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Israel is uniquely sexy — Ari Shavit tells Sally Quinn

Israel/Palestine
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Ari Shavit. (Photo: Spiegel & Grau/NPR)

Ari Shavit. (Photo: Spiegel & Grau/NPR)

How do you know the fix is in? Ari Shavit’s revivalist-Zionist book My Promised Land continues to get a ton of attention, even as the mainstream does its utmost to ignore Max Blumenthal’s very different description of Israel in Goliath. Shavit got a full-page ad in the New York Times last week, and at the same time he was interviewed by Sally Quinn in the Washington Post. Quinn clearly knows very little about the issue. She spells his name Savit three times.

I’ve been reading Shavit’s book and must praise it as an intimate portrait of Jewish Israel, with Shavit doing his utmost as a reporter to convey that world to us. But the book is very much Inside the Jewish paradigm, and suffers from the complacency and hermeticism of Tel Aviv. The book contains: endless celebrations of Jewish creativity and high-tech start-ups, the repeated claim that Israel prevented another “Holocaust” by bombing the Iraq reactor in 1981 and then the Syrian facility in 2007, the assertion that Iran is rushing to get its hands on a bomb…. Very inside Israel ideas.

Our narrator affects worldliness, but in fact he lacks the ability to step outside the bubble. And that’s the most telling thing about Shavit’s reception: while Max Blumenthal speaks in a leftwing American idiom we all recognize (of equality and anti-racism), Shavit speaks in an Israeli idiom he believes is sophisticated but isn’t. His writing is clueless when it comes to sex, it’s cringe-making 50-year-old guy stuff that went out in this country a few years ago (I should know).

Sally Quinn got some of this inside-Israel cluelessness in her story:

The result of living with this fear constantly, Shavit says, is “not despair, pessimism or passivity. It’s not whining. We are not addicted to victimhood. We didn’t turn it into our religion or identity.” Instead, he says, “you see creativity everywhere. There is an intensive cultural life in Israel, poetry, theater and intensive economic and scientific creativity as well.

“The quality of life, of human relationships is unique, sensual. Israel is very sexy. There is something in the air. The boys and girls are beautiful. You see it in our reproductivity — even among secular Israeli Jews it is off the charts.” He thinks it is perhaps no accident that they are that way.

P.S. It is a well-known fact (i.e., I believe this, but don’t have the time to document it now) that people in conflict zones have higher birth rates. Yasser Arafat once described the Palestinian womb as a weapon. It strikes me as naive not to factor this in when you are reporting how beautiful the boys and girls are.

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46 Responses

  1. just
    just
    December 15, 2013, 11:04 am

    Israel is ‘sexy’?

    puh- leeze!!! A line worthy of the coffee I just spewed.

    • Krauss
      Krauss
      December 15, 2013, 11:41 am

      Apartheid is very sexy – i.e. beneficial – if you belong to the right race.

  2. Shmuel
    Shmuel
    December 15, 2013, 11:22 am

    The boys and girls are beautiful. You see it in our reproductivity — even among secular Israeli Jews it is off the charts.”

    Is Shavit insinuating that Israelis don’t have access to contraceptives?

    • seafoid
      seafoid
      December 15, 2013, 5:38 pm

      “You see it in our reproductivity ”

      You do. 40% of Jewish kids in Israel live below the poverty line.

  3. just
    just
    December 15, 2013, 11:30 am

    It’s almost as though he is extolling a *cough* superior race, or something……….

    • seafoid
      seafoid
      December 15, 2013, 4:42 pm

      Ignorance is not sexy.
      Neither is it bliss.
      Israel is shoddy.

      • just
        just
        December 15, 2013, 5:10 pm

        Feigning ignorance is not sexy. Neither is lying. Neither is genocide. Neither is being an obdurate obstacle to peace anywhere, anytime. Neither is perfecting apartheid “sexy”.

      • seafoid
        seafoid
        December 15, 2013, 5:34 pm

        Destroying a family’s home is not sexy.
        Torturing a 12 year old is not sexy.
        Humiliating a parent in front of their kids is not sexy.
        It’s severely disturbed .

