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Total number of comments: 9591 (since 2009-12-17 04:46:00)

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  • Imagine if this article was about whites and blacks in the US
    • "Glad to know that you think Judaism is a community that rejects humanity."

      That's the way Jewishness (as distinct from the religion Judaism) seems to me, as a non-Jew. Even more so when intermarriage is called a "loss".

      I'm waiting to be persuaded that I am wrong.

      People like Mooser, who clearly thinks that being human is more important than being Jewish, are a good argument against me.

      People like you, who seem to think that Jews should always remain separate from the rest of humanity, are not.

    • " i don’t want the jewish community to vanish"

      Did you see the "if"?

      "do you wish ethnicities should vanish?"

      I don't see any point in maintaining ethnically based "communities".

      "let’s please not define jewishness by zionism’s disgrace."

      Tell that to eee.

    • Part 2.

      If if if if if if if the Jewish community actually really is such a community, then the sooner it vanishes through assimilation, the better for all of us.

    • The moderators just won't let me say what I have to say. Clearly they don't understand the implications of "if".

      I'll try breaking this into two parts, and see whether I can get it past them that way.

      Part 1.

      A community which calls intermarriage a "loss" is a community which rejects humanity.

      (Anything wrong with saying that, moderators?)

    • "Not only do the Orthodox suffer many fewer losses from intermarriage"

      "losses from intermarriage"

      Now there is a revealing phrase.

  • Pro-Israel whitewash of 10-year-old's killing unravels in court (and online)
  • Sullivan on Obama's 'capitulation' at the UN
    • "Israel is also working on a mechanized, robotic soldier who can be controlled with a joystick."

      I thought the IDF was already full of them.

  • Why do they call them Stalinists?: Yisrael Beiteinu and the Soviet experience
    • Stalin was certainly a monster, but the complaints made in this article seem a bit contrived.

      "Given Stalin's ... perception of Jews (dangerous elements)",7340,L-3342999,00.html

      "and plans for them (arrests and relocation to Siberia)"

      He created a Jewish State where Jews could speak Yiddish!

      "The Jew is forbidden his own schools,"

      Did any other minority group in the Soviet Union have a right to establish separate schools to maintain minority status? If not, the "institutionalized discrimination" wasn't discrimination.

      "and he cannot learn Hebrew or Yiddish in the public schools; they simply are not taught."

      Yiddish was the language of the Jewish State in Siberia.

  • Mourning the Jewish New Year
    • I'm going to rub this in, john h.

      Look at that list.

      The primitive African schwartzes understand it.

      The penny's dropped for the uncultured, beeer-swilling, ockers.

      The sheep-shagging Kiwis can grasp it.

      Even the Canadians, for Heaven's sake, get the idea.

      But the super-civilized, sophisticated, Nobel-Prize-winning inventors of cherry tomatoes ...

    • Chief Rabbi, do you really believe that God will forgive the Jews if they don’t say sorry to the Palestinians and then play their necessary part in righting the wrong done?
      By Alan Hart

    • "My people were three years removed from (yet another) mass slaughter "

      Which "your people" did not do a lot to stop. The Zionists among "your people" were busy trying to make sure that Jews could not escape to anywhere but Palestine, and cutting deals with Hitler.

      But the slaughter was over in 1948.

      "at the hands of Christians."

      At the hands of Nazis.

      And yet millions of Christians, Hindus, Sikhs, and Muslims risked and lost their lives in the war against the Nazis. But even though many of them were Americans, you don't count them as "your people". On the contrary, you lump them all in together as part of the untrustworthy Christian Western world.

      "American Jews? In 1948? I don’t think so."

      The influx of Jews that led to the expulsion of hte Palestinians began long before 1948. Are you saying that there were no American Jews among them?

      "These were European refugees. REFUGEES. "

      As soon as they joined a movement to take over the country from the locals, they became invaders.

      "Is it too much for you to understand that people can be both Jewish and American?"

      I understand that an American can be a Jew. I don't understand how he can refer to a bunch of foreign Jews as "my people" in a way that clearly privileges them over Americans.

      "If a Polish or Greek-American guy talks about his Greek people, I guess he doesn’t identify as American according to you."

