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Israel Deals Peace Process Another Blow

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Posted on Nov 17, 2009
Flickr / david55king

The view from Gilo, where the new apartments are slated to be built. A wall separates Palestinian territory in the distance.

The Israeli Interior Ministry has approved the construction of 900 housing units, four or five bedrooms each, on annexed Palestinian territory in East Jerusalem. Benjamin Netanyahu’s spokesman said any settlement deal with the U.S. would not include Jerusalem.

It’s another setback for the Obama administration, which has tried to revive the peace process while having to deal with a conservative, expansionist Israeli government and a divided and discredited Palestinian Authority.

The White House has been trying for a full stoppage of new settlement construction, a basic precondition of restarting negotiations, but Netanyahu’s government has only been willing to agree to a partial freeze, excluding Jerusalem and the “natural growth” of existing settlements.  —PZS


Settlements on occupied territory are considered illegal under international law, though Israel disputes this.

Israeli media reported earlier that the government had rejected a request from Washington to freeze the construction work at Gilo.

US President Barack Obama’s Middle East envoy, George Mitchell, is said to have made the request to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at a meeting in London on Monday.

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By Sepharad, November 30, 2009 at 11:51 pm Link to this comment

brewerstroupe, thank you for the references attacking the Peters book. I’ll look them up and read them, particularly with an eye out for any criticism of Peters’ assertion of increased Arab migration to the region after the Zionists had begun improving the productivity of the land.             

Re Ran Cohen, it is true that many Jews in Arab countries came to Palestine to support the modern Jewish state, but many many more were exiled. There is a large group of their descendents which have many examples of their exile. I cannot recall the name of the group at this moment but will look it up in the next few days. I think they have a branch in New York. Many of these people’s descendants live in Israel and are perhaps the most anti-Arab of all Israelis, and usually are zealous religionists.  In his book of essays “In the Land of Israel”, Amos Oz describes attempting and failing to discuss their radical position regarding the Arabs with a group of these people in Beit Shemesh, hoping to moderate their views. Perhaps he thought his own background would reassure them that he at least understood their anti-Arab feelings though disagreed with them. (Oz was born in Jerusalem. His family, like the rest of Jerusalem’s Jews, were attacked, driven from their homes by Jerusalem’s Arabs during the ‘48 war.) Nevertheless, the Arab Jews had no patience for what Oz had to say, and dismissed him, accusing Oz and his ilk of not understanding and of being dangerously naive regarding the intentions of the Arabs. 

Re the Lavon affair, it is neither the first time nor the last that one country builds a spy network in another country, and not the first time that the spies’ government has abandoned them when they become an embarrassment or for other reasons simply inconvenient.

I’ve never disputed that the Arabs in Palestine were, like the Jews, present in the region since ancient times. Arab land is vast compared to Israel—roughly, a footballmk in the middle of a football The land available to Arabs is vast; in comparison,  their lands are a football field with a matchbook in the middle, i.e. Israel. 

Sodium—also thank you for the Jordanian kings’ thumbnail biographies. I did confuse Feisal with his father Husayn Shareif Abdallah, and also incorrectly wrote that he was assassinated ON HIS WAY to prayers, not AFTER. I don’t think anything I’ve written here disagrees with your other elaborations, including the fact that Abdallah I was assassinated by a Palestinian. His grandson, the late King Abdallah Hussein, obviously drew a lesson from this: in his reign he was careful to appear as not just a a good king to his people but also as a king not fawning over Westerners in general and Israel in particular. indepent

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By Sodium, November 25, 2009 at 8:55 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Re: Sepharad,November 19 at 10:22 pm.
Re: Sepharad,November 19 at 1047 pm.


Your above references(Re) are full of holes and confusion.I will not attempt to give them the “Shingo Treatment”,in which Shingo used to disect every comment made and he subsequently either
accepted or rejected it.I just(and simply)have no time for doing that.However,I shall attempt to help out in order you may overcome the erroneous confusion in which you have unintentionally fallen:

Shareef Husayn bin Ali:
Shareef Husayn bin Ali is considered the one who started the Great Arab Revolt,during WORLD WAR ONE,against the Ottoman Turkish Empire,after which he was exiled by the victors,namely Britan,to Cyprus
in which he remained until he died.He was burried in his beloved Jerusalim.He is the father of three princes who lead the Great Arab Revolt against the Ottoman,in coordenation with the fluently Arabic
speaking British intelligence officer dubbed as Lawrence of Arabia.He is the sire of all Kings who ruled modern Jordan since 1920.His three sons are:

Prince Abdallah The First(He was the oldest son)
Prince Feisal.
Prince Zaid.