      • just
        just
        December 15, 2013, 5:46 pm

        Destroying ancient olive trees is not sexy.
        Uprooting an ancient way of life in the Negev is not sexy.
        Raiding homes in the wee hours of the night, terrorizing & arresting people is not sexy.
        Denying others their place of worship is not sexy.
        Not prosecuting the IOF for their crimes is so very not sexy.
        Flooding Gaza with dams and causing freezing poop to flow is definitely not sexy.
        Using White Phosphorus and deploying ultra sophisticated weapons against an imprisoned population is terribly un- sexy.

        Being a hypocrite is not sexy.

        Are crimes sexy to Shavit? I guess so.

  4. Krauss
    Krauss
    December 15, 2013, 11:42 am

    We are not addicted to victimhood. We didn’t turn it into our religion or identity.

    Easily the most self-deluded thing I’ve read in quite a while-
    And as someone who reads a lot of Zionists so you get it a lot, so that’s saying quite a bit of the total disconnect Shavit has with his own society.

    The boys and girls are beautiful. You see it in our reproductivity — even among secular Israeli Jews it is off the charts.” He thinks it is perhaps no accident that they are that way.

    The most beautiful people tend to be in Sweden, no? I thought this was more or less the concensus view(I’m talking about the Western world, which Israel desperately wants to be part of, culturally speaking).

    Also, the high Israeli birth rate is actually a relatively straight-forward story: Israel invests more in IVF treatments per capita than any other country on earth. It is also a world-leader in IVF treatments and spends a very high amount of research dollars in terms of its size of the economy on these issues of fertility.

    In addition, the entire ethos of the state, imbued from the beginning, is to keep producing Jewish children or else… HOLOCAUST! It’s drummed into the children from the beginning. The world is against us, remember the Holocaust, and make lots of Jewish babies.

    Demographic scaremongering is part of the societal DNA, together with the government’s endless efforts to make women have as many births as possible, including at very late stages in the fertility cycle(mid-40s), this is only a natural outcome.

    In other words, the high secular birth rate is mainly a response to two things:

    1. Demographic scaremongering, constant and amplified at all times.

    2. Massive government investment into fertility clinics, IVF treatments and similar issues, all with the explicit aim to have as many babies as possible.

    (Need I mention that the fertiltiy industry in Israel is solely based to produce Jewish children? The non-Jewish 25% are not exactly included. Naturally, Ari Shavit mentions neither of these things. As usual, Palestinians do not matter to him. He even went as far as defending ethnic cleansing as something that “had to happen”.)

    • Krauss
      Krauss
      December 15, 2013, 12:01 pm

      A final word on Israeli fertility.

      Why does these things not figure in Shavit’s analysis, besides his own racial myopia and essentialist/racialist fantasies?

      Well, for several reasons.

      The first factor is because it reveals the racist paranoia at the center of Israel’s existence. The racist indoctrination – which begins in school, as Blumenthal documented in his book. This clashes with the “liberal” fantasies Shavit wants to peddle. It’s the Jewish version of American racism pre-WWII where the explicit aim was to unite the white ethnicities into a singular white(“American”) identity by contrasting it to all non-whites.

      Thus, Yellow Peril. Thus, Jim Crow. Thus, the Japanese internment camps. Thus, the glorification of the Cowboys vs Indians, i.e. the legitimization of the ethnic cleansing of the Native Americans.

      Israel is following America’s playbook to the letter. Only the difference is that Israel is doing it in the 21th century while America did this pre-WWII, while the effort post-WWII was to dismantle these things. Israel is moving in the other direction.

      This would have forced Shavit to deal with the zeitgeist of the country, and ultimately the logic of it; endless ethnic cleansing, demonization of non-Jews. I never compare Israel to Nazi Germany in any respect but I will make a single exception: Nazi Germany was obssesed with racial purity and massive fertility as well. It achieved quite a bit on the same recipe as Israel: the racist indoctrination which began in schools, suffused with racial paranoia as well as massive investments from the government to push the fertility rate up.

