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Looking Back on 40 Years of Occupation

Posted on Jun 3, 2007
Israeli guard tower
AP Photo / Emilio Morenatti

With part of Israel’s security barrier in the background, a Palestinian woman shops for produce near the Kalandia checkpoint between Jerusalem and the West Bank city of Ramallah in April 2005.

By Chris Hedges

Israel captured and occupied the Gaza Strip and the West Bank 40 years ago this week.  The victory was celebrated as a great triumph, at once tripling the size of the land under Israeli control, including East Jerusalem.  It was, however, a Pyrrhic victory.  As the occupation stretched over the decades, it transformed and deformed Israeli society.  It led Israel to abandon the norms and practices of a democratic society until, in the name of national security, it began to routinely accept the brutal violence of occupation and open discrimination and abuse of Palestinians, including the torture of prisoners and collective reprisals for Palestinians attacks.  Palestinian neighborhoods, olive groves and villages were, in the name of national security, bulldozed into the ground.

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Israel’s image has shifted from that of a heroic, open society set amid a sea of despotic regimes to that of an international pariah.  Israel’s West Bank separation barrier, built ostensibly to keep out Palestinian bombers, has also been used to swallow huge tracts of the West Bank into Israel.  Palestinian towns are ringed by Israeli checkpoints.  Major roads in the West Bank are reserved for Israeli settlers.  The U.N. estimates that about half the West Bank is now off-limits to Palestinians.  And every week there are new reports of Palestinian produce that is held up until it rots, pregnant women giving birth in cars because they cannot get to hospitals, and even senseless and avoidable deaths, such as one young woman who died recently when she couldn’t get through a checkpoint to her kidney dialysis treatment.

“We are raising commanders who are policemen,” former Israeli General Amiram Levine told the newspaper Maariv. “We ask them to excel at the checkpoint. What does it means to excel at the checkpoint?  It means being enough of a bastard to delay a pregnant woman from getting to the hospital.”

The occupation was benign at the beginning.  Israelis crossed into Palestinian territory to buy cheap vegetables, eat at local restaurants, spend the weekend in the desert oasis of Jericho and get their cars fixed.  The Palestinians were a pool of cheap labor and by the mid-1980s, 40 percent of the Palestinian workforce was employed in Israel.  The Palestinians flowed over the border to the shops and beaches of Tel Aviv.  But the second-class status of Palestinians, growing repression by Israeli authorities in the West Bank and Gaza and festering poverty saw Palestinians, most of them too young to remember the moment of occupation, rise up in December 1987 to launch six years of street protests.  The uprising eventually led to a peace accord between Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization led by Yasir Arafat.  Arafat, who had spent most of his life in exile, returned in triumph to Gaza. 

The Oslo Accords that followed momentarily heralded a new era, a moment of hope.  I was in Gaza when they were signed.  The Gaza Strip was awash in a giddy optimism.  Palestinian businessmen who had made their fortunes abroad returned to help build the new Palestinian state.  The radical Islamists seemed to shrink away.  Palestinian women threw off their head scarves and beauty salons sprouted on city streets.  There was a brief and shining sense that life could be normal, free from strife and violence, that finally Palestinians had a future.  But it all swiftly turned sour.  The 1995 assassination of Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, coupled with mounting draconian restrictions on Palestinians to prevent them from entering Israel and keep them in submission, led to another uprising in 2000.  This one, which I also covered for The New York Times, was far more violent.  This latest uprising has led to the deaths of more than 4,300 Palestinians and 1,100 Israelis.  It ushered in an Israeli policy that saw Jewish settlers relocated from Gaza.  Gaza was then sealed off like a vast prison.  Israel also began to build a security barrier—at a cost of about $ 1 million per mile—in the West Bank.  When it is done, the barrier is expected to incorporate 40 percent of Palestinian land into the Israeli state. 


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Israeli air strikes have, over the past year, decimated the infrastructure in Gaza, destroying bridges, power stations and civilian administration buildings.  The breakdown in law and order, coupled with the growing desperation in Gaza, has triggered an internecine conflict between Hamas and Fatah.  There are some 200 Palestinians who have died in clashes and street fighting between the two factions during the past year—more than one-third of those killed by Israel during the same period. 

The Israeli abuses have been well documented, not only by international human rights organizations, but Israeli human rights groups such as B’Tselem.  On June 4, 2007, Amnesty International released a new 45-page report called “Enduring Occupation: Palestinians Under Siege in the West Bank,” which again illustrates the devastating impact of four decades of Israeli military occupation. The report documents the relentless expansion of unlawful settlements on occupied land.  It details the ways Israel has seized or denied crucial resources, such as water, to Palestinians under occupation.  It documents a plethora of measures that confine Palestinians to fragmented enclaves and hinder their access to work, health and education facilities. These measures include the 700-kilometer barrier or wall, more than 500 checkpoints and blockades, and a complicated system of permits to heavily restrict movement.

“Palestinians living in the West Bank are blocked at every turn. This is not simply an inconvenience—it can be a matter of life or death.  It is unacceptable that women in labor, sick children, or victims of accidents on their way to hospital should be forced to take long detours and face delays which can cost them their lives,” said Malcolm Smart, director of Amnesty International’s Middle East and North Africa Program. 

“International action is urgently needed to address the widespread human rights abuses being committed under the occupation, and which are fueling resentment and despair among a predominantly young and increasingly radicalized Palestinian population,” said Smart.  “For 40 years, the international community has failed to adequately address the Israeli-Palestinian problem; it cannot, must not, wait another 40 years to do so.”

Of Gaza’s 1.4 million residents, a staggering 1.1 million now depend on outside food assistance.  The World Food Program has identified Gaza as one of the world’s hunger global hot spots.  The WFP is a principal food aid provider to Palestinians, providing assistance to 640,000 Palestinians, more than a third of them in Gaza.