King Abdallah The First:
Since Jordan is the center of our interest in this dialogue,Prince Abdallah The Firtst,became the first ruler of modern Jordan in 1920.The British called it The Heshamite Princedom of Trans-Jordan.Later on,it became The Heshamite Kingdom of Jordan and Prince Abdallah The First,Became the First King of Jordan.He was accused by many Arabs that he went too far in his relationship with Britan due to the fact that he and Winston Churchill were close friends and played CHESS through a telephone line connecting Abdallah’s Palace in Jordan to Churchill’s home in Britain.In 1951 and AFTER finishing prayer in the Great Mosque(the Dome of the Rock)in Jerusalem he was assassinated by a Palestinian whose last name was ESHO.His oldest grand son,Prince Hussein was accompanying him.Luckly,he survived the unexpected assault of assassination.

King Abdallah The First sired Two sons:
Prince Talal(the oldest son).
Prince Nayef.

King Talal bin Abdallah The First:
Talal became king but did not last long because the British claimed he was “mentally disturbed” and ended up in “exile” in a Turkish hospital till he died.

King Talal sired three sons:
Prince Hussein(the oldest).
Prince Mohamed.
Prince Hassan.

King Hussein bin Talal:
After Talal was declared unfit to rule,Prince Hussein eventually crowned as the king of Jordan in 1952 and remained so until he died of cancer in 1999.He knew eight American President,from Eisenhower to Bill Clinton.He was most admired Arab king,all over the world,especially in the West because of his humility and moderation in his international dealings.Modern Jordan have witnessed economic booms in education,healthcare,industrial base,constructions and became a hub for business from investers around the world,and as well as a center for seminars and confrences of all types.World leaders,including Bill Clinton heading a delegation of past American Presidents travelled all the way to Amman,Jordan,to pay their respect to indeed an admired king.

Hussein has five sons:
Prince Abdallah,The Second,(the oldest son).
Prince Feisal.
Prince Ali
Prince Hamzeh.
Prince Hashim

King Abdallah The Second:
As usual,the oldest son takes his father place. Thus PRINCE Abdallah The Second became KING Abdullah The Second.He is the cuurent king of Jordan.He is extremely intelligent and he appears following his father’s policy,exhibiting humility and moderations in his international dealings.

Migrations of Arab Jews To Israel:
Please read the following book:

Ben Gurion’s Scandles
Naeim Giladi

Giladi is an Iraqi Jew who helped smuggling thousands of Iraqi Jews.

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By Sodium, November 24, 2009 at 3:00 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Re: brewerstroup,November 20 at 6:14 pm.


Many thanks for making my future responses to Sepharad shorter and easier-hopefully.

Your concise comments on the content of the discredited book entitled “From Time Immemorial”
by Joan Peters had/have been most appreciated. So were your comments about the Arab Jews who had chosen to leave their homelands in the Arab countries and migrate to Israel after Israel was created in 1948. I know enough of what actually took place mainly in Iraq and Egypt to instigate the exodus of the politically innocent Arab Jews from those two Arab countries which in the 1948 and afterwards had the largest numbers of Arab Jews after the Arab state of Morocco which had the highest numbers of Arab Jews then. It was a pleasure reading,some times ago,that some of the Jews who migrated from Morocco to Israel had already returned to their beloved Morocco. I certainly would like to see more Arab Jews returning to the Arab countries from where they migrated by either choice or due to SYNTHETIC fear.

Finally,I feel that I must let you know that I have followed your posts whenever I had time to spend behind the computer and wherever I had the good fortune to come across them. And the precision of the content of your posts have convinced me that you are one of the very very few posters,around here,who really know what they are talking about. I have been a student of the Arab-Israeli conflict since I was undergraduate student in 1950s,the good old days of President Dwight Eisenhower-yes,yes good old days since Eisenhower gave the American people PEACE FOR EIGHT YEARS AND LEFT BEHIND A BALANCED BUDGET AND MEANWHILE KEPT ISRAEL’S EXPANSIONIST AMBITIONS UNDER LEASH. The Suez Canal crisis and its aftermath in 1956 certainly attests to what I have just said. For confirmation,please read the following book:

Warriors At Suez
Donald Neff

Donald Neff was Time Magazine correspondent in the Middle East then,and was Pro-Israel,but changed his mind later on.

brewerstroup: Thank you again for an excellent post. I have enjoyed and appreciated reading it. Keep it coming.

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By brewerstroupe, November 20, 2009 at 2:14 pm Link to this comment

It is a great pleasure to re-visit this thread and find the debate being conducted in a civil manner and focused where it belongs - on the History.
A couple of points that should be considered.
Few “history” books have been as thoroughly discredited as Joan Peter’s “From Time Immemorial”.

