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Total number of comments: 9587 (since 2009-12-17 04:46:00)

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  • Rep. Steve Israel's anti-Israel, anti-Semitic record on Occupy Wall Street (which must be news to him)
  • Is Occupy Wall Street anti-Semitic?
    • O.K. Much as I enjoy painting the Emergency Committee for Israel as a bunch of anti-Semites, my commitment to logic means I have to reveal the flaw for anyone who didn't spot it.

      Here's the flaw.

      "That seems to me to imply that the 1% are Jewish."

      should be

      "That seems to me to imply that the Emergency Committee for Israel claims that the protesters believe that the 1% are Jewish."

      And the conclusion does not follow.

      What does follow is the interesting question

      "Why does the Emergency Committee for Israel claim that the protesters believe that the 1% are Jewish?"

    • (Psst! There is a flaw in that argument. Can you spot it?)

    • Let me try to get this straight. I'm reviewing the situation.

      99% are exploited by the 1%.

      Protesting about this exploitation implies being anti- the 1%.

      But protesting about this this exploitation is anti-Semitic.

      Therefore, being anti- the 1% = being anti-Semitic.

      That seems to me to imply that the 1% are Jewish.

      Suggesting that 99% of Americans are exploited by Jews is an anti-Semitic claim.

      Therefore, claiming that Occupy Wall Street is anti-Semitic is an anti-Semitic claim.

      So the Emergency Committee for Israel is making an anti-Semitic claim.

      Nope, can't be. I think I'd better think it out again.

      (And thanks to Lionel Bart.)

  • Bill Kristol: 'We need to hear' that Obama has gone to war on Iran
    • Do they learn that non-Jewish Americans actually did a bit of fighting against the Nazis?

      I don't expect them to learn that the British, the French, the Dutch, the Danes, the Norwegians, the Czechs, the Poles, the Greeks, the Yugoslavs, the Australians, the New Zealanders, and the Canadians fought against the Nazis.

      I don't expect them to learn that armies of black Africans, white Africans, Hindus, Sikhs, and Muslims fought against the Nazis.

      I certainly don't expect them to learn that Soviet Union played the major role in destroying the Nazis.

      But I would hope that they learn that a few Americans fired the odd, angry, shot.

    • "You would think that the Second World War didn’t happen…"

      Indeed, Woody. This "all the nations looked on and did not lift a finger to save the victims" is one of the most insulting things that the persecution peddlers* say.

      It is sickening.

      *Not Avnery, of course. He is just quoting them.

    • "It is a prayer calling upon God to punish those who “do not know him”."

      Since a large chunk of humanity has no idea of the Jewish God, it seems a pretty anti-social thing to call for. And what is involved in the "knowing", anyway?

      And my conscience is clean, I tell you. Clean!

    • "a frank discussion of its history and problematic nature."

      "Problematic" seems a mild term for a prayer which makes Jews the enemies of humanity.

    • "The request is not that detailed (just generic wrath, anger and destruction),"

      I have read the OT, and that is the sort of thing God does.

      "Do you have a guilty conscience?"

      Who, me? No, honest, guv, I've never done anything to feel guilty about.

      Straight up.

      Nothing at all.

      Nothing on my conscience.

      Innocent as a babe, I am.


      Trust me.

    • So only the more traditional and observant Jews ask God to bury us alive, burn us up, kill all our firstborn, afflict us with plagues and boils, and so on.

      That's comforting to know.

    • 'Jews have prayed to God for centuries, year after year, on Pesach eve: “Pour your wrath upon the goyim….”'

      Is this true? Do Jews really ask God to smite the rest of us?

  • Oren rationalizes Israel's isolation (then rants about Abbas denying 4000 years of Jewish homeland)
  • 'Commentary' smear of Occupy Wall St. doesn't bother to get basic facts right
    • "outing only the jewish israel-firsters could be construed as antisemitic"

      Just about everything could be construed as anti-Semitic, and most things are so construed by those determined to do find anti-Semitism in everything.

      Do we, therefore, have to refrain from naming Jews unless we can name an equal or greater number of non-Jews in the same context?

    • "But if the top organizer behind the Tea Party turned out to have published a blacklist of American Jews he claimed had dual loyalty to the U.S. and Israel,..."

