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Total number of comments: 28 (since 2012-10-27 21:28:51)

I am a college lecturer.

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  • 'NYT' publishes hagiographic profile of Israeli 'philosopher-general'
    • TRY THE FOLLOWING TWO QUESTIONS:

      -True or False: Human Rights Watch reported that in the twenty-four cases of Lebanese civilian casualties which it examined in detail, it found no evidence that Hezbollah [during the 2006 war] deliberately used civilians as shields to protect its fighters from retaliatory Israeli attack. link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

      -Which human rights organization reported the following concerning the 2008-2009 military operation in Gaza ? “[We] found no evidence that Hamas…directed the movement of civilians to shield military objectives from attacks….In all of the cases investigated…of families killed when their homes were bombed…by Israeli forces…none of the houses struck was being used by armed groups for military activities.…[However we did find that Israeli soldiers] used civilians, including children, as ‘human shields’, endangering their lives…” link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

  • Max Blumenthal responds to latest critique of his book, in the 'Forward'
    • One would think that the documentary, The Gatekeepers, pretty much settled that Israel is the myopic, brutal power. To remind readers, in the 2012 documentary six former heads of Israel’s domestic counterterrorism agency (Shin Bet) – Avraham Shalom, Yaakov Peri, Carmi Gillon, Ami Avalon, Avi Dichter and Yuval Diskin – “speak publicly for the first time about their work combating violence from both Palestinians and Israelis….Interestingly enough, these six men…share a belief that a Palestinian state should have been a priority [and show] disdain for Israeli politicians for not doing more to make it happen.” According to Peri, “When you retire, you become a bit of a leftist.” “Not all terrorists, the gatekeepers take pains to point out, are Palestinian.”
      link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

  • Pat Boone sells tiny plots of Israeli land to Christian Zionists
    • It is ironic that most US evangelicals have never demonstrated the slightest interest in the welfare of Palestinian Christians who live under Israel’s harsh and illegal occupation. In contrast, in 2012 “the United Church of Canada [the largest Protestant denomination in Canada]…voted to boycott products exported by Israeli settlements on the West Bank. The foray into Middle East politics was one of 13 resolutions the UCC adopted…The resolutions also single out Israeli settlements as a principal obstacle to peace in the region, call on Israel to suspend settlement expansion, and express regret for previously asking Palestinians to acknowledge Israel as a Jewish state.” link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

  • Religious intolerance in Jerusalem
    • To state that "ultra-orthodox people seldom try to impose their
      principles on others" is to not understand the political efforts by the ultra-Orthodox to affect the civil rights of Israelis. Consider just one of many examples: “[I]n 1953, the Knesset passed the Rabbinical Courts Jurisdiction Law, which established the Jewish religion as the state religion, replete with…rabbinical courts. The law empowered rabbis to determine, where applicable, if an immigrant’s conversion had been valid, and it reaffirmed the right of [Orthodox/ultra-Orthodox] rabbinic officials to preside over all marriages, divorces, and burials for Jewish citizens…Official rabbinic bureaucracies determined which restaurants, hotels, etc., would be declared kosher—a state-sponsored monopoly that has led to thousands of patronage jobs. By 1955, the state had set up two school systems for Jews, one secular and the other [Orthodox], that is, for children of those identifying with the National Religious Party…Ben-Gurion also permitted the sons of the relatively small, non-Zionist, ultra-Orthodox…communities to study in their own [religious] schools…and avoid military service.”
      link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

  • 'New York Times' profile of group bent on sanctioning Iran fails to mention Israel connections
    • The following, written by an historian of the UNITED STATES FEDERAL GOVERNMENT, cannot be emphasized enough:
      “Hard liners in Iran reject the status quo of American supremacy in the region….While in this conflict the United States remains largely the good guy, it has not always been the perfect guy. Both Bush administrations dismissed Iranian goodwill gestures and refused to accept any dialogue that addressed Iran’s legitimate security concerns. The United States supported Saddam Hussein and his Arab bankrollers in a bloody war against the Islamic Republic that killed several hundred thousand Iranian soldiers. The mantra of regime change remains a frequent slogan in many quarters in Washington. Unfortunately, Iran’s response to these trespasses has invariably been to use the tools of the terrorist: an exploding car bomb on a crowded street or a plot to kill a diplomat in a popular Washington restaurant….Iran’s quest for nuclear technology has heightened the stakes and the tension but it has not been a catalyst for the conflict.” link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

  • New report shows Palestinians own only 8% of historic Palestine
    • The "8%" figure is ironic due to the following question: Approximately what percentage of Mandatory Palestine’s land was owned by Jews at the time of the 1947 UN Partition Plan?

