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Public debate on Zionism sets a crucial precedent

Israel/Palestine
on 155 Comments
Max Blumenthal debates Mira Sucharov at the University of Ottawa on May 22, 2014. (Photo: Dylan Penner)

Max Blumenthal debates Mira Sucharov at the University of Ottawa on May 22, 2014. (Photo: Dylan Penner)

On May 22, Max Blumenthal debated liberal Zionist Mira Sucharov on the question: “Can Israel exist as both Jewish and democratic?” The debate was held at the University of Ottawa in front of a crowd of about 150 spectators. The Cable Public Affairs Channel (CPAC), a large privately-owned station broadcasted nationally in Canada, filmed and televised the debate. CPAC has made the footage permanently available on their website for all to learn from and to share. It can be accessed here.

The event was, by all accounts, an enormous success.  What seems so straightforward and obvious—to let the public determine which ideas hold water and which fall short—is rarely if ever sanctioned in the case of Israel’s supposedly democratic nature. I believe that through having such a civil, public debate, a very positive precedent has been set: we can respectfully engage in discussion and debate as responsible and engaged individuals who care deeply about the future of Palestine/Israel. How radical an idea is that?

Screenshot from CPAC recording of the event "Can Israel Exist as both Jewish and Democratic?"

Screenshot from CPAC recording of the event “Can Israel Exist as both Jewish and Democratic?”

My only fear is that Max Blumenthal did such an incredible job of articulating the ills of Zionism and the inherently violent and expansionist nature of the “Jewish state,” that finding someone to debate this issue again may prove to be as difficult as it was to find someone to debate it in the first place. Mira Sucharov needs to be commended for agreeing to debate this issue publicly, knowing that her position of esteem within the Jewish establishment would forever be compromised. As Mondoweiss  reported, she was censored in the Ottawa Jewish Bulletin—in her own column—for making mention of the debate, and of how her own synagogue refused to let her put up a poster advertising it.

The major barrier to future debates is the continuing fear of the Jewish establishment to accept any criticism of Israel’s existence as a state that privileges one ethnic and religious group, and by its very nature, must discriminate against all others. As Max Blumenthal said in the debate: “You’ve seen what happened here. Israel wasn’t destroyed. Nothing scary happened. We had a talk, we had a chat, and that was it. I don’t know what people are so afraid of.” That’s the question that those within the Jewish tent—including liberal Zionists— need to be reflecting on.

Tyler Levitan
About Tyler Levitan

Tyler Levitan is the Campaigns Coordinator for Independent Jewish Voices – Canada. He is based in Ottawa on unceded Algonquin territory.

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155 Responses

  1. just
    just
    May 29, 2014, 11:49 am

    Thanks for this, Tyler.

    Looking forward to watching the event when I have more time! Thanks to CPAC as well.

    “As Max Blumenthal said in the debate: “You’ve seen what happened here. Israel wasn’t destroyed. Nothing scary happened. We had a talk, we had a chat, and that was it. I don’t know what people are so afraid of.” That’s the question that those within the Jewish tent—including liberal Zionists— need to be reflecting on.”

    So wise, so true.

    • Frankie P
      Frankie P
      May 29, 2014, 6:31 pm

      Max B.:
      “You’ve seen what happened here. Israel wasn’t destroyed. Nothing scary happened. We had a talk, we had a chat, and that was it. I don’t know what people are so afraid of.”

      Frankie P.: I do, Max. They are afraid of the truth.

  2. ritzl
    ritzl
    May 29, 2014, 12:18 pm

    Doesn’t Sucharov’s own personal experience with ostracism on this end the debate before it even begins? That treatment raises the “… to let the public determine which ideas hold water and which fall short…” sense to the level of self-evident, but also in the sense of Sucharov’s general ability and willingness to argue her position?

    And you’re right, she is to be commended for her courage in debating MB.

    Thanks for posting the vid link.

  3. MHughes976
    MHughes976
    May 29, 2014, 12:20 pm

    What were Mira Sucharov’s reasons for claiming that it is possible, in all the circumstances, to have a Jewish and democratic polity?

  4. oldgeezer
    oldgeezer
    May 29, 2014, 2:23 pm

    Excellent debate. I probably should watch cpac more often as I had no idea they were carrying it. It was nice to a discussion which didn’t get bogged down in some of the more emotional arguments.

    Thank you!

  5. Zach S
    Zach S
    May 29, 2014, 2:47 pm

    Wouldn’t the time to have a debate if a Jewish and democratic state is possible be in 1897?

    • Shingo
      Shingo
      May 29, 2014, 5:34 pm

      No, seeing as the first time a Jewish state was even mentioned (apart from Herzl) was in 1937.

    • May 29, 2014, 9:10 pm

      How can a state be both a Jewish state and democratic? I mean, is there even anything to argue about? It can be one or the other, not both

    • talknic
      talknic
      May 30, 2014, 12:34 am

      Zach S “Wouldn’t the time to have a debate if a Jewish and democratic state is possible be in 1897?”

      The Zionist Federation didn’t, nor did they in 1948 (no mention of democracy in the declaration)

      The time would be when they eventually write the promised and required constitution, under which an Israeli Government can be legally elected for the first time.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 30, 2014, 1:06 am

        Good point Talknic.

        Amazing how the Palestinian state has managed to write a constitution but Israel have been unable to.

      • Walid
        Walid
        May 30, 2014, 1:40 am

        Shingo, they’re waiting to get rid of their Palestinian problems and to set their borders that are still expanding. After these 2, they’d have a constitution in 20 minutes.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 30, 2014, 3:57 am

        Shingo, they’re waiting to get rid of their Palestinian problems and to set their borders that are still expanding. After these 2, they’d have a constitution in 20 minutes.

        Agreed Walid,

        Though one has to wonder if Israel would ever agree to set their borders. There are some nut cases on the right who think Jordan still belongs to them

    • pjdude
      pjdude
      May 30, 2014, 1:22 am

      probably but zionist didn’t want to debate they wanted to wage a war of conquest.

    • Hostage
      Hostage
      May 30, 2014, 1:37 am

      Wouldn’t the time to have a debate if a Jewish and democratic state is possible be in 1897?

      Check the archives, we’ve answered that a million times. The Zionist delegation to the Versailles Peace Conference was led by Weizmann and Sokolow. When the US Secretary of State asked what they wanted, they opted for incorporation of their national home in Palestine. They both claimed that they didn’t need their own Jewish government or State. The United States government accepted that proposition and ratified the Anglo-American Palestine Mandate Convention on that basis. *See the discussion of Sokolow’s and Weizmann’s proposals from the Minutes of the Council of Ten Meeting in the FRUS: http://digicoll.library.wisc.edu/cgi-bin/FRUS/FRUS-idx?type=goto&id=FRUS.FRUS1919Parisv04&isize=M&submit=Go+to+page&page=164

      Sokolow held the Presidency of the World Zionist Organization after Weizman’s departure. The same year that he made the Palestine proposal at Versailles, he published his “History of Zionism (1600–1918) Volume I”. On pages xxiv–xxv he explained the Jews didn’t need or want their own state:

      The object of Zionism is to establish for the Jewish people a home in Palestine secured by public law.” . . . It has been said and is still being obstinately repeated by anti-Zionists again and again, that Zionism aims at the creation of an independent “Jewish State” But this is fallacious. The “Jewish State” was never part of the Zionist programme. The Jewish State was the title of Herzl’s first pamphlet, which had the supreme merit of forcing people to think. This pamphlet was followed by the first Zionist Congress, which accepted the Basle programme – the only programme in existence.

      link to books.google.com

      • MRW
        MRW
        May 31, 2014, 8:03 am

        So they lied.

  6. Zach S
    Zach S
    May 29, 2014, 2:55 pm

    I think it’s time that we have a free and open debate about Palestinian nationalism in this country. Palestine’s constitution explicitly states it is a state that’s part of the Arab nation and that its people are the Palestinian Arabs. Does anyone sincerely believe that a country can be Arab and democratic at the same time? The idea is preposterous.

    • just
      just
      May 29, 2014, 5:39 pm

      What a foolish and bigoted statement.

      And yeah, “I sincerely believe that a country can be Arab and democratic at the same time”.

      They have a far better prospects than Israel, as it currently exists, has ever had or ever will have.

      btw– how’s your denial about the assassinations of the two teens doing now that it’s clear that the IOF murdered them in cold blood while they posed no threat to anyone?

    • Woody Tanaka
      Woody Tanaka
      May 29, 2014, 5:42 pm

      “Does anyone sincerely believe that a country can be Arab and democratic at the same time? The idea is preposterous.”

      Mods: I think it’s time to ban this poster for gross racism. Can it get more blatent than this??

      • May 29, 2014, 9:11 pm

        I am unaware of any state that demands it be known as an Arab state.

      • piotr
        piotr
        May 30, 2014, 7:09 am

        “Egypt, officially: the Arab Republic of Egypt, …”

        I imagine that a treaty with Egypt spells out that this is a treaty with the Arab Republic of Egypt. However, there is no separate acknowledgment of the Arab character of Egypt, or something like that. Incidentally, American Administration was urging the government of Egypt to refrain from steps hindering the restoration of democracy, which presupposes that Egypt at some prior point of time was a democratic state.

        However, Israel is “State of Israel”, and not “Jewish State of Israel”. The meaning of both terms, “Israel” and “Jewish” is quite convoluted. Prior to the creation of the State of Israel, the word connoted either legendary and questionable “united monarchy of David and Solomon”, which has roughly the same historical status as Arthurian kingdom, and one of two separate states that had very similar (but different) religions, Israel/Shomron/Samaria and Judah. That historical Israel was emphatically not Judean, and Jewish roughly means Judean.

        Thus Jews claimed descend from Judah and also dubbed themselves Israel because of the double (at least double) meaning of Israel. Incidentally, there are also people claiming descend from Israel/Shomron/Samaria, including Palestinian clans from the area of Nablus, and a group still practicing the Israeli/Samaritan religion. I guess that such complications may suggest the use of a different name, say, Neualtland or Altneuland. And any treaty with Neualtland should contain a clause recognizing its Altneulandish character.

        Fast forward 2900 years to 21-st century. Who are Jews? Current front runner for the President of Israel visited USA some 20 years ago and visited some synagogues, and concluded that Reform Jews are not Jews. It is of course debatable, but shows that it is highly debatable what “Jew” means, and by extension, what “Jewish” means. To give another example, the State of Israel may deem some individual to be sufficiently Jewish to immigrate but insufficiently Jewish to be buried (or married) with Jews.

      • StCuthbert
        StCuthbert
        May 30, 2014, 8:03 am

        I am unaware of any state that demands it be known as an Arab state.

        The League of Arab States, the Syrian Arab Republic, the Arab Republic of Egypt, the United Arab Emirates.

        But nothing the Arab states do changes the fact that Zionism is racism.

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 29, 2014, 10:57 pm

        A country can’t be Jewish and democratic: Legitimate opinion.

        A country can’t be Arab and democratic: “Gross racism.”

        Did I get it right?

      • Bumblebye
        Bumblebye
        May 30, 2014, 9:17 am

        Of course you didn’t get it right SadZach. “Jewish” is a label used for all sorts of exclusionary purposes. “Arab” is a fairly inclusive term, which does not preclude racial/religious/etc differences. Your statement:

        “Does anyone sincerely believe that a country can be Arab and democratic at the same time? The idea is preposterous.”

        Ends with a grossly racist sentence. Geddit now?

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 30, 2014, 9:31 am

        Bumble, unless “Arabs” include everyone in the world, an “Arab state” privileges one minority group over all others, and is therefore undemocratic. Do you agree or disagree?

      • Woody Tanaka
        Woody Tanaka
        May 30, 2014, 9:43 am

        “A country can’t be Jewish and democratic: Legitimate opinion.

        A country can’t be Arab and democratic: “Gross racism.”

        Did I get it right?”

        No, of course you got it wrong. The first question isn’t “can a country be Jewish and democratic?” But “can Israel be Jewish and democratic?” There is nothing bigoted in that, because it is asking about a specific entity, with decades of actions to inform us of how that country defines those terms.

        That is the key, because Israel does not define “Jewish” in this context to mean “a modern, secular state with full human rights protection, suffrage and equality for all whose lives are controlled by the state, but where the population just happens to be a majority Jewish.” If it did, there would be no debate. And it does not define “democratic” to mean a state where everyone whose lives are controlled by the state are granted full suffrage and absolute equality in every respect, regardless of ethno-religious background.” Again, if it did, there would be no need for the debate.

        Because it does not define these terms in this matter, it is a valid discussion.

        There is no equivalence in the racism you spewed. The second question you asked was “Does anyone sincerely believe that a country can be Arab and democratic at the same time?” to which you answered: “The idea is preposterous.” Therefore, your statement is that it is preposterous to believe that any country which is populated by Arabs can be a democratic country. That is absolutely, 100% vile, gross racism.

        Not only for the obvious reason that you are talking as a general matter about any state which happens to be populated by Arabs and that, therefore, it is its Arab character that you somehow find relevant to the potential for democracy, but also because it is a well known and easily observable fact that the Arabs do not define “Arab” in the same manner that the Jews define “Jewish” in the context of the term’s meaning for a state.

        So, no you didn’t “get it right.” You’re clearly an anti-Arab bigot and should be banned from this website.

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 30, 2014, 11:35 am

        Israel does not define “Jewish” in this context to mean

        How does it define “Jewish” then? Let me guess: “an ethno-religious apartheid state.”

        Therefore, your statement is that it is preposterous to believe that any country which is populated by Arabs can be a democratic country.

        No, that’s your interpretation of what I said. Blumenthal said that a country with Jewish national characteristics by its very nature discriminates against minorities and therefore is undemocratic. Unless you think Arabs are better than Jews, you must agree that an Arab state would run into the same problem. Do you?

      • Woody Tanaka
        Woody Tanaka
        May 30, 2014, 4:07 pm

        “How does it define ‘Jewish’ then? Let me guess: ‘an ethno-religious apartheid state.'”

