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Total number of comments: 2958 (since 2012-06-23 07:13:37)

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  • 'Facebook' ads are way more important than the children we slaughter in some poor country
    • Some details on Google/State Department connection:

      Media Orgs Donate to Clinton Foundation Then Downplay Clinton Foundation Scandal

      To understand why The New York Times, Google, CNN and PBS would censor negative information about Clinton, particularly, stories revolving around the Clinton Foundation scandal, all you have to do is follow the money. All of these companies have donated—in some cases up seven figures—to the Clinton Foundation. Carlos Slim, Chairman & CEO of Telmex, the largest New York Times shareholder, donated between $1 and $5 million. Google donated between $500K and $1 million.

      * * * *

      A deeper look into Google’s ties to Clinton , specifically while she was secretary of state, exposes more reasons why the tech giant has a vested interest in censoring the AP’s bombshell story. Wikileaks exposed that Google teamed up with Clinton’s State Department to overthrow Syrian President Bashar al Assad in 2012.

      In leaked emails between Clinton’s staff and Google executive Jared Cohen—who worked for Clinton at the State Department before joining Google—Cohen details Google’s plan to get involved in the region and to boost Assad defections.

      The exchange proves that the tech company worked in concert with the State Department to topple Assad’s government. Further proving Google’s nvolvement with US foreign policy, Cohen helped draft the State Department’s 21st Century Statecraft Initiative, which called for using Internet and social media technologies to pursue diplomatic goals.

      Google’s controversial relationship with Clinton has raised enough eyebrows that the Oracle Corporation is using its resources to launch the Google Transparency Project. The mission is to shed sunlight on Google’s relationships with Clinton and President Barack Obama. The GTP has already produced a series of investigative reports on Google including one that reveals that there were 18 former State Department officials that joined Google as executives and five Google officials who acquired senior positions at the State Department. [emphasis added] "


      Clinton email reveals: Google sought overthrow of Syria's Assad

      Cohen worked as a member of the secretary of state's policy planning staff from 2006 to 2010, when he was hired to lead Google Ideas, but was tied to using social media to incite uprisings even before he left the department. He once reportedly asked Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey to hold off of conducting system maintenance that officials believed could have impeded a brief 2009 uprising in Iran, and Julian Assange, who founded the secret-leaking website WikiLeaks, has for years referred to Cohen as Google's "director of regime change."

    • Keith: ...the very notion of Russia interfering in “our democracy” is worse than a sick joke insofar as it lends legitimacy to anti-Russian hostility and censorship of the alternative media.


      Google plans to 'de-rank' Russia Today and Sputnik to combat misinformation

      Eric Schmidt, the chief executive of Google’s parent company Alphabet, has said the search engine is preparing to take action against state-run Russian news agencies, including Russia Today and Sputnik, which are accused of spreading propaganda by US intelligence agencies.

      [...]Google has faced criticism for promoting the two news sites by including them in its Google News service – a curated list of legitimate news sites – as well as other algorithmic services that select and promote news.

      Of course, other sites such as AlterNet have complained about being "de-ranked" by Google, so this is not just about Russian sites, it's about all alternative media, as Keith points out.

      And let's not forget Google's close ties to the U.S. State Department, it's activities in support of destabilization and war in Syria, it's funding of Crowdstrike (the firm connected to the pro-war, pro-NATO expansion, anti-Russian Atlantic Council which unsurprisingly claimed without evidence that Russia was behind the DNC hacking) and so on.

  • The Russiagate farce, or how the Russians corrupted our pristine democracy
    • "New revelations from a massive trove of documents known as the Paradise Papers reveal Republican super-donors who stored much of their wealth in offshore tax havens pumped more than $350 million into the 2016 election. Some are well-known backers of conservative causes, like casino magnate Sheldon Adelson and Charles and David Koch. Others have sought to keep their activities out of public view, like Warren Stephens, the hidden co-owner of a payday lending company now under investigation for deceiving customers. And billionaire Robert Mercer and his family built a $60 million war chest for conservative causes inside their family foundation by using an offshore investment vehicle to avoid U.S. taxes. "

      Of course, the neoliberal/militarist Democratic Party establishment spent some $750,000,000 on the election.

