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A lull on this site

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Adam Horowitz and I will both be traveling over the next couple of days so fresh posts will be infrequent. We should be resuming regular updates by Friday. Thanks for your understanding.

Additionally, I find I am not able to input a Vacation Response on my Yahoo account (what’s with Yahoo?). I’ll be traveling for 2 weeks and difficult to reach during that time.

Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of

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205 Responses

  1. Kathleen on February 8, 2012, 10:39 am

    Travel safe…learn a great deal…and get some rest too.

  2. Justice Please on February 8, 2012, 11:06 am

    Hope you guys can relax and refill your tanks. We need you in the War of Ideas!

  3. patm on February 8, 2012, 11:21 am

    so fresh posts will be infrequent

    That’s not such a bad thing. There are plenty of posts to read and comment on, including the Today in Palestine lists tucked away in the Features file.

    Stay safe, both of you.

  4. Citizen on February 8, 2012, 12:23 pm

    Phil, Adam, take a break, away from the maddening crowd if you can. You guys deserve it!

    • Taxi on February 8, 2012, 1:17 pm

      Since you told me not too long ago that you’ve not had a vacation in ooooooh decades, well I’ve been fantasizing about winning the lottery and taking you round the world in 80 days – styleestyle! And NO we won’t be stopping off in Apartheid israel, no way gringo! Shingo, chaos and annie are invited too!

      • annie on February 8, 2012, 1:47 pm

        yeah taxi!!! i so want to go! you can be our tour guide.


      • Citizen on February 8, 2012, 4:03 pm

        Thanks for the thought, Taxi! I really do appreciate it a lot. I really like you, Shingo, Chaos, and Annie (& some other MW regulars too). It would be a wonderful pleasure. I wish I knew somebody in my local area worth any one of your pick’s little toes. Instead, I am faced daily in my local area with utter indifference. If it was not for MW (& a handful of other web sites) and Twitter, I would think I am alone. Well, one exception, my brother knows the score, and we do talk often on the phone, and we meet together at least quarterly, but he lives in NY.

      • Taxi on February 9, 2012, 3:30 pm

        “my brother knows the score”
        Then your brother’s gotta come see the world with us too citizen heck yeah he is so invited! (Hey mondo folk, don’t you just love to hear that two brothers love AND understand each other? How fortunate and priceless is THAT?!)

        Citizen I gotta tell you your earnest appreciation sure is wonderful. Your personal truth, as always, is bitter-sweet. A purring cynic like me really digs this kinda dichotomy.

        I reckon you gotta be the best citizen in this whole goddam internet universe!

      • annie on February 9, 2012, 4:06 pm

        you’re not all alone citizen! we’re real!

      • Citizen on February 9, 2012, 4:15 pm

        Taxi, you have good intution. My brother and I do love each other, and we, both lawyers (and both teen soldiers), who came from a hard-scrabble background–our dad was a mechanic, mom a housewife, five kids, do agree on politics. And, yes, Taxi, your description of me as “earnest” is extremely accurate. Not sure how you deduced that from my comments, but it is very true. Must be the mix of lower middle class/working German and Irish in me, combined with being born and bred in USA, and having spent formative years in both rural, suburban, and urban centers her in the USA? Just asking. So, Taxi, you’re a “purring cynic?” How did you get that way? I’d say I’m a reluctant cynic. I don’t purr. But you may have touched the spot.

      • Citizen on February 9, 2012, 4:22 pm

        Thanks, Annie. I know you are real. If I was not an agnostic, I’d pray for you. Heck I sorta do that anyway.

      • Taxi on February 10, 2012, 11:11 am

        I don’t believe ‘earnestness’ is a sociological product or a result of the class system – it omits from that most mysterious part of humans called the metaphoric heart.

        “How did you get that way?”
        Let’s just say citizen that I’ve been to royal palaces, the ghetto and to bohemia circle, been stuck in war zones and intermittently in the lap of luxury, and I can tell you it’s all so good AND meaningless – what a wickedlicious life eh?! THAT’S why I’m a “purring cynic”.

      • Citizen on February 10, 2012, 11:26 am


        ear·nest 1 (ûrnst)
        1. Marked by or showing deep sincerity or seriousness: an earnest gesture of goodwill.
        2. Of an important or weighty nature; grave. See Synonyms at serious.
        in earnest
        1. With a purposeful or sincere intent: settled down to study in earnest for the examination.
        2. Serious; determined: “Both sides are deeply in earnest, with passions that approximate those of civil war” (Conor Cruise O’Brien).
        [Middle English ernest, from Old English eornoste; see er-1 in Indo-European roots.]

        Re: “…it’s all good AND meaningless.” You mean sound and fury signifying nothing? I don’t think you do, but that’s just me-reading your comments over the years?

      • Citizen on February 10, 2012, 11:46 am
      • Taxi on February 10, 2012, 2:19 pm

        Hahahaha yeah I meant ’emit’ NOT ‘omit’.

        “… it’s all good AND meaningless” – I mean in an existential way, meaning: one projects meaningfulness or meaninglessness into one’s existence, fury or no fury, sound or silence.

        Heck Citizen, we’re getting almost as deep as Confucius here hahahaha!

      • Taxi on February 10, 2012, 2:55 pm

        What a lovely story @ your link Citizen. Thank you.

        “…..a woman who could live with no for an answer—and even be satisfied with no answer at all.”

        The above is the last line in the writer’s story. So like, yes I can live with a million nos but I sure as heck ain’t satisfied with “no answer at all”. It fact, it’s damn maddening to have no answers to important questions.

        The philosophy of the writer is perhaps a tad too new-age for me – I ain’t THAT surrendered to the ‘is’ of life.

        “Rage, rage at the dying of the light” – is closer to the bones of my brain I’d say.

      • Citizen on February 10, 2012, 5:38 pm

        Taxi, do we project meaningfulness or meaninglessness into our existence, or is it already there no matter how we try to avoid it? What happened to “play it forward,” and that butterfly affect? I do know, if you give me a dollar, I am one dollar richer.

      • Citizen on February 10, 2012, 5:42 pm

        Without having read your link to yet, Taxi, that’s quite a bridge you mentally cross repeatedly between existentialism and Dylan Thomas’s rage against the dying of the light. “The bones of your brain”? Sheesh, I actually get what you mean. I suspect you’ve been trying to be less hard on yourself lately. Am I right?

  5. Memphis on February 8, 2012, 1:31 pm

    Gives a short atheist/agnostic prayer that Taxi wins lottery :)

    • Taxi on February 8, 2012, 2:34 pm

      Memphis you are so coming with as the guest of honor you charmer!

      • Memphis on February 8, 2012, 3:47 pm

        Sweet, but that wasn’t my intention. I just always heard it was better to pray for someone else than your self. So why not you, and then you get to take Chaos for a sweet world wide vacation. Seems win win to me. And maybe you’ll feel kind enough to buy me a Ferrari and pay off my student loan when I graduate. :)

      • Citizen on February 8, 2012, 4:10 pm

        A Ferrari? That choice does not sound very agnostic.

      • Taxi on February 8, 2012, 4:16 pm

        Sure if I win I’ll buy yooz a Ferrari and annihilate your debt with the click of my fingers – heck I wanna throw in a foot massage certificate and a magic frog to kiss just cuz you’re so deliciously selfless. Memphis, I think I adorezya.

        (A drunken Irishman once told me that god only answers the prayers of agnostics and the curses of the devil – lol!)

      • Citizen on February 10, 2012, 11:50 am

        May I have a vintage split-window VW Beetle instead in working order, and condition? After all, I don’t have any debt….

      • Taxi on February 10, 2012, 2:38 pm

        Hey my grandad had one of those VW’s in baby-blue and tiny windshield wipers – classic! And how perfectly apt of you to ask for one and yes my dear you GOTTA have one!

        Maybe you and Memphis can do a charity drag-race for Palestine hahahaha!

      • Citizen on February 10, 2012, 5:30 pm

        I use to have a baby blue VW bug–it was a 1959, & I drove it in college in the late ’60s. But the split-rear window bugs were older than that–they even had those side arms that shot when you were signaling a turn, if memory serves. I don’t cotton to drag races, especially with VW bugs. Maybe I will drive my Mustang.

  6. annie on February 8, 2012, 1:58 pm

    here’s an entertaining blog if anyone is interested.

    • iamuglow on February 9, 2012, 9:24 am

      Neat site. I like. Thanks.

      “If you chance upon a liberal Zionist in the woods: …….don’t make sudden requests for equal rights for Palestinians…that might scare them away.

      • Citizen on February 9, 2012, 3:26 pm

        Well, iamuglow, Witty has not been around much lately.

      • annie on February 9, 2012, 3:28 pm

        like blankfort

      • Taxi on February 9, 2012, 3:58 pm

        Maybe witty was marched down the plank when the last set of mondo ‘rules of conduct’ were posted by captain Adam. Dumvita and eee have also been notably absent since that day too. Hmmmmm. Hope eee got the squeaking plank and Dumvita got a cute little row-boat with a hamper and an i-phone on board.

        Sometimes Blankfort doesn’t post for ages and ages so I don’t analyze his absence as something unusual.

      • Kathleen on February 10, 2012, 10:23 am

        You can bet Blankfort is out there expanding his mind…that fella is a truly compassionate individual and an encyclopedia of facts about the I/P conflict and other middle east issues

      • annie on February 10, 2012, 12:12 pm
      • Taxi on February 10, 2012, 3:03 pm

        Blankfort is an ingenious humanitarian. People like him are constantly stalked by loons and their loony tunes.

      • Citizen on February 10, 2012, 5:44 pm

        Taxi, I think Blankfort is a very serious and ethical person. I like this Blankfort a lot. Anyway, I’ve already been tossed into his camp, rightly or wrongly. I consider that a plus. I don’t know anything about him except what he thinks, as per his/her comments on MW.

      • john h on February 10, 2012, 6:06 pm

        Hope eee got the squeaking plank and Dumvita got a cute little row-boat with a hamper and an i-phone on board.

        Can’t understand why dumvita has disappeared. She’s no liberal Zionist and tho she did have her moments I thought she was good value. Perhaps she used “nazi” some way that upset a moderator? I miss her!

      • Bumblebye on February 10, 2012, 6:42 pm

        There, but for the grace of Mod…..

      • john h on February 10, 2012, 9:36 pm

        Yes please, Mod, may all be forgiven, bring dumvita back to us, I beg you!!

      • MRW on February 11, 2012, 9:35 am

        Blankfort was banned.

      • patm on February 11, 2012, 10:49 am

        “Blankfort was banned.”

        I’m sorry to hear this. How did you hear about it?

      • Cliff on February 11, 2012, 11:00 am


      • jayn0t on February 11, 2012, 11:38 am

        I don’t believe that. Jeff’s on this new site with Atzmon and co.: – readers of this blog will find it interesting

      • iamuglow on February 12, 2012, 1:04 am

        psst. That is terrible if true.

      • MRW on February 12, 2012, 3:22 am


        I’m sorry to hear this. How did you hear about it?

        Googled. It’s on seanmcbride and anonymouscomments Friendfeed Mondoweiss group. Search for anonymouscomments on Friendfeed and click on the comments link upper right and poke about. I don’t know how to add a link; doesn’t seem possible, but then I’m not a Friendfeed member. It appears that Jeffrey Blankfort replied there as well to confirm that the moderators threw him off for bringing up facts that Hannah Arendt, Lenni Brenner, Tom Segev, and even Hostage linked to.

        I find objecting to documented historical data dishonest. Doing it in the 21st C is unforgivable, but it seems that’s what the moderators decided on. It will diminish this site immeasurably. (What do they say about the hobgoblins of little minds?) To imply, infer, state that Jeffrey Blankfort is an anti-semite, which I understand is what he is accused of (see Friendfeed), when what he actually wrote is far from it–he was fighting the I/P issue when some of the moderators here were in diapers or not even born yet–is tawdry, intellectually dishonest, and a flat-out lie.

        Guess I’m next for saying this.

      • Taxi on February 12, 2012, 4:06 am

        I’m deeply disappointed by the moderators at mondoweiss.

        Nameless, faceless judges: I urge you to reconsider this appalling and short-sighted decision to ban Jeffrey.

        If your best commentators start to disrespect your decisions, then you might as well call yourselves the Huffington Post.

        I for one feel alienated from this site by this unjust decision.

        Again I urge you moderators to reconsider – and I urge all fair-minded mondo posters to protest this decision in the strongest possible way.

      • Hostage on February 12, 2012, 7:29 am

        It appears that Jeffrey Blankfort replied there as well to confirm that the moderators threw him off for bringing up facts that Hannah Arendt, Lenni Brenner, Tom Segev, and even Hostage linked to.

        I really couldn’t say, because I haven’t been warned privately or moderated. When someone deploys a hasbara straw man I’ve normally respond by directing attention to some of the standard published authorities that can shed light on the particular subject for those readers who might be interested in reading more about the topic. I’ve never thought the Jews were responsible for the rise of the Nazis and can’t think of any enlightened sources, including Jeffrey Blankfort, who’ve stated that is the better view of the situation. I’m sorry that whatever happened ended in a ban.

        I generally disagree with attempts to justify attacks on non-belligerent civilians going about their daily business. That even includes rationalizations about attacks on Israeli citizens on their side of the Green line. See for example my comment on the controversial Derfner editorial.

        That rule applies to the Jewish victims of the Holocaust too. Codifications of the customary rules of warfare, like Article 16 and 23 of the Union Army Lieber Code of (1863) and the corresponding rules annexed to the Fourth Hague Convention of 1907 outlawed murder and cruelty that targets any civilian population – no matter how obnoxious the victim’s culture might be to others (e.g. Zionists, Jabotinsky’s Yid, or the Haredim).

        I don’t think the Holocaust era Zionists and their slavish devotion to nation building is any more despicable than the conduct of our own modern-day officials. The latter are all too willing to sustain further military and civilian losses before they will consider a pullout from one of our disastrous wars, because of their concern over the possible loss of access to resources or national prestige. It’s just silly to argue that those Zionist or US policies ever were, or are, essential to our survival – much less that they helped provide Jews or Americans with safe havens. There is international consensus that those sort of actions may give rise to criminal responsibility for the individuals involved, but that they are not a justification for the death penalty, much less wholesale genocide of the Zionists or Americans.

        The article on the new comment policy and Adam’s replies both indicated that sort of discussion wasn’t the real target of the new additions to the MW comment policy, but that beating off-topic dead horses about the Nazi era doesn’t add to the value of the comment section – which should be aimed at providing information about the conflict today.

        I’ve never had a single comment rejected by the moderators here, although I’ve seen several of the regulars complain that they have been moderated from time to time. Anyone who has posted regularly on Israeli news sites can imagine the toxic brew the moderators here must see during discussions like the ones on Prof Slater’s just war article. It was impossible for some of us readers to sort through the 400+ comments that made it through moderation without getting completely exasperated. So, I have no trouble accepting the claim that the moderators were burned-out afterward and that a rule change to avoid a repetition for the site operator’s sakes was in order – and I indicated as much at the time.

      • john h on February 14, 2012, 8:24 pm

        It appears dumvita took herself off the site, all posts on her profile have gone; she may not have been banned after all.

      • Taxi on February 15, 2012, 2:59 am

        A message to Phil and Adam,

        The moderators you’ve placed in your good offices are good people, I’m sure. But I do get the strongest feeling/sense that maybe one or two of them are not as well informed as your best posters. Indeed it seems an intellectual travesty to give them the final say over what gets published. It also dulls the site down to have moderators who don’t FULLY understand the value of a dynamic and free-flowing debate, or disapprove of the authentic and original ‘spirit’ of mondoweiss that made it what it is today.

        Yes I’d say Mondoweiss has recently lost it’s spark and I’m noting less dynamic blogger-traffic since this article appeared. I’ve personally lost a large degree of interest in blogging here, knowing that I’m being moderated by staff who fundamentally know less than me about the I/P conflict (I even experienced the ’67 war in Jerusalem!), and who also dislike/disapprove of my style and vibe.

        It’s not fair or progressive that ‘readers’ and ‘moderators’ have more rights than bloggers. Especially that half of the appeal of mondoweiss has been about the originality of bloggers and their exciting contributions.

        Phil and Adam, I urge you to reconsider, not the rules, but your choice of moderator.

        Who guards the dog? You need to address this between you two.

      • Chaos4700 on February 15, 2012, 8:46 am

        They banned Jeffrey Blankfort? Can we demand that Phil and Adam answer for that?

