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Total number of comments: 3533 (since 2009-10-01 15:59:16)

seanmcbride

Website: https://friendfeed.com/seanmcbride

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  • Video: If you voted for Hamas, Israel has a right to kill you, says president of NY Board of Rabbis
    • ritzl,

      Thoughtful post -- good points.

      To develop your ideas a bit further: there is a great deal of difference between CUFI (which you rightly point out is controlled by a Jewish Zionist, David Brog) and the mainstream Jewish religious establishment (Orthodox, Conservative and Reform Judaism).

      CUFI is not a mainstream Christian organization -- far from it -- it is so far on the fringe that one could describe it as an anti-Christian cult. And it didn't develop its Zionism from within -- it was foisted on it from without

      The Jewish religious establishment, on the other hand, which is arguably the dominant component of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, does represent the Jewish mainstream -- and its Zionism is generated from within -- the leaders of Orthodox, Conservative and Reform Judaism are passionate Jewish nationalists acting in what they perceive as their self-interest.

      "Holding all Jews responsible for the crimes of Zionism" is certainly not an idea I endorse. What I have argued is that the Jewish religious establishment needs to be held responsible for transforming Judaism into an ethnic nationalist ideology organized around the interests of a foreign government -- Israel. That establishment has indoctrinated its followers in the belief that they owe a fervent loyalty to Zionism and Israel based on Torah myths and symbols revolving around sacred peoplehood, sacred nationhood and sacred territory.

      This is a huge problem from the standpoint of Jewish interests -- they may well succeed in destroying Judaism as a viable religion if the Zionist project continues on its current disastrous trajectory, dragging religious Jews with it.

    • Annie,

      Can you expand your thoughts a bit? The comment you are replying to is packed with quite a few specific ideas.

    • Mooser,

      The facts of interest in this matter are the official statements that a large majority Orthodox, Conservative and Reform Jewish leaders have made about Israel and Zionism over the last half century -- many of which are easy to retrieve with Google. I would ask you to do some Googling of your own on this subject, but you've made it clear that research, scholarship, fact-collection and fact-checking don't engage your attention.

      The truth is, those leaders have fully Zionized Judaism -- in fact, erased all distinctions between Judaism and Zionism. Right-wing rabbis continue to acquire ever-greater influence and power in Israel, while traditionally left-wing Jewish religious institutions in America (like Reform Judaism) find themselves increasingly in the same camp with Likud Zionists.

      Young religious Jews are being indoctrinated into the belief by religious authorities that Judaism = Zionism -- probably that is why quite a few of them are abandoning Judaism.

      We've discussed this issue in some detail here:

      link to friendfeed.com

      And that forum is permanently open to pursue that conversation when this thread closes.

    • Ritzl,

      How are Jewish religious leaders (Judaists) being any less proactive and energetic in promoting Zionism than secular Zionists? In fact, Orthodox, Conservative and Reform rabbis often seem to be the most aggressive and influential leaders in the Zionist world these days -- one can turn up hundreds of stories on these trends in the Jewish and Israeli media.

      And what precisely now are the ideological differences between Judaism and Zionism? Most leaders of Judaism claim that there are none. Mainstream Judaism is Zionist in precisely the same way that Christian Zionism (a bizarre sect on the periphery of mainstream Christianity) is Zionist.

      Shouldn't the Orthodox, Conservative and Reform Jewish communities bear full responsibility for the policies of their leadership? If those communities themselves are not enthusiastically Zionist then why do they not oppose that leadership?

      Were German Christians in the first half of the 20th century responsible for the beliefs and policies of the leading German Christian denominations during that era? Most people I know would argue that they were.

      But even there, I don't think the merger between Christianity and German ethnic nationalism approached anywhere near the intensity of the merger between Judaism and Zionism over the last half century.

      Isn't this a huge issue? How many Jewish children are being indoctrinated into the belief that Judaism = Zionism? Aren't those religious beliefs affecting their political beliefs and behavior in profound ways?

      If this thread is closed, it can be continued here:

      link to friendfeed.com

    • ziusudra,

      The Jewish religious establishment itself has vociferously embraced Zionism (Jewish ethnic nationalism) as an ideology and removed all distinctions between Judaism and Zionism. This is where Judaism stands in the year 2014. It is really impossible to say now whether Zionism is driving Judaism or Judaism is driving Zionism -- they are one and the same thing.

      A few Jewish voices object to these developments, but they are not being heard where it counts -- especially at the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations.

    • The boundaries between Zionism and mainstream Judaism have completely dissolved and collapsed over the last half century -- they now comprise a single ideology and culture. One can't imagine a greater disaster for Judaism. The reputation and fate of Judaism now rest in the hands of a single nation -- Israel -- and whatever possibly mad regime is running it at the moment.

  • Dr. Kristol's curriculum: US 'special responsibilities' include 'ancient longings' of Jewish nationalists
    • W.Jones,

      Israel Shahak mentioned a passage from the Talmud which relishes the prospect of Jesus being immersed in boiling excrement.

      Interesting reference by Mooser there (probably unconscious -- or at least one hopes.)

      Regarding that passage, and the entire tradition, see this:

      Israel and Anti-Gentile Traditions
      link to myjewishlearning.com

      The author, Ari Alexander, studies the modern Middle East at Oxford University.

      Alexander's point of view:

      Israel Shahak's theory that anti-Gentile traditions have influenced Israeli policy is well known in both Arab and anti-Semitic circles, but Jews have yet to properly confront it.

    • Mooser,

      What do you envision as the consequences of the worldwide Jewish religious establishment embracing the ideology of Zionism and nearly all Israeli government policies without reservation? How do you think this situation will unfold moving forward?

    • Mooser,

      Oh, your current position seems to be about what it has always been.

      My position is that the contemporary Jewish religious establishment has swallowed Zionism hook, line and sinker and merged Judaism and Zionism into a single messianic ethno-religious nationalist ideology based on ancient biblical memes (especially sacred peoplehood and sacred territory).

      If you have any thoughtful critiques of this position, please share them. I've read a few dozen first-rate scholarly books on this topic and am always open to learning more about these issues from well-informed people.

      As usual, if this thread is closed, it can always be pursued here at any length:

      link to friendfeed.com

    • Mooser,

      One has to admit this: whatever Zionists put their minds to, they do with great force and skill. They have managed to roll right over the American government -- supposedly the most powerful institution on the planet -- with the greatest of ease. Many Americans at this point have the distinct feeling that they have been colonized.

      I've been impressed by some of your recent comments. Clearly you have been thinking deeply about the problematic relations between Zionism and Judaism -- a subject which has come up in some of our previous interesting exchanges. :)

      My current position is this: mainstream Judaism has so profoundly embraced Zionism for so long now (more than half a century) that I suspect it may be beyond recovery. It swallowed Zionism whole -- every last little bit. Zionism is flowing through its veins. I guess we'll have to see how that turns out. I've placed my bets.

    • Zionism has opened the door wide for the reemergence of white ethnic and Christian religious nationalism in Western culture -- both in Europe and the United States -- and all other forms of ethnic and religious nationalism as well all around the world. We all have "longings," don't you know. No form of ethnic or religious nationalism enjoys more innate legitimacy than any other -- unless you are an Old Testament cultist.

      Great comment by Krauss above, by the way. He gets to the heart of the issue.

  • How Israel militarized social media
    • The more that pro-Israel activists try to propagandize their cause -- a narrow ethnic and religious nationalist cause -- the more enemies they make. That is the social dynamic in play here.

      I am surprised that more people haven't noticed this. The other guy's ethnic and religious nationalism is usually a turnoff for most people.

      What Israel (and Zionists) desperately need is a much lower profile on the world stage. But they keep raising their profile in the most negative ways possible -- self-destructive behavior at its finest.

      Switzerland is not aggressively trying to push a narrow ethnic nationalist agenda on the world. Smart.

  • Video: 'It's a hell of a pinpoint operation' -- John Kerry caught criticizing Israel on hot mic during Sunday news show
    • The situation here is obvious: John Kerry knows that if he tells truth and expresses his real thoughts and feelings, he will be targeted for destruction by the Israel lobby. Barack Obama and Kerry have been intimidated into supporting yet another disastrous Israeli policy. Noam Chomsky has no useful insights to provide on what is really going on in US/Israeli relations.

  • Mohyeldin's boss at NBC rallied 'Jewish passion' for Israel when 'it is physically threatened'
    • Sumud,

      I don’t think the moderation platform is as perfect as we might want. Don’t take it personally.

      Moderation of Internet forums has to be one of the most difficult, energy-consuming and thankless tasks one can imagine -- that is why active commenters netwide need to take a proactive role in developing independent communications networks as adjuncts to leading publications and blogs.

      Mondoweiss may be the most professionally and fair-minded moderated forum on the net -- I don't understand how they manage to process and edit the large volume of comments here.

      And the moderation is absolutely necessary -- there are well-organized propaganda groups out there who are eager to take over or wreck forums at every available opportunity. Give them a small opening and they will flood in and wreak havoc.

    • Mooser:

      You can pick up this discussion here, if you would like:

      Notice the hysteria and anger that anti-Zionist Mooser expressed about any efforts to analyze the numerous important connections between Judaism and Zionism and between the Jewish religious establishment and the Israel lobby. He lost it completely -- and he is still off-balance and fuming about that subject.

      link to friendfeed.com

      Context:

      Certainly this is a tendency one sees among many liberal and progressive Zionists: to place the blame for Israeli policies on any and every group in the world except the Jewish establishment and the Jewish lobby.

      You should have every opportunity to express your point of view and to defend your ideas.

    • Mooser,

      You might want to take a look at Friendfeed as a powerful social media tool for sharing and discussing news and information of all kinds (not just Mondoweiss articles).

      Regarding the general look and feel:

      1. bottom-up (not top-down) in terms of social organization
      2. clean
      3. collaborative
      4. crisp
      5. decentralized
      6. democratic
      7. elegant
      8. fleet
      9. flexible
      10. self-moderating
      11. self-organizing
      12. swift
      13. uncluttered

      Regarding specific features:

      1. instant posting with no moderation or delays
      2. unlimited time for editing posts
      3. independent proactive posting of main articles
      4. share items to Friendfeed directly from your browser
      5. share items to other social media platforms from Friendfeed
      6. import other social media feeds into Friendfeed
      7. direct private communications with all other users
      8. create new groups on the fly
      9. break off highly active conversations into new conversations or even new groups
      10. powerful features for searching past posts and comments
      11. read or engage in multiple conversations on a single page
      12. block undesirable users on a person by person basis
      13. hide uninteresting conversations

      Friendfeed overcomes many of the limitations of traditional blogging platforms.

