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Finding 1 ‘Arab’ in Israeli basketball, NY Times espouses Zionist racial theory

US Politics

On March 13, The New York Times Sports section ran a long article about an Israeli basketball player under the title, “In Israel, an Arab Chooses Baskets Over Goals.” Karam Mashour of Nazareth plays for the team Bnei Herzliya. Reporter Sam Borden made this claim for him:

In a league full of Israeli Jews, top Europeans and talented Americans, Mashour is the only player of Arab heritage. Perhaps more pointedly, in a country where more than a fifth of the eight million residents are Arab, Mashour is one of only two to play in the top division in more than decade.

This is both inaccurate and obnoxious. The Times is stating baldly that “Arabs” cannot be Jews, when the truth is that many, many Jews are Arabs. They speak Arabic, or they are of Mizrahi heritage, coming from Arab countries. Israeli Mizrahi Jews are said to number about 3 million and are the largest ethnic group in Israel. That’s why Israeli Jewish names often strike American Jews as foreign. Their ancestors have Arab heritage.

The New York Times article’s premise that Arabs cannot be Jews thereby accepts a Zionist definition of Jewish nationality. “Arab” is generally a linguistic/cultural definition: it refers to people who speak Arabic. The article barely mentions Palestinians, but this is the actual distinction at work here: Mashour is a Palestinian, not a Jew.

There are actually many basketball stars of Arab heritage, including Doron Jamchi and Oded Katash. Thanks to our friend Ronnie Barkan for the info; here’s a list of all-time scorers. Many of them are Arab Jews.

Mizrahi basketball stars

Mizrahi basketball stars

Photograph that includes Mizrahi surnamed ballplayer in top scoring stats, standing third from right. Shot appears to show others of Mizrahi background

Photograph that includes Mizrahi surnamed ballplayer in top scoring stats, standing third from right.

The New York Times article only uses the word “Palestinian” twice, to refer to the Palestinian territories– when Palestinians inside Israel prefer to call themselves Palestinians, not Arabs. No, the article accepts the Israeli distinction, between Jews and Arabs:

According to Hagay Segal, a communications official with the Israel Basketball Association, about 10 percent of the 35,000 registered basketball players in the country are Arab.

No one doubts that there are sectarian divisions in the Middle East. But the New York Times is espousing Zionist dogma when it states that Jews cannot be Arabs.

 

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85 Responses

  1. lyn117
    lyn117
    March 25, 2016, 11:32 am

    Well, at least they didn’t (judging by the quotes) trot him out as an example of Israel’s wonderful ethnic diversity and lack of state-sponsored racism. Although he does seem to be somewhat characterized as a “good Arab”, one who doesn’t care about politics.

  2. WH
    WH
    March 25, 2016, 11:49 am

    This assumption is almost universal. And sadly, Mizrahi Jews in Israel mostly seem to adopt it too, with some of them being the most virulent Arab-haters (recall the incidents during Protective Edge). It’s the phenomenon of the disadvantaged punching down at those who are more disadvantaged, the second-raters revelling in their advantage over the third-raters. It was rather surreal last year when a Mizrahi Jew was stabbed by an Ashkenazi Jew who mistook him for a Palestinian, and it was reported that he’d been taken for an Arab – but he is an Arab! A real lacuna in the public consciousness there.

  3. March 25, 2016, 12:10 pm

    Mizrahi Jews are racially Arabs, and were ethnically Arabs for most of their existence prior to the establishment of Israel in 1948. As such, I can never see them as the enemy of Palestinians, because they are practically brothers, even though some may exhibit problematic racist behaviors that were internalized through a life-long state sponsored indoctrination.

    If I were to make an analogy, I see Mizrahim in Israel as Latinos in the US. Most Latinos have indigenous ancestry to the land in America, far more than the white Euro-Americans who are mostly descendants of violent, unwelcomed invaders. Yet, somehow the whites get to dictate who is more American, and not the Latinos even though white people are technically settler-colonialists that legally have no right to even be on American soil.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      March 25, 2016, 12:36 pm

      “Mizrahi Jews are racially Arabs, and were ethnically Arabs”

      Yes, you place a great deal of confidence in racial theory, “rugal_b”. You know who is what race and what that means.
      Perhaps someday the world will advance to meet you, if you weren’t so busy spinning backwards.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      March 25, 2016, 1:07 pm

      Funny thing, isn’t it?
      “rugal_b” rejects everything about the “white man”
      Except the “white man’s” racial theories and determinations.
      Those of course, he thinks are perfectly good enough to be getting along with. Hmmmmm.

    • Talkback
      Talkback
      March 26, 2016, 7:09 am

      Hey “Rugal_b”, since you seem to be a racial/blood and soil expert: Do people with African origin have a right to be on Amercan soil and to dictate who is more American than native Americans/Latinos?

      Yeah, I don’t really expect an answer.

      • March 26, 2016, 12:45 pm

        @Talkback

        The blacks being in the US is not due to violent deliberate invasion by their ancestors, they are here because they have been unwillingly transplanted during slavery. Kinda like the poor Ethiopian and Yemenite Jews who were duped into moving into Israel by the scheming white Euro Jews. They are the victims of white settler-colonialism and imperalism, just like the native Americans.

        White people are settler colonialists in America in the exact same manner white Jews in Israel and Palestine are settler colonialists. They have no recorded ancestry to the land they claim to be theirs, and no historical, cultural, or lingual ties either so they established a national government on stolen land through genocide and extreme, calculated violence.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 26, 2016, 5:51 pm

        “They have no recorded ancestry to the land they claim to be theirs, and no historical, cultural, or lingual ties either so they established a national government on stolen land through genocide and extreme, calculated violence.”

        “Rugal_b”, I think you’ve got a case! If you explained it just like that to the Supreme Court, I think you might win. Wouldn’t that send a shock through the Appellate and State judiciary! They would have to overturn everything! And after you win that case, we’ll go after Israel and those “scheming Euro-Jews” like “Hophmi”

      • Talkback
        Talkback
        March 27, 2016, 7:43 am

        That doesn’t answer my question, rugalb.