      -Answer: 7 percent. link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com
      -The unrelenting settlement growth will continue until the US sees its interests sufficiently harmed by Israeli policy.

  • Guatemalan genocide got assist from US, Christian Right, and Israel
    • I should have added the following to my above comment: With respect to Guatemala, Israeli political leaders were just following orders from their American bosses. However, the Israeli leaders surely knew that "just following orders" is not an acceptable defense for war crimes.

    • The following piece of information results in absolute disbelief when told to “properly educated” Westerners:
      “In the Cambridge History of the Cold War, John Coatsworth [a historian of Latin America and the provost of Columbia University] recalls that from 1960 [by which time the Soviets had dismantled Stalin's gulags] to ‘the Soviet collapse in 1990, the numbers of political prisoners, torture victims, and executions of nonviolent political dissenters in Latin America vastly exceeded those in the Soviet Union and its East European satellites.’ But being nonatrocities [since committed by US-supported regimes], these crimes, substantially traceable to U.S. intervention, didn’t inspire a human-rights crusade.” link to link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

      The above is important to understand because what is often reported as aberrations in US foreign policy concerning “non-Whites” (Vietnam, Abu Ghraib, etc.) are not aberrations.

  • In 1948 the Nakba was carried out by the military, in 2013 it continues in courtrooms
    • It is never easy for a country to honestly address its wrongs. War in 1948 was inevitable -- primarily due to the goals of Zionism. It is long past due for some measure of justice to be done. Perhaps if more Jews were informed of the following, more empathy could be generated for displaced and soon-to-be-displaced Palestinians:
      -"In July 1948, Ben Gurion gave orders for the operations in Lydda and Ramleh: ‘Expel them!’ he told Yigal Allon and Yitzhak Rabin — a section censored out of Rabin’s memoirs, but published thirty years later in the New York Times.”
      -"During the [1948] war Zionist forces committed abuses so terrible that David Ben-Gurion…declared himself ‘shocked by the deeds that have reached my ears.’ In the town of Jish, in the Galilee, Israeli soldiers pillaged Arab houses, and when the residents protested, took them to a remote location and shot them dead.”
      -"[J]ews committed far more atrocities than the Arabs and killed far more civilians and PoWs in deliberate acts of brutality in the course of 1948.″
      link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

  • Glenn Greenwald brings facts and reason to 'Real Time', ruins Bill Maher's night
    • Maher should try the following Terrorism Quiz: link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

      Question 6: In 1958, according to the United States National Security Council, what was the main reason the Arab people hated the US?

      Answer:
      -“In a staff discussion…president Dwight Eisenhower described ‘the campaign of hatred against us (in the Arab world), not by the governments but by the people’. His National Security Council outlined the basic argument: the US supports corrupt and oppressive governments and is ‘opposing political or economic progress’ because of its interest in controlling the oil resources of the region. Post-September 11 [2001] surveys in the Arab world reveal that the same reasons hold today, compounded with resentment over specific policies [such as the US’s]…crucial support for Israel’s harsh military occupation…”
      -“As a Rumsfeld-era Pentagon study concluded: ‘Muslims do not hate our freedom, but rather, they hate our policies.’ In particular, it is ‘American direct intervention in the Muslim world’ – justified in the name of stopping Terrorism – that ‘paradoxically elevate[s] the stature of and support for Islamic radicals’.”

  • More on the Church of Scotland's controversial report on occupation
    • -“Contrary to a common portrayal, secular politicians initiated settlement in the occupied territories and have continued to back it ever since. But the most ideologically committed settlers have been [Orthodox] Zionists -- and the government's support for settlement has fostered the transformation of [Orthodox] Zionism into a movement of the radical right.”