      Regarding Mondoweiss on Friendfeed -- you've been mentioned and discussed there a few times. :)

      Blog and publication commenters need to become much more proactive in defining how they communicate with one another -- distributed power is really what the Internet is all about. Rather than complaining about being moderated, Internet users should establish their own platforms for publishing, fully under their own control. (Of course, that is precisely what Facebook and Twitter users are doing.)

    • Maximus Decimus Meridius,

      You can post comments on Mondoweiss articles here instantly:

      link to friendfeed.com

      No moderation, you can edit your comments without any time limits, and you can start your own threads if you like.

      (Mondoweiss on Friendfeed is an outlet to post comments and pursue discussions that might not be appropriate for Mondoweiss -- and to develop direct private relationships with other commenters, if you are interested in doing so. In no way is it intended to compete with Mondoweiss -- it's just an auxiliary tool.)

    • This is what is most fascinating about Bill Maher: he presents himself to the world as a rational and logical critic of religion (he's too smart for that, you know), but he feels a passionate and irrational attachment to a state, Israel, and a movement, Zionism, that are largely driven by Jewish and Christian religious fundamentalism of the most extreme variety.

      Maher seems to be completely oblivious to his blatant self-contradictions -- and he often comes off as a preening fool when discussing Mideast politics. In the end, he basically fits the liberal Zionist mold -- he's an intellectual mess when it comes to Israel and Zionism -- someone to be ridiculed on that account.

      (I also think that Maher can be smart, witty and funny on other topics.)

      If this thread is closed early, it can be pursued here:

      link to friendfeed.com

  • Child's beating in Jerusalem brings unprecedented coverage of Palestinian experience to U.S.
  • Chomsky and BDS
    • dbroncos,

      A consistant theme in Chomsky's critique of Israel is his belief that behind Israel's crimes is the Great Satan and its "levers of power". His is a classic "they're just taking orders" argument that doesn't hold water. The craven stooping and bowing to Zionist power from Truman on down tells a different story.

      Superbly stated.

      I can't recall the last time Noam Chomsky produced any useful *facts* about the creation of American policies towards Israel -- concrete facts which name particular names of people and organizations. He is airy and vague on the matter of the Israel lobby -- consistently evasive and, in my opinion, intellectually dishonest.

      Phil Weiss, Max Blumenthal, Adam Horowitz, Alex Kane and Jim Lobe in recent years have provided much more valuable research into the operations of the Israel lobby (and American Mideast policy in general) than Noam Chomsky -- their analysis is grounded in the real world -- it is highly specific -- they connect many dots. Chomsky is flying on fumes.

      How often has Chomsky even mentioned in passing AIPAC, the Conference of Presidents, JINSA, RJC, NJDC, PNAC, ZOA, the neoconservatives, etc.?

  • 'Survival and well-being of the Jewish state' is a national security interest of U.S., Indyk says
    • Pat Nguyen,

      Regarding the three points here:

      link to mondoweiss.net

      Any response?

    • Pat Nguyen,

      @Just, how about you stop telling Jews what to do

      Pat,

      1. Most people probably assume from your handle that you are Vietnamese -- which may well be wrong. Can you clarify where you are coming from on Mideast issues in terms of religion, ethnicity and nation of citizenship?

      2. With regard to your request -- "stop telling Jews what to do" -- does that work in reverse? Should Jewish organizations (like AIPAC and the Conference of Presidents) stop telling Christians, Americans, Europeans, Arabs, Muslims and other groups what to do?

      3. Who, currently, are your favorite experts on Mideast and Israeli politics? Who do you recommend that we read?

      If this thread is closed, you can pursue this discussion here:

      link to friendfeed.com

    • Martin Indyk is all about Israel and nothing but Israel -- in other words, he is passionately preoccupied with his narrow ethnic and ethnic nationalist self-interest. Such an inspiring figure for us all. One gets the impression that he couldn't care less about the American interest or the concerns of most Americans.

      Indyk and Dennis Ross have succeeded for many years now in obstructing or sabotaging American efforts to engineer a peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians -- under the false guise of a pro-peace, pro-two state agenda.

      Stephen Walt on Indyk: "Appointing Indyk as IP mediator is like hiring (Bernie) Madoff to run your pension. He had 8 years to do a deal in 90s and failed.”

      Indyk, who is a leading member of the Israel lobby, smeared Stephen Walt and John Mearsheimer as antisemites for even daring to mention the existence of the lobby. It is easy to predict that attacks by Jewish Zionists on non-Jewish Americans and Europeans over Israeli issues will backfire badly over the long run -- they are creating many enemies.

  • Autopsy report shows Mohammed Abu Khdeir was burned to death; reports spread of other possible abductions
    • Phil,

      I think it is important to approve comments of this nature because they are incredibly revealing of the mindset that is driving some Israelis and pro-Israel activists -- many of them, in fact. One can find literally thousands of similar comments (or worse) expressed in the comment sections of many leading Israeli and American publications.

      One needs to pay very close attention to these comments indeed -- and understand their implications for the future of Israeli and American Mideast policies.

      We all know the endgame here -- outright genocide.

      Here is a recent example from the comment section of the highly respectable "The Hill," in response to "State Dept. demands investigation into reports of teen's beating in Israel" link to thehill.com

      "go to he11 you loser phaggot. time for the jews to go thermonuclear on the rag heads like you"

      This is often the norm in "pro-Israel" discourse on the Internet -- not an aberration. Someone should take the trouble to collect all the comments in this vein on a single browsable and searchable website.

  • Chomsky supports portions of BDS agenda, but faults others, citing realism and int'l consensus
    • DeBakr,

      Just trying to get a handle on why the chmsky hate here when he’s already pretty well despised by center-right Israelis and for sure is hated by religious fanatics. Why doesnt the “my enemies enemy is friend clause apply here?

      Quite a few people mistrust Noam Chomsky at this point because he falls into the by now well-established pattern of liberal and progressive Zionists playing the role of de facto stonewallers for Likud Zionism and Greater Israelism. Liberal Zionists express pretty sentiments about universal human rights while obstructing the application of any effective pressure on the Israeli government to change its policies.

      Noam Chomsky and Norman Finkelstein are basically in the same camp as Dennis Ross and Shimon Peres -- all pretty talk, no effective action. Don't listen to their words, watch their actions and pay close attention to the trajectory of Israeli policies in the real world, which are moving towards the realization of Greater Israel, step by inexorable step.

      Chomsky has been especially evasive and devious about handling the issue of the Israel lobby in American politics -- and especially the role of the Jewish lobby within the Israeli lobby. Clearly that subject agitates him and he would prefer not to talk about it -- for reasons that he knows best and about which we are free to speculate.

      Without effectively countering the power of the Israel lobby in American politics, how will it ever be possible for the United States to pressure the Israeli government to stop building new settlements in the occupied territories and to arrive at a fair and equitable peace agreement with the Palestinians? But Chomsky has consistently downplayed the influence of that lobby -- whenever the issue comes up, he tries to distract his audience by speaking in vague generalities about the evils of American imperialism.

      I can easily think of a few dozen thinkers and writers who are much more credible and impressive on Mideast and Israeli politics than Noam Chomsky -- including Stephen Walt, John Mearsheimer, Jeffrey Blankfort, Paul Pillar and Stephen Sniegoski. I find the blind admiration of Keith and Hostage for Chomsky to be baffling. He hasn't been a meaningful voice in the great Mideast debates for quite a few years now.

    • libra,

      I am looking forward to Hostage's defense of this Noam Chomsky article. :) Meanwhile I am commenting on it here:

      link to friendfeed.com

      One remark: Many liberal and progressive Zionists complain about Israeli policies but go to extraordinary lengths to obstruct any actions to change those policies -- that is how this game is being played. Make ineffectual progressive sounds while the settlements continue to expand.

  • Jeffrey Goldberg leads the charge on latest BDS smear: Presbyterian Church divestment is anti-Semitic because David Duke supports it
    • Annie,

      I am assuming that you have no investment in Hillary Clinton? She is appalling on foreign policy. Bill Maher just described her as John McCain in drag. Glenn Greenwald astutely remarked:

      Hillary is banal, corrupted, drained of vibrancy and passion. I mean, she’s been around forever, the Clinton circle. She’s a fucking hawk and like a neocon, practically. She’s surrounded by all these sleazy money types who are just corrupting everything everywhere.

      She is, in fact, basically a neocon and an AIPAC/Goldman Sachs tool. She is a less appealing candidate now than she was in 2008, and she lost the nomination in 2008.

      Pointing out that many white nationalists like David Duke are less extreme in their views and language than mainstream Jewish nationalists is a powerful line of argument to develop with regard to the ongoing debates about Israel and Zionism. Think about it.

      Noting that ethnic nationalism (European "Zionism") is on the rise in contemporary Europe may help persuade the Jewish establishment to become more energetic in defending universalist values -- especially with regard to voicing its opposition to bad Israeli policies.

    • Citizen,

      David Duke’s philosophy seems very similar to Zionist philosophy to me. Just substitute Jewish for White Christian. Anybody else see this?

      The resemblance is as clear as day -- all ethnic and religious nationalist ideologies tend to look alike.

      The difference here is that David Duke's language and beliefs are more moderate and temperate than many Jewish nationalists -- including many Israeli leaders and American pro-Israel activists -- and his agenda isn't organized around the interests of a foreign government.

      Zionists have lost the moral high ground and intellectual leverage to object to aggressive nationalism as expressed by other ethnic and religious groups, which can simply reply, we are doing exactly what you are doing -- pursuing our narrow collective self-interest. Certainly European ethnic and religious nationalist groups will take this line -- we are following the Israeli model.

      I am surprised that more critics of Israel haven't noticed this opening for discussion and debate -- you could drive a Mack Truck through it.

      If this thread is closed soon, this discussion can be pursued here:

      link to friendfeed.com

    • Naftush,

      On what grounds can you define Jewish ethnic and religious nationalism as legitimate and the ethnic and religious nationalisms of all other groups around the world as illegitimate? Do Jewish nationalists enjoy special privileges in this domain that should be denied to other groups?

      Why should the Jewish nationalism of Richard Perle, Michael Ledeen, William Kristol or Jeffrey Goldberg be granted more legitimacy than the ethnic and religious nationalism of other peoples?

      There are no reasonable answers to these questions -- just emotional appeals -- many of them based on biblical fairy tales -- that on close inspection break down and reveal their essential illogic and absurdity.

