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From Portugal to Israel: You too can dream of a post-colonial future

Middle East
on 72 Comments

I’m spending a vacation in Portugal with my girlfriend. Having posted various photos and videos on social media, the responses are basically all positive and endearing. “I love Portugal”, “what a place”, they write etc.

I’m from Israel, and with my political involvement and historical awareness, this immediately throws me into comparisons. I can’t help it. And the striking comparison here is that of Portugal as a past colonialist empire, as opposed to Israel, a current and continuing settler-colonialist venture.

It appears many are not that aware of how big a colonialist force Portugal was – its current size may be misleading. It was the largest and longest standing colonialist empire, starting in 1415 and ending only in 1999 (with the handing over of Macau to China). Stretching from Asia to South America, it was the leading player in the Transatlantic Slave Trade, transporting an estimated 6 million African slaves. The British were a distant 2nd place, transporting an estimated 3.2 million African slaves.

Unsurprisingly, the debate about the framing of this horrid past is still ongoing. Just this year, the Lisbon incumbent Socialist mayor wanted to establish a “Museum of the Discoveries”, and the name alone stirred a fierce debate about the whitewashing and glorification of this past.

“It would only reinforce Portuguese colonial ideology, which portrays that period as heroic and simply glosses over the glaring issues of slavery, mass killings and other abuses,” said Joacine Katar-Moreira, a researcher at the University Institute of Lisbon and co-author of an open letter criticising the proposal that was signed by 100 black activists.

Katar-Moreira went on:

“There are already so many statues and monuments paying homage to that moment in history. We don’t need another one, which, like the others, would be an instrument for stroking national self-esteem.”

But I don’t want to delve too deeply into the Portuguese colonialist past right now, because my point is really more comparative – comparing it to Israel.

The point is, I can now easily wander around in Portugal and enjoy it, appreciate its nature, its people, its current culture. Sure, I’m aware of that past, but I’m also aware that it’s a past.

With Israel, it’s different. I visit Israel because I have family there. But if I were a tourist, this would be a whole other story. Being a tourist in Israel would be visiting an Apartheid state, with a current and active settler-colonialist reality. Visiting it just for pleasure, as a tourist, would be immoral.

But Portugal gives me hope. It’s a national story that says that it is indeed possible to abolish colonialism, and to move on to a future of freedom, justice and equality. Sure, there will be ongoing debates about the past – but it would be a past. In Israel, it’s a present.

When I’m in Israel, I don’t post photos and videos as I do here in Portugal, even though my visits to Israel are in a way ‘touristic’, since I don’t live there, and I travel around with family etc. I simply do not want to help ‘market’ Israel and assist its ‘branding’. For me, this is a rather simple moral issue. It’s one thing if one is actively assisting the oppressed Palestinians, and is there for that purpose (which Israel seeks to prevent). Israel is simply so immersed in this colonial, oppressive and murderous present, that any mentioning of it is political. You are either fighting it, or you are endorsing it by promoting it.

Portugal offers me the reflection of how liberating it can be to end colonization.

To be sure, most Zionists would not appreciate the notion of colonization as a description of their venture. They consider that name-calling, an application of a generally condemned anachronism that mostly applies to the past, not the present. They do this by various means of denial. These include not only the institutional denial of the 1948 Nakba ethnic cleansing, but also the framing of the 1967 occupation as a temporary response (as the term occupation suggests), rather than an act of ongoing colonization. 

It is becoming increasingly clear to many around the world that the Israeli reality is not a mere set of nationalist military responses to this or that temporary aggression, but rather a premeditated settler-colonialist venture throughout the land, in the name of Zionism.

Right now, Israel is so much in the midst and depth of it, that a future of freedom, justice and equality seems hard to even perceive. That future is the goal of the movement for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions, and it is something that Israel sees as a strategic threat, because equality is anathema to Zionism.

Of course, the Zionists think that it is necessary, existentially necessary, to keep those Palestinians subdued. Just as the Portuguese colonialists once thought it was necessary to keep the African slaves and the colonies.

About Jonathan Ofir

Israeli musician, conductor and blogger / writer based in Denmark.

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72 Responses

  1. Spring Renouncer
    Spring Renouncer
    December 24, 2018, 1:58 pm

    It is good that you derive hope from Portugal’s decolonization. Unfortunately, in practical terms, that country’s experience will not be helpful to Israel/Palestine. The problem is that settler colonialism – in contrast to other forms of colonialism – is particularly entrenched and resistant to change. Giving up foreign colonies can harm the ego and economy of an exploitative colonial power, but will leave its metropole intact. With a settler colony – especially one like Israel or white South Africa that does not have a mother-country or metropole – decolonization is an existential threat to the colonial state. As such, the colonizers and their state radicalize and dig in. The few Israelis fighting for equality and justice are truly brave and commendable, but in such a situation only intense pressure from the outside coupled with resistance of the colonized can lead to a dismantling of the colonial enterprise.

    • John O
      John O
      December 24, 2018, 3:17 pm

      It’s relatively easy to retreat from far-flung outposts of empire – even though the process can be bloody, as in France’s abandonment of Algeria, where huge numbers of “pieds noirs” returned to France and nearly brought about a civil war (to say nothing of the awful death toll in Algeria itself).

      To accept that you have to share the land you live in with its indigenous population is much harder, because it involves giving up your power and seeing it transferred to others. But it can be done – as in South Africa.

      Britain, being a bit weird, has managed to do this in as complicated a way as possible. We’ve gone from being the empire on which the sun never sets to being one equal nation among 28 in Europe, and (if we don’t wake up and see sense) soon to be a colony of Europe – if we get a “deal” – or a colony of the USA – if we don’t get a deal. On the whole (to misquote WC Fields) I’d rather be in Lisbon.

    • Misterioso
      Misterioso
      December 25, 2018, 11:36 am

      @Spring Renouncer

      Zionism’s spawn, “Israel,” is rotting within and increasingly, correctly viewed by peoples around the world as racist, fascistic, expansionist and a brutal/illegal occupier. At the same time, ever growing numbers of Jews throughout the world, including the U.S., especially youth, are abandoning Zionism and Israel. Jewish emigration from “Israel” is surging, immigration is in the tank and the indigenous Palestinian Arab population is growing rapidly. The writing is on the wall.

  2. JLewisDickerson
    JLewisDickerson
    December 24, 2018, 3:14 pm

    RE: “It appears many are not that aware of how big a colonialist force Portugal was – its current size may be misleading. It was the largest and longest standing colonialist empire, starting in 1415 and ending only in 1999 . . .” ~ Ofir

    SEE:
    The Doctrine of Discoveryhttp://users.humboldt.edu/ogayle/hist420/DoctrineDiscovery.html

    Portuguese Empirehttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Portuguese_Empire

    Lisbon museum plan stirs debate over Portugal’s colonial past
    ‘Museum of the Discoveries’ would glorify slavery and other historical abuses, critics say
    LINK – https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/sep/17/lisbon-museum-plan-stirs-debate-over-portugals-colonial-past

  3. Neil Schipper
    Neil Schipper
    December 24, 2018, 4:06 pm

    For thousands of years prior to the age of transoceanic transport, the origin myths, sacred texts, and holy days of the Portuguese people all spoke of the lands of their forefathers… Brazil, Macau, Angola, and Mozambique.

