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Total number of comments: 316 (since 2012-08-22 13:26:49)

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  • It's time for Tom Friedman to face the contradictions of liberal Zionism, and move on
  • Conflicting dreams and realities: Amos Oz in Rochester
    • The hasbara fantasy of Israel as a multicultural democratic society is put to the lie every time someone like Oz shows up and totally conflates "Israelis" and "Israeli Jews", as he apparently did all through the lecture.

  • Joyless in Zion
    • A valuable testimony, Phil. Thank you.

      One thing that gets lost in the discussions is how well you can write, particularly in longer pieces. What about an autobiography some day?

  • Israel distorts timeline of events to play victim in the dangerous escalation with Iran and Syria
  • The remarkable disappearing act of Israel's car-bombing campaign in Lebanon or: What we (do not) talk about when we talk about 'terrorism'
    • Brilliant, important work, Adam.

      M. Brulin, Phil and yourself should be quite proud.

  • An American girl in Gaza
    • Dr Filippone, let me express my admiration for what you do, and my appreciation for Francesca's courage in making this trip.

  • The New York Times tries to make the Ahed Tamimi story go away
  • 'Iraq didn't work out, but at least it was a belief in progress' -- David Brooks reflects on a BIG mistake
    • Brooks didn't advocate an invasion of Iraq for the sake of democracy. He advocated the invasion to eliminate the supposed intolerable threat posed by Saddam's WMDs.

      From his March 24, 2003 Weekly Standard column:

      . . .What matters, and what ultimately sprang the U.N. trap, is American resolve. The administration simply wouldn't let up. It didn't matter how Hans Blix muddied the waters with his reports on this or that weapons system. Under the U.N. resolutions, it was up to Saddam to disarm, administration officials repeated ad nauseam, and he wasn't doing it. . .

      Earlier in the same column Brooks alludes to the "fog and verbiage" of those opposing the invasion.

      Who's generating the fog and verbiage now? Who's trying to muddy the waters?

  • My journey away from Zionism
  • A house cat is smaller than an aircraft carrier, not larger-- in world of 'NYT' correction
  • DC and Jerusalem reel over Trump disclosure of ISIS plan to-- hush!-- put laptop bombs on planes
  • Pro-Israel group bullies Church of Scotland over its 'sensitive' commemoration of Balfour centenary
    • Why are the leadership of so many Christian churches so un-Christian when it comes to anything Israel . . . I’ve never come across any that discuss the plight of the Palestinians.

      Citizen, the so-called "mainline" moderate/liberal Protestant churches (Methodists, Lutherans, Presbyterians, etc) have a venerable tradition of support for Palestinian rights. This stems in part from their long involvement in the region as missionaries and educators. Including some ancestors of mine.

      Those communities have a hard time making their voices heard because 1) they have a WASP-like preference for speaking in carefully modulated tones and would never host a TV show and 2) they've been shrinking like snow patches in April. Over the past 50 years they have gone from the majority establishment to a dwindling few.

  • Trump's new war has neocons, Clintonites, and Israelis applauding, but left and realists dismayed
    • I just don’t get the absolute disconnect.

      oldgeezer, we live in an echo chamber in the US. We produce the biggest share of the world's entertainment, and our news media dominate as well. Very few outside voices penetrate. I think that's the main reason for that disconnect.

      I love my local paper's coverage of local news, but look at what they put on today's front page about the attack on Syria:

      Russia complains, but other nations rally around U.S. strikes.

      This is an AP story, about as official as it gets in the US.

      Even if you look at, say, the Canadian or New Zealand version of Google News, you get mostly American articles with no second thoughts about the attack.

  • Breaking: UN Security Council passes historic resolution against settlements as two-state solution 'slips away'
  • Historical evidence does not support Zionist claims re the Western Wall
    • gamal, the story of the Buddha's tooth is an old one with many variations. It does have to do with the power of devotion, not the efficacy of theft, as you have noted. Whether this wall at which Jews have prayed for many generations was part of the temple complex or not has nothing to do with their devotion.

      It's probably best for persons who, like like ourselves, are posting polemical arguments on a political site to be circumspect about offering advice on attachment.

    • It may well be true that the Western Wall was never part of the Temple complex. I still sympathize with the many Jews who feel a strong attachment to it.

      It's like the traditional Tibetan story about the trader whose aged mother keeps asking him to bring back a tooth of the Buddha from India for her. He keeps forgetting. Finally, on his way home he realizes that he has forgotten again so he takes a tooth from a dead dog lying by the side of the road. His mother is overjoyed with this relic, and deeply venerates it. Eventually it starts performing miracles.

      Our reality and the truth about history are not always the same. Zionists say that there never were Palestinians as a separate people. Nonetheless, they exist now.

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  • 'NYT' bias amazes: long article about online incitement in Israel/Palestine only blames Palestinians
    • I noticed that same article in the Boston Globe. Pretty bad.

      Pace oldgeezer, the worst inciters are not members of any public, US or Israeli, but members of our government and, in particular, the media like the Globe and the Times.

      For decades Americans have been given one side of the story regarding I/P, and the Middle East in general. Over time this led most average citizens to conclude that Palestinians and Arabs really have something wrong with them. After all, those Palestinians were constantly causing trouble for little reason that the average person could see. The endless repetition of pro-Israeli memes has had the effect over time of changing black to white.

      This article has a particularly egregious example of this:
      "Israel . . . builds settlements on land Palestinians consider theirs..."

