Trending Topics:

Influential rabbi teaches would-be Israeli soldiers: Genocide is a mitzvah

Israel/Palestine
on 84 Comments

Rabbi Ophir Wallas of the Bnei David Military Mechina was caught on video teaching young would-be soldiers that Israelis are, from the halachaic point of view, permitted to wipe out Palestinians, and that only fear of massive retaliation prevents that.

Rabbi Wallas’ words can be heard here. They are taken from a longer lecture he has given his students, which – for those who have too much time on their hands – can be seen here. Here is my translation, with essential footnotes:

“In conquering the Land [of Israel] according to Nachmanides and Rashi [*], who say that the wars of today are also mitzvah wars for conquering the Land, I am beholden to nothing. This isn’t the law of the persecutor [**], right? What law are we dealing with? The laws of a mitzvah war, a war of occupying the Land. Even if I don’t conquer Gaza right now, [conquering it] is part of my ability to settle the Land of Israel, so it is also a part of the mitzvah of conquering the Land. And therefore it follows, there’s no other way; like, we’d have to kill them all. Because this is the difference between the Law of the Persecutor and mitzvah wars. […] A mitzvah war of conquering the Land, which is not limited to saving the people of Israel from their enemies, according to some of the Rishonim [***] I could, on the face of it and by the essential law, destroy, kill and cause to perish [****] all of them. I will not do so, because if I were to do so, and reject international treaties, then the State of Israel shall parish, unless we shall witness a miracle of miracles – and one must not trust in a miracle. And that’s the only reason I won’t do it.”

A few other notes are essential. First, and please bear with me, what is a mechina? Literally, it means a “preliminary school”, but in Israel it came to mean a school  which prepares students who finished their high school studies for military service. While most Israeli Jews are drafted soon after finishing high school, a select few are allowed to study for one more year, and in this year they are supposed to be indoctrinated to become better soldiers. Most mechinas boast of a high percentage of graduates who go on to become officers and serve longer than draftees. With one exception, all mechinas are religious, and are in fact a form of yeshiva. Mechina teachers are public employees who get their salaries from both the Education Ministry and the Defense Ministry. Mechina leaders often meet with senior officers, up to the Chief of Staff, and participate in high-level discussions about the level of religiosity of the army, particularly whether women may serve with men. The fact that the mechinas are producing a large number of motivated officers when most Israelis do not wish to become officers gives them unusual leverage with the high command – with the result that they are rarely, if ever, supervised.

This began to change over the last year. The Bnei David mechina, the first of them, has long been considered the flagship of the National Religious movement, and its leader, Rabbi Elli Saddan, even won the Israel Prize – the country’s highest civil honor – for his contribution to education. However, over the last year, several rabbis of the mechina – including Saddan himself – were caught on videos saying highly inflammatory things. The main targets of the mechina rabbis have been gays and women; the utterances were so inflammatory, as the rabbis exposed their misogyny and homophobia, that the Minister of Defense demanded at one point that one of the worst offenders, Saddan’s deputy Yigal Lewinstein, resign or the mechina will be sanctioned (Hebrew). Soon after, Lewinstein went on “vacation”, but the mechina insisted he was not fired (Hebrew).

As one scandal after another hit Bnei David, leftists have made it a habit to go over the mechina’s videoed lectures looking for bait. The Wallas quote is the latest prize. Most of the haul, however, dealt with misogyny and homophobia. This is one of the rare examples of what Bnei David rabbis think about Palestinians.

Now we need a crash course in Jewish [not Israeli] warfare law. It basically distinguishes between two sorts of wars: reshut (permitted) wars and mitzvah (ordained) wars. Kings are permitted to go on reshut wars if they so please, but such wars are handled under relatively humane laws. Mitzvah laws are a different concept entirely: they are holy wars, the enemy is considered to be the enemy of God, and, as Wallas says, “I am beholden to nothing.” The model is the extermination wars of the biblical Joshua. Most Halacha scholars are divided about what constitutes a mitzvah war, but they agree that wars to reconquer the Holy Land fit the bill – after all, they are modeled on Joshua’s.

There used to be a snag: Only a king could declare a mitzvah wars, and Judaism was not supposed to have a king until the messiah came. The National Religious movement made a leap of faith over this hurdle: it declared Israel to be “the beginning of the growth of our redemption” (a phrase recited every year in the Independence Day prayers), and treats the state as semi-holy, and one that may declare mitzvah wars.

And, at the end of the chain, we have a government-sponsored rabbi teaching children ardent for some desperate glory that legally they are permitted to order their soldiers to destroy, kill and cause to perish women, old men, and children. Yes, there is still a caveat: If Israel is to suffer because of international treaties, it shouldn’t be done.

But what if the time is right?

Technically, Rabbi Wallas is somewhat under military supervision. As his teachings – while essentially correct, alas – go directly against military law, one might expect he’d be removed, demoted or reprimanded. But, while Lewinstein was reprimanded for denigrating women soldiers, Wallas has less to fear. No one in the military command cares about rabbis rhapsodizing about genocide.

Notes

* Two prominent medieval glossa writers, Rabbi Moshe Ben Nachman and Rabbi Shlomo Yitzhaki

** A halachaic law permitting the harm, up to killing, of a person who is “persecuting” others and putting them in danger.

*** Jewish religious scholars of the High and Late Middle Ages period

**** Wallas is here quoting Haman’s order for the extermination of Jews, Esther 3:13.

Yossi Gurvitz
About Yossi Gurvitz

Yossi Gurvitz is a journalist and a blogger, and has covered the occupation extensively.

Other posts by .