      If he calls himself "Greek", I say he's deluded. If he thinks his tenuous "Greekiness" is more important than his "Americaness", he's a traitor.

    • "Jewish history is stained because we contributed to the displacement of another people to survive"

      There was no threat to the survival of "the Jews" in 1948. Nor did most individual Jews need to displace anyone to survive.

      " a displacement that was nothing unusual for the times,"

      That doesn't make it right.

      " was assumed to be necessary by the world powers in order to keep peace in the Middle East,"

      "World Powers", in the form of the UN, immediately demanded that the displaced people be allowed to return.

      "and was caused at least as much by the actions of Arabs as by the Jews."

      Nonsense. Arabs did not go to America and Europe. It was European and American Jews who pushed into Palestine wiht the aim of taking over the country.

      "the hard things my people had to do to survive ... the risk it does for my people."

      You are an American, and yet you clearly do not think Americans are "your people". Why not? Is Atzmon right?

  • And now a message from our first Jewish president . . .
    • I've found one for Eid - ul - Fitr.

      Phew! For a minute there, I thought he might be biased towards a particular minority group.

    • Have you got any links to Obama's greetings for

      Eid-ul Fitr (29 August)
      Ganesh Chaturthi (1 Sept)
      Birthday of Confucius (28 Sept.)?

      Or for

      Birth of Guru Gobind Singh (5 Jan)
      Nirvana Day (15 Feb)
      Magha Puja (19 Feb)
      New Year: Nanakshahi (14 March)
      Five Holy Days of Pronia (Banjah) (17 to 21 March)
      Holi (20 March)
      Norouz (21 March)
      Woolgoolga Curryfest (9 April)
      Ramanavami (12 April)
      Baisakhi (14 April)
      RoHa's Birthday (15 April)
      First Day of Ridvan (21 April)
      Vesak Day (17 May)

      etc., etc.?

  • ADL gloats over the cancellation of Gaza children's art exhibit
    • What a splendid action!

    • "Until this moment, Senator, I think I have never really gauged your cruelty or your recklessness. ... Have you no sense of decency, sir? At long last, have you left no sense of decency?" (J.P. Welch)

      Cruelty and recklessness, yes.

      No decency.

      No shame.

  • Visit to the Office of Congressional Ethics about AIPAC junkets to Israel
  • An Open letter to President Obama from Israel
    • "This post wreaks of fear .."

      Err, Dex, I think you mean "reeks of fear".
      "Reek" means to "smell (intrans.)" or "smoke (intrans.)"

  • Something to contemplate as you sit in rush hour traffic waiting to get on to the Queensboro bridge
    • "The fact that we collectively ... a backlash in the foreseeable future."

      You can say that again. And again. And again, until they get it.

      Clearly the gross immorality of the love of exceptionalism means nothing to them, but maybe the threat of a backlash will.

  • Knesset to vote on full Israeli annexation of the West Bank
  • Ron Paul for Palestinian statehood: 'I believe in self-determination of peoples'
    • "i think paul was referencing palestine, not israel."

      Since Americans are required to care very much about Israel, I suspect he had Israel in mind.

  • 'Young, Jewish and Proud' issues challenge to the Jewish community
    • “Young, Jewish, Proud”

      Proud of what? Being young? Hardly an achievement. We all manage it at one time or another.
      Proud of being Jewish? Is that so difficult to manage? (I'm not a Jew, so I don't know.)

      So what are they proud of? I don't understand this "pride" thing at all.

  • The view from the West Bank: Statehood bid? What statehood bid?
    • "I think that anyone who is “proud” of anything that he or she did not personally achieve is an idiot."

      Exactly my position.

  • Sidelined: U.S. fails for the second time in Quartet discussions on ‘Jewish state’
    • "It only took 60 yrs for the world to see through he laughable myth of the US “honest sobroker” image.'

      Most of the world saw through that long ago. We still hope Americans will catch up with the rest of us.

  • Will a US veto at the UN invite another 9/11 (followed by an attack on Iran)?
  • Palestinian negotiator Hanan Ashrawi pressed on next steps for Palestinian statehood
    • "On either end of the extreme a significant amount of Jews living in Israel wish to live under Halakha, and a significant amount of Palestinians want an Islamic government."