    Stubbornly had the Portuguese clung to these traditions, through daily prayer in the non-European languages of those lands, and through supporting a priestly class devoted to the study and interpretation of texts in those languages. The humblest churches as well as the greatest cathedrals of Lisbon, Porto, Faro and Algarve were daily filled with voices expressing the vitality of their emotional and historic connection to those lands.

    And how gratifying it must have been for the Portuguese, once the first great fleets arrived, to find residing in neighborhoods of Rio de Janeiro, Maputo, and Luanda, long residing minority populations worshipping and studying in those very same languages. And how gratifying to find dozens of villages, and remnants of temples and burial sites, where the stories in foundational texts took place.

    • eljay
      eljay
      December 24, 2018, 7:21 pm

      || Neil Schipper @ December 24, 2018, 4:06 pm ||

      Europeans who sailed to the Americas were not “ancient Americans” “returning” to an “ancient homeland”. Similarly, people throughout the world – citizens of homelands all over the world – who have chosen to embrace the religion-based identity of Jewish are not “ancient Israelites” “returning” to an “ancient homeland”.

  4. Marnie
    Marnie
    December 24, 2018, 9:59 pm

    ‘Stretching from Asia to South America, it was the leading player in the Transatlantic Slave Trade, transporting an estimated 6 million African slaves. The British were a distant 2nd place, transporting an estimated 3.2 million African slaves.’

    Free women, children and men were stolen from Africa and made to be slaves. They weren’t standing on the beach waiting to hitch a ride to the ‘new world’.

    • Mikhael
      Mikhael
      December 25, 2018, 8:00 pm

      eljay December 24, 2018, 7:21 pm
      citizens of homelands all over the world – who have chosen to embrace the religion-based identity of Jewish are not “ancient Israelites” “returning” to an “ancient homeland”

      Of course, the Jews who returned to their ancestral and historical homeland of Eres Yisra’el, which has never been devoid of a Jewish population for the past millennia and to which Jews have always migrated back to and repopulated long before they were able to reestablish Jewish self-rule and national sovereignty in the 20th century, are not not “ancient Israelites”. Obviously, that is for the simple reason that the ” ancient Israelites” died in ancient times. Today’s Jews are, however, by and large (with the exception of the very few people who have recently converted) literally the lineal descendants of ancient Israelite populations who lived, not surprisingly, in the Land of Israel. Moreover, it wasn’t until modern times that Jews were ever on an equal citizenship basis with any of their non-Jewish neighbors in the Diaspora countries that you confuse with “homelands all over the world” (and that right has also been revoked in modern times). Today most Jews in Diaspora countries where they do enjoy broad citizenship rights and freedom (unlike many of their ancestors who were denied equal rights while living in Diaspora lands, whether in the Arab world or in Europe ) and the Jews who live in free societies, e.g., Canada, have the legal as well as moral right to leave those societies and migrate back to their actual ancestral and national homeland, their only one, the one on the shores of the Mediterranean that has its capital in Jerusalem, where they can live and experience their national culture without any form of a “religion-based identity” if they so choose, because being Jewish has fuck all to do with believing in or following any sort of “religion.”

      • eljay
        eljay
        December 25, 2018, 8:52 pm

        || Mikhael: … Of course, the Jews who returned to their ancestral and historical homeland of Eres Yisra’el, which has never been devoid of a Jewish population for the past millennia and to which Jews have always migrated back to and repopulated long before they were able to reestablish Jewish self-rule and national sovereignty in the 20th century, are not not “ancient Israelites”. … ||

        Jewish citizens of homelands around the world were foreign to geographic Palestine. They weren’t ancient Israelites, they were not from geographic Palestine, they could not possibly “return” to it.

        || … because being Jewish has fuck all to do with believing in or following any sort of “religion.” ||

        That’s nice, but I’ve never said that it does. The fact remains that the identity of Jewish is religion-based – it can only be acquired by:
        – undergoing a religious conversion to Judaism; or
        – being descended from someone who underwent a religious conversion to Judaism.

        Merry Christmas, Mike.  :-)

      • Marnie
        Marnie
        December 25, 2018, 9:20 pm

        …’Mediterranean that has its capital in Jerusalem, where they can live and experience their national culture without any form of a “religion-based identity” if they so choose, because being Jewish has fuck all to do with believing in or following any sort of “religion.”’

        ‘National culture?’ I think you just really mean a nationalistic desire, with no culture at all as they stole much of what they call ‘israeli’ from palestinians. A people without an identity but a desire to get out of dodge and go anywhere they can muscle in and use an old book and old deity they don’t give fuck all about as their collective prop. The Being a jew has fuck all to do with believing in anything except the mentality of the mob. What a bill of goods the zionists sold the world.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        December 26, 2018, 1:05 pm

        ” because being Jewish has fuck all to do with believing in or following any sort of “religion.” “Mikhael”

        Yeah, it’s more like being in a secret club, gang, or army.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        December 26, 2018, 1:19 pm

        “being Jewish has fuck all to do with believing in or following any sort of “religion.”

        Gosh, “Mikhael”, knowing that must give you a real advantage with Jews who are dumb enough to think it’s a religion.

      • Mikhael
        Mikhael
        December 26, 2018, 6:06 pm

        eljay December 25, 2018, 8:52 pm
        Jewish citizens of homelands around the world were foreign to geographic Palestine. They weren’t ancient Israelites, they were not from geographic Palestine, they could not possibly “return” to it.

        Jewish migration to the ancestral, national homeland of the Jews in Eres Yisra’el predates by centuries the period when Jews were initially able to acquire citizenship in Diaspora lands in the 19th century (rights that were later revoked in many countries in the first half of the 20th century and then only given again after the end of WW2). Jews have consistently left these foreign places over the centuries to live where their ancestors originated from in Eres Yisra’el, before they were ever granted citizenship rights in those foreign locales that you think were their “homelands”. By definition, a Jew who lives in in Eres Yisra’el cannot be foreign to that country, especially now that there is a Jewish nation-state there known in Hebrew, the national and ancestral language of the Jewish People, as Medinat Yisra’el.

        The fact remains that the identity of Jewish is religion-based – it can only be acquired by:
        – undergoing a religious conversion to Judaism; or
        – being descended from someone who underwent a religious conversion to Judaism.