The desperation—with young men unable to find work, travel outside the Gaza Strip or West Bank and forced to sleep 10 to a room in concrete hovels without running water—has empowered the Islamic radicals.  The desperation has led the Palestinian population, once one of the most secular in the Middle East, to turn to radical fundamentalism.  The more pressure and violence Israel employs, the more these radicals are empowered.

The Israeli lobby in the United States is captive to the far right of Israeli politics.  It exerts influence not on behalf of the Jewish state but an ideological strain within Israel that believes it can crush Palestinian aspirations through force.  The self-defeating policies of the Bush administration are mirrored in the self-defeating policies championed by the hard-right administration of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert in Jerusalem.  Israel flouts international law and dismisses Security Council resolutions to respect the integrity of Palestinian territory.  It has instead trapped Palestinians in squalid, barricaded ghettos where they barely survive. 

It is not in Israel’s interest—or our own—to continue to fuel increased Palestinian strife and rising militancy.  Economic sanctions and an arms ban against Israel are our last hope.  These were the tools that toppled the apartheid regime in South Africa.  And it was, after all, the sanctions imposed by the first President Bush—he suspended $10 billion of loan guarantees for resettling Russian immigrants in Israel—that prodded right-wing Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir to attend peace talks in Madrid.

A trade embargo—even if imposed only by European states—would be a start.  It is outside pressure that can alone halt the inexorable slide into a conflict that could become regional.  And a new regional conflict with Israel could spell the end of the Zionist experiment in the Middle East.  It may be quixotic, perhaps even impossible, but it is the last measure left to save Israel from itself.

Chris Hedges is a veteran journalist and former Mideast bureau chief for The New York Times. His most recent book is “American Fascists: The Christian Right and the War On America.”

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By Matt, June 7, 2007 at 9:27 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Writes a Zionist: “Tell us if you believe the Jews have a right to live independently in their own homeland.”

People, as members of ethnic groups, do not have “homelands”. Not in Germany, not in Serbia, and not in Israel.

Individual people have homes.

If in a particular place the inhabitants are (or used to be) mostly members of some ethnic group, it doesn’t mean that that place is the rightful “homeland” for people of that ethnicity, so that foreigners who are members of the ethnic group can come “home” to that place, kicking out or assuming superior rights over ethnically different people who already live there.

Jews from Brooklyn who move to West Bank settlements are not coming “home”.

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By nahida, June 7, 2007 at 8:35 am Link to this comment


As long as our land is occupied by Zionists (Jewish terrorists), and as long as we are treated as sub-humans by war criminals who think of themselves “chosen”, and as long as this racist, fascist, imperialist, state exists, we WILL fight back.

You mourn about Hitler and the holocaust, and what Hitler did was to call for a pure Aryan state, in exactly the same way as you are calling for the right of a pure Jewish state to exist.

Why should such RACIST intently have the right to exist?

Resisting occupation, oppression and injustice is basic human right.

We are freedom fighters; we are fighting terrorists, racists, occupiers and thieves.

People normally steal money, goods, but… OMG… stealing a whole country!!  And worse still… you think you can get away with it
No… no… no

You have more physical power now, but nothing remains as it is …THINGS CHANGE.

And DO NOT underestimate our INNER power… by your crimes you killed many of us, and tortured many more, but you lost your souls in the process, and you have failed to destroy our souls, our humanity, our dignity, and our will to be free.

Your power will NOT last forever; we can afford to lose many wars.
You cannot afford to lose one… and that one IS coming…
Sooner or later it is coming…

Unless of course you come back to your senses, abandon your criminal ideology as being “chosen” and abandon your criminal deeds of subjugating a whole nation, and constantly threatening and attacking your neighbours.

It is your choice, either to live in a state of fear for ever, behind mental, psychological, and cemented walls of your creation, or accept that you are no better than any other human and join the rest of humanity.

“To those against whom war is made, permission is given (to fight back), because they are wronged; and verily, God is most powerful for their aid; (They are) those who have been expelled from their homes in defiance of right,-(for no cause) except that they say, our Lord is God”. (22:39-40)

‘Fight in the cause of God against those who fight you, but do not initiate aggression. God does not love transgressors.’ (2.190)

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By Matt, June 7, 2007 at 8:33 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

As a person absolutely appalled by the Iraq war and even more appalled at the Bush administration’s plans for war against Iran, much of what I writehere reflects my passionate anger against Israel concerning its influence on US foreign policy.

One might wonder why I don’t rant so much against greedy military contractors and oil executives who obviously benefit from these wars.

The short answer is: because it is Israel that has thrown our system disastrously off balance.

This has allowed the warmongering corporatists to do far more damage than they would otherwise be able to do. Since 1967, Israel has moved politically ever farther to the right, as the fascist implications of its founding play themselves out in the occupation, overwhelming Israel’s traditional Jewish progressivism.

The logical contradiction is being resolved in the direction of outright fascism.

During that time, in America, Israel has maintained (through a kind of sentimental inertia) most of its traditional support in the Democratic party and among traditional Jewish progressives, while simultaneously cultivating a huge new power base of militant Christian Zionists who are mostly Republican and anti-progressive.

Militantly expansionist Israel now straddles both our parties like a Goliath. This means that while the military industrialists are always there, always lurking and looking for ways to rev up the war machine, it is only Israel that makes it possible for the war machine to go this far.

It is only Israel that has gotten us into a situation in which it looks like our insane chief executive and his cohorts may actually be about to launch a pre-emptive nuclear attack on Iran, a country which has not attacked us and is no threat to us.

And it is only Israel that has so distorted our politics, with everyone living in mortal fear of the “anti-Semite” label, that even in “antiwar” circles it is almost impossible to point out Israel’s pivotal role in fomenting these wars.

Israel is the key. Israel is what makes the whole thing politically unstoppable.

And that’s why, as I watch in helpless frustration, I have come to hate Israel, which I used to love. I know I shouldn’t, but that’s the way I feel at this point. I see now that my American liberal sentimental attachment to Israel was always misplaced and unreciprocated, and it has been cynically exploited. I am very bitter about this. I think it’s only natural. But I’m also very sad about this.

