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In Israel/Palestine we are witnessing the end of a colonial regime

on 102 Comments

What is happening in Israel today and what happened last week, last month, last year, and for the past almost fifty years is about cementing sovereignty over land that the international community agrees does not belong to Israel and over a subject people, the Palestinians—all in contravention of international law.

I’m in Israel now, taking a break from the inanity and horrors of American politics, and watching the situation in Israel/Palestine heating up. Frequent topic in the Israeli press: is this or isn’t this the start of the third intifada? And, if it is, the discussion goes, how can Israel tweak the occupation so as to pacify the Palestinians? As for, how can Israel address the root cause—the very fact of the occupation—by decolonizing, well, that’s not part of the discourse.

My reaction is always the same when Palestinian youth, in particular, reach a breaking point. In 1987, with the outbreak of the first intifada, in Gaza, my first thought was that it was so long in the coming—that is, it took twenty years from the outset of the 1967 occupation of the Palestinian territories and the start of Israel’s illegal colonization of Palestine for the outrage to boil over.

In 1967, in the wake of the war, Theodor Merom, legal counsel for the Israeli Foreign Ministry, issued an unequivocal opinion for the government of Levi Eshkol, that moving Israeli civilians to settlements in the recently occupied territories would be a violation of international law, specifically, of the Fourth Geneva Convention. Further, Geneva IV is also explicit that military occupation as a result of war does not confer sovereignty over the territory for the occupier and that the occupation is by definition temporary. All of this was known to the Israelis in 1967. For all the protest to the contrary, including the (truly absurd) notion that the “deed” to Palestine was given to the Jews by god three thousand years ago (and therefore trumps Geneva IV?), the Israelis have not a leg to stand on. The Greater Israel project is illegal, full stop—a reality recognized by the international community. All of Israel’s current (Golan Heights, East Jerusalem) and future annexations cannot change that fact.

So here we are, thirty years after the outbreak of the first intifada, watching as the apartheid regime of land theft, including its colonization and repression of the occupied, rightless, stateless people needed to sustain the settlement project, with its 550,000 colonists, only grows. I consider each of those colonists, in both occupied East Jerusalem and the occupied West Bank, to be a stumbling block in the way of any possibility of peace.

The resulting Israeli routine for “managing” the conflict (that’s the Israeli concept), rather than finding a fair resolution, is more murder of Palestinians by the IDF, the Israeli police, and settlers (with essentially no accountability for the perpetrators), house demolitions, imposition of additional draconian laws, more Jew-only bypass roads, more closures, more arrests of children, more people held under administrative detention (no legal rights at all; forget about habeas corpus), and more restrictions on travel both within the occupied territories, as well as abroad. That’s only a partial list, of course.

Amira Hass nails it in her new article, “Palestinians are fighting for their lives; Israel is fighting for the occupation.” She eloquently and accurately outlines the situation and interprets it:

The war did not start last Thursday, it does not start with the Jewish victims and does not end when no Jews are murdered. The Palestinians are fighting for their life, in the full sense of the word. We Israeli Jews are fighting for our privilege as a nation of masters, in the full ugliness of the term.

That we notice there’s a war on only when Jews are murdered does not cancel out the fact that Palestinians are being killed all the time, and that all the time we are doing everything in our power to make their lives unbearable. . . . When something in the war’s one-sidedness is disturbed, and Jews are murdered, then we pay attention.Young Palestinians do not go out to murder Jews because they are Jews, but because we are their occupiers, their torturers, their jailers, the thieves of their land and water, their exilers, the demolishers of their homes, the blockers of their horizon. . . . [T]he enemy they face proves every day that its malice has no limits. . . .

. . . Even the language is malicious. Jews are murdered, Palestinians are killed and die. Is that so?

This is the way of resistance to colonial regimes. Israel is simply another case study. Occupiers rule by the sword and expect the ruled to acquiesce quietly. The situation has played itself out historically around the world. Israeli colonization—both in the founding of the state itself and in the post-1967 Greater Israel project, the latter being the relevant point for most of the international discussion—was taking off just as the rest of the Western empires were reluctantly embarking on the business of decolonization. For its part, South Africa, with its apartheid regime, gave up (technically) in 1991, with the abolition of the apartheid laws, and then with the multiracial election of 1994. While it is true that, as Israelis never fail to remind, the Palestinian people are not led by a person of the stature of Nelson Mandela—who, it must be remembered, was imprisoned as a terrorist for twenty-seven years—more important, the Israeli people are not now, and have never been, led by a person of the stature of F. W. de Klerk (though granting that one cannot know where Rabin would have taken Oslo had he survived).

Netanyahu, a person of no stature (and admittedly only the latest in a long line of self-deluded ultranationalist Israeli leaders, including the leaders of the Labor Party), is bringing ruination on his country, alas, with the approval of most Israelis via his party and the other nationalist parties, regardless of what they call themselves (I include Herzog’s Zionist Union in this description). I concede Netanyahu’s “successes,” however: he has achieved his goal—reelection.

Back to Hass, who writes of the travesty of the reportage in the Israeli media:

Our worldview is shaped by the consistent betrayal by Israeli media outlets of their duty to report events, or their lack of the technical and the emotional ability to contain all of the details of the world war that we are conducting in order to preserve our superiority in the land between the river and the sea.

Not even this newspaper has the economic resources to employ 10 reporters and fill 20 pages with reports on all the attacks in times of escalation and all the attacks of the occupation in times of calm, . . .  The random examples we do manage to report are but a drop in the ocean, and they have no impact on the comprehension of the situation for a large majority of Israelis.

And I will add that this problem of reportage, by which the aggressors are too often presented as victims, is a travesty duplicated in much of the Western media. The New York Times, the newspaper of record, is, tragically, a case in point, certainly in its daily language. When will the Times view Palestinian blood as being as red as Jewish blood in terms of coverage? When will it stop referring to occupied East Jerusalem as something that Palestinians “want” as their future capital when it is internationally understood that that is a just resolution and that Israeli settlement of East Jerusalem is a nonstarter? (Israeli sovereignty over West Jerusalem is, of course, not in question internationally.) And how many puff pieces by Jodi Rudoren must readers of the Times have to stomach? On reading her article about Ayelet Shaked, Netanyahu’s latest justice minister, I found myself thinking that there’s no way a Times reporter covering a new neofascist minister in, say, today’s Hungary, would have produced an article like that. But Israel is different, and that’s the rub. The mainstream reportage is changing, to be sure, but far too slowly to keep pace with changing realities.

Can anyone say when the Israeli colonial project, dependent as it is on the suppression of a subject people in the name of the theft of their land, will reach its end? For sure not. Nor can we know exactly how it will end. But we can say that the realization abroad that Israel administers an apartheid regime is spreading, the proof being official Israeli panic over the matter. Eventually, the push from outside will be to replace the current apartheid system (entangled as it is with a massive web of settlements) with 1S/1P/1V—one state, one person, one vote—in all of Israel/Palestine. When that happens, the Jewish state, even in some benign cultural form that hypothetically could have evolved, will become history.

It may be hard for Israelis (and their best friends abroad) to digest the reality of the situation, but they fail to do so at their peril. The downfall of such regimes as colonial Israel often comes unforecast and without warning. Examples from recent decades should easily come to mind to those willing to pay attention.

The irony is that they are bringing that future on themselves.

Ilene Cohen

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102 Responses

  1. pabelmont on October 7, 2015, 11:30 am

    Israel, in fact if not as understood, plays a game of realpolitik wherein the state balances the anger, willpower, resources of the other nations to-enforce-international-law against the Zionist power (exercised through the USA and its military-industrial-complex (MIC) and AIPAC especially) to prevent them from such enforcement.

    So far the nations have said a lot of words but scarcely done any effective deeds towards enforcement. Why should any nation but Palestine fight Palestine’s battles? Why for that matter should any nation fight for anyone’s human rights? Most nations are busy to some extent violating someone’s human rights.

    It is possible that an explosion of pro-Palestine terrorism against a nation or of Israel-produced refugees/migrants into a nation might give that nation a reason to support Palestine. Or not.

    Of course, if America’s oligarchic system of government (misleadingly called democracy) were to be replaced by something closer to democracy, then the MIC and AIPAC might lose power and people favoring human rights abroad might gain power adn the USA’s support for Israel-over-Palestine be reduced.

    • JLewisDickerson on October 8, 2015, 1:23 pm

      RE: “Israel, in fact if not as understood, plays a game of realpolitik wherein the state balances the anger, willpower, resources of the other nations to-enforce-international-law against the Zionist power (exercised through the USA and its military-industrial-complex (MIC) and AIPAC especially) to prevent them from such enforcement.” ~ pabelmont

      JOEL KOVEL (1-20-13):

      [EXCERPT] . . . As with everyone I know of in official political culture, [Thomas] Friedman assumes that Israel is a rational actor on the international stage who will obey the calculus of reward and punishment that regulates the conduct of normal states.
      The presumption is that if you tell it the truth, and even pull back US support, it will get the message, reflect, and change its ways. But Israel is not a normal state, except superficially. It will make adjustments, pulling back here, co-operating there, making nice when necessary, crafting its message using a powerful propaganda apparatus employing the most up-to-date social science. But this is simply tactical and no more predicts or explains the behavior of the Zionist state than an individual sociopath can be explained by the fact that he obeys traffic signals while driving to the scene of his crime. . .