      Which is why I offer my three state solution. Take a small patch of the Negev that no-one uses, put a fence around it and another down the middle. In one half you put all the crackpot Jews, in the other the similarly crackpot Muslims. These will be the Jewish State and the Islamic State. The rest of the country is for those who are prepared to make an effort to get on with the neighbours.

  • Turkish government releases identities of IDF soldiers who attacked the Mavi Marmara
    • " We both know the answer."

      I don't know the answer. If the list includes a lot of wrong names, it could be because the Turkish intelligence isn't all that good after all.

      Is it always anti-Semitic to suggest that some Jews have committed crimes?

    • I'm not arguing that two wrongs make a right or vice versa.

      I am simply pointing out listing Jews is not always a practice carried out by Gentiles, and therefore not always (contrary to what lli would have us imagine) an expression of anti-Semitism.

    • "ummm they waged an uprising against the British, not the US"

      The US didn't exist when they started. They were rebels against their rightful king, and, as such, traitors to Britain, their country.

      When they declared independence, they created a new country, and were loyal to that country and its people.

      None of this applies to eee's strange ideas about treason, however. Calling for a change in the country's system is not disloyalty if the change is intended to be for the benefit of the country. (Otherwise any MP who proposes a change would be a traitor.) An uprising against an oppressive government is not treason to the country, either.

      Believing that the members of the government have deliberately harmed part of the population is not treason.

      Pointing out that member of the government have been suborned and corrupted by a foreign power is not treason. It is an aid to reform of the government for the benefit of the country.

    • Here's a list of Jews.

      Compiled by your enemies, of course.

    • "We’ll publish"

      "We"? You mean Americans?

      "allowed violent IHH activists to board the boat"

      Of course, you should find evidence that there were violent IHH activists on board, but you will probably just keep screaming that they were there.

      "a legal international blockade"

      It isn't legal, and it isn't international.

  • The UN application for the State of Palestine and the future of the PLO
    • Spelling lesson:

      P o p u l a c e ( n. The common people.)

      P o p u l o u s (adj. Thickly populated.)

      Grammar lesson: Coordinating conjunctions should not be followed by a comma, even when they are used to start a sentence.

      This is not a difficult rule to remember.

  • Obama's impossible dilemma--and ours
    • And they had long range missiles, as well. (V1 and V2) I concentrated on the tanks because they were an obvious force on the battlefield. As you point out, there weren't enough Me 262s to make a difference.

    • "First of all most of the Jews in Israel did not come from the US, so it will not be a return."

      Indeed not. It will be no more a return than the migration of Jews to Israel was a return.

    • "As far as technology is concerned, Israel has an enduring edge in expensive high tech weapons, primarily airforce."

      Superior military technology is always helpful in fighting a war, but it is not in itself sufficient.

      By the end of WW2, German tanks were superior to any allied tanks. In Vietnam, the US had, overall, superior technology. And the same is true in Afghanistan.

    • Eisenhower had the reputation of being an American hero who played a major role in the war against Germany. Tough to play the Holocaust card against him.

  • Nearly 1 in 4 young children in the U.S. living below the poverty line, but aid to Israel is untouchable
    • "the Jews in their own historic homeland can under no conditions be made to remain a subordinate, dependent minority as they are in all other countries in the Diaspora."

      And you can easily see how subordinate and dependent Jews are in the USA, Britain, France, Australia, Canada, and the Netherlands.

      In those countries, not one Jew holds an important position in Government, Civil Service, Finance, Industry, Media and Entertainment, Academia, or the Arts.

  • Abbas at the United Nations a game changer? Maybe.
    • "Where is their and mine ancestral homeland? Israel"

      Our current state of knowledge suggests that your ancestors (and mine, and everyone else's) came from East Africa.

      Why don't you claim that as your ancestral homeland?

      And why is your ancestral homeland so important to you, anyway? You are not your ancestors.

      My homeland is where I have my home, and that is Australia, not East Africa.

