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Putting Israel’s cynical humanitarian work in Nepal in the proper context

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Israel’s prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, was quick to congratulate Israeli soldiers on their relief efforts in Nepal, where an earthquake late last month claimed many thousands of lives.

“These are the true faces of Israel,” he said of a 260-strong team that arrived to pull survivors from the rubble, treat the injured, help deliver babies, and entertain traumatised children. Israel’s field hospital in Kathmandu was the biggest and best-equipped after India’s, Nepal’s large neighbour.

Similar relief operations by Israel were prominent in Haiti after its 2010 earthquake, in Japan a year later after a quake there, and in 2013 when a typhoon wrecked the Philippines.

Israel’s humanitarian concern for the victims of disasters, however, looks more cynical when set alongside its record once the TV cameras depart. Israel’s international aid budget is paltry compared to that of other developed nations.

There has to be at least a suspicion that Israel is exploiting natural catastrophes to win itself new international friends and try to refute global opinion surveys that regularly identify Israel as a major threat to world peace.

The message is aimed at a domestic audience too. As commentator Gideon Levy observed, Israelis are being reassured that, despite the evidence, they really do have the “most moral army in the world”.

The criticism that Israel is demonstrating selective compassion –bringing salvation to far-off Nepal while smashing homes and cutting down lives close by in Gaza – is blithely dismissed by most Israelis. “Nepal is not firing rockets on our cities; it has not elected terrorists to run its government,” so the narrative goes. But the hollowness of these self-serving arguments has been illustrated by events of the past few days.

Netanyahu’s new rightwing government – characterised by the Haaretz daily as Israel’s most “dangerous” yet – is the first since the Oslo accords were signed more than 20 years ago that has dropped the pretence of wanting to resolve Israel’s conflict with the Palestinians. During the election campaign, Netanyahu vowed there would be no Palestinian state on his watch.

That is the main context for assessing the entirely manmade disaster Israel created in Gaza last summer, when it killed more than 2,100 Palestinians, including some 500 children, and wrecked vast swaths of the built-up landscape.

If Israel claims it is distinguishing between the suffering of innocent Nepalese and armed Palestinians, it has to explain the testimonies of serving soldiers published last week. They say their orders in Gaza were to shoot indiscriminately on any Palestinian they met, whether armed or not.

A recent report by the Association of International Development Agencies found eight months after the Gaza operation that 12,000 homes still had to be rebuilt and 100,000 Palestinians – one in 18 – were homeless.

The chief reason ordinary Palestinians, unlike the Nepalese, cannot begin to rebuild their lives after their own catastrophe is because Israel maintains a savage siege – a form of collective punishment – on the coastal enclave.

While Nepal embraces anyone offering help, for nearly a decade Israel has threatened and attacked any humanitarian group trying to reach Gaza. In 2010 Israel killed nine activists on the high seas as they tried to bring medicine and food to the sick and destitute there.

The UN, meanwhile, is considering listing the Israeli army alongside Islamic State (ISIL) and Boko Haram as a serious violator of children’s rights for the attack on Gaza.

But Israel’s humanitarian double standards do not apply only to the tiny enclave.

In recent days, Israeli courts have approved the uprooting of whole Palestinian communities – from Sussiya in the West Bank to Umm al-Hiran in Israel – so that Jews can live in their place. It has also backed government plans to confiscate arbitrarily Palestinian properties in East Jerusalem.

Where is the humanitarian concern for these Palestinians, including those who have Israeli citizenship, as they are left displaced and homeless? They have never fired a rocket and most have never voted for Hamas.

The answer is provided by members of the new government. Rabbi Eli Ben-Dahan, the minister overseeing the occupation bureaucracy, has called Palestinians “beasts, they are not human”. The new justice minister, Ayelet Shaked, urged a genocide last year, demanding the slaughter of Palestinian “snakes”.

Another large group of non-Jews in Israel is faring barely better. In violation of international law, Israel is jailing and deporting African asylum seekers, often returning them to regions they fled in fear of their lives – over the protestations of UN officials.

Reuven Rivlin, Israel’s president, described the soldiers in Nepal as “ministering angels” representing “the universal values of our people and our country”.

Nothing could be further from the truth. Israel’s government and its army represent not universal values but a tribal allegiance to a state that always asks first: “What is good for a Jewish Israel?”

When most Israelis sanctify a Jewish fortress-state, the decision to send soldiers half way around the world to offer help in front of the TV cameras is an easy generosity. It is far harder to recognise the humanity of fellow human beings who share the same small patch of land Israel claims as its exclusive home.

The efforts of Israeli soldiers to save children in Nepal should be commended – but not if it gives them and their compatriots an excuse to turn a blind eye to Palestinian children suffering amid the rubble of Gaza.

A version of this article first appeared in the National, Abu Dhabi.

Jonathan Cook

Jonathan Cook won the Martha Gellhorn Special Prize for Journalism. His latest books are “Israel and the Clash of Civilisations: Iraq, Iran and the Plan to Remake the Middle East” (Pluto Press) and “Disappearing Palestine: Israel’s Experiments in Human Despair” (Zed Books). His new website is jonathan-cook.net.

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95 Responses

  1. Krauss on May 13, 2015, 11:33 am

    A lot of the aid has gone to bailing out surrogate mothers, something that is a lot less reported.

    These are poor and exploited Nepalese women who are sacrificed for the all-encompassing goal of more Jewish babies. So there’s J-positive blood babies to save and thus it’s not hard to see why this is rolling.

    And in any event, it’s been long-standing policy for Israel to bend-over backwards to send aid in high-profile cases, but Israel’s foreign assistance as percentage of GDP is not where it needs to be(1% is the aim for developed countries) – and that is much more telling of the state’s real priorities. Even austerity-hit Britain is meeting that goal.

    But of course such aid doesn’t garner headlines – it merely saves lives in much more systematic fashion – and as such, it’s a lot less useful.

    • on May 13, 2015, 2:15 pm

      Pathetic to watch these poor SOBs pat themselves so hard on the back when it is clear they have no concern for the victims of these natural disasters but only care about good pr.

      We probably all grew up knowing a kid or two who was just like this.

    • Mooser on May 13, 2015, 6:56 pm

      “So there’s J-positive blood babies to save and thus it’s not hard to see why this is rolling.”

      “J-positive blood”? Is there such a thing? This is very confusing. I knew extensive DNA testing could establish certain probabilities and inferences can be made on the basis of those and other evidence, but “J-positive”? Scary.

    • Landie_C on May 13, 2015, 10:22 pm

      What IS Israel’s foreign aid in real terms and as a % of GDP? Cook should have provided that information in his article.

    • JaapBo on May 14, 2015, 3:10 am

      Wikipedia says Israel gives 0.07% of GDP in development aid

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_governments_by_development_aid

  2. Qualtrough on May 13, 2015, 12:27 pm

    That poster is so parody-ready.

    Less than 1% of the world is Israeli but x% of UN resolutions are directed against Israel.

    Less than 1% of the world is Israeli, but they kill more civilians than XX countries combined!

    and so on.

  3. just on May 13, 2015, 12:48 pm

    I am so glad to see this article at MW. I read it yesterday @ The National, and was duly impressed.

    I also read this yesterday via Richard Silverstein @ Tikun Olam:

    “First explicit Israeli media admission that IDF treats wounded al Nusra fighters inside Israel. http://buff.ly/1cMa2zW

    https://twitter.com/richards1052/status/598031161621872640

    The article:

    “Israel’s commitment to human life knows no bounds. When soldiers guarding the northern border with Syria last week were asked to permit entry to a seriously wounded Syrian man, they did not hesitate, despite the fact that the patient was a member of the Al-Nusra Front, an offshoot of Al Qaeda.

    Israeli military doctors received the wounded man at the border, and after a security check to make sure he was not wired with explosives, transported the patient to Ziv Medical Center in the Galilee town of Tsefat (Safed).

    A day earlier, the Israeli army had been asked by contacts on the Syrian side to open the gates to a pregnant woman in need of a caesarean section. Israel agreed, and sent army doctors and paramedics to await the woman at the border. But the woman ended up giving birth to a healthy baby on her way to meet the Israelis.

    These are but a few of the more recent examples of Israel’s readiness to aid the the victims of Syria’s ongoing civil war, be they friend or foe.”…

    more hasbara @ http://www.israeltoday.co.il/NewsItem/tabid/178/nid/26576/Default.aspx?utm_content=buffer78791&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer

  4. a blah chick on May 13, 2015, 12:49 pm

    Do any of our Zionist regulars have an answer for why Israel has pledged to rebuild a Nepalese village why knocking down Palestinian ones? And don’t tell me this is about not aiding people who fire “missiles” because these Bedouin are Israeli citizens. Who do they think they are fooling?

    They can take their phoney “compassion” and shove it.

