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  • Video shows Israeli interrogators attempting to coerce confession from Ahed Tamimi
    • écrasez l'infâme April 11, 2018 at 2:42 pm

      Thank you Keith.

    • A question : Was there not an Israeli leader (or, some highly placed authority) who said something along the lines of … ‘we’ll make their (Palestinians) lives so miserable that they’ll want to leave’. ? Do you know who (or if) someone said such a thing? Do you know what he / she actually said if such were indeed said? I vaguely recall reading something along those lines, but forget context. Thanks

    • écrasez l'infâme April 11, 2018 at 5:48 am

      Adam, Thanks for the update on Ahed Tamimi.
      A question : Was there not an Israeli leader (or, some highly placed authority) who said something along the lines of ... 'we'll make their (Palestinians) so miserable that the'll want to leave'. ? Do you know who (or if) someone said such a thing? Do you know what he / she actually said if such were indeed said? I vaguely recall reading something along those lines, but forget context. Thanks

  • Video: Israeli soldiers brutally beat wounded man, leave him to die 'as though he were not a human being'
    • écrasez l'infâme March 4, 2018 at 9:03 am

      JOHN A QUESTION FOR YOU (.. and perhaps for others):
      When I see your input, I will often dwell on what you write - it is thoughtful, well composed (if long at times) and your irony does not descend to the sardonic. So a question from this newbie.

      After a while it becomes such a blur (perhaps the effect of 'hasbara culture'), .... and yes, it does seem so ordinary and banal that these "terrortists" are ever present (on the high seas or in a Jericho alleyway) and are ever ready to attack and therefore must be suppressed - preemptively it seems. Or, as the video suggest, wantonly and cruelly. What is it - thoughtless to think so?; or, thoughtless to think otherwise? or, thoughtless to even raise the question? Death wishes seem so abundant under the occupation ... and death providers ever so willing. Yet, it does seem odd that someone would initiate an attack agains the unseen and the so numerous and well armed force ( such odds, such an unwieldy 'club'). Was this a planned ambush? Was there incitement? Was it suicide by IDF? So many questions suggested by that B'Tselem video.

      OK - here's the question:
      It seems that the degree of incitement and provocation from the IDF is on the increase. Or is this simply my imagination?. Is there an itemized list (date / what / who etc) somewhere showing the number of incidents being actively investigated by one authority or another?

  • In calling for end of Jewish state, Avraham Burg is painted as 'troublemaker' at liberal NY synagogue
    • And Burg concludes with "I'm telling you what I feel".
      What if standard for the basic human response to the miseries we witness was as simple as ‘fellow feeling’ as opposed to the saccharine and moralizing instruction of religion. Religion seems to get in the way of fellow feeling - in some case it promotes the opposite. In this regard Nietzsche is thought provoking still. For example: “As soon as a religion comes to dominate it has as its opponents all those who would have been its first disciples.” from Nietzsche's Human, all too Human, s.118.

      See here for more Nietzschean prompts to reflection about the millstone of ‘religion’ :

      Burg's conclusion: It is in the realm of impossibility that Israel could ever be a secular state is.

  • Educators need to denounce the smear tactics of Canary Mission
    • It seems to be a bit absurd that websites can operate anonymously; this only encourages bullying behaviour.

      Is there not oversight of hate or defaming web-sites on Google that I can alert or register a complaint? Has anyone tried to reach Google for example?

      Am I revealing myself to be naive when expecting Google to be more transparent about such issues. A couple of years ago the so called "Shit List" was removed. The Canary Mission seems to be that same sort of stuff

  • What MLK's 'Letter from Birmingham Jail' tells us about Ahed Tamimi in a cold Israeli cell
    • In the racist context of Israel, Hannah Arendt's relevant notion of becoming and being "superfluous" is underlined in a three year old's being shot (during what is considered a normal military exercise, i.e. Israeli soldiers sanctioned to practice their skills in an urban setting), in countless other acts of degradation ... and in Ahed Tamimi's human response to jackboot colonialism. Her human response cannot be appreciated in what has become normal in Israel. She is kept in jail and it seems may be there for a long time because she is this 'other' who refuses to be so reduced - refuses to be an 'other'. This refusal, it is feared, will become a model for others to follow. And so it goes - as they say, 'the beatings will stop when morale improves'.