Posted In:

84 Responses

  1. Maghlawatan
    Maghlawatan
    April 17, 2018, 9:34 am

    People like Dershbag wil say it is just one rotten apple but the whole barrel is sick. Fascism doesn’t grow by accident.

    https://electronicintifada.net/blogs/ben-white/army-rabbi-exhorted-gods-army-they-massacred-palestinians-shujaiya
    Prominent settler and former Israeli army chief rabbi Avichai Rontzki delivered a “messianic, fiery speech” to Israeli forces prior to the devastating massacre of the Gaza City neighborhood of Shujaiya, it was revealed today.
    An account of the speech appears in a new piece by Nahum Barnea, a prominent journalist at Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth, and is based on remarks made by a soldier present at the time.
    The soldier related that before their invasion of Shujaiya, troops were gathered to “listen to the words” of Rontzki, who “praised the miracle of God’s army.” According to an article last week in Kipa, a religious-Zionist oriented news site, Rontzki has been performing reserve duty and “encouraging the combatants on the ground.”
    The Electronic Intifada has already reported on the phenomenon of groups of Jewish mystics offering support to the Israeli forces currently shelling Gaza, as well as the Israeli army commander who declared “holy war” on Palestinians.
    “Damned”
    The anonymous soldier in Barnea’s article also recounts a similar event prior to the Shujaiya massacre:
    We got close to Kibbutz Nahal Oz and then they gathered us together. You know how it is in the army – when told to gather, you gather. Waiting for us was a bunch of Breslev Hasidic Jews singing “Messiah, Messiah,” dancing and bouncing around. We formed a circle around them, and a bunch of fighters danced with them in ecstasy

  2. eljay
    eljay
    April 17, 2018, 9:51 am

    So…according to this maniac, it’s acceptable to massacre all those who not-innocently / criminally stand in the way of Jews overtaking all of Palestine. Huh. Mr. Wallas sounds a lot like a certain MW Zionist.

    But he differs from that MW Zionist in one respect: Mr. Wallas’ desire to see massacre done is tempered by his realization that it could spell the end of religion-supremacist “Jewish State”.

    It’s nice to know that Zionists will sometimes refrain from doing evil because they understand and accept that it is wrong to do evil fear retribution.

    • pabelmont
      pabelmont
      April 17, 2018, 10:50 am

      Making nice with the people Jews live among has been a rabbinic teaching for 2000 years. For exactly the reason of avoiding making waves. Nothing new about it.

      But the idea of OKing lots of killing (to make the Jewish soldiers feel good about unnecessary killing) is exactly the sort of thing that strict orthodox Jewish thought has OKed forever and which Israel Shahak famously wrote about, causing a scandal: don’t say out loud for the gentiles to hear what we Jews say privately to each other!

      And the army has been doing a pretty good job of misbehaving (from my perspective) for years, even before orthodox Jews came into the army, so maybe this sort of thinking is not restricted to the orthodox and is not limited, by way of justification, to religious ideas. The events of the 1948 part of Nakba were not justified by rabbis.

      • MHughes976
        MHughes976
        April 18, 2018, 9:30 am

        Mind you, I’m sure non-Jews have often said things behind Jewish backs that they would not have said to Jewish faces.

      • Yaakov Shapiro
        Yaakov Shapiro
        April 18, 2018, 9:43 pm

        Tthe idea of OKing lots of killing (to make the Jewish soldiers feel good about unnecessary killing) is exactly the sort of thing that strict orthodox Jewish thought has OKed forever” – I never heard of such a thing. I would challenge you to point to a source. This sort of nonsense is a purely National Religious innovation (for example: https://www.israelnationalnews.com/Articles/Article.aspx/19875 ).

        Also, both Wallas and the writer of this article present one particular Zionist view of Jewish law. I, and others, would beg to differ. Even according to Nachmanides, there is no Mitzvah nowadays to take over the Holy Land, even peacefully, and certainly not by war – because Jews are in exile and not allowed to conquer the Holy Land. That principle renders the “Mitzvah” Zionists talk about of conquest nonexistent nowadays. This is the majority view, including even that of Zionists such as Rabbi Ovadiah Yosef.

      • echinococcus
        echinococcus
        April 18, 2018, 11:43 pm

        Rev. Shapiro,

        I never heard of such a thing. I would challenge you to point to a source

        Does that mean that the Old Testament, viewed by a lot of irreligious people as the source for Orthodox Jewish thought par excellence, is in reality not Orthodox neither a source? I suppose there is no need to quote the several injunctions and encouragements in that book to commit genocide on various peoples inhabiting Palestine, and the ongoing identification of any current inhabitants with the seed of Amalek.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        April 19, 2018, 5:25 pm

        ” That principle renders the “Mitzvah” Zionists talk about of conquest nonexistent nowadays. This is the majority view, including even that of Zionists such as Rabbi Ovadiah Yosef.”

        Whew! As a Jew, I can’t tell you how relieved I am to hear that!
        (And how it must render the tender souls of Israelis, knowing that all the things the Palestinians are forcing them to do aren’t quite mitzvahs, just “security” and “defense”.)

      • gamal
        gamal
        April 19, 2018, 9:14 pm

        ” the several injunctions and encouragements in that book to commit genocide”

        i am second to none in my Biblical ignorance, if I take the example of the infamous 9.5,

        funny to think that it related to battles where Muslims were fighting in defense of polytheists, weird and honestly if you haven’t read a least tafsir Quturbi or even the preceding and succeeding verses , knew who ibni Rabah was and what he said I am going to be so bored..what are we discussing if god told me to kill kafirun…ibni Qayyums hidayatul hayara fi ajwibatul Yahud wa’l Nasara, says we are not allowed too.. superficial textual support notwithstanding….nothing is ever as much fun as one hopes.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      April 17, 2018, 11:17 am

      “eljay”, how could we have been so wrong about “Jon s”?
      We both thought (c’mon, I’ll cop to it if you will) he was politically and morally screwed up, but it turns out he’s just got religion.

      • eljay
        eljay
        April 17, 2018, 12:52 pm

        He’s a fighter, he’s a poet, he’s a teacher
        He’s been to school – oh, man, he’s been the teacher

        If you want him to, he’ll lay his hands on you
        But the ride don’t never ever come for free (no-no, no-no-no)

        (with apologies to Mr. Bongiovi Jr.)

      • Steve Grover
        Steve Grover
        April 17, 2018, 1:30 pm

        Eljay,
        Here is a video of Jon Bon Jovi’s excitement about playing in Israel in 2015. And Bon Jovi is coming back in May.

        https://youtu.be/l90aIvPy558

      • eljay
        eljay
        April 17, 2018, 2:03 pm

        || Steve Grover: Eljay,
        Here is a video of Jon Bon Jovi’s excitement about playing in Israel in 2015. And Bon Jovi is coming back in May. … ||

        Gosh, that’s really super terrific!