      If he is right about those people having dual loyalty, and that dual loyalty leads them to acting against the best interests of the U.S. , wouldn't publishing the list be a good thing?

  • In prisoner deal, Palestinian and Israeli right wings are working together-- politically
  • Neocon orgs seek to paint Wall St protests as anti-semitic
    • "So let’s agree first and foremost that connecting finance with Jews with Jewish money is antisemitic. Do you agree?"

      I don't understand. A lot of the top financiers in the US are Jews. A number of big finance companies have names which look like Jewish names. Connecting finance with Jews just seems to be recognising reality. There is no implication that the connection results from Jewishness. What is anti-Semitic about noting that fact?

      Saying "a bunch of rich Jews are ripping us off" is true, but comes a bit closer to being anti-Semitic because it might lead the logically-challenged (sadly, a very large social group) to assume that only Jews are involved. As far as I can make out, there were plenty of non-Jewish slime-balls involved. The suggestio falsi is not a logical implication of the suppressio veri, but the the unschooled might draw that conclusion.

      (Saying "the Jews are ripping us off" is false, since the lack of qualifiers or quantifiers implies (to logicians, at least) that all Jews are involved. And I bet Mooser isn't. But no-one here is saying that.)

    • "the upper imcome bracket, I also hear voices ... attempting to paint this whole group as a persecuted social minority."

      My heart bleeds for them. I'm so glad that I am not part of that minority, and, on present showing, never will be.

  • Boycott update: Champion fencer Sara Besbes stands down rather than plays Israeli
    • "You could have brought tens of reports and experts that would say this is some kind of crime and is immoral. But as a matter of fact, it is used extensively by western countries and is clearly considered moral and not criminal whatsoever."

      Considered moral by whom? Western governments may do it, but they do lots of things that are considered immoral.

      And something may legal and not criminal, but still be immoral.

    • "Of course Israel is in Asia. You should tell that to the Asians though."

      'In the interview with Tamir, which appeared in Haaretz on Friday, he said Israel should utilize its strong links with Australia to enhance its position with Asian countries. He described Israel and Australia as "sisters" in Asia and added: "We are in Asia without the characteristics of Asians. We don't have yellow skin and slanted eyes. Asia is basically the yellow race. Australia and Israel are not - we are basically the white race." '

    • "one should keep politics and sports apart."

      Perhaps, but the reality is that sports teams are organised as national teams. National flags are flown, national anthems played, and medals assigned to countries.

      Look at the FIFA and IRB matches. Sport becomes a substitute for warfare, but by less humane means.

  • Americans believe red herring-- Iran is Enemy #1. Why?
    • Damn wrong.

      It should be Feith, Kristol, Bolton, etc., themselves. You can send Howard, Blair, etc. while you're at it.

    • "Who is America’s biggest enemy?

      What has Iran done to America since 1776?

      The embassy hostage crisis of 1979. (A long term result of the American role in the 1953 coup and backing for the Shah.)

      And that's it.

      Could Iran attack the United States? Not even with its most advanced missiles. (U.S. force which have placed themselves in a position to threaten Iran are vulnerable to counter-attack.)

      "Iran is an ideological enemy"

      You mean they don't agree with the US on everything? That's an enemy?

  • Do we really need another 'Gandhi'?
    • "a book called The Jewish Contribution to Civilisation by Cecil Roth. It gives a record of what the Jews have done to enrich the world? literature, art, music, drama, science, medicine, agriculture, etc."

      OT, but I always find this sort of thing a bit irritating. A lot of Jews have made great contributions to literature, art, music, drama, science, medicine, agriculture, etc., but what was specifically Jewish about their contributions? Most of the Jews who made such contributions did so as Europeans, operating within the general European tradition. They were Scotsmen and Germans and Hungarians.

      I suppose thinking in this way is another reason why I am an anti-Semite.

  • Burg, former Knesset speaker, endorses idea of one state from river to sea
  • Lupe Fiasco performs with a Palestinian flag and Occupy Wall Street shirt at the 2011 BET Hip Hop Awards
  • Some preliminary questions about the alleged Iranian terror plot
    • "I can assure you that US aircraft carriers are sitting ducks for cruise missile attacks"

      I have read that the latest Yakhont missile is fitted with software that enables it to pick out carriers from among the other ships, and then attack them. All while flying just above the waves at blistering speed and weaving back and forth to confuse the opposing radar.