      The other part why Shavit isn’t talking about the fertility industry is that, one, it’s not very helpful to your essentialist/racialist arguments if it’s as trite as economics, no matter how true. Second, it would also leave all kinds of uncomfortable questions as to who are the beneficiaries of this vast fertility industry. And since Israel is all about race; the inevitable question becomes, which race benefits? Shavit doesn’t want to go there.

      Instead he wants to put out all these racialist arguments about Jewish vitality and romanticise it, skimming over deliberate government policy and the racist incitement against non-Jews which the state is constantly pushing as a means to unite the Jews living inside Israel and emotionally blackmail them into having as many babies as possible “or else Hitler will win from his grave”.

      Shavit, the defender of the ethnic cleansing of Lydda on the grounds that “it had to happen for me to be here”, doesn’t surprise.

      More racialism, more essentialism, more denial of Palestinians, more racist mythmaking. He makes a perfect Zionist. Let’s freeze him in time. We’ll need specimen like him in the future to show people how bigots looked like.

      • Citizen
        Citizen
        December 15, 2013, 3:45 pm

        @ Krauss
        Yes, maybe someday we will have documentaries on the Jewish Israeli version of the Lebensborn movement. The difference is, the products of the Israeli version won’t discover they were pawns late in life, because Jewish Israelis have been public about it and their regime has lasted well over 12 years.

        Also, Krauss, I call your attention to another Nazi analogy that you apparently have missed. The Lebensraum policy.

        Also, how about the macro theory one’s group is chosen by God, which has been conflated by many Zionists with the material state of Israel? As to saying this is a burden for Jews, not a blessing at the expense of others, let me remind you of Himmler’s speech to his SS officers where he said the same thing,

    • American
      American
      December 15, 2013, 12:14 pm

      Krauss says:
      December 15, 2013 at 11:42 am

      {We are not addicted to victimhood. We didn’t turn it into our religion or identity.}

      Easily the most self-deluded thing I’ve read in quite a while>>>>>>

      Ditto. Its astounding isnt it?
      Their victimhood and choseness permeates everything in Israeli society.
      Shavit’s book clearly is a propaganda effort to present Israel as’ normal’—- except true to form— they cant resist presenting themselves as ‘better than normal or superior.’

    • RudyM
      RudyM
      December 15, 2013, 12:24 pm

      The most beautiful people tend to be in Sweden, no? I thought this was more or less the concensus view

      I don’t know if I’m missing a joke here, but this is a very odd comment.

      • Citizen
        Citizen
        December 16, 2013, 12:27 pm

        @ RudyM
        I guess you don’t know the role of the girl-next-door blonde shiksa in male Jewish American psychology (and ditto re black male psychology in US, or, for that matter, the average white guy, e.g., Hefner made a fortune from it).

      • Krauss
        Krauss
        December 17, 2013, 9:51 am

        White blonde women are seen as the most beautiful by white men. This is pretty universal. And it is white men who have lorded on “who’s hot” lists over many decades in America and Europe and in the rest of the West and decided to cast blonde women as the objects of infatuation in movies. A lot of porn stars dye their hair blonde. Very few dye their hair darker.

        Non-white men absorb this by society’s standards. (Aside from the fact that by pure statistical chance, there are simply many more white women).

        Just look at the “top 100 most beautiful women”. They’e begun to parachute in affirmative action candidates, but generally speaking it is the stronghold of white blonde woman. Look at People’s 100 most beautiful women list. Or Ask Men. I’m sure there are other lists. It’s always the same. It has typically been over 80% white, some years over 90%. Only recently have you seen a gruding clawback as people have begun to protest.

        So I’m not sure on which parallel universe you live in, Rudy.