      For any who would like a deeper understanding of Hannah Arendt's relevance in the context of what Israel has become I suggest VITA ACTIVA - a 2015 documentary on Arendt's intellectual life and her contribution to understanding the 'banality of evil' and related ideas. Look it up - Arendt's capacity to think things through validates much of what Philip Weiss and others do.

  • Ahed Tamimi should stay in prison because she might slap again -- Israeli ethicist
    • I wonder if the Prof. Kasher has read Hannah Arendt's thoughts on 'the banality of evil'?
      Arendt thought Eichmann a clown for his unwillingness to think things through ... to see things from the perspective of another. He explained himself with clichés, without thought and without perspective.
      Kasher may be an ethicist, but really he is a rationalizer; his main function seems to have been to rationalize the Israeli norm. He is performing for his ideological masters. In the end he is framing what is normal with the ethical normality of Israel's government. Talk about banality - these ordinary people behaving without imagination, without thinking through. How very ordinary they all want to seem ... how banal they are becoming.

  • Israel prevents Omar Barghouti from accompanying his mother to Jordan for critical surgery
    • I like Desmond Tutu reference above. [Everyone has a choice. As Bishop Tutu said, “if you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.”] Ahed Tamimi, Omar Barghouti are but the tip of the Israeli iceberg of depredation and degradation ... Israelis (not all I'm sure) are emboldened by Trump and his crew and their brand of power politics. The million others who are out of site and submerged in the endless indignities that the Israeli government considers normal. I'm aware of BDS and letter writing - both are good expressions of support but are they enough? Are there legal ways of showing support for the other Omars and Aheds ? Is there, for example, an Omar fund raising initiative or one for Ahed T. ?

  • Yakov Rabkin's devastating critique of Zionism: it is opposed to Jewish tradition and liberalism
    • Some while ago I posted a request for something to read that might give, or attempt to, a whole picture of Zionism's ascent to such a powerful force. Thomas Suarez recent book STATE OF TERROR (How Terrorism Created Modern Israel) was recommended. I read it with interest. I also note that the photographer for the picture of Yakov Rabkin is Suarez himself. [Hence the incentive to ask a further question.] As persuasive as Suarez is,I wonder if there is some cherry picking of evidence and reports? I had not known of the hundreds acts of terror nor of the fact that some terrorist leaders became Israeli Prime Ministers ... and so on. The land grab for the whole of Palestine (forget partition) is evidenced over and over again. Suarez is meticulous and the evidence is sublime. I have looked for critiques of the book and except for a notable cringe worthy extremist there is not much . I have not read any sustained critique of his book.
      So ... three more questions:
      1) why is there so little attention being paid to these archival releases from Kew
      garden ... in the world? ... in North America?
      2) have the Israelis responded to the revelations in Suarez' book?
      3) is there a similar book from an Israeli point of view? Has Israel ever released archived material covering that era?

      I strongly recommend Suarez' book.

  • Terrorism: How the Israeli state was won
    • Suarez delivered an impressive conference. Riveting reading.
      I just asked my local library to purchase Suarez's book.
      The conference he gave alludes to so many things. The recent release of information from the British archives is adding material to this ongoing discussion. I am interested in looking as Suarez's footnotes with the aim of confirming the documentation that supports his text.
      Can anyone confirm that his facts are checked or "checkable" - or simply that there are footnotes?

      I've been reading news stories from Mondoweiss and the comments section for a couple of years and am impressed by the lucidity of the observations and the determination to fight the good fight. I find it all very encouraging that the people left in the 'ditch' that Suarez mentions are acknowledged and supported. Thank you.

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