      But what really concerns me, like Kay24, is the $44,000 spent over several years by Russian individuals on Facebook ads focused on a diverse set of issues, not specific candidates. That might seem like a paltry sum--and it is-- but let's not forget the fact that those ads were seen by millions of people (if only for milliseconds).

      Propaganda experts believe the infamous " Russian puppy ads" were particularly insidious:

      [New York Times:] There was even a Facebook group for animal lovers with memes of adorable puppies that spread across the site with the help of paid ads. [...]some analysts suggested a possible motive: to build a large following before gradually introducing political content.

      As Kay24 says, that kind of foreign interference in "our democracy" should not be taken lightly.

    • Cf. "Meet Clint Watts, a Dubious Russia Meddling 'Expert' Lobbying the U.S. Government to 'Quell Information Rebellions'

      With a sketchy past in the counterterror swamp, Watts has suggested media censorship as a remedy to Russian interference."

      By Max Blumenthal

  • Despite angry protest, Massachusetts screening of anti-occupation doc gets positive response
    • Keith: This is a non-racial ideological construct... ETC.


      I don't disagree with your analysis. I would just say:

      1) "Racism" has become to some extent a non-racial concept (cf. the U.N. definition of "racial discrimination", the labeling of anti-Islamic attitudes as "racist" etc.)

      2) "Anti-Gentilism" lacks bite as an epithet, however accurate. "Anti-Gentilist" is even worse. I'd take "racism" and " racist" --even if wrong-- if my goal is vilification.


    • Keith: perhaps we should call it for what it truly is: anti-Gentilism.

      While "anti-Gentilism" is no doubt accurate, I'm not sure it has the requisite rhetorical ring.

      I suggest the simple, established epithets "racism" and "racist", however less precise they may be.

  • Miko Peled on free speech and Zionism
    • It’s still not at all clear: is Peled for no-platforming ( not criminalizing) genuine Holocaust deniers, skeptics and trivializers, as he is for no-platforming Zionists? If not, why not?

  • The problem with Miko Peled's 'Holocaust: yes or no'
    • rosross: Some of those questioning such historical details have been hounded, abused, professionally destroyed….

      Could you please provide some specific examples? What historical details? Thanks.

    • echinococcus : “Antisemitism” is not at all like anti-Arab/Muslim/ Communist.

      It's exactly the same.

      "Anti" means against or opposed to. What is opposed is the entity following the word "anti". The only possible confusion is with the word "semitism". Once it is understood that it refers to Jews and/or Jewishness, the expression becomes perfectly meaningful. Antisemitic means being opposed to Jews/Jewishness, just as anti-Muslim means being opposed to Muslims/Islam, or anticommunist means opposed to communists or communism. It's that simple. The semantic structure is identical in all cases.

      [echinococcus: ] The operative part is to know if the term is used a) to designate opposition based on a characteristic of birth (=ancestry) in which case it is racism, or b) anything acquired (like religion or anything else in the acquired department, which would make it entirely kosher.)

      Absolutely wrong. Anti-Arab bigotry, for example, can be based on alleged "characteristics of birth" or alternately it can be based on alleged acquired cultural defects (or others). In both cases it is wrong because 1) it posits a monolithic Arab identity; 2) it posits some *essential* negative characteristics, whether acquired or not, and 3) that posited monolithic, essentialist characterization is not consistent with empirically verified reality.

      Creating a false essentialist notion of an "Arab mind"-- created primarily through culture, not genetics-- is just as objectionable as a false essentialist notion of Arabs based on purely inherited characteristics.


      Along with prefaces, a conclusion, and a postscript, the book contains 16 chapters, including Arab child-rearing practices, three chapters on Bedouin influences and values, Arab language, Arab art, sexual honor/repression, freedom/hospitality/outlets, Islam's impact, unity and conflict and conflict resolution, and Westernization.

      [..]Patai is criticized in passing at several points in Edward Said's book Orientalism. Other scholars[who?] describe the book as simplistic, reductionist, stereotyping, generic, essentialist, outdated, superseded, flawed, unscientific, and even intellectually dishonest.[3]

      The Racism Watch organisation reported in June 2004 that Manning Marable, Columbia University director of African American Studies, had called for immediate action to be taken to end the U.S. military's use of the book. This was followed by a surge of media interest in the book during the summer of 2004. In an article in The New Yorker, Seymour Hersh said that he was told by an academic that the book was "the bible of the neocons on Arab behaviour".[4]

      The anti-Arab ideology in "The Arab Mind" does not, as you would have it, become kosher simply because it deals with alleged acquired characteristics.