      The ethnic and religious nationalism of the mainstream Jewish establishment in contemporary America (not to mention among the Israeli leadership) is far more aggressive and supportive of violence than the white nationalism of David Duke or Kevin MacDonald. (And to be perfectly clear, I oppose all forms of ethnic and religious nationalism -- I think they invariably lead to huge social problems of the very kind that Israel is now facing.)

      Either "Zionism" is good for everyone or it is good for no one.

    • The Jewish nationalism of Jeffrey Goldberg (a former Kahanist) -- and that of all Zionists (including Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu) -- is at least as problematic as the white nationalism of David Duke -- and usually much more so. Consider the human rights violations and acts of violence that Jewish nationalists are committing on a daily basis -- not to mention the extremism of their often religion-driven and supremacist rhetoric.

      It is really a great mistake for pro-Israel activists like Goldberg to bring the names of white nationalists (call them white Zionists, if you will) into the debate. The obvious line of counterattack: why should Jewish ethno-religious nationalism enjoy greater legitimacy than any other ethnic or religious nationalist movement anywhere in the world? They have no effective comeback. This is why the complaints by pro-Israel activists about the rising tide of ethnic nationalism in contemporary Europe sound so hollow and absurd.

  • Oldman says Hollywood is 'run by Jews,' then offers over-the-top apology
  • Fear of anti-semitism accusation did not stop Presbyterians from witnessing occupation
    • Opponents of the divestment proposal wore t-shirts bearing the slogan: “Love us, don’t leave us!”

      Why do so many Jewish Zionists demand lavish expressions of "love," devotion and adoration from the rest of the world? One sees this pattern pop up all the time in Zionist rhetoric.

      It is not enough for them for others to express support for Israel -- one must express that support with hot passion and weepy sentimentality.

      Sometimes it almost seems like they are insisting upon being worshipped -- as if they collectively constituted the mystical body of God Himself. One would not be surprised to learn that some religious Zionists do in fact subscribe to this belief literally.

      For most us, of course, these emotional demands are incredibly suffocating and alienating -- and we would consider it indecent to make such demands on others. Most of us are quite satisfied with giving one another enough space to go quietly about our business. We don't need the melodrama.

      So: what are the psychological and cultural factors driving this behavior?

  • Neoconservatism is 'vindicated' in fawning 'NYT' piece on power couple of Kagan and Kristol
    • traintosiberia,

      With lists, one can explore the deepest and darkest recesses of any aspect of the world with surgical precision. (For "Illuminati" only. Keith Alexander gets it.)

      You should also mention the Podhoretz family.

    • LeaNder,

      Well, no doubt the NYT mirrors the larger US West coast Power Elite's outlook, not just on Israel.

      What is "the larger US West coast Power Elite"? I can't parse that phrase or concept.

      The attitude of the New York Times on Israeli issues appears to be very much proactive and emotional -- not dictated by any outside powers. This is an in-shop culture.

    • Mooser:

      Mondoweiss on the New York Times:

      [Google; site:mondoweiss.net intitle:"new york times" link to google.com:"new+york+times"]

      -- nearly 50 articles with "New York Times" in the title.

      (This site doesn't seem to be able to parse that legal Google search URL.)

    • Mooser,

      Hold up there, Tokyobk!! How can we answer that question before we answer the question "what makes Jewish "Jewish"? Once we answer that, we can tell if the NYTs is "Jewish".

      The leading Jewish organizations in the United States -- self-identified as Jewish and relentlessly preoccupied with Jewish issues -- are gathered together under the umbrella of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. Their collected public statements offer some insight into what "Jewishness" means in the minds of Jewish establishment leaders. Deciphering their statements is not rocket science.

      What is their core message? -- Jewishness is synonymous with a passionate attachment to Israel and Zionism (Jewish ethno-religious nationalism). Of course some Jews disagree -- but they are not controlling the public conversation on this issue at media outlets like the New York Times and Washington Post.

      Christopher Vecsey recently wrote a book on Jewish issues at the New York Times:

      [book; author=Christopher Vecsey; title=Jews and Judaism in The New York Times; date=2013; publisher=Lexington Books; Amazon=http://www.amazon.com/Jews-Judaism-The-York-Times/dp/0739184695]

      I may even get around to reading it. But I am already intimately familiar with the treatment of Israeli issues at the New York Times. Mondoweiss has covered the subject in depth over the years. That treatment is highly biased and clearly motivated by a great deal of emotion.

    • tokyobk,

      That was a measured and reasonable comment, as are most of your comments.

      With regard to the "Jewishness" of the Sulzbergers (and the New York Times), four points:

      1. Many secular (even atheistic) Jews have been militantly pro-Jewish and pro-Zionist on purely ethnic grounds, not explicitly religious grounds -- David Ben-Gurion is a leading example.

      2. The fact that the Sulzbergers keep hiring Revisionist/Likud Zionists and Jewish neoconservatives to hold forth on the op-ed page of the New York Times indicates that at least a few influential Sulzbergers are passionate about Israel and Jewish nationalism. It would be interesting to know more about who they are and how they operate behind the scenes.

      3. The New York Times has also published quite a few articles that have been critical of Israel and Likud Zionism (by Anthony Lewis, Thomas Friedman and others) -- but that is part of an intense debate that is going on "within the family," so to speak -- Jews arguing with Jews over Jewish issues. But the problem with this is that Mideast politics (including Israeli politics) is an issue that powerfully impacts all Americans -- we all need to participate in the debate.

      4. Compared to the Washington Post and Fox News, the New York Times is relatively enlightened on these issues -- but not nearly enlightened enough.

    • tokyobk,

      Nothing in my comment remotely implied that neoconservatives represent all Jews or are quintessentially Jewish. For instance, the fact that Likud or JINSA (the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs) are Jewish organizations doesn't in any way suggest that all Jews support them -- most of them don't.

      But it is also a fact that many neoconservatives *claim* to speak for "the Jews" and "the Jewish people" -- all of them.

      You need to find some talking points with teeth.

      You wrote:

      If you want to say Neoconservatism is a “Jewish movement” because Jews helped create its ideology, well ok...

      They did more than help create its ideology -- Jews with a pro-Likud agenda have dominated the neoconservative movement from its inception to the present day. Simply review the back pages of Commentary to study the details.

      Btw, if anyone wants to pursue threads that are closed on Mondoweiss, feel free to do it here:

      link to friendfeed.com

      They all remain permanently open. Comments are posted instantly.

    • tokyobk,

      The New York Times is owned by a Jewish family (the Sulzbergers), has heavily promoted Jewish nationalism (Israel and Zionism) in recent decades, has prominently featured Jewish neoconservatives and neoliberals (crypto-neocons) on its op-ed page, played a key role in pushing the United States into the Iraq War (under neocon prodding and by means of deception), and just published this inane article by Jason Horowitz, which provides Robert Kagan an opportunity to whitewash the crimes of the neocons, while trying to goad Americans into yet another disastrous Mideast war.

      Do you have a problem with the accuracy of any of the above statements? And are you trying to imply (quite crudely) that there is something antisemitic about noting the obvious?

      Some of the neocons and neolibs who have been provided major platforms at New York Times in recent decades: A.M. Rosenthal, David Brooks, Judith Miller, Thomas Friedman, William Kristol and William Safire.

      I can't recall members of any other ethnic or religious nationalist groups or movements being given significant space at the Times -- can you? What we've got here is not just a pattern, but a pattern that is rather shouting at one, don't you think?

      The immediate question: who at the Times made the decision to publish the Horowitz article on Kagan and why? Perhaps that is a question you would prefer not be asked. Which would raise yet another question: why does this topic ruffle your feathers?

    • Walker,

      Other than the fact that Robert Kagan is Jewish, Jason Horowitz is Jewish, David Brooks is Jewish, William Kristol is Jewish, neoconservatism is predominantly a Jewish movement, the New York Times is a Jewish newspaper, etc., it would be unfair and impolite to notice a Jewish angle on the publication of this perfectly ludicrous article in a newspaper which played a leading role in pushing the United States into the Iraq War -- a policy from which only Israel has benefited.

  • Fearing divestment from Israel, Jewish orgs oppose divestment to halt global warming
    • Reducing politics to the narrow pursuit of tribal self-interest is guaranteed to alienate most tribal outsiders. Most of us try to rise to a higher plane in thinking about the world's problems.

  • The NYT and the NSA: Abramson and Baquet have different journalistic values
    • broadside,

      Yes, dark days ahead. I give Baquet less time on the job than Abramson got. I believe within a year reporters will be deserting that ship like an Italian captain from a sinking cruise liner.

      The New York Times is dead in the water and sinking fast -- largely due to terrible management by neocon incompetent Arthur Sulzberger Jr. and his closest associates. Arthur Jr. has done as much damage to the Sulzberger brand as George W. has done to the Bush brand -- the perils of nepotism.

      Few people will miss the New York Times -- it has been drifting into irrelevance for nearly two decades now. It is difficult to remember the era in which it was once considered by many to be the greatest newspaper in the world.

      The current PBS Frontline documentary "United States of Secrets" paints a sad portrait of the paper -- and especially of Bill Keller.

  • Rothkopf's jailbreak from the Zionist captivity is sure to embolden others
    • Philip Munger,

      Where did lisa pop in from?

      According to Google, lisa Bandrea has posted dozens of comments on Mondoweiss since at least 2012, but most of them are no longer in the Mondoweiss archives.

    • Michael Oren tries to put a rational, moderate and civil face on Zionism but the world has easy access to what is really going in Israel and the Zionist world from many sources that paint the real picture, for instance:

      1. Algemeiner
      2. Commentary
      3. Failed Messiah
      4. Forward
      5. Frontpage Magazine
      6. Haaretz
      7. Israel National News
      8. Jerusalem Post
      9. Jewish Press
      10. Times of Israel
      11. WorldNetDaily
      12. Ynet News

      There is little doubt that we are looking here at a messianic ethno-religious nationalist cult that is veering into extreme xenophobia. And it is a safe prediction that many Diaspora Jews like David Rothkopf are going to be headed for the exits.

  • Jewish neocons and the romance of nationalist armageddon
    • irishmoses,

      Please note, my criticism is directed neither at all Jews in general, Jews in the US, nor or all Israeli Jews. It is directed at a particular subset of Zionists who support Likud policies, and their supporters, many of whom are not Jews.

      What about the role of *liberal Zionists*, like Hillary Clinton, in supporting and promoting the Iraq War? Clinton still hasn't offered an apology for helping to drive the United States in a multi-trillion dollar foreign policy disaster -- and she has threatened to "totally obliterate" Iran.

