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DIG DIRECTOR

Chris Hedges
Chris Hedges, whose column is published Mondays on Truthdig, has written twelve books, including the New York Times best seller “Days of Destruction, Days of Revolt” (2012), which he co-authored with the cartoonist Joe Sacco. Some of his other books include “Death of the Liberal Class”...








 
 

Israel’s Barrier to Peace

Editor’s note: In this Dig, the former Middle East bureau chief for The New York Times and author of the bestseller “War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning” examines the way Israel’s security wall has ripped a mortal gash in the lives of Palestinians living in its shadow, and argues that there can be no hope for peace in the Middle East as long as America continues to aid Israel in its dehumanizing practices.




The rage and extremism of the Islamic militants in Lebanon and the occupied territories in the West Bank and Gaza appear incomprehensible to the outside world.  The wanton murder, the raw anti-Semitism, the callous disregard for human life, including the lives of children and other innocents, permit those on the outside to thrust these militant fighters in another moral universe, to certify them as incomprehensible.

But this branding of these militants as something less than human, as something that reasonable people cannot hope to understand, is possible only because we have ignored and disregarded the decades of repression, the crushing weight of occupation, the abject humiliation and violence, unleashed on Lebanese and Palestinians by Israel because of our silence and indifference.  It is the Israeli penchant for violence and occupation that slowly created and formed these frightening groups.

The failure by the outside world to react to the years of brutal repression, the refusal by the United States to intercede on behalf of the occupied Lebanese and Palestinians, gradually formed and galvanized the radicals who now occupy the stage with Israel, answering death for death, atrocity for atrocity.

Those inside these zones of occupation pleaded over the years for help.  We refused to listen.  And once they burst through these barriers, enraged, bloodied, bent on revenge, we recoiled in horror, unable to see our complicity.  We asked them to be quiet, to be reasonable, to calm down, and when they did not, their blood heated by years of abuse and neglect, we condemned them to their fate.

The barrier built by Israel in the West Bank is one of the most tangible and important symbols of this long humiliation, this strangulation of the Palestinians by Israel.  To understand the role of this barrier is to begin to understand the rage it has now unleashed.  Understanding is not excusing, but until we grasp that these militants do not come from another moral universe, until we face our own complicity in their creation and the awful violence now underway in Lebanon and the occupied territories, we cannot begin to understand the gross injustices that fuel these militant movements.  It was, after all, the $10 billion in loan guarantees by the United States that made this barrier possible.

Ending the loan guarantees, as long as they were used to build settlements and seize even more Palestinian land, would have done more to blunt the rage and violence of militants than all the iron fragmentation bombs Israel has dropped on the hapless civilians in Lebanon, the West Bank and Gaza.

But we react too late.  We react to the manifestation of rage rather than the cause of rage.  We are as morally compromised as those we condemn, as incomprehensible to them as they are to us.  And until we become comprehensible to each other there will not be peace in the Middle East.




There is a 25-foot-high concrete wall in Mrs. Nuhayla Auynaf’s front yard.  The gray mass, punctuated by cylindrical guard towers with narrow window slits for Israeli soldiers, appears from her steps like the side of a docked ocean liner.  It is massive, cold and alien.  The dwarfed shrubs, bushes and stunted fruit trees seem to huddle before it in supplication.  I struggle to make sense of it, the way I struggled to make sense of the smoldering rubble that was the World Trade Center a few hours after the planes hit.

We do not speak.  Mrs. Auynaf lives with the wall.  She is as drawn to it as she is repelled by it.  It absorbs her.  She goes out on her second-floor balcony every morning and looks at it.  She implores it for answers, as if it is a Sphinx that will answer the riddle of her new existence.

“My old life ended with the wall,” she tells me.

The wall, built by Israel a year before, blocked her from the neighboring Israeli town of Kfar Saba where she used to shop.  It cut her off from Israel.  It made it hard to reach the rest of the West Bank.  The lone Israeli checkpoint with its guard towers, floodlights, concrete barriers, dust, stench, crowds, special pass cards, intrusive searches, rude remarks by border police were more than she could bare.  She tried to pass through once.

“I could not stand the humiliation,” she says.  “I turned back.  I went home.  Now I never leave.”

The wall reduces her world to its ugly perimeter.  Her five boys beg to go to the seaside.  The wall makes this impossible.  No one goes to the sea anymore.  There are days when the checkpoint is sealed, days after suicide bombings or days when the Israeli soldiers shut it down abruptly without explanation.  On those days she sometimes gathers up her children and walks the empty streets, wandering like prisoners in a circle.  Other families do the same.  It gives her a sense of movement.  Families pass each other two, three, four times in an afternoon.  All are thinking the same thoughts.

“The town would rent buses to go to the sea,” she says.  “We would go for the day.  We would stand in the water.  We would look at the rocks and the waves.  This was before.”

The house is pleasant.  It was finished at the start of the uprising, when business was good and peace seemed possible.  The floors are marble.  The kitchen has a counter and white appliances.  The sofa and chairs have muted blue and beige stripped fabric.  We sit in the living room.  A large window fan, set on the floor in front of the open door, provides a weak breeze.  The door frame is filled with the expressionless gray face of the wall.  It draws our eyes to it, the way a muted television screen distracts me during conversations.  Sometimes we turn to look at it, as if it is a presence in the room, someone who should be offered sweet tea or a glass or water or asked to leave.  We want it to speak to us.

Her son Ibrahim, 6, sits on her lap.  He has a scar on his leg.  He was shot two years ago by Israeli soldiers.  It happened at dusk.  The soldiers were firing at a group of Palestinian workers who were trying to slip into or out of Israel without proper work permits.  He was watching from the front yard when a bullet went astray.  He stays close to his mother, especially when he hears the sounds of gunshots.  He does not like to leave home.  The world frightens him.

The family was one of the wealthiest in Qalqiliya before the wall ruined them.  They spent $200,000 on their home, with its sloping terra cotta tiled roof, its pleasant garden.  It looks like the homes in the middle-class suburbs outside of Tel Aviv.  Once the wall went up, the family’s car parts business was wiped out.  Mrs. Auynaf’s husband makes less than 10% of what he once earned.  He has trouble shipping car parts into the walled enclosure.  He often cannot reach suppliers.  Customers, those in Israel and those in other areas of the West Bank, can no longer get to his store.  He does not have a permit to drive the family car through the checkpoint.  He must stand in line, often for several hours, to go in and out.  He is away now.  He is trying to salvage his business, but it cannot go on like this.  She hopes he will be home tonight.  But she does not know.  The lines are long.  Sometimes the soldiers get tired or bored or surly and turn people away until the next morning.

“We talk about how we are going to survive, what we are going to do,” she said. 

She hangs laundry on the balcony.  Her only view is the wall.  The other morning she was hanging laundry to dry and she heard singing.  The song was by Fadel Shaker, a popular Arab singer.  The singer had a sweet voice.

“You who are far away, why do you forget those who love you?” the words go.  “When I fall asleep I think only of your eyes.  I think only of you.”

Her five boys were in the yard.  They began to sing.  There was a chorus of voices, the sweet voice and the voices of the children.  She peered up into the glaring sunlight to see the singer.  She saw an Israeli soldier in his green uniform standing on top of the earthen mound on the Israeli side of the wall, the mound the army drives jeeps up to peer down on those below.  He looked like an Olympian god.  She thinks he was a Druze, the tiny, nominally Muslim sect that lives near the border with Syria and serves in the Israeli army and border police.

“He waved when the song finished,” she says.  “The children waved back.  Then he disappeared behind the wall.”

She was on the balcony a few days later.  She was pinning up cloths on the line.  The wooden shutters were open into the house.  She looked up and saw a soldier watching her from the top of the mound.  There was no singing. His raspy voice crackled over the megaphone mounted on the jeep.  He ordered her to go inside and close the shutters.  She obeyed.  Her wet laundry lay behind in the basket.

“I live in a zoo,” she says.  “They come and watch me.  I am a caged animal.  They have the freedom to come and go, to look or not look, to be kind or cruel.  I have no freedom.”

She fears madness.  She points to an elderly woman 200 feet away squatting under a fig tree.

“The wall was the end,” she says.  “When it was finished she went mad.”

We watch the woman.  She is keening slightly.  People are being destroyed by the serpent’s teeth of the wall, springing up from the soil of the West Bank like the evil warriors sown by Cadmus.  This for me is the story, not the amount of concrete or coils of razor wire or razed olive groves and villages, but what all this is doing to human souls.



Next Page: The barrier is the most catastrophic blow to the Palestinians since the 1967 occupation of the West Bank and Gaza.

Dig last updated on Jul. 25, 2006


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By Barry, August 31, 2006 at 8:50 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Just a Reminder of Who We Are and Why We Are Fighting

http://www.frontpagemag.com/images/sndebrgd.gif

By Dennis Prager
FrontPageMagazine.com | August 29, 2006

It is important to remind people once again about the
moral world inhabited by the people we are fighting.

Societal examples:

*  The Islamic Republic of Sudan, in its attempt to
force Arab/Muslim rule on the largely non-Arab and
non-Muslim population of southern Sudan, has led to the
killing of well above one million Christians and animists
and black (i.e., non-Arab) Muslims, in addition to the
widespread enslavement, rape and torture of those people.

*  No major international Arab or Muslim organization
has condemned the Sudanese government’s mass murders that
border on genocide.

*  The leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran has
repeatedly denied the Holocaust and repeatedly called for
the annihilation of Israel. As the six million Jews of
Israel do not plan a mass exodus from their ancient and
modern homeland, such annihilation would in fact mean
another Holocaust.

*  The holy center of Islam, the Muslim country where
the holiest Muslim sites are situated, is Saudi Arabia. That
country bans the practice of any religion other than Islam,
amputates hands of thieves, does not allow women to drive a
car, mandates what women wear outside of their homes and is
the only country in the world to feature a weapon on its
national flag. Women were treated considerably better and
had more civil rights in ancient Rome, not to mention
ancient Israel, than women living in the holiest cities of
Islam today.

*  Virtually every Islam-based country decrees the
death penalty for any Muslim who converts to another
religion.

In other words, every country that calls itself “Islamic” is
morally inferior to just about every country in North
America, South America, Western Europe, Eastern Europe,
almost every Asian country, and many African countries.

No Muslim country treats non-Muslims and their religions
anywhere nearly as decently as any Western non-Muslim
country (including Israel) treats Muslims. That is why tens
of millions of Muslims immigrate to non-Muslim societies and
virtually no non-Muslim immigrates to any Muslim society. In
every Muslim country, non-Muslims are either systematically
persecuted at worst or treated as inferiors at best.

Individual examples (in just the last five months):

*  “A German court sentenced a Turkish man to more than
nine years in jail yesterday for the ‘honour killing’ of his
sister…The murder of Hatun Surucu, 23, who was shot
several times at a bus stop in a Berlin suburb last year,
shocked Germany. . . . Forced to marry a cousin in Turkey as
a young girl, Ms. Surucu later broke with her
Turkish-Kurdish family in Berlin and was living
independently with her 5-year-old son, to the intense
disapproval of her relatives. . . . Public outrage at the
murder was exacerbated when some teenage boys at a school
with many pupils from immigrant families…reportedly openly
applauded the killing, condemning the victim for having
lived ‘like a German.’” (The Guardian, UK, April 14, 2006)

*  “Men using machetes attacked worshipers in three
Coptic [Christian] churches in the port city of Alexandria
[Egypt] on Friday morning, killing an 80-year-old man and
wounding at least six other people, the police there said.”
(International Herald Tribune, April 15, 2006)

*  “An Egyptian state-controlled newspaper praised
Monday’s suicide attack in Tel Aviv, which killed nine
people and wounded dozens, calling it an act of sacrifice
and martyrdom.” (Jerusalem Post, April 18, 2006)

*  In Britain, Abdula Ahmed Ali, 25, and his wife
Cossor, 23, were arrested in connection with the plot to
blow up airplanes flying across the Atlantic. According to
Scotland Yard, the Muslim couple planned to take their
6-month-old baby on the suicide mission, using their baby’s
bottle to hide a liquid bomb. (Daily Telegraph, UK, Aug. 14,
2006)

*  “We’ve got Hezbollah fighters running around in our
positions, taking our positions here and then using us for
shields and then engaging the [Israelis].”—words of a
Canadian UN observer written days before he was killed by
Israeli bombs (Ottawa Citizen, July 27, 2006)

*  “Canadian authorities rounded up a group of 17
Muslim men and boys suspected of plotting to bomb major
buildings in the Toronto area . . . ” (CNN, June 5, 2006)

*  In Australia, “[Islamist] propaganda has convinced
many residents their suburbs are being overrun by Islamic
extremists. . . .The Saturday Daily Telegraph revealed an
escalation of anti-Semitic behaviour. . . . Jewish
university students were targeted and forced to hide their
traditional skullcaps beneath baseball caps to avoid abuse,
while attacks on synagogues have increased.” (Daily
Telegraph, Australia, Aug. 26, 2006)

*  “A third suspect detained in a failed attempt to
blow up two German trains is a Syrian national…German and
Lebanese authorities are each holding one of two young
Lebanese men accused of carrying the suitcase bombs onto
trains in Cologne station on July 31. . . . Officials say
they could have caused many casualties and set the trains on
fire.” (Newsday, Aug. 26, 2006)

Does all this suggest that we are fighting a billion
Muslims? Of course not.

Does all this suggest that all or even most Muslims are bad
people? Of course not.

It does suggest, however, that the dominant forces within
Islam are bad at this time; that Muslims who see this evil
in their midst have not mobilized any counterforce either
out of fear for their lives or for some other reason; and
that decent men and women around the world—Hindu,
Christian, Jewish, atheist, Buddhist and Muslim—are
threatened by this powerful, death-loving force.

Muslims who do not acknowledge the threat to civilization
from within the Muslim world at least have two excuses—
fear for their lives or group solidarity. What excuses do
non-Muslims have who deny this threat?

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By Kwagmyre, August 31, 2006 at 8:42 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Stated by Sarah:

“They are just very adamant regarding their own survival.  And, make no mistake.  They are fighting for their survival.  Jews have been fighting for their survival forever.  They’re getting better at it.  If that pisses off a few people that want to erase them….too bad.”

No argument from me about that from me about what might “appear” to be the “survival” issue.  The problem though is that Israeli’s very behavior virtually guarantees a never ending threat to its survival.

I realize they’re hardly out there to win popularity contests but it only succeeded in generating more support among the Lebanese for Hezbollah(who demonstrated that they can play just as rough as the IDF could ever be).  And they only manage to get the U.S. into codependently supporting their militaristic mentality so long as the latter thinks they have represented a true “democracy” in that region of the world.

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By Justice4all, August 31, 2006 at 8:37 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Comment #20704 by Dov:

“But from your armchairs in California you don’t feel the terror ….”

You should instead mention the state-sponsored terror committed by Israel against the Palestinian and Lebanese civilians. Images of 7 innocent Palestinian family members bombed on Gaza beach and more than 1000 civilians killed in Lebanon are still fresh in memory. No matter how hard you try to twist the truth with flagrant lies, the fact the matter is the world is finally seeing the truth about the aggressive and hostile nature of Israel.

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By Dov, August 31, 2006 at 8:35 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

To the claim that West Bank settlers would “fight to the last man to keep their homes”—baloney.  That’s what people suspected in Gaza, but bottom line, Israel withdrew.  They didn’t want to leave, they’d spent a long time building up their homes and their lives and their businesses there, but in the end, Israel withdrew for the sake of peace.

Ten years ago, when I first got to Israel, there were questions about whether the people here would support politicians who agreed to withdraw.  But that was effectively decided at Camp David, where Barak’s offer did NOT result in a no-confidence vote in the Knesset (that’s how government support is measured here), and even more with the Gaza withdrawal.  Bottom line, right now, if there was reason to believe it would bring peace, virtually all Israelis would support it.  But so far this is all theoretical, since the Palestinians have not been willing to stop terror and accept a state in co-existance.