  5. ziusudra on May 13, 2015, 1:05 pm

    Greetings,
    To whom it may concern:
    Me sister & i were born unto ‘out to tea’ parents.
    The N.Y. Police confiscated us street running Kids with scabies, putting us into Kings County Hospital in B’klyn, where we were later given up to the Catholic Nuns & sent to St Joseph’s Home where the Nuns took care of us for 5 yrs!
    We hear so much of the crimes & atrocities of the members of the Catholic Church! Yes, but i had a Huckle Finn childhood in the Catholic home!
    There are many individuals in Israel that are helping Palestinians. These individual Palestinians are aware of the help that they received.
    We can’t equate Governmental atrocties, even though there are helpers of squatters doing their share of ditching it out, by denying that there are others, even programs of the State that genuinely help foreignors. The good & the bad are going on & those receiving help are thankful. I’ll ne’er enter a church again, due to the fairy tales of Catholicism, but when i see a Nun, i get the warmest feelings & memories of a magnificent childhood in a Catholic Boarding School in Peeksill, N.Y. given to me by the taxpayers of N.Y.
    Last but not least, it is through the help of those that helped us because they believed, they sacrificed their lives in service! Subjective reality has many hues & is not easy to comprehend.
    ziusudra

    • Froggy on May 14, 2015, 10:06 am

      My eldest cousin once described her childhood in Occupied France.

      She described those ‘nice older boys’ who used to give the village children sweets and sometimes little toys. Those ‘nice older boys’ she referred to were the German soldiers guarding the port, members of the same occupying army that sent her French Catholic father and his brothers, including my grandfather, to Dachau.

      No matter what image their propagandists try to project, people who commit atrocities at the order of their state are, along with their supporters, very easy to comprehend. If we don’t comprehend that, then ‘Never Again’ becomes just another slogan.

  6. eljay on May 13, 2015, 2:28 pm

    Israel’s prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, was quick to congratulate Israeli soldiers on their relief efforts in Nepal, where an earthquake late last month claimed many thousands of lives. “These are the true faces of Israel,” he said …

    They are the “true face” of an oppressive, colonialist, expansionist and supremacist “Jewish State” in the same way that his time spent volunteering in the community and coaching the local hockey team are the “true face” of the serial rapist who has women chained in his basement.

  7. amigo on May 13, 2015, 2:49 pm

    “Israeli military doctors received the wounded man at the border, and after a security check to make sure he was not wired with explosives, transported the patient to Ziv Medical Center in the Galilee town of Tsefat (Safed). ”

    Presumably they used a Palestinian child as a “Human shield ” as part of their security check.

    http://www.haaretz.com/news/two-idf-soldiers-charged-with-using-9-year-old-human-shield-in-gaza-war-1.264652

  8. Rusty Pipes on May 13, 2015, 5:49 pm

    Unlike coverage of Israel’s camera-ready disaster response team in other countries in recent years, the MSM actually has covered Israel’s priority for rescuing surrogate mothers and Israeli babies in Nepal. Consequently, rather than seeming totally generous, Israel’s medical response has appeared to involve some self-interest. While this is not necessarily a PR-fail, it is not the kind of PR-success that Israel could use at a time when it has just elected its most right-wing, most unabashedly racist, government in the country’s history. While the MSM has not made linkage, stories about the Nepalese surrogate moms not being welcome in Israel have aired in the same weeks as vague descriptions about the ideology of Netanyahu’s government partners.

  9. JWalters on May 13, 2015, 6:49 pm

    A good thing for those Nepalese their homes aren’t on land the Zionists covet. Then it would be slaughter instead of rescue.

  10. Froggy on May 13, 2015, 8:20 pm
    • bryan on May 14, 2015, 3:49 am
      • Froggy on May 14, 2015, 9:41 am

        Thank you, Bryan. Your link does indeed work.

        That is the face of Israel that the people of France saw last summer. Do the Israelis and their Zionista supporters abroad think that people forget these things?

        Ordinary people can’t ‘unforget’ what they saw and read. Do hasbarists think that a propaganda poster will neutralise the horror etched in people’s minds?

      • bryan on May 15, 2015, 9:20 am

        Indeed, but I fear that far from deep etching on people’s minds we are dealing with a palimpsest, where one image rapidly replaces another making the original image obsolete, and where many people lack context and historical and moral background, so that they exhibit emotional discomfort and rapidly turn aside to focus on more important things like celebrity break-ups, royal babies and football matches.

  11. JLewisDickerson on May 13, 2015, 9:21 pm

    RE: “Israel’s prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, was quick to congratulate Israeli soldiers on their relief efforts in Nepal… Similar relief operations by Israel were prominent in Haiti after its 2010 earthquake… Israel’s humanitarian concern for the victims of disasters, however, looks more cynical when set alongside its record once the TV cameras depart.” ~ Johnathan Cook

    SEE: “The Zionization of Disaster Relief”, by Richard Silverstein, Tikun Olam, 01/19/10

    [EXCERPTS] [A]t Israel’s Haiti field hospital, they delivered what the Israeli PR flacks called “the first since the earthquake.” The medical staff urged the woman to name her baby “Israel” (who, if he reaches adulthood, would never be welcome in Israel) and she was only to eager to oblige. Another Israeli PR coup! . . .
    . . . Didn’t know there was anything particularly Zionist about providing disaster relief? You learn something new every day. This is a story of exploiting the suffering of poor, defenseless Haitians on behalf of Israeli triumphalism.
    Sol Salbe translated an eye-opening column from Yediot by an Israeli doctor who was an integral member of all Israeli international disaster response teams until recently. Then he made the mistake of writing a mildly critical statement about Israeli disaster relief efforts. As a result, he was relieved of his obligation for further IDF service and further participation in the disaster relief program. The op ed is so revealing (and not yet available online in English) I’m going to quote large sections . . .

    ● Public Relations instead of saving lives

    Sending portable toilets to Haiti would have been a better option, but this does not provide good photo opportunities. Israeli missions to disaster areas in the past have shown that such activity was in vain.

    • Yoel Donchin

    I received my final exemption from the army after I published an article which said that the State of Israel acts like the proverbial Boy Scout, who insists on doing a good deed daily and helping an old lady cross the road even against her will. . .
    . . . Generally speaking, we start preparing for such a mission within hours of the announcement of a natural disaster. Most often the Israeli mission team is the first one to land in the area. Like those who climb Mount Everest, it plants its flag on the highest peak available, announcing to all and sundry that the site has been conquered. And in order to ensure that the public is aware of this sporting achievement, the mission is accompanied by media representatives, photographers, an IDF spokesman’s office squad and others . . .

    ENTIRE POST – http://www.richardsilverstein.com/tikun_olam/2010/01/19/the-zionization-of-disaster-relief/

    P.S. ALSO SEE – “Video: ‘Israel’ Born in Haiti after IDF Delivers Healthy Baby”, Arutz Sheva TV, 01/17/10
    The IDF Field Hospital in Haiti has delivered its first baby, and the mother was so happy that she called him “Israel.”…
    LINK – http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/135568

    • JLewisDickerson on May 13, 2015, 9:56 pm

      P.P.S. ALSO SEE: “The painful truth: Haiti’s disaster is good for the Jews”, By Paul Woodward, War in Context, January 23, 2010

      [EXCERPTS] If I came up with a headline claiming the devastation in Haiti is “good for the Jews”, I could reasonably be accused of being anti-Semitic. But it’s not my headline. It comes from this report on a site run by Israel’s popular Hebrew daily, Maariv.

      Every disaster needs a hero, the report says, and the heroes in Haiti are the Israelis.

      The message that Israel is saving Haiti was likewise captured in an editorial cartoon in Yediot Aharonot which shows American soldiers digging for earthquake survivors. A voice from beneath the rubble calls out, “Would you mind checking to see if the Israelis are available?” . . .

      . . . In this mirror, Israel now sees an image of itself as a big-hearted nation admired around the world for its humanitarian efforts in Haiti. But the self-satisfaction will be short-lived. Before long this glimmer of goodwill will once again be overshadowed by the enduring reality that in the minds of most Israelis the suffering of others seems just as likely to provoke callous indifference as it does an open heart.

      The big Israeli heart shrivels at the sight of a Palestinian.

      As Larry Derfner wrote in the Jerusalem Post:

      … the IDF field hospital in Haiti is a reflection of something very deep in the national character.

      But so is everything that’s summed up in the name “Gaza.” It’s the Haiti side of Israel that makes the Gaza side so inexpressibly tragic. And more and more, the Haiti part of the national character has been dwarfed by the Gaza part.

      Gaza, too, is a matter of life and death – not just for the people who were trapped in the rubble there not long ago, but for Israel. When will this big-hearted nation stop being heartless to the people in Gaza? . . .