Yes, it makes me very sad.

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By lilmamzer, June 7, 2007 at 7:39 am Link to this comment

#75988 by nahida

Tell us, without the twisted jihadi propaganda, what your vision for the future of the Jews in Israel is.

Tell us if you believe the Jews have a right to live independently in their own homeland.

Tell us if you believe the Jews have a right to self-determination.

And don’t make it a zer-sum-game argument, meaning, your answers are predicated on what the Jews do for Arabs.

This is a focussed and meaningful series of questions that cut to the heart of the conflict.

Can you agree that Jews have a right to live as a free and independent nation in their homeland of Israel?

If your answer to that basic question is no, then you stand for incessant war, repression, genocide, intolerance, and the crudest of double-standards.

Wish not for yourself what you would deny to others, Nahida.

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By Peter RV, June 7, 2007 at 7:34 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

To the esteemed Censorship,
Please publish my post, commentary to Billy the Dik’s #75819, even if it is politically very incorrect. I don’t mind being “mopped floor with” like Hedges (if I may borrow the delicate expression of one of the forum’s intellectuals-in-residence)
  BTW, I did try to register several times, without much success.

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By lilmamzer, June 7, 2007 at 7:32 am Link to this comment

#75988 by nahida

Always playing the victim, never the victimizer.

Now you have Gaza. All to yourselves, and what do you do with it? There is no “occupation” of Gaza, save the Arabs still living there.

Tell us, do you support Hamas? And What Hamas represents - Jihad? Because most Palestinian Arabs do - they voted for Hamas knowing the Hamas agenda of genocide for the Jews and enforced sharia for everyone else.

The only reason your Arabs are still living in “refugee camps” which, by the way, have modern 3 story apartmnent buildings, go figure, is that your fellow Arabs living in 22 independent nation-states want you to stay that way, and you know that. Israel is not your place. Gaza is. Stay there and stop firing rockets at Israeli civilians. Stop sending women and children across the border with bombs strapped to their bodies to slaughter Israeli civilians. Stop teaching Jihad and 72 virgins for martyrs, stop living in the 8th century already. We’re so tired of it.

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By Inherit The Wind, June 7, 2007 at 7:00 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“Since a “Jewish state” is inherently undemocratic because it discriminates against non-Jews, therefore there can be no just two state solution.”

I keep asking the question: Why is this not equally true for all the Islamic state?  I’ve even heard, in democratic liberal Turkey, “scholars” say “You cannot be truly Turkish if you are not Moslem”.

Since the question has been refused to be answered repeatedly, the only conclusion I can reach is that somehow, it’s OK for Moslems, but not for Jews.

And there’s only one answer for that: an inherent hatred for the Jewish religion and for Jews in general.

And the response from the anti-semites is to call names (except TW who is at least polite, even though utterly and completely at sea).

By the way, saying an Arab cannot be anti-semitic is as absurd as saying a Cuban or Venezuelan can’t be anti-American.  After all, Cuba and Venezuela are American, aren’t they?  Obfuscation. Gibberish.

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By nahida, June 7, 2007 at 6:08 am Link to this comment

who is the terrorist?

lefty and ilk

If you want to talk about violence why not talk about the violence perpetrated by the Zionists (Jewish terrorist) living in the stolen occupied Palestine?

I think it would be very helpful to compare the “violence” committed by those Israeli Zionist Jews and the “violence” by Palestinians.

Remember that the violence perpetrated by Israeli Zionist Jews is one of “aggression”; as:

-They are the ones who are occupying someone else’s land.

-They are the ones who destroyed 531 villages in 1948.

-they are the ones who still defying 65 UN resolutions (forget the resolutions that are vetoed by USA) while the Palestinians had NONE against them.

- They are the ones who committed televised multi-massacres and mass murder.

-they are the ones who killed NINE times more Palestinian children against every Israeli child.

-They are the ones who watched 68 women giving birth at checkpoints while 34 of their infants and 4 of them dying.

-they are the ones who are denying almost 7 million Palestinian refugees from returning to their homes, and giving that right to any Jew, just because of his “Jewishness”.

-They are the ones who gave themselves the right to steal our homeland, just because they claim that God (whom they don’t believe in, as most Israelis are seculars) gave them that land!

Now if all that is not insane, what is?

If all that is not inhumane, what is?

on the other hand; Palestinians are defending their occupied land Palestine and they are fighting to regain their freedom and equality as human beings

Living under occupation and being subjugated to someone else’s brutality, who sees you as subhuman, is not a pleasant experience I tell you.

visit this site and study the comparative iinformation in it:

open your eyes and be a witness to what your ugly Israhell is doing to the children of Palestine by watching the photos and the videos in my blog:

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By lilmamzer, June 7, 2007 at 4:36 am Link to this comment

Chris Hedges defends Arab homicide bombing among many other atrocities as he gets hammered shilling for radical Islam. Watch him get the beat-down he richly deserves…......

Hotchens Hammers Radical-Islam-Apologist Hedges

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By Tony Wicher, June 7, 2007 at 1:27 am Link to this comment

Re #75926 by Billy the Dik on 6/06 at 8:39 pm
(100 comments total)

“Tony Wicher, I have long admired and respected Rabbi Lerner along with other dignified Jews and Arabs: Chomsky, Zinn, Finkelstein, Edward Said, etc.  I sub to Tikkun.  The problem for me is that (I’ve noted elsewhere that the Israeli news is much more accurate than the US media) I’m a citizen of the US, therefore for first duty and responsibility is to protest “my” government/corporate unbridled and greedy support for Israel’s policies.  I am partly responsible for this, as a citizen of a democracy.”

I am completely with you. Our primary responsibility as American citizens is to see to it that our government ceases to support the racist policies of the state of Israel. These policies follow inevitably from the fundamental Zionist principle that there must be a “Jewish state”.