      The irrelevancy or your acquired characteristic vs "characteristics of birth" dichotomy becomes even clearer if we consider anti-Islam bigotry (aka Islamophobia ) where there is no question of "characteristics of birth."
      Criticizing Islam while being empirically accurate and acknowledging its complexities is perfectly legitimate. But giving a false, distorted, monolithic, essentialist condemnation of Islam is not. It's bigotry. It's falsification of reality, therefore not legitimate.

    • Emory Riddle: The reality is that Zionism has a massive platform — the mainstream media, our pols, Hollywood, our schools, etc ...

      Absolutely. But that is precisely why it's wrong to call for de-platforming or no-platforming Zionists, while arguing that Holocaust deniers should be given a platform. (please do not drop that second part of my sentence.)

      It's wrong because it harms the anti-Zionist cause. It associates anti-Zionism with Holocaust denial, and that association can be massively damaging precisely because Zionism has a massive platform.

    • Annie, I didn't claim that Armenian genocide denial would ever be as big a political issue as Holocaust denial. We both know the reason why that is true.

      But you wrote: had he said the armenian genocide instead, nobody would have blinked an eye.

      I think that's hyperbolic.

    • Annie Robbins: it could be construed as an invitation to question whether the holocaust really happened, but that seems to me to be a radically extreme interpretation of those words.

      No, it's the most natural interpretation of the plain words. Jonathan Ofir certainly has no motive to interpret them that way-- and yet he clearly and unequivocally does.

      Jonathan Ofir : Peled suggests that this free speech also include “Holocaust: yes or no” – and with that “no”, he is quite clearly whistling to Holocaust deniers.

      Politics is a rough game. Phrases will predictably be taken out of context. It would be massively stupid-- politically-- to use a phrase that in its most simple and obvious interpretation means something you don't mean to say at all.

      If Peled believed that Holocaust deniers and trivializers should not have a platform in Labour Party events etc. then why give Zionists a huge opening to claim the opposite??

      As Donald Johnson put it:

      Yes, you should defend free speech, but no, that doesn’t mean you have to give a shout out to people who think the reality of the Holocaust is up for debate. Peled sounds like a good guy, but he said something dumb.

      If Donald Johnson, Jonathan Ofir and many others such as myself who have no motive to attack Peled interpreted his remarks that way, certainly something went very wrong in the speech.

    • Annie: have you ever heard of the “new” anti semitism?


      Of course.

      it means anti zionism equals anti semitism

      It claims that anti-Zionism is a form of antisemitism. But you need a definition of antisemitism in order make that argument as well as to make the argument that anti-Zionism is NOT antisemitism.

      there was once a time when anti semitism meant hatred for jews.

      But the "New Antisemitism" doesn't abandon that (rough) definition. You demonstrated that yourself:

      [Annie Robbins:] in this new configuration, zionism being a political construct, it means if one is anti ethnocratic or anti colonialist states, including or specific to israel, one hates jews

      So it's still about "hating Jews".

      The argument against "The New Antisemitism" is simply, no, anti-Zionism is NOT antisemitic because it's not about hating Jews or Jewishness (followed up, of course with facts and logic that prove that point.)

      You can't make a strong argument that anti-Zionism is not antisemitism if you claim not to know what "antisemitism" means (Peled, echino), or if you deny that it exists (Atzmon). Those r
      rhetorical strategies just don't work, whatever the impulse behind them.

    • Annie: he didn’t reference anything about shutting down other forms of political speech. he spoke about not inviting them to speak

      De-platforming is a form of "shutting down speech", rightly or wrongly.

      If a Zionist group, for example, lobbied against a proposed invitation to a pro-Palestinian speaker at a Labour event, would you not consider that an attempt to shut down a certain kind of political speech at that event?

    • Annnie Robbins: i wasn’t aware he said anything about (or even mentioned) holocaust denier

      In Peled's expression "Holocaust: yes, or no" , "no" means denial.