    • So, in short:

      (a) there is no moral argument from lack of a state/national consciousness, etc., to "it is not wrong to drive them out and steal their stuff",

      (b) the lack of a state/national consciousness, etc., is offered as a legalistic distraction to us and as a support for the self-deception of Zionists,

      (c) the Jewish people (or at least the Zionists) don't understand the difference between "legal" and "right".

      That explains a great deal about why, when I ask for the argument, I am met with Zionist silence.

    • "Then you are lucky I didn’t cite ..."

      Probably very lucky, and I thank you for your restraint.

      Perhaps I don't understand the full ramifications of "sovereignty" as a legal term, but I am not sure that arguments about sovereignty - even incompetent, irrelevant, immaterial, or senescent ones - deal with the aspect that I am interested in.

      Human beings were driven out of their homes, and dispossessed of their farms, factories, and businesses, by people who had no prima facie greater rights to those homes, etc, (and, indeed, no rights to them at all as far as I can see). This seems grossly immoral to me, and I cannot see that the lack of a state/national consciousness/etc., makes it any more moral.

      I am not, here, concerned with legality, self-determination, independence, or political sovereignty, but with fundamental morality. And I wanted to know if the Zionists actually had a moral argument - no matter how poor - in play here. They never seem to present one.

    • Thanks for the links. The first three pages of Svirsky are appalling. They look like the product of the Postmodern Generator. But there, he is drawing on French frauds. ("I draw on Deleuze and Guattari’s..")

      When he gets down to the Terra Nullius concept and Zionist practice, he writes much more clearly and makes a fair bit of sense in explaining Zionist collective psychology.

      However, what I was imagining was that there was some sort of Zionist argument from

      "Palestinians did not have a state/national consciousness/etc."
      "Therefore it was permissible to push them from their farms and houses."

      From Svirsky it looks as though there is no such argument. It is merely a piece of self-deception.

      The Zionist tells himself ‘there is no Arab people living in intimate fusion with the country, utilizing its resources and stamping it with a characteristic impress: there is at best an Arab encampment’ and thus succeeds in convincing himself that the farms, villages, etc., never really existed. And if they never existed, there is no harm in eradicating them.

      If that is what is going on, it is no wonder that the Zionist makes loud declarations about "no Palestinian state, etc., but never explains why this matters. Explaining would reveal the self-deception.

    • "So no, we don’t all agree that there was no independent country of Palestine."

      Your stunningly detailed and brilliantly deployed knowledge notwithstanding, the point that baffles me is why Zionists think this is so important?

      Do they really think that the lack of a Palestinian state, or the lack of a Palestinian "national consciousness", or some such, means that the Zionist programme to take over the land and expel or subjugate all of its Arab inhabitants is morally justifiable?

      If so, how is the argument supposed to work?

    • "I had never heard of a country called Palestine."

      Then your education was woeful.

      " There was no such identifiable entity of a group that was only non Jews"

      Are you denying that there were people living in Palestine before the Zionists, or are you denying that the people had any right to live there?

      "There was no call for a Palestinian state during Ottoman rule."

      But as soon as the Australian, British, Indian, and Arab forces had defeated the Ottomans, the people wanted independence. They were not happy with the Mandate.

    • There is a geo-political game-changer as well. The centre of economic and political power is moving to the far East. As American power dwindles, Japan, South Korea, and Thailand will care less and less about what America wants. China and Vietnam don't care a lot about what America wants anyway.

      But the Far Eastern countries do want stability in the Middle East.

      Far Eastern countries don't care about Jews. Jews play almost no role in their cultural or religous traditions. (Malaysia and Indonesia, being largely Muslim countries, are exceptions, but they are strongly pro-Palestinian. Only the northern half of the Philippines is Christian.) They don't care if they get called "anti-Semites". The Holocaust was far away and long ago and nothing to do with them.

      Nor are they likely to have much sympathy with European colonisers.

      So if Israel can't keep American military secrets flowing into China, it can expect little support from the Far East.

      Will Europe and America continue to be able to prop Israel up for much longer?

  • Buttu, Erakat, Dajani, Rabbani and Abunimah respond to UN speeches
    • “Israel is our neighbor and it has a Jewish majority, hence it is a Jewish state”.