  4. amigo
    amigo
    March 25, 2016, 12:28 pm

    Here are the rules Israel plays by, on/ off the basket ball court .

    Rule 1: Israelis have the right to play on both sides of the court, but Palestinians can only play on their own side.

    Rule 2: For security reasons Palestinians do not have the right to pass the ball between players, the ball could hit an Israeli player.

    Rule 3: There will be no basket on the Israeli side.

    Rule 4: Israel is allowed to shoot at any time even during
    time-outs.

    Rule 5: Palestinians are not allowed to have supporters. Only Israelis should be supported.

    Rule 6: Israel selects the sports press writers and what they report.

    Rule 7: Israel encourages Palestinians to shoot into the Palestinian basket. Players who refuse will be nominated as terrorists and will not be allowed to play.

    Rule 8: Palestinian players are allowed to leave the field, but cannot return. One exception: A Palestinian can be replaced by an Israeli!

    Rule 9: Israel selects and instructs the referees, and tells them when to look away.

    Rule 10: Israel selects the captain of the Palestinian team.

    Rule 11: Israeli faults and Palestinian good plays will not be shown on TV.

    Rule 12: Israel takes the money which sponsors pay to Palestinians clubs.

    Rule 13: Only Israeli players get refreshments.

    Rule 14: Palestinians are required to play, when and where designated by Israel.

    Rule 15: Rules only apply to Palestinians; Israelis may change the rules during the game and are not required to advise the Palestinians of the changes.

    Rule 16 , (my addidtion).

    Any member of the Israeli team can shoot a Palestinian opponent who is moving and looks like a threat.I forgot to mention , all Members of the Israeli team are allowed to carry weapons .

    Note , this is not my work.I don,t wish to be accused of plagiarism.

  5. Blake
    Blake
    March 25, 2016, 12:37 pm

    Great comments cannot disagree with any of them.

    They clearly term the natives “Arabs” at all costs

  6. wondering jew
    wondering jew
    March 25, 2016, 7:51 pm

    Do mizrachi jews refer to themselves as Arab jews? I assume the vast majority do not.

    • Laurent Weppe
      Laurent Weppe
      March 26, 2016, 12:41 am

      I think it was Sami Michael who said that no matter their claim, the ashkenazi bourgeoisie had always regarded mizrahi Jews as Arabs. His point was that the loyalty of many mizrahi Jews to the fiction of a jewish ethnicity was one-sided.

      (Of course, it’s very far from unusual to have the upper-class regarding itself has the real herrenvolk while pretending to feel kinship with parts of the plebs in order to play divide & rule: middle and working-class ashkenazi Jews most probably aren’t held in very high esteem by the israeli upper-class either)

    • John O
      John O
      March 26, 2016, 4:15 am

      Why ask if you already know the answer?

    • Rafi
      Rafi
      March 26, 2016, 5:45 am

      Of course not, but you see, sometimes you call people the names they choose, and sometimes you call them the names you choose, the distinction could be tricky, just follow the guidelines of the max blumenthals and scott roths of the world and you should be set. Maalish.

    • Talkback
      Talkback
      March 26, 2016, 7:52 am

      Why should they, if calling them “Arab” is inteded to be an insult?

  7. hophmi
    hophmi
    March 26, 2016, 12:17 am

    Oh please. This is garbage. The vast majority of Jews with heritage in the Middle East do not define themselves as Arab Jews, and did not do so before there was a State of Israel. Many would find the term an offensive way of denying their ethnicity.

    • jon s
      jon s
      March 26, 2016, 1:38 pm

      There’s some arrogance – even hutzpah – in Scott and Phil presuming to tell other people (Mizrahi Jews in this case ) who they really are and how they should define themselves.

      • eljay
        eljay
        March 26, 2016, 1:54 pm

        || jon s: There’s some arrogance – even hutzpah – in Scott and Phil presuming to tell other people (Mizrahi Jews in this case ) who they really are and how they should define themselves. ||

        Imagine how non-Zionist Jews must feel when Zio-supremacist Jews tell them that loyalty to a colonialist, (war) criminal and religion-supremacist “Jewish State” is an essential part of being Jewish.

      • Marnie
        Marnie
        March 27, 2016, 2:13 pm

        “Imagine how non-Zionist Jews must feel when Zio-supremacist Jews tell them that loyalty to a colonialist, (war) criminal and religion-supremacist “Jewish State” is an essential part of being Jewish.”

        Drinking coffee and reading MW is dangerous!

    • lysias
      lysias
      March 30, 2016, 3:25 pm

      I recently read a book by the late Iraqi Jew Naeim Giladi in which he stated with considerable emphasis that he considered himself and all other Iraqi Jews to be Arabs.

  8. Nevada Ned
    Nevada Ned
    March 26, 2016, 1:34 pm

    Buried at the end of the article is Karam Mashour’s college career in the US. He played college basketball at UNLV and Morehead States University. As an average college player, he had not the slightest chance of playing in the NBA, and I believe he knew it.

    As far as I can tell, Mashour strictly declined to discuss politics, and I can certainly understand that. He’s at the mercy of Israel’s racist fanatics.

  9. James Canning
    James Canning
    March 26, 2016, 2:47 pm

    In the 19th century, Arabs in Palestine who happened to be Jewish by religion, were known as Arabs.

    • just
      just
      March 26, 2016, 3:04 pm

      Exactly.

      Jewish folks in Yemen are Yemeni, Iraqi Jews are Iraqi, Iranian Jews are Iranian, Afghan Jews are Afghan, Ethiopian Jews are Ethiopian, etc……

    • Shmuel
      Shmuel
      March 26, 2016, 3:05 pm

      In the 19th century, Arabs in Palestine who happened to be Jewish by religion, were known as Arabs.

      “Arabs … were known as Arabs.” That makes sense, of course. How could it not? But according to whom? Themselves? (Other) Arabs? Europeans?

    • eljay
      eljay
      March 26, 2016, 3:20 pm

      To some Europeans, people from North America – whether they come from the U.S.A. or Canada – are Americans.