      • eljay
        eljay
        April 17, 2018, 2:29 pm

        Whaddaya know: Jon also played for Gaddafi’s son. He was probably excited about that, too.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        April 17, 2018, 2:48 pm

        “And Bon Jovi is coming back in May.”

        All the kids in Israel love Bon Jovi. His “Living On A Prayer” is the climax of every Israeli concert. All the kids dahven right along.

      • Maghlawatan
        Maghlawatan
        April 17, 2018, 3:13 pm

        Wow Steve

        Any popstars below the age of 50 going to apartheid Israel? LOLZ

        I bet French Montana isn’t. Hasbara is so forgettable.

      • eljay
        eljay
        April 17, 2018, 3:37 pm

        || eljay: He’s a fighter, he’s a poet, he’s a teacher … ||

        Hmmm…that should have been “preacher”, not “teacher”. Oh, well.

      • Misterioso
        Misterioso
        April 18, 2018, 10:57 am

        @Steve Grover

        “Here is a video of Jon Bon Jovi’s excitement about playing in Israel in 2015. And Bon Jovi is coming back in May.”

        By performing in the fascistic entity known as “Israel,” all he does is demonstrate how desperately he needs a gig. No surprise.

  3. Ossinev
    Ossinev
    April 17, 2018, 10:07 am

    Basically all these Israeli Zios are mad Mahdis with some of them just being overtly madder. Genocidal IDF freaks chanting and dancing in ecstasy = Genocidal ISIS freaks chanting and dancing in ecstasy
    To their credit though the Genocidal ISIS freaks never claim to live in the only democracy in the Middle East.

    • gamal
      gamal
      April 17, 2018, 10:43 am

      “mad Mahdis”

      back in the day when it was ok to slaughter Furis, the Mad Mahdi and his Fuzzywuzzies were from Darfur, it’s funny that this never came up during the recent crisis there,

      anyway not that it will do much good but there is a book “Karari: A Sudanese account of the battle of Omdurman” by Ismat Zulfo which interviews many of the Sudanese participants, i am always puzzled why so many British people recycle imperial racist propaganda apparently completely oblivious, don’t you read?

      https://www.amazon.com/Karari-Sudanese-Account-Battle-Omdurman/dp/0723226776

      i would recommend Raskins classic but that’s to wander in to culturally Marxist territory, but still

      “The Mythology of Imperialism: A Revolutionary Critique of British Literature and Society in the Modern Age”

      https://www.amazon.com/Mythology-Imperialism-Revolutionary-Critique-Literature/dp/1583671862

      you come across as either blind or malevolent..read some shit.

  4. Maghlawatan
    Maghlawatan
    April 17, 2018, 10:07 am

    The problem with advocating genocide is that what is good for the goose is also kosher for the gander. A lot of these fascist rabbis think God is behind them. So did the Temple guardians when the persians attacked and trashed the house.

  5. Kay24
    Kay24
    April 17, 2018, 10:52 am

    Israel has had some vicious Rabbis, calling for the extermination of goyim, and egging Israelis to kill Palestinians. I remember the controversial Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, who had spoken in the same evil manner. These men would qualify to be in the nazi movement. It should make us wonder exactly who they address, and who their followers are. No decent human being will agree with these shameless men who pretend they are doing God’s work, while they sound like they do the devil’s.

    • eljay
      eljay
      April 17, 2018, 11:26 am

      || Kay24: Israel has had some vicious Rabbis, calling for the extermination of goyim, and egging Israelis to kill Palestinians. … ||

      Cue Zionist whataboutism…

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      April 17, 2018, 11:21 pm

      “Israel has had some vicious Rabbis, calling for the extermination of goyim”

      That’s disgusting. Why don’t those Rabbis pick on somebody their own size!

    • Misterioso
      Misterioso
      April 18, 2018, 11:03 am

      @Kay24

      Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir declared during an interview with the foreign editor of the London Sunday Times that “it was not as though there was a Palestinian people in Palestine…and we came and threw them out and took their country away from them. They did not exist.” (Sunday Times, London, June 15, 1969)

      In the view of another prime minister of Israel, Yitzhak Shamir, the Palestinians are of no more significance than insects when compared to Jews: “From this mountain top and from the vantage point of history I say that these people [the Palestinians] are like grasshoppers compared to us.” (The Independent, April 1988, from Reuter, Tel Aviv; cited by Michael Rice, False Inheritance, Kegan Paul International, London and New York, 1994, p. 127).

      While delivering a televised address to his Likud party in 1989, Shamir further maligned Palestinians by describing them as “alien invaders of the Holy Land…. They are brutal, wild alien invaders in the land of Israel that belongs to the people of Israel, and only to them.” (New York Post, February 6, 1989)

      During a speech to the Knesset, Menachem Begin, Israel’s sixth prime minister, referred to Palestinians as “beasts walking on two legs.” (New Statesman, 25 June 1982)

      Regarding Palestinians residing in the occupied West Bank, Raphael Eitan, then Israel’s Chief of Staff, declared: “When we have settled the land, all the Arabs will be able to do about it will be to scurry around like drugged cockroaches in a bottle…. We shall use the ultimate force until the Palestinians come crawling to us on all fours.” (New York Times, 14 April 1983)

      Prime Minister Ehud Barak: “The Palestinians are like crocodiles, the more you give them meat, they want more…” (Jerusalem Post, Aug. 30, 2002)

      Rabbi Perin, in a eulogy for Baruch Goldstein, in 1994, stated : “One million Arabs are not worth a Jewish fingernail.” (New York Times, Feb. 28, 1994)

      Rabbi Ovadia Yossef, the spiritual leader of the Shas party and former Israeli Chief Rabbi, described the Arabs as “serpents” and in his Passover sermon, he stated that “the Lord shall waste their seed, devastate them and vanish them from this world. It is forbidden to be merciful to them. You must send missiles to them and annihilate them. They are evil and damnable.”

      • mondonut
        mondonut
        April 18, 2018, 12:23 pm

        @Misterioso

        The actual quote has a different meaning when not selectively edited to distort:

        “There were no such thing as Palestinians. When was there an independent Palestinian people with a Palestinian state? It was either southern Syria before the First World War, and then it was a Palestine including Jordan. It was not as though there was a Palestinian people in Palestine considering itself as a Palestinian people and we came and threw them out and took their country away from them. They did not exist.”