      SOURCE –

      P.S. Although it may appear that to a certain degree that pabelmont’s and Kovel’s comments are contradictory, I’m not so certain that they are. Consider whether the U.S. is “a normal state, except superficially”. What about American exceptionalism? Is the U.S. fully a “rational actor”?

  2. diasp0ra on October 7, 2015, 11:42 am

    Despite the terrible events currently happening, I am optimistic in the long term. If things keep going as they are, the struggle for equal rights will be inevitable since the two state model is being buried. This fact is being more and more realized every day.

    Israel cannot win a struggle against equal rights, just as it could not force itself on the region by military power. The Kingdom of Jerusalem once functioned by that logic, but even after 100 years, it was a foreign entity that was dissolved.

    As a popular song states: Another day has set, our diaspora grows one day longer, but our return draws one day nearer.

    • lysias on October 7, 2015, 12:33 pm

      The Kingdom of Jerusalem lasted about 200 years, but I don’t think Israel is going to last that long.

      • diasp0ra on October 7, 2015, 12:49 pm

        Was more of a figure of speech, but yeah I don’t think it will last 20 more years. Hopefully in my lifetime I will see freedom from them.

      • Mooser on October 7, 2015, 12:53 pm

        “The Kingdom of Jerusalem lasted about 200 years,”

        And Methuselah lived 900 years! But who calls that livin’…

      • MitchC on October 7, 2015, 1:02 pm

        Have any of you considered that, just maybe, all those repeated threats to destroy Israel is what is causing all of this? I’m sure the multiple stabbing attempts, fire-bombing, and wars don’t do much good, either.

        If, just once, the Palestinian leadership came to Israel and said “We want peace”, rather than “We want our demands met”, things would look a lot different.

      • Sibiriak on October 8, 2015, 12:31 am

        MitchC : […]maybe, all those repeated threats to destroy Israel is what is causing all of this

        No. The Zionist imperative is to expand into as much of “the Land of Israel” as possible. That imperative is completely independent of Palestinian resistance. If the Palestinians resist, Israel expands. If the Palestinians don’t resist, Israel still expands. The expansion causes the resistance; the resistance doesn’t cause the expansion.

      • ivri on October 8, 2015, 3:24 am

        Good point MitchC. These continual, and fairly ridiculous, “predictions” are not irrelevant to the realities on the ground – except that it makes them go the other way. They incite Palestinians into yet more violence – “to hasten” the wish – regardless of actual realities on the ground or changing circumstances around. It indeed sums up into a death-wish but not in the way intended.

      • diasp0ra on October 8, 2015, 8:40 am


        I find it very interesting that you take this logic of a vacuum with Israel.

        Do you know, that when things are at their most quiet during peace negotiations and period of calm, as what happened in the last 10 years, Israeli settlement expansion actually accelerates? It’s actually correlated. Every time there are peace talks, Israeli settlement expansion explodes. We’ve been trying the “we want peace” approach for a while now, if you haven’t noticed.

        It’s also incredibly funny that you use those words, nobody more than Israel approaches the table with a “we want our demands met” mentality. We have 0 power to enforce anything on Israel. We agree to so much crap because we have no choice. A demilitarized state with joint control over borders and Israeli presence in the West Bank for the long to medium term? Oh yeah, we’re the ones being unreasonable here.

        Are you seriously, with your full sanity intact, suggesting that “all this” is caused by the occupied side with zero capability of creating facts on the ground? The side that is dying by the day and living under apartheid conditions?

        That is some amazing mental gymnastics right there, Mitch. That victim blaming PhD that you have must be paying dividends.

        Do you even understand how much pressure and crap somebody has to live under for them to go stab a soldier, knowing that their life is forfeit? Do you know what would drive a bright aspiring engineer, lawyer, doctor etc to strap a bomb to their chest? Do you think these are normal circumstances? Have you ever asked yourself what drives people to do this?

        Your point is empty. You have no point, you and Ivri, somehow think that it’s the job of the occupied population to provide safety for the occupier. It’s not. How a person like you could even pretend to have a conscience is beyond me.

        Violence is not just physical. Violence is legal, violence is institutional, violence is everything Israel imposes on Palestinians. Yet you don’t see this as violence, the hell people live under is not violence, but when they go try and throw a rock at an armored tank ONLY because of that hell they live in, that is when violence begins with you.

        You don’t care about justice for peace, you just want quiet. Well you’ll never get any quiet, nobody rolls over and dies quietly in the face of oppression. You want to occupy a people, put them under military rule, dictate every facet of their life, annex and build on their territory and want quiet in return?

        No, it’s obviously our fault. We caused this because we said mean words to the men having their boots on our necks. We clearly deserve this.

      • CigarGod on October 8, 2015, 8:54 am

        Brilliant violence essay, Diasp0ra.


      • Rodneywatts on October 8, 2015, 3:11 pm

        Yes diasp0ra, my sentiments the same as CigarGod–couldn’t agree more. Sad we have a few plonkers contributing such inane trash.

      • Mooser on October 8, 2015, 5:03 pm

        Those poor bubelles are going to weep and wail when they find out the world doesn’t owe us anything for being Jewish. That’s what all the arguments boil down to. The world owes us something (over and above the human rights each person is entitled to.) because Jewish. Anyway, when they find out, oh “ain’t that a kick in the head” as Dean Martin sang.

    • mcohen. on October 7, 2015, 5:13 pm

      great article ilene…the one state solution is the only way to go,what i do not understand is why there is no support amongst the arab population for one man one vote,no mention in the press.south africa is used as an example to support bds,but you never hear about one man one vote

      does mondoweiss and for that matter does america support a one man one vote one state solution

      • ckg on October 8, 2015, 12:04 am

        @mcohen. I believe the majority of Mondoweiss commenters and staff support 1S1P1V. Many others like myself are open to any solution that is democratic and agreeable to the Palestinians. Supporters of 1S1P1V are routinely unfairly attacked by Zionists as anti-Semitic because the demographic accounting suggests that such a state will not be Jewish majority and thus deny the Jewish people self-determination–as if the principle were developed for the benefit of the colonists rather than the defense of the colonized.

      • Sibiriak on October 8, 2015, 2:04 am

        ckg: Supporters of 1S1P1V are routinely unfairly attacked by Zionists as anti-Semitic because the demographic accounting suggests that such a state will not be Jewish majority and thus deny the Jewish people self-determination–as if the principle were developed for the benefit of the colonists rather than the defense of the colonized.


        It can also be argued that 1S1P1V would deny self-determination to the Palestinian people . Self-determination is about a people’s power to determine their political and cultural destiny; it’s not simply or even primarily about individual rights.

        In a single state, whether the Palestinians had a majority edge or not, every single Palestinian national decision, every decision about the political, economic, social and cultural direction of the country, would have to be made in conjunction with the Israeli Jewish population, a huge majority of which are ethnocentric, chauvinistic, racist and virulently anti-Arab and anti-Muslim. Depending on the exact nature of the electoral system, such a substantial minority would have an effective veto power on most issues, or at least formidable powers of obstruction and gridlock.

        And more than that. In modern “democracies” embedded in the global neoliberal capitalist system, money is power, money is speech, money is government capture, money is economic and political control–and in a single “democratic” Israeli/Palestinian state, money-power would be vastly asymmetrical.

        Wealthy Jewish citizens and corporations would not only be able to corrupt and control the government, or at least have great money-power over it, they would be able to buy up and profit from the best economic assets throughout the whole of Palestine.

        And as Thomas Piketty and other experts on economic equality have demonstrated, under today’s hegemonic neoliberal capitalism, there is a structural imperative for inequality to increase and become irreversibly entrenched.

        Under those conditions, it is difficult to see how Palestinian national self-determination could be achieved at all.

      • inbound39 on October 8, 2015, 4:33 am

        It is a complete fallacy to believe a Two State Solution is ever dead. Israel was created by a majority vote in the UN even though the majority population in Palestine rejected its creation. Therefore, all it takes is a majority decision in the UN to create the State of Palestine based on 67 borders and Israel will simply have to like it or lump it . If Israel can be created by the stroke of a pen then so can the Palestinian State at any time a majority vote says so. A majority vote can never be ruled out at the UN by the Security Council particularly if Israel loses the American Veto safeguard.

      • bryan on October 8, 2015, 7:10 am

        Surely, Sibiriak, even within a primarily Jewish Israel “Wealthy Jewish citizens and corporations [have been] able to corrupt and control the government, or at least have great money-power over it, they would be able to buy up and profit from the best economic assets throughout the whole of [Israel]? There are huge inequalities in Israel in wealth, income, status, power, access to education and decent housing (ask the Arab, Mizrahi, Ethiopian, and even Russian citizens) but I don’t see anyone questioning whether this brings into question whether “national self-determination” has been achieved for Jewish Israelis. To some extent, despite its inadequacies, the “democratic system” gives minorities some leverage – e.g. the difficulties Netanyahu is having in holding together an extremist government. So I don’t see that as an insuperable objection to a 1S1P1V solution, provided that of course the “V” part of this equation continued to carry weight. Think also of the peace dividends that could accrue, in terms of reduction in military and “security” expenditure, ending of government investment in the the settlement project, unleashing the productivity of the Palestinian portion of the population, “defeating” BDS, generating positive international prestige for the IP state, and generally unleashing great economic opportunities. We might also expect continued US, EU and Arab state investment, re-channelled and even energized into a latter-day Marshall Plan in support of the new regime. Or am I just being hopelessly optimistic?