      I don't know whether any of this is true. I haven't tried it myself.

    • I have heard that the official line of the US Navy is that their ships will be completly safe from even the fiercest Russian anti-ship missiles as long as the ships are docked in Denver.

      The Chinese have also developed some pretty good anti-ship missiles. Iran has a bundle of anti-ship missiles, and I believe they are mounted on mobile launchers.

      One of the dirty little secrets of the Kuwait war was that, in spite of the best efforts of the SAS to locate Saddam's SCUD launchers, and the RAF's low-flying ground attack skills, a lot of the launchers survived. In the broken, hilly, fringe of the Gulf, taking out all the Iranian launchers would be a pipe dream.

      Now imagine a carrier group in the Gulf. Very little room to manouver. And an attack consisting of a salvo of fifty old, cheap* , missiles, with a dozen of the best Russian jobs mixed in. What would happen?

      No-one knows. It's never been tried. The SeaRam system is supposed to be able to handle multiple missiles, and might succeed.

      But if it is tried, I'd like to be right here in Brisbane and far from the action.

      *Cheap for missiles. Still a bit more than $9.99 a dozen.

    • "Of course, attacking Iran is so insane I hope the cooler heads will continue to prevail, and prevent such madness. But you never know."

      Over the last sixty-five years I have learned to never underestimate the stupidity and insanity of governments.

  • Afternoon headlines
  • Creeping halacha?
    • So you are saying that Israel shares its values with the Muslim world rather than the West?

    • "Precious Jewish daughter, please move to the side when a man approaches."

      The women have to step aside. "Ladies first" is not a Jewish principle, then.

      "It's just our religion."

      The ultra-orthodox are not gentlemen. That is sufficient condemnation of the religion.


      "As the children and their mothers make their way home, intimidating pickets of ultra-orthodox Jewish men have been waiting for them a little way up the street – some, say the families, have thrown stones and tomatoes and faeces as they have tried to pass."

      shows just how contemptible these ultra-orthodox can be.

    • "Three-state solution, anybody?"

      I've been pushing that for a while, but we can raise it to four, or even five if needed. Just as long as the mini-states are tiny scraps shoved out of the way some where in the desert, and the majority of the country is for the people who are willing to make an effort to get on with the neighbours.

  • Panic and shock sweep Cairo
    • "Blaming the Christian-Muslim violence in Egypt on Zionists"

      I haven't blamed it on anyone.

      " is a blood libel."

      That term "blood libel" has become nearly as popular as "anti-Semite".

    • "Christians are being massacred in Egypt, you were raised Catholic, doesn’t this affect you at all?"

      Do you think that Chaos should care more about Christians than about other people, and, if so, why?

  • Palestinians have their own Gandhis and Kings
  • In memoriam: Hanan Porat, an extremist by any other name
    • Not a big deal. When things get busy it isn't always easy to remember who is who. I tend to mix up Shmuel and Shingo.

    • "Annie, I know exactly what Roha was talking about, but he is saying Jews, not Israelis. "

      Who? Me? Don't you mean POA?

    • "National aspirations are coming from both sides and I as Israeli support my country, rather than considering the Palestinian aspirations first."

      What do you mean by "national aspirations", and why are they important to you?

  • Operation Enduring Failure: Ten years of war on Afghanistan
  • Kol Nidre in Cairo. Not
    • "We will become a minority inside an arab muslim country. We will become a Yugoslavia, a Lebanon."

      That's odd. The number of Jews seems about equal to the number of Christian and Muslim Arabs combined. And according to some MW regulars, it will be the Jews who hold the economic power.

      And Lebanon isn't so bad.

      "Those who have the means will emigrate and the weak ones will be damned."

      What happened to all the Jewish solidarity?

      "You know damn well that a overwhelming majority of Americans will never dream of letting it happen."

      Even if it benefits them?