  5. bilal a
    bilal a
    December 15, 2013, 12:24 pm

    Young Beauty and Fertility , sounds vaguely familiar:

    “While the Belief and Beauty society’s activities varied widely from clothing design to healthy living, many of the classes were designed to give girls a primer for their future tasks as wives and mothers. Those courses, in particular, were often taught by members of the Frauenschaft. ”

    http://www.bdmhistory.com/research/gands.html

  6. Pamela Olson
    Pamela Olson
    December 15, 2013, 1:26 pm

    I long for the day when I can appreciate Israelis’ superficial qualities without feeling nauseous about the horrific oppression taking place that most of them turn a blind eye to (if not actively participate in). I really do.

    Afrikaners are often kinda sexy, too. The accent carries a similar sense of arrogance and danger. It’s nice now that we can hear it and just appreciate it for what it is, instead of cringeing at the policies they might support that are still going on…

  7. Maximus Decimus Meridius
    Maximus Decimus Meridius
    December 15, 2013, 2:35 pm

    Does anyone else find Israel’s preoccupation with its own alleged ‘sexiness’ a bit unsettling? Is there any other country which markets itself this way? There have been several Israeli Tourist Board ads explicitly trying to entice visitors based on the ‘hotness’ of Israelis, the whole ‘Israel as gay haven’ selling point, there was that Maxim spread a few years back with the ”Women of the IDF’ displaying their bits (with the sponsorship of the Israeli embassy). It’s almost like the pimping of an entire nation.

    It seems Shavit has been bamboozled by the whole thing – just as Israelis are cleverer, more moral and more sophisticated than everyone else, so too they are ‘sexier’. But then, someone who will believe that Israelis don’t wallow in their own sense of victimhood will happily believe anything that suits.

    • seafoid
      seafoid
      December 15, 2013, 3:36 pm

      Neediness. Please look at us. Isn’t bar refeli sexy? If you disagree you are no better than a belzec camp guard.

    • Walid
      Walid
      December 15, 2013, 3:38 pm

      Maximus, let them brag all they want; it’s much less unpleasant than the never-ending and nauseating stories of being victims.

    • JeffB
      JeffB
      December 15, 2013, 7:08 pm

      @Maximus —

      France is obsessed with its own sexiness. Italy as well.
      “Virginia is for lovers” if you want a US example.

      But mainly this is a healthy continuation of Zionism, getting away from ghetto values. Ghetto Jews are pale, scholastic, fat, balding, wear unfashionable clothing…. while Israeli Jews are tanned, muscular, healthy and wear young military fashion. A key part of Zionism is trying to reverse the psychological damage of 2000 years of statelessness. Zionism takes the ghetto out of Jews. It sends a message, I’m sitting here writing on Mondoweiss instead of playing VolleyBall in the sun because I never made aliyah.

      Also as a propaganda tactic it works. By encouraging Jewish teens in American to sexually idealize the IDF they identify with them.

  8. Walid
    Walid
    December 15, 2013, 3:34 pm

    Every country has some stunningly beautiful people and some less beautiful, of course. Israel is no exception. I wouldn’t categorize Shavit as being among the beautiful, he looks more like a chinchilla. On the other hand, his country also has Bar Refaeli.

    • seafoid
      seafoid
      December 16, 2013, 12:54 am

      Sah. But for me the ideology is a killer. Literally. But also figuratively.
      One thing that goes with beauty for me is culture. And Israeli culture is very shallow. 65 years is nothing. Some song from 1967 about Jerusalem stands for so much of the stuff they don’t have because they didn’t live there. It’s not their fault bas heek ya’ni.

      The other thing, of course, is noor al ain. The light in the eyes.

      Lebanon up the road is very ,shall we say, complex. But the culture is very deep.
      They know their tabbouleh.

      • Taxi
        Taxi
        December 16, 2013, 1:05 am

        They know their tabbouleh.

        Plus the Lebanese are by far more attractive and “sexy” than the ashkanazim usurpers of the holy lands. There are thousands of Lebanese ‘Bar Rafaelis’ who have no interest in commercial modeling.

      • seafoid
        seafoid
        December 16, 2013, 9:55 am

        Yeah. And real sexy has confidence. It doesn’t need advertising.
        It’s not afraid of getting old.