Since a “Jewish state” is inherently undemocratic because it discriminates against non-Jews, therefore there can be no just two state solution. The biggest single mistake was made in 1947 by the United Nations when it granted the partition as the British were leaving. As soon as this happened, the Zionists led by Ben Gurion initiated ethnic cleansing, as they had meticulously planned for years (See Ilan Pappe, “The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine”). Partition is the CAUSE of the problem, not the solution. The solution, now as in 1947, is a single democratic state in the whole area. I have been arguing this point with Michael Lerner for a long time, and I think he may be coming off his two-state postion. If you will listen to the video at the URL I posted in my previous comment, you will see he never mentions the two-state solution which he has always made a central point.

Michael’s main point in this video is that he is calling on American Jews to unite to form an alternative to AIPAC, the ADL and other mainstream Jewish organizations, which can be critical of Israel and can defend non-Jewish critics of Israel from charges of anti-Semitism. This is a most constructive and welcome approach, im my opinion.

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By Robert, June 6, 2007 at 11:10 pm Link to this comment

Norman Finkelstein on Chicago Public radio.

On its 40th anniversary of the June 1967 Arab-Israeli War….

“Norman Finkelstein: In order to understand the build up to the war the best place to begin is November, 1966. There was an Israeli retaliatory, as they call it, attack on a Jordanian village called Samu. In the course of the attack on Samu they blew up 125 buildings and killed a large number of Jordanian soldiers.

When that attack happened the Jordanians and also the Syrians began to attack Nasser for not coming to their defense. Here was this Egyptian president claiming to be the leader of Arab nationalism and Pan-Arabism and he was doing nothing. Nasser was being taunted for his, as it were, impotence in the face of Israeli aggression.”


For the rest of the interview transcriptand/or audio is the link to Finkelstein’s facts:

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By Robert, June 6, 2007 at 10:42 pm Link to this comment

Comment #75884 by Billy The D on 6/6 at 5:35 pm

Hey Billy…have you noticed what this forum’s “fanatic zionist gang’s” usage of methods & tactics with their heckling attempts to quiet anyone who exposes any of Israel’s, AIPAC & zionism’s deceptive & subversive acts:

Here is a small list of what they attempt to use:

1. If the person is a gentile, zionists cry “antisemitism” which is nothing more than a smoke screen to hide their intentions / actions.

2. If the above doesn’t work, they ignore the charges, hoping the information will not be given widespread distribution.

3. If the information starts to reach too many people, they ridicule the information.

4. If that doesn’t work, their next step is character assassination. If the author and/or speaker hasn’t been involved in sufficient scandal, they are crafty at fabricating scandal against the person(s).

5. If none of these work, they are known to resort to physical attacks & harm.

One can see the hatred & vile from “stenchy lefty/ephraim, ill-lie-mamzie & blowing in the wind’s (ITW) plopping piles of badgering on this & other threads/forums.

Just think about where these infected zionists got brainwashed at? Most likely, right here in these United States. In their many zionist schools, zionist rabbis, zionist mentors, Israeli zionist speakers and/or kibutz exchange programs…zionist/Israeli websites.

Their sick attempts with their juvenile heckling/tauting & sly methods are not going to work on the people who care for the TRUTH & equal rights for all people. Not Just For Jews ONLY!

These zionists are no strangers to each other. Their intentions are transparent to us & their sidetracking attempts of the main issues are not going their way.


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By Tony Wicher, June 6, 2007 at 9:10 pm Link to this comment

If anybody is interested in possibly helping this problem instead of contributing to it, they might be interested in this short address by Rabbi Michael Lerner of the Tikkun and the Network of Spiritual Progressives. NSP.dwt

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By Peter RV, June 6, 2007 at 5:45 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Ref.75819 by Billy the Dik

  Billy the Dik’s got the right idea but doesn’t go far enough.
  I don’t believe in the Anathema of Anti-Semitism either, on the contrary, I believe that everybody should be Anti-Semitic so long as the Semites behave like beasts (but no longer than that)

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By lilmamzer, June 6, 2007 at 12:12 pm Link to this comment

#75786 by Billy the Dik: Lilmamzer and Lefty… all you’re doing is showing your greedy colors and making an unwitting case for anti-Semitism

Oh, you don’t need any help from us. You’ve been one all along. You just won’t admit it comes from within yourself.

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By lilmamzer, June 6, 2007 at 9:10 am Link to this comment

#75672 by Fadel Abdallah:
Forty years ago, when I was still young and hopeful, just days away before officially graduating from college, my life was permanently shattered and turned upside down by the so-called 6-day war against my homeland.

The Gazan Arabs were occupied by Egypt. The Arabs of Judea and Samaria were occupied by Jordan. Both Egypt and Jordan commenced hostilities against Israel from these area, Fadel. From Gaza, the Egyptian Army opened fire with artillery. From the Jordanian Army came shelling of Jerusalem and surrounding residential areas. You know nothing of history. You nothing about your own people. Too bad you know so little and that you r"life was permanently shattered”. You still sound shattered. What a waste. But that would put you in good company - the rest of the Arab world.

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By lilmamzer, June 6, 2007 at 9:05 am Link to this comment

#75672 by Fadel Abdallah:
Forty years ago, when I was still young and hopeful, just days away before officially graduating from college, my life was permanently shattered and turned upside down by the so-called 6-day war against my homeland.

Fadel, you made me laugh out loud.

Forty years ago, your people publicly declared, in newspapers, on the radio, in the mosques and in schools, that the combined Arab armies would wipe the Jews out and drive them into the sea.

Is THAT what you were “hopeful” about?

The 6 Day War was a war AGAINST the JEWS’ homeland of Israel, you ignorant fuck.

You have everything precisely upside down and backwards.

Thanks for the laugh, Fadel.