      • Dan Crowther on February 15, 2012, 9:11 am

        That’s the word on the street(blankfort’s banning) — until I saw the Moose man the other day posting, I thought he was too….. DumVita and a couple of others are gone as well, although it seems like it may have been voluntary……

        One I thing I will say, this site used to amaze me — i read it everyday for a couple years before finally commenting, I read the incredibly well written and thoughtful comment section and was intimidated to jump in — and Blankfort was a part of it.

        The fact that Taxi – TAXI!!- has a problem getting through the mod’s is unbelievable to me….

      • Chu on February 15, 2012, 9:50 am

        Not only was Jeff an great source in the comment section, he had also written articles here as well. I agree with Chaos that Adam & Phil should address this, preferable through a post. I asssume this was based on new outside pressure that they have received, or outside forces leaning hard on CERSC. Who knows?

      • Taxi on February 15, 2012, 10:48 am

        Ah yeah Danny boy, every now and then a certain mod dislikes my honesty and turn-of-phrase hahahaha! But so what? Plenty more where that came from, as I like to say!

        “… this site used to amaze me”.
        Okay, and now, I mean lately, does it still amaze you? Do tell your truth! Cuz for me the real electrifying thrill is practically all gone – I’m not inspired to give mw my best verbal acrobatic shot presently. Reason for this? I feel a conservative/mediocre fence has been erected to contain the mustang in me, in all of us. I’m bored. Simply.

        That the topic of how awful that Dersh dude is, is more interesting and enlightening than the documented but hidden history of the conflict, is really a bit too ‘safe’ of an editorial for my liking. It’s also a tad repetitive and tedious for me, having read at least a dozen or so critiques per year on the Dersh right here on MW.

        What to do but hope that Adam and Phil be careful not to throw the baby out with the bath water.

        I’m putting all my cards on the table cuz I love you Mondoweissers.

      • Dan Crowther on February 15, 2012, 11:27 am

        “Okay, and now, I mean lately, does it still amaze you? Do tell your truth!”

        No, it doesn’t. I hate to say it, but I think it was Mooser on the Jerry “Just Wars” Slater thread said it best when he said – “this is becoming the best liberal zionist site on the web!” — there is more than a little truth to that.

        I don’t know what has happened, but I don’t think I can read anymore “Oh gawd, what has happened to my people” articles from jewish folks, and I can’t be bothered with the “adelson funds gingrich” max blumethal type reporting — we here all know dersh, adelson, mort zuckerman and co. are assholes, does it really need to be written about daily?

        Ive also noticed that MW has changed at the same time the “left” gets ready to get behind Barry and the O’s for a second term — lots of Paul bashing, lots of “scary republicans” and their Israeli counterparts, but NOTHING on O’s wars in Libya/Yemen/Somalia etc (we could go on and on), his war mongering in Syria or really anything about how the I/P conflict is affected by all of these happenings…..

        Recently, I get the feeling that sometime soon, I am going to be reading a “I can’t believe my people used a war with iran as cover to kick palestinians out of Israel/Palestine” article, followed directly by some poetry from rosengarten and sob sister accounts from other jewish cats. the thought of this makes me wanna puke

      • Taxi on February 15, 2012, 11:46 am

        Cool to hear your take on the direction that MW is currently taking, Dan.

        We need a consensus from the blogging folk on MW. Anyone else out there have a comment to share on the topic of the recent lacklusteryvibe that Dan and I are experiencing as bloggers on MW?

        Does anyone else here think that the editors should be equally considerate of their bloggers as they are of their readers and moderators? Or is MW alright to be like a mini Hollywood where their writers are treated like secondhand bags of dirt?

      • Danaa on February 15, 2012, 1:25 pm

        Taxi, Dan, I’ll jump. Because I agree – something has gone a bit dull around the edges. There has always been the danger that a site as dedicated to the documenting the travails of the Jewish “spirit” as MW was, will deteriorate into a bowl full of tears, devoid of the very spirit it seeks to reinvigorate. That danger is upon us and I am with Dan, Taxi and Chu on the navel-gazing ambiance that seems to have descended upon us. You wouldn’t find me anywhere near a Desh article anymore than tuning it to the latest rubbish MSNBC spews about republican mud-slinging. As Taxi says – it’s ennui producing and the agenda is so obvious the aliens who are watching us must be getting bored out of their little green minds. Next we know, they’ll shut down the show altogether, and then what!

        One other comment, Taxi. I think the moderators may be unfairly blamed. They may have been thrown under the bus as well, precisely because they can’t come out and defend themselves – by definition. As much as we hate to admit it – the blame for the dulling of the site following the banning of Jeffrey lies with them that set policy and make the command decisions. The rest we have no visibility about, so I urge resisting the temptation to jump to conclusions that may or may not be warranted. The mods may have had absolutely nothing to do with the banning of jeffrey, for all we know, unless we hear or find out otherwise. I imagine it is not an easy job, and am not sure why anyone would want to do it, unless paid in tablets of gold.

        Unfortunately no one knows the secret ingredient that makes one site more popular over others, insofar as getting people (known as commenters to the aliens) to give it their best shot. I suspect (and we are all about to see proof) that Jeffret Blankfort somehow was part of the secret ingredient, no matter how frequent or scarce his appearances. Because he could be so provocative and thought provoking. Just seeing him here adding a comment and interjecting once in a while was like a refresher for them who feel trapped in the looking glass, as many of us are. He is one of the prophets for our age, and prophets often have things thrown at them, which is something they surely expect. But once in a while a prophet is ‘allowed” to get through, and for that the town on Ninveh was saved (forget the darn whale now – it’s an allegory!!).

        For how long and how deep a prophet is allowed to access the conscience of a people – or several people – is a measure of the capacity for redemption the people have, or so I believe. Jeffrey got just short of a decade on this channel, also known as Mondoweiss. And we have all seen this channel go from little rivulets of water to a near-torrent. Alas, when time came to do the real soul digging that needed doing, one of our best digging tools has been taken away, leaving behind a forelorn mound, with but a few disciples milling about, shovels at the ready, still waiting for the green light. To me that means that the work of redemption (by which I mean putting disaster in abeyance – however that happens) is taking a lull, just like Phil.

        PS Imagination is such a curse! grandiosity is never more than wink or a step away! well, I know the good people here have more than a few grains of salt at the ready. More like boulders.

      • patm on February 15, 2012, 1:54 pm

        Taxi, here’s a comment I made Feb 13, 2012 at 8:39 am on the Hasbara PennBDS wrap-up: Pro-Israel students are ignorant thread. There was 1 reply from Citizen.

        “Adam and Phil,

        I think you both should take note of what Hostage says here:

        Werdine & Co. pretend that they can’t grasp the simple concept of being an accessory or accomplice to a crime that deliberately targeted a civilian population outside the jurisdiction of the proposed Jewish State. I’m not interested in debating this or continuing to fund a website that provides Werdine and his partners a platform to whitewash Haganah’s role in deliberately erasing 400+ villages, including Deir Yassin.

        Hostage is one of your most valuable contributors to the comment section. He is expressing a view I’m sure others share. You have disappointed many including myself by wrongly banning Jeffrey Blankfort, and now you are giving the likes of Werdine and Shaktimaan a free run to spread their hasbara lies.

        These invaluable ‘old hands’ as I call them have only so much time, energy, money, and goodwill to spend helping you with this site.”

      • American on February 15, 2012, 2:35 pm

        I am in agreement with Taxi, Dan, Danaa, Chu.
        We’re in danger of being nothing but a bunch of handwringers here, dancing around with the concerned tearful Liberal zionist.
        We need spark! A War of Truth, not just ideas.
        Bring on the hard core zionist and Israel firsters and give us a chance to debunk their rationals and ideology for MW readers.
        We promise not to use profanity..:)

      • Cliff on February 15, 2012, 3:13 pm

        i agree wholeheartedly with patm.

        the same applies to people like hophmi tho.

        and then where would our Zionist crew be? there’d be none left

        they are all liars/intellectual crooks/supporters of war crimes as long as it’s Israel doing the bombing/looting/murdering/etc.

        even the more civil ones like WJ say it’s acceptable to murder Iranian scientists because of an existential fear (so he agrees with Ward Churchill, who attempted to at least partially rationalize the 9/11 attacks b/c the victims made up the technocratic elite who power the American empire).

        How is that any different from when WJ says its ok to kill Iranian scientists since they assist the Iranian war machine/effort/etc.

        Phil and Adam don’t moderate. They PAINT (selective moderation) the comments section.

        I havent seen Witty here in ages (*knock on wood*) and eee too. So that’s a plus.

        I still don’t understand what Jeffrey did though. He wasnt just an arm-chair intellectual like some people here (myself included). He had real experience. He was spied on by the ADL. He was shot at by Israeli soldiers (ie. FASCISTS) during the first Lebanon War (not sure on timeline here).

        He comments as a human being without identity. He’s Jewish but I have never seen him exhibit that ethno-exceptionalism espoused by so many liberal Jews (even ones I adore like Anna Baltzer). He just tells the plain truth and expresses the kind of solidarity that I believe is most meaningful (one devoid of lame identity politics where you have to tip-toe around upsetting liberal Jews/the Establishment in our country vis a vis terms like ‘israel-firster)

        in fact, i think all of this fake-moderation is symptomatic of the phony Left (we have a new guy on this website commenting, who is form a website called New Left – and shocker, he objects to the term Israel Firster).

        60+ years of conflict. 45 years of colonization. And we’re still stepping on eggshells around offending people with THE PLAINSPOKEN TRUTH!

        Maybe it’s because my family never had an antagonistic view of non-Indians. We always thought of ourselves as Americans.

        Although my parents have in recent years, visited their homeland more often.

        This is my country. I am American. I do not identify as an Indian-American. I am only American (and asterick, ‘of Indian descent’).

        It’s a waste of time to indulge the PC police amidst the REAL offenses being physically afflicted and visited upon the Palestinians.

      • patm on February 15, 2012, 3:23 pm

        Guess I’m next for saying this.

        I’ve only just read your comment, mrw. I joined Sean’s ff group early and have made a few comments. See my February 15, 2012 1:54 pm comment above for reaction to Blankfort’s firing.

      • LeaNder on February 15, 2012, 3:48 pm

        I’d like to join Danaa, and the rest. To censure Jeffrey Blankfort surely was a very bad decision. Initially, I couldn’t believe the rumor was true; but then it appears to be true. I wish this very special decision would have been made much more openly, instead of additionally censoring the posting of Jeffrey’s response on the issue on’s Sean McBride’s Friendfeed here.

        While I can’t deny that I occasionally had troubles with Jeffrey, I have to admit I lately started to like the old man, thus again, I really think we deserve to learn more about the explicit reasons, which I still don’t understand. No doubt something may have escaped my attention.

      • Dan Crowther on February 15, 2012, 4:09 pm

        Fckin A Cliff……. I agree across the board.

        I will say this though, I have noticed more and more “maybe the “jewish community” doesn’t have much to offer here” (regarding palestine) comments not only here on the MW comment threads – but in other places as well. I think the great wall of jewish leftist arbitration is coming down — all we can do is to go out in public and state our views, regardless of who is present, which is what I try to do.

        If we are consistent, and we agree that someone being able to move to israel based on who they were born to (no matter where they are from in the world) is bullsht, well, in my view, elevating the speech of someone based on the same criteria is also bullsht. And we shouldn’t be afraid to say it – being jewish does not give you anymore legitimacy to protest Israel or advocate for palestine than anyone else.

        And anyone who says otherwise is a tosser

      • Taxi on February 15, 2012, 5:04 pm


        I so adore your thinking and your poesy – I think I’ve expressed my admiration of your work and person before.

        You know, I actually admire mondo moderators – I mean their patience and their focusing powers. But I do think that sometimes their personal pc boundary can be anti-intellectual and lame. I believe they exert a tangible influence on the ‘vibe’ of a thread, for sure. In Jeffrey’s case, perhaps they had ‘influence’ on the decision to ban him, perhaps not, but indeed, the ultimate decision and responsibility lay squarely in Phil and Adam’s hands. The dude Jeffrey is so unbelievably informed and generous with sharing his studied and personal knowledge of the I/P conflict that I cannot believe any editor in their right mind would ban him – especially considering his humanitarian and inclusive dictum on justice and peace. But banned he apparently was and we don’t know why the heck he was banned and this is most confusing – promoting a weird and sudden distrust of the decision makers’ agenda. Something’s not right. And this unrightness needs ‘splaining! I mean why not close the whole commentary section down and see what happens to MW – really, if you’re gonna ban the proven best why then bother moderating the lowlier? Life is just too short for avoidable headaches and tedium, n’est-ce pas?

        In my view, MW was at it’s best when one could say anything about anyone – trolls and extremists on both sides were taken care of and chased away mainly by the unique political wit and wisdom of the finer bloggers, and not by moderators. This spontaneous methodology made for compelling, informative AND amusing reading. No other site on the I/P conflict had this political literati pizzazz cuz their moderators were anally retentive zio puppets and their editors were toupee and pantaloons-wearing zio stooges. Granted, this wanton freedom of expression had it’s downside too for several years, I know, but Phil and Adam eventually got a good handle and a great balance going for a couple of years thereafter and MW’s creative output flourished and attracted a wider readership and a financially supportive corporation or two. For a few years altogether, Phil and Adam musta had the most interesting I/P net-rag in the English language out there. Not too shabby I’d say, considering that wonderful things in life, like flowers, usually fade sooner than later.

        So what’s next? What’s gonna happen? Hahahahaha I don’t know, mate. But if it stays dull around here, I sure ain’t gonna be hanging around.

        Oh please Adam and Phil, puleeeze with cinnamon buns and cherries on top, please I implore you to re-thunk the whole goddam new recipe – you’re taking the wedding cake outta the oven too soon.


        patm dearest, thank you for bringing to our attention Citizen’s clear-headed and succinct commentary on this subject. I hadn’t seen this comment of his before. Don’t you just love his self-possession and integrity? Citizen: this earnest and extraordinary everyman.

        I assume his post resonated to the spindly bone with you too.

      • on February 15, 2012, 5:28 pm

        agreed there’s a lot of smart commenting on MW and creative dispatching of trolls, etc.
        same and moreso can be said of almost completely Moderation-free

      • patm on February 15, 2012, 5:36 pm

        And Avi_G, he’s not been lately.

      • Taxi on February 15, 2012, 6:37 pm

        The great Avi_G actually resigned himself of his own volition a few month back, he announced it to us all – he did pop in once since then though. (Hope you’re having good timez Avi_G wherever you are!)

      • Danaa on February 15, 2012, 6:41 pm

        patm, never saw anything from Avi_G that would cause comment policy makers to put on the floppy heavy boots. His was a forceful and unequivocal voice, and careful of words, at that. I suppose we never settled whether he was the same as the old Avi we used to have around here (I personally doubt it – very different styles). Let’s hope he didn’t get plain bored, with all the latter-day hand-wringing just busy (as we all do, from time to time).

      • patm on February 15, 2012, 7:11 pm

        I assume his post resonated to the spindly bone with you too.

        Spindly bone or not, it never hurts to have a lawyer tag along, Taxi. Did you see how he changed my “wrongly” to “official” to describe Jeffrey’s banning. ‘:>

        It’s futile to speculate on the AJP case, so why not get back to discussing the new rules: the ban on discussions of 9/11 conspiracy theories, and on the role of European Zionists and Nazis in the 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s—for fear of holocaust and nakba deniers. Or so it seems. The rules are vague.

        I’m on record as agreeing with the new rules. I’ve changed my mind. I was wrong. What P & A have done is quite breath-taking.

        To ban discussion of known facts and expert opinion of historians and historiographers on the holocaust and nakba is to deny us vital knowledge of our recent past. Anti-intellectual to the hilt!

      • patm on February 15, 2012, 7:43 pm

        Let’s hope he didn’t get plain bored,

        Avi-G got pissed off, john h. I saw a sharp comment wherein he accused Phil of refusing his comments because he’d used his “forceful and unequivocal voice” to criticize Phil. Avi-G left shortly after, I miss him, to me he was an instant ‘old hand’.