        In practice, yes, it does.

        “No, that’s your interpretation of what I said.”

        No, bigot, that’s exactly what you said.

        “Blumenthal said…”

        Stop trying to pass the buck, blood-libeler. You’re a bigot who made a bigoted statement. At least be a man and own up to it.

        “Do you?”

        I think any country that does not provide every person under its control with full equality, an equal vote and full human, civil and political rights without regard for race, religion, ethnicity, etc., is worthy of condemnation, regardless of the ethnicity of its inhabitants. Are you willing to say that about Israel, bigot?

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 30, 2014, 9:51 am

        A country can’t be Arab and democratic: “Gross racism.”

        It is when Arabs can be Jewish, Muslim and Christian.

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 30, 2014, 9:54 am

        Shingo:

        Not everyone in the world can be Arab. In fact, you have to be born one. Ergo, an Arab state is racist. Agreed?

      • Ron Edwards
        Ron Edwards
        May 30, 2014, 9:54 am

        Re: Woody’s recommendation, I agree. Zach S is conducting classic flak-barrage tactics, what we evolutionary biologists recognize as the Gish Gallop, to no purpose other than to make sure newcomers to the site cannot enter or even perceive a worthwhile discussion in the comments. It is rank intellectual dishonesty and also deliberate sabotage.

        Imagine if the knowledgeable posters here – citing Walid and Hostage as two, right off the top of my head – were able to conduct a solid discussion, comparing disagreements and interpretations, helping others to learn and perhaps arriving at new ideas. But no; with Zach S blithering away at high volume & frequency, they and the rest of us are reduced to dancing like fools, swatting away bits of flak, while the bots high-five one another.

    • Shingo
      Shingo
      May 29, 2014, 5:49 pm

      Palestine’s constitution explicitly states it is a state that’s part of the Arab nation and that its people are the Palestinian Arabs. Does anyone sincerely believe that a country can be Arab and democratic at the same time?

      If you had bothered to read Articles 9 – 33 which covers human rights of it’s citizens and explicitly states that All Palestinians are equal under the law and judiciary without discrimination because of race, sex, color, religion, political views, or disability., many articles that are either absent or have been rejected in the Israeli constitution, to answer that question.

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 29, 2014, 6:06 pm

        First of all, Israel has an article in their Declaration of Independence that says the exact same thing:

        “THE STATE OF ISRAEL will be open for Jewish immigration and for the Ingathering of the Exiles; it will foster the development of the country for the benefit of all its inhabitants; it will be based on freedom, justice and peace as envisaged by the prophets of Israel; it will ensure complete equality of social and political rights to all its inhabitants irrespective of religion, race or sex; it will guarantee freedom of religion, conscience, language, education and culture; it will safeguard the Holy Places of all religions; and it will be faithful to the principles of the Charter of the United Nations.”

        Secondly, article 1 makes it clear that when they say “Palestinians,” they mean “Palestinian Arabs.” Palestine is a country with a national character: A Muslim and Arab one. Therefore by Blumenthal’s definition it is a discriminatory and privileged state by nature, therefore it can never be a democracy.

        Do you agree?

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 30, 2014, 10:07 am

        Secondly, article 1 makes it clear that when they say “Palestinians,” they mean “Palestinian Arabs.”

        No, they do not. It makes it clear that “Palestinians” refers to the citizens of Palestine, regardless of religion.

        Palestine is a country with a national character: A Muslim and Arab one. Therefore by Blumenthal’s definition it is a discriminatory and privileged state by nature, therefore it can never be a democracy.

        Wrong, because under the state Articles, all citizens of that state will be equal under the law.

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 30, 2014, 10:19 am

        It makes it clear that “Palestinians” refers to the citizens of Palestine, regardless of religion.

        Article 1: “Palestine is the homeland of the Arab Palestinian people; it is an indivisible part of the greater Arab homeland, and the Palestinian people are an integral part of the Arab nation.”

        Palestinians are Arabs, which is a panethnic group. Palestinians are not citizens of a state called Palestine.

        The idea of Palestine as a homeland of the Arab Palestinian people should be just as “apartheid” and “racist” as Israel being a homeland of the Jewish people. That is, if you and Blumenthal want to be consistent.

        Wrong, because under the state Articles, all citizens of that state will be equal under the law.

        Irrelevant. Blumenthal said right in the debate that because Israel is a state for one people, it has legalized discrimination and therefore he calls it “apartheid.” Now will you say the same of the Palestinian Arab state?

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 30, 2014, 8:43 pm

        Palestinians are Arabs, which is a panethnic group. Palestinians are not citizens of a state called Palestine.

        False. Under the constitution, Palestinians are defined as the citizens of Palestinians, regardless of race, religion or ethnicity.

        The idea of Palestine as a homeland of the Arab Palestinian people should be just as “apartheid” and “racist” as Israel being a homeland of the Jewish people.

        Wrong. Because Palestine does not distinguish between ethnic Palestinians and citizens of Palestine the way Israel does.

        Irrelevant. Blumenthal said right in the debate that because Israel is a state for one people, it has legalized discrimination and therefore he calls it “apartheid.” Now will you say the same of the Palestinian Arab state?

        As has been explained to you, Israel rejects the existence of an Israeli nationality. It does so because to recognize Israeli nationals would be to grant the same status to non Jews that Jews enjoy. The Palestinian state does not make this distinction.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 12:58 pm

        Palestinians are Arabs, which is a panethnic group. Palestinians are not citizens of a state called Palestine.

        They declared the establishment of the State of Palestine in November of 1988 and the 2003 Basic Law that you are trying to misrepresent has a definite territorial scope of applicability that stops at the 1967 armistice borders. You also keep failing to mention that under Article 4 “Respect for the sanctity of all other divine religions shall be maintained.” Furthermore under Articles 9, 10, and 11 of “Title Two – Public Rights and Liberties” – “Palestinians shall be equal before the law and the judiciary, without distinction based upon race, sex, color, religion, political views or disability”; the government “shall work without delay to become a party to regional and international declarations and covenants that protect human rights”; and “Personal freedom is a natural right, shall be guaranteed and may not be violated.”

        Israel’s laws don’t contain any of those legal rights or guarantees.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 12:07 pm

        First of all, Israel has an article in their Declaration of Independence that says the exact same thing

        The text of resolution 181(II) required Israel to provide a written declaration on religious and minority rights that would be a fundamental law and the basis of its written constitution. That was a legal requirement for the termination of a mandate regime:

        B. STEPS PREPARATORY TO INDEPENDENCE
        The Constituent Assembly of each State shall draft a democratic constitution for its State and choose a provisional government to succeed the Provisional Council of Government appointed by the Commission. The Constitutions of the States shall embody Chapters 1 and 2 of the Declaration provided for in section C below
        C. DECLARATION
        A declaration shall be made to the United Nations by the Provisional Government of each proposed State before independence. It shall contain, inter alia, the following clauses:
        General Provision

        The stipulations contained in the Declaration are recognized as fundamental laws of the State and no law, regulation or official action shall conflict or interfere with these stipulations, nor shall any law, regulation or official action prevail over them.
        Chapter 2: Religious and Minority Rights

        Freedom of conscience and the free exercise of all forms of worship, subject only to the maintenance of public order and morals, shall be ensured to all.

        No discrimination of any kind shall be made between the inhabitants on the ground of race, religion, language or sex.

        All persons within the jurisdiction of the State shall be entitled to equal protection of the laws.

        http://www.yale.edu/lawweb/avalon/un/res181.htm

        Let’s look a what Israel did instead. During the People’s Council discussion on the 14th of May, several of the members were highly offended by the non-religious or democratic tone of those UN-prescribed portions of the text, while others were disturbed because the paragraph dealing with “speech” had failed to mention freedom of the press, assembly, and etc. explicitly.

        Contrary to the UN requirement that the declaration serve as the fundamental law of the State, Ben Gurion replied: This is not a constitution.” and that it was “not the law of the land” either. He said that “We have put in the basic phrases demanded by the UN, and I am sure that they, and more, will be included in the law of the land.
        – See Netanel Lorach, Major Knesset Debates, 1948-1981, Volume 1 – People’s Council and Provisional Council of State, 1948-1949, pp 53 (pdf page 40 of 184)
        * link to jcpa.org

        But equality has never been included in either the law of the land, or a written constitution. Furthermore, both the government and the Courts have declared that the Declaration is not a law at all:

        The second section is the primary source of authority in the Israeli legal system. Some were inclined to view the Proclamation of Independence, and especially its declaratory section, as a constitution, but the Supreme Court stated, in a series of decisions, that the proclamation does not have constitutional validity, and that it is not a supreme law which may be used to invalidate laws and regulations that contradict it.

        See The Proclamation of Independence link to knesset.gov.il

        The Basic Law: Human Dignity and Liberty doesn’t mention or protect equal rights under the law. It does stipulate that Israel is a Jewish state. Article 10 explicitly says that the Basic Law does not affect the validity of existing discriminatory laws. Article 8 allows the Knesset to adopt new discriminatory laws befitting the values of a Jewish state. Article 12 is complete nonsense: i.e.

        “This Basic Law cannot be varied, suspended or made subject to conditions by emergency regulations; notwithstanding, when a state of emergency exists, by virtue of a declaration under section 9 of the Law and Administration Ordinance, 5708-1948, emergency regulations may be enacted by virtue of said section to deny or restrict rights under this Basic Law”

        link to knesset.gov.il
        The Basic Law: Freedom of Occupation is just as bad and possibly worse. It also stipulates that Israel is a Jewish state. Article 4 allows discriminatory laws befitting the values of a Jewish state. Article 8 and its amendments allows the Knesset or a ministerial regulation to waive the application of the Basic Law in accordance with an ordinary statute or series of statutes adopted by a simple majority. link to knesset.gov.il
        The bottom line is that the Knesset can overturn any Supreme Court decision the right wing governing coalition doesn’t agree with, and they’ve already done it on several occasions.

        There isn’t any doubt among legal scholars, like Prof. Nahum Rakover, former Deputy Attorney-General in Jewish Law Department of Israel Ministry of Justice and former Advisor to the Knesset on Jewish Law; and Prof. Yoram Dinstein, former President, Rector and Dean of Law at Tel Aviv University, that the Knesset can overrule a Supreme Court decision regarding the Basic Laws See:
        *Rakover:“Modern Applications of Jewish Law,” 1992, and “Jewish Law and Israeli Law: On the Process of Integration”, 1998;
        *Dinstein, “Israel Yearbook on Human Rights, Volume 25; Volume 1995”, pages 210-212.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 30, 2014, 8:35 pm

        Not everyone in the world can be Arab. In fact, you have to be born one. Ergo, an Arab state is racist. Agreed?

        No, because under the constitution, one does not need to be an Arab to be a Palestinian.

      • lyn117
        lyn117
        May 30, 2014, 11:51 pm

        Israel ” will ensure complete equality of social and political rights to all its inhabitants irrespective of religion, race or sex;”

        I see why Israel’s founders wrote it this way. Since Arab is neither a religion, race, nor sex, it allowed them to continue their ethnic cleansing campaign, mass murder Palestinian Arabs and drive them from their homes, confiscate their property and give it to themselves for Jewish-only use. Do things like go into Arab towns, beat up the children with sticks, board people up in their homes for days without food or water, then blow up the homes with the people inside. Or just line them up against walls and shoot them.

        And, of course, applying such rights only to “inhabitants”. Having driven the majority of people from what is now considered by most people to be Israel (I mean Israel within the 1949 armistice lines), they then declared non-Jews who left their homes because of this terror to be no longer inhabitants of Israel. Like, if you take a vacation in France, your home country then declares you to no longer be an inhabitant.

        I see no reason why Jews shouldn’t have a Jewish state, but the one they have was stolen from its indigenous inhabitants by terror and violence. You can make rhetorical questions like, “why should Jews have the right to self-determination just like every other people,” however, that skips the actual sequence of events. The proper question is “why should Jews have the right to mass murder and terrorize the indigenous inhabitants of a place, drive them from their homes and confiscate the land, vehicles, jewelry, books, houses, orchards, businesses, factories, monies, household furnishings and other property the indigenous left behind as they fled in terror, and turn them over for Jewish-only use, and on top of that claim the right to self-determination in that land, to which they were immigrants in the first place?”

    • Cliff
      Cliff
      May 29, 2014, 8:02 pm

      @Zach S

      Are you American?

      Do you support America’s right to become a Christian State with demographic engineering to keep the population of non-Christians under control?

      No of course you don’t. You support Jewish terrorism, colonialism and nationalism.

      These other nationalisms you refer to or invent are simply rhetorical memes for you to HIDE behind.

      You are no different from White Nationalists, KKKers, Neo-Nazis who all want a pure White nation.

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 29, 2014, 10:58 pm

        Do you support America’s right to become a Christian State

        Americans don’t want their country to be a Christian state. I do support the right of other countries such as Greece, the UK, and Ireland to self-determine as Christian nations. That’s their right.

        Just like Palestine desires to be a Muslim and Arab nation. That is their right.

        I hardly see how wanting Jews to have the same rights as everyone else makes me similar to a white nationalist.

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        May 30, 2014, 7:31 am

        ” I do support the right of other countries such as Greece, the UK, and Ireland to self-determine as Christian nations. That’s their right.”

        If being a”Christian nation” means having policies which allot greater and more social and political advantages to Christians than to non-Christians, that would be morally wrong. There cannot be a moral right to do something which is morally wrong.

        “I hardly see how wanting Jews to have the same rights as everyone else….”

        You want Jews in Israel to have more legal rights than non-Jews. Jews in the UK, Australia, Denmark, Canada, and a lot of other countries have the same rights as everyone else in those countries.

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 30, 2014, 8:50 am

        If being a”Christian nation” means having policies which allot greater and more social and political advantages to Christians than to non-Christians, that would be morally wrong.