      ENTIRE COMMENTARY – http://warincontext.org/2010/01/23/the-painful-truth-haitis-disaster-is-good-for-the-jews/

  12. Kay24 on May 13, 2015, 9:39 pm

    Thankfully it seems the Vatican does not seem to be impressed with Israel.

    “VATICAN CITY (AP) — The Vatican officially recognized the state of Palestine in a new treaty finalized Wednesday, immediately sparking Israeli ire and accusations that the move hurt peace prospects.

    The treaty, which concerns the activities of the Catholic Church in Palestinian territory, makes clear that the Holy See has switched its diplomatic recognition from the Palestine Liberation Organization to the state of Palestine.

    The Vatican had welcomed the decision by the U.N. General Assembly in 2012 to recognize a Palestinian state. But the treaty is the first legal document negotiated between the Holy See and the Palestinian state and constitutes official diplomatic recognition.”

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/05/13/vatican-recognizes-state-of-palestine_n_7274096.html?ir=WorldPost

    Perhaps the result of the Pope’s visit to the region. He must have seen for himself the devastation caused by Israel. Good move, Vatican.

  13. Marnie on May 14, 2015, 12:18 am

    Israel ranks low in international giving

    A philanthropy expert says citizens could actually legitimize the state of Israel as a part of the world family by giving more to support other people.

    June 08, 2013|By Edmund Sanders, Los Angeles Times

    JERUSALEM — Israeli doctors were among the first to set up emergency hospitals in Haiti after its devastating 2010 earthquake. Israel also swiftly dispatched water-purification experts to Japan following the 2011 tsunami and trauma experts to Boston after the recent marathon bombings.

    Yet despite such high-profile disaster assistance, Israel ranks near the bottom among leading free-market economies in providing foreign aid to developing nations.

    Along with Mexico and Chile, Israel gives the least as a percentage of gross national income among members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Israel gives one-tenth of the U.N.’s target rate, lagging behind Turkey, Poland, Slovakia and even Greece during its debt crisis, according to OECD data.

    On an individual basis, Israelis are also less likely to send donations abroad compared with citizens of most European countries and the U.S., according to a study by Hebrew University’s Center for the Study of Philanthropy in Israel. Over the last decade, 0.1% of individual charitable funds raised in Israel went to international relief, compared with 48% in Belgium, 13% in Italy and 5% in the U.S.

    In an interview Wednesday in Jerusalem, Hillel Schmid, head of the center, told The Times that Israelis can and should give more if they want to be accepted as global citizens.

    Q: Why don’t Israelis give more internationally?

    A: Israelis in general are not so generous in giving, internationally and even inside Israel. People are suspicious about giving money. There’s an anti-philanthropist feeling. Even though Israel was built by philanthropists, today surveys show that Israelis think philanthropies are self-interested, political and wasteful.

    And though Israelis see themselves as part of the larger world, they see themselves as beneficiaries, not contributors. Israelis are a little bit selfish in this way. We’ve been educated through the years to expect that money will be imported from the Jewry in the rest of the world, like New York and Los Angeles.

    Q: Is it surprising that Israelis don’t give more considering the emphasis on charity in Judaism and Israel’s roots as a socialist state?

    A: There’s a proverb, “The poor come first.” It means you should take care of your own people first before giving money to others and running overseas. It would be strange for an Israeli to send money to Africa when they feel there are still so many projects here.

    Q: So do Israelis give a lot of money domestically?

    A: No. Individual philanthropy inside Israel — for things like social programs, education, art, culture — is less than 0.7% of the GDP. In the U.S., it’s about 2.5%. Though Israel is not socialist anymore, people still think it’s the role of the government to provide these things, not philanthropy. They feel, “We pay taxes. We serve in the army. Why should we give more?”

    Total philanthropy in Israel is $5.5 billion a year, but much of that money originates from (foreign sources). We are the biggest importer of philanthropy money in the world. Ten years ago, 72% of Israel’s philanthropy came from overseas. Today it’s about 62%.

    Q: Is the problem that Israelis simply can’t afford it?

    A: No. For several years the government has been declaring almost every day how strong the economy is. But the wealth of Israel is not reflected in the giving. They can afford to give much more. There was a recent report that there are 500 multimillionaires in Israel and several billionaires. Look at people like [American billionaires Bill] Gates and [Warren] Buffett and others who are giving their assets to generous foundations. You don’t find an Israeli who is giving away his capital like that to help a hospital in South Africa.

    Q: Yet internationally, the Israeli government was more much aggressive about giving in past decades. When it was still a developing nation itself in the 1950s and 1960s, Israel’s track record for providing technical assistance and sending doctors or agriculture experts to Africa rivaled larger developed nations. What changed?

    A: First, we don’t have political relations anymore with most of the countries in Africa.

    Q: True. And it was their decision to take part in the Arab boycott, so you can’t blame Israel for that.

    A: Right. But back then, aid was seen as a government interest. Not anymore. The government today has no policy about philanthropy. But I think it should because Israel is not in good shape in terms of legitimacy, the Palestinian territories and all this stuff. You’ve seen the polls that rank Israel fourth as the most-hated country after Iran, Pakistan and North Korea. Philanthropy abroad is not only for ideological and humanitarian reasons, but there is some self-interest as well.

    Q: Does that really work? Israel showered Africa with assistance in the hopes that it could forge diplomatic relationships, yet those countries still boycotted Israel.

    A: I think it does. We are isolated in the world. We can actually legitimize the state of Israel as a part of the world family by giving more to support other people. But we need to develop a culture of giving. Education should start in elementary school. The Israeli rate for volunteerism is not very high, except in wars and disasters. And the government needs to do more to encourage philanthropy, such as providing better tax benefits.

    Q: Is there any sense of national shame that Israel ranks so low in this area?

    A: We don’t want to be last in terms of poverty or education, or to rank lower than Turkey or Greece in those areas. But I don’t think if you ask someone on the street, that they would say it bothers them that we don’t give more.

    [email protected]

    “And though Israelis see themselves as part of the larger world, they see themselves as beneficiaries, not contributors. Israelis are a little bit selfish in this way. We’ve been educated through the years to expect that money will be imported from the Jewry in the rest of the world, like New York and Los Angeles.” I guess this stems from the eternal victimhood status that has been the basis for most everything done in Israel and the way the rest of the world, even “New York and Los Angeles” view the state of Israel.

    “We don’t want to be last in terms of poverty or education, or to rank lower than Turkey or Greece in those areas. But I don’t think if you ask someone on the street, that they would say it bothers them that we don’t give more.” We’ll only help the goyim in full view of many camera crews with accompanying photo ops and constant exposure in the press.

    Matthew 6:1-4 “Beware of practicing your righteousness before other people in order to be seen by them, for then you will have no reward from your Father who is in heaven. “Thus, when you give to the needy, sound no trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may be praised by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.

  14. Abdul-Rahman on May 14, 2015, 3:59 am

    The hasbara crew really goes into overdrive to try to exploit human suffering. If only they took some of those cameras over to Gaza.

    These attempts at what have been termed “bluewashing” are some of the more repulsive of the Zionist propaganda variety. The Nepali surrogate mothers who will be “allowed” into Israel, only until “Jewish babies exit the surrogate’s body”, to paraphrase David Sheen, has to be one of the more “memorable” aspects of this hasbara outting.

    Once again the words of Israeli doctor Yoel Donchin are very important at dealing with these cynical Zionist propaganda screeds. I wonder if the Israeli regime took out some more aid to bring on those extra cameras, as Donchin has noted before. As has been said before: No country does so little, yet makes so much noise about it.

  15. JustJessetr on May 14, 2015, 7:39 am

    The thinking of this article, summed up neatly, implies that if Israel gives, it’s only for PR. If Israel gives, it’s not enough. If Israel gives, it’s giving to the wrong people. Therefore there should be no giving at all.

    I think that ‘cynical’ is being applied to the wrong party here.

    • Kris on May 14, 2015, 11:03 am

      @JustJessetr: “I think that ‘cynical’ is being applied to the wrong party here.” Not really. You are the one who is insulting us by offering a false syllogism.

      Here’s how false syllogisms like yours work:

      “This trick consists in stating a false syllogism. Your opponent makes a proposition, and by false inference and distortion of his ideas you force from it other propositions which it does not contain and he does not in the least mean; nay, which are absurd or dangerous. It then looks as if his proposition gave rise to others which are inconsistent either with themselves or with some acknowledged truth, and so it appears to be indirectly refuted. This is the diversion, and it is another application of the fallacy non causae ut causae.

      “Example

      “Killer dogs have long teeth. You say your dog has long teeth, so it must be a killer.

      “You said you cannot afford a car, but you can afford a house.

      “We hear the person was with you when the crime was committed. So where were you when the crime was committed?