      It's not a matter of opinion that the land belongs to the Palestinians. First of all, they have lived there for hundreds of years. Second, East Jerusalem, the West Bank, and Gaza were conquered by Israel during the 1967 Six Day War. UN Security Council Resolution 232, which since 1967 has been considered basis for a settlement after the war, alludes to "inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by war". Every international body that has ever considered this question - the United Nations, the International Court of Justice, the High Contracting Powers to the Geneva Convention, the International Committee of the Red Cross - ALL have said that Israel's settlement of its own population in those territories is illegal. There is not a single nation, apart from Israel, has ever officially said otherwise. Yet we see and hear the repetition of statements like the above daily in our media.

      Israel's policy of delay, delay, delay; the creation of facts on the ground under US protection; and repeating the same propaganda over and over, has had an effect. Public discussion, or should I say public discussers, are more pro-Israeli than ever. Yet will this result in a happy ending for Israel? I don't think so.

  • Jeffrey Goldberg should come with a warning label
    • "numinous mantle". I love that.

      I remember hearing years ago Jeffrey Goldberg being interviewed by Terry Gross about his recent trip to Lebanon. Goldberg started talking about how most Lebanese were antisemitic. Gross was agreeing with him every step of the way despite the fact that she seems never to have been to Lebanon. Israel's repeated assaults and occupations of Lebanon didn't enter the picture. It sounded like a private kvetching session, not something that belonged on the public airwaves.

  • Trump could be bumpy for Jews
    • Abba, I sympathize with your fears, but I think you have your antennae out way too far. "The lynch death of Leo Frank is an example of the worst treatment"? What's the other comparable example of mistreatment of Jews in the US? That's ONE lynching out of 4,733 recorded by the Tuskegee Institute since 1882.

  • Jeffrey Goldberg will be silent till he finds a way to spin all the bad-for-the-Jews news from Israel
    • And when Jeffrey Goldberg is stumped about what to say about Israel, he finds it most comforting to talk about neo-Nazi Trump supporters and the antisemitic British Labor party for good measure.


      The Labor party has strands of anti-Zionism, but it certainly is NOT antisemitic. That linked NYT article is all about lack of fealty to Israel. The ugly assault on Jeremy Corbyn is spearheaded by supporters of Israel, including Jonathan Freedland of the Guardian. IMO they are the ones disguising their real motivation and intentions, not Corbyn. Corbyn is about as genuine and straightforward as they come.

  • ADL took US cops to Israeli prison, occupied Hebron and settler winery during counter-terror seminar
    • They also met with the head of the Palestinian civil police in Bethlehem and toured Christian holy sites.

      Oh, wow! Toured Christian holy sites. That will certainly help them understand the issues.

      As for the rest, they had a one hour meeting with that Palestinian police chief to balance their 20 meetings with Israelis over 7 days. Plus all of those breakfasts, luncheons and dinners mingling with their wonderful hosts. Yes, they certainly were exposed to all sides.

      This kind of training/indoctrination is disgraceful. One of the worst things that has happened to our country since 911 is the adoption of Israeli behavior and tropes.

      Great article, Alex.

  • Let's talk about Russian influence
    • Great article, Phil, except for this:

      That’s one good thing, everyone is now in on the joke. Even if the media can’t discuss it, everyone knows it.

      I'm not sure why you came to that conclusion. Most people don't know it. Most Americans aren't in on the joke. Your very post spells out why.

      One suppressed SNL skit doesn't mean the public knows. It doesn't.

  • Druze Arabs in the occupied Golan Heights discuss borders, identity, colonialism and war
    • Very interesting, like your conversation with Druse in Israel.

      I wonder what the tens of thousands of 1967 Golan refugees think of this.

  • The breathtaking arrogance of Alan Dershowitz's 'advice' to Black Lives Matter
    • If hop said "Hitler was a monster", someone might just as cheaply say the same thing about that comment.

  • A losing battle in Israel's High Court of Justice
    • This reminds me of the old joke "military justice is to justice as military music is to music".

  • Israeli racism unmasks Netanyahu goodwill video
    • Here is a thoughtful report . . . I invite anyone who cares enough to be bothered to actually read the list for oneself and apply critical thinking skills.

      I did glance at your link, hosted by the thoughtful, among whose International Advisory Board members are the uber-thoughtful Elliot Abram, James Woolsey, and Alan Dershowitz.

      I applied critical thinking skills. I found that, contrary to the NGO Monitor's opinion, I do find discriminatory Israel's refusal to grant citizenship to the West-Bank spouses of Israeli citizens when, according to Wikipedia, "Israel traditionally automatically granted citizenship to spouses of Jewish Israeli citizens".

      I found it very interesting that NGO Monitor chose not to mention the most egregious discriminatory law. This is the Right of Return, whereby any Jew may immigrate to Israel even if he has no blood connection to the place, while no exiled Palestinian may return to Israel despite being born there.

      It also turns out that a link on the Adallah website gets redirected to this:

      which implored me to download a critical Firefox update immediately by clicking a button. I can imagine what might happen if I did. (I deleted a couple of characters from the above for safety).

      Funny how often malware is deposited on pro-Palestinian sites, or, failing that, how often those sites are falsely reported to to web security sites as dangerous. It's all in support of thoughtful critical analysis!

  • Jews need to study the Torah in order to criticize Israel, Beinart says
    • IF a Jew wants to criticize Israel AND still remain actively Jewish and part of the US Jewish community, s/he needs to study Torah

      I'm not Jewish, and don't have a dog in this fight. But it's curious that later Beinart says:

      We are not simply a religion. We are a people.

  • Bill Clinton attacked all Muslim Americans during his speech to the DNC
    • Bill Clinton's remarks were horrendously anti-Muslim. As the OP noted, they placed American Muslims in the category of "other" whose presence in their own country is conditional. (Note that 81% of Muslims in this country are US citizens).