      • annie on February 15, 2012, 9:14 pm

        I suppose we never settled whether he was the same as the old Avi we used to have around here (I personally doubt it – very different styles)

        no, it was the same avi, he told me once and i have no reason to doubt him. he was one of my favorite posters and i miss him. even tho he imagined i had censored one of his comments at one time. he is so smart, usually.

        i worry about how the new policy might impact the site. not happy bout blankfort but then again i am not privy to whatever behind the scenes communication/pushback the site may have endured as a result of his postings.

        my guess is (big guess) there are unspoken limits..there’s a level of discourse that becomes dangerous and i don’t know what that is. i think many more people keep track of and read this site than we can imagine. so sometimes i notice when the arena becomes more challenging outsiders just show up. this tells me we’re closing in on the unspeakable.

        there is a dynamic that goes on in threads that doesn’t happen anywhere else on the internet. it’s not the same a main posts (which do not tend to speculate so much) and much different than twitter (very few words). it’s a place where personalities and narratives develop over time and when one of those valued voices disappears it is as if an appendage is severed (as opposed to trolls whose absence we do not notice). here we are weeks later not over him. but we do not know how many emails flew around. we really do not know. it is hard to pinpoint the exact comment that resulted in this or even if there was ‘one’.

        part of this lull is , of course, because phil is gone. this is really a more ‘in house’ conversation of commenters than actual participants in the MW community as there are probably many more (thousands more) people who read than comment. i sense there is a thirst for knowledge of the older and wiser…something jeffrey excelled at. but i don’t understand who was on the other side and what their limits were, i just think they were really really loud. but it wasn’t a conversation we were privy to. that is my guess.

      • Chaos4700 on February 15, 2012, 9:24 pm

        Who cares about “pushback?!” Did Phil forget that there are Palestinians who are DYING as we speak?

        We have a real problem here. I’m starting to perceive an existential threat to this corner of the pro-Palestinian rights movement. And here I started thinking we were making progress.

      • Hostage on February 15, 2012, 11:29 pm

        That’s the word on the street(blankfort’s banning)

        No Blankfort acknowledged the story in comments he made here:

      • Chu on February 16, 2012, 9:31 am

        If we are consistent, and we agree that someone being able to move to israel based on who they were born to (no matter where they are from in the world) is bullsht, well, in my view, elevating the speech of someone based on the same criteria is also bullsht. And we shouldn’t be afraid to say it – being jewish does not give you anymore legitimacy to protest Israel or advocate for palestine than anyone else.

        Well said Dan. I’m leery of Jewish activists, and past authors on this site, who say they are forming an organization to stop Israel apartheid, etc. But it always begins with ‘Jews against’, etc. Avoiding inviting the ‘supposed others’ to stand in solidarity comes across as separatist and potentially impotent for the growth of an organization. This author Ezra Nepon, posting the other day, hopes to enticing us with ‘the New Jewish Agenda’ that carries the same exclusionary tone. I realize that anyone can be a member of JVP, but enough with the religious branding on peace organizations. Call it Citizens against the Apartheid already. I think part of the reason is that when the non-Jew starts an organization, they are branded Anti-semites. Just look at the flak Alison Weir gets from her website ‘If Americans Knew’.

      • Dan Crowther on February 16, 2012, 9:37 am

        Again, I think Chao’s sense of urgency is spot on. I really can’t overstate my agreement all the way through.

      • Chu on February 16, 2012, 9:49 am


        Jeff made an astute comment that going forward there will be no deep probing of the conflict (it’s roots). The idea is to stay on current events, which is laughable in comparison to what has already transpired here over the years. It’s a stretch expect a group that has wrestled exhaustively with each aspect of this conflict to be neutered about the long reaching history, its causes and effects.

      • patm on February 16, 2012, 10:43 am

        no, it was the same avi, he told me once and i have no reason to doubt him. he was one of my favorite posters and i miss him. even tho he imagined i had censored one of his comments at one time. he is so smart, usually.

        Surprised to hear this, annie. Such different voices. I thought back to his reply to Danna when she expressed surprise upon learning he was a Mizrahi Jew. In that reply, the voice was that of a humble black servant in the American south duly apologizing for keeping secrets from his master. Ironic, amusing, skillfuly written. I shall look for the mondo url.

      • MRW on February 16, 2012, 10:46 am

        Dan, [February 15, 2012 at 11:27 am]

        As I wrote Jeffrey Blankfort: I’m just a GB (Gentile Baseboard) on MW, something that goes around the bottom of the room decorating the wall, while the “elites” are checking out their coifs with both hands in the mirror higher up in the room–♫ I’m so pretty ♫ oh so pretty ♫.

        Me and all the rest of the GBs who helped build the traffic to this site starting over six years when had pegged at the equivalent of a high-school after-school craft class URL…well, now we know we’re a peg above a guy who initiated the I/P activism in the 1970s, 40 years ago–when NOT ONE SINGLE PERSON ON, OR VISITOR TO, THIS SITE GAVE A DAMN ABOUT IT, OR KNEW ABOUT IT–with a title that did not contain the words Jewish or Zionist, because it wasn’t germane, and he concentrated the title with the words of the real issue to be solved: Palestine or Palestinian. The GBs didn’t get banned because, why? We didn’t know as much as the banned person, the grand-daddy of the I/P movement in this entire country, a guy who started alone and suffered alone in an act of morality and simple justice. He gets banned. The guy who lived through WWII, and swore to never forget its history. That’s what the jejune junks because a part of that truth he lived through and could document is apparently not only hard to take, but he refuses to be hijacked by pilpul*. (We GBs, on the other hand, we baseboards, we just take up inches, good for business. Helps the Alexa hit-o-meter. Also keeps the Zios hired by the Ministry of Information & Hasbara in Tel Aviv, whatever it’s called, deploying pilpul on this site, ‘natch, despite the lack of historical evidence).

        Of course, the commenters that contributed to this site are a good part of the reason why this site was getting national attention lately–attenzione that was BEFORE Blankfort was banned. His crisp thinking–and that of many others–are part of the reason why this site garnered attention. Don’t think for a moment the articles were alone in doing it.

        I know some of you probably think: who are you? I didn’t have a yellow star beside my name (a sign of donating money), because I forked over my 250 bucks nine months before yellow stardom was introduced, but I was going to contribute a lot more this month. (Now I can splurge on my vices.) But I wrote the equivalent of almost 10 books on this site in 2.5 years. I was here for six. That contribution has to count for something, even though a lot of what I wrote I recognize as an effort at understanding because so many of you here taught me things I didn’t know and for which I am grateful and thankful.

        But I’m not sticking around unless Blankfort is here. I can do without the pilpul. So this is my adieu. It’s been a great run. Truly. I am going to miss so, so many of you.

        Don’t miss reading these. They couldn’t be more timely.

        * David Shasha: What Is Pilpul, And Why On Earth Should I Care About It?

        * David Shasha: Netanyahu At AIPAC: Pilpul In Action!

      • Dan Crowther on February 16, 2012, 11:22 am



        And yes, the comment section IS MONDOWEISS!!!

        Maybe we should start a site

        This is insane, MW wants to have a “honest investigation” without the honesty – I dont think people realize what a special place the comment section was, as i said above, i read for years without posting – and in that time I got to read the writing of incredible minds, saying things that were “taboo” but totally true – and it made me unashamed to state my views.

        the comment section was a view affirming space, whatever else was true about it, it was a place where if you came armed with facts and a thoughtful argument you could hang – but if you came with nonsense and platitudes, you got shredded. What the F more could we want?


      • patm on February 16, 2012, 11:24 am

        Again, I think Chao’s sense of urgency is spot on. I really can’t overstate my agreement all the way through.

        Agreed, Dan. This is not a game. Hasbara Central means business. Clarity of mondo’s purpose is required to meet this challenge. Phil and Adam must state clearly who they are: liberal zionists or anti-zionists?

        The answer determines comments policy, who is banned, who wants to join.

      • seanmcbride on February 16, 2012, 11:36 am


        Here is the link for the discussion about Jeffrey Blankfort on Friendfeed:

        (To copy links on Friendfeed posts: position your cursor over the dates for posts.)

        I hope that Mondoweiss reverses its policy on Blankfort. If it doesn’t, I am concerned that there might be a decline in the level of intellectual energy and vitality here.

      • seanmcbride on February 16, 2012, 11:41 am


        My thoughts and feelings exactly.

      • Taxi on February 16, 2012, 12:36 pm


        I’m in solidarity and appreciation of your many brilliant contributions, my friend. I too have had a compelling urge to depart from MW for all the good and right reasons that you and others have highlighted. Here’s my deal, with myself that is: if this issue is not addressed by Adam and Phil come the 1st March 2012, then I too will resign from blogging for MW. By the end of the month, I need to have heard/read a convincing argument by the co-editors as to why they deemed it necessary, deemed it just and sensible to ban Jeffrey Blankfort.

        I feel better to leave this site having given the editors time for a bit of soul searching and reflection. Of course if they decline commenting on such a deeply disturbing administrative decision, well then, it’ll be their loss and shame.

        Perhaps, MRW, you would consider hanging around till the end of the month too? Give the guys the benefit of the doubt – because of all their hard work and vitality in putting this site together in the first place?

        Please, stay with me till the end of month – take a deep breath and wait before you hermetically seal your decision.

        It’s all just too sad and sudden otherwise.

      • Danaa on February 16, 2012, 1:10 pm

        Patm, if you find the url, please post. I forgot about that one but do remember some other interesting exchanges. Like you, I am surprised about the personality transformation. It can be, of course – the beauty of the internet is that one CAN evolve and/or express different facets of one’s persona. All the more so on sites that revolve around exchanges of opinions. More power to them who can be more, especially when the outlook is immutably just.*

        In any case I appreciate all the Avi’s and will be delighted to see one and all return to run down the tracks and up the hills with us. We need every nuance of every voice – multiplied a thousand times.

        * Myself, I entertain many transformative visions too. My favorite is as a stay-on-point brevity meister, with nary nestled parenthesis nor tussling astericks in sight…sigh…

      • annie on February 16, 2012, 1:55 pm

        patm, the first paragraph in phil’s wiki page references I’m gonna wave my freak flag high (why I say I’m an ‘Anti-Zionist,’ not a ‘Post-Zionist’). i don’t think adam is a zionist either.

      • annie on February 16, 2012, 2:00 pm

        i will see if i can find the specific comment in the archives patm.

      • Danaa on February 16, 2012, 2:05 pm

        MRW, far from GB be you to me like to most of us here. I – along with many – appreciate – and then some – your many good posts, links and contributions – tirelessly disseminated (now don’t melt, OK?).

        Just as Dan and Taxi and everyone above said, it’s the very variety of voices and the freedom to express them, that made the site so special. Unlike most other comment sections on the nets, this one did not have that musty ambiance that settles in when everyone keeps going around in circles, largely over the same tired points, seemingly engaged in pointless competition over navel gazing sophistry (there’s pilpul for ya). What’s a Jew to do? sums up most of the commentary to be found appended to many a site ostensibly dedicated to “peace in our time”.

        So what’s the new MW to be? are all Beinarts now? Woody Allens? plaintive Portnoys? maybe some of us are not that and neither wish to be?

        Many a time did Phil speak about the vitality and freshness that the new forms of interactive journalism bring to the old masses, grown tired of being lectured to from every lantern perched self-enamored journo. Without robust commentary, all we’ll have is the same old “journalism” and opinionated muck-cracking, delivered by a few, appreciated by few, ignored by most who have more important things to do than listen to the same nuggets, urged to ignore the maggots within and without. Listening much, commenting little and engaging in even less is what got us all here in the first place – to the precipice of an apocalypse.

        Dan is right – it’s time to raise our voices rather than be too quick to take our marbles and go home. I, in particular, would like to see someone like Shmuel, precisely because he took a few issues with divisiveness (invariably brought forth by the likes of the incorrigble Blankfort and even more so by the smoldering Atzmon) join us here to call for Jeffrey’s reinstatement. Long live divisiveness , I say!

        And while I am at it – calling for reinstatements – if Witty was banned too – as many of us suspect – let him return too. No, I do not consider him remotely on the same level as Blankfort, but he made a good talking lamp post and by being Witty, has brought forth great bursts of wit and merriment over the years. Let him too return as exasperating as his brand of JB (Jewish Baseboard) is. Witty – by fault or default – was part and parcel of the mythology of Mondoweiss. Personally, I feel funny bringing up his name, say, as epitome of disingenuousness and pretzel thought making, without knowing he is lurking somewhere, ready to say something totally innane and/or irrelevant. let him too say his piece, just like eee and Werdine.
        Let them all return and speak their piece. And let the other commenters do what they do best with them – show them up for the hollow ziobots that they are.

        If little shreds of baseboard slit and packets of musty pilpul is the price to pay for having even a bit of light from the Blankfort beacon, so be it.

      • on February 16, 2012, 2:14 pm

        Blankfort is still listed among ‘Writers’ on Mondoweiss, paired with Phil as well as in his own right —

        # Jeff Blankfort and Phil Weiss (12)
        . . .
        Jeffrey Blankfort (119)

        is that just for archive purposes?

      • American on February 16, 2012, 3:45 pm

        Don’t do it MRW. Stay. Push the envelope. Nothing to lose.

      • Shingo on February 16, 2012, 4:22 pm

        I couldn’t agree more re Blankfort.

        Phil and Adam have made a really bad call here. This all went south when Slater posted his just war column and saldy, Donald followed suit.

        I’d urge them to bring Blankfortback, even if it meant allowing eee and Witty back into the mix. While I I appreaciate the concerns that have motivated the new policies, it’s gong to lead to the energy and passion of this blog being strangled and suffocated.

        This has been a bad move guys.

      • Shingo on February 16, 2012, 4:31 pm

        Here is the link for the discussion about Jeffrey Blankfort on Friendfeed:

        It speaks volumes that a thread on Friendfeed attracts more taffic these days than one on Mondoweiss. How very sad.

      • seafoid on February 16, 2012, 5:16 pm

        Even without going into the prehistory some of the stuff the Zionists did while Jews were being exterminated was sick. Like negotiating with the Nazis to save a couple of thousand Zionist Hungarian Jews while the rest, almost half a million ,were sent off to Auschwitz and death.

        In obedience to Himmler’s directive I now concentrated on negotiations with the Jewish political officials in Budapest. One man stood out among them, Dr. Rudolf Kastner, authorized representative of the Zionist movement. This Dr. Kastner was a young man about my age, an ice-cold lawyer and a fanatical Zionist. He agreed to help keep the Jews from resisting deportation and even keep order in the collection camps if I would close my eyes and let a few hundred or a few thousand young Jews emigrate illegally to Palestine. It was a good bargain. For keeping order in the camps, the price of 15,000 to 20,000 Jews – in the end there may have been more – was not too high for me.

      • john h on February 16, 2012, 6:30 pm

        As I see it, the real poke in the eye is that Blankfort and the trolls were banned on the basis of what they wrote before the new rules came in. It was thus retrospective even though I seem to recall that was denied.

        They should be allowed back, monitored under the current rules like we all are, and accepted or banned according to those rules from here on. Justice must be done and seen to be done!

      • patm on February 16, 2012, 6:32 pm

        Pretty telling stuff, seafoid. Not surprising, in every war there are collaborators. Was is a corrupting force.

      • john h on February 16, 2012, 6:57 pm

        MRW, don’t give up too soon; if you can’t comment at least read and see what does or doesn’t develop here.

        I really appreciate the exchanges we had on the Saul Bellow thread. What you shared about that scientific finding on the mindset, and on that great mentor you had, almost certainly rank as the highlight of my time here on Mondoweiss.
        Thanks a million.

      • Thomson Rutherford on February 16, 2012, 8:47 pm


        Phil and Adam must state clearly who they are: liberal zionists or anti-zionists? The answer determines comments policy, who is banned, who wants to join.

        patm, I disagree with this part of your comment. I (as an anti-Zionist) think Phil and Adam should make it clear that they welcome reasonable comments from both liberal Zionists and anti-Zionists, both Jewish and non-Jewish. MW should be a forum for debate and exchange of ideas among people with different views.

        My feeling is that it would counterproductive for Phil and/or Adam to declare explicitly “who they are” – at least not on this website. Their goal should be to expand the influence of their blog in enabling the broadest reasonable discussion about I/P and the ME. Toward this end, no one should be banned unless they repeatably ignore warnings to comply with reasonable commenting guidelines (or they have been identified as trolls).

      • Dan Crowther on February 16, 2012, 9:25 pm

        Wow, Danaa, one of the all time great posts….

        I couldn’t agree more, all the way through – Witty exists, therefore he should be here, and if truth is going to exist here – with consideration to the tone with which it is delivered- Blankfort should be here too.

        And, I have to say, when I think of who some of the most frustrated people have been here, and who the banned or disinterested are, it’s the anti-zionist jewish guys. shmuel is a rare bird these days, mooser, avi ( come on avi!!)

