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Anti-Palestinian tropes

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I googled the phrase “anti-Palestinian tropes.” Nearly all the articles I saw were about Omar’s alleged antisemitism.

I then used the advanced search feature and found a thread on “anti-Palestinian tropes” from Yousef Munayyer.

It is safe to say that concern over anti-Palestinian racism and concern about anti-Palestinian tropes is virtually nonexistent in mainstream American politics or the media. People in those venues seem unaware that such concepts could exist, let alone wonder whether they themselves might be influenced by them. Most people who write for or read papers such as the NYT are probably upper middle class or above and see themselves as liberal and sophisticated. They judge others by the standards they hold and it doesn’t occur to them that they might have their own moral blindspots and their own taboos, some justifiable and some not.

Ilhan Omar is not part of their bubble. She said things which upset them, so for them the issue is whether she did this out of deliberate malice or did she just stumble into it out of ignorance? The fact that she upset them twice in one month has caused an upheaval of sorts.

One finds liberals defending Omar by treating her as an unsophisticated immigrant who doesn’t know the minefields of this topic. This comes from people who see themselves as her nuanced frustrated critical defenders, like Michelle Goldberg.

Nancy Pelosi has also adopted this stance.

It might be useful to think of what to say to pundits and American liberals in general who live inside this bubble, complacently assuming that they have the understanding and moral authority to determine how the Israel-Palestine issue should be discussed. I exist in this bubble myself and might still be under its influence. Still, here are my suggestions for Americans on anti-Palestinian tropes to avoid when writing about antisemitic tropes to avoid. If you fall into such tropes, you run the risk of encouraging anti-Palestinian racism. A sincere liberal wouldn’t want to do this. They might fall into using anti-Palestinian tropes in the way they think people less sophisticated might blunder into saying something antisemitic, but they should want to avoid doing this. Of course some or many of Omar’s critics are anti-Palestinian bigots who do not wish to change, but this piece is written for liberals who would not want to spread racism if they were made aware of how they might be doing so.

You should read the list in Munayyer’s thread above. Then here is mine. In no particular order—

Trope 1. “Israel has a right to exist.”

Boom. You just stepped on a mine. It is possible to say this without intending anything anti-Palestinian. You might be arguing, as some have, that Israel has the legal right (like any other nation no matter how bad its human rights record) to exist inside well-defined borders without being invaded, though we could then move on to that topic of the human rights violations. One could argue about all this. It sounds funny talking about the sacred nature of borders coming from any American given how often we invade or bomb or support terrorist attacks on others and also given the ill defined location of Israel’s borders. But there is no need to argue about it, because few people mean it that way.

What the phrase actually means in most cases is that Palestinians have no right to exist in their own homeland so don’t bring it up or you are an antisemite. The sentence is meant to shut down any moral judgement about the Nakba, or preferably any mention of it at all. One can employ the concept without using the actual sentence. See, for instance, Roger Cohen’s recent attack on Jeremy Corbyn, where Cohen says he is a proud Zionist and gives a one line history of 1948, complete with parenthetical invading Arab armies.

(Arab armies went to war against [the U.N.’s] Palestinian-Jewish territorial compromise and lost)

One could say something about that invasion, which came weeks after the April 9 massacre at Deir Yassin and the generation of 300,000 Palestinian refugees and which in the case of Transjordan was an invasion of the land to be granted the Palestinian State– but never mind.

The big point here is that Roger Cohen leaves out the Nakba. Cohen wants to make a case for Zionism based on the threat of antisemitism. If he asked me what Jews in the 1930’s should have done facing the Nazi threat, I have no good answer. The threat was real and became genocidal. Even the countries opposed to Nazism were permeated with antisemitism to varying degrees. There was clearly an extremely urgent need for a refuge for Jews in that era.

But I know the Nakba was an enormous crime, two wrongs don’t make a right, and it is impossible to have a serious discussion about Zionism without even mentioning the Nakba. Some would try to justify it. Mr. Cohen, I imagine, realizes he can’t bring himself to do this, so he solves the problem by not mentioning it.

To some degree Zionist arguments prevail with Western Christians because of Christian guilt. Christians know that Jews were persecuted over the centuries because of Christian antisemitism. Supporting Zionism and ignoring the crimes committed by Israel amounts to a cheap way to atone. The Palestinians become the scapegoats for the crimes of others. Of course, as they are not willing scapegoats, they have to be demonized to justify their treatment.

Trope 2. “Israel has a right to defend itself”.

This is always stated after Israel has committed some war crime. American politicians cite it like some sort of mantra. It is immoral to use this trope to excuse war crimes. But invariably, whenever Israel kills civilians you will find America politicians saying that Israel has a right to defend itself. Obama said this during the Gaza War of 2014, in which Israel defended itself by killing around 1500 civilians including 500 children. Several dozen Israelis died, including six civilians. Mainstream US politicians seem comfortable with calling all this self defense.

Israel continues to shoot unarmed Palestinian protesters. Last year, the New York Times carried four columns defending this practice and putting all the blame for the deaths on Hamas.

Two of these columnists, Bret Stephens and Tom Friedman, now condemn Omar.

Can anyone imagine the New York Times publishing a piece defending a Palestinian terror attack on civilians as justified because Palestinians have the right to defend themselves, one which said that the blame should fall entirely on Israel? What would the reaction be if they did?

There would be a nationwide uproar, because a defense of the murder of Israeli Jewish civilians would be rightly seen as a moral outrage , but the murder of Palestinians is just a PR problem for Israel and not in any sense a moral outrage. If people defend it, they get space in the New York Times to do so and there is no fuss about this at all.

Cohen and Goldberg work there. I gather that there is apparently a policy in place forbidding New York Times columnists from criticizing each other by name, or criticizing the editors.

But they could write columns criticizing the callous contempt of some of Israel’s American supporters without naming their colleagues. Will they? I don’t know.

Trope 3– “One can criticize Israel as harshly as one wants, but one should avoid antisemitic tropes in doing so.”

I agree. But for most of those who say this, it is empty rhetoric. How many of the people saying this about Omar actually write articles condemning Israeli apartheid or war crimes or the indecency of those who defend them? And what exactly did Omar say that was inaccurate regarding the Lobby? It is almost certainly true that part of Omar’s crime was criticizing the Lobby while being a Muslim. But even Bret Stephens condemns Islamophobia.

Bret Stephens, the honest critic of Israel and foe of Islamophobia, actually gets to strike that pose in the same paper that prints his defense of killing protesters.

Kamala Harris, Bernie Sanders and Warren have weighed in with statements that painted Omar as a victim of Islamophobia — which she is — without mentioning that she’s also a purveyor of anti-Semitic bigotry — which she surely is as well.

And notice that the instant an accusation of antisemitism is made, it immediately takes center stage, while Palestinian rights, never very important to begin with, fade away to the level of a meta- topic if they are mentioned at all. Yes, theoretically we are told, you could say some mean things about settlements and Netanyahu. It won’t make any difference to our support for Israel if Israel just brushes it off, of course. It never has. People have been criticizing Israel for decades and we continue to support them. It is Kabuki theater.

Let’s move on. Goldberg is angry that Republicans who are far more bigoted than Omar (in her view, Omar is a bit of a bigot) get away with so much.

This is the safe way to defend Omar. To Goldberg, the other Democrats are the heroes of the story, trying to figure out how to punish Omar for her “mild antisemitism” (Goldberg’s words, not my view) while not letting the bigoted Republicans get away with anything.

Could there be anti Palestinian bigotry in the Congresspeople of both parties who give billions every year to Israel no matter how badly Israel treats Palestinians? Should these people be criticized for their cowardice or apathy or bigotry? It doesn’t seem to be a question that any of Omar’s critics wish to ask. Omar is not part of the club, so she can be called a bigot.

As it turns out, she has supporters in Congress, so Congress decided to condemn all forms of bigotry except the one they nearly all practice, which is anti-Palestinianism. I sound sarcastic here, yet believe it or not I am trying to avoid any cheap sarcasm. Much of our political discussion in America makes sense if you think of it as the behavior of high school cliques. That extends well beyond this topic, but I digress.

Trope 4– “What about X? How can you be motivated by anything except bigotry if you focus only on Israel and ignore X?”

I don’t object to “whataboutism” in general. I use it myself. “Whataboutism” when honest is pointing out hypocrisy. One of the earliest known examples is from the Bible when the prophet Nathan confronts King David for his plot to have Uriah murdered to cover up David’s adultery with Bathsheba.

(It is fascinating and touching to reach across millennia and see that David feels genuine outrage on behalf of the poor man whose beloved pet was slaughtered by the rich man. Whataboutism works best on people with a conscience.)

But whataboutism when used should be accurate.

Whataboutism has been used several times against Omar. In a deleted tweet for which she apologized, Julia Ioffe said Omar should criticize the Saudis. Of course, Omar has been a very harsh critic of the Saudis. People who employ this move are making an unconscious bigoted assumption that because Omar is a Muslim she must be a bigoted antisemitic hypocrite who doesn’t criticize any Muslim state.

Tom Friedman used this argument, though he used Syria instead.

[W]hen I see [the dual loyalty charge] coming from a congresswoman who seems to be obsessed with Israel’s misdeeds as the biggest problem in the Middle East — not Iran’s effective occupation of four Arab capitals, its support for ethnic cleansing and the use of poison gas in Syria and its crushing of Lebanese democracy — it makes me suspicious of her motives.

He couldn’t use the Saudis, because Friedman has been one of the biggest bin Salman boosters around and after the murder of his friend Khashoggi he said that this murder was worse in principle if not in number than the war in Yemen, a war he had largely ignored.

Whataboutism is also used in a unique way with Palestinians. There is no other group where, if you advocate for their rights, you can guarantee that some liberals will say you should be looking at fifty other groups first. The unspoken assumption, probably below the level of conscious thought in most cases, is that Palestinians don’t matter and so the only reason one could possibly care must be antisemitism.

Trope 5. “Rain of rockets”.

No one with any sense of fairness would compare Hamas rocket fire with what Israel does to Gaza. But there is no more widely-used mainstream cliche that describes the vastly more destructive Israeli actions except “Israel has the right to defend itself.”

It also doesn’t matter who shoots first or whether the Gaza blockade itself is a war on the population. By definition Hamas rocket fire is the justification for Israeli brutality, no matter what the order of events.

Trope 6– Apologetics for pint-sized Hitlers.

This is actually off the topic of Palestinians, but a couple of weeks ago Ilhan Omar clashed with Elliott Abrams, a noted defender of murderous and even genocidal Central American allies in the 1980’s. Several members of the foreign policy “community” rushed to Abrams’s defense. This included some liberals. It is interesting to see how little interest this created among most of those who now criticize Omar. If you are part of the Blob, you can actually have a history of apologetics for pint-sized Hitler types, and it doesn’t matter.

One could go on. The point is that we do have dehumanizing anti-Palestinian tropes that are used all the time and so far as I know, it never occurred to any of the mainstream liberal Omar critics to write about them.

They need to come outside their bubble, turn around, and see what it looks like from the outside. As best I can tell, it looks like a high school clique, but one with a hugely magnified power to ostracize and bully and namecall, as well as bomb and invade and blockade and occupy. If you are part of the American Empire, maybe you could learn something from Ilhan Omar, who was born in Somalia, about how it appears from someone born outside.

Do I mean that as some sort of melodramatic cheap shot? No. Members of the educated professional American class (of all religions or none) need to stop thinking of themselves as the final moral arbiters of right and wrong.

Look at what America has done in the Middle East over the past few decades under both parties. Do we look like people in a position to give lectures to anyone?

Donald Johnson

Donald Johnson is a regular commenter on this site, as "Donald."

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184 Responses

  1. bcg on March 10, 2019, 2:47 pm

    Hey, let’s not forget the “Israel made the desert bloom, the Palestinians never developed the land” trope – an Israeli actually said that to me.

    https://www.palestine-studies.org/jps/fulltext/38553

    Since the establishment of Israel, Zionists have most frequently used the contention that they have “made the desert bloom” to justify the establishment of the State of Israel in Palestine in 1947-48. On the one hand, the extent of the catastrophe suffered by the Palestinians is belittled by repetition of the old assertion that the country had been an almost unpopulated desert before the Zionists’ arrival. On the other, Zionists have taken their argument about the superiority of their own, to Palestinian, agriculture one step further and contend that they have a stronger claim to sovereignty over the country because they have exploited its agricultural potential more efficiently than the Palestinians could have done. Whether or not Israel’s agriculture is more advanced than the Palestinians’ might have been had they not been dispossessed, it is an astonishing assertion that sovereignty over a territory should belong to the people best able to develop its resources. One wonders what the state of the world might be today if this principle were adopted by the superpowers as a basis for their foreign policies.

    • Peter in SF on March 10, 2019, 4:15 pm

      You beat me to it! Kamala Harris also invoked this trope at the 2017 AIPAC conference:

      when I visited Israel for the first time, I saw the fruits of that effort and the Israeli ingenuity that has truly made a desert bloom.

      http://www.policyconference.org/article/transcripts/2017/harris.asp

      • Kay24 on March 10, 2019, 8:48 pm

        The Palestinians had made the dessert bloom with their olive trees, farms, and orchards, as old pictures show, but ever since they have been occupied, and blockaded, farms and orchards destroyed, it has all come to a crashing halt. Israelis keeps bragging it made the dessert bloom, but no one dares to say it is at the expense of their victims. Harris purposely ignores that fact.

      • Misterioso on March 11, 2019, 10:40 am

        @Kay, et al

        For the record:
        Europeans visited the Holy Land regularly and their diaries provide a portrait of Palestine before the arrival of foreign Zionists. As far back as 1615, the English poet George Sandys found it “a land that flowed with milk and honey; in the midst as it were of the habitable world, and under a temperate clime; adorned with beautiful mountains and luxurious valleys; the rocks producing excellent waters; and no part empty of delight or profit.”

        According to Englishwoman Lady Hester Stanhope who was in Palestine in 1810, “The luxuriance of vegetation is not to be described….Fruits of all sorts from the banana to the blackberry are abundant. The banks of the rivers are clothed naturally with oleander and flowering shrubs…. [The Arab orchards near Jaffa] contained lemon, orange, almond, peach, apple, pomegranate and other trees.”

        The American missionary, William Thompson, visited all the areas of Palestine between 1832 and 1876 and discovered rich agricultural development throughout the land. Outside Bethlehem, he viewed “the greenery of wheat.” Approaching Ramallah, he found “vineyards covering the surrounding hills which were filled with figs and olives, while apples, pomegranates and other fruits were abundant,….. near Jenin the soil is planted with cucumber, melons and maize,”….towards Acre he crossed “the green expanse of meadows;” in the Galilee, he found “olive groves.” (The Land and the Book, pp. 24, 107.166, 251,303)

        Sir Moses Montefiore, who travelled to Palestine in 1839 to look for agricultural lands to acquire, described the eastern Galilee as covered with “groves of olive trees, I should think more than five hundred years old, vineyards, much pasture, plenty of wells and abundant excellent water; also fig trees, walnuts, almonds, mulberries etc., and rich fields of wheat, barley and lentils.” In the area around Djaouna he found “the highest of cultivation….the inhabitants were good farmers and possessed horses, cows, sheep and goats in great abundance.” [Diaries of Sir Moses and Lady Montefiore. p.169,175-176.]

