1989, pp. 345-346).

    • I agree. Trump meeting with Rep. Tulsi Gabbard is good news.

  • I'm not worried about anti-Semitism
    • I think that Annie is correct in suggesting that the "alt-right" should not be dismissed out of hand. I have noticed that many young white male Christians, atheists, libertarians and others -- non-Jews and non-Muslims of all sorts -- make racist, anti-Semitic and Islamophobic comments to me in private coffeehouse conversations. My "chrome dome" apparently makes them feel safe to speak their minds around me -- a stranger, someone they may have seen around town before -- Ventura, CA -- but do not know personally.

      I honestly believe I probably hear more comments of this sort in casual conversations than most people do. Many of these young white males appear to assume that I'm an older, fairly successful paleoconservative (or white ethno-nationalist of some sort), part of what they consider to be the new "silent majority." It is troubling and worrisome. It makes me anxious, at times. What I have always recognized as "white privilege" (or "WASP privilege") seems to have morphed into its reverse among many white males: they actually seem to genuinely believe that -- as white males -- they are the victims of discrimination in (what is for them) today's new "pc world."

      We need to make an effort to stay informed. We need to try to reason with these people. We should not ignore their comments. We should challenge them in an intellectually-rigorous manner.

      Having shared this experience, I would also add -- "with extreme prejudice" (to quote dialogue from Coppola's APOCALYPSE NOW) -- that it's too soon to become fearful, paranoid. Talk is cheap. When more of these young white males begin gathering in groups and assaulting "minorities" -- if we ever reach that stage in the U.S. (and I don’t believe we will) -- then it will be clear that it is actually time to start becoming fearful, paranoid.

      I don't think we have reached that stage of madness yet, so it seems premature to presume that the U.S. is moving rapidly in a linear direction toward some ultra-right-wing political movement which closely resembles fascism. Trump’s election may be a temporary aberration. Let's hope so. It's too soon to assume, as many of these young white males do, apparently, that this is "the new normal."

  • Where do we go from here? Our thoughts & yours on the US election
    • It is difficult at this point to predict with any specificity exactly what course Trump will chart. He may simply chart an aggressive neoliberal economic course -- combined with militant neocon foreign policy objectives along the way -- as he steers the Ship of State forward (teetering on the edge of the abyss). We may see, in other words, more of the same: a continuation of the horrific farce of U.S. Manifest Destiny -- disguised as the “American dream” -- played out with virtually no opposition from the multitude.

      Of course, his ethno-nationalist pilots and crew may advise him to steer the Ship of State radically toward the alt-Right with a vengeance, taking no dissenting prisoners as they proceed toward their white nationalist republic. As horrible as things are presently, they could get much worse posthaste. So we should not, it seems to me, remain passive/inactive.

      Either way, resistance seems the only reasonable strategy for us to adopt at this point. Mutinies do not always entail throwing the captain and crew overboard. We could shackle them with manacles and chains and fasten them to stays in the Ship’s hold, using them as ballast as we steer the Ship of State towards a social democratic stronghold.

  • The power of hasbara culture
    • Sorry, Fritz, but I believe you have completely misconstrued the probable impact of the article written by Yakov Hirsch. Exposing the way Jeffrey Goldberg and Jonathan Greenblatt demonize and dehumanize supporters of the BDS movement does not necessarily lead all Americans to fear the “power of hasbara culture.”

      You have made the same error in logic that Ernst Pawel, one of the biographers of Theodor Herzl, attributed to Herzl in his analysis of the “Jewish problem” in DER JUDENSTAAT [The Jewish State] (1896).

      Goldberg and Greenblatt, like Herzl before them, assume that “anti-Semitism is ineradicable, deeply ingrained in folklore and myth, and, moreover, justifiable as a defense [by anti-Semites] against [Jewish] dominance, [so Jews] need a land of their own in which to become a people like any other.” “Jews, in this view, were defined as such by anti-Semites rather than their own backgrounds,” traditions [and/or their own complex views of their own social identity] (THE LABYRINTH OF EXILE: A LIFE OF THEODOR HERZL, New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux,1989, p. 265).