      "A world without borders is a nice slogan. "

      But not what I am suggesting. I was thinking of a Canadian-Mexican border in the part east of the Rockies, and the bit west of the Rockies becoming part of New Zealand.

    • Tal, if the state of Israel is dismantled, what horrible things will happen to you? Will you be driven out of your house, perhaps?

      I doubt it. So where is the cruelty?

      But the lot of the Palestinians will be greatly improved, and you will get a chance to improve yourself by becoming more human.

      Who would be harmed, and who would benefit from the dismantling of the USA? Once we get a clear answer to that question, we can divide the US between Canada, Mexico, and New Zealand.

    • "telling someone their belief system is becoming extinct is challenging their reality."

      Does "challenging their reality" mean (a) telling them that they are not real or (b) telling them that their beliefs about reality are false?

      Using meaning a:

      Saying "RoHa is not a real person, but just a computer programme set up by eljay" could be offensive.
      (Though I probably wouldn't be offended by it. I'm not very good at taking offense.)

      But saying "RoHa's belief system is becoming extinct" does not imply that I am unreal.

      Using meaning b:

      Saying "RoHa's belief system is becoming extinct" does not imply "RoHa's belief system is false". It just implies that fewer and fewer people share my brilliant insight into the nature of Life, the Universe, and Everything. And that is their problem, not mine.

      (And supposing - per impossible - that my belief system were false, it would be foolish of me to take offense at being informed of the fact.)

      So I still don't understand how it is offensive.

      "besides, evidence suggests none of the three main religions are anywhere near the point of extinction"

      Four of the five main religions still seem pretty strong. Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, and Hinduism are well supplied with adherents. It is hard to tell about the fifth (Chinese folk religion) but I suspect it is in better condition than is officially admitted. Sikhism is fairly healthy, too. I think the Parsees are fading a bit.

    • "of course it would be offensive to say someone’s religion was becoming extinct."

      Sorry, I don't see the offense. How does it offend?

    • "Saying Judaism is ceasing to exist as a religion is absolutely false and offensive."

      It may be false, but why is it offensive?

  • The Jewish-Palestinian book of life
    • Hey! As far as I can tell, he's younger than I am. If he's old, I'm a geezer, and that I strongly deny.*

      Call him "a bitter early-middle-aged man".

      (*Though I have developed a strong Yorkshire accent and frequently start sentences with "When I were a lad..." and "Young people today ...". )

  • What do a Jewish state and a Catholic table have in common?
    • "Baruch Spinoza"


      He was given the name "Baruch" when he was born, but as far as I can tell his family called him by a nickname, and he took the name "Benedict" when hw was still a young man. That is the name he published under.

    • "American Samoans are US nationals, but they are not US citizens."

      I don't understand the distinction. Could you explain it , please?

  • A society coming apart at the seams: Settlers attack IDF in the West Bank
  • Congratulating Nobelist, Netanyahu continues to anoint himself king of the Jews
    • I seem to remember the title "King of the Jews" was once applied to someone else. He came to a bad end.

  • Yom Kippur fast in solidarity with political prisoners to take place at Occupy Wall Street this Friday
    • "An interesting 19th-century Jewish thinker by the name of Zvi Hirsch Chajes wrote that all human beings have an inborn ethical “instinct”,"

      Mengzi (Mencius, 391 - 308 BCE) argued this long before Zvi Hirsch Chajes. Similar views were developed by Western moral philosophers from the Classical Period onwards.

      "and that the good fortune of the Jews was to have been given precise – albeit not always comprehensible – instructions regarding ethical behaviour."

      The Confucian instructions are less precise, but usually a lot more ethical.

    • "Who are you to determine what standard the Jews should aspire to ... ?"

      Does that mean that you, too, think that Jews don't have to meet the same standards as the rest of us?

    • "3-second google search came up with ... "

      You're asking a lot of DBG.

  • As UNESCO moves toward Palestinian recognition, Congress threatens to cut funding
    • "The U.S. must strongly oppose this move and make clear that any decision to upgrade the Palestinian mission’s status by UNESCO or any other UN entity will lead to a cutoff of U.S. funds to that entity."

      This is not just cutting off funds to the Palestinians. It is cutting off funds to UN bodies.