      “Discussion

      “A syllogism is a basic logical argument that draws a conclusion from two premises. It is easy to create a syllogism that is logically wrong, as in the examples. The tricky nature of this can be used to make the the other person look stupid, dangerous or otherwise socially undesirable, making this method particularly provocative when additional people are also present.

      “A part of this method is that untangling the logic a syllogism (or even recognizing that one exists) is not always that easy, and in the confusion you can create, you can insert more persuasive suggestions.

      “‘State a False Syllogism’ is the twenty-fourth of Schopenhauer’s stratagems.” http://changingminds.org/techniques/techniques.htm

      • JustJessetr on May 14, 2015, 10:33 pm

        And ducking the issue is the first stratagem of MW.

        Israel helps people. You hate Israel. Therefore you think what Israel does isn’t helpful. That’s more than just the issue, it’s MW philosophy.

        Have you asked a Nepalese, or a Haitian, or even a Syrian soldier, if they would to give back the help that Israel offered? Please do me a favor and find such people who were given direct medical aid, videotape your question to them, and then upload their response to MW.

        In the meantime, if you know so much about how people should be helped, close your MacBook, go to Nepal, grab a shovel, and dig a fuckin’ toilet. It would be the perfect repository for your cynicism. And people who are suffering would find it useful, for once.

      • just on May 14, 2015, 11:08 pm

        “Have you asked a Nepalese, or a Haitian, or even a Syrian soldier, if they would to give back the help that Israel offered?”

        Nope, not going to. Not now, not ever. Not even worth doing. How can you ask a dying, injured, or suffering person to “give back the help”? How do you justify/explain what you’ve done to Palestinians for nigh on seven decades until this very moment?

        Thanks anyway. (btw, Israel is helping al- Nusra, et al~ NOT Syrian soldiers. It is curious.)

      • oldgeezer on May 14, 2015, 11:57 pm

        @JustJessetr

        You know you are right that Israel does help people. And in the overall scheme of things any help is better than no help regardless of the reasons it is given. Even patching up Al Nusra/AQ/ISIS fighters is a plus. No one should be allowed to just die. Sending them back to the fight is a bit beyond the pale however. Ever wonder how many people were beheaded by patched up fighters?

        Anyway to get to the point helping a few people here and there just doesn’t make up for the daily oppression of millions. It may satisfy your conscience but on any sane basis it doesn’t even come close. There are reasons we don’t extol the virtues of countries that have commited atrocities and Israel fits into that category.

      • talknic on May 15, 2015, 12:39 am

        @ JustJessetr “And ducking the issue is the first stratagem of MW”

        Give an instance please

        Israel helps people”

        Except if they’re non-Jews in Israel or Palestine or wishing to go to Palestine and help Israel’s neighbours overcome 67 years of Israeli transgressions

        “You hate Israel”

        No, most folk here would rather Israel adhered to the laws it agreed to adhere to by becoming a state and being admitted to the UN

        “Therefore you think what Israel does isn’t helpful.”

        If you say so. See if you can spot the difference between helping and overtly bragging about helping.

        “Have you asked a Nepalese, or a Haitian, or even a Syrian soldier, if they would to give back the help that Israel offered? Please do me a favor and find such people who were given direct medical aid, videotape your question to them, and then upload their response to MW”

        OK. Will you pay my airfare? BTW do you think selling weapons to the dictator Francois Duvalier and his son Jean-Claude Duvalier was good for Haitians?

        “In the meantime, if you know so much about how people should be helped, close your MacBook, go to Nepal, grab a shovel, and dig a fuckin’ toilet”

        How will I recognize you? You WILL be there of course … right?

      • oldgeezer on May 15, 2015, 12:52 am

        @justjester

        Intentional typo in your name
        “:In the meantime, if you know so much about how people should be helped, close your MacBook, go to Nepal, grab a shovel, and dig a fuckin’ toilet. – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/recent-comments#sthash.0MjXSguO.dpuf

        How about Israel use it’s high tech and nobel prizes to teach the Israeli Terrorist Force to dig a freakin latrine.

        Get back to me when Israeli’s learn appropriate methods of defacation until then you may be a smell unto nations but not a light.

      • just on May 15, 2015, 6:43 am

        “In the meantime, if you know so much about how people should be helped, close your MacBook, go to Nepal, grab a shovel, and dig a fuckin’ toilet. It would be the perfect repository for your cynicism. And people who are suffering would find it useful, for once.”

        “Interesting” that you should mention digging toilets here! Perhaps you should remind the IOF! As if you give a hoot about suffering people…

        “Shit Israeli soldiers did in Gaza

        The Israeli soldiers’ testimonies from the Gaza onslaught of last summer compiled by the veterans group Breaking the Silence — called, “This is How We Fought in Gaza” — includes a remarkable number of statements about shitting. The soldiers were occupying Palestinian homes, and often defiling them, sometimes destroying the houses later. And they had different protocols about how to relieve themselves and get rid of the waste.”…

        http://mondoweiss.net/2015/05/shit-israeli-soldiers

    • Marnie on May 14, 2015, 12:46 pm

      You got most of it right – Israel only gives for PR, period. Never enough, period. It’s a self-serving gesture from the get go, period. They aren’t giving anything they’ve earned on their own; they give what’s been given to them being the welfare state it continues to be – it’s so easy to be generous with someone else’s dough. I’m sick to death of people like you and the rest of the TROLLS on Mondoweiss. Israel is now bragging about giving a “new leg” to a child in Gaza, who only needs a new leg because the IDF destroyed it!

      Tell you what Mr. Jester, Yonah, Hophmi, DaBakr, JeffB, Jackdaw and the other minions – Let’s rebuild all the homes in Gaza that were destroyed last summer – lets rebuild every home that has been bulldozed by the IDF and and when that GOOD WORK has been done – let’s not boast and brag about it but QUIETLY let’s all get the fuck out of THEIR LAND!

      • Bornajoo on May 14, 2015, 4:21 pm

        “Tell you what Mr. Jester, Yonah, Hophmi, DaBakr, JeffB, Jackdaw and the other minions – Let’s rebuild all the homes in Gaza that were destroyed last summer – lets rebuild every home that has been bulldozed by the IDF and and when that GOOD WORK has been done – let’s not boast and brag about it but QUIETLY let’s all get the fuck out of THEIR LAND! ”

        +1 Marnie! Well said

      • Marnie on May 15, 2015, 12:13 am

        I can’t believe the chutzpah it takes for someone to help someone out and then demand gratitude and praise and “Gee you guys aren’t the ravenous wolves/murders of children I thought you were!” kind of recognition for only doing what is the RIGHT THING TO DO. If you saw a child teetering too close to a street because his dipshit israeli mother was too busy on her cellphone to notice, would you get that child out of harm’s way and then demand payment ? That’s basically what the zionist state does, every fucking time they go on a PR/damage control mission, excuse me, I mean humaniatarian aid road trip, they don’t do something nice and go home. Hell no! They actually make posters, as above, with the caption THANKS ISRAEL? Maybe there’s small print under that caption that says “Thanks Israel, for not mistaking us brown folks for Africans and locking us up! Thanks Israel, for not mistaking us for Palestinians and harvesting organs from our dead (we need ’em too ya know!). Thanks Israel, now get the hell out of our country!

  16. just on May 14, 2015, 11:49 am

    Ali Abunimah:

    “Propaganda site boasts “Gaza child gets new leg in Israel.” How many legs have Israeli bombs severed? http://www.israel21c.org/news/gaza-child-gets-new-leg-in-israel/ … #hasbara”

    https://twitter.com/AliAbunimah/status/598601193456173057

  17. DaBakr on May 14, 2015, 2:48 pm

    i suppose nobody here see’s the complete and utter absurdity of a report by a down-beat and snide reporter who is calling the Israeli aid to the Nepalese people and nation “cynical”. Hah! What a joke. I would say that the height of cynicism is trying excruciatingly hard to find some underhanded angle to one small state providing aid to another after a horrific natural disaster.

    Somebody should ask the 1000s of nepalese how “cynical” they think this aid is. The same is said for the IDF medical teams helping wounded Syrians. That they tried to label as ‘cynical’ as well. They also tried to cook up some stupid ‘conspiracy’ about Israel being ‘allied’ with IS when the truth is that NO person who ever crossed the border into Israel was asked their affiliation. The were simply searched for weapons and promptly treated. For all anybody knows Assads fighters are probably crossing as well. Buts its all so ‘cynical’. lol

    And if Israel were to give 7.7% of gdp to foreign disaster relief commenters here would still find fault with that. And the world media pumps out story after story about Israel=Nazi and Israel=SA so why shouldn’t Israel publish their aid? It is truthful and interesting. Take a reality pill.

  18. jon s on May 14, 2015, 5:10 pm

    Here’s some relevant info:
    According to the IDF spokesperson the IDF field hospital in Nepal
    ” treated 1,600 patients, operated 85 surgeries, and delivered 8 babies.”