      Hirsch distinguishes between hasbara -- “good public relations arguments in support of Israel” -- and hasbara culture, “a belief system about the world" and the Zionists' view of their place in this world. He then suggests that “The recent call by Israeli education minister Naftali Bennett for the pardon, if convicted, of Elor Azaria, the Israeli soldier caught on video executing a prone and injured Palestinian, is useful in understanding the difference between hasbara and hasbara culture.”

      “The narrative of victimhood and the politics of Jewish ethnocentricity cultivated by Netanyahu and Bennett,” Hirsch explains, “are part of the social construction of reality of hasbara culture. That is the unabashed Jewish tribalism that we see from Israel every day. It is being so ethnocentric you can’t even believe the Palestinians can be ethnocentric too. In hasbara culture every type of Palestinian resistance to Israeli occupation is about Israel[,] is about “‘the Jews.’”

      In other words, you assume that “the Palestinian people don’t have their own national narrative, their own story, that is not Jewish-centric.” “Hasbara culture,” Hirsch suggests, “is an aggressive, proselytizing culture.” It assumes not only that anti-Semitism is immutable and “ineradicable” but much worse: it assumes that anti-Semitism is “justifiable as a defense [by anti-Semites] against [Jewish] dominance, [so Jews] need a land of their own in which to become a people like any other.”

  • H to Jake to Malcolm to Maggie to Haim to Huma -- resetting the discourse on Israel in 6 easy steps
    • Zionist-Jewish Americans have, in my view, either inadvertently or deliberately become the oppressors and persecutors of Palestinians, and the apologists for Israeli war criminals, by assuming their “historical victimhood” status as “Jews” which (in their minds) makes it definitionally impossible for them to oppress others while supporting a safe haven -- commonly known as the modern State of Israel -- for “likely” future victims of anti-Semitism.

      Christian-Zionist Americans (especially the Calvinist Christian Reconstruction Zionists, Charismatic/Pentecostal Kingdom Now Zionists, New Apostolic Reformation Zionists and others) are guilty of supporting the oppression and persecution of Palestinians too, of course, but they don’t possess the “historical victimhood” status of Zionist-Jewish Americans (which makes their role as supporters of oppression and persecution of Palestinians more palatable to most Americans).

  • In Tel Rumeida, you can be arrested for laughing
    • That's a really good question, Demsh. It is not commonly known that Herzl was unable to convince the vast majority of Western-European Jews during his lifetime to subscribe to what they considered his "paranoid" views. This included the Rothschilds and other wealthy, powerful French, German, Austrian and British Jews. They would not even answer his long-winded letters, much less meet with him to discuss his “foolhardy” project.

      Most successful Western-European Jews considered themselves Austrians, Germans Frenchmen, Englishmen, etc. and believed his idea of colonizing Palestine both “dangerous” (for all Jews) and "crazy." Not only that, but the idea of immigrating to Palestine and founding a Jewish State in that part of the Ottoman Empire was not even a remotely attractive idea to them.

      Even friends of Herzl’s, like the great Austrian dramatists Arthur Schnitzler, sympathized with Herzl’s “paranoia” because anti-Semitism was “going mainstream” in politics in Vienna, and elsewhere, with the rise of pan-German and pan-Slavic political parties, but they still believed this to be a temporary aberration, and they wanted no part of Herzl’s “crazy” project because they believed it to be not only totally unfeasible, but quite frankly, a utopian fantasy, the project of an emotionally-disturbed, “paranoid” individual.

    • It's absurd when viewed from a historical perspective. The two Austro-Hungarian founders of political Zionism, Theodor Herzl and Max Nordau (born Simon Maximilian Südfeld) were atheists, but they justified the colonization of Palestine by claiming: 1) modern Jews (c. 1896) were "probably" distantly related in some way to the ancient Israelites who were dispossessed of or exiled from their homeland by the ancient Romans, 2) the indigenous people of Palestine living in the region for the last 1500 years were "barbaric" (THE JEWISH STATE, Herzl, Theodor, 1896), and 3) modern Western-European Jews were/are “civilized” and were (c. 1896-1948) being persecuted by “civilized” Russians, Austrians, Germans and other Europeans).