      -Settlement had been a quintessential Labor Zionist value. After the 1967 War there was new land to settle. Pioneers could again act, however, this time “with the power of a state behind” them. “The initiative to start settling came mainly from Labor politicians, officials, and activists. At first, [Orthodox] Zionists were junior partners. Labor governments approved new settlements on a piecemeal basis” that roughly fit the (never formally approved) Allon Plan -- settlements should be placed in lightly populated areas that provided security benefits. “Tension between Labor and Orthodox activists began in earnest only after the 1973 Yom Kippur War, when the religious settlers feared that the government might return a piece of the West Bank to Jordan.” link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

  • Iran is not imminent threat, says head of Israeli military intelligence
    • Hello Phil: If you'd prefer I not submit comments to your pieces, it would be courteous to send me an email. Then I won't waste your time or mine. Best Regards, Rudolph. I copy the following in this comment:
      Your comment is awaiting moderation.
      March 16, 2013 at 8:50 am
      In March 2013, “U.S. Director of National Intelligence James Clapper confirmed [that] Iran has not decided to develop a nuclear weapon and that it would be unable to do so secretly. Testifying before the Senate, Clapper said Iran could not divert safeguarded material to produce weapons-grade uranium without it being discovered.” link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

      It can’t be stated enough that Iran is a signatory to the NPT while Israel, Pakistan, and India are not. However, the latter three are not sanctioned by the US.

      According to David Crist, a historian for the UNITED STATES FEDERAL GOVERNMENT and an advisor on Middle East issues “Hard liners in Iran reject the status quo of American supremacy in the region….Both Bush administrations dismissed Iranian goodwill gestures and refused to accept any dialogue that addressed Iran’s legitimate security concerns. The United States supported Saddam Hussein and his Arab bankrollers in a bloody war against the Islamic Republic that killed several hundred thousand Iranian soldiers. The mantra of regime change remains a frequent slogan in many quarters in Washington. Unfortunately, Iran’s response to these trespasses has invariably been to use the tools of the terrorist: an exploding car bomb on a crowded street or a plot to kill a diplomat in a popular Washington restaurant….Iran’s quest for nuclear technology has heightened the stakes and the tension but it has not been a catalyst for the conflict.” link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

    • In March 2013, “U.S. Director of National Intelligence James Clapper confirmed [that] Iran has not decided to develop a nuclear weapon and that it would be unable to do so secretly. Testifying before the Senate, Clapper said Iran could not divert safeguarded material to produce weapons-grade uranium without it being discovered.” link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

      It can't be stated enough that Iran is a signatory to the NPT while Israel, Pakistan, and India are not. However, the latter three are not sanctioned by the US.

      According to David Crist, a historian for the UNITED STATES FEDERAL GOVERNMENT and an advisor on Middle East issues “Hard liners in Iran reject the status quo of American supremacy in the region….Both Bush administrations dismissed Iranian goodwill gestures and refused to accept any dialogue that addressed Iran’s legitimate security concerns. The United States supported Saddam Hussein and his Arab bankrollers in a bloody war against the Islamic Republic that killed several hundred thousand Iranian soldiers. The mantra of regime change remains a frequent slogan in many quarters in Washington. Unfortunately, Iran’s response to these trespasses has invariably been to use the tools of the terrorist: an exploding car bomb on a crowded street or a plot to kill a diplomat in a popular Washington restaurant….Iran’s quest for nuclear technology has heightened the stakes and the tension but it has not been a catalyst for the conflict.” link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

  • You could become 'another Goldstone' -- friendly warning to Yale prof whose study cleared Palestinian textbooks of demonization charge
    • It's probably worth noting that several years ago Nathan Brown, Professor of Political Science and International Affairs at George Washington University, after a detailed study on The Palestinian Curriculum, wrote: “[T]he Palestinian curriculum is not a war curriculum; while highly nationalistic, it does not incite hatred, violence, and anti-Semitism.”
      Right-wing supporters of Israel, seeking reasons why Palestinians harbor resentment against Israel and Jews, often point to Palestinian textbooks that purportedly instill such hatred. Prof. Brown demonstrates that a better explanation is to be found in the harsh occupation administered by Israel. As Prof. Brown writes in his conclusion, “With the effects of conflict felt on a daily basis, what textbooks and teachers say is probably irrelevant in any case.” link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

