Commenter Profile

Total number of comments: 7451 (since 2009-12-17 04:46:00)

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  • Al Aqsa mosque is closed off for first time in 47 years as tensions flare
    • Baha'i is Abrahamic. There are probably only about eight hold-out Azali Babis left, but counting them gives us five Abrahamic religions.

      Any advance on five?

  • 'Chickenshit' attack enrages Netanyahu and lobby, but will it stir voters against Obama?
    • I can only find a comment about ceremonies on lawns. I can't find any comment about "grassy knolls". Where is it?

      Actually a serious threat, if he did say that.

      The internet is full of material about the "Mossad killed JFK" suggestion. Here's an interesting one.

      link to

    • "Benjamin “King of all Jews” Netanyahu – it has quite a ring to it"

      And yet, for me, the phrase "King of the Jews" always conjures up the mental image of a superscription written in Hebrew, Latin, and Greek.

  • Sh*tstirring Jeffrey Goldberg dumps diplomatic sh*tstorm with 'chickensh*t' quote
    • And let's not forget the Israeli operations against the Somali pirates.

    • But American, think of the assistance from Israel during the Korean War, the Malayan Emergency, the confrontation with Indonesia, the Vietnam War. Think of the role they played in dealing with the Mau Mau, EOKA, the Hukbalahap, the break up of Yugoslavia.

      Doesn't that count?

    • But didn't Israel invent chickens?
      Or at least the shit.

  • Normalizing occupation, NYT runs whimsical story on time zones
    • Eljay, surely you have realised by now that only Jews have feelings, and those feelings must never be hurt.

      (And OT, but I read that your government has plans to make criticism of Israel a criminal offence. Can you get the internet in Canadian prison cells?)

    • The big questions are:

      Where is all this saved daylight being stored? Vast underground caverns?

      What is going to be done with it when the authorities decide they have collected enough of it?

  • Rivlin commemorates Kfar Qassem massacre and speaks of 'equality'
    • A change from the usual Israel bad cop/worse cop/really terrible cop.

    • I'm astonished to see this from an Israeli president. Yes, he made a promise he can't keep, talked the usual drivel about "national home of the Jewish people", and so forth, but it is still better than anything I ever expected to hear.

  • University of Exeter students vote to boycott Israeli settlement products in a landslide
    • Far too many year ago I did some research for my PhD in the U of Ex library. The ME section was so good it was hard to drag myself away from it and concentrate on my topic.

  • Resistance is our duty, too
    • "For Jews, treason is the name of the game. It is our right. It is our duty."

      How is it treason for American or Australian Jews to resist Israel. It is their support for Israel that has been treason in the past.

  • Kerry just snubbed a gov't minister who calls for segregated bus lines. And that's a bad thing?
    • "ministry of labor developed a plan to eliminate foreign sushi chefs"

      As someone who lived in Japan for years, I have a knee-jerk sympathy for a plan to eliminate all sushi chefs, but my calmer self thinks that would be too extreme. We should teach them how to cook, instead.

  • Shaking the campus from the US to Palestine
    • “the Jewish people never gave up hope … this desire for a homeland … a political movement dedicated to the creation of a Jewish state.”

      Morally irrelevant. Hopes and desires do not give any group a right to take over a country from the natives. They do not give any rights at all.

      “A state of Israel was seen as a necessary refuge for Jewish victims of oppression, especially in Russia, where pogroms were decimating the Jewish population.”

      Necessity does not give rights. (At best it acts as a mitigation for blame when wrongs are committed.) The interests of the East European Jews were not more important than the interests of the Palestinian Arabs.

      (Nor am I convinced that the state was a necessity. East European Jews could - and did - migrate to countries like Britain, Canada, and Australia, where they were more likely to become Governor-General than be victims of pogroms.)

      “This has nothing to do with colonialism.”

      I don’t care whether you say Zionism is colonialism or not. It is wrong regardless of what it is called.

      “The early Zionists sought to establish a secular state of Israel, recognized by the world, through purely legal means.”

      Yet they had no legal or moral right to set up a state in Palestine. In setting it up despite the opposition of the Palestinian Arabs they committed moral wrong.

      “The Arabs living in Palestine vigorously opposed Jewish immigration into the territory and the idea of a Jewish homeland.”

      Of course they opposed the idea of a bunch of foreigners coming into their country and setting up a state for the benefit of the foreigners and not for the benefit of the natives.