      I'm not interested in demonizing anyone. I'm simply interested in pointing out the truth. The truth is that Bill Clinton has treated Muslims despicably (note the sanctions on Iraq and his unwavering support for Israel no matter what). His wife is a firm friend of Netanyahu. In my case I intend to hold my nose hard and vote for her, but let's us keep our eyes open here.

  • 'There is no other place in the world where Americans bear so much responsibility for what happens' --Ehrenreich
    • That's a fact. And not only do we inflict suffering on the Palestinians, but we suffer blowback. Most Americans don't even know this.

  • Freewheeling Trump has backed down on only one issue. Guess which one
  • Coexistence in the land of 'Hatikvah'
    • Steven Davidson, thank you for this engrossing narrative. I have hardly ever seen anything written by. for, or about the Druse in Israel, despite the fact that they are famously almost the only Palestinian inhabitants in Israel to serve in the armed forces. Most interesting.

  • Why Trump's revolution succeeded, and Bernie's fizzled
    • Everybody will pay if Trump is elected. And depths to which he'd drag the country will make HRC's ilk a more appealing alternative.

      I don't trust Clinton to carry out much of the Sanders platform. I don't think she'll be a good President. However, we do have to think of the alternative. We can't let the worst be the enemy of the pretty bad.

  • How Israel accidentally validated my activism
  • Jewish entitlement, and Jewish populism
    • David Rothkopf has pooh-poohed the role of the Israel lobby and doesn’t publish anti-Zionist writers at Foreign Policy

      Phil, to its credit the Foreign Policy site publishes Stephen Walt.

  • Israeli officers permitted to open fire on boys with slingshots
    • And please spare me the b/s about “occupation”…

      This has to qualify for some kind of prize.

    • not a word of anger or indignation over the fact that Jordan has over 2 million Palestinians . . . blah blah blah.

      You're equating Jordan's acceptance of Palestinian refugees, however grudging, with Israel's refusal to allow them to return home, in violation of UN resolutions.

  • Pregnant Palestinian woman, 27, is killed in Hebron
    • Thanks, zaid.

    • Kate, I noticed that Sara Daoud Ata Tarayra, the 27 year old woman killed yesterday, had the same last name as the assailant in the Kiryat Arba murder, though spelled differently here.

      If you hear any news about a possible connection, could you please post it?

  • Palestinian teen is killed after allegedly killing 13-year-old Jewish girl in settlement
    • I’m going to guess that this 17 year old (or the other ones that are egged on to commit these crimes) knows nothing about occupation of which land or which border belongs to whom or who lived where and when.

      I would guess that this 17 year old did know that his country is illegally occupied by the inhabitants of Kiryat Arba. This is also the conclusion of the UN Security Council and the World Court. It 's only here in the US that there's such deliberate obfuscation and amnesia about "which border belongs to who".

    • This was obviously a terrible act, worthy of condemnation. But you can't dismiss context and motive, in this or in any event. Kiryat Arba is an illegal settlement under international law, like every settlement in the West Bank. Its inhabitants are notorious for their ugly behavior towards the Palestinians whose land they occupy.

      Its sobering to contrast the enormous hue and cry shaking the rafters over this crime, to the radio silence that ensued in the US after an Israeli officer used a Palestinian 13 year old girl for target practice in 2004.

  • 'I was wrong in my presumption that Israel desired peace' --Chas Freeman
    • Boomer, I feel the same about my native land. At the same time, it doesn't help to become like an embittered ex-lover, with exaggerated antagonism replacing love. I do react that way sometimes.

  • Post Orlando, a Muslim's comment on homophobia within the Muslim community
    • Katie, you are literally trying to square a peg into a round hole because you cannot reconcile Islam with your western sensibility regarding persecution of gays.

      This is ridiculous. Who are you to make such a statement, some scholar of the subject? How would you react if I (or anyone) made such a sweeping statement about Judaism?

    • Katie, I really appreciate your courage.

    • The argument that Muslim homophobia came from European colonizers is irrelevant. We are all responsible for our own minds and behavior in this and every regard.

  • Palestinians in North America: Our rent to pay
    • Until recently I lived in Massachusetts. Plenty of Republicans there insisted that Senator Warren lied about having Native American ancestry. None of them provided any proof, to my recollection. Do you have any proof? If so, could you please post it?

  • 'Politico' dares to publish Ehrenreich saying occupation fosters terrorism, and 'Camera' goes haywire
    • Folks, if you haven't read Ehrenreich's entire story by clicking on the link at the start of this article, please do so. It's quite a piece.

      Phil, thanks for bring this to our attention. I've emailed Politico editors and Ben Ehrenreich to express my appreciation.

  • In story faulting Saudi lobby, 'NPR' knocks U.S. Israel lobby 'pressure' a year after the fact
    • Americans love Jews as moral preceptors

      Phil, I think that most Americans, like most human beings, look up to anyone who genuinely acts as a true moral preceptor.

      One current example of this is the admiration flowing towards the cowboy who roped a bike thief in Oregon yesterday. The cowboy, Robert Borba, said "Poor gal's bike. Could have been her only means of transportation, I dunno. Stealing it ain't right".

      That's a pretty good moral precept from someone who demonstrated he has the status to make one.

      On the other hand, I highly doubt that most Americans really see Jews as such as moral preceptors. I certainly don't.

      Apart from that, excellent article.

  • Chuck Schumer 'worried' that his daughter was not marrying a Jew
    • Why don't you just take the bull by the horns, Mooser, and perform the next time she comes for a visit?