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        April 18, 2018, 8:10 pm

        Mondonut, the full version is worse than the edited version. The edited version would have been a simple, evil, lie.
        The full version says that the southern Syrian Arabs were morally insignificant because they did not constitute a collective, a state or a “people”, and so throwing them out and taking their homes and farms was not wrong. They had no rights to begin with. Individual rights do not count. It is the collective that is important.
        That is a basic principle of Fascism, and by that statement Meir aligned herself with Mussolini and the other Fascist leaders.

  6. Citizen
    Citizen
    April 17, 2018, 10:56 am

    I don’t remember the war-as-mitzvah principle being applied at any time during the Nuremberg or Tokyo Trials, nor in its progeny, Geneva IV. Hitler said he was following the orders of “Divine Providence.” I think Goering’s opinion on both the trial and the Nazi’s ultimate philosophical motives are mirrored in Zionism as implemented, and in genocide of “the Other” as justified by : Darwinian survival.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      April 17, 2018, 12:31 pm

      “Darwinian survival.”

      I thought “Darwinian survival” consisted of having an abundance of off-spring, some of which may be better adapted for survival.

      • Citizen
        Citizen
        April 17, 2018, 3:53 pm

        Yes that’s the narrower view, however, in The Descent of Man, Darwin disparaged blacks and observed that the break in evolutionary history between apes and humans fell “between the negro or Australian and the gorilla,” indicating that he considered blacks the humans that were the most ape-like. Darwin also predicted that “[a]t some future period, not very distant as measured by centuries, the civilised races of man will almost certainly exterminate and replace throughout the world the savage races.” [Darwin, Descent of Man (1871), vol. I, p. 201] You can decide for yourself which 20th Century leaders took that “survival of the fittest” POV and ran with it.

  7. Marnie
    Marnie
    April 17, 2018, 11:36 am

    Everytime I think it can’t get any worse, it does. Israel is a third world shithole and israelis know it. They are the hillbilly bastards at the family reunion. No one wants this trash washing up on their shores. Maybe that explains why the u.n., the u.s., etc., don’t get involved. These are the last people anyone would want as their neighbor. In my opinion, of course.

    • Steve Grover
      Steve Grover
      April 17, 2018, 1:33 pm

      “Israel is a third world shithole and israelis know it.”
      Its as much of a third world shithole as Norway.

      • Marnie
        Marnie
        April 18, 2018, 2:59 am

        “And bon jovi’s coming back in May”

        The desperate desire to make ‘israel’ appear normal and wonderful is going to take a lot more than these 7 little words stevia.

      • Steve Grover
        Steve Grover
        April 18, 2018, 4:01 pm

        Here is a few more words Marnie. Happy 70th Israel! Jack White is going too!

      • Marnie
        Marnie
        April 18, 2018, 11:59 pm

        70th anniversary of desperately seeking legitimacy! Keep up the good PR work stevia!

    • Maghlawatan
      Maghlawatan
      April 17, 2018, 3:20 pm

      Marnie

      Most third world countries have deep wells of shared culture and knowledge.
      All poor Israel has is hasbara. Beyond hasbara there is a void.
      In terms of shitholes Israel would be classified as culturally disadvantaged.
      Any country counting the Dersh as a friend is pretty pathetic.

      • Marnie
        Marnie
        April 18, 2018, 2:18 am

        I use the term ‘shithole’ wrt ‘israel’ to mean exactly what it describes, like an outhouse you know?

      • Marnie
        Marnie
        April 18, 2018, 2:49 am

        Maghalawatan –
        The key word for me is ‘most’. ‘israel’ is in a sub-sub-sub class all by itself. ‘israeli culture’? What a joke. Aside from what they stole from the indigenous people there is nothing.

      • Kay24
        Kay24
        April 18, 2018, 3:38 am

        Any country that has to pay jobless youth millions of dollars to spread propaganda, false information, and blame their long suffering victims for their occupation, is more than pathetic.
        It is utterly disgusting.

      • inbound39
        inbound39
        April 18, 2018, 7:51 am

        I would be inclined to go a touch further. Not only is Israel culturally disadvantaged it is also morally disadvantaged with a large degree of cognitive dissonance present in a large number of its inhabitants of Zionist persuasion. Israel should be declared an Open Air Lunatic Asylum judging by the article above.

      • Maghlawatan
        Maghlawatan
        April 18, 2018, 3:14 pm

        Sometimes I think a leader will emerge to lead Israel back to reality.

      • Marnie
        Marnie
        April 19, 2018, 12:00 am

        “Sometimes I think a leader will emerge to lead Israel back to reality.”

        (ughh, remember what happened to the last one?)

  8. John O
    John O
    April 17, 2018, 11:50 am

    From the letters page of today’s Guardian. It looks like the first correspondent might have studied at Bnei david:

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/apr/16/israeli-snipers-letter-divides-opinion

    • Maghlawatan
      Maghlawatan
      April 17, 2018, 3:39 pm

      Zionism is insane

      “The former combatants who wrote concerning Israel’s security policy on the Gaza border (Letters, 13 April) do not represent the views of the majority of Israel defence force (IDF) soldiers, who appreciate the high moral standards demanded of them by the country they serve.

      I myself served as a lieutenant in the IDF tank corp and can attest that Israel places the utmost priority on avoiding causing harm to innocent civilians, stringently enforcing a rigorous code of conduct. Any soldier who contravenes this code faces severe consequences.
      Far from being “unarmed demonstrators”, rioters approached the border at the instruction of terror group Hamas. Armed with guns, explosives and molotov cocktails, they sought violent confrontation. Of those killed, around 80% have already been identified as belonging to terrorist organisations. Israel unilaterally withdrew from all of Gaza in 2005 and it is astonishing to read the mendacious claim that Israel is seeking to “maintain the regime of occupation”.

      Hamas alone bears responsibility for organising violent riots with the purpose of infiltrating Israel in order to murder innocent civilians. This is clearly documented in the Hamas Charter. For the good of both our peoples, they must stop.”