        I’ll say this: We need MORE Jewish cats like these guys around, not less.


      • Hostage on February 16, 2012, 10:21 pm

        Jeff made an astute comment that going forward there will be no deep probing of the conflict (it’s roots).

        I can’t say yet, time will tell. I’ve never avoided the subject and don’t intend to ignore the use of the Holocaust straw man arguments in the future. The UNSCOP majority asserted that Palestine could not solve the problems of World Jewry and that any attempt to do so with such limited space and resources would violate the rights of the Arab majority. They were absolutely correct.
        *Millions of Jews have never moved to Palestine. It would create an environmental and public services nightmare if they had ever tried.
        *Israel has become a by word for an institutionalized regime of inhumane and systematic oppression and domination by one racial group over another.
        *The Jews in Israel have required hundreds of billions in military assistance and they are less secure today than they would have been if they had simply stayed in post-WWII Germany. In fact, the Jewish Agency for Israel pressured the German government to adopt restrictions on Jewish immigration.

      • American on February 16, 2012, 10:47 pm

        I sort of miss witty. I don’t see anything he said as worthy of banning.
        His beliefs weren’t my cup of tea and he was exasperating 80% of the time to try and read. But he took all our beatings without attacking people personally that I ever saw.

      • Hostage on February 16, 2012, 11:00 pm

        Again, I think Chao’s sense of urgency is spot on. I really can’t overstate my agreement all the way through.

        The Palestinian BDS National Committee (BNC) was happy to get the endorsement of Jewish Voice for Peace, so it wouldn’t comes across as an Arab separatist movement.

        So what do you guys think about renaming the Council of National and Islamic Forces in Palestine? It’s at the top of the list of civil society organizations that called for BDS. Why have a so-called Palestine Center in Washington D.C. and all of the Palestinian civil society organizations with mailing addresses outside the Middle East? Are we supposed to be leery about these allies too? I think these groups took on those names to influence a target audience, not to preach to the already converted. They want to show that it is respectable for Palestinians, Islamists, and Jews to support non-violent approaches and that we aren’t all a bunch of terrorists, racists, or warmongers. “Citizens against Apartheid” would dilute or eliminate that aspect of the message.

      • anonymouscomments on February 17, 2012, 12:15 am

        I just realized this issue broke out here….

        I always liked Blankfort’s comments (and so many other’s), and found nothing offensive. Once the new rules were made, I agreed they had some merit, and it was a choice made by Phil and Adam et al. I stopped any 9/11 discussion myself, and it makes sense given the mission of the website. I knew some discussions I found interesting and informative would cease, but that’s what you get when you want to be focused on the mission, and less arcane and freewheeling.

        When I realized Blankfort *might* be banned, I was shocked, and tracked down his email and checked. I have to say, I was shocked.

        Simply…. shocked.

        I fully expect Blankfort would have respected the rule change, and avoided certain digressions on WWII history (oddly, it is arguable his comments did not even clearly break the letter of the new rules; but that is beside the point). But the thing is, he never broke the rules once they were altered, and all his previous nuanced comments were already posted and had made it through moderation. A retrospective banning of such a great, composed commenter, with deep knowledge, who had even contributed to the site as a writer, was inexplicable for me.

        Not that Adam and Phil owe us much of anything, but the bottom line is I cannot see how they came to that decision. I think it was a mistake. I hope that they will reconsider the banning of Blankfort, should they realize it was a mistake (and frankly, disrespectful). And I even feel they even owe him a personal apology, but that is my opinion. But even that may be too little too late, and perhaps Blankfort would not even want to comment here again after such an unceremonious, unexpected, and unwarranted banning.

        Phil seems like a very genuine man, who gives people a hearing. Perhaps that is why he ended up banning Blankfort in the first place (people wispering in his ear?). Can he give us a hearing and reconsider some of the moves, perhaps made in haste? Can he admit a mistake, should he judge it was a mistake?

        There is a chill on the site since the shake up, but once I confirmed Blankfort was banned, it went a little ice cold for me. And from the thread above, I fear other passionate and informed commenters may be leaving or cutting back, and perhaps other posters I enjoyed may have been banned as well.

        STOP THE BLEEDING. Consider if some mistakes were made in retrospective bannings, which took dedicated commenters out before they even had a chance to conform to the new boundaries of debate. Consider asking Blankfort back (with a sincere apology).


      • Shingo on February 17, 2012, 5:36 am

        Here here anonymouscomments,

        I am also shaken by what has trasnpired on this forum since the censorship policy was announced. Balnkfort’s insights and experiences were unparalleled and it frnakly astounds me that a man who was on the ground, witnessing the Israeli occupation of Lebanon first hand, has been banned.

        I hate to say, but right now, my gut is saying that Phil and Adam have been Goldstoned.

      • patm on February 17, 2012, 11:34 am

        Thomas Rutherford, the Israel Lobby is overseeing a massive online hasbara campaign. To welcome a troll to mondo’s comments section is to invite unreasonable comments from tag teams of paid propagandists and volunteer zealots. We’ve no time for endless rounds of squishy middle debate.

        You say commenters “identified as trolls should be banned.” I say identification takes time, proof, money, and preferences. By the banning of Blankfort, P & A revealed their comments policy. Long-time commenters are shocked, dismayed, angry.

        Those of us who will leave March 1 unless Blankfort’s banning is revoked know that we can find many worthy-of-support, anti-Zionist, pro-Palestinian websites. We can all come up with fine sites.

        Long hours of sitting is bad for old folks; we need to keep moving to stay alive. ‘;->
        I started as an anti-Zionist activist going to the 5 – 6 pm vigil held each Friday outside the offices of the Toronto’s Israel Consulate. The small vigil has been going on for a decade. I left because I felt I didn’t know enough about the I/P conflict. Now I feel I do. Maybe I’ll go back.

      • Shmuel on February 17, 2012, 12:52 pm

        Danaa (you called on me by name, so you get the salutation :-),

        I may be in the minority on this thread, but I think that the comment section was indeed problematic, and that change – specifically tougher moderation – was in order. The main issues, as I understand them, were objectionable content, distraction and disruption.

        The first two “victims” of the crackdown seem to have been Witty and Blankfort, the former for disruption and the latter for objectionable content. I can’t say that I’m sorry to see Witty go. He was certainly a good part of the problem – both in his own comments and in the endless (and often nasty) arguments they engendered. As for Blankfort, I appreciated the accounts of his personal experiences and some of his insights, mostly ignored the endless “Chomsky wars”, and cringed at a few of his comments (so sue me).

        At this point, Phil and Adam are between a rock and a hard place. Some of the best and most prolific commenters feel that Blankfort was treated shabbily, and that his banning is also an indication of a disturbing narrowing of minds and horizons. On the other hand, I don’t think that they can really discuss the reasons behind their decision openly on the site, without giving rise to a whole lot of distraction, disruption and objectionable content. I’m sure they were aware of Blankfort’s following and the possible ramifications of his banning, but decided to take the chance anyway. They also decided to allow at least some discussion of the matter (including links to Friendfeed) – probably not an easy call in itself.

        I don’t know what they will do in the end, but it would be a terrible shame to lose commenters like MRW or Taxi.

      • Danaa on February 17, 2012, 2:27 pm

        Shmuel, it’s not just MRW or Taxi or Dan Crowther. It’s the chill that will descend on the site as a whole – something that cannot be measured or assessed ahead of time.

        To me, the issue revolves around solidarity. We either have it in our small camp or we don’t. A site that cannot live with someone of Jeffrey’s experience, passion, insight and writing caliber. because of occasional diversion into some or other territory, cannot make claims for inclusivity. It will be less effective in calling for action because there are too many boundaries being drawn. Jeffrey’s voice is one of the few that has been clear, consistent, unyielding and just. If he at times chooses to bring up topics that are uncomfortable for some, that’s a small prices to pay. They don’t have to join in the discussion.

        I realize that Jeffrey may have been the sacrificial lamb to throw into the rink. I expected something like this, Just as I expect Phil to get a wonderful offer anytime soon that will take him away from this place and leave it as another aggregator of Bad News Bear. That is the goal. The PTB (Powers-that-be) know all too well that precipitating food fights among the faithful is the surest way to lessen the sting of their critiques. How big a pound of flesh they extract is a measure of the site’s effectiveness. Given what Jeff was and is, MW was getting quite effective.

        As another comment, when DailyKos instituted draconian comment policies I lost all interest and basically never read it any longer. The same with the Guardian which I used to read every day and now visit only for something specific. Same with Haaretz, which has taken a serious turn into the land of the bland. Something similar will be true for me with MW. Without a riveting comment section – divisive or not – a site can lose vitality – which, again, is not something that can be measured.

        I will still read MW and occasionally contribute but without a few good people around to inspire new insights and provide historical context, my involvement too will likely shrink.

        That, mind you, is precisely the purpose of those who asked for Blankfort’s head, including, no doubt, the very nasty and petty Slater, for whom I lost all respect, following his pathetic “Just a War” nonsense. They – the PTBs and followers, are reading this thread and fulminating with glee, as we speak. I think you, and others who take issue with divisiveness and distraction may want to take agood look around and see the vultures circling. They are right now zeroing in with utter mirth on the the NF fracas – the new Goldstone moment.

        Divide and rule has always been the Achiles heel of the left or anyone who challenges the PTB. Our only defense is solidarity that rises above petty squabbles over one point in history or one turn of phrase. Most of us have been able to rise above our differences and occasional tiffies, and that, by itself is inspiring.

        So you tell me now – how will BDS be successful when the likes of NF take a whack at it?

      • seanmcbride on February 17, 2012, 2:43 pm


        So far I think the Mondoweiss team deserves a great deal of credit for permitting as much open discussion about these moderation issues as it has. Instead of reacting defensively and making matters worse, it held its tongue — that required some impressive self-discipline.

        Where I stand: 1. I fully understand the need to moderate most forums like this one. 2. I respect the prerogative of Phil Weiss to run his site according to his taste. 3. I’m still a big fan of Mondoweiss. 4. I think it was a mistake to ban Jeff Blankfort, on the basis of the possibly limited information I possess on the subject — I am still having trouble swallowing that decision. 5. Political movements combine, feud, splinter, recombine, etc. all the time — it’s the way of the world. If Phil and Jeff have irreconcilable views on some key political issues, so be it — move on. There is plenty of room on the net to express and organize all points of view.

      • seanmcbride on February 17, 2012, 2:51 pm

        The main point to pay attention to: the editorial quality of Mondoweiss — the content of the lead articles — remains very high. That is what counts most. Occasional strong comments and discussions are just cherries on the frosting on the cake — they are not the main show.

      • Shmuel on February 17, 2012, 3:14 pm


        I hear you. Where I disagree is with your assumption that there was necessarily pressure from on high, or that it is part of an attempt to somehow neutralise MW. It’s not that I don’t see boogeymen all over the place (although I know I’m not up to your standards); I just don’t see them here. What I do see is an honest attempt to make MW as effective as possible, and that also deserves solidarity – accepting if not understanding, and trying to limit the damage by telling them off and sticking around.

      • Danaa on February 17, 2012, 3:33 pm

        Shmuel “Where I disagree is with your assumption that there was necessarily pressure from on high, or that it is part of an attempt to somehow neutralise MW. ”

        Thanks for the prompt reply. Just a quick aside to wet the appetite – could it be I know a little more than meets the eye? always a possibility, isn’t it?

        Come on over to the great US of A and we’ll go on a boogey men hunt (it’s like a treasure hunt – there they are and they they aren’t. And when you find one, it’s a keeper). May not need to go far, but farther is funner (hint for the hunt: no boogey men hiding in Grand Canyon, sorry. And I hate Las Vegas, where they boogey to a different tune, so that’s out. Still leaves 48 states, don’t it?). All that I will trade for more pictures of colliseum under blankets of snow and sleet.

      • seanmcbride on February 17, 2012, 6:07 pm


        Which specific remarks by Jeffrey Blankfort (if any) did you find objectionable, and why? (Specific quotes, please.) It would help to get some closure on this issue if one could understand precisely what happened. What did he say that was too controversial for Mondoweiss? (It’s easy to understand why Blankfort would piss off the ADL, AIPAC, Commentary, Tablet Magazine or Jeffrey Goldberg.)

        If the moderators would prefer not to pursue this discussion here, visit:

        if you’d like — or not.

        Regarding the “Chomsky wars” — you are of course entitled to your own interests, but it seems to me that there are some substantive and important issues to look into in that particular discussion. Blankfort and I arrived at pretty much the same conclusions about Noam Chomsky and his followers from our own separate paths and angles of vision. Blankfort makes perfect sense to me — most Chomsky followers don’t.

      • Thomson Rutherford on February 17, 2012, 6:31 pm


        I’m just a GB (Gentile Baseboard) on MW, something that goes around the bottom of the room decorating the wall ….

        As a fellow GB, I have been meaning to ask you not to stop commenting at Mondoweiss, but rather to continue your protests from within. Still, I think I understand your position.

        I stopped commenting here about a year ago, I think, and only recently returned (to commenting – I never stopped reading here). Before that, I had commented at MW for a couple of years under an alias, ‘Call Me Ishmael.’ You may remember me from those days because we had a number of exchanges – mostly, I think, in agreement. I’m that same guy from Texas. Again, in that earlier period, as ‘Call Me Ishmael,’ I dropped out from MW for about a year before returning (without the alias).

        Why did I drop out twice for long periods from a website I revere? Partly it was because I have other interests: As an economist, I felt compelled to spend enormous amounts of time studying what went wrong during and before the financial crisis and its subsequent economic impacts. Then, on top of that, there is the crisis of the U.S. political system. I felt that MW and the I/P issues would have to be carried by others with better credentials than mine. What brought me back to MW recently was hearing the drumroll for war with Iran.

        As a commenter at MW, I have always been acutely aware of my Gentile status, while at the same time never being willing to take a back seat on the bus because I am not a Jew. I have tried always to lend a distinctly and (I hope) authentic goyishe voice to the discussions. At the same time, as an egalitarian humanitarian, I have tried to emphasize that I think Jews are due all the regard, respect, and affection that other humans are; i.e., no more and no less. No exceptionalism – not as a Jew, not as an American. That is the perspective I bring to my anti-Zionism.

        I have been quite outspoken here about my opposition to the Jewish power structure (a term I long ago borrowed from Jeffrey Blankfort and James Petras) which has enabled Zionism, a form of ethno-religious nationalism, to capture U.S. foreign policy and manipulate it to its own iniquitous ends. I have been sharply critical of a political situation which, under my gaze for the last half-century, has enabled a very small ethno-religious minority to gain such enormous power and influence – often used in its own parochial interests – in the government, media, and educational institutions of America, a nation which was supposed to have been founded and nurtured on democratic principles which include equality of opportunity regardless of ethnicity and/or religion. I am tired of being shut out of discussions about my country’s welfare because I am not Jewish and do not toe the Zionist line.

        Nevertheless, I have tried here to moderate my fierce anti-Zionism because I truly do want to see MW succeed as a much-needed voice in the wilderness, and I don’t want my combative streak to damage Phil and Adam’s efforts, which I deeply appreciate. I also want others to understand that I am not anti-Semitic by any reasonable definition. So I am often trying to walk a line along boundaries that the moderators will understand and tolerate.

        I shall miss your participation at MW, as well as that of Taxi and patm and other regulars who, as a matter of principle, may take their discourse elsewhere. I have seen so many good commenters come and go and very occasionally pop in again. Hopefully, if you do leave, you will also pop in now and then with your much-valued contributions to the cause.

      • seanmcbride on February 17, 2012, 7:40 pm

        Thomson Rutherford,

        I really like the direct and nuanced intellectual clarity of this comment. That’s pretty much where I’m coming from.

      • Shmuel on February 17, 2012, 7:51 pm


        I don’t remember any specific comments, just that there were a few that made me uncomfortable. I also remember thinking that had they been made by anyone else, they probably wouldn’t have made it through moderation. I really don’t feel like sifting through the archive to see what might have bugged me at the time – especially since I’m not the one who decided to ban him.

        I agree that there are some substantive and important Chomsky-related issues, but the debates do tend to drag on, be long-winded, and more than a little childish. I just don’t have the patience.

      • Shmuel on February 17, 2012, 7:59 pm


        My appetite is whetted. Please share! And thanks for the invite, but I already have enough boogeymen to last me a lifetime. If I come across any nice pictures of the Colosseum in white, I’ll be sure to send them along. I spent the snowy days in my own neighbourhood, and am lousy with a camera.