        The vast majority of countries in the world don’t feel that way, and identify as Christian and/or Muslim nations. If you think 95% of the countries in the world are morally wrong to have national character, including Israel, you are being consistent. I wonder if Blumenthal feels the same way.

        Jews in the UK, Australia, Denmark, Canada, and a lot of other countries have the same rights as everyone else in those countries.

        I think the Jewish people should have equal rights to all other peoples, including of self-determination a state of their own. The Palestinian Arab people have a right to a state, why don’t the Jewish people?

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 30, 2014, 8:55 pm

        The vast majority of countries in the world don’t feel that way, and identify as Christian and/or Muslim nations.

        That’s false, because the vast majority of the world are neither Muslim nor Muslim.

        The Palestinian Arab people have a right to a state, why don’t the Jewish people?

        Evidently, Israel does not believe Palestinian people have a right to a state, especially the leadership.

      • Woody Tanaka
        Woody Tanaka
        May 30, 2014, 9:31 am

        “I hardly see how wanting Jews to have the same rights as everyone else”

        But they don’t. The Jews want the right to create an ethno-religious Apartheid state.

      • eljay
        eljay
        May 30, 2014, 1:37 pm

        >> The vast majority of countries in the world … identify as Christian and/or Muslim nations. If you think 95% of the countries in the world are morally wrong to have national character, including Israel, you are being consistent.

        There’s nothing wrong with a state having “national character” as long as all citizens of, immigrants to, and ex-pats and refugees from (hereafter, CIER) that state are treated equally.

        When you and Zio-supremacists like you talk about “Jewish State”, you’re not talking benevolently about a state with a Jewish “national character” – you’re talking about a supremacist state with legally-enshrined discrimination:
        – against non-Jewish CIER of that state; and
        – in favour of Jewish CIER of that state AND of Jews elsewhere in the world with absolutely no CIER ties to that state.

        To advocate for “Jewish State” is to advocate for Jewish supremacism, regardless of how strongly, petulantly or angrily you do it.

        And, no, supremacism isn’t any more just or moral simply because it’s Jewish supremacism.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 30, 2014, 9:50 am

        I hardly see how wanting Jews to have the same rights as everyone else makes me similar to a white nationalist.

        All other states that call themselves democracies have designated themselves a country of all it’s citizens and that all citizens have the same rights. Israel does not. Israel is the only state that privileges one ethnicity above all others, regardless of citizenship.

        It is also the only state that implements demographic engineering, which is akin to white nationalism.

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 30, 2014, 9:57 am

        All other states that call themselves democracies have designated themselves a country of all it’s citizens

        I apologize Shingo, but that isn’t true. Japan is the country of the Japanese people, Greece is the country of the Greek people. If you go further into Europe you will find many more examples.

        Israel is the only state that privileges one ethnicity above all others, regardless of citizenship. It is also the only state that implements demographic engineering

        An absurd claim:

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nation_state#The_nation_state_in_practice

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 30, 2014, 8:46 pm

        Japan is the country of the Japanese people

        And Japanese people are defined as anyone who has or obtains Japanese cizrinship. This has already been explained to you under the topic of Japanese Nationality Law, so you are wrong.
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_nationality_law

        Greece is the country of the Greek people.

        Same again. Greek citizenship may be acquired by descent or through naturalization.
        If you go further into Europe you will find many more examples which disprove you thesis.

        An absurd claim:

        There is nothing in your link that refutes my point that Israel is the only state that privileges one ethnicity above all others, regardless of citizenship.

        Hasbara fail!

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 1:19 pm

        I apologize Shingo, but that isn’t true. Japan is the country of the Japanese people

        Yes, but the “Japanese people” includes aliens who have acquired Japanese nationality without regard to race, creed, social status, or family origin. You obviously haven’t read the Japanese Constitution of the Nationality Law:

        RIGHTS AND DUTIES OF THE PEOPLE
        Article 10. The conditions necessary for being a Japanese national shall be determined by law.

        Article 11. The people shall not be prevented from enjoying any of the fundamental human rights. These fundamental human rights guaranteed to the people by this Constitution shall be conferred upon the people of this and future generations as eternal and inviolate rights.

        Article 12. The freedoms and rights guaranteed to the people by this Constitution shall be maintained by the constant endeavor of the people, who shall refrain from any abuse of these freedoms and rights and shall always be responsible for utilizing them for the public welfare.

        Article 13. All of the people shall be respected as individuals. Their right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness shall, to the extent that it does not interfere with the public welfare, be the supreme consideration in legislation and in other governmental affairs.

        Article 14. All of the people are equal under the law and there shall be no discrimination in political, economic or social relations because of race, creed, sex, social status or family origin.
        Peers and peerage shall not be recognized.
        No privilege shall accompany any award of honor, decoration or any distinction, nor shall any such award be valid beyond the lifetime of the individual who now holds or hereafter may receive it.

        http://japan.kantei.go.jp/constitution_and_government_of_japan/constitution_e.html

        Japanese nationality can be obtained through a period of residency. Intermarriage with aliens is legally sanctioned and there are no religious tests or conversions required in order for aliens to obtain Japanese nationality. See Articles 4-9 of the Japanese Nationality Law and stop misrepresenting the facts. http://www.moj.go.jp/ENGLISH/information/tnl-01.html

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 11:23 am

        I do support the right of other countries such as Greece, the UK, and Ireland to self-determine as Christian nations. That’s their right.

        All three have accepted the European acquis communautaire regarding full equality of their non-Christian citizens. EU accession to the European Convention on Human Rights was made mandatory by the Treaty of Lisbon.

        I hardly see how wanting Jews to have the same rights as everyone else makes me similar to a white nationalist.

        Israel has refused to adopt the constitutional guarantees for religious and minority groups contained in UN resolution 181(II). It has filed accessions to some of the UN human rights treaties, based upon reservations that deny the International Court of Justice its role in settling disputes and it openly defies the UN HRC and treaty monitoring bodies. So it’s not at all like the other civilized nations you are comparing it to in your comments.

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 30, 2014, 11:27 am

        All three have accepted the European acquis communautaire regarding full equality of their non-Christian citizens

        That’s fantastic for them. But they still self-determine as Christian states which (by Blumenthal’s definition) make them discriminatory by nature and therefore undemocratic. Agreed?

        Israel has refused to adopt the constitutional guarantees for religious and minority groups

        Please scroll up to read the guarantee of equal rights for minority groups enshrined in Israel’s Declaration of Independence.

      • hophmi
        hophmi
        May 30, 2014, 1:31 pm

        “All three have accepted the European acquis communautaire regarding full equality of their non-Christian citizens.”

        I can’t read crap like this anyone. What the hell does that mean when you spend a hundreds of years persecuting people? You have to be a complete bastard to persecute minority populations for literally hundreds and hundreds of years, and until this very day, really (not to mention a few hundred years of real, parasitic, mercantilistic settler colonialism thrown in for good measure) and then, after you establish a 90 or 95% homogeneity rate, say, hey everyone, we accepted the principle of equality for our non-Christian citizens! Everything is OK! We’re OK! Let’s elect lots of anti-immigrant MPs to our national Parliaments and our EU Parliament and let’s spend all of our time bashing the refugee state of one the minorities that experienced the absolute worst we had to offer and, after trying everything to please us, finally left after we killed most of them off.

        The language I have in my mind when people make the argument that EU is fine and dandy is too strong for this forum. It is just the absolute worst of Westerners.

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 30, 2014, 1:32 pm

        but the “Japanese people” includes aliens who have acquired Japanese nationality

        No, that’s the citizenry of Japan. You must be born Japanese to be part of the Japanese people:

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_people

        This line of argument isn’t working for you. You should try another one.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 30, 2014, 9:00 pm

        You must be born Japanese to be part of the Japanese people

        No, you must be born Japanese to be ethnic Japanese. You can be born anywhere to become a Japanese citizen and enjoy equality under the law.

      • Woody Tanaka
        Woody Tanaka
        May 30, 2014, 4:01 pm

        “What the hell does that mean when you spend a hundreds of years persecuting people? ”

        Yeah, modern day Europeans are to blame for what other Europeans did in centuries past. Guilt passes with blood, don’tcha know.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 4:08 pm

        That’s fantastic for them. But they still self-determine as Christian states which (by Blumenthal’s definition) make them discriminatory by nature and therefore undemocratic. Agreed?

        No and you are coming across as mentally disabled.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 4:20 pm

        I can’t read crap like this anyone. What the hell does that mean when you spend a hundreds of years persecuting people? You have to be a complete bastard to persecute minority populations for literally hundreds and hundreds of years, and until this very day, really (not to mention a few hundred years of real, parasitic, mercantilistic settler colonialism thrown in for good measure) and then, after you establish a 90 or 95% homogeneity rate, say, hey everyone, we accepted the principle of equality for our non-Christian citizens!

        Well you’ve proven yourself incapable of reading and grasping a lot of things Hophmi. No one alive today has suffered hundreds of years of persecution. The fact remains that acceptance of the European acquis communautaire and equal rights for all under the law is mandatory – and it doesn’t allow for member states to manipulate their demographic characteristics on the basis of race, creed, religion, & etc., like Israel does. You have to be developmentally challenged to keep on excusing Israel’s refusal to even pay lip service to modern civilized standards, while wagging your finger at societies that do.

      • Woody Tanaka
        Woody Tanaka
        May 30, 2014, 4:21 pm

        link to en.wikipedia.org

        This line of argument isn’t working for you.

        LMAO. In response to the actual constitution of Japan, published by the Japanese PM on his website, you’re linking to Wikipedia, and you think you win that point???? Holy cow, you’re thick.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 4:37 pm

        No, that’s the citizenry of Japan. You must be born Japanese to be part of the Japanese people:

        link to en.wikipedia.org

        This line of argument isn’t working for you. You should try another one.

        The Wikipedia article does not mention any legal entity recognized by international or national law. The Japanese constitution does NOT reserve the state of Japan for any “Japanese people” based upon race or family origins, separate from all Japanese nationals, including naturalized aliens. So, your line of argumentation is threadbare sophistry and you are very feeble-minded for suggesting that I should change my line argumentation based upon the UN Charter “principle of equality and self-determination of peoples”.

      • Ecru
        Ecru
        May 30, 2014, 2:00 pm

        @ Zach S

        But you haven’t answered the whole question have you? You’ve cherry picked.
        So let’s restate it.

        Do you support America’s right to become a Christian State with demographic engineering to keep the population of non-Christians under control?

        Your precious Judenreich has been indulging in “demographic engineering” (aka ethnic cleansing) since the beginning which you apparently approve of.
        So do you support the right of let’s say Ireland to do the same with the ethnic minorities living there – for example Jews?

      • hophmi
        hophmi
        May 30, 2014, 4:50 pm

        “No one alive today has suffered hundreds of years of persecution.”

        Your point? That’s unresponsive.

        “The fact remains that acceptance of the European acquis communautaire and equal rights for all under the law is mandatory – and it doesn’t allow for member states to manipulate their demographic characteristics on the basis of race, creed, religion, & etc., like Israel does. ”

        LOL, but they do it anyway. You think the Europeans aren’t trying to keep immigrants from certain country out?

        “You have to be developmentally challenged”

        Do me a favor, keep your nasty-ass garbage to a minimum, since I know people who are developmentally challenged.

        “You have to be developmentally challenged to keep on excusing Israel’s refusal to even pay lip service to modern civilized standards, while wagging your finger at societies that do.”

        You have to have a poor grasp of law to understand why certain countries, like the United States, does not put lots of rights on the books that they cannot hope to fulfill. The utter ridiculous of your line of reasoning is illustrated by the presence of constitutions in many Arab dictatorships, where they function as public, institutional lies.

        Israel is a democracy, albeit imperfect. And it is to Israel’s credit that it doesn’t lie to the international community by creating meaningless legislation that it cannot follow. You continue to make a mockery out of the international legal system by celebrating countries that “pay lip service” to international norms by putting laws on the books that no one follows.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 8:02 pm

        “No one alive today has suffered hundreds of years of persecution.” Your point? That’s unresponsive.

        There’s no need to respond to your imaginary problem and your complaint has never applied to the EU.

        LOL, but they do it anyway. You think the Europeans aren’t trying to keep immigrants from certain country out?

        I assume you mean Turkey, which is not an EU member state and is illegally occupying one, Cyprus. See Turkey ordered to pay 90m euros over Cyprus invasion http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-27380388

        More to the point, Turkey has not implemented the acquis. http://europa.eu/legislation_summaries/enlargement/ongoing_enlargement/community_acquis_turkey/e40111_en.htm

        Do me a favor, keep your nasty-ass garbage to a minimum, since I know people who are developmentally challenged.

        I’m serious, you are not normal or well adjusted.

    • Hostage
      Hostage
      May 30, 2014, 2:00 am

      I think it’s time that we have a free and open debate about Palestinian nationalism in this country. Palestine’s constitution explicitly states it is a state that’s part of the Arab nation and that its people are the Palestinian Arabs. Does anyone sincerely believe that a country can be Arab and democratic at the same time? The idea is preposterous.

      No it’s not preposterous. You are just not very smart. I’ll re-post my reply to Hophmi:

      I pointed out that Israeli lawmakers on the Constitution, Law, and Justice Committee who oppose equal rights for non-Jews had won the debate for the past 65 years regarding the question of whether or not racial equality was incompatible with Judaism. As a consequence, they have managed to keep the state from adopting a written constitution or entrenching equal rights in the state’s Basic laws.

      You responded by saying “Let me know when such a debate takes place in an Arab parliament.” So I pointed out that the Palestinians and Tunisians were much smarter than the Israeli lawmakers, because they had already debated and adopted Constitutions and Basic Laws that explicitly guaranteed “equal rights under the law, without distinctions based upon race, sex, color, religion, political views or disability”.

      You tried to suggest that those explicit constitutional guarantees are somehow incompatible with the explicit provisions regarding Islam, respect for the sanctity of all other divine religions, and the application of Shari’a as a principal, but not exclusive, source of legislation. In fact, the Palestinian Basic Law required the government to subscribe to all the UN Human Rights Conventions as soon as possible.