I do find it interesting that American liberals would make a big deal of settlers.  Why would it be so bad if they didn’t move?  Can’t a democratic Palestinian state exist with a small Jewish minority, as Israel exists with its 15% Arab population?  The answer is that we all know that the Palestinian state will not be as much of a democracy as Israel, who, however flawed, can live with its Arab minority even while the Palestinians are refusing to even consider starting a state with Jews in their region.  Even your question accepts the democratic potential of Israel and not of the future Palestinian state.

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By Spinoza, August 31, 2006 at 7:26 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Sarah, Dov I am almost crying crocodile tears for you.

Nah,  You preach false history and victimhood. Sorry but I don’t feel sorry for you because you are disrespecting your so called enemy. Arabs are people and people with rights like everyone else.  You have to learn that lesson.  Hamas offered you a Hudna and had not attacked anyone for 18 months.  Israel immediately attacked Hamas.  Whose fault is that?  Sorry it has been Israel who has done most of the attacking and the Palestinians who have been doing the retaliating and when the Palestinians announced that they would use non violent methods the Israelis attacked more. You are liars.  You are thieves.  Eventually you will be driven into the sea because of your own greed.  Maybe that is why the country embraced Likud and capitalism.

And stop the stupid anti semitism crap, you people are the major source of anti semitism in the world today.

(And Sarah you have to get beyond a Leon Uris version of history and get some real history books, the same for Dov)

Sarah Look at Finkelstein’s Beyond Chutzpah)

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By salman, August 31, 2006 at 6:04 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Thus spoke Sarah: “Israel bought the land they live on from Arabs when they were almost exterminated out of Europe and ran to Palestine to save themselves”.

I think we have a new twist or shall I say a new red herring here. “We bought the land and then we ran to save ourselves”. I wonder if Sarah is a realtor? It was a done deal, so what are the Palestinians quibbling about? Now we’ve moved from the Bible to a land deal!
Well Sarah you have a nice way of showing your appreciation to your new neighbors with your ‘shoot on sight’ policy; treating them worse than dogs, and killing a few every day as a matter of routine. And that is what the world is condemning; not your Jewish faith or your ethnic background.
That Sarah is not anti-semitism; it’s called plain human decency.

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By Not Having Israel's Lies, August 31, 2006 at 4:37 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“Should we forget all the history of violence against the Jewish people and the established policy of all of its current neighbors to wipe them off the face of the earth?”

OK, you’re lying right there, Sarah.

For example: Saudi Arabia itself — than which there is no nation more Arab nor more Muslim — stated years ago as its official policy that it would accept the existence of Israel if Israel should retreat to its proper borders and allow the Palestinians to have a truly sovereign state in the West Bank and Gaza, with a fair share of the local water (currently hogged by Israel) and free of the settlements and Israel’s other strangling encroachments.

Why can’t you admit the obvious: Israel has a frankly expansionist, ethnic-supremacist agenda. They’re thugs. For example, they currently and transparently aim to steal Lebanon’s Litani River, so they can dig more swimming pools, as the Palestinians do without an adequate water supply.

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By Justice4all, August 31, 2006 at 4:20 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

When you cannot defend your position with facts, and when you run out of objective and factual arguments, it is always anti-Semitism.

With satellite TV stations and the Internet, more people are becoming more educated about the real situation in Palestine and the true facts on the ground.

If you think that by continuing to oppress the Palestinians, occupy their country and confiscate their land, they become less resolute and resilient and eventually give in, you are wrong. You have tried for 58 years to eliminate their identity and you have not succeeded. They will eventually prevail simply because their cause is just and fair.

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By Geronimo, August 31, 2006 at 3:34 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Meanwhile, with all this war-mongering, notice how there’s nothing (or hardly anything) in the news about jobs, health care, pensions, homelessness and our disappearing forests and fisheries.  Lost, whatever really matters.  Can anyone explain how it’s possible that the high from rooting for the home team (ie.our troops in Afghanistan and Iraq) makes up for being unemployed, hungry, homeless, old and discarded.  Must be some sort of slight of hand.

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By Kwagmyre, August 31, 2006 at 3:15 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Dov writes:

“I’m sorry if the Palestinians might have to be willing to move a few kilometers too, but for the sake of peace, why can’t they do what Israelis are willing to do?”

Well, in all fairness, you and perhaps a fair number of other Israeli citizens might be flexible but it’s the hard core Fundamentalist leaning settlers in the West Bank who would fight to the last man(and woman)to keep their territory out of the hands of Palestinians who’d want that as an integral part of their future state. 

And the new state should also include East Jerusalem too.

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By Sarah, August 31, 2006 at 2:53 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Wow.  Anti-Semitism is definitely on the rise.  Should we forget all the history of violence against the Jewish people and the established policy of all of its current neighbors to wipe them off the face of the earth?  Do any of us really know what it is like to have centuries of oppressors trying to eliminate us?  Come on.  Read the real history. 

Israel bought the land they live on from Arabs when they were almost exterminated out of Europe and ran to Palestine to save themselves.  They turned it from a wasteland into an Eden.  They taught their Arab neighbors how to live productively off the land.  Then, the Arabs tried to destroy them.  Just like the Pograms, just like the Nazis.  They are still trying to wipe them off the face of the earth. 

Israel is not an “oppressor.”  They are just very adamant regarding their own survival.  And, make no mistake.  They are fighting for their survival.  Jews have been fighting for their survival forever.  They’re getting better at it.  If that pisses off a few people that want to erase them….too bad.

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By Dov, August 31, 2006 at 1:02 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Spinoza, my letters to the Editor get me dozens of emails each time agreeing with me and thanking me for saying what I said clearly.

I knew I’d never convince you and Salman of anything when I posted about Israelis wanting peace and got a stream of responses about how I should stop feeling “chosen” and stop feeling Biblical rights to land, neither of which had anything rational to do with anything I’d said.

Bottom line, I live here, this is my life, I’m not concerned with convincing some anti-semites in armchairs in California or Arizona.  I’ll work for peace here instead.

But you know how when you lose a tooth you keep feeling a perverse need to stick your tongue into it?  That’s the kind of feeling that keeps me coming back here to see what other rediculous things you or the other irrational Israel-bashers can come up with.

I understand Palestinians.  They want Israel out and they want the whole land, and they’re willing to blow themselves up in coffee shops to get it.  I understand that, and I’ll keep arguing for a peaceful two-state solution with no terror.  And I’ll keep pushing my government here to defend me against terror.  And I’ll push the world to promote a two-state solution with no terror.  It’s that simple.

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By Spinoza, August 31, 2006 at 12:34 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Bolton: U.N. Must Now Focus on Sanctions. HE HE HE


There is a necessary fight against fascism as represented by Rummy and other Bushites. Unfortunately the left is divided and ineffective as usual. However, I recently got an email from the World Can’t Wait and they are hoping to organize a super political action on October 5th. They are also asking for donations. Hopefully we can really do something to change history. They can be found at the

http://www.worldcantwait.org

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By Spinoza, August 31, 2006 at 12:31 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Dov can you think of any reason no one believes you? (Israel)

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By Dov, August 31, 2006 at 11:50 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Gee, let’s compare the number of policeman that are locked up each year to the number of criminals that are locked up each year!  Or the number of murderers that are given the death penalty to the number of prison death penalty administrators that are murdered!  Or the budget required to pay police salaries to the amount stolen from cash registers!

Guys, you can sit in California or Arizona all you want, life’s easy, I understand that.  Over here, Israelis will do anything for peace, but it won’t come by letting terrorists strap on explosives and blow themselves up in our malls.  If we have to stop them, sorry to disappoint you.  They could choose to have a country on the West Bank anytime they want.  They declined a country 50 years ago, the Jordanians and Egyptians put them into refugee camps, and now they’re all clamoring for the 70 virgins waiting for them if they blow people up.  We Israelis just want peace, and bottom line, if the Palestinians wanted peaceful co-existance then they’d have said yes to a state in the West Bank.  Israel’s willing to force its citizens to move for the sake of peace, I’m sorry if the Palestinians might have to be willing to move a few kilometers too, but for the sake of peace, why can’t they do what Israelis are willing to do?

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By Mark Dolce, August 31, 2006 at 10:03 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The United States gives approximately $15,000,000 per day to the Israeli government and military and gives the Palestinian NGO $232,290 per day. Israel holds 9,599 Palestinian prisoners and Palestine holds one (1) Israeli prisoner. Since 2000, 4,171 Palestinians have been killed by Israel and 1,084 Israelis have been killed. Since 2000, 776 Palestinian children have been killed and 121 Israeli children have been killed. There is a new wall in the world, it’s the worst wall we have seen in modern times. Israel built it and continues to build it with US support. If the Republicans have their way, the next wall will be from San Diego, California to Brownsville, Texas.

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By Spinoza, August 31, 2006 at 12:24 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

This is why Israel is considered scum throughout the world.

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article14753.htm


http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article14762.htm

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By Spinoza, August 30, 2006 at 11:56 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Idiot right wing Jews


http://www.democracynow.org/article.pl?sid=06/08/30/1418200

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By Kwagmyre, August 30, 2006 at 5:27 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

And this just in from msnbc.com:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/14589323/

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By OIL, August 30, 2006 at 4:54 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

America is playing a long game to attain total control of the entire Middle East. That is where the oil is. Every midle-eastern country is being played as the pawns in the US game. Think about it.

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By Dov, August 30, 2006 at 1:39 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

First, the Iranian Parliament member is a designated member, not a Jewish person elected through the regular process.  Unlike the several Aram members of Israeli Knesset who were elected just like other Knesset members, with votes from Israeli Arab citizens with full normal representation.

Second, anyone who doesn’t like the security fence route, please name Arab villages that are over the green line but within the security fence.

Third, I lived here through the intifada, and I live here now, and the success of the fence in stopping terror is crystal clear.  Don’t tell me it’s not a security fence, that’s baloney, it’s there because the Arabs refused to stop terror, and they still refuse to give up terror.

Fourth, I repeat again, I live here, and every Israeli would be happy to withdraw completely from the West Bank and Gaza if it would bring peace.  But from your armchairs in California you don’t feel the terror, you don’t see how the Palestinians refuse to accept the two-state solution and give up terror.

http://israel-letters.blogspot.com/

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By ed_tru_lib, August 30, 2006 at 11:55 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Why are even a few sensible people bothering to continue to post here?. Are you planning to change the “mind” of spinoza, who obviously “lives” here-a terrorist troll/dupe who’s mindless anti-semitism, (particularly pathetic if, as he says, he really is Jewish, and therefore THAT self-hating)or any other murderer-loving mental case?
Way back when I last bothered to look in and post I got a response that reflects the mindlessness of the Israel-haters-someone babbling about a “get” or Jewish divorce, which in Israel, or the US for that matter is only required by the most orthodox rabbis, if one wishes to re-marry in an orthodox Jewish ceremony. In Israel, like Iowa, you can get divorced, or married, at the courthouse, and ALL Israelis, Jewish, Arab, or Hindu, have the same property rights.

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By Justice4all, August 30, 2006 at 11:50 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Comment #20573 by David Zohar

This pretense of flase victimhood does not work anymore. You have been occupying the land and oppressing the Palestinians for decades now. You are occupiers and villains and not the victims here, so do not cry wolf.

As for the Apartheid wall (it is not a barrier or a fence as you called it), feel free to move it to the 1967 borders instead of having it snake its path through Palestinian towns and villages and choking the Palestinian people. I am pretty sure that Palestinians would not object to this if this would be a borderline for their free and independent state assuming that they would have total control over their land, sea and airspace as well as their foreign affairs. This would be the proper analogy with Mexico since it is not being occupied and oppressed by the United States.

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By Spinoza, August 30, 2006 at 9:40 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

>>>  In the Moslem world, you do not have Jewish parliament members, simply because all the Jews were either kicked out, or threatened


Zionists are some of the biggest hypocrites around.

It was the Zionists and the Israeli government who were demanding/threatening that all Jews leave the Muslim Countries and come to Israel.  *Liar* is a very good adjective to describe many Zionists.

And yes there were Jews living in Baghdad until recently and there are two Jewish members of the Iranian Parliment.

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By Barry, August 30, 2006 at 5:52 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

From the International Herald Tribune:

Palestinians at fault in Gaza, Hamas official says
By Steven Erlanger The New York Times

Published: August 29, 2006

JERUSALEM In an unusual instance of self-criticism, Ghazi Hamad, a well- known Hamas official, has deplored the collapse into chaos of Gazan life and has said that much of the blame belongs to Palestinians themselves.

“Gaza is suffering under the yoke of anarchy and the swords of thugs,” Hamad, a former Hamas newspaper editor and spokesman for the current Hamas government, wrote in an article published Sunday in Al Ayyam, the Palestinian daily.

After so much optimism when Israelis pulled out of Gaza a year ago, Hamad wrote, “life became a nightmare and an intolerable burden.”

Hamad urged Palestinians to look to themselves, not to Israel, for the causes. But he appeared not to be placing the blame on Hamas or the Palestinian prime minister, Ismail Haniya of Hamas. He said various armed groups in the Gaza Strip - most affiliated with Fatah, a rival to Hamas - were responsible for the chaos.

“We’ve all been attacked by the bacteria of stupidity,” Hamad wrote. “We have lost our sense of direction.”

He then addressed the armed groups: “Please have mercy on Gaza. Have mercy on us from your demagogy, chaos, guns, thugs, infighting. Let Gaza breathe a bit. Let it live.”

Hamad also questioned the utility of firing rockets into Israel that cause few casualties but result in many Palestinian deaths when the Israelis retaliate. He seemed to be arguing for other armed groups to follow the Hamas decision to halt rocket fire into Israel.

While Hamad looked at Palestinian failings, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert of Israel announced that his government would set up a committee to investigate its lapses in the recent war against Hezbollah in Lebanon.

In a speech Monday evening, Olmert acknowledged “shortcomings and failures” and said a government-appointed committee led by Nahum Admoni, a former director of the Mossad secret service, would investigate them.

Olmert and his government, elected just five months ago, are trying to respond to public unhappiness with the results of the war without losing control of any investigations. Aides say Olmert believes that the results of the war are positive and that Israelis will come to see that over time.

He is betting that a protest movement among reservists over the way the war was conducted will wane.

Few Israelis have the appetite for a new election, and those on the left who are unhappy with Olmert and Defense Minister Amir Peretz, the leader of the Labor Party, do not want the Israeli right to benefit.

The decision by Olmert, which would avoid a state commission of inquiry, is sure to stir criticism, but Olmert has argued that a government inquiry would be faster and more efficient. “We do not have the time and must act quickly,” he said in his speech.

A commission would have the power to subpoena witnesses and demand resignations. Once announced, it would be out of the government’s control, with members appointed by the leader of the supreme court.

In the West Bank on Monday, Palestinian government workers held a strike and march in Ramallah and hospital workers in Nablus went on strike because the government had not paid salaries.

The civil servants’ union announced earlier that about 80,000 workers would begin an open-ended strike on Sept. 2. The workers include 37,000 teachers and 25,000 health workers, the union said.

The action suggests that popular patience with Hamas may be running out, as the United States and Israel predicted early this year when they announced a freeze on the aid that pays most civil servants’ salaries.

Efforts by the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas of Fatah, to form a unity government with Hamas have not succeeded, as Hamas insists on leading the government. Nor has Abbas been willing to dissolve the Hamas government, as the administration of George W. Bush has reportedly urged him to do.