      In other words, the ancient Israelites of the Exodus narrative -- and those modern Jews who are “probably” distantly related to them in some way -- are valorized over the “barbaric” Arabs living under the Ottoman Empire before WWI (and later under the British Mandate, 1920-1948).

      It is therefore perfectly reasonable for modern “civilized” Jews to dispossess modern “barbaric” Palestinian-Arabs from their land because the modern Jews were/are a “civilized” people, while modern Arabs are a “barbaric” people.

  • 'Atlantic' editor says that Israel's 1948 expulsion of Palestinians was not 'a tragedy'
    • “Goldberg’s . . . Nakba denial [is]: an ethnocentric statement about Jews that does not take into account Palestinian humanity. . . . [and] is meant to obscure [the] lived reality of ethnic cleansing and occupation that we are all dealing with today [with] the collapse of the peace process and the rise of the [BDS] movement.”

      Another way of comprehending American college students’ growing distaste with present-day Zionist ideology might be to try to better understand the historical context of the establishment of a central precept of that ideology: the principle that any present-day capitalist World-System must include a Jewish State -- whose laws privilege Jews -- to avoid another Shoah or, at any rate, a world in which widespread, rabid anti-Semitism (and persecution of Jews) is inevitable.

      Most American college students -- whether they identify themselves primarily as Jewish or gentile, white or black, European-American or Native American, or however they choose to classify their complex nexus of identities -- are not convinced that that particular ethnocentric/discriminatory Zionist premise is valid. Most black youth, for example, are not convinced that a return to a (black) slave economy in the U.S. is inevitable. Why should young Jewish-Americans believe that a predominantly-Jewish, militant-nationalist Israeli regime which terrorizes its probable fifth columnists (the Palestinian population of Israel, the West Bank and Gaza) is the only thing that stands in the way of a return to a world in which widespread, rabid anti-Semitism (and persecution of Jews) is inevitable?

      Andreas Huyssen argues that the socio-cultural milieu of late 19th- and early 20th-century Europe suffered from an “anxiety of contamination” which helped produce the anti-Semitic totalitarian regimes of Stalin’s Soviet Union and Hitler’s Germany (AFTER THE GREAT DIVIDE: MODERNISM, MASS CULTURE, POSTMODERNISM, 1986, p. vii). The ethnocentric/discriminatory ideology of Zionism was formulated in that same socio-cultural milieu. The Zionists’ ethnocentric ideology is comprehensible/fathomable in that particular socio-historical context, but it makes no sense in the socio-cultural milieu of our contemporary global world order. I would argue that any militant-nationalist political regime which privileges children born of Jewish women over children born of non-Jewish women in today’s neoliberal capitalist World-System encourages -- rather than discourages -- anti-Semitism.

  • The battle over Obama's legacy, featuring Netanyahu, Zogby, liberal Zionists, and 88 senators
    • ". . . in reality, Israelis have made their choice. So the question is whether the United States can face that reality, and what, if anything, is it prepared to do about it?"

      Israelis have indeed made their choice, in my view, a choice based on their nostalgia for “lost origins,” the fictively inscribed world of the European colonizer and the native Other. What does that mean for 21st-century Israelis and Americans?

      It means that Zionists in Israel and the U.S. must recognize that they do not occupy a higher ground, morally and legally, than the indigenous Palestinian. They must acknowledge the common humanity of both the colonizer (occupier) and the colonized (occupied) and guarantee them the same rights and privileges not just in ambiguous theory but in actual practice.

  • Trump’s Israel advisor (again) argues for annexation of the West Bank with bad math
  • There's no room on campus to be progressive and pro-Israel
    • Thank you, Annie Robbins.

    • Ha . . . ha . . . ha . . . ha . . . ha. LMAO! Exactly.

    • I join other commentators in thanking Annie for her cogent analysis of Kogen's “How BDS Is Pushing Jewish Students Out of Social Justice Activism." I often wonder if pro-Zionist activists have taken the time to study the writings of Franz Rosenzweig, Martin Buber, Emmanuel Levinas, Tony Judt , Judith Butler and the many other respected scholars who have pointed out the menacing fault lines revealed by any careful scrutiny of Zionist ideology.