      • Cliff on February 17, 2012, 8:00 pm

        I agree with Shingo and others.

        If there was some hypothetical condition where we would have to bring back Witty, eee, and others like them to also bring back Jeffrey – I would be all for it.

        I see the merit in what Danaa is saying too.

        I am only concerned with trolls who do hit and run commentary. Responding to thread titles only. Baseless accusations of antisemitism.

        Anything that undermines discussion.

        Jeffrey didn’t do any of that.

        He didn’t deserve to be grouped up with the likes of Witty. Witty – who got his own congratulatory thread? Ridiculous.

        On that note, where has James North gone?

        Avi? Mooser? Etc.

      • Thomson Rutherford on February 17, 2012, 9:49 pm


        I don’t remember any specific comments, just that there were a few that made me uncomfortable.

        Shmuel, as one who has great respect for your views and your ability to express them, I wonder if you would be willing to explain what kinds of comments here at MW make you “uncomfortable.” (Perhaps you have already done that elsewhere?) And can you explain why they discomfit you?

        Honesty and frankness about these things are so important in promoting understanding, wouldn’t you agree?

      • Thomson Rutherford on February 17, 2012, 10:20 pm

        I want to be clear about it: I am among those who are strongly disturbed and offended by the banning of Jeffrey Blankfort, whom I regarded as a sort of virtual mentor (just as I was influenced by Phil Weiss somewhat later).

        Like danaa (and annie?) and some other regulars here, I suspect that fundamental changes at Mondoweiss are impending. What a shame for some of us who relied on it and believed in the mission that Phil had staked out.

      • American on February 18, 2012, 1:47 am

        @Thomson Rutherford

        Where I am coming from also Thomson.
        Well said.

        I understand how MRW feels, the pilpul is wearing and we aren’t going to bring about peace for Palestine or cure the Israel first political aberration in congress in our MW comment section. But gentile American voices, ones not emotionally attached to Israel, that can be more objective are necessary and do help others really understand our Israel issue.
        Hope MRW will chime back in when he feels like it, if not, will be a big lose to me personally and all of us I think.

      • American on February 18, 2012, 2:01 am

        “Blankfort makes perfect sense to me — most Chomsky followers don’t.”…sean

        I can’t take any more Chomsky. Those discussion are as worthless as asking
        Chomsky if there has ever been any event in the universe that wasn’t caused by US imperilism.
        He has one fixed, immutable point which is the same for everything.

      • Walid on February 18, 2012, 2:33 am

        “… could it be I know a little more than meets the eye? ” (Danaa)

        Evidently there is something going on more than meets the eye. It started with the unjust stoning of Donald when he made his plea for civility, a message that he seemed to be also carrying on behalf of others.

      • Shmuel on February 18, 2012, 6:11 am


        I can’t discuss Blankfort, because I really don’t remember the specific comments that bothered me, or why they did, so I’ll try to address the issue more generally. Since the specific context of Blankfort’s banning seems to be related to views perceived by the owners of this site as anti-Jewish, I’ll focus on that although, again, I am not accusing Blankfort of anything.

        Maybe uncomfortable isn’t the right word. I don’t like racism of any kind, but talk is just talk. What counts is the effect or possible effect such talk might have. That effect might be direct (like Zionism), or indirect. I am not particularly bothered by anti-Jewish racism per se, nor do I feel threatened by it. It bugs me however, when it undermines human rights discourse and activism on behalf of Palestinians. This might, for example, include an essentialist-determinist approach to Zionism (Jews are like that and have always been like that), or the extension of the struggle for Palestine to a struggle against “Zionist” world domination, for reasons unrelated to Palestine.

        The last time I tried to explain this, I was accused of garden-variety tribalism, hypocrisy and gate-keeping. Needless to say, I don’t think that is the case.

      • LeaNder on February 18, 2012, 7:47 am

        Shmuel, I vaguely remember the larger context (Zionism and the Nazis, I think) and one specific point that irritated me.

        He mentioned films he saw that supposedly showed that the Judenräte (the often prominent German Jews that the Nazis used for the administration of the transport to the camps), enriching themselves with the property left by their fellow Jews. Knowing the larger context and also more recent research about these jewish belongings, the things left in the house or flat, not the more valuable business and property, I admittedly couldn’t help but wonder, was he alluding to Nazi propaganda? I honestly can’t think of any other material proving the point he made given the context.

        I don’t think it makes any sense to point at this enforced collaboration with the Nazis as evidence for anything, other than as evidence for the cynicism of the Nazi system.

        Mind you, I am not suggesting that German Jews collectively were angels or that none of them exploited this position to warn or help some. Yes, obviously these people were humans shaped by the context too.

        The problem I have is the group-dynamics these selected and non-researched little items occasionally seem to cause. Maybe you have a different perspective from the majority here, since you occasionally were the lonely sane voice fighting such group dynamics. That I distinctively remember. But something I would need to take a closer look at would be: did Jeffrey Blankfort occasionally cause the storm with fast and easy arguments like the one mentioned above?

        I should add that these Judenräte weren’t necessarily Zionists, I don’t have numbers, but I would assume the vast majority weren’t.

      • seanmcbride on February 18, 2012, 9:53 am


        It would be helpful to refer to the specific and verbatim remarks that Blankfort made, in the context of his overall nuanced chain of thought — don’t you think?

        For instance, Google [ blankfort nazis]

        where you will notice this important pointer near the top of the hits:

        Then use the search feature in your browser to review all passages on the page which mention Blankfort.

        My impression, while that discussion was occurring, was that Blankfort easily dominated the debate on the basis of superior documentation and logic. Take a close look at the details and judge for yourself. Jerome Slater tried to muddle through unimpressively by smearing Blankfort as an antisemite — but of course Slater has accused nearly every commenter here of being an antisemite.

        Probably the best place to pursue this discussion, if anyone feels motivated to do so, is over on Friendfeed — unless the moderators here explicitly greenlight it.

      • LeaNder on February 18, 2012, 10:11 am

        Sean, you are right. I simply decided that Shmuel might need a little support. We rationalists after all, are more boring then the sensationalists.

        I may do Jeffrey slightly wrong, but “the films” sticked on my mind. Obviously. Incidentally the research into this property began really late. I obviously know this context, but I doubt everyone here is able to put that in context.

        Now I really have to run.

      • MHughes976 on February 18, 2012, 11:46 am

        The ‘films’ were said to show Judenrat members collecting up goods for delivery to the Nazis. I presumed that the films were made in order to convince the Ns that the J’rat members were obeying orders and not pocketing stuff for themselves.
        Anti-Judenratism is a feature, as I understand, of the accounts offered by Hilberg and by Arendt.
        For myself, with no expertise here, I tend to think that it’s a bit facile to be angry with people who may have been unheroic but were under such barely imaginable pressure. Blankfort should perhaps have restrained his disgust on contemplating this banal, bureaucratic bit of evil. But I don’t think it reflects terribly badly on him that he (if I’m right) slightly misjudged here.

      • Danaa on February 18, 2012, 5:43 pm

        Shmuel “This might, for example, include an essentialist-determinist approach to Zionism (Jews are like that and have always been like that), or the extension of the struggle for Palestine to a struggle against “Zionist” world domination, for reasons unrelated to Palestine.”

        Just a quick comment on the fly. I’ll table the first sentence for now (but reserve the right to resurrect at a time of my choosing – because I know I’ll have to bring in the dreaded GA). With regard to the second sentence I just want to note something I’ve been meaning to for some time.

        Oh yes, LeanDer – the rant below it’s for you too (it is a rant too*, I’ll let my betters deliver the more erudite and temperate commentary).

        There is a difference between those who view the situation when in Europe (or elsewhere else in the world) and the ones in the US. I often thought that people in Europe – or even Israel – may not realize what it’s like to turn on to any news channel or open any of the newspapers of record, and see almost wall-to-wall commentary by people of Jewish background andor the approved and vetted philosemite. Whether it’s a round table or pundit-de-jour, or just a guest on a talk show. It’s unmistakable and unavoidable. Sure all Jewish people commntators and writers do not concern themselves with israel in particular, and they certainly do not all concern themselves with the same issues or come from the same place, but when you have a foreign policy round table on e.g., PBS and out of 4 guests, three are Jewish, that is noticeable. Just as it is noticeable that the NYT has 1 to 3 Jewish themed articles every day, with nary a nod to eg, plain old christians, or, heaven forbid, anything that might be of interest to Asians (it’s been months since the Tiger Mom was everywhere, and she too was married to a rather well known and well connected Jewish academic person). yet Asians are ubiquitous in the North east and are dominant ethnic group on parts of the West Coast. But everywhere you lokk, there’s not a Chinese-American commenting anywhere and very few Indian-Americans – a truly disappeared group. Which is peculiar when many of us work with them every day (technology in the US has pretty much gone Asian, across the board. But do they get to speak much about it? other than our token SoE Chu, that is).

        Making matters worth, this is election season, which means open season on anything muslim and/or Arab. If you had to be subjected to what we are – with our inane infotainment channels – you may view things a bit differently.

        And that before we even get to the issue of israel. How can we believe anything someone says about Syria or Iran when they are either, a known neocon, or a cowed democrat who may, in all likelihood be Jewish, or be funded/awe his position to Jewish themed think tank? do you get commenters from WINEP all the time? The heritage club? can you imagine what it’s like to listen to such distorting and slanting of the day’s news and opinions all going in one direction (with the hidden theme/sub-text is it good for the Jews? or the more sophisticated version – is it REALLY good for the Jews?). To make matters worse, these themes are then promulgated and regurgitated by a bimbo-de-jour look-alike (who may or may not be a real bimbo, except they are not really allowed to deviate from a script so it sounds like the Rah-Rah of cheerleaders delivered by a cheerleader look-alike. And yes, they all tend to look kind of the same, and sound like it too**).

        This I say, in case you wonder why we celebrate every minute deviation from the script – a comment by the excellent Christopher Hays or guest (early, early AM), or a throw-away comment by John Stewart. I know that in Italy they had the Berlusconi media, but in the US, we don’t even have a Berlusconi to throw rotten eggs at. There is no one particular agency or individual to denounce or tar and feather. Because it’s everywhere and it’s everyone.

        You can laugh all you want about the tendency to see hints of the protocols but we, who are on this continent, get our news so distorted, so zionist paradigm subservient, that it’s hard not to conclude that our entire media has been taken over and used to disseminate one point of view and one actor. Not only that but that means that it is almost.

        rant over. Now let the well termperate ones chime in.

        * It’s all Samel’s fault for refusing to give me discount on lessons in well-expressed temperance, that stays on topic.
        **I can say bimbo because I am the right gender. Don’t anyone even think of quoting unless correctly chromosomed.

      • on February 18, 2012, 8:03 pm

        this almost makes me cry, danaa.
        I thought it was just me.

        “I often thought that people in Europe – or even Israel – may not realize what it’s like to turn on to any news channel or open any of the newspapers of record, and see almost wall-to-wall commentary by people of Jewish background andor the approved and vetted philosemite. Whether it’s a round table or pundit-de-jour, or just a guest on a talk show. It’s unmistakable and unavoidable.”

        I’m scared to death about the world my adult children will live in.

        I used to go to the symphony in my town, but the last time I went — Mozart violin concerto — after the conductor was introduced, several screens on the wings of the stage flashed holocaust memorial messages and someone spoke a commentary about holocaust. It was very disturbing.

        holocaust has become a sickness. holocaust “survivors” are in their 80s and 90s. they are not doing this. Israeli govt
        AND American Jews are busy indoctrinating the next generation of holocaust sickos. where will it end?

      • LeaNder on February 18, 2012, 8:05 pm

        * It’s all Samel’s fault for refusing to give me discount on lessons in well-expressed temperance, that stays on topic.

        If you ask me, well, even if you don’t, Samel himself leans more towards the entertaining and not so well-adjusted (to your above scenario) among us MW’ssians. He is not averse to a good healthy rant, it feels. Neither is our equally well-expressed Shmuel. If you juxtapose both mentally to Richard Witty it will immediately manifest itself.

        Besides I agree with Samel, you don’t need lectures. You wrote some of the most interesting comments here yourself, and I don’t want to judge the less established terrain you occasionally enter.

        but we, who are on this continent, get our news so distorted, so zionist paradigm subservient, that it’s hard not to conclude that our entire media has been taken over

        Yes, that’s not really a speech bubble topic, maybe even dangerous terrain, but somehow it fits into your Orwellian scenario above.

        To control public perception on the ME into the next decades, centuries, millennia (is there a concrete vision, like the future 5000 years of a save Jewish haven?) would indeed need a giant controlling octopus pretty much like the protocol vision. But that’s not so surprising either, if you realize what the Protocol’s core sources are. You are looking at the good old Machiavellian bible combined with authoritarianism and the will to power.

        Ultimately it’s a hall of mirrors, if you suspect someone of having the will to power, like those Arabs, who as you may know intend to take over Europe and even the US now, you may in fact have exactly that on your mind. The Nazis didn’t print the Protocols from a certain time on, you know, it would have been too obvious for everyone using her brain.

        Concerning your Orwellian scenario above, if I may meander one step further:
        I once read a book review in my then weekly, unfortunately I didn’t keep it. The book was written by a journalist, maybe he was Jewish too? He had spend a long time in Russia and after that he worked in the States. Initially he thought now finally he would move to the land of milk and honey, media-wise, unfortunately this turned out not to be the case. In the end he was really puzzled about how essentially similar these two systems were in spite of the obvious differences.

      • Thomson Rutherford on February 18, 2012, 11:40 pm


        So you’ve noticed too? I can’t wait to watch the next Holocaust flick out of Hollywood or TV land. American elementary school kids get regular doses of Holocaust remembrance. They know more about that than about the American role in WWII. Many of them believe that the war itself was all about Hitler’s desire to exterminate the Jews.

        Keeping Americans feeling personally guilty on account of the Holocaust, keeping them alarmed about their own putative, potential inner anti-Semitism, is essential for the survival of Zionism in America. Otherwise, it is ultimately doomed as a dominant political force. The Zionists know that.

      • Thomson Rutherford on February 19, 2012, 12:25 am

        Shmuel, thank you for your reply;viz.,

        Maybe uncomfortable isn’t the right word. I don’t like racism of any kind, but talk is just talk. What counts is the effect or possible effect such talk might have. That effect might be direct (like Zionism), or indirect.

        Sorry for my lateness again in responding, in view of the time difference between Texas and Italy. I didn’t want to talk about Blankfort per se, but rather, as you suggested, to discuss broader issues. I come to those issues (to repeat my expression from above) as a “fierce” anti-Zionist, and you (if I remember correctly) as a more restrained and cautious anti-Zionist – or perhaps simply as a non-Zionist. (I’m not trying to pin you down here.)

        I shall certainly not accuse you of hypocrisy or gate-keeping, and I’m inclined to ignore innocuous forms of tribalism. Some of my concerns about Zionism in America have been well stated in another reply to you, the one from Danaa just above this comment. As she said, you and Leander in Europe are probably not able to see just how pervasive is the Zionist influence over the power structure in America.
        It is especially noticeable in the mainstream media and in the daily operations of Congress, but to the attuned observer it is equally evident in almost all elements of intellectual life in America that bear on political consciousness. This may seem like outrageous hyperbole, but regrettably it is not.

        This is a lamentable situation that arouses great concerns not only among anti-Zionists like me, but also (for different reasons) among some liberal Zionists. It is generally regarded as a good thing by neocons and Likudniks, and certainly by the ‘Israel firsters,’ and possibly even by some liberal Zionists like the J-Streeters.

        Given this dangerous situation, I think you are right to be a bit apprehensive about the development of significant levels of anti-Semitism in America – eventually. But we are still a long way from that outcome yet. I believe that there is still a lot of room to push a hard line against Zionist influence in America, to pursue an aggressive anti-Zionism against the forces of AIPAC, CPMJAO, and JCPA, among other Jewish Zionist pressure groups, without arousing anti-Semitism. (Christian Zionist lobbying and propaganda groups are insignificant in comparison, but general public opinion in America about Israel is certainly not insignificant in setting policy.)

        Zionist forces in America are extremely powerful. It should be self-evident that there are only three ways that this political power can be greatly diminished: (1) America is invaded and conquered by the non-Zionist world (laughable); (2) American Jewish leaders, without external pressure, become predominantly anti-Zionist (very unlikely in the foreseeable future); or (3) External pressure is perceived by American Jewish leaders, inducing their conversion to anti-Zionist or at least non-Zionist positions.