        In 1859, a British missionary described the southern coast of Palestine as “a very ocean of wheat…the fields would do credit to British farming.” (James Reilly, “The Peasantry of Late Ottoman Palestine,”)

        While visiting Palestine in 1883, Englishman Laurence Oliphant described the Plain of Esdraelon at Acre as being “…in a high state of cultivation. It looks today like a huge green lake of waving wheat, with its village-crowned mounds rising from it like islands and it presents one of the most striking pictures of luxurious fertility which it is possible to conceive.” (ibid)

        The Palestinian wheat fields Oliphant described had contributed a great deal to keeping France’s population from starvation. According to the French economic historian Paul Masson, “wheat shipments from the Palestinian port of Acre had helped to save southern France from famine on numerous occasions in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.” (Quoted by Marwan R. Beheiry, “The Agricultural Exports of Southern Palestine, 1885-1914,”)

        Research by Middle East scholar Dr. Alexander Scholch reveals that between 1865 and 1882 “Palestine produced a relatively large agricultural surplus which was marketed in neighbouring countries, such as Egypt and Lebanon, and increasingly exported to Europe. These exports included wheat, barley, durra, maize, sesame, olive oil, soap, oranges, vegetables and cotton. Among the European importers of Palestinian produce were France, England, Turkey, Greece, Italy and Malta.” (Alexander Scholch, “The Economic Development of Palestine, 1856-1882,”)

        Ahad Ha’am (nee, Asher Ginsberg) observed while in Palestine in 1891 (when Jews privately owned less than one per cent of the land), that “throughout the country it is difficult to find fields that are not sowed. Only sand dunes and stony mountains that are not fit to grow anything but fruit trees – and this only after hard labour and great expense of clearing and reclamation – only these are not cultivated.” (Quoted by Rashid Khalidi, “Peasant Resistance to Zionism” in Blaming the Victims…” ed. by Edward Said and Christopher Hitchens, London & New York: Verso, 1988, p. 216)

        Most Palestinians made their living directly or indirectly from farming. Those residing in towns, villages and cities mainly engaged in business and the crafts or served as government workers and professionals. Many of the wealthy were landlords and/or members of older families who held positions in the civil service, the judiciary and associated professions.

        The main source of wealth for all Palestinians was the abundance of food produced on the fertile coastal plain that stretched from Gaza in the south to Acre in the north. For centuries, the country’s principle export was its enormous crop of world famous citrus and other fruits from the orchards near Jaffa. The legendary Jaffa orange resulted from an innovated grafting technique devised by Palestinian orchardists. Jaffa oranges were of such high quality that in 1856, Henry Gillman, the American consul in Jerusalem, suggested that Florida citrus growers would improve their crops by studying and adopting Palestinian grafting techniques. “The volume of the 1880 harvest was 36 million oranges.” (British report on Palestinian agriculture, Parliamentary Papers, 1881/xc Beyrout, 19.3 1881)

        BTW, Netanyahu and his fellow thieves/thugs have repeatedly trotted out the canard that during his visit to Palestine in the 1860’s Mark Twain (i.e., Samuel Clemens) criticized and dismissed Palestinian agriculture. Au contraire:

        “Deniers also champion Mark Twain’s 1867 Innocents Abroad, always using the same passage, which describes Palestine in part as a ‘desolate country’ where Twain ‘never saw a human being on the whole route.’ But this 68-word mantra, presented as a single coherent opinion, selectively combines sentences and phrases from pages 488, 520 and 555 of the travelogue. Never mentioned are Twain’s half-dozen anecdotes about encounters with Arabs in Palestine. Innocents Abroad actually offers more support to the Palestinian narrative than the Zionist one.” (“The rhetoric of Palestine denial” by David Benkof, 2014)

        The Zionist claim that Israel quickly and dramatically increased the amount of land under cultivation within its borders is another fabrication as is Shimon Peres’ assertion that such land was “redeemed from swamp and wilderness.” In fact, as of 1979, “About 80 percent, and probably more, of the 2,185,000 dunums ‘brought into cultivation’ [by Israel] since 1948 constitute farmland belonging to Palestinian refugees.” (Alan George, Making the Desert Bloom…” p. 99)

        The truth is that during the first three decades of Israel’s existence when it received a net import of capital totalling $31.5 billion (Maariv, 1 July 1977), excluding US taxpayers’ massive financial aid, and had the use of modern agricultural equipment as well as sophisticated farming techniques, its record of land cultivation was quite poor. “[T]he area within what became Israel actually being farmed by Arabs in 1947 was greater than the physical area which was under cultivation in Israel almost thirty years later…. The impressive expansion of Israel’s cultivated area since 1948 has been more apparent than real since it involved mainly the ‘reclamation’ of farmland belonging to the refugees; this is probably as true for the Negev desert as for the rest of Israel.” (Alan George, “Making the Desert Bloom…”,

    • Donald on March 10, 2019, 4:22 pm

      I forgot about that one. Another recent one is that to criticize Israel for the plight of Palestinians is to deny the Palestinians heir own agency. What that really means is that Palestinians are entirely responsible for their own oppression.

      Related is the one recently restated by Bill Maher— he feels sorry for the Palestinians but they are only oppressed by other Palestinians.

      • US Citizen on March 10, 2019, 4:55 pm

        Agreed. These arguments and slogans have become clichés and inside jokes, the classics include: “Israel made the desert bloom”

        “A land without a people, for a people without a land “ – Israel, so they say, meaning Palestine, had been mostly wasteland and one of the great feats of the Zionist enterprise was to turn the desert green.

        An example would be a crop of Jaffa oranges, which was exported to the rest of the world. What a triumph against the odds of nature and humanity’s neglect.

        What a lie. Most of the orange groves and vineyards belonged to Palestinians who had been tilling the soil and exporting oranges and grapes to Europe since the eighteenth century.

        Or my favorite: “There was never a state/place called Palestine” – they stick the word ‘state’ or ‘place’ in there like it proves their worthless point.

        This last one I find especially entertaining, it clashes so wonderfully with other Israeli talking points. In the end it amounts to “We are under existential threat from the people who don’t exist.”

      • Donald on March 10, 2019, 5:35 pm

        Someone ( not me) should do a sequel. Just collect all the anti Palestinian tropes ever stated and put them in one place. I didn’t try to do that and was only pointing out the apparent unawareness in the msm that any such thing even exists.

      • Kay24 on March 11, 2019, 4:19 am

        It is unbelief to hear these apologists blame the Palestinians, the victims of this oppression, and occupation, for their plight. As if any people on earth would want to be occupied, blockaded, be collectively punished, have their children thrown in jail, and many of them killed, for decades.

        Bill Maher is a disgusting Islamaphobe, who seems ignorant of the suffering of the Palestinian people, they get so blinded by their love for Israel, that all the crimes against humanity, the massacre of unarmed civilians, the land thefts, the children being killed by snipers, the water being stolen by the occupier, and the People of Gaza being forced to drink contaminated water, don’t seem to sink into their thick skulls, or they just don’t give a damn. They prefer to go by Israel lies and propaganda, to justify their support for a sadistic occupier. Had this been Iran or some other Muslim nation, the bombs would have been dropped long time ago.

      • John O on March 11, 2019, 4:31 am

        @US Citizen

        On a flippant note, I was in the Cambridge Botanical Garden a couple of weeks ago. There I saw a cherry tomato plant – introduced to the UK around the year 1600.

      • Citizen on March 11, 2019, 8:35 pm

        @ Donald
        Yes, Bill Maher recently blamed the Palestinian plight on the Palestinians on his latest show. Nobody called him on it. Over the years, this guy, who was kicked off tv for awhile for being anti-PC, shows continuously how he hates Christians and Muslims–& I’d say for the right reasons, their hypocrisy and negative impact, but he also shows his love fest for Jews, and for Israel, which he often conflates. Seems he’s always trying to attack his daddy, who was a Catholic, for not telling him he was biologically half Jewish when he was growing up. Anybody?

      • dionissis_mitropoulos on March 11, 2019, 9:19 pm

        Donald here are two more tropes:

        1 The Palestinians don’t love their children (i.e. they are inhuman)

        2 The Palestinians never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity (i.e. they are shortsighted)

      • Peter in SF on March 12, 2019, 6:00 am

        Citizen: Bill Maher did criticize Jews in his anti-religious movie Religulous. He pokes fun at the lengths to which some Orthodox Jews go to follow Sabbath rules, and then I’m wondering if he’s going to talk about Zionism (which harms other people, not just themselves), and he does! BUT the people he argues about Zionism with are Naturei Karta members who give religious reasons for their anti-Zionism. He presents this as yet another reason why religion is bad: because it leads some people to oppose Zionism!

    • RoHa on March 10, 2019, 8:33 pm

      British figures from the Mandate period show that, up to 1948, the major part – 80% + – of agricultural production was produced by Arab farmers.

      • oldgeezer on March 11, 2019, 11:37 am

        @john O

        “On a flippant note…. There I saw a cherry tomato plant – introduced to the UK around the year 1600.”

        What further evidence do you need to prove that zionism/Israel has developed time travel as well.

    • Brewer on March 11, 2019, 1:19 am
    • Talkback on March 11, 2019, 5:11 pm

      Isn’t it true that Palestine was destitute until Israelis made its desert bloom?
      http://www.palestineremembered.com/Acre/Palestine-Remembered/Story665.html

  2. Boomer on March 10, 2019, 6:46 pm

    Don’t forget the simple “trope” (since that is the word of the day) of nonexistence. Most easily and commonly this is accomplished by ignoring their existence. But one does encounter the explicit versions: “there is no Palestinian people,” “there are no Palestinians,” it was “a land without a people for a People without a land,” etc. Sometimes it is conceded that people lived there for centuries, but they didn’t make the land prosper (evidently the natives were ignorant and lazy), and anyway they were “not” related to the Jews who lived in the ancestral homeland, etc. etc. And of course, in the rare case when it is admitted that someone existed there, they were “Arabs,” unlike “us,” as discussed in “The Arab Mind.” (read the original edition for the full message) https://www.amazon.com/Arab-Mind-Raphael-Patai/dp/0967201551

    I’ve mentioned Juan Cole’s recent post elsewhere, but it’s worth mentioning here too:
    https://www.juancole.com/2019/03/somalia-explaining-scares.html

    • Donald on March 10, 2019, 7:47 pm

      That was the first trope on Yousef’s list.

      https://mobile.twitter.com/YousefMunayyer/status/1103667413911040000

    • RoHa on March 10, 2019, 8:42 pm

      Much is made of “there never was a Palestinian state” and “the Palestinians weren’t ‘a people'”.

      The relevance of these has always totally escaped me.

      There were people living in Palestine.

      Assuming both these claims are true:

      Why does it matter that they were not ‘a people’?

      Why does it matter that Palestine was not a state?

      How does that justify driving them out and looting their property?

      I’d love to see a Zionist answer those questions. Unfortunately, they would much rather get involved with trying to show that the claims are true than show that the claims are relevant.

      • Talkback on March 11, 2019, 5:15 pm

        Roha: “Why does it matter that they were not ‘a people’?

        Why does it matter that Palestine was not a state?”

        It doesn’t in post-colonial times. Which means in the case of Palestine when it was put under mandate.

        But it is even a lie that Palestinians weren’t a people and Palestine was not a state. Palestine was allready a state (“in statu nescendi”) under mandate and its citizens (whether Arab or Jews) became legally “Palestinians” in 1925. Palestinans are a constitutive people, a nation in the relevant sense. Jews have never been and will never be, because nobody can become Jewish by acquiring the citizenship of any country.

      • RoHa on March 12, 2019, 1:23 am

        “But it is even a lie that Palestinians weren’t a people and Palestine was not a state. ”

        I know that, but I am more interested in why Zionists think it matters.

        And I’m sure that, any minute now, several of them will chime in and explain.

        Any minute now.

      • Peter in SF on March 12, 2019, 6:11 am

        This is the essence of Michael Neumann’s argument in his book The Case Against Israel.

      • Talkback on March 12, 2019, 10:16 am

        Roha, I know that not only you knows that. I just wanted to bring it up in this thread.

      • RoHa on March 13, 2019, 9:17 pm

        The explanations for why the claims are relevant haven’t started flooding in yet. No doubt our Zionist posters are making sure they get everything very clear.

  3. Kay24 on March 10, 2019, 8:57 pm

    If an American President had said America is a Christian country, for Christians only, today AIPAC will not be existing, and we would be called an apartheid nation. The PM of Israel has joined an extremist terrorist group, to run for elections, and it seems if he wins, he will continue to be adored, and accepted, by those who now criticize Rep. Omar harshly for stating facts that are not anti-semitic. I have not heard anyone say that they will not work with him.

    America loves this apartheid nation led by racists.

    “On Saturday, actress Rotem Sela denounced Netanyahu’s frequent talking point that his political rival will form a government with Arab political parties.

    “When the hell will someone in this government tell the public that Israel is a country of all its citizens,” Sela wrote on Instagram.

    Netanyahu responded: Israel “is the national state, not of all its citizens, but only of the Jewish people.”

    MORE:

    https://www.huffpost.com/entry/netanyahu-israel-is-the-national-state-only-of-the-jewish-people_n_5c855f71e4b0d93616293db9

  4. Marnie on March 10, 2019, 11:29 pm

    ‘One finds liberals defending Omar by treating her as an unsophisticated immigrant who doesn’t know the minefields of this topic. This comes from people who see themselves as her nuanced frustrated critical defenders, like Michelle Goldberg.

    Nancy Pelosi has also adopted this stance.’

    Yep, but this is also steeped in their racism. They had been tolerant of this black muslim hijabi wearing immigrant – I mean really, what could she know about anything? They have to ‘educate her’ about knowing her place and knowing who’s boss. With support like theirs……

    I don’t know if this would count as antipalestinian tropes (IMO), but I believe they do as the evangelical right refuses to acknowledge the humanity of palestinians because their book teaches them that their (evangelicals) salvation is based on the belief that jews are the keys to their kingdom to come.

  5. RoHa on March 11, 2019, 2:19 am

    “which in the case of Transjordan was an invasion of the land to be granted the Palestinian State– but never mind.”

    I have gained the impression that the Arab armies never actually invaded the territory which was to be granted to the Jewish State. Am I correct about this?

    “Iran’s effective occupation of four Arab capitals, its support for ethnic cleansing and the use of poison gas in Syria and its crushing of Lebanese democracy”

    I don’t remember Iran doing any of these things.

    • Maximus Decimus Meridius on March 11, 2019, 11:17 am

      “I have gained the impression that the Arab armies never actually invaded the territory which was to be granted to the Jewish State. Am I correct about this?”

      Yes.

      “Iran’s effective occupation of four Arab capitals, its support for ethnic cleansing and the use of poison gas in Syria and its crushing of Lebanese democracy”

      I don’t remember Iran doing any of these things.”

      Me neither. But I guess you and I just aren’t getting our information from the right cartoons.

    • hophmi on March 11, 2019, 1:57 pm

      Go see a doctor for your memory loss.

      • pjdude on March 11, 2019, 6:24 pm

        why should people go see a doctor for things you made up?

      • Citizen on March 12, 2019, 7:43 am

        @ hophmi
        Name the four Arab capitals Iran effectively occupies.
        Where is Iran supporting ethnic cleansing?
        Source for claim Iran used poison gas in Syria?
        When did Iran crush Lebanese democracy?

    • James Canning on March 11, 2019, 3:48 pm

      The notion Iran is “effectively occupying” any Arab capital is borderline silly.

      • eljay on March 11, 2019, 5:13 pm

        || James Canning: The notion Iran is “effectively occupying” any Arab capital is borderline silly. ||

        And it has nothing to do with Israel’s actual and on-going occupation and colonization of territory outside of its / Partition borders.

    • Talkback on March 11, 2019, 5:27 pm

      RoHa: “Am I correct about this?”

      First of all. Israel’s declaration of statehood not only violated the parition plan, because it was to early, but it also violated Sec Res 46 who asked both parties not to declare statehood, because they wanted to re-discuss the partition plan which was put on ice.

      So legally there was no “invasion”, but just a mere declaration of statehood.

      Besides that, there were some minor “border”-crossings.

      • Talkback on March 11, 2019, 10:09 pm

        Nathan: “Why in the world is it claimed that the invading Arab armies did not invade the territory of the proposed Jewish state?”

        How can any army invade the territory of a PROPOSED state? Especially when its mere declaration not only violated the proposition, because it was to early, but also a Security Council Resolution from 17 April 1948 which called upon the parties to even abstain from declarations pending further consideration of the future Government of Palestine by the General Assembly after the proposition was put on ice?