    • echinococcus: There is no word about “denying a public platform” to anyone there

      Don't play dumb, please. The context of this whole issue is British Labour Party conferences etc. and the question raised is who should be allowed a platform in those events.

    • ehinococcus : Nobody knows what that means

      Speak for yourself.

      Do you know what "anti-Arab" means? Or "anti-Muslim", or "anti-communist" etc?

      Do you struggle to understand the meaning of any of those or similar terms?

      Substitute "Jewish" or "Jewishness" for "Semite" or "Semitism" and you should be able to figure out what "anti-Semite" or "anti-Semitism" means.

      (Note that in the above expressions there is no need to precisely define "Arab", "Muslim", or "Communist" in order to understand the basic meaning of the expressions--in fact, precise definitions of the term after "anti" strip the expression of its function.)

    • Annie Robbins: and had he said the armenian genocide instead, nobody would have blinked an eye.

      I seriously doubt that.

    • @Annie

      You left out the second part of my sentence: "but other forms of political speech like pro–Zionism should be shut down."

      "so what you’re arguing is that discussing the holocaust is wrong,

      Not at all.

      I'm arguing it's wrong to call for de-platforming of Zionists, while arguing that Holocaust deniers should be given a platform. Two words are crucial there: "platform" and "deniers".

      And while I think people should be free to discuss "Holocaust: yes or no?", I think it's massively politically stupid to champion such a public discussion and put it into the same league as public discussion of "Palestine, the liberation..."

    • echinococcus: Did Peled say he would invite “Holocaust(TM) deniers” ...


      He says there are "limits to tolerance" regarding speech.

      As an example of such a limit, he says " we do not invite apartheid South Africa racists...we do not invite Zionists."

      In stark contrast, he said speakers discussing "Holocaust: yes or no" should not be denied a public platform. If you are arguing that the Holocaust might not have happened, you are a Holocaust denier.

      He's for giving Holocaust deniers a platform, but not South African racists or Zionists-- and Jonathan Ofir was perfectly right to point out the political toxicity of that contradiction.

    • Keith: . Strictly speaking, Holocaust denial should only be applied if someone essentially denies that around 5 to 6 million Jews were killed by the Nazis.

      I agree. Holocaust denial and Holocaust trivialization are two different phenomena (as are Nakba denial and Nakba trivialization.) Both are bad. Trivialization is arguably worse, since it's hard these days to get away with pure Holocaust denial. Of course, mythologizing the Holocaust as an absolutely unique event, the epitome of an irrational eternal Gentile Jew-hatred, is to be roundly rejected as well.

    • Peled: Peled says “I don’t know what antisemitism means.

      If he doesn't know what antisemitism is, then he is in no position to argue that anti-Zionism is not antisemitism.

    • JoeSmack: sounds like tone policing

      It's about content not tone. It's about the massive political stupidity and harmfulness of arguing that "Holocaust: yes or no" should be up for discussion but other forms of political speech like pro--Zionism should be shut down.

    • Who's defending the idea of "free speech on any topic"??

      Not Peled:

      Peled’s subsequent remarks at the Labour fringe event seemed to indicate that he was not a blanket supporter of ‘free speech’:

      “It’s about the limits of tolerance: we don’t invite the Nazis and give them an hour to explain why they are right; we do not invite apartheid South Africa racists to explain why apartheid was good for the blacks, and in the same way we do not invite Zionists – it’s a very similar kind of thing”, he said.

  • Feel-good Gaza poster in NY window draws feel-bad response from neighbor
    • Jack Green: For years, women who were beaten by their husbands, boyfriends or lovers had no refuge to escape to. We could have waited for “universal and consistent application of justice, accountability and equality” OR We could have established Womens Shelters.
      For years, gentiles oppressed Jews. We could have waited for “universal and consistent application of justice, accountability and equality” OR We could have established established Israel.


      Jack, the fatal flaw of that analogy is this:

      The establishment of Israel has involved--actually required--the denial of the Palestinians' right to self-determination, their ethnic cleansing, their oppression, and the establishment of an apartheid regime of occupation.

      The establishment of women's shelters involves no such denial of rights or oppressive regime.

  • On empathy, Yom Kippur, and the NFL
    • RoHa: Siberiak, surely you do not think I am capable of such deceptive subtlety or such subtle deception!

      Surely you are joking!