      I’ve had a few people say, “Oh, you’re American”, to which I have replied “No, I’m Canadian”.

      I have never replied “No, I’m atheist” or “No, I am of mixed European ancestry”.

    • jon s
      jon s
      March 27, 2016, 1:54 pm

      James Canning, please explain who were the Jews who were “known as Arabs”?
      And known by who?

      • echinococcus
        echinococcus
        March 27, 2016, 5:35 pm

        Being an “Arab” is defined by one’s mother tongue, ie any dialect of Arabic, and culture, i.e. the very many common traits, often language-related, that criscross the world of Arabic speakers.
        Nothing more. So the Mizrahi are by definition Arabs (Jewish Arabs if they were believers, or if they clung to a concept of hereditary Jewishness .) Those born after becoming illegal invaders in Palestine may have lost all connection to their homeland and culture, so they are of course an exception.

      • jon s
        jon s
        March 28, 2016, 4:44 am

        Jews are not illegal invaders in their historic homeland.

      • echinococcus
        echinococcus
        March 28, 2016, 5:06 am

        Jon S,

        How many thousand times have you been told that the “historic homeland” of any people, including those of the Jewish confession (or those with such ancestry) is the land of their parents, grandparents, etc? None of them is in Palestine. How many thousands of times have you avoided to bring direct evidence of your nonsense? Why do you think anyone would believe such a textbook example of malignant dishonesty as yourself?
        All Zionists immigrated after 1897 are illegal invaders, nay colonial criminals invading with the stated hostile intent of subverting the country’s sovereignty.

      • talknic
        talknic
        March 28, 2016, 5:09 am

        @ jon s “Jews are not illegal invaders in their historic homeland”

        Israeli Jews are illegal invaders in territories “outside the State of Israel” … “in Palestine” https://unispal.un.org/DPA/DPR/unispal.nsf/eed216406b50bf6485256ce10072f637/b4085a930e0529c98025649d00410973?OpenDocument

        As for the historical Jewish People’s homeland, take your pathetic Zionist whining to the Zionist Movement and the Jewish People’s Council for having proclaimed Israel as “an independent republic within frontiers approved by the General Assembly of the United Nations in its Resolution of November 29, 1947

      • Shmuel
        Shmuel
        March 28, 2016, 5:29 am

        Jews are not illegal invaders in their historic homeland.

        Jon,

        Without arguing definitions, the question remains: Why not? Bennett made the very same argument regarding the West Bank. I know you disagree with him. What’s the difference?

      • eljay
        eljay
        March 28, 2016, 7:03 am

        || jon s: Jews are not illegal invaders in their historic homeland. ||

        Contrary to your deliberately dishonest assertion, neither (Mandate) Palestine nor Israel is the “historic homeland” of every person in the world who has acquired the religion-based identity of “Jewish” by:
        – undergoing a religious conversion to Judaism; or
        – being descended from someone who underwent a religious conversion to Judaism.

      • MHughes976
        MHughes976
        March 28, 2016, 7:54 am

        As ever, I would like to know what ‘historic homeland’ means. If it is said that people who are living in an area peacefully and whose right to be there is generally and customarily acknowledged (such as the non-Jewish population of Palestine on the evidence, were evidence needed, of the Balfour Declaration and associated documents) cannot be excluded unjustly and wickedly if (this being the conclusive point) the people doing the excluding are descendants or co-religionists of earlier inhabitants I would deny it. I would say that the most obvious and acceptable basis of political right is being set aside for one for which there is no shred of moral argument.

      • Shmuel
        Shmuel
        March 28, 2016, 8:20 am

        I would say that the most obvious and acceptable basis of political right is being set aside for one for which there is no shred of moral argument.

        Thus, even if one accepts all of jon’s other premises (including the concept of “historic homeland”), it remains a claim without moral basis — although it may resonate on other levels (mythological, romantic, religious, poetic etc.). It is, in effect, an attempt to confer the validity of reality on a dream.

      • Sibiriak
        Sibiriak
        March 28, 2016, 8:54 am

        jon s:Jews are not illegal invaders in their historic homeland. [emphasis added]

        Shmuel: Without arguing definitions, the question remains: Why not? Bennett made the very same argument regarding the West Bank. I know you disagree with him. What’s the difference?
        —————-

        International law: the first invasion, up to the pre-1967 borders, however illegal and immoral, has been legalized after the fact; the second invasion has not. Yet.

        ( Referring to two invasions is just a manner of speaking; it’s not meant to suggest there hasn’t been a continuous process of invasion, dispossession, ethnic cleansing and oppression, starting around 1897 and continuing to this day.)

        .

      • Shmuel
        Shmuel
        March 28, 2016, 8:59 am

        International law: the first invasion, up to the pre-1967 borders, however illegal and immoral, has been legalized after the fact; the second invasion has not. Yet.

        That was not jon’s argument. His argument was “Jews are not illegal invaders in their historic homeland” (and not say “Israeli Jews are not illegal invaders in territory internationally recognised as Israeli”). If “historical homeland” is a valid argument, why not in “Judea and Samaria”?

      • Sibiriak
        Sibiriak
        March 28, 2016, 9:46 am

        Shmuel: That was not jon’s argument.
        ——————–

        I realize that. I was presenting a possible argument explaining why Jews could be legal invaders in part of their alleged “historical homeland” but illegal invaders in another part.

        If “historical homeland” is a valid argument

        It’s clearly not. And it’s rather bizarre how much respect it gets.

        (To be precise, the statement ““Jews are not illegal invaders in their historic homeland ” does not directly state that legality of the Jewish presence in “their historic homeland” is due to its being their historic homeland.)

      • gamal
        gamal
        March 28, 2016, 10:28 am

        “Jews are not illegal invaders in their historic homeland.”

        the present and historic homeland of the Palestinians is…..?