        What we actually do have is that after multiple “invasions” before the declaration of Israel the Zionists had allready occupied most if not all the territories beyond the proposition and what came to become the 67 lines.

        Not to mention that the Arab armies absolutely had the right to help the Palestinians against violent seperatists and terrorists, massacres and expulsion. Isn’t that exactly what the US is trying to do in Syria even without being even asked by the Syrians?

      • Nathan on March 12, 2019, 11:43 am

        Yes, Talkback, the Arab states had the right to invade the new Jewish state in 1948. It happens that a people feels it has to go to war. Was it wise to do so? Well, that’s an interesting topic of debate. Anyway, they did invade the territory of the Jewish state.

        The issue at hand is not legalities, so it’s quite silly to claim that it was illegal to declare independence or to “secede”. But if indeed your view of events is legalities, then you might want to consider the legality of Israel’s defeating the invading armies. I think that the Jews had the legal right to win the war. Do you agree?

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius on March 12, 2019, 12:15 pm

        “the invading armies”

        Which part of Israel was ‘invaded’?

      • YoniFalic on March 12, 2019, 12:25 pm

        If one reads the justification made by the Arab League for intervention in Palestine, one finds that the Arab League made a perfectly valid legal argument for a humanitarian intervention on the basis of the white racist genocidal Euro invaders’ crimes against humanity since December 1947.

        We must state unequivocally that the bad guys won in Palestine in 47-8, but the situation is completely correctable because there is no statute of limitations for the international crime of genocide and because the international community can and must remove the criminal genocidal invader conglomeration if the international anti-genocide legal regime is to have any meaning and is to be taken seriously by anybody.

      • Talkback on March 12, 2019, 7:35 pm

        Nathan: “Yes, Talkback, the Arab states had the right to invade the new Jewish state in 1948.”

        They didn’t invade any “Jewish state”. They entered Palestine to help Palestinians against the seperatists and terorrists of JSIL, their ethnic cleansing, massacres and belligerent takeover of Palestine.

        Nathan: “It happens that a people feels it has to go to war.”

        Only one party had to go to war to acquire territory and therefore rejected a truce proposal at the end of April 1948.

        Nathan: “Anyway, they did invade the territory of the Jewish state.”

        Nope. The Zionist seperatists and terrorists tarted a war to take over Palestine through war and expulsion.

        Nathan: “The issue at hand is not legalities, so it’s quite silly to claim that it was illegal to declare independence or to “secede”.”

        Yep, legalities aren’t an issue for criminals and their supporters, but only a “silly claim”. But states have a right to maintain their territorial integrity. And only under rare circumstance this can be violated by creating a state within a stae. But of course it isn’t quite silly as soon as you claim “legalities” for Jews which actually even sound silly:

        Nathan: “I think that the Jews had the legal right to win the war. Do you agree?”

        There is no such thing as a legal right “to win a war”. You either win it or loose it. But nobody has a right to go to war to acquire territory and expell the majority of the native population. After 1945 the latter is called a war of aggresion and the former a crime against humanity. And a state not for all its citizens is an Apartheid state.

    • Nathan on March 11, 2019, 9:04 pm

      RoHa – You have “the impression that the Arab armies never actually invaded the territory which was to be granted to the Jewish State”, because this claim comes up quite often in anti-Israel circles. It is, of course, an “impression” that is based on reading books and articles of people who apparently are unfamiliar with (1) the battles of the 1948 war and (2) the map of the Partition Plan.

      Anyway, to answer your question, the invading Arab armies did indeed invade territory of the proposed Jewish state according to the Partition Plan. For example, Kibbutz Sha’ar ha-Golan was overrun by the Syrian army, looted and burned to the ground. Just down the road, at the entrance of Degania, you can still see the Syrian tank that was knocked out by the kibbutz members with a Molotov cocktail. Needless to say, both mentioned kibbutzim are on the territory of the proposed Jewish state.

      The question that makes me curious is: Why in the world is it claimed that the invading Arab armies did not invade the territory of the proposed Jewish state? After all, the Arab representatives at the UN debates throughout November 1947 made it absolutely clear that the decision to partition Palestine will force them to go to war, and therefore the destruction of the Jewish community in Palestine will be on the conscience of the UN.

      If you have motivation, you might want to google “the battle at Kibbutz Negba” – and you can read about an example of an attack by the Egyptian army. The late Uri Avnery fought there, and an excellent description of the battle appears in his book: In the Fields of the Philistines.

      • Peter in SF on March 12, 2019, 4:20 am

        The question that makes me curious is: Why in the world is it claimed that the invading Arab armies did not invade the territory of the proposed Jewish state?

        I have been guilty of claiming this. Why? Because, of the Zionist accounts I’ve read of the war, none mentioned specifically that any of the Arab armies made it onto any of the territory assigned to the Palestinian Jewish state. Since these accounts don’t mention any such dastardly event, I inferred that one didn’t happen.

      • Sibiriak on March 12, 2019, 6:39 am

        Peter in SF: Because, of the Zionist accounts I’ve read of the war…
        ———————————-

        Which accounts are you referring to?

    • Sibiriak on March 12, 2019, 12:23 am

      RoHa: I have gained the impression that the Arab armies never actually invaded the territory which was to be granted to the Jewish State. Am I correct about this?
      ————————————————–

      This question has been dealt with in previous MW discussions and specific locations were identified where, it is claimed, Arab forces did indeed cross into territory which was to be granted to the Jewish state. Unfortunately there is no archive search function that would allow me to quickly bring up that information.

      In any case, there seems little reason to doubt that if they had had the ability to do so, the Arab armies would have seized all the territory in Palestine and crushed the incipient Jewish State.

      • Peter in SF on March 13, 2019, 2:04 am

        Sibiriak: I’m thinking of the usual: JVL, ADL, StandWithUs.

    • Peter in SF on March 12, 2019, 5:06 am

      The conventional line about Iran is that it is dangerous because it sponsors terrorism, it’s working on nuclear weapons, and it aims to destroy Israel, and maybe kill all the Jews in the world. It is interesting that Friedman gives four reasons why he thinks Iran is a big “problem in the Middle East”, and his reasons don’t overlap with the conventional ones. Well maybe “support for ethnic cleansing” is supposed to be a reference to removing Jews from Israel, but even Ahmadinejad never advocated that.

      We have to give Friedman props for mentioning the three stated goals of the BDS movement, quoting its manifesto accurately. How often do we see that done by BDS opponents? Friedman says he is “not a B.D.S. supporter“, but then the reason he gives for his non-support is: “By being specific about the rights of Palestinians to return to their home and not unequivocally committing to a two-state solution, the movement leaves me and many others to believe that B.D.S. is just code for getting rid of the state of Israel.
      And then he moves on to other topics. He carefully avoids saying whether or not he supports the stated goals of B.D.S. He doesn’t even say outright that he opposes the Palestinian right of return; he just says that in his view, it must be accompanied by “a two-state solution”.

    • RoHa on March 12, 2019, 9:57 pm

      So there were a few occasions on which the Arab forces did cross the partition lines.

      Thanks.

  6. Misterioso on March 11, 2019, 9:58 am

    To be brief:

    Contrary to what Zionists would have us believe, today’s Jordan (referred to as Transjordan by the Allies after WWI) was not part of Palestine. As Ottoman maps attest, it was administered separately from Palestine, the dividing line being the Jordan River. Known to locals as Al Baqa, the area east of the Jordan River, which became the Emirate of Transjordan in 1923 (as partial fulfillment of Britain’s pledge in the July 1915 – March 1916 Hussein/McMahon correspondence to grant the Arabs independence – including Palestine – in exchange for what proved to be their invaluable assistance in defeating the Turks during WWI) was part of the Turkish vilayet (province) of Syria. The area west of the river was governed by the Ottomans as three sanjaks (sub provinces), two of which (Acre and Nablus) formed part of the vilayet of Beirut, while the third was the independent sanjak of Jerusalem.

    BTW, it was reliably estimated at the time that the total number of Jews living permanently in the Ottoman province that became know as Transjordan was three at most.

    Apart from the fact that Transjordan was not part of Palestine, the League of Nations and Britain never considered including it permanently as part of the Palestine Mandate given the fact that its population was very much ethnically different from that of Palestine. Palestinians were primarily a settled people (800 villages and 24 towns) dependent on an agricultural economy. The inhabitants of Southern Syria/Transjordan (largely desert and steppe with a narrow strip of cultivable land and little urban development) were descended from the Arab tribes of the northwestern part of the Arabian Peninsula and were largely nomadic.

    In 1921, i.e., before the League of Nations British Class A Palestine Mandate was instituted, Britain agreed to recognize Abdullah ibn Hussein al Hashem as the ruler of Transjordan. To repeat, Transjordan became an autonomous emirate under Abdullah in 1923.

    No wonder Palestinians rejected the recommendatory only 1947 Partition Plan (UNGA Res. 181), which was contrary to the terms of the League of Nations British Class A Mandate and the Atlantic Charter, never adopted by the UNSC and grossly unfair to the indigenous Palestinians. Indeed, it proved so unworkable that when Polish born David Ben-Gurion (nee, David Gruen) et al. declared the “Jewish State” of Israel effective 15 May 1948 (after Jewish forces had already dispossessed and expelled 400,000 Palestinians – e.g., 30,000 from West Jerusalem in March, and a further 30,000 in May,, 60,000 from Haifa in April, 75,000 from Jaffa in late April and early May), the UNGA was in the process of shelving the Partition Plan in favor of a UN Trusteeship.

    When war erupted due to necessary intervention by reluctant outnumbered/outgunned Arab state armies to stem the accelerating expulsion of Palestinians, a US proposed cease-fire was accepted by the Arab League but rejected by Israel.

    During the war Israel seized 78% of Palestine (22% more than the Partition Plan recommended, including large portions of the proposed Palestinian state, e.g., Jaffa and Acre), expelled 400,000 more Palestinians for a total of about 800,000 (according to Walter Eytan, then Director General of the Israeli Foreign Ministry) and went on to destroy over 500 of their towns and villages, including churches, mosques and cemeteries. It was only the beginning of the Zionist’s conquest of Palestine and the expulsion of its indigenous Arab Christian and Muslim inhabitants. (Just prior to and during Israel’s first invasion/occupation of Egypt in 1956 in collusion with Britain and France and during the war it launched on 5 June 1967, a further 250-300,000 Palestinians were expelled.)

    BTW, The repeated assertion by Israel’s leaders and other Zionists that Palestinians fled their homes and properties in 1948 because they were told to do so by Arab leaders to make way for incoming Arab armies has long-since been debunked. To quote John H. Davis, who served as Commission-General of UNRWA at the time: “An exhaustive examination of the minutes, resolutions, and press releases of the Arab League, of the files of leading Arabic newspapers, of day-to-day monitoring of broadcasts from Arab capitals and secret Arab radio stations, failed to reveal a single reference, direct or indirect, to an order given to the Arabs of Palestine to leave. All the evidence is to the contrary; that the Arab authorities continuously exhorted the Palestinian Arabs not to leave the country…. Panic and bewilderment played decisive parts in the flight. But the extent to which the refugees were savagely driven out by the Israelis as part of a deliberate master-plan has been insufficiently recognized.” (John H. Davis, The Evasive Peace, London: Murray, 1968)

  7. Qualtrough on March 11, 2019, 10:09 am

    They raise their children to hate.

    And please Omar, STOP apologizing! Everything you said it true. And that goes for everyone else. Stop apologizing. Stop playing their game.

  8. Maximus Decimus Meridius on March 11, 2019, 11:12 am

    “The Arabs have a million countries. Why can’t the Jews have this one?”

    “I’d support the Palestinians if only they would use peaceful resistance” (admittedly this one has gone out of style since the rise of BDS).

    “A Palestinian state would be completely intolerant of homosexuals and other minorities, so best leave things as they are.”

    I’m sure there are tons more where they came from….

  9. James Canning on March 11, 2019, 12:17 pm

    Donald Johnson states that “given the ill defined location of Israel’s borders . . .” In fact, the borders of Israel are well-defined. Illegal Jewish settlers in the occupied West Bank, of course, are trying to blur the borders to enable them to be redrawn.

    • Peter in SF on March 12, 2019, 4:36 am

      It’s true that the Israeli High Court has made clear that the West Bank is a territory under belligerent occupation and not part of Israel, but the official line of the Israeli government is also that all of the West Bank is “disputed territory” whose final status is subject to negotiation. And, of course, one of the parties to this dispute is the Israeli government. They’re not giving up claims over that territory.

  10. hophmi on March 11, 2019, 1:55 pm

    So all criticism of the Palestinians is racism, even though they’re not a race, and all nice things said about Israel are anti-Palestinian. Is Yousef trying to write a comedy routine?

    • Maximus Decimus Meridius on March 11, 2019, 3:39 pm

      “So all criticism of the Palestinians is racism, even though they’re not a race”

      This is a double strawman. Of course valid criticisms can be made about Palestinians, as about any other group. But the tropes referred to above aren’t valid criticisms, but rather attempts to distort reality in order to justify their continued oppression.

      And no, Palestinians aren’t a race. But neither are Jews, despite the reality defying attempts to claim otherwise.

      “all nice things said about Israel are anti-Palestinian.”

      I’d struggle really hard to think of a ‘nice’ thing to say about Israel. Even the cherry tomato wasn’t actually ‘invented’ there.

      But then, Mussolini made the trains run on time so I guess it’s possible.

    • Donald on March 11, 2019, 4:02 pm

      Race is an ill- defined category, and racists generally hate groups without having a justifiable reason for doing so. But you know that. In the case of Palestinians, they are demonized because they inconveniently lived or live in a place where Zionists wanted to build a state. Whether they fit some pseudo scientific definition of a race is irrelevant to the question of whether they can be a group that is the target of hatred. But you know that too.

      “all nice things said about Israel are anti- Palestinian”

      Nope. What if someone praised the discoveries of Israeli scientists, for example. Is that anti- Palestinian? No.

      • Mooser on March 11, 2019, 10:14 pm

        “What if someone praised the discoveries of Israeli scientists, for example. Is that anti- Palestinian? “

        Zionists use Israel’s industrial and technological advantage as proof of Zionist superiority, ever since Zionists “made the desert bloom”

      • YoniFalic on March 12, 2019, 4:15 am

        Tech-washing is an old colonial-settler invader-genocidaire trope. It goes back to the Spanish Empire. The Spanish claimed that the Spanish were so much more productive than the profligate backward natives that the natives lost their claim to native lands. For the good of the human race, the Spanish had to take all the land of the natives (and all native wealth). This colonial theme was often expressed in Spanish art of the 16th century.

        Constructive Zionism was an important form of tech-washing in early Zionism. In most cases, constructive Zionism was extremely destructive of the ecology and did a great deal of damage.

      • YoniFalic on March 12, 2019, 8:04 am

        Tech-washing is just a way for white racist genocidal Euros (like my family) to assert that they are so much better and more important than the natives that have the right to perpetrate genocide on them.

        It is not hard to relate such an assertion to my parent’s scorn for my Israeli “Jewish” Algerian Berber high school girlfriend as a primitive savage because they believed Euro Slavo-Turks (descendants of E. European Yiddish-speaking Rabbinic Jewish communities) to be better and more important than all non-Europeans. Euro Slavo-Turks are hardly the first Europeans to have such ideas.

    • Talkback on March 11, 2019, 5:21 pm

      No hophmi. It’s your comedy routine that you don’t understand that it is the racist and racism that treat their target like a race, whether they are or not. And it is Israel’s (and your) comedy routine that antizionistm is antisemitism.

      • Mooser on March 11, 2019, 10:18 pm

        “No hophmi. It’s your comedy routine”

        Funny you should say that, “Talkback”. Try reading “Hoph’s” comments in a Mother Marcus voice. They scan perfectly.

  11. hophmi on March 11, 2019, 5:03 pm

    “What if someone praised the discoveries of Israeli scientists, for example. Is that anti- Palestinian? No.”

    Seems like anything praising Israelis is anti-Palestinian to Yousef because it acknowledges Israel’s existence.