      Forget about promoting education and sex equality (UNESCO), let the children starve, get kidnapped into sex slavery, or become drug runners (UNICEF), (UNODC), or, better still, just let everyone die of disease (WHO).

      For the sake of Israel, the US is making itself the enemy of the world.

  • Esc and Ctrl: The Guardian investigates Israeli internet hasbara
    • "Always speak the truth."

      If you know what it is.

      "That way you don’t have to remember what you said-"

      I don't have to, anyway. My wife remembers it all.

  • Even in times of austerity, some spending is inviolable
    • Now there is an idea for a series of posters. Make them simple.

      "1 in 4 children in America go to bed hungry.
      America sends $3bn to Israel every year."

      "n,000 teachers have been laid off for lack of funds.
      Israel gets $3bn of your taxes every year."

      "n,000 firefighters have been laid off for lack of funds.
      $3bn of your tax money goes to Israel every year."

      And so on.

      Try it.

  • NYT reviewer: Small group of Bush advisers will take real reason for Iraq war to their (restless) graves
    • "Second was a crazed populous driven to hysteria by the events of 911 and the irrational need for revenge against the nearest Muslim they could find. "

      The US was already involved in killing Muslims in Afghanistan, but maye that wasn't enough.

    • And who's going to reimburse the Iraqis?

    • "US sons and daughters die, Israelis go to the beach and sit by their US subsidised pools filled with Palestinian water resources, while the neocons cheerlead for apartheid."

      Plus the destruction of a country, death, rape, and total misery for millions, contamination by depleted uranium leading to generations of appalling birth defects, and other minor details.

  • Jewish terrorists strike again, this time in the Galilee
    • "I can’t respect someone who blames 9/11 on the Mossad on the Alex Jone’s radio show."

      What causes the lack of respect? Saying it on the radio show, or saying that Mossad was responsible?

      If the latter, why does that claim lead to loss of respect?

    • Do you think that a biased source can be ignored? If so, you will have to ignore just about every source. Learn to work around the bias to extract the truth from the source.

    • "What a generalization"

      Can you show that it is an unfair generalization? Woody's collected posts give his reasons for making the generalization, but I'm sure that he'd summarise them if you asked him nicely. Then you can work out whether the generalization is justified, and report back to us.

    • "the unifying message is anti-Israel."

      You say that as if it were a bad thing.

    • "There is a world wide Jewish community trying to figure out what is best for the Jews."

      It would be nice if they tried to figure out what is best for everyone.

  • The new 'internalized conflict': Israeli settlers targeting Israeli activists w/ impunity
    • "Where will Jews flee when it is fellow Israelis who are targeting them with violence?"

      Obviously, they need another Jewish State as a safe refuge from the persecution they suffer in this one.

  • An American Jew who emigrated to Israel is asked if the end of the Jewish state would be a tragedy for her
    • To expand on this theme a bit. Let us suppose that people like her become the majority in Israel, and set up a single state from sheer pragmatism.

      That might not be as good as setting up a single state from moral conviction, but it seems preferable to the current situation.

      And after a while, Jews in such a state might come to think that Arabs are almost human too. The moral conviction could develop from the pragmatic action.

      (Did I just see a pig flying past my window?)

    • "In ANY nationalism, there is always the tension between the national identity and the democratic"

      But when you say "national" you don't mean real nations.

    • "she’s not perfect. Who is?"

      Well, I am, of course. And while I take Dex's point that it would be better if she accepted the one-state becasue it was the right thing to do, and Dan's point about her taking advantage of a racist policy, I still want to invoke Voltaire's maxim that the best is the enemy of the good.

      Even if he was a Frenchman.

    • "Then I am for human rights. Human rights trumps everything. We are for human beings."

      She's talking sense. Send her to the re-education camp.

  • Silverstein and McGovern ponder prospect of Israeli attack on Iran
    • "An Israeli attack on Iran would cause Iran to attack US/NATO warships in the Persian gulf, bring the US at least, and most likely NATO against all of Iran."

      I'm pretty sure the Iranians will have factored this in to their thinking on the matter. Now that they have better relations with NATO Turkey than Turkey has with Israel, they could well decide to hold off any attack on US ships in the Gulf.