        Incorrect. Except for the small minority of recent converts who have undergone a religious conversion to Judaism, the vast majority of people who identify as Jews are in fact descended from the Hebrews and Israelites of antiquity who never underwent any formal conversion to “Judaism,” as “conversions” to what we now identify as “Judaism” only started to become standardized in the Talmudic Era; most Jews of that period (from whom today’s Jews trace their descent) had been born into the Jewish People and followed (or didn’t follow) any number of sects, cults and practices before anything remotely resembling what we consider to be “Judaism” today ever cohered. They were Hebrews/Israelites/Jews simply because (1) they — or their ancestors — were of Hebrew/Israelite/Jewish descent and (2) they or their ancestors lived in the Land of Israel and the Kingdom of Judah. Certainly, in antiquity, and in the present, both in the Land of Israel and in the Diaspora, originally non-Jewish people have entered into the Jewish fold through conversion to what we now call “Judaism” and Jews alive today certainly have some descent from those people as well, but that doesn’t counter the fact that the vast majority of self-identifying Jews alive do in fact trace their descent to the Israelites of antiquity who lived, not surprisingly , in the Land of Israel. Jewish national identity is derived from the fact that Jews trace their ancestry to a specific people, who spoke a specific language and lived in a specific place, even if some of the ancestry of present day Jewish populations is in part also traceable to foreign non-Jews who at some point in the past assimilated into Jewish national culture through adoption of the religious beliefs of what is now termed “Judaism” and subsequently were absorbed into Jewish communties.

        Merry Christmas, Mike. :-)

        You should extend your holiday greetings in this season towards my fellow citizens of Israel, the Jewish nation-state, who follow the Jesuscult, as loyal, patriotic citizens who belong to a national ethnic minority group but who nonetheless have equal civic and political rights as their Jewish fellow citizens of Israel who belong to the majority national and ethnic group. If any of them happen to read this, I wish to convey your heartfelt holiday message to those Jesuscult holiday-observant soldiers who defend Israel in the IDF.

      • eljay
        eljay
        December 26, 2018, 8:51 pm

        || Mikhael @ December 26, 2018, 6:06 pm ||

        Rule of thumb with Zionists: The weaker their position, the more they write to justify it.

        And Mikhael habitually writes a lot!

        Happy 2019, Mike!  :-)

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        December 29, 2018, 9:39 pm

        Jewish migration to the ancestral, national homeland of the Jews in Eres Yisra’el predates by centuries the period when Jews were initially able to acquire citizenship in Diaspora lands in the 19th century

        Wrong. The fact that a handful of Jews made pigramage to Palestine after the Romans laid waste to the so called Kingdom does not come close to anything that qualifies as “migration”. That explains why there were out 50 thousand Jews in Palestine in 1905.

        the vast majority of people who identify as Jews are in fact descended from the Hebrews and Israelites of antiquity

        Wrong. Ashkenazi Jews descended from Italian Jews who by and large were converts to the faith.

        https://geneticliteracyproject.org/2013/10/08/ashkenazi-jewish-women-descended-mostly-from-italian-converts-new-study-asserts/

        Hope that helps

  5. Jackdaw
    Jackdaw
    December 25, 2018, 1:55 am

    Jonathan’s analogy falls flat on it’s face.

    The Portuguese conquistadors invaded foreign lands and always had Portugual to return to to.

    The Zionist settlers were invited to settle Palestine, they were not conquering foreign lands, nor did they have a homeland to return to.

    Jews are the indigenous people of Eretz Yisroel, the Portugeuse conquered indigenous peoples.

    The differences are so wide and so numerous that only wilfully blinds culties can’t/won’t see them

    • johneill
      johneill
      December 25, 2018, 9:22 am

      what invitation?

      • Jackdaw
        Jackdaw
        December 25, 2018, 10:37 am

        The League of Nations specifically and exclusively entitled Jews to settle and build a homeland, via Mandate for Palestine.

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        December 25, 2018, 8:55 pm

        “The League of Nations specifically and exclusively entitled Jews to settle and build a homeland, via Mandate for Palestine.”

        Pope Alexander VI decreed that all lands west and south of a meridian line 100 leagues west of the Azores and Cape Verde islands rightfully belonged to Spain.

        However, he failed to specify the lands on the other side of this line as Portuguese possessions. Spain and Portugal resolved this in the 1494 Treaty of Tordesillas.

        The LON “invitation” has as much moral weight as the Pope’s decree. If you accept the Mandate, why not acknowledge that the Spanish and Portuguese were entitled to settle in the Americas?

      • johneill
        johneill
        December 25, 2018, 9:11 pm

        i fail to see the legitimacy of that defunct body instituting a british colonial declaration, over and above the wishes of the only people who could have invited the settlers.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        December 26, 2018, 5:43 am

        The League of Nations specifically and exclusively entitled Jews to settle and build a homeland, via Mandate for Palestine.

        Correction: The League of Nations Mandate entitled Jews to obtain a visa, migrate to Palestine and apply for citizenship of Palestine. They would have to purchase land if they wished to settle. The word “homeland” does not appear anywhere in the Mandate for Palestine.

      • Jackdaw
        Jackdaw
        December 26, 2018, 2:01 pm

        @shingles

        Correction. The Mandate called for a national home for the Jewish people, not a homeland.

        My bad. Your stupidity.

        “…the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, it being clearly understood that nothing should be done which might prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine, or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country; and

        “Whereas recognition has thereby been given to the historical connection of the Jewish people with Palestine and to the grounds for reconstituting their national home in that country; “

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        December 29, 2018, 9:40 pm

        The homeland was meant to be and understood to, become a State, once a Jewish majority was in place.

        On the contrary. No where has that false claim been documented. In fact, Even Balfour explicitly denied this.

        On October 31, 1917, when the Balfour Declaration finally came before the War Cabinet, Balfoursummarized the arguments for and against it. He specifically addressed Curzon’s objections to the use of the vague term “national home” maintaining that it did not mean the establishment of an independent Jewish state. See Karl Ernest Meyer, Shareen Blair Brysac, “Kingmakers: the invention of the modern Middle East”, W. W. Norton & Company, 2008,link to books.google.com

        In fact he had to promise that would not happen in order to gain approval of the declaration. Declassified documents show that there were War Cabinet sponsors of the Balfour Declaration who interpreted the national home clause as meaning nothing more than assistance in establishing a shrine in one of the main Jewish communities. A week before the cabinet met a number of its members wrote memos pointing out that the term “national home” had no definite or agreed upon meaning. See CAB 24/30, “The Future of Palestine”(Former Reference: GT 2406), 26 October 1917; CAB 24/4, “The Zionist Movement”(Former Reference: G 164), 17 October 1917; and CAB 24/28 (Former Reference: GT 2263) “Zionism, 9 October 1917.

        “The notion of the National Home, which derived from the formulation of Zionist aspirations in the 1897 Basle program has provoked many discussions concerning its meaning, scope and legal character, especially since it has no known legal connotation and there are no precedents in international law for its interpretation. See paragraph 141, of the UNSCOP Report to the General Assembly,A/364, 3 September 1947

        The Churchill White Paper went further and stipulated that “It makes it clear that while the mandatary is expected to establish “a national home for the Jewish people” it is not the intention to create a “Jewish State,” as had been charged in certain quarters.”