  • Remembering the Six Day War
  • 'Everyone's a veteran' in Israel, says Junger. Well, not really
    • In the US media "Israeli" practically always means "Israeli Jew". In my observation the same tends to be true among Israeli Jews themselves.

      This is something to bear in mind when defenders of Israel go on about Israel's supposed multicultural society.

  • 'I am Palestinian and I am human' -- and Leanne Mohamad, 15, is disqualified from UK speaking competition
    • barmalei, it's easy to be pretend to be the rational one when your power is incomparably greater than your opponent's.

      The relationship between Israel and Palestinians reminds me of my relationship with my little brother when I was nine and he was six. At times I would tease him to the point where he would just lose it and attack me. Of course, I weighed twice as much as him so his attempts to hurt me never came to much. But I felt quite superior about my greater rationality.

      In terms of power and control, Israel is not twice the size but 100 times the size of the Palestinians. Casualty figures reflect this. I well recall the news coverage of the 1996 Israeli assault on Lebanon. In Lebanon, ambulances burning, hundreds of thousands fleeing in terror. In Israel, repeated sympathetic interviews with inhabitants of Kiryat Shmona about how difficult it was to sit in shelters all day long.

      I took the trouble to actually check the UN Human Development Index and found that Lebanon is distinctly ahead of Palestine in the index.

      I also thought the presentation was emotional and one-sided. Yes, it does make a difference how a number like 30,000 Palestinian children killed is derived. At the same time, your voice addressing Leanne Mohamed is similar to mine addressing my little brother. And most of what you posted is just hasbara.

  • Top donor to Clinton super PAC is Haim Saban
    • Please note that the foregoing does not necessarily mean that all prominent Jewish supporters of Israel are, like Haim Saban, only interested in Israel. Obviously most will support other causes as well.

      It does mean that as far as the Middle East is concerned only one point of view gets pushed.

    • Annie, at what point do you ban this guy as a troll?

    • hophmi, for decades both the media and national political leaders have been strongly pro-Israel. I used to look for direct connections to Israel among Jewish purchasers of media companies and Jewish major donors to political parties. I found them quite frequently. Often it wasn't simply a matter of vacationing in Israel or funding a college there, but leadership in a Zionist organization or proclaiming open support for Israel.

      Please don't try to pull the wool over my eyes, at least, because it won't work.

  • Israel is at war over nature of a Jewish state, and NYT spins it as 'changing of the guard'
    • John O -

      Year ago, before I was kicked off, a senior official of the Board of Deputies of British Jews used to haunt the Guardian I/P comments section, "helping" readers with explanations. I suspect she also kept the Guardian in shape behind the scense.

      Following some really egregious moderating I posted:

      Whatever happens, they have got
      The Board of Deputies of British Jews
      And you
      Do not

  • Resolution 242 does not mean what you may think it means
    • Yonah, you may suppose that UNSC 242 is irrelevant today. It's certainly clear that Israel's leaders and many of its citizens would prefer the "move along, there's nothing to see hear" approach to this issue. But they are deluding themselves. Outside of the US, the world has not forgotten that Israel is violating the law. In the end Israel and the US will have to come to terms with this.

  • Netanyahu announces 'seminar on Jewish history' in his office-- for European diplomats
    • This is incoherent even for hasbara.

      The San Remo accords said nothing about the extent of the Jewish "homeland" inside Palestine. Britain never intended all of Palestine to be part of the Jewish homeland.

      In any case, Britain had no moral right to dispose of Palestine without consulting its inhabitants.

  • Jeffrey Goldberg terrorizes peers into silence over his daily intellectual and moral outrages
  • American Voices: Who are you voting for and why?
  • Palestinians say ‘let us move’ as Bethlehem Marathon kicks off amidst severe movement restrictions
  • Hebron settlers file complaint against Palestinian who filmed execution
  • 'Hi pal. I love you' and 'Russia has seen the lord' -- loopy Biden froths over Netanyahu
    • Based on my experience of my parents' siblings, if one of them worked closely with Jews on a subject close to his/her heart, that formed a bond that translated into fervent support for Israel. My family was liberal and Jews were, of course, leaders in liberal causes in the '40s, '50s and '60s.

      Another factor is that in the '40s & '50s antisemitism was stronger than it is now; the Holocaust had just happened; and it was natural and fit for a liberal gentile to feel solidarity with Jews.

  • Understanding the fundamental roots of conflict and suffering: An interview with Rich Forer
    • What a thoughtful and rewarding discussion.

      I especially appreciated Katie's question "Do you think people in our movement also suffer from ego-identification" and Rich's response. From a buddhist perspective, it's our own attitudes and emotions that do us the most damage.

  • Trump calls out Clinton for her support for Israel's separation wall
  • Top ten ways Muslim-Americans can do more
  • NYT's Rudoren says Mondoweiss critique of her recent article is 'nuts'
    • Great comment, pgtl10. Zionists are always trying to eliminate Palestinian Christians from the picture, to better enforce the notion that Palestinians = Muslims = bad bad bad bad jihad against Jews.

      Not only was wine produced in Palestine before the Zionists showed up, but many leaders in the resistance to Zionism have been or are Christian Palestinians. That includes not only Edward Said and Hanan Ashrawi, but resistance leaders like George Habash and Nayef Hawatmeh who were far more militant than Arafat back in the day.

  • Reports on Rubio and Cruz's big Jewish donors forget to mention Israel
    • the big ‘tell’ of this is that Singer is hawkish on Israel and liberal on gay rights? this is a big deal? this is the norm for republican Jews . . .