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By lilmamzer, June 6, 2007 at 8:53 am Link to this comment

Chris Hedges, you need to do some clear-eyed rethinking about your credentials as a journalist. You have been for many years now an advocate, not a journalist, for dark forces that threaten the lives and liberty of many millions of people. Why have you never written or spoken out against the shameful attempts by the British journalists union to boycott Israeli Jews? Shame on you Hedges. Your bigotry is so transparent.

From the Wall Street Journal, June 5, 2007:

Palestinian rocket attacks against Israeli civilians are intensifying, Hamas leaders are calling for the destruction of the Jewish state and Gaza descends into chaos. For the British left that naturally calls for a boycott of, you’ve guessed it, Israel. Not every criticism of Israel is anti-Semitic. But the inverse, that criticism of the Jewish state is never anti-Semitic, can’t be true either. To judge Israel by standards different than those applied to any other nation is racist in effect if not intent.

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By lilmamzer, June 6, 2007 at 8:46 am Link to this comment

Chris Hedges disingenuously ignores the reality of Israel’s situation before, during, and after 1967. The Prime Minister of Israel sets the record straight. Read it, Hedges, and reconcile it with your Catholic morality, you asswipe.
Looking back to the weeks preceding the Six-Day War, it may be difficult for you to imagine just how desperate life seemed for Israelis, ringed by peoples whose armies pointed their weapons towards us, whose leaders daily promised the imminent destruction of our state and whose newspapers carried crude cartoons of Jews being kicked off the face of the earth. We were once again people facing annihilation. We had no alternative but to defend ourselves, no strategic allies to ensure our survival. We stood alone.

Israel fought an unwanted war to defend its very existence, and today there are still leaders who call for Israel to be wiped off the map. Our survival in 1967 is now, in the eyes of the world, the original sin of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Over the last 15 years, successive Israeli governments have initiated talks with the Palestinians in every conceivable permutation in an attempt to reach a settlement. In the 1990s, Israel withdrew from all the Palestinian cities in the West Bank, handing its affairs over to a Palestinian Authority. Nearly two years ago, Israel withdrew its troops and civilians from Gaza, with no preconditions. In the face of concessions that have threatened our own domestic consensus, the constant refrain has been the Palestinian refusal to end its violent attacks on our citizens.

Palestinian violence is not a response to the capture of the West Bank and Gaza. From the emergence of the Zionist movement over 100 years ago, Arabs have opposed our claim to independence on our historic homeland, often violently. Our conflict is not territorial, it is national.

In the wider Arab world, there is ever greater recognition that Israel will not disappear from the map. I take the offer of full normalization of relations between Israel and the Arab world seriously; and I am ready to discuss the Arab peace initiative in an open and sincere manner. But the talks must be a discussion, not an ultimatum.

Israel is prepared to make painful concessions to pay the price for a lasting and just peace that will allow the people of the Middle East to live in dignity and security. But as strong and resourceful as Israelis are, we cannot make peace alone.
The only concession the Truthdig/David Duke Alliance wants is national suicide from Israel. Not gonna happen!

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By Robert, June 6, 2007 at 6:51 am Link to this comment

“How Can Children of the Holocaust Do Such Things”

“A Jewish Plea” 

By Sara Roy  

April 7-8, 2007

“For my mother and father Judaism meant bearing witness, raging against injustice and refusing silence. It meant compassion, tolerance, and rescue. In the absence of these imperatives, they taught me, we cease to be Jews.

Many of the people, both Jewish and others, who writeabout Palestinians and Arabs fail to accept the fundamental humanity of the people they are writing about, a failing born of ignorance, fear and racism. Within the organized Jewish community especially, it has always been unacceptable to claim that Arabs, Palestinians especially, are like us, that they, too, possess an essential humanity and must be included within our moral boundaries, ceasing to be “a kind of solution,” a useful, hostile “other” to borrow from Edward Said. That any attempt at separation is artificial, an abstraction.”

“Why is it virtually mandatory among Jewish intellectuals to oppose racism, repression and injustice almost anywhere in the world and unacceptable—indeed, for some, an act of heresy—to oppose it when Israel is the oppressor, choosing concealment over exposure?”

“What are Jews now capable of resisting: tyranny? Oppression? Occupation? Injustice? We resist none of these things, no more. For too many among us they are no longer but necessary and good—we cannot live, survive without them. What does that make us? We look at ourselves and what do we see: a non-Jew, a child, whose pain we inflict effortlessly, whose death is demanded and unquestioned, bearing validity and purpose.”


An outstanding article by SARA ROY and one that exposes her Judaism vs Zionism.

Here is the link to the rest of Sara Roy’s article:

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By nahida, June 6, 2007 at 5:51 am Link to this comment

I Believe in Miracles

You can break my bones
My free spirit is invincible

You can cause me the loss of sight
The light of my insight
You’ll never take away
In the shadows of darkness
Lies the corpse of your might

You can destroy my house
The windows of my hope,
You cannot break
The pillars of my faith
You can never shake

You can threaten me
With weapons of death
And mass destruction
Implanting fear in my heart
You cannot achieve
Nor can you cut off
My divine connection

With a missile
You can tear my body apart
My soul however
Is out of your reach
And is forever intact

You claimed victory in six days!
Victorious are those
With a dignified gaze
Facing tanks with tender flesh
And only with stones,
The F16 fighter blaze

You can never defeat my will to be
Because my power that you cannot explain
Grows from within the roots of my pain

You depend on the United States
For wealth and war supply
My infinite strength stems from
My creator, the One most high

I can show you the way
To victory, just say:
“In the name of God
Most gracious, Most merciful
The loving, the Just
The source of peace and light”
Strip away your greed and lust
You’ll be surprised!
Enjoy the transformation
Of your soul and heart

Examine your deeds and
Put your life to the test
Can you see what wrongs you’ve sown?
Were you planting roses
Or were you planting thorns?