Hamad said that his article, in a newspaper normally associated with Fatah, was a personal comment. Despite the taunt at Fatah, it was singular in its criticism of the penchant to blame Israel and its occupation of Palestinian lands for every ill - even after Israeli troops and settlers had left Gaza.

“I’m not interested in discussing the ugliness and brutality of the occupation because it is not a secret,” he wrote. “I prefer self-criticism and self-evaluation. We’re used to blaming our mistakes on others.”

Palestinian joy after the Israeli departure “made us forget the most important question - what is our next step?” he wrote.

“When you walk in the streets of Gaza City,” he continued, “you cannot but close your eyes because of what you see there: unimaginable chaos, careless policemen, young men carrying guns and strutting with pride and families receiving condolences for their dead in the middle of the street.”

Hamad said those who saw themselves as fighting Israel were working at cross-purposes. “It is strange that when a big effort is taken to reopen Rafah crossing to ease the suffering of the people, you see others who go to shell rockets toward the crossing, or when someone talks about cease-fire and its importance, you find those who go and shell more rockets,” he wrote.

JERUSALEM In an unusual instance of self-criticism, Ghazi Hamad, a well- known Hamas official, has deplored the collapse into chaos of Gazan life and has said that much of the blame belongs to Palestinians themselves.

“Gaza is suffering under the yoke of anarchy and the swords of thugs,” Hamad, a former Hamas newspaper editor and spokesman for the current Hamas government, wrote in an article published Sunday in Al Ayyam, the Palestinian daily.

After so much optimism when Israelis pulled out of Gaza a year ago, Hamad wrote, “life became a nightmare and an intolerable burden.”

Hamad urged Palestinians to look to themselves, not to Israel, for the causes. But he appeared not to be placing the blame on Hamas or the Palestinian prime minister, Ismail Haniya of Hamas. He said various armed groups in the Gaza Strip - most affiliated with Fatah, a rival to Hamas - were responsible for the chaos.

“We’ve all been attacked by the bacteria of stupidity,” Hamad wrote. “We have lost our sense of direction.”

He then addressed the armed groups: “Please have mercy on Gaza. Have mercy on us from your demagogy, chaos, guns, thugs, infighting. Let Gaza breathe a bit. Let it live.”

Hamad also questioned the utility of firing rockets into Israel that cause few casualties but result in many Palestinian deaths when the Israelis retaliate. He seemed to be arguing for other armed groups to follow the Hamas decision to halt rocket fire into Israel.

While Hamad looked at Palestinian failings, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert of Israel announced that his government would set up a committee to investigate its lapses in the recent war against Hezbollah in Lebanon.

In a speech Monday evening, Olmert acknowledged “shortcomings and failures” and said a government-appointed committee led by Nahum Admoni, a former director of the Mossad secret service, would investigate them.

Olmert and his government, elected just five months ago, are trying to respond to public unhappiness with the results of the war without losing control of any investigations. Aides say Olmert believes that the results of the war are positive and that Israelis will come to see that over time.

He is betting that a protest movement among reservists over the way the war was conducted will wane.

Few Israelis have the appetite for a new election, and those on the left who are unhappy with Olmert and Defense Minister Amir Peretz, the leader of the Labor Party, do not want the Israeli right to benefit.

The decision by Olmert, which would avoid a state commission of inquiry, is sure to stir criticism, but Olmert has argued that a government inquiry would be faster and more efficient. “We do not have the time and must act quickly,” he said in his speech.

A commission would have the power to subpoena witnesses and demand resignations. Once announced, it would be out of the government’s control, with members appointed by the leader of the supreme court.

In the West Bank on Monday, Palestinian government workers held a strike and march in Ramallah and hospital workers in Nablus went on strike because the government had not paid salaries.

The civil servants’ union announced earlier that about 80,000 workers would begin an open-ended strike on Sept. 2. The workers include 37,000 teachers and 25,000 health workers, the union said.

The action suggests that popular patience with Hamas may be running out, as the United States and Israel predicted early this year when they announced a freeze on the aid that pays most civil servants’ salaries.

Efforts by the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas of Fatah, to form a unity government with Hamas have not succeeded, as Hamas insists on leading the government. Nor has Abbas been willing to dissolve the Hamas government, as the administration of George W. Bush has reportedly urged him to do.

Hamad said that his article, in a newspaper normally associated with Fatah, was a personal comment. Despite the taunt at Fatah, it was singular in its criticism of the penchant to blame Israel and its occupation of Palestinian lands for every ill - even after Israeli troops and settlers had left Gaza.

“I’m not interested in discussing the ugliness and brutality of the occupation because it is not a secret,” he wrote. “I prefer self-criticism and self-evaluation. We’re used to blaming our mistakes on others.”

Palestinian joy after the Israeli departure “made us forget the most important question - what is our next step?” he wrote.

“When you walk in the streets of Gaza City,” he continued, “you cannot but close your eyes because of what you see there: unimaginable chaos, careless policemen, young men carrying guns and strutting with pride and families receiving condolences for their dead in the middle of the street.”

Hamad said those who saw themselves as fighting Israel were working at cross-purposes. “It is strange that when a big effort is taken to reopen Rafah crossing to ease the suffering of the people, you see others who go to shell rockets toward the crossing, or when someone talks about cease-fire and its importance, you find those who go and shell more rockets,” he wrote.

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By salman, August 30, 2006 at 4:06 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Is Israel an American value? A link to what Israel is all about.

http://www.couplescompany.com/Features/Politics/2005/ValueI1.htm

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By David Zohar, August 30, 2006 at 2:17 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Why does the USA have a barrier along its border with Mexico?

When the fanatic Arab Terrorists disband and promise to live in peace with Israel, the wall will come down. Not a day before.

From ;An Israeli from Jerusalem who has seen too many Jews blown up by “peaceful Palestinian” terrorists.

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By Barry, August 30, 2006 at 12:19 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

http://www.nysun.com/article/38742

August 29, 2006 Edition

Pan-Muslim Fiction

By EFRAIM KARSH
August 29, 2006

In discussions of the contemporary Middle East, few arguments have resonated more widely, or among a more diverse set of observers, than the claim that the Palestinian-Israeli conflict constitutes the source of all evil and that its resolution will lead to regional peace and stability. No sooner had the guns fallen silent on the Israel-Lebanon border than Prime Minister Tony Blair of Britain, fresh from his summer vacation in the Caribbean island of Barbados, announced his intention to embark on a mission to the Middle East next month in an attempt to both stabilize the situation in Lebanon and to resuscitate the stalled peace process between Israel and the Palestinians. This sense of urgency was echoed by the American former national security adviser, Zbigniew Brzezinski, who claimed that “Today, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to separate the Israeli-Palestinian problem, the Iraq problem and Iran from each other.” And the Jordanian commentator Rami Khouri put it in even stronger terms: “Every major tough issue in the Middle East is somehow linked to the consequences of the festering Israeli-Palestinian conflict… Its bitterness kept seeping out from its Palestine-Israel core to corrode many other dimensions of the region.”

While there is no denying the argument’s widespread appeal, there is also no way around the fact that, in almost every particular, it is demonstratively, even invidiously, wrong. For one thing, violence was an integral part of Middle Eastern political culture long before the advent of the Arab-Israeli conflict, and physical force remains today the main if not the sole instrument of regional political discourse. At the domestic level, these circumstances have resulted in the world’s most illiberal polities. Political dissent is dealt with by repression, and ethnic and religious differences are settled by internecine strife and murder. One need only mention, among many instances, Syria’s massacre of 20,000 of its Muslim activists in the early 1980s, or the brutal treatment of Iraq’s Shiite and Kurdish communities until the 2003 war, or the genocidal campaign now being conducted in Darfur by the government of Sudan and its allied militias, not to mention the ongoing bloodbath in Iraq. As for foreign policy in the Middle East, it too has been pursued by means of crude force, ranging from terrorism and subversion to outright aggression. In the Yemenite, Lebanese, and Algerian civil wars, hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians perished; the Iran-Iraq war claimed nearly a million lives.

Nor have the Arab states have ever had any real stake in the “liberation of Palestine.” Though anti-Zionism has been the core principle of pan-Arab solidarity since the mid-1930s — it is easier, after all, to unite people through a common hatred than through a shared loyalty — pan-Arabism has almost always served as an instrument for achieving the self-interested ends of those who proclaim it.

Consider, for example, the pan-Arab invasion of the newly proclaimed state of Israel in 1948.This, on its face, was a shining demonstration of solidarity with the Palestinian people. But the invasion had far less to do with winning independence for the indigenous population than with the desire of the Arab regimes for territorial aggrandizement. Transjordan’s King Abdullah wanted to incorporate substantial parts of mandatory Palestine into the greater Syrian empire he coveted; Egypt wanted to prevent that eventuality by laying its hands on southern Palestine. Syria and Lebanon sought to annex the Galilee, while Iraq viewed the 1948 war as a stepping stone in its long-standing ambition to bring the entire Fertile Crescent under its rule. Had the Jewish state lost the war, its territory would not have fallen to the Palestinians but would have been divided among the invading Arab forces.

During the decades following the 1948 war, the Arab states manipulated the Palestinian national cause to their own ends. Neither Egypt nor Jordan allowed Palestinian self-determination in the parts of Palestine they had occupied during the 1948 war (respectively, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip). Palestinian refugees were kept in squalid camps for decades as a means of whipping Israel and stirring pan-Arab sentiments. “The Palestinians are useful to the Arab states as they are,” Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser candidly responded to an inquiring Western reporter in 1956. “We will always see that they do not become too powerful.” As late as 1974, Syria’s Hafez al-Assad referred to Palestine as being “not only a part of the Arab homeland but a basic part of southern Syria.”

If the Arab states have shown little empathy for the plight of ordinary Palestinians, the Islamic connection to the Palestinian problem is even more tenuous. It is not out of concern for a Palestinian right to national self-determination but as part of a holy war to prevent the loss of a part of the “House of Islam” that Islamists inveigh against the Jewish state of Israel. In the words of the covenant of the Islamic Resistance Movement, better known by its Arabic acronym Hamas: “The land of Palestine has been an Islamic trust (waqf) throughout the generations and until the day of resurrection…. When our enemies usurp some Islamic lands, jihad becomes a duty binding on all Muslims.”

In this respect, there is no difference between Palestine and other parts of the world conquered by the forces of Islam throughout history. To this very day, for example, Arabs and many Muslims unabashedly pine for the restoration of Spain, and look upon their expulsion from that country in 1492 as a grave historical injustice, as if they were Spain’s rightful owners and not former colonial occupiers of a remote foreign land, thousands of miles from their ancestral homeland. Edward Said applauded Andalusia’s colonialist legacy as “the ideal that should be moving our efforts now,” while Osama bin Laden noted “the tragedy of Andalusia” after the 9/11 attacks, and the perpetrators of the March 2004 Madrid bombings, in which hundreds of people were murdered, mentioned revenge for the loss of Spain as one of the atrocity’s “root causes.” Within this grand scheme, the struggle between Israel and the Palestinians is but a single element, and one whose supposed centrality looms far greater in Western than in Islamic eyes.

This is not to deny that resolution of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict is a pressing issue. But the regional ramifications of any settlement will be far narrower than is widely assumed. Quite to the contrary, the best hope of peace between Arabs and Israelis lies in the rejection of the spurious “link” between this dispute and other regional and global problems.

The pretense of pan-Arab or pan-Islamic solidarity has long served as a dangerous elixir in Palestinian political circles, stirring unrealistic hopes and expectations and, at key junctures, inciting widespread and horrifically destructive violence. Self-serving interventionism under these false pretenses had the effect of transforming the bilateral Palestinian-Israeli dispute into a multilateral Arab-Israeli conflict, thereby prolonging its duration, increasing its intensity, and making its resolution far more complex and tortuous. Only when the local political elites reconcile themselves to the reality of state nationalism and forswear the false notions of pan-Arab and pan-Muslim solidarity, let alone the imperialist chimera of a unified “Arab nation” or a worldwide Islamic umma, will the long overdue regional stability will be finally attained and the Arab-Israeli conflict resolved. Not the other way round.

Professor Karsh is head of Mediterranean Studies at King’s College, University of London, and author most recently of “Islamic Imperialism: A History,” available from Yale University Press.

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By Kwagmyre, August 29, 2006 at 8:41 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Posted by SickofIsrael:

“(2) People have the right to resist, with violence if necessary, the imposition on them of an ethnic-chauvinist, semi-theocratic regime in which they will forever be considered second-class undesirables and a “demographic problem” — whether or not they constitute what a bunch of recently imported religious/ethnic chauvinists would call a “real country” or not.”

And to think that this was the major justification(as we were taught in grade school)for Washington, Jefferson, Jackson, Madison, etc. to start a full scale revolution against the British colonial occupying force.

This is no different than what’s stated above as a sufficient rationale for the Palestinians in their own brand of resistance to Israeli occupation.

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By Dov, August 29, 2006 at 8:22 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Interesting point from someone:

> (1) People have the right not to be driven
> from their homes because of their
> ethnicity, ...
> (2) People have the right to resist, with
> violence if necessary, the imposition on
> them of an ethnic-chauvinist, semi-theocratic
> regime in which they will forever be
> considered second-class undesirables ...

Well said.  Given that, what’s the problem with a two-state solution?  Do you think that another Arab-majority government would be even close to livable for Jews?  (Just look at the other Arab-run governments in the region.) 

There were two collections of people here, clearly can’t live together as one unit, the two-state solution solves the problem.  Yes, people in both groups might need to move a few miles.  Or choose to live in the “other” country.  Yes, it’s not ideal.  But what other solution do you see?

To be clear, all of the above also apply to all the Jewish refugees driven out of Arab countries in 1948, and also apply to Jews living in towns in the territory that Israel expects will be part of a future Palestinian state.  Israel has Arab citizens (Many Israeli Arabs said they’d prefer to stay in Israel and not move to a new Palestinian state, and they’re free to), the Palestinians refuse to have Jewish citizens and demand that all Jews leave their region before a state be established.  Fine. 

Nothing’s ideal.  But the two-state solution seems to me to be the only solution.  Again, if you oppose the two-state solution, what’s your proposed other solution that addresses the issues you raise above for both sides?

http://israel-letters.blogspot.com/

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By barak, August 29, 2006 at 8:22 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Finally we are witnessing the difference between the Moslem world and the Israeli/Jewish world.

Amira Haas is a journalist who speaks against her country’s policies. Her writing is published in Israel and abroad. She is not in prison nor is she tried for treason.

Now let’s see if there is a Moslem journalist who has the guts or the freedom to be critical of his country (and please don’t tell me that the Moslem countries are perfect…) and has managed to stay out of prison or not be killed.

Yes, Israel is not perfect, but there are Arab parliament members who are free to scream against the policy. In the Moslem world, you do not have Jewish parliament members, simply because all the Jews were either kicked out, or threatened.

Israel, with all its mistakes, and all its injustice, is so superior in its democracy to the Moslem countries, that there is not even the possibility of comparison.

To add insult to injury and imply that all the problems in the world are caused by Israel, Zionism and the U.S. would be similar to me saying that all the problems in the world are because of the Kuran…
This is would be a very limited and unsophisiticated way of understanding people, race, religion, politics and the evil in all of us.

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By Fadel Abdallah, August 29, 2006 at 6:18 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Katrina’s memory as another barrier to national peace!

As we commemorate the first anniversary of Katrina, I would like to record my feelings about how bad an omen was this for our country. Just nine months into Bush’s first stolen election, we were hit with the tragic events of 9/11. Whether this was an inside job or it was some outside enemy, history has yet to give its final verdict. However, the fact that it happened on Bush’s watch is bad enough of an omen for people to wake up.

Almost nine months into his second term, our country was devastated by the horrors of Katrina. This was, for sure, a wake up call from heaven; another bad omen about this evil imposed on the nation in the name of democracy and security.