      It may be the norm for Republican Jews. It's also the norm for the media to hardly ever mention this fact - which has enormous influence on American politics - to the American public.

  • Kagan pushed regime change in Iraq, now says US must get over 'trauma' and do Syria
    • A mensch, in short.

    • Phil, if Jim Lobe is a friend of yours you are moving in the right circles.

      Lobe was one of the earliest to write about the connections that neoconservatives who were pushing war had to Israel, prior to the Iraq invasion. He is a stand-up guy, an all-around good citizen.

  • Israeli police shoot two scissors-wielding Palestinian teenage girls, killing one
    • These random attacks on Israelis are an expression of bedrock despair. I sympathize very much with the attackers' frustration with decades of bitter oppression. Still, they are wrong, both morally due to the randomness and practically due to their counter-effectiveness.

      The US is partly to blame for them, and as an American once more I feel ashamed.

  • How NPR talks about Israel/Palestine
    • I used to live in Boston and listened to Ashbrook before he went national. He has always been a lamebrain, particularly on this subject. Only in American would a public radio correspondent get away with this kind of stupidity.

  • You can't say U.S. media is reporting violence in Israel-Palestine in an evenhanded manner
    • No one in America seems prepared to report the glaringly obvious, the actual reality: Palestinian rage is being spurred on by a violent Israeli occupation of the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

      There was a story yesterday in my local paper about the reasons for this unrest. I believe it was a reprint from WaPo. It wasn't until the eleventh paragraph that the occupation was mentioned.

  • Coulter's point is that Republicans pander on Israel to win donors, not voters
    • JLD, I appreciate your point. However, look at this another way.

      Christians are probably 2% of the population in Israel. If a plurality of the big donors in Israel were Christian, and Israeli candidates pandered to them the way that US candidates pander to Israel, you'd see plenty of Israeli references to "f--ing Christians" on social media .

  • Illegal 'live fire' on Palestinian stonethrowers gets a pass in the paper of record
    • Beyond a certain degree stone –throwing becomes a real issue for those subject to it. In particular it can easily cause fatalities or injuries to children travelling in cars and buses

      Please post the number of Israelis killed by stone-throwing together with the number of Palestinians killed for throwing stones. That will give some perspective on which side is being more brutal.

      It always starts low key and tolerated, which is interpreted as am opportunity that should be further exploited so it becomes bigger until at some pint it passes limits. This was the case with the Intifada – first just stones or low-key shootings until it became a full-pledged terror war

      The complete opposite is true. From B'Tselem, check out the tables for Fatalities in the First Intifada. During the first month (Dec 9-31, 1987), 24 Palestinians were killed by Israelis while no Israelis were killed by Palestinians.

      From Wikipedia on the First Intifada:
      The IDF killed many Palestinians at the beginning of the Intifada, the majority killed during demonstrations and riots. Since initially a high proportion of those killed were civilians and youths, Yitzhak Rabin adopted a fallback policy of 'might, power and beatings'.

      The Second Intifada started with Israeli police and troops showering Palestinian demonstrators with gunfire. From Wikipedia:
      During the first few days of riots, the IDF fired approximately 1.3 million bullets.[49] According to Amnesty International the early Palestinian casualties were those taking part in demonstrations or bystanders. Amnesty further states that approximately 80% of the Palestinians killed during the first month were in demonstrations where Israeli security services lives were not in danger.

      Your legend is false. The fact that it's presented it here reflects right-wing Israeli biases and explains some of their behavior.

  • Riham Dawabshe dies, leaving one survivor of arson attack, Ahmad, 4
    • I'm not a fan of Israel, but I think it's tough to judge a place by the comments that appear on a news site.

  • 'They tried to kill me': Nonviolent activist recounts brutal encounter with Israeli military
  • The 'Pallywood' smear: Viral images of Palestinian boy's brutalization brings backlash
    • shalom, the Nabi Saleh villagers have been protesting since the illegal Gush Eminem village next door (Halamish) confiscated their communal spring three years ago.

      Who is "staging this trash"? Who is the basic aggressor here? It is Israel. Those soldiers in the video are there to defend Halamish.

      In that context, perhaps some personal action from you to end the Israeli occupation is appropriate rather than a call for a "peace rally". "Peace rally" for what?

    • Pallywood is the equivalent of Jewywood? Please. The Palestinians are not a religion or an ethnic group. They’re a nationality. The equivalent term for the Israelis is hasbara, which you throw around here all the time.

      James North has addressed this.

      The reality is that this is all political theater

      This is not just "political theatre" - these people are defending their land from illegal confiscation, something which Israel has been doing daily since 1967.

      international activists do indeed encourage the kids not only to protest, but also to throw stones. (Followers of Gandian non-violence don’t throw stones, by the way.) That’s the problem with international activists – they not only call attention to the conflict; they take part in it and stoke it.

      What international activists in Nabi Saleh encourage kids to throw stones? Where's the evidence?

      And they do it from a position of privilege; if this were the US Army at an Iraqi checkpoint in 2005, Mohammed Tamimi would be dead right now.

      Nabi Saleh is no comparison to an Iraqi checkpoint. All of the Israelis there know who Mohammed Tamimi is, and that he is not wearing a suicide belt. Killing Tamimi would be pure murder.

      The Tamimi family has long used their children as tools for the their agenda, coaching them on what to say to journalists, sending them out there

      Where is the evidence that the Tamimi children throw stones, let alone that their parents "send them out" to do it?

      to endanger their lives by throwing stones.

      What country threatens children with death for throwing stones?

      The question is this: if Nabi Saleh wasn’t saturated with journalists, would these encounters happen? Probably not.