Listen to your heart,
The true story you shall hear
Let your soul vision be your guide
The picture will be ever so clear

A few words are all you need to say:
“Forgive me God”
And all your sins will be washed away

“I’m sorry Palestine”
For all the pain I caused you
“I’m sorry children of Palestine
For being so cruel
Digging your graves
I’m not your superior
You are not my slaves”

Heaven will be yours
And on Earth will be peace
When you begin to care

In my heart you’ll find a place
And my land we can share

I believe in miracles
And that day I shall see
Because God is only just
God is only fair

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By nahida, June 6, 2007 at 5:47 am Link to this comment

Will I ever grow up again?

Life on hold

My internal clock is shattered into pieces
The 40 years of forced exile
Have no record in my book of memories
Chapters of lost titles
Blank sheets; page after page
Unseen pictures with no lines
Mysterious characters with no faces
Images that have neither shape nor colour
Invisible words that have no letters
Nor meanings

A sad story with an unwritten scriptLife on hold

Ageing by the day
The head inflamed with grey hair
Swallowed by the dark sea of shame
Having to flee without facing the storm
Shaken by the gales of hurt and pain
With my roots uprooted
A freezing gloomy everlasting winter
Watching over my shoulders
Awaiting my decay

Life on hold

I was seven
I am seven
I will be seven
And I will stay seven
Until the day of my return
The pieces of my shattered clock
Will be put together, that day
And it will start ticking again
The pink and white blossoms of my spring
Will become something more than just a dream

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By Inherit The Wind, June 6, 2007 at 5:14 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“Fadel Abdallah on 6/05 at 9:09 pm
(57 comments total)

Forty years ago, when I was still young and hopeful, just days away before officially graduating from college, my life was permanently shattered and turned upside down by the so-called 6-day war against my homeland.

This so-called six-day war proved to be forty years, and still counting, of forced exile, dispossession, humiliation, pain, suffering and recurring sad memories repeated day after day and year after year; not only for me personally, but for millions of my fellow country men and women, whose only sin was that they did not get the chance to fight and defend their beloved Palestine or die in the process.

Forty years after, I am willing to trade off all my suffering and pain for just one year, or perhaps one month of peace and solitude under a shady olive tree of my beloved Palestine.

Forty years after, and despite my dignified anger and pain, I still pray for the wrongdoers to see the light and make amends; otherwise, may the God of Justice, or Nemesis, exact revenge upon the wrongdoers through some miraculous act. “


Amazing how Fadel has left out 3 critical details:
1) The massive Egyptian army assembling on Israel’s southern border, with the explicit mission of eradicating Israel
2) The massive Syrian army assembling on Israel’s northern-eastern borders, along with long-range artillery on Golan Heights, all with the explicitly declared mission of eradicating Israel.
3) King Hussein of Jordan, who kept his nation out of the war for a day after the war started, then attacked Israel from the East.

Without this last attack, none of Fadel’s “troubles” would have happened.  Fadel’s nation attacked Israel and LOST THE WAR!  Along with it, was lost the West Bank, Sinai (Egypt), Gaza, and the Golan. 95% of the territory captured has been given back.

See, Fadel, forgets the Russian saying: “Half a loaf of bread is half a loaf of bread. But half of the truth is a lie!”  Because Fadel pretends that Israel was never threatened and pretends that his nation, Jordan, never attacked Israel, he thinks he can fool people into thinking he’s a victim of Israeli aggression. That’s a pure, simple flat LIE. 

The West Bank was lost to Jordan because Jordan attacked Israel.  King Hussein was more afraid of what the Arab world would do to him if he didn’t attack than what Israel would do if he did.  So he attacked Israel, mostly out of fear.  He joined the coalition of Egypt, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Yemen and others in their quest to obliterate Israel and massacre every Jew there.

The truth will set you free, Fadel, not lies.  The cause of your troubles were your own people and your own king, not Israel.  The continuing cause of your troubles are your own people, Fadel, who have REFUSED to make peace at every opportunity.

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By Robert, June 5, 2007 at 10:57 pm Link to this comment



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By Fadel Abdallah, June 5, 2007 at 10:09 pm Link to this comment

Forty years ago, when I was still young and hopeful, just days away before officially graduating from college, my life was permanently shattered and turned upside down by the so-called 6-day war against my homeland.

This so-called six-day war proved to be forty years, and still counting, of forced exile, dispossession, humiliation, pain, suffering and recurring sad memories repeated day after day and year after year; not only for me personally, but for millions of my fellow country men and women, whose only sin was that they did not get the chance to fight and defend their beloved Palestine or die in the process.

Forty years after, I am willing to trade off all my suffering and pain for just one year, or perhaps one month of peace and solitude under a shady olive tree of my beloved Palestine.

Forty years after, and despite my dignified anger and pain, I still pray for the wrongdoers to see the light and make amends; otherwise, may the God of Justice, or Nemesis, exact revenge upon the wrongdoers through some miraculous act.

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By Inherit The Wind, June 5, 2007 at 9:55 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“the American people are waking up slowly & finding the TRUTH about who is sucking our nation’s blood & resources. Its Israel & its fanatic zionist ideologies & their land grabbing expansion goals.”

There are only 3 possible sources for this propaganda: The moslem fanatic extremists, the American nazi/KKK alliance (like David Duke), or Mein Kampf.  Didn’t you forget the part about how the Passover Matzoh couldn’t be made without the blood of a Christian child, now a Moslem child?

How did the so-called “progressives” ever fall for the propaganda of the Ku Klux Klan and the American Nazi Party?  They’ve been saying the same thing as Robert and Billy the Dik for decades.  George Lincoln Rockwell spewed the same garbage in the 60’s. David Duke and Lewis Farakkhan spewed it in the 80’s and 90’s.

Nothing ever changes. Every 50 years or so the hate-filled idiots arise and say “Let’s kill all the Jews. They are the cause of all the evil in the world.”

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By Toby, June 5, 2007 at 9:40 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

#75551 by TAO Walker
Love to read your wisdom!
When can we look forward to reading your book?