    • pjdude on March 11, 2019, 6:26 pm

      praising them for discoveries no. tech washing their warcrimes than it is.

    • John O on March 11, 2019, 7:28 pm

      @hophmi

      Heart transplant surgery was pioneered in South Africa., while apartheid was in full flow and Mandela was in jail.

  12. JLWarner on March 11, 2019, 6:46 pm

    RE: Donald’s comment at 4:22. How can Palestinians be responsible for their oppression if they have no agency?

    • Donald on March 11, 2019, 8:14 pm

      I think you might have misunderstood. The anti- Palestinian trope goes like this —

      “ Blaming Israel for the oppression of the Palestinians denies them their own agency. The decisions they made are the reason for their plight.”

      The idea is to absolve Israel and put all the blame on Palestinian leaders. Bill Maher just did that.

      • Citizen on March 12, 2019, 8:05 am

        Yes, Bill did. None of his guests called him on his blaming the victims. Nobody in his audience protested in any way.

  13. JLWarner on March 11, 2019, 6:57 pm

    Donald

    Trope 1. “Israel has a right to exist.” … “What the phrase actually means in most cases is that Palestinians have no right to exist in their own homeland so don’t bring it up or you are an antisemite.”

    You way over do it here. Some might mean that, but many do not. In fact, all 2-state supporters, including Omar, mean that both Jews and Palestinians have a right to self-determination.

    Beyond that, the main reasons for Israel having a right to exist is that IT EXISTS. Any attempt to change that amounts to advocating a sin as great as the Nakba, but with about ten-times as many people.

    • Donald on March 11, 2019, 8:29 pm

      I don’t think I am overdoing it. The phrase is generally taken to imply that Israel has the right to exist as a Jewish state, without having to get into the ugly little detail of how that came about.

      “Any attempt to change that amounts to advocating a sin as great as the Nakba, but with about ten-times as many people.”

      Zero sum thinking. People could also advocate a single secular democracy with equal rights for all. People on the Zionist side don’t want to argue against this in a direct way, so they do the “ right to exist” argument.

      I am not Palestinian and if they wish to settle for a two state solution that is their business. But even from that POV there is no reason why they have to grant Israel’s right to have 78 percent of the land. Even if one was pushing for a 2ss the usual rhetoric starts out granting Israel the right to have pushed out the Palestinians, take 78 percent and so the Palestinians have to haggle for as much as 22 percent and if Israel offers a big chunk of that 22 percent it is termed “ a generous offer”. That’s another trope. All the usual cliches and tropes favor Israel.

      • Nathan on March 11, 2019, 9:34 pm

        Donald – When you claim that the argument (“Israel has the right to exist”) actually means “in most cases that the Palestinians have no right to exist…”, in essence you are avoiding the very interesting question at hand: Do you, Donald, accept Israel’s right to exist? The same is true about Israel’s right to defend herself. You bring up the question in your article, but you don’t give us your judgment in this regard. We all know that in the anti-Israel world there is a rather general and sweeping agreement that the State of Israel should not have come into existence. Moreover, in the anti-Israel world any action of the Palestinians (no matter how horrendous) is always legitimate resistance, but any action on the part of Israel is always evil. So, I would imagine that you, too, reject Israel’s right to exist and to defend that existence. Instead of just saying so, you prefer to pretend that these very central topics on the anti-Israel agenda are actually topics on the anti-Palestinian agenda. How silly.

      • Talkback on March 11, 2019, 9:59 pm

        Nathan: “We all know that in the anti-Israel world there is a rather general and sweeping agreement that the State of Israel should not have come into existence.”

        Do the Nonjews living in Israel have a right to create a state in between 55% up to 78% of its territory and expell about 75% of Jews, if they don’t agree?

        Nathan: “Moreover, in the anti-Israel world any action of the Palestinians (no matter how horrendous) is always legitimate resistance, but any action on the part of Israel is always evil.”

        Do Palestinians have a right to “defend” themselves against Israel exactly the same way Israel “defends” itself against Palestinans? Targeted Assasinations or disproportianate use of force? Want on destruction? Firing indiscriminately into densly populated areas? Using live ammunition against Jewish Civilians who are trying to cross (and even settle) borders and cripple or even kill them?

        I dare you to answer my questions.

      • Mooser on March 11, 2019, 10:11 pm

        “Nathan”, instead of blathering about Israel’s “right to exist” which is meaningless, why not instead say that Israel has the ‘power to exist’ or has the ‘means to exist’?

      • Donald on March 11, 2019, 10:24 pm

        In bullet point form.

        1. I don’t think Israel had the right to expel the Palestinians or practice apartheid or commit war crimes. This is the central point.

        2. I do think that like any nation with a good or bad human rights record Israel has a right not to be invaded or conquered by an outside country. Though again, this sounds funny coming from an American or an Israeli.

        3. On the other hand, Israel oppresses Palestinians and stole their land and are the aggressors there so they have no right to oppress Palestinians and commit war crimes and call it self defense.

        4. Palestinians have no right to kill unarmed people and children. But the Israelis are the aggressors. So it is dishonest to focus on Palestinian violence and treat Israeli violence as self defense when it is the underlying cause of all the violence. Can an individual Israeli policeman stop a Palestinian from attacking a civilian? Yes. But again, keep the larger picture in mind. And the rockets come from people in a giant prison. Stop treating people like animals.

        It is my opinion that Palestinians should use nonviolent forms of resistance like BDS, which of course your side treats as antisemitic and no better than terrorism. Anything other than surrender is terrorism.

        I would say pretty much the same about any oppressed group but it is easy for me to say that others should use nonviolence when I am not being oppressed. But I think it will work better for them than violence.

        I missed a central point here. More below.

      • Donald on March 11, 2019, 10:28 pm

        “in essence you are avoiding the very interesting question at hand: Do you, Donald, accept Israel’s right to exist?”

        Very flattering, btw. I had no idea my acceptance of Israel’s right to ethnic cleansing was central to the whole issue.

        Now your turn. Do you think Israel has the right to steal land from Palestinians and kill them if they resist, or oppress them and kill them if they resist or is this questioning only supposed to go one way?

        Actually, better yet, do Palestinians have the right of self defense against Israelis? Or does this whole self defense concept only go one way?

        I should have thought of that. It’s the central twist to the self defense trope. By definition, only Israelis have the right to use self defense.

      • RoHa on March 11, 2019, 11:40 pm

        “I had no idea my acceptance of Israel’s right to ethnic cleansing was central to the whole issue.”

        It’s all up to you. That’s a relief.

        We can send Kushner and Co. home, disband MW and similar, and leave everything in your safe hands. Do you think you’ll get it all sorted out by Friday? Then we could have celebration parties on Saturday.

      • Peter in SF on March 12, 2019, 5:41 am

        No, Nathan, “Do you, Donald, accept Israel’s right to exist?” is not a “very interesting question”. States don’t have a right to exist. Nobody defended the USSR’s “right” to exist at the time when its continued existence was being seriously debated by the various politicians there who eventually decided to terminate its existence.

        Now if you insist on playing this “Israel’s right to exist” game, I could even turn this around: What is the state of Israel? It’s the state that was proclaimed by those 37 signatories of the declaration of independence of May 14, 1948, right? If you read their declaration, it says that this state “will ensure complete equality of social and political rights to all its inhabitants irrespective of religion, race or sex; it will guarantee freedom of religion, conscience, language, education and culture; it will safeguard the Holy Places of all religions; and it will be faithful to the principles of the Charter of the United Nations.
        Does that state have a right to exist? You think so? Well, why doesn’t it exist? Because there’s been a regime governing its territory that has prevented its existence. If you believe in this state’s right to exist, then you should support the goals of the BDS movement:
        – ending the Israeli occupation and colonization of all Arab lands and dismantling the Wall;
        – recognizing the fundamental rights of the Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel to full equality;
        – respecting, protecting and promoting the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties as stipulated in UN resolution 194.

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius on March 12, 2019, 8:04 am

        Not to speak for Donald or anyone else but…..

        “Do you, Donald, accept Israel’s right to exist?”

        As I’ve said above, no nation state has the right to exist, nor is such a ‘right’ ever claimed for any nation state other than Israel. So, no.

        ” The same is true about Israel’s right to defend herself”

        Israel has the same rights in this regard as any other nation, no more or less.

        And despite what you’ll hear from apologists for highly aggressive states like Israel, such rights are actually quite constrained.

        Which is to say, no nation has the ‘right’ to ‘defend itself’ in territory which it is the illegal occupying force.

        No nation can unilaterally decide it has the ‘right’ to ‘defend itself’ against a foreign country withou first making its case at the United Nations. You can’t just get up and bomb a country ‘in self-defence’.

        So in other words, almost all of Israel’s purported acts of ‘self-defence’ are illegal under international law.

      • Sibiriak on March 12, 2019, 10:05 am

        Peter in SF: States don’t have a right to exist.
        ———————————————

        The state of Palestine has no right to exist. That’s a fantastic talking point.

      • Nathan on March 12, 2019, 10:28 am

        Donald – I thought that your question was really funny. When you ask if “Israel had the right to steal land”, I recalled the old comedy line: “When did you stop beating your wife”. In other words, your question assumes one’s guilt as self-evident, and it doesn’t really matter what the answer is. You have stated your case, and the “question” is just a method of throwing mud. If you want to ask a question, and if you really are interested in hearing someone’s point of view, you might try phrasing yourself in neutral terms, demonstrating that you understand the abc’s of an intelligent conversation (i. e. that you are asking a real question through which you might learn how someone else sees things).

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius on March 12, 2019, 10:57 am

        “The state of Palestine has no right to exist.”

        Correct. It doesn’t. No more than Yugoslavia or Israel or Czechoslovakia have/had the ‘right to exist’.

        However, the Palestinian people certainly have an absolute right to self determination and freedom from occupation. Whether that right is realised in a soverign Palestinian state or a bi-national Israeli/Palestinian state is still an open question. But the rights of the Palestinian people to freedom is not in question.

      • Donald on March 12, 2019, 12:20 pm

        “In other words, your question assumes one’s guilt as self-evident, and it doesn’t really matter what the answer is. “

        You are evading. There isn’t any doubt Israel stole land— there were several hundred villages from which Palestinians were expelled. And Israel continues to steal land.

        So you could respond to my questions as I did yours or you can play the game where you pretend to be above questioning while others have to answer your questions. Nothing is stopping you from saying that you think Israel was right to expel the Palestinians and keep their land, but you prefer the tropes which avoid stating what happened. That is what the tropes are for, because the reality is ugly.

        You could also answer some of my other questions, such as whether the right of self defense goes both ways. But you are not responding in good faith.

      • Nathan on March 12, 2019, 9:23 pm

        Donald – You surely are joking when you claim to have answered my question. I asked you if you, Donald, think that Israel has a right to exist. In your answer, you tell me that Israel didn’t have the right to expel Palestinians, and that Israel oppresses the Palestinians and steals their land (reread your comment that starts with the phrase “In bullet point form”). You also came out in favor of non-violent resistance, but you reminded us that you are not the oppressed (meaning that you can accept the violent actions of others against Israel). In short, you repeated your list of grievances against Israel, but a simple answer to a simple question just doesn’t appear. Here are two examples of a simple answer: (1) “Yes, Israel has the right to exist”; “No, Israel doesn’t have the right to exist”.

        Your question in return to me is a “loaded question”. The answer to your question is to accept your perception of events as self-evidently true. You ask if I “justify a theft”. Both an answer “yes” and an answer “no” are meant to corroborate your position that there was a theft. In short, your method of questioning is just a propaganda ploy. It is a statement that there are not two sides to this story, as if you wish to debate on the condition that it be established beforehand that you have a monopoly on the truth.

        So, does the State of Israel have the right to exist? It’s not a very difficult question. A simple “yes” or “no” will do.

      • Sibiriak on March 12, 2019, 11:02 pm

        Nathan: …a simple answer to a simple question just doesn’t appear.
        ———————————————–

        That’s right. Donald obviously evaded your question.

      • Keith on March 13, 2019, 12:22 am

        NATHAN- “So, does the State of Israel have the right to exist? It’s not a very difficult question. A simple “yes” or “no” will do.”

        There is no inherent “right” for a state or any organization to exist. A state or any organization has a right to exist to the degree that it is legitimate, yet its existence is primarily a function of its power. Based upon both legal and moral principles, Israel does not have a right to exist AS A JEWISH STATE, a form of blood and soil nationalism similar to Nazi Germany. Israel does, however, have the power to exist in its present abhorrent form. Israel can only obtain moral legitimacy by becoming a state of ALL of its citizens, consistent with the norms of Western democracy.

      • Sibiriak on March 13, 2019, 12:53 am

        Israel exists; it is an internationally recognized state and member of the United Nations in full standing.

        All such states have the right to exist, if by that one means the right to continue existing.

        Regarding a state that currently does not exist, a “right to exist” can only refer to a right to come into existence. To say that Israel now has the right to exist (continue existing) is not to say that in 1948 Israel had a right to come into existence. That’s a separate question.

        Under international law, existing states have both rights and duties. Among the most important rights accorded to states is the right of self-preservation (self-defense).

        There is widespread consent that the right of every State to self-preservation and the corresponding duty not to prejudice the preservation of other States is to be included among the ‘basic’ or ‘fundamental’ rights. Such a right, according to early commentators, developed as a right to preserve, maintain, and protect a State’s independence, sovereignty, and equality. It is for this reason that some authors regard it as a mere corollary of the preceding rights. Others, on the contrary, see it as the only truly fundamental right of States.

        The existence of a ‘fundamental right to survival’ has been confirmed by the ICJ in a recent advisory opinion relating to the legality of the threat or use of nuclear weapons, which recognized the fundamental right of every State to survival as a basis for admitting its right to resort to self-defence (Legality of the Threat or Use of Nuclear Weapons [Advisory Opinion] [1996] ICJ Rep 226) (Nuclear Weapons Advisory Opinions).

        Oxford Public International Law, “States Fundamental Rights and Duties”
        http://opil.ouplaw.com/view/10.1093/law:epil/9780199231690/law-9780199231690-e1112

        That “fundamental right of survival” of states, confirmed by the ICJ, is synonymous with a “right to exist”, i.e. to continue to exist.

        As a state, Israel has, of course, other rights beyond the mere “right to exist”. They include the right to sovereign control over the national territory; the right to make and apply laws with full civil jurisdiction, and to operate police and security forces legally and unchallenged over the national territory; the right to access international courts and other institutions of international governance; the right to make legally binding treaties with other states; and so on and so forth.

        In order for a state’s sovereignty rights under international law to be clear, the territorial extent of the state must be defined. What are the borders that separate Israeli territory from Occupied Palestinian territory? The ICJ answered that question clearly and unequivocally in its 2004 “Wall” opinion. Those borders are based on the UN sanctioned armistice agreements of 1949 and subsequent peace agreements. The armistice line, aka “Green Line” or “pre-1967 borders,” has become the provisional border that divides “Israeli territory” from “occupied Palestinian territory“; it is to be the basis for a final agreement and permanent border between Israel and Palestine. This conception was cemented by UN res 242 and has been reinforced by numerous UN resolutions and ICJ opinions since then. In the absence of such a final agreement, the provisional border remains the dividing line between Israeli territory and Occupied Palestinian territory.

        As noted above, under international law states have duties (obligations) as well as rights. Israel is clearly failing to uphold its basic duties as a state. Israel’s apartheid regime is a crime against humanity which could justify direct UN action against Israel. International law sanctions interference in the internal affairs of states to correct extreme violations of law, such as apartheid.
        ——————————————————————————————————

        Does Israel have the right to exist?” is essentially a trick question conflating the notions of a right of a state to come into existence, the right of a state to continue existing, and the right of a state to continue a certain set of policies (eg. an apartheid regime.)

        The “right to exist” talking point is designed to shift the focus away from Israel’s violations of international law and oppression of Palestinians and put it on Israel’s supposed right to defend itself against forces it claims are seeking its destruction. And it’s extremely effective in doing that.