      You're probably right there. Without the journalists Israel probably might well react with decisive brutality against those people who are defending their homes.

      Why is Nabi Saleh saturated with journalists when, right next door to the West Bank, hundreds of thousands of people are dying in the world’s bloodiest conflict? Because covering Nabi Saleh is much easier than covering just about any other place in the Middle East right now, including Syria, where Palestinians actually are dying in droves.

      Bad things are happening elsewhere in the Middle East. In no way does that justify Israel's behavior in Nabi Selah or anywhere else in the occupied territories.

      You’re also fooling yourself if you think that this video is going to have some long shelf life; the last Ahed Tamimi viral video is barely remembered today.

      If so, that's because Palestinian story is constantly being shoveled over by pro-Israeli journalism at the New York Times, CNN, the Washington Post and other US media.

      Most people understand that there is a conflict in the Middle East

      Right, it's a "conflict in the Middle East", not Israel's longstanding campaign to dispossess Palestinians, which has been declared illegal by international bodies up to and including the UN Security Council.

      unfortunately, that conflict hurts children on both sides, whether they are Mohammed Tamimi, or Daniel Traegerman, who never threw a single stone, and was murdered by mortar shell fired from Gaza.

      Bring up the one Israeli child killed by a shell from Gaza last year, as opposed to the hundreds of Gazan children killed by Israel. Google Images features dozens of images of Danny. Good luck googling for pics of those hundreds of Palestinian kids.

  • Israeli minister says IDF should have fired on unarmed Palestinian protesters for humiliating a soldier
  • University of Illinois Chancellor steps down as judge upholds Salaita lawsuit against school on 1st amendment grounds
    • Just a huge warning sign . . . turning the classroom into an anti-Israel podium – can cost you your teaching job.

      The ruling said that University of Illinois's failure to hire Professor Salaita was a violation of freedom of speech. The "huge warning sign" is that if you "cost a professor his job" due to his views on Israel you could be up for hefty damages.

  • Defying Obama on Iran deal, Schumer cites Hamas
    • hophmi, I'm unable to reply directly to your post below where you say "No one disputes any of these things, Mooser", so I'll answer it here. The fact is that several of the things you say are disputed, while others just give one side of the picture. I'll go down the list:

      It just denies that gay people exist . . . It’s official Iranian policy.
      One person - President Ahmadinejad - said that gays "didn't exist". He very quickly clarified that to say he meant that they did not exist in such numbers as in the West. In no way can that off the cuff remark, since clarified, be turned into "official Iranian policy".

      No. It just funds the Syria despot who has killed hundreds of thousands . . .
      You know, there are other parties in Syria committing terrible atrocities in Syria, and have been from the beginning. These include Al-Qaeda allied groups supported by Israel.

      It just helps fund and sustain Hezbollah, who essentially used it militia to take over Lebanon
      The bloc containing Hezbollah as a political party regularly wins a plurality of the vote in Lebanon. Hezbollah's military is viewed as heroic and patriotic by many non-Shiite Lebanese for its serial defeats of Israel.

      It’s just provoked the rebellion there against a government friendly to the United States
      Nobody has adduced any evidence of this. Please don't quote the GOI.

      It has funded Shiite militia there, though, and helped contributed to the sectarian governing philosophy of al-Maliki
      The "sectarian governing philosophy" is unfortunately shared by most Shia and Sunni alike in Iraq.

      funding Hamas and supplying them with weapons which are used to target Israeli civilians, it’s definitely contributed to Gazan suffering.
      Iranian funding of Hamas has tailed off to practically nothing. In any case, the world is aware that it's Israel that is primarily responsible for Gazan suffering. This is one fact that really is undisputed, outside of Israel and the Republican Party.

  • The day after 9/11, Kagan father-son duo said 'take the war' to Palestine
  • Obama tells Americans it is 'abrogation of my constitutional duty' to defer to Israel on Iran Deal
    • The reality is that given the collapse of so many Arab states in the region . . . there is simply no much choice anymore.

      Gee, and just how did that happen?

      If you look at the neocons' policies and their behavior when they had a chance to affect outcomes in Iraq, Syria, Libya, Yemen, it's hard to believe that their goal (and Israel's also) was to anything other than to fragment Arab nations and destroy their societies. To take one example, look at Douglas Feith and his painstaking preparations for the care of Iraq.

  • Sanders risks losing left over unprogressive views of Palestine -- Washington Post
    • I still support them because I understand that they are the power-base of the US and the US` s support of Israel is crucial. You always need to have your priorities ordered.

      Yes, and your priority is "Israel First". If only more American supporters of Israel were as honest as you.

  • You be the judge
    • catalan, the Amish joke discussion was about who is allowed to make fun of who in the New York Times, an organ of power if there is one in the US.

  • 'NYT' must think it has no Amish readers
    • The point is power, catalan. Weiner could make that crack in the Times because she is a member of a privileged group. Do you think the Times would give a platform to an Amish guy to make jokes about Jews?

      What was it someone said - Comedy is funny and brave when aimed at yourself or the powerful. It's lazy and cruel when aimed at the weak.

      It's not a level playing field. That's what gets me. You don't notice because you take it for granted.

    • Yes, you could joke about ultra Orthodox Jews in much the same way, and people do.

      No, nonJews don't, not in the New York Times. I agree with the OP - this slightly crass excerpt indicates privilege.

      However, as the British might say, "Worse things happened in the war".

  • Scenes from a Sanders presidency
    • I'm not surprised that poor Bernie is not up to speed on race relations. For the past 50 years he has lived in Vermont, which has about three African-Americans.