    • eljay: But the possibility that he may mean something doesn’t mean that he actually means it.


      Exactly. He may mean something; then again, he may not--that's what makes the deniability plausible .

      (Of course, an unconditional affirmative statement would remove any doubts.)

    • Eljay: I saw those. Both were conditional ...

      Could it be that the conditional (and interrogative) can be useful-- to maintain plausible deniability?

  • High holidays? Meh
    • Mooser: Not an easy row to hoe...

      Well, as Keith has pointed out several times, Jews have traditionally eschewed hoeing, .

  • Jews have religious commandment to support Israel and fight BDS -- American Jewish Committee
    • @ Talkback Are you arguing that displacement or genocide were legitimate before the Nuremberg trials?

    • JeffB: Your whole movement is based on refusing to treat everyone equally and continually applying standards to Israel you hold no other state or people to. Most of my time on Mondoweiss is pointing out that the arguments against Israel apply to just about every other country on the planet when they were at a similar point in their development.

      Not following you. If one holds that negating other peoples' self-determination, ethnic cleansing, settler colonialism, genocide, religious/ethnic supremacism etc. were wrong in all instances in the past, and wrong now regarding Israel, where is the hypocrisy/ double standard?

    • Talkback: And which one is the product of displacement or genocide after this was finally condemned in the Nuremberg Trials against the Nazis?

      Displacement or genocide were legitimate before the Nuremberg trials?

  • Israeli rightist Smotrich lays out the vision for apartheid
    • RoHa: 2. This point is much more important. It doesn’t matter what sort of nation, if any, the Jews are. What the Zionists did was wrong.


      The debate about whether some or all Jews constitute a "nation" or "people" is a major distraction, imo, and it favors the Zionists since it puts a heavy burden on anti-Zionists to prove that Jews are not a nation/people. That is not any easy task given the slippery definitions of the terms and the long history of Jews being perceived as such by themselves and others. ("People" is actually the key term in international law regarding the right of self-determination, not "nation", and the meaning of that term has been deliberately left undefined, but nevertheless loosely established via precedent and legal tradition.)

      It's a completely unnecessary burden to take on because Jews' status as a people/nation, valid or not, in no way gave/gives Zionists the right to displace the indigenous Palestinian population nor the right to deny the Palestinian people their right to self-determination in their own territory, a right fully backed by international law and institutions.

    • Citizen: Are you implying Jews in the US, for example, or UK, or Canada, or EU, or Australia have no national rights now?

      What national rights do Jews have in the U.S.? They only have individual rights, like everyone else (apart from Native American nations, which have special forms of national sovereignty.)

  • Rightwing campaign against Jewish exec who called for exposing Nakba seems likely to fail
    • Those who don't read the Bible can easily feel isolated these days:

      Insiders—many of whom are afraid to come forward—say [CIA Director] Pompeo’s religious beliefs are becoming part of CIA dogma to the dismay of longtime employees.

      “According to four sources familiar with the matter, Pompeo, who attends weekly Bible studies held in government buildings, referenced God and Christianity repeatedly in his first all-hands speech and in a recent trip report while traveling overseas,” the report states, adding that since taking over, Pompeo has also set about establishing a chaplaincy on the CIA campus.

      A spokesperson for the CIA defended the move, saying, “Director Pompeo is a man of faith. The idea that he should not practice his faith because he is Director of CIA is absurd.”

      According to Michael Weinstein, founder of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, he is being flooded with complaints about the creeping evangelical Christianity that is beginning to pervade the intelligence agency.

      Weinstein notes that insiders are afraid to speak up, stating, “They don’t typically file formal complaints within the government. But certain things are making them especially uncomfortable, such as officials signing off with the phrase ‘have a blessed day.’ That’s something “straight out of The Handmaid’s Tale.”

      “In the intelligence community, we see supervisors wanting to hold Bible studies during duty hours [and] inviting lower-ranking individuals to their homes for Bible studies,” Weinstein continued. “Our clients at CIA feel extremely isolated in a way they have not felt before.”

      The CIA dismissed complaints about the Christian influence at the agency, saying they are staying true to their mission.