  • Chomsky: Obama strongly supported Israel's 2006 Lebanon invasion
    • It's worthwhile to remember how easily Israel manipulated a pretext in 2006--the capture of Israeli soldiers by Hezbollah--to pursue its key strategic goal--Hezbollah's destruction: “In leaked testimony to the Winograd Committee investigating Israel’s mismanagement of the summer 2006 Lebanon war, Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert admitted that the war had been carefully planned at least four months ahead of time…Facts such as that Hezbollah fired no rockets into Israel until after Israel’s savage aerial attacks…had begun, or that Israel had left unresolved for years the bitter issues of Lebanese prisoners of war and the occupation of the Shebaa Farms region, only generate more questions when one considers how easily negotiations could have defused growing tensions.” link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

      As Chomsky might say, it is a clear indicator of the discipline of the US mainstream media that Hezbollah's significant popularity among Shia and non-Shia in Lebanon is so unfathomable to Americans. How could Obama have voted in any other way in such a disciplined political environment?

  • Settlers stage new year's attack on West Bank village of Qusra
    • A country that commits state terrorism should not be surprised when its citizens commit retail terrorism. However, in recent years Israeli leaders have begun to recognize the problem of terrorism by radical Jewish settlers against occupied Palestinians. In 2011, “the Israeli general in charge of the West Bank, Nitsan Alon, described the violence by radical settlers as ‘terrorism’ and urged the IDF to ‘do much more to stop it.’”
      "According to UN investigations, in 2011, extremist settlers launched almost 300 attacks on Palestinian property, causing over 100 Palestinian casualties…"
      The radical settler attacks should be labeled as terrorism as they target innocent “Palestinians, pro-peace Israelis, and Israeli soldiers alike for supposedly anti-settlement measures taken by the Israeli government. By seeking to frighten a rival population and intimidate a government, the extremists mimic the typical methods of terrorist groups across the globe.”
      Settler terrorism “is undoubtedly working. It has made it more difficult for the IDF to govern the West Bank and fractured the settler movement, weakening the influence of the more moderate elements that would accept the legitimacy of the Israeli state even if it committed to another withdrawal.” link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

  • Two-state process has been 'a charade' for two decades
    • While Rabin's vision of a Palestinian "entity" was still a work-in-progress when he was assassinated, we will never know what might have been...
      Rabin knew one thing very clearly: There is a real cost to peace. Why Israel has been unable to produce a leader like Rabin is a sad reflection of Israeli society.
      Jews should remember that "In the mid-1990s, Dov Lior--the head of the West Bank's rabbinical council--and other prominent rabbis implied that Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin's willingness to cede land to the Palestinians made him a moser (traitor), a transgression they claimed was punishable by death. Emboldened, one of their disciples, Yigal Amir, murdered Rabin." link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

  • Khalidi, Karon and Bronner (!) deliver a post mortem for the two-state solution
    • While I have no illusions over the great difficulty to have Israel enter good faith negotiations with the Palestinians, it is important to know that despite relentless settlement growth the two-state solution is still a realistic solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict. According to Shaul Arieli, one of Israel’s leading experts on the demarcation of the future Israeli-Palestinian border, "It is true that over the years the settlements have driven a network of wedges between the clusters of Palestinian villages. But these wedges [have not created] a Jewish dominance that would make unilateral annexation [by Israel] possible….Some 85 percent of the settlers live in the settlement blocs that cover less than six percent of the area of the West bank. In the rest of the area, there is a clear Palestinian dominance. The number of Israelis living outside the blocs is only 2.6 percent of the population, while inside the blocs, it soars to 95 percent. The built-up area of the Israeli settlements outside the blocs covers less than 0.4 percent of the area of the West Bank...”
      Furthermore “most of the settlers who work are working inside Israel and therefore will not have to change jobs when a final status agreement is signed. Moreover, the number of households that will have to be absorbed in Israel, according to the Israeli or Palestinian proposals at the [2007] Annapolis peace talks, will not be greater than 30,000, while the reservoir of housing units planned in Israel…stands at more than ten times that number.”
      The Israeli supporters of "Greater Israel" (and there are many) are the critical enemies of a two-state solution. Their desired solution is to "transfer" occupied Palestinians on the West Bank to Jordan. link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