      “To suggest that the Zionists clearly intended from the start to dominate and/or expel the Arabs is absolute baloney”

      The intention to set up a Jewish state clearly implies that the Muslim and Christian Arabs would be - at best - second class citizens. (The local Jewish Arabs were not too happy about the idea, either.) And the words and actions of the Zionists supported the idea of Jewish domination.

      “The plan was ratified in November 1947.”

      And the Zionists started expelling Palestinian Arabs, exactly as they had declared they would.

    • "the narrow-minded Arab mentality that is saying it is alright for some Jews to be living amongst us but we have to dominate them."

      Since it was the clear intention of the Zionists to dominate and/or expel the Arabs, it seems reasonable that the Arabs would want restrictions on immigration of Jews.

      "This was a dreadful proposition for the Jews who at that time were facing very severe restrictions on immigration – a death sentence potentially for European Jewry."

      It was a just proposition for the Jews in Palestine, but they did not want justice. They wanted the land.

      And the Arabs had no greater obligation to European Jews than people in any other country. They were certainly not morally required to give up their country for the sake of European Jews.

    • If the Jewish immigrants were so keen on making common cause with the local Arabs, how did the Zionists get a foothold?

      The Zionists were uninvited foreigners. They entered the country with the avowed (loud and often) intent of taking over the country and setting up a state in which they would be top dogs, run for their benefit.

      They did set up an alternative society, with institutions for the promotion of Jewish interests and from which locals were excluded.

      And Zionists did buy up some land and drive off the tenant farmers.

      If that isn't declaring themselves the enemies of the locals, it comes damned close.

    • "In Palestine the native inhabitants were never willing to entertain a significant Jewish presence"

      Because the Jews who arrived declared themselves the enemies of the natives. They refused to become part of the local society. They drove native tenant farmers off the land. They declared loudly that they intended to take over the land, make themselves top dogs, and impose a language they had just made up.

  • 'Jewish students were barred from attending' pro-Palestinian event -- Alterman misrepresents
    • It astonishes me that these people never seem to get tired of whining about anti-Semitism. The rest of us certainly get tired of hearing the whining.

      I strongly suspect that one of the causes of modern anti-Semitism is irritation at the constant whinging about it.

  • There are some things about Gaza that I still can't wrap my head around
  • ExxonMobil and Apartheid South Africa have 'no right to exist,' Gitlin says
    • I've never heard of this person, but he seems like a person who just follows fashionable bandwagons. Totally unimportant.

  • The hidden documents that reveal the true borders of Israel and Palestine
    • On that basis, Jews in general were not and are not a nation. ("Common identity" and "ethnicity" need defining, but the rest is pretty clear.)

      But we could argue that the Zionists who moved into Palestine started forming themselves into a "nation". And now we move back to the questions:

      Why is this important?

      What does "recognition of the Jews as a legitimate nation in Palestine" imply?

      Why isn't full citizenship and equal rights for all residents sufficient for "sharing the land"?

    • " in my view Jews in Israel are not foreigners."

      In my view I am irresistible to women. I fear that by the time reality conforms to my view, I will be too old to benefit from it, even with pharmacological assistance.

    • Give Jon s a chance.

      He's still trying to figure out what he means by "nation", and why equal rights and full citizenship aren't enough.

    • “Bi-national state” implies that there are two nations on the land"

      What do you mean by "nation"?

      "they reach an agreement as partners in sharing it."

      I repeat: equal rights and full citizenship is sharing the land. What more would you want?

    • "The Arab side never agreed to the bi-national option, which implies recognition of the Jews as a legitimate nation in Palestine, "

      What do you mean by "a nation in Palestine"? Some sort of separate community? Why should they agree to that?

      "with whom the land is to be shared. "

      Equal rights and full citizenship is sharing the land.

      "Moreover , I doubt that the Arab leadership proposed allowing 75,000 immigrants over five years. They didn’t accept any Jewish immigration. "

      Why should they? They didn't invite the foreigners, and the foreigners had no other right to enter the country.

  • An exciting night at the opera: 'Klinghoffer' opening dominated by protest and heavy police presence
    • "books which were once banned are now being taught in collage courses. "

      Not read, but glued to a baseboard.