    • "The devil is in the details": A few details Al2Sultan leaves out:
      In his political pamphlet, Der Judenstaat [The Jewish State] (1896), Theodor Herzl characterized the Middle East and Asia of his day as a wellspring of “barbarism” and suggested that the best form of governing the Jewish nation’s Promised Land would be a combination of “democratic monarchism” and “aristocratic republicanism” in order to preserve “a true balance of power.” “Nations are . . . not fit for unlimited democracy at present,” he wrote, “and will become less and less fitted for it in the future.” “Our people” (the Jews) who colonize Palestine, Herzl suggested, will “accept the new constitution it offers them. Should any opposition manifest itself,” he made clear, “the Society [of Jews] will suppress it.”

      Herzl made his strategy for the colonization of Palestine quite explicit in the concluding chapter of this political pamphlet in which he suggested that the first colonists must be primarily from the Jewish underclass: “It is precisely the poorest whom we need at first” because “only the desperate make good conquerors.” According to Herzl’s carefully-crafted political pamphlet, the principle of “[u]niversal brotherhood is not even a beautiful dream.” In point of fact, he argued, the Christian humanist and Enlightenment concepts of “universal brotherhood” — as splendid as they may sound in theory — have turned out to be ill-advised in practice. The father of modern political Zionism — Theodor Herzl — specifically rejected the Christian humanist, Reform Judaism, Muslim and secular versions of “universal brotherhood,” claiming that “antagonism [as opposed to cooperation or collaboration] is essential to man’s greatest efforts.”

      The very idea (conception/proposition) of a “Jewish State” can never be wrenched/twisted/spun into a progressive political policy objective, never could. Why dissimilate? If you are a political reactionary, Al2Sultan, why don't you just fess up, and adopt neocon arguments from brilliant political theorists like Leo Strauss and Carl Schmitt. Why the games?

  • Solidifying behind Clinton, foreign policy establishment gins up a cold war with Russia/Iran
    • Correction: The book Cities Under Siege: The New Military Urbanism. London: Verso -- cited in my post above -- was published in 2010 (not as incorrectly recorded: to be published in the future: 2020).

    • I agree. Also, I was thinking it may be easier to understand the U.S.’ so-called “war on terror” as part of the Pentagon’s 21st-century strategy of achieving full-spectrum dominance and control of the entire planet, cyberspace, the electromagnetic sphere and space itself.

      The Pentagon defines “battlespace” as “the limitless battlefield of post-modern war . . . the environment, factors and conditions that must be understood to successfully apply combat power, protect the force or complete the mission. This includes the air, land, sea, space, and the included enemy and friendly forces; facilities; weather; terrain; the electromagnetic spectrum; and the information environment within the operational areas and areas of interest” (U.S. Department of Defense, Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms. Washington, DC: Department of Defense, 2004, p. 64).

      Over the past thirty years, “it has become increasingly clear that the nature of warfare is undergoing a radical change. Enormous battles between two regular, mechanized, and well-equipped armed forces of the industrial age have become a thing of the past. In fact, the Yom Kippur War in 1973 was the last time classic battles of this kind were fought, either in this region [the Middle East] or beyond. Other types of warfare, of an absolutely different kind, have taken their place” (Yiftah Shapir, “Trends in Military Buildup in the Middle East,” Shlomo Brom and Anat Kurtz (eds.). Strategic Survey for Israel 2009. Tel Aviv: The Institute for National Security Studies, 2009, p. 112).

      “One type, commonly called the Revolution in Military Affairs (RMA), rests on three main components: the use of precision guided, long range weapons; absolute intelligence superiority throughout the battle arena; and systems of Command, Control, Communications, Computers, and Intelligence . . . that allow for integration of all the other elements. The war in Iraq in 2003 proved the absolute superiority of a military that adopted this approach over traditional mechanized military” (Brom and Kurtz [eds.], p.112).

      There are at least four different types of warfare needed today, two of which the U.S. can employ and two Israeli “niche” systems: 1) “focused logistics,” and 2) “full dimensional force protection” (Halper, Jeff. War Against the People: Israel, the Palestinians and Global Pacification. London: Pluto Press, 2015, pp. 75-76).