      • jon s
        jon s
        March 28, 2016, 4:16 pm

        Shmuel,
        In principle , the West Bank is , indeed, no different, it’s also part of the same geographic unit, part of the same homeland. Nablus and Hebron (and even Gaza!) are part of Eretz Israel.
        However , those cities are also part of Falastin, the Palestinian homeland, and so are Haifa and Lod and Be’er Sheva.
        In the interest of peace, and because the Palestinian people also have the right to establish a state of their own, we should realize that we don’t have to exercise political sovereignty over our entire homeland. And the Palestinians also should realize that they don’t have to exercise political sovereignty over their entire homeland. In short, we can’t have Nablus and Hebron, they can’t have Haifa and Be’er Sheva).
        Partition , the two-state solution , is still , in my view, the best option, both morally and practically. Not perfect, not easy, but better than any other option.

      • jon s
        jon s
        March 28, 2016, 4:22 pm

        Gamal,
        The present and historic homeland of the Palestinians is…. Palestine.
        So there you have it : two peoples, sharing the same homeland.

      • MHughes976
        MHughes976
        March 28, 2016, 4:57 pm

        So if we have two sets of people in the historic homeland (whatever that means) of both, both sets have a right to some but not to all of it, implying that partition is the right outcome. This would mean that one could be an unjust invader or marauder within the homeland if one took all or planned to take all. Also that it is an obligation to part with some of the territory, even though it is part of one’s homeland. Since the underlying rights are supposed identical it would follow that the partition should not advantage one over the other in any way, certainLy not so as to make the eventual possession of the whole by one side comparatively easy or likely. Have I got that right?

      • Shmuel
        Shmuel
        March 28, 2016, 5:40 pm

        Jon,

        If I understand you correctly, you are saying that there are two equally valid claims to all of Palestine/EY, but in the name of peace and fairness, one side should keep nearly 4/5 of it, and the other side a little over 1/5.

        I’m with you so far, and understand the basic workings of the 2ss (not perfect, best chance, etc.). Where you lose me is on the “historical homeland” part, and how that makes a claim that is in any way similar to that of the people whose land it actually was — not in prayers or dreams or hopes or memories or books, but in the real world.

        You might say that it doesn’t really matter, as long as the “bottom line” is peace and compromise, but it has to have an effect on the way you envision peace and compromise. The Palestinians have been (and continue to be) incredibly wronged by the Zionist movement and the State of Israel (mostly on the basis of the very same “historical homeland” argument). I would think the first step to reconciliation would be a little humility.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 28, 2016, 6:37 pm

        “Jews are not illegal invaders in their historic homeland.”

        Jews can break laws that other people can’t? What on earth does religion have to do with it?

        “Jon s” Nobody owes you anything for being Jewish!! Strange, unfair, but true. Who told you different?

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 28, 2016, 6:44 pm

        “As ever, I would like to know what ‘historic homeland’ means.”

        It means identifying as Jewish entitles you to a material reward, and legal immunity. It’s absurd. In this case “historical homeland is a fraud perpetuated on Jews gullible enough to fall for it.

        Don’t even buy into it.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 28, 2016, 7:33 pm

        “Shmuel,
        In principle…/…our entire homeland. they can’t have Haifa and Be’er Sheva).
        Partition , the two-state solution , is still , in my view, the best option, both morally and practically. Not perfect, not easy, but better than any other option”

        Well, there you go, “Shmuel”! Engagement, dialogue, and agreement.
        Glad to see you two are in accord.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 28, 2016, 7:37 pm

        “two peoples, sharing the same homeland.” “Jon s”

        And one of them (Zionists) had to come all the way from Europe to find it so they deserve extra! When are you going to drop that “homeland” bullshit?

        What the hell does “homeland” have to do with it? NOTHING, besides the fact that it’s bullshit.

        But without that ridiculous “homeland” lie, you fall to pieces. So you will keep on using that Nazi-favored term, for a place you had to go and steal, jeez. Why, of all things the word “homeland”?

        Lying to Jewish children for a living, while living on stolen land. Oh, well, I suppose it’s better than seeing Christmas lights.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 28, 2016, 7:46 pm

        “I would think the first step to reconciliation would be a little humility.”

        Yeah “Shmuel” you just keep telling us that an appeal to Zionist “humility” is possible.

        That is a freakin lie, “Shmuel”. I think you know as well as anybody that Zionism depends on a denial “humility”.

        Besides, “Jon s” will simply proceed to tell us how much “humility” Zionism shows by not exterminating or expelling the Palestinians.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 28, 2016, 7:55 pm

        “Where you lose me is on the “historical homeland” — not in prayers or dreams or hopes or memories or books, but in the real world.”

        “Jon s” is an American, ‘anchored’ and ready to bolt back to the good ol’USA, who lives in a settlement Beersheva, (the one “they can’t have”) who willingly teaches “Israeli history”.
        What on earth would he know about “the real world”?

      • gamal
        gamal
        March 28, 2016, 8:57 pm

        “two peoples, sharing the same homeland.” “Jon s”

        Its a classic isn’t it Mooser, I believe some of your ilk Jon are debating whether or not to share my shit with me, maybe Hughes can work out how much of my property you are entitled to, because of your characteristics, its all so phony and weak, look at your comrade Grover its like all of you have osteoporosis of the spirit, weak soulless crap.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 29, 2016, 12:42 am

        “the present and historic homeland of the Palestinians is…..?”

        And what makes it so infuriating “gamal” is that “Jon s” is an American. Yup, his maw made good ‘n sure he was anchored firmly. He’s playing at Israel. After all, why be any man’s equal, when you can be the Palestinian’s superior.
        So ol “jonny s” can play any kind of game he likes with Israel, ruin it for everybody, and then blithely fly on home to where “hamburgers sizzle on an open grill, night and day.”
        And think about the US taxes which go to Israel that he didn’t have to pay!

        Anyway, he (“Jon s”) has been slinging that “historical homeland” BS since he got here. It’s the shibboleth which makes him invulnerable, under that sign he will conquer! He gives me a mighty, mighty pain in the neck. A career criminal (and proud of it!) pretending he’s a Rebbe or something.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 29, 2016, 1:04 am

        “its all so phony and weak, look at your comrade Grover its like all of you have osteoporosis of the spirit, weak soulless crap.”