  • Press can't justify red carpet for Oren tract and blackout for Blumenthal's 'definitive account' of Gaza
    • John, the media is a business and what it chooses to focus on is what it thinks would “sell”, namely attracts enough interest.

      Oh, so that explains why neocon faces are all over the airwaves. The public is screaming for them.

  • Israel's real fear about the Iran deal: It puts pressure on the occupation
    • yonah, having been against the Iraq invasion doesn't make one a "dove". It makes one sane.

      Don't you agree, or do you think that act of aggression was a good idea?

  • The people love the Iran deal -- to judge from 'NYT' letters
  • Obama gets on the same page with Iran ('we don't have to be imprisoned by the past')
    • Every time Obama talks plainly about equal human rights for all in the Middle East, he frightens the Israelis.

      Excellent insight!

    • And you believe that making a deal with the leading state supporter of terrorism, a theocratic dictatorship, reflects this?

      Iran is one of the most democratic countries in the Middle East. It's far more democratic than our closest Arab allies - Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Egypt.

      "the Leading state supporter of terrosrism" is rich coming from a partisan of one of the leading state practitioners of terrorism.

  • 'America I'm putting my queer shoulder to the wheel' -- Allen Ginsberg
    • I am a fan of Ginsberg's poetry. What's more, I met him. He was really a wonderful person. Pace yonah, the photo does show how he looked in his later years. One of the things about Ginsberg was that he didn't try to hide much of anything.

  • When will justice's 'thunderbolt' come for Palestine?
  • Corey Robin revisits Arendt's Eichmann in Jerusalem
    • I think it is apposite to quote Maj. Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman’s letter . . .

      Oh, Sherman said that, but Ben-Gurion did it. There is a big difference. Furthermore, the conquest of Palestine was attended by numerous massacres of civilians, unlike Sherman's march to the sea. Finally, the South was defending slavery as well as their homes, while the Palestinians were just defending their homes.

  • The crisis of the American Jewish community
    • The Jewish community will divide more and more clearly in the next year or so between Zionist Jews and non-Zionist ones. This open division will license politicians who depend on Jews (as donors, or as voters in blue states, or as an opinion-forming elite inside the Democratic Party) to divide themselves.

      Phil, this would be more believable if we had evidence of major Jewish donors who truly support justice, as opposed to mere Liberal Zionists who dislike Netanyahu but oppose placing serious pressure on Israel. That would be a worthy subject for a thread.

  • Pro-Israel wealthy Jews feature in 'Forward,' Christie roast, and U of Michigan censorship
    • The bipartisan consensus on Israel was much less strong 40 years ago than it is now. In the '60s and '70s there were senior administration officials (Dean Rusk, George Ball, James Baker), senators (Chuck Percy, William Fulbright), and even a President (Jimmy Carter) who were willing to be strongly critical of Israel.

      It's my opinion that the bipartisan consensus was created by the carrots and sticks of the Israel lobby. Largely the sticks. All of the individuals above were hurt. The consensus has always had to be enforced.

      In 1996 Mother Jones published something called the "Mojo 400", a list of the largest individual donors to both major parties. I took the time to analyze those top Democratic donors whose names were identifiably Jewish. Almost all of them had direct ties to Israel, either as members of major pro-Israel groups or as benefactors of Israeli causes. This is not a new phenomenon.

    • I first heard about the estimated share of national Democratic Party donations made by Jews around 1996, via JJ Goldberg. As a supporter of Palestinian rights I was stunned. I was even more shocked by the fact that this massive political reality and its massive foreign policy implications were mentioned nowhere by the mainstream media. This was enormous malfeasance, amounting to deliberate deception of the public.

      This is related to a second massive reality regarding the media itself. Jewish supporters of Israel have for years constituted a very disproportionate share of publishers, editors and journalists in mainstream media. Given the pro-Israeli bias of US media, this is an in-your-face opportunity for investigation. Is it really credible to suppose that Abe Rosenthal's views on Israel had no effect on the New York Times' reporting during his 11 years as Executive Editor? How did Katharine Weymouth's Zionist background affect her stint as publisher of the Washington Post? There has never been a finger lifted to investigate these situations or many other similar ones. Again, the American public be damned.

  • Sheesh: A conservative response to the special relationship
  • The U.S. is at last facing the neocon captivity
    • JeffB @ May 19, 2015, 12:59 pm:

      The American people don’t like anti-American governments and generally favor military action to get rid of them.

      Walker @ May 19, 2015, 7:26 pm

      Please post evidence that Americans “generally favor military action to get rid of (anti-American governments)”. This is characteristic of the quality of your argumentation. You simply made this up.

      JeffB @ May 20, 2015, 7:46 am:

      Now my claim was that Americans don’t like anti-USA governments. You argued that was a fabrication. So now present some examples of governments hostile to the USA that are popular among Americans.

      JeffB can't type anything without redisplaying his tendency to just make things up.

      This is not really funny, though. This shell game type of argumentation, designed to deceive, is a standard approach of hasbarists. They are very good at it.

    • Now you can apologize for being an asshole rather than phrasing that request politely.

      JeffB, it is annoying that I can't reply to your post directly.

      The saddest thing about your "evidence" is that apparently you can't tell how bogus it is. You muster just three examples from among the many scores of anti-American governments that have been around over the years. Of your three cases, Iran and Iraq only illustrate the public's being "sold on the need for war based upon trumped up charges, backed by fabricated evidence", as oldgeezer put it. We attacked Afghanistan only because it hosted Osama bin Laden, not because it had an anti-American government.

      Your response confirms my original point about the quality of your argumentation. The bad language is just icing on the cake.

    • The American people don’t like anti-American governments and generally favor military action to get rid of them.