        If you deny that Israel has the right to exist, you fall into that trap. Refusing to answer the question is no better.

        The only effective answer is to say, yes Israel has the right to exist within its internationally accepted borders, but:

        Israel does not have the right to be a “Jewish state” that privileges Jews over non-Jews.

        Israel does not have a right to maintain an apartheid regime.

        Israel does not have the right to deny Palestinians their right to political self-determination on their own territory.

        Israel does not have the right to build settlements in Occupied Palestinian Territory.

        Israel does not have the right to annex territory outside its internationally accepted borders.

        Israel does not have the right to violate international law, commit war crimes, crimes against humanity, ethnic cleansing or genocide under the pretext of “self-defense”.

      • echinococcus on March 13, 2019, 3:42 am

        Sibiriak,

        The message in your longish message is condensed in “All such states have the right to exist, if by that one means the right to continue existing. Regarding a state that currently does not exist, a “right to exist” can only refer to a right to come into existence.”

        Problem: if the second sentence is considered as true, then the first cannot. The absence of a right can only be enforced by sanctioning the violation and walking back the transgression to the status quo ante. If the coming into existence of a particular state is illegitimate, the only thing that establishes that illegitimacy is the required penalty, i.e. making that particular state disappear.

        Everything else may be appropriate, may be wise, etc. but remains lawyerly sophistry and propaganda.

      • Talkback on March 13, 2019, 4:01 am

        Nathan: “So, does the State of Israel have the right to exist? It’s not a very difficult question. A simple “yes” or “no” will do.”

        It’s quite revealing that you think you have a right to answers, although you don’t answer questions. You didn’t answer my question: “Do the Nonjews living in Israel have a right to create a state in between 55% up to 78% of its territory and expell about 75% of Jews, if they don’t agree?”

        The reason why you don’t answer these question is obvious, because it also reveals how bogus your question and Israel’s “right to exist” is.

        So allow me another question which you won’t answer for the same reasons. Does Palestine have a right to exist without mentioning borders, without mentioning how it would treat minorities and how it is going to achieve and maintain a Nonjewish majority? A simple “yes” or “no” will do.”

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius on March 13, 2019, 6:41 am

        Siberiak

        “All such states have the right to exist, if by that one means the right to continue existing.”

        In order to decide if something is a ‘right’, one must ask a number of questions, among which: who is the competent body to enforce that right? So can you tell me to whom Yugoslavia or East Germany, to name just two examples, should take their case for their ‘right to continue exisiting’ having been infringed?

      • Donald on March 13, 2019, 8:50 am

        “That’s right. Donald obviously evaded your question.”

        Sigh. I can’t tell if you are being sarcastic or a bit thick. In the rest of this comment I will assume the second.

        In the original post I said the phrase had two different meanings and in my answer to Nathan I responded to both. No, Israel had no right to expel Palestinians to establish a Jewish state. Yes, they have a right not to be invaded by third parties.

        Nathan and you both want a clear yes or no question to a question that deliberately conflates two different issues. One issue is the fundamental right of people not to be subjected from ethnic cleansing and to be prevented from returning. If Palestinians decide to give up the right of return and settle for a two state solution that is their decision and their right to make that decision one way or another and not mine and not yours either,Sibiriak.

        The other issue is the right not to be invaded. Israel like every other country has the right not to be invaded even if they are a major human rights violator. They can be pressured, but not attacked by a third party. In that sense they have the right to exist just like every other country, such as Iraq under Saddam Hussein. But I don’t like to give your precious “ yes or no” answer to the question because the question is deliberately imprecise and inflammatory. I answered the two different meanings separately.

        Or like apartheid South Africa. Nobody asked in the 80’s if South Africa had a right to exist. The answer, though, would have been the same. The question would have been a deliberate conflation of two different issues, meant to cloud the basic issue of whether black South Africans had the right to exist.

        Nobody asked if South Africa had a right to exist back in 1980, because apparently no apartheid supporter was clever enough to spin it that way.

        I expect this from Nathan, who at this point has evaded all questions about Palestinian self defense or whether Israel has the right to steal land. His evasions suggest that Israel has done nothing wrong and so I am asking an innocent man to justify why he beats his wife. Essentially Nathan is a Nakba denier because he pretends asking about that is the same as browbeating an innocent man.

        It is exasperating, Sibiriak, that in your zeal to defend the 2 ss you resort to supporting Nathan’s obvious dishonest debating tactics or more to the point, you embrace a deliberately imprecise question obviously designed to conflate Israel’s nonexistent right to ethnic cleansing with its right not to be invaded. I am not going to support language that is meant to do that.

      • Donald on March 13, 2019, 9:16 am

        Okay, Sibiriak, I just read your long response and the content boils down to this— the question as asked can’t be answered with a simple yes or no because it is a trick question that requires two different responses. Gee, where have I seen that?

        However, I appreciate your long detailed response to him.

      • Donald on March 13, 2019, 9:48 am

        Nathan, let’s get this out in the open. Do you deny that Israel deliberately expelled hundreds of thousands of Palestinians in a process that included a number of massacres? Do you deny that once expelled the Israelis kept them out by force?

      • eljay on March 13, 2019, 10:01 am

        || Donald @ March 13, 2019, 8:50 am ||

        Well said, Donald.

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius on March 13, 2019, 10:08 am

        Donald

        “The other issue is the right not to be invaded. Israel like every other country has the right not to be invaded even if they are a major human rights violator”

        Actually, they could be. However, the grounds on which a state can be legally invaded by foreign states are actually very few, and need to be authorised by the United Nations. Needless to say, Israel does not consider those laws apply to it, and has illegally attacked every single one of its neighbours, and several other nations too.

      • Donald on March 13, 2019, 11:03 am

        Thanks eljay. I appreciate your contributions and those of several others ( including even Sibiriak) who have examined the right to exist trope.

        Maximus wrote—

        “Actually, they could be. However, the grounds on which a state can be legally invaded by foreign states are actually very few, and need to be authorised by the United Nations. Needless to say, Israel does not consider those laws apply to it, and has illegally attacked every single one of its neighbours, and several other nations too.”

        That’s true. But it does require that process. As you say, Israel ignores that process. The US also violates international law with impunity.

        Some of the posts people are writing in this thread about the right to exist are very good ones, considerably better than mine, and it would be great if they were put together in some way as a front page post. Won’t be me doing it— I don’t have the background to write a good post about international law. But anyone can see ( once you step outside the propaganda bubble) how the right to exist trope mixes up different issues in a way designed to make Israel seem to be the innocent victim.

        And Nathan’s evasiveness on Israeli crimes are just trollish after the first few posts.

      • Keith on March 13, 2019, 11:42 am

        SIBIRIAK- “Israel exists; it is an internationally recognized state and member of the United Nations in full standing.”

        The UN recognition of Israel as a nation state is essentially the legal recognition of the power dynamics which existed and continue to exist. There was a lot of arm-twisting to achieve the “correct” vote, partner. Israel exists primarily because the US wanted (and continues to want) it to exist for a variety of reasons. No social organization has an INHERENT right to exist in its present form. All are subject to changes in conditions. Israel exists because it currently has the power to exist, as does the US. You should keep in mind that many (most?) of the UN recognized nation states exist in name only, their sovereignty non-existent in our globalized, financially controlled world. Also, the law exists primarily so that the power elite can settle disputes without going to war. And the right to exist didn’t help Yugoslavia when the empire wanted it broken up, and it ain’t doing much for Venezuela now. It isn’t pretty, but that is reality.

    • Donald on March 11, 2019, 9:34 pm

      I am sometimes puzzled by the 1ss vs 2ss debate the way some people frame it. You see 1ss as zero sum— it must mean a massive expulsion, probably incredibly bloody, of millions of Jews. Or more likely Palestinians, since the Israelis have the heavy weapons.

      So you oppose it because that is how you imagine a 1 ss— as Armageddon. But if the two sides hate each other that much and it can’t be fixed, then why would a 2ss be stable? They will be living side by side, sometimes literally side by side in places like Jerusalem. ( or so I assume— I haven’t been there.) If they don’t get along, if they basically hate each other so much a single state would lead to genocide and this can’t be changed, how long is a 2ss going to last before war and terrorism breaks out again?

      • wondering jew on March 11, 2019, 11:49 pm

        the 2ss is the least bad solution. it will be dangerous and tenuous. or it would be. it would take tremendous pressure on israel to change the dynamic sufficiently for israel to offer something that the palestinians can accept. tremendous pressure. i don’t foresee it in the next 6 years. we’ll see who gets elected in 2020 and what tack they take, but i don’t foresee sufficient pressure in the short range. it would take 17 ilhan omar’s. that’s my way of saying, ” i don’t see it.”

      • Peter in SF on March 12, 2019, 5:49 am

        The UN adopted the 2ss plan in 1947. It didn’t work out, because only 1 of the 2 Palestinian states formed a functioning government, and it and some of the other neighbors took over all of the territory that was supposed to belong to the other Palestinian state. But then 20 years later, all of Mandatory Palestine came under the control of one government. There’s been only 1 state there for over 50 years now.

      • Talkback on March 12, 2019, 10:20 am

        Peter in SF: “It didn’t work out, because only 1 of the 2 Palestinian states formed a functioning government, …”

        Only one party was allowed to have what Britain and the US called a “shadow goverment” and a “state within a state” according to the Anglo-American Committee of Inquiry of 1946.

        It was the first Zioinist Jew ruling Palestine Herbert Samuel who laid these fundaments and even allowed the illegal Haganah to form.

      • Donald on March 12, 2019, 12:21 pm

        “but i don’t foresee sufficient pressure in the short range. “

        I think that is probably right.

    • Maximus Decimus Meridius on March 12, 2019, 5:46 am

      “Beyond that, the main reasons for Israel having a right to exist is that IT EXISTS”

      Nonsense.

      Did Yugoslavia have a ‘right to exist’?

      Or the Soviet Union?

      Or East Germany?

      Or any of the other states which used to exist in my lifetime alone, and now do not?

      Nation states exist, or they do not. Israel is not an exception. It now exists – at the great expense of the native peoples who were subjected to ethnic cleansing as a neccessary condition of its creation and continued existence – but will it exist 10, 50, 100 years from now? Who knows. The ‘right to exist’ canard is just that – a canard which seeks to give Israel unique ‘rights’ accorded to no other nation state.

      • Nathan on March 12, 2019, 11:15 am

        Maximus – The Arabs world has make the claim that Israel has no right to exist. Hence it is a topic that is often discussed. Actually, I like to bring up the issue when debating with anti-Israel people in order to clarify what exactly is the topic at hand. Very often, anti-Israel people prefer to raise grievances (occupation, the wall, etc), leaving the false impression that rectifying such grievances would solve the conflict. However, whenever you ask if Israel has the right to exist, you are able to clarify that there will always be “grievances” as long as Israel exists. Most writers here prefer to evade the question. If one admits that his position is indeed that Israel should not exist, then obviously the real debate is ideological (and there are always different perspectives, and no one’s perspective is less valid).

      • YoniFalic on March 12, 2019, 11:33 am

        Hey Nathan! Why do white racist Euros like you & my family have a right to invade the Levant, to steal Palestine, and to commit genocide? I know a group very much like Zios that claimed a very similar right in Europe during the 30s and 40s.

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius on March 12, 2019, 11:43 am

        “The Arabs world has make the claim that Israel has no right to exist.”

        Eh, no. Anyone who has even the slightest knowledge of international law and precedents knows that no nation state, including Israel has a ‘right to exist’.

        “Most writers here prefer to evade the question.”

        What are you going on about? Of course Israel has no ‘right to exist’. We’re not half-assed American politicians who are going to be shamed into pretending otherwise.

      • eljay on March 12, 2019, 11:56 am

        || Nathan: … The Arabs world has make the claim that Israel has no right to exist. Hence it is a topic that is often discussed. Actually, I like to bring up the issue when debating with anti-Israel people in order to clarify what exactly is the topic at hand. Very often, anti-Israel people prefer to raise grievances (occupation, the wall, etc), leaving the false impression that rectifying such grievances would solve the conflict. However, whenever you ask if Israel has the right to exist, you are able to clarify that there will always be “grievances” as long as Israel exists. Most writers here prefer to evade the question. If one admits that his position is indeed that Israel should not exist, then obviously the real debate is ideological (and there are always different perspectives, and no one’s perspective is less valid). ||

        The problem isn’t that Israel exists – it’s that it exists as a deliberately and unapologetically colonialist, (war) criminal and religion-supremacist state that refuses:
        – to end its on-going occupation and colonization of territory outside of its / Partition borders;
        – to reform from religion-supremacist “Jewish State” of and for Jewish Israelis and non-Israeli Jews into secular and democratic Israeli state of and for all of its Israeli citizens, immigrants, expats and refugees, equally;
        – to respect and uphold international laws and human rights;
        – to accept responsibility and accountability for its past and on-going (war) crimes.

        You Zionists already know this. But I suppose there’s no reason for a self-proclaimed “moral beacon”, “light unto the nations” and “progressive paradise” state like Israel to change its ways when its so much easier simply to blame “the Arabs world” for everything.

      • Talkback on March 12, 2019, 8:34 pm

        Nathan: “Very often, anti-Israel people prefer to raise grievances (occupation, the wall, etc), leaving the false impression that rectifying such grievances would solve the conflict. However, whenever you ask if Israel has the right to exist, you are able to clarify that there will always be “grievances” as long as Israel exists.”

        Very often anti-Palestinian people prefer to leave the impression that Palestinians have no rights which even could be violated by Israel, but only “grievances” and that the occupation and wall are not illegal and immoral issue. However, whenever you ask if Israel has the right to violate the right to self determination, international law, human rights and ethnic cleansing, you are able to clarify that this will continue as long as Israel exists.

      • Nathan on March 12, 2019, 10:25 pm

        Maximus – The Arab world, indeed, has made the claim that Israel does not have the right to exist. Your comment about international law doesn’t refute this simple truth. One can comment about the conflict from the point of view of international law, and one can comment about the conflict from the point of view of ideology and politics. The claim that Israel has no right to exist is an ideological position, and one hears this position all the time. Actually, the question of legitimacy is at the very heart of the conflict.

        Have you noticed all the comments about the Jewish exile? Some people here wish to note that the Jews are a religious community (and not a people), and that they are not the descendants of exiled Judeans. Who cares about such topics? Surely international law doesn’t deal with questions of DNA or shared descent. Well, obviously, the comments are meant to prove the illegitimacy of the Jewish state (by refuting its founding narrative). In short, people are busy with the question: Does Israel have the right to exist (this includes you, of course).

      • Keith on March 13, 2019, 12:29 am

        NATHAN- “The Arab world, indeed, has made the claim that Israel does not have the right to exist.”

        Bullshit! The problem is Israel as a Jewish state, not Israel per se. The problem is Israeli anti-Gentile racism.

      • DaBakr on March 13, 2019, 5:12 am

        @k

        But naturally unconcerned with the dozens of Muslim states and particularly the ones that forced out and ethnically cleansed themselves of thousand year+ Jewish communities. while Israel was created as the jewish state it has at least 20% non Jews. Where area all the Arab worlds Jews? Not that your very concerned about them and how they adjusted to their own refugee status. Again, your urgent passion is concerned primarily with jews

      • Talkback on March 13, 2019, 11:07 am

        Nathan: “Some people here wish to note that the Jews are a religious community (and not a people), and that they are not the descendants of exiled Judeans.”

        That’s a historic fact, even in the Israeli historian academic world. You wish to note that they are an ethnic group and all descendents of “exiled Judeans” which denies a millenia of Jewish proselytism. Well, if Jews are a “people” then so are Christians and Muslims. The only difference is that Judaism changed to being matrilineal and Chstiniaty and Islam are patrilineal.

        Nathan: “Who cares about such topics?”

        Your Zionists fellows do. They started this idiotic narrative and the idiotic claim that is built on it.

        Nathan: “Well, obviously, the comments are meant to prove the illegitimacy of the Jewish state (by refuting its founding narrative).”