      • diasp0ra on October 8, 2015, 8:26 am

        You’re not looking in the right places then. The number of supporters for one state inside Palestine, and ironically enough, also inside Israel, is rising year after year.

        The last poll carried out in March put this number at 31%.

        You won’t hear this in mainstream media because it is still taboo to even mention this internationally as the two state solution is the only that is internationally accepted..for now.

      • Keith on October 8, 2015, 1:37 pm

        SIBIRIAK- “In modern “democracies” embedded in the global neoliberal capitalist system, money is power, money is speech, money is government capture, money is economic and political control–and in a single “democratic” Israeli/Palestinian state, money-power would be vastly asymmetrical.”

        Absolutely correct, and that is why little has fundamentally changed in South Africa, appearances notwithstanding. Money power would guarantee that a single state of all of its citizens would remain a Jewish dominated state of its oligarchs and transnational corporations. From a purely rational perspective, a desirable solution for the oligarchs and corporations, however, such a solution flies in the face of Zionist ideology, hence, is unacceptable (as is a two state solution).

        “And indeed, peace is a mortal danger to the Zionism of blood and soil, a Zionism that cannot imagine willingly returning even an inch of the sacred territory of the land of Israel.” (p343, The Founding Myths of Israel, Zeev Sternhell)

        The persistent attitudes of classical Judaism toward non-Jews strongly influence its followers, Orthodox Jews and those who can be regarded as its continuators, zionists….Since 1967, as Israel more and more ‘Jewish’, so its policies are influenced more by Jewish ideological considerations than by those of a coldly conceived imperial interest.” (p99, “Jewish History, Jewish Religion,” Israel Shahak)

        The bottom line is that current Israeli policies are driven as much or more by Zionist ideology as by rationality, hence, a change in policies is unlikely as long as Zionism exists in its present form.

      • eljay on October 8, 2015, 3:35 pm

        || mcohen.: … the one state solution is the only way to go,what i do not understand is why there is no support amongst the arab population for one man one vote … ||


        … a one state solution will eventually lead to an attempt by arabs to enforce sharia law through the democratic process,the demographics back this up … therefore jewish law will be the law in that state

  3. Polly on October 7, 2015, 12:04 pm

    Great article Ilene. Your bit about the Times resonated with me.
    The biggest stumbling block I face in discussing the M.E. with anyone is the fact that most “respected” media continue to warp the conventional wisdom surrounding it. How do you tell someone who seems articulate, who prefers the NY Times over the Daily News and who watches Chris Matthews as opposed to FOX that there is a piece of the puzzle this huge in world affairs that they don’t really know about?
    The M.E. situation is still basically treated as 2 peoples who just can’t get along. Muslims (thanks to Bill Maher and Sam Harris types) are still portrayed as godless heathens who would slit your throat if they only had half a chance (Flight Of The Phoenix – 1965 anyone?).
    Before the online world happened I, like I guess many others have been left dizzy at how much we have been lied to about, and for how long.

    • ivri on October 7, 2015, 4:57 pm

      Well, blaming things on lack of adequate knowledge on what goes on in the Israel-Palestine conflict does not really make sense. The conflict is after all almost century-long and there have been zillions of words written on it – for a very long time it occupied the center-podium of international politics. Most likely anybody with just a passing interest in it has already made up his/her mind long time ago about it. What may have changed is recently is the broader regional mayhem, which may have added perspective to people. But still chances are that any new “dramatic” news piece, even the wider disturbances last week in the area – which I refuse to view as a new Intifada, it is not even close to anything like that – already makes little difference. For almost everybody that bothers to even pay attention – given the huge “competition” on the media from far more active scenes – it is, and will be, just “more of the same”, a “steady” conflict that will drag on forever.

      • Atlantaiconoclast on October 8, 2015, 11:50 am

        This is why I believe its crucial for us to change strategy. We are not going to get Americans to care about Palestinians. We can however get them to oppose Israel, if we can convince them that Israel is not a real ally, and that Israel has actually hurt the US in many different ways.

    • MHughes976 on October 7, 2015, 5:16 pm

      They were formerly godless heathens, now death -cultist religious fanatics according to the view still so prevalent in the west thatbI despair of anything good happening in the near future. For the Zionist side there is hardly any praise that is sufficient.

    • JWalters on October 7, 2015, 6:59 pm

      “I, like I guess many others have been left dizzy at how much we have been lied to about, and for how long.”

      It IS amazing when the picture flips. The very size of the change makes it hard to believe. The prolonged blackout of facts is especially hard to believe, and is especially disturbing when realized.

      Thanks to Mondoweiss for being such a convenient source of information.

    • Atlantaiconoclast on October 8, 2015, 11:48 am

      very good point! And 9/11 didn’t help either. The video purportedly showing Palestinians celebrating 9/11 hurt even worse IMO. It was actually a celebration of someone passing out candy, but the meme stuck.

  4. Kay24 on October 7, 2015, 12:19 pm

    It is time Israeli leaders, and it’s apologists here in the US, admitted to, and realized that, it is Israel’s own criminal behavior, the endless occupation, and the illegal settlements, that are bringing anger and making long suffering victims of their occupation, react this way. No one can fault the Palestinians for that anger and desperation. Their is a limit to human endurance and tolerance, and soon it will be breaking point.

    Let no Israeli or their apologists complain when it does. Israel is asking for it, and when they get it, they will not like it. They can dish out, but history shows they cannot take it without whining.

    • inbound39 on October 8, 2015, 4:35 am

      Could not have articulated the issue better myself Kay24…..well done.

  5. eljay on October 7, 2015, 12:29 pm

    I doubt that the supremacist and colonialist “Greater Israel” project will be shut down any time soon, but neither will it live on to be the “Thousand Year ‘Jewish State'” Zio-supremacists wet-dream about.

    Unfortunately, that’s not much consolation to:
    – the Palestinians who have been suffering for decades;
    – the refugees who are prevented from returning to their homes and lands; and
    – the non-Zionist Jews who suffer and will likely continue to suffer some portion of the blowback intended for hateful and immoral Zio-supremacist Jews.

  6. wondering jew on October 7, 2015, 12:42 pm

    They can dish out, but history shows they cannot take it without whining. Just to make sure Kay24. You’re referring to Zionist history, not to Jewish history?

    • echinococcus on October 7, 2015, 11:03 pm

      An old Ladino saying would describe Reb Fredman as “waiting in ambush for fleas in the back of a mouse”. Zing! goes the shot as soon as the flea seems to appear.
      The described would apply perfectly to the Alexandrine riots, CE 65. Just as another example, 1973, 2006. Did you study the rest, in between?

      • Kay24 on October 8, 2015, 7:34 am

        Heh. :))

    • Kay24 on October 8, 2015, 7:34 am

      Obviously, the zionists, the government of Israel, it’s minions in the US. Clear now?

    • Mooser on October 8, 2015, 6:35 pm

      “You’re referring to Zionist history, not to Jewish history?”

      “Yonah” we have a fine, a first-class ability, oft demonstrated, to produce Jewish historical whines. Surely there’s enough there to whine over, wouldn’t you say?

      I mean, c’mon, where do you think the Zionists learned their whine-making? Although they have developed into real ohmeohmyophiles in the last 50 years.

  7. MitchC on October 7, 2015, 1:05 pm

    Since when have we forgotten the basic principles of cause and effect?

    If I went and stabbed a person on the street, with police and soldiers about, I would expect to be shot no matter what country I’m in. How is it racist if I’m the one who tried to stab someone in the first place?

    By all means, tell me all about how he’s fighting for his people’s freedom and all that – but that argument will have to spiral all the way back to the 1920s with each side accusing the other of “starting it”. In the end, we’ll reach the question of “who fired the first shot” — well, I have a better question to ask you, who is willing to be the one to not fire the last shot?

    • echinococcus on October 7, 2015, 11:06 pm

      If I went and stabbed a person on the street, with police and soldiers about, I would expect to be shot no matter what country I’m in

      You don’t go out much, do you? Outside the Zionist entity, the goode olde God’s Own US and a couple horrible shitholes, I can’t see any country where it would happen.

    • CigarGod on October 7, 2015, 11:34 pm

      Apparently you have Mitch…if you think the cause is the guy with the knife.

    • WH on October 8, 2015, 3:31 am

      You’re right Mitch, it was entirely justified to shoot the ultra-orthodox Jew who stabbed participants in the gay pride parade. Oh wait… they didn’t.

      • Mooser on October 8, 2015, 6:26 pm

        “Oh wait… they didn’t.”

        Nor did they, and they had every right to, seeing as the man was just released from prison for the same type offense use preventative detention.

    • bryan on October 8, 2015, 7:44 am

      Utter nonsense Mitch. England and Wales has seen 55 fatal police killings in 24 years; the USA saw 59 fatal police shootings in the first 24 days of 2015 (adjusting for population difference this is a rate more than 60 times higher. Iceland has seen 1 fatal police killing in 71 years, while the town of Stockton, California, which has a smaller population, saw 3 fatal police killings in the first five months of 2015 (a rate almost 500 times higher). See

      There is no universal law that says someone bearing a knife on the street has sacrificed his (or her) life. There are still old-fashioned countries that respect the rule of law and believe that even violent criminals should be arrested and subjected to due process of law, rather than summarily executed at the whim of a policeman, even though your only “crime” may have been to point your fingers, or a toy gun, or a replica gun, or merely to have a knife in your bag when passing through a checkpoint.