      Paul Charney
      Chairman, Zionist Federation UK and Ireland

  9. wondering jew
    wondering jew
    April 17, 2018, 12:14 pm

    I do not know how prominent wallas’s interpretation of the texts and current events is among the national religious. I am not surprised, but certainly it should be said that not all national religious learned rabbis think like this.

    Unending wars and the power dynamics plus Jewish texts add up to a horrible mix, not in all cases but in this specific case.

    There really is no positive news and so now wallas has his 15 minutes of infamy.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      April 17, 2018, 12:27 pm

      Unending wars…

      None of which Israel has anything to do with.

      “There really is no positive news and so now wallas has his 15 minutes of infamy.”

      And now that he has gotten his “15 minutes of infamy” he’ll go back to preaching love and peace.

    • johneill
      johneill
      April 17, 2018, 12:37 pm

      theocracies tend to breed extremists, so empowering religious authorities to ‘educate’ the army is not any way forward for a country pretending at democracy.
      the religious definitions of war are also creepy from my perspective, and the ‘semi-holy’ status of the state seems quite established. yes yonah, there is no good news here. not everyone thinks like him, yet everyone thinks it’s normal.

      • eljay
        eljay
        April 17, 2018, 1:07 pm

        || johneill: … the religious definitions of war are also creepy from my perspective, and the ‘semi-holy’ status of the state seems quite established. yes yonah, there is no good news here. not everyone thinks like him, yet everyone thinks it’s normal. ||

        Fighting a holy war sounds like a pretty important ritual of the Jewish religion. The words of a certain MW Zionist may therefore help to explain why everyone thinks it’s normal:

        A willingness to legally ban the practice of the Jewish religion – even of one important ritual-is in my view an expression of anti Jewish bigotry.

      • johneill
        johneill
        April 17, 2018, 9:43 pm

        let halachic scholars believe what they will, as with christians in seminary or students of islam – i’m saying don’t let it run any aspect of the state. i’m aware of yonah’s beliefs and he has made some progress so far as i can tell, i’d agree a willingness to ban religious practice is an expression of bigotry, but ‘holy war’ is not what i’d call religious practice; though talking about it, unfortately, is.

  10. Ossinev
    Ossinev
    April 17, 2018, 1:35 pm

    @Gamal
    “you come across as either blind or malevolent..read some shit”
    I think you are to put it mildly doing me a disservice on this one. I am neither blind nor malevolent and have zero sympathy or illusions for what you describe as “Imperialist racist propaganda”.
    As for reading I am a reasonably well educated (Hons Degree History) fluent English speaker.
    I will refer you to the English word “nuance” and suggest you regroup recalibrate and reflect on the thrust of what I said and what I consider to be an insulting ad hominem response. To help you a bit: a constant in Zionist propaganda is that Islam and Islamic nations especially Iran are motivated and driven by what have been perceived as “Mahdi” type religious zealots who simply want to slaughter all non believers whereas the only democracy in the Middle East is not remotely theocratic and not driven in any way by religious zealots and wouldn`t dream of slaughtering non believers.. The article of course is proof to the contrary and my comment was an attempt to illustrate that.
    If you feel the need to stick some ad hominem knives in I recommend you save them for the more deserving Hophmi and JonS Hasbarists who frequent MW.

    Perhaps a point taken would be in order ?

    • gamal
      gamal
      April 17, 2018, 3:10 pm

      That is just one glorious whitesplanation,

      “I will refer you to the English word “nuance” ”

      it is always possible that I missed the “nuance” due to the “chip on my shoulder”

      “To help you a bit:” steady on only if you can spare time from your nuanced readings,

      “a constant in Zionist propaganda is that Islam and Islamic nations especially Iran are motivated and driven by what have been perceived as “Mahdi” type religious zealots who simply want to slaughter all non believers whereas the only democracy in the Middle East is not remotely theocratic and not driven in any way by religious zealots and wouldn`t dream of slaughtering non believers” ”

      hons degree you say, well in an article that focuses on some openly genocidal statements by an Israeli Rabbi you say

      “Basically all these Israeli Zios are mad Mahdis with some of them just being overtly madder. Genocidal IDF freaks chanting and dancing in ecstasy = Genocidal ISIS freaks chanting and dancing in ecstasy
      To their credit though the Genocidal ISIS freaks never claim to live in the only democracy in the Middle East.”

      do you think the Rabbi attended a Jewish madrasa where he learned Jewish “mad Mahdism”,

      “and my comment was an attempt to illustrate that” that Islam is every bit as implicated in genocide as Zionism or Zionized Judaism,

      “If you feel the need to stick some ad hominem knives in I recommend you save them for the more deserving Hophmi and JonS Hasbarists who frequent MW.”

      people like you are far more damaging to liberation struggles than their open opponents, but thanks for the talking down to I of course have no education and only ever read the blurb on a book and whats a British muslim born and bred in the Empire, involved with government and media for 30 years know about anything

      American Taliban
      Bundy Caliphate
      Jewish Sharia ?

      “Perhaps a point taken would be in order ?” what? you a Rotarian?

      Muslims are at the very least just as bad as whatever it is that is under discussion and we should never forget that, i have your point.

      • Citizen
        Citizen
        April 17, 2018, 4:02 pm

        I’m sorry, did some Muslim state just get its latest GIFT from US taxpayers of $38 billion + interest + supplement (in Trump’s Tax Bill)?

  11. Maghlawatan
    Maghlawatan
    April 17, 2018, 2:22 pm

    Judaism has no central authority so there is no quality control.
    One of the Jewish Torah ‘s three commands to “love” is to love “the Other.”

    HOWEVER
    Anyone can fillet the torah in defence of genocide. anyone can indoctrinate IDF teenagers.

    https://www.myjewishlearning.com/article/genocide-in-the-torah/
    “Genocide in the Torah
    The existential threat of Amalek.
    By Shmuly Yanklowitz
    In 2006 Conservative Rabbi Jack Reimer, Bill Clinton’s rabbinic counsel during his presidency, created a stir when he associated Islamic fundamentalism with the biblical nation of Amalek.
    “I am becoming convinced that Islamic Fundamentalism, or, as some people prefer to call it, ‘Islamo-fascism,’ is the most dangerous force that we have ever faced and that it is worthy of the name: Amalek… We must recognize who Amalek is in our generation, and we must prepare to fight it in every way we can. And may God help us in this task.”