    • Marnie on May 14, 2015, 11:43 pm

      Seriously JonS – you really going there? Do you really think it’s wise to brag about the IDFs (self-serving) “humanitarian” efforts abroad, and no one’s going to notice what the inhumanity of the IDF at home. Are you that stupid – or do you think we are?

      Here’s some relevant info for you:

      71 Palestinian Women Forced to Labor at Checkpoints (https://occupiedpalestine.wordpress.com) This is from 2011 so that number is probably higher, eh JonS – you think?

      KILLED +2200 PALESTINIANS LAST SUMMER, KILLED 500 CHILDREN, DON’T KNOW THE STATS ON THE PREGNANT WOMEN WHOSE BABIES WERE LOST.

      ON AVERAGE, KILLS ONE PALESTINIAN EVERY 2-3 DAYS.

      SETTLERS UPROOT 450 OLIVE TREES (APRIL 21, 2015)

      ISRAEL DEMOLISHED ALMOST 1200 HOMES IN 2014 (MW)

      • Marnie on May 15, 2015, 12:31 am

        With all of your posts, I feel nothing but shame for living in Israel and anger that I live there with so many people just like you. You are the worst because you see yourself as liberal. Do you even know what that is? You don’t think you’re like Daniela Weiss – she’s too radical, that’s not for you. You are better, because you’re liberal, which has completely lost its meaning in the last 20 or more years. You’ve demonstrated here that there is absolutely nothing the zionist state can do that you won’t defend. That makes you more dangerous than Daniela Weiss, Moshe Feiglin, Naftali Bennett, Netanyahu et al, could ever be. You, and so many many like yourself, will watch what they do and defend them because nothing is more important than the preservation of a Jewish state. You come to this site and read the same stories that I read and yet you always see the zionist state as little David against bad old Goliath (the rest of the world). That comparison doesn’t play anymore. David is really Dawud and Goliath is the zionist state. The zionists are not victims, they are perps. You and your co-conspirators paTROLLING this site to “provide balance” to the narrative. Bullshit. It’s much more self-serving than that. You make me feel such anger and shame. I’m no better than you, but I’m trying to be.

      • oldgeezer on May 15, 2015, 1:31 am

        @Marnie
        “The zionists are not victims, they are perps.”

        Well said.

        They are not the only perps in the mix but they are perps. Their level of morality or actions is no better than the worst of the worse. They don’t represent all Iraeli’s although they like to pretend they do and call opponents traitors nor do they represent all Jews although the call opponents self haters.

        They don’t represent the bottom layer of humanity but they do occupy they same rung on the ladder. All groups have these same people. The people who lack higher level emotions such as empathy and sympathy. Until science figures it out, if ever, we will always be stuck with them and frankly we need to figure out how to marginalize them as killing people for their own ends is somehow moral in their screwed up set of values.

        Finally, yes you are morally better than them although on potential you are no better. They have chosen their path. I may disagree on many of your values but I know I could welcome you as a neighbour anytime despite disagreements. They would want to drive you out unless you agree with them.

      • Bornajoo on May 15, 2015, 2:51 am

        Thank you for your comment Marnie

      • just on May 15, 2015, 6:23 am

        Thank you, Marnie and oldgeezer.

      • DaBakr on May 15, 2015, 8:32 am

        @mn

        i guess if Israel can ‘steal’ hummus then Palestinians can ‘steal’ the david/goliath story. But i have seen the story double-flipped with anti-Zionists first declaring that the ‘real’ goliath was actually an easy mark for crafty sly and treacherous David and now-the Palestinians are the so-called ‘good’ david and Zionists are the ‘bad’ Philistine Goliath. Only in the middle east…..

  19. a blah chick on May 14, 2015, 10:51 pm

    Would all our detractors please answer this question: why is Israel pledging to rebuild a Nepalese village while knocking down Bedouin ones at home?

    I’ll wait.

    • DaBakr on May 15, 2015, 8:37 am

      @abc

      you can wait. while waiting explain how one group destroyed by earthquake through no doing of their own compares to a [formerly?] nomadic tribe declaring a permanent village in a spot the state claims as illegal (and which has given alternative lands in the state -not part of any OP either)?

      You might as well say: ‘since the US provides arms to massacre IS how can it provide aid to help victims in Japan? huh?

      • a blah chick on May 15, 2015, 10:23 am

        Don’t give me that “illegal squatting” excuse. Plenty of settlers “illegally” squatted on Palestinian land in the West bank and the government did nothing.

        Let me phrase the question another way: Why doesn’t Israel use those millions to provide their OWN Palestinian citizens with decent housing?

        I’ll wait.

      • DaBakr on May 15, 2015, 4:10 pm

        @mn

        well obviously the state has a completely different policy towards settlers in the op and bedouins on state land. and even if that is the case -without going into the details-what does it have to do with aid to other nations? The bedouins have not suffered a natural castastrophe and are seeking for the state to capitulate to their demands. They have a court system for that that has shown many times it does not necessarily rubber stamp state policy. Nepalese suffered catastrophic natural disaster. Its really apples and oranges and you are simply angry that Israel is not relenting on this Bedouin village. You are not the only one as many Israelis could care less if their village stays or not. Sometimes the state functions like a cold bureaucracy -wether it is Zionist or Palestinian.

    • jon s on May 16, 2015, 4:45 pm

      Marnie, If you feel so bad about living here, well, it’s a free country, and you can leave.
      As for Daniella Weiss, Feiglin and the rest – your own extremism is a mirror-image of theirs. Fanatics from both sides have a lot in common.

      • Bornajoo on May 16, 2015, 4:52 pm

        “Marnie, If you feel so bad about living here, well, it’s a free country, and you can leave. As for Daniella Weiss, Feiglin and the rest – your own extremism is a mirror-image of theirs. Fanatics from both sides have a lot in common.”

        So someone who cares about the human rights of others is a fanatic?

        My oh my……

      • just on May 16, 2015, 5:34 pm

        It’s NOT a “free country” at all, jon s! Apartheid and ethnic cleansing are not the hallmarks of a free country.

        Go read here and see what your beloved citizens elected:

        “Israeli Government Most Racist, Extremist in History”

        http://www.richardsilverstein.com/

        To call anyone in favor of peace, justice, and equal rights a fanatic/extremist just shows how far gone you really are, and how you really feel about the ongoing Nakba.

        So sad that you teach kids.

      • Marnie on May 18, 2015, 7:02 am

        No shit JonS.

        It’s people like you and the regular paTROLLERS here at MW, and of course the GoI that make me feel bad. I’d feel fabulous if you all would leave. But don’t do it just for little ol’ me, there’s a few million others at least who’d be happy too.

  20. jon s on May 15, 2015, 1:00 am

    blah chick,
    The simple answer is that things are not black-and-white.
    It’s typical of extremists and fanatics to refuse to see any shades of gray, any nuances.
    On this blog there are some who demonize Israel, everything in Israel is bad, everything Israel does is evil , even the good things are bad .

    • oldgeezer on May 15, 2015, 1:17 am

      @jon s
      “On this blog there are some who demonize Israel, everything in Israel is bad, everything Israel does is evil , even the good things are bad . – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2015/05/putting-israels-humanitarian#comment-146468

      Just as there are some who argue that because Israel does some good things the pure evil things it does don’t matter.

      Pot, kettle.

      Stop oppressing millions of people each and every day and people may view the few hundred people you do good things for in a different light.

      • Marnie on May 15, 2015, 3:49 am

        Thanks, fellow oldgeezer, for this and for the above comments.

      • DaBakr on May 15, 2015, 8:44 am

        @gz

        in this case-thankfully-Israel could care less what these “people” you mention “may view” and are only concerned with the Nepalese that they are aiding. Israeli’s are so use to this [what people may think] it passes with barely a notice. Our actions speak louder then then what people may think. and am sure the propaganda arm of the nation which you live in does much more then simply brag about all the good it does in the world without highlighting the bad.

      • just on May 15, 2015, 9:19 am

        “Our actions speak louder then then what people may think”

        Yes they do, DaBakr.