      The U.S. and Israel’s “military-industrial-security complexes are integrated to a degree ‘that it might now be reasonable to consider them as a single diversified, transnational entity . . . [f]ueled by the two states’ similar ideologies of permanent war’” (Graham, Stephen, Cities Under Siege: The New Military Urbanism. London: Verso, 2020, p.259, qtd. in The War Against the People, p. 72).

      Syria -- with the help of Russia, Iran and Turkey -- may be able to foil the Pentagon’s 21st-century strategy of achieving full-spectrum dominance and control of the entire planet, cyberspace, the electromagnetic sphere and space itself.

  • Outside RNC, Cornel West has inspiring words for the Palestinian people
    • Is it possible to plagiarize cliches?

      Michelle Obama's speech may be rated as too cliché-ridden in your judgment, Keith. I would think that a great deal of contemporary political discourse -- especially words spoken in public to a politically-enthusiastic U.S. Democratic Party (or Republican Party) audience -- would be rated cliché-ridden by most of us. That's beside the point.

      You are guilty of plagiarism whenever you use someone else's words or ideas without crediting them. Much of Melania's speech is virtually word-for-word identical to Michelle's speech. You can't deny that. She's guilty as charged. The excuses coming out of the Fortress Trump campaign are lame at best.

  • Guess who sent me this letter
    • Any way I could persuade you (or your great team at Mondoweiss) to delete all my previous comments on your website? I'm being hassled by the govt. and pro-Israel trolls, apparently, so I'd prefer to not participate in most social media discussions in the future for some (unspecified) period of time.

    • I'm wondering if Phil or any of his many politically progressive readers are finding FBI cookies on their laptops, having problems calling anyone, at times, problems using FaceTime -- quite often -- sending iMessages, etc.? Am I being targeted by pro-Zionist trolls, for some reason, you think . . . . or . . . . am I just being paranoid?

  • White House says Netanyahu offers no alternative but military action (and Liz Warren won't say if she's attending speech)
    • This is a real opportunity for Elizabeth Warren to distinguish herself further from Hillary Clinton by suggesting that she -- unlike most U.S. politicians -- is not "for sale."

      This is a gift! Hopefully her campaign advisors will stomp their feet and repeat in unison to her: “Standing with President Obama over and against Bibi Netanyahu will resonate with the American public.”

      The average voter in the U.S. cannot imagine any U.S. politician standing up and looking directly into the mass media circle jerk of microphones, cameras, and camcorders in an honest, forthright manner and saying:

      “I cannot be bought. If I choose to run for the distinguished office of the presidency of the United States, I will represent the American people. I will defend their interests against all lobbyists no matter how powerful, well heeled and demanding they may be.”

      “There are no rubber stamps on my desk. Lobbyists FedEx me rubber stamps every day, and I just repackage the item and write on the box: “Return to sender, address unknown.”

  • Obama reported to be looking into settler attack on State Dep't officials, even as NYT buries the story
    • I don't know, Annie? If I was president -- radical suspension of disbelief, of course! -- I would not sign legislation into law involving economic or military sanctions which I do not support. Congress can always override my (presidential) veto if they have the votes, but if they do, then my political opponents would have a more difficult time making the case that I am, always have been, and always will be an unqualified, unconditional bootlicker servicing the Zionist lobby on a daily basis.

      I like sanctions myself -- and not just the BDS version being recommended by Josh Ruebner, Anna Baltzer, Rebecca Vilkomerson, etc. Much prefer them to military intervention, for example. Why rule out a strategy which is quite effective in some cases?

    • I agree that we should all make sure we never blame the U.S. govt.'s unqualified support of Zionist ethnic-cleansing operations on "Jews" (a vague, essentialist designation), Mivasair. Michelle Goldberg's book, KINGDOM COMING: THE RISE OF CHRISTIAN NATIONALISM (2006), suggests that much of the political support for Israel's hawkish, ethnic-cleansing policies comes from Christian Zionists in the U.S.

      Christian nationalism -- like German nationalism and militarism, Jewish nationalism and militarism (or Zionism) -- should all be condemned as anachronisms. Religious, ethnic and/or cultural privilege (and bigotry) just does not make sense in the 21st century.

      Zionism must be distinguished as an (exclusivist) ideology which has no obligatory connection to religious faith, ethnic or cultural bias.