        Nope, they prove that the Zionist fake narrative of an exile doesn’t legitimate a “Jewish” state.

        Nathan: “In short, people are busy with the question: Does Israel have the right to exist (this includes you, of course).”

        The real question- and the one Zionist are trying to distract from with their “right to exist” debate – is, if the pre 48 Palestinian citizens and their descendants have a right to an independent state in their own country which was under mandate until 1948, the right to nationality within this territory and the right to leave and return to their country. Do they, Nathan? Yes or no?

      • Keith on March 13, 2019, 11:18 am

        DABAKR- “Where area all the Arab worlds Jews?”

        I believe that some remain in Iran in spite of Zionist false flag attempts to get them to leave. As for the Arab world in general, the creation of Israel AS A JEWISH STATE, with Zionist Jews making war against their Arab neighbors and ethnically cleansing the Palestinian Arabs probably caused a significant deterioration in the lives of many Arab Jews as non-Jewish Arabs reacted in anger at the actions of these Zionist Jews. What would you expect? Israeli Jews have never been concerned about the negative impact their policies have on Jews living outside of Israel, particularly in Arab countries where an uptick in anti-Semitism could result in the much sought after Jewish immigration to the Jewish state. And your “concern” is how best to exploit the situation of Jews in Arab countries.

      • DaBakr on March 16, 2019, 5:56 pm

        @kth

        You are correct that there is a small shadow of the jewish population still living in Iran then the much larger one that enjoyed more protection under the former Shah (and don’t get all excited. The shah had some trusted jewish advisors but there was no collective jewish power. Like in pre ’48 Baghdad, Jews in Persia retained their status, protection and wealth through mercantile and international trade. While the remaining Jews in Iran is too big a subject to get into here suffice to say the numbers are down to probably under 22,000. Of that 22,000 is safe to assume 80% have immediate family living in israel. Plus the huge expatriate communities in Los Angeles and other Cali cities. There are laws prohibiting Iranian Jews from society. They are allowed one rep in the govt(which is BS PR to many observers. In short, the Jews left in Iran are almost hostages but not treated that badly. They also serve as a major mullah regime hasbara talking point: e.g. :
        ” Look, we tolerate Jews in our totalitarian Muslim fanatical regime” And, as almost any Iranian jew (or other regime opponent) who had fled to Israel or the US would tell you in hushed tones that they won’t comment publicly on how dangerous the mullah regime is because they still fear for relatives still in Iran and some, if you know them well, will tell you the mullah regime has loyal servants in the US as well. (In fact, if it didn’t involve Israel and Jews, this story would be typical and ordinary for dozens of other refugees who escaped religious political tyranny)

        So, yeah, three are some Jews in Persia. But you seem to know there are none left (except an actual handful here and there. Less then dozens total)

        And your response of “what did you expect…?” Was surprising to me but probably not how you intended. The answer I will give now, with the benefit of hind hindsight is, yes, I expected this. At the very least it’s not surprising. so, you shouldn’t have any issue with Israelis, zionist Jews or others returning the same epithet: what did you expect? And, to back this up you only need glance at a simple map of the Arab/muslim sovereignty covering the entire region of northern Africa to the middle east and the small dot that comprises what folks here like to call the ‘expansionist zionist apartheid regime’ . any concept that Israel is in control of the Arab/muslim world’s natural resources, type of governments, religious laws, etc is either quite deluded or very naive. Or, you just don’t like Jews and Israel provides a convenient fig leaf with doc called Jewish progressives endorsing your views.

      • Keith on March 17, 2019, 5:50 pm

        DABAKR- “You are correct that there is a small shadow of the jewish population still living in Iran then the much larger one that enjoyed more protection under the former Shah….”

        I am somewhat surprised that you brought up the Shah, the brutal dictator installed in power by the CIA after the overthrow of the elected liberal reformer Mossadegh. Israel loved the dictator and worked with the CIA to form the brutal Savak secret police who terrorized the general population into submission. According to you, the general population didn’t include Iranian Jews who were “protected.” No doubt a consequence of the intense cooperation between the dictatorial Shah and Israel. And, yes, Israeli Jews made a lot of money in Iran under the Shah. In view of Israeli Jewish support for the hated Shah, it takes a certain amount of Chutzpah to criticize the Iranians for having negative feelings toward Israel and Jews. Apparently, Jewish actions toward non-Jews should have no effect whatever on non-Jewish feeling and actions towards Jews? Also, the alignment of Israel with the empire in destabilizing the entire region hardly engenders good will. When are you Zionist Jews going to take some responsibility for the consequences of your own actions? You treat the Arabs (except for Arab monarchies) like shit and then claim anti-Semitism.

        Let me clarify one point. The Jews living peacefully in the Middle East prior to the Zionist invasion were Mizrahi Jews. The Zionist were overwhelmingly Ashkenazi. The result is that the local Semitic Jews had their lives upturned as a consequence of the brutal retrograde colonialism of Jewish Europeans who identified with Europe and looked down upon the Mizrahi. That is the reality, claims of victimhood dishonest.

    • Peter in SF on March 13, 2019, 2:10 am

      Nathan:

      “The claim that Israel has no right to exist is an ideological position, and one hears this position all the time.”

      No, one does not hear this position all the time. The claim that one does hear all the time is Israel has a right to exist, and it is always made in the context of justifying some Israeli government policy or action.

      Maximus and I are making the claim on this board that Israel has no right to exist, because we don’t believe that any state has a right to exist. Humans have rights, states don’t. If, as you say, you seriously want to have a discussion about whether or not Israel has a right to exist, then you first need to make clear what it even means for Israel, or any state, to have a right to exist. Maximus and I brought up examples of the USSR, Czechoslovakia, and Yugoslavia as states that stopped existing, and you never said whether or not you believe those states had a right to exist. There were people in or close to the GWB administration who famously advocated “ending states that support terrorism”: were they saying that those states had no right to exist, or that those states must be forced to stop certain activities of their governments? Does it make a difference?

      Nathan, why don’t you say which states you believe have a right to exist, and which states do not have a right to exist? How about starting with states that currently exist? There are even 10 current members of the Canadian parliament who are open in expressing their opinion that Canada shouldn’t exist. But they don’t say Canada has no right to exist — and, you may be surprised to hear, their opponents don’t say that Canada does have a right to exist. Why not? Because nobody in Canada believes that Canada has a right to exist! Most Canadians think it should continue to exist, but there are some, like those 10 MPs, who think it should be split up, and others who think it should become part of the U.S.A. The question of whether or not Canada has a “right” to exist never crosses anyone’s mind.

      After saying what existing states do or do not have a right to exist, what about ones that have been proposed, but don’t (yet) exist? A Palestinian state? A Kurdish state? An African-American state? In reality, people don’t talk about whether such states have a “right to exist”; they talk about the rights of the people who would be living in these putative states.

      In the case of Israel, in contrast with other states, does it mean something special to say that Israel has a right to exist? Does insisting that Israel allow the descendants of its forced exiles of 1948 to return and to be full citizens mean denying the right of Israel to exist? Suppose someone proposes full equal rights under the law for Jews and non-Jews within Israel: Would such a proposal negate Israel’s right to exist, on the theory that “Israel” by definition is a state that privileges Jews? Or how about a proposal to change Israel’s name to Palestine: Would that be a denial of Israel’s right to exist? If it is, then that would show that your notion of “Israel’s right to exist” is absurd. But I honestly don’t know how you would answer any of these questions.

      If you ever hear anyone assert that the state Israel has no right to exist, they’re asserting that the state has no right to do some of the things it does. If you respond with “well, it wouldn’t be Israel if it did/didn’t do X”, then you’re not talking about the right of Israel to exist; you’re talking about the right of a government to do or not do X.

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius on March 13, 2019, 6:49 am

        An excellent post, but don’t expect any logical response from Nathan.

        And of course you are correct: The ‘right to exist’ nonsense is invariably an attempt to justify continued Israeli human rights abuses. I look forward to Nathan providing us with a list of all those nation states which he believes have the ‘right to exist’, as well as his suggested compensation for those many states whose ‘right’ in this regard has been infringed.

      • eljay on March 13, 2019, 7:57 am

        || Peter in SF: … If you ever hear anyone assert that the state Israel has no right to exist, they’re asserting that the state has no right to do some of the things it does. If you respond with “well, it wouldn’t be Israel if it did/didn’t do X”, then you’re not talking about the right of Israel to exist; you’re talking about the right of a government to do or not do X. ||

        Israel has a right to exist is Zio-speak short-hand for: The religion-based identity of Jewish grants to those who choose to hold it the “right”…
        – to Jewish supremacism in/and a religion-supremacist “Jewish State” in as much as possible of Palestine; and
        – to do unto others acts of injustice and immorality they would not have others do unto them.

        That’s why pretty much anything with respect to I-P that involves justice, accountability, equality and respect for human rights and international laws is considered:
        – a threat to this Zionist “right”; and, of course,
        – anti-Semitism (and even “Jew hatred”).

        The injustice and immorality – and hypocrisy – of it all is breathtaking. The shoot-and-cry victimhood is just a bad joke.

      • Nathan on March 14, 2019, 12:09 pm

        Peter in SF – One can argue that no state has a right to exist, or that the real question is “do states have the right to continue to exist”, or (like Donald) one can argue that the question of Israel’s right to exist is really a denial of Palestinian rights, or whatever. It’s all just beating around the bush. It’s so obvious that this is a website dedicated to the Palestinian narrative entirely. It’s actually quite amazing that foreigners can present the Palestinian view exactly as the Palestinians present it. So, there is no doubt that the answer on this website to the question (“does Israel have the right to exist”) is a loud “NO” – and really it doesn’t matter if everyone can argue that the question is improper, or whatever.

        It really is VERY interesting that no one here has the simple honesty to come out and say the obvious which is: “Israel just shouldn’t be”. Is it a kind of intellectual cowardice, or is it a propaganda ploy? Well, maybe it’s both. If one states in clear terms that the end result that one has in mind is the end of Israel, then quite probably some of the reading audience is going to find this aim as unreasonable and unrealistic. So, we’ll hear a lot of grievances, but we’ll never hear that rectifying such grievances would mean that all is well (and Israel can live in peace). It’s the same ploy as the BDS movement. No one in the anti-Israel world can imagine an eventual acceptance of Israel.

        Israel is going to continue to exist (and thrive). She seems quite capable of handling the conflict and the many articles in Mondoweiss. So, we’ll all be able to continue our enjoyable hobby of debating with each other for many years to come. At least that’s some good news.

      • eljay on March 14, 2019, 12:57 pm

        || Nathan: … It really is VERY interesting that no one here has the simple honesty to come out and say … Is it a kind of intellectual cowardice, or is it a propaganda ploy? … ||

        You really are VERY right. Please put your simple honesty and your intellectual bravery to work and provide a clear and concise answer to each of Donald’s two clear and concise questions:

        Donald   March 13, 2019, 9:48 am

        Nathan, let’s get this out in the open. Do you deny that Israel deliberately expelled hundreds of thousands of Palestinians in a process that included a number of massacres? Do you deny that once expelled the Israelis kept them out by force?

        Thanks.  :-)

      • Talkback on March 14, 2019, 1:38 pm

        Nathan: “It really is VERY interesting that no one here has the simple honesty to come out and say the obvious which is: “Israel just shouldn’t be.” Is it a kind of intellectual cowardice, or is it a propaganda ploy? Well, maybe it’s both. “.”

        So what’s your excuse that you keep ignoring my questions if the pre 1948 citizens of Palestine have a right to an indepdent unitary state in all of Palestine?

        The answer can only be that you know that it would be wrong to deny them this right. Which answers the question, if Israel has a right to exist.

      • Donald on March 14, 2019, 1:43 pm

        Oh there you are Nathan.

        Should Israel continue to exist? Yes, especially if the alternative is a bloodbath. But it should stop being an apartheid state. Whether that means two states or a single democratic state with a right of return for Palestinians and equal rights for Jews and Palestinians is a decision that Palestinians should make. I am not going to use “ right to exist” because as several of us have pointed out, that is a propagandistic way of conflating different issues and dismissing the basic rights of Palestinians. And you demonstrate it here by your dismissive condescending attitude and your trolling. You have contempt for Palestinian rights.

        Now you never answered any of my questions unless there is a post you have written that hasn’t gone through moderation. You just evaded them.

        So were the Palestinians expelled? That’s one question. Easy to answer. It is simply a factual question, not a moral one.

        Second one— do Palestinians have a right to defend themselves? That’s a moral one.

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius on March 14, 2019, 4:05 pm

        “It really is VERY interesting that no one here has the simple honesty to come out and say the obvious which is: “Israel just shouldn’t be”

        Well, I do. And I always have, if you’ve bothered to read my posts.

        Of course Israel shouldn’t exist. It is an inherently racist state which could only exist at the expense of the native people, who were either killed or expelled to make way for the ‘right’ sort of people. No such state should exist.

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius on March 14, 2019, 4:06 pm

        @ Donald,

        “Second one— do Palestinians have a right to defend themselves? That’s a moral one.”

        No it isn’t. Under international law, an occupied people have the right to resist occupation, including through the use of arms.

      • YoniFalic on March 14, 2019, 4:47 pm

        I agree with Maximus Decimus Meridius with the qualification that after Nuremberg IMT no state can be allowed that is founded in genocide. Nuremberg IMT is terminus a quo (starting point) for international anti-genocide legal regime. Providing material support to such a regime or conspiring to support such a regime are crimes against humanity and criminal violations of the U.S. Code.

        There is no statute of limitations for Genocide either in international or in US law.

        We should think of the criminality of Israel and Zionists just as we think about the criminality of US slavery and slavers. The former became a heinous crime after 1865. The latter became criminals after 1865.

        The international community and the US have an obligation to abolish Israel and to punish Zionists just as the US government had an obligation to abolish slavery and to punish slavers after 1865.

        The above formulation seems much stronger in supporting Palestinians against the white racist colonial-settler invader-genocidaires (and lackeys) than anti-racism and anti-Apartheid formulations.

      • amigo on March 14, 2019, 4:49 pm

        “It really is VERY interesting that no one here has the simple honesty to come out and say the obvious which is: “Israel just shouldn’t be” MDM

        I don,t have a problem with that statement other than being accused of antisemitism. which at this point , just runs right off my shoulders.

        However , I don,t have a problem with Israel continuing to exist if it is totally reformed and becomes a state for all it,s citizens as in , changes its National flag and Anthem and treats all citizens as equal and allows all citizens to share the same roads and park in the same parking lots and end the Jews only hospitals and allow non Jewish citizens to run for Office on a platform of reforming Israel , etc , etc, etc.

        Short of all of the above —shut the place down.

      • Donald on March 14, 2019, 8:08 pm

        Maximus— Poor phrasing on my part. I know , or rather, since my knowledge of international law is almost nonexistent, I have heard that occupied people have a right to fight their oppressors. I was interested in hearing what Nathan’s view is on the right of Palestinians to defend themselves. Not that I expect him to answer.

      • RoHa on March 14, 2019, 9:39 pm

        ‘It really is VERY interesting that no one here has the simple honesty to come out and say the obvious which is: “Israel just shouldn’t be”. ‘

        I think I’ve said that, or words to that effect, often.

        If I haven’t, I’ll say it now.

        Israel just shouldn’t be

      • RoHa on March 14, 2019, 10:51 pm

        “No it isn’t.”

        Yes it is. A legal right does not automatically give a moral right. And there can be a moral right even when there is no legal right.

      • Talkback on March 15, 2019, 6:39 am

        amigo: “I don,t have a problem with that statement …”
        RoHa: “I think I’ve said that, or words to that effect, often. If I haven’t, I’ll say it now. Israel just shouldn’t be.”

        Same. Allthough I’m not focussing about what hasn’t a right to exist, but what has and should have since 1948:

        An former mandated State of Palestine released into independence like all other states under a Class A mandate. (Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Transjordan).