How bad it has to get till the average American wakes up to the horrors committed by this administration in their names and with their tax-payers money!

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By Justice4all, August 29, 2006 at 6:09 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

For all those ignorants out there who claim morality, ethics, and western style democracy: Some food for thought- enjoy !!!


Amira Hass is an Israeli Journalist and she is not a self-hating Jew or anti-Semite.

————————————————————
(just blinded by racism and indifference)


HA’ARETZ, AUGUST 30, 2006



Can you really not see?

By Amira Hass

Let us leave aside those Israelis whose ideology supports the dispossession of the Palestinian people because “God chose us.” Leave aside the judges who whitewash every military policy of killing and destruction. Leave aside the military commanders who knowingly jail an entire nation in pens surrounded by walls, fortified observation towers, machine guns, barbed wire and blinding projectors. Leave aside the ministers. All of these are not counted among the collaborators. These are the architects, the planners, the designers, the executioners.

But there are others. Historians and mathematicians, senior editors, media stars, psychologists and family doctors, lawyers who do not support Gush Emunim and Kadima, teachers and educators, lovers of hiking trails and sing-alongs, high-tech wizards. Where are you? And what about you, researchers of Nazism, the Holocaust and Soviet gulags? Could you all be in favor of systematic discriminating laws? Laws stating that the Arabs of the Galilee will not even be compensated for the damages of the war by the same sums their Jewish neighbors are entitled to (Aryeh Dayan, Haaretz , August 21).

Could it be that you are all in favor of a racist Citizenship Law that forbids an Israeli Arab from living with his family in his own home? That you side with further expropriation of lands and the demolishing of additional orchards, for another settler neighborhood and another exclusively Jewish road? That you all back the shelling and missile fire killing the old and the young in the Gaza Strip?

Could it be that you all agree that a third of the West Bank (the Jordan Valley) should be off limits to Palestinians? That you all side with an Israeli policy that prevents tens of thousands of Palestinians who have obtained foreign citizenship from returning to their families in the occupied territories?

Could your mind really be so washed with the security excuse, used to forbid Gaza students from studying occupational therapy at Bethlehem and medicine at Abu Dis, and preventing sick people from Rafah from receiving medical treatment in Ramallah? Will also you find it easy to hide behind the explanation “we had no idea”: we had no idea that the discrimination practiced in the distribution of water - which is solely controlled by Israel - leaves thousands of Palestinian households without water during the hot summer months; we had no idea that when the IDF blocks the entrance to villages, it also blocks their access to springs or water tanks.

But it cannot be that you don’t see the iron gates along route 344 in the West Bank, blocking access to it from the Palestinian villages it passes by. It cannot be that you support preventing the access of thousands of farmers to their land and plantations, that you support the quarantine on Gaza which prevents the entry of medicine for hospitals, the disruption of electricity and water supply to 1.4 million human beings, closing their only outlet to the world for months.

Could it be that you do not know what is happening 15 minutes from your faculties and offices? Is it plausible that you support the system in which Hebrew soldiers, at checkpoints in the heart of the West Bank, are letting tens of thousands of people wait everyday for hours upon hours under the blazing sun, while selecting: residents of Nablus and Tul Karm are not allowed through, 35-year-olds and under - yallah, back to Jenin, residents of the Salem village are not even allowed to be here, a sick woman who skipped the line must learn a lesson and will be purposefully detained for hours. Machsom Watch’s site is available for all; in it are countless such testimonies and worse, a day by day routine. But it cannot be that those who are appalled over every swastika painted on a Jewish grave in France and over every anti-Semitic headline in a Spanish local newspaper will not know how to reach this information, and will not be appalled and outraged.

As Jews we all enjoy the privilege Israel gives us, what makes us all collaborators. The question is what does every one of us do in an active and direct daily manner to minimize cooperation with a dispossessing, suppressing regime that never has its fill. Signing a petition and tutting will not do. Israel is a democracy for its Jews. We are not in danger of our lives, we will not be jailed in concentration camps, our livelihood will not be damaged and recreation in the countryside or abroad will not be denied to us. Therefore, the burden of collaboration and direct responsibility is immeasurably heavy. 


“Whereas it is essential, if man is not to be compelled to have recourse, as a last resort, to rebellion against tyranny and oppression, that human rights should be protected by the rule of law” (From Preamble to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948)

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By Fadel Abdallah, August 29, 2006 at 5:14 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Another voice for peace and justice from good Christians to terrorist Christians!
=============================================
The Jerusalem Declaration on Christian Zionism
Posted: 28 Aug 2006 04:47 PM CDT
Statement by the Patriarch and Local Heads of Churches In Jerusalem

“Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called the children of God.” (Matthew 5:9)

Christian Zionism is a modern theological and political movement that embraces the most extreme ideological positions of Zionism, thereby becoming detrimental to a just peace within Palestine and Israel. The Christian Zionist programme provides a worldview where the Gospel is identified with the ideology of empire, colonialism and militarism. In its extreme form, it laces an emphasis on apocalyptic events leading to the end of history rather than living Christ’s love and justice today. We categorically reject Christian Zionist doctrines as false teaching that corrupts the biblical message of love, justice and reconciliation.

We further reject the contemporary alliance of Christian Zionist leaders and organizations with elements in the governments of Israel and the United States that are presently imposing their unilateral pre-emptive borders and domination over Palestine. This inevitably leads to unending cycles of violence that undermine the security of all peoples of the Middle East and the rest of the world.

We reject the teachings of Christian Zionism that facilitate and support these policies as they advance racial exclusivity and perpetual war rather than the gospel of universal love, redemption and reconciliation taught by Jesus Christ. Rather than condemn the world to the doom of Armageddon we call upon everyone to liberate themselves from the ideologies of militarism and occupation. Instead, let them pursue the healing of the nations!

We call upon Christians in Churches on every continent to pray for the Palestinian and Israeli people, both of whom are suffering as victims of occupation and militarism. These discriminative actions are turning Palestine into impoverished ghettos surrounded by exclusive Israeli settlements. The establishment of the illegal settlements and the construction of the Separation Wall on confiscated Palestinian land undermines the viability of a Palestinian state as well as peace and security in the entire region.

We call upon all Churches that remain silent, to break their silence and speak for reconciliation with justice in the Holy Land.

Therefore, we commit ourselves to the following principles as an alternative way:

We affirm that all people are created in the image of God. In turn they are called to honor the dignity of every human being and to respect their inalienable rights.

We affirm that Israelis and Palestinians are capable of living together within peace, justice and security.

We affirm that Palestinians are one people, both Muslim and Christian. We reject all attempts to subvert and fragment their unity.

We call upon all people to reject the narrow world view of Christian Zionism and other ideologies that privilege one people at the expense of others.

We are committed to non-violent resistance as the most effective means to end the illegal occupation in order to attain a just and lasting peace.

With urgency we warn that Christian Zionism and its alliances are justifying colonization, apartheid and empire-building.

God demands that justice be done. No enduring peace, security or reconciliation is possible without the foundation of justice. The demands of justice will not disappear. The struggle for justice must be pursued diligently and persistently but non-violently.

“What does the Lord require of you, to act justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God.” (Micah 6:8)

This is where we take our stand. We stand for justice. We can do no other. Justice alone guarantees a peace that will lead to reconciliation with a life of security and prosperity for all the peoples of our Land. By standing on the side of justice, we open ourselves to the work of peace - and working for peace makes us children of God.

“God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation.” (2 Cor 5:19)

His Beattitude Patriarch Michel Sabbah
Latin Patriarchate, Jerusalem

Archbishop Swerios Malki Mourad,
Syrian Orthodox Patriarchate, Jerusalem

Bishop Riah Abu El-Assal,
Episcopal Church of Jerusalem and the Middle East

Bishop Munib Younan,
Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land

August 22, 2006

http://www.j-diocese.com/DiocesanNews/view.asp?selected=238#slbl238

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By SickOfIsraelControllingOurForeignPolicy, August 29, 2006 at 11:13 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Again Dov says: “The fact that there was never a country here before 1948 is ignored.”

Setting aside any questions of international law, it is a matter of elementary ethics that:

(1) People have the right not to be driven from their homes because of their ethnicity, whether or not they constitute what a bunch of recently imported religious/ethnic chauvinists would call a “real country” or not.

(2) People have the right to resist, with violence if necessary, the imposition on them of an ethnic-chauvinist, semi-theocratic regime in which they will forever be considered second-class undesirables and a “demographic problem” — whether or not they constitute what a bunch of recently imported religious/ethnic chauvinists would call a “real country” or not.

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By salman, August 29, 2006 at 9:33 am Link to this comment
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The conclusion of Dov’s hogwash:
“In the meanwhile, I hope my government here has the guts and the ability to defend its citizens properly.”

Now,any decent human being would be asking his/her government the following questions: Excuse me Sir; can you tell me what shenanigans are you up to around the world, that I cannot travel safely anywhere outside of the USA, when that was NOT the case right up until the 60s/70s/80s?
Excuse me Sir; why are you going around dropping bombs all over the planet on suspicions and killing an untold number of people?
Excuse me Sir but is ‘world domination’ a part of the current U.S. foreign policy doctrine? And, pre-emptive strikes, based on suspicions, a tool in the implementation of that doctrine?
Excuse me Sir, how are you protecting me by making millions of more enemies everyday, not just for me but generations to come?
Excuse me Sir; what sort of a relationship do you have with one particular country in the middle east, which causes so much consternation and angst not just throughout the Muslim world but amongst the majority of people around the world, and only the other day the Dy. PM of our closest ally referred to you as CRAP?
Excuse me Sir; why is it that every single day Palestinians are being killed for over 60 years and there’s a news blackout in our media?
Excuse me Sir: If protecting me involves taking thousands of lives around the world, then please don’t do it. I know you have the “guts” to do it. But don’t. Not in my name. I know I am very precious, but so are the lives of others on the planet.

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By Spinoza, August 29, 2006 at 9:17 am Link to this comment
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>>>I’m back outta here, back to the real world.  Hopefully Palestinian leaders will have more brains than the people here, and will some day decide to say “yes” to peaceful co-existance here.


Not with your attitude.  And it is attitude that is crucial

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By Dov, August 29, 2006 at 12:26 am Link to this comment
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Thought I’d take a quick look here, and I see I’m not missing much.  Lots of discussion of history by Barry and Realist and others, and lots of responses with no facts.  An article on how Israelis were wimps in the war and didn’t think that Hezbola could win and are trying to find someone to blame “covers the major points in the conflict”?????  Right.  Terror is excusable.  The UN’s right to divide a land into two states is irrelevent.  The fact that there was never a country here before 1948 is ignored.  The lives of Israeli Arabs and the existance of Jewish refugees is ignored.  The fact that Jordan and Egypt chose not to make a Palestinian state and to keep Palestinians in refugee camps is ignored.  Blah blah blah.  I’m back outta here, back to the real world.  Hopefully Palestinian leaders will have more brains than the people here, and will some day decide to say “yes” to peaceful co-existance here.  In the meanwhile, I hope my government here has the guts and the ability to defend its citizens properly.

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By Spinoza, August 28, 2006 at 6:54 pm Link to this comment
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I think this covers one of the major issues in the conflict very well!

YOU MUST FIRST RESPECT YOUR FOE.

By Gilad Atzmon

08/28/06 “peacepalestine”——It is now clear that as much as the Israeli Army doesn’t know how to win a war, the Israeli people do not know how to lose one. Already at the late stages of the recent wave of hostility in Lebanon the Israelis were desperately searching for a scapegoat, someone to blame, someone who would take personal responsibility for the humiliating Israeli collective defeat.

It didn’t take long before the Israelis turned en mass against Dan Halutz, their IDF Chief of Staff. They accused him of being an ‘arrogant pilot’, for being ‘detached from reality’ and for ‘not preparing the Army to win a war’. Dan Halutz, no doubt a qualified war criminal as well as an Israeli stock exchange inside trader, dismissed his critics. Yet, as one may expect, Halutz wouldn’t stand up and admit in public that the leader of a miniscule Arab paramilitary force, the legendary Hassan Nasrallah was just slightly better than himself in wining a battle and concluding a war. In fact, Nasrallah was just better than every Israeli general in using his force, in manoeuvring his fighting units, in strategic moves and tactical decisions. Halutz and his staff generals wouldn’t admit it because being Israeli soldiers, a product of Jewish nationalism and crude racism, they are all supremacist to the bone.

While in a meeting with reservist commanders last week Halutz learned about an IDF commander who refused to rescue combatants just because “they were not under his direct command”. He learned as well about another Israeli commander who managed to evade the battlefield in the midst of the fight. The commander was found hours later hiding inside a tank. Yes, the Israelis are far from being heroes, their paratroopers do not shoot from the hip as much as their tank commanders do not expose their upper body while the battle goes on. They all prefer to hide behind their glorious Merkava tank’s armour. However, they all fail to admit that the Hezbollah are just exactly the opposite. The Hezbollah warriors do shoot from the hip and they don’t have armoured vehicles to hide in. Yet, the Israelis would prefer blaming themselves rather than simply admitting that an Arab fighter happens to be just slightly better.

These days, an extensive Israeli reservist rebellion is emerging in Israel. The humiliated IDF fighters are somehow very unhappy. They felt unprepared for the war. Their weapons were faulty, so they say, they lacked the necessary gear, the ‘catering services’ failed to serve their food exactly when they expected it. If this isn’t enough, they insist as well that intelligence was misleading and orders where confusing. Like the archetypal Jewish mother, the newly born Hebraic Samson is a venerable effeminate character who would prefer to endorse the role of the victim. I believe that when the Israelis engage in self-criticism they tend to regard themselves as a collective of outspoken liberal beings. But in fact, they all lie to themselves. By putting themselves down they save themselves from confessing the clear fact that at least in this round the ‘Arabs’ were just far better.

The reservist rebels call for the immediate resignation of Olmert, Peretz and Halutz. Peretz so they say, is just a small ‘Union leader’, he lacks the capacity to command the army of a hostile state that insists upon putting world peace at a constant threat. They may be right. Peretz isn’t a natural talent. Indeed he was quick to join the never ending list of Israeli war criminals, he gave the Israeli Army the green light to bring ‘Lebanon to its knees’, to kill so many civilians, to destroy a country’s civil infrastructure. Yet Peretz was not a tactical or strategic visionary. He was good enough to spread death in the region but he himself didn’t understand what all this loss was there to serve. Unlike Peretz, who became a mass murderer just a few days into the war for absolutely no reason, Sheikh Nasrallah has managed to defeat Israel without bringing the state to its knees, without killing many civilians. Nasrallah won a war without being a mass murderer. And the question to be asked is whether the time is ripe for the Israelis to admit that a Lebanese Shiite leader is far more advanced both intellectually and morally than their own leaders. May I tell you, this is not going to happen. The Israelis are racist to the bone. Even now after being defeated by a bold patriotic group of warriors, they are still convinced that they are fighting a fanatical bunch of sub-humans.

And what about Olmert, the man who was voted to implement a sickening judeocentric unilateral peace agenda and managed to bring his country into a miserable war less than four months later? Would he admit in public or even to himself that it was Assad, Ahmadinejad and Nasrallah who smashed the Israeli power of deterrence without causing any damage to the infrastructures? They did it without killing many civilians at all, just with light weaponry and conventional rockets, without American planes and Merkava tanks. They did it without hundreds of nuclear bombs. Will the Israelis admit that Assad, Ahmadinejad and Nasrallah are just slightly more clever than their own miserable leadership whom they ‘democratically elected’?

I say no, I say never! Israel is a racist national state. It is supremacist to the bone. The Israelis are not capable of regarding their neighbours as equal human beings. This is exactly why Israel has never been and never will be a partner for peace. In order to make peace you must first respect your foe.