      • Walid
        Walid
        December 16, 2013, 11:58 am

        “There are thousands of Lebanese ‘Bar Rafaelis’ ”

        You’ve probably noticed, Taxi, that all these thousands of good-looking ones all look alike as if cloned from the same master model. Same sculpted nose, ears, chin, cheeks, bust, buttocks, coiffure. Only they weren’t molded after Bar Rafaeli but after Haifa Wehbeh: Beirut is the plastic surgery capital of the world with more than 1.5 million interventions per year, seven times the rates in France; it’s all make believe. That isn’t to say that there aren’t any natural beauties. There aren’t that many but those that are naturally beautiful are really really beautiful. Beauty may be only skin deep but as seafoid noted, the culture there is very deep.

      • miriam6
        miriam6
        December 16, 2013, 12:59 pm

        [email protected];

        I saw a video once of a young Lebanese woman complaining bitterly about the Lebanese predilection for plastic surgery.
        The irony was that she herself admitted that she had had a nose job herself!!Pot calling the kettle black there I think!
        Think there is a phenomena known as ‘Lebanese nose’ in Lebanon ?- meaning about post plastic surgery noses!
        I always think that when Lebanese men are good looking they are VERY good looking men.

        BTW – have seen news reports of fighting skirmishes between the Lebanese army and Israeli forces in the last 48 hours plus fighting between Lebanese army and Salafist militia in Sidon.

        People are talking about it on social media etc. .

      • Taxi
        Taxi
        December 16, 2013, 1:22 pm

        Walid,

        Maybe Beirut and Ashrafieh have plenty of “sculpted” women, but I’m in the south and I can’t say I’ve seen more than a handful of ‘worked on’ women in the couple of years that I’ve been here. For the most part, all women I see are a-la-naturale, most are truly striking, even the hijabi women – even the old village women where I’m staying still look beautiful. So many beautiful eyes and eyelashes in Lebanon. Some real dishy men walking around Lebanon too.

        I had to google Haifa Wehbeh to know who you’re talking about. I googled her pictures before her surgeries and she looked attractive before surgery anywayz.

        Yes, Walid, beauty is very serious business in Lebanon – it’s like a currency. A few years ago, I was watching CNN international and a Lebanese plastic surgeon was being interviewed. He said that the only thing that Lebanon actually has is beauty – not oil, not industry, not mega wealth, but beauty, real beauty – and if you weren’t born beautiful in Lebanon, you’d be an outcast with no social life, no career, and no conjugal opportunities. He said this is why plastic surgery is thriving in Lebanon despite all its wars and problems.

        The irony is that they really are some of the most attractive people on the planet so they really don’t need to be so fixated on it – they already got it, but they’ll leave no stone unturned for more of it. Because it IS a currency there, like the doctor on CNN rightly said.

        Hey does Georgina Rizk ring a bell for you?

      • Walid
        Walid
        December 16, 2013, 10:49 pm

        Taxi, yes I know of Georgina Risk. Now is somewhat plump but still has an attractive face. Became famous for winning the 1971 Miss Universe and fraternizing at the event with Miss Israel but more so when her Palestinian commando husband was assassinated by the Mossad supposedly for his involvement in Munich. Did you know her?

      • Walid
        Walid
        December 16, 2013, 11:07 pm

        Miriam, there are now thousands of sicko fundies armed to the teeth all over Lebanon hiding among the over million Syrian refugees that are promising fun and games for the country to start with the Christmas holidays. Their latest skirmish with the army in Sidon was supposedly to smuggle in rigged automobiles ready to be detonated. Hard to tell who these guys hate most, the Israelis, Shia, Christians, non-observant Sunnis, the Druze, Americans etc. Probably hate them all equally because they consider them all sinners.

      • just
        just
        December 16, 2013, 1:06 am

        well said.

        I have never seen any culture worth reproducing nor extolling wrt Israel yet.

        For me, beauty comes from within.

      • Taxi
        Taxi
        December 17, 2013, 12:32 am

        Walid,

        Yes, Georgina Rizk used to sometimes attend my dad’s dinner parties in the early 70’s. I once heard Mahmoud Darwish describe her as half-cat and half-gazelle.