        I would not have believed it possible until I got here. Oh, not that some people thought that way, I knew that, but that they would write it down?
        I would never, ever have believed that a presumably educated Jewish man could say “historical homeland” (about Palestine, over, and over and over again) and think that is supposed to convince the people we are stealing the “historical homeland” from that we’re doing them a favor by stealing it!!

        And if (God forbid!!) the Zionists (I’ll go no further, but the world will) do succeed in their plan, I don’t think it will be the honorific, the battle-flag the world will salute and bow respectfully to, that Zionists seem to think it will be.
        It’ll be an albatross, a millstone around the neck of every Jew in the world for all time to come. Put on with the chains we forged ourselves.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 29, 2016, 1:12 am

        “because of your characteristics”

        Ah, yes, that “characteristic” which unites, say, me and Benjamin Netanyahoo, and oh, Phil Weiss and Bennet. Got to be there. So if anybody wants to punish me for Nettie’s or Bennet’s sins, go right ahead, they might as well be mine, us all being the same people.

      • jon s
        jon s
        March 29, 2016, 4:27 am

        MHughes976,
        I pretty much agree.

      • jon s
        jon s
        March 29, 2016, 4:40 am

        Shmuel,
        I didn’t mention percentages. Once the principle of partition and 2 states is accepted, the determination of borders is a matter of politics and negotiation and ultimately mutual agreement. There’s a general consensus that the pre-67 borders are the most practical and acceptable (just barely) , with some adjustments.
        I know that we differ on the significance of the historic part. In my view it carries significant weight, it makes the difference between being colonialists and our situation.
        I don’t deny that from the Palestinian viewpoint they were wronged. The issue is how to reach a reasonable peace agreement for the good of both sides.
        I’m sorry that I came across as lacking humility.

      • echinococcus
        echinococcus
        March 29, 2016, 5:05 am

        the first invasion, up to the pre-1967 borders, however illegal and immoral, has been legalized after the fact

        … by the wrong instances.

        Would you accept a note from the primary school principal to justify the arrest of someone? No.
        Likewise, the “legalization” by a bunch of colonial powers instead of a Palestinian plebiscite in due form is worth toilet paper.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 29, 2016, 11:07 am

        “I’m sorry that I came across as lacking humility.”

        And now he is mocking you, “Shmuel”! He’s sorry he “came across as”. That real, deep Zionist humility is so self-effacing it doesan’t even show.

        “Shmuel” why do you think it serves ‘engagement’ to be mocked and manipulated by Zionists? The only purpose it serves is to point out Jewish impotence in dealing with Zionism.

      • Shmuel
        Shmuel
        March 29, 2016, 5:10 pm

        Jon,

        It’s not about differing “on the significance of the historic part” or about how much “weight” you or I ascribe to it. It is about what is, in effect, a preposterous claim that I find hard to believe you would give the time of day to under any other circumstances. It is a myth, a fairy tale, entirely devoid of any legal or moral substance.

        As Zeev Sternhell says, Israel exists and Israeli Jews exist, and as such must be contended with, but that’s about it. So yes, European and non-European Jews definitely did invade Palestine — no matter how much they may have carried visions of it in their religious and cultural baggage. Necessity for some, at certain points, may also mitigate their actions, but cannot undo them.

        Recognising that and trying to go forward from there is the kind of humility I’m talking about, not tone or turn of phrase. How can anyone who still believes that Jews and Palestinians have equal rights in all of Palestine, because it is “our historic homeland”, possibly even envision anything remotely resembling “a reasonable peace agreement for the good of both sides”?

      • Shmuel
        Shmuel
        March 30, 2016, 2:54 am

        Jon,

        Land Day today — 40th anniversary of the protests against the expropriation (by the first Rabin gov.) of 20,000 dunam of Palestinian land within the State of Israel, for the exclusive use of Israeli Jews (expropriation in Israel somehow always seems to go only in that direction); protests that left 6 Palestinians dead.

        What was the rationale behind that and every other expropriation and act of discrimination against Palestinians in Israel and the OT, if not the belief that Eretz Yisrael is the “historic homeland” of the Jews, and the Jews are there not as colonists or invaders but as the historic owners of the land, simply taking back what’s theirs?

        Yours is a somewhat gentler version of that (but so was Rabin’s, no?), which magnanimously admits that Palestinians also have a legitimate claim to the land, but the principle is the same, and the consequences are the same. The current state of affairs in Israel is not an aberration, but the natural outcome of the “historic homeland” ideology, although some might like Israel to be (and imagine it once was) more enlightened, without ever considering the root causes of its brutality and oppression. “Jewish and democratic” is a lie (I’m always amazed to see people like Uzi Baram [e.g. in today’s Haaretz] still clinging to the “justness of Israel’s cause” — if only it would return to the “original” values of Zionism).

        Getting Israel and Israelis to understand that they are indeed colonialist invaders is not about making them say “uncle”. It really is a necessary step to reaching any kind of viable solution, because a peace process based on the arrogance of “generous offers” will always find that there is “no partner”. What else did you expect?

      • Sibiriak
        Sibiriak
        March 30, 2016, 3:38 am

        Shmuel: Getting Israel and Israelis to understand that they are indeed colonialist invaders
        ——————-

        Imo, that is a near-impossible task; at best, it would take multiple generations, 50-100 years.

        (Btw– look at the interminable debate on whether or not the Brits were colonialist invaders in Australia. http://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/postcolonial-blog/2016/mar/30/its-not-politically-correct-to-say-australia-was-invaded-its-history )

        To condition a viable solution on Israel Jews fessing up to being “colonialist invaders” means guaranteeing failure.

        A viable settlement–not a solution–to the Israeli/Palestine conflict must be forced on an unreconstructed Zionist Israeli majority.

        And then: a long struggle for equal rights within Israel, and a very long struggle to move past Zionism entirely.

        That’s my current view– nothing dogmatic.

      • Shmuel
        Shmuel
        March 30, 2016, 3:52 am

        A viable settlement–not a solution–to the Israeli/Palestine conflict must be forced on an unreconstructed Zionist Israeli majority.