  • The message sent from Palestinian resistance during the Israeli attack on Gaza
    • Israel knows how to stop rocket attacks from Gaza: enter good faith talks with Hamas. However, it is precisely Hamas’s potential as a serious and independent negotiating partner that threatens “Greater Israel.” Israeli policymakers know that upon proper negotiations that cover the Occupied Palestinian Territory, Israel will have to give up land and resources, and withdraw thousands of settlers. (As Prime Minister Rabin stated, “Peace has a cost.”)

      Besides degrading Gaza's rocket capacity, Israel's aggression has the side benefit of creating "terrorists" and thus enabling its "Greater Israel" strategy.
      Who said the following? “If I were a young Palestinian, it is possible I would join a terrorist organization.”
      Answer: Ehud Barak. (This was Barak’s response to Gideon Levy, a columnist for Ha’aretz, when Barak was asked what he would have done if he had been born a Palestinian.) link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

  • 4 myths about the Israeli attack on Gaza
    • It’s worth remembering that one of “Israel’s early acts of retaliation [during the first intifada] was to deport the Palestinian-American pacifist Mubarak Awad of the Center for the Study of Nonviolence.”

      When the arena is one of violence, Israel wins. When good faith negotiations occur, Israel can only lose since it is the occupier. link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

  • Israel rejects truce and escalates fighting in Gaza with assassination of Hamas leader; 10 killed, 90 wounded in Israeli attacks
    • It is important to remember that Israel has a long record of exploiting pretexts to commence aggressive action. It is only later that the real causes of the aggression are determined (and integrated into mainstream accounts). Besides the obvious 1956 Suez War, where Israel conspired with France and Britain, consider the following two cases of Israeli invasions of Lebanon:

      (1) “Israel invaded Lebanon on June 5, 1982, following an eleven-month cease-fire with the PLO, which Israel claimed had been broken by the attempted assassination of the Israeli ambassador to the United Kingdom Shlomo Argov…It made little difference to the Israelis that the assassination had been carried out by a renegade Palestinian group led by the infamous Sabri al-Banna…, a blood foe of the PLO. The invasion gave Ariel Sharon, then the Israeli defense minister, carte blanche to pursue his own dream of destroying the PLO as a political force in the region [thus consolidating Israel’s hold of the Occupied Palestinian Territory] and putting in place a pliant government in Beirut that would become the second Arab state, after Egypt, to enter into a formal peace agreement with Israel.

      (2) “In leaked testimony to the Winograd Committee investigating Israel’s mismanagement of the summer 2006 Lebanon war, Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert admitted that the war had been carefully planned at least four months ahead of time…Facts such as that Hezbollah fired no rockets into Israel until after Israel’s savage aerial attacks…had begun, or that Israel had left unresolved for years the bitter issues of Lebanese prisoners of war and the occupation of the Shebaa Farms region, only generate more questions when one considers how easily negotiations could have defused growing tensions.” link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

  • Peter 'Powder Keg' Beinart is disinvited from gig at Atlanta Jewish book festival
    • The critical point about Beinart's recent book is that there is literally nothing new in it. Why did it take him so long to see what has been in plain view for a long time: Israel's policies in the Occupied Palestinian Territory amount to apartheid? (Even Jimmy Carter wrote about this several years ago.) I wonder if Beinart finally read a book by Norman Finkelstein, Akiva Eldar, Gilbert Achcar, Juan Cole, etc.