  • Israeli support for Myanmar is the natural alliance of regimes based on ethnic supremacy
  • Changing the narrative, from BDS to antifa
  • The United State of Israel and Palestine
    • Talkback: But “Jewish” is not a nationality. Nobody can become “Jewish” by acquiring a citizenship. Therefore they are not a nation AS citizenship and therefore a “Jewish state” of Israel is inherently racist, if only Jews are considered to be nationals.


      Doesn't make sense. If you define "nationality" as citizenship, as you have, then non-Jews can be "nationals" in Israel as well, since non-Jews can be citizens in Israel. Again, that's using your definitions, not Israel's.

      That doesn't negate any of your other valid points, of course.

  • As many as 1 million Israelis have left for the U.S.
    • Circular migration--good for Israel. Wikipedia:

      According to public opinion polls, the main motives for leaving Israel have not been the political and security situation, but include desire for higher living standards, pursuit of work opportunities and/or professional advancement, and higher education. Many Israelis with degrees in scientific or engineering fields have emigrated abroad, largely due to lack of job opportunities. From Israel's establishment in May 1948 to December 2006, about 400,000 doctors and academics left Israel. In 2009, Israel's Council for Higher Education informed the Knesset's Education Committee that 25% of Israel's academics were living overseas, and that Israel had the highest human capital flight rate in the world.

      However, an OECD estimate put the highly educated Israeli emigrant rate at 5.3 per 1,000 highly educated Israelis, meaning that Israel actually retains more of its highly educated population than many other developed countries.

      In addition, the majority of Israelis who emigrate eventually return after extended periods abroad . In 2007, the Israeli government began a programme to encourage Israelis living abroad to return; since then, the number of returning Israelis has doubled, and in 2010, Israeli expatriates, including academics, researchers, technical professionals, and business managers, began returning in record numbers. Israel launched additional programmes to open new opportunities in scientific fields to encourage Israeli scientists and researchers living abroad to return home.

      These programmes have since succeeded in luring many Israeli scientists back home. [emphasis added]


      According to demographer Pini Herman, this circular migration has been an economic boon to Israel. Israel does not have the technological, academic, and other infrastructural resources to absorb its disproportionate number of highly trained and skilled population, second only to the United States.

      As a result, many Israelis have worked overseas for extended periods of time. Upon their return, they have often attracted or repatriated with them to Israel new infrastructure, such as that provided by companies like as Intel, Google, Microsoft, and IBM. [42] [emphasis added]

    • Israel Net migration rate


      Net migration rate: 2.2 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2016 est.)

      Definition: This entry includes the figure for the difference between the number of persons entering and leaving a country during the year per 1,000 persons (based on midyear population). An excess of persons entering the country is referred to as net immigration (e.g., 3.56 migrants/1,000 population); an excess of persons leaving the country as net emigration (e.g., -9.26 migrants/1,000 population). The net migration rate indicates the contribution of migration to the overall level of population change.

    • "Israel’s demographic future: Crowded and very religious"

      “Israel will have the highest population density in the Western world,” Sergio DellaPergola, a preeminent Israeli demographer and member of the report’s steering committee, told JTA. “Interestingly, haredim will overtake Arabs as the largest minority.”

      The Central Bureau of Statistics revised upward its previous projection, made in 2012, that the population will reach 15.5 million in 2059, with 4.5 million haredim. DellaPergola said the bureau had wrongly assumed Israel’s fertility rate would continue to decline.

      [...}Israel is growing rapidly mostly because of its birth rate, which DellaPergola said is the highest of the world’s 100 most developed countries...

    • "Israel's population to surge to 20 million by 2065

      Study shows Jewish population to grow to 81% of Israel's total, with massive growth in haredi community, which will make up 32% of Israel

      [...]According to data released by the Central Bureau of Statistics, Israel’s population will continue to grow at a fairly steady rate, with the overall growth rate averaging 1.8% over the next half a century, compared to 1.82% from 2006-2015.

      Unlike most industrialized countries, Israel’s birth rate has remained well above the replacement rate, with a total fertility rate (the average number of children a woman has) of 3.1, compared to 1.85 for the US, 1.58 for the European Union, 1.39 in Japan, and 2.35 worldwide.

      Israel will grow to 9 million citizens next year, hitting 10 million 2024, 11 million by 2030, 12 million by 2035, and 13 million by 2039. By 2065, Israel will likely be home to 19.954 million citizens, 23 and a half times the number at the time of Israel’s birth in 1948.