        The latter eventuality is highly likely. It is only a question of how soon, and to what levels the policy-changing pressure will rise before Zionism is in sharp retreat in America. Obviously, the pressure will come not only from anti-Zionist Jews, but from non-Jewish anti-Zionists as well. This latter group can be expected to swell inexorably over time. It’s just in the nature of things.

        Now to the concerns you expressed. Goyishe anti-Zionism is not the same as anti-Semitism. It can entail classic anti-Semitism, but it need not. It need not be driven in any way by antagonism, hostility, or dislike for Jews as fellow citizens and as friends. But it could be … not in America right now, but eventually. The longer the massive push-back against Zionism takes to get rolling, the more likely it is that it will eventually inflame and entrail pockets of latent anti-Semitism that have been seeded by the extraordinarily high profile of the Jewish minority in American socio-politico-economic affairs. As I have said to you before, Jewish anti-Zionists and non-Zionists must join with (and recruit) like-minded goyim to get the ball rolling against Zionism in America. It is urgent.

        You said,

        I am not particularly bothered by anti-Jewish racism per se, nor do I feel threatened by it. It bugs me however, when it undermines human rights discourse and activism on behalf of Palestinians. This might, for example, include an essentialist-determinist approach to Zionism (Jews are like that and have always been like that), or the extension of the struggle for Palestine to a struggle against “Zionist” world domination, for reasons unrelated to Palestine.

        With one exception, these are all intra-Jewry (intra-Judaic?) side-issues that are not particularly relevant to anti-Zionist goyim like me. I don’t see anti-Jewish racism under my bed, or elsewhere around me. (Even back in the days when I used to see a lot of anti-Blacks racism, I never saw any anti-Jewish racism.) Whether Zionists believe they need to control the whole world is irrelevant, I think, to Palestinians, Iranians, and to me as an American anti-Zionist.

        The one exception, the one thing that is relevant in your statement, is your concern that “talk” here at MW, possible interpreted as “anti-Jewish racism,” undermines human rights discourse and activism on behalf of Palestinians. To the extent that your concern about this is valid, I thoroughly agree with it. And to the extent that such “talk” might undermine the anti-war and anti-imperialism purposes of MW, I certainly don’t want that to happen either. Because, you see, my interests are in promoting those causes, not undermining them.

        But here’s the thing: I don’t believe Americans can do much to help the Palestinians, to protect Lebanon or the rest of Israel’s neighbors, to prevent war with Iran, to improve relations with Russia, to reduce our own militarism and military expenditures, to guarantee Constitutionally-mandated freedoms of expression within our own country, or even to help save Israel from its own self-destructive impulses UNLESS we can vastly reduce the power of the Israel Lobby and its associated organizations. We can have legitimate differences of opinion about how best to accomplish that, but I don’t think any rational person can argue that it should not be done. And this is why I have tried to give that objective such emphasis here at MW.

        PS – This reply is for the benefit of LeaNder, also, if she is still perusing this thread.

      • Danaa on February 19, 2012, 3:40 pm

        TR – that’s one heck of a comment. In light of the discussion above, I’m glad to see that MW allows through such a good example of an analysis that can be no less true for being controversial. I can only hope people take note of this before we all run for the doors.

        MRW- I think this one was for you. How long will you resist?

      • annie on February 19, 2012, 5:44 pm

        Jewish anti-Zionists and non-Zionists must join with (and recruit) like-minded goyim to get the ball rolling against Zionism in America. It is urgent.

        i completely agree. i think one of the greatest frauds on the american public has been pressing the lie that america and israel share the same values because in the most fundamental ways we do not, america not being an ethnic nationalist state. that’s huge and i am sure whoever it is who designs zionists talking pts knows very well it is a lie and most americans don’t really get what this is about because most americans really do not understand what zionism is and when they realize what it is they will reject it as an ideology, unless they are brainwashed (hence we are continually being told israel and america share the same values..there is nothing coincidental about that).

        it’s just not natural for a child born in this country to be an ethnic nationalist. also, the zionist voice and narrative is very dominating, it just is, often their advocates argue like bullies wielding a whole slew of tools to divert, slander, evade, distract and skirt the truth.

        and shmuel

        or the extension of the struggle for Palestine to a struggle against “Zionist” world domination, for reasons unrelated to Palestine.

        i can honestly say i don’t think zionists care what flowers i plant in my garden. there are lots of things even very powerful zionists could care less about dominating, but US media isn’t one of them. defense appropriation seems to be pretty high on their list too. and US foreign policy. and if they are not interested in controlling congress i wish they would communicate that loud and clear cuz they sure are fooling me. but world domination? nah, like i said , they don’t care what i plant in my garden. there are probably many many things zionists could care less about dominating. we should start a list.

      • American on February 19, 2012, 6:57 pm

        “I used to go to the symphony in my town, but the last time I went — Mozart violin concerto — after the conductor was introduced, several screens on the wings of the stage flashed holocaust memorial messages and someone spoke a commentary about holocaust. It was very disturbing. “..teta

        That is sick.

      • annie on February 19, 2012, 7:55 pm

        Evidently there is something going on more than meets the eye. It started with the unjust stoning of Donald when he made his plea for civility, a message that he seemed to be also carrying on behalf of others.

        i am sorry if donald got the impression i was stoning him. i expressed in the thread i didn’t agree with his list and why. it was an isolated criticism and didn’t reflect anything other than the rejection i was expressing and why. i realize that sometimes people take everything so personally if you don’t align with all of someones comments. i guess sometimes things get too heated.

      • American on February 19, 2012, 8:47 pm

        Thomson Rutherford says:
        February 19, 2012 at 12:25 am>>>>

        Totally agree with Rutherford once again.
        I would only suggest regarding this:

        3)”External pressure is perceived by American Jewish leaders, inducing their conversion to anti-Zionist or at least non-Zionist positions.”

        That I think it is more likely politicians would succumb to this external pressure than would the American Jewish leaders, most of whom with any actual government influence are committed zionist.

      • American on February 19, 2012, 8:59 pm

        Evidently there is something going on more than meets the eye. It started with the unjust stoning of Donald when he made his plea for civility, a message that he seemed to be also carrying on behalf of others.”

        Phooy! What about my unjust stoning by the Donald. What about me, me,me,! Hahaha..
        After all I am the one he lied about..excuse me, where are my manners…the one whose comments he “mispresented” his ‘civility’ plea posting.

      • Donald on February 19, 2012, 11:15 pm

        “the one whos comments he “misrepresented”–

        Here’s the comment that was “misrepresented”–

        “Put trade sanctions on Israel

        That should do it. But if it didn’t do it, and they are delusional enough to believe they can continue their current path, then US military intervention is warranted. If I were an Israeli withdrawing of US support would be enough to put the mother of all fears in me. Just how delusional the zionist government of Israel really is is what disturbs me. Recently we had Slater, as some other zionist have claimed here before, say that it would be a political impossibility the US would ever intervene in Israel and that Israel would be some kind of military match for the US. Both of these beliefs are very naive. Anyone of a certain age or familiar with history has seen countries politically swing from one extreme to another for one thing, meaning no politic policy of any country should ever be taken for granted or as written in stone by anyone.
        I am sure the Israeli government knows that the US could take out Israel with one Boomer precision ballistic missile submarine that is undetectable and would render the Israeli so called Sampson option and nukes irrelevant. But the worry is that they don’t think the US would ever go that far against Jews no matter what they do and therefore push us and/or the world to the point of military force because they ignored all warnings.
        As I have said numerous times, the zionist don’t fear consequences and people of abnormal hubris who don’t, usually push others into having to inflict them.”

        My “misrepresentation”–

        ” A suggestion that Israel be nuked or might be nuked by the US. Completely insane. ”

        My mistake in my post some weeks back was in taking seriously a remark that was just barroom BS. You get those at any blog from time to time and I should have let it go, focusing on other problems, though if memory serves there were people who seemed almost hopeful that Israel and Turkey would get into a shooting war after the murder of the protestors, and it seemed like the same sort of craziness at work. It’s one thing to point out the hypocrisy that governs who the US bombs and who it doesn’t bomb–I’m all in favor of making that sort of point and I’d like to have seen us all piling on Jerome Slater’s defense of Obama on that ground. But sometimes people here seem to go a little further than that. The commentariat here is a little ghetto and it’s not always very healthy.

      • Donald on February 19, 2012, 11:42 pm

        “though if memory serves there were people who seemed almost hopeful that Israel and Turkey would get into a shooting war after the murder of the protestors, and it seemed like the same sort of craziness at work.”

        I should probably spell out what I mean there, but then I’d have to go back and find some examples from 2010 where it seemed like people were hoping Turkey and Israel would get into a war right after Israel murdered the protestors on that ship and I’m not going to do that. Too lazy. But assuming my memory is correct, I think hoping for such a thing was a mistake.

      • Thomson Rutherford on February 20, 2012, 12:04 am

        American says,

        I think it is more likely politicians would succumb to this external pressure than would the American Jewish leaders ….

        American Jewish leaders would still control mighty big bucks for campaign contributions. But you may be right: National politicians may ‘turn’ first when general public pressure becomes great enough. In such an environment, though, I think it would be inevitable that, at the least, a huge split would occur among the most influential Jewish leadership – much more so than exists today. At that point it becomes, at worst, an even playing field and anti-Zionists have a fighting chance. ‘Revolutions’ have slow beginnings, and this one has already begun.

      • Thomson Rutherford on February 20, 2012, 12:15 am


        Ghetto? Did someone close the gates?

      • Walid on February 20, 2012, 1:36 am

        “The commentariat here is a little ghetto and it’s not always very healthy.” (Donald)

        The ghetto is the anti-Zionist cult that feeds on the neverending daily dose of evils committed against Palestinians. I still haven’t figured out what’s behind this passion and the Palestinian torch they are carrying. D. Samel’s term, “inauthentic” that he used elsewhere keeps ringing in my ears.

      • Danaa on February 20, 2012, 2:00 am

        Donald, if you accuse American, you should have accused me too (among other worthies). I may not do nuke talk or bomb-bomb talk usually, but I did, if memory serves me right, wonder aloud why isn’t there a call to sanction Israel and embargo its exports, given that it does far worse things than Iran. I might have, facetiously of course, wondered why drones to affect regime change are OK for Libya and not Israel (again, given that israel uses drones constantly to murder Gazans). Doesn’t mean I would be calling for such action, only that I use “what’s good for the goose, etc.” argument. That’s how we all argue here, and that has nothing to do with ghetto mentality, of which we stand accused, per you. A ghetto is a notch above a “cult”, right?

        BTW,when someone issues a lone call for all-out BDS of israel, and let the chips fall where they may, doesn’t mean it’ll happen, or is what should happen, only that fair is fair. Iran is a theocracy now, but israel is headed that way, and then some. Maybe a little embargo can nip the process in the bud? surely lots of israelis would be all too glad to take the bitter pill, if only they thought it’d work.

        All these lines of debate were precipitated by Slater’s nonsensical “Just a War” post. Went down like a ton of bricks, that. And for good reason. Fair minded and right-thinking people looked around and noticed that there may indeed be one country that could deserve the harsh penalties Slater advocated, and that was israel. And still, he went on with his case, the essence of which was, that he knew what “Just” meant, because well, he had suitable academic credentials and good language skills (if not fortitude for debates).

        So, why did you single out American and not me, for example? I can be bad too, especially when it comes to failing to properly articulate my points, and would like to be acknowledged for such.

        You should have known better before accusing people of calling for nuke this or nuke that. That kind of talk is heard really in only one place, and that is – why – yes, you guessed right – in israel again (and there by a rather small minority of the semi-insane, the kind who celebrate the death of children, killed in a bus accident). Last I saw, for the most part, the worst anyone has done here is to call for cutting off military aid to Israel and putting their war criminals on trial at the Hague. (OK, there were some calling for all out sanctions + embargo, but hey – everyone has the right to try and push something through the UN !).

        As well, I couldn’t help but notice your non-apology to American. You should raise it up a rung, me thinks. How about a full all out?

      • Shmuel on February 20, 2012, 4:10 am

        Thomson and Danaa,

        As MRW has pointed out to me on a number of occasions, the side of the pond you live on does make a difference. Some of the things you say about the media and the Zeitgeist in the US resonate, and others don’t. There is a pro-Israel bias in most of the Italian media and Jews are “in” (in a cool, exotic and at least partially corrective sort of way), but the reasons have little to do with Jewish presence or ownership (although I have read and heard otherwise from those I would describe without hesitation as racists).

        I would also describe myself as a “fierce” anti-Zionist, although – for reasons of temperament and strategy – I may come across as more “restrained or cautious”.

        I think you are right to be a bit apprehensive about the development of significant levels of anti-Semitism in America – eventually

        But I am not. Maybe it’s the pond thing again, but I am absolutely not apprehensive about anti-Semitism – in America or anywhere else. I am concerned about Islamophobia, anti-Roma racism, neo-colonialism, attitudes to immigrants and immigration, and many other issues. Anti-Semitism, in and of itself, is of far less concern to me, because I do not believe that it is a serious problem today. As I wrote, it only bothers me when it gets in the way of other, far more important issues – first and foremost, the struggle for Palestinian rights.

        Now to the concerns you expressed. Goyishe anti-Zionism is not the same as anti-Semitism. It can entail classic anti-Semitism, but it need not.

        Again, I have not expressed any such concerns. I don’t use the word “goy” (and wish others wouldn’t), and know the difference between anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism.

        I don’t see any of this as “intra-Jewish” – even the cultural struggle within Judaism. Racism – real or “talk” that might be perceived as such (rationally, not ADL-rules) – has no place in what is essentially (or at least should be – and that is what it is for me) an anti-racist struggle, for intrinsic as well as practical reasons. It really isn’t about Jews or Jewish concerns.

        As for the Israel Lobby, I think the arguments over whether it is a single/primary cause or one of many are futile. It is a powerful and highly detrimental force that must be dealt with both systemically (the lobby system, campaign finance, etc.) and specifically.

      • Thomson Rutherford on February 20, 2012, 5:59 am

        Shmuel, thank you for clarifying your thoughts. If I misread them earlier, I accept responsibility for it.

      • Thomson Rutherford on February 20, 2012, 6:14 am


        The ghetto is the anti-Zionist cult …. I still haven’t figured out what’s behind this passion and the Palestinian torch they are carrying. D. Samel’s term “inauthentic” … keeps ringing in my ears.

        Fascinating comment! I beg you to elaborate. You actually can’t figure out anti-Zionist “passion” and how it might relate to “the Palestinian torch”? Do you even know how to read, Walid? What have you been doing all this time at Mondoweiss?

      • Thomson Rutherford on February 20, 2012, 6:30 am

        P.S. – I’m sorry to hear about that ringing in your ears, Walid.

      • annie on February 20, 2012, 8:33 am

        this is a little OT but i just read it and my mind segued when i read the ‘Boomer precision ballistic missile submarine’ comment merging with ‘barroom BS’. for a real dose of guys loving to talk about weapons and ‘softening the target” (the target being the american audience getting another lube job intended to inure us to an iran attack) this just in, a step by step on the weapons needed : Iran Raid Seen as a Huge Task for Israeli Jets

        it’s just constant, this attention towards attacking iran. this is the same build up we got before iraq. this is how it’s done, this is how you get a society to accept war. you report about it so much ordinary people just start to accept it is inevitable and forget to question why we are preemptively attacking iran. people just accept they have a nuclear weapons program, when there’s no evidence they do.

      • James North on February 20, 2012, 8:52 am

        Shmuel: Please elaborate why you don’t use the word “goy.” I understand it is at least mildly offensive, and I’ve upbraided Phil privately for using it, even in his joking way. What’s more, I never hear anyone under about 70 using it, and there’s no need to reintroduce it to a younger generation.

      • GalenSword on February 20, 2012, 9:20 am

        In Yiddish goy has negative connotations of brutishness and stupidity. The proper non-derogatory Yiddish term for non-Jew is nit-yid.

        The negative connotations of Yiddish carry over into Modern Israeli Hebrew, which is — as I and many eminent scholars of linguistics argue — relexified Yiddish.

      • seanmcbride on February 20, 2012, 9:24 am

        What? Is this is a serious, non-ironic remark?

      • Shmuel on February 20, 2012, 9:35 am

        Please elaborate why you don’t use the word “goy.” I understand it is at least mildly offensive …

        A lot depends on who is doing the using and in what context, but it can be and often is mildly to very offensive – in usage, rather than etymology (it literally means “nation”, and is even used in the Bible and Jewish liturgy in reference to Jews). At best, there is some ambiguity, but that’s enough of a reason not to use it.