      If "Jewish State" means "majority are Jews" and nothing more, then I don't think there would be any objection.

      But when "Jewish State" means a state run by Jews, for Jews, and wherein all others have to face legal and social dsicrimination as second-class citizens, then it would be morally wrong for anyone to make such a recognition.

      When "Jewish State" means that it was morally justifiable for the Zionists to take the land away from the Palestinians, or to continue to do so, or both, no decent person could accept it.

  • Outside the UN
    • "It’s easy to be tolerant of gays when your country doesn’t have any as you purport."

      I don't have access to the Farsi original, and it wouldn't help me if i did, but the translation of his remarks is "We don't have homosexuals like in your country." (Emphasis mine.)

      I interpreted that as "We don't have homosexuals parading through the streets in weird costumes, or proclaiming their sexuality in public."

      In Iran, homosexuals face the death penalty. Some are, indeed, executed.

      The alternative is to ask for a sex-change operation. This seems to be pretty easy to get, and is paid for by the state. After the operation, the person is legally a woman.

      Since Ahmedinejad would certainly be aware of both these facts, it seems unlikely that he simply meant that there were no homosexuals.

    • The Very Wonderful Julia Gillard.

    • I'll be a bit surprised if Australia does abstain.

      The Very Wonderful Julia Gillard's boyfriend, First Bloke Tim Mathieson, is an Israeli agent.

      Action Man Tony Abbot has been bought, and his number two, Julie Bishop (the one with the mad, staring, eyes) is a traitor who supported Israel over Australia on the the passport scandal. She just recently said Australia should vote "No".

      On the other hand, That Nice Mr Rudd allegedly thinks that an abstension would help his bid to get Australia onto the Security Council, and right now TVWJG needs his support.

    • Dersh looks almost human in that picture.

  • A roundup of opinions from a busy week at the UN
    • I think it is an insult to the ladies of that profession. They and the client deal with each other. Obama and Netti are working to screw a third party.

  • Abbas brings Tahrir to New York, and some of our media seem to be on board
    • "In months to come, we can expect probing coverage of the occupation at last from the American press,"

      Probing? The American press?

  • Mondoweiss liveblogs the UN General Assembly speeches
    • "Absence of absolute justice….we went for relative justice 22% of historic Palestine"

      I'm glad he pointed out that out.

      Abbas may be a colourless, illegitimate leader who has spent too much of his time being too cosy with the Israelis, but he has said what had to be said.

    • "His grandparents came from Lithuania and Minneapolis"

      So Lithuania and Minneapolis should be part of the Jewish State. Just common sense.

  • So much for secular Jewish identity
    • I've heard similar reports about the Majapahit and Funan kingdoms. But so far nothing from the Avars or the Scythians.

    • "the Yotvingians".."they inherited from earlier Urartu"

      You just made those up, didn't you?

      "Talmud claims that Samaria belonged to Lost Tribes of Israel. Samaritans claim that they were never lost."

      T: Hey, you're one of the Lost Tribes! Welcome back!
      S: We're not lost. We know where we are, and we've always been here.

      (Unlike the long-lost Yallaahwi tribe, who wander through the jungle in a state of continuous self-determination, shouting out "We're the Yallaahwi.")

      "Mayan peoples who got their lands from gods, if I recall, winning them on a bet by playing ball"

      Now that sounds fair.

  • Ismail Khalidi: A tragic lecture, justifiying a vicious occupation, with no awareness that we killed the two-state solution
  • Bill Keller still doesn’t know now what we all knew then…
    • "Daddy Defense"

      On 11 September 2001 my son was one and a half years old. I was in Philadelphia at the time. The anthrax letters were passing through a post office a bit to the north of where I lived.

      I felt no urge to slaughter Afghans.

      Early in 2003, he turned three. I was in Guildford, then, and Bush, Powell, and Blair were making our flesh creep with tales of Saddam Hussein.

      I felt no urge to slaughter Iraqis.

      Am I a bad father?

  • Settler violence and 'the threat of Jewish terrorism'
    • "The Israel Navy captured two Palestinians with dozens of bags of tobacco "

      See! The Israeli Navy tries to protect the people of Gaza from the unhealthy effects of tobacco.