        The non-Jews living in Palestine were to have their civil and religious rights reserved, but NOT to have political rights.

        Wrong as usual. Neither the British nor LON had the right to take away what was already theirs. The non Jews already had political rights under the terms of the Mandate. The mention of political rights was in reference to Jews migrating to Palestine and obtaining citizenship. If one were to believe your Hasbara, the existing Jewish population in Palestine would also be denied political rights.

        BTW, when the framers of the Mandate wrote that clause, they were thinking about the French clergy living in Jerusalem, and not the local Arabs.

        Wrong.

        You’re only repeating Zionist propaganda about the failure of the Mandate to mention political rights of the non-Jewish population. The Allied Powers were justifiably concerned about the weasel wording of the Balfour Declaration. So they addressed its defects in the text of the San Remo Resolution (that Zionists prattle-on so much about). It stipulated that:

        It was agreed –

        (a) To accept the terms of the Mandates Article as given below with reference to Palestine, on the understanding that there was inserted in the proces-verbal an undertaking by the Mandatory Power that this would not involve the surrender of the rights hitherto enjoyed by the non-Jewish communities in Palestine;

        http://www.cfr.org/israel/san-remo-resolution/p15248

        The ICJ noted in its advisory opinion that the rights and privileges of the Palestinian communities had been under international guarantees that dated back “far in time”. The Court cited Article 62 of the Treaty of Berlin (1878) as one of the more recent examples:

        In no part of the Ottoman Empire shall difference of religion be alleged against any person as a ground for exclusion or incapacity in matters relating to the enjoyment of civil or political rights, admission to public employments, functions, and honors, or the exercise of the various professions and industries, in any locality whatsoever.

        So, the exercise of both civil and political rights, free from any discrimination on religious grounds, was one of the rights “hitherto enjoyed by the non-Jewish communities in Palestine.”

        In 1906, the Young Turks had acknowledged that the free exercise of religion had been accorded to the various nationalities under the millet system:

        10. The free exercise of the religious privileges which have been accorded to different nationalities will remain intact.

        http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/mod/1908youngturk.html

        The Court specifically noted that those “existing rights” were the subject of safeguarding clauses regarding freedom of movement and management of the Holy sites (contained in Article 13 of the Mandate) and that an entire Chapter of the UN Partition Plan had been devoted to the subject of protections for religious and minority groups “in conformity with existing rights”.

      • DaBakr
        DaBakr
        January 1, 2019, 7:38 pm

        @shng

        Oh. It was a “shrine”. That makes so much more sense. Thanks.

    • joycejamie
      joycejamie
      December 25, 2018, 9:47 am

      The value of your post is to remind us that the biggest hurdle for any resolution of the conflict is for all of us to acknowledge the starting point. You have distorted the facts of that starting point. Zionist settlers were not “invited to settle Palestine.” Certainly not by the Palestinians. Arabs and Jews living in Palestine were alarmed once they realized the new settlers wanted to take over the land, not join the community. Zionist settlers were invaders. Zionists today continue to colonize the West Bank, with the financial backing of the Israeli government and against international law. As we all know, there were lands offered to Zionists to establish a homeland, but they chose to push out the indigenous Palestinians.

      • Jackdaw
        Jackdaw
        December 25, 2018, 10:45 am

        ” Zionist settlers were not “invited to settle Palestine.”

        They most certainly were invited.
        Besides the League of Nations, forerunner of the United Nations, the Jews were also invited by the the leader of the Arab World, King Faisal.

        “All necessary measures will be taken to encourage and stimulate immigration of Jews into Palestine on a large scale, and as quickly as possible to settle Jewish immigrants upon the land through closer settlement and intensive cultivation of the soil.”

        https://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/the-weizmann-faisal-agreement-january-1919

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        December 26, 2018, 5:47 am

        They most certainly were invited.
        Besides the League of Nations, forerunner of the United Nations, the Jews were also invited by the the leader of the Arab World, King Faisal.

        Wrong. They were invited to apply for permission to travel to Palestine, obtain citizenship and purchase land provided that this did immigration did no harm to the existing non Jewish population.

    • bcg
      bcg
      December 25, 2018, 9:56 am

      @Jackdaw: You mean the Palestinians aren’t indigenous?

      • Jackdaw
        Jackdaw
        December 25, 2018, 10:39 am

        No, they are not.

        There is no surviving peoples that can be shown to have preceded the Jews in the region, i.e. no Canaanites.

      • oldgeezer
        oldgeezer
        December 25, 2018, 11:01 pm

        @jackdoh
        “Jews are the indigenous people of Eretz Yisroel, the Portugeuse conquered indigenous peoples.”

        Ludicrous

        “The League of Nations specifically and exclusively entitled Jews to settle and build a homeland, via Mandate for Palestine.”

        A homeland is not a state and it was clearly detailed the indigenous were not to be denied any rights as a result.

        I can’t recall any exclusivity clause but since you’re generally dishonest I’m not going to bother to check.

        “There is no surviving peoples that can be shown to have preceded the Jews in the region, i.e. no Canaanites.”

        Yes there is. Certainly they have a much closer affiliation to Canaanites than the criminal zionists have to ancient Jews.

        ” For 800 years they tried to return … ”

        No. That’s pure bs.

      • Jackdaw
        Jackdaw
        December 26, 2018, 12:35 am

        @old loser

        “A homeland is not a state and it was clearly detailed the indigenous were not to be denied any rights as a result. ”

        The homeland was meant to be and understood to, become a State, once a Jewish majority was in place.
        I’m not plowing this field again.

        Wrong again. The non-Jews living in Palestine were to have their civil and religious rights reserved, but NOT to have political rights.

        BTW, when the framers of the Mandate wrote that clause, they were thinking about the French clergy living in Jerusalem, and not the local Arabs.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        December 26, 2018, 5:52 am

        No, they are not.

        Oh yes they are and people like Ben Gurion openly admitted this as such. It just goes to show how brainwashed Zionists are that they have come to believe that those who were already in Palestine for over a millennia were not indigenous

        There is no surviving peoples that can be shown to have preceded the Jews in the region, i.e. no Canaanites.

        The Palestinians descended from the Canaanites and indeed are descended from the original Hebrews.

        Hope that helps

      • oldgeezer
        oldgeezer
        December 26, 2018, 12:30 pm

        @jackdoh

        you live in a fabricated world of fiction. Your claims and denial hysterical.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        December 27, 2018, 10:32 am

        @ Jackoff

        The homeland was meant to be and understood to, become a State, once a Jewish majority was in place.

        On the contrary. No where has that false claim been documented. In fact, Even Balfour explicitly denied this.