  • B'Tselem video: Israeli soldiers blindfold and detain 11 year old disabled child
    • "@robbins should know that the motive has always been there. Notwithstanding Israel’s actions, the unwillingness of the Palestinians to accept a growing Jewish presence predate 1967 by over hundred years. "

      Uninvited foreigners start pouring into the country.
      They make no attempt to become part of the local society, but set up an alternative society from which locals are excluded.
      They loudly proclaim their intent to take over the country and set up a state in which they will be top dogs, run for their benefit, using a language they have just made up, and that any locals who are not driven out will be subjugated.
      To prove the point, they buy up some land and drive off the tenant farmers.

      And you think the locals should have welcomed them with open arms.

    • It's comforting to know that we have the brave Israelis on our side in the War Against Terrorism.

  • 'Settlement endorsement should be put on a par with racism, sexism, homophobia and anti-Semitism' --British pol
    • "Sad to say, but the UK’s “Conservative” Party is not conservative anymore. It’s just another left-wing anti-Israel party."

      Were that true, I would rejoice. But many old Labour supporters in Britain think that the Labour Party has become just another right-wing party.

    • @Harry Law

      That would impress the Americans. They love titles, since they aren't allowed to have them.


      Phil's law strikes again.

    • Sir Andrew. "Sir" goes with the full name or the give name. Not used with the surname alone.

    • Invite Gerald Kaufmann and Andrew Duncan to top the bill.

      I like George Galloway, but including him might be counter-productive. I suspect he is persona non grata, and has been since he shredded the senators.

    • He's an anti-Semite, of course.

  • Europe wearies of Netanyahu's diversions
    • And let's not forget that Gwynedd County Council voted 42 to 3 in favour of suspension of trading with Israel, refusal to invest in Israeli establishments, and condemnation of "the over-reaction and savageness used" against Gaza.

      More about Gwynedd Council here.

      link to

    • Palijustice can speak for him/herself, but Martin van Creveld regarded nuking Europe as an option for defending Israel. Let's hope Laurent is right.

    • "What is fascinating is the total lack of foresight exhibited by not only the Israeli government but the Israelis and their Zionist fellow-travellers as well."

      The whole Zionist project seems to have been a bit short on foresight. The nearest to a long term plan seems to have been Ben Gurion's "The old will die and the young will forget".

      (And I hope that the FT has been misquoted. It would be shocking if such a high-ranking newspaper misplaced commas.)

  • Settlers in Jerusalem tear down family's Islamic banners, give them to a dog
  • 'NYT' can't keep its story straight on anti-Semitism in Germany
  • Israel's Dead Soul: Steven Salaita's critical scholarship explains his dismissal from the University of Illinois
    • This book was published in 2011! Surely the Grand Panjandra at University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign would have taken it into account when they first offered him the appointment.

      (Or was it the spur for a cunning plan to offer him a post, get him to give up his tenure, and then then dump him?)

    • I don't know what Salaita means by "multiculturalism", but I presume he defines it somewhere in his book.

      The version I know seems to be a politically correct term for encouraging self-imposed apartheid. As you say, it splits up society into "communities", and weakens social solidarity.

      From my perspective, another bad effect is that it enables these "communities" to burden their children with the task of maintaining the minority "culture". All citizens should have full access to all the opportunities available to, at least, members of the majority culture in the country. Minority children can end up having the opportunities limited by the cultural limitations imposed on them by the minority culture

    • Complicated Utterance, though regrettable, is necessary these days. Without it, no-one will think he is a serious academic.

  • How Israel relies on Islamophobia
    • "you only have to be a Muslim to qualify as a terrorist"

      In Britain you only have to doubt what Cameron tells you.

  • Israel wields 'significant US domestic power' to foil peace process -- NY Review of Books
  • Islamophobia, liberalism and the dangers of Interfaith ignorance
    • Why are Chomsky and Comedy Central pronouncing “Saudis” like “SaUdis”?

      Perhaps because in Arabic Saud is "sa9uud". Two vowels with a consonant between them. Second vowel is long.

  • British Parliament sends a message to Obama: the people see Israel as a 'bully'
    • I haven't seen much reporting of this debate here in Australia*, which Is a pity. I'm sure it would be welcome to much of the populace, even if the politicians pretend it never happened.

      It shows how dire the I/P situation is when it stirs morality in the bunch of frauds, drunks, and time servers who infest the Commons.

      And I like the phrase "screensaver politics". I think we may hear that used more often, now.

      (*Most attention is being paid to Tony Abbot's subtle an delicate diplomacy with Russia.)

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