      What about Harry Reid's lavish praise of Sheldon Adelson?

      "Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has for some time billed the Koch brothers as public enemy No.1 .

      But billionaire Republican donor Sheldon Adelson? He’s just fine, Reid says.

      “I know Sheldon Adelson. He’s not in this for money,” the Nevada Democrat said of Adelson, the Vegas casino magnate who reportedly spent close to $150 million to support Republicans in the 2012 presidential election."

      link to politico.com

      Are there really any meaningful distinctions between neoconservatives in the Republican Party and liberal Zionists in the Democratic Party?

  • Mourning the age of Netanyahu
    • yonah fredman,

      This is the main point: on what grounds can Jewish nationalists (Zionists, Jewish supporters of Israel) object to every other group in the world from pursuing its ethno-religious nationalist interests?

      How does one reconcile liberalism (in the broadest sense) with Zionism? The truth is, they can't be reconciled.

      Benjamin Netanyahu worrying about demographic threats to Jews in Israel is precisely like white Christians worrying about demographic threats to their interests in the United States and Europe.

      What is the difference between Benjamin Netanyahu and Avigdor Lieberman on the one hand and David Duke and Patrick Buchanan on the other? This is why "liberal Zionists" now find themselves caught in a terrible ideological bind. Something will have to give.

      Your thoughts?

  • Palestinians remain marginalized at the New York Times
    • Krauss,

      The NYT is still the greatest newspaper in the world, or at least the best Western newspaper.

      This was true until the Internet and the World Wide Web came along. Now the New York Times is just one of a zillion websites -- and it hasn't been particularly interesting for at least a decade. Thought leaders don't hang out there. The general tone is one of mumbling mediocrity. Some of the science and tech articles are ok but one can find much better coverage of these topics on dedicated science and tech sites.

      As for the Washington Post: it is difficult to believe that this was once an influential publication and not a joke. Jennifer Rubin? Charles Krauthammer? Jackson Diehl? Fred Hiatt? When is the last time it broke an important story?

      Both newspapers are neocon propaganda outlets, with all that implies -- and they are still living with the damaging repercussions of having backed the Iraq War with all their might.

      A single individual (and a blogger, essentially) -- Glenn Greenwald -- has recently had more impact on the public conversation where it counts than these two declining corporate behemoths.

  • Who will be the last neoconservative?
    • yonah fredman,

      I don’t consider my politics the beginning or the end of my consciousness.

      Are there any political issues you care more about than or as much as Jewish nationalism (Israel and Zionism)?

      I am not a white, Christian, Anglo, Irish or European nationalist. Some political issues I care about: overpopulation, the environment, pollution, global warming, climate change, alternative energy technologies, radical wealth inequality, Wall Street corruption, impacts of artificial intelligence and robotics on the workplace, genetic engineering.

      I have been drawn into the great Mideast debates because I noticed that ancient ethnic and religious feuds in that region based on biblical myths could draw in the United States and trigger a global catastrophe.

    • yonah fredman,

      Since you have organized your politics around ethnic and religious nationalism, and around your own narrow ethnic self-interest, it's difficult to believe that you actually care much about Syrians, Ukrainians or any other ethnic outgroup.

      Ethnic nationalists tend to view ethnic outsiders as enemies or temporary tools to be used and discarded -- as pawns on the grand chessboard.

      Regarding the mess in Ukraine: that is yet another failed neoconservative project -- just like the Iraq War. There is little that we can do about it now -- the mistake was in provoking Russia to defend its vital interests in the region.

    • libra,

      Indeed it does and who’s the leading medddler? Why, none other than Ms. Victoria Nuland. Or perhaps more pertinently in this context Mrs. Robert Kagan. A fact Phil overlooked in his eagerness to tell us “People in D.C. don’t want to hear from neoconservatives.”

      Neocons: aggressive and power-hungry bullies who miscalculate every situation, who ruin everything they touch and who never accept responsibility for their disastrous policy failures.

      It has become a matter of urgent necessity to drive them out of the US government, both major political parties and the mainstream media before they do any more damage.

      They appear to have been the prime movers behind current dangerous developments in Ukraine, which could easily escalate into a world war.

    • biorabbi,

      The last neoconservative found standing will be carefully catalogued.

      His religion will be duly noted if it is of the Mosaic derivation.
      His fealty to Israel will be noted.
      His loyalty to the United States will be made suspect.
      His shifting, pernicious nature will be explored.

      Is that about right?

      Most of the leading neoconservatives have been Jewish nationalists and Likud Zionists with a passionate attachment to Israel (Greater Israel, more specifically). Think Norman Podhoretz, Irving Kristol, Douglas Feith, Elliott Abrams, Richard Perle, Michael Ledeen, Daniel Pipes, William Kristol, David Frum, etc.

      Do you really think you will succeed in covering up these conspicuous and irrefutable facts with the antisemitism smear? Be prepared to be justly ridiculed if you go down that path.

      Leading neocons have left a long and rich documentary trail behind themselves for decades in publications like Commentary. They have always been given to making grand pronouncements about "the Jews" and "the Jewish people" while mixing together Judaism with Zionism.

      Neoconservatism from its very start was an Israel-centric (Greater Israel-centric) political movement -- in truth a Jewish ethno-religious nationalist political movement. Deal with it. Please do not insult our intelligence.

    • It would be nice to think that neoconservative beliefs are disappearing from the American scene, but I would keep an eagle eye on statements made by members of the following neocon outfits over the coming months to be certain:

      # neoconservative organizations
      1. AEI (American Enterprise Institute)
      2. American Thinker
      3. Commentary
      4. CSP (Center for Security Policy)
      5. David Horowitz Freedom Center
      6. ECI (Emergency Committee for Israel)
      7. FDD (Foundation for the Defense of Democracies)
      8. Federalist Society
      9. Fox News
      10. FPI (Foreign Policy Initiative)
      11. Frontpage Magazine
      12. Gatestone Institute
      13. Henry Jackson Society
      14. Heritage Foundation
      15. Hoover Institution
      16. Hudson Institute
      17. JINSA (Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs)
      18. Manhattan Institute
      19. Middle East Forum
      20. National Review
      21. NED (National Endowment for Democracy)
      22. Newsmax
      23. RJC (Republican Jewish Coalition)
      24. UANI (United Against Nuclear Iran)
      25. Wall Street Journal
      26. Washington Post
      27. Weekly Standard
      28. WorldNetDaily
      29. ZOA (Zionist Organization of America)

      Probably the most influential and potentially dangerous neocon on the current scene is a Democrat: Hillary Clinton. Many people believe she will be the next president. (And make no mistake: she, like quite a few leading Democrats, has been consistently pushing forward the neocon agenda with its aggressive militarism up and down the line, with no apologies.)

      Increasingly the Benghazi controversy appears to be opening a window on yet more neocon projects, including covert ops directed at Libya and Syria -- pure Clean Break stuff. Our current meddling in Ukraine reeks of neoconservatism.

  • Boycott on the horizon if Starbucks buys stake in SodaStream
    • JeffB,

      Comments got closed but I’ll respond to part of the old comment:

      Feel free to pursue discussions that have been closed on Mondoweiss here:

      [Mondoweiss on Friendfeed link to friendfeed.com ]

      It's always wide open. Some conversations never end.

    • libra,

      Bottom line Sean, if you end up on the same page as JeffB you need to up your game in the thinking department and, depending on what you are trying to prove here, maybe the moral department as well.

      I always take care in political analysis to strictly separate what, based on my values, I want to happen from what, based on objective reality, I think will actually happen. Those are two separate tracks, and it would be a mistake to confuse them.

      I don't get the sense that Palestinians have a strong base of political support anywhere in the world -- and that is why Israel continues to get away with pushing them around and abusing their human and civil rights. I strongly oppose those policies but I doubt that you have any practical political program for changing this historical dynamic.

      BDS might move the needle a bit -- but I continue to wonder about how much support BDS will acquire in the United States and Europe.

      I strongly opposed the Iraq War, but I knew it was going to happen no matter what I did. The forces pressing it forward at the time were much stronger than the forces opposing it.

    • Annie,

      Thanks to you and Feathers for providing a few more suggestions. My revised list of brands that might possibly be legitimate to avoid if one strongly disagrees with the expansionist and discriminatory policies of the current Israeli government:

      1. Ahava
      2. Bed Bath and Beyond
      3. Ben & Jerry's
      4. Body Shop
      5. Estee Lauder
      6. Giant Eagle
      7. HP (Hewlett-Packard)
      8. New York Times
      9. Sabra
      10. Sara Lee
      11. Scarlett Johansson
      12. SodaStream
      13. Starbucks
      14. Target
      15. Tribe
      16. Victoria's Secret
      17. Washington Post

      Most of us are of course in no position to boycott large defense contractors like Elbit Systems or Northrop Grumman.

      If Walid is correct -- and he seems to understand the Arab world quite well -- I am skeptical that BDS will go mainstream in American and European society when the Arab world itself seems to care so little these days about the plight of the Palestinians. If fact, Arab powers may be moving into a political alliance of convenience with Israel in opposition to Iran. The future of the Palestinians may be more bleak than its past.

    • jon s,

      I don't have any interest in boycotting companies simply because they do business with Israel. If BDS moves ahead, it should should focus on those businesses that are most involved in supporting, enabling or exploiting the occupation. Use a laser beam focus. And back off as soon as Israel modifies its policies.

      BDS is a kind of brushback pitch -- not an attempt to throw a beanball.

    • Feathers,

      I am still curious:

      What are the most popular products at the most popular supermarket chains in the United States that are most worthy of being boycotted?

      I have seen Ben & Jerry's, Dorot, Nestlé, Sabra, Sara Lee, Starbucks and Tribe mentioned, but I am not confident that I have this issue sorted out factually and fairly.

      Boycotting Scarlett Johansson movies seems like a clear-cut issue -- she went out of her way to associate her brand with the settlements movement.

    • Walid,

      Sean, until the Arabs decide to wholeheartedly endorse BDS, it will continue being not much more than a thorn in its backside. They are actually going in the opposite direction....

      Thanks for the background info on Starbucks in your other comment.

      With regard to the participation of Arab nations in BDS -- you seem to be saying that it is weak and declining.

      Would it be reasonable to predict that Americans and Europeans are not likely to be more strongly committed to Palestinian human rights than Arab nations and the worldwide Arab community?

      And has Israel already succeeded in substantially crushing its Arab opposition in its own neighborhood?

    • Annie,

      if that’s your opinion why do you do it?