  • Obama consulted no Palestinians for his rendition of history
    • "He’s not pathological, so much as a cheap fraud."

      How do you know how much he gets paid for his propaganda?

    • Again, a compelling and irrefutable argument, eljay.

      You are on a roll these days.

    • "any legitimate Holocaust scholar doesn’t frame it as merely a Jewish Holocaust."

      You mean "No legitimate Holocaust scholar frames it as merely a Jewish Holocaust."

      Legitimate Holocaust scholars don't have a lot of say in the matter.

      The links I attached show that there is strong opposition to including homosexuals in the story.

      The Holocaust weepies that pour out of Hollywood ignore the homosexuals. And the same goes for nearly everything that makes reference to the Holocaust. It is nearly always presented as a "Jews only" event.

    • "too bad that some are more free and equal than others"

      And that is why I/P is such an important issue to all Arabs.

      Zionism claims that Jews are more important than any Arabs. And so Israel, as it stands, is a denial of the full humanity of all Arabs.

      (Actually, it is an insult to most of the world, since the Zionist claims that Jewish interests are more important than the interests of anyone else.)

    • "some of my best friends are Vegemites"

      I've heard that one before. But would you let your sister marry ...?

      Have you ever actually tasted Vegemite? I tried it in 1954.

    • "why do you suppose the Patriarch Issac was not a Chaldean like Terah and his son Abram?"

      Because he was an East African, like the rest of us.

    • "If your argument is that no nation exists, then saying that the Jewish nation does not exist is not bigoted."

      Why is it any more bigoted to say that Jews are mistaken about their nationhood than to say that they are mistaken about their religious beliefs?

      "But this is not what Roha is saying is it? He does believe Australians are a nation and that the French nation exists."

      I don't think I have ever said that Australians are a nation and that the French nation exists.

      Australia is a nation, in the sense that it is a political entity established on a territory with a sovereign government, national anthem* , and so forth.

      The same goes for France. I am quite happy to say that France is a nation.

      But now we have got a little further with your idea of what a nation is.
      (a) Lots of people.
      (b) Feel a connection.
      (c) For a long time
      (d) Declare themselves to be a group with properties a, b, c, and d. (Recursive!)

      I'll call this a gnation, to differentiate it from real nations like Australia or France. And I'll set aside the question of just how well Jews fit this idea.

      What is the moral or political significance of a group being a gnation?

      *This is it.

    • " the entire argument is a pointless distraction."

      I agree. But we got a few good jokes out of it.

    • "You want to know what it’s like to suffer? For like, pretty much the entirety of human history? Try being gay, hophmi."

      You call that suffering? It doesn't compare! Did the Nazis make homosexuals wear a special badge to show they were homosexuals? Did the Nazis round up homosexuals and send them to the camps? Eh? Eh?

      Oh. Yes. They did, didn't they.

      Still doesn't count, though.

    • "When a group like the Jews self-determines themselves as a nation, they are a nation. When a fringe group in Brisbane does it, it is not."

      So being a nation is something more than just self-determination to be one.

      "What is the exact difference between the groups that their self-determination produces a nation and those that don’t? I can’t tell you just as I can’t tell you what is the minimum number of grains of rice in a heap. But I can tell you that a million grains of rice is a heap and 3 grains of rice are not."

      But we know that to make three grains into a heap, we just need to add more grains. It is a matter of quantity, even if it is an indeterminate quantity.

      "In the same way the Jews are a nation and the Brisbane group isn’t."

      Is that, too, a matter of quantity, or is there something else needed?

      O.K. Let's be broad minded and inclusive. Just stamp collectors. Worldwide. Left-handed, right-handed, ambidextrous, or no hands. Cheesecake photography not required.

      Australia Post estimates that there are 22 million of them. Stanley Gibbons organization estimates 30 million of them. (That's more than the population of Australia.)

      Suppose they declare themselves to be a nation. Choose.

      (a) Yes, they are a nation (for what it's worth).
      (b) No, they are not a nation.
      (c) Get a life, guys.