“Reviewing the book for the November 28, 1985 issue of The New York Times, Yehoshua Porath (Professor Emeritus of Middle East History (formerly Associate Professor of Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies), then Lecturer in the History of the Muslim Countries at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem) described the book as a “sheer forgery,” adding that “in Israel, at least, the book was almost universally dismissed as sheer rubbish except maybe as a propaganda weapon.”

Peter’s assertions that the Palestinians are an immigrant people have also been thoroughly debunked by geneticists such as Ariella Oppenheim and Harry Ostrer who assert that Palestinians represent the descendants of peoples living in the area since neolithic times.

There is a vast difference between the exodus of Jews from Arab lands and the expulsion of Palestinians at gunpoint.
It is very important to keep in mind the Zionist’s essential need for immigrants to settle the newly conquered and cleansed territory. Any military strategist will tell you conquest is relatively easy for a superior force but holding on to territory is difficult once the insurgency begins. To hang on one must populate the land.
Arab states did not expel Jews as a matter of policy. In fact, some actually made emigration very difficult, fearing that to do so would only strengthen the Jewish State. As the news of the massacres and expulsions spread through the Arab world there was indeed a backlash against Jews. This was encouraged by Zionist operations such as the Lavon Affair and the bombings in Bagdhad. We should not forget that Jews held very high positions in Government during Ottoman rule and right up until the hostilities in Palestine:

“Iraq’s first minister of finance, Sir Sassoon Eskell, was a Jew, and Jews were important in developing the judicial and postal systems. Records from the Baghdad Chamber of Commerce show that 10 out of its 19 members in 1947 were Jews

see also

The exodus of Misrahim is adequately explained by the desire of Jews to participate in the nascent state and the unrest among Arabs caused by the injustice visited on their Palestinian co-religionists, a regrettable but understandable reaction.

Iraqi-born Ran Cohen, a former member of the Knesset, said: “I have this to say: I am not a refugee. I came at the behest of Zionism, due to the pull that this land exerts, and due to the idea of redemption. Nobody is going to define me as a refugee”. Yemeni-born Yisrael Yeshayahu, former Knesset speaker, Labor Party, stated: “We are not refugees. [Some of us] came to this country before the state was born. We had messianic aspirations”. And Iraqi-born Shlomo Hillel, also a former speaker of the Knesset, Labor Party, claimed: “I do not regard the departure of Jews from Arab lands as that of refugees. They came here because they wanted to, as Zionists.”.

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By Sepharad, November 19, 2009 at 6:47 pm Link to this comment

PS Sodium, I will find and read Glubb’s book; he has always been as interesting to me as Orde Wingate, the Scottish British officer to taught the Israeli irregulars to fight not just in more disciplined 20th-century ways but as the Hebrew warriors fought.

I know a lot about the Bedouin, admire them greatly, and have spent time with individuals, the children of the Bedouin who for generations were friends of my family, in Israel between Gaza and Beersheva. Though “Lawrence of Arabia” a fine film but understating the ferocity of that actual fighting. Also, must admit I liked the Otomans better than the British and French colonials. They understood the region better. (T.E. Lawrence loved the Bedouin, the desert, and also the Zionists. I’ve never been clear whether it was he who influenced Hussein into favoring the Jews, or—more likely—that Hussein, who himself had friends among the Zionists, found it beneficial to his interests as well as the region’s. His inclination to like and cooperate with the Zionists also got him was assassinated, as he was about to walk into the mosque with his son, which was not lost on the last King Hussein, who carefully walked a tightrope. It could not have been easy, and it is now not easy for King Abdullah.)

I understand vehemently objecting to and opposing (as I do, in far more concrete ways than posting) what the West Bank settlers and the Netanyahu government are doing. I can’t understand why so many people don’t understand that Israel is the origin and homeland for many, many Jews. Felicity is waiting for the Native Americans to reclaim Manhattan. As they should: if they want it back I will encourage and help that effort. But perhaps they will wait too long, as those of us in the Diaspora may have.

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By Sepharad, November 19, 2009 at 6:22 pm Link to this comment

Sodium, you do know a great deal about the history of the Middle East—I’d never heard of the acetone offering—but I think you may be misled about the numbers of Arabs and Jews in Israel (given the slave name Palestine by the Romans) west of the Jordan and of course in Jerusalem at different times and places. The Arab sympathizers emphasize one set of numbers and Zionist sympathizers emphasize another—both emphasize years in which they show majorities—but Joan Peters (author of “From Time Immemorial”)used Ottoman records showing a large influx of Arabs from Iraq after the earlier Zionists and Jews of continuing residence “from time immemorial”, as well as later comers like my great-great grandparents in 1828, had developed and improved the cultivation of the land, which attracted large numbers of Arabs to the coastal hills and plains west of the Jordan. There were Jews scattered throughout Israel/Palestine from ancient times—the Romans didn’t kiil and drive out all of them—and there was a large colony of Jewish scholars and intellectuals always centered in Jerusalem. Maimonides father and brother were among them, though he himself lived wherever the Kurdish warrior Salah-ah-din did.