      I think Mideast politics and Israeli policies are having an outsize negative impact on the world and on my country (the United States). I think that American foreign policy in this area, which has been largely dictated by the Israel lobby, has been mistaken. I enter into discussions on this topic in part to try to persuade others to my outlook, but even more to try to better understand the situation from a 360 view by engaging with those who disagree with me and listening to them.

      With regard to actually impacting policy, BDS, if it were taken seriously by enough people worldwide, would probably exert much more influence than writing comments. But comment-writing is not without impact (I am thinking of the trend of comment sentiment at the New York Times and Washington Post -- and of Mondoweiss's impact on the discussion).

      If Mondoweiss commenters aren't meaningfully engaged with BDS, certainly most average Americans and Europeans won't be.

      I am still trying to get a sense of how real this BDS thing is -- is there a powerful grassroots push behind it that will continue to grow? Or will it quickly sputter out? This will in part depend on future Israeli moves and policies.

    • Woody Tanaka,

      I refuse to buy any product that is labeled Made in Israel.

      What are the most popular brands and products in leading American stores that are made in Israel?

      Which American companies are most involved in supporting Israel and what are their most prominent consumer products?

      It's easy to understand why some people might choose to boycott Scarlett Johansson films -- she aggressively placed herself right at the center of this controversy.

      What about Ben & Jerry's ice cream? Are there good reasons for it to be on the boycott list?

      I have mixed feelings about BDS, but the Israeli government keeps building new settlements in defiance of the United States, Europe and the international community. How is it possible to get the attention of Israel without BDS?

      Certainly writing comments on websites like Mondoweiss, Informed Comment and the New York Times has had no effect whatever.

    • Dutch,

      In the Netherlands: Permanent action against Veolia, G4S and Mehadrin. Ad hoc action against supermarkets and products.

      Thanks for responding.

      So far I haven't been able to elicit any response on Mondoweiss from Americans who are boycotting specific brands, products or vendors or who are discussing this topic in a practical way.

      Is this thing really happening on a scale that impacts corporate bottom lines or is it more a generalized talking point in political debates about Israel?

    • What brands, products and vendors are Mondoweiss writers and commenters currently boycotting?

  • Apartheid label will stick
    • Hostage,

      I still wish that you would set up a wiki which organizes your rich collection of documents and makes them browsable and searchable.

      Such a website would provide many advantages over a random stream of comments -- although your comments are very valuable -- I am a great believer in the power of dialectic.

  • NBA owner Sterling reportedly sought to justify his racism by citing Israeli racism
    • Ecru,

      Actually Hoppy doesn’t even have to go to that much work – all he has to do is look at his own comment history here, especially as regards Europeans.

      People who define their cultural identity in terms of perpetual conflict with ethnic outsiders will be perpetually trapped in conflict with ethnic outsiders -- it's an endless self-reinforcing feedback loop.

      Complaining about the negative social consequences of self-created ideological models seems odd -- if the model isn't working, discard it.

    • hophmi,

      ROTFLMAO. A fantastic description of how people react here when their views are challenged. You are truly blind, Sean.

      Your posts often remind of those of M.J. Rosenberg in tone and language: emotional, abusive, illogical, etc. Perhaps the two of you should team up. I don't think either of you are helping your cause.

      I do sometimes see abusive language from critics of Israel here. I don't like it. I've complained about it in the past. I don't think it helps to move forward a useful discussion about Israel that might lead to positive breakthroughs in mutual understanding and a good outcome for Israel and the Palestinians.

    • hophmi,

      These are the two money quotes I took away from Einstein's Collier's article on German antisemitism:

      1. The formation of groups has an invigorating effect in all spheres of human striving, perhaps mostly due to the struggle between the convictions and aims represented by the different groups. The Jews, too, form such a group with a definite character of its own, and anti-Semitism is nothing but the antagonistic attitude produced in the non-Jews by the Jewish group. This is a normal social reaction.

      2. Perhaps even more than on its own tradition, the Jewish group has thrived on oppression and on the antagonism it has forever met in the world. Here undoubtedly lies one of the main reasons for its continued existence through so many thousands years.

      link to filosofiaesoterica.com

      How do you interpret them?

      Phrases of interest:

      1. "nothing but"
      2. "normal social reaction"
      3. "thrived on oppression"

      I was hoping that Simon Schama would address these questions in his recent PBS series, but he didn't.

      I never saw your response to this other post:

      Einstein in a New York Times letter (1948) expressed his views on the Zionist faction which currently rules Israel (Likud):

      Among the most disturbing political phenomena of our times is the emergence in the newly created state of Israel of the "Freedom Party" (Tnuat Haherut), a political party closely akin in its organization, methods, political philosophy and social appeal to the Nazi and Fascist parties. It was formed out of the membership and following of the former Irgun Zvai Leumi, a terrorist, right-wing, chauvinist organization in Palestine.

      The current visit of Menachem Begin, leader of this party, to the United States is obviously calculated to give the impression of American support for his party in the coming Israeli elections, and to cement political ties with conservative Zionist elements in the United States. Several Americans of national repute have lent their names to welcome his visit. It is inconceivable that those who oppose fascism throughout the world, if correctly informed as to Mr. Begin's political record and perspectives, could add their names and support to the movement he represents.

      Before irreparable damage is done by way of financial contributions, public manifestations in Begin's behalf, and the creation in Palestine of the impression that a large segment of America supports Fascist elements in Israel, the American public must be informed as to the record and objectives of Mr. Begin and his movement.

      The public avowals of Begin's party are no guide whatever to its actual character. Today they speak of freedom, democracy and anti-imperialism, whereas until recently they openly preached the doctrine of the Fascist state. It is in its actions that the terrorist party betrays its real character; from its past actions we can judge what it may be expected to do in the future.

      ...

      Within the Jewish community they have preached an admixture of ultranationalism, religious mysticism, and racial superiority. Like other Fascist parties they have been used to break strikes, and have themselves pressed for the destruction of free trade unions. In their stead they have proposed corporate unions on the Italian Fascist model.

      During the last years of sporadic anti-British violence, the IZL and Stern groups inaugurated a reign of terror in the Palestine Jewish community. Teachers were beaten up for speaking against them, adults were shot for not letting their children join them. By gangster methods, beatings, window-smashing, and wide-spread robberies, the terrorists intimidated the population and exacted a heavy tribute.

      link to archive.org

      Note carefully the language used and the charges lodged: Nazi, Fascist, ultranationalism, religious mysticism, racial superiority, terrorism, gangster methods, etc.

      Do you agree or disagree with Eintein, Arendt, Hook and company?

      With regard to the main point in this thread -- that the Passover ceremony expresses an ideological vision of perpetual conflict between "the chosen nation" (Israel, the Jewish people) and "the nations" (all other nations and peoples) -- a historical pattern extending over millennia which Simon Schama documents in The Story of the Jews -- there has been no rebuttal. That is the easily demonstrable truth.

      And this xenophobic attitude towards "the nations" has been rife in many thousands of comments made by pro-Israel activists over the last few decades -- simply consult, for instance, the pages of leading Israeli publications for the evidence.

    • (No Reply button available.)

      Annie,

      I specifically had in mind this kind of situation: the Jewish neoconservatives who played a key role in pushing America into the Iraq War had written openly and at length about their Jewish nationalist, pro-Israel and Likud Zionist agenda in Jewish publications for years before the war. When people pointed out that these warmongers were in fact Jewish nationalists and Likud Zionists, and that their ethnic and/or religious nationalist beliefs strongly motivated their violent aggression towards Iraq, they were often accused of "antisemitism" and "Jew-hatred" for merely pointing out that they were who they were and who they had proudly proclaimed themselves to be. Alice in Wonderland.

      Joe Klein broke the taboo on that particular bit of nonsense by pointing out that Jewish neoconservatives are in fact Jewish neoconservatives with a passionate attachment to Israel. They didn't deserve a pass on their politics merely because they were Jews.

      Mainstream Jewish publications cover the pro-Israel lobbying of American and European Jews in considerable depth -- names are named and activities are chronicled. The facts are out there. They can be discussed in a reasonable way among reasonable people in mainstream American politics.

    • German Lefty,

      Memo to MJR: Sterling doesn’t need to be linked to the Jews. He happens to be a Jew. Also, Sterling uses Israel’s racism against blacks to justify his own racism against blacks. This makes it clear that he’s a Zionist.
      MJR also writes: “It’s like bringing up the Catholic pedophile scandal when discussing Governor Christie.”
      No, it’s not. Unless Christie actually turned out to be a pedophile.

      One never sees M.J. Rosenberg engage in reasonable debate about Israeli issues because he doesn't do logic -- as you just demonstrated. And he is incredibly emotional and abusive towards his political opponents.

    • German Lefty,

      Any way, I grew up to believe that the mere mention of someone’s Jewishness is anti-Semitic. Now, imagine my surprise when I first visited Jewish websites, such as Tablet Magazine. I have NEVER seen the words “Jew” or “Jewish” THAT often. Looking at such websites made me feel VERY uneasy because this constant emphasis on people’s Jewishness totally reminded me of Nazi behaviour. There’s even a website called “Jewcy”. A pun about the word “Jew”. If any non-Jew did that, he would be immediately accused of anti-Semitism.

      More examples:

      1. Jewlicious
      2. Jewsnews
      3. JINSA (Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs)
      4. RJC (Republican Jewish Coalition)
      5. NJDC (National Jewish Democratic Council)
      6. JIDF (Jewish Internet Defense Force)

      And the level and intensity of "Jew-counting" at mainstream Jewish publications like Forward, JTA, Tablet, etc. is staggering.

      There is a great deal of confusion on this issue -- the rules for political correctness in this domain are byzantine -- Alice in Wonderland.

    • [Snoop Dogg goes off on Donald Sterling in Instagram video, calls him a redneck link to larrybrownsports.com ]

      Whoops -- wrong cultural group -- Donald Sterling isn't a redneck. You need a guidebook to sort out the varieties of racism.

  • Walter Benjamin's theory of fascism
    • Walter Benjamin's chief influences:

      1. Jewish messianism
      2. Kabbalah
      3. Marxism
      4. Zionism

      Benjamin was also an admirer of Leo Strauss, a key inspiration for neoconservatism.

      During the era in which Benjamin was a Marxist, Marxists in the Soviet Union had already committed crimes against humanity that rank among the very worst in human history.

  • Our eviction action at NYU created more dialogue than ever before
    • libra,

      Lists are precision tools for getting a handle on what is really going on in the world and identifying emergent strategic patterns. Essential elements of objective Big Data mining. They get you out of the realm of vague speculation and into a well-rounded view of particular and concrete facts.