    Who is Amalek?
    According to the book of Exodus, Amalek is the nation that attacked the weakest among the Israelites as they fled from Egypt. This transgression was not to go unpunished. The Torah has a harsh prescription for Amalek: annihilation.

    “It shall be that when Hashem, your God, gives you rest from all your enemies all around, in the Land that Hashem, your God, gives you as an inheritance to possess it, you shall blot out the memory of Amalek from under the heaven. Do not forget it!” (Deuteronomy 25: 19; also see Exodus 17:14 and Numbers 24:20)

    Blotting out the memory of Amalek was no mere psychological activity. The Israelites were expected to kill every Amalekite–man, woman, and child. But was this just a theoretical imperative or was it meant to be carried out?

    The book of Samuel implies that it required actual fulfillment: “Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox, and sheep, camel and ass,”(Samuel I, 15:3). King Saul struck down Amalek as he was commanded but he then took mercy upon King Agag and upon some of the Amalekite animals. God and the prophet Samuel harshly criticized Saul for not fulfilling God’s word.”

    Does this rabbi have anything to do with the “King’s Torah” book which advocates the murder of non Jews ?

  12. Maghlawatan
    Maghlawatan
    April 17, 2018, 3:25 pm

    Rav Walla must be a black sheep-

    I came across Wallanwalla a while ago.
    Much more sophisticated, especially the percussion.
    The choice is between nihilism and culture. Israel lost.

  13. MHughes976
    MHughes976
    April 17, 2018, 4:50 pm

    This is a philosophy which states a supreme imperative, that the Israelite conquest of the land should succeed (because it is a divine command), and subordinates all other moral considerations to that. It’s honest of him to use the word conquest, which is what is being attempted. How should we reply? Not with too much self-righteousness, because the idea of a ‘supreme imperative’ may not be so alien to us. ‘We’ sacrificed a lot of lives to stop Hitler. I think we should attack the idea that there can be a right to conquer. But in a Christian tradition, where the Book of Joshua is a sacred text, there may be a pang of doubt.

  14. Ossinev
    Ossinev
    April 17, 2018, 6:18 pm

    @gamal
    “That is just one glorious whitesplanation”

    That is one glorious racist comment.

    “it is always possible that I missed the “nuance” due to the “chip on my shoulder”

    I made no reference to you “having a chip on your shoulder”.

    “people like you are far more damaging to liberation struggles than their open opponents”

    Whereas people like myself(ie you) are the real deal.

    Sounds like Zionist “chosen” type thinking to me ie this is my chosen liberation struggle. I make the rules on what can and cannot be said on this website when it comes to people other than people like me.

    “but thanks for the talking down to I”

    “you come across as either blind or malevolent..read some shit” = IMHO serious talking down.

    Very finally and just for the record my reference to having a History Degree was not a self glorifying “whitesplanation” as you put it. It was merely to indicate that I have done a little bit of reading on Colonial/Imperialist history in the Middle East and have no illusions about the chaos and havoc (to put it mildly) visited on the region by the British including the betrayal of the native Palestinians. Have just started reading some more “shit” in my latest book on the subject: “Lawrence IN Arabia” subtitled “War ,Deceit,Imperial Folly and the Making of the Modern Middle East” by Scott Anderson.

    Just adding to all the other “shit” on the subject you know. Already a good read. Can also recommend as an example of other “shit” which I have recently read. “Ploughing Sand” subtitled “British Rule in Palestine 1917-1948” by Naomi Shepherd. I could go on and on about the “shit” which I have read on the subject but to what point ?

    Goodnight and goodbye.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      April 17, 2018, 11:18 pm

      Al-Mahdī, (Arabic: “Right-Guided One”)original name Muḥammad Aḥmad ibn al-Sayyid ʿAbd Allāh, (born August 12, 1844—died June 22, 1885, Omdurman, Sudan), creator of a vast Islamic state extending from the Red Sea to Central Africa and founder of a movement that remained influential in Sudan a century later.

      • gamal
        gamal
        April 18, 2018, 1:13 am

        there is an eerie resonance in all this mad Mahdi,

        1.st Robert S Kramer : Holy City On The Nile : Omdurman during the Mahdiyya 1885-1898, can’t recommend highly enough

        but the Khalifa really, played in black face by Lawrence Olivier in a racist classic my most enduring impression was Oliviers lips, they deserved their own Oscar, is what i am referring to below, i know how to edit

        but back too eerie

        in 1898 Kitchener wiped out the dervish army who put on a display that was the pinnacle of courage and ineffectiveness, Europe celebrated the advances in military tech in those 13 years from Khartoum to Omdurman and 16 years later with yet more advances in hardware slaughtered 14 million men in France….i live alone with crows everything is eerie but still

        Brexit Britain is expelling and firing Windrush Jamaicans, have you seen the “You have now been deported to Jamaica here are some useful tips” leaflet, it’s not a joke and so Brexit and break with the commonwealth is everyone to be expelled from everywhere…I don’t reckon it’s only those Mahdis and Mullah who are mad I am beginning to wonder about all of us,

        it’s like the bullshit is becoming kaleidoscopic

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        April 18, 2018, 5:42 am

        Broke a British square.

        http://www.bartleby.com/246/1128.html

        Does this count as imperial propaganda?

      • eljay
        eljay
        April 18, 2018, 7:52 am

        || Mooser: Al-Mahdī … creator of a vast Islamic state extending from the Red Sea to Central Africa … ||

        I wonder if he had the same Thousand Years! expectation for his “Islamic State” that Zionists have for their “Jewish State”.

      • gamal
        gamal
        April 18, 2018, 9:20 am

        “his “Islamic State” ”

        pretty much the same fate as Red Clouds Lakota supremacist state, now there a 2 Sudans, 3 Iraqs, infinite Libyas, when there are 6 six Syrias we can be sure Empire will have averted the dangers of Native Supremacism in their own countries, our vigilance must be constant.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        April 18, 2018, 12:10 pm

        “Broke a British square.”

        One walk down Carnaby St. will do it.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        April 18, 2018, 12:39 pm

        “I wonder if he had the same Thousand Years! expectation for his “Islamic State”

        Do you think the British had the same expectations for their future in the ME?