        On October 31, 1917, when the Balfour Declaration finally came before the War Cabinet, Balfoursummarized the arguments for and against it. He specifically addressed Curzon’s objections to the use of the vague term “national home” maintaining that it did not mean the establishment of an independent Jewish state. See Karl Ernest Meyer, Shareen Blair Brysac, “Kingmakers: the invention of the modern Middle East”, W. W. Norton & Company, 2008,link to books.google.com

        In fact he had to promise that would not happen in order to gain approval of the declaration. Declassified documents show that there were War Cabinet sponsors of the Balfour Declaration who interpreted the national home clause as meaning nothing more than assistance in establishing a shrine in one of the main Jewish communities. A week before the cabinet met a number of its members wrote memos pointing out that the term “national home” had no definite or agreed upon meaning. See CAB 24/30, “The Future of Palestine”(Former Reference: GT 2406), 26 October 1917; CAB 24/4, “The Zionist Movement”(Former Reference: G 164), 17 October 1917; and CAB 24/28 (Former Reference: GT 2263) “Zionism, 9 October 1917.

        “The notion of the National Home, which derived from the formulation of Zionist aspirations in the 1897 Basle program has provoked many discussions concerning its meaning, scope and legal character, especially since it has no known legal connotation and there are no precedents in international law for its interpretation. See paragraph 141, of the UNSCOP Report to the General Assembly,A/364, 3 September 1947

        The Churchill White Paper went further and stipulated that “It makes it clear that while the mandatary is expected to establish “a national home for the Jewish people” it is not the intention to create a “Jewish State,” as had been charged in certain quarters.”

        The non-Jews living in Palestine were to have their civil and religious rights reserved, but NOT to have political rights.

        Wrong as usual. Neither the British nor LON had the right to take away what was already theirs. The non Jews already had political rights under the terms of the Mandate. The mention of political rights was in reference to Jews migrating to Palestine and obtaining citizenship. If one were to believe your Hasbara, the existing Jewish population in Palestine would also be denied political rights.

        BTW, when the framers of the Mandate wrote that clause, they were thinking about the French clergy living in Jerusalem, and not the local Arabs.

        Wrong.

        You’re only repeating Zionist propaganda about the failure of the Mandate to mention political rights of the non-Jewish population. The Allied Powers were justifiably concerned about the weasel wording of the Balfour Declaration. So they addressed its defects in the text of the San Remo Resolution (that Zionists prattle-on so much about). It stipulated that:

        It was agreed –

        (a) To accept the terms of the Mandates Article as given below with reference to Palestine, on the understanding that there was inserted in the proces-verbal an undertaking by the Mandatory Power that this would not involve the surrender of the rights hitherto enjoyed by the non-Jewish communities in Palestine;

        http://www.cfr.org/israel/san-remo-resolution/p15248

        The ICJ noted in its advisory opinion that the rights and privileges of the Palestinian communities had been under international guarantees that dated back “far in time”. The Court cited Article 62 of the Treaty of Berlin (1878) as one of the more recent examples:

        In no part of the Ottoman Empire shall difference of religion be alleged against any person as a ground for exclusion or incapacity in matters relating to the enjoyment of civil or political rights, admission to public employments, functions, and honors, or the exercise of the various professions and industries, in any locality whatsoever.

        So, the exercise of both civil and political rights, free from any discrimination on religious grounds, was one of the rights “hitherto enjoyed by the non-Jewish communities in Palestine.”

        In 1906, the Young Turks had acknowledged that the free exercise of religion had been accorded to the various nationalities under the millet system:

        10. The free exercise of the religious privileges which have been accorded to different nationalities will remain intact.

        http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/mod/1908youngturk.html

        The Court specifically noted that those “existing rights” were the subject of safeguarding clauses regarding freedom of movement and management of the Holy sites (contained in Article 13 of the Mandate) and that an entire Chapter of the UN Partition Plan had been devoted to the subject of protections for religious and minority groups “in conformity with existing rights”.

    • Shingo
      Shingo
      December 25, 2018, 10:33 am

      Jews are the indigenous people of Eretz Yisroel, the Portugeuse conquered indigenous peoples.

      The first time in history indigenous people landed in a place for the first time by boat.

      The first time in history people could convert to a religion and become indigenous to a land overnight

      • Jackdaw
        Jackdaw
        December 25, 2018, 2:09 pm

        @shingles

        “The first time in history indigenous people landed in a place for the first time by boat. ”

        Waves of religious Zionist Jews tried to return home to Zion. For 800 years they tried to return, but they were treated badly by the locals, and the religious Zionists couldn’t sink roots.

        https://www.haaretz.com/1.5277537

        Read a book sometime.

      • eljay
        eljay
        December 25, 2018, 8:25 pm

        || Jackdaw: … Waves of religious Zionist Jews tried to return home to Zion. For 800 years they tried to return … ||

        In my opinion, a place from which one is 800 years removed is not one’s “home”.

        But in your opinion, every non-Jew who for the next 800 years tries to return to geographic Palestine is entitled to return there.

        ZioHQ will want to have a few stern words with you.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        December 26, 2018, 6:10 am

        Waves of religious Zionist Jews tried to return home to Zion. For 800 years they tried to return, but they were treated badly by the locals, and the religious Zionists couldn’t sink roots.

        Jackoff, Zionism not only a secular political ideology, but it is only about 140 years old so there could not possibly have been “waves of religious Zionist Jews” trying to return. That’s why as of 1905 there were only 50 thousand Jews in Palestine. What’s more, of those 50 thousand, only 500 were Zionists. None were “returning home” but migrating to Palestine for the first time .

        Even your own article points out that this so called “mass immigration”, only amounted to a few thousand.

        Hope that helps.

      • Jackdaw
        Jackdaw
        December 26, 2018, 9:04 am

        @shingles

        I will assume you never read my link, so I leave you no choice.
        https://www.haaretz.com/1.5277537

        I hope this helps.

    • Misterioso
      Misterioso
      December 25, 2018, 11:04 am

      @Jackdaw

      “The Zionist settlers were invited to settle Palestine, they were not conquering foreign lands, nor did they have a homeland to return to.

      “Jews are the indigenous people of Eretz Yisroel, the Portugeuse conquered indigenous peoples.”

      Nonsense!
      Reality: Recent in depth DNA analysis has proven conclusively that including their ancestors, Palestinians have lived continuously between the River and the Sea for about 15,000 years. It is they who are the indigenous inhabitants of the lands between the River and the Sea.

      To wit: (http://journal.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fgene.2017.00087/full Front. Genet., 21 June 2017 | https://doi.org/10.3389/fgene.2017.00087 )

      EXCERPTS: “The Origins of Ashkenaz, Ashkenazic Jews, and Yiddish”
      “Recent genetic samples from bones found in Palestine dating to the Epipaleolithic (20000-10500 BCE) showed remarkable resemblance to modern day Palestinians.”