      For instance, with regard to liberal Zionists, who are we really talking about?

      link to friendfeed.com

      Let me know if you have any additions to the list.

    • libra,

      Sean, far be it for me to critique your listing skills but I notice that Coca-Cola is at number 3.

      It was at position 3 because it was part of an alphabetical, not prioritized list. I am just beginning to learn about this domain -- trying to get it into focus.

      But that information you provided is precisely what I was looking for -- I didn't realize that PepsiCo was a major owner of Sabra.

      Here is the main question: are any Mondoweiss writers and commenters here boycotting any particular brands, products and vendors as part of BDS? Which ones in particular?

      How about you, libra? Have you changed your buying patterns over Israeli issues?

    • What leading everyday brands, products, vendors, etc. might individuals choose not to purchase or shop from as part of BDS? What is the best current list?

      What is the full rationale behind the campaign from the boycott (not divestment) standpoint?

      Would it be reasonable, for instance, to no longer make payments for Scarlett Johansson movies (at the theater, via streaming video, for DVDs)?

      Some names I've noticed mentioned:

      1. Ahava
      2. Body Shop
      3. Coca-Cola
      4. Dorot
      5. Estee Lauder
      6. HP (Hewlett-Packard)
      7. Intel
      8. L'Oreal
      9. McDonald's
      10. Motorola
      11. Nestle
      12. Pampers
      13. Sabra
      14. Sara Lee
      15. SodaStream
      16. Tribe
      17. Victoria's Secret
      18. Volvo

      Regarding the relentless flood of attacks by pro-Israel activists on many Americans and Europeans -- might that behavior not encourage many consumers to exercise their free choice not to purchase the brands and products on this list?

  • When the going gets tough, Roger Cohen gets going
    • Stephen Shenfield,

      In fact, the writing of articles like this, asserting the sustainability of the occupation, is a significant contribution to MAKING it sustainable, as people who are persuaded by this sort of sophistry will conclude that it is futile to resist the occupation and will therefore not resist it. In other words, this is self-fulfilling prophecy, disseminated quite deliberately in the interests of the Zionist right wing with a view to such self-fulfillment.

      Smart.

      It is difficult to believe that "liberal Zionist" Roger Cohen doesn't know exactly what he is doing.

      This is how the liberal Zionist game is played.

      For a list of some key liberal Zionist ops see: link to friendfeed.com

    • NormanF,

      Zionism on the other hand, is good. Jews deserve national self-determination....

      On what grounds does any people "deserve" to seize territory from another people by means of force, violence and terrorism?

      And on what grounds can it demand that other peoples support its territorial aggression?

      Does every ethnic and religious group get to play this game? Many of them are nursing a wide variety of legitimate historical grievances.

      Or is only one group "special"?

    • What Roger Cohen leaves out of his political calculations: the accumulated impact over decades of often abusive attacks by pro-Israel activists on Americans and Europeans. (The most recent high-value target: John Kerry.)

      My bet is that Israel, on its current path, will be facing a more serious problem with Americans and Europeans than with Arabs and Muslims. It might be a mistake for Roger Cohen to assume that billionaires like Sheldon Adelson and Haim Saban will be able to hold the American political system in thrall indefinitely. The Israel lobby may be the most self-destructive public relations machine in history.

    • Per usual, I scanned the Readers' Picks comments and discovered that most New York Times readers expressed thoughtful disagreements with Roger Cohen.

      The comment that got most directly and succinctly to the main point:

      What's economically sustainable is not always politically sustainable. Ask the South Africans.

      Regarding that data pattern I mentioned earlier -- Jewish critics of Israel on the left (both liberal and progressive) sliding to the right over time and rationalizing or enabling Likud Zionist policies: Roger Cohen is yet another datapoint.

      If you are a Zionist, you can't be just a little bit Zionist any more than you can be just a little bit pregnant -- you are in for the whole nine yards. Liberal Zionists really need to get their act together and stop pretending that they are "liberal."

  • Registration of Jews and other human beings
    • lysias,

      If the ADL is really behind the hoax, I wonder how that can be squared with Israel not supporting U.S. policy on Russia/Ukraine?

      On the other hand, the militantly pro-Israel neoconservatives have been ringleading the propaganda campaign against Russia, right?

      Who benefits from the hoax?

    • lysias,

      This story (the alleged role of the ADL in the Ukraine hoax) has been gaining major traction on Twitter. I am surprised that the ADL hasn't responded yet with a denial and a condemnation of Gordon Duff.

      No supporting documentation, to the best of my knowledge, has been produced to support the charge against the ADL. If this story about the hoax is itself a hoax, is it actionable?

      [Twitter; hoax ADL link to twitter.com ]

  • Snowden revealed a world of conspiracies I once would have scoffed at-- Bryan Burrough
    • I listened to the Terry Gross interview with Bryan Burrough when it first aired, while I was driving (that is when I usually listen to NPR -- in the car).

      I think Gross is a great interviewer, with a supple and sensitive intelligence and a wide range of interests that I share, but when she tried to press the theme that Snowden was motivated by "ego," my skin crawled. I don't think she has any comprehension of the qualities of mind and spirit that drive people like Snowden and Greenwald -- she is not in that league. But give her credit for doing this show.

      As for Bryan Burrough -- nice work, guy. You are beginning to grasp how the world really works beneath the steady stream of misleading and misinforming propaganda.

      Regarding Terry Gross's liberal Zionism -- sad, boring and provincial.

  • Bridgegate 2.0: Israeli tech students manipulate traffic patterns
    • Phil,

      Great post -- you are locking on to an issue of the highest strategic importance -- cyberwarfare -- which comprehends a wide range of activities, including Big Data mining.

      This little hack is just the tip of an immense iceberg, most of it invisible to the public. And the public can't even begin to wrap its mind around the details and significance of the Snowden/Greenwald data dump -- it's just a mysterious blur of strange acronyms.

      Israel, and Unit 8200, may well be the world's most innovative leader in developing these technologies.

      How many Mondoweiss commenters realize that the most minute and intimate details of their lives are an open book for several intel agencies that are monitoring Mondoweiss? Do they understand what can be done with that data?

  • Obama and Kerry are spurred by 'vainglory' in pursuing talks -- Finkelstein
    • JeffB,

      AIPAC is not a foreign lobby it is a bunch of Americans who like Israel.

      Do you mind me asking: with which Jewish and Israeli organizations have you been affiliated?

      Regarding the Israel lobby:

      One can turn up many hundreds of articles in the New York Times, the Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal over the last few decades in which Jewish Americans have been arguing for policies (usually pro-war policies) that have been originated and defined by the Israeli government.

      One finds very few (any?) articles by Irish Americans, German Americans, Swedish Americans, Japanese Americans, Egyptian Americans, etc. which have promoted policies that have been originated and defined by Ireland, Germany, Sweden, Japan, Egypt, etc.

      How do you explain this discrepancy? Isn't it obvious that the political activities of the American Jewish establishment are much more organized around the interests of a foreign government than the politics of all other major ethnic groups in American life?

      According to the ideology of Zionism (and often Judaism as well) all Jews worldwide are members of the Jewish "nation" -- a nation which stands separate and apart from "the nations." This situation may strike you as normal and unexceptional, but much of the rest of the world would beg to differ -- the situation is highly abnormal.

    • Hostage,

      How extensively would you guess that Mossad and its satellite organizations have infiltrated and acquired control over anti-Israel groups and networks in the United States by means of stealth, deception, coercion and other means?

      How high, in your opinion, would this project rank on the agenda of the Israeli government and the Israel lobby?

    • Hostage,

      To my remark:

      Would it be fair to describe Richard Perle, Douglas Feith, David Wurmser and Meyrav Wurmser as Jewish nationalists and Likud Zionists who have been operating inside the American government

      You replied:

      No, that would be hyperbole, since Meyrav Wurmser was not working inside the US government....

      Meyrav Wurmser's husband, David Wurmser, was Middle East adviser to Dick Cheney, which provided her with direct access to the highest levels of the American government -- and she ranks among the most important Jewish neoconservatives and Likud Zionists in American politics. See: [Wikipedia; Meyrav Wurmser link to en.wikipedia.org ]

      With regard to her influence in the Bush 43 administration, Right Web reported:

      In the June 2006 American Prospect, Robert Dreyfuss claimed that Wurmser was responsible for arranging a meeting between Syrian dissident Farid Ghadry and prominent officials in the Bush administration, including Elizabeth Cheney and John Hannah. Ghadry, a Virginia businessman and Syrian expatriate, is the founder and president of the Reform Party of Syria."

      link to rightweb.irc-online.org

      Regarding her overall profile:

      # Meyrav Wurmser: associations
      1. Ariel Center for Policy Research
      2. Benador Associates
      3. Benjamin Netanyahu
      4. Clarion Fund
      5. Clean Break: A New Strategy for Securing the Realm
      6. David Wurmser
      7. Dick Cheney
      8. Douglas Feith
      9. Eleana Benador
      10. EMET (Endowment for Middle East Truth)
      11. George Washington University
      12. Herut
      13. Hudson Institute
      14. Institute for Advanced Strategic and International Studies
      15. Iraq War
      16. Islamophobia
      17. Israel
      18. Israel lobby
      19. Jewish lobby
      20. Johns Hopkins University
      21. Likud
      22. MEMRI (Middle East Media Research Institute)
      23. neoconservatives
      24. Obsession: Radical Islam's War Against the West
      25. Revisionist Zionism
      26. Richard Perle
      27. Sarah Stern
      28. US Naval Academy
      29. Yigal Carmon

      Meyrav Wurmser is only one of hundreds of Likud Zionists operating at the highest levels of the American power structure -- but one rarely sees Noam Chomsky or Norman Finkelstein investigating this lobby in any depth, with names and facts.

    • LeaNder,

      Your comment didn't address my main point: for several years (decades?) now, one has sensed decreasing pressure and urgency from Arab governments (Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan, etc.) *and* the Arab street to solve the Palestinian issue. Non-Palestinian Arabs are preoccupied with their own problems.

      Certainly it is unlikely that most Americans and Europeans are going to be more concerned about the Palestinian issue than Arabs in the region. And the oil factor is a much less important now than it was in the 1970s and 1980s.

      Some of Israel's most dangerous enemies among Arab leaders have been removed from the board (Saddam and Gaddafi for instance).

      Israel may be under the impression that it can do whatever it likes without any significant opposition. It has been able to easily cow Obama and Kerry and it believes that it can handle the BDS threat with ease.