      Presumably you are a proponent of state terror, a gun rights advocate, a support of Israel right or wong – or all three?

      • Atlantaiconoclast on October 8, 2015, 11:52 am

        Can we please stop conflating Palestinian rights with gun control, and other “progressive” causes? I support the 2nd Amendment. No compromise. Want to change it? Amend it.

      • Mooser on October 8, 2015, 3:53 pm

        “I support the 2nd Amendment. No compromise.”

        Sure, post-natal birth control sure beats abortion, or contraception, don’t it.

      • bryan on October 9, 2015, 4:16 am

        I was not “conflating Palestinian rights with gun control”. I merely made a passing reference to gun rights in response to someone who advocated gunning down people in the streets.

        I have no problem with your second amendment in its original interpretation (1791 -2008) that “The right to bear arms is not granted by the Constitution” (1876, United States v. Cruikshank) and that restrictions on guns are perfectly legitimate when not having a “reasonable relationship to the preservation or efficiency of a well regulated militia” (1939, United States v Miller).

        What is clearly absurd is its reinterpretation following lobbying by a very small group, funded by arms manufacturers and dealers, that effectively allows any lunatic to assemble an armory of weapons. This matter clearly has nothing to do with Palestine, though coincidentally the same right-wing Supreme Court responsible for this reinterpretation, also came up with the Citizens United decision that permits wealthy American Zionists to subvert the democratic process to protect Israeli crimes.

      • Mooser on October 9, 2015, 11:49 am

        “bryan” when a person decides to forsake statistics, any kind of common sense and history, and decide to form their opinions based on a corpus, a Scripture, of media nonsense about guns and their use, there’s nothing you can do. A person usually derives their information from the bulk of the input.

        Remember folks, keep your home self-defense weapons clean, loaded and available for use, and safely stored to prevent accidents!

      • bryan on October 10, 2015, 6:30 am

        Thanks Mooser for the two very interesting links, particularly the second (which describes the systematic attempts to suppress research on issues relating to the impact of gun ownership and safety). Might also lead one to conclude that one must “conflate Palestinian rights with gun control” – both illustrate the immense power of small lobbying organisations and the strenuous efforts efforts made to suppress intelligent and open debate of the respective issues.

      • Mooser on October 10, 2015, 4:15 pm

        ” strenuous efforts efforts made to suppress intelligent and open debate of the respective issues.”

        You said it, brother! I agree.

    • diasp0ra on October 8, 2015, 8:51 am

      Okay Mitch,

      Your cause and effect seems to begin when a Palestinian does anything. Ignoring the context and what drove this person to do anything.

      According to your way of thinking, if I dropped a baby in a shark tank, I am free of blame, as I did not do the killing the sharks did. What lead up to that is just an endless spiral of who started it. Context means nothing, apparently.

      Honestly if you don’t see the double standard of how Palestinians are shot and even more violent settlers are slapped on the wrist you’re blind. But that is what Apartheid means, two legal systems for two people living in the same territory. Two ways of dealing with two different groups.

      Not to mention that Palestinians are reacting to decades of humiliation and oppression. Palestinians are fighting for their lives, while Israelis are fighting for the status quo and their superiority. World of a difference there.

      • CigarGod on October 8, 2015, 9:06 am

        Our dumbed down citizenry…and even worse than dumbed…is the indoctrinated w/out being taught reasoning skills.
        But they (Mitch) think reacting within manufactured commonsense is reasoned thought.

      • MitchC on October 8, 2015, 12:11 pm

        You claim the Palestinians are reacting to decades of humiliation and oppression; how nice of you to finally admit that. The Jews are reacting to decades of Palestinian violence and genocide. Apparently, the former is worse, and humiliation justifies murder.

        The question of “who started it” can go back all the way to the 1920s. Mind you, back then Palestinian Arabs were shooting at Palestinian Jews on the street. Was there occupation back then? Was there an Israel? Nah, there was simply no need for an excuse back then.

      • CigarGod on October 8, 2015, 1:26 pm

        Again…you choose a convenient starting point for yourself. Try the 1850’s.

      • diasp0ra on October 8, 2015, 2:07 pm


        What are you talking about? What GENOCIDE of the Israelis ever took place by Palestinians?

        How can you even argue this? Are you telling me that fresh off the boat Zionists in the 1850s who clearly had a plan to establish a Jewish only state while getting rid of the natives is a Jewish reaction to Palestinians?

        This was a design feature of Zionism, it’s not something they were pushed into. Go into all the old writings on Zionism and you will find that the vision of what state to be built always came at the cost of removing the natives.

        THAT is when you can start analyzing the situation on the ground, and not some arbitrary point like 1920 where the Balfour declaration was already given and Zionists began more overtly to exclude the natives and take over territory.

        What, you think the Palestinians were bored one day and decided to start a scuffle with their neighbors?

        Are you seriously going to pretend that tens of thousands of fresh off the boat European Zionists weren’t coming in with a colonial mentality and a colonial goal and slowly carrying out their plan? Or are we just irrational angry brown people who do things for no reason?

        I repeat again, Israeli Jews are fighting to keep their superiority and to keep their status as lords over the land by discrimination. Palestinians are fighting to break that superiority. World of a difference that you can’t seem to grasp.

        This always happens when people look at an event detached from its context and history.

      • talknic on October 8, 2015, 5:40 pm

        @ MitchC

        1897 The Zionist Federation decides to colonize Palestine

        Seems some folk must miss out large chunks of history (and make other large chunks up)

      • RoHa on October 8, 2015, 7:22 pm

        Mitch, the Zionist invasion began before the 1920s.

        Foreign Jews poured into Palestine with the clear and avowed intention of taking over the land and setting up a Jewish state. They had no intention of becoming part of Palestinian Arabic society.

        By the 1920s they had already set up the basics of their separate society.
        They were insisting on their new language being used along with Arabic.
        They mostly did business only with each other, and, when possible, kept themselves cut off from the Palestinian Arabs.
        They bought up land and drove off the Arab tenant farmers.

        The Palestinian Arabs resisted, but the Zionists were backed by rich and powerful people in the richest and most powerful countries of the world.

        So who started it? The Zionists started it. If they had stayed at home in their own countries, the current problem would not exist.

      • YoniFalic on October 9, 2015, 3:01 am

        These quotes that come from the first Aliyah and that were collected by Benny Morris put Zionism from the beginning squarely in the category of genocidal European colonialism.

        Morris provides excerpts from three letters written in 1882 by these first arrivals:

        Vladimir (Ze’ev) Dubnow, one of the Biluim wrote to his brother, the historian Simon Dubnow, in October 1882: “The ultimate goal … is, in time, to take over the Land of Israel and to restore to the Jews the political independence they have been deprived of for these two thousand years …. The Jews will yet arise and, arms in hand (if need be), declare that they are the masters of their ancient homeland.” (Dubnow himself shortly afterward returned to Russia.)[11]
        Ben-Yehuda, who settled in Jerusalem in September 1881, wrote in July 1882 to Peretz Smolenskin in Vienna: “The thing we must do now is to become as strong as we can, to conquer the country, covertly, bit by bit … We will not set up committees so that the Arabs will know what we are after, we shall act like silent spies, we shall buy, buy, buy.”[12]
        In October 1882 Ben-Yehuda and Yehiel Michael Pines, who had arrived in Palestine in 1878, wrote to Rashi Pin, in Vilna: “We have made it a rule not to say too much, except to those … we trust … the goal is to revive our nation on its land … if only we succeed in increasing our numbers here until we are the majority [Emphasis in original] …. There are now only five hundred [thousand] Arabs, who are not very strong, and from whom we shall easily take away the country if only we do it through stratagems [and] without drawing upon us their hostility before we become the strong and populous ones.”[13]

  8. Mooser on October 7, 2015, 1:06 pm

    “(Israeli sovereignty over West Jerusalem is, of course, not in question internationally.)”

    And will exist when the “colonial regime” ends?

  9. MikeHolloway on October 7, 2015, 1:28 pm

    Could I get some clarification Ms. Cohen? Don’t know if authors ever read net comments. Not sure I would. Are you advocating the two state solution, or a unilaterally imposed Palestine like a Gaza withdrawal? I find advocates, especially Israeli advocates, more confusing than clarifying, which is, of course, just an aspect of my own ignorance. No one seems to be concerned about practical facts. Certainly not Likud and the right who now seem convinced that the Palestinians will magically disappear and reappear in Jordan. I find the left equally confusing. The rhetoric of people who seem to be advocating for a two state solution is often inextricable from that of people dedicated to the elimination of Israel. That is, of course, from the perspective of someone over here in the states. It might be entirely obvious to you that the security of Israel isn’t in question. From my perspective, getting as I do daily emails from PMW, it certainly seems that the majority of the Palestinians, and certainly their leaders, mean to carry on a war with Israel and show no interest in meeting Israel’s terms for the creation of Palestine. Am I wrong?
    Tell me where I’m wrong. My impression is that the Palestinians have never given up on eliminating the Jewish homeland and have purposely declined on multiple occasions accept a Palestine on Israel’s terms. In response, Israeli crazies on the right have obtained power by successfully exploiting fear mongering. The right’s apparent plan to deal with Palestinians (so far as you could call it a plan) is to squeeze them out and encourage emigration.
    While protesting, and working against, the Likud government might be a moral imperative, isn’t there also a need to encourage Palestinians to give up the war and settle with Israel? It seems that rhetoric on the left is dedicated to encouraging hostilities rather that calming them.