      So, once again let me point out that Israeli lawmakers seem pretty slow and dimwitted by comparison, if they can’t figure out how to mention Judaism, the principles of halakhah, respect for other divine religions, and guarantees of equal rights under the law, without distinction based upon race, sex, color, religion, political views or disability in their own Basic Laws – and that your response helped prove my point.

      FYI, the “Palestinian Arabs”, also includes the Arab Jews of Palestine. If they wish to form a political union or confederation with other Arab states, they have the perfect right to do so under conventional and customary international law regarding the modes of exercising the right of self-determination. The codification of the customary right of self-determination is contained in the Declaration On Principles Of International Law Friendly Relations And Co-Operation Among States In Accordance With The Charter Of The United Nations. It explains that establishing a sovereign independent state; free association; or integration with another existing State; or the emergence into any other political status chosen by a people, constitute valid modes of implementing the right of self-determination.

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 30, 2014, 8:54 am

        Hello Hostage, you need to watch the debate again. Blumenthal isn’t saying that Israel can’t be democratic because they didn’t dot all the is and cross all the ts when their lawmakers were writing their founding documents. He said that it can’t be democratic because it favors one ethnicity and religion over all the others.

        As you admit, the Palestinian Arabs are Arabs. Therefore, their state favor Arabs over all other ethnicities and races, which is undeniably discriminatory, if not racist. So my question is: do you think Blumenthal is wrong, or do you agree that under his criteria a Palestinian Arab state would be undemocratic?

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 1:48 pm

        Hello Hostage, you need to watch the debate again. Blumenthal isn’t saying that Israel can’t be democratic because they didn’t dot all the is and cross all the ts when their lawmakers were writing their founding documents.

        No, because Jewish leaders went to the UN and boldly “lied through their teeth” when they promised they would guarantee the equal rights of the Arab minorities under their proposed jurisdiction. Furthermore, it has always been the lawmakers of Israel who have claimed that equality of rights is incompatible with Judaism. Israel’s lawmakers have prevented the adoption of any constitutional right to equal protection under the law for the non-Jewish population.
        See:
        * MKs debate protection of ‘equality’ in future constitution: Religious MKs reject inclusion of ensurance of equality, saying it would contradict Judaism. link to haaretz.com
        * Lapid: Israel’s definition as Jewish and democratic is an unsolvable contradiction: “Judaism is a whole line of values that have existed for thousands of years, but the democratic idea is a new idea, and significant parts of it stand in contradiction to Judaism” link to jpost.com
        Hannah Arendt described the situation during the Eichmann trial and her books were banned in Israel as a result:

        Like almost everybody else in Israel, he believed that only a Jewish court could render justice to Jews, and that it was the business of Jews to sit in judgment on their enemies. Hence the almost universal hostility in Israel to the mere mention of an international court which would have indicted Eichmann, not for crimes “against the Jewish people,” but for crimes against mankind committed on the body of the Jewish people. Hence the strange boast: “We make no ethnic distinctions,” which sounded less strange in Israel, where rab­binical law rules the personal status of Jewish citizens, with the result that no Jew can marry a non-Jew; marriages concluded abroad are recognized, but children of mixed marriages are legally bastards (children of Jewish parentage born out of wed­lock are legitimate), and if one happens to have a non-Jewish mother he can neither be married nor buried. The outrage in this state of affairs has become more acute since 1953, when a sizable portion of jurisdiction in matters of family law was handed over to the secular courts. Women can now inherit property and in general enjoy equal status with men. Hence it is hardly respect for the faith or the power of the fanatically religious minority that prevents the government of Israel from substituting secular jurisdiction for rabbinical law in matters of marriage and divorce. Israeli citizens, religious and nonreligious, seem agreed upon the desirability of having a law which pro­hibits intermarriage, and it is chiefly for this reason—as Israeli officials outside the courtroom were willing to admit—that they are also agreed upon the undesirability of a written constitution in which such a law would embarrassingly have to be spelled out. (‘The argument against civil marriage is that it would split the House of Israel, and would also separate Jews of this country from Jews of the Diaspora,” as Philip Gillon recently put it in Jewish Frontier.) Whatever the reasons, there certainly was something breathtaking in the naivete with which the prosecution denounced the infamous Nuremberg Laws of 1935, which had prohibited intermarriage and sexual intercourse between Jews and Germans. The better informed among the correspondents were well aware of the irony, but they did not mention it in their reports. — Eichmann in Jerusalem: a report on the banality of evil, Google ebook, page 7

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 30, 2014, 1:53 pm

        No, because Jewish leaders went to the UN and boldly “lied…

        That’s what you’re saying. It isn’t what Blumenthal is saying. Seriously, go back and watch the debate again if you’re still confused.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 5:39 pm

        No, because Jewish leaders went to the UN and boldly “lied… [ when they promised they would guarantee the equal rights of the Arab minorities under their proposed jurisdiction.]

        Of course it is. He explains that the Jewish Leadership planned to use military force and ethnic cleansing to engineer demographic superiority; to colonize neighboring Transjordan; and to grant Jews superior rights and mentions the inequality of rights under the law starting at 12:25. He cites Ben Gurion’s letter to his son Amos about his plans for partition. The UN would never have approved the plan if he had said the same things in his UNSCOP testimony that he said in the letter to his son.

        On the day he introduced the Law of Return and the Nationality Laws, during the 160th Sitting of the First Knesset David Ben Gurion, said that “The Law of Return is one of the State of Israel’s Basic Laws. It encompasses one of the central missions of our country, “the in-gathering of the exiles.” He sure as hell wasn’t talking about Palestinian Arab exiles and Max correctly points out that’s because they aren’t Jews. See — See Lorch, Netanel (ed), Major Knesset Debates, 1948-1981, Volume 2, JCPA/University Press of America, 1993, pp 611 – 613 (pdf pages 142-143) link to jcpa.org

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 30, 2014, 8:52 pm

        He said that it can’t be democratic because it favors one ethnicity and religion over all the others.

        And he is right. But that does not refute what Hostage has pointed out.

        As you admit, the Palestinian Arabs are Arabs.

        But under the constitution, Palestinians are defined as the citizens of Palestine, which includes those who are not Arab.

      • hophmi
        hophmi
        May 30, 2014, 11:28 am

        Hostage repeats the very silly answer that because Arab societies have adopted de jure principles that they do not apply, they are “smarter” than Israeli lawmakers, who have not seen fit to act like garden-variety dictatorships that make a million de jure promises that they do not keep de facto. Israel, a country with a functional judiciary does not make promises it is not yet equipped to keep. Despite that, Arabs in Israel remain the most empowered Arabs in the Middle East. Go figure, you people who insist on telling us that you’re concerned with the reality on the ground, rather than the theory.

        “If they wish to form a political union or confederation with other Arab states, they have the perfect right to do so under conventional and customary international law regarding the modes of exercising the right of self-determination.”

        That’s all fine. Let’s acknowledge what that is, which is a confederation of ethnocratic Arab states. It’s the Arab League. It is not the League of Middle Eastern States.

        And don’t tell me how Arab Jews in Palestine are Arab. Jews were NEVER equal citizens in Arab societies, not now, and not ever. And there are Palestinians that are Israeli. There are Bedouins who are Israeli. There are Druze who are Israeli. So Israeli and Jewish are not the same thing, just as Arab and Muslim is not the same thing. Are the vast, vast, majority of Arabs Muslim? You bet.

        This is one of the central hypocrisies of your movement. You employ one set of standards to Israel and another for everyone else.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 5:06 pm

        Hostage repeats the very silly answer that because Arab societies have adopted de jure principles that they do not apply, they are “smarter” than Israeli lawmakers, who have not seen fit to act like garden-variety dictatorships that make a million de jure promises that they do not keep de facto. Israel, a country with a functional judiciary does not make promises it is not yet equipped to keep.

        Hophmi you like to lie and pretend that Arab politicians haven’t debated and adopted democratic constitutions granting Jews and Christian citizens equal rights, even though they have done that in several cases. FYI, an Arab judge in those countries has constitutional backing to treat everyone with full equality under the law. Now you say that Israel isn’t ready to do the same, when the Jewish Agency lied and said they were ready and willing, as a condition for terminating the international mandate. So please shut up when we point out that Israel, and its judiciary, are backward and less civilized and refuse to even adopt a constitution that aspires to treat everyone as equals under the law. The judges in Israel have no constitutional backing when the Knesset overturns one of their landmark decisions with a simple statute.

        Jews were NEVER equal citizens in Arab societies, not now, and not ever.

        Oh bullshit. The Jews didn’t suffer from any legal disability. They were entitled to full civil and political rights which were protected against any discrimination on religious grounds by Article 62 of the Treaty of Berlin (1878) and the participation of the Sublime Porte in the public law and Concert of Europe:

        Article LXII. The Sublime Porte having expressed the intention to maintain the principle of religious liberty, and give it the widest scope, the Contracting Parties take note of this spontaneous declaration. In no part of the Ottoman Empire shall difference of religion be alleged against any person as a ground for exclusion or incapacity in matters relating to the enjoyment of civil or political rights, admission to public employments, functions, and honors, or the exercise of the various professions and industries, in any locality whatsoever.

        link to fordham.edu
        The Palestinians and Jews had enjoyed full representation in the Ottoman Parliament, which among other things, had established suitable legal conditions for Jewish immigration. Here is a link to a debate on the subject that took place in 1911 between Palestinian and Jewish lawmakers. See Yuval Ben-Bassat and Eyal Ginio, Late Ottoman Palestine: The Period of Young Turk Rule (Library of Ottoman Studies), 2011, page 111 et seq link to books.google.com

        No discrimination was allowed in affording the right to vote or hold public office on the basis Jewish nationality in any event:

        The Proclamation for the Ottoman Empire, 1908 said:
        3. It will be demanded that all Ottoman subjects having completed their twentieth year, regardless of whether they possess property or fortune, shall have the right to vote. Those who have lost their civil rights will naturally be deprived of this right.
        4. It will be demanded that the right freely to constitute political groups be inserted in a precise fashion in the constitutional charter, in order that article 1 of the Constitution of 1293 A.H. [Anno Hegira] be respected.

        9. Every citizen will enjoy complete liberty and equality, regardless of nationality or religion, and be submitted to the same obligations. All Ottomans, being equal before the law as regards rights and duties relative to the State, are eligible for government posts, according to their individual capacity and their education. Non-Muslims will be equally liable to the military law.
        10. The free exercise of the religious privileges which have been accorded to different nationalities will remain intact.

        link to fordham.edu

    • Walid
      Walid
      May 30, 2014, 2:23 am

      “Does anyone sincerely believe that a country can be Arab and democratic at the same time? ”

      Yes; Lebanon.

      • StCuthbert
        StCuthbert
        May 30, 2014, 8:57 am

        @Walid,

        Well said. It’s perfectly acceptable for a state to be both Arab and democratic, but it is impossible for a state to be both Jewish and democratic.

      • MRW
        MRW
        May 31, 2014, 8:43 am

        The correct analogy to ‘Jewish and democratic’ is Muslim and democratic. For that, there is Malaysia and Indonesia, the latter having around 225 million people.

      • hophmi
        hophmi
        May 30, 2014, 11:38 am

        Lebanon is your example? Yeah, OK, the confessionalist system worked for a while. But there hasn’t been a census since 1932, which suggests that everybody is afraid to actually have a real representative democracy, which I can understand. Palestinians living there didn’t have the same rights as other FOREIGN workers until 2010 and remain disenfrancised. Freedom House hasn’t recognized Lebanon as a fully free country since 1975.
        Lebanon, like Israel, leaves personal status issues to the clerics in each religion.

        At any rate, even if it were a real democracy, Lebanon would be the exception that proves the rule. It is one of 22 Arab states, and a tiny one at that.

  7. pabelmont
    pabelmont
    May 29, 2014, 4:03 pm

    It is surely curious that the various branches of so-called Jewish community forbid discussion of what seems an enormously important ideological point. This means that whereas Judaism has evolved into three or more branches (or tendencies) only one of which is called “orthodox”, ALL of these branches (at the leadership/money level) insist on a degree of orthodoxy on the Israel ideology that they would never insist upon on matters of Jewish (excuse me, I mean: religious) doctrine.

    Or am I wrong? are there red-lines on Jewish religious orthodoxy? Do scholars debate Talmudic questions or merely recite ancient “received” answers? Was the answer to the question “can a Jew throw an electric switch on Saturday?” already set in stone 2000 years ago or was there discussion more recently?

    • Zach S
      Zach S
      May 29, 2014, 4:21 pm

      It’s not that Jews refuse to debate “Zionism,” they just don’t see the point. Israel exists, it’s the Jewish state, and has been for 67 years. Only the marginal extremists like the ones this website attracts think that is going to change any time soon.

      I mean, do you expect Jews to debate whether or not to identify as Jews, or whether they should keep using rabbis, or whether the Torah is still their holy book? Israel is now part of the worldwide Jewish experience, whether you like it or not.

      In other words, it’s not that the debate can’t be held, it’s just that for most Jewish people it’s now finished.

      • Woody Tanaka
        Woody Tanaka
        May 29, 2014, 4:41 pm

        “I mean, do you expect Jews to debate whether or not to identify as Jews, or whether they should keep using rabbis, or whether the Torah is still their holy book? Israel is now part of the worldwide Jewish experience, whether you like it or not.”

        And the question which people seek debate on is whether or not Jews are going to run or support a brutal and barbaric ethno-religious Apartheid state. If you’re saying the Jews have decided that such brutality is part of their experience as Jews — that the Star of David is nothing more than a Klan hood — then I would suggest that you make sure all the other Jews in the world agree. That is what the debate is, not the sophmoric nonsense you’re talking about.

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 29, 2014, 5:00 pm

        Jews are going to run or support a brutal and barbaric ethno-religious Apartheid state.