Gilad Atzmon was born in Israel and served in the Israeli military. He is the author of two novels: A Guide to the Perplexed and the recently released My One and Only Love. Atzmon is also one of the most accomplished jazz saxophonists in Europe. His recent CD, Exile, was named the year’s best jazz CD by the BBC. He now lives in London and can be reached at: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

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By Kwagmyre, August 28, 2006 at 6:50 pm Link to this comment
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Barry comments:

“Jews were here along with the Arabs for all of history, and the UN decided to take the area from the British “empire” and make two countries for the two peoples here.”

OK, that’s all fine & dandy but if it’s the UN that made that decision why hasn’t Israel then abided by Resolution #242(I think that’s the #)which REQUIRED them to cede back the territory taken in the ‘67 war? 

And as far as the 95 or 97% figure which is so often given, if Israel was already required by International Law to return ALL that territory then these “concessions” are essentially meaningless.  They’re not doing anything more than they’re already supposed to.

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By Spinoza, August 28, 2006 at 5:30 pm Link to this comment
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>>>I just figured it out!  Spinoza really believes in the ethical relativism of his namesake!  Baruch Spinoza was the big promoter of ethical relativism, that (to quote Wikkipedia) “that nothing is good or bad, except to the extent that it is subjectively perceived to be by the individual.” <<<<

Barry you are ignorant of the thinking of Spinoza.  He is neither an ethical relativist nor absolutist.  He is a rationalist which means he takes a “scientific” approach to ethics.  Spinoza was one of the founders of the enlightenment and is the primary source of the ideas of an ethical culture.  The more modern thinker was Kant who further rationalized the idea of modern ethical theory and it is to this school that I consider myself a part of.  In both Kant and Spinoza’s thinking we should do that which if done universally would be universally good.

This of course goes along with the Greek idea that we should aim for the “true, good and beautiful” in everything we do in life.  Though of course their are contradictory ideas you will find these ideas to be part of Judaism, Christianity and Islam.

“Spinoza argues that knowledge of good and evil arises from the awareness of what causes pleasure and pain. The greatest good of the mind, and its greatest virtue, is to know God (IV, Prop. XXVIII). To act with virtue is to act according to reason (IV, Prop. XXXVI). If we act according to reason, then we desire only what is good. If we act according to reason, then we try to promote what is good not only for ourselves but for others. Freedom is the ability to act according to reason. Freedom is not the ability to make free, undetermined choices. Freedom is the ability to act rationally and to control the emotions. Servitude is the inability to act rationally or to control the emotions”

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By Geronimo, August 28, 2006 at 4:06 pm Link to this comment
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How Zionists Blackmail The World

Unless Israel gets what it wants, the rest of ua get the mushroom cloud.  .  .

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By salman, August 28, 2006 at 12:50 pm Link to this comment
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Surprise surprise! Barry’s been quoting “international laws” and the UN. Two things which the U.S. considers the greatest irritants to its persuit of world hegemony. It shows little or no respect for international laws and only uses the UN when it serves its purpose; where Bolton works as a second UN Ambassador for Israel.

As for the Camp David proposals, here’s some answers from the Palestinian side; please read these, objectively, without racist bais:
http://www.palestinemonitor.org/Camp David Myth/negotiating_team_answers.htm

The shadow of ZOG by Israel Shamir:
http://www.israelshamir.net/English/shadowofzog.htm

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By Barry, August 28, 2006 at 12:42 pm Link to this comment
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To correct my own typo in 20319: it’s factually correct that Jordan controled the West Bank and East Jerusalem 19 years and didn’t create a Palestinian state.  (not West Jerusalem)

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By Barry, August 28, 2006 at 11:51 am Link to this comment
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Salman wrote “I believe that 95% too was only 22% of original Palestinian land”

This is a key misunderstanding.  There was no original Palestinian land, there was no original Palestinian country.  There was thousands of years when Arabs and Jews both lived here, under one empire after another.  It was no more Palestinian than it was Jewish, both lived here.  Then the UN decided on the partition plan.

All this is documented history.  Perpetuating lies about countries that didn’t exist, or denying the right of international law to create countries, or denying the fairness of creating two states in an area occupied by two peoples, is silly and counterproductive.

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By Barry, August 28, 2006 at 11:33 am Link to this comment
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Salman, the 5% was a Israeli suburb of Jerusalem with tens of thousands of residents.  News reports said that Arafat didn’t even argue.  It’s not about green or posh, it’s about an existing city.  Moving a city of tens of thousands of Israelis is no different than moving all New Yorkers out of Manhattan to give it back to the Indians.

People, Israel is a country.  Jews were here along with the Arabs for all of history, and the UN decided to take the area from the British “empire” and make two countries for the two peoples here.  Israel made a country, the Palestinians could have (they had the whole west bank and Eastern Jerusalem immediately after 1948) but they didn’t.  Bad choice.

And yes, Spinoza, it’s factually correct that the 5% was the Efrat and other towns in the Etzion block, and it’s factually correct that Jordan controled the West Bank and West Jerusalem for 19 years and didn’t create a Palestinian state.  And it’s factually correct that Jews have been here (along with Arabs) for thousands of years.  And it’s factually correct that the area was controled by outside empires for all that time, until the UN decided on the partition plan.

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By Barry, August 28, 2006 at 10:42 am Link to this comment
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Socrates, why does the number of civilian casualties mean that Israel didn’t try to minimize the number of civilian casualties?  Minimize means just that, minimize, given the need to kill the terrorists who chose to hide in and under houses and hospitals.

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By salman, August 28, 2006 at 10:24 am Link to this comment
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Unfortunately these Zionist sympathisers are so brainwashed by their racist ideology. I mean its such a joke. “We offered 95%!!!” Well Sir why the hell were you keeping back 5%? I mean were these some beggars you were dealing with; that you say you made a generous offer; what more did they want. First as I’ve said repeatedly, you get booted out of Europe; then you occupy land for a multiplicity of dubious and mythological reasons.
What you fail to mention is that, say in a big town; if 5% of area is really posh and green and 95% is slum and desert, then offering the 95% wouldn’t make much sense would it? And in any case I believe that 95% too was only 22% of original Palestinian land.
This guy Realist aka Delusional is truly the essence of evil. Every single day without a moments break the U.S. and Israel kill civilians just for target practice. Literally hundreds of thousands have died in Afghanistan and Iraq as a result of the wars. Women, children, whole wedding parties, old men with disabilities, widows, orphans bombed, maimed, murdered, and burnt to their deaths; not to mention the humiliation and deaths in custody by members of the KKK at Abu Ghraib. And this man has the gall to speak of a moral high ground; “keeping civilian casualties to a minimum” How sick can you get. Pure and simple racism!
In fact the U.S. army is under orders not to count the Iraqi or Afghan dead. Why? Because the jihadis Pat Robertson and Gerry Falwell have told them you are doing God’s work; kill as many as you want. The Rapture on its way.
This is why when the Controlled and devil-driven U.S. media in the midst of a war comes up with smokescreens such as Jill Carrol or Jessica Lynch; people around the world are asking themselves; how about the stories of the countless men, women and children brutally murdered by the U.S. and Israel. How about a documentary on the Palestinian family which was blown to bits( a lone surviving girl screaming for her parents) on a Gaza beach. Why would any American cry for them? After all they’re not human beings; they don’t speak with an American accent; they are not European looking; they weren’t sitting in a pizzeria; what do their lives matter?

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By Socrates, August 28, 2006 at 4:44 am Link to this comment
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``No country is totally innocent when it comes to conflict but at least some of us try to keep civilian casualties to a minimum (thats more than can be said for the muslim butchers of Islam).’‘

Very few countries really go out of their way to keep civilian casualties to a minimum during conflicts…that’s just a load of BS. Certainly not Israel…the numbers speak for themselves (e.g., over 90% of people killed in Lebanon recently by Israel were civilians; compared with less than 50% for Hezbollah).

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By Barry, August 27, 2006 at 9:19 pm Link to this comment
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I just figured it out!  Spinoza really believes in the ethical relativism of his namesake!  Baruch Spinoza was the big promoter of ethical relativism, that (to quote Wikkipedia) “that nothing is good or bad, except to the extent that it is subjectively perceived to be by the individual.”

That’s why bombing cafes and bus stations isn’t bad, as long as the bombers subjectively perceive themselves to be right.  Jordan and Egypt sticking Palestinians into refugee camps isn’t bad as long as they subjectively perceive themselves as doing it for long-term good.  Choosing intifada over having a state isn’t bad as long as Arafat subjectively perceived himself as doing what would get him more international aid.

Well, Spinoza, I’ll choose any day to be on the side that accepted the UN partition plan, proposed a state giving the Palestinians 95% of what they wanted (this number according to a Palestinian supporter on this list), and withdrew from Lebanon and Gaza.  You can subjectively perceive whatever you want.

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By Barry, August 27, 2006 at 8:36 pm Link to this comment
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Spinoza, it’s simple, if I were in the Palestinian’s shoes I’d have accepted the partition plan in 1948, or I’d have established a state in 1948 in the West Bank, or I’d have said yes to Barak’s proposal at Camp David.  It’s that simple. 

Would any of these have been perfect?  No.  Life’s imperfect.  But if I were in their shoes that’s what I’d have done, and I’d have had a much better life than they’ve had.

Now, what have I said that’s factually incorrect?

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By salman, August 27, 2006 at 7:40 pm Link to this comment
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Comment 20190 by Spinoza:

Thank you for the link. I’m sure their’s millions of Jews out there who empathise with the situation of the Palestinians and now the Lebanese. If somehow they could use their collective voice to counter AIPAC and the other forces which have taken control of the U.S. Congress.

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By Kwagmyre, August 27, 2006 at 9:08 am Link to this comment
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In a previous post I said:

“Your analogy would like if I acquired a pit bull, trained it to be the meanest dog in the neighborhood, then realizing it was even dangerous to me, decided to erect a strong enough fence to keep it away from me and those who I cared about whenever possible.”

Minor correction needed.  I should have started with “my” analogy instead of “your” since I’m the one that provided it.

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By Spinoza, August 27, 2006 at 8:36 am Link to this comment
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This would be a more permanent url


http://www.counterpunch.org/cockburn08262006.html

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By Spinoza, August 27, 2006 at 5:42 am Link to this comment
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Hopefully there will be one person here who will sign this petition and contribute a few dollars.


http://www.jewishsolidarity.info/petition.php

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By Spinoza, August 27, 2006 at 5:38 am Link to this comment
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Do people like Barry, Mar, Realist, Alice really truly in their heart of hearts believe what they post?  Do you realize that most of it is factually incorrect?  You are creating stories to convince you to hate others instead of exploring both evidence and heart.

Try to put yourself in the shoes of the other.

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By salman, August 27, 2006 at 3:14 am Link to this comment
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Thank you Kwagmyre; in fact there’s countless statements of Israeli leaders dehumanizing the Palestinians. Here’s some more:

“The settlement of the Land of Israel is the essence of Zionism. Without settlement, we will not fulfill Zionism. It’s that simple.”
—Yitzhak Shamir, Maariv, 02/21/1997.

“(The Palestinians) would be crushed like grasshoppers ... heads smashed against the boulders and walls.”
—Isreali Prime Minister (at the time) Yitzhak Shamir in a speech to Jewish settlers New York Times April 1, 1988
“I would have joined a terrorist organization.”
—Ehud Barak’s response to Gideon Levy, a columnist for the Ha’aretz newspaper, when Barak was asked what he would have done if he had been born a Palestinian.
Remember these are the guys who introduced terrorism to the middle east.
For Alice in wonderland: When you move to a new place, you must learn to live in peace and respect your neighbors; don’t go tear down their olive gardens; kill their kids and then complain of suicide bombs. If that’s a problem then ask Uncle Sam to give them F-16’s.
” Iran is helping Hezbollah”; coming from a country which interferes in the affairs of almost every country on earth; contradicts the very concept of democracy( the majority principle), by imposing its will on everyone on the planet( 5% people dictating to 95%); the country which has killed the most number of people outside of its borders, and continues to do so.
I agree with Alice on just one point though. She’s quite right about the oil money. The petro dollars should have been used to buy off the U.S. media and everyone on Capitol Hill. There was plenty to go around; they could have easily outbid AIPAC.

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By Kwagmyre, August 26, 2006 at 4:22 pm Link to this comment
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Alice writes:

“The wall would not have been necessary if the Palestinians had not strapped bombs around their own teenagers and sent them into Israel to blow up civilians in discos, pizzerias, buses, and Passover seders.”

Your analogy would like if I acquired a pit bull,  trained it to be the meanest dog in the neighborhood, then realizing it was even dangerous to me, decided to erect a strong enough fence to keep it away from me and those who I cared about whenever possible. 

The point to this is that you’ve clearly overlooked how the Palestinian suicide bombers have become “conditioned” to act the way they do.
Desperation can drive anyone to take desperate measures when they realize they’re inextricably caught in a helpless predicament. 

No less than Golda Meir was supposed to have said that she could imagine herself being a suicide bomber when came to realize the poignant plight of the Palestinians and how they could be driven to take desperate measures like this.

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By salman, August 26, 2006 at 2:41 pm Link to this comment
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Re. 20057 by Alice:

First of all I’d like to ask you Alice, what exactly are you doing in the middle east? With a name like that shouldn’t you be in England or Iceland or Holland or even Wonderland?
I mean just because Hitler did some nasty stuff to you, how did you acquire land rights in the middle east? And then you are not satisfied with what you got; your want more and more.
Have you counted the number of Palestinians murdered since you wrote your deceitful post? I guess they don’t matter cuz they weren’t in a pizzeria? Remember that family on the beach?
Shame on you squatter settler!
Now read this and chew on it for sometime, before you spew out more hate:

http://www.counterpunch.org/
Who’s to Blame?
Israel on the Slide
By ALEXANDER COCKBURN

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By salman, August 26, 2006 at 12:19 pm Link to this comment
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Spinoza your posts are the most insightful and interesting; balanced and not hate-spewing.

BTW I think when Mars said that the “Palestinians were not chased, they ran”, I think he really meant they were training for the olympics; and the Jews were just helping them run faster by firing at their rear ends.

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By MAR, August 26, 2006 at 11:32 am Link to this comment
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Salman asks: Why did they run? His answer: becasue they were afraid. I answered that many posts ago on the evidence of the day. They ran because they thought the Jews were going to visit on them the same fate that the Arabs had proposed for Jews before Israel won the ‘48 war. The Arabs promised Jewish blood running into the sea; the now-Israelis countered by offering citizenship and treatment due a citizen of the new Israel.  Sure, they could return but the accepted way is not with hate in their hearts and with a suicide bomb wrapped around them. 

The vindictive Palestinian from the camps is really the product of the Arabs for the above reason and because the Arab nations ignored the plight of those that unnecessarily fled and ended up in the camps.

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By The Realist, August 26, 2006 at 11:14 am Link to this comment
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Yes, conflict is a terrible thing. Death is a terrible thing. What a pity all the knee jerk rhetoric gets an airing all the time. No country is totally innocent when it comes to conflict but at least some of us try to keep civilian casualties to a minimum (thats more than can be said for the muslim butchers of Islam).

Perhaps all the muslims and wannabe muslims out there should start finding out the truth about the scum they so eagerly defend.

It is true that not all muslims are terrorists but it is equally true that 99.9% of terrorists are muslim.

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By Barry, August 26, 2006 at 10:48 am Link to this comment
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Many Arabs fled or were driven out of Israel in 1948.  Many Jews fled or were driven out of all the Arab countries in 1948.  These are both clear facts.

Most of the Arabs that fled or were driven out of Israel in 1948 ended up in the West Bank or Gaza.  Most of the Jews who fled or were driven out of Arab countries in 1948 ended up in Israel.