      • eljay
        eljay
        April 18, 2018, 12:55 pm

        || Mooser: “I wonder if he had the same Thousand Years! expectation for his “Islamic State”

        Do you think the British had the same expectations for their future in the ME? ||

        “Does Howdy Doody got wooden balls, man?”

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        April 19, 2018, 2:49 am

        “Do you think the British had the same expectations for their future in the ME?”

        Unlikely. Official pronouncements notwithstanding, official Britain was well aware that those pronouncements could well be no more than frantic boast and foolish word, and that all their pomp of yesterday could very quickly be one with Nineveh and Tyre.

        After all, they knew that the American colonies had broken away with the aid of the French, who saved the colonists’ butts in the uprising.

        (You Americans should recall that, if it weren’t for the French, you would be speaking English today.)

        They recalled the Indian Mutiny, the Sikh wars, the Great Game of keeping the Russians out of India, the Ashanti wars, and too many other rebellions against British rule for them to be confident of holding on to anything for a thousand years. Especially with the damned French still lurking all over the place.

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        April 19, 2018, 3:40 am

        “Brexit and break with the commonwealth ”

        Brexit I approve of, but I’d be sad to see an even greater break with the Commonwealth.

        (I recall pre-EU Heathrow had three sets of passport gates for arrivals: “Honoured British Citizens” (me), “Uncouth Commonwealth Riff-Raff” (me again), and “Foreign Scum” (not me). It was depressing to see British Citizens and EU Foreign Scum lumped together, and Commonwealth Riff-Raff bundled in with the rest of the Foreign Scum. That led to Australia requiring visas for British Citizens. )

        I think that post-Brexit Britain would be wise to try to restore good relations with the Commonwealth, but I fear it may be to late now.

      • Jon66
        Jon66
        April 19, 2018, 8:52 am

        Roha,

        I think we paid them back twice over.

        “After President of France Charles de Gaulle withdrew France from the common NATO military command in February 1966 and ordered all American military forces to leave France, President Johnson asked Rusk to seek further clarification from President de Gaulle by asking whether the bodies of buried American soldiers must leave France as well.[19] Rusk recorded in his autobiography that de Gaulle did not respond when asked, “Does your order include the bodies of American soldiers in France’s cemeteries?””https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dean_Rusk

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        April 19, 2018, 6:34 pm

        “We”?

        I thought you were an Israeli.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        April 19, 2018, 7:12 pm

        “I thought you were an Israeli.”

        Are you perhaps mixing up “66” and “s”?

        Anyway <a href="http://mondoweiss.net/profile/jon66/"Jon 66" describes himself thus:

        “I am husband, father, and surgeon. I was raised in a Zionist household and am interested in a peaceful solution.”

        “Husband, father, and surgeon”, in that order.

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        April 20, 2018, 12:46 am

        ‘Are you perhaps mixing up “66” and “s”?’

        Probably. All these Zionists look alike to me.

    • MHughes976
      MHughes976
      April 18, 2018, 9:36 am

      You are a well informed person, Ossinev, with a strong moral sense, which leads you to advocate the cause of human rights in Palestine.

  15. Zara
    Zara
    April 17, 2018, 9:25 pm

    Israel, founded on lies, is a very sick country but worse is that its sickness has overtaken the greatest military power on earth, the United States. There is no vaccine for this disease which is satanic in origin. What will the christian zionists say when Israel is destroyed but Damascus remains?

    God help us all.

  16. JLewisDickerson
    JLewisDickerson
    April 17, 2018, 10:34 pm

    RE: “The main targets of the mechina rabbis have been gays and women; the utterances were so inflammatory, as the rabbis exposed their misogyny and homophobia . . .” ~ Gurvitz

    MY COMMENT: But . . . but . . . but, I thought that since Israel was a “liberal democracy”, it was supposed to be a real haven for gays and women!

  17. RoHa
    RoHa
    April 17, 2018, 10:39 pm

    “Jewish warfare law. …two sorts of wars: reshut (permitted) wars and mitzvah (ordained) wars.
    Kings are permitted to go on reshut wars if they so please, but such wars are handled under relatively humane laws.”

    If they so please?

    Western, Chinese, Hindu, and other ethical traditions require at least a just cause and that war be the last resort. Is there no such requirement on Jewish kings?

    “A mitzvah war of conquering the Land, which is not limited to saving the people of Israel from their enemies,… I could, on the face of it and by the essential law, destroy, kill and cause to perish … all of them.”

    Is this part of the great Jewish ethical tradition people keep mentioning?

    (For those who are interested in the Chinese Tradition of Righteous War, there is a neat introduction here. Start at page 10.

    http://krex.k-state.edu/dspace/bitstream/handle/2097/15549/ChengyunChang2013.pdf;sequence=1)

    • Maghlawatan
      Maghlawatan
      April 18, 2018, 12:55 am

      Chinese, Western etc war traditions didn’t stop evolving 2500 years ago. The last Jewish King in Shangri La was Bronze Age. If these National Religious rabbis were as reverential about eating as they are about the Torah and war, religious Jews wouldn’t be allowed to eat with forks, which would be deemed too modern.

      Once again we see that Israel is not stable. Extremists don’t stop and settle at consistency. They continually push limits and degrade the conversation. Israeli civil society is too weak to resist.
      Israel has a real problem. Political extremism plus an army is a Prussian tragedy in the making.
      Nazis have to be removed from the conversation. There is no coexistence until they are deprived of their power. It doesn’t matter what the justification is, whether it is Torah or the Emperor is descended from the Sun God.

    • Keith
      Keith
      April 18, 2018, 10:58 am

      ROHA- “Is this part of the great Jewish ethical tradition people keep mentioning?”

      Indeed it is. In modern parlance it is referred to as a tikkun olam intervention. This is where a militarized warfare state bombs people for their own good.