#75497 by bigjimbo
“I was serving as an Air Force officer in Vietnam at the time of the 6-day war.  My primary memory and lasting emotional pain is the criminal and deliberate attack on the US Liberty and the deaths of many sailors.  I don’t buy the lie that it was an accident.”

You shouldn’t. It was no accident.

#75489 by Rob Thair
“Israel” is simply a destination and theoretical base for the Jewish diaspora.”

The diaspora or dispersion, is not the exclusive property of the Jews, since they were just one of twelve tribes who were scattered.

“Israel, heart and soul of nations” refers to descendents of all the twelve tribes.

Jacob [Also called Israel] fathered 12 sons: Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Zebulun, Issachar, Dan, Gad, Asher, Naphtali, Joseph and Benjamin. Jacobs [Israel’s] twelve sons are the ancestors of the twelve tribes of Israel.

If we use the Bible (whatever version) as the historical record. Given the reality of the time span, war, slavery, intermarriage, dislocation, dispersion, emigration and exploration, it is reasonable to assume descendents of Jacob [Israel] are spread across the entire face of the earth. Therefore descendents of Israel can be found in all peoples on the earth today.

The Jewish people are generally referred to as the Children of Israel, signifying their descent from Jacob [Israel].

However ALL descendents from ALL the children of Jacob [Israel] are likewise the children of Israel.

Therefore, when referring to the Nation State of Israel, we must remember, that State represents only one twelfth of all the sons of Jacob [Israel]. And should more accurately be named the “Nation State” of Judah.

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By Palestinian, June 5, 2007 at 9:06 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

To Lefty (or should I say Righty)
I am Palestinian who was born in Jerusalem; my Palestinians ancestry goes hundreds of years. Yet according to your “logic” I am not worthy to be in Palestine. Only the “chosen people” with the superior blood have the right to this land. Why a European Jew who never saw Israel in his life be allowed to stay in the occupied Palestine while I and most of my family are not allowed even to visit our homeland.
FYI the quotes you sited come from people who never left a finger to help the Palestinian. You want a good understanding of what happen to the Palestinian in 1948 and 1967 read the Israeli historian Benny Morris book about the Palestinian refugee. You will know who the culprit is

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By Robert, June 5, 2007 at 7:49 pm Link to this comment

Comment #75628 by Billy The D on 6/5 at 6:14 pm

Billy TD,

Man you are showing those “fanatic zionists” that you do “dare to speak out” and to tell the TRUTH about who is hijacking the American people & who is stealing our resources & our hard earned taxpayers money. Those fanatic zionist Israeli settlers are living like kings in those “for Jews ONLY” Israeli settlements/colonies, while the Palestinians are brutaly oppressed for simply NOT being of that “superior blood” that Nazi-zionism requires.

This zionist infected “lefty-ephraim pesach” just keeps plopping that green “horse-shit” zionist propaganda in the stall of his. He just can’t cope with the facts that the American people are waking up slowly & finding the TRUTH about who is sucking our nation’s blood & resources. Its Israel & its fanatic zionist ideologies & their land grabbing expansion goals.

These creeps have no shame and certainly no humanity. For these hate-filled zionists…its ALL about deceptions…lies…lies…lies!

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By Peter RV, June 5, 2007 at 4:47 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

This is also the fourtieth anniversary of Israel’s attack on the USS Liberty. For those who didn’t see this most remarkable BBC account of the event, “Dead in the Water”, this is a must-see.
Warning: Not recommanded for Lefty or Lilmamzer types of persons, for it may affect seriously their spiritual disposition
( The scenes of blatant lyings of Israeli and U.S. government officials, are quite brutal, tender souls may simply not withstand them )
Oh, before I leave, here is another Golda Mier’s morally convolluted message to the Palestinians i.e. terrorists (in her first message she informed them that they didn’t exist), and it is a gem, too:
“We don’t hate you for killing us, we hate you for making us kill you”
  Good old Golda, she knew that “they make us do it”, way before Lefty and Lilmamzer discovered this.

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By peacefull1, June 5, 2007 at 3:27 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Whatever problems exist in this part of the country, at least we know they don’t have anything to do w/ religion, at least according to you Chris and all the others blinded by faith.  Maybe we should pray for solutions… we all know how effective that is.

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By David Flannery, June 5, 2007 at 2:33 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The history of the Jews has been a tragic one.

Throughout the Old Testament you can read about the many conflicts between The Israelites (Jews) and their god and the many punishments that their god heaped upon the ungrateful chosen ones.

The chosen ones have always been a violent bunch. In order to claim their promised land they committed what would be considered war crimes today.

Not only did they not get along with their god but they could not get along with each other and so split up into the northern and southern kingdoms.

This split did not help when attacked by the Syrians and Babylonians and Romans.

Jews have been unjustly persecuted over the last couple thousand years.

Part of the animosity towards the Jews was, I think, is due to their chosen people status. It kind of like being the favorite in a dysfunctional family, all the other family members are jealous and resentful.

The other reason was the supposed part played by the Jews in killing Christ.

This I have not understood at all. Christ had to die or there would be no Christianity. The Jews were only doing their part in the great drama being played out by god.

Another side bar is the aloofness of the Jews and their desire to stay apart from the societies that took them in.

None of the above justifies the persecution of the Jews.

Out of guilt the European community tried to make amends by setting up a Jewish state in old Israel.

But for the Jews to get a foot hold they had to revert to their old ways of persecuting the folks already there.

And now we are back to their god. Their god promised to return them and it looks like god is finally after 2000 years making good on the promise.

However, god is a fickle being. Now days god is a Christian lover and once the Jews are all settled in god will start up the war of Armageddon and most of the Jews will be sent to hell on the arrival of his son Jesus Christ.

It really sucks being a Jew.

Now if all the Christianity stuff is just myth the Jews still have a problem….

Even though they now have the upper hand they will not be able to hold the power place for ever.