      • miriam6
        miriam6
        December 17, 2013, 6:40 am

        [email protected]:

        A lot of the instability in the Lebanon is an overflow of the civil war in Syria – right?
        In June this year there was fighting between the Lebanese army and the Salafists in Sidon -and then a car bombing in July and since then.
        The fact that Hezbollah is allied to Assad has caused friction in Lebanon too between Shia /Sunni has it not?
        But the Lebanese army seem more than capable of dealing with the Salafists.
        I have read there are over 1.5 million Syrian refugees in Lebanon and that was back in late August this year.

        Then there is the funding of the Salafis everywhere by Saudi Arabia.
        I listened to a Tariq Ramadan interview where he said it was more accurate to talk about the ‘fundies’ as Salafis rather than Wahhabis as we know them in the West.
        But Salafi seems to mean the same type of hard core Islamist ideology as Wahhabism – as far as I can see.

        Some people I know from Lebanon on fb say that most life continues as normal in Lebanon though.
        The fact that the Lebanese have taken in so many Syrian refugees is impressive though – especially when you think about how folks in the West complain about a few hundred or thousand refugees/ immigrants being in Europe.

  9. irishmoses
    irishmoses
    December 15, 2013, 5:28 pm

    I think Shavit’s My Promised Land is an important book, despite all the faults Phil has listed.

    First, it gives you a valuable insight into the mindset of an influential liberal Zionist Israeli and his view of Israeli history and its present political situation. While I disagree with his interpretation of much of Palestine/Israel history, he writes well and his use of personal recollections from all the people he interviewed makes it interesting to read.

    Second, and most important, Shavit is brutally honest about the conduct of Israel during the 1948 war. He pulls no punches about ethnic cleansing, massacres, systematic looting, rape, theft, and murder of civilians by Israeli troops. This honest rendition continues into Israel’s later history. He does not mince words when he describes the plight of Israel’s Arab “citizens”. I found his honesty astounding from someone who is such a strong supporter of Israel.

    Third, despite his honesty and admission of all that happened, he claims it was all necessary, no matter how horrible, if Zionism and its Jewish State was to survive. That rationalization is equally astounding since Israel could have done it otherwise and survived and flourished.

    While Blumenthal’s Goliath is a much more accurate and powerful book, it really preaches to this choir. I think Shavit’s Promised Land is an important read.

    I have just completed a 2000 word review of it, Banality in the Promised Land: Admitting and Rationalizing Zionism’s Evil Deeds. I will forward it to Phil to see if he wants to post it on MW. If not, I’ll post a link to my blog for anyone interested.

    • Sibiriak
      Sibiriak
      December 17, 2013, 1:51 am

      irishmoses :

      …. he claims it was all necessary, no matter how horrible, if Zionism and its Jewish State was to survive. That rationalization is equally astounding since Israel could have done it otherwise and survived and flourished.

      This is an interesting issue for me. I’d like to know exactly how a Jewish State (i.e. around 80% Jewish) could have been created with out resort to forcible ethnic-cleansing–I mean a realistic scenario that takes into account the demographic, social, political, military and ideological “force-vectors” that defined that historical moment (e.g., the Palestinian (near-) majority and vast land-ownership in the UN designated Israeli territory, Palestinian nationalism and militancy, Arab nationalism, Zionist “transfer” ideology, Zionist military confidence and planning, the improbability of Jewish immigration creating a Jewish super-majority etc. an the near future, etc. )

      • irishmoses
        irishmoses
        December 17, 2013, 10:22 pm

        I never heard back from Phil or Adam regarding posting my review of Shavit’s My Promised Land but I posted it on my own blog for anyone interested in reading it:

        http://savingisrael.wordpress.com/2013/12/17/banality-in-the-promised-land-admitting-and-rationalizing-zionisms-evil-deeds/

      • irishmoses
        irishmoses
        December 17, 2013, 10:44 pm

        Sibiriak said:

        I’d like to know exactly how a Jewish State (i.e. around 80% Jewish) could have been created with out resort to forcible ethnic-cleansing–I mean a realistic scenario that takes into account the demographic, social, political, military and ideological “force-vectors” that defined that historical moment (e.g., the Palestinian (near-) majority and vast land-ownership in the UN designated Israeli territory, Palestinian nationalism and militancy, Arab nationalism, Zionist “transfer” ideology, Zionist military confidence and planning, the improbability of Jewish immigration creating a Jewish super-majority etc. an the near future, etc. )

        You’ve raised one of the most critical issues in the I-P debate: Did Israel need to sacrifice the Palestinians to gain an exclusively Jewish state?