      “The non-Levantine origin of AJs [Ashkenazi Jews] is further supported by an ancient DNA analysis of six Natufians and a Levantine Neolithic (Lazaridis et al., 2016), some of the most likely Judaean progenitors (Finkelstein and Silberman, 2002; Frendo, 2004). In a principle component analysis (PCA), the ancient Levantines clustered predominantly with modern-day Palestinians and Bedouins and marginally overlapped with Arabian Jews, whereas AJs clustered away from Levantine individuals and adjacent to Neolithic Anatolians and Late Neolithic and Bronze Age Europeans.”

      The Jebusite/Canaanites were ancestors of today’s Palestinians and it was they who founded Jerusalem around 3000 BCE. Originally known as Jebus, the first recorded reference to it as “Rushalimum” or “Urussalim,” site of the sacred Foundation Rock, appears in Egyptian Execration Texts of the nineteenth century BCE, nearly 800 years before it is alleged King David was born. Its name “seems to have incorporated the name of the Syrian god Shalem [the Canaanite God of Dusk], who was identified with the setting sun or the evening star…and] can probably be translated as ‘Shalem has founded’.” (Karen Armstrong, Jerusalem, One City, Three Faiths; Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 1996, pp.6-7)

      It is estimated that the Hebrews did not invade until circa 1184 BCE and their resulting United Kingdom of Israel, which never controlled the coast from Jaffa to Gaza, lasted only about 75-80 years, less than a blip in the history of Canaan and Palestine.

      BTW, no credible archaeological evidence, or more importantly, writings of contemporaneous civilizations, have been found that prove Solomon or David actually existed. (Nor has any evidence been discovered to confirm that a Jewish exodus from Egypt ever occurred. )

      To quote the late renowned Jewish Israeli writer/columnist, Uri Avnery: “[David and Solomon’s] existence is disproved, inter alia, by their total absence from the voluminous correspondence of Egyptian rulers and spies in the Land of Canaan.” (“A Curious National Home,” by Uri Avnery, May 13/17 – http://zope.gush-shalom.org/home/en/channels/avnery/1494589093/)

      Jewish missionaries converted many pagan peoples to their faith in the Middle East, including Palestine, as well as Africa, Asia and Europe, especially during the two centuries preceding Christianity. Also, the Zionist claim that descendants of those Jews expelled from Palestine by the Romans have lived apart throughout the world for nearly two millennia and not intermingled with people outside of their religion is absurd. To quote Polish born David Ben-Gurion (real name, David Gruen): “‘race’ does not unite Jewry since the ancient people dissipated after so much dispersion.” (Philippe de Saint Robert, Le Jeu de la France en Mediteranee ,1970, p.182)

      Herzl’s diaries not only confirm that his objective was the establishment of a “Jewish state” in Palestine, but that it would be an expansionist state. In the year of his death, 1904, he described its borders as being “…in the north the mountains facing Cappadocia [Turkey], in the south, the Suez Canal [Egypt] in the east, the Euphrates [Iraq].” (Theodor Herzl, The Complete Diaries, 11 p. 711)

      Even more revealing as to how Herzl and his fellow Zionists intended to deal with the indigenous Christian and Muslim Palestinians is the “Charter for Zionist Colonization of Palestine and Syria,” which he drafted between the summer of 1901 and early 1902. Much to his disappointment, however, he was denied the opportunity to present it to the Ottoman Sultanate. Article Vl of the charter called for Istanbul to grant the Zionists, in the form of the Jewish-Ottoman Land Company (JOLC), “complete autonomy, guaranteed by the Ottoman Empire” while Article III gave them in effect, the right to deport the native population to other areas of the empire. Article 111 “[pertained] to the Palestinian and other Arab owners and inhabitants of the three categories of land to be purchased/owned by the JOLC – the large and small private landholdings, the Sultan’s state domain, and the land for which there is no title.”

      Israel Zangwill, the influential Anglo-Jewish essayist and Zionist first believed that the Palestinians would simply “fold their tents and slip away.” It was he who first voiced the lie that Palestine was a “land without a people, waiting for a people without a land.” (Zangwill, Israel, “The Return to Palestine”, New Liberal Review 11, Dec. 1901 p. 627)

      In 1905, Zangwill contradicted himself during a talk in Manchester when he observed that Palestine was “already twice as thickly populated as the United States…. [W]e must be prepared to either drive out by the sword the [Arab] tribes in possession as our forefathers did or to grapple with the problem of a large alien [sic] population….” (Zangwill, Speeches, p. 210, quoted by Nur Masalah, Expulsion of the Palestinians, 1992, p. 10)

      In the February 1919 issue of the League of Nations Journal, Zangwill proposed that the Palestinians “should be gradually transplanted” in Arab countries and at a public meeting in the same year he remarked that “many [Palestinians] are semi-nomad, they have given nothing to Palestine and are not entitled to the rules of democracy.” (Jewish Chronicle, Dec. 12 1919, Masalha, p.14)

      In 1920, Zangwill proposed in The Voice of Jerusalem, that there should be an “‘Arab exodus’…based on ‘race redistribution’ or a ‘trek like that of the Boers from Cape Colony,’ which he advocated as ‘literally the only way out of the difficulty of creating a Jewish State in Palestine.’” He continued: “We cannot allow the Arabs to block so valuable a piece of historic reconstruction….To fold their tents and silently steal away is their proverbial habit: let them exemplify it now.” (Zangwill, The Voice of Jerusalem, p. 103, quoted by Masalha, EOTP pp. 13- 14)

      Other Zionist leaders saw the future Jewish state in Palestine not only free of Arabs, but the first step towards the creation of a much larger country. In 1918, Ben-Gurion described the future borders of the Jewish state as: “to the north, the Litani River; to the northeast, the Wadi’Owja, twenty miles south of Damascus; the southern border will be mobile and pushed into the Sinai at least up to Wadi al-`Arish; and to the east, the Syrian Desert, including the furthest edge of Transjordan.” (Teveth, Ben-Gurion and the Palestinian Arabs, pp. 34-34; Nur Masalah, Expulsion…, p. 87)

      BTW, About 10% of the Jewish inhabitants of Palestine rejected Zionism. To quote Ronald Storrs, the first British military governor of Jerusalem: “The religious Jews of Jerusalem and Hebron and the Sephardim were strongly opposed to political Zionism…” (Storrs, Ronald, Orientations, Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1945)

      In 1930, when despite ever increasing immigration, Jews privately owned only about four per cent of Palestine, Arthur Ruppin, a pivotal figure in political Zionism wrote that displacement of Arab farmers was inevitable because “land is the most necessary thing for our establishing roots in Palestine. Since there are hardly any more arable unsettled lands in Palestine, we are bound in each case of the purchase of land and its settlement to remove the peasants who cultivated the land so far, both owners of the land and tenants.” (Rashid Khalidi, Blaming the Victims)

      Britain’s Shaw Commission concluded: “The plain facts of the case are that there is no further land available which can be occupied by new immigrants without displacing the present population.” (Palestine Royal Commission Report, July 1937, Cmd. 5479, p. 176; cited by Alan George, Journal of Palestine Studies, #30, Winter, 1979, p. 91.)