    • I like the fact that you mock the report of Obama “looking into” an incident in which Israeli “settlers” [as opposed to Zionist thugs/enforcers] threw rocks at an unfamiliar vehicle carrying U.S. State Dept. officials in Eretz Israel’s colony on the West Bank of the Jordan River, Kay24.

      Rather than focus on Obama’s apparent endorsement of Netanyahoo freezing $127 million in Palestinian tax revenues -- in response to the Palestinian Authority filing a request to join the International Criminal Court earlier this week -- let’s make sure the MSM reports on Obama’s robust investigation into a few heroic Israel “settlers”/”homesteaders” throwing rocks at foreign intruders making inquiries about IDF operations in their colony on the West Bank.

  • Dershowitz named in lawsuit alleging abuse of underage sex slave
    • Being a retro-bohemian has its advantages. Post-Zionist Israeli artists, journalists and academics -- esp. the Israeli New Historians and their revisionist colleagues in the sociology departments of Israeli universities in the 1990s -- found themselves enticed by some features of the recent past.

      Remember that they were experiencing the radical aftershocks of viewing Marshall McLuhan’s “Mechanical Bride” déshabillé. They found some other avant-garde tropes equally seductive: Berger’s and Luckmann’s theory of the “social construction of reality,” various deployments of the “hermeneutics of suspicion” by academic colleagues teaching in the humanities, Adorno’s and Horkheimer’s deconstruction of the “dialectic of Enlightenment,” and many other Kafkaesque and Borgesian strategies of disclosure and demystification, so the idea of a powerful and unscrupulous pro-Israel lobby controlled by a wealthy and politically-astute “shadow elite” did not seem too implausible to them at that time.

      They began to think in terms of Foucault’s power-knowledge structures and Gramsci’s theory of cultural hegemony. They even began to question their own roles as purveyors of a canonical Zionist ideology. Their curiosity led them to examine more carefully the master narratives of Zionism they had learned as students and were currently teaching in their own classrooms.

      Employing more critical approaches to history and sociology compelled them to confront the prevalent view of Zionism in the Israeli academy as a democratic movement of “national liberation” with profound skepticism. The obvious cosmopolitan bourgeois convictions of Herzl, Nordau and Jabotinsky did not connect seamlessly with these early Zionists’ fin de siècle views on race, ethnicity and nationalism. That recognition created, for some of them, an almost overwhelming experience of cognitive dissonance.

      So they began to dig deeper, to challenge inherited beliefs, to view the Zionist canon skeptically. They were by no means emotionally incapacitated by doubt as Zionist neocons would lead you to believe. Instead, they began to “hold back assent from opinions which are not completely certain and indubitable just as carefully as [they would] those which are patently false.” That is, they began to employ their own updated understanding of Descartes’ skeptical “method” in their search for truth.

      In fact, Ilan Pappé documents his own version of Julien Benda’s "Trahison des Clercs" -- his personal journey of discovery -- in his "The Idea of Israel: A History of Power and Knowledge" (2014).

    • I agree with the point you make, Annie. But the specific circumstances and the public "reputation" of someone like Epstein would be relevant in this case, I would think.

      To me it seems pretty dumb (for a prominent public figure like Dershowitz) to accept sexual favors from young women through an intermediary like Epstein.

      I certainly don't think men should suspect all young women of preparing honey traps, or acting as bait in badger games, but the circumstances seem suspicious in this particular case.

      I have not seen any hard evidence at this point, obviously. I am speculating about the size of an object -- viewed through a small circular aperture -- at the bottom of a large, opaque pit.

    • Check her ID? Sorry, possession of what appears to be a valid ID is not a credible defense for an adult having "consensual" sex with someone who may feasibly/possibly be a minor. The legal age for consensual sex in the geographical domain where the sex took place is the critical issue in this case, I would think.

      If there is any question of a sexual partner being underage, the adult should not only decline to have sex with the person in question, he/she should offer help, protection and show genuine concern for this person's safety and security. Robust support, encouragement, and unqualified/unconditional protection should have been offered/provided to this young woman.

      I don't detect any wiggle room for the defendant under the circumstances described.