        Jews don’t see it as a “brutal and barbaric ethno-religious apartheid state,” any more than Palestinians see the State of Palestine as any of those things.

        If you hate Israel and want it to disappear, fine, but that’s on you. Don’t expect the world’s Jews to march along with you into disenfranchisement and homelessness.

        PS: What do you feel about a Palestinian Arab state. Racist, ethnocratic and undemocratic by nature or a-ok?

      • Woody Tanaka
        Woody Tanaka
        May 29, 2014, 5:39 pm

        “Jews don’t see it as a ‘brutal and barbaric ethno-religious apartheid state'”

        Hence the need for the debate.

        “If you hate Israel and want it to disappear, fine, but that’s on you.”

        I don’t particularly care one way or the other. So long as there is full equality and full protection of the human, political and civil rights of ALL people between the Jordan and the Med., then I have little care for the particulars of how that comes about.

        “Don’t expect the world’s Jews to march along with you into disenfranchisement and homelessness.”

        More of your delusional talk. You really need to rid yourself of your zero-sum thinking. Granting the Palestinians and Jews full equality and full political, civil and human rights would not, by definition, make the Jews disenfranchised and homeless. It would merely prevent them from running an ethno-religious Apartheid state.

        “PS: What do you feel about a Palestinian Arab state. Racist, ethnocratic and undemocratic by nature or a-ok?”

        Don’t change the subject. Whataboutery is a lame Zionist tactic that has no place here. (And “by nature”??? Can’t you discuss this issue without your anti-Arab racism spewing out?)

      • eljay
        eljay
        May 29, 2014, 5:39 pm

        >> What do you feel about a Palestinian Arab state.

        If it’s a secular and democratic state of and for all of its Palestinian citizens, immigrants, ex-pats and refugees, equally – no problem. They would all hold bureaucratic Palestinian citizenship, and they would all be guaranteed the same rights.

        Israel / “Jewish State” is not prepared to do the same for all of its citizens, immigrants, ex-pats and refugees.

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 29, 2014, 5:45 pm

        Hello eljay,

        If it’s a secular and democratic state of and for all of its Palestinian citizens, immigrants, ex-pats and refugees, equally – no problem.

        It would not be any of those things. Please read the Palestinian constitution. The Palestinian Arab state would be for the Palestinian Arabs only, and use Islamic sharia law as the base for its legal system.

        Can I take that to mean you are against the creation of a Palestinian Arab state?

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 29, 2014, 5:57 pm

        Jews don’t see it as a “brutal and barbaric ethno-religious apartheid state,” any more than Palestinians see the State of Palestine as any of those things.

        Of course they do. And more of them are opening their eyes to that reality. After all, Max is Jewish.

        Don’t expect the world’s Jews to march along with you into disenfranchisement and homelessness.

        Ending apartheid, occupation, home demolitions, mass murder and land theft, and abiding by international law does not require marching anyone into disenfranchisement and homelessness.

        PS: What do you feel about a Palestinian Arab state. Racist, ethnocratic and undemocratic by nature or a-ok?

        What do you feel about articles 9-33 of the Constitution, which explicitly protect the rights of all citizens and states that all are equal under the law – unlike Israel?

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        May 29, 2014, 7:15 pm

        “If you hate Israel and want it to disappear, fine, but that’s on you. Don’t expect the world’s Jews to march along with you into disenfranchisement and homelessness.”

        The disappearance of Israel would not lead to Australian Jews being driven out do their homes or being stripped of their right to vote. The same goes for the rest of the world’s Jews. Nor need it have that result for Israeli Jews. If Israel were to be replaced by a unified, democratic, state in all Palestine, they would still have their votes and their homes.

      • pjdude
        pjdude
        May 30, 2014, 1:24 am

        that’s the problem they don’t see there crimes as crimes. most criminals don’t. that they are emotionally and intellectually as a people incapable of taking responsibility for their actions is a major problem.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 10:11 am

        Please read the Palestinian constitution.

        We’ve been there and done that. it’s pretty obvious that you have not read the Palestinian Constitution. The UN had no problem with the establishment of a Jewish or Arab majority state, so long as the constitution specifically protected the fundamental human rights and equality of minorities. Israel has refused to do that for 65+ years. The Palestinian Constitution did that from the very outset:

        Article 4
        1 Islam is the official religion in Palestine. Respect for the sanctity of all other divine religions shall be maintained.
        2. The principles of IslamicShari’a shall be a principal source of legislation.

        Title Two – Public Rights and Liberties
        Article 9

        Palestinians shall be equal before the law and the judiciary, without distinction based upon race, sex, color, religion, political views or disability.
        Article 10

        1 Basic human rights and liberties shall be protected and respected.
        2 The Palestinian National Authority shall work without delay to become a party to regional and international declarations and covenants that protect human rights.

        Article 11

        1 Personal freedom is a natural right, shall be guaranteed and may not be violated.

        — palestinianbasiclaw.org/basic-law/2003-amended-basic-law

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 30, 2014, 10:43 am

        Palestinians shall be equal before the law and the judiciary, without distinction based upon race, sex, color, religion, political views or disability.
        Article 10

        This refutes Zach’s claim that the constitution defined Palestinians are Arabs only. Palestinians are recognized under the constitution as citizens who can be of any religion or race.

      • Pamela Olson
        Pamela Olson
        May 29, 2014, 5:47 pm

        Traveling back in time to, say, 1985:

        “It’s not that white South Africans refuse to debate “Apartheid,” they just don’t see the point. Apartheid exists, it’s the nature of the state, and has been for ___ years. Only marginal extremists think that is going to change any time soon.”

      • eljay
        eljay
        May 30, 2014, 9:55 am

        >> The Palestinian Arab state would be for the Palestinian Arabs only, and use Islamic sharia law as the base for its legal system.
        >> Can I take that to mean you are against the creation of a Palestinian Arab state?

        If what you say is true, yes, I am against the creation of such a state. I believe that no state should exist as a supremacist state. I believe that every state should exist as secular and democratic state of and for all of its citizens, immigrants, ex-pats and refugees, equally.

        When it comes to a supremacist “Palestinian Arab” state, it appears we agree. But when it comes to a supremacist “Jewish State”, I remain consistent while you show your true Zio-supremacist hypocrite colours.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 1:30 pm

        >> The Palestinian Arab state would be for the Palestinian Arabs only, and use Islamic sharia law as the base for its legal system. . . . If what you say is true, yes, I am against the creation of such a state.

        That is not the case. A simple reading of Title One and Title Two of the 2003 Basic Law http://www.palestinianbasiclaw.org/basic-law/2003-amended-basic-law would debunk the idea that the rights of members of other religions aren’t maintained or that fundamental human rights contained in regional and UN conventions aren’t protected without distinction based upon race, sex, color, religion, political views or disability.

        He’s employing a series of straw man arguments, that are not based upon the facts.

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 30, 2014, 1:40 pm

        Hostage, this line of argument is fallacious:

        A simple reading of Title One and Title Two of the 2003 Basic Law link to palestinianbasiclaw.org would debunk the idea that the rights of members of other religions aren’t maintained…

        Your argument seems to be that if the Palestinians just pass some laws saying that discrimination isn’t allowed (and then carry on with that discrimination anyway), it’s perfectly fine for them to create an ethnocratic apartheid theocracy for just one group (Palestinian Arabs).

        Blumenthal would not allow a Jewish state to remain if they had equivalents of Title One and Title Two, so why do you hold Palestinian Arabs to such lower standards.

      • Zofia
        Zofia
        May 30, 2014, 2:51 pm

        Well…you can read this: http://www.pcpsr.org/domestic/2003/nbrowne.pdf
        The Third Draft Constitution for a Palestinian State:Translation and Commentary, byNathan J. Brown.
        About article 7 (about sharia) he writes:
        This article has attracted tremendous attention, but again the impact is far
        more symbolic than practical.
        • First, the article refers not directly to the shari‘a but to the
        “principles of Islamic shari‘a.” This in itself is ambiguous, since
        it is not clear what the “principles” of the Islamic shari‘a are. The
        Egyptian Supreme Constitutional Court has wrestled with a
        stronger clause (more on this below) and has decided that only
        shari‘a-based rules “certain as to their authenticity and meaning
        [qat‘ al-ithbat wa-l-dalala]” are relevant. Since so much of the
        Islamic legal tradition consists of debate, analysis, and contrasting
        interpretations and applications, only a very small body of such
        rules can be easily identified.
        • Second, the clause gives no guidance on who is to interpret the
        principles of the Islamic shari‘a. Since it is “a major source for
        legislation,” presumably the legislative branch itself is to draw on
        shari‘a principles when writing laws. Again, with the shari‘a
        presenting not a body of codified law but a quite long and varied
        tradition, it would be difficult to prove that a law does not draw on
        shari‘a principles in some way. In short, this clause should be
        read as an injunction to the legislature to take Islamic law
        seriously rather than an attempt to implement a shari‘a-based
        legal system. It would be virtually impossible to challenge any law
        on the basis of this provision.
        • Third, the drafters of the constitution have deliberately eschewed
        a stronger formulation—making the principles of the Islamic
        shari‘a the rather than a source of legislation. The stronger
        formulation is used in Egypt and there has been pressure for it in
        other Arab states (such as Kuwait). The practical effects even of
        this stronger formulation have been quite limited.
        You can read the rest in that pdf file.

        The PLO Charter provides that ‘Judaism, because it is a divine religion is not a nationality with independent existence.’ (Art. 35 20). As such, Jews who normally resided in Palestine until the beginning of the Zionist invasion were considered Palestinians. You must remember that “Arab” is is quite an inclusive term, it is not based on religion, race,, etc. It has more to do with culture, especially language (books on Arab nationalism explain this stuff, try R. Khalidi or Suleiman’s book on Arab nationalism and language).
        This vision changed totally following the Palestinians’ recognition of Israel. Israel- in line with Zionist beliefs and according to the Law of Return- grants Israeli citizenship to all Jewish men or women as members of the Jewish nation, so after that Jews weren’t mentioned per se in the constitution, their rights are guaranteed according to the laws mentioned in the constitution.
        You can read the rest in: “Palestinian Nationality and citizenship current challenges and future perspectives”, by Asem Khalil (you can download it).
        Palestinian (draft) constitution is one of the most liberal in the Arab world read: “Palestinian Politics after the Oslo Accords”, by N.J. Brown.
        You must also remember that Palestinians must protect what is being destroyed and threatened by the occupation, their identity is till this day contested, their rights as Palestinian Arabs are being denied for the sake of the “Jewish right” to the land, and as any nation they must somehow react to that, that is why they emphasize their Arabness, etc. It has nothing to do with racism, etc. For decades their docs have emphasized that they distinguish between Zionists and local Jews, who they consider as Palestinians…recognition of Israel made that specific article (about local Jews being Palestinians) unnecessary…. Jews are treated like any other group in the constitution…

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 5:52 pm

        Your argument seems to be that if the Palestinians just pass some laws saying that discrimination isn’t allowed (and then carry on with that discrimination anyway), it’s perfectly fine for them to create an ethnocratic apartheid theocracy for just one group (Palestinian Arabs).

        No the Constitution specifically say that Palestinians shall be equal before the law and the judiciary

        Neither you nor Hophmi have ever cited an example of a Palestinian law or policy that condones the creation of an “ethnocratic apartheid theocracy for just one group (Palestinian Arabs)”.

      • hophmi
        hophmi
        May 30, 2014, 11:50 am

        Hostage continues to be dishonest about the Palestinian constitution.

        Article I: Palestine is part of the larger Arab world, and the Palestinian people are part of the Arab nation.

        So is it a Palestinian nation or an Arab nation? And why is it that you say people are being racist when they refer to Palestinian Arabs instead of Palestinians?

        “Islam is the official religion in Palestine. Respect for the sanctity of all other divine religions shall be maintained.
        The principles of IslamicShari’a shall be a principal source of legislation.”

        Is Sharia law something that is compatible with UN Human Rights standards? You know that it’s not. And I could not care less what the Palestinian Constitution says about respecting other religions. That is a cardinal example of a desirderata that is meaningless unless it’s true in practice.

        “Arabic shall be the official language.”

        Sounds like an ethnocracy to me.

        “Article 13
        No person shall be subject to any duress or torture. Indictees and all persons deprived of their freedom shall receive proper treatment.”

        We know that the PNA doesn’t follow this.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 6:21 pm

        Hostage continues to be dishonest about the Palestinian constitution.

        No your tag team partner already recited Article 1 and misrepresented its importance, just like you did.

        the Palestinian people are part of the Arab nation.

        Palestine is a state. Palestinians are part of the Arab nation or culture. The fact that many nations are not nation states is introduced in international law 101. Try reading chapter 1, volume 1 of the State Department (Whiteman Edition) Digest of International Law.

        And why is it that you say people are being racist when they refer to Palestinian Arabs instead of Palestinians?

        Citation please. I believe that you are confusing complaints about the use of the racist construct “Israeli Arab”. The Supreme Court of Israel refuses to recognize a nation of Israel separate from the Jewish people in Israel and elsewhere in the Ministry of Interior population registry; or to apply the label “Israeli Arab” to Arab speaking Jews from Arab countries

        Is Sharia law something that is compatible with UN Human Rights standards?

        Yes it is and the constitution requires that fundamental human rights be adopted and applied in any event.

        “Arabic shall be the official language.” Sounds like an ethnocracy to me.

        No, not if the majority speaks Arabic and the jurisdiction isn’t gerrymandered or maintained through discriminatory laws, ethnic cleansing, & etc. Ethnocracy is a form of government where representatives of a particular ethnic group hold a number of government posts disproportionately large to the percentage of the total population that the particular ethnic group(s) represents and use them to advance the position of their particular ethnic group(s) to the detriment of others. http://books.google.com/books?id=HvHR5F3v5pcC&lpg=PR14&ots=0aoL99O_fY&pg=PA99#v=onepage&q&f=false The Palestinian Arabs have not created a large diaspora of exiled non-Arab ethnic groups.