      The views of the Shaw Commission were echoed by John Chancellor, Britain’s high commissioner for Palestine. In a memorandum to Colonial Secretary, Lord Passfield, dated 17 January 1930, he called for a complete suspension of Jewish immigration and land purchase to protect Arab agriculture, pointing out that “all cultivable land was occupied; that no cultivable land now in possession of the INDIGENOUS [my emphasis] population could be sold to Jews without creating a class of landless Arab cultivators.”

      In short, foreign Jews had the same right to Palestine as Irish Catholics and Mexican atheists, i.e., none whatsoever!!

      • Jackdaw
        Jackdaw
        December 26, 2018, 3:13 am

        @Mister Zero

        Your research is based on idiotic evidence.
        Most of Ashkenazic Jewry died in the Holocaust. We don’t have their DNA to analyse.

        Do we?

      • Jackdaw
        Jackdaw
        December 26, 2018, 4:44 pm

        @Mister Zero

        And I bet you eat a lot of junk food while reading your junk science.

        https://forward.com/opinion/339676/dont-buy-the-junk-science-that-says-yiddish-originated-in-turkey/

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        December 26, 2018, 5:01 pm

        Most of Ashkenazic Jewry died in the Holocaust. We don’t have their DNA to analyse.

        Are you deliberately trying to embarrass yourself? The Ashkenazi population prior to the Holocaust was 10-11 million so there would have been ample DNA available to sample.

        Hope that helps

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        December 26, 2018, 6:30 pm

        “Jackdaw”, you know, I just took a look through your archive, and your deterioration over the years is pretty obvious.

      • Jackdaw
        Jackdaw
        December 27, 2018, 12:21 am

        @loose shingles

        Taking your numbers, If more than half the Ashkenaz population perished, than yes, “Most of Ashkenazic Jewry died in the Holocaust.”

        And yes, ” We don’t have their DNA to analyse”

        Do we?

        The junk science you’re trying to peddle is embarrassing and no one is buying it.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        December 29, 2018, 9:46 pm

        Taking your numbers, If more than half the Ashkenaz population perished, than yes, “Most of Ashkenazic Jewry died in the Holocaust.”

        Nice to see you walkingbsck your original claim that no Ashkenazi Jews remained from which to obtain DNA samples.

        Do we?

        Yes we do. It only takes one individual from which to obtain a DNA sample and they didn’t even need to be alive at the time. So yes, millions of Ashkenazi Jews would be more than adequate.

        Forget junk science, you’re stuck on junk logic.

    • RoHa
      RoHa
      December 25, 2018, 9:25 pm

      “Jews are the indigenous people of Eretz Yisroel,”

      It seems ludicrous to say that European and American Jews, whose ancestors have not lived in Palestine for a thousand years or more, are indigenous, and that Palestinian Arabs, whose ancestors have lived in Palestine for a thousand years or more, are not indigenous.

      And even sillier to say that this indigeneity gives those Jews a right to set up a state and drive out the Palestinians.

      But let us examine this idea of “indigenous by descent” a little more.

      1.

      I recall that one of the dodgy DNA studies found that European Jews had enough Italian DNA to suggest that the Jewish men took Italian wives. This means that, although Jews may be “indigenous by descent” to Palestine through their great, great, etc. grandfathers, they are also “indigenous by descent” to Italy through their great, great, etc. grandmothers.

      And replace “Italy” with whatever other country turns up in the DNA.

      How many countries can Jews be indigenous to? Do they have a right to set up a state in all those countries?

      2.

      It seems improbable that the ancient indigenous people of Palestine – Jewish and non-Jewish – kept it all to themselves. Bored Egyptian, Hittite, and Etruscan housewives may well have entertained themselves with their Canaanite slave boys. Hyksos, Assyrian, and Roman men were as likely as any others to keep Canaanite slave girls as concubines.

      The implication is that there are probably an enormous number of non-Jews who are direct descendants of indigenous Canaanites. They can make just as good a claim to being “indigenous by descent” as European Jews can.

      Do they have a right to set up a state in Palestine?

      • henspert
        henspert
        January 8, 2019, 2:29 pm

        Looking at the faces of Palestinians, it looks like Crusaders mixed with the inhabitants. I see many cultures mixed in the cross roads of palestine or land bridge Tethys left connecting our continents. What a myriad display of genetics. Neanderthals also clashed there. Wow the story of migration.

    • eljay
      eljay
      December 25, 2018, 10:18 pm

      || Jackdaw: … Jews are the indigenous people of Eretz Yisroel … ||

      Some of the people in the world who are Jewish are indigenous to geographic Palestine. Some are not. Neither group is entitled to a supremacist “Jewish State”.

      Some of the people in the world who are not Jewish are also indigenous to geographic Palestine. Some are not. Neither group is entitled to a supremacist “Non-Jewish State”.

    • Marnie
      Marnie
      December 30, 2018, 2:27 am

      @JackDOH!

      You must have been dropped a few times as a tender babe. Or maybe the person who delivered you smacked your head mistaking it for your ass? I bet that still happens. Snarky new year to the court jerkster of MW!

  6. henspert
    henspert
    December 25, 2018, 8:33 am

    Latinos or people of color “light skinned” have never opressed anyone. Only white of the white wash Anglo-Saxsons did that. The proof is in the wealth of envied United States. Plus US Public Television Amy Walter and Big Bird taught me that. Y’all need to wake up and keep it real, you know what I am sayin…

    Is six million code for mythology? I mean our tv even had a six million dollar man.

    For reals now byrcchan carey has some real numbers on chattel slavery, lets hope he keeps to studying slavery and nothing Norman Finkelstein migh or there will be old testament hell to pay.

    • RoHa
      RoHa
      December 26, 2018, 7:09 pm

      “Y’all need to wake up and keep it real, you know what I am sayin…”

      No, I don’t know what you are saying.

    • gamal
      gamal
      December 25, 2018, 12:41 pm

      “In the Muslim Sufis’ Christology, we have a solid body of evidence in which we see the current animus presumed between various religions of Palestine as political hogwash” Dabashi

      From your link CigarGod, and from mine

      One should be as Jesus son of Mary
      In the way of sincerity
      To grasp the value and the verity of the chapter
      And verse of the Gospel

      Sana’i

      Every Christlike saint as sweetly
      As Jesus spoke such secret
      Words in infancy

      Attar

      And…and

      “And Jesus continued, saying : “O Doctors, O scribes, O Pharisees, O Priests, tell me. You desire horses like Knights, but you desire not to go forth to war : you desire fine clothing like women, but desire not to spin and nurture children : you desire the fruits of the field, and you desire not to cultivate the earth : You desire the fishes of the sea but not to fish the sea : you desire honour as citizens but you desire not the burden of the state : and you desire the tithes and first fruits as priests, but desire not to serve God in truth. What then shall God do with you seeing here you desire every good without effort, God will give you a place without any good and every evil”

      Isa ibni Maryam, Jesus : Gospel of Barnabas 69.