  18. JLewisDickerson
    JLewisDickerson
    April 18, 2018, 12:49 am

    RE: Kings are permitted to go on reshut wars if they so please, but such wars are handled under relatively humane laws. Mitzvah laws are a different concept entirely: they are holy wars, the enemy is considered to be the enemy of God, and, as Wallas says, “I am beholden to nothing.” The model is the extermination wars of the biblical Joshua. Most Halacha scholars are divided about what constitutes a mitzvah war, but they agree that wars to reconquer the Holy Land fit the bill – after all, they are modeled on Joshua’s. ~ Gurvitz

    NOTE NETANYAHU’S USE OF THE ‘MITZVAH/HOLY WAR’ AS A “DOG WHISTLE” TO THE IDF AND HIS RACIST, FAR-RIGHT BASE IN THIS EXCERPT FROM ALLISON DEGER’S ARTICLE OF A FEW DAYS AGO (April 12, 2018):

    [EXCERPT] Days after an Israeli human rights group urged soldiers to refuse orders to shoot at Palestinian protesters in the Gaza Strip along the fence that divides the occupied territory from Israel, a group of left-wing Israeli activists approached soldiers stationed along the border and called them “terrorist.”

    Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu yesterday responded by defending the military for their “holy work,” and accused the activists of “outrageous absurdity.” . . .

    . . . Netanyahu added that Israeli soldiers “need to do their holy work,” and referred to the Palestinian protesters as “terrorist.”

    Hours later Netanyahu’s spokes person Ofir Gendelman commented on social media that Israeli soldiers are carrying out a “holy mission of defending Israel.” . . .

    SOURCE – http://mondoweiss.net/2018/04/netanyahu-israeli-snipers/

    • JLewisDickerson
      JLewisDickerson
      April 18, 2018, 1:02 am

      P.S. In essence, through the use of the Mitzvah/Holy War “dog whistle”, Netanyahu is signaling both the IDF and his racist, far-right (partially settler) base that the Palestinians are “Amaleks” that God commanded the Jews to exterminate.

      • JLewisDickerson
        JLewisDickerson
        April 18, 2018, 9:06 pm

        RE: “the Palestinians are ‘Amaleks’ that God commanded the Jews to exterminate.” ~ me ( from above)

        PROBABLY SHOULD HAVE BEEN: the Palestinians are ‘Amalekites’ (the undying enemy of the Jews) that God commanded the Jews to exterminate.

        THUS: In essence, through the use of the Mitzvah/Holy War “dog whistle”, Netanyahu is signaling both the IDF and his racist, far-right (partially settler) base that the Palestinians are ‘Amalekites’ (the undying enemy of the Jews) that God commanded them to exterminate.

    • JLewisDickerson
      JLewisDickerson
      April 18, 2018, 11:23 am

      P.P.S. ALSO SEE: The Wrong Side of History | by Uri Avnery | Counterpunch.com | March 8, 2011

      (EXCERPTS) . . . Israel is dominated by the settlers, who resemble in spirit the Crusaders of the 12th century.
      Fundamentalist religious parties, not much different from their Iranian counterparts, play a major role in our state.
      The political and economic elite is steeped in corruption. Our democracy, in which we took so much pride, is in mortal danger.

      Some people argue that all this is happening because “Netanyahu has no policy”. Nonsense. He has a clear policy: to maintain Israel as a garrison state, to enlarge the settlements, to prevent the foundation of a real Palestinian state, and to go on without peace, in a state of eternal conflict.

      Just now it was been leaked that Netanyahu is going to give a historic speech – another one – very soon. Not in the Knesset, whose importance is approaching nil, but in the really important forum: AIPAC, the Jewish lobby in Washington. . .

      ENTIRE ARTICLE – https://web.archive.org/web/20110516003120/http://www.counterpunch.org/avnery03082011.html

  19. Maghlawatan
    Maghlawatan
    April 18, 2018, 2:46 am

    “The main targets of the mechina rabbis have been gays and women; the utterances were so inflammatory, as the rabbis exposed their misogyny and homophobia”

    Fundis are always the same. Always women. Always LGBT.

    In Iran women must wear the hijab. In Afghanistan gays were executed by being pushed into a dry pool. In Ireland pregnant unmarried women were shunned.
    And in Israel it is the same pathetic shit.

    • Rashers2
      Rashers2
      April 23, 2018, 12:28 pm

      Call me “picky”, @maghlawatan, but, in Iran, women NO LONGER have to wear the hijab: “29 Dec 2017 – Women in Tehran will no longer be arrested for appearing in public with their heads uncovered, almost 39 years after the strict dress code was introduced.” Source: http://www.thetimes.co.uk et al. This year, Crown Prince Moh’d bin Salman in KSA has relaxed the burqa requirement and introduced some other creeping but significant social reforms in the direction of “secularisation” and emancipation. I’m not expecting anytime soon a digital remastering of “Exodus” to be on general release there but movie theatres in KSA are re-opening after 35 years’ darkness; and women will be allowed to drive.
      The fundamental [sic] difference is that neither of the two last-mentioned countries (nor, indeed, Taliban-ruled Afghanistan) lay/laid claim to being secular democracies; and two of the three have/had few democratic pretensions of any sort. The deflection (“whataboutery”) which is a staple tool of Zio-hasbara used to counter any criticism of Israel frequently cites KSA and other countries, including N. Korea, as exemplars of countries where whatever Israeli behaviour/situation is being complained of is worse/more extreme than in Israel.
      The irony of lying with other dogs but claiming to have caught fewer fleas rather than aspiring to higher standards which would exclude altogether misogyny, advocating ethnic cleansing and homophobia, and to more appropriate pre-military training institutions in which mechina rabbis would have no role, passes the Zio-apologists by.

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        April 23, 2018, 6:39 pm

        Burqa requirement? When I lived in Jeddah most women covered their hair but not their faces.

  20. ballerina
    ballerina
    April 18, 2018, 9:36 am

    These poor creatures are so insecure that they have to set themselves up as special, superior..it has been like this from the time they first made up monotheism..it’s a shame because they might have made more positive contributions..but no..let’s turn civilization against us and see if we can have it all!..if not, the Samson option is always available

  21. echinococcus
    echinococcus
    April 18, 2018, 10:20 am

    Writing and discussing the Zionists’ principle of genocide as if it were some aberration, or limited to some factions.

    Instead, reading all Zionist history and a lot of their official programs shows that the genocide of the owners of Palestine, including erasing their culture and their very memory, is one of the few basic, unrenounceable common tenets of Zionism.

    That a few cloudheads may sincerely believe in a non-genocidal Zionism doesn’t make it possible, it only shows how gullible they are.

Leave a Reply