      Per Finkelstein: The “Apartheid analogy” has also been made by “the editorial board of Haaretz, which observed…[that] ‘millions of Palestinians are living without rights, freedom of movement or a livelihood, under the yoke of ongoing Israeli occupation,’ as well as former Israeli Knesset member Shulamit Aloni, former deputy mayor of Jerusalem Meron Benvenisti, former Israeli Ambassador to South Africa Alon Liel, South African Archbishop and Nobel Laureate for Peace Desmond Tutu, and ‘father’ of human rights law in South Africa John Dugard.” link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

      Nevertheless, Beinart deserves some praise as he must have known that he would suffer rebukes by American Jewish mainstream entities. (Very early on, Chomsky warned Finkelstein that he'd have a hard time due to his honest writing.)

  • Christian leaders will not be cowed into silence about widespread human rights violations
    • The "irreparable rift" referred to in the article is primarily between American progressive Jewish and Christian groups and the (politically powerful, pro-Likud) Christian Right.
      Many in the US Christian Right regularly preach that Jews must rule the biblical land of Israel in order for Christ to return. However, they also believe but rarely state “that Jews who do not convert are damned and will be destroyed in the fiery, apocalyptic ending of the world.” Despite this blatant anti-Semitism, right-wing Jews embrace traditional evangelicals as such evangelicals lobby persistently for US financial, military and diplomatic support of Israel.
      "It is ironic that most US evangelicals have never demonstrated the slightest interest in the welfare of Palestinian Christians (or Muslims) who live under Israel’s harsh and illegal occupation. In contrast, in 2012 the United Church of Canada, the largest Protestant denomination in Canada, voted to boycott products exported by Israeli settlements on the West Bank. The UCC resolutions also single out Israeli settlements as a principal obstacle to peace in the region, call on Israel to suspend settlement expansion, and express regret for previously asking Palestinians to acknowledge Israel as a Jewish state.” link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

  • The Suez Canal and the British empire’s need for the Balfour Declaration
    • I have always felt that the following helps to explain Britain's support of Zionism (at least until 1939): "In 1922, Zionist leader Chaim Weizmann queried a British official why the British supported Zionism despite Arab opposition. Didn’t it make more sense for the British to keep the Palestine mandate but drop support for Zionism? ‘Although such an attitude may afford a temporary relief and may quiet Arabs for a short time,’ the official replied, ‘it will certainly not settle the question as the Arabs don’t want the British in Palestine, and after having their way with the Jews, they would attack the British position, as the Moslems are doing in Mesopotamia, Egypt and India.’” (It's interesting that US support for Israel is also motivated by the need to have a reliable non-Arab ally in the region.)
      link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

  • Secret Israel NIE warns of irreversibility of Israeli colonization
    • Mooser, Rudolph does not expect any beneficience from Israel. As you know no country gives up land and resources unless it is pressured to do so. Indeed, Israel would not have returned the Sinai to Egypt unless Egypt had proved itself as a military threat in 1973. (Israel has a long record of missing opportunities for peace. In 2012, new information concerning the 1973 War was made public. It is now known that “eight months before the war, Anwar Sadat sent his trusted aide, Hafez Ismail, to the almighty US Secretary of State, Henry Kissinger. He offered the immediate start of peace negotiations with Israel. There was one condition and one date: all of Sinai, up to the international border, had to be returned to Egypt without any Israeli settlements, and the agreement had to be achieved by September, at the latest.” link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com)
      As my former post indicates, the pressure will have to come from the US; and the US has pressured Israel in the past. Of course Israel and the Lobby will make matters difficult. However, the US has prime interests which it will ensure.
      Unfortunately, the US will only care about oppressed Palestinians if such oppression affects its prime interests such as control of the Persian Gulf. (The US is not uniquely evil. It is, however, uniquely powerful.)

    • Once the costs of the Occupation become too great for the US, the US will pressure Israel successfully. There are many instances where US interests have engendered US pressure on Israel: 1957 Sinai withdrawal; 1990-1992 loan guarantees for a settlement freeze; 2004 sales by Israel to China; etc.
      "If supporting the Israeli occupation becomes a major political burden for Washington, as it might if the Arab Spring ushers in governments responsive to popular opinion, a serious rift could open up between the United States and Israel.”
      And, despite relentless settlement growth, it is important to realize that it is not too late for the two-state solution. According to Shaul Arieli, one of Israel’s leading experts on the demarcation of the future Israeli-Palestinian border, “It is true that over the years the settlements have driven a network of wedges between the clusters of Palestinian villages. But these wedges have not created a Jewish dominance that would make unilateral annexation by Israel possible. Some 85 percent of the settlers live in the settlement blocs that cover less than six percent of the area of the West bank. In the rest of the area, there is a clear Palestinian dominance. The number of Israelis living outside the blocs is only 2.6 percent of the population, while inside the blocs, it soars to 95 percent." link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