Re Glubb Pasha, he indeed trained the Legion, and led it into battle against the newly-partitioned Israelites. He was talented and fierce, and the Bedouin fighters always have and always be very fierce—and very loyal. Their service in the Israeli army is well known; they are not only fierce but also superb trackers. Indeed, when King Abdullah (father of the current thing) wanted the PLO militants to stop attacking Israel from Jordan, and they refused, he turned his Bedouins loose on them and drove them from Tunisia. Never again were they welcome in Jordan.

The one trait widely known to characterize the Bedouin is that they are exceedingly loyal to the country in which they live. 

I’ve read that the current King Abdullah is quietly getting rid of Palestinian people in positions of power in his government, army, police, civic positions etc. but do not know if that is true or if so what it means. I agree that it would be very foolish of Israel to antagonize Jordan. It’s also true that roughly 60% of Jordanians self-identify as Palestinians, however the Balfours and Sykes/Picot people chose to draw their lines. 

In fact I find just about everything being done by all parties in the area at the time to be foolish, cruel and self-destructive .. almost as blindly biased as many of the postings on this thread. Zionism is not a term of denigration—though it is a large umbrella and covers a wide range of opinions, many at odds with one another and only bigots would define it as such. Binyamin Netanyahu is a Zionist, so is Shimon Peres, so is Amos Oz. (And so am I.)

I believe that the 900,000 Jews driven from Arab lands (as the Iraqi delegate to the Arab League said, a simple “population exchange”) with only what they could carry were as unhappy and terrified at being refugees as the 700,000 Palestinians who were driven from pre-‘67 Israel by war, by Jewish terrorists, by Jewish fighters, by the command of the Mufti of Jerusalem. I also believe that it speaks ill of the Arab countries for refusing to embrace their brothers and sisters and resettle them, as Israel—with far less infrastructure than she has today—did. It was not easy for those Jews, but they rebuit and made lives for themselves. Why on earth have the Palestinian refugees been unable to create something of value for themselves?

Nevertheless, Israel must help them get a life and stop making it harder. No one else seems interested in doing so.

Oh—a river does make a better border than a wall, or a fence. Of course it is subject to being crossed by drones, or suicide bombers, or missiles, or armies.

I’ll be leaving the country early tomorrow a.m. for 12 days, and will turn off commuter, but will catch up later.

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By Blackspeare, November 19, 2009 at 11:30 am Link to this comment

Sodium…I’m impressed!——not many people known about the “acetone” connection to history.

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By Sodium, November 19, 2009 at 10:58 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Subject: More about the Synthesis of Illegitimacy and Aberration of History by INTERNATIONAL INTRIGUES.

I have just finished reading a disclosed document No.94-December 30,1969,published by the United States Department of State.The document is entitled as:


The following quotations taken from the document might be of interest:

Mudros Armistice:
“The signing of the Mudros Armistice,on October 30,1918 marked the complete Turkish defeat in Arab Ottoman lands.All of geographic Syria was occupied by allies troops.British troops were located throughout the area,a small French force on the coast and the Arab Army of King Husayn in the interior.Although General Allenby was ultimately responsible for the military government throughout Syria,the British established a provisional administration only in Palestine to the west of the Jordan river.A french provivisional government controlled the coastal regions north of Palestine and subsequently Cilicia.An Arab administration under Amir Faysal,with a small number of British and French officers on his staff,assumed control of the cities of Allepo,Homs,Hamah and Damascus as well as the Trans-Jordan area,both north and south of the boundary.”

Please notice how the discription of the geagraphy of Palestine is so distinct from Syria and Trans-Jordan.And Trans-Jordan was associated closer to Damascus,Syria and other Syrian cities such as Allepo,Homs and Hamah,in adition to Damascus,as the end of the above quote indicates.Therefore,what I have said in my earlier post that Jordan,in various times in its history was indeed part of Greater Syria and never as part of Palestine since time immemorial.
The fabulous ruin city of Petra in souhern Jordan,not too far from the Jordanian see port of Aqaba,attests to the fact that Jordan was also independent and center for commerce and caravan activities travelling through Greater Syria,but never part of Palestine.Petra,in Jordan,is considered one of the Seven Wonders of the World.

Exact Quote of Balfour Declaration:
“His Majesty Government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people,and willuse their best endeavours to facilitate the achievementof this object,it beingclearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine or the rights and polititical status enjoyed by Jews in any other country.”