        I also dislike the world “gentile” (although it is better than “goy”), because it represents an odd an disturbing division of the world into Jews and everybody else. When I was a kid (in an Orthodox environment, with a lot of Hebrew and Yiddish around), I remember that I was shocked that non-Jews actually had a word for non-Jews.

      • Shmuel on February 20, 2012, 9:55 am

        In Yiddish goy has negative connotations of brutishness and stupidity …
        The negative connotations of Yiddish carry over into Modern Israeli Hebrew

        I disagree. I have heard it used in both in Yiddish and Hebrew, without such connotations, as a simple statement of fact.

      • GalenSword on February 20, 2012, 10:09 am

        Just google goyishe kop.

      • Shmuel on February 20, 2012, 10:14 am

        Just google goyishe kop.

        I don’t have to google it; I’ve heard it used. I did not say that “goy” never has negative connotations, just that it does not always have them. In Hebrew somewhat less than in Yiddish, which never really made it to the age of PC.

      • Citizen on February 20, 2012, 11:53 am

        Thanks, Hostage–if anyone wants to know where those fired for smoking cigs in the office building (& their still intact penile empathizers, so to say) went, and what they think about it, that’s a good place to start.

      • Walid on February 20, 2012, 11:58 am

        Danaa, my initial 3-liner to you here was not intended as a platform to declare another open season on Donald; it was simply my insight on the change in moderating policy being discussed on this thread. Whatever that policy was, there seems to be a general agreement that this was kicked-off by Slater’s piece followed by Donald’s plea for civility and a lot of guys taking out their frustration with Slater on Donald. It was after this episode that the new rules came out and people started getting banned without warning and you hinted at something beyond Phil and Adam being behind this new policy. Absurdly, it appears to be OK to continue calling Zionists names, but no longer OK to discuss certain historical root issues about them such as those the savy JB was in the custom of doing, or the similarly oriented posts that were refused to me, since neither have anything to do with antisemitic comments that should not be appearing here.

        Thomson, you asked me a question and proceeded to write your own answer to it and concluded where I’m not at; saved me the effort of answering you, especially since your mind is already made up.

      • Citizen on February 20, 2012, 11:58 am

        Maybe the Atzmon connection is why Jeff was banned? Atzmon is really good in that he knows no (Jewish) sacred cows, but sometimes his language is seen as too easily spun by real anti-semites? Is that why we have certain subjects banned here now?

      • Chu on February 20, 2012, 12:17 pm

        Walid, I wouldn’t ever expect you to be censored. That’s odd, but so was the banning of Potsherd with no explanation. See this alternate channel. See link: [see anonymous comments thread]

      • Dan Crowther on February 20, 2012, 12:32 pm

        Don’t sweat that shit, Walid – you’ve got the respect of us all here, your a great contributor, some folks just don’t react well to views that differ from their own (especially when its from someone they usually agree with)

        Ive been CRUSHED on some posts by folks who I usually see eye to eye with – I think sometimes, especially on popular threads, people are trying to say something that will garner the attention of the person you are replying to – so if 30 people are replying to the same comment (say one of mine for example) and someone says, “Hey Crowther, go sleep with your sister” — Im probably going to respond – not too kindly- to that person. And of course, it all devolves from there.

        I think a far worse offense is the “your a moron” type sht you sometimes see in comment threads (Guilty) — I personally didn’t like Donald’s civility post, but left it alone, he’s a consistent commenter, has lots of good info to share etc. And it was his opinion, and we should all be allowed our opinions. I think we can hammer each other on views, beliefs about civility etc. – but where I draw the line is the “your not serious, you know nothing of what you talk about” stuff. This should be a place where one can inform AND learn, and in my view, making negative declarative statements about other regular commenters hurts that effort.

        — Dan

      • American on February 20, 2012, 1:08 pm

        “In such an environment, though, I think it would be inevitable that, at the least, a huge split would occur among the most influential Jewish leadership – ”

        Thomson….a huge “public’ split would be good.
        I guess my theory in the Israel issue is what it is on all other special interest. Namely, that will always be special interest trying to buy government. The politicians are suppose to be the gatekeepers against special interest trumping the people’s interest and ruling government but obviously they aren’t doing their jobs.
        Even if for instance we convinced the Jewish leadership to change their tune
        on Israel-US & I/P and they pressured congress for change–it would ‘still’ be their Jewish-Israel voices—still be a special interest segment speaking and having the influence on a issue that affects the rest of us, just with a different tune.
        There are all kind of groups out there working on Palestine, Jewish and gentile ones and joint ones and people going head to head on BDS with zionist activist on campus and zionist-anti zionist tit for tats flying around the blogsphere and so forth. We trying to convince the ordinary zionist and Israle firsters among us in the public isn’t getting us anywhere and even if we did they aren’t Aldeson or the Money that talks on Israel in DC.
        But we aren’t really-really getting in the individual politician’s faces. Confronting them in public and in print. Calling them names, denouncing them as Israel firster, or anti American or whatever is necessary to scare them into carrying out our will not theirs, their fringes and donors. I want to see the public eating the politicians lunch in public face to face at their campaign stops, by phone and fax, a general mad as hell up rising. A occupy AIPAC type revolt so big the media has to show it to the rest of the US.
        If we ever put the fear of God and voters into the politicians on Israel-firstism as “foreign” corruption we ‘d be getting somewhere.
        When Obama or some GOP candidate on the campaign trail swears his allegiance to Israel I want people to shout him down and tell him to move to Israel and run for office there since that’s who he represents.
        Will the public get there on Israel-US-I/P?….maybe… but something has to galvanize them to do it and that something will be some terrible event I am afraid.

      • Citizen on February 20, 2012, 1:31 pm

        Well, American, the annual AIPAC conference is not far away; Bibi will be speaking at it, and afterwards, with Obama, and Barak will be meeting with Obama’s top folks before it. Will even OWS be out front on the sidewalk? What will we see covered in the US MSM? Exactly.

      • Taxi on February 20, 2012, 1:41 pm

        Bravo Dan. You’re a fine model of empathetic civility. Yes, even though I personally find Donald’s analysis, in it’s purest form, very illuminating, yet I find that he sometimes expects everyone to adhere to his moral standards and interpretation of civility. Sorry Donny boy but sometimes you remind me of the worst authoritarian Victorians.

        What’s the point in oppressions that leads to fear and repression, done in the name of civility? To me, this is fascism in a starched suit.

        True freedom wears its hair unkempt and blowing in the wind.

      • Donald on February 20, 2012, 1:57 pm


        You noticed my non-apology because I wasn’t apologizing. I don’t usually refer to remarks as barroom BS if I’m apologizing.

        His remark sounded like more than just a Chomsky-style illustration of US double standards on military intervention. It sounded like a call for intervention if BDS didn’t work. But in fairness, it’s incoherent. The Israelis can’t use their nuclear arsenal as a deterrent because they “know” we might blast them without warning with a nuclear submarine, but they don’t think we’d do anything against “Jews” so we might have to intervene? Huh?

        What I regret is that I paid the remark any attention whatsoever.

        The value of Mondoweiss is mainly in the front page articles. That’s true of almost all blogs. If Phil and Adam have any good effect on the world (and I think they probably have) it’ll be from the front page articles. Comment sections are froth. They can be educational froth (MW’s is at its best) but that’s about it.

      • Walid on February 20, 2012, 4:29 pm

        “Walid, I wouldn’t ever expect you to be censored. ”

        Chu, it happened the first time about a year ago and frankly, I was happy my embarrassing post was refused because I shouldn’t have written it. It was witty but in poor taste.

        The refusal happened again a couple of weeks back, thrice, on a subject that I guess had suddenly become taboo as it dealt with a factual historical issue that in my opinion had nothing to do with things antisemitic or even Israel as it didn’t exist in 1933, especially since I had quoted respectable sources. I decided to drop it because such issues and others like them are probably needlessly putting a lot of community heat on Phil and Adam. I’ve been following the friendfeed.

        Dan, I had one of those moments but it left me more perplexed than crushed; someone said I was like Pam Geller because I was criticizing Arabs on something and I guess criticism of Arabs by an Arab was a novelty here. I’ve run out of nasty things to say about Zionists and tired of going over and over the same issues about them. I’m more concerned about the plight of the Palestinians that have been getting shafted by friends and foes since 90 years than I am about beating up on Zionists. Some here don’t realize or don’t care that there’s a difference.

      • chauncey on February 17, 2012, 5:40 pm

        Also sorry to see the retroactive ban of Blankfort, truly a grizzled veteran of the “war of ideas” (heck, he even fought the ADL, and he won!).

        JB a feather in the cap of MW, an exclusive, a jewel if not the jewel in the crown, MW the closest thing to a blog of his own. The baby out with the bath water, as Taxista put it. Hopefully, a reversal.

      • Taxi on February 18, 2012, 12:58 am

        Why can’t the mods just reject so-called offensive posts instead of banning the poster? Just don’t publish what’s icky to the intellectual and emotional palette. Why not deal in this manner? Why the extremism of banning informed voices? Whatever happened to the fair-handed American motto of ‘three strikes and you’re out’?

      • NorthOfFortyNine on February 19, 2012, 11:51 pm

        Blankfort gone? Say it ain’t so! -N49.

  7. Blake on February 8, 2012, 2:35 pm

    Bon voyage

  8. marc b. on February 8, 2012, 2:45 pm

    annie, there has been some good reporting on the mischaracterization of events in syria, to include pepe escobar in the atimes, and the observer mission report itself, which most news outlets seem to ignore. pertinent points: 1. no evidence of organized, lethal force being used by SG against peaceful protesters; 2. near unanimity of syrians against international intervention. they want to sort this out themselves. imagine that; 3. clear evidence of foreign support for ‘regime-change’ style provocations in syria.

    listening to the radio you would assume that every syrian is screeching for foreign intervention, ‘now!’ ‘no more talk, no more blah, blah, blah’, refering to international chatter about the crisis, is what i heard this morning from some impartial syrian source this morning.

    • Rusty Pipes on February 8, 2012, 4:31 pm

      All PNAC agenda, all the time. Just a few sources, like counterpunch, questioning the narrative. None of the MSM covering the actual content of the Arab League report. There is less interest in the unfolding of the Clean Break agenda for the Middle East at the Garish Orange Site than there was during the Bush Administration. I’ve had no success there lately.

      • Dan Crowther on February 9, 2012, 9:16 am

        The Angry Arab News Service is a really good (often times hilarious) read, not only about Syria, but ME politics in general…..

        The Escobar article that cites the arab leagues findings in Syria is probably the finest repudiation to the “the syrian regime is massacring its people” line out there….

        “Nawaat: The massacre in Homs, killing more than 200 lives, the deadliest since the events started, does it seem suspicious to you?

        A.M: This massacre is signed and its authors are making fun of our intelligence. Is it possible to believe for a moment, a government, whatever it is, could commit such a massacre on the day his case is brought before the Security Council?”

      • mudder on February 9, 2012, 8:56 pm

        Politics aside, no one’s wit equals that of Angry Arab As’ad AbuKhalil.

      • marc b. on February 10, 2012, 9:56 am

        there was a report on NPR this morning questioning the providence of explosions outside of government bases in syria, the SG attributing the attacks to opposition forces and the opposition forces claiming that the SG was behind the explosions as a means of discrediting the opposition. something fishy is up.

        BEIRUT (AP) — Two explosions struck security compounds in the Syrian city of Aleppo on Friday, killing 25 people and wounding 175, state media reported, in a major city that has largely stood by President Bashar Assad in the nearly 11-month-old uprising against his rule.

        The blasts come as escalating violence between regime forces and an increasingly militarized opposition has raised fears the conflict is spiraling toward civil war.

        A Syrian offensive aimed at crushing rebels in the battered city of Homs continued Friday, with soldiers who have been bombarding the city for the past six days making their first ground move to seize one of the most restive neighborhoods.

        State TV blamed “terrorists” for the blasts in Aleppo — the first significant violence in Syria’s largest city — saying they were proof the government is facing a violent enemy. Anti-Assad activists accused the regime of setting off Friday’s blasts to discredit the opposition and avert protests that had been planned in the northern city on Friday.

        Along with the capital Damascus, Aleppo is Syria’s economic center, home to the business community and prosperous merchant classes whose continued backing for Assad has been crucial in bolstering his regime. The city has seen only occasional protests.

        Three earlier bombings in Damascus in December and January that killed dozens prompted similar exchanges of accusations. Nobody has claimed responsibility for any of the attacks.

      • annie on February 10, 2012, 10:04 am

        marcb, from angry arab

        Riyadh Al-As`ad said that his forces did attack a center for “thugs” (Shabbihah) in Aleppo but that they did not bomb it but that the Syrian regime bombed after the withdrawal of the Free Syrian Army forces. Let me get this straight–it is not easy to keep up with the lies of this army or the Syrian National Council: so the forces of the Free Syrian Army attacked a center of “regime’s thugs” but that after the withdrawal of the Free Syrian Army armed thugs (sorry, soldiers), the Syrian regime’s thugs in the center decided to bomb themselves? I mean, that is exactly the account that Riyad Al-As`ad told on Aljazeera Arabic.

      • Dan Crowther on February 10, 2012, 11:06 am

        Escobar’s latest is a worthy read:

        “…….All this dovetails with an explanation by fine journalist Nir Rosen, author of the indispensable Aftermath: Following the Bloodshed of America’s Wars in the Muslim World; Homs is essentially a question of rebels seizing government checkpoints – and government forces shelling a few neighborhoods with mortars. According to Rosen:

        There was no fighting in Homs, just shelling from these safe locations (from the point of view of the regime), suggesting they are unable to actually attack Khalidiya with regime fighters … No opposition fighters were killed in the attack. And up to 130 people in Khaldiyeh were killed and 800 wounded (like I said not fighters). Now that’s a lot of people but if you were watching the news … you would think that Homs was destroyed while in fact this attack can also be seen as a sign of the regime’s weakness in the city.

        Compare this with my Syrian source worried that “people are completely in the dark as to what the government is thinking regarding Homs”.

        Imagine an armed insurrection in a mid-sized city in the US; the whole world saw how peaceful Occupy Wall Street was dealt with by billionaire mayor Michael Bloomberg. The “disgusting” BRICS have made it clear; there will be no NATOGCC humanitarian bombing of Syria. But NATOGCC may be succeeding in its plan B: to plunge Syria into civil war.”

        I would just like to add how friggin awful (and maybe intentionally misleading) Juan Cole has been in regards to Syria. But, this was probably to be expected – his latest up today is a near total joke and he even weakly takes on his ” people say I like wars when a democrat is in office” detractors…… Prof Cole and Jerry “Just War” Slater would probably have a lot to talk about…..

      • annie on February 10, 2012, 11:14 am

        yeah and his last one is a must read.

        When the over 160 monitors, after one month of enquiries, issued their report … surprise! The report did not follow the official GCC line – which is that the “evil” Bashar al-Assad government is indiscriminately, and unilaterally, killing its own people, and so regime change is in order.

        So the report was either ignored (by Western corporate media) or mercilessly destroyed – by Arab media, virtually all of it financed by either the House of Saud or Qatar. It was not even discussed – because it was prevented by the GCC from being translated from Arabic into English and published in the Arab League’s website.

        Until it was leaked. Here it is, in full.(PDF)

        The report is adamant. There was no organized, lethal repression by the Syrian government against peaceful protesters. Instead, the report points to shady armed gangs as responsible for hundreds of deaths among Syrian civilians, and over one thousand among the Syrian army, using lethal tactics such as bombing of civilian buses, bombing of trains carrying diesel oil, bombing of police buses and bombing of bridges and pipelines.

      • Dan Crowther on February 10, 2012, 11:22 am

        no way annie – that was from a couple days ago – I linked to his latest!!! haha :)

        Actually, Im full of it – this is his latest ” return of the keyboard warriors”

      • annie on February 10, 2012, 11:25 am

        hi dan, sorry i wasn’t clear, i didn’t say or mean his latest, i said his last one.. meaning the last one before this…sorry for the confusion. it’s vital background. hey, maybe there was even one in between!

      • Dan Crowther on February 10, 2012, 11:27 am

        haha! he’s been churnin’ them out lately……

      • Dan Crowther on February 10, 2012, 11:35 am

        “As Andrew Levine from the Institute for Policy Studies has shrewdly observed, [4] Obama the neo-con may be a very clever move to pre-empt Mitt and win even more votes. But it may be an exercise in transparency, as Obama, even before his State of the Union address, has been reciting Kagan to the letter, as in forget Asia, this will be another American century, and I will be at the helm; thus remember, it is I that coined the only change you can believe in.