  7. MHughes976
    MHughes976
    December 25, 2018, 12:15 pm

    If we interpret Jesus as a Palestinian refugee from Herod we might note that things were better for refugees in those days, in that Jesus’ family had no difficulty in crossing into Roman imperial territory, where they were safe, and no difficulty in exercising a right of return to the diminished Herodian territory when they chose, seemingly suffering no loss of property. I hope that better days return. Peace and good will.

  8. wondering jew
    wondering jew
    December 25, 2018, 12:37 pm

    the probability that Jesus thought of himself as Palestinian are between 1/10^30 and zero. to refer to him other than how he would refer to himself seems to me an out and out insult. using his ethics to find justice or peace or better days for the Palestinians does not seem to indicate a need to distort who he was and what he thought of his own identity.

    • gamal
      gamal
      December 25, 2018, 8:22 pm

      “the probability that Jesus thought of himself”

      you didn’t hear he has a new name, can’t recommend enough, new name, only because it’s Christmas are you allowed the beautiful Jah9, Prophet come in all shapes and sizes..”weak heart a tremble..”

      https://youtu.be/gqF8RRDGnkc

    • RoHa
      RoHa
      December 25, 2018, 10:15 pm

      If they’ve got the sums right this time, you might be able to ask him soon.

      https://sputniknews.com/us/201812251070985650-jesus-second-coming-prediction/

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      December 26, 2018, 12:39 pm

      ” to refer to him (Jesus) other than how he would refer to himself seems to me an out and out insult.” “JW”

      When did you get so concerned about insulting Jesus? Must be you caught some Christmas spirit!

      “distort who he (Jesus) was and what he thought of his own identity.

      You’ve spent a lot of time with Jesus? Know Him like He knows Himself, huh?

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      December 26, 2018, 1:27 pm

      Shorter “WJ”: ‘I’ll claim Jesus as a Jew before I’ll let you claim Him as a Palestinian!’

    • RoHa
      RoHa
      December 26, 2018, 7:13 pm

      “to refer to him other than how he would refer to himself seems to me an out and out insult. ”

      I’m glad you agree that we should always refer to Spinoza as “Benedict” and not as “Baruch”.

    • MHughes976
      MHughes976
      December 26, 2018, 10:40 pm

      I agree with Yonah that Jesus, though he might have said ‘I live in Palestine’, would not have said ‘I am a Palestinian’, since he would not have seemed to identify himself with the Philistines of former days. His followers writing in Greek would not really have had a word for describing anyone as ‘a Palestinian’ since the Septuagint, their main Bible, had made ‘foreigners’ the word for non-Jews in Palestine. Mark’s Gospel uses the awkward ‘Syrophoenician’ for the non-Jewish woman whom Jesus seems to insult but who becomes the only character in the story to defeat Jesus in argument, these verses being a little mirror of the problems the NT writers had in re-imagining and re-engineering the Jewish tradition of a special relationship with God.
      Jesus seems to have referred to himself primarily as ‘the Son of Man’, with its claim to apocalyptic descent from heaven and its air of representing universal humanity and in Christian usage he is primarily ‘Our Lord’. I wouldn’t feel insulted on his behalf if other terminology, not surrounded by the same religious imagery or without his recorded personal warrant, is used. I wouldn’t consider ‘religious teacher from first century Palestine’ to be too far from normal reading of the record.
      Peace and goodwill once more! – though of course even that innocuous seeming phrase is a little sectarian, being the Protestant rather than the Catholic reading of the angel’s message in Luke.

  9. bcg
    bcg
    December 25, 2018, 1:39 pm

    Holy Cow, Jackdaw says the Palestinians aren’t indigenous! Imagine that, they came from Outer Mongolia and they have no rights.

    There are, of course, many differences between Portugal’s colonial history and the Zionist takeover of Palestine, but they have one common feature: an astounding capacity to not see other human beings.

    • Jackdaw
      Jackdaw
      December 26, 2018, 4:43 am

      Arabs came to the Levant from Arabia, as conquistadors.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        December 26, 2018, 12:42 pm

        “Arabs came to the Levant from Arabia, as conquistadors.” “Jackdaw”

        You plan to exhibit the entire harrowing process to us, don’t you? From here to infirmity.

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        December 26, 2018, 7:00 pm

        And every Arab now alive is a direct descendant of those Arabians, and only of those Arabians?

        Nonsense. “Arab” means “speaks Arabic as mother tongue”.

        The Arabians didn’t just spread their language around. They intermingled with the local people. That’s why Syrian Arabs are usually quite pale, and Sudanese Arabs are much darker.

        The Palestinians are as much descendants of the indigenous people of Palestine as any Jew is.

      • Shingo
        Shingo
        December 26, 2018, 9:11 pm

        Arabs came to the Levant from Arabia, as conquistadors

        And the Hebrews came to Canaan as invaders as conquistadors if the Old Testament is to be believed.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      December 26, 2018, 6:36 pm

      “Jackdaw” are the other commenters here allowed to talk about Jews the same way Jews talk about everyone else?

  10. Elizabeth Block
    Elizabeth Block
    December 25, 2018, 1:46 pm

    Someday someone – someone with Tony Judt’s breadth of knowledge and depth of wisdom – will write a comparative history of the ends of empires. I don’t think any of the previously-imperial countries will come off well. Israel won’t. The United States won’t. Portugal finally gave into the inevitable when it liberated its colonies.

    I had a friend, a history professor, to whom I would bring erudite questions. Once I asked him why there were lots of Portuguese in Toronto, but not many Spaniards. He reminded me that Portugal had had an empire, and said that some families came to Canada to keep their sons from being drafted to fight in imperial wars.
    I told this story to my mechanic – he’s Portuguese – and it turns out that he was one of those sons. When he was 15, he went to Portugal with his parents to visit family, and when arriving, and again when departing, he had to show documents showing that he was a Canadian citizen and not subject to the draft in Portugal.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      December 26, 2018, 12:57 pm

      Well, if one is going to create a great Empire, the best thing is to make it almost all contiguous, like, for instance, the Russian Empire.

  11. tamarque
    tamarque
    December 26, 2018, 9:14 am

    Someplace above someone noted the Spaniards were not colonialists. Are you forgetting they were brutal conquistadors? Are you forgetting their colonial and vile invasion of S. America and Mexico? Colonialism was the economic politics of the day and was enabled by the European disdain and condescension. And I would venture a suggestion that Eastern Europe was not involved in the colonization of the rest of the continents was due at least in part to their not having such access to the oceans to help sail the blue.

    • RoHa
      RoHa
      December 26, 2018, 7:09 pm

      Are you thinking of the strange claim by Henspert: “Latinos or people of color “light skinned” have never opressed anyone. Only white of the white wash Anglo-Saxsons did that. ”

      Which is patently false.

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