        And the chances of that happening would be?

        It’s a trajectory, and even a settlement (brought about by any means) seems highly unlikely. It also seems highly unlikely that anything at all will change without an ideological shift within a minority, even a small minority of Israeli Jews — those like jon, whose self-image is grounded in democratic and even humanistic ideals. That image (somehow extended to Israel as a whole) is a crucial part of the reason why a forced settlement is so improbable. So there’s a cycle that needs to be broken, without any illusions about “reconstructing” an Israeli majority.

      • Sibiriak
        Sibiriak
        March 30, 2016, 3:53 am

        echinococcus: . … the “legalization” by a bunch of colonial powers instead of a Palestinian plebiscite in due form is worth toilet paper.
        —————–

        Only in your illusory world of moral purism.

        In the real world, the legalization of the Israeli state within ’67 borders by the UNSC, UNGA, ICJ etc. has enormous ideological and political force.

        In the real world, your moral purism is worth toilet paper. (But if you produce enough of it, the value isn’t negligible.)

      • echinococcus
        echinococcus
        March 30, 2016, 10:58 am

        Sibiriak,

        Not “moral purism” again. I’m not the only one to think so –in fact, some people who do count in this story think so: a lot of Palestinians, owners of the sovereignty over Palestine. They have the law entirely on their side.
        You’re not the first one to try, of course. All the colonial powers and alphabet soups have been at it a long time, as well as all those “friends” who make enemies superfluous. Still they somehow don’t seem to have given up. My prediction is that they may give up only if the genocide perpetrated by the Zionists is entirely successful. Essentially the only example to the contrary is that of Gaul under the Romans (and that perhaps because of insufficient documentation.)

      • Sibiriak
        Sibiriak
        March 30, 2016, 11:53 am

        echinococcus: I’’m not the only one to think so –in fact, some people who do count in this story think so: a lot of Palestinians, owners of the sovereignty over Palestine.
        —————–

        I doubt many Palestinians would disagree that, as I put it, the legalization of the Israeli state within ’67 borders by the UNSC, UNGA, ICJ etc. HAS enormous ideological and political force.

        “Has” does not mean “should have”. But for a moral purist as yourself, such a basic distinction is very difficult to make.

      • MHughes976
        MHughes976
        March 30, 2016, 12:53 pm

        I don’t know where this will land in the sequence! Jon says Inunderstand him correctly: but my idea on my understanding of it is full of paradox.
        I can’t see how the Jewish and Palestinian claims can be historic in the same sense, since they have arisen so differently, one involving claims that are morally normal, one involving claims that are exceptional.
        If the two historic claims for the two groups are of equal force and validity they must surely convey rights of equal nature, validity and value on all individuals concerned, implying that Shmuel is right about proportionality. However the ‘classic’ version of the 2ss, which you do not denounce, concedes a very disproportionate share to the Jewish side.
        The idea of Two Historic Claims raises the question of the situation when more or less all the territory was occupied, in accordance with one of the historic claims, by a non-Jewish population with certain civil rights (maybe not as full a set as a modern Westerner would have) and certain rights of property. The Jewish Arrival and the assertion of the other historic claim was still in the future. Were all existing civil and property rights to be considered provisional until that Arrival would take place? I would think it clear that it is contrary to the nature of rights not to be fixed and enduring across time: thus to regard them as only provisional would be mistaken, not to say grotesque.
        Now consider what the Two Claims theory implies when it comes to the Jewish arrival – that individuals on the Jewish side are to make massive acquisitions of civil rights (political power to influence the affairs of the area) and of property, individuals on the other side significant losses of both as the area where they can exercise political power markedly shrinks. At this rate the claim to the moral equality of the Two Claims vanishes, rendering the whole caboodle a tissue of contradiction.

      • MHughes976
        MHughes976
        March 30, 2016, 3:10 pm

        As to the authority of international institutions and to moral,purism – many would say without tuning a hair that political authority derives from a social contract, called (perhaps somewhat miscalled) by some ‘the consent of the governed’. This is often treated, celebrated indeed, as a grand self-evident, universally applicable truth. If it is anything like true it renders completely wrong and indeed outrageous the idea that some sort of international committee, which is all that the UN organs are, has some sort of right to assign sovereignty over territory whose inhabitants it has no claim to represent. Echino is completely right about that.
        For my part. I’m not a purist in the sense (the normal sense, I think) of denying that there sometimes has to be compromise in this world. I don’t know that Echino is a purist in that sense either.

      • Sibiriak
        Sibiriak
        March 30, 2016, 4:00 pm

        MHughes976: As to the authority of international institutions…
        ————–

        I never spoke to their moral authority, only their actual power. One can deny the former yet affirm the latter.
        —————-

        I’m not a purist in the sense (the normal sense, I think) of denying that there sometimes has to be compromise in this world. I don’t know that Echino is a purist in that sense either.

        Compromise? Echino? You’ve got to be kidding. Not an inch. Not a millimeter. Not on Zionism. Not with genocidal Jewish invaders. How can you compromise with genocidaires*?

        —————–
        *But it’s up to the Palestinians themselves, of course. Echino’s role is to tell us what “strict morality” demands. That’s the function of a moral purist: pure judgment. And pure denunciation. All the rest, especially the filthy compromising, is left to others. It is a necessary function, though–somebody has to be the voice of absolute justice in all its purity–even if it’s unattainable, or not worth the cost of attaining.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 30, 2016, 5:31 pm

        “….even if it’s unattainable, or not worth the cost of attaining”

        You are exactly right, “Sibiriak”. Even if every Zionist invader turned around and left today, there is still a vast amount of damage which will remain irreparable, a huge reservoir of unprosecuted crime.