  • On eve of University of California honor, Bill Maher defends anti-Muslim hate speech in Vanity Fair interview
    • Attempts to impose dogmatic atheism on sizable groups of heterogeneous populations in an apodeictic manner has not been an effective strategy, historically, for organizing human communities. Many individuals like to believe in freedom of thought and action (and/or free will) as well as individual liberty (and/or "open"/experimental forms of community), especially when faced with adults raised in different cultural milieus. A better strategy, it seems to me, would be to give (headstrong) human beings a range of choices: atheism, agnosticism, different forms of skepticism, and sophisticated forms of tolerant belief systems like religious pluralism.

    • I agree, Kay24. Karen Armstrong is a highly-respected historian who has written many books on ancient history, the Bible, Islam, the Crusades, biographies of both Muhammad and Buddha, but her real passion comes through most clearly, in my view, in her comparisons and contrasts between the three Abrahamic religions.

      She has devoted her entire life to studying and writing about the history and exegesis of Axial Age religions (800-200 BCE), Christianity and Islam, all the books included in the different versions of the Old and New Testament, the Quran, the Pseudepigrapha and the Apocrypha (She hasn't written extensively on the Babylonian and/or Jerusalem Talmud, however, as far as I have been able to determine).

      Maher has no scholarly background. His expertise is in tabloid journalism, celebrity chitchat, and making fun of people, their beliefs and opinions. He was a dyed-in-the-wool libertarian, Hugh Hefner acolyte with no sympathy whatsoever for the poor or minorities until 6-8 years ago when he miraculously transformed himself into a “compassionate conservative” (masquerading as a liberal progressive).

      Like Sam Harris, he’s been on an anti-Islam/pro-Israel crusade (as a dogmatic atheist) since 9/11. He was apparently raised as a Roman Catholic but claims his mother (née Julie Berman) never told him her “dark secret” (that she was the child of Jewish parents).

      Coincidentally, the late Christopher Hitchens had the same “dark secret.” His mother, he claims, kept this secret from him and his Christian brother her entire life (1921-1973). He did not know of his Jewish ancestry, he claims, until late 1987, but thought nothing of it until the first Gulf War (1990 1991), when to everyone’s surprise at the NATION magazine (where he worked) he transformed himself from a radical Leftist “dove” into a pro-Israel, Little-Bush-loving, Arab-hating “hawk.”

    • @ Jahan-Zaib H. Gilani: You have quite accurately, in my view, unmasked Bill Maher as a frequent purveyor of Islamophobia and religious hate speech. He seems completely oblivious to world history’s religious wars and the protracted, bloodstained struggle of humans for some modicum of religious tolerance, something which distinctly separates modernity from the Middle Ages.

      This kind of historical amnesia is especially noxious coming from a celebrity with a large fan base who promotes himself as a “liberal” and/or political progressive. His fans have come to anticipate his attacks on people of faith, his characterizations of them as credulous dupes or spellbound sheeple. The religious, the pious, the devout are his favorite target.

      When employing his particular style of put-down humor, Maher regularly makes fun of Roman Catholic doctrine, priests, nuns and Christian fundamentalists. But anyone who has watched him more than once recognizes that he reserves his most venomous assaults for Muslims. Like his second baseman on this particular panel, Sam Harris, Maher proudly defends his dogmatic atheism as the only valid form of belief for intelligent, well-informed, rational human beings in the 21st century. And both of them are guilty of mischaracterizing and defaming Islam as the only truly pernicious and malevolent world religion widely in use today.

      Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Buddhism and other forms of traditional belief are all, for him, wholly without foundation and thus subject to mockery and ridicule. People who support contemporary religious belief systems, and time-honored spiritual practices, are all -- without exception -- characterized as either spellbound fools or people trapped in some kind of weird pre-Enlightenment time warp.

      Thank you for identifying this joker by his peculiar multicolored fool’s suit.

  • Caroline Glick melts down with European diplomats
    • That's so funny. What's an app.? You're so-o-o-o-o-o retro.

    • The Simon Weisenthal Center and Hillel International just proudly announced a new phone app “to fight anti-Semitism” which will be deployed on 550 US campuses with Hillel centers.