      • MRW
        MRW
        May 31, 2014, 8:48 am

        The Palestinian Arab state would be for the Palestinian Arabs only, and use Islamic sharia law as the base for its legal system.
        What kind of nonsense is this? Christians have lived in Palestine for centuries. Your assumption that Palestinians are all Muslim is intellectually deficient.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 29, 2014, 5:50 pm

        It’s not that Jews refuse to debate “Zionism,” they just don’t see the point.

        If it was a case of simply not seeing the point, then why go to such lengths to shut down the debates and censor them?

        Only the marginal extremists like the ones this website attracts think that is going to change any time soon.

        Germany was as state in 1939 just as it is a state now, but it certainly did change. Same with South African during and after apartheid.

        Hopefully, Israel will follow these examples.

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 29, 2014, 6:10 pm

        Shingo:

        Please provide evidence that a significant percentage of Jews besides a few tokens like Max see Israel as how Woody described it.

        Ending apartheid,…does not require marching anyone into disenfranchisement and homelessness.

        No, but annihilating the world’s only Jewish state does, and that’s what Blumenthal and Sucharov are debating here. Let’s not play word games.

        If it was a case of simply not seeing the point, then why go to such lengths to shut down the debates and censor them?

        They don’t censor or shut down anything. They object to these kinds of debates because they see ‘debating’ basic human rights of the Jews as an attack on those rights. Just to pick another example: do you think if someone demanded that we reopen the debate about whether or not black people should be allowed to vote, black people would be offended? I would be.

        Germany was as state in 1939 just as it is a state now, but it certainly did change.

        It didn’t change into something other than the state of the German people though. That is what you are seeking to do to Israel, and it’s not only illegal, but it’s an attack on the right of self-determination of the Jewish people. And then you are confused about why they speak out against you.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 30, 2014, 9:59 am

        Please provide evidence that a significant percentage of Jews besides a few tokens like Max see Israel as how Woody described it.

        I don’t know now many see Israel the same as Woody, but a significant number no longer support Israel or are losing interest. A recent poll of American Jews by the Pew Research Centre confirms that American Jews are turning away from Israel, with nearly a third (31 per cent) saying they did not feel attached to the Zionist state and another 39 per cent feeling only “somewhat” attached.
        http://blogs.timesofisrael.com/israel-right-or-wrong-no-more/

        No, but annihilating the world’s only Jewish state does, and that’s what Blumenthal and Sucharov are debating here.

        Why are you even bothering to post this garbage? Never has Blumenthal ever suggested or entertained the idea of annihilating anything or anyone. He is questioning the legitimacy of the political system in Israel. Ending apartheid did not mean annihilating the State of South Africa or annihilating any South Africans.

        They don’t censor or shut down anything.

        Yes they do, and there are countless examples of them doing so.
        http://www.haaretz.com/opinion/slander-israel-s-critics-as-anti-semites-shut-down-debate-on-israel-s-atrocities.premium-1.509519
        http://honestreporting.com/irish-times-accuses-pro-israel-activists-of-shutting-down-the-conversation/
        http://www.theguardian.com/world/2010/apr/29/rights-groups-israeli-bill-military

        They object to these kinds of debates because they see ‘debating’ basic human rights of the Jews as an attack on those rights.

        Human rights of the Jews is not even a point of debate because it is not remotely in jeapordy. Human rights of the Jews are not under threat let alone being violated. What they are debating is whether it is acceptable in the 21st century to support a state that privileges one ethnicity/religion over all others.

        do you think if someone demanded that we reopen the debate about whether or not black people should be allowed to vote, black people would be offended? I would be.

        No one has raised the right of Jews to vote, so your point is absurd from the outset.

        It didn’t change into something other than the state of the German people though.

        Wrong. Germany is the state of the citizens of Germany. Israel makes the distinction because it refuses to regard non Jews as equal under the law or state. Israel does not even recognize Israeli nationality because it might threaten the privilege status enjoyed by Jews.

      • Woody Tanaka
        Woody Tanaka
        May 30, 2014, 10:49 am

        ” They object to these kinds of debates because they see ‘debating’ basic human rights of the Jews as an attack on those rights. Just to pick another example: do you think if someone demanded that we reopen the debate about whether or not black people should be allowed to vote, black people would be offended? I would be.”

        Your entire premise is wrong. The Jews have no right to run an ethno-religious Apartheid state. It’s international law. That is all this debate is about, not about Jewish self-determination, but about the fact that, in exercising that right, they are infringing on the political, civil and human rights of the Palestinians.

        If you want to draw a true analogy, imagine a state in which all but a handful of Blacks who were subject that state weren’t permitted to vote or given their human rights and liberties, and Whites claimed a “right” of self-determination to a state in which Blacks were systematically discriminated against in favor the Whites. Undoubtedly, the Whites in that situation woudl be offended at the notion of debating their right to institute a Jim-Crow state as you are “offended” now, but such a debate would be the right and proper thing, because of the fact that the Blacks are suffering intentional discrimination and oppression.

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 30, 2014, 11:30 am

        Hello Woody:

        Your entire premise is wrong. The Jews have no right to run an ethno-religious Apartheid state. It’s international law.

        As I said before, Jews don’t see it as an “ethno-religious apartheid state.” Neither for that matter does most of the world community.

        I remind you that under international law Israel has a right to exist and defend itself. It’s not a buffet, you cannot pick and choose which sections of international law to hold sacrosanct and which to ignore.

        That is all this debate is about, not about Jewish self-determination, but about the fact that, in exercising that right, they are infringing on the political, civil and human rights of the Palestinians.

        I thought this was about how a “Jewish state” is an “ethno-religious apartheid state.” Why are you bringing Palestinians into it?

        all but a handful of Blacks

        There are 1.2 million Arab citizens of Israel. I’d hardly call that “a handful.”

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 30, 2014, 9:14 pm

        Jews don’t see it as an “ethno-religious apartheid state.

        Of course not, and mos inmates in prisons will tell you they are innocent. But yes, most of the world community does indeed see it that way, which is why Israel’s popularity in in the gutter along with North Korea.

        I remind you that under international law Israel has a right to exist and defend itself.

        Not to defend stolen land it doesn’t. Under international law, Israel is required to end it’s occupation. As you say, it’s not a buffet, you cannot pick and choose which sections of international law to hold sacrosanct and which to ignore.

      • Woody Tanaka
        Woody Tanaka
        May 30, 2014, 4:19 pm

        “As I said before, Jews don’t see it as an ‘ethno-religious apartheid state.’”

        So what? The great thing about facts is that they exist regardless of how you “see it.”

        “I remind you that under international law Israel has a right to exist and defend itself.”

        No, no state has “a right to exist.” Under international law, states exist. And it may defend itself, but only for lawful purposes and by lawful means. Israel doesn’t, hence the debate.

        “I thought this was about how a ‘Jewish state’ is an ‘ethno-religious apartheid state.’ Why are you bringing Palestinians into it?'”

        No, learn to read. It is about how Israel’s acts have demonstrated it to be an ethno-religious Apartheid state. And who the f*ck do you think is suffering under the Apartheid state? The Palestinians. Are you really this dumb or what?

        “There are 1.2 million Arab citizens of Israel. I’d hardly call that ‘a handful.'”

        Given the numbers of Palestinians being oppressed by the Zionists in the West Bank and Gaza sections of Palestine, yeah, the number of Palestinians west of the Green Line are a handful.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 6:33 pm

        I remind you that under international law Israel has a right to exist and defend itself. It’s not a buffet, you cannot pick and choose which sections of international law to hold sacrosanct and which to ignore.

        No ethnic minority regimes that acquire territory by war and deny the inhabitants equal rights do not have the right to exist. If Israel won’t comply with international law, it can’t employ the US veto in the Security Council to maintain its legitimacy. Eviction by armed attack or military occupation is a war crime and crime against humanity for which no statutory limitation applies. There is no important difference between Israel and the apartheid regimes of South Africa and Southern Rhodesia when its policies and practices affecting the indigenous population is concerned.

      • talknic
        talknic
        May 30, 2014, 7:13 pm

        @ Zach S “Jews don’t see it as an “ethno-religious apartheid state.” “

        Declaration of the Establishment of the State of Israel “The state of Israel ….will be based on freedom, justice and peace as envisaged by the prophets of Israel

        “I remind you that under international law Israel has a right to exist and defend itself”

        However it does not have the right to illegally acquire territory by war http://wp.me/PDB7k-6r#unscresolution242 ANY war http://pages.citebite.com/y1f0t4q1v4son

        “It’s not a buffet, you cannot pick and choose which sections of international law to hold sacrosanct and which to ignore”

        Indeed. So why does Israel ignore the binding Laws and UN charter , emphasized and reaffirmed in hundreds of UNSC resolutions?

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 30, 2014, 10:36 am

        Hello Shingo, I think it’s safe to say that if that is all you can find, then the American Jewish community does not see Israel in the way that Max does.

        Never has Blumenthal ever suggested or entertained the idea of annihilating anything or anyone. He is questioning the legitimacy of the political system in Israel.

        Are you saying Blumenthal isn’t an anti-Zionist? He wants to deprive the Jewish people of their homeland and their right of self-determination, and then is shocked and surprised when they don’t join him in marching towards their own disenfranchisement.

        Human rights of the Jews is not even a point of debate because it is not remotely in jeapordy. Human rights of the Jews are not under threat let alone being violated.

        Of course they are. This website attacks the human right of Jewish self-determination every single day, and they are hardly the only ones.

        Wrong. Germany is the state of the citizens of Germany.

        No, you’re wrong:

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Germans

      • talknic
        talknic
        May 30, 2014, 7:28 pm

        @ Zach S “He wants to deprive the Jewish people of their homeland and their right of self-determination”

        Quote… thx

        “This website attacks the human right of Jewish self-determination every single day”

        Quote … thx

        // Germany is the state of the citizens of Germany//

        “No, you’re wrong: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Germans

        Uh? An article about Germans, not Germany or German citizenship. Try http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_nationality_law pal.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 30, 2014, 8:33 pm

        I think it’s safe to say the American Jewish community is diverse and not all Jews see Israel in the way that you do.

        Are you saying Blumenthal isn’t an anti-Zionist? He wants to deprive the Jewish people of their homeland and their right of self-determination, and then is shocked and surprised when they don’t join him in marching towards their own disenfranchisement.

        Yes Blumenthal is anti-Zionist, but Zionism isn’t about denying self determination to Jews. As has been explained to you, Jews enjoy self determination all over the world. Now does Max want to deny Jews of any land, provided it has not been stolen from anyone else.

        The belief that a piece of territory was once the homeland of an ancient civilization that has long since disappeared does not give anyone the right to take at will, which is what you are trying to justify.

        This website attacks the human right of Jewish self-determination every single day, and they are hardly the only ones.

        That’s a blatant lie and you know it. What this website does is oppose the actions by Israel to deny the right of Palestinian self-determination under the excuse that it is necessary to enable Jewish self-determination – which we all know is a ruse.

        No, you’re wrong:

        From your own link if you had bothere to read it.

        ” The term also refers to the citizens of the Federal Republic of Germany, regardless of ancestry, mother tongue, ethnic identity or culture.

        Hasbara fail!

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 2:17 am

        Israel exists, it’s the Jewish state, and has been for 67 years.

        Nope, the Balfour Declaration, the Palestine mandate, the LoN Minority Treaties, and the Anglo-American Palestine Mandate Convention (44 US Stat. 2184; Treaty Series 728) contain written, legally binding guarantees regarding the nationality, civil rights and standing of Jews living in this and other countries. Most Jews in the United States still agree with the 1950 “Entente” agreement between AJC President Jacob Blaustein and Prime Minister Ben-Gurion which stipulated Jews living in the USA are not “Israelis” or “exiles”.

        An April 20, 1964 letter to Rabbi Elmer Berger of the American Council for Judaism from Assistant Secretary Phillips Talbot of the U.S. State Department, confirmed that the US government:

        “does not recognize a legal-political relationship based upon religious identification of American citizens. It does not in any way discriminate among American citizens upon the basis of religion or ethnicity. Accordingly, it should be clear that the Department of State does not regard the “Jewish people” concept as a concept of international law.”

        — See Whiteman’s Digest of International Law, Volume 8, U.S. Dept. of State, U.S. Govt. Print. Office, 1967, page 35

        Even today, when the State Department pays lip service to PM Netanyahu’s demand that the Palestinian Authority recognize Israel as the state or homeland of “the Jewish people”, it does so in very equivocal terms, i.e. The U.S. spokesman said “We have recognized the special nature of the Israeli state. It is a state for the Jewish people. It is a state for other citizens of other faiths as well.”

        Since then, Secretary Kerry has testified to the Congress that it was a mistake to even entertain the demand in the first place.

  8. StCuthbert
    StCuthbert
    May 29, 2014, 4:36 pm

    Israel’s existence as a state that privileges one ethnic and religious group, and by its very nature, must discriminate against all others.

    Very well said. Any state for one particular ethnicity or religious group is by nature discriminatory and therefore undemocratic.

  9. Citizen
    Citizen
    May 29, 2014, 4:48 pm

    “In other words, it’s not that the debate can’t be held, it’s just that for most Jewish people it’s now finished.”
    So, all us Gentiles should just agree? Do we have anything at all to say about justice?

    • Zach S
      Zach S
      May 29, 2014, 5:10 pm

      Pabelmont was asking why the Jewish community doesn’t debate Zionism, and I told him why I thought they didn’t. But as long as you’ve injected non-Jews into the conversation, I would ask you what is “justice” about seeking to deny Jews their right of self determination, the same right that every other nation (including Palestinians Arabs) take for granted and exercise with no criticism?

      Jews don’t tell non-Jews how to run their societies and live their lives. Maybe non-Jews should grant them the same courtesy.

      • just
        just
        May 29, 2014, 5:30 pm

        “Jews don’t tell non-Jews how to run their societies and live their lives.”