If they do not either totally eliminate the 300 million around them that hate their guts and a large portion of the other millions around the world who are not fond of the Jews or come to some political agreement acceptable by all the new Jewish state will eventually go the way of the original.

It is in the best interest for the Jews to play nice in their rough neighborhood.

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By TAO Walker, June 5, 2007 at 2:19 pm Link to this comment

Six and a half billion tame two-leggeds are stuck inside the shrinking and suffocating confines of a contraption called “civilization.”  This now ten-thousand-year-long “processing” of “Planet Earth,” to satisfy the specialized appetites of “energy”-dependent entities who have as much regard for the “rights” of human beings as “The Colonel” has for those of chickens, and who see their selves in essentially the same position vis-a-vis their human “livestock,” is rapidly reaching its supposed-to-be inevitable (but ain’t gonna happen this time) climax….wholesale slaughter of the tormentees in one last orgy of consumption before trying to flee to the next “tailgate party” in a now aeons-long record of such rapine, pillage, and murder. 

Set against this, the bloody and interminable internecine conflict featuring some of the latter day descendents of Shem (over “The Land of Milk and Honey”), even with its antecedents themselves three or four millennia in the past, is just one more fleetingly gruesome attraction in a globe-girdling “midway” of such freak-shows symptomatic of the terminal phase of the whole damned (and doomed) operation.  It’s like two brothers fighting over their sack-lunches in the back of a school bus that is about to go over a sheer cliff anyway….the driver having just died at the wheel, foot jammed down on the gas, from a finally fatal attack of heartlessness.

Meanwhile, back in the u.s.s.a., a couple dozen “presidential hopefuls” choke on the pretzels of convolluted logic and self-justifying rationale (the heady liquor of allamerican exceptionalism no longer serving quite so well to wash things down), trying mightily to avoid the ugly truth of the Iraqi-oil-grab phase of the american imperial “project,” in their efforts to persuade theamericanpeople to let one of their select number take-over the helm of the allamerican pirate-ship-of-state nineteen or so Moons from now.  Does all that, and so much more-of-the-same, suggest to any of the mostly tunnel-visioned commentors here (with apologies to you rule-proving exceptions) that the condition their condition is in makes civilization a damned good “place” to be FROM, right about now….and that it isn’t ever going to get any better but only much worse (Or would that be vice-versa?), in that particular regard?

This old Savage is going to go help out at the SunDance in a couple weeks.  One of the GreatGrandDaughters is dancing to finish her first four-year commitment, and people of our tiyoshpaye and others, young and old and in-between, will be keeping-up with theirs, too.  Our Mother earth, of course, has been doing her own SunDance faithfully for as long as “what goes around comes around,” which is for all intents and purposes pretty much forever. 

Even those “energy”-hungry tormentors, for all their comparatively brief (but seems-like-forever) history of degradation and exploitation, are but babies among the many Children of Life Herownself, whose Song ‘n’ Dance is what moves the whole Living Universe of Universes.  What’s more, one way or another these terrible infants are about to be weaned, once and for all. 

So get ready for some kicking-and-screaming, some weeping-and-wailing-and-gnashing-of-teeth, as the “gods” themselves (along with their plutoligarch priesthood and their herds and flocks of domesticated two-legged worshippers) learn at last to live free and wild….even if they first have to die crying in the Wilderness a few times before they figure out the trick.

Sometimes “tough love” is the only “language” your average repeat offender can understand.  That applies equally to cosmic criminals, war profiteers, and the run-of-the mill petty thieves who always seem to end-up holding the shitty end of their “betters”’ schtick.  And when it comes to tough Love, the sisters of our Mother Earth all agree, “Nobody does it better.”


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By Robert, June 5, 2007 at 2:14 pm Link to this comment

Comment #75473 by Peter RV, on 6/5 at 8:11 am

PRV…Its look likes “lefty=ephraim pesach”, “ill-lie-mamzie” and “Blowing in the Wind” are all out here with the same “zionist garbage” that they have tried to spew on ‘truthdig’s’ other thread/forum, “Palestine’s Hard Choice: An Interview with Sari Nusseibeh.”

“Lefty=ephraim pesach” thinks that he is clever & cute by attempting to flood this great article/forum with his Nazi-zionist “green horse crap”. This impacted hate filled & infected zionist is known for his deceptive & sly attempts to label all commenters who criticize his “Nazi-Apartheid” Israel…as Arab imposters, terrorists…and that same ole zionists methods. Like you said in one of your previous comments…PRV, these zionists are trying to “carpet bomb” us.

One can see from the vile that these sick zionist
are spewing…what their aims are?

They just want to control and manipulate information critical of their Apartheid Israel. They want to discredit truth & plant doubts on these forums.

We exposed this infected “lefty=ephraim pesach” & left him standing in “plopping green manure filled” stall. His big fat “bare behind” was exposed to all readers/commenters on the previous thread. People can check it out for themselves.

I want to thank Chris Hedges for this great article & for daring to tell the TRUTH about what Israel & its brutal IDF have been doing to the Palestinians in last 40-59 years. Israel is a “terrorist state”, a killing machine. Its IDF kill & murder 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, year old Palestinian children or unarmed civilians and NOT face any charges for murder…NEVER.

Our United States sends Israel $3-5 billion dollars( over $110 billion dollars from 1948- till present), per year to support Israel’s Apartheid systems,building of new settlements “for Jews ONLY”,  thousands of tons of sophisticated weapons to kill Palestinian children & unarmed civilians/Arabs.

PRV…we “dare to speak out” to expose these sick zionists, AIPAC’s agendas. They want to “SILENCE” the TRUTH. Their crappy attacks will ONLy back-fire on them.

These zionists got brainwashed and infected with hatred and Nazi-behavior from their zionists schools, zionist rabbis…right here in these United Stated…man! One can see them clearly dressed up for the occasion…their brutal IDF military uniforms are on & their killing “uzi’s” & other American made weapons are all ready & pointed at anyone who criticizes their Apartheid infected ideologies!

FOLKS…don’t