The above-mentioned Arab refugees were put into refugee camps by Jordan and Egypt, who controled the West Bank and Gaza from 1948 until 1967.  The above-mentioned Jewish refugees were built housing and towns by the weeks-old Israeli government, and formed the very productive sefardi portion of Israeli society.

Any Jews in Arab countries who didn’t leave were killed.  Today there are none.  Any Arabs in Israel who didn’t leave, and who lived within the Israeli borders between 1948 and 1967, received citizenship and full protection of law, perhaps not better than blacks and hispanics in America but not worse.  (Arab towns may not be the richest, but they’re no worse than poor Jewish towns like Sderot.)

We can argue forever about who caused refugees.  The 1948 war was a war between cultures living interspersed, and everyone did things that political theorists agree shouldn’t have happened.  But we can see the differences when we look at who put people in refugee camps, who integrated them into society, and who allowed non-refugees to stay and live.

And yes, I’ve seen Arab towns in Israel’s pre-1967 borders.  I’ve been to nightclubs in those towns, I’ve seen the cars parked in the streets, I’ve seen the nice apartment buildings and single-family houses there.  Virtually half the cab drivers in Western (Jewish side) Jerusalem are Arabs who live in Arab towns.

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By Spinoza, August 25, 2006 at 11:05 pm Link to this comment
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I copied and pasted the following from the Angry Arab Web site.


“In the past month, say Egyptian newspapers, no fewer than 124 babies born in the city of Alexandria have been named Nasrallah. For good measure, one mother called her newborn twins Hassan and Nasrallah. The name of Hizbullah’s chief also topped the list of the most popular political figures in Egypt, in a recent opinion poll, followed by two other bearded Islamists, Khaled Meshaal, the exiled leader of Hamas, the Palestinian movement, and Iran’s president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. By way of contrast, when Gamal Mubarak, the Egyptian president’s ambitious son, hitched a lift into Beirut airport with a highly publicised relief cargo from Cairo, text messages in Egypt’s capital joked that he was “waging jihad in the cause of photography”.”

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By Lefty, August 25, 2006 at 9:14 pm Link to this comment
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Chris,

You begin your analysis with a false premise: “It is the Israeli penchant for violence and occupation that slowly created and formed these frightening groups.”  An article beginning with a false premise is doomed to end with a false conclusion.  I don’t have the patience to read your analysis.

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By Spinoza, August 25, 2006 at 7:15 pm Link to this comment
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>>>What I really cannot for the life of me understand is that the Jewish people, who without question are amongst the most gifted people on earth cannot resolve this conflict. <<<<

The great evil is nationalism. The belief that ones tribe is better then all other tribes. It clouds the mind and prevents rational thought. It causes people to work against their own best interest. It is hard to believe that Jews would be working with and supporting the far right.  It is hard to believe that Jews would be militarists and supporters of of the worst of capitalism.

Yet we saw Netanyahu, Sharon et. al. supporting the neo Nazis in Croatia and cavorting with the likes of Pat Robertson.

>>>> As I said on a previous post, the Jews didn’t chase the Palestinians from their lands, the Palestinians ran. <<<<


Mar, you are perhaps one of the most ignorant and dishonest people posting here.  Your claim of neutrality is one of the many lies you tell. But that is typical liberal behavior.

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By Geronimo, August 25, 2006 at 6:17 pm Link to this comment
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Salmon (Comment #20016) asks why it is that the Jewish people haven’t resolved the Middle East conflict.  It’s because Zionism, a mutant strain of Judaism, is now the official ideology of the Jewish establishment ,  which means that peace between Arabs and Jews is strictly a non-starter.  Unless, of course, the Palestinians agree to forfeit any claim to their homeland, Palestine, now occupied by Jewish settlers, which will never happen this side of genocide. 

There are, of course, many anti-Zionist Jews but, unfortunately,  most are unseen, unspoken and unheard.  The Zionist establishment sees to that,  slandering Jewish opponents with the charge of being self-hating Jews.

Turns out that not all anti-Zionist Jews are silenced by this intimidation.  Those who resist and continue to speak out are the true Jews.  The true Jew is always on the side of the slave and against the slavemaster, even if that slavemaster happens to be a relative, a friend or a co-religionist.  Quite naturally then, the true Jew finds herself on the side of the Palestinian people, being that it’s their homeland that’s been occupied by Jewish settlers and to be occupied is to be enslaved.

The true Jew knows that only the slave can free us all and that none of us will be free until the last chain is broken. 

So how to resolve the Middle East conflict?  No problem!  Palestinians together with true Jews will find a way.  Count on it!  .  .  .

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By Spinoza, August 25, 2006 at 5:48 pm Link to this comment
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This article is germane to the discussion and the mentality of those who don’t want a fresh start.


Thinking About Violence in Our Schools


The violence in the schools, like conflict and violence everywhere, follows a model. The model presented here was developed by Stanford University Professor Rene Girard. It applies in general to conflicts at any level of intensity. It has 5 stages.

1. Mimetic Desire
One party identifies an object of desire and other parties imitate that desire. Examples of things children and adults desire: respect, attention, money, happiness, power, land, jobs, knowledge. Whatever the culture tells us is desirable, that’s what people adopt as worth having.

2. Mimetic Rivalry
Now the parties begin competing for the object of desire. Whatever good competitive strategies emerge, others copy them. Since it’s a rivalry, it’s played as a win/lose game. To win, you only need to get more of the desirable object than the rival. If the object of desire is respect, you hit the rival with tokens of disrespect. This is done first with verbal violence, put downs, taunts, and escalates to rejection, alienation and shunning.

3. Skandalon
Skandalon is a Greek word that means “trap”. It’s the root of “slander” and “scandal.” In the rivalry for respect, if one side is “dissed” they are caught in the temptation of Skandalon and feel compelled to retaliate. Thus begins a “dissing” war, fought on the battlefield of the psyche. Skandalon is what makes it so hard not to take the bait, so hard just to walk away. It’s so easy to retaliate. The give and take escalates into mutual and mimetic enthrallment.

4. Alienation and Scapegoating
Eventually one side crosses some arbitrary threshold of concern where the supervising authorities feel compelled to intervene. It’s essentially random which side crosses first, but often it’s the weaker faction, which uses more venomous attacks to maintain parity. Whichever side goes over the arbitrary line becomes blameworthy, and the others who kept their violence below threshold are the victims. They gang up on and alienate the scapegoat, calling for the authorities to intervene and punish the blameworthy party.

5. Authorized, Sanctioned and Sacred Violence
To appease the mob/majority, the authorities determine guilt and visit sanctions and punishment on the scapegoat. This escalates the violence to the next higher level of authority in our culture.

The 5-stage pattern repeats at all levels of power and for all rivalries and competitions. The most virulent conflicts are over respect, attention, money, power, sex, land, or ideology. Ethnic conflicts and school “tribes” follow this model.

In the Balkans, centuries of low-grade ethnic conflicts bubble along until one side gets enough power to visit depredations on another. Thus we see genocide and ethnic cleansing. At every point in a conflict, the dynamic is somewhere in the 5-stage model, which repeats endlessly.

The only way to stop the violence is to adopt the conscious goal of de-escalation and run the model backward. Giving up objects of rivalrous desire, avoiding the temptation of skandalon, avoiding alienation and scapegoating, avoiding authorized and sanctioned violence.

Two years ago NATO visited authorized and sanctioned violence upon the Serbs. Thus NATO ran the global violence model forward toward more future violence. In Kosovo, the mimetic object of rivalrous desire was the right to use state-sanctioned violence to maintain the social order desired by those in power. In Kosovo, the Albanians were the outcasts being shunned by the Serbs. In Littleton, the outcasts were the smart “nerdy” students, shunned by the “jocks” and “debs”.

The terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon demonstrate that not just military forces are capable of massive strikes. Now the country proposes to visit retribution on whomever can be identifed as blameworthy, thus renewing the cycle for the next round, which could take as long as 20 years to cycle through.

A common type of scapegoat is a person who bears witness and speaks the truth to power. Powerful figures in human history were martyred for bearing witness to brutality and oppression.

In Littleton, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold bore witness to the pervasive and horrific culture of violence that children wage with cruel verbal abuse, shunning, and other powerful tokens of disrespect.

Treating those boys as if they were “scum of the earth” was a regrettable act of verbal violence, and—alienated and trapped in Skandalon—they felt compelled to retaliate, with tragic results. Conflict left to itself tends to escalate over time.

Now we will isolate, marginalize, alienate, and scapegoat a new blameworthy enemy, and their progeny will reciprocate in due time, with even more ingenious uses of our own technology turned back on us, as weapons against us.

We need to think our way out of violence by mindfully running the model backward, de-escalating violence and moving toward peace.

At every stage of the model, we need to be mindful of the dynamic we are caught up in, and consciously elect to run the model in reverse. Until now, the great theologians and peacemakers presented this as tenets of important religions or as tenets of ethics or morality.

With Girard’s Systems Theoretic Model of the dynamic structure of conflict and violence, we can discover the optimal strategy to drive the system in reverse toward non-violence and peace. Science and reason arrive at the same optimal solution as that proposed historicly by Jesus, Buddha, Gandhi, King, Thich Nhat Hanh, John Dear, and thousands of other rational thinkers who thought deeply about the problems of violence, oppression, and injustice.

It’s pure science, pure reason, and pure theology. These methods of thought all reach the same insightful solution.

It’s time we learned it so that we can discontinue the mindless practice of killing ourselves off. It’s time we learned, reviewed, reflected, and meditated on this model. You can do that in the context of your faith, or in the context of a quiet meditation on a scientific model. It’s the same calming mindfulness.

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By Alice, August 25, 2006 at 5:16 pm Link to this comment
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The wall would not have been necessary if the Palestinians had not strapped bombs around their own teenagers and sent them into Israel to blow up civilians in discos, pizzerias, buses, and Passover seders.  This *after* rejecting a US-sponsored peace offer at Camp David offering them 97% of the territories as an independent state, with sovereignty over half of Jerusalem.  (How’s that for US complicity in the occupation?)

After Israel withdrew from Lebanon and from Gaza, instead of building a productive state the Palestinians attacked Israel with rockets, and Hezbollah, Iran’s puppet, did the same, both over internationally recognized borders where there was *no* occupation.  (With record oil profits, why aren’t the Arab states and Iran helping the Palestinians build their society, instead of just providing arms and supporting terrorism?  What about *their* complicity in violence?)

When Iran gets a nuclear weapon, people like Mr. Hedges will finally realize that Islamic extremist violence isn’t just Israel’s problem.

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By salman, August 25, 2006 at 4:35 pm Link to this comment
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I’m surprised DELUSIONAL is calling us Nazis; because short of mass genocide, I believe the treatment of Palestinians by the Zionists pales in comparison to the European treatment of Jews thru the centuries. I wonder what the Muslim-hater Fallaci has to say about that?
The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is the root cause of all the attacks against westerners whether in Bali or London; one of the videos records the statement of one of the suicide bombers in which he clearly speaks of his outrage at western connivance in the death and destruction of Muslims; for the Zionist delusional to delink Israel as a festering wound is yet another proof of his EVIL.
I think Mar’s statement quote:
“As I said on a previous post, the Jews didn’t chase the Palestinians from their lands, the Palestinians ran” unquote; speaks volumes.
Only recently, on CBS’s 60 Minutes there was a segment about a Jewish family( one of them an American ) whose home in Vienna had been taken by the Nazis; that home was Austrian Govt property and was rented out by the Austrian Govt to the U.S. Embassy; after a long drawn battle the Jews won their case; the house will be returned to them and of course the U.S. govt. has said they will vacate immediately( surprise, surprise). The final scene in the segment pictured the family, champagne glasses in hand, celebrating.
Now my question to the ” noble” Mars is why is it that a Palestinian family who left their home for whatever reason; let’s assume for a second, they weren’t forced out( they ran as you put it); or just went on a vacation on R & R; why have they no right to return even to the land they left; let alone reclaim their houses?

Realist( Delusional) is too far gone in his hate for Muslims; all he needs to know is if you especially google stuff against Christians or Jews and the atrocities committed by them, you’ll hit mountains which will deluge you. If we go that track; they’ll be a lot of copy and paste on this forum.

Incidentally, just heard on NBC, there’s thousands of unexploded U.S. fedexed cluster bombs lying around in south Lebanon; killing people daily; there’s mini Balis going on every day. But then of course what business is that of Muslims anywehere? After all when you kill its terrorism; when we kill, you should thank us, cause we are bringing freedom and democracy!

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By MAR, August 25, 2006 at 3:22 pm Link to this comment
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Just a peek back. I visited the site and saw a reference to Goodman’s interview with the former Israeli Forreign affairs boffo (in BARAK’s government, no less)  because I thought perhaps I had something wrong. (Always quite possible) But I think the opinions voiced had more to do with internal Israeli political machinations. I don’t know how old those guys were in 1947-55 but my bet they weren’t there (or even born) and they are reading what they want to.  The following is my take even though I wasn’t on the scene until the Suez crisis.

Just a recap: There were Jews in Palestine before 1900 but the Zionist movement starting feeding them into Palestine - their homeland as far as they were concerned. When Arabs attacked settlements (sound familiar?)  the Jews formed Haganah, to protect themselves against the murder and mayhem brought about by Arabs raids.  Eventually, some Arabs became very friendly to Jews and vice verse.

After the Arab War of 1936(?) and the Hebron masacre (more Jews killed by Arabs)the Brits, who had the Mandate, helped the Haganah to reorganize into a more credible force - possibly something like Hezbollah.

Men from Haganah formed the Jewish Brigade in World War II as a more regular force to fight the Nazis. So to this degree the Jews had some well-trained and motivated at the end of the war. The more outlawish sub-forces such as Irgun and Palmach were dissolved. 

The Brits came out with their White Paper and the UN came out with its vote for the creation of a Jewish state in Palestine in 1947. There was mayhem as Arab Palestinians attacked Jews and Jews fought with Arab Palestinians.  IN 1948 the Jews declared themselves the State of Israel. The Arab nations of Jordan, Egypt, Syria and so on (I forget which) joined the Palestinians. The interviewer says they were not very good armies. Only indofar as they were beaten. The Arab Brigade in Jordan was British-trained, British-equipped and was well-disciplined and was regarded as a significant force. As for the others, neither discipline nor much else had been their forte.

OK the Jews are now Israelis and won hands down. Jordan took the land now known as the West Bank from the Palestinians.  I repeat, Jordan took it.  Egypt kept Gaza, Syria hung on to the heights and Jerusalem was divided.
From Wikipedia: 
quote:
Large numbers of the Arab population fled the newly-created Jewish State during the Palestinian exodus, which is referred to by many Palestinian groups and individuals as the Nakba (Arabic: النكبة), meaning “disaster” or “cataclysm”. Many historians suggest that the Palestinians fled because of orders from Arab generals. Many Palestinians left under the belief that the Arab armies would prevail and they would return.[8] Moreover, Israel offered — in the Declaration of the Establishment of the State of Israel — to the Arab inhabitants of the State of Israel the full and equal citizenship and due representation in all its provisional and permanent institutions, but many refused.
end quote.

As I said on a previous post, the Jews didn’t chase the Palestinians from their lands, the Palestinians ran.

Moreover, it was my experience that the Arab nation did nothing to help the refugees - they did not take them in and look after them but encouraged them to stay in the camps as a running public relations sore to be used against Israel. Nor did the refugees do much to help their own situation. For example, the use of a shovel to dig latrines and so on. The camps were a disgrace but not an Israeli disgrace. They are an Arab disgrace and a UN disgrace.