      • echinococcus on May 15, 2015, 1:30 pm

        Da Bakr,

        I observed that more than most of your co-bots you’re not paying attention to what your own words entail. As in

        Our actions speak louder then then what people may think

        Like
        X0,000 murdered in cold blood
        X00,000 maimed and tortured and jailed in violation of international law
        X,000,000 robbed of country, land, future and life in violation of international law
        X0,000,000 blasted, burned, beheaded, maimed, displaced and robbed of a future in “neocon”-driven American wars on explicit orders from Zionists
        427 Martians or Marshallese or whatever, given a band-aid to stick on their wounded parts while being photographed
        144 Nepalese surrogate mothers carrying holy Jewish fetuses allowed shelter in “Israel” until delivery –then out.
        X00 Ethiopian (and at the same time Jewish, duh) women forcedly subjected to temporary sterilization (investigation on worse pending) so they could NOT carry off-color Jewish fetuses
        X00 Islamic Caliphate State and X00 Al Qa’eda fighters sent back to cutting heads on Zionist pay after getting fixed in state-of-the-art facilities
        X,000 mothers and babies and sick and victims of Zionist attacks dead at checkpoints or on the roads for being refused access to hospitals
        Feel free to add actions that speak louder than words…

      • DaBakr on May 15, 2015, 4:18 pm

        @ec

        only true believers, semi-educated, mediocre minded and other fanatics have the time to parse history and select every single factoid that they choose and then collate it into an exaggerated list with no context and without rebuttal and then ask for a response. If you have time-start your list at ’48. Or better yet-go back to how Hrtzl was the beginning of the evil progression of Jews to reclaim their lands from Arab and Ottoman colonizers. heard it all before. There are even fanatical Zionists that do the exact same thing as you-not surprising.

      • echinococcus on May 16, 2015, 12:46 am

        So no answer. Why coat it in a lot of small talk?
        Anyway, swallow back that “reclaim their lands” bullshit. You guys just cannot keep from propaganda at anytime.

    • just on May 15, 2015, 6:27 am

      What ‘nuance’ is there to last summer, jon s?

      What ‘nuance’ is there to the ongoing Nakba?

      “Families in Khuza’a forced to live in shipping containers as politics prevent Gaza reconstruction” – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2015/05/containers-politics-reconstruction#sthash.Ts2lKJMG.dpuf

      “Bulldozers demolish a mosque in ‘unrecognized’ village of 14,000 near Beersheba” – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2015/05/bulldozers-unrecognized-beersheba#sthash.XtgTbebw.dpuf

    • eljay on May 15, 2015, 9:02 am

      || jon s: It’s typical of extremists and fanatics to refuse to see any shades of gray, any nuances.
      On this blog there are some who demonize Israel, everything in Israel is bad, everything Israel does is evil , even the good things are bad . ||

      Not everything Israel does is bad. Not everything the hard-working, hockey-coaching, community-volunteering serial rapist does is bad, either.

      The problem with Zio-supremacists – even “liberal Zionists” – is that they’re happy to see “nuances” and “shades of gray” and to talk “peace”* all day every day as long as Israel:
      – remains a supremacist “Jewish State”;
      – is not required to honour its obligations under international law; and
      – is not held accountable for its past and on-going (war) crimes.

      _________________________
      (*Zio-supremacists love “peace”, but avoid justice, accountability and equality like the plague.)

      • jon s on May 16, 2015, 4:59 pm

        Eljay, Absolutely.
        I don’t think Israelis and Palestinians can have both peace and justice. We have to make a choice and ,yes, I prefer peace to any notion of perfect justice.

      • eljay on May 16, 2015, 5:54 pm

        || jon s: Eljay, Absolutely.
        I don’t think Israelis and Palestinians can have both peace and justice. We have to make a choice and ,yes, I prefer peace to any notion of perfect justice. ||

        1. Who said anything about “perfect justice”? What does “perfect justice” even mean?

        2. Justice, accountability and equality are a foundation for peace.

        3. Of course Israelis and Palestinians can have both justice and peace.

        4. It’s no surprise that you prefer “peace” over justice, accountability and equality:
        – It absolves you and your Zio-supremacist co-collectivists of accountability for past and on-going (war) crimes.
        – It rewards you by letting you keep as much as possible of what you have stolen.

      • just on May 16, 2015, 6:19 pm

        +1, eljay!

        For the Zionists, peace means “quiet” aka please pipe down while we slaughter, maim, steal, demolish, kidnap, imprison, destroy, and do everything we can to make you disappear!

    • a blah chick on May 15, 2015, 10:33 am

      “It’s typical of extremists and fanatics to refuse to see any shades of gray, any nuances.”

      Thank you for not saying “it’s complicated.”

      I believe that everyone on this planet EVERYONE should be treated with dignity and respect. Yes, even those wretched settlers. I do not believe that anyone should have rights or privileges based on race, religion or ethnicity. Ask my parents who grew up in a segregated south what that feels like. If these views of equality make me a fanatic or extremist so be it.

      • Marnie on May 18, 2015, 8:30 am

        Amen to that!

      • jon s on May 18, 2015, 4:21 pm

        Peace means a future without bloodshed, a future where children in both Gaza and Sderot, and everywhere else in this country can grow up without the fear of bombs and rockets and shootings and knifings. That’s what I believe we should focus on, not some futile search for “justice” , which will only bring more misery.
        And, blah chick, I also believe that everyone should be treated with dignity and respect. All people should be equal.

      • RoHa on May 18, 2015, 9:07 pm

        “I also believe that everyone should be treated with dignity and respect. All people should be equal.”

        So you would have no objections to a unified state in Palestine wherein all residents had equal rights.

    • Marnie on May 18, 2015, 8:26 am

      When the good deeds the SoI does start to astronomically outnumber the bad deeds, and when the bad deeds are no longer actions to the detriment and destruction of Palestinian lives, homes, farms and livelihood, then and only then will the SoI get any praise. Until then, you better believe that the SoI deserves to be demonized, criticized and scrutinized for the devilish, hellish deeds that are done here every day and that BDS will continue, ever stronger, in the only nonviolent way to protest.

      • jon s on May 19, 2015, 4:27 pm

        Ro Ha,
        As I’ve said on numerous occasions, I believe that two states is the only possible solution – both politically possible and morally sound.
        Equality means equal rights not only for individuals, but for nations. The Palestinian people and the Jewish people deserve equal rights , including the right to independent nation-states.

      • RoHa on May 19, 2015, 8:29 pm

        “Equality means equal rights not only for individuals, but for nations. ”

        “Nations” do not have rights. The idea that they do is largely the work of woolly-minded romantics who have peddled their nonsense far and wide.

        Individual human beings have rights. Established organisations with governing bodies (such as states) can be regarded as having some limited rights. But groups such as nations cannot. There is no determinate entity to be the bearer or locus of the rights, to exercise the rights, or to carry out corresponding duties.

        “including the right to independent nation-states.”

        So, of course, there is no such right. Neither the Palestinian “people” nor the Jewish “people” have the right to an independent state.

        Forget about “nations” and “peoples”. Think about people instead. It is actual people who live and die, who feel joy and pain. Do not be led astray by metaphor and fantasy.

  21. bintbiba on May 15, 2015, 4:49 am

    To my fellow ‘oldgeezers’ , Marnie and oldgeezer , Greetings !
    Thank you for all your comments.

    Stop oppressing millions of people each and every day and people may view the few hundred people you do good things for in a different light. – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2015/05/putting-israels-humanitarian#comments

    • jon s on May 20, 2015, 3:55 pm

      RoHa,
      “Individual human beings have rights” – but those rights include the right of individuals to get together with other individuals who share the same language, faith, territory , history and economic ties and form communities. Communities can take various forms, such as religions, ethnic groups – and nations. And if that’s so, nations have rights which are the extensions of individual rights.
      Aside from the theoretical side, there’s the practical reality: we still live in an era of nation-states, an era in which nations expect, or demand , equal rights with other nations, including the right to self-determination in such a state. Unless they are very weak or their adversaies very strong, , national movements are not likely to give up until those expectations are satisfied.
      What happened when the USSR broke up? The Ukrainians, Lithuanians and the rest formed nation-states , in implementation of their rights as nations. Imagine, for a moment ,that the recent referendum in Scotland had turned out differently, and a majority of the Scottish people had opted to leave the UK and establish a Scottish state. . Wouldn’t we say that they were seeking equal rights as a nation?

      • RoHa on May 21, 2015, 2:31 am

        First. Let’s be clear about nations.

        http://mondoweiss.net/2015/04/understanding-jewish-national#comment-766727

        Jews in general were not and are not an n-nation.

        “nations have rights which are the extensions of individual rights.”

        The individuals have rights, but that does not necessarily imply that the group has any group right.

        Your claim looks like a fallacy of composition – assuming that the whole has all the characteristics of the parts. (A brick is light enough for me to lift. My house is made of bricks, so it is light enough for me to lift.)

        The individuals might have a right to get married to other individuals. This does not imply that that the group has a right to marry another group, nor does it imply that the group has a right to marry an individual.

        You will need to present an argument for group rights.

        “we still live in an era of nation-states”

        No, we live in a world in which many states are p-nations more or less set up as states for n-nations, but also many states are p-nations set up simply as p-nations without being based on an n-nation. The USA, China*, Brazil, Australia, Canada, India, and many of the states of Africa are such p-nations.

        “an era in which nations expect, or demand , equal rights with other nations”

        I smell a fallacy of equivocation here.