I wish that Benyamin Natenyahu and his criminal settlers adhere to the last part of the statements in the Balfour Declaration quote,concerning the “rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine.”

It seems to me that INTERNATIONAL INTRIGUES,as practiced by the colonialist powers,not only synthesized illegitimacy and aberration of history but also illegitimacy and aberration of geography.They just drew arbitrary borders lines and created so many illegitimate states across the whole Middle east and north Africa.


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By Sodium, November 19, 2009 at 8:26 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Subject: The Synthesis Of Illegitimacy,Aberration of History By INTERNATIONAL INTRIGUES.

The claim that Jordan was part of Palestine is inncorrect at best and falsified propaganda at worst.
This so based on enormous amounts of historical events which prove that Jordan was never part of Palestine.It was at several times part of Greater Syria.So,what are all countries surrounding current political Syria? That includes,in addition to Jordan the following current countries: Lebanon,Israel/Palestine,Iraq,including Kuwait as part of Iraq before discovering oil in Kuwait.

Before the fall of the Ottoman empire in 1918,one could travel across the Middle East from Turkey in the East to Morocco in the West with no need for passport,since the whole Middle East was considered as integrated whole.Therefore,if Jordan was illegitimate,aberration of history,so was every country in the Middle East,including Israel,because they were founded by the colonialists,namely.Britain and France,not by the inhabitants of each country. Not only that,but by the raw power of INTERNATIONAL INTRIGUES.Samples:

The Balfour Declaration:
In 1917,Arthur Balfour,Britain’s Foreign Minister then,gave Chaim Weissman,a well known organic chemist
and a Zionist leader a written promised that Grait Britain will help in establishing a home(state) in Palestine,for the Jewish people. Mr.Balfour had no right whatsoever in handing Palestine to Mr.Weisman
with disregard to the wishes of the Palestinian people who were making the vast majority of Palestine then. It was really a “horse Trading: between the two men. Balfour was after the formula for the production of ACETONE,an organic solvent required for the manufacturing of some form of   explosives for the military,while Mr.Weisman was interested in the written declaretion known now The Balfour Declaration. It was good for the Zionist aganda but bad for Palestine and the Palestinian People.

The Sykes-Picot Accord:
It was a secret dealing between Britain and France,prepared during the First World War,to divide the Middle East between themselves,after the war and the fall of the Ottomon empire.Neither the Arabs nor the Jews knew what was going on.The results of this horrible accord are the terrible political boundaries the travellers have to contend with and the totally illegimite countries across the Middle East.

Unfulfilled Promises:
Promises made by Britain to Shareef Hussein,the great grand father of current king of Jordan were ignored.When the Shareef insisted Britain must fulfill its promises,he was exiled in Cyprice till death.He was burried in his beloved Jerusalem.

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By Sodium, November 19, 2009 at 4:16 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Re: Sepharad,November 18 at 3:52 am.

Blackspeare,re 11/17 8:02-“water makes a nice border”(as in why Israeis wanted space betweenJordan River and Mediterranean Sea);it does make a nice border,and the Palestinians on the West Bank would doulbtless be much better off if they were living on the East Bank,and the border of Palestine was what it actually was until the British gave most of it to a Hashemite king,who named his new country “Jordan”.



What kind of a corrupt delusional talk is your above Re?

Water and river make nice border??!! How does that apply in the age of missiles and Drones?  Yeah,Just how? if it is not an old convenient Zionist propaganda invented just to dump the rest of the Palestinians on Jordan. If that ever happens,I can assure you that it will be the end of Israel for sure,regardless of the military machines Israel possesses,because Israel has to deal directly then with the fierce Bedouins tribes of Jordan and part of the Bedouins culture is VENGEANCE till the end of time.

I certainly do not wish those kind of people to be my enemy. Absolutely not. Although I was stationed in Amman,Jordan for more than 20 years,and I had occasionally dealt with some of them,you need not take my word but you can read the writings of T.E.Lawrence,well known as Lawrence of Arabia. This intelligence British officer spent agreat deal of time with those Bedouin Arabs in Jordan and it was they who defeated the Ottoman Turks and kick them out of all Arab countries. The movie,“Lawrence of Arabia” directed by David Lange showed only the tip of the iceburge that took place in the Great Arab Revolt against the Ottoman empire. Also,I highly recommend to read the following book:

A Soldier With The Arabs
John Glubb

John Glubb was a British intelligence General who formed Jordan’s crack “ARAB LEAGION”,mainly from Jordan’s Bedouins tribes. His book was published in the late 1950s. It is a fascinating account and it is a must read for anyone interested in learning about Jordan 50 percent tribal society. Perhaps,you may find a copy in your local library. Read it if you find it. It is worth the time in spending reading it.