        And that’s when this really becomes a scary movie; if Obama the neo-con concludes that to get to his new, dominant American century first he needs to do some vacuum-cleaning in Southwest Asia, blowback or not, he’ll do it – to the delight of the Keyboard Warrior brigade.” (escobar)

      • marc b. on February 10, 2012, 11:43 am

        annie, i caught a bit of the diane rehm show while out of the office this morning, with her press roundtable. what a load of horse bleep, with rehm hopefully questioning one guest about the US planning military contingencies for intervention. not a word of context, e.g. the recent commission report findings, or what a cluster f#ck libya has become after our beneficent efforts. one of the reporters was carping on about how the libyan ambassodor (i believe) to syria claimed it had no authority to attempt to prevent libyan citizens from going to syria to aid the opposition. i can just imagine the reaction to a statement like that if libyans were off to gaza to assist hamas.

      • American on February 10, 2012, 11:44 am

        Inquiring minds want to know.
        Exactly why does the media want to lie?
        Ex….the claim that the US and Isr agree on Iran working toward nukes.
        Despite….all over the news last week and this, are the headlines that Mossad and the AIE and the US all agree Iran isn’t building a nuke.
        Who wants the lie?
        Do the Jewish heads at the networks direct these lies?
        Do the neocons?
        Do the network advertisers direct these lies?
        Who stands to gain?


        Years ago, I always enjoyed the McNeil-Lehrer News Hour on PBS. Whether I agreed with the news analysis and commentaries or not, I always had the sense that the personal integrity of the two anchors was on the line at all times, and that there was some greater depth to the coverage than one would otherwise find on the major networks. This was the pre-CNN and Fox 24-hour news cycle era.

        It was from this mental image that I watched, in horror, as the same PBS News Hour last night delivered a typical neoconservative propaganda line, under the pretext of giving news.

        It was a short news update on the Iran situation, centered on the announcement of new U.S. sanctions against Iran.
        In the course of the report, the news anchor slipped in the formulation that the United States and Israel are in full agreement that Iran is pursuing a nuclear weapon.

        Hold the phone! Yes, that has been the persistent mantra of every Netanyahu government mouthpiece for months and months, and it has been echoed in every American neocon propaganda front for even longer, dating back to the bad old days of Bush and Cheney.

        But, the truth is: In October 2011, the National Intelligence Council, the premier agency of the U.S. intelligence community, issued an update to the November 2007 NIE on Iran’s nuclear program. Both the published/declassified 2007 study, and the classified 2011 study reached the same conclusion: Whatever work Iran was doing on weaponization was halted in late 2003, and has not resumed. Iran is engaged in enrichment, and is constantly improving their ballistic missile capabilities. But the vital part of any nuclear weapon program–the actual work on converting enriched uranium into a bomb–has been suspended for almost a decade, and the best U.S. intelligence community estimate is that it remains suspended.

        This is no light matter. And this is not something that is based on “leaked” information. While the content of the updated NIE has not been released in declassified form, as recently as last week, General James Clapper, the Director of National Intelligence, issued an annual global threat assessment, in which he summarized the NIE findings, noting that there is no evidence that Iran has resumed weaponization. Nor is there evidence that the Iranian leadership has made a decision to even pursue building a nuclear bomb.

        Back to my original point: The media, including the once-respected public broadcasting network, has gone over to the dark side on an issue that is too serious to let pass. We had the experience in the year leading into the Iraq invasion of a flood of neocon propaganda, about “thermonuclear mushroom clouds” and armageddon from Saddam Hussein’s arsenal of weapons of mass destruction. Are we going to allow ourselves to be railroaded again into a war that would have far more devastating consequences than Iraq? At least some of our taxpayer dollars go to the funding of PBS. Don’t we have a right to expect some degree of accuracy and honesty on matters of war and peace?

      • annie on February 10, 2012, 12:08 pm

        I watched, in horror, as the same PBS News Hour last night delivered a typical neoconservative propaganda line, under the pretext of giving news.

        It was a short news update on the Iran situation, centered on the announcement of new U.S. sanctions against Iran.
        In the course of the report, the news anchor slipped in the formulation that the United States and Israel are in full agreement that Iran is pursuing a nuclear weapon.

        american, here is great post by Nima Shirazi (i met him at pennbds!), “obama lies about iranian nuclear program” confirming this same crap:

        By blithely referring to an Iranian “nuclear weapons program,” the President of the United States is knowingly contradicting the findings and statements of both the American and Israeli military and intelligence communities; the very communities he notes are engaged in such high-level information sharing, cooperation, and coordination.

        On January 8, 2012, speaking on CBS’s Face The Nation, Obama’s own Defense Secretary Leon Panetta declared, “Are they trying to develop a nuclear weapon? No.” He added that the U.S. was “putting diplomatic and economic pressure” on Iran in order “to make sure that they do not make the decision to proceed with the development of a nuclear weapon.”

        Ten days later, Israeli daily Ha’aretz reported that, when U.S. Joint Chiefs chairman General Martin Dempsey would soon meet with “various senior defense officials, including Barak and Israel Defense Forces Chief of Staff Benny Gantz,” he would be presented with an “intelligence assessment” that “indicates that Iran has not yet decided whether to make a nuclear bomb.” Ha’aretz continues,…

        includes video

      • Keith on February 10, 2012, 6:46 pm

        DAN CROWTHER- As for Obama’s plans and media complicity, Alexander Cockburn over at CounterPunch said the following:

        “Meanwhile, on another front, the networks are ready. A CounterPunch informant reports:

        “I was visiting ABCNews the other day to see a friend who works on graphics. When I went to his room, he showed me all the graphics he was making in anticipation of the Israeli attack on Iran; not just maps, but flight patterns, trajectories, and 3-d models of U.S. aircraft carrier fleets.

        “But what was most disturbing – was that ABC, and presumably other networks, have been rehearsing these scenarios for over 2 weeks, with newscasters and retired generals in front of maps talking about missiles and delivery systems, and at their newsdesks – the screens are emblazoned with “This is a Drill” to assure they don’t go out on air – (like War of the Worlds).

        “Then reports of counter-attacks by Hezballah in Lebanon with rockets on Israeli cities – it was mind-numbing. Very disturbing – when pre-visualization becomes real.”

        Another CounterPuncher emails us:

        “Just a quick possible scoop for the news room – I have a neighbor who bounces for a Seattle bar, and he had some very rowdy US service men in the bar the other night. When he asked them what was up, they told him they were being deployed to the mid-east as a front-running group for an operation in Iran.”

      • kapok on February 11, 2012, 12:14 pm

        Don’t forget They’re all over Syria. Lots of links bringin da context.

      • annie on February 11, 2012, 12:39 pm

        kapok, there’s a really killer link/analysis someone posted over there in the comment section. just fantastic round up imho by Steve Gowans

      • kapok on February 11, 2012, 2:53 pm

        lol, gowan’s on another tab!

      • on February 15, 2012, 11:16 am

        NPR nonstop propaganda radio

        this perhaps overly-optimistic report yesterday bore signs of hope that the Russians could provide enough heft to lean back against US-British-Israeli madness (Sergei Lavrov has been impressive in his repeated declarations that ‘Russia will not be party to another Libya — that was a betrayal of the deal that had been agreed to; It is not our job to change regimes or pick sides, but only to stop the killing and press for a negotiated resolution’), but this morning not only did we hear the same-old-same-old from NPR, C Span also continues to beat the drums — Nancy Calo’s news blurbs in the Washington Journal time slot repeated Bibi’s evidence-free charges that Iran was behind the bombings, in India and Georgia.

        Then, two seemingly rational congressmen (to the extent that is not an oxymoron), Larsen from Washington state and Boustany from Louisiana, spent half-an-hour on Washington Journal discussing US relations with China. Many callers said, “We shouldn’t be engaging with China because look what they are doing to people in Tibet,” and “China supports that murderous Assad in Syria” and “China abuses human rights” and “China hacks my email.”
        Boustany and Larsen repeated and repeated: “The best way to ‘engage with leverage’ is to maintain a relationship with the Chinese . . .”
        Larsen [I think] said this (paraphrase), “If you’re not in the room engaging with them you cannot tell them to their face” to shape up on the human rights situation; “If you’re not in the room engaging with them you cannot tell them to their face” that they’re on the wrong side re Syria [which China and Russia are NOT].”

        As I listened I thought, wow, they get it!! You’ve got to engage with people even the people you don’t like, such as Iran!! Hot diggity!

        Then Larsen continued:

        . . . But, little by little China is moving in the right direction on Iran: China is cutting back on its oil purchases, so that we can tighten the screws on Iran.

        What is different about Iran vis a vis China? Why is it ok and even advisable to actively engage with China, in order to attempt to influence those actions of China’s that US does not agree with, but it is not only not ok to engage with Iran but, seemingly, a better policy to try to cause Iran’s economy to collapse? WHAT IS DIFFERENT?

        ISRAEL is the difference.
        Zionism is the difference.
        Israel is like a drop of ink that turns the entire glass of milk black.

        Why don’t these lawmakers see the disjunction between their thinking on China and on Iran? It is so obvious.

      • Daniel Rich on February 17, 2012, 4:22 pm

        @ American,

        Q: Exactly why does the media want to lie?

        R: Who pays the bills?

      • American on February 17, 2012, 6:31 pm


        To keep it short– I think everyone with an agenda that wants to propagandize or sell the public on something, be they corporations, ideologues within or outside the media, Israel firsters, any special interest———-that has any financial clout, influence, like minded friends with in the media etc. to do it with, does it.

        Listened to Fox News the other day just to see what they were selling and it was all day long Iran,Iran,Iran…..most of it inaccurate and fear mongering.
        In the Iran propagandizing in the media I suspect that it comes from Israel first interest, whatever neo’s are sleeping with them and I don’t know who else. Some might say the oil interest or the weapons industry see some profit in a war. What we do know is the US Military and the majority of the population is against a war or attack Iran.

    • Citizen on February 9, 2012, 3:29 pm

      I tweeted the pertinent points given here by marc b; was barraged with tweets supporting the three points. I don’t expect this data to get out to Dick & Jane.

    • annie on February 9, 2012, 4:34 pm

      i’m completely with you marc b. i posted a few comments on the recent syria thread. wrt events happening there i’m way aligned w/b over @ moon of alabama. thing is, i don’t feel i have a good enough grip on the finer pts to write a post about it.

      • chauncey on February 9, 2012, 5:02 pm

        Annie, speaking of posting and the “lull,” perhaps this might be worthy…
        an Israeli ad makes a joke out of the idea of a Mossad agent accidently blowing up an Iranian enrichment plant.

      • annie on February 9, 2012, 6:29 pm

        interesting chauncey

        In response to Iran’s claims, Samsung released a statement condemning the production of the commercial by the firm’s Israeli branch, with Samsung’s Tehran office saying that the spot had nothing to do with the firm and that it had been produced by HOT.

      • on February 9, 2012, 8:23 pm

        boys will be boys and Mossad will be Mossad. Ronen Bergman says in the video, “Israel has probably carried out more assassinations then any other country in the world; even Saddam Hussein and Stalin were more squemish about assassinations than Israelis are.”
        That’s our ally.

      • Shaktimaan on February 12, 2012, 8:01 am

        No. He said Israel has carried out more “overseas” assassinations. Big difference. Hussein and Stalin were not more squeamish about assassinations by any means.

      • Hostage on February 12, 2012, 8:42 am

        No. He said Israel has carried out more “overseas” assassinations. Big difference.

        Okay let’s parse what he actually said:
        1) From the day of establishment, the Israeli secret services have used the weapon of assassinations, targeted killing, more extensively than any other country in the world.
        2) Even the cruel tyrants, like Stalin or Saddam Husein, were far more hesitant when it came to overseas assassinations.

        He does not claim that Statement #2 is an exception to the “extensive” scope described in Statement #1. He only claims that Israel has acted with less inhibition than some tyrants when it comes to overseas assassinations.

      • LeaNder on February 12, 2012, 9:08 am

        teta, I would always take similar statements with a grain of salt. Given the secrecy surrounding these events how would he know? What factual basis /statistics supports his claim? Thus: “has probably”. Rather vague isn’t it?

        I think a big part of power may well be to be perceived as powerful. That may well be the real reason behind statements like this.

      • on February 15, 2012, 11:26 am

        thank you LeaNder.
        I was intrigued that immediately after Bergman’s interview was over, Brian Williams introduced a new report that, he said, was so important that NBC would devote the entire time slot to it: news about a mistress that John F. Kennedy, “our martyred former president,” had over 50 years ago.

        I’ve listened to enough of these ‘newscasts’ to know that the words and concepts that were intended to be linked in the viewer’s mind were: Bergman’s statement that Israel does assassinations “to change the course of history,” and the fact that a US president was “martyred.”

  9. DICKERSON3870 on February 8, 2012, 5:47 pm

    RE: “Adam Horowitz and I will both be traveling over the next couple of
    days…” ~ Weiss

    MY REPLY: Toodle-oo, you two!

    Toodle-oo –
    Toodle loo –

  10. Hostage on February 8, 2012, 9:20 pm

    I find I am not able to input a Vacation Response on my Yahoo account (what’s with Yahoo?).

    I have a screen under Options > Mail Options with a “Vacation Response” dialog selector box:

    Automatically respond to emails

    X Enable auto-response during these dates (inclusive)

    From:[selector boxes]
    Until:[selector boxes]
    Message:[text box]
    X – Send Sample Copy To Me

    X-Different response to emails from a specific domain

    First domain:[text box]
    Second domain:[text box]
    Message:[text box]
    X -Send Sample Copy To Me

  11. G. Seauton on February 9, 2012, 12:22 am

    Thanks for the heads up, Phil, but you and Adam have provided such a wealth of material in the last couple of weeks that most of us will probably still be looking over the “previous editions.”

  12. dbroncos on February 9, 2012, 6:04 pm

    Safe travels. Thanks for all your great work!

  13. patm on February 19, 2012, 9:49 am

    Jeff Blankfort on Sean’s ff feed yesterday:

    “What also rankles, personally, is that “anti-Zionists” Max Ajl and David Green, tribalists to the core, who are in denial re the Lobby and openly pushed earlier for Phil to ban me, not for anything about the Zios and the Nazis or about Atzmon but just for my take on the Israel lobby finally got what they wanted. – Jeff Blankfort”

    • Citizen on February 20, 2012, 12:58 pm

      Jeff Blankfort should not be banned, among others. Is Phil/Adam taking heat from their new funders and the current bent of more influential young turks within the jewish community regarding Israel-USA, Zionism-secular Judaism? Was the banning of Jeff a career move?

      • Dan Crowther on February 20, 2012, 2:21 pm

        Hold the phone – so blankfort got banned for his views regarding the lobby? I thought it was because of the transfer agreement stuff etc? How can anyone be banned for writing about the lobby, here of all places? This site leads the league in lobby driven articles….

        Does anyone know what Blankfort said? My take was that he really really emphasized the role of “conspiratorial jews” – but to the point of banning? hmm. His essay on Chomsky from years back on Dissident Voice was tremendous, and in my opinion is the only serious argument against some of Chomsky’s views regarding the lobby, us-israel relations etc. Blankfort offered the only argument that – if considered on a point by point basis with Chomksy- could reconcile the different “schools” of thought regarding US regional policy, US-Israel Policy and the I/, I/Arab conflicts.
        A counterweight to Chomsky gets banned?? How many people can lay claim to that title?(aside from mcbride, american…. haha ZING!! Jus kiddin.. love lives here!!)

        On the “new rules” comment thread, Phil mentioned that he didn’t write as much about “jewish identity” and “jewish power” mainly because of commenter disapproval. I wonder if he isn’t writing about “jewish power” for other reasons…. me personally, i have no use for discussions of jewish power etc. to me its a distraction — we don’t need to focus on the individual actors, we have a uniform policy (here in america) to deal with;

  14. Boycott Israel on Campus on February 20, 2012, 3:52 pm

    Nothing wrong with banning Jeff, Phil, and everyone else over 30.

    This site should be by and for thousands of campus Boycott-Israel activists, to organize marches for boycott nationally and campus-by-campus.

    However, since there IS no visible movement to boycott Israel, bring back Jeff, Phil, and everyone else who wants to grouse about The Lobby’s Omnipotence.

    Better these old grousing contributors than none at all.