    • Teapot on October 8, 2015, 12:17 am

      My impression is that the Palestinians […] have purposely declined on multiple occasions accept a Palestine on Israel’s terms

      Why should Israel get to have a solution based solely on their terms? But you know what, let’s pretend for a moment that it’s okay for Israel to dictate the terms. What are those terms exactly? Israel refuses to define its borders. They keep talking about swapping territory, but in all those many long years of “peace talks”, they never bothered to outline the borders between Israel and Palestine.

      There is no Palestine on Israel’s terms, because Israel’s terms are that there can never be an independent Palestine.

      • MikeHolloway on October 8, 2015, 12:34 pm

        Barak and Olmert did seem to be ready to make Palistine happen with their proposals, didn’t they? Of course, that’s now in the past. You may be correct that the present Israeli government could not do what Barak and Olmert did. The solution would then seem to be to calm the fear mongering of the Israeli electorate in order to facilitate a government able to consider a sovereign Palestine, no? I don’t see how whipping up hostility against Israel is going to help peace. Is it simply a matter of political necessity that there be an extreme element to balance another extreme?

    • eljay on October 8, 2015, 7:46 am

      || MikeHolloway: … From my perspective, getting as I do daily emails from PMW, it certainly seems that the majority of the Palestinians … show no interest in meeting Israel’s terms for the creation of Palestine. … ||

      The Palestinian territory defined by Partition belongs to the Palestinians. The creation of a Palestinian state is dependent upon Israel ending its decades-long occupation and colonization of Palestine and withdrawing to within its / Partition borders. The creation of Palestine should not be dependent upon “meeting Israel’s terms”.

      || … My impression is that the Palestinians have never given up on eliminating the Jewish homeland … ||

      Since there isn’t a “Jewish homeland”, the Palestinians have nothing to eliminate.

      And while they may rightly object to the existence of Israel as an oppressive, colonialist, expansionist, belligerent, intransigent and religion-supremacist “Jewish State”, my impression is that the Palestinians don’t object to the existence of Israel as an Israeli state of and for all of its Israeli citizens, immigrants, expats and refugees, equally.

      • MikeHolloway on October 8, 2015, 12:47 pm

        “my impression is that the Palestinians don’t object to the existence of Israel”
        In so far as this statement addresses hostilities, this is something I’m frustrated at understanding. Five to ten years ago, news articles were interviewing Palestinians anxious to build successful businesses and focus on prosperity. The suggestion was that the majority were tired of violence and wanted to build a life and a country for their children. While it’s very well documented through the Palestinian media that hate mongering propaganda is encouraging violence, I can’t get a sense of how much of the Palestinian population is focusing on violence. Just the other day NYT interviewed a Palestinian father searching for his 11 year old son at a violent protest. He stated that he was going to kick his son’s behind and that he didn’t want his son to be martyr. Doesn’t that attitude offer more hope for the Palestinians than making yourself a target for the strongest and most paranoid military force in the region?

      • CigarGod on October 8, 2015, 1:24 pm

        Good luck with ever having a free mind…if you keep getting your “impressions” from the NYT.

      • Bumblebye on October 8, 2015, 3:17 pm


        Mikey dear, who has been *relentlessly* hostile for well over 70 years towards the indigenous people of Palestine? The “articles” you’ve read in (presumably) msm or other pro-Israel organs has told yo less than half of 1% of the reality. You need to educate yourself about the relentless violence of the shtetlers towards Palestinians; about their personal propensity for theft along with that of their government; research just how much land has been stolen/”expropriated” for exclusively Jewish use, about the resources – ie water – stolen with no recompense; the denial of building permits to Palestinians on their own land, the violence of the shtetlers *supported* by the Israeli government thru the back-up of IOF personnel who further victimise Palestinians by adding to the violence or arresting them rather than theirassailants…actually, go and read thru just one months worth of Kate’s lists of what’s been reported. It’ll keep you busy for days. You talk of 5 to 10 years ago that you were reading your uninformative articles – so pick a couple weeks 5 years ago and a couple of recent weeks. Then see if your understanding is still frustrated.

    • bryan on October 8, 2015, 8:56 am

      “The rhetoric of people who seem to be advocating for a two state solution is often inextricable from that of people dedicated to the elimination of Israel”

      How strange it is then that the US, the governments of leading EU and other western states, many Jewish and pro-Israel organisations, and “liberal Zionists” virtually to a man and woman, and many leading Israeli politicians, journalists and intellectuals all advocate a two-state solution as the only way to save the state of Israel from the inherent evil of a corrosive occupation which is detrimental to its international reputation and democratic system. Even on this site you will find two-state enthusiasts, along with the probably more numerous one state enthusiasts (who often argue their case simply on the basis that on-going settlement activities have destroyed the feasibility of a 2SS). You will also find a handful of backwoodsmen who favour the status quo, though you will soon note their paucity of persuasive arguments (beyond their tribal loyalties).

      “From my perspective, getting as I do daily emails from PMW, it certainly seems that the majority of the Palestinians, and certainly their leaders, mean to carry on a war with Israel and show no interest in meeting Israel’s terms for the creation of Palestine.”

      If you were a Christian fundamentalist you would believe every single word of the Bible was God’s inerrant word, even when different passages violently contradict each other. If you were a Stalinist, you would believe Pravda was gospel. If you were a southern supremacist then Watcher on the Tower would be your watchword. (see but since you are an Israel apologist you select an extremist and discredited source, Palestine Media Watch. In 2013 an Israeli judge threw out expert testimony from its director, Itamar Marcus, arguing that PMW’s research was extremely biased and cherry-picked information from low-circulation media, even when this was directly contradicted by far more influential and mass-circulation sources, and that Marcus lacked all credibility as an expert witness. (see

      ” Am I wrong? Tell me where I’m wrong.”

      Of course you are wrong, and you probably know it in your own heart. But since you invited explanations I would suggest that a common attribute of extremists (especially the right-wing extremists prevalent in modern society) is an intellectual laziness – they like to be told what to believe, and lack the powers of critical analysis to be able to assess and evaluate evidence for themselves. They are even more prone than the average person to “confirmation bias” (See, deliberately seeking out evidence that confirms their personal beliefs, and deliberately ignoring anything to the contrary.

      You may of course be simply a troll, with no interest in the truth, but if not there are many ways that you can become better informed. Mondoweiss is an excellent source, with high quality articles and some very knowledgeable contributors, and might even humble you to read and learn more before you start voicing too many of your own personal views. +972 magazine, The Electronic Intifada and many other web-sites, that welcome comments from readers, may also act as an antidote to the orthodoxies presented by PMW.

      • MikeHolloway on October 8, 2015, 12:22 pm

        You misunderstand. The two state solution is obviously the only solution that doesn’t involve horrific bloodshed. I meant only what I wrote.
        Perhaps I should have prefaced my remarks with by stating that I’m trying to understand how popular support might be built for a practical peace in the conflict. The only thing I’m certain of is that the rhetoric of both the right and the left, as it’s popularly used, is not concerned with encouraging a practical solution. Hence the question about confusion generated by conflating extreme pro-Palestinian propaganda with encouraging the creation of a Palestinian state. There doesn’t seem to be a realistic way of achieving a Palestinian state without Israel’s cooperation, which is unlikely if hostilities continue, no? Doesn’t peace require giving up hostility?

      • bryan on October 9, 2015, 3:47 am

        “You misunderstand.” If you are genuinely looking for a solution then give up on PMW as your source of information, since this is an extremist organisation, intent on fanning the flames of conflict by portraying all Arabs and all Palestinians as irremediably hostile to peace.

        “Doesn’t peace require giving up hostility?” I don’t see that at all. Sometimes it is only resistance that will drive politicians to peace negotiations. Think about it: peace is the absence of hostility: if you already have an end to hostility then peace is almost redundant.

        Peace was achieved in Northern Ireland (a very close parallel to Israel-Palestine) by far-sighted politicians on both sides who committed to talk to each other and discuss solutions. They did not say surrender all your weapons and stop all agitation and then we can talk. They said the peace solution when we agree on it will entail the surrender of weapons and a full normalisation of relations.

        When the Oslo Accords were signed the PLO accepted a highly disadvantageous framework on the basis that trust-building was necessary, believing, obviously misguidedly, that if they compromised first, they could induce Israel to compromise later in the proposed five-year cycle of negotiations. As we know that ended that disastrously when Rabin was assassinated by extremists, and government passed to the extremist Netanyahu, who did everything possible to destroy the process. Read the Wikileaks exposure of recent negotiations and you will find the PA have again been ready to make huge sacrifices for peace.

        The absurdity you pose as the necessity to give up hostilities comes with the implication that it is Palestinians who must give up hostilities but the key obstacle to peace is continued settlement building and other Israeli measures. If an Israeli government had any desire for peace it would take simple steps to relax hostility: it would say the status quo regarding temple Mount will be maintained and we will facilitate peaceful access for Moslem worship. It would say as long as Hamas and other groups desist from rocket fire, we will relax the siege of Gaza. It would say we will review those arbitrarily detained in Israeli jails, and release all those who cannot clearly be identified as a terrorist threat. It would say we will suspend all further building activity on the Wall and have a moratorium on further settlement building and expansion for the limited duration of a defined peace process. Come to the table, and we will put concrete proposals to you as to how to resolve our differences on borders, refugees, Jerusalem, and security for both peoples. The effect of such an approach would be truly amazing in terms of calming tension and hostility (except in the right-wing settler community). Why is such an approach impossible? Obviously because Palestinians are the obstacle to peace.