      • jon s
        jon s
        March 30, 2016, 5:32 pm

        Shmuel,
        A few questions and observations:
        What is it that you see as a myth and fairy tale? Not that the significance of myths can be easily dismissed in any people’s historic memory, I would just like to know what you’re referring to .
        Terminology is important, it’s not just semantics. By using the term “invaders” you conjure certain images and bring to mind certain references : The Japanese invaded China. The Germans invaded Poland. The reader gets the picture.
        The images in my mind are quite different: the followers of R.Yehuda Ha’hasid, making their way to Jerusalem; the idealists of the Second Aliyah, intent on establishing a socialist utopia; the dazed survivors of the ghettos and death camps; the Jews from Yemen and Ethiopia, crossing the desert on foot . Some “invaders”.
        As to Jews and Palestinians having equal rights in the country that both regard as their homeland: I don’t know of any method to measure each people’s rights, relative to the other. Should Palestinians have 70%, Jews 30%? Or, maybe 80-20? Or the other way around? The only sane approach is : equal rights.
        I don’t tend to idealize the past , and Land Day is a good example of past injustices, and God knows there are plenty of on-going injustices, but Israelis are not going to see themselves as colonialist invaders. Neither side is going to deny its own legitimacy.

      • echinococcus
        echinococcus
        March 30, 2016, 6:02 pm

        Sibiriak,
        I.
        When you compromise –due generally to a disadvantaged negotiating position– what you do is first assert your rights, to the last ounce, not forgetting anything.
        The weaker your brute strength position and your prospects of getting something, the more you have to start by staking claims.
        When you then do make compromises, as much and as many as you have to, what you give away is enjoyment of some of your rights –never the rights themselves, because that always is your death sentence.
        The partition is totally illegal by the few basic common principles of the self-determination of colonized peoples. Current colonialist power doctrine about it is based on a might makes right principle, not on the law. That is something to continue shouting about, irrespective of the need the Palestinians would have to compromise in order to keep alive –if, that is, the Zionists would have shown a shadow of a whiff of a wild surmise of an idea of a compromise at any moment in their history when dealing with anyone weaker.

        II.
        What “compromise” exactly? When did you see the Zionists enter any compromise when they were holding the cards? Even when they are not holding any cards and have to bend their head for a moment, you know they are never giving up and will continue whining until they can come back and grab whatever it is they wanted.
        You got to be two to compromise, and the Zionists ain’t one.

      • eljay
        eljay
        March 30, 2016, 6:29 pm

        || jon s: … As to Jews and Palestinians having equal rights in the country that both regard as their homeland … ||

        Non-Palestinian Jews may have “regarded” Palestine as their homeland; but to the indigenous Palestinian population, it actually was their homeland. Equating the two is a tasteless joke on your part.

        As it is:
        – Partition-borders Israel is / should be the homeland of all the citizens of, immigrants to and expats and refugees from that geographic region; and
        – Partition-borders Palestine is / should be the homeland of all the citizens of, immigrants to and expats and refugees from that geographic region.

        Neither state is the “ancient homeland” or “eternal homeland” of all people in the world who choose to hold or to acquire the religion-based identity of Jewish.

        || … I don’t know of any method to measure each people’s rights … The only sane approach is : equal rights. ||

        Equal rights for all – along with justice and accountability – is the sane approach.

        But as you have repeatedly made very clear, you don’t even want equal rights: You want a “peace” that comprises two states, one of which is a religion-supremacist “Jewish State”, and as little justice and accountability as possible.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 30, 2016, 7:03 pm

        “What is it that you see as a myth and fairy tale?”
        “Neither side is going to deny its own legitimacy.” “Jon s”

        So there you go, “Shmuel”. That’s how “Jon s” uses the legitimacy you granted him There’s your “engagement”: ‘We will keep what we have taken.’

        Face it “Shmuel”, when it comes to Zionism, we are impotent as Jews. We have irresponsibly created a monster we cannot control, not controlled through any process Judaism or Jewishness can muster. It only gets worse if we try to lie about it, reassure people. It’s about time we admitted it. If you asked me in an unguarded moment.

      • gamal
        gamal
        March 30, 2016, 7:33 pm

        Jon :

        “I don’t tend to idealize the past”

        “The images in my mind are quite different: the followers of R.Yehuda Ha’hasid, making their way to Jerusalem; the idealists of the Second Aliyah, intent on establishing a socialist utopia; the dazed survivors of the ghettos and death camps; the Jews from Yemen and Ethiopia, crossing the desert on foot . Some “invaders”.”

        ” I don’t know of any method to measure each people’s rights, relative to the other” (???)

        and yet

        “Land Day is a good example of past injustices, and God knows there are plenty of on-going injustices,”

        by what method do you discern this

        “Israelis are not going to see themselves as colonialist invaders”

        because

        “Terminology is important”

        its not even good sophistry, ” I don’t know of any method to measure….. people’s rights”

        do you not get out much?

      • jon s
        jon s
        March 31, 2016, 2:19 am

        One more point, in which I may be at least partly in agreement with Shmuel: much as the history is important to me, it’s futile and counter-productive to focus on it. Who was here first, and who was here for how long and who did what to whom – the history becomes an impediment to finding any kind of solution. There are 8 million Israelis, many of them second, third and fourth generation, who certainly are not “invaders” by any standard, and not going to go away, and neither are the Palestinians. The vital question is the present and the future: more violence and bloodshed or a different path for both peoples?

      • echinococcus
        echinococcus
        March 31, 2016, 2:52 am

        John S

        who certainly are not “invaders” by any standard, and not going to go away

        Oh, they are only invaders by the standards of the colonial peoples, owners of all the land and sovereignty on it. Of course, to the conscious American armed invader with no receivable grounds for his illegal immigration called John S, the owners of the country are no people and their Goyish standards do not count.

        As for going back, let’s see if you’ll request Palestinian citizenship when the time comes (if, that is, you respond to the criteria –that would be a surprise) or beat it back to Brooklyn or Philly or wherever the hell prides itself on being your hometown. Or fight it out to suicide?

      • Shmuel
        Shmuel
        March 31, 2016, 2:53 am

        Jon,

        Myth and fairy tale
        What I called a “myth and a fairy tale” is the idea that 2,000 years of history mean nothing, that Jews can somehow pick up where they left off, around 70 CE, and the actual inhabitants of Palestine (including the Jews of the Old Yishuv) had better like it or lump it. It’s romantic – epic even – but it does not confer legal or a moral rights. Christian Zionists (who may actually have come up with the idea in the first place) don’t know the difference either, and mainstream Western society in general has also been caught up in this idea that fires the imagination but is, on closer scrutiny (which few bother to do), profoundly wrong.