        It is quite obvious that Jewish immigration and a Jewish state was illegaly enforced upon the native population. So far Nathan couldn’t come up with a single universal principle that could justify this. All he does is whine about the fact that some challenge “Israel’s right to exist”. We should stop responding to this ZIonist debate. The real question is if a State of Palestine and its people have a right to exist in Palestine. I dare any Zionist to deny this with an explanation based on human rights an international law.

      • DaBakr on March 16, 2019, 6:11 pm

        @pt

        The fact your even discussing Israels’right’ to exist or not exist provides more justification for the accusation that anti Israel activists are not only obsessed with jews and Israel but had been easily led to waste brain space on concepts that only make sense to bigots and oddball pseudo utopiasts. fix yourself first

      • Talkback on March 16, 2019, 7:55 pm

        DaBakr: “The fact your even discussing Israels’right’ to exist or not exist provides more justification for the accusation that anti Israel activists are not only obsessed with jews and Israel …”

        To the contrary. It’s you who is obessesed with Jews and Israel. That’s the reason why you, Nathan and your fellow Zionists can’t formulate a single universal principle that could justify Israel’s founding and existence without bring up Jews. On the other hand it is quite easy to make a case for the Palestinian’s side without even mentioning them. They were the people OF the country and had the right to an independent state within this country without the interference of foreign settlers. It’s simply a post colonialism vs. Zionist colonialism.

    • Peter in SF on March 15, 2019, 3:05 am

      Nathan, you have not given any example of a past, present, or proposed state that does or doesn’t have what you label “a right to exist.”

      You write that “It’s so obvious that this is a website dedicated to the Palestinian narrative entirely. It’s actually quite amazing that foreigners can present the Palestinian view exactly as the Palestinians present it.
      Palestinian narrative“: yet another anti-Palestinian trope.
      And besides, Phil himself writes a lot on this website about Jewish issues and the position of Jews in American society, from an insider perspective, and it’s crazy to say he’s getting this from the “narrative” of Palestinians.

      I came to this issue, and to this website, years ago because I had grown up hearing so many anti-Palestinian tropes that were accepted widely but sounded a bit fishy when you thought about them:
      – “Israel has a right to exist“: How come no other government’s policies or actions are ever defended in these same terms?
      – “Jews are a people and are therefore entitled to their own state; Palestinians do not constitute a people and therefore aren’t“: How come no other government’s ethnic cleansing of “people who aren’t a people” is ever justified on these grounds?
      – “One can criticize Israel as harshly as one wants, but one should avoid antisemitic tropes in doing so.“: How come no similar concern is ever expressed about criticism of any other country’s government?
      – “To criticize Israel for the plight of Palestinians is to deny the Palestinians their own agency“: Why is it OK to say this, but politically incorrect to say it about any other group of people oppressed by any other government?
      etc.

      Israel is going to continue to exist (and thrive). She …

      Ah yes, referring to Israel as “she”. A dead giveaway that someone is a Zionist defender. I get it: the rhetorical trick here is to portray Israel as a woman who needs defending, and in your experience, it’s so subtle that your audience isn’t going to notice what you’re doing.

      • DaBakr on March 16, 2019, 6:14 pm

        @pt

        “…. Anti Palestinian tropes” . So glad you got the message sent down from Palestine hasbara central. Good use of “trope”. Keep emphasizing that it isn’t a Jewish buzzword. Keep believing tis isn’t a PR game but the number one human rights catastrophe of all time.

      • annie on March 16, 2019, 7:16 pm

        https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/trope

        Definition of trope
        1a : a word or expression used in a figurative sense : FIGURE OF SPEECH
        b : a common or overused theme or device : CLICHÉ
        the usual horror movie tropes
        2 : a phrase or verse added as an embellishment or interpolation to the sung parts of the Mass in the Middle Ages

      • Talkback on March 16, 2019, 9:05 pm

        DaBakr: “Keep believing tis isn’t a PR game …”

        Good catch, DaBakr. “PR game” is another Anti-Palestinian trope.

      • annie on March 16, 2019, 11:07 pm

        “PR game” is another Anti-Palestinian trope.

        Dabakr is repeating the “pallywood” trope. there’s a long history of denying palestinian claims, this predates internet. remember when palestinians were claiming corpses were coming back without organs, and then that chief forensic pathologist was busted. dr. hiss https://www.irishtimes.com/news/israel-admits-organ-harvesting-1.850939 but that’s just one story, before the internet no one took anything palestinians said seriously. someone should make a list of racist Anti-Palestinian tropes.

      • DaBakr on March 17, 2019, 2:59 am

        @an

        I actually wasn’t even thinking of the pallywood ‘ trope,’. I was simply referring to the palestinian shift in policy after oslo to engage in lawfare, PR,,(hiring American firms) and their own hasbara or explanation of their narrative as they see it. I doubt wether what im referring to is actually a trope to any rational Arab or Israel

      • Talkback on March 17, 2019, 5:27 am

        Annie: “Remember when palestinians were claiming corpses were coming back without organs, and then that chief forensic pathologist was busted.”

        Vividly. The Jewish Apartheid State called it a blood lible.

      • Talkback on March 17, 2019, 5:36 am

        Peter SF: “How come no similar concern is ever expressed about criticism of any other country’s government?”

        This is a huge point. Allthough the US has started to go down the “it’s because they hate us” road. But they are not ready to claim “it’s because they hate the American people” or “anti-Americanism” yet.

        Peter SF: “I get it: the rhetorical trick here is to portray Israel as a woman who needs defending, …”

        Oh, another trope.

      • Talkback on March 17, 2019, 8:50 am

        DaBakr: “I actually wasn’t even thinking of the pallywood ‘ trope,’ …”

        And Omar actually wasn’t even talking about the Jews. But it’s irrelevant, if someone needs to accuse someone else of using racist tropes, is it DaBakr?

        DaBakr: “… lawfare …”

        Also a very good catch, DaBakr. That’s another anti-Palestinian trope: Palestinians don’t have the right to restore their rights by legal means, because if they do, it’s only a different kind of warfare and not the violators of their rights, but they are the aggressor.

        Boy, you are on fire!

      • Mooser on March 17, 2019, 12:17 pm

        “…their own hasbara”

        Speaking of ‘tropes’, “Dabakr”, there is no need to refer to the stereotype of Zionist prevarication.

      • DaBakr on March 17, 2019, 5:52 pm

        @tb

        yeah, there is an actual thing called the blood libel. does it occur in every case where its applied? can’t say. but you can peruse the internet for 1000s of accusations (videos even!) that jews use christian baby blood to bake matzah. pretty sure there were no christians around when there was no time to let the bread rise in the desert and on the run. the worst comparison I can think of in return is the Palestinians celebrate with candies in street when an Israeli youth is stabbed to death. and guess what? it actually did happen. so it a bit confusing on the trope front. I understand that the vast majority of arabs do not distribute candy at Israeli deaths and nor do Israelis dance at weddings celebrating death. the problem is….there is always somebody there with a smart phone to film it. Is that a trope?

        and btw, I’m all in for the trope game. there are definitely tropes that apply specifically to Palestinian arabs. I just don’t think they can compete on the same level as the world-wide zionist conspiracy to rule the earth,(that has nothing to do with jews btw).

        @mssr
        the ‘hasbara’ trope. thanks to MW , commenters constant application of the word it has entered into the lexicon as proper to describe any nations/ethnicities struggle to ‘explain’ their narrative. now, narrative? theres a real jew word if you ask me.

        as for hasbara? MW commenters definition of the word differs from its actual meaning. so, if you don’t like ‘tropes’ in general don’t use them. otherwise, go for it, anti-jew, anti-zionist, anti-arab, anti-muslim, anti-anything tropes. they all have a kernel of truth -or do they?

      • Talkback on March 17, 2019, 6:43 pm

        DaBakr: “@tb yeah, there is an actual thing called the blood libel. does it occur in every case where its applied? can’t say.”

        So you can’t even say that the accusation was wrong in the case of Yehuda Hiss?

        DaBakr: “the worst comparison I can think of in return is the Palestinians celebrate with candies in street when an Israeli youth is stabbed to death. and guess what? it actually did happen.”

        Yeah, this happened, too:
        VIDEO: Israeli settler passes out candy to celebrate killing of Palestinian in Nablus
        https://www.maannews.com/Content.aspx?id=777145

        Btw. how do Jews annually celebrate seven decades of expulsion and dispossession of Palestinians and Israeli Apartheid?

        DaBakr: “so it a bit confusing on the trope front.”

        Not at all. A trope is applied to Jews or Palestinians as such, even if the actual cases are real, but limited to individuals or groups within the overall population.

        DaBakr: “I’m all in for the trope game. there are definitely tropes that apply specifically to Palestinian arabs.”

        Yes, yes. You’r not so different from antisemites who claim that “there are definitely tropes that apply specifically to Jews or Israeli Jews” at all. That is what being racist is all about, isn’t it? So what trope would you apply specifically to the 95% Israeli Jews who supported Israel’s massacre and large scale destruction in Gaza? Feel free to use a blood lible if that makes you feel ‘calm’. Because guess what? It actually did happen.

        DaBakr: “MW commenters definition of the word differs from its actual meaning.”

        You mean “literal” meaning. Because MW commenters know what Hasbara actually means. But we should not longer worry about Israel’s Hasbara after it has imploded and the vacuum that it has left could only be filled with cheep and pathetic accusations of antisemitism or its tropes.

        The case of Omar has clearly shown how far some would go to read “the Jews” into any accusation to fabricate antisemitism and consequently its “rise”. Whether this is projected antisemitism or self-hatred is the only interesting question.

    • Peter in SF on March 17, 2019, 5:19 am

      DaBakr:

      The fact your even discussing Israels’right’ to exist or not exist provides more justification for the accusation that anti Israel activists are not only obsessed with jews and Israel but had been easily led to waste brain space on concepts that only make sense to bigots and oddball pseudo utopiasts. fix yourself first

      Huh? Yes, I just admitted that I had been easily led to waste brain space on concepts that only make sense to bigots and oddball pseudo utopiasts. I was talking about this concept because others brought it up here, and Nathan (an anti-anti-Israel activist) kept asking about it.

      I don’t know if you realize it, but your whole post reads like a putdown. Especially with the “fix yourself first” sendoff.

  14. bcg on March 11, 2019, 10:47 pm

    Wait a minute! Another trope has appeared today that COULD just be construed as anti-Palestinian! On NPR’s talk show 1A the topic was Ilhan Omar and that whole mess, and one of the participants in the discussion said the Jews have the right to return to their ancestral homeland FROM WHICH THEY WERE EXILED. I’ve never been able to figure this out- there was the Babylonian exile, but the Jews were allowed to return around 520 B.C., I can’t find any evidence of another mass exile. Anyone?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jewish_diaspora#Roman_destruction_of_Judea

    • Peter in SF on March 12, 2019, 3:42 am

      I’m listening to 1A right now:
      https://the1a.org/shows/2019-03-11/what-happens-when-we-talk-about-israel
      That guest you’re talking about was full of propaganda: Nathan Guttman Washington correspondent, Israeli Public TV; @nathanguttman
      The other guests were Deborah Lipstadt and Jeremy Ben-Ami — giving us the full spectrum of “acceptable” Jewish opinion — and Nihad Awad from CAIR.

      The host of the show said that the question to be addressed today is: How do we criticize Israel without being anti-Semitic?
      I think it is extremely unlikely that the same show will have a future program on how to speak approvingly of discrimination against and ethnic cleansing of Palestinians without being anti-Palestinian.

    • Maximus Decimus Meridius on March 12, 2019, 5:54 am

      I think we’re still supposed to believe in the obvious nonsense that the Jews in the ‘diaspora’ are the descendants of those Jews exiled by the Romans. I say obvious nonsense because as your link states, there was already a large Jewish population in the empire – much too large for it to have consisted of exiles from little Judea – well before the Jewish Wars, and the Romans had neither the means nor the motive to exile large civilian populations.

      And even though Zionist historians now agree with the above, the myth remains, because otherwise the Jews are just a religious group like any other, and not worthy of special rights or considerations as a ‘nation’.

    • Talkback on March 12, 2019, 10:25 am

      bcg: “I can’t find any evidence of another mass exile. Anyone?”

      I think it was Shlomo Sand who wrote that you won’t find a single Israeli academic/historian who can prove or even would claim that this exile even happened (beyond Jerusalem). The “diaspora” is a hoax. What we do find is that Judaism spread.

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius on March 12, 2019, 11:46 am

        There were several million Jews in the Roman empire before the Jewish wars. How is it possible that they all descended from a small patch of land whose people were mostly farmers, not seafarers? And how come they nearly all spoke the local languages such as Greek or Latin, and not a Near Eastern language?

      • Mooser on March 12, 2019, 12:02 pm

        Now that technological progress has given us the answer, we can simply rank a person’s Jewishness, and consequently, their right to a certain amount of Palestine, by the percentage of Jewish genes in their DNA.

        There will have to be a minimum, of course, too.

      • eljay on March 12, 2019, 12:12 pm

        || Talkback: … What we do find is that Judaism spread. ||

        Judaism spread and the religion-based identity of Jewish, which can be acquired only by…
        – undergoing a religious conversion to Judaism; or
        – being descended from someone who underwent a religious conversion to Judaism,
        …spread with it.

        That identity has nothing to do with:
        – being from Israel / “Judea and Samaria” / the “Land of Israel”;
        – speaking Hebrew; or
        – partaking of Jewish culture.

      • gamal on March 12, 2019, 1:13 pm

        “There will have to be a minimum”

        And what of those who are Maximum Jew, isn’t that the kudos of naches, if you were though, Max Semite, you’d have to avoid coitus with a minimum Jew and risk just producing an average Joe…or Zioness, when you could be heightening the breed, the 23andme tribes of Israel and their helotype underlings, when people look back at us and our times I expect there will be considerable disgust, confusion and rejection.

      • Mooser on March 12, 2019, 4:28 pm

        “And what of those who are Maximum Jew,… avoid coitus with a minimum Jew.”

        That’s why marriage in Israel is religiously regulated, no doubt.

      • RoHa on March 13, 2019, 12:57 am

        Brilliant idea, Mooser. Forgive me for being an old nit-picker, but I think I see a tiny flaw in the plan.

        We get everyone together, and allot a share in Palestine according to the percentage of Jewish genes. Those with 100% JG get 1% of Palestine, those with 90% JG get 0.9% of Palestine, 80% get 0.8%, and so forth.

        Fine. All of Palestine is alloted.

        But then Mr. and Mrs. Morgenstern (100% each) are so pleased with their combined 2% share that they get a bit over-excited and … er … a little while later they have a daughter, Marjorie.

        She is 100%JG.

        Where does Marjorie’s 1% come from?

      • Mooser on March 13, 2019, 12:48 pm

        “But then Mr. and Mrs. Morgenstern”

        “Wie schoen leuchtet der Morgenstern”

      • Mooser on March 13, 2019, 3:30 pm

        “She is 100%JG.”

        Where I come from, 100% + 100% = 200%. Little Marjorie is entitled to everything she’s got coming.

      • RoHa on March 13, 2019, 9:25 pm

        But she only gets 50% of her mother’s genes, and 50% of her father’s.

        Even so, she is entitled to 1% of Palestine, but the whole country has already been divvied up. Does she take 1% of Syria or Lebanon?

      • Mooser on March 14, 2019, 12:01 am

        “But she only gets 50% of her mother’s genes, and 50% of her father’s.”

        She may have siblings, who must also be provided for.

      • YoniFalic on March 14, 2019, 4:56 pm

        The Jewish Diaspora is not a hoax. It is composed of communities descended from non-Judean converts to Judaism. In contrast, the Greek Diaspora is descended from actual Greek emigrants from the ancient Greek polities of ancient Greece. The Jewish Diaspora never spoke Judean Hebrew-Aramaic while to this day one can find people that belong to Greek Diaspora communities and that still speak dialects of Greek descended from ancient Greek dialects.