When our observer troops were pulled from the line at Nassar’s order (UN observers had to have the consent of both sides to “keep the peace” then Nasser started his tanks rolling - those that would start. The Israelis caught the Egyptian Air Force on the gropund, not out of perfidy, but because the Egyptians, who live in the desert area, didn’t have enough smarts to put covers on the engines and so many were inhibited by sand!  Even MIGs can’t fly with sand in the engines and hydraulics. I saw it.

So long. I can see that this thread will be a continuing rant with many ordinaries getting bored and the same old same investive passed back and forth.

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By The Realist, August 25, 2006 at 2:45 pm Link to this comment
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I’m not going to respond to the Nazi abuses.

In my former post, I argued that the conflict between Israel and its neighbors is not over territory. If chamas says so, it’s only used as an excuse, a pretext. The final and overall aim is to annihilate Israel (Old Nasser’s crap dream).

But the problem is much broader than that. For instance, in Bali (Indonesia), in October 2002 nightclub suicide bombers killed 202 people, mostly tourists. What has this to do with Israel?

Then, last October, again in Bali, a suicide bomber detonated himself, killing 20 more innocents and injuring 120, some of them Australians. Again I ask: What has this to do with Israel?

But this is going on and on worldwide. A bunch of Islamic religious fanatics, using schemes worse than the Mafia is thriving for World Domination. And the world crippled and paralyzed by democracy, political correctness and self destructive wishful thinking, is unable, or still worse than that – afraid to oppose it!

To see the grave consequences, what’s happening in Italy, in Britain and in America, press the 3 links which appear below respectively. You’ll be amazed:

http://jihadwatch.org/archives/006631.php

http://www.melaniephillips.com

http://iona.ghandchi.com/emerson.htm

Hence once again, what does this have to do with Israel? Answer: Nada.

Now what’s the underlying aim of the Islamic neo fascists? Answer:

1.  To deny cooperation among free countries to fight back, or so to speak: “Divide and Conquer”.
2.  To put you asleep.

That’s why salman, abdul and their likes, sometimes speak softly to you guys – they are trying to put you asleep, (Remember Walt Disney’s “Trust in Me” with Kaa the snake in The Jungle Book film)?

They are trying to sell you the rubbish that the way to Israel passes through the Capitol. This is meant to blame Israel in everything except the terrorists. Don’t buy it.

Here’s another link. Listen to a courageous Arab woman – Wafa Sultan, what she says about Islamism on Al Jazeera:

http://eclairci.typepad.com/civilisation_vs_the_middl/2006/08/wafa_sultan_the.html#comment-21333225

If there is salvation for this our planet, it will certainly come from women like this. Great news is - she’s not alone!

Yours truly
The Realist

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By Jon B, August 25, 2006 at 12:40 pm Link to this comment
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China had spent enormous sum to build its Great Wall within its boundary. Its intended to fend off invading force and it failed. Two thousand years later, Israel models after China to build some concrete wall outside of its territory. So far, it accomplished nothing other than international condemnaton. No matter what and how many PR, it can not bury the news of those living under the occupation.

What a humanitarian disaster.

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By salman, August 25, 2006 at 12:11 pm Link to this comment
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Thank you Spinoza; I know there’s millions like you who yearn for peace. Just about every single Arab country has agreed to recognize Israel provided UN Resolutions are implemented.
One cannot dehumanize a whole people, treat them like dirt; kill a few every single day and then hope for peace.
What I really cannot for the life of me understand is that the Jewish people, who without question are amongst the most gifted people on earth cannot resolve this conflict.

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By Kwagmyre, August 25, 2006 at 11:03 am Link to this comment
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Posted by The Realist

“spinoza,

In one of my former posts I said: (I wouldn’t be surprised if (you) called (yourself) Albert Einstein – yet another Jew, who comes to my mind), but since you say you have a sister in Rehovot, I understand that you’re the-good-for-nothing-self-hater Quisling type.”

And since when does questioning one’s own religion or nationality amount to such traitorous activity? 

I guess we’re to assume then that because you’re NOT one to question in that fashion, that automatically entitles you to “The Realist” self-designation?

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By salman, August 25, 2006 at 10:21 am Link to this comment
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I think this guy REALIST should seriously consider changing his ID to DELUSIONAL.

Here we have a Zionist claiming to love democracy and freedom, threatening everyone who doesn’t agree with him, with the FBI or Mossad. I can quite understand why Goebells went for his type.
Foul! Foul! Hezbollah’s arming themselves with rockets; coming from someone who is armed to the teeth; with cluster bombs falling out of his backside. What a disgustingly shameless specimen!
“My opponent mustn’t have anything to defend himself, while I pound him into lean ground meat.” Gaza strip to the south; another Gaza strip to the north!
I wonder if DELUSIONAL is one of those thieving settlers busy committing grand larceny in the middle east. Kill a Palestinian and then shoot of another post on the internet.
Stop thieving and murdering and raping and pillaging and building fences and cutting off the water and electricity and kicking and humiliating and bulldozing and firing missiles on stone throwers and DELUSIONAL no one will be firing rockets or throwing stones at you. Now if that doesn’t make sense to you; then maybe your granny wasn’t born in the middle east and you should return to Poland or Russia or Germany; and there won’t be no Intafada.

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By Spinoza, August 25, 2006 at 10:00 am Link to this comment
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> Beware salman, the FBI and CIA’s after you). <<<


Nasty warmakers like Realist ought to be banned.

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By The Realist, August 25, 2006 at 5:42 am Link to this comment
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Many people at this forum ask questions of this sort or that, and then automatically blame Israel for all its neighbors’ misfortunes.

Others are led to believe that the issue is maybe around territorial dispute. So let me ask you two simple questions:

1.  For what purpose has the hizbulla accumulated an arsenal of thousands of rockets?

2.  Did Israel owe Lebanon even one inch of their soil?

Answer: for the only purpose to annihilate Israel and its people. This is what their war monger said over and over again.

Time and again, Israel has been attacked by its neighbors and countless terrorist acts are the norm each day, and each time it’s being frowned upon: “why, you don’t have the right to defend yourself!”, or better still: “you’re using excessive power!” “Stay put!” F-16 selective target bombings should be condemned, while indiscriminate firing of rockets on Kiryat Shmone and Sderot, to kill as many civilians as possible, is legitimate. Oh, what a joke!

How would some other sovereign state react if only one rocket was fired upon its civilians? Now you tell me!

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By The Realist, August 25, 2006 at 12:55 am Link to this comment
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spinoza,

In one of my former posts I said: (I wouldn’t be surprised if (you) called (yourself) Albert Einstein – yet another Jew, who comes to my mind), but since you say you have a sister in Rehovot, I understand that you’re the-good-for-nothing-self-hater Quisling type.

So, let me tell you this: you’ve soiled this thread with a’many cans of venom, but this will not save you. Know why? Coz in the eyes of your “mates” such as salman, fadel and their likes, you’re first of all and foremost - a Jew. Wait until they catch you in a dark corner (that is before they are caught by the FBI/CIA themselves).

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By M.Shahin, August 24, 2006 at 11:44 pm Link to this comment
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Most Americans do not realize what goes on for Palestinians on a daily basis.

This wall is cutting off livlihoods and more. It is just another measure in Israel policy to strangle the Palestinians.

They steal their land, then they wall them off in the worst parts of land as if the Israelis are retracing their days back to the ghettos they were forced into during the Hitler era.

They defend the wall by saying it keeps out suicide bombers, but where did the suicide bombers come from? It all points back to Israel.

Jews, Muslims, and Christians were all living in peace until Palestine became Israel. Hamas, Hezbollah, PLO - all such groups arose after the occupation.

Once people understand this, then maybe they will begin to understand why many in the Muslim world are angry at America for supporting Israel in its ruthless agression against others by supplying Israel with bombs to kill children.

We cannot stand by a nation that allows itself to cruelly crush others and in the same breath say they have a right to exist. Jews and Palestinians both have a right to exist, so why don’t the Israeli’s get their foot off the Palestinians for a moment and give them some measure of peace and just treatment.

Until Israel realizes this simple equation, it will forever be defending itself against terrorism.

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By The Realist, August 24, 2006 at 11:20 pm Link to this comment
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Salman writ:

“Let me add finally a) that I will condemn suicide bombings, 911, whatever, if some of the guys on this thread will condemn F-16 bombings”.

Before you open another can of worms, a correction is in order: dates are spelled this way – 9/11 and not as UN resolutions – 911.

Since you deliberately misspell 9/11 to belittle dates like this, and looking back at your former posts with which you’ve stained this thread, your statement that you “will condemn suicide bombings”, is not only lip service – it’s an outright lie and as it is with many liars – it has a purpose. Your purpose is more than transparent. (Beware salman, the FBI and CIA’s after you).

Having said that, your wish to condemn F-16 bombings is quite understandable. But don’t you see here a contradiction? You can’t APPROVE, I repeat APPROVE 9/11, Madrid, London, Bali etc. suicide bombings and at the same breath ask for F-16 condemnation, don’t you?

Nevertheless, I’ll address your jerky wish later on.

The Realist

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By Jon B, August 24, 2006 at 8:34 pm Link to this comment
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It would be wonderful if George W, Bush goes to Palestine and live among one of the oppressed. Upon his return, tell the world exactly how he feels. I know I know it will never happen. After all, he is a man without soul.

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By Spinoza, August 24, 2006 at 5:37 pm Link to this comment
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>>> All this silly, mindless hate and blabber by the excusers of the terrorist murderers<<<<


True liberal is a person who does need to be destoyed as he says. He can not live and let live. Like all warmongers it hurts him that their are people who want to see peace on this planet. Who want the planet to exist for all of our grand children.

Anyhow, I will fight against fascism and such ugly people till the day I die.

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By Spinoza, August 24, 2006 at 5:13 pm Link to this comment
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Amira Hass on reality.  Something very very necessary.


http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article14678.htm

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By Kwagmyre, August 24, 2006 at 4:57 pm Link to this comment
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Ed_tru_lib states:

“Israel makes mistakes. Israel is far from infallible, or selfless. But Israel, democratic, secular, no more or less subject to corruption, or political demogogues than America or western Europe,”

Secular?  Surely you’re joking???

I have a lady friend, American born, Jewish, was married years ago to an Israeli born guy, they got divorced after a few years being married. 

He was intending to return to Israel after this.  But she found out that for that divorce to be recognized as legit in Israel, they had to go through a formal ceremony called a “Get” in which she was subject to a gruelling, even humiliating litany of accusations hurled against her in Hebrew by a rabbi, all this because the divorce she had obtained here in the U.S. wasn’t sufficient enough.

And unless I’ve received false information, Israeli Arabs do NOT have the same legal authority to own property as Jewish born Israelis do.

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By ed_tru_lib, August 24, 2006 at 1:58 pm Link to this comment
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How pathetic. All this silly, mindless hate and blabber by the excusers of the terrorist murderers. A few, occasionally almost-as-ridiculous comments by the Israel-can-never-do-no-wrong crowd, and NO ONE HAS BUDGED AN INCH from their original positions from the beginning. (was the same Bush even president then?) A few, like Dov, who is actually there, have consistantly made sense. More than a few, like Spinoza and Fuddwallah, consistantly reveal, and revel in, their mindless hatred for even a free, peaceful Israel. And of course there are probably several who have changed their names a time or two.

Israel will trade the west bank and gaza for peace. They will stop launching missiles for peace. They will withdraw from lebanon and never attack it, ( as they haven’t Jordan or Egypt) for peace.
The hamas, al quaeda, hezbollah, plo, nazis etc etc lunatics and puppets will Never stop, unless they are destroyed. They, and their supporters, and enablers, are therefore, pure and simple, EVIL.
Israel makes mistakes. Israel is far from infallible, or selfless. But Israel, democratic, secular, no more or less subject to corruption, or political demogogues than America or western Europe, is so far beyond the cowering murderers, insane religious extremists, hijackers, iranian psychotics, and their lickspittle apologists here or anywhere, that of course they will ALWAYS defend themselves, and of course they will ultimately always prevail.
There are legitimate differing views on Israel’s handling of this last crisis. Very few of them have ever been expressed here. Most of the weeks of posts here are from people who would say, if there was a blog about it for them to post on, that the contractors at Auschwitz should be sued, or even prosecuted, for not making gas chambers or furnaces that could work faster. Unfortunately that seems to be the mindset of the actual people Israel now must negotiate with, as they have in the past. I simply can’t imagine why people have a problem understanding why this is likely to continue to be a bit of a problem, or why Israel would prefer to handle it a little more directly, if necessary.

As I said in my first post here, if negotiating parties BEGIN with the position that Israel will exist in peace behind what borders are agreed upon, the wars END—FOREVER. But of course one has to be sane, or at least not evil, to comprehend that.

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By Spinoza, August 24, 2006 at 8:28 am Link to this comment
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This in my view is one of the best comtempory accounts of recent events/negotiations on the issue of Palestine. It refutes most of what Dov has to say.

http://www.democracynow.org/finkelstein-benami.shtml

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By salman, August 24, 2006 at 1:59 am Link to this comment
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Let me add finally a) that I will condemn suicide bombings, 911, whatever, if some of the guys on this thread will condemn F-16 bombings. How can one be the face of evil and the other the face of good? When it’s common sense, that a suicide bomber will gladly rid himself of his suicide belt were he to have an F-16 instead;
b) I also think that DOV who says he’s an Israeli is someone you can sit and talk to. If only DOV could come up to Washington and quietly tap a few Congressmen and Senators on their shoulders and say to them: “Guys we enormously appreciate your help and support, but kindly back off a little and for goodness sake STOP sucking up to us so much. There’s more dissent of Israeli policies in Tel Aviv than there is on Capitol Hill. You are only making things more difficult for us.”
After all Jews and Arabs did co-exist for centuries before U.S. interference. There’s millions on both sides of the divide who long for peace; who want to end this cycle of demonising and brutalising.

Thank you.

Sal

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By Spinoza, August 24, 2006 at 12:45 am Link to this comment
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>>>Salaman, learn to read, I’ve said many times that Israelis would be happy to give the whole West Bank and Gaza for peace<<<<

My sister, who lives in Rehovot, says this often.  Honestly I don’t believe it sincere because she has also said that it would be nice to keep it.  I suspect that is the true attitude of most Israelis.  “Yes they will give it back if they must but that would be a shame”.

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By Barry, August 24, 2006 at 12:08 am Link to this comment
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I don’t understand—why can’t the Palestinians build up an economy in their own territory?  It’s not “chains” to keep Mexicans in Mexico.  They get millions in aid, let them build factories and stores and an economy on their own side of the 67 border.

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By The Realist, August 23, 2006 at 11:56 pm Link to this comment
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Salman,

It is very rare to encounter a twisted mind as yours:

Evil is good – Good is evil.

The death cult is good (re: 9/11 and other atrocities) – building roads, bridges and schools is evil.

This is not going to work out (re: Hitler’s end).

You should better see a psychiatrist.

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By Spinoza, August 23, 2006 at 11:44 pm Link to this comment
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I don’t know if I posted this article before but I think it covers the discrepancy between the perceptions of Jews and Arabs.


Hizbullah’s attacks stem from Israeli incursions into Lebanon
By Anders Strindberg

NEW YORK – As pundits and policymakers scramble to explain events in Lebanon, their conclusions are virtually unanimous: Hizbullah created this crisis. Israel is defending itself. The underlying problem is Arab extremism.
Sadly, this is pure analytical nonsense. Hizbullah’s capture of two Israeli soldiers on July 12 was a direct result of Israel’s silent but unrelenting aggression against Lebanon, which in turn is part of a six-decades long Arab-Israeli conflict.

Since its withdrawal of occupation forces from southern Lebanon in May 2000, Israel has violated the United Nations-monitored “blue line” on an almost daily basis, according to UN reports. Hizbullah’s military doctrine, articulated in the early 1990s, states that it will fire Katyusha rockets into Israel only in response to Israeli attacks on Lebanese civilians or Hizbullah’s leadership; this indeed has been the pattern.