        Are you saying that n-nationalists want their n-nation be treated equally with other n-nations?

        It seems to me that n-nationalists want an independent p-nation for their n-nation. That is not the same as a demand for equality with other n-nations.
        And it seems to me that p-nations – including those not based on an n-nation – demand equal treatment with other p-nations.

        “including the right to self-determination in such a state.”

        Trouble is, there is no such right.

        “What happened when the USSR broke up? The Ukrainians, Lithuanians and the rest formed nation-states , in implementation of their rights as nations.”

        Fallacy of begging the question.

        The formation of states is clear. The alleged “implementation of their rights as nations” assumes that there are such rights.

        Scotland: ” Wouldn’t we say that they were seeking equal rights as a nation?”

        You might say that, but I wouldn’t. I would say that the people resident in Scotland have chosen independence for that region, and that largely because they don’t like what the London government is doing to them.

        Large chunks of Northern England which have never been part of Scotland aren’t happy about rule from London either.

        *No, there is no Chinese n-nation. The efforts of the Emperors created a p-nation, and perhaps a Han c-nation. But Cantonese are a different n-nation from the Szechuanese and Pekingese. (People, not the annoying little dogs.) They look different, they live in a different area, speak a different language, and have a different culture.

      • MHughes976 on May 21, 2015, 11:20 am

        If individuals have a set of rights which are absolute it follows that there cannot exist another set of rights – either by implication from the first or on an independent basis – in conflict, even potential conflict, with the first.
        I accept that some might say that social contracts set up for the protection of rights must limit (render non-absolute) the rights that they protect. Before the contract a cavewoman who had killed a mammoth had a right to as much of the carcass as she could cook over the fire or make into an ornament – after the contract she might have to hand over a tusk to the Cave Queen as a tax payment.
        Even if this is so, the terms of the social contract – subjection to the law in return for franchise – clearly prohibit any subgroup from restricting franchise to itself without general consent. The people who live in the most damp caves cannot insist that only they are consulted about fire-lighting policy.

    • catalan on May 21, 2015, 11:37 am

      “If individuals have a set of rights which are absolute – ” MHughes
      They don’t. If you accept a divine being which grants these rights (American declaration of independence) then a prerequisite for them is the belief in said being.
      If these rights are the result of a social contract, then the society in question can decide to severely restrict these rights, rendering them anything but absolute. Thus, most human beings live in societies where criticism of the leadership is not a right. Also, at least half of the world’s women do not have the right to choose their partner. This is not a judgement of these social contracts, just an observation. Perhaps the Chinese or the Saudis derive great benefits from curtailing political assembly or religious worship.
      This talk of absolutes does not have a basis in the physical reality. It’s an idea born in the minds of intellectuals.

      • jon s on May 24, 2015, 4:25 am

        RoHa,
        I confess that you sort of lost me with your “n-nation” and “p-nation” categories.
        And of course I disagree with your statement that Jews are not a nation. With all respect, it’s not your call.
        I assume that you support equal rights for Jews, as individuals.
        My main point is that Jews also should also enjoy equal rights as a people or a nation, if they define themselves as such.

      • eljay on May 24, 2015, 8:59 am

        || jon s: My main point is that Jews also should also enjoy equal rights as a people or a nation, if they define themselves as such. ||

        People who choose to be Jewish should have every right to be Jewish. No country in the world should deny those people their choice.

        The choice to be Jewish does not translate into a group right to steal, occupy and colonize land in the Middle East (or anywhere else) and set up a religion-supremacist state primarily of and for people who have chosen to be Jewish (with all non-Jewish citizens relegated by default to second-class-citizen status).

      • Bumblebye on May 24, 2015, 9:00 am

        RoHa: you will need to present an argument for group rights
        jon s: it’s not your call

        every darn time you claim Jews are a nation you are claiming that Hostage, mooser, talknic, Elliott et al are part of this “nation” wherever they are on planet earth! Israeli law does the same with its law of return. Every Jew in the diaspora who accepts this peculiar argument, whether or not they have the second (Israeli) passport – think donors and those who in their political work put the (perceived) interestsof Israel at the forefront of their activity (zionists, whatever brand, lite or hard) – can claim (or be conned into believing) that they are “loyal” while others are “traitorous” for dissenting when the opposite is the real truth.
        Jon s, why don’t you understand how you are one of the most antisemitic posters on the MW comment section?

      • RoHa on May 24, 2015, 10:54 pm

        “That is not your call”

        Why not? If Jews do not fit the definition, I can say so just as well as anyone else.

        And if you can’t follow my distinction between p-, n-, and c-nations, it is no wonder you are so confused in your thinking.

        The word “nation” has several meanings. If we do not keep those meanings separate, we will fall into fallacies of equivocation.

        I’ll set it out again.

        P-nation.
        This is the most common meaning of “nation” these days. It is the sort of thing that is a member of the UN, ASEAN, etc. It is a sovereignish state, with a government and the other usual accoutrements. Australia, China, Monaco, Slovakia, Chad, Uruguay, and even Canada are p-nations. Israel is a p-nation.

        N-nations.
        N-nations are those groups which woolly-minded Nineteenth Century romantics got themselves in a lather about. They usually have a common culture and some sense of group solidarity, and, most importantly:
        1. The majority of the members live in a single territory, and the majority of the population in that territory are members of the group.
        2. The majority of the members of the group have a single, specific, language as their common language.
        (The Finns are a textbook example.)

        C-nation:
        “a cultural-political community that has become conscious of its coherence, unity, and particular interests.”

        Jews in general are not a p-nation. (No group is. A p-nation is a political arrangement. It is not a group of people.)

        Jews in general are not an n-nation. (They have neither a territory nor a language.) Israeli Jews could be regarded as an n-nation.

        I have been persuaded by Siberiak that Jews in general can be regarded as a c-nation.

        I claim that n-nations and c-nations have no rights or duties whatsoever, and that the members have no rights or duties to the n/c-nations.

        The distinction between n-nations and c-nations is important because there is a strong current of opinion that every n-nation is entitled to set up its own p-nation. (Claimed as a right of self-determi-.) Since the n-nation has a territory in which it is the majority, this opinion does have a certain surface plausibility, since in those cases where an rsd is acknowledged, it is acknowledged as the right of the people inhabiting the territory.

        The Zionist, ignoring the difference between c-nations and n-nations, claimed that the Jewish c-nation was also entitled to set up its own p-nation.

        It is in order to forestall this fallacious, amphibolous, argument that I point out that Jews are not an n-nation. What Jews declare themselves to be does not alter the reality. Declaration cannot make a c-nation into an n-nation.

        I deny that n-nations and c-nations have any rights at all, and I have given reasons for my position. (I also share MHughes’ scepticism about group rights in general.)

        Where is your argument for the “national rights” that you claim such groups have?

        Furthermore, if you acknowledge equal rights for each individual, why are you so concerned about then dividing them up into “nations”? What is the point?

  22. iResistDe4iAm on May 17, 2015, 5:47 am

    Sadly, Nepal is the latest of many natural disasters, but Palestine is the world’s longest (67 years) Israeli-made UNNATURAL disaster.

    Thankfully, unlike natural disasters, man-made UNNATURAL disasters (aka. crimes against humanity) can be stopped.

    • jon s on May 25, 2015, 3:36 pm

      Bumblebye,
      Are you saying that perceiving the Jews as a nation makes one an Anti-Semite? What kind of upside-down logic is that? You realize that regarding the Jews as a nation was one of the precepts of modern Zionism? Does that make every Zionist who ever was and every Jew who immigrated to Israel out of Zionist ideals- an Anti-Semite? Or is it just me?

      • jon s on May 25, 2015, 3:44 pm

        RoHa
        Could you refer me to a book or academic paper which lays out in detail the p-nation, n-nation, c-nation distinctions?

      • Bumblebye on May 25, 2015, 5:19 pm

        Zionism is antisemitic, especially if it makes the argument of claiming all Jews everywhere as members of the same nation. The Israeli “nationality” of Jew is grossly antisemitic. It allows the conflation of all Jews everywhere with the crimes perpetrated by Israel. Which then, of course, leads to spikes in what *you* would call antisemitism when diaspora Jews (who may not even be pro-Israel no matter how it acts) are challenged over Israel’s actions. Israel’s unvirtuous circle maybe – a deliberatly hoped for response to spur migration?

      • echinococcus on May 25, 2015, 6:29 pm

        Are you saying that perceiving the Jews as a nation makes one an Anti-Semite?

        It certainly does. And “perceive” may be the exact word.
        Someone who cannot immediately perceive the monstruosity of labeling a religious group (OK, adding those with ancestry in that religious group) as a “nation” is not just antisemitic but also deranged.

      • RoHa on May 25, 2015, 10:34 pm

        “Could you refer me to a book or academic paper which lays out in detail the p-nation, n-nation, c-nation distinctions?”