        Inavders, pilgrims, idealists and refugees
        What you’ve done next is to distort history on a number of levels. You conjure up an extreme image of invasion, and arbitrarily decide that anything that does not look exactly like the Rape of Nanking doesn’t count. You anachronistically “Zionise” the followers of Yehudah he-Hasid, ignore the colonial aspect of the Second Aliyah, and de-contextualise the post-Churban, Yemenite and Ethiopian “aliyot” – creating an image of innocence that is somehow meant to colour the whole of the Zionist project. It is a very partial image that teaches very little about the whole. It is another kind of myth-making.

        Rights and equality
        On the subject of equal rights, you’ll get no argument from me, although judging by your previous comments at MW, your understanding of the concept of equality is very different from mine. To my mind, equality precludes the existence of an ethnocratic state; in fact precludes discrimination of any kind, whether in terms of civil rights, the rights of refugees or the right to security.

        Legitimacy
        I don’t expect Israelis to put on “Ashamed to be a colonialist” t-shirts, but there’s a whole range of possibilities between that and “Jews are not illegal invaders in their historic homeland”. I would expect a self-declared leftist and peace-activist to be closer to the former than the latter – which remains the ideological basis for the denial of Palestinian legitimacy and entitlement to equality, on the ground and at the negotiating table.

        Land Day is not a past injustice but current reality, perhaps nowhere more (within Israel) than in the Negev. Can Jews be expropriators and oppressors and ethnic cleansers in their “historic homeland”?

      • talknic
        talknic
        March 31, 2016, 4:32 am

        jon s “much as the history is important to me, it’s futile and counter-productive to focus on it”

        Nonsense. Israel proclaimed its borders and was admitted into the UN and subsequent UNSC resolutions are based on that historical fact.

        “There are 8 million Israelis, many of them second, third and fourth generation, who certainly are not “invaders” by any standard “

        The UNSC and the IJC disagree. Israelis are prohibited from settling in territories occupied by Israel.

        “… and not going to go away, and neither are the Palestinians”

        The Palestinians have a legal right to stay in their own territory, Israelis do not have a right to stay in non-Israeli territories belonging to Palestine

        “The vital question is the present and the future: more violence and bloodshed or a different path for both peoples?”

        There is no moral, ethical, legal or actual practical for Israel to be occupying or illegally settling its citizens in non-Israeli territories. Israel can withdraw from all non Israeli territories. It is required by law and has never been tried

      • annie
        annie
        March 31, 2016, 4:46 am

        history is … futile and counter-productive

        oh really.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 31, 2016, 5:19 pm

        “history is … futile and counter-productive”

        From his profile:

        jon s

        An Israeli history teacher,long-time activist on the Israeli Left.
        – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/profile/jon-s/#sthash.T5192Ygw.dpuf

        Shorter “Jon s”: ‘We will keep what we have stolen, And the rest of the Jewish world will just have to live with that. Why, aren’t you proud of us?’

      • gamal
        gamal
        March 31, 2016, 8:01 pm

        “history is … futile and counter-productive”

        Zionism no dwelling on the past

        except as “narrative”.

        why the fear of futility Jon, the donya is all round a little bit futile, empty and marvelous.

    • Sibiriak
      Sibiriak
      March 30, 2016, 4:16 am

      Shmuel : [Sibiriak:] A viable settlement–not a solution–to the Israeli/Palestine conflict must be forced on an unreconstructed Zionist Israeli majority.

      And the chances of that happening would be?
      ————————

      Hard to say. Certainly far greater than the chances of “getting Israel and Israelis to understand that they are indeed colonialist invaders”.

      There is no movement in that direction whatsoever; in fact, the movement is the other way–toward increased Zionist radicalization and militancy.

      On the other hand, there IS movement toward increased external pressure on Israel: BDS, EU measures, changing global opinion, potential UN/ICJ action etc. Nowhere near enough. Maybe it will never be enough. Maybe it will. The future is open.

      It also seems highly unlikely that anything at all will change without an ideological shift within a minority, even a small minority of Israeli Jews

      I shift within a small minority of Israeli Jews could be one “force-vector for change” among many force-vectors– but I wouldn’t give it central importance at this point.

      In any case, a change within a small minority of Zionist Jews is a much different proposition than “ getting Israel and Israelis to understand that they are indeed colonialist invaders. “. The latter proposition is D.O.A.

      —————–
      those like jon, whose self-image is grounded in democratic and even humanistic ideals.

      Unlike most MW posters, I see a potentially positive role for many liberal Zionists, especially in the U.S.

  10. Herchel
    Herchel
    March 27, 2016, 1:32 pm

    How many of those “Jewish Arabs “were involved in the mass killings in Belgium, Turkey or Pakistan over the past few days? Probably fewer than the Number of Arabs playing professional basketball in Israel.

    • James North
      James North
      March 29, 2016, 12:30 pm

      Mooser: Are you sure you aren’t pretending to be “Herchel?” Because every time “Herchel” comments, he loses support for his side.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        March 29, 2016, 12:43 pm

        “Mooser: Are you sure you aren’t pretending to be “Herchel?”

        “James” I must confess that I thought about doing a parody-Zionist thing when I first started reading Mondo.
        I’m so glad I didn’t! When the real thing came along, I would have been exposed as a pallid imitation.

        “Because every time “Herchel” comments, he loses support for his side.”

        Gee “James”, you don’t think Jewish antinomianism is going to catch on?

  11. Jane Porter
    Jane Porter
    March 29, 2016, 5:30 pm

    Amigo, Bravo! This description with humour of Israel’s racist and deeply stupid policy is clear and perfect……
    Further for other commenters: the present Historic Homeland of Palestine belongs to the Palestinians, christians druzes muslims and others who lived there and stayed there for thousands of years,
    See Salman abu sitta and also Shlomo Sands

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