In the process of its violations, Israel has terrorized the general population, destroyed private property, and killed numerous civilians. This past February, for instance, 15-year-old shepherd Yusuf Rahil was killed by unprovoked Israeli cross-border fire as he tended his flock in southern Lebanon. Israel has assassinated its enemies in the streets of Lebanese cities and continues to occupy Lebanon’s Shebaa Farms area, while refusing to hand over the maps of mine fields that continue to kill and cripple civilians in southern Lebanon more than six years after the war supposedly ended. What peace did Hizbullah shatter?

Hizbullah’s capture of the soldiers took place in the context of this ongoing conflict, which in turn is fundamentally shaped by realities in the Palestinian territories. To the vexation of Israel and its allies, Hizbullah - easily the most popular political movement in the Middle East - unflinchingly stands with the Palestinians.

Since June 25, when Palestinian fighters captured one Israeli soldier and demanded a prisoner exchange, Israel has killed more than 140 Palestinians. Like the Lebanese situation, that flare-up was detached from its wider context and was said to be “manufactured” by the enemies of Israel; more nonsense proffered in order to distract from the apparently unthinkable reality that it is the manner in which Israel was created, and the ideological premises that have sustained it for almost 60 years, that are the core of the entire Arab-Israeli conflict.

Once the Arabs had rejected the UN’s right to give away their land and to force them to pay the price for European pogroms and the Holocaust, the creation of Israel in 1948 was made possible only by ethnic cleansing and annexation. This is historical fact and has been documented by Israeli historians, such as Benny Morris. Yet Israel continues to contend that it had nothing to do with the Palestinian exodus, and consequently has no moral duty to offer redress.

For six decades the Palestinian refugees have been refused their right to return home because they are of the wrong race. “Israel must remain a Jewish state,” is an almost sacral mantra across the Western political spectrum. It means, in practice, that Israel is accorded the right to be an ethnocracy at the expense of the refugees and their descendants, now close to 5 million.

Is it not understandable that Israel’s ethnic preoccupation profoundly offends not only Palestinians, but many of their Arab brethren? Yet rather than demanding that Israel acknowledge its foundational wrongs as a first step toward equality and coexistence, the Western world blithely insists that each and all must recognize Israel’s right to exist at the Palestinians’ expense.

Western discourse seems unable to accommodate a serious, as opposed to cosmetic concern for Palestinians’ rights and liberties: The Palestinians are the Indians who refuse to live on the reservation; the Negroes who refuse to sit in the back of the bus.

By what moral right does anyone tell them to be realistic and get over themselves? That it is too much of a hassle to right the wrongs committed against them? That the front of the bus must remain ethnically pure? When they refuse to recognize their occupier and embrace their racial inferiority, when desperation and frustration causes them to turn to violence, and when neighbors and allies come to their aid - some for reasons of power politics, others out of idealism - we are astonished that they are all such fanatics and extremists.

The fundamental obstacle to understanding the Arab-Israeli conflict is that we have given up on asking what is right and wrong, instead asking what is “practical” and “realistic.” Yet reality is that Israel is a profoundly racist state, the existence of which is buttressed by a seemingly endless succession of punitive measures, assassinations, and wars against its victims and their allies.

A realistic understanding of the conflict, therefore, is one that recognizes that the crux is not in this or that incident or policy, but in Israel’s foundational and per- sistent refusal to recognize the humanity of its Palestinian victims. Neither Hizbullah nor Hamas are driven by a desire to “wipe out Jews,” as is so often claimed, but by a fundamental sense of injustice that they will not allow to be forgotten.

These groups will continue to enjoy popular legitimacy because they fulfill the need for someone - anyone - to stand up for Arab rights. Israel cannot destroy this need by bombing power grids or rocket ramps. If Israel, like its former political ally South Africa, has the capacity to come to terms with principles of democracy and human rights and accept egalitarian multiracial coexistence within a single state for Jews and Arabs, then the foundation for resentment and resistance will have been removed. If Israel cannot bring itself to do so, then it will continue to be the vortex of regional violence.

• Anders Strindberg, formerly a visiting professor at Damascus University, Syria, is a consultant on Middle East politics working with European government and law-enforcement agencies. He has also covered Syria, Lebanon, and the Palestinian territories as a journalist since the late 1990s, primarily for European publications.

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By Spinoza, August 23, 2006 at 11:21 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I want to compliment


Comment #19759 by salman on 8/23 at 4:33 pm


Comment #19752 by Geronimo on 8/23 at 3:58 pm

for saying what needs to be said.

Since the fanatics have taken over the posibility is real that this conflict can help destroy the planet.

Since all of the right wingers were praising Mar let me say, Mar is a disgusting wishy washy liberal who has no backbone and is no better then apologists for Israel than Barak, Dov, Realist and company. They all exhibit the disease of Islamophobia. They are all in essense reactionaries.

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By Franco - An American Patriot, August 23, 2006 at 10:53 pm Link to this comment
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The Wall looks stronger than the levees in New Orleans - it will need to be to keep the Palestinians back - no chains? What are you kidding?

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By Spinoza, August 23, 2006 at 10:38 pm Link to this comment
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Mr. Realist, there is a difference between a mashuganah and a monster.

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By Dov, August 23, 2006 at 9:48 pm Link to this comment
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Salaman, learn to read, I’ve said many times that Israelis would be happy to give the whole West Bank and Gaza for peace, in fact we’ve been trying to for 10 years.  Arafat said no, Hamas refused to renounce terror.  (And yes, as someone else said, there’s a matter of a huge city with tens of thousands of residents, for which Israel offerred the same amount of land somewhere else to compensate.)

Again, there were Arabs here for thousands of years and there were Jews here for thousands of years.  THERE’S NO FORCED OCCUPATION, THERE’S A DECISION BY JORDAN AND OTHER ARAB LEADERS NOT TO START ANOTHER ARAB COUNTRY FOR THE PALESTINIANS.  When the UN said split the land, Jordan could have taken the West Bank and started a Palestinian country there, but they chose to leave their bretheren in camps instead.  Meanwhile, an even larger number of Jewish refugees left Arab countries for Israel, and were integrated into Israeli society and built the country.

Last note before I stop reading here:  You can argue all you want with facts, all facts can be argued with.  But as an Israeli I’m telling you a fact that noone who’s not here can argue with:  Israelis are tired and want peace.  But we can’t give a country to people who say no.  The phrase “land for peace” is a two-way street, and the Arabs have got to decide that they accept us staying here as well.

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By Fadel Abdallah, August 23, 2006 at 8:01 pm Link to this comment
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(The following piece is dedicated to my Muslim brother Salman and my Jewish friend Spinoza as the most two distinguisged warriors for truth and justice. Keep up the good work! May you be always blessed!)
============================================== 

This Day in History: August 25
By Fadel Abdallah

On August 25,1992, the (Christian) Serbian army began shelling the National Library in Sarajevo, on purpose. Over a million books and more than a hundred thousand manuscripts were deliberately destroyed.
Three months earlier, the same army had attacked the Oriental Institute in that city, with its magnificent collection of Islamic and Jewish manuscripts, and over five thousand of these were burned. Well, for some Christian entities, even libraries are strategic military targets; something that speaks volumes against the so-called enlightenment of Western Christianity visa-a-vi Islam.
The savage attacks at the Sarajevan libraries of memories, by the (Christian) Serbian Army, took place for the same reasons that led to the burning of untold numbers of Arabic and Hebrew books in 16th century (Christian) Spain and to the destruction or mutilation of a large number of the memory palaces of Muslim Spain.
This Inquisition against Muslims and Jews and their books, took place only a couple of hundred years after the last (Christian) Crusades against the Muslims ended, leaving on their heals untold massacres and savagery whose wrath even the Middle Eastern Christians were not saved. Another badge of honor for Western Christianity! 
The Libraries Inquisition of 1992 at Sarajevo fell ironically on the five-hundredth anniversary of the capitulation of the last Muslim kingdom of Granada, in 1492, and the expulsion and Inquisition against Muslims and Jews. Was it a coincidence or a deliberate timing? Only the Almighty God knows!
However, a handful of treasures were saved from the terrible destruction of 1992 at Sarajevo. Among the most precious of the surviving items was a famous manuscript called the Sarajevo Haggadah; a famous Jewish prayer book recited during Passover, in remembrance of the Exodus. The story of the survival of this manuscript speaks volumes for the nobility of Muslims in times of crises. Threre is in it a lesson for moderate Jews who should remember that Muslims deserve better than what they’ve been getting at the hands of political Zionism.
This gorgeously illuminated manuscript dates to the late thirteen or early fourteen centuries. The book’s first rescue from the bonfires of oblivion when it was taken out of Spain in the Exodus of 1492 by Sephardic Jews, who then settled in the Islamic Ottoman empire. There the Haggadah was cherished and protected for nearly five hundred years. But then the precious book had to be rescued a second time during World War II. It was well known in intellectual circles that a certain Muslim curator in the library in Sarajevo had saved that Sephardic Haggadah from the atrocities of another savage (Christian) group, known more conveniently for Christians as Nazis.
Some seven years after the book has been saved, on May 2, 1999, the New York Times ran a remarkable piece of true history. The story tells about one woman, out of the thousands of Albanian Muslims who were herded out of Kosovo in early April of 1999, who was able to take with her a document she could not read, but felt it was an important historical one. For her, that document had special sentimental value because her father had once received and had cherished greatly. 
On the other side of the Macedonian border, after a harrowing trip, the woman thought to show her precious paper to the members of the local Jewish community, a group involved in the relief efforts for the Kosovars. She took the document to them because she knew it was Hebrew, and she sensed it might well be the key to some story worth translating at that trying moment. It turned out that the document was the commendation her father had received from the Israeli government for saving not only the Sarajevo Haggadah, but saving many Jews from the (Christian) Nazis. The Muslim librarian, who was a hero in book circles for having rescued that token of hundreds of years of Muslim tolerance from the depredation of twentieth century (Christian) barbarism, had also hidden fellow Sarajevans, Jews, in his apartment during World War II.
The moral of this true story should be clear for living decent Christians and Jews who refuse to take part in their governments’ atrocities against Muslims. I purposely highlighted the word Christian by putting it in parenthesis for two reasons: firstly, because all these atrocities I touched upon are hard historical facts about states that professed Christianity, at least nominally. Secondly, because I wanted to imagine the reaction of good Christians about the atrocities committed in the name of their religion, not just by a bunch of small extreme fringe groups, but by policy of the states that committed these crimes throughout history against the followers of the other two Abrahamic Faiths, Judaism and Islam.
As the news of the alleged Muslim terrorist plot in England surfaced, I was greatly pained by the words of evil (Christian) George Bush who used the expression “fascist Muslims” as a blanket statement. Though some Muslim organizations protested this statement and demanded an apology, he insisted on “standing the course” of his “crusade campaign” against Islam and Muslims. Iraq is the latest charitable act coming from the twenty-first century (Christian) neo-Nazis and Inquisition soldiers who have a leader claiming God talks to him.
My final question here is intended only for people of reason, “Is there a moral equivalent between these horrific historical acts by official states professing Christianity, and the small fringe groups of Muslims committing targeted “terrorist acts” against those they perceive have wronged them?” Much of the future of humanity depends on how honestly or dishonestly we answer this question.

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By salman, August 23, 2006 at 4:33 pm Link to this comment
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” Intransigence against western values “. The slave master speaks. A desire to not just impose yourself on others but bomb them into doing so. Now if that is not fundamentalism, I don’t know what is?
Western values come in a variety of colors; they come in the shape of great technological and economic advances but they also come in the shape of enviromental degradation of the planet and on a personal level they also come in the shape of a Jerry Springer lifestyle; when over half of Americans are born out of wedlock and the word bas**rds has become history, instead its a love child. BTW on the “happiness index”, it has not been proven that westerners are any more happier than people elsewhere. People in the third world maybe poor, but they have close -knit families which form a solid foundation for human well being. Loneliness is not a disease known to poorer societies. Parents are not discarded like trash to retirement homes. 
So, there is no one template for everyone in the world. And what a boring world it would be if everyone on the planet was an obese multi-grease layered American. The Taliban too had their medieval and dark side; but they also had some plus points; like the total eradication of the presently blossoming heroin trade.

Fundamentalism is forcing your views and your lifestyle on all others. Obviously common sense is not very common. Isn’t there anyone in America who can tell its leaders that carpet bombing whole villages and then distributing candy to the survivors is not a good idea. First we’ll kill your parents and your siblings and then we’ll come and build bridges and schools and hospitals. Is that the definition of a moral high ground or a strategy to convert   “intransigence” to obedience?
In the U.S. if a spouse doesn’t wish to continue with the relationship; wants out; she or he is not called a terrorist or a separatist? The Chechens, the Palestinians, the Kashmiris want their freedom; Bush says they hate freedom. So maybe we can go back to the thread: Is Bush an idiot?

Cheers

Sal

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By Geronimo, August 23, 2006 at 3:58 pm Link to this comment
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Looks like the Israeli public, realizing that their mighty military machine got its you know what kicked by Hezbollah, is calling for an independent investigation of what went wrong.

What went wrong?  The colonization of Palestine, that’s what went wrong.  It was doomed from the start.  The only way that European Jewish settlers could have pulled this off was for them, making like they had landed at Plymouth Rock, to have slaughtered all the natives.  They’ve yet to do this,  although genocide is still on their table in the form of ethnic cleansing.  Too late now,  anyway, because the world (the Arab/Islamic section, at least) will never permit it.  Hezbollah’s stunning victory guarantees that from now on what the settler-state has to look forward to is a perpetual slave revolt as per Haiti these past two hundred years. 

Of course the Israelis and their supporters will deny that the Palestinians are enslaved.  “Look, there are no chains.”  True, there are no visible chains, but none the less the Palestinians are slaves because to occupy another people’s land is to enslave them,  What does this turn the settlers into?  Slavemasters, that’s what. 

And the only way that the settlers can avoid this scary and violent future is for them to sit down with the Palestinian and Lebanonese leaders (including representatives from both Hezbollah and Hamas) and, on the basis of liberty, justice and equality for all, work things out.

So best scuttle your so-called investigation of what went wrong, Israelis,  and get on with figuring out how to get along with your neighbors.  You’ll find them ready, able and willing.

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By MAR, August 23, 2006 at 2:46 pm Link to this comment
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Thanks for your gentlemanly comment,Dov. I appreciate it.

Perhaps off the topic, Mr. Monitor, but when you introduce a teary-eyed grandmother looking out over the Palestine Wall, you chose a topic that has deep and widespread roots. It’s typical journalism, narrowly deal with an issue but sell those papers.

The real issue is Islamic growing instransigence against Western values and that subject is deep with widespread roots - not just Israel and Palestine, not just the Middle East, but increasingly the world over 9/11 and all that.

My country has something like 3000 highly trained soldiers in Afghanistan, many reservists with valuable civilian skills as well as their fighting ability. In their efforts to restore civilization to Afghanistan they have rebuilt bridges, schools and hospitals, help set up programs for women and help stabilize the new government. The people of Afghanistan welcome a chance to return to a semi-normal life.

But now the Taliban are emerging from under the rocks, like snakes. They kill teachers, burn schools, ravage hospitals and send suicide bombers against those trying to bring a better life. Having to fight back and repell them takes up time and energy that is better used in their primary purpose. And blood is spilled on both sides, more Taliban than Canadian at this ppoint.

In Iraq, the Muslims can’t even decide who are the good Muslims, Sunni or Shi’ia.

Any time you put this kind of topic up it cannot be restricted because Islam is re-emerging as a world force. It’s not just “terrorism” but terrorism is just a strategy used by those who wish to aggravate their enemy and energize their friends.  Than you. I am gone

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