    • diasp0ra on October 8, 2015, 8:56 am

      Your impression is wrong. Plain and simple.

      Do you know what Israel’s terms even are? An autonomous bantustan or two. Nobody would agree to that. Netanyahu openly said there would be no Palestinian state under his rule, yet it’s still the Palestinians that are the problem here?

      Ask yourself why you to come to this discussion from one side, what about Palestinian terms? Why has Israel never agreed to Palestinian terms? Why are Palestinians obligated to meet Israel’s terms but not the other way around? Even though Israel is in control of everything and has the power to enforce anything it wants, and thus needs to give up more than the Palestinians?

      Work on your bias and then come back with an answer.

      • MikeHolloway on October 8, 2015, 1:00 pm

        One of the things I try to do in studying the conflict is understand what outcomes the various political groups are trying to achieve. This is frustrating since what I read often doesn’t seem to be practically achievable. One thing does seem to be certain though. Israel is in control of the region. Achieving a country for the Palestinians can’t happen without their willing cooperation.
        It does seem to be conceivable that a Palestinian state would be in Israel’s own best interests. Would it not be more practical to frame a solution in those terms than trying to force Israel to do something it can’t, or won’t, do?

      • diasp0ra on October 8, 2015, 2:13 pm

        Think about it this way:

        If the Black South Africans thought in this manner, Apartheid would never be stronger.

        Since the white South Africans controlled everything, let’s suck up to them and hope they bestow upon us a bantustan that might help us carry out a little of our national ambitions.

        You see why this never would have worked?

        It’s the same here. We don’t want a state just to have a state. We want a solution to this conflict, and a weak demilitarized state with 0 sovereignty under Israeli control that Israel wants for us is no solution at all.

    • inbound39 on October 9, 2015, 4:56 am

      I suggest Mike Holloway reads Biography of Theodore Herzl and his views on Palestine or Jabotinsky’s Iron Wall. Even David Ben Gurions Diaries. All three talk about the need to remove ALL Palestinians from their homeland. It can also be found within these writings,David Ben Gurion in particular, that the Zionists knew the Palestinians would not leave willingly,that they would need to be forced to move. Ben Gurion also gave orders not to allow Palestinians back into pre state Israel and that Palestinian villages should be demolished. Zionists took all the Palestinians possessions and tools and machinery and even emptied the banks of Palestinian Money and kept it for Israel. Rather than Palestinians settling with Israel or accepting a State on Israel’s terms it is more a case of Palestinians need to demand the criminal State of Israel pay reparations and comply with Resolutions made by the UN in keeping with International Law and Withdraw in total from Palestinian Territory. Israel has an obligation to the World to end this conflict by abiding by the International treaties it has signed and ratified such as the Geneva Convention and the UN Charter. There is no obligation for anyone to accept the dictats of a criminal State such as Israel. It is a very real and present danger to World peace particularly when influential people within Israel are sanctioning the murder of the President of the United States if he refuses to comply with their religious beliefs.

  10. Citizen on October 7, 2015, 2:23 pm

    On Twitter, pro-Israel defenders always attack use of the word “colonial” by pointing to the technical/historical fact colonial settlers always had a mother country/state while the Jews do not, hence, Israel, their logic goes, is not a colonial enterprise. (Also that there’s never been a Palestinian state, hence, their logic goes, Palestinians are an invented people; they’re just Arabs who have many other Arab states/countries they can move to anytime, while Jews have no other country/state but Israel.) Unfortunately, onlookers on a thread without much knowledge of how deceitful hasbara story line is, get taken in.

  11. niass2 on October 7, 2015, 3:53 pm

    You ask how the Isreali’s could tweak the occupation so it is more palatable to the Palestinians. They could give each Palestinian family that has a right to return a box of Twinkies with a promise to give them their state back before the Twinkies become inedible. Given how long this is taking and is going to take the Isrealis can tell the press “At least we weren’t/arent lying about the Twinky thing.” Over in my room here it is getting colder and am not witnessing anything but the fact I am getting info here that is unavailable in the news for consumption by Americans. Bombing hospitals is a much better story anyways. I don’t see the end of the occupation from here, but I am listening to a Darkstar from Miami 1973. Hopefully smarter people than me, like Sarah Palin,can see the end of the occupation from their porch. I can’t. I’ll keep looking. Maybe I’ll see it by the time the leaves IV fall. Shall we go while we can?

  12. just on October 7, 2015, 8:37 pm

    Amira Hass’ article is masterful.

    Gideon Levy “nails it”, too. His latest:

    “Even Gandhi Would Understand the Palestinians’ Violence …

    Through the haze of self-righteousness, media propaganda, incitement, distraction, brainwashing and victimhood of the past few days, the simple question returns in full force: Who’s right?

    There are no justified arguments left in Israel’s arsenal, the kind a decent person could accept. Even Mahatma Gandhi would understand the reasons for this outburst of Palestinian violence. Even those who recoil from violence, who see it as immoral and useless, can’t help but understand how it breaks out periodically. The question is why it doesn’t break out more often.

    From the question of who started it to the question of who’s to blame, the finger is rightfully pointed at Israel, at Israel alone. It’s not that the Palestinians are blameless, but the main blame lies on Israel’s shoulders. As long as Israel doesn’t shake off this blame, it has no basis for making even a scrap of a demand from the Palestinians. Everything else is false propaganda.

    As veteran Palestinian activist Hanan Ashrawi wrote recently, the Palestinians are the only people on earth required to guarantee the security of the occupier, while Israel is the only country that demands protection from its victims. And how can we respond?

    As Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has asked in a Haaretz interview, “How do you expect the Palestinian street to react after the burning of the teenager Mohammed Abu Khdeir, the torching of the Dawabsheh home, the settlers’ aggression and the damage to property under the eyes of the soldiers?” And what are we to answer?

    To the 100 years of dispossession and 50 years of oppression we can add the past few years, marked by intolerable Israeli arrogance that’s exploding once again in our faces.

    These were the years Israel thought it could do anything and pay no price. It thought the defense minister could boast he knew the identity of the Dawabsheh murderers and not arrest them, and the Palestinians would restrain themselves. It thought that nearly every week a boy or teenager could be killed by soldiers, and the Palestinians would stay quiet.

    It thought military and political leaders could back the crimes and no one would be prosecuted. It thought houses could be demolished and shepherds expelled, and the Palestinians would accept it all humbly. It thought settler thugs could damage, burn and act as if Palestinian property were theirs, and the Palestinians would bow their heads.

    It thought that Israeli soldiers could burst into Palestinian homes every night and terrorize, humiliate and arrest people. That hundreds could be arrested without trial. That the Shin Bet security service could resume torturing suspects with methods handed down by Satan.

    It thought that hunger strikers and freed prisoners could be rearrested, often for no reason. That Israel could destroy Gaza once every two to three years and Gaza would surrender and the West Bank remain calm. That Israeli public opinion would applaud all this, with cheers at best and demands for more Palestinian blood at worst, with a thirst that’s hard to understand. And the Palestinians would forgive.

    This could go on for many more years. Why? Because Israel is stronger than  ever and the West is indifferent and letting it run wild as it never has. The Palestinians, meanwhile, are weak, divided, isolated and bleeding as they haven’t been since the Nakba.
    So this could continue because Israel can — and the people want it to. No one will try to stop it other than international public opinion, which Israel dismisses as Jew-hatred.

    And we haven’t said a word about the occupation itself and the inability to end it. We’re tired. We haven’t said a word about the injustice of 1948, which should have ended then and not resumed with even more force in 1967 and continued with no end in sight. We haven’t spoken about international law, natural justice and human morality, which can’t accept any of this in any way.

    When young people kill settlers, throw firebombs at soldiers or hurl rocks at Israelis, this is the background. You need a great deal of obtuseness, ignorance, nationalism and arrogance – or all the above – to ignore this.”

    read more:

    For info on the horrors of Israeli torture:

    “Shin Bet Seeks Lenient Plea Deals for Hamas Operatives to Avoid Testifying About Torture Methods”

    read more:

    It seems that the US eagerly and willfully learned from them.

    “I’m in Israel now, taking a break from the inanity and horrors of American politics, and watching the situation in Israel/Palestine heating up.”

    Ilene~ I wonder how you (or anyone sane) can bear/choose to go to Israel and surround themselves with the 95% of the population that cheered the bombs massacring the Palestinians of Gaza, and with that criminal and inhuman government, and with the terrorists of the IOF.

    Thanks for the article.

  13. BI on October 7, 2015, 8:51 pm

    Let’s call this situation what it is: The Greatest Injustice of the 20th Century=>

  14. Spring Renouncer on October 7, 2015, 10:22 pm

    I hope that you are right and justice is inevitable. I am increasingly afraid, though, that successful popular rebellion against a technologically advanced occupier is a dying vestige of the Twentieth Century.

    Why is humanity so awful? Why can’t we interact freely, make love, get high together, redistribute wealth and power, and dissolve the cruel idiocy of borders?

    I feel so disgusted by everything and everyone, chief among them, myself. ‘I should run away to San Francisco. We should all run away to San Francisco and have a blast, and watch the sunset by the beach. We should bury our heads in the sand and eat lotus: forget our debt, our privilege, and the massacred thousands who used to own this land.’