        Surely you’ve heard of AIPAC, Zach…

      • Kathleen
        Kathleen
        May 30, 2014, 12:09 am

        Bingo…

      • Woody Tanaka
        Woody Tanaka
        May 29, 2014, 5:30 pm

        “But as long as you’ve injected non-Jews into the conversation, I would ask you what is “justice” about seeking to deny Jews their right of self determination, the same right that every other nation (including Palestinians Arabs) take for granted and exercise with no criticism?”

        If they can exercise that right without stealing someone else’s land or oppressing them, then no one would have a problem with it. But if their exercise of that right requires another people to suffer, then there is no justice in allowing them to exercise that right.

        “Jews don’t tell non-Jews how to run their societies and live their lives. ”

        LMAO. Yes, they have. And, for the most part, to their credit. For example, in the US, many Jews told the overwhelmingly non-Jews in the Southern US (and the US as a whole, for that matter) not to run a society that was racially discriminatory.

        Indeed, one of the fundamental tenets of Judaism is that the 7 Laws of Noah (a wholly Jewish invention, albeit of mostly universal human norms) should or must be followed by non-Jewish societies.

      • StCuthbert
        StCuthbert
        May 30, 2014, 8:10 am

        If they can exercise that right without stealing someone else’s land or oppressing them, then no one would have a problem with it.

        I would have a problem with it, because their state would still be discriminatory towards non-Jews and therefore undemocratic.

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 30, 2014, 9:04 am

        If they can exercise that right without stealing someone else’s land or oppressing them, then no one would have a problem with it…

        Oh Woody, Woody, Woody…go back and read the article again. Here’s a quote from it:

        “any criticism of Israel’s existence as a state that privileges one ethnic and religious group, and by its very nature, must discriminate against all others”

        Blumenthal was saying that it is Israel’s Jewish nature that makes it undemocratic, as long as Israel exists as an expression of the Jewish right of self-determination, it is “privileged” and deserves criticism. It has nothing to do with how that state behaves. Your thoughts?

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 30, 2014, 8:49 pm

        Oh Zach, Zach, Zach…go back and read the quote you cited:

        Blumenthal was saying that it is Israel’s Jewish nature that makes it undemocratic, as long as Israel exists as an expression of the Jewish right of self-determination, it is “privileged” and deserves criticism. It has nothing to do with how that state behaves.

        You’re lying.

        Blumenthal states that Israel “privileges one ethnic and religious group, and by its very nature, must discriminate against all others” so he is indeed referring to how the state of Israel behaves and this is what deserves criticisms.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 29, 2014, 6:10 pm

        I would ask you what is “justice” about seeking to deny Jews their right of self determination, the same right that every other nation (including Palestinians Arabs) take for granted and exercise with no criticism?

        Jews enjoy the right of self determination in pretty much every country they live in, so non sequitir.

        Jews don’t tell non-Jews how to run their societies and live their lives.

        Actually they do and often for the better. Jews were leading the charge during the civil rights movement. They also lead the charge against prayer in public schools.

        If the US were to declare itself a Christian state, Jews would declare it an outrage and a violation of human rights.

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 29, 2014, 6:33 pm

        Jews enjoy the right of self determination in pretty much every country they live in, so non sequitir.

        The right of self-determination is a collective right, not an individual right. Look it up.

        Jews were leading the charge during the civil rights movement.

        Those were American Jews seeking to change America, the society they lived in. They don’t tell Greece it can’t be Greek, or Japan that it can’t be Japanese, or any of the 23 Arab countries that they can’t be Arab.

        If the US were to declare itself a Christian state

        In many ways the US already is a Christian state. “In God We Trust” on our coins. No mail on Sundays. “God Bless America.” The only religion to get a federal holiday is Christianity. But I notice that none of these things are used by Blumenthal and his crew to prove that America is supremacist and therefore undemocratic by nature. Nothing like a good helping of double standards.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 30, 2014, 10:13 am

        The right of self-determination is a collective right, not an individual right. Look it up.

        Jews who live in other countries are regarded as part of the Jewish community and that community therefore has the right of self-determination. Fail!

        Those were American Jews seeking to change America, the society they lived in.

        Irrelevant. They fought to oppose laws and social conditions that the considered to be a violation of human rights.

        They don’t tell Greece it can’t be Greek, or Japan that it can’t be Japanese, or any of the 23 Arab countries that they can’t be Arab.

        And no one is telling Israel is can’t be Israeli.

        In many ways the US already is a Christian state.

        In no sense of the word is the US a Christian state, hence the separation of church and state. Prayer is banned in public schools, and is the teaching of all religion.

        So no, there are no double standards.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 11:46 am

        Jews enjoy the right of self determination in pretty much every country they live in, so non sequitir.

        The right of self-determination is a collective right, not an individual right. Look it up.

        The only tangible manifestation of the right of self-determination is the exercise of territorial jurisdiction. So, “the Jews” can only exercise jurisdiction in the states or territories that they actually inhabit. The UN abolished and prohibited the practice of apartheid and colonialism in the 1960s, i.e. see the Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples, Adopted by General Assembly resolution 1514 (XV) of 14 December 1960. http://www.un.org/en/decolonization/declaration.shtml and the Convention on the Elimination of All Racial Discrimination, adopted by the General Assembly on 21 December 1965 by resolution 2106 (XX). http://legal.un.org/avl/ha/cerd/cerd.html

        FYI the General Assembly also declared the responsibility of UN member states, including Israel, to apply the declaration and to comply with the
        principles of the Charter of the United Nations and the resolutions of the
        United Nations regarding the exercise of the right to self-determination by
        peoples under colonial and foreign domination, including the Palestinian people. See for example: General Assembly resolution 40/25, 29 November 1985. http://www.un.org/documents/ga/res/40/a40r025.htm

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 30, 2014, 11:58 am

        Hello Hostage,

        The only tangible manifestation of the right of self-determination is the exercise of territorial jurisdiction. So, “the Jews” can only exercise jurisdiction in the states or territories that they actually inhabit.

        And so the Jews exercise jurisdiction in Israel. But oh wait, you and yours are trying to change that aren’t you?

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 30, 2014, 9:14 pm

        And so the Jews exercise jurisdiction in Israel. But oh wait, you and yours are trying to change that aren’t you?

        No, because the West Bank and East Jerusalem is not Israel.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 6:44 pm

        And so the Jews exercise jurisdiction in Israel. But oh wait, you and yours are trying to change that aren’t you?

        Yes, in accordance with the terms and conditions of the minority protection plan contained in resolution 181(II) that the Jews of Palestine supposedly “accepted” in line with customary international law. Carol Fink explained that in 1878 the Concert of Europe dictated the conditions on internal governance of four new states. She says that is when the concept of granting title to a territory on the basis of minority rights treaties started, with the cases of Serbia, Montenegro, and Romania. See Defending the Rights of Others, page 37 link to books.google.com In light of serious human rights abuses, it’s logical to demand enforcement of minority rights agreements, not their systematic violation.

        During the 48th session of the Ad Hoc Political Committee hearings on Israel’s UN membership application, the representative of Cuba asked if Israel had supplied the required minority rights declaration? Mr Abba Eban said he could answer in the affirmative and cited the Declaration of Independence (a signed document) and a cable from Foreign Minister Shertok to the Secretary General of the UN announcing the Declaration. He asked for some time to consult with his government before replying in full. See pages 2-3 of the .pdf http://www.un.org/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=A/AC.24/SR.48

        During the 51st session Mr Eban acknowledged that the resolution required Israel to make a declaration. He said that the rights stipulated in UN resolution 181(II) had been constitutionally embodied as the fundamental law of the state of Israel as required by the resolution when the Declaration of Independence had been promulgated as law in the official state gazette. See his full remarks starting on page 6 of the verbatim UN record, http://www.un.org/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=A/AC.24/SR.51

      • talknic
        talknic
        May 31, 2014, 1:25 am

        Poor Zach S … what a job to have. Making a complete idiot of oneself!

        But that’s the way with cheats and thieves. The first lie must be maintained with more lies until it’s all lies, excuses, obfuscation, mis-quotes, diversion and complete bullsh*t in every pathetic straw littered conversation.

        Fortunately now via the internet they can be exposed as quickly as they appear, a fact the stupid colonizing bastards seem to have failed to grasp.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 10:30 am

        The right of self-determination is a collective right, not an individual right. Look it up.

        Correct. That’s why you can’t draw a country’s borders around territory inhabited by members of various “national” or “ethnic” groups and deny them full equality under the law or limit their participation in the political, economic, social, and cultural life of the country, like Israel does, on the bases of race, color, descent, or national or ethnic origin. That’s the definition of racial discrimination, See article 1 of the ICERD. http://www.ohchr.org/EN/ProfessionalInterest/Pages/CERD.aspx

        Any such practice violates Article 1 UN treaty obligations. Read the Namibia and Wall case decisions. Every UN member states has an obligation to promote “the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples”, and “encouraging respect for human rights and for fundamental freedoms for all without distinction as to race, sex, language, or religion”. http://www.un.org/en/documents/charter/chapter1.shtml

        “Jews” can’t draw borders around territory inhabited by “Arabs” and declare it a “Jewish state” which doesn’t grant full equality to all of its citizens and which declares that only Jews have the right to exercise self-determination. That’s apartheid.

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 30, 2014, 10:41 am

        Hello Shingo:

        In no sense of the word is the US a Christian state, hence the separation of church and state. Prayer is banned in public schools, and is the teaching of all religion. So no, there are no double standards.

        The United States has Christmas, a Christian holiday, as a federal holiday. It has no Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, or pagan holidays as federal holidays. Therefore, under Max’s criteria, the USA is “a state that privileges one ethnic and religious group, and by its very nature, must discriminate against all others.”

        Do you agree with Max that the USA is not a democracy? Why or why not?

        Hostage:

        I’m glad you agree that Jews have the right of self-determination. Please talk to Max about it because he doesn’t feel the same way.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        May 30, 2014, 8:39 pm

        The United States has Christmas, a Christian holiday, as a federal holiday.

        So what? They have Christmas in Japan too, but you can’t suggest Japan is a Christian state .

        Do you agree with Max that the USA is not a democracy?

        I would agree. It’s become an oligarchy.

        I’m glad you agree that Jews have the right of self-determination. Please talk to Max about it because he doesn’t feel the same way.

        Please quote Max stating that Jews do not have the right of self-determination or withdraw that statement.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 12:46 pm

        I’m glad you agree that Jews have the right of self-determination. Please talk to Max about it because he doesn’t feel the same way.

        They say that ignorance is bliss, so of course you would have a natural inclination to experience gladness. I’m pretty certain that Max and I don’t believe that there is any common territorial entity shared by “the Jews” wherein they can exercise jurisdiction or self-determination, free from the legal constraints imposed by the corollary obligation to respect “equality of peoples”. You don’t know what you are talking about if you think I’m in agreement with you.

      • LeaNder
        LeaNder
        May 31, 2014, 6:30 am

        The United States has Christmas, a Christian holiday, as a federal holiday. It has no Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, or pagan holidays as federal holidays.

        How many Holidays on this list or for that matter this or this would you want to include? Just one? Since I can see only one officially for Christianity.

        Or would it suffice if the US abandoned Christmas and Christmas trees? Since strictly if every religion gets just one religious holiday and it is then–according to the respective population’s religions–also turned into on the into a holiday on the State level, it may be a complicated democratic process. Over here we have strong faction of seculars for instance. But usually they don’t complain about religious holidays. What I am trying to get at, I have no doubt that employers would protest if public holidays are expanded too much. ;) Religions in the United States In other words, you then have also to suggest which secular holidays you think could be dropped and not all people may share your opinion.

        Not over here in my circles, but on the US web I encountered complaints about the Christmas trees everywhere. Admittedly I was puzzled since strictly Christmas trees are no religious symbol at all. Now since the complaint was not so much about the commercial use but the trees in public places, I wondered if I should start an initiative to include Chanukah/Hanukkah symbolism. The menorah? The problem is, compared to the fir tree that is clearly religious symbolism. No? Apparently that has been challenged.

        Can you explain the history of the nine branch version?

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        May 29, 2014, 7:26 pm

        1. Jews are not a nation.
        2. People in democratic nations, such as New Zealand and Sweden, exercise their right of self determination without much criticism. It is, at best, debatable how much people in non-democratic countries exercise the right.

        Perhaps you should start here, and learn instead of talking nonsense.
        http://mondoweiss.net/2014/05/determination-haunts-policy.html#comment-666133

      • hophmi
        hophmi
        May 30, 2014, 12:53 pm

        “1. Jews are not a nation.”

        What you think Jews are hardly matter. Most Jews regard themselves as members of a nation, whether you believe it or not.

        “2. People in democratic nations, such as New Zealand and Sweden, exercise their right of self determination without much criticism.”

        Well, that’s interesting, since New Zealand is a settler-colonial state largely settled by Christian missionaries. The double standard rears its ugly head again. Sweden is a country with rising anti-immigrant sentiment and persecution of Jews so bad that Jews have more or less been ethnically cleansed from Malmo.

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        May 30, 2014, 7:23 pm

        “Most Jews regard themselves as of a nation, whether you believe it or not.”

        We have demonstrated clearly that Jews are not a nation in any ordinary sense. So I see two main possibilities.
        1. They are mistaken, just as they would be if they regarded themselves as flock of penguins.
        2. By “nation”, they mean something different from the usual sense. If so, it makes no difference to anything, since all our ideas about the rights and conduct of nations are based on the ordinary senses.

        New Zealanders and Swedes do not formally claim self-determination for ethnic groups.

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        May 30, 2014, 9:37 pm

        On the other hand, if we accept your comments as criticisms of the way New Zealanders and Swedes exercise their right of self-determination, then Zach is certainly wrong when he says that other nations exercise rsd without criticism.

      • MRW
        MRW
        May 31, 2014, 8:57 am

        Sweden is a country with rising anti-immigrant sentiment and persecution of Jews so bad that Jews have more or less been ethnically cleansed from Malmo.