      Please post evidence that Americans "generally favor military action to get rid of (anti-American governments)".

      This is characteristic of the quality of your argumentation. You simply made this up.

  • Hundreds of academics call on State Dept to revise its definition of anti-Semitism, respect criticism of Israel as protected speech
    • JeffB, thank you for the clarification. You have confirmed beyond all possible doubt that Israel and its supporters (such as yourself) have no respect whatsoever for international law, and so can't be called hypocrites for constantly violating it. Thanks for emphasizing that.

      My link to the Pew survey shows what I said it shows - that a large majority of the American public supports the UN.

      My point about whether the settlements are illegal is not "completely wrong". UNSCR 476 state that Israeli settlement "constitutes a flagrant violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention". You use as an example of "no legal validity" a contract to sell someone the sun. This makes no sense at all as an analogy to Israel's concrete daily actions in the occupied territories.

      Please provide a link to support your claim that "Hamas has a policy of trying to capture Israeli civilian hostages". From somewhere other than an Israeli propaganda site, please.

    • JeffB, unfortunately the limit on comment nesting prevents me from replying directly to your post.

      Applying a double standard would be flip out when other countries violate the UN security council and being unconcerned when Israel does it. It is not a double standard to be semi-indifferent or somewhat hostile to the UN across the board, which is what the vast majority of Israel’s supporters are.

      What you really mean is, as former Israeli Minister of Justice Tzipi Livni put it, "I am against law – international law in particular". You express this by attacking those institutions which embody international law, such as the UN, because time and again they have decreed that Israeli settlement of territories conquered in 1967 is illegal.

      Most of us - most people around the world, in fact - believe that international law matters and the UN should be respected. One of the saddest things about the US over the past two decades has been our slow adoption of Israel's attitude of contempt towards international law.

      The UN Security council for example in 476 and 478 said that actions taken by Israel have no legal validity which is a substantially weaker claim then the acts being illegal. If you are going to be a sticker for the UN Security council then at least quote the council and not BDS fabrications.

      This rivals Bill Clinton's "It depends on what the meaning of the word 'is' is". "Illegal" and "have no legal validity" mean the same thing. The UNSC resolutions condemning the settlements (including 476 & 478) reference the Fourth Geneva Convention as the basis of the law being violated. The suggestion that this is a "BDS fabrication" is wrong. Almost every nation in the world (including the US in UNSCR 476) has voted to condemn the settlements as settlements as illegal. So has every international body that has considered the issue.

      if you are going to take the Geneva Convention seriously then one of the 4 grave breaches of the Geneva convention is taking civilian hostages. A matter of policy for Hamas.

      I'm not sure what this means. If you're referring to so-called "human shields", could you please provide a reference from a reputable source that establishes that Hamas used civilians as human shields? The Goldstone Report did not make that claim. It did show that Israeli forces used Palestinians as human shields. The Wikipedia entry on Human Shields" is replete with substantiated accusations of Israelis using Palestinian civilians as human shields. This seems like a classic case of projection.

    • Actually, supporters of Israel can only defend the country by applying a double standard. What other nation has been allowed to go so long in blatant defiance of UN Security Council resolutions?

      So Jeff, I believe that countries should be expected to respect UN Security Council resolutions. including the many that have pointed out that Israel's settlement of occupied territories (including Jerusalem) is illegal. These resolutions point out that Israel is in violation of the Geneva Convention, law that should certainly "apply equally to all".

      That's not a high bar for normal people. I'm happy we are in agreement here, Jeff. Who would have imagined?

  • Netanyahu: Jerusalem was always the capital 'of the Jewish people alone'
    • JeffB:

      1) Palestinians speak a language that evolved from an eastern Arabian peninsula dialect of Aramaic


      1-Arabic is a western Semitic language


      Look at your own graph. Where is the tree for Aramaic. Where is the branch for Arabic. Your graph agrees with me.


      I never claimed that Arabic evolved from Aramaic……..YOU DID!!!!!! . . . Arabic evolved from western Semitic languages which clear in the chart


      Actually I said the opposite. My key point that you are agreeing with is that Arabic did not evolve from Aramaic.

  • 'NYT' plays shameless propagandist for Israel's threats to kill Lebanese civilians
  • 'NYT' runs piece of unadulterated propaganda for Israeli army
  • 'New anti-Semitism' on college campuses is largely blowback against orchestrated Israel advocacy
    • What shameful garbage . . . it is disingenuous to claim that antisemitism on campus is “blowback” against students who exercised their First Amendment right to oppose divisive BDS and Israeli Apartheid Week programming on campus.

      Speaking of shameful garbage, you fail to present any evidence at all of antisemitism on campus. Looking at the video of the interview with Beyda, it's clear to me that the interviewer, despite her mistaken use of the term "as a Jew", does not display any animus towards Beyda personally at all. To me it seems obvious that she was inquiring about Beyda's potential Zionist bias, which is understandable in the context of the attempts of Zionist groups around the world to criminalize criticism of Israel.

  • Apartheid is no longer verboten word for Israel in 'NYT' and 'CNN'
    • I was kicked off for linking to this site.

      Many other sites are touchy about this subject.

      {Edit} - this was intended to be posted under the comment below.

  • 'NYT' reports 'surge of hostile sentiment against Jews' nationwide -- on what basis?
    • Unfortunately the key question was phrased poorly.

      Ms Beyla never should have been asked "Given that you are a Jewish student . . .". It never follows that because someone has a particular background they automatically think and act a certain way.

      Her leadership in Hillel could certainly be grounds for discussion. But not the fact that she's a Jew.

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