    This is what I feel often. This is what Europe’s oppressed and displaced Jews must have felt of Israel too. Escape and utopia are so terribly fraught with tragedy. Good intentions – one person’s urge for pleasure, and escape from pain – crush ‘the other’ to death.

    The answer, then, is not to hail some elusive future victory (Marx’ fatal flaw), but to never stop fighting. We must not stop fighting. We must not stop questioning those in power. Most importantly, we must never stop questioning our selves: we must ask, ‘on whose withering body does my status rest? When have I sacrificed a human being to attain a thing, either material or conceptual?’ We have killed. Our silence is killing right now, and it must be stopped.

  15. thetumta on October 7, 2015, 10:33 pm

    Great article. How much damage the Zionist Project continues to inflict on the world remains to be seen. In the end, they will use their nukes, yet again(October 1973). Maybe Putin will save us yet again.

    During the last Clinton Administration, Ariel Sharon was quoted by his Chief of Staff as saying, “We own the Americans and they know it”. He was referring to the “Clintonistas”.

    Rafeal Eiteain recently stated on Israel’s channel 2 that Bill Clinton was “visibly shaken” when Nathanyahoo, still a Mossad agent at the time told him they had the Monica tapes. It was Wye River and Bill just rolled over and screwed Arafat.

    The problem is here. Unless we solve it, we’re done for.

    Hej! Tumta

    P.S. This site is totally penetrated that’s why I don’t post anymore. Tired of death threats on my phone. Constant virus interference when I type. Very simplistic harassment causing a lot of retyping. If you post here, you’re on a list.

    • JWalters on October 8, 2015, 6:57 pm

      You are previewing Jerusalem as the world’s capital. Here’s an excellent article on Israel’s heavy threat and smear operations in America, traced to an office in Jerusalem, by Max Blumenthal and Julia Carmel.

      Posting via public connections helps anonymity. Not sure if calling in the police would be helpful. ACLU perhaps?

      It is OUTRAGEOUS that American citizens are being harassed and threatened by a foreign government for expressing their political opinions about that government. Outrageous!

  16. Jasonius Maximus on October 7, 2015, 11:47 pm

    As a South African expat who grew up during the end of Apartheid, I often wonder if this is where South Africa would be today had De Klerk and Mandela not seen the light and negotiated an end to the unsustainable status quo of white minority rule.
    Then again, even at the height of Apartheid, the senseless killing of native South Africans was nowhere near that of Israel/Palestine. The ‘Sharpeville Massacre’ of 1960, arguably the darkest day in the resistance to Apartheid, saw 69 deaths in the face of nearly 7,000 protesters. This year alone, over 30 Palestinians have been killed for less intransigences and far lesser threats to Israel forces and colonial status quo. Include any of the previous Intifadas and this makes the South African regime look like a tame pussy cat in comparison. Desmond Tutu’s analysis of the Israel/Palestine struggle is right. This is more than Apartheid, it is something so very much worse, insidious and malevolent than anything the NATS and the racist Apartheid regime could EVER have dreamt up or carried out…

    • echinococcus on October 8, 2015, 4:59 am


      Of course there’s a huge difference. SA Whites didn’t even think of driving away the owners of the place or of conducting a genocide: they desperately needed slaves. The Zionists need a country empty of its owners. They think they have a huge reserve of Russians.

  17. kalithea on October 7, 2015, 11:52 pm

    Oh look! A young modern-day David in a keffiyeh defeating the Goliath Zionism stone by stone.

  18. Pixel on October 8, 2015, 4:58 am



  19. Misterioso on October 8, 2015, 11:17 am


    You write: “If, just once, the Palestinian leadership came to Israel and said ‘We want peace’, rather than ‘We want our demands met,’ things would look a lot different.”

    For your edification:
    In 1988, the PLO accepted Israel as a sovereign state within the borders of the 1947 recommendatory only UNGA Partition Plan, Res. 181 (which, for the record, violated the terms of the Class A British Mandate for Palestine and was never adopted by the UNSC.) By signing the 1993 Oslo Accords, the PLO agreed to UNSC Res. 242 and thereby agreed to recognize a sovereign Israel within its boundaries as of 4 June 1967. The PLO also agreed to the US supported 2002 Arab League Beirut Summit Peace Initiative which offers Israel full recognition as a sovereign state, exchange of ambassadors, trade, tourism, etc., if Israel complies with international law and its previous commitments. Fully aware of Israel’s demographic concerns, the Beirut initiative does not demand the return of all Palestinian refugees. It “calls upon Israel to affirm” that it agrees to help pursue the “achievement of a just solution to the Palestinian refugee problem…” Regrettably, then Israeli PM Ariel Sharon summarily dismissed the Arab League’s peace overture, as did Israel’s govt. in 2008.

    For the record, other peace initiatives that Israeli governments have rebuffed include: U.S. Secretary of State William Rogers’ The Rogers Plan (1969); The Scranton Mission on behalf of President Nixon (1970); Egyptian President Sadat’s land for peace and mutual recognition proposal (1971); U.S. President Jimmy Carter’s call for a Geneva international conference (1977); Saudi Arabian King Fahd’s peace offer (1981); U.S. President Ronald Reagan’s Reagan Plan (1982); U.S. Secretary of State George Shultz’s Schultz Plan (1988); U.S. Secretary of State James Baker’s Baker Plan (1989); and the previously noted 1993 Oslo accords signed by Yasser Arafat and Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin that unravelled following the latter’s assassination and subsequent return to power of the Likud party from 1996-1999 under Benjamin Netanyahu; continuation of the Taba II negotiations (2001); the unofficial Geneva Peace Initiative of November/December 2003; and the 2014 Kerry Initiative.

    As for the 2000 Camp David Summit, working in tandem, Barak and Clinton tried to shove a very bad deal down Arafat’s throat. It could only be rejected. Suffice to quote Shlomo Ben-Ami, then Israel’s foreign minister and lead negotiator at Camp David: “Camp David was not the missed opportunity for the Palestinians, and if I were a Palestinian I would have rejected Camp David, as well.” (National Public Radio, 14 February 2006.)

    Regrettably, Israel’s response to every peace overture from the Palestinians and Arab states, has been an escalation of illegal settlement construction in belligerently/illegally/brutally occupied Palestinian and other Arab lands.

    • inbound39 on October 9, 2015, 5:06 am

      You missed out the Arab Peace Initiative which has been on the table since 2002. Israel hasn’t even bothered to acknowledge or read it and yet it gives Israel ALL it requires from Arabs in as much as its right to exist and guaranteed business with ALL Arab League States and guaranteed Peace.

  20. JLewisDickerson on October 8, 2015, 12:57 pm

    RE: “Our worldview is shaped by the consistent betrayal by Israeli media outlets of their duty to report events, or their lack of the technical and the emotional ability to contain all of the details of the world war that we are conducting in order to preserve our superiority in the land between the river and the sea.” ~ Amira Hass

    “Israel’s Weird Elections”, by Uri Avnery, Counterpunch, 1/04/13:

    [EXCERPTS] . . . The Israeli media are already to a large extent neutralized, a creeping process not unsimilar to what the Germans used to call Gleichschaltung. [SEE: Gleichschaltung @ Wikipedia – J.L.D. ]
    All three TV channels are more or less bankrupt and dependent on government handouts. Their editors are practically government appointees. The printed press is also teetering on the brink of bankruptcy, except the largest “news” paper, which belongs to Sheldon Adelson and is a Netanyahu propaganda sheet, distributed gratis.
    [Naftali] Bennett repeats the ridiculous assertion that almost all journalists are left-wingers (meaning traitors.) He promises to put an end to this intolerable situation. . .
    . . . In the coming four years, the official annexation of the West Bank to Israel may become a fact. . .
    . . . If the government continues on its present course, this will lead to certain disaster – the entire country between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River will become one unit under Israeli rule. This Greater Israel will contain an Arab majority and a shrinking Jewish minority, turning it inevitably into an apartheid state, plagued by a permanent civil war and shunned by the world.
    If pressure from without and within eventually compels the government to grant civil rights to the Arab majority, the country will turn into an Arab state. 134 years of Zionist endeavor will come to naught, a repetition of the Crusaders’ kingdom.
    This is so obvious, so inevitable, that one needs an iron will not to think about it. It seems that all major parties in these elections have this will. Speaking about peace, they believe, is poison. Giving back the West Bank and East Jerusalem for peace? God forbid even thinking about it.
    The weird fact is that this week two respected polls – independent of each other – came to the same conclusion: the great majority of Israeli voters favors the “two-state solution”
    , the creation of a Palestinian state along the 1967 borders and the partition of Jerusalem. This majority includes the majority of Likud voters, and even about half of Bennett’s adherents.
    How come? The explanation lies in the next question: How many voters believe that this solution is possible? The answer: almost nobody. Over dozens of years, Israelis have been brainwashed into believing that “the Arabs” don’t want peace. If they say they do, they are lying.
    If peace is impossible, why think about it? Why even mention it in the election campaign? Why not go back 44 years to Golda Meir’s days and pretend that the Palestinians don’t exist? (“There is no such thing as a Palestinian people…It is not as though there was a Palestinian people and we came and threw them out and took their country away. They did not exist.” – Golda Meir, June 13, 1969) . . .