      If it is just numbers that count, then you have to go for a.

      If you choose b, then you should try to suggest what else is needed and why it is important. And then show that Jews have it.

      If you choose c, you are admitting that your insistence on Jewish "nationhood"is just as pathetic as stamp collecting.

    • "a viscous yeast extract"

      You're just an anti-Vegemite, Shmuel.

    • "When you tell millions people that have self determined themselves as nation that you do not accept their self determination, you are a bigot."

      First it was "a people", and now it is "a nation". But you don't tell us what either of these things are. If you set out a set of characteristics of a nation, then we would be able to see whether the Jews had enough of those chacteristics to be classed as a nation. And if someone makes a mistake about it, it is just a mistake. Not bigotry.

      We have a set of characteristics of penguins. If millions of Jews "self-determine" themselves to be a flock of penguins, they would be mistaken, and would find that out in their first winter in Antarctica.
      Nor would it be bigoted to say that they were wrong.

      If they say they are a flock of penguins, but not penguins like the black and white birds, then they are just talking nonsense, and it is not bigoted to tell them so. What is the point of calling yourself a penguin if you do not swim in cold water, tap dance, eat fish, and carry out evil plots?

      All you seem to have to offer is the claim that Jews "have self determined themselves as nation" But this suggests that the only characteristic of a nations is that a group has declared itself one. In that case, the left-handed, stamp-collecting, cheescake photographers of Brisbane could declare themselves a nation and be just as legitimate a nation as the Jews. If you deny this, it is up to you to show that there are important characteristics the Jews have and the Brisbane lack.

      And then you have to show what gives being "a nation" any moral or political significance

    • "you can’t pretend this is the same thing."

      Yes he can. He has to squeeze his eyes shut and try really hard, but he can do it.

  • On saying that Israel has a right to exist
    • "I wish more people were like your grandson. "

      There are actually a lot of them.

      My son's school is full of them. There are children from a wide variety of racial and religious backgrounds. There are plenty of children of mixed ancestry. And as far as I can tell, they don't give a toss about it. They pick their friends on the basis of character.

      And you will find the same sort of attitude in a lot of other places as well.

    • "someone said, why this Jewish thing, just be American."

      That would be me.

      "if someone suggested to Muslims that they stop thinking of themselves as such and consider themselves American"

      Not the same. I am not saying that Jews or Muslims should give up their religions.

      I am suggesting that Jews give up the idea of being members of some special ethnic/cultural group. I say the same thing to people who think of themselves as "Arabs", "Irish", "[fill in the blank]" even though they are US citizens who were born and brought up in the USA.

      I don't see the point of this "identity" stuff. When has it ever done anyone any good?

    • "The right of return to a single state, negates Israel’s existence."

      A subject clause should not be followed by a comma, so that should be

      "The right of return to a single state negates Israel’s existence."

      If you can't handle something as simple as the grammar of English, your first language, you are clearly not capable of thinking your way through the I/P problem.

    • ‘The right to establish our sovereign state here, in the Land of Israel, arises from one simple fact: Eretz Israel is the birthplace of the Jewish People.’

      Another example of a bad Zionist argument.

      How does "Eretz Israel is the birthplace of the Jewish People" imply "the Jewish People" have a right to establish a sovereign state there?

      "Birthplace" cannot be taken literally. (I was born in Sale Cottage Hospital. Do I have a right to establish a sovereign state in the hospital?) A "people" is not born in the literal sense. I would have to interpret "birthplace" as "formed a tribe and labelled themselves there".

      Is there a general principle to the effect that "If a group formed a tribe and labelled themselves in a particular territory, members of that group thereafter have a perpetual right to establish a sovereign state in that territory"?

      I have never heard of such a principle, and it has the obivous difficulty that several groups could form tribes, etc., on the same territory, and thus claim conflicting rights to the same territory.

      A further difficulty is that such a principle denies the rights of the current inhabitants to establish a sovereign state in the territory.

    • ‘It would not enter the mind of any Briton or Frenchman, Belgian or Dutchman, Hungarian or Bulgarian, Russian or American, to request for his people recognition of its right to exist. Their existence per se is their right to exist. The same holds true for Israel."