        Nope. It’s my own classification of the meanings of “nation”. Ask any questions you may have about it, make any criticisms you want, and I will gladly look at both. I’m an old academic, and I’m used to debating my own ideas.

        If you have an alternative set of meanings, spell them out, and I will look a those. The key point is that we avoid amphiboly by using shared meanings*.

        But what I most want to see is your argument for “national” rights.

        After that, an explanation of why this division of people into “nations” is so important to you.

        (“The reason that a hockey match breaks out every time this discussion comes up is because we are employing symbolic, legal shorthand terms, like “non-self-governing”, “self-determination,” “independent, “sovereign,” and “state” that do not have a shared meaning for Zionists talkback artists sitting in their parent’s basement in Petah Tikva pounding out canned replies on the basis of 200 year old dogma their political movement incorrectly assigns to those terms today. Hostage, http://mondoweiss.net/2015/05/congress-legislatures-against#comment-770203)

  23. light2014 on May 17, 2015, 11:51 am

    The Syrian Nelson Mandela -Dr. Kamal Al-Labwani, Thanks Israeli Aid

    Dr. Kamal Al-Labwani, considered one of the most prominent members of the Syrian opposition movement, was in Israel recently to visit the Syrian casualties hospitalized in the Ziv Medical Center near Safed (Tsfat).
    A Syrian doctor and artist, sometimes called “the Syrian Nelson Mandela,” Al-Labwani came to Israel to thank the medical teams.
    “I am filled with appreciation for the devoted medical care that the Ziv Medical Center is providing for the Syrian casualties, people from my nation, who have been injured in the war. This is a touching humanitarian gesture and an opportunity to bridge between the nations and a hope for peace in more quiet times,” he said.
    “I came to the Ziv Medical Center to thank the hospital for treating hundreds of men, women and children, who have received the highest quality treatment, and emotional support following the difficult events they have experienced during the war in Syria. This treatment is not only for the wounded children and women, it is for the entire Syrian people, this is how we feel and everyone knows this and is talking about it. In Syria, Bashar Al- Assad claims that the Israelis are the enemies, and, here, at the hospital we see who the real Israel is. I ask: who is really the enemy?’”
    Al-Labwani also met leading figures in the Israeli government during his visit.
    He was joined on his visit by Moti Kahana, an Israeli-American businessman, who has been involved in humanitarian activities for the victims of the civil war in Syria and in the efforts to assist the Jews still remaining in Syria to leave the country.
    Hospitals throughout Israel have treated hundreds of Syrians wounded in their civil war.
    By Viva Sarah Press September 21, 2014,

    • just on May 17, 2015, 12:30 pm

      Gee, thanks.

      (eye- roll)

    • Walid on May 17, 2015, 1:05 pm

      Yes, Labwani is a real sweetheart and he would thank Israel. He wants Israel to impose a no-fly zone all over Syria which would entail the killing of fellow Syrians. He would also give up the Golan to Israel and find some compensation package or other for the 400,000 Golan refugees now living all over Syria. It’s isn’t any wonder that Zio-creeps think he’s a great guy. That a-hole will never set foot in Syria again. Mandela never negotiated with anyone to kill his own people.

    • jon s on May 27, 2015, 3:39 pm

      RoHa,
      First of all , I would like to compliment you for seeking to make an original contribution to the discussion of nationalism. Perhaps you should try to publish your concept. I mean this sincerely.

      You make it sound as if I , personally , decided to divide the world into nations, like some obsession of mine. I’m simply observing the world as it is, a world where nations and nationalism play crucial roles. In this context , of the real world, a world full of nation-states, I see no reason why the Jewish people shouldn’t be able to enjoy the same rights as other peoples, as a matter of equality.

      As far as definitions, I said it’s not your call , meaning that if a large group of people want to consider themselves a nation, then who are you and who am I to say that they are not. I prefer the “subjective” approach: if a group cosiders itself a nation, it’s a nation.

      There are also well-known “objective” definitions:

      Anthony Smith: “a named population sharing a historic territory, common myths and historical memories, a mass public culture, a common economy and common legal rights and duties for its members”.

      Stalin was certainly a mass murderer but he knew something about nationalism .
      Here’s his definition, from J.V.Stalin:”Marxism and the National Question”(1913) A nation is a historically constituted, stable community of people, formed on the basis of a common language, territory, economic life, and psychological make-up manifested in a common culture.

      Stalin also says: :A nation has the right freely to determine its own destiny. It has the right to arrange its life as it sees fit, without, of course, trampling on the rights of other nations. That is beyond dispute.” (Sort of ironic, Stalin not wanting to see any rights trampled…)

      • RoHa on May 28, 2015, 6:20 am

        Thank you for your compliment. I regret that I cannot return one.

        You are totally missing the point of the distinctions. Before you start talking about nations, you have to be clear what you mean by “nation”. If not, you can begin by using one meaning, and end up with another. This will – and clearly does – make you very confused.

        You ask for equal treatment, and equal rights, for the Jewish “people”. I will assume, for the moment, you mean the Jewish c-nation.

        I will first point out that, as far as I am concerned, the Jewish c-nation has exactly the same rights as any other c-nation, and, indeed, the same rights as any n-nation.

        None whatsoever.

        (And you have not yet given an argument to the contrary.)

        But let us suppose that some sorts of things called “nations” have rights. We have to decide what sort of thing we are talking about when we say “nation”, because equality can only be between entities of the same sort. Hence my definitions.

        Now it is perfectly clear that Switzerland (a p-nation) is a very different sort of thing from the Jewish c-nation. Switzerland is an organization, with a government holding authority over a specific territory. The Jewish c-nation is not an organization, does not have a government, and is spread over many territories. There is no more basis for claiming that the Jewish c-nation has the same rights or is entitled to equal treatment with Switzerland than there is for claiming that the extended RoHa family is so entitled.

        Since the specific right you are requesting is that of establishing a state, you might want to try claiming equality with the Finns or the Slovaks. They established states for the Finn and Slovak n-nations. Now it is by no means clear that they had a right to do this, but they did it anyway. You might want to argue “Right or no right, they got away with it. Why can’t Jews?”

        That is where the distinction between n-nations and c-nations bites. Finns and Slovaks are the overwhelming majority in their respective territories. Jews do not have a territory; they are scattered over the world. (As is the RoHa extended family.) Even in current Israel, they only make up 80% of the population at most. Nor (unlike Finns or Slovaks) do the Jews have a common first language.

        So whether we say that n-nations have rights (I don’t) or that general principles of equity require equal treatment for n-nations, it still doesn’t help your case.

        Jews are not an n-nation.

        Your appeals for equity can only be appeals for Jews to have equal treatment with other c-nations who are not the populations of p-nations. Perhaps you would like equal treatment with the Gypsies?

      • RoHa on May 28, 2015, 6:25 am

        “You make it sound as if I , personally , decided to divide the world into nations, like some obsession of mine. I’m simply observing the world as it is, a world where nations and nationalism play crucial roles. In this context , of the real world, a world full of nation-states”

        But the world is not full of nation-states, if by “nation-states” you means states established by and mostly occupied by n-nations. There are a lot of such states, but there are also a lot of states which are not nation states.

        It is you who is defending the idea that Jews constitute a nation. What is the point?

        It is you who supports the idea of Jews establishing a nation-state instead of a “non-nation”-state. What is the point?

        “As far as definitions, I said it’s not your call , meaning that if a large group of people want to consider themselves a nation, then who are you and who am I to say that they are not.”

        If a large group of people want to consider themselves a flock of penguins, or kings of infinite space, or British Peers …

        But they still won’t be able to survive winter in Antarctica, or receive homage from the Golgafrinchams, or sit in the House of Lords.

        And simply declaring themselves a nation does not give the right to establish a state, let alone to migrate to a country and drive out the native inhabitants in order to establish it.

        And if the stamp collectors of the world declare themselves a nation, can they establish a state in New Zealand?

        ” I prefer the “subjective” approach: if a group cosiders itself a nation, it’s a nation.”

        But what sort of nation? Simply calling themselves a nation does not make them the sort of nation that Stalin was talking about. And it certainly does not make them a nation in the most common sense of the word. (That is, a p-nation.)

        “Here’s his definition, from J.V.Stalin:”Marxism and the National Question”(1913) A nation is a historically constituted, stable community of people, formed on the basis of a common language, territory, economic life, and psychological make-up manifested in a common culture.”

        None of which are characteristics of Jews in general.

        ‘Stalin also says: :A nation has the right freely to determine its own destiny. It has the right to arrange its life as it sees fit, without, of course, trampling on the rights of other nations. That is beyond dispute.” ‘

        I would certainly dispute it, but it is irrelevant to Jews. They are not a nation of the type Uncle Joe was talking about.

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