    • JLewisDickerson on October 8, 2015, 1:02 pm

      P.S. ALSO SEE: “Who Will Save Israel”, by Uri Avnery,, 23 May 2015

      [EXCERPTS] THE BATTLE is over. The dust has settled. A new government – partly ridiculous, partly terrifying – has been installed. . .
      . . . Now the situation inside Israel proper is about to change drastically.
      Two facts attest to this.
      First of all, Ayelet Shaked has been appointed Minister of Justice. One of the most extreme right-wing Israelis, she has not made a secret of the fact that she wants to destroy the independence of the Supreme Court, the last bastion of human rights. . .
      . . . PERHAPS WORSE is Netanyahu’s decision to retain for himself the Ministry of Communication.
      This ministry has always been disdained as a low-level office, reserved for political lightweights. Netanyahu’s dogged insistence on retaining it for himself is ominous.
      The communication Ministry controls all TV stations, and indirectly newspapers and other media. Since all Israeli media are in very bad shape financially, this control may become deadly.
      Netanyahu’s patron – some say owner – Sheldon Adelson, the would-be dictator of the US Republican party, already publishes a give-away newspaper in Israel, which has only one sole aim: to support Netanyahu personally against all enemies, including his competitors in his own Likud party. The paper – “Israel Hayom” (Israel Today) – is already Israel’s widest-circulation newspaper, with the American casino king pouring into it untold millions.
      Netanyahu is determined to break all opposition in the electronic and written media. Opposition commentators are well advised to look for jobs elsewhere . . .
      . . . One cannot avoid an odious analogy. One of the key terms in the Nazi lexicon was the atrocious German word Gleichschaltung – meaning connecting all media to the same energy source [SEE: Gleichschaltung @ Wikipedia – J.L.D. ]. All newspapers and radio stations (TV did not yet exist) were staffed with Nazis. Every morning, a Propaganda Ministry official by the name of Dr. Dietrich convened the editors and told them what tomorrow’s headlines, editorials etc. were to be.
      Netanyahu has already dismissed the chief of the TV department. We don’t yet know the name of our own Dr. Dietrich. . .


    • JLewisDickerson on October 8, 2015, 1:09 pm

      “Netanyahu threatens new TV station for Palestinian citizens of Israel”, By Haggai Matar,, 19 June 2015

      [EXCERPT] Israeli Communications Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday declared his intention to shut down a brand new television station, “Palestine 48.” A day later, its employees and management vowed that they would not fold so easily. The station began pilot broadcasts on Thursday morning from Nazareth, and for the time being, its launch schedule is proceeding as scheduled.

      Israeli authorities — and the Netanyahu government in particular — have been targeting Arab cultural institutions in recent weeks, cutting off funding for an Arabic-language theater in Haifa and threatening to do the same to a children’s theater in Jaffa operated by an Arab actor.

      According to Sanaa Hammoud, a member of Palestine 48’s advisory board, the Netanyahu government is in the midst of a campaign to silence and exclude 20 percent of Israel’s citizens, ultimately de-legitimizing their citizenship itself. . .


  21. JLewisDickerson on October 8, 2015, 1:34 pm

    RE: “The irony is that they [the Israelis] are bringing that future [their demise] on themselves.” ~ Ilene Cohen

    MY COMMENT: If on some level the Israelis actually long for their own demise [i.e. the infamous Masada complex], then it is not truly irony!

    IRONY: a state of affairs or an event that seems deliberately contrary to what one expects –

    P.S. Excellent commentary, Ms. Cohen! ! !

  22. Ossinev on October 8, 2015, 2:44 pm

    MikeHolloway – “One of the things I try to do in studying the conflict is understand what outcomes the various political groups are trying to achieve.”

    You are having a laugh and giving the new Hasbara game away as in really we are not trying to screw the Palestinians we are really really desperate to achieve peace oh and I forgot in order to do that it`s best to desist from criticism of Israel and just well continue to study the conflict.

    You sound like Regurgitev Mark II

    • MHughes976 on October 8, 2015, 4:31 pm

      Let those who speak of peace on terms acceptable to Israel press Israel to state its terms of peace, presumably some version of the much-canvassed but rarely defined 2ss, and declare that it will discuss counter-proposals. The indefinite failure to put such terms on the table suggests a bit more clearly every day – though however clearly it is suggested there are many bliind because they refuse to see – that Israel’s real purpose is not peace but a form of elimination of the other side. The only way to remove this suggestion is for Israel to state its terms. Let all these liberal Zionists and persons of immense good sense and good will call every day for this to happen. But then maybe they aren’t so sincere either.

      • Jon66 on October 8, 2015, 5:26 pm

        The Israelis proposed a concrete albeit flawed solution in 2000. Terms were presented at that time.

        “Some have asked Atallah: But why now? Atallah’s answer is this: The deal at Camp David was put forward as a “take it or leave it” offer. As a result, the Palestinians on the street believed that this deal was the final offer-it was the best they would get. They believed the peace process was over. Then came Ariel Sharon’s visit to the Haram al-Sharif with “over 1,000 [members of the] Israeli occupation forces” and Israel’s use of live ammunition against Palestinian protesters the next day. The Intifada erupted in response.”

        Having done a significant amount of negotiation, there is no such thing as “take it or leave it offer”. There was no counter-proposal and nothing would have prevented counter offers form being presented.

      • mcohen. on October 8, 2015, 5:39 pm


        You are quite right.insert media jive.cloudflare little children.

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius on October 9, 2015, 5:10 am

        Correct me if I’m wrong, but wasn’t that ‘offer’ in 2000 never actually put down in writing?

      • MHughes976 on October 9, 2015, 11:09 am

        If Israel were to say ‘the terms we proposed at a previous time are still on the table; if there is uncertainty about what they were here are the full details; if they are accepted, fine; if they are not immediately acceptable we will discuss all counter proposals’ we might get somewhere. What we have had for years is negotiations, so called, with no actual proposals in view.

  23. rosross on October 9, 2015, 4:17 am

    Anyone who has followed this issue for decades, has known for many decades, that Israel’s religious bigotry has made a one-state solution the only solution. Israeli religious discrimination and greed in wanting all of Palestine means two states have always been impossible and since maintaining occupation, colonisation and apartheid are also impossible, that means one democratic state share by all.

    And this outcome is all Israel’s own work.

    • inbound39 on October 12, 2015, 5:37 am

      One State Solution is a naive last ditch stand for Zionists to at least retain some of their ill gotten gains and acquire some sense of pseudo legitimacy. It will not solve anything for the Palestinians. It will simply change the method of oppression and subjugation and will inevitably lead to civil war. To think One State is a Solution is naive in the extreme. Israel has caused the Palestinians far too much pain and grief to expect Palestinians to live peacefully in the same room as Israeli’s. Two States based on the Partition Plan is the ONLY chance for any kind of peace….there needs to be separation and distance between Israeli’s and Palestinians and it will take decades for animosity and resentment to dissipate.

      • diasp0ra on October 12, 2015, 10:01 am


        You’re thinking of a one state solution as is Israel today, not the entity that would need a regime change to be implemented properly.

        It’s not naive in the slightest. It’s ambitious yes, but not naive.

        Two states based on the partition plan = game over for refugees, game over for Palestinians inside Israel. This is the Palestinian cause, not the West Bank/Gaza cause. A country so tiny and so cut up cannot sustain the refugees and most likely cannot even sustain itself properly, according to the world bank.

        Furthermore, if peace is not based on justice, then it’s not peace, it’s quiet. Quiet has a way of ending when the root causes of the issue are not dealt with. The two state solution does not address the core issues, but avoids them and puts a band aid around them.

      • CigarGod on October 12, 2015, 10:27 am

        Seems to me the partition was also bad for Jews. Too hard to administer for commerce or security…for either people.

        I agree to regime must go. It cannot be fixed. The rot is like holes in swiss cheese.

      • inbound39 on October 12, 2015, 2:49 pm

        I cannot see how the Partition Plan was bad for the Jews given they were given a State of their own free and armed to the teeth by America and given impunity from being Law abiding by America also. Palestinians want self determination and freedom in a State of their own. The Partition Plan gave them that. What was not given to them was protection from greedy self indulgent Jewish Terrorists. I assert my original statement that the harm done to Palestinians by Israeli’s excludes them sharing the same room… will be so tense the air will be cut by a knife and eventuate in civil war. It cannot go any other way. Israels Partition Borders were and have always been defensible….they have not been seriously breached ever. It is Palestinians that need protecting from religious nutbar Israeli’s that want ALL the land and resources. Syria is being eyed up as we speak…..oil to be had in Golan Heights….Occupied Territory. Regime change in Israel will help …yes….but it needs International peacekeepers permanently on the borders to stop Kach etc….the Moshe Feiglins and the Naftali Bennetts of Israel will not give up.

  24. Marnie on October 11, 2015, 12:45 pm

    “Young Palestinians do not go out to murder Jews because they are Jews, but because we are their occupiers, their torturers, their jailers, the thieves of their land and water, their exilers, the demolishers of their homes, the blockers of their horizon. . . . [T]he enemy they face proves every day that its malice has no limits. . . . ”

    Crystal clear truth!

  25. Ossinev on October 12, 2015, 11:17 am

    “Can anyone say when the Israeli colonial project, dependent as it is on the suppression of a subject people in the name of the theft of their land, will reach its end? For sure not.”
    Sadly Ilene I believe that the beginning of the end, and this can`t be far off, will be a blatant massacre of Palestinian civilians by either the IDF or a settler group or both( not a Cast Lead or Protective Edge type massacre perpetrated under the cover of a so called “war”) Nitay must be soiling his pants at the thought of this as it is something which is now out of his control and will be something that cannot be cannot be Hasbarised away.

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