      • echinococcus on March 15, 2019, 1:37 am

        Yoni Falic,

        Just a technicality: sorry for sounding a bit pedantic — the only Greek extant that is descended from “ancient Greek dialects” is Tsakonian, a Doric relic spoken in a small area of the Peloponnese, i.e. not in the Diaspora. All other current Greek dialects are descended from the Alexandrian Koinê that replaced all ancient dialects.

      • YoniFalic on March 15, 2019, 12:28 pm

        I tend to consider Alexandrian Koine to be an ancient Greek dialect. I could be incorrect, but I was under the impression that some specialists in historical Greek linguistics considered Griko to descend from Doric Greek. The Ophitic variant of Pontic Greek has characteristics that cause some specialists to classify it as a pre-Koine dialect or an evolution of ancient Greek separate from Koine.

        The Greek Diaspora population like the Jewish Diaspora population has a large mercantile component but unlike the Jewish Diaspora population had a central origin population that continued to exchange individuals with the Diaspora communities, and there was a linguistic leveling effect.

        The Jewish Diaspora descended from Mesopotamian, Greek, Phoenician, Armenian, Slavic, Germanic, and other convert populations had no major connection with the mostly agrarian Judean population, which had entirely converted to Christianity or to Islam by the 13th century. The mercantile elements used written Rabbinic Hebrew to communicate. Because this written Rabbinic Hebrew was a relexified version of the writer’s native language, miscommunications was always possible, but the problem tended to be alleviated by commercial use of quotations that came from sacred texts and that had agreed meanings.

        (In the Slavo-Turkic culture area from Eastern France to the Ukraine, there was a leveling effect, in that Ostjiddisch replaced Knaanic & was moving westward. Judeo-French dialects long ago died out or were supplanted by West German Jewish dialects.)

    • Boomer on March 12, 2019, 3:09 pm

      re: “I can’t find any evidence of another mass exile. Anyone?”

      I think it’s widely accepted that Jews were expelled three times for excessive Judaizing: in 139 BC, in 19 AD, and again sometime between AD 41 and AD 53 (the date is disputed). However, those expulsions were from Rome, not Jerusalem, so they don’t support the claim that Jews were exiled from their homeland by the Romans. Quite the contrary, they imply that there were substantial numbers of Jews (enough to be considered troublesome) in Rome as early as 139 BC. At least some were expelled from Jerusalem per se after the destruction of the temple, but as far as I know, there’s no evidence of large scale removal from the region as a whole. See:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Claudius%27_expulsion_of_Jews_from_Rome

      Also, as I understand it, even the Babylonian exile was probably limited to a relatively small number of the local elites, not the entire population of the region:

      “Archaeological studies have revealed that not all of the population of Judah was deported, and that, although Jerusalem was utterly destroyed, other parts of Judah continued to be inhabited during the period of the exile.[6] The return of the exiles was a gradual process rather than a single event, and many of the deportees or their descendants did not return, becoming the ancestors of the Iraqi Jews.”

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Babylonian_captivity

      • Boomer on March 12, 2019, 3:33 pm

        PS: I forgot to mention the most important event, which may have involved large scale expulsion from the region, though certainly not total:

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bar_Kokhba_revolt

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius on March 12, 2019, 5:40 pm

        From your link:

        ” The Jews suffered a serious blow in Jerusalem and its environs in Judea, but the Jewish communities thrived in the remaining regions of Palestine—e.g., Galilee, Bet Shean, Caesarea, Golan and along the edges of Judea[15] ”

        So definitely not a total expulsion. Not close.

        When you think about it, large-scale ethnic cleansing is pretty rare even in modern societies, but it would have been impossible in an age without modern technology and means of transport. Also, even if the Romans had been in possession of an efficient train network, why would they have wanted to expel an entire population? Who would pay taxes? Who would farm the land?

        As many as 1 in 10 people in the Roman empire may have practiced Judaism at one point. Are we seriously to believe that they all originated in a small patch of land in the Levant? Surely most Jews were similar to what Christians would be a few centuries later – citizens of various parts of the Roman empire who chose to convert to a fashionable new religion fromt he Near East?

      • Nathan on March 12, 2019, 8:46 pm

        Boomer – If the deportees from Judah and their descendants became the ancestors of the Iraqi Jews, then the descendants of the Babylonian captivity did in fact return. The vast majority of Iraqi Jews came to live in Israel in 1951. The trend in anti-Israel circles is to claim that today’s Jews are the descendants of converts to Judaism (not exiled Judeans), so it caught my eye that you bring a quote that corroborates the Jewish narrative of an exiled people. It’s even more interesting to note that no one here protested your quote about the Iraqi Jews’ descent from the exiled Judeans. Perhaps, since you didn’t mention that the Iraqi Jews are now in Israel, it didn’t register with the various readers what the meaning of your quote is (i.e. that it is true that exiled Judeans returned to the country in modern times).

      • Peter in SF on March 13, 2019, 2:19 am

        “The trend in anti-Israel circles is to claim that today’s Jews are the descendants of converts to Judaism (not exiled Judeans), so it caught my eye that you bring a quote that corroborates the Jewish narrative of an exiled people.”

        Hey Nathan, rather than making observations about what may be a “trend in anti-Israel circles” and what may be part of “the Jewish narrative”, could you share your own judgment about what the historical reality is?

      • Talkback on March 13, 2019, 4:05 am

        Peter in SF: “Hey Nathan, rather than making observations about what may be a “trend in anti-Israel circles …”

        Doing that seems to be a trend in the anti-Gentile circles.

      • DaBakr on March 13, 2019, 5:15 am

        “Excessive judaizing” . and that is MW in a nutshell.

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius on March 13, 2019, 6:37 am

        “The vast majority of Iraqi Jews came to live in Israel in 1951.”

        So what? That’s still a relatively small number.

        I’d be genuinely interested in hearing you explain how as many as 1 in 10 of the population of the Roman empire practiced Judaism, if not as a result of large-scale conversions.

      • eljay on March 13, 2019, 8:09 am

        || Nathan: … The trend in anti-Israel circles is to claim that today’s Jews are the descendants of converts to Judaism … ||

        That’s ridiculous: Some of “today’s Jews” are obviously converts to Judaism.

        || … (not exiled Judeans) … ||

        Correct: None of “today’s Jews” is an exile from ancient Judea.

      • Talkback on March 15, 2019, 6:21 am

        DaBakr: “Excessive judaizing” . and that is MW in a nutshell.”

        Really, how many Gentiles have turned to Judaism because of MW so far? So much for “ecessive stupidity” in a nutshell.

      • DaBakr on March 16, 2019, 6:19 pm

        @tb

        what? gentiles turning to judaism…?. haven’t a clue why you would think of this but based on the small number of Jews worldwide, I would say, very proportionately small. what’s the point? also, you might want to consider the source material for Christians and Muslims.

      • Talkback on March 16, 2019, 8:56 pm

        DaBakr: “… haven’t a clue why you would think of this …”

        It’s not my thought:

        Though it is commonly associated with Christianity, Jews did engage in proselytizing. Sue Fishkoff noted in Try it You’ll like it! Should Jews Proselytize? that “Judaism has a long history of not only welcoming, but encouraging gentiles to become Jewish. From the day Abraham picked up a flint and performed his own circumcision, thus becoming Judaism’s first convert, ancient Israelites openly spread their teachings among the nations they encountered.”

        Fishkoff says Jewish proselytizing was so successful, it’s estimated that by the first century C.E. fully 10 percent of the Roman Empire was Jewish, close to eight million people. Jews stopped proselytizing, she said, “because of pressure from Christian and then Muslim rulers, beginning in 407 C.E. when the Roman Empire outlawed conversion to Judaism under penalty of death.”
        https://www.jpost.com/Opinion/No-holds-barred-Its-time-for-the-Jews-to-proselytize-462967

        DaBakr: “I would say, very proportionately small.”

        Sure, whatever makes you feel ‘calm’.

  15. Brewer on March 12, 2019, 1:34 am

    Some good sense spoken here:
    https://youtu.be/RAPDzee0oi8

    • YoniFalic on March 13, 2019, 6:52 am

      With respect to the history and the analysis of anti-Semitism, the video is highly uninformed. It is preferable to start with Esau’s Tears by Lindemann even though Lindemann’s book also has serious deficiencies.

      This page points out that at least in France alleged anti-Semitism was directed primarily against Ashkenazim in Alsace. (I would more precisely say Jewish Alsatians that were culturally Slavo-Turk.)

      https://books.google.com/books?id=NagdhSUgB9oC&pg=PA45&dq=Esau%27s+Tears+Lindemann+Ashkenazim+France+Emancipation&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwic8qfv9f7gAhXlx1kKHTy2DzQQ6AEILDAA#v=onepage&q=Esau's%20Tears%20Lindemann%20Ashkenazim%20France%20Emancipation&f=false

      I have studied the history in depth from revolutionary France through the Holocaust. I don’t doubt that almost all anti-Semitism is really anti-Slavo-Turkism (even often for the psychotic anti-Semites of Nazi Germany) and that Jewish non-Slavo-Turks have often expressed criticism of Slavo-Turks exactly congruent to criticism of Slavo-Turks by alleged anti-Semites.

      The Jews that can be considered anti-Semites by comparing statements include Emma Lazarus, who is a famous American Jewish Ibero-Berber.

      The video makes one important point indirectly. Slavo-Turks have typically wanted to keep pre-modern privileges and exemptions even as historical restrictions are lifted as Slavo-Turks are given equal citizenship.

      Because European Ibero-Berbers generally received near or full emancipation much earlier, Ibero-Berbers long ago reconciled themselves to loss of pre-modern privileges and exemptions as historical restrictions are lifted.

      • Mooser on March 13, 2019, 12:25 pm

        “Jewish non-Slavo-Turks have often expressed criticism of Slavo-Turks exactly congruent to criticism of Slavo-Turks by alleged anti-Semites”

        “Yoni”, every time you say “Slavo-Turk” you really should follow up with a parenthetical “(not that there’s anything wrong with that)” so nobody gets the wrong idea.

      • DaBakr on March 17, 2019, 8:17 pm

        clinging to the discredited ‘salvo-turk’ theory in desperation and insanity without any curiosity about why no root turkic language can be linked to yiddish, Hebrew , greek, German, French etc. forget the dna which disproves the ‘trope’. language and its roots are a more precise window into obscure subjects like the lost history of the khazzer kingdom. just more: living in the bubble and searching for fig leaves.

      • Keith on March 18, 2019, 12:40 am

        DABAKR- “clinging to the discredited ‘salvo-turk’ theory…”

        Discredited by who? You? The essence of Zionism is to cling to the pre-modern privileges of Classical Judaism. Quite successfully, I might add, due primarily to the exploitation of the Holocaust to achieve Zionist objectives. Yoni’s history of Eastern Europe is quite sound. And Zionist sectarianism is an affront to multiculturalism.

      • YoniFalic on March 18, 2019, 1:22 am

        I only use Slavo-Turk as a way to refer to the region from Slavia to the region around the Black and Caspian Seas.

        While the Khazar conversion is a major theme of medieval Rabbinic literature, it is not significant and most of the conversion in the Black & Caspian Sea area took place long before Turkic peoples wandered into the area.

        Turk is just short Helleno-Pontic-Armenian-Irano-Scythian-Caspian-Turkic region. Conversion to Judaic religion is well-attested in the region in ancient literature (including the Bible), and there probably was some minor Turkic-Tatar conversion (including the Khazar conversion) in the region shortly before the area became Islamic (as is described in Jewish, Byzantine, and Arabic literature).

        Slavia refers to the region where there were Knaanic-speaking Judaic populations as well as the historically attested conversions that took place among Slavic-language speakers during the time of the Hussite Rebellion and later. RASHI’s commentaries contain a few Judeo-Slavic or Knaanic words, and this presence suggests there was export of Slavo-Turk Judaic/Jewish population into French Jewish (Gallo-Roman) population in the 11th century. Export of Slavo-Turk Judaic/Jewish population into the Ibero-Berber and the Syro-Mesopotamian community is attested from the 10th century.

        The replacement of the earlier Talmudic term גרממיא (Germamya) by Ashkenaz suggests that between the 10th and 13th century Slavo-Turk Judaic/Jewish merchants came to dominate the overland route from France to Mesopotamia. This trade route was extremely important until the Mongols destroyed Baghdad and rampaged into Poland.

        Yiddish probably starts as a relexification of Knaanic to the mostly Germanic vocabulary of a lingua franca or pidgin used for communication between Slavic & Germanic speakers in areas where Slavic & Germanic peoples cohabited. The oldest stratum of Yiddish contains obsolete Christian terminology. The semantics of Yiddish is almost entirely Slavic while the grammar is strongly Slavic.

        We can be completely certain that ancient Judeans never left Palestine, gradually converted first to Christianity then to Islam, and became the ancestors of modern Palestinians.

        People of the ethnic background of Dabakr and of my family must be considered invaders, interlopers, thieves, and genocidaires in the Levant.

      • YoniFalic on March 18, 2019, 5:22 am

        I know Zios are never interested in the facts, but here is online & bilingual Megillah 6b, which demonstrates the Mishnaic Hebrew term for the Germanic region (Germamya). In the Middle Ages among Rabbinic Jews Ashkenaz became the term for Jews in Germany while Karaite Jews used Ashkenaz for Germany in general.

        https://www.sefaria.org/Megillah.6b.2?lang=bi&with=all&lang2=en

      • Talkback on March 18, 2019, 9:21 am

        Keith: “Discredited by who? You?”

        By the same authority that officially named MW a hate site. So yes, him.

      • Mooser on March 18, 2019, 3:53 pm

        “I only use Slavo-Turk as a way to refer to the region from Slavia to the region around the Black and Caspian Seas.”

        Yes, but all this information on Slavo-Turkic Jews may tip somebody off, and I won’t be able to ‘pass’ any more.

  16. Misterioso on March 12, 2019, 12:23 pm

    @Annie

    I hate to complain, but I have not received the link to today’s (March 12/19) edition.

    No problem. I look forward to tomorrow’s edition.

  17. klm90046 on March 12, 2019, 6:53 pm

    I think Ilhan’s apologizing is a clever tactic. Observe:-

    Ilhan Omar lashes out at Zionist schemes and atrocities, there’s an uproar against her, she apologizes; this gives her breathing space. Zionists and their lackeys don’t know what to do with her.

    She lashes out again!

    To some this may be disingenuous. Sure. When dealing with an adversary as dicey and ruthless as the Lobby, ingenuity is the weapon of choice. Sincerity never won a war.

  18. Sibiriak on August 25, 2019, 8:59 am

    NPR Has a Blob Problem August 23, 2019

    https://lobelog.com/npr-has-a-blob-problem/

    The Iraq war, endless conflict, and a ridiculously out-of-control Pentagon budget: They’re all products of the bipartisan, cross-ideological consensus in Washington—i.e. “the Blob”—that promotes military primacy as the key tenet of U.S. foreign policy.

    It might seem odd then to assert that National Public Radio—where progressives from San Francisco to Austin to Burlington turn to for the day’s news—is a member of the club, as the public broadcaster isn’t necessarily known for promoting this militaristic orthodoxy.

    But that’s not entirely accurate.

    Last Sunday’s broadcast of Weekend Edition is a case in point. In a segment purporting to provide “right and left” perspectives on the week’s foreign policy news, NPR instead hosted two prominent figures from DC’s foreign policy establishment whose views weren’t too far off from one another: Danielle Pletka of the American Enterprise Institute and Brian Katulis of the Center for American Progress.*

    Frustratingly, there really wasn’t much of a foreign policy debate during the Weekend Edition segment. Regarding the row over Israel barring Reps. Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar from entering Israel and Palestine, Pletka lamented that the episode did the congresswomen “a huge favor,” and she blasted them for their alleged “odious views,” which she did not specify.

    Katulis’s response from the “left” was to say nothing positive about Tlaib or Omar, nor to defend them against Pletka’s attacks. A more progressive response could have perhaps highlighted how racist and authoritarian politics, practiced by Donald Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, fueled this particular incident against two Muslim women of color who also happen to be U.S. Members of Congress.

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