        Oh puh-leeze. Jews have not been ethically cleansed from Malmö.

      • talknic
        talknic
        May 30, 2014, 12:48 am

        @ Zach S “I would ask you what is “justice” about seeking to deny Jews their right of self determination”

        Done already. Determined by a bunch of Zionist Jews declaring the State of Israel, thereby blowing the opportunity that existed for Israeli Jews to live anywhere in the Jewish People’s historic homeland unless they’d like to become citizens of Palestine, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt

        “the same right that every other nation (including Palestinians Arabs) take for granted and exercise with no criticism?”

        No criticism? Weird. You criticize them, Netanyahu and co criticize them constantly. Furthermore under occupation they DO NOT exercise self determination

        “Jews don’t tell non-Jews how to run their societies and live their lives.”

        Occupation of Palestinian territories ring a bell? Does the legally baseless demand to recognize Israel as the Jewish state ring a bell? Does the legally baseless demand to dis-arm ring a bell? Does the legally baseless demand to relinquish their territory ring a bell? Does the legally baseless demand to forgo RoR ring a bell, even for people who had a right to Israeli citizenship but who were dispossessed by Jewish forces. What kind of country dispossesses its own citizens?

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 30, 2014, 8:42 am

        Hello talknic, you’re going to have to expand upon your first point. How can “Israeli Jews” have missed an opportunity by the creation of Israel?

        No criticism? Weird. You criticize them

        Please demonstrate that there is a significant movement against Palestinian nationalism on the grounds that it is “supremacist” and “racist.”

        Occupation of Palestinian territories ring a bell? Does the legally baseless demand to recognize Israel as the Jewish state ring a bell?

        Neither of those things is telling non-Jews how to live their lives. Israel is not telling Palestine that it can’t be a racist Arab-supremacist ethnocratic theocracy, as they desire it be.

      • talknic
        talknic
        May 30, 2014, 4:12 pm

        @ Zach S “you’re going to have to expand upon your first point. How can “Israeli Jews” have missed an opportunity by the creation of Israel?”

        Israeli Jews can not settle anywhere in the Jewish People’s historic homeland because the State of Israel doesn’t have the same territorial footprint as the Jewish People’s historic homeland.

        Israel was “proclaimed as an independent republic within frontiers approved by the General Assembly of the United Nations in its Resolution of November 29, 1947” http://www.trumanlibrary.org/whistlestop/study_collections/israel/large/documents/newPDF/49.pdf No further territory has ever been legally acquired by Israel.

        “Please demonstrate that there is a significant movement against Palestinian nationalism on the grounds that it is “supremacist” and “racist.”

        Who are you quoting Pajero? I’ve never used the words in respect to the I/P issue.

        // “Occupation of Palestinian territories ring a bell? Does the legally baseless demand to recognize Israel as the Jewish state ring a bell?//

        Neither of those things is telling non-Jews how to live their lives. ”

        So why does Israel make those demands?

        “Israel is not telling Palestine that it can’t be a racist Arab-supremacist ethnocratic theocracy, as they desire it be”

        Read the draft constitution and stop posting ziocrap you stupid person http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Constitution_of_Palestine_%282003%29

      • Zach S
        Zach S
        May 30, 2014, 4:43 pm

        Hello talknic,

        Israeli Jews can not settle anywhere in the Jewish People’s historic homeland because the State of Israel doesn’t have the same territorial footprint as the Jewish People’s historic homeland.

        And why can’t Jews live as minorities in Arab countries, the same way Arabs live as a minority in Israel? Oh right…racism.

        Who are you quoting Pajero? I’ve never used the words in respect to the I/P issue.

        I’m not sure who Pajero is, but Blumenthal and his fellow travelers have used those words to describe Israel. Are you saying they are wrong?

        So why does Israel make those demands?

        I would be happy to discuss that with you in a thread about that subject.

        Read the draft constitution…

        I have:

        Article 1:
        “Palestine is part of the large Arab World, and the Palestinian people are part of the Arab Nation. Arab Unity is an objective which the Palestinian People shall work to achieve.”

        (That’s the etho-apartheid.)

        Article 4:
        “Islam is the official religion in Palestine. Respect and sanctity of all other heavenly religions shall be maintained.
        The principles of Islamic Shari’a shall be the main source of legislation.”

        (That’s the theocracy)

        You were saying?

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 30, 2014, 8:09 pm

        And why can’t Jews live as minorities in Arab countries, the same way Arabs live as a minority in Israel? Oh right…racism.

        There are Jewish communities in Tunisia, Lebanon, and elsewhere that live like minority communities in Israel.

        Article 1:
        “Palestine is part of the large Arab World, and the Palestinian people are part of the Arab Nation. Arab Unity is an objective which the Palestinian People shall work to achieve.”

        (That’s the etho-apartheid.)

        That includes Arab Christians and Jews too.

      • talknic
        talknic
        May 30, 2014, 8:31 pm

        @ Zach S “And why can’t Jews live as minorities in Arab countries”

        They do you stupid person

        ” the same way Arabs live as a minority in Israel?”

        They’re Israeli citizens in Israel

        ” Oh right…racism”

        No citizenship you incredibly stupid person

        “I’m not sure who Pajero is, but Blumenthal and his fellow travelers have used those words to describe Israel. Are you saying they are wrong?”

        I said what I said Pajero. It’s still there.

        “I would be happy to discuss that with you in a thread about that subject”

        Your posts show you’re incapable of honest discussion

        //Article 1:
        “Palestine is part of the large Arab World, and the Palestinian people are part of the Arab Nation. Arab Unity is an objective which the Palestinian People shall work to achieve.”//

        “(That’s the etho-apartheid.)”

        There are Arab Christians, Arab atheists, Arab Muslims and Arab Jews in the world.

        //Article 4:
        “Islam is the official religion in Palestine. Respect and sanctity of all other heavenly religions shall be maintained.
        The principles of Islamic Shari’a shall be the main source of legislation.”//

        “(That’s the theocracy)”

        For all heavenly religions

        Keep digging buddy. It’s fun to watch Ziocaine addicts wade around in ziopoop

      • pjdude
        pjdude
        May 30, 2014, 1:28 am

        because contrary to zionist lies there isn’t a jewish right to self determination. religions even oppressed ones have never had that right. its why the farce of manufacturing of jewish nationhood happened. self determination resides either with the legal residents of a territory. or an nation that’s been opressed and prevented from excersizing the right. say like if a bunch of people decided to they wanted their territory and have been waging a 60+ year war of conquest against them.

      • American
        American
        May 30, 2014, 12:10 pm

        Zach S says:

        I would ask you what is “justice” about seeking to deny Jews their right of “self determination.”>>>>>>

        First of all, the definition of the ‘self determination” THEORY:

        “Self-Determination Theory is about how people decide internally as well as externally to the extent they sees forces outside the self as initiating, pressuring, or coercing one’s action.””

        And it is total bullshit as a ‘theory’…because everyone everywhere, in any nation, will be ‘pressured’ to follow its laws and conform to accepted norms and rules of that nation as long as they are equitable and just.

        Your ‘Jewish’ self determination appears to be that Jews dont have to follow or conform to generally established or accepted rules and laws regardless of what country they live in or any ‘universal’ standards that govern ALL people’s rights.

        Furthermore, the ‘political’ definition of the right of Self Determination is:

        “The right of nations to self-determination (from German: Selbstbestimmungsrecht der Völker), or in short form, the right to self-determination is the cardinal principle in modern international law (jus cogens), binding, as such, on the United Nations as authoritative interpretation of the Charter’s norms.[1][2] It states that nations based on respect for the principle of equal rights and fair equality of opportunity have the right to freely choose their sovereignty and international political status with no external compulsion or interference”

        Israel doesnt meet the requirment of…..” nations based on respect for the principle of equal rights and fair equality of opportunity”.

        You are in fact ‘violators of international law, universal human rights and are a ‘outlaw rouge state’…therefore the world DOES have the right and OBLIGATION to ‘interfer’ with your sovereignty and international political status and compell you to change…..if you want to remain a state.

        Just as the world did with Germany.

        Your Jewish ‘self determination’ right , which never even legally existed or applied to ‘religious ‘tribe scattered thruout the world, has been foreifted because of what your self determination has turned out to be.

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        May 31, 2014, 12:26 am

        Here, of course, we (Hostage, Shingo, American, pjdude, etc.) are just posting for the benefit of casual readers.

        The Hasabaristas will ignore what we say. They just repeat slogans about “self determination” for Jews, Jews as a “people”, Jews as a “nation”, four legs good, two legs bad, and so on.

        I have repeatedly asked them to tell us what they mean by “people” and “nation”, but they never answer. These are just meaningless buzzwords they toss out.

        I have repeatedly asked them to provide moral arguments for their positions, but they never do.

        They simply pretend that their claims make sense. This pretence is dishonest. They are liars, and they know it.

  10. Kathleen
    Kathleen
    May 30, 2014, 12:08 am

    Will watch when I have more time. Tyler you are so right Mira or anyone else who is brave enough to debate Max is to be commended. His grasp of the facts on the ground through his reading, direct research, interviews etc are beyond measure. When you have facts, truth, a sharp intellect, humor, charm all mixed into one as Max does…tough to go up against. But it is Max’s willingness to stick his neck out and go to the mat on this issue of human rights and justice that is to be honored and can not be beat.
    .

  11. Pixel
    Pixel
    May 30, 2014, 1:10 am

    For those wishing to leave a personal tip o’ the hat: [email protected]

  12. Philip Munger
    Philip Munger
    May 30, 2014, 2:16 am

    Thanks, Pixel. I just sent her a short note wishing her well, and hoping she suffers no further adverse consequences for having taken on the task of debating Max.

    I watched the debate this morning. They both did well. Max was passionate, yet articulate. She was studied, but more than a bit of a utopian in her belief that things might get better there before they get worse.

  13. piotr
    piotr
    May 30, 2014, 7:40 am

    Perhaps the issue would be more clear if the question was “Can Israel be democratic?”

    Israel has a very unique approach to property rights, and while I am not a libertarian, this is a pretty basic type of rights, especially if it involves throwing people out of their dwellings or allowing/not allowing to use the land to make the living. I understand that it is not a totally innovative approach, for example it has parallels with the concept of tribal lands of Amerindians in USA. This land issue is quite pervasive utterly undemocratic, in the sense of treating different folks equally. Also, to make a better parallel with Amerindians, imagine a creation of Hopi republic that would through out most of Navaho from the lands their currently use on the account that the Navaho are new comers. (It actually happened to a limited degree, but mercifully, only a small number of Navaho were affected.)

    When a new town or city is created in other country it is typically a private or a state venture that is not dedicated to a specific ethnic or religious group. Not in Israel. Incidentally, this is the chief reason I think it is not realistic to create “a single democratic state between the sea and the river”, unless you explain how the treatment of “Jewish tribal property” will change. As it is, most of the matters pertaining to the use of land are decided by the tribal institutions that are ruled in quite convoluted way.

    Marriages and immigration are decided by the theocratic Jewish authorities which again are elected in a quite convoluted way.

    And then there is Jewish military with its own set of inclusions, exclusions, land control and privileges (for the current and past members). One may point out that the military has non-Jewish members, but it is nevertheless sufficiently Jewish to have special compartments in submarines for the storage of Torah scrolls. It is manifestly not ethnic/religion neutral institution.

    It would take fundamental changes in Israel to make it a “mildly ethnocratic state” resembling mildly ethnocratic states of Europe. And I do not see such changes on the horizon.

  14. Ron Edwards
    Ron Edwards
    May 30, 2014, 9:43 am

    The more of these debates, the better. Here’s why, as I see it.

    In the tweet cited in the previous Mondoweiss article, Sucharov writes: “And, as a Jew who was raised with Zionist narratives and feels a deep emotional connection to Israel, I admit a certain subjective attachment to the idea of maintaining a Jewish and democratic state.”

    And … that’s all she’s got. That’s all any liberal Zionist has: “a certain subjective attachment,” which is to say, an unexamined personal mythology. The debate reveals that one side is composed of observations and events, and the other – when prevented from obfuscating those observations and events – is composed of nothing but a self-reinforced self-image.

    Therefore debating a liberal Zionist is the best possible public strategy: unlike the “fundamentalist” Zionist, he or she is not intellectually dishonest enough to produce a Gish Gallop, and therefore must fall back, ultimately, on his or her attachment to the personal mythology. The dishonesty is wholly emotional.

    Sucharov seems to me to be quite close to examining the mythology, since she herself brought her position to this point in her tweet even before the debate began. Let’s hope her debate experience with Max closed the final leg of the circuit. But regardless, the real gain is that if the debater is not willing to examine it, then the audience certainly will. This is what the audience sees and hears:

    Side 1: A nation is occupying, oppressing, discriminating against, and strategically murdering over half the people directly subject to its policies. This situation persists solely because the U.S. aids and abets it.

    Side 2: That’s all true, but I’d rather believe XYZ about myself than respond appropriately.

    Once Side 2 is revealed as simply not wishing to engage fully with the issue, the fact is revealed that there is no actual debate to be had. There aren’t two “sides.” During the debate, when the personal mythology is revealed, then the prevailing conditions and the political response are no matter for debate at all.

  15. John Salisbury
    John Salisbury
    May 30, 2014, 10:43 am

    Down here in Melbourne we had Ari Shavit last week.Next week Peter Beinart.
    Would love to have magnificent Max down here to present his side of the story.

  16. Citizen
    Citizen
    May 30, 2014, 3:55 pm

    Check out this comparison of the very wide discrepancy on US domestic issues, as between the 1% & the 99%: http://www.dailykos.com/story/2014/05/29/1302820/-Someone-finally-polled-the-1-And-it-s-not-pretty?detail=email#

    I’d like to see a similar comparison on US foreign policy in the Middle East. Also, generally regarding US foreign policy.

    Notice how wide the spread is on what amounts to a verdict as between the 1% & 99% on FTAs.

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