      In a truly alarming marriage of Paranoid Surveillance Culture and the no-desperate-move-surprises-us-anymore Israel lobby…the Simon Wiesenthal Center (SWC), the group known for actually building a “Museum of Tolerance” on top of a Muslim cemetery in Jerusalem, has developed the app to encourage students to literally report their teachers and fellow students. Reminiscent of surveillance posters found in places like Singapore, and I’d imagine, North Korea, this app’s catch phrase is “See it. Report It”

      Explained Hillel International spokesperson David Eden:

      “Working against anti-Semitism with the Wiesenthal Center is a natural for Hillel International. We’re proud to stand shoulder to shoulder by promoting this important tool to those who most often take the brunt of anti-Semitic attacks – students,” said David Eden, Chief Administrative Officer and chief spokesperson for Hillel International. “This innovative and simple to use app is another resource that we can use to help keep North American college campuses safe for Jewish students.”

    • According to Glick, nothing has changed. Europeans treat Jews, an essentialist corporate body, the same way, today, they have since the time of Jesus.
       
      Non-Jews have always misread/misinterpreted the Book.  Non-Jews are incapable of understanding YHWH's Word.  Jews alone understand YHWH's Law.  Jews alone are capable of distinguishing right from wrong.   Jews alone are capable of determining terrorists from non-terrorists. All non-Jews worship idols and/or false “messiahs,” so Israelis refuse to recognize -- or abide by -- non-Jewish (international) law.

      Better: Glick simply turns agreed-upon international law on its head by suggesting that only Israelis understand and respect international law: "We [Israelis] respect international law," Glick claims.  "You guys [Europeans] make it up."

    • Great post, Annie! This is the new face of Israel, the economic and military hegemon of the Middle East, the Near East, and Southwestern Asia who singlehandedly opposes Islamic terrorists around the world while Europeans and Americans sit on their thumbs, or worse, secretly support and finance Islamic terrorists, anti-Semites, and Jew-haters around the world.

      According to Glick, the late great Ze'ev Jabotinsky and Menachem Begin, and Zionist roadhouse bouncers like the current Minister of Foreign Affairs, Avigdor Lieberman, Israelis (and/or Jews, people of Jewish descent) have been treated in a contemptuous, patronizing and condescending manner by Europeans for hundreds -- or better, thousands -- of years.

      Why should the direct descendants of Abraham, Moses, Deborah, Ruth, Solomon and David pay any attention whatsoever to what these morally obtuse pagans, idol worshippers, and Judenhasser have to say about the way Jews govern their God-given homeland, Eretz Israel?

  • Nationalism vs imagination -- Beinart and Vilkomerson square off over two-state solution
    • Sarah Turbow and Peter Beinart, it seems to me, are expressing views common to the generation born before nationalism was understood as a cultural artifact, an ideology patched/cemented together with the bricks left behind when the divinely-ordained ideology of dynasty/monarchy was smashed and left in ruins. “As late as 1914, dynastic states made up the majority of the world political system, but . . . [that] old principle of Legitimacy [has long since] withered silently away” (IMAGINED COMMUNITIES, Anderson, Benedict, London: Verso, rev. ed., 2006, p. 22).

      “Nationalism is not the awakening of nations to self-consciousness: it invents nations where they do not exist” (Anderson, p. 6). Communities larger than primordial villages used to be imagined/conceptualized as if they were ethnically or culturally homogeneous. But they were not homogeneous. Instead, they turn out to have been ethnically, religiously and culturally heterogeneous.

      We need to learn to live together, to coexist peacefully. We cannot divide our ethnic, religious and cultural communities into competing sovereign states. Ethnic, religious and cultural pluralism are all unavoidable/inescapable. Imagining a spuriously homogeneous ethnic, religious, and/or cultural community is no longer credible.

    • Annie is exactly right. We have to stop dividing people up into separate racial, ethnic, cultural, and religious categories. Are bilingual Hispanic-Americans supposed to choose to be primarily loyal/faithful to Spain, Mexico, Cuba ( i.e., their Spanish-speaking ancestors), their Native American ancestors, or their (English-only speaking) white (or Black) ancestors? Do redheaded Americans and/or Israelis need to form secret Redheaded Leagues to fight discrimination?

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