As to E.T. Lawrence,or Lawrence of Arabia,his book entitled ” Seven Pillars Of Wisdom ” is truly great and monumental in form and substance. I truly treasure the knowledge embodied in it and I am proud having it among my most important and treasured books. Read it or buy it,if you find it. Then,you will realize how dangerous to fool around with Jordan as a depot for getting rid of the rest of the Palestinians. No one should be under an illusion that the refugees in Jordan are content to stay in there.They are not.They want to return to Palestine. They are teaching their children and grand children never to forget their properties and rights in Palestine. Anybody who ignores this fundamental reality is living in realm of wishful foolness.

In short,I am trying here to inform you and Blackspeare that it is utterly unwise to creat a problem with Jordan whose peace with Israel has been rather warm,until Benyamin Natenyahu thwarted it,by kicking some East Jerusalem Arabs from their homes inherited from their ancestors for centuries;and alraedy started building 9,000 housing units in their places,to be sold or rented for Jews only. I saw a huge demonstration taking place in Amman,Jordan at internet: www.,last week. The demonstrators were demanding that the government and the King kick out the Israeli Ambassador from Amman and severe the diplomatic relations and abrogate the peace treaty with Israel. Of course,the king and his government can resist the demonstrators demands up to a point,but then what? and how long,if Natenyahu continues his fanaticism? I regret to say that your post and Blackspeare’s posts are no help for peace. Wise up,fellows.

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By brewerstroupe, November 18, 2009 at 3:38 pm Link to this comment

“the Israelis should have annexed the West Bank, helped the remaining Palestinians migrate to their country of choice and take the punches from the world.”

This is a process known as ethnic cleansing and in this case it would be performed by an immigrant population upon the indigenous people, not an internecine struggle between two native peoples whose dispute is ideological, as is most often the case. It is also a process rightly condemned when it was employed by the Axis powers during the second World War and is proscribed in International Law.

What you suggest appears to me to simply perpetuate the problem. If your plan had indeed been implemented, would you feel sanguine about the Palestinians, at some later date, visiting the same procedure upon the Jewish State? It seems to me that having sanctioned it on one occasion you could have no argument with it on another.

Roper: So now you’d give the Devil benefit of law.
More: Yes. What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil?
Roper: I’d cut down every law in England to do that.
More: Oh? And when the last law was down—and the Devil turned round on you—where would you hide? Yes, I’d give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety’s sake.

Robert Bolt : A Man for All Seasons

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By Blackspeare, November 18, 2009 at 2:34 pm Link to this comment


Yes, by biblical teaching it was to the Tigris, but realistically and what was doable was to the Jordan.  But without another all out war, the Jordan might as well be the Tigris!  As I said after the 1967 war, the Israelis should have annexed the West Bank, helped the remaining Palestinians migrate to their country of choice and take the punches from the world.  And today it would be a fait accompli!  The Palestinians would either have gain control in Jordan or have mainstreamed into other societies.  But then again without the ME, this would indeed be a dull world——all we would have is North Korean and they’re pathetic!

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By felicity, November 18, 2009 at 12:02 pm Link to this comment

Blackspeare - actually it was/is from the Mediterranean to the Tigris - according to Jewish tradition territory promised by god to the descendants of Abraham (?) - which may explain why in ‘98 Kristol wrote to Clinton advising him to invade Iraq.

(I continue to wait for some Native American group to claim ownership of Manhattan Island - having been promised to their ancestor by their diety.  We easily submit to the Jewish right-of-ownership of ME territory as valid but I seriously doubt that we would submit to the Native American claim.)

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By thebeerdoctor, November 18, 2009 at 10:21 am Link to this comment

Whether someone laments the injustice served up to the Palestinians, or whether one accepts the Israel as victim narrative served up by AIPAC and associates, one thing is certain: none of this is possible without the unending river of U.S. financial and military aide that flows to Israel, without the citizens of this country ever being asked to decide if this largess should continue.
The political structure has been bought off a long time ago, in favour of Israel. Our current President barks on about Iran’s nuclear intentions, totally oblivious to the hydrogen bomb arsenal located in Israel, which that country refuses to officially acknowledge, nor has it become a signatory to any of the International Atomic Energy protocols. This hypocrisy is beyond belief.
If President Obama actually wanted to stop Israel from taking more land away, he could do this by announcing that Israel would no longer be a recipient of U.S. aide. But of course he will never do this: Rahm Emanuel will tell him that such action would be politically impossible.

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By Sepharad, November 17, 2009 at 11:52 pm Link to this comment

Blackspeare, re 111/17 8:02—“water makes a nice border” (as in why the Israelis wanted space between Jordan River and Mediterranean Sea); it actually does make a nice border, and the Palestinians on the West Bank would doubtless be much better off if they were living on the East Bank, and the border of Palestine was what it actually was until the British gave most of it to a Hashemite king, who named his new country “Jordan”.