      The future of the Palestinians looks bleak to me.

    • Hostage,

      1. Is the Israel lobby the most powerful foreign lobby in American history?

      2. Does the Israel lobby comprise dozens or hundreds of interlinked organizations operating globally, often at odds with the nations in which they are located?

      3. Do pro-Israel billionaires and hectomillionaires tend to dominate both the Democratic and Republican Parties?

      4. Did pro-Israel activists play the lead role in driving the United States into the Iraq War?

      5. Have Noam Chomsky and Norman Finkelstein attempted in the past to deflect attention from the power of the Israel lobby through vague and evasive speech and doubletalk?

      6. Do Chomsky and Finkelstein sometimes seem to be as emotionally conflicted about Israel and Zionism as Jeffrey Goldberg, M.J. Rosenberg, Eric Alterman and Leon Wieseltier?

      Rhetorical questions -- think whatever you like. I've come to my own conclusions on these matters -- yes to all of the above. We may have to agree to disagree.

    • Hostage,

      Because the Clean Break was a platform written by American interlopers for Netanyahu to implement, not vice versa.

      See background on the Clean Break here:

      [Wikipedia; A Clean Break: A New Strategy for Securing the Realm
      link to en.wikipedia.org ]

      Would it be fair to describe Richard Perle, Douglas Feith, David Wurmser and Meyrav Wurmser as Jewish nationalists and Likud Zionists who have been operating inside the American government on behalf of Israeli interests (and more specifically the interests of Greater Israel)? Haven't they (and neoconservatives in general) been focused on using American military power to achieve the goals of Likud?

      And haven't the Clean Breakers succeeded in achieving many, if not all, of their goals? Particularly in smashing Iraq to smithereens? (And at a cost of trillions of dollars for Americans?)

      I don't think the Israel lobby is all-powerful in American politics (we haven't attacked Iran *yet*), but it is extremely powerful -- much more powerful than any other foreign lobby in American history. And I don't think that Noam Chomsky and Norman Finkelstein have adequately addressed the issue of this power. What explains their reticence on this matter?

    • Giles,

      Are you really trying to sell the idea that Fink is and has been under deep cover for all these decades? That the Lobby wanted him to destroy the Israeli founding narrative as presented in Joan Peter’s book or to expose the Holocaust Industry. Sorry but that is not credible. Fink has his blind spots but is no Zionist plant

      With regard to Finkelstein: my own opinion is that he is the real deal, painfully sincere about his beliefs, but also somewhat confused and incoherent in those beliefs because these issues are incredibly complex and he is emotionally conflicted about them.

      But in the matter of running ops to control the opposition: they can be incredibly sophisticated and involve intense long-range planning and the use of "actors" with extraordinary talent. Don't ever think for a second that a bright and skeptical person like yourself couldn't be fooled by one of these players.

      The other point is that it is possible to turn and acquire control over leaders of the opposition through a wide variety of means, including bribery, blackmail, threats, enticements, entrapment, etc. -- not only directed at leaders but at their family members and loved ones. This stuff happens in the real world -- it's not just lurid spy fiction.

      Mossad is reputedly the best in the business in running these kinds of operations -- and it has all the skills and techniques that have been developed by Hollywood at its fingertips.

      With regard to the matter of many critics of Israel on the left holding peculiar self-contradictory beliefs or exhibiting a pattern of doing strange flip-flops from left to right -- that issue is still live.

      What triggered my original post in this thread was noticing that Finkelstein sounded much like Aaron David Miller and Moshe Yaalon in his slam at Kerry and Obama. But I should have been more surgical in broaching this topic -- my bad.

    • JeffB,

      Side note: thanks for responding to those ten questions about your general political/cultural profile so forthrightly and crisply!

      You got that these are not trick questions or part of a "gotcha" fishing expedition but an effort to speed up useful and intelligent exchanges among parties who know very little about their respective beliefs and biases. (Some people become defensive about these inquiries.)

      I now have a better grasp of how your ideas and opinions hang together -- and am actually more receptive now to giving them a full hearing.

    • Phil,

      I'm with Donald. Ross, Miller and Indyk, sure. Chomsky and Finkelstein? These are intellectuals of integrity, even if you don't agree with them.

      Chomsky and Finkelstein have written some of the most searching and thoughtful critiques of Israel and Zionism out there and I respect them for that.

      They have also tried to protect the Israel lobby from full scrutiny and have opposed BDS. So sometimes I wonder about how their ideas hang together and about what realistic plans they have for achieving a change in Israeli policies.

      When Finkelstein begins sounding a bit like Aaron David Miller in ridiculing Kerry's peace efforts, I feel a trifle suspicious about what's up. But Finkelstein is probably perfectly sincere and is who he appears to be -- someone who is intensely conflicted on Israeli issues and not always perfectly coherent. (I can relate to that because my own views on Israel keep shifting in volatile and unpredictable ways.)

      Is Mossad running ops to try to control the political opposition? Of course, and they are very good at what they do. But it would be a mistake to run wild with paranoia about this. Everyone is innocent until proven guilty.

    • You know, there is a major factor in the Palestinian situation that I don't see many people noticing or commenting on: the Arab world overall seems to be showing decreasing interest in the plight of the Palestinians and in fighting for their rights.

      Many Americans and Europeans may be thinking, if Arab governments themselves aren't up in arms about the suffering of the Palestinians, why should we be?

      The future of the Palestinians could be very bleak indeed. Israel and the Israel lobby are determined to crush their spirit, and possibly to spirit them out of them of Greater Israel in large numbers. Power elites in the United States and Europe seem to be unwilling to get into a real fight with Israel and the Israel lobby over these policies and plans -- the personal costs of doing so are much too high. Likud Zionists could conceivably get everything they want by simply wearing down everyone else in the world. No one should underestimate their determination and staying power.

    • Parity,

      Regarding Finkelstein's game plan:

      Only mass nonviolent civil resistance can catapult Palestine back on the international stage.

      This is where my bs detector kicks in hard and I wonder about what Finkelstein is really up to.

      Does he really believe that such a popular revolt is going to happen or that it would be successful? I don't. Israel would easily crush such a revolt if it were to occur -- and it has some very effective tricks up its sleeve to prevent such a revolt from even getting off the ground in the first place.

      From my perspective, Finkelstein is just buying more time for Greater Israelists to get on with doing what they are doing. Perhaps he is sincere and not devious like the Ross/Miller/Indyk trio -- but in that case he is incredibly naive, in my opinion. I hope I am wrong and he is right -- but I don't see it

      Holding out the prospect of this chimera can be used as a device to obstruct effective pressure on the Israeli government by the United States and Europe. Let's cross our fingers and hope for magic -- and by no means is BDS acceptable.

    • Example:

      Here is liberal Zionist Aaron David Miller (on the left), once a key leader of the two-state effort, in bed with Likud Zionist Elliott Abrams (on the right):

      "Miller, Abrams both say settlement pressure misguided" (June 22, 2009)

      Both Aaron David Miller, who advised Secretary of State Jim Baker on Arab-Israeli issues during the George H.W. Bush and was at the Camp David negotiations during the Clinton administration, and Elliott Abrams, who was deputy national security adviser in the George W. Bush administration, agreed last week that the Obama administration's pressure on Israel over settlements isn't the correct move right now. And both said they saw virtually no chance of a conflict-ending agreement between the Israelis and Palestinians anytime soon.

      link to blogs.jta.org

      One would have to be quite dense not to comprehend that we've been played here -- this has nothing to do with "paranoia."

    • Keith,

      Your analysis is persuasive: Israel has never had any intention of achieving a two-state solution with the Palestinians or abandoning its ambition to keep expanding the borders of a Jewish state.

      And I strongly disagree with Donald and LeaNder that it is "paranoid" to suspect that many promoters of the two-state solution, like Ross, Miller and Indyk, have been duplicitous about their real game plan, which was to stall, stall, stall for as long as possible until the "peace process" petered out and while Israel created facts on the ground that would be impossible to undo.

      The question, then, for "progressives" like Norman Finkelstein and M.J. Rosenberg is this: how do you intend to rein in aggressive Greater Israelism without the application of massive coercive pressure from the United States and Europe? Keep in mind that even the prospect of BDS arouses powerful emotions of anxiety and anger in them.

    • LeaNder,

      How about giving us at least one or two events, quotes or citations from any of his books, that amount to “apologetics for the Israel government”?

      I assume you are referring to Finkelstein?

      I read his first two books when they were first published and was greatly impressed -- he struck me as intellectually courageous.

      But he stopped me dead in my tracks when I read his >>emotional<<attacks on the BDS movement -- which, as I recall, he smeared as a "cult" (M.J. Rosenberg has adopted the same tone on this issue). But even then I wasn't ready to write him off.

      Now he is accusing Kerry and Obama of being "vainglorious" in making a last-ditch effort to save the peace process -- using language that reminds one of Aaron David Miller or Moshe Yaalon, the Israeli defense minister who attacked Kerry for being "obsessive and messianic" (that's an exact quote). (Miller, as I recall, in his Foreign Policy essay also used to the term "messianic" to write off the peace process that he had been supposedly working to advance for the last decade or so.)

      The only conceivable way of slowing down or stopping Likud's drive to build Greater Israel is through BDS or through heavy pressure from the American government to achieve a political settlement.

      Apparently Finkelstein (like Miller) wants to remove that pressure. So what's his game plan? How do you envision this situation unfolding?

      With regard to apologetics for the Israeli government I was thinking primarily of the Ross/Miller/Indyk triumvirate -- but also of Noam Chomsky, who has often blamed the behavior of the Israeli government on a vague American corporatocracy -- he never develops his claims on this point with any particular facts. Chomsky has consistently run interference for the Israel lobby.

      There is a distinct pattern of critics of Israel on the left obstructing any meaningful American pressure on the Israeli government. These people do not add up. They express good wishes and then argue for policies that make the fulfillment of those wishes impossible. They might just as well be adjuncts of Likud.

    • Donald,

      Let's leave Finkelstein, Morris, Chomsky, Rosenberg and Greenwald out of this for the moment.

      Do you believe that Ross, Miller and Indyk have been sincere in their efforts to pursue the two-state solution to the I/P conflict? Or have they been duplicitous and manipulative, attempting to drag out the peace talks for as long as possible while providing space for the Israeli government to continue to build new settlements in the occupied territories?

      And more: how active do you think Mossad has been in attempting to control the political opposition in the United States and Europe? Not active at all? Very active? What methods would it use? What resources does it have at its disposal?

    • Donald,

      And lumping all these people into the same category of evil Zionists who are trying to pull the wool over your eyes isn't a very helpful analysis.

      There is absolutely a pattern of significance here: liberals and progressives taking a critical stance towards Israel and Zionism and later creating a great deal of cognitive dissonance by making statements which protect Israel from being subject to any effective pressure for changing its policies.

      This pattern is most obvious in the behavior of liberal Zionists like Dennis Ross, Aaron David Miller and Martin Indyk, who have deliberately obstructed and sabotaged the Mideast peace process while pretending to champion it -- but one also hears echos of this routine in the behavior of more hard left critics of Israel like Finkelstein.

      This current slam by Finkelstein at John Kerry and Barack Obama could have easily come out of the mouth of Aaron David Miller or even a typical neocon. Something really doesn't add up. It is not paranoid to wonder about what is the real agenda here when one sees so much self-contradictory behavior.

      The bottom line in all this messy and confusing back-and-forth: Israel keeps building more settlements and consolidating its hold over Greater Israel. That is what one should be paying attention to -- and to whom precisely has enabled this state of affairs all across the political spectrum, from the far right to the far left. Finkelstein is one of many enablers.

    • One is beginning to notice a pattern of duplicity among some leading Jewish progressives regarding Israel. At first they present themselves to the world as fearless and principled critics of Israel and Zionism, they establish themselves as leaders and moderators of that conversation, and then they use the influence they have acquired to mount often sleazy apologetics for the Israeli government. Have some or most of them been "ops" from the very beginning, executing a long-range game plan?

      Obama and Kerry have been committed to solving the I/P problem because they realize that the failure to do so will likely have disastrous strategic consequences for the United States and Israel down the line if it is not fixed now. This moment in history is probably the last opportunity to fix the problem before it becomes unfixable.

      It turns out that quite a few progressive anti-Zionists or non-Zionists are really liberal Zionists who are really Likud Zionists who are running interference for the grand project of building Jewish dominated Greater Israel -- they are, quite simply, Zionists -- passionate Jewish nationalists. After observing the peculiar gyrations of Benny Morris, Norman Finkelstein, Noam Chomsky, Glenn Greenwald, M.J. Rosenberg and others one wonders -- which progressive critics of Israel are the real deal? Which have been presenting a false face to the world? Is Norman Finkelstein just a more left-wing variation on Aaron David Miller, Dennis Ross and Martin Indyk? In the end, a clever saboteur of all efforts to stop or slow down Zionism's messianic scheme to build Greater Israel?

      Have many of us been hoodwinked?

      The insulting rhetoric here ("vanity," "vainglory," etc.) is straight out of the neocon playbook.

      Fool me once....

  • Southern Poverty Law Center takes Blumenthal's side against smear campaign
    • David,

      Refreshing my memory about the particulars of the Pipes/Breivik connection:

      Pipes seems to be Breivik's primary reference material and font of inspiration. Used as a reference twice, and given his own bully pulpit in one of Breivik's blog entries, complete with video and cheering-on.

      Here is every piece of writing Breivik published on document.no. Cool of them to consolidate it rather than suppress it.

      link to document.no /

      Breivik only ever posted a single video; it was Daniel Pipes making a right-wing presentation, titled "Leftism and Islam. Muslims, the warriors Marxists have been praying for."

      For those who don't remember, Pipes -- a radical, murderous, hate-filled conservative demagogue -- was a Bush nominee to the U.S. Institute of Peace, an advisor to Giuliani's election campaign, and a conspiracy theorist whose argument amounts to, "with-a-name-like-Obama-he's-got-to-be-Muslim."

      link to democraticunderground.com

      It was definitely about the Islamophobia. And both Pipes and Breivik are militant Zionists.

    • David Samel,

      The question would be how Max would justify his accusation against Pipes, Geller and Spencer regarding the Breivik massacre.

      What could be a more simple task? Pipes, Geller and Spencer have been responsible for a torrent of inciting hate speech against Islam of the type that is guaranteed to provoke violent actions against the target of hate. Breivik shared their Islamophobia and was directly inspired by it.

      The key link between Breivik and Pipes and Geller -- they are all militant ethnic nationalists. Breivik is a European (more narrowly Norwegian) ethnic nationalist; Pipes and Geller are Jewish ethnic nationalists. Militant ethnic nationalists frequently commit violence against their political opponents -- that is the historical track record. And militant ethnic nationalists from different traditions often form temporary alliances of convenience. (Hence the strong support of Breivik, Geert Wilders and other European ethnic nationalists for Israel and Zionism.)

    • David Samel,

      Your logic eludes me entirely.

      Both Daniel Pipes and Anders Breivik are Islamophobes.

      Frazier Glenn Miller is an antisemite. Max Blumenthal isn't an antisemite.

      There is no hypocrisy here because the analogy is blatantly false.

  • 'Israel is the home of all Jews,' declares a right-wing official
    • LeaNder,

      lysias, when I met Sean McBride, he at one point argued that the Zionists influenced the Nazi ideology. Which is obviously a simplification. But he may have had similar evidence in mind.

      To set the record straight, I once remarked that Dennis Prager (who is a leading Jewish thinker) observed in one of his books (Why the Jews? as I recall) that Nazis appropriated "the chosen people" theme from Jewish nationalism for their own mystical ethnic nationalist ideology. (I don't have the quote at hand.) Christianity and Islam also appropriated "the chosen people" theme from the Old Testament. All three ideologies have used their "chosen people" rationale periodically to attack Judaism and Jews.

      Human history is rife with competing "chosen peoples" (messianic ethnic and religious movements) in fierce battle with one another -- which is is quite ironic.

      Perhaps we need to rethink this whole thing -- debug the basic belief system. What I have noticed is that all these "chosen people" conflicts seem to be ego-driven at a very primitive level of human consciousness. Maybe we just need to grow up and develop a bit of rational self-control over our respective tribal urges and demons.

  • Mark Halperin excommunicates Rand Paul, over Israel
    • RudyM,

      I don’t know. Hillary seems pretty defeatable in general. I think the Democrats will be making a mistake to make her their presidential candidate.

      Hillary was stale, dull, boring and uninspiring in 2008 and she will much more so in 2016. She's a crude neocon and a tool of the most corrupt elements of Wall Street and the Israel lobby.

      If Elizabeth Warren made an effort I think she could easily defeat Clinton -- just as Barack Obama buried her in 2008.

      She is not nearly as bright as Bill and has no political accomplishments of note on her resume. We have never seen her lead from convictions on any issue. She is running because she is addicted to power and expects to be coronated by an equally corrupt Democratic Party.

    • lysias,

      The tech companies are upset by what the NSA has been doing, at least now that it has become public. It hits them in their wallets. And that’s an issue on which Paul is strong.

      This situation (and sector) potentially provides Rand Paul with a huge opportunity to rake in major campaign contributions. I wonder if his political organization is smart enough and capable enough to exploit it.

    • It's always enlightening to see members of the Israel lobby expose the operations of the Israel lobby so frankly.

  • 'NYT' abided by Israeli gag order even as 'EI' scooped it repeatedly
    • The New York Times agrees to be gagged by Israel.

      ...

      I believe this is yet more evidence of Israel-centrism at the New York Times.

      It really would be useful to know precisely which individuals within the New York Times hierarchy are responsible for the pro-Israel propaganda machinations at the paper and what precisely are their ties to Israel.

      These are important facts that the American public deserves to have in its possession.

      And the same point applies to the Washington Post.

  • Reports of anti-Semitism in Ukraine and Hungary
    • hophmi,

      I'm sorry, Sean, were you depending on Israel to save the West from itself?

      No one is expecting Israel or Jews to "save" the West from itself. The point is that if the Jewish establishment embraces ethnic and religious nationalism for itself it will no longer be able to object in an effective political way to every other ethnic and religious group in the world -- and especially in the United States and Europe -- from going down the same path.

      If the aggressive pursuit of ethnic and religious nationalist interest is good for one group, it's good for all groups. Everyone gets to play or no one gets play.

      A world in which "Zionism" (messianic ethnic nationalism) triumphs for everyone could easily turn into the worst possible nightmare for Jews -- they could lose their position of security and prosperity in the West while finding Israel surrounded by hostility from the entire world. Imagine a situation in which Israel's economc and political relations had broken down with everyone -- Israel vs. "the nations."

      (Actually, numerous biblical prophets have already imagined it -- this scenario seems to be hardwired into the cultural DNA of important streams of Jewish culture.)

      Most Jews would probably miss the tolerant and modern democratic West of the latter 20th century if Zionist attitudes among all ethnic and religious groups do indeed manage to prevail the world. Matters are currently trending that way.

    • lysias,

      John Kerry, the head of the department in which Victoria Nuland is a high-ranking official.

      A reasonable speculation based on current available information: the recent antisemitic hoax in the Ukraine was a neocon false flag op, designed to escalate tensions and conflict between the United States and Russia, and possibly undertaken without the approval or knowledge of Barack Obama. That is a possibility. (But I make an effort never to jump to conclusions in these cases.)

      It's pity that more voices in the mainstream media didn't raise the same questions about the 9/11 anthrax attacks, which reeked of false flag manipulation then and even more so now.

    • JeffB,

      The fact that the Jewish establishment, because of its embrace of Jewish nationalism (Zionism), has lost the intellectual and moral authority to oppose ethnic and religious nationalism in the United States and Europe (and everywhere else) doesn't strike you as rather a significant historical development?

      For how much longer do you think that that establishment will be able justify its two-track and self-contradictory policies -- ethnic and religious nationalism for itself and liberal universalism for everyone else?

      Also: what would be the fate of Israel in a world in which ethnic and religious nationalism were running rampant in the West? Can you do the math? Why would ethnic and religious nationalist states in the West continue to support Israel?

    • A few parties that are trying to push the United States into a confrontation with Russia over Ukraine:

      "Former Reagan Adviser Urges U.S. to Counter Russia with ‘Strength and Leadership’: Calls for Awakening of the West in speech" link to freebeacon.com

      1. FPI (Foreign Policy Initiative)
      2. Kurt Volker
      3. McCain Institute for International Leadership
      4. neoconservatives
      5. Robert McFarlane
      6. Washington Free Beacon

    • Stephen,

      There is currently a great deal of interesting speculation about who might have been behind the Ukrainian antisemitic leaflet on Daily Kos:

      link to dailykos.com

      Most people agree that it was a false flag provocation -- the main question, as usual: who benefits?

      One line of thought: those who are trying to demonize Russia and to push the United States into greater involvement in the Ukrainian mess are the lead beneficiaries. This leaflet pushes all the right buttons.

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