        I think there are three questions raised by this issue: Was Israel’s decision to “transfer” some 750,000 Palestinians out of Israel-captured territory legal? Was it moral? And, was it necessary? Shavit’s original New Yorker article, Lydda, 1948 really honed my interest so I’ve done quite a bit of reading and research to find answers to those questions. My short answer is no, Israel’s conduct was neither legal, moral, nor necessary.

        Obviously you would prefer I was more specific. My review of Shavit’s book, which is posted on my blog (see link in my last posting) gives a brief analysis. However, I think the answer and discussion requires a separate thread so I’ll attempt to put my analysis together and submit it to Phil, Adam, and Annie to see if they want to open that important door for a thorough and separate discussion. Hopefully this time I will receive a response even if it is only a brief, “not interested”.

        Shavit’s conclusion, that the massive war crime committed by the Israeli army in 1948 was necessary if Zionism and the Jewish state were to survive, is a huge issue that cries out for thorough discussion. But, I have yet to see a review of his book that recognizes the importance of the issue he raises in the book. His honest admission of the massive and ongoing war crime against the Palestinian people, starting in 1948, and his conclusion that it was all necessary needs to be challenged.

        Hopefully Sibiriak, you will get your answers and discussion of this very critical, foundational issue. Thanks for responding. It’s nice to know there is at least one other person out there that recognizes the importance of this issue.

  10. Taxi
    Taxi
    December 15, 2013, 11:33 pm

    Using “sexy” to sell you a stolen second-hand car.

  11. Xpat
    Xpat
    December 15, 2013, 11:35 pm

    “We are not addicted to victimhood. We didn’t turn it into our religion or identity.”

    Dear Mr. Shavit: you can reproduce plentifully and be beautiful and still be hooked on victimhood.
    Also, this is yet another classic statement of Israeli ideology: rejecting non-Israeli Jewish life. “We are a different breed to our miserable forebears who trembled in fearful victimhood in the shtetls of Europe or the effete “diaspora” today.”

    • Citizen
      Citizen
      December 16, 2013, 12:35 pm

      @ Elliot
      Those who ushered in the Nazi era would understand this wedding by many Jews to the new Jewish superman.

  12. Erasmus
    Erasmus
    December 16, 2013, 7:37 am

    Re Sally Quinn + revivalist-Zionist Ari Shavit: …you see creativity everywhere…..

    In the good old tradition of Rabbilistic Legalistics
    Creativity everywhere: Especially when it comes to ignoring High Court / Supreme Court rulings and / or hair splitting legalistics and inventive circumventions of HC / SC rulings…..

    Por exemplo: The new refugee Detention Law
    The new Law – passed by the Zio-Knesset last week only – permits INDEFINITE DETENTION of Asylum seeking refugees in so-suitably-named OPEN DETENTION CAMPS (located in midst of the desert+ with 3daily role-calls)
    after a High Court ruling had struck down as unconstitutional an earlier law that permitted the indefinite prison detention of asylum seekers.

    Substance and content of Human Rights and Israel’s Basic Laws is irrelevant and do not matter if it comes to the all-pervasive fear wrt any non-Jewish “Population Bomb”…..
    BUT creative word creations, punctuations, the judicious choice of definite or indefinite article and, last not least, the art of definition rule .

    http://972mag.com/sudanese-asylum-seekers-walk-out-of-open-prison-en-masse/83751/
    http://972mag.com/despite-landmark-high-court-ruling-asylum-seekers-are-cautiously-optimistic/78987/
    http://972mag.com/knesset-passes-controversial-bill-on-prolonged-detention-of-asylum-seekers/32487/

  13. OlegR
    OlegR
    December 16, 2013, 7:46 am

    /Our narrator affects worldliness, but in fact he lacks the ability to step outside the bubble./

    Said the guy in another bubble.