I think there is too little land for too many people who used to live in the real Palestine. But I also think that we have to look at what exists, not what would be nice, what the king of Jordan could do, what might have evolved had not the Gaza land-for-peace experiment been so disastrous for both Israelis and Palestinians. Whether Netanyahu likes it or not, no matter how scared the Israelis are of Hamas on one border and Hizbullah on the other, Israel has to make a fairer deal with the Palestinians on the West Bank, help them build a solid economic structure for a second state, help train if necessary army as well as police for the Palestinian state (a demilitarized Palestine, as Netanyahu and Likudniks want, is a non-starter because the Palestinians have to be able to maintain internal security and protect themselves from their enemies (of whom Israel is by far the least dangerous).

There are millions of different opinions in Israel. There are IDF soldiers who refuse to serve in “occupied” territories. There are IDF soldiers to refused to arrest settlers (and those soldiers are not to be simply thrown in jail but to be court-martialed). There are also just as many, perhaps more, opinions in the West Bank and even in Gaza.
There always will be even more differences of opinions between many Israelis and many Palestinians. But no matter how many different opinions and perceived dangers on both sides, Israel must absolutely make the first serious steps at giving the Palestinians their righteous Palestinian state, which is NOT incompatible with a secure Israel. Indeed quite the contrary. Israel will never be truly secure until there is an equally secure side-by-side state of Palestine.

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By brewerstroupe, November 17, 2009 at 9:04 pm Link to this comment


“In 1948 when Ben Gurion decided to declare statehood because so many displaced Jews from the war needed a home .”

I have a few problems with this reading of history. Apart from the obvious injustice involved in the concept of displacing 700,000 Palestinians to make way for 250,000 displaced European Jews (the total immediately post-war), most of the Jewish DPs had been re-settled by 1948. Those that remained in Europe were under the protection of UNWRA and the Allies - they were in no immediate danger. Palestine, on the other hand, was descending into chaos thanks to Palestinian resistance and Jewish militarization - not a safe haven at all.
Contemporary documents reveal quite a different story. Zionists had great need of immigrants and went to extraordinary lengths to encourage Jews from all parts of the world including black ops in Egypt (Lavon Affair), Iraq (Synagogue bombing), among others.
Zionists have a habit of distorting the timeline to great and misleading effect. More than half (over 400,000) of the Palestinian refugees were expelled before the 1948 War began.
This contributed to anti-Jewish feeling among the populations of Arab States causing something of an exodus which worked well for Ben-Gurion etc. In order to hold on to the territory gained by the expulsion of the indigenous population, they needed settlers urgently. From 1948 on this need was filled from countries outside Europe.

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By wags101, November 17, 2009 at 7:56 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The U.S. must stop giving any aid to this rogue nation that commits war crimes against humanity and then tells the world to stop condemning them for these acts because it’s “anti-semitic”.

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By the tshirt doctor, November 17, 2009 at 5:12 pm Link to this comment

I read a few years ago how the government of Israel and the government of the Palestinian Authority were equal in their no peace process. But we don’t hear about the Jewish settlements. Or how they interact with the Palestinians.

I don’t think I like the Jewish settlers. They keep the tensions high. And the people over there who don’t like the Jews, don’t like us either because we think Israel is our good looking brother, and we keep lending him money that we can’t afford.

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By B L Canary, November 17, 2009 at 4:29 pm Link to this comment

The Presidency of the European Union expressed grave
concern over the humanitarian situation in Gaza on
Tuesday 17 November.

The European Union remains gravely concerned by the
humanitarian situation in Gaza. Calls for urgent
measures have not been sufficiently answered.
The European Union continues to urge that prompt and
concrete measures be taken to solve the humanitarian
crisis in Gaza and to allow for reconstruction and
economic recovery.
The European Union notes with concern that the
situation on the ground has not improved since
January 2009. The continued policy of closure, which
has been in place since 2007, has devastated the
private sector economy and further damaged the
natural environment.
The poor water quality is particularly worrying. The
essential reconstruction of homes, schools and health
facilities to which the international community,
including the European Union committed itself at the
Donors Conference in Sharm el Sheikh, is still
prevented. While extremists stand to gain from the
current situation, the plight becomes worse for the
civilian population, half of which are children.
The European Union reiterates its calls for an
immediate and unconditional opening of crossings for
the flow of humanitarian aid, commercial goods and
persons to and from Gaza. The Agreement of Movement
and Access of 2005 should be implemented. The EU
urges Israel to facilitate the transfer of material
and financial resources into Gaza for the
implementation of the UN Pilot Projects. The EU calls
for the full implementation of UNSCR 1860.