    • Just before the Georgian president went potty and picked a war with Russia, the Israelis were allegedly plotting to mount an attack on Iran from Georgian airbases.

      The Russians are said to have destroyed those bases and captured a quantity of more-or-less secret Israeli equipment.

      Add to that the current break with Turkey, and it looks like that route is closed.

  • Israel doubles rate of Palestinian home demolitions and plans to uproot 30,000 Bedouin. Clinton says Palestinians need to be more flexible.
  • Khalidi reflects on the 'Palestinians' Next Move' in The National Interest
    • 'I find Rashid Khalidi's "The Palestinians' Next Move" exceptionally clear, concise, and convincing.
      2. "after two decades of the U.S. behaving as 'Israel’s lawyer,' the two-state solution is now dead."'

      But here

      Hussein Ibish tells us that the one-state solution is impossible.

      What options are left?

      1. RoHa's utterly brilliant three-state option.
      2. Some sort of no-state option. (E.g., the whole territory becomes a Chinese Protectorate.)
      3. Rivers of blood.
      4. ?

      The greater power lies with the Israeli Jews, and so far it looks as though they are going for options 3 or 4. Have they really thought this through?

    • seafoid, I haven't read yours, but here's mine. Also the Euro, but also...

      "The truth about the euro project is that it was always based on a colossal act of make-believe, launched in defiance of all economic and political reality. And as history and storytelling have shown us again and again, when human beings, individually or collectively, attempt to act out a fantasy, there is a very clear and identifiable pattern to what follows.

      The “fantasy cycle”, as I have called it elsewhere, unfolds through five stages. The tragedy begins with the Anticipation Stage, when nervous energy tempts the protagonist into some enticingly hubristic course of action. Now we enter a Dream Stage, when for a while, all seems to go well. But because the fantasy defies the reality of the world around it, things move into a Frustration Stage, where it all starts to go wrong. This prompts those in the obsessive grip of the make-believe to push their fantasy even further out of touch with reality, leading them to the Nightmare Stage, where, as reality crowds in on them, everything goes wrong. This leads to the fifth and final stage: Nemesis, or an “explosion into reality”, where the fantasy destroys itself."

      Christopher Booker

  • US withholds $200 million from PA for punishment over statehood bid
    • Yes. The Saudis were not pleased with that, so they kept the US planes they had on the ground.

      They have bought a bunch of Typhoons, as well.

    • "Saudi government hates cutting oil sales, but cutting military purchases is something that they can do easily and hurts USA very pointedly "

      When Bush 1 was VP, the Saudis were not happy with the US, and showed it by staging a fly-past of Tornado fighters rather than US-made planes.

  • Vice PM Moshe Ya’alon: Regime change in Ramallah will ultimately be necessary for peace talks to progress
    • "Hostage, What you are doing is called cherry picking"

      Show us the rest of the cherries, then.

    • And a Wodehouse fan as well!

      Is there no limit to your virtues, Mooser?

    • "Hostage,
      Your one sided BS does not convince anyone."

      Yeah, Hostage. Keep those facts, quotes, citations, and references to yourself. We don't want a good story spoiled by reality.

      Smart-ass know-all.

    • "Jews want a state of their own."

      Australian Jews have Australia, just like all the other Australians they share it with. Why is that not enough?

  • 'Time' features generational divide over Israel-- when will 92d St Y stage this family affair?
    • How interesting. Denying the racial purity of Jews is racism.

    • "no matter how devoted Jews may be to humanity at large, we owe our devotion first and foremost to one particular people—our own people."


    • 'the ideological inconsistencies between Zionism, which upholds the principle of Israel as a Jewish state, and American liberal democracy, which emphasizes individual rights regardless of race, ethnicity, or religion. "The tragedy," Resnick says, is that the two worldviews may be "irreconcilable."'

      May be?

  • Imagine if this article was about whites and blacks in the US
    • "common sense dictates you do not create an exclusive ethnic state where there’s already millions of other (indigenous) people you are not including."

      Annie, when you phrase it like that, it does sound like the sort of plan we associate with slack-jawed yokels and copious amounts of beer.

    • Incidentally, somehow part 2 comes before part 1 in the thread. Taking them in the correct order might help.

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