  14. Erasmus
    Erasmus
    December 16, 2013, 11:34 am

    Erasmus says:
    Re Sally Quinn + revivalist-Zionist Ari Shavit: …you see creativity everywhere…..
    In the good old tradition of Rabbilistic Legalistics

    Creativity everywhere: Especially when it comes to ignoring High Court / Supreme Court rulings and / or hair splitting legalistics and inventive circumventions of HC / SC rulings…..

    Por exemplo: The new refugee Detention Law
    The new Law – passed by the Zio-Knesset last week only – permits INDEFINITE DETENTION of Asylum seeking refugees in so-suitably-named OPEN DETENTION CAMPS (located in midst of the desert+ with 3daily role-calls)
    after a High Court ruling had struck down as unconstitutional an earlier law that permitted the indefinite prison detention of asylum seekers.

    Substance and content of Human Rights and Israel’s Basic Laws is irrelevant and do not matter if comes to the all-pervasive fear wrt any non-Jewish “Population Bomb”…..
    BUT creative word creations, punctuations, the judicious choice of definite or indefinite article and, last not least, the art of definition and redefinition rules .

    http://972mag.com/sudanese-asylum-seekers-walk-out-of-open-prison-en-masse/83751/
    http://972mag.com/despite-landmark-high-court-ruling-asylum-seekers-are-cautiously-optimistic/78987/
    http://972mag.com/knesset-passes-controversial-bill-on-prolonged-detention-of-asylum-seekers/32487/

  15. eljay
    eljay
    December 16, 2013, 12:50 pm

    >> The result of living with this fear constantly, Shavit says, is “not despair, pessimism or passivity. It’s not whining. We are not addicted to victimhood. … ”

    Of course you are. Not a day goes by without Zio-supremacists wailing about existential threats and the Holocaust re-visited…even as they continue to aggress, oppress, steal, occupy, colonize, destroy, torture and kill.

    >> Instead, he says, “you see creativity everywhere. There is an intensive cultural life in Israel, poetry, theater and intensive economic and scientific creativity as well.”

    Pretty sweet, when you’re sitting on stolen resources, and backed financially, economically, militarily and politically by Western nations and the world’s (currently) sole super-power.

    >> “The quality of life, of human relationships is unique, sensual.”

    How is it and how are they unique and sensual?

    >> “Israel is very sexy.”

    In what way(s) is it “very sexy”?

    >> “There is something in the air.”

    What is in the air?

    >> “The boys and girls are beautiful. You see it in our reproductivity — even among secular Israeli Jews it is off the charts.”

    So…does their beauty make them want to fuck, or is their beauty a result of all that fucking? Or maybe both?

  16. traintosiberia
    traintosiberia
    December 17, 2013, 11:19 pm

    There was this article in weekend edition 01/16-18/ 2004 by Ari Shavit in counterpunch
    Survival of the fittest? An interview with Benny Morris.
    I don’t know if he is same person or not.
    Here he says” Though he ( Morris) calls himself a left wing Zionist ,he invokes and praises the fascist Valdimir Jabotinsky in calling for an Iron Wall solution to the current crisis.Referring to Sharon.’s security wall,he ( Morris) says ” something like a cage has to be built for them .I know that sounds terrible.It is really cruel. But there is no choice. There is a wild animal there that has to be locked up in one way or another”

    That is the reality now , a reality he deplored once ,not that long ago. He now celebrates that reality . But he is no exception. The liberals who would have readily agreed that the Zionist plan and method embraced in 1936 or 1947 were fundamentally wrong and racist,also have later turned into Israeli apologist defending the developments later . Shavit was denouncing Benny Morris in 2004. Now he celebrates Israel that have heeded his( Morris ) advice!

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