      [...]Haredi Jews, who currently constitute about 12% of the population, at present have a growth rate of 3.92%, more than double the national rate.

      [...]Between 2017 and 2065, the haredi rate of growth is expected to average 3.89%, compared to 1.03% for non-haredi Jews and 1.55% for Israeli Arabs, not including residents of the Palestinian Authority. Israel’s Arab population is expected to remain stable at 21% through 2051, then decline gradually to 19% by 2063.

      [...]By 2043, the haredi population will surpass Israel’s Arab population, and by 2065 haredim are expected to number nearly 6.5 million, or 32% of Israel’s total population, compared to 3.8 million Arabs and 9.66 million non-haredi Jews.

  • 'We came to school and found the school destroyed': Israeli forces demolish West Bank school hours before children's first day
    • Mooser : [Sibiriak:]“Oh, and btw, who are you claiming imposes the “white” “delineation” on “whites”

      I didn’t include “white”, did I?

      Yes, you most certainly did.

      I wrote: Thinking of yourself as “black” ( “white”, “Latino”, “Asian” etc.) is also a choice.

      You replied: Don’t be stupid. Those delineations are imposed from the outside...

      "Those delineations" obviously refers to the ones I listed-- including "white."

    • Mooser: " Those delineations are imposed from the outside"

      Oh, and btw, who are you claiming imposes the "white" "delineation" on "whites"?

    • Mooser: Don’t be stupid. Those delineations are imposed from the outside...

      Don't be stupid. From the outside--in part. You may not be able to prevent that, at present, but you don't have to accept it, let alone embrace it.

      And again, don't be stupid. Identities like "Latino" etc. are not simply imposed--they are embraced as well. You know that.

    • RoHa: Thinking of yourself as a Jew is a choice.

      Thinking of yourself as "black" ( "white", "Latino", "Asian" etc.) is also a choice. Just sayin'....

  • Chomsky on what 'everyone knows'
    • Danaa: ...if people did not care so much for Chomsky’s opinion,s they surely would not take the time to run every sentence through a grinder, would they?

      And yet in your own long, expanded, specially--commissioned anti-Chomsky article you couldn't manage to quote even a single sentence of Chomsky's--not a single one! But thanks for sharing your personal perceptions (projections). And thanks for telling us how Chomsky's advanced age explains his mental rigidity, and how he can't see reality because he's "wearing rose-colored glasses"--thanks for those great insights. And thanks for putting all those thoughts into Chomsky's head (the one's he's never put on paper.) That was beautiful. Really.

    • Citizen, I read both. Keith's points stand.

    • Of course, "everybody knows" does not constitute any kind of logical/factual argument, and it's an easy comment to single out and jump all over.

      Chomsky, however, is certainly not trying to foreclose discussion.

      Just the opposite--as exemplified by his two books co-written with Ilan Pappe: "Gaza in Crisis: Reflections on the US-Israeli War Against the Palestinians " (2013) and "On Palestine" (2015).

      You won't find any "garbage arguments" by either author in those excellent works.

  • White Jews: deal with your privilege and call out Jewish support for white supremacy
  • On Charlottesville and Jewish memory
    • Nathan: So how could it be that Professor Ellis didn’t remind us of the stolen land on which he lives? Well, it’s quite simple. It didn’t even occur to him.

      Nonsense. Of course Ellis is fully aware of America's dark colonialist history. In fact, the omission of Native American victimization and the omission of Palestinian victimization are part and parcel of the same ideological project, not contradictory elements.

      In another piece about the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Ellis writes:

      The national advertising campaign accompanying the museum’s anniversary is fascinating in and of itself. The campaign focuses on the ‘extraordinary brand’ the museum – and the Holocaust – represents.

      That’s according to Lorna Miles, chief marketing officer for the museum. In her words: ‘I do feel that the museum has an extraordinary brand, and that its reputation is impeccable. And my job as the chief marketing officer is not just to protect the brand, but also to promote it.’

      When Miles promotes the museum she promotes the Holocaust, too. The museum’s ‘extraordinary brand’ is the Holocaust. Or is the Holocaust the museum’s product to sell?