  • 'NYT' op-ed equating anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism relied on Nasrallah quote that is in all likelihood a fabrication
    • Whenever I read about "anti-X" statements by people who have been brutally harmed by "X," I recall the following comment (below) by "Walter Laqueur, a leading academic stalwart of Israel, who acknowledges that Palestinians’ hostility to Israel and Jews has been an understandable response to the injustice inflicted on them and that, were a just settlement of the conflict reached, Palestinian, and more broadly Arab/Muslim, hostility would largely dissipate:
      "For the Palestinians, the existence of Israel is bound to remain a trauma for as far as one can think ahead, the loss of part of their homeland being the greatest injustice which can be put right only by violence. It is only natural that they will want this state to cease to exist. Once they have a state of their own, however, problems of daily life will loom large and much of their energy will have to be invested in making this state work. The great urge to reconquer what was lost will not disappear, but it will not be pursued as in the days when this was the only issue.”

      Anyone familiar with the horrors of the 1982 and 2006 invasions of Lebanon by Israel--not to mention lesser ones in between--will understand occasional invective against Israel--and yes, even, Jews--by Lebanese of various religions, sects, etc.
      For a brief reminder of Israel's policy in Lebanon, consider: "Israel’s general strategy in Lebanon from 1985 to 2000 was two-fold: militarily to smash the guerillas themselves, their bases and their personnel; politically to persuade the Lebanese state and people, by punishing them too, to turn against Hizbullah, and then to make a final peace with Israel independently of Syria. For an example of civilians being punished, consider Israel’s 1996 Grapes of Wrath campaign which caused some 500,000 Lebanese to flee north. During the 16-day campaign 25,132 artillery rounds and 2,350 air sorties resulted in killing only thirteen Hizbollah fighters. Once again it was Lebanese civilians who bore the brunt; 165 died, compared with not one Israeli, military or civilian.”

      References available at: link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

  • Israeli maker of 'Gatekeepers' says occupation is 'past the point of no return'
    • Despite relentless settlement growth, it is important to realize that the two-state solution is still a realistic solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict.
      According to Shaul Arieli, one of Israel’s leading experts on the demarcation of the future Israeli-Palestinian border, “It is true that over the years the settlements have driven a network of wedges between the clusters of Palestinian villages. But these wedges have not created a Jewish dominance that would make unilateral annexation by Israel possible. Some 85 percent of the settlers live in the settlement blocs that cover less than six percent of the area of the West bank. In the rest of the area, there is a clear Palestinian dominance. The number of Israelis living outside the blocs is only 2.6 percent of the population, while inside the blocs, it soars to 95 percent. The built-up area of the Israeli settlements outside the blocs covers less than 0.4 percent of the area of the West Bank. With regard to the use by Israelis of transportation infrastructures in the West Bank, those who do not live there drive only on 293 kilometers (which are 10 percent) of the roads outside the settlement blocs and the settlers drive on another 19 percent. The other 71 percent of the roads are used exclusively by Palestinians. On the other hand, inside the settlement blocs, 83 percent of the roads are used by the Israelis. This is a reality of de facto separation.
      "Furthermore most of the settlers who work are working inside Israel and therefore will not have to change jobs when a final status agreement is signed. Moreover, the number of households that will have to be absorbed in Israel, according to the Israeli or Palestinian proposals at the 2007 Annapolis peace talks, will not be greater than 30,000, while the reservoir of housing units planned in Israel stands at more than ten times that number.
      “The devotees of the Greater Land of Israel are making efforts to hide this reality of separation on the West Bank. They aspire to banish to the eastern side of the Jordan the Palestinian inhabitants of the West Bank." link to detailedpoliticalquizzes.wordpress.com

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