      And this is the sort of shifty argument the Zionists love to use. The existence of the Bulgarian people (interpreted either as (a) an aggregate of individuals or (b) some sort of collective entity) may be sufficient to give them(a) or it(b) a "right to exist", but that does not give a Bulgarian state a right to exist.

      (Which is one of the points Klug wishes to make.)

  • Mearsheimer on dual loyalty and William Safire
    • Nathan you seem to be clinging to the idea that ethnic groups have an absolute right to establish an ethnically-based state. That's not how the right of self-determination works. (Insofar as there is such a right, and it works at all.)

      The Kurds do not have a right of self-determination as Kurds.

      The rsd was pushed (I'm tempted to say "cooked up")as a means of breaking up empires, so it was intended to support the natives of colonial territories in gaining independence for their territories. The term "people" in the UN version was not defined, but the only meaning that makes sense morally and legally is "all the lawful residents of a territory". Thus, Syrian Kurds can be said to have rsd as members of the Syrian people.

      When the territory in question is not the whole of the territorty of a pre-existing state, the the rsd can conflict with the principle of territorial integrity of states. Other moral considerations also affect the rsd.

      In practical terms, if the area generally regarded as "Kurdistan" were to become an independent state, it would slice off a small portion of Syria (far less than the area occupied by US-backed Kurdish forces), a larger slice of Iraq, a strip of Iran, and a very large chunk of Turkey. The rest of Turkey will not agree to their country being carved up in this way.

      There is no single "plight of the Kurds". The Kurds have differing problems in the various countries. Their rights are the same as everyone else's: to be full and equal citizens in a reasonably just polity.

  • New resource tracks and analyzes Israeli arms exports
    • "a blight unto its all too numerous enemies."

      That's why Israel hs so many enemies. It started out as a blight unto the neighbours, and has never stopped.

    • "US sells Israel’s adversaries far more arms than it gives to Israel."

      Other countries have to buy them. Israel gets them as a gift.

  • Why not Judeo-Christian-Muslim?
    • Mediaeval Jewsih philosophy, from the Karaites onwards, is generally regarded as inspired by Mu'tazilah and the Kalam schools.

  • Comments Policy
    • I doubt you are doing anything wrong.

      I know from experience that it is frustrating to have comments delayed for so long that the discussion has been forgotten before your final, crushing, point gets published. Some of mine have been delayed for days.

      But, since Phil and Adam insist on spending their vast wealth on champagne and Belgian chocolate instead of hiring me to help with the moderation and eliminate superfluous commas, we simply have to put up with it.

      For my part, I think the value of MW outweighs the frustration.

    • Please restore the archives of MW commenters.

      First, it saves me a lot of time. Instead of rewriting my points, I can go back through the archive of my previous brilliant posts and find the point already spelled out in my inimitable, pellucid, prose.

      Second, I can re-read Mooser's gems.

    • "At the same time all the anti-Zionists are posting freely within minutes on this blog expressing feeling and opinions which can only be characterized by one word. And you know this word. "

      It is very rare for one of my posts to be passed minutes after I posted it. Some take hours, some take days, and some (usually the best ones) never make it at all. And yet I am told that mine positively reek of the "feeling and opinions which can only be characterized by one word".

    • "For the obvious reason that generally when I post back home the mods are likely sound asleep."

      And there is part of the problem. Annie and her like need to sleep.

      I want the mods to eschew sleep, food, and every other distraction until they have cleared all my scintillating posts, but if they can't, it's time for Phil to get some robots!

    • "If you simply don’t like my face"

      It's nothing personal, Walker. Everyone loves me, and yet I had one that waited nearly a week to be moderated! Right now have several that have been waiting at least two days.

      I know it is frustrating to see a comment remain in limbo until everyone has forgotten about the topic you were commenting on (and doubly frustrating when your comments are as brilliant and incisive as mine) but there just don't seem to be enough moderators to get through them all.

      Perhaps Phil and Adam could get some funding from AIPAC to hire more moderators. If not, the only recourse is patience.

      Builds character.

  • 'Einstein on Israel' reveals essential history of debate over Zionism and a Jewish state

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