      If the Holocaust is a commodity, it must be marketed like any other commodity. Like, for example, Ben and Jerry’s ice cream or DisneyWorld.

      It’s interesting to speculate what Miles thinks ‘protecting’ the museum/Holocaust brand entails. No doubt, this has to do with protecting the museum’s Holocaust narrative – making sure what’s allowed into that narrative and what must, at all costs, be kept out.

      The most obvious narrative intruders are the Palestinians. They’ve been symbolically knocking on the museum’s doors since its opening. If Palestinians were let in, if only as the victims of the victims, what would that portend for the museum and the Holocaust brand?

      Including the Palestinians would certainly sully the Holocaust brand – from a certain perspective. From another point of view it might revive the Holocaust brand by investing it with honesty. I doubt the museum will take that risk.

      The Times article contains interesting nuggets about the future of Holocaust consciousness itself. First off, the amazing attendance figures of the Holocaust museum. As of last July, 34 million people have come to the museum – more than 1.5 million a year. That’s a huge number to be sure.

      The breakdown along religious/ethnic lines: about 90% of the museum visitors were non-Jewish. I assume that the great majority of them are Christian in background. This raises the issue of what the museum’s primary function is. Is it to commemorate the Holocaust or inculcate the majority Christian population with Holocaust memory for political reasons?

      The Times article doesn’t provide a breakdown of where the museum-goers come from. The international component is important, though. Exporting the Holocaust beyond Jewish and American shores is an important – and political – goal of Holocaust consciousness.

      34% of the museum visitors were school children. This means that a significant proportion of the children’s visits were organized through schools they attend. Thus the Holocaust museum, funded by the national government, is likewise recognized and officially sanctioned by the American education industry.

      The Americanization of the Holocaust continues apace. The museum-goers are educated about the Holocaust in America’s capital. The museum carries the implicit – and sometimes explicit – sense that America saved Jews from annihilation. If it didn’t then, it should have and would today, another tip of the hat to Israel as a beacon of light besieged by those who would do it harm.

      The museum’s corollary message is important.The Holocaust could only have happened in Europe because, in America, our protected freedoms and history of tolerance, prohibits events such as these. The museum doesn’t get into the messy historical details of the history of Native Americans and African slaves. The story line of American innocence, now buoyed by the Holocaust, remains.

  • Trump response to Charlottesville sugarcoats a rotten morality
    • Annie Robbins: check out this quotation from the @nytimes

      “i see both the social justice alt-left and the white supremacist alt-right as two sides of the same coin.”

      Btw, the actual quote refers to "the social-justice warrior alt left" not simply the "social justice alt-left."

      Perhaps a small difference, but not entirely insignificant.

      The quote goes on to say:

      Both would punish others for wrong think. Both see the other side not as opponents, but as evil that can justifiably be silenced.

      There's a good deal of truth on that narrow point of anti-free-speech advocacy, although it is obviously being seized upon and manipulated for ideological reasons. (The remark about the "crumbling of Western civilization's certainties" is worthless tripe.)

      Cf Glenn Greenwald, "The Misguided Attacks on ACLU for Defending Neo-Nazis’ Free Speech Rights in Charlottesville ":

  • Lessons from Finkelstein: International Law and equal rights should be the focus for Palestine solidarity
    • Nathan: I wonder why you are living in alternative reality.

      When there is a really horrible situation with no obvious solution in sight, many people become inclined to wishful thinking.

    • yonah fredman: The vast majority of Jews ind america have their roots in ancestors who cursed Mother Russia as a Jew hating place...

      And no doubt an abiding, ineradicable, seething Jewish hatred towards "Mother Russia" has played and continues to play a big role in the ongoing anti-Russian demonization project.

    • Annie Robbins: if “the occupation, the siege, the annexation, are illegal under International Law. The settlements are illegal under International Law. The wall is illegal under International Law“ what difference, practically speaking, has a vote on that illegality made?

      Well, for one thing, it's contributed significantly to the legitimacy and therefore to the POWER of the BDS movement.

      The BDS movement has deliberately aligned itself with international law. I think that's a smart move. Without that alignment, I believe BDS would be less powerful.

      International law is one weapon to be grasped and used. It's not enough, but one needs all the weapons one can get a hold of.

      Finkelstein's take on international law isn't the only possible one, btw.

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