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By dontwastetimetalking, November 17, 2009 at 4:10 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Stop arguing with these criminals.  Sanction all things Israeli.  Boycott all trade, university exchanges, sport competitions, etc. that involves Israelis or Israeli products.

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By Blackspeare, November 17, 2009 at 4:02 pm Link to this comment

FRTothus——what are you——some kind of a pacifist.  Lets get with the program.  In 1948 when Ben Gurion decided to declare statehood because so many displaced Jews from the war needed a home he was advised not to maje so a move just yet and wait for a better partition deal——they always wanted the land to span from the Mediterranean to the Jordan——water makes for a nice border.  Ben Gurion replied to his detractors that we’ll declare statehood now and get the rest of the land in the future.  And there you have it.  What is more interesting is that right after the 1967 War the remaining fearful Palestinians were packed and ready to move out of the west bank.  Only at the urging of General Dayan to the Palestinian leaders that they could all live in peace did the Palestinians stay put and brings us to the present day situation.  As we all know the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan is illegitimate and the monarchy false——and aberration of history.  Jordan is the home of the Palestinians and they know it.  They haven’t forgotten Black September!

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By david, November 17, 2009 at 3:21 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“The terrorism of suicide bombings was born of
despair. There is no military solution to despair.”
(Nahum Barnea, columnist for Israeli newspaper Yedoit

Absolute blabber. The terrorism that preceded suicide
bombing was born of hatred, racism, ignorance and
virulent refusal to allow the Jewish people to live
peacefully on land that was bought legally and worked
effectively pre 1948.  Arab incitement along with
religious and secular Arab Nationalism have resulted
in a complete distortion of the current situation. 
There are preceding factors here.

Additionally, Jerusalem has been and always will be
the historic and modern capital of the Jewish people. 
It is absurd to claim that it belongs to another
culture because on his way to “heaven a prophet
stopped in jerusalem on his flying horse”.  This is
the type of ignorant babble that the apologetic self
hating liberals and radicals use to legitimize an
illegitimate and tendentious “national struggle” that
was born out of animosity and hatred for the Jewish
people and their foundation of the Nation of Israel.

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By FRTothus, November 17, 2009 at 2:55 pm Link to this comment

The caption under the photograph is incorrect.  It should read “The view from Gilo, where the new apartments are slated to be built. A wall separates Palestinian territory in the distance from the Palestinian territory in the foreground.”

“...The charge that criticism of Israel is implicitly anti-Semitic—is regarded in Israel and the United States as Israel’s trump card. If it has been played more insistently and aggressively in recent years, that is because it is now the only card left. The habit of tarring any foreign criticism with the brush of anti-Semitism is deeply ingrained in Israeli political instincts: Ariel Sharon used it with characteristic excess but he was only the latest in a long line of Israeli leaders to exploit the claim. David Ben-Gurion and Golda Meir did no different. But Jews outside of Israel pay a high price for this tactic. Not only does it inhibit their own criticisms of Israel for fear of appearing to associate with bad company, but it encourages others to look upon Jews everywhere as de facto collaborators in Israel’s misbehavior. When Israel breaks international law in the occupied territories, when Israel publicly humiliates the subject populations whose land it has seized—but then responds to its critics with loud cries of “anti-Semitism”—it is in effect saying that these acts are not Israeli acts, they are Jewish acts: The occupation is not an Israeli occupation, it is a Jewish occupation, and if you don’t like these things it is because you don’t like Jews. In many parts of the world this is in danger of becoming a self-fulfilling assertion: Israel’s reckless behavior and insistent identification of all criticism with anti-Semitism is now the leading source of anti-Jewish sentiment in Western Europe and much of Asia…”
(excerpted from the article
“The Country that Wouldn’t Grow Up”
by Tony Judt
Ha’aretz,, 5/5/06)

“For the most part, Israel is the subcontractor for American arms to the ‘Third World.’ There is no terrible regime-Colombia, Guatemala, Uruguay, Argentina and Chile during the time of the colonels, Burma, Taiwan, Zaire, Liberia, Congo, Sierra Leone-there is not one that does not have a major military connection to Israel…. So this is the missing piece… Israel is a key member of the empire.”
(Jeff Halper)

“It is both my Jewish and human duty to resolutely refuse to take any part in this army. As the son of a people victim to pogroms and destruction, I cannot be a part of your insane policies. As a human being, it is my duty to refuse to participate in any institution which commits crimes against humanity.”
(Sergio Yahni, Israeli army ‘refusnik’)

“The terrorism of suicide bombings was born of despair. There is no military solution to despair.”
(Nahum Barnea, columnist for Israeli newspaper Yedoit Ahronot)

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