Commenter Profile

Total number of comments: 1349 (since 2012-06-23 07:13:37)

Showing comments 1349 - 1301

  • Our new look
  • Jodi Rudoren loves a winner
    • Keith:

      All movements proclaim high ideals and moral grounding, however, all need to be judged on their actions...

      True, the "actually existing" movements need to be judged on their actions, but their ideals and ideologies need to be judged on their own terms, imo.

  • Democratic Party leader echoes Netanyahu's new theme: Hamas equals ISIS
  • Ceasefire comes to a close -- Mohammed Assaf's 'Raise Your Head High'
    • MHughes976:

      Anyone with friendly, or even objective, attitudes to Palestinians would say, for a start, that they have rights equal to anyone’s and deserve to be fully enfranchised citizens of a fully sovereign state with frontiers determined by a normal procedure.

      Hence the enduring relevance of a two-state solution, despite Israel's relentless expansionism.

  • Liberal Zionism has lost its refuge-- a plausible two-state solution
    • At The National, Joseph Dana writes that the Gaza onslaught has deepened the understanding that the two-state solution is a dead letter because Israel’s militant response to Palestinian unity shows that it has no intention of allowing a viable Palestinian state to emerge...

      If Israeli intentions are the deciding factor, then a one-state solution is even less plausible than a 2 -state solution.

  • How the Israeli discourse on terrorism seeks to justify blatant war crimes
    • Djinn:

      If they then took up arms with any of the armed groups committing the ongoing Nakba, then yes they were terrorists.

      And if they were at all sympathetic to the ongoing Nakba, they were-- "terrorist sympathizers."

  • Jodi Rudoren and Abe Foxman mull over 'the Arabs' owning New York hotel
    • Mooser:

      They will never forget those six years. Six years can be a lifetime when an existential threat takes over your favorite hotel!

      I detect in your remarks a troubling indifference to Jewish post traumatic dynamics.

  • Gaza war gives rise to new Jewish group targeting Jewish institutions that support occupation
    • Dan Crowther:

      I’m happy to have jewish folks start wholly ineffective, sectarian peace groups, I just don’t see why it needs to be congratulated, publicized and so on.

      Publicity is what these groups are all about. If you want them to be effective , then, yes, you should publicize them, promote them, praise them to high heaven.

      And it is critically important that there be such Jewish groups . It sends a clear message: opposition to specific Israeli policies is not "anti-Jewish", "anti-Semitic", or even necessarily "anti-Israeli".

      The problem isn't that such groups are getting too much publicity; it's that they are getting too little.

  • What Jim Fallows and I saw
    • tokyobk:

      But I am going to make a speculation that “the jews problem” for you is not going to go away with Israel.

      How can such speculation, devoid of supporting evidence or argument, be considered anything other than vile character assassination?

    • Philip Weiss:

      Just as Ed Miliband’s outspoken criticism of Israel in UK shows that Jewishness and Zionism are overlapping categories but by no means an identity.

      It's also true that criticism of Israel and anti-Zionism are overlapping categories but by no means an identity.

  • Remnick gets the timeline wrong
    • It’s true, Rivlin is a one state guy, but he’s willing to give everybody citizenship.

      Perhaps not. According to the provided link:

      4. An unabashed proponent of the one state solution, Rivlin advocates giving full Israeli civil and political rights to West Bank Palestinians in a single-state scenario.

      link to

      No mention of GAZA and its 1.6+ million Palestinians. Israeli annexation of the West Bank alone is not a "one-state solution."

  • Video: A beautiful brother went looking for his family in the death zone (Updated)
    • just:

      we have to use the words ‘terrorist’ and ‘terrorism’ right back at them, then.

      Yes! Yes! Yes! "Terrorism" easily trumps "war crimes", "human rights violations" etc. There is no alternative.

  • Israel is in a pickle
    • Bumblebye:

      Interesting Walid. Israel will be unable to claim ‘terroreeesm’ if these Hamas forces haven’t made for civilian homes and massacred them, will they! If Hamas victims are military,...

      Attacks on military targets by various groups are routinely labeled "terrorism" by state propagandists. The U.S. has consistently done this--the 1983 barracks bombing in Lebanon is a classic example, but only one of many. The Kiev regime is labeling attacks on Ukrainian military forces as "terrorist attacks". ETC.

    • American:

      ” if israel can’t stop the rocket fire they are in a pickle, that’s my point. you can have the last word.’….annie

      o.k. my last word.
      If Israel cant stop the rocket fire they will keep on assaulting Gaza with that as their justification.

      I agree. Assaulting Gaza. Rejecting any genuine peace process. Occupying the West Bank. Warehousing Palestinians. Annexing territory. Labeling Palestinians "terrorists". Suppressing domestic dissent ( however little there is). Bolstering a militaristic fortress state-society. ETC. Low-damage rocket fire is in Zionist/militarist interests.

  • Palestinian citizens of Israel protest draft in Tel Aviv as passersby tell them to die or emigrate
    • If the path to the future is towards one state

      "One state"-- including Gaza, or it's not one state. What path do you see toward that?

  • Settler legislators call for annexing West Bank blocs to 'return us to sanity and Zionism'
    • ritzl:

      if Israel does de jure annex “Area C,” what will they do with the 300K Palestinians living there

      Not all of Area C: the bills call for annexing "different settlement blocs, making up most of Area C ; some areas with dense Palestinian populations would likely be excluded. Palestinians ending up in Greater Israeli territory would get full Israeli citizenship.

  • The NYT and the NSA: Abramson and Baquet have different journalistic values
  • 'NYT' publishes unvarnished ADL propaganda: 93% of Palestinians are anti-Semites
    • W.Jones :

      The number 1 problem with the survey is that it asks a stereotypical question format: “Are Jews X?” If you answer Yes OR No, you have made a generalization about all Jews.

      Good point.

  • Israeli teens take celebratory selfie in police custody after attacking Palestinian car
    • Ellen:

      ... Zionism is no different. Like the ADL it desperately needs real or imagined Judeophobia to keep itself going. Without it, Zionism would die.

      Well, the ADL's latest research claims to show that 26% of people worldwide are anti-Semites as are 93% of the people in Gaza and the West Bank.

      link to

  • Abunimah and Blumenthal's freedom ride
    • Hostage:

      The notion that Abbas “led” the peace process is detached from reality.

      Correction: Abbas has led the Palestinians in a fraudulent peace process led by others.

    • irishmoses:

      Abbas has been in charge for 10 years and what do the Palestinians have to show for his nonviolent efforts?

      Abbas has led a fraudulent "peace process," not any kind of massive non-violent intifada.

    • yonah fredman:

      I don’t believe that Gaza is large enough to be considered a sufficient sized state to address the needs of the Palestinians for statehood.

      Ya think?

  • Don't destroy our dream-castle Israel! (Why the Jewish establishment shut out J Street)
    • yonah fredman:

      ... the idea that [Netanyahu] would annex Area C or Area B, is preposterous, given his realpolitik.

      What consequences does he fear?

  • Two-state solution is 'psychological solution' allowing people to take themselves off the moral hook -- Telhami
    • pabelmont:

      But merely proposing a “solution” without proposing a means to achieve it, without a reasonable reality-based hope for it, is self-delusion.

      And what are the means to attain a 1SS, uniting Gaza/West Bank and Israel, which could not just as well and more easily be used to obtain a 2SS?

    • And he predicted that with the end of peace talks, the Obama administration’s only real option is to lay out a specific plan for a solution of the conflict, ala the Clinton Parameters

      And that "solution", involving highly truncated Palestinian mini-state, will set the standard for an internationally acceptable outcome.

  • As Israel 'staggers toward the abyss,' criticizing it is now 'the most fashionable cause' on the left
    • John Kerry:

      A two-state solution will be clearly underscored as the only real alternative. Because a unitary state winds up either being an apartheid state with second class citizens—or it ends up being a state that destroys the capacity of Israel to be a Jewish state...

      link to

  • Bait-and-switch anti-Semitism: NYU SJP accused of targeting Jews, or not
  • Obama and Kerry are spurred by 'vainglory' in pursuing talks -- Finkelstein
    • Citizen:

      Dismantling the PA would mean either conning the UN into taking over the territory directly, an unlikely proposition, or simply handing the keys back to Israel and forcing the Israeli military, the official governor of the occupied territories, to handle basic services in major cities.

      Or: Israel annexes Area C etc. and lets Palestinians keep the keys to the remaining populous areas in the West Bank. The West Bank then becomes like Gaza: nobody is forcing Israel to handle basic services etc. there.

    • Israel constitutes a “strategic asset” of the US

      How about, "Many in the US ruling elite believe Israel constitutes a “strategic asset” of the US."

  • Palestinian youth say the talks with Israel are futile
  • Two desperate anti-Semitism charges, from Foxman and Boteach
    • Krauss:

      The reason why using anti-Semitism in Zionist advocacy is dangerous is precisely because it weakens any attempt to root out real anti-Semites..

      And you, Krauss, are a perfect example of this, with your hysterical, irrational, absolutely baseless charges of anti-Semitism against puppies.

  • Amid 'climate of fear' at Vassar, president comes out against 'action and protest' re Israel
  • The Jewish community must not embrace Ayaan Hirsi Ali
    • LeaNder, it's "to the extent," not "extend ." Sorry to nitpick, but you made the error three times, so I thought it might be helpful to point it out. I very much appreciate your posts here--they always have some mysterious ambiguous element that keeps me thinking, like poetry.

  • Simon Schama's Israel whitewash
    • the program shows a long except from David Ben-Gurion’s speech of May 14, in which he announced that “the Jews have come home from their exile.”

      The notion of a grand "exile of the Jewish People" is mythological, not historical.


      Israel Jacob Yuval, "The Myth of the Jewish Exile from the Land of Israel"

      link to

      (link to

      link to

      Israel Bartal, dean of humanities at the Hebrew University:

      “Although the myth of an exile from the Jewish homeland (Palestine) does exist in popular Israeli culture, it is negligible in serious Jewish historical discussions...

    • seanmcbride:

      In viewing all five episodes of Simon Schama’s The Story of the Jews, I was struck by the relentless main theme: Jews have been in conflict with “the nations” — one national enemy and Pharaoh after another — since the inception of Judaism to the present day, century after century.

      A very important observation. The creation of a grand "story" relentlessly expressing the theme you identified -- this is Zionist myth-history.

  • Ultra-Zionists push back as Jewish establishment tacks toward center
    • Krauss:

      It is striking to me that Bronner, when pushed to the wall, doesn’t consider what is best for the readers. [ETC.]

      Good catch. Excellent points.

  • 'A Painful Price': The escalating war on Palestine solidarity at U of Michigan and beyond
    • puppies:

      those “some things” must necessarily be inborn. Everything else, i.e. acquired later and kept consciously, is open to rational criticism.

      As a point of logic, why would "some thing" necessarily be exempt from rational criticism just because it was "inborn"? And why can't "unconscious choices" be open to criticism?

    • LeaNder:

      Hardly “uniquely” French

      "Unique in French history" does not mean "unique to French history".

    • JeffB:

      I’d love a world where no one think to question Jewish legitimacy, where Israel for Israelis is as non controversial as Sweden for Swedes;

      "Israel for Israelis" IS utterly non-controversial. "Israel is the state for the Jewish People, not its citizens" ---much less so.

  • MJ Rosenberg’s conundrum
    • talknic:


      Absolutely possible. Gaza is under occupation or blockaded. Whatever the terminology---EITHER WAY, it is NOT part of a single de facto state including Israel.

      Neither Gaza or the West Bank have seceded from Palestine.

      Agree. The point stands: IF the WB were to be annexed by Israel, legally or illegally, via referendum or not, Gaza would still remain outside of Israel.

      So, by what conceivable political process could Gaza become part of a single state including Israel? Answer that. And if it does not, there is no 1SS.

    • seafoid :

      Gaza is an integral part of Palestine ...

      Exactly. Part of Palestine. It won't be part of Israel.

      By what political process and legal process could Gaza conceivably become part of Israel?

    • seafoid:

      [Sibiriak:]“No. There is also Gaza and its 1.7 million Palestinians. They are not part of this alleged de facto single state including Israel and the WB.”

      3. Implementation of the border crossing agreements and an end to the blockade of the Gaza Strip.

      Exactly. Gaza is a de facto separate polity being blockaded by a foreign state, Israel. Gaza is NOT part of an alleged de facto single state.

    • Donald:

      No, one and a half. Gaza is a prison camp where the inmates are allowed to rule what happens inside the barbed wire.

      It is a de facto dependent state under blockcade by a foriegn power, Israel.

      The point is: Gaza is NOTpart of the alleged de facto single state comprising Israel and the WB; and if the WB is formally annexed to Israel, in whole or part, Gaza will still remain outside as a separate polity (dependent state or half state or whatever you want to call it).

      There is no "one state solution" without the inclusion of Gaza, and that seems to be on no one's agenda.

    • The fact is, even now, there is only one state between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River, and that is Zionist Israel.

      No. There is also Gaza and its 1.7 million Palestinians. They are not part of this alleged de facto single state including Israel and the WB. So, even if you presume the WB is not occupied territory of Palestine, you are still left with TWO states, not one.

    • Page: 13
  • Reports: Abbas faults Israel for 'procrastinating,' says Palestine will move to join int'l organizations
    • Palestinians will argue that the West Bank is de facto part of Israel and that they are therefore entitled to full political rights.

      But what about Gaza and its 1.7 million Palestinians-not to mention refugees and their descendants? Are they also to become part of Israel? No. So, at best we are dealing here with TWO de facto states, not a democratic 1SS, and a permanent fracturing of the Palestinian people. Israel will, of course, resist the absorption of large numbers of WB Palestinians, but even if it came to that, those Palestinians would still be a minority in a Jewish state , with millions left outside that state.

  • Right-wing news outlets attack U. Mich's divestment drive
    • ToivoS:

      The most powerful Zionist (and they have majority support) continue in their goal of West Bank annexation.

      1) West Bank annexation would create TWO states, not one. No Zionist supports annexing Gaza, and you can't leave Gaza out of your analysis.

      2) Most Zionists support annexing only a portion of the West Bank. Bennett, for example, proposed annexing 60% of the West Bank, leaving large numbers of Palestinians outside of Israel. Most Zionists aim at a considerably smaller percentage. Only a small minority on the extreme extreme-right aim at annexing the entire WB.

      3) Even if the West Bank were annexed in its entirety, that would still leave Jewish Israelis as a majority in Israel. Of course, the Jewish majority would no longer be so dominant, which is why most Zionist do not aim at absorbing the entire WB.

      Namely, one state will be the end of the Zionist experiment.

      One state--Israel/WB/Gaza-- would indeed be the end of the Zionist experiment. Which is why Zionists will avoid it at all costs.

      And who is going to force Israel to annex Gaza?

  • BDS' big night: Loyola student government passes divestment, U. Mich votes it down
    • Citizen

      [MJ Rosenberg] points to the fact BDS statement of agenda never mentions the 1967 occupation when it declares said agenda.

      But see BDS goals: link to

      1. Ending its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands occupied in June 1967 and dismantling the Wall;

      2. Recognizing the fundamental rights of the Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel to full equality; and

      3. Respecting, protecting and promoting the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties as stipulated in UN Resolution 194.

      link to

  • US Jewish leaders blast Harvard students on pro-Israel trip for taking photo at Arafat's tomb (Update)
    • JeffB:

      Jews don’t remember Masada as a slight they remember it as a high point of resistance.

      Yes, another Zionist-invented memory.

      Shlomo Sand, "The Invention of the Land of Israel: From Holy Land to Homeland" (p. 97):

      Zionist historiography did everything in its power to portray Philo the philosopher as a Jewish patriot. 33 But it was much more difficult to do the same for Flavius Josephus, because of the fact that the great Jewish historian had betrayed his comrades-in-arms, crossed enemy lines, and joined the Roman camp. At the same time, however, Zionist historiography made maximum use of Josephus’s major work in order to depict the uprising of the year 66 CE as a “great national revolt.”

      This uprising, and the siege of Masada with which it came to an end, subsequently emerged as a historic milestone in the modern aspiration for a Jewish uprising and an inexhaustible source of Zionist pride.

      The fact that the heterogeneous population in ancient Judea spoke a mixture of languages and had no understanding of the concepts of citizenship, sovereignty, and national territory was of no interest to the Zionist agents of memory. For years, Israeli schoolchildren have memorized the slogan “Masada will not fall again,” and when they come of age they are expected to willingly sacrifice their lives in accordance with this national call to duty.

      In their youth, they are taken to view the son et lumière at the remains of the fortified walls built by Herod out of concern about an uprising among his subjects. After their induction as soldiers of the State of Israel, they swear allegiance on the Bible at the center of the mountain’s summit, where the pleasure palace and Roman bathhouse of the uninhibited Jewish Edomite king once stood.

      Neither the Israeli schoolchildren nor the soldiers were aware that, for many centuries, their true forefathers did not even know the name Masada. Unlike the narrative of the destruction of the Temple, which was ingrained deep in the collective memory of communities that followed the Jewish religion, the books of Josephus and thus the events they narrated remained unrecognized by the rabbinical heritage.

      Yet it was through these works alone that the proponents of modern nationalism learned of the collective murders and suicides perpetrated by Eleazar Ben-Yair and his fellow Sicariis. It is doubtful whether these senseless acts ever took place, but under no circumstances was Masada meant to serve as a model to emulate in Jewish tradition, as it was not undertaken for the sanctification of God’s name. 34

  • The battle over Palestine is raging--and Israel is losing: Ali Abunimah on his new book
  • Ululating at Vassar: the Israel/Palestine conflict comes to America
    • [Zionist student] I felt my opinions not being validated.

      Amazing. Pathetic. Childish. Intellectually, emotionally, spiritually pathological.

    • pabelmont:

      She acknowledges that [A] SJP does not say Israel should not exist.

      Depending on what is meant by "Israel," a single, liberal-democratic state comprising the territories of today's Israel, Gaza and the West Bank could certainly entail the demise of "Israel" .

    • Sumud:

      ... what Israel is offering the West Bank is actually Gaza but with more relaxed borders that Israel controls, and can close and open as they see fit.

      Gaza and the West Bank would be connected with some kind of corridor and would be politically unified, to one degree or another.

      Not a state.

      Yes, it would be a de facto dependent statelet. But that could change over time--it's not the end of the historical process.

      If Palestine becomes a fully recognized state, it would have all the rights under international law that any other state has. It has been argued, for example, that "no new state is ever under any obligation to remain demilitarized, whatever else it may have agreed to in its pre-state incarnation." I'm not sure if that is true, or if Palestine is legally in a "pre-state" condition at the moment, but in a practical sense, there is certainly some truth in it.

    • Dan Crowther:

      Yeah, we’re in a dangerous place, Schneiderman – these infantile brats you’re schooling are going to be in charge of important institutions one day; I can’t even fathom saying something like “you’re disempowering us” – what the fuck does that even mean? Is that just post-modern lib arts school nonsense, or do people really talk like that now?

      Your comments are making me feel uncomfortable.

  • In Abbas meeting, Obama dropped formula about recognizing Israel as Jewish state
    • Sumud

      Please name any concession Israel has made ever in any negotiation since Oslo.

      Well, start from the premise that sharing (let alone giving sovereignty over) any inch of Eretz Israel with a non-Jew is a concession.

  • Kerry tries to get out of Jewish-state trap set by Netanyahu and the lobby
    • ritzl:

      WRT Gaza, I think I’m on record with the belief that Gaza will almost certainly be a separate entity.

      So, in fact, you are not really talking about a "single state", but rather two states -- Gaza + Israel/West Bank.

      Consider the implications. The Palestinian people would be effectively split in three--Gazans, Palestinian Israelis, and Palestinians in refugee camps/other states.

      The Palestinians given Israeli citizenship would still be a minority in Greater Israel--they would have achieved no collective self-determination; they would still be ruled by a Zionist Israeli majority, which is what Palestinian nationalists fought to avoid from the early years of Zionism. (The inter- national political strife and social conflict within this Greater Israel might be so great that a movement for Palestinian-majority areas to secede and link with Gaza would likely reemerge).

      The Gazans would still be encaged in their barely viable "entity", and there would be no Palestinian state for even some of the refugees to return to.

      I'm not sure why this arrangement-- which is actually advocated by some extreme right-wing Israelis--would be so desirable.

    • Stephen Shenfield:

      If Israel unilaterally changed its official name from “the State of Israel” to “the Jewish State of Israel” then recognition of Israel would automatically entail recognition of Israel as a Jewish state.

      I don't think recognizing a name is the same as recognizing a reality. If that were true the following declaration would make no sense-- but it makes perfect sense:

      "We recognize The Jewish State of Israel as state, but not a Jewish state"

    • Hostage:

      It’s hard to see how “Jewish state” was “resolved” in 1947...

      It seems to me that Kerry is arguing that the issue of the Jewishness of Israel was resolved by res. 181 because a specifically Jewish state was proposed. Acceptance of res.181 would then necessarily entail the acceptance of the Jewishness of that state. Of course, what the term "Jewish state" actually means is unclear.

    • ritzl:

      its a simple shoulder shrug away from handing Israel its own worst nightmare outcome of an Apartheid one-state.

      How do you get the "international community", international public opinion, and international law to view Israel and Gaza and the West Bank as a single state (rather than as Israel + occupied Palestinian territory)? I don't think it is so simple as you suppose. Is the world going to press Israel to annex Gaza and give Gazan Palestinians Israeli citizenship?

  • Does Israel Have a Right to Exist as a Jewish State?: An excerpt from Ali Abunimah's 'The Battle for Justice in Palestine'
    • talknic:

      JeffB “If an American Jew converts to Christianity they cease to be a Jew”

      Try telling that to their mothers LOL


    • JeffB:

      Of course, you are entitled to promulgate you own definitions but one thing for sure is that your definition of a “Jewish Israeli nation” and rejection of a global “Jewish nation” flatly contradicts Israeli law and dominant Zionist ideology.

      If that were the case then why can’t I vote in Israeli election?

      Simple. Because you ARE NOT an Israeli citizen. But, according to Israeli law and dominant Zionist ideology (not my view) you ARE a member of the "Jewish nation".

    • JeffB :

      JeffB: Global Jews belong to the Jewish religion.
      Sibiriak You lost me right there. So if a Jew outside of Israel is not religious, that person ceases to be a Jew under your definition?

      Yes. If an American Jew converts to Christianity they cease to be a Jew.

      I said "not religious". So, again: what if a Jew outside Israel is *not religious*, i.e. rejects Judaism, but does not adopt another religion--that person ceases to be a Jew under you definition?

      I submit that "Global Jews belong to the Jewish religion" is an untenable definition of global Jewry.

    • JeffB:

      Israeli Jews are a nation.

      Using your terminology then:

      1)The state of Israel is a multinational state since it has citizens from various "nations", not just the "Jewish-Israeli nation".

      2) Israel privileges the "Jewish-Israeli nation" over the other Israeli nations. It is a discriminatory ethnocratic state, where the dominant ethnos is, in your terminology, "the Israeli-Jewish nation".

      So, you've changed labels, but the reality is the same.

    • JeffB:

      Global Jews belong to the Jewish religion.

      You lost me right there. So if a Jew outside of Israel is not religious, that person ceases to be a Jew under your definition? How about inside Israel? Can a Jew be not religious and still be a Jew there?

      Of course, you are entitled to promulgate you own definitions but one thing for sure is that your definition of a "Jewish Israeli nation" and rejection of a global "Jewish nation" flatly contradicts Israeli law and dominant Zionist ideology.

    • Ellen:

      Ofer, with all respect…since when is Judaism a nationality?

      Ofer referred to the notion of a Jewish nationality, not a Judaism -nationality. Thus, non-religious Jews would also be part of the "Jewish Nation" ( a "Jew" being variably defined by a combination of religious, genetic and cultural elements.)

      The Jewish religion and it’s many converts have been around a lot longer than nation states.

      "Nations" have been around for a lot longer than "nation-states". Nation and state are two different notions.

      In fact, there are two fundamentally different concepts "nation", leading to two different notions of "nation-state"-- a civic nation-state=nation-state of citizens, and an "ethnic" nation-state=nation-state of a single "ethnic" group ("people").

      Israeli Supreme Court judge Meltzer wrote in the "Israeli nationality" ruling:

      The proposition attests to a certain conceptual confusion among the appellants. Israel is defined, internationally (since the UN “partition” resolution) and internally (at least following the aforementioned basic laws) ... as the Jewish people’s nation state. The fact that it is also the [civic] nation state of its Israeli citizens - whoever they may be - does not negate its identity as the Jewish people’s [ethnic] nation state.

      (From Ofer Neiman's translation)

      Israeli law and Zionist ideology recognizes the idea of Jewish "ethnic" nation-state. (Judaism recognizes the idea of Jewish nation/ Jewish People.)

      The word "ethnic" itself does not have a precise meaning, and has served various ideological functions.

      Shlomo Sand, "The Invention of the Jewish People":

      The murderous first half of the twentieth century having caused the concept of race to be categorically rejected, various historians and other scholars enlisted the more respectable concept of ethnos in order to preserve the intimate contact with the distant past. Ethnos, meaning “people” in ancient Greek, had served even before the Second World War as a useful alternative to, or a verbal intermediary between, “race” and “people.” But its common, “scientific” use began only in the 1950s, after which it spread widely. Its main attraction lies in its blending of cultural background and blood ties, of a linguistic past and a biological origin—in other words, its combining of a historical product with a fact that demands respect as a natural phenomenon.7

      [...]The ethnic community is, after all, a human group with a shared cultural-linguistic background, not always well defined but capable of providing crucial materials for a national construction. Yet a good many other scholars cling to ethnos as though to bring in by the back door the essential primevalism, the racial concept that in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries bolstered the promoters of the fragile national identity. Thus ethnos has become not merely a historical and cultural unit but an ambiguous entity of ancient origin, at whose heart lies a subjective sense of closeness that it inspires in those who believe in it, much as race did in the nineteenth century.

      [...]For [Anthony D.] Smith, “an ethnic group, then, is distinguished by four features: the sense of unique group origins, the knowledge of a unique group history and belief in its destiny, one or more dimensions of collective cultural individuality, and finally a sense of unique collective solidarity.”8

      The diligent British scholar, it seems, considers that the ethnos is no longer a linguistic community with a common way of life; that the ethnos does not inhabit a particular territory but needs only to be associated with one; that the ethnos need not have an actual history, for ancient myths can continue to serve this function equally well. The shared memory is not a conscious process moving from the present to the past (since there is always someone around who can organize it) but rather a “natural” process, neither religious nor national, which flows by itself from past to present.

      Smith’s definition of ethnos, therefore, matches the way Zionists see the Jewish presence in history—it also matches the old concept of pan-Slav identity, or that of the Aryans or Indo-Europeans, or even of the Black Hebrews in the United States—but is quite unlike the accepted connotation among the traditional community of anthropologists.9

      Toward the end of the twentieth century and in the early twenty-first, “ethnicity”—which Étienne Balibar rightly described as entirely fictitious—has experienced a resurgence in popularity.

    • Within the article Ofer Neiman linked...

      link to

      ...there is another link to Ofer's translation (pdf file) of parts of the Israeli Supreme Court's ruling. If you are interested in this issue, I suggest reading it.

    • JeffB:


      But even the modern record shows that if the Jews didn’t have their own state their status would return to the horrors of the past.


      I was saying that Israeli Jews are a nation even if Jews in general are not. Israeli Jews are a people with a state.

      In statement #1, you say the Jews have their own state. In statement #2, you say Israeli Jews have their own state.

      You contradict yourself fundamentally.

    • JeffB:

      I think the idea of successful assimilation should have been listed as an option.

      Jeff's " assimilation option"--state-directed ideological conversion of Arab-Palestinians to Zionism-- what would it actually entail?

      I pressed JeffB on this point previously. Read his response, and see if it makes sense to you:

      link to

      [JeffB:] There basically are two arguments.

      5a) How do regimes change the idealogical orientation of populations? How does North Korea, Stalin’s Russia, China, America’s conversion of the population away from Communism in Latin America… work? To a great extent I think what you are arguing is that concentrated state terror is not an effective way of changing mass public opinion away from a position that a powerful state finds threatening. And I can point to historical record and examples of its success.

      I guess we can go a couple places depending on exactly what the point of disagreement is. I’m still not clear.

      i) How individual humans form their opinions and how these can be changed i.e. how brainwashing, propaganda… work. In short why anybody believes in anything.

      ii) How powerful states can use these mechanisms to shape public opinion. How states can deliberately change the ideology of their population. How propaganda and brainwashing work.

      iii) How this can be applied on a large scale. How totalitarianism and other such systems of mass influence work.

      5b) Given that Israel can change the ideology of the Palestinian population what’s the optimal time frame? Does it make sense to do it fast or slow?

      If we consider a scale of Zionism from 0 to 100 with 0 being your typical Saudi Arabian and 100 being Netanyahu I’d say the West Bank Palestinians are about a 15.

      Lets’s say that 70k Israelis working as part of a colonial administration can use mass persuasion techniques raise the Zionism of Palestinians on the West Bank from a 15 to a 40 over 10 years. Doing it that fast is going to involve the entire population going through a process of reeducation center with heavy terror and a complete collapse of social institutions (church, extended family, social structures…) for 2-3 years. It is going to mean a total takeover of Palestinian society at the most intimate levels.

      It may mean huge chunks of the populations shuffling through “reeducation centers” where they are exposed to even more intense persuasion. And it might mean outright killing a few percent of the population.

      Conversely a more gradual process many of the same steps are done but there is much less resistance thus less need for terror and violence. It is much easier to make sure Islam isn’t passed successfully from generation to generation and then isn’t passed at all, then to erase knowledge of Islam and affection for it from an active practitioner. But such a system might move the Palestinian average by only 0.5 per year.

      Which is better? I’m going to go on the side of long but it is a choice.

      Recruiting 70k people who are drawn towards totalitarianism from the Israeli population, training them in totalitarian methods of population reorientation, giving them a decade experience with them might have some inadvertent effects on how Israel is internally governed. :) Israel already has some strongly non-democratic tendencies I’m not sure it is in the interests of Israelis to supercharge them. On the other hand Israel does seem to have tremendous patience and the ability to maintain government strategies across administrations.

      I’m going to lean towards the slow approach though if someone wanted to go fast I can see that as a reasonable position. So 3 generations till you have large numbers of converts and lots of intermarriage and 5 till essentially the West Bank is fully Zionized.

    • JeffB:

      I was saying that Israeli Jews are a nation even if Jews in general are not.

      As I pointed out earlier, Israeli law explicitly rejects your notion of an Israeli-Jewish nation. Israeli law recognizes only a global Jewish nation.

      Your notion that there is "Israeli-Jewish nation", but no "Jewish nation"; that there is an "Israeli-Jewish people", but no "Jewish People"--that's a radical negation of the dominant core of the Zionist worldview.

      Israeli Jews are a people with a state.

      Jewish citizens of Israel share a state with non-Jewish citizens. But (most) Israeli Jews and global Jewry proclaim Israel to be the nation state of a global Jewish People , not the state of all its citizen. This makes Israel a discriminatory ethnocratic state, not a liberal-democratic state.

    • JeffB:

      You have a group of people that speak the same language, share the same culture, share a set of historical myths, share a common recent history, inhabit a particular territory, and give allegiance to the same government.ISRAELI JEWS are not under some hodgepodge definition a nationality the ARE A NATIONALITY under the strictest definitions.

      (emphasis added)

      Sophistry. As defined in Israeli law and mainstream Zionist ideology, there IS NO Israeli Jewish nationality, only a Jewish nationality.

      Israel is proclaimed to be the state of the Jewish nation ("the Jewish people’s nation state")--not the state of the Israeli Jewish nation -- and the Jewish nation comprises ALL Jews, not only those residing in Israel.

  • Fruits of a right-wing takeover: Knesset barrage limits Arab parties, conscripts the ultra-Orthodox, and puts the peace process to a vote
    • hophmi:

      I think that’s a little misleading. Israel has one of the lowest thresholds in the world, even with the change.

      3.25% is not particularly high, for sure. Wikipedia lists the thresholds here:

      link to

  • Shira Robinson explains the DNA of Israel
    • Ecru:

      Imagine if in Europe during WWII there had been a Jewish or Roma nation

      I guess you need to imagine a Jewish or Roma state able to defend itself militarily against all attackers--or take them down with them. Not easy to imagine without a nuclear arsenal.

    • talknic :

      @ Sibiriak “At what point, then, do the progeny of settlers cease to be settlers?”

      Simple. When they become legal citizens of the entity to which the territory legally belongs. As long as Israeli settlers and their children in non-Israeli territory...

      I was referring to individuals in Israel proper, or other states like the U.S., Australia etc. which have been classified as "settler-colonial" states.

    • Donald:

      [Sibiriak:]“At what point, then, do the progeny of settlers cease to be settlers?”

      I would have had a problem with that statement too, except that the article provided plenty of context. The point is that if the descendants of settlers still enjoy legal privileges that the descendants of the original inhabitants do not, then it is still a settler colonial state, and not a normal country with a history of conquest like so many others. ETC.

      I agree with everything you wrote, but it didn't quite answer the question. I was asking about the classification of individuals as "settlers", not the classification of states in historical-sociological terms.

      I think the word "settler" is terminologically incorrect for distant descendants of "settlers" who are now residents of a legal state, however discriminatory or oppressive that state may be. It just doesn't make sense to argue that all Israeli citizens today who are progeny of "settlers" are themselves also "settlers", but that they would instantly cease to be "settlers" if the Israeli state became fully democratic/non-discriminatory. Individuals as "settlers" and individuals as beneficiaries of a discriminatory ethnocratic state- those are two distinct concepts, which may or may not be related given the specific case.

      Btw, the term "settler" is interesting for its connotations. The fact is most Jewish immigrants (80%?) who came to mandatory Palestine ended up in cities , not in farms or kibbutzim etc. So, ironically, the term "settler" plays into the myth of Jewish pioneers developing and making bloom an unsettled land.

    • Seafoid:

      ... your grandchildren would still be settlers.

      At what point, then, do the progeny of settlers cease to be settlers?

  • Review of recent 'NYT' corrections raises doubts about paper's commitment to getting the facts right in Israel/Palestine
    • Benny Morris, "1948: A History of the First Arab-Israeli War":

      It is clear that Abdullah was far from confident of Arab victory and preferred a Jewish state as his neighbor to a Palestinian Arab state run by the mufti. "The Jews are too strong-it is a mistake to make war," he reportedly told Glubb just before the invasion.79 Abdullah's aim was to take over the West Bank rather than destroy the Jewish state...


      The Egyptian response was to change the planned single-prong offensive up the coast road into a two-pronged offensive. Now the left prong would proceed up the coast road toward Majdal and Isdud, and perhaps toward Tel Aviv, while a newly added right prong would veer eastward, via Beersheba, and occupy as much as possible of the southern West Bank, perhaps as far northward as Jerusalem.

      The Egyptians would thereby ensure that Abdullah would not get all of the West Bank and that they themselves would emerge from the war with a substantial and important part of central Palestine (Hebron and Bethlehem) under their control.82

      Thus, in the days before and after 15 May the war plan had changed in essence from a united effort to conquer large parts of the nascent Jewish state, and perhaps destroy it, into an uncoordinated, multilateral land grab.

      As a collective, the Arab states still wished and hoped to destroy Israel-and, had their armies encountered no serious resistance, would, without doubt, have proceeded to take all of Palestine, including Tel Aviv and Haifa.

      But, in the circumstances, their invasion now aimed at seriously injuring the Yishuv and conquering some of its territory while occupying all or most of the areas earmarked for Palestinian Arab statehood.

      From the start, the invasion plans had failed to assign any task whatsoever to the Palestinian Arabs or to take account of their political aspirations. Although the Arab leaders vaguely alluded to a duty to "save the Palestinians," none of them seriously contemplated the establishment of a Palestinian Arab state with Husseini at its head. All the leaders loathed Husseini; all, to one degree or another, cared little about Palestinian goals, their rhetoric notwithstanding. It was with this in mind that Jordan, on the eve of the invasion, ordered the ALA out of the West Bank" and subsequently disarmed the local Arab militias.

    • [Dershowitz:]“Why are so many of the grandchildren of Nazis and Nazi collaborators who brought us the Holocaust once again declaring war on the Jews?

      Obviously because anti-Semitism is transmitted genetically.

    • Sumud:

      You probably know this Patrick but just to be 100% clear the five Arab armies never attacked Israel proper in 1948

      But was it their intention to invade Israel proper and dismantle the Israeli state?

  • J Street cheerleading for Kerry features Congressman warning Palestinians will demand the vote if two states fails
    • ToivoS :

      ...who in their right mind thought Kerry could succeed.

      Kerry's proposals are so much in Israel's favor, so much the fulfillment of longstanding Israeli goals, and so unjust to the Palestinians, that it is not entirely unreasonably for some Liberal Zionists to think that Israel just might be pressured into accepting them. If that happened and the Palestinians balked, taking the blame, a road might open for the unilateral imposition of the U.S. backed Kerry proposals, or something close to them--so the thinking might go.

    • ritzl:

      Do they really expect to generate and lead a massive crescendo of re-envigorated demands for “Two States, NOW!”

      Yes, or at least to try.

  • Israel is now attempting to 'de-Arabize' Palestinian Christians, but in the 1950s it was Jews from the Middle East
    • MahaneYehude1:

      You describe the Mizrahi Jews as passive peoples that can’t decide anything in their life. You always use passive verbs like “they were forced, were spirited, were subject… etc”.

      I think you have a valid point there. Ilan Pappe avoids the suggestion of complete passivity by utilizing the phrases such as "self de-Arabization" , "voluntarily and by a policy from above" etc., in reference to Jews that came to Israel from Arab countries.

      In the new Jewish state a Jew became an ethnic identity and a Jew was, apparently, someone who was not an ‘Arab’ – not any Arab but someone who was not a Palestinian. Without such a definition the question of who was a Jew, a permanent source of trouble in the history of Israeli law-making and administration, would have remained an insoluble issue between religious and national definitions.

      There were of course Arab Jews, or Jews who came from Arab countries, but they were de-Arabized, voluntarily and by a policy from above: coached to Hebraicize their Arabic names, distance themselves from their Arabic language, history and roots, and adopt strong anti-Arab positions as the best means of integrating into the veteran Ashkenazi, namely European, society.16


      In 1954, the new Jewish immigrants from Arab countries were still communicating freely with the Palestinians as new neighbours and as connoisseurs of the same culture. The first group that sensed this inevitable affinity was the poets and writers. Some of the Jews coming from Arab countries were quite well-known poets and writers in their homelands. At first they united with Palestinian writers to form their own union as Arabic writers. In March 1955, Palestinian and Jewish poets convened a conference of Arabic poetry in Nazareth, organized by Michel Haddad, a Palestinian poet and editor of the literary monthly al-Mujtama’. Three famous Jewish Iraqi poets, Zakai Binyamin, Salim Sha'shu'a and Shalom al-Kitab, took part in the event, which was attended by more than five hundred people.62

      For Jewish immigrants who had been artists in the former Arab countries – writers, poets or singers – the only ready-made audience in Israel who could consume their trade were the Palestinians. When the famous Jewish Egyptian belly dancer Zahara Yehoshua arrived in 1954 the only places she performed in were the Palestinian villages. Later she would be de-Arabized, with all the other members of her community, rename herself Dalya and desert her Arab culture.


      When a bomb exploded in the central bus station in Tel Aviv, the mob tried to lynch anyone who looked like an Arab – in some cases Jews who came from Arab countries attacked other Jews with the same origin, mistaking them for ‘Arabs’. These terrifying moments did not however help to change the attitude of the Mizrahi Jews towards the Palestinians – by and large as a political electorate they emerged as even more anti-Arab in general and anti-Palestinian in particular after 1973 (which explains their support for Menachem Begin's Likud Party during those years).

      [...]As mentioned before, their own low socio-economic conditions in comparison to the Ashkenazi Jews, their geographical location, on the borders with Arab countries where the conflict was felt more acutely, and above all the realization of many among them that self de-Arabization was the key factor that would ensure their full integration into the more veteran Israeli Jewish society, are the main reasons quoted by scholars on this subject.47


      [Begin] was voted in by an Arab Jewish, Mizrahi, electorate, who were persuaded by an appeal to their anti-Arabism, among other issues. In their eyes, if I may recap what I have pointed out earlier on, and in the political manipulation of the political right in Israel, their ticket to full integration into the Israeli society was their ability to de-Arabize themselves: to wipe out their Arab traditions, roots and language so that they would become as Israeli and Zionist as the Ashkenazi Jews. Displaying a strong anti-Arab position, including vis-à-vis the Palestinian minority in Israel, assured success in the struggle for integration and with it, maybe, personal economic prosperity. Begin unashamedly exploited this impulse and these apprehensions.

      Ilan Pappe, "The Forgotten Palestinians: A History of the Palestinians in Israel "

  • Grindr in Hebron: A dispatch from the last debate
    • tokyobk :

      A German who doesn’t write sensitively about Jews may not be an anti-semite but is definitely an a-hole.

      Why should there be a separate standard for Germans? There is no guilt transmitted via genetics or citizenship,. Germans should be able to speak openly just like other individuals. And blanket "sensitivity" for all Jews just because they are Jewish? Nonsense.

  • Robert Caro, Nakba-denier
    • Sumud:

      If you read more carefully the speech which Hostage quoted Lindbergh doesn’t refer to any such monolithic entity

      Good points and thanks for the correction. I still think Lindbergh goes too far in the "monolithic" direction with this statement, for example, where he speaks of Jews as a unitary "race" with identifiable "leaders":

      But I am saying that the leaders of both the British and the Jewish races, for reasons which are as understandable from their viewpoint as they are inadvisable from ours, for reasons which are not American, wish to involve us in the war.

      I realize that the term "race" probably means something more like "people" in today's terminology, and there were Jewish "leaders", so my point may not be so compelling.

    • yonah fredman:

      I don’t really care if in his heart he really loved the Jews [...]That was an antisemitic speech, meaning that the effect of the speech was to cow the Jews.

      First of all, I reject both your and Lindbergh's assertion of a monolithic entity "the Jews".

      More importantly, I reject your defining anti-Semitism solely in terms of the subjective reaction of Jews.

      "Having the effect of cowing Jews" is simply not a reasonable definition of anti-Semitism. Many Jews say they feel cowed by criticisms of Israeli policies/Zionsim-- does that mean those critics are necessarily anti-Semites? Of course, not. Your definition of anti-Semitism is untenable and pernicious,.

      When you label someone an anti-Semite, you necessarily refer to the person's feelings, intentions, motives. You are saying not simply that the person is mistaken, wrong, illogical, nonsensical, ignorant, stupid or whatever, you are saying that the person is motivated by hatred of Jews .

      And for the record, I never said I agreed with Lindbergh's statements, or that they were "just" or anything like that, so you can stop putting words in my mouth. I simply disagree with your characterization of Lindbergh as an anti-Semite based on that speech . So, it doesn't make a difference to my argument how many people quit the American First committee in protest of Lindbergh's speech.

    • yonah fredman:

      Isn’t it relevant to see the reaction of the Jews of September 1941 to his speech.

      The reaction of Jews tells us how Jews interpreted his words. It doesn't tell us what Lindbergh intended to convey. If Jews interpreted his words as a threat, that does not mean that they were a threat. I don't see how you can dispute that simple logic.

      do you feel that we should only look at his words as if they were spoken in a vacuum

      No. Hostage did a nice job above explaining the historical context.
      That context involves much more than simply the subjective interpretation of Jewish listeners to the speech.

      You STILL have not adequately answered this question:

      ...on what basis do you determine that Lindbergh was making a threat against Jews motivated by Jew-hatred as opposed to a warning motivated by the concern about the loss of tolerance that can happen in war time?

      Saying it was a threat because Jews felt is was a threat is NOT at all a satisfactory answer.

    • yonah fredman:

      [Lindbergh:]" Their greatest danger to this country lies in their large ownership and influence in our motion pictures, our press, our radio and our government."

      What kind of anti war statement is that?

      If you were engaging in critical thinking, not polemics, you wouldn't pull that statement out of context.

      In context , the anti-war import is clear: a group whose leaders were in favor of a war would be in an especially strong position to promote that pro-war view due to considerable media control and influence over government. Whether that assessment was completely accurate or not, it was certainly connected to an anti-war statement.

    • yonah fredman:

      A threat against the Jews that if war breaks out and it doesn’t go well for America it will not go well for the Jews, that’s how I interpret this:.

      Fortunately, not everyone would read into those statements the most negative possible meanings and motivations as you have.

      The question you have never been able to answer is: on what basis do you determine that Lindbergh was making a threat against Jews motivated by Jew-hatred as opposed to a warning motivated by the concern about the loss of tolerance that can happen in war time?

      Why can't you admit that yours is certainly not the only reasonable interpretation of his words, and that to interpret them in the most negative way possible is, therefore, a choice? Why can't you tolerate any other less negative interpretations and reactions to those statements?

      And why haven't you adduced corroborating evidence of Lindbergh's alleged Jew-hatred?

    • Israel didn’t bomb Cairo.

      The most striking air operation was the attempted bombing on 15 July of King Farouk's Abdeen Palace in Cairo by a lone IAF B-17. Three B-17 Flying Fortresses had been purchased by the Haganah in the United States before 15 May, had been flown to Czechoslovakia to be outfitted and armed, and on 15 July had set out for Israel. Their orders were to bomb Egyptian targets on the way. One headed for Cairo, where it failed to hit the palace but caused some damage nearby,132 causing Ben-Gurion satisfaction if not joy. 133

      The bombing certainly raised morale in Tel Aviv. 134 Some thirty Egyptians died and a railway line was hit.135 The two other airplanes bombed Rafah (instead of El Arish, their ordained target) before landing at `Eqron Airfield. 136 The Egyptians responded on 16 and 17 July by repeatedly bombing Tel Aviv with Dakotas, accompanied by a Spitfire fighter escort, killing at least fifteen Israelis.

      The Egyptians lost one Dakota. 137 In the following days the B-17s bombed El Arish and Syrian positions around Mishmar Hayarden. On the night of 17-18 July an IAF Dakota bombed Damascus itself, killing about sixty and injuring another eighty to one hundred people. The bombs blew out the windows of the Syrian parliament building. 138 A further bombing, by a lone B-17 bomber on the morning of 18 July, aimed at Maze Airfield but missed, hitting Damascus itself, with bombs and crates of large bottles (to "heighten panic"). Twenty persons were killed and eighty injured, and windows and doors in the apartment occupied by the US charge d'affaires shattered. This provided "an unpleasant introduction" for the American minister, James Keeley, who had arrived in the Syrian capital the night before.13`9 Rich families reportedly fled Damascus, and the Syrian government began building air raid shelters. The Syrians (and Iraqis) reacted that evening by bombing the Ramat David Airfield and Haifa but failed to hit anything. 140

      The IAF Messerschmitt Squadron flew ground-support missions and occasionally intercepted Egyptian aircraft. The Arab air forces were almost completely ineffective; only the Syrian air attacks around Mishmar Hayarden had a serious impact.

      Benny Morris, "1948: A History of the First Arab-Israeli War"

  • On John Judis's 'Genesis,' and its critics
    • Naftush:

      Mr. Slater writes, “As is well-known, the Zionist leadership seized upon the ‘transfer’ solution and it became deeply embedded in Zionist ideology—and behavior—thereafter.”
      Unsupported. Gratuitous. Unworthy.

      Completely supported and meticulously documented in Nur Masalha's book, "Expulsion of the Palestinians: The Concept of “Transfer” in Zionist Political Thought 1882–1948."

    • Donald:

      What were the choices available for Jewish refugees in 1947 outside of Palestine?

      Another question: What would have been the choices available for Jewish refugees in 1947 outside of Palestine if Palestine had not been a viable choice?

    • dbroncos:

      Every settler who moves into the West Bank ... adds another nail to the coffin of the 2ss.

      Every settler who moves into the West Bank also adds another nail to the coffin of any democratic 1SS.

  • Dateline, Ukraine: How the State Department 'midwives' democracy
    • [Paul Craig Roberts:]What has happened in Ukraine is that Washington plotted against and overthrew an elected legitimate government and then lost control to neo-nazis

      I'm not entirely in agreement with the use of the term "neo-Nazi" (too reductionist) to describe ultra-nationalist parties like Svoboda, but in any case, their power in the new regime in Kiev should not downplayed.

      Oleg Makhnitski from Svoboda has been appointed to the office of prosecutor general, along with a number of other far-right appointments to key positions, including Secretary and Deputy Secretary of the National Security and Defence Council-. The first order of business apparently is to arrest and jail Ukrainians who wish to democratically challenge the current regime.

      Case in point: The ex-governor of the Kharkiv region, Mikhail Dobkin, has been arrested and jailed. A former Yanukovich supporter and fierce opponent of the new Kiev regime, he resigned the governorship in order to run as a candidate in the upcoming May 25 elections. He's "pro-Russian", no doubt about it--he supports rights for Russian speakers and greater regional autonomy, maintaining ties with Russia etc.,--and he questioned the legitimacy of the coup-installed regime, but he never supported secession for any region. Nevertheless, he was called to the prosecutor general's office, accused of separatism, and hauled off to a detention center.

      See (in Russian):
      link to

      This kind of anti-democratic repression bodes very ill. With far-right leaders in key prosecutorial and national security positions, its difficult to see how any kind of national reconciliation will be possible. This coming election on May 25th obviously can't have any legitimacy at all if opposition parties are outlawed and opposition candidates are thrown in jail.

  • Mainstream press embraces Netanyahu's speech as supporting Kerry initiative
    • James Canning :

      How do you think the Mandate for Palestine was created? By something other than “right of conquest”?

      Good point.

      Cf. UN Special Committee on Report to the General Assembly (1947):

      180. The spirit which prevailed at the creation of the Mandate for Palestine was explained by Lord Balfour at the opening of the eighteenth session of the Council of the League of Nations as follows:

      [...] "Remember that a mandate is a self-imposed limitation by the conquerors on the sovereignty which they obtained over conquered territories. It is imposed by the Allied and Associated Powers themselves in the interests of what they conceived to be the general welfare of mankind and they have asked the League of Nations to assist them in seeing that this policy should be carried into effect. But the League of Nations is not the author of the policy, but its instrument.

      link to

    • puppies:

      . That Green Line is only based on right of conquest; illegitimate; both sides of that wall are wrong.

      Not all historical wrongs can be made completely right, unfortunately.

      All of Palestine including the Zionist entity is illegally settled by the Zionists.

      And Israel subsequently became a legally recognized state, and its citizens have rights independent of how their state came into existence. How would you propose that be undone?

  • New Israeli legislation favoring Christians seeks to divide Palestinian community
    • Walid:

      . I think it’s a religion but Jews themselves are insisting they are a nation.

      The confusion comes from these facts, imo:

      Judaism is a religion of nationality (peoplehood); if you believe in the Jewish religion (most variants) you perforce believe in a Jewish nation/people.

      Conversely, Jewish nationalism --even if stripped of any belief in God--is based on religious ideas: the Chosen People, The Land of Israel, Exile, Wandering, Return etc. --all mythological ideas which would be essentially meaningless without their Biblical foundation.

      So, Jewish religion and Jewish nationalism can never be completely separated.

      That does not, however, mean that Jewish nationalism must take a modern political form of ethnocratic territorial sovereignty.

    • First, since it is reasonable to assume that a person cannot have two nationalities

      That means American Jews (et al.) are not American by nationality OR they are not part of the Jewish nation.

      this change would compel Jewish citizens of Israel to choose between being Israeli and Jewish.

      This implies that being Jewish necessarily means being Jewish by nationality; a Jew cannot NOT be part of the Jewish nation.

      Therefore, American Jews cannot be American by nationality, by definition.

  • Obama warns Israel about delegitimization, and Oren suggests annexation
    • W.Jones:

      It sounds like the Israeli Plan B is to recognize a state that does not have full sovereignty, is overseen militarily, and whose territory is limited and chopped into pieces- something not wholly different from what happened to Gaza.


  • Poll: If two-states collapse, Americans overwhelmingly favor 'democracy'
    • RoHa:

      I am not yet convinced that the West Bank Palestinians have any strongly-felt national aspirations.

      Palestinians in the West Bank, as far as I can tell, do not see themselves as a national group separate from Palestinians in Gaza and elsewhere. So...

      My guess (and I will set it aside in the face of solid evidence) is that the aspirations are for full and equal citizenship in a state on the territory of Palestine.

      Even if true, those aspirations would be for ALL Palestinians who would want to be citizens of such a Palestine--and those would be national aspirations.

      I have seen no evidence that West Bank Palestinians have expressed the desire to become citizens of a Greater Israel (Palestine) in which Gazans would be excluded, not to mention refugees, and in which they would be subject to Jewish majority rule. Have you?

      The movement for a West Bank state was simply a desperate bid to free themselves from Israeli oppression.

      There IS NO "movement for a West Bank state". All the main Palestinian two-state conceptions include Gaza , afaik.

      Historically, Palestinians wanted a single state in mandatory Palestine. The PLO dropped that concept decades ago and opted for the "two states for two peoples" paradigm, recognizing Israel as a separate state. It's yet to bee seen if Palestinians will give up the 2-state idea and return to a single-state paradigm. And yes, the idea was to end Israel occupation and oppression.

    • Blownaway:

      they don’t want pieces of the West Bank they want it all.

      I disagree. Only a few on the extreme right support annexing the entire West Bank. Jewish Home party chairman Naftali Bennett called for Israel to annex only Area C, leaving out the majority of the Palestinian population in the West Bank.

      Netanyahu, following Sharon, Barak et al.--the mainstream of Zionist expansionist thinking, exemplified by the Apartheid Wall--supports annexing the major settlement blocks etc. and giving the Palestinians a small, demilitarized, dependent statelet, i.e., taking the maximum amount of land with the minimum number of Palestinians .

      In any case, none of them are considering annexing Gaza, which holds some 1.8 million Palestinians.

      How do you see "the world" forcing Gaza into a single Israeli/Palestinian state, assuming "the world" could get Palestine to dissolve itself, and West Bank Palestinians to give up their national aspirations, not to mention Israeli forced acceptance?

    • Blownaway:

      Obama will say he prevailed on Netanyahu to accept the difficult choices in the framework(everything they want) and the Palestinians said no.

      Of course, that's a likely possibility.

      And then, suppose (after some time) Israel unilaterally declares its borders, annexing major settlement blocs and leaving the remainder +Gaza for the Palestinian "state".

      What would be the poll question options at that point?

    • What’s more, if the option is taken off the table...

      And how would that actually happen? Would Abbas/Palestine/PLO have to renounce Palestine's current UN statehood status and officially demand the legal merger of Israel, Gaza and the West Bank?

    • When Americans are asked what solution they favor, they go for the two-state outcome over a one-state paradigm by 39-24 (with another 24 percent supporting occupation/annexation).

      If you combine the 39% 2SS + 24% occupation/annexation, you get 63% opposed to a democratic 1SS.

    • German Lefty:

      I find the choice of words a bit problematic.

      There are two kinds of a two-state solution:
      - a Zionist two-state solution (liberal Zionist goal)
      - a non-Zionist two-state solution (BDS goal)

      There are two kinds of a one-state solution:
      - a Zionist one-state solution (conservative Zionist goal)
      - a non-Zionist one-state solution (BDS goal)

      Excellent point.

    • Krauss:

      Understand what Finkelstein says: he says the privileged group must eradicate the system that it built and nurtures

      Where does Finkelstein say that?

    • mondonut

      Of course, that single state would be Israel from the river to the sea excluding both Gaza Of course, that single state would be Israel from the river to the sea excluding both Gaza.

      Yep. Excluding Gaza and refugees is a big problem for the "one-staters".

      Would Americans support the forced merger of Gaza and Israel?

  • Thought experiment. Dateline Ukraine
    • The newly-appointed Dnepropetrovsk governor is Igor Kolomoysky, Ukraine’s third-wealthiest man, with an estimated fortune of $2.4 billion. He co-owns the informal commercial group Privat, which includes Ukraine’s largest bank Privatbank, which Kolomoysky heads, as well as assets in the oil, ferroalloys and food industries, agriculture and transport.

      A former ally of Yulia Tymoshenko, Kolomoysky reportedly had a falling out with her and refused to finance her election campaign in 2010, which the ex-prime minister subsequently lost to Yanukovich. Kolomoysky was reported to be a principal sponsor of the UDAR party, which is one of the three fueling the street campaign to oust Yanukovich.

      Kolomoysky has a dual Ukrainian-Israeli citizenship and controls his business empire from Switzerland.

      link to

  • Making visible the Nakba: a US education project
    • dispossession of the Palestinian people that began with the founding of the state.

      The dispossession of the Palestinian people began long before that.

  • Thanking Wieseltier, Shavit wants to save young American Jews who've been 'exposed to anti-Israel propaganda'
    • yonah fredman:

      continuity of the Jewish people

      You refer to "the Jewish people"--but what, then, are you proposing as the common denominator that supposedly links all Jews into a single people ?

  • 'NYT' says East Jerusalem isn't occupied, and Israel lobby takes credit
    • jonah fredman:

      Jews, yehudim, as a corporate group, carry upon themselves the recent history (post 1948), the abyss history (1933-1945), modern pre abysss history (1789-1933) and onward through the years. they also carry the books: the talmud with its laws, the practices of Shabbat and kosher and the book called Tanach.

      No. Jews are not " a corporate group" that carries upon itself "the talmud with its laws" etc., since huge number of Jews do not do so.

    • yonah:

      the people whose language is the language of the bible.

      Well, that "people" is certainly not the "Jewish people", since "the language of the Bible" is not the language of millions of Jews today. Millions of Jews do not speak, read or write in Hebrew.

      As for the past, should you not condemn the Zionists' all out war on Jewish culture-- the hateful assault on the Yiddishist culture of the vast majority of Jews-- just as vehemently as you praise the Zionist Hebrew cultural revolution?

      The founders believed that national revolution necessitated an absolute social and emotional break with exile. Immigration to Palestine was supposed to represent a new birth, a rupture with the past whose chief symbol was the obliteration of Yiddish culture...

      [..]The zealotry concerning the Hebrew language, the total war on Yiddish culture, and its progressive elimination from the lives of the pioneers were a necessary stage in nation-building, but they were also a striking, uncompromising expression of the national-revolutionary trend.


      There are many examples of this phenomenon [the founders and pioneers turning against their own Jewish culture]. On 3 January 1951 the censor, at that time attached to the Ministry of the Interior, forbade theatrical troupes, singers, and other entertainers to perform in Yiddish. Only foreign troupes or actors on tour in the country were allowed to use Yiddish. Copies of the letter containing this prohibition were sent to the criminal department of the police in Tel Aviv as well as to the police headquarters (Archives of the Ministry of Culture).


      Not only was Jewish history in exile deemed to be unimportant, but the value of living Jews, Jews of flesh and blood, depended entirely on their use as raw material for national revival.

      The Jewish communities scattered across Central and Eastern Europe were important to the founders chiefly as a source of pioneers. They were considered to have no value in themselves.

      (Zeev Sternhell, "The Founding Myths of Israel")

    • MahaneYehude1:

      Isn’t it nice that a people returned his homeland after a long exile

      Except there was no people returning to a "homeland", and there had been no "exile."


      No. Mythology.

    • Currently, Palestine's leadership is not demanding in negotiations or political statements sovereignty over any part of territory inside the Green Line --is it?; Israel, in contrast, IS demanding sovereignty over major chunks of territory occupied in 1967.

    • Hostage:

      the territory on Israel’s side of the Green Line must ipso jure be treated as ‘disputed’ too

      Ipso jure yes, but as a matter of politics , Palestine's leadership is NOT disputing territory on Israel's side of the Green Line (is it?), while Israel's leadership IS disputing territory occupied in 1967.

  • The cowardly Leon
    • yonah fredman:

      Feeling Palestinian pain...

      It's not just about Palestinian suffering; it's about justice, dignity, human rights, and national aspirations.

      Israel should annex the West Bank and give the Palestinians living there full citizenship and voting rights.

      That's exactly the proposal of some folks on the extreme right in Israel:

      link to

      Yonah's generous offer--what would it do? Permanently fragment the Palestinian people, destroying their national aspirations. A portion would be given voting rights in a Jewish-supremacist Israel but be subject to all the discrimination and subordination that comes from not being Jewish in Jewish-nation-state (which happens to be moving toward even more extreme Jewish nationalism.) Some 1.8 million Palestinians would remain encaged in a tiny Gaza statelet; and nothing for the millions of scattered Palestinian refugees.

      Then again, the idea can't be all bad---Shingo supports it!

      The more realistic Israeli annexation proposal:

      [Jewish Home party] chairman Naftali Bennett has previously called for Israel to annex Area C, leaving the majority of the Palestinians in the West Bank without full rights.

      [...]According to the Israeli Right’s idea, the state will absorb roughly 2 million Palestinians from the West BankAccording to the Israeli Right’s idea, the state will absorb roughly 2 million Palestinians from the West Bank but remain the same in every other aspect.

      link to

  • Settler leader's vision for peace: millions of American Jews must move to Israel and Palestine
    • link to

      13:24:Mr Yanukovych says the new government in Ukraine has no genuine authority from parliament. "People who preach violence" have come to power he says. Andriy Parubiy, Dmytro Yarosh and Oleh Tyahnybok are people who "strike fear into Israel".

    • Keith:

      US supported rise of the neo-Nazi parties in places such as the Ukraine where a successful imperial destabilization has occurred.

      I'm not so sure it was so much real support as use. Now that a "pro-Western" regime is in place and neoliberal policies can be implemented, their usefulness may come to an end.

      Today's stories:

      "Ukraine's PM-designate Arseniy Yatsenyuk warns of 'unpopular' steps to save the economy..."


      Ukraine has asked the International Monetary Fund to help prepare a new financial aid program ...


      The White House has sent financial experts to Ukraine to help its new leaders deal with the economic crisis...

  • Israel lobby group compiles secret dossiers on pro-Palestinian speakers
    • Shmuel:

      “In order to have peace, there must be mutual understanding and even respect for each other’s narratives and history. Which aspects of Israel’s history and situation do you and other Palestinians find most persuasive and legitimate?”

      Here too, the premise is flawed.

      The question after the premise seems strange to me. How can an aspect of Israel's history be persuasive and/or legitimate ? Does that presume that there is a single, uncontested historical narrative--an official version? Worse: how can an aspect of a situation be persuasive/legitimate?

  • Political Zionism is destroying a culture and a people, and intentionally so
    • Citizen:

      The Palestinians will reject the PA if all they are offered is a castrated rump state.

      "If" ??

    • @BingBong: From your Times of Israel link:

      44% of Israelis said they supported an Israeli withdrawal from the entire West Bank, with the exception of some settlement blocs in less than 3% of the area which would be swapped for an equal amount of territory inside the Green Line.

      That means the majority of Israeli respondents DO NOT support a 2SS settlement based on pre-1967 borders WITH LAND SWAPS to allow Israeli sovereignty over major settlement blocs.

      It seems Israelis do NOT support a settlement creating an independent, sovereign STATE, but a settlement that gives the Palestinians a small dependent statelet with limited sovereignty made up of barely contiguous enclaves.

      I hope you’re not calling Palestinians in favour of 2SS mentally defective.

      From your link: "Fifty-six percent of polled Palestinians supported a similar withdrawal plan "

      So, unlike the Israelis , the majority Palestinian respondents supported a two STATE settlement.

      But that's NOT what Kerry/Israel are proposing.

      Here's a recent report:

      Secretary of State John Kerry's framework agreement draft as "madness," Palestinian newspaper Al-Quds reported Wednesday.

      According to the paper, meetings held between the two last week in Paris were very difficult and Abbas was on the verge of blowing up the peace negotiations.

      According to Al-Quds, Kerry demanded Abbas to official recognize Israel as a Jewish state, and offered that Beit Hanina neighborhood will be declared as the Palestinian capital instead of the entire east Jerusalem area.

      This was not the first time the Americans have offered only a part of east Jerusalem for the Palestinian capital. In a previous round of talks, the Americans offered Abu Dis as an alternative - an offered that was rejected immediately.

      Additionally, the secretary of state demanded that as part of land swaps, Israel will keep ten settlement blocs.

      In addition, Kerry has raised the possibility that the Jordan Valley will not be a part of the Palestinian state. This is in contradiction to comments Abbas made several weeks ago to the New York Times, where he expressed willingness to allow both international and Israeli presence in the area for an interim period of several years.

      The paper reported that Abbas was furious at Kerry's proposal and threatened to turn back on his recent flexible offers.

      [...]Abbas had presented his core principles earlier this month during an interview with the New York Times. He confirmed that a Palestinian state might have to cede its defensive capability to NATO, and that he could accept IDF presence in the West Bank for a five-year period after the signing of an agreement. The Palestinian leader even agreed to a gradual evacuation of Israeli settlements in the West Bank.

      However, Abbas insisted that he would not recognize Israel as a Jewish state.

      link to

    • JeffB:

      “Zionism not DNA created the Jewish Nation. ”

      So before Zionism there was no "Jewish Nation".

  • Meet the Jewish students who are taking on the Jewish establishment
    • “These activist “young Jews” are obligated as American citizens, not as “Jews.”

      And they are obligated as human beings, not just as "American citizens."

      And what is the ultimate source of these obligations?

  • BDS and the purveyors of Israel's democratic image
    • James North:

      So why are you here, commenting every 10 minutes?

      You might find an answer to that question if you carefully consider this statement by JeffB:

      [ JeffB to Krauss:] You aren’t a parent yet. But in a couple years you start realizing you are never going to [be] that figure you pictured growing up.

      Instead your hope rests in the baby in the crib. And for the American Jewish community that baby is Israel.

    • JeffB:

      It is part of Jews walking away from the navel gazing of the diaspora. Jews become fully human and live in human societies under human rules.

      Jews aren't "fully human" and don't live in "human societies" if they are not living in Israel??

      But if a Jew wants to spend his live navel gazing it is still possible to dedicate their life to moral service under Zionism.

      "Moral service" = "navel gazing"?


      Are you choosing your words carefully?

    • JeffB:

      Putin’s United Russia party has 0 international legitimacy, who cares? The Communist Party of China has 0 international legitimacy, who cares?

      Moral legitimacy-- Jews care.

      The sad thing-- from a Zionist perspective --is that the idea of "aliya" is no longer possible. There can be no ‘ascent’ via immigration to Israel, no elevation of the Jew to a higher form of living and existence. There can now only be "yerida"--descent.

    • JeffB:

      the “stupid” comment was unnecessary and rude.

      My "its the Occupation, stupid" was an allusion to James Carville's famous "the economy, stupid" 1992 campaign message.

      The phrase has become a snowclone repeated often in American political culture, usually starting with the word "it's" and with commentators sometimes using a different word in place of "economy." Examples include "It's the deficit, stupid!"[3] "It's the corporation, stupid!"[4] "It's the math, stupid!"[5] and "It's the voters, stupid!".[6]

      link to

      It wasn't a comment about you.

      [JeffB:]The argument is about the BDS position not the PA position nor the Arab League position...BDS is a reaction against 2SS which is both the PA and Arab League position.

      The original 2005 BDS statement of goals read:

      1. Ending its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands and dismantling the Wall .

      That was changed to:

      Ending its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands occupied in June 1967 and dismantling the Wall;

      As I argued in another thread, a call for the end to the occupation/colonization of post 1967 territories acquired by Israel effectively equivalent to a call for two states , at least in the short term, since an end to Israeli occupation of the West Bank and Gaza would mean Palestine, already a de jure state, becoming a de facto state alongside Israel. Of course, others disagree.

      The fact is, as stated, the official BDS goals are quite vague --deliberately so, imo--and can be interpreted different ways. Your interpretation is not invalid, but it is the most extreme possible. Other interpretations are possible.

      You know that no one is imposing any solution on a nuclear power over a few million refugees.

      I was referring there to the possibility of Israel at some point imposing a solution on the Palestinians via Israeli annexation of parts of the West Bank, not anybody imposing something on Israel.

    • Maximus Decimus Meridius :

      Come on Jeff. You KNOW that is a totally idiotic comparison.

      Like any analogy of this type, it is imperfect, but it is far from "idiotic".

      The resistance of Jewish Israelis to having Israel turned into an Arab-Muslim-majority governed state is comparable to the resistance French citizens would put up to having France turned into a German majority-governed state. And, arguably, there is a greater religious, cultural and "civilizational" divide between Jewish Israelis and Arab/Muslim Palestinans than there is between contemporary French and Germans.

    • JeffB:

      1) The greenline / wall is a demand for Israel to relinquish control of lands on which over 10% of their population lives

      The Palestinians (and Arab states) have long ago signaled willingness to agree to land swaps that will put major Israeli settlement blocks under Israeli sovereignty. So, your 10% figure is only theoretical, not at all realistic.

      2) Equality is a demand for a radical restructuring of the government so that it is less representative of what the Israeli Jewish people want.

      The demand for equality within Israel proper isn't the driving force behind BDS' popularity--it's the Occupation, stupid. Arab Israelis already have basic civil rights in Israel, and an increase in equality will result from a gradual social as well as political process, not a sudden "radical restructuring" of the Israeli government .

      13) 194 is a call for Israel to be overrun with a hostile population.

      1) Everything depends on how 194 is interpreted, especially in terms of the rights of descendants of refugees.

      2) Crucially, the Palestinian leadership has long ago signaled that they would agree to an implementation of a right of return that would involve symbolism, compensation, and only a very small number of Palestinians returning to Israel.

      Maximalist goals and achievable results need to be distinguished. Personally, I see BDS achievable results as: 1) Further delegitimization of Zionist ideology and policy, with long term implications. 2) Increased pressure on Israel to agree to a two "state" settlement. 3) Set the stage for a very long-term anti-Apartheid -like struggle in the unlikely event that Israeli flat-out rejects any two "state" settlement and attempts to annex the entire West Bank.

      Furthermore, BDS works synergistically with other social/political forces: international governmental and popular pressure on Israel (increased "pariah state" status); legal action via the UN, ICC etc.; non-violent Palestinian protests, and so on.

      Having said all that, I still believe a "1.5 state" arrangement, either through negotiation or imposition, is the most likely short-term outcome. But the dynamics are complex, and many possibilities exist. The future is open.

  • 'Price-tag' attacks on Palestinians are as Israeli and common as matkot on a Tel Aviv beach
    • eljay:

      I see a couple of obvious differences:
      - Esperanto was constructed more recently than English, Japanese and Arabic; and
      - it wasn’t adopted to the extent that the other three languages were.

      >> If constructedness isn’t the crucial differentiating factor, what is?

      Not sure what you mean by “constructedness”, but I’d say the “crucial differentiating factor” is, not surprisingly, how they are constructed (i.e., their constructions).

      I'd say there is a difference in how they were constructed.

      Esperanto and other "conlangs" have been planned and constructed consciously and deliberately , by a small number of intellectuals who had an ideological goal governing the construction process . That's quite different from how ordinary languages such as English, Arabic, Japanese etc. were constructed.

      A planned or constructed language (short: conlang) is a language whose phonology, grammar, and/or vocabulary has been consciously devised for human/human-like communication, instead of having developed naturally. It is also referred to as an artificial or invented language.

      link to

      In the philosophy of language, a natural language (or ordinary language) is any language which arises in an unpremeditated fashion as the result of the innate facility for language possessed by the human intellect.

    • eljay:

      All languages are constructed, not natural

      Okay. But there is a huge difference between a language such as Esperanto and languages such as English, Japanese, Arabic etc.

      If constructedness isn't the crucial differentiating factor, what is?

  • 144 Irish educators pledge boycott-- as Karmi says, We gave up waiting on governments for help
    • brokebook:

      As I’ve pointed out repeatedly, Ronit Lentin herself states, after 45 years of living in Ireland, “I’m not Irish.”

      By "Irish" she means being a member of an "Irish" ethnos or "people" constructed as Gaelic and Catholic etc. If she has to have a Gaelic and Catholic identity to be "Irish", she could live 100 years in Ireland and still not be "Irish" in that meaning of the word.. So, using that meaning of the word, of course, she is not and cannot ever be , "Irish".

      On the other hand, she IS "Irish", meaning a full and equal member of the Irish citizenry. And, arguably , she has the same right as any other citizen to criticize the state and/or attempt to alter the Irish state/society.

      The alternative would be to argue that some Irish citizens are more "Irish" than others and have a greater right to determine the policies of the Irish state and the character of Irish society/culture. That would make Ireland an ethnocracy, at least partially, not a democracy.

    • brokebook:

      Ronit Lentin who has lived in Ireland for 45 years but states, “I’m not Irish.”

      Your argument is unclear because it doesn't distinguish between two meanings of the word "Irish".

      1) "Irish" = member of an "ethnic" group constructed as an Irish Gaelic, Catholic "people" (with other defining cultural elements, as well).

      2) "Irish"= member of the citizenry of the Irish state.

      Lentin, of course, could never be "Irish" in the first meaning, since she, presumably, can't identify as Gaelic or as Catholic and probably lacks other "Irish" (=ethnos) cultural identifiers. She is clearly "Irish" in the second meaning though.

      The issue then becomes: Does the Irish state promote the relative inclusion and valorization of the "Irish"=ethnos subset of Irish citizens and the relative exclusion and devaluation of non-"Irish"=ethnos subset of Irish citizens? And if so, is this good or bad?

      Put another way, does/should the Irish state embody and employ the notion that ethnic-"Irish" citizens are more "Irish" than non-ethnic "Irish" citizens?

  • 'Can you tell who is an Arab?' appeal is tax-deductible
  • Hillary Clinton to do NY fundraiser with man whose 'only agenda' is Israel
    • Krusty:

      Anti-Semitism (per the ADL’s latest survey) remains at 12% nationwide in the US.

      Which means real anti-Semitism must be far, far, far, less. (What is a percentage of anti-Semitism, anyway?)

      Obviously, these factors support the Zionist project: that Jews, due to their unique historical persecution, require a sovereign ethnonational state of their own.

      1) The Zionist project is NOT simply a Jewish-ethnocratic state-- it's an expansionist ethnocratic state which denies Palestinians human rights and equality (inside and outside of Israel proper) and crushes their national aspirations, an ever-expanding Jewish-supremacist state that denies that its founding required the ethnic-cleansing of indigenous inhabitants and which presides over an oppressive, apartheid-like occupation regime.

      2) That expansionism is not necessary for a Jewish "safe haven," therefore, it must be driven by some other motivation.

      3) From what principles do you derive the notion that persecuted groups require "sovereign ethnonational" states of their own? Or does this notion only apply to Jews? If the latter, how can Jews be so different from all other humans that there is a principle of ethno-nationalism that applies to them and only them?

    • seafoid :

      Why does the US political class always have to go to the bots for money? Is there no other source of cash ?

      Yes, there is--which tells you its not all about cash.

  • Effort to remove Jews from West Bank is akin to Nazi slaughter -- settler spokesman
    • NormanF:

      The Jewish nation is the oldest in the world after the Chinese.

      Jewish sovereign nationality has existed only for a very short period of time in history --a short period in ancient times, followed by centuries of non-existence, and now Israel.

      So what do you mean by "the Jewish nation"? What gives a human group the right to call itself a "nation"?

    • Hostage:

      I think that the UN should not have admitted either new state without admitting the other one .

      What were Palestinian nationalists doing at that moment to demand that a Palestinian (Arab) state be admitted next to the Jewish state?

      And were there any Arab states --or any states---demanding that?

    • NormanF:

      The Jewish nation is the oldest in the world after the Chinese.

      Are American Jews then a nation within the American nation?

      Also: What different ethnic groups make up the Chinese nation?

    • [Puppies:] What counts is that, in the absence of “modern” Prussian-style nationalism, what’s left is religion for the religious

      The Jewish religion was/is a religion about a nation, about the relation between God and a people , so belief in Judaism involves belief in a Jewish nation/people. Jewish religion and some form of Jewish "nationalism" has been inseparable. So even "in the absence of “modern” Prussian-style nationalism", Judaism involved nationalism (but not necessarily a territorial/political nationalism).

      [tokyobk:]The Jewish people has been a diverse and self consciously united religion throughout the ages.

      And that religion, to repeat, was always a religion about a particular nation/people . So, believers in the religion, including recent converts, believed they were part of an ancient nation/people even if they had no other connection other than that religious belief, i.e. even if there was no other linguistic, cultural, or "ethnic"-genetic element making the unitary Jewish "people" a "people".

    • Palestine became a defined political entity in 1923 under the Mandate.

      An important fact, no doubt. But just how important? Suppose Palestine had NOT been defined as a a new state in 1923? What would the implications have been? Would that have meant Jews had the moral or legal right to colonize the territory and construct a Jewish state or proto-state there?

      Take it a set further, suppose the Balfour Declaration and the Mandate had referred to "a state for the Jewish people" instead of "a national home".

      Would that have given Jewish colonization and construction of a Jewish state in Palestine unchallengeable moral and legal legitimization?

    • JeffB:

      That’s how virtually the entire South West became states. The occupancy changed

      Nonsense. I took quite a bit more than an alteration "occupancy" for sovereignty to change--i.e. political, military and legal action. A quick glance at the history of Texas in the 19th century, for example, makes that glaringly obvious.

      According to your cute formula, if a portion of the South West became "occupied" by folks identifying with Mexico, not the U.S., past one generation , the U.S. would, by that alone , lose sovereignty over the area. Again, nonsense. There is no such "one generation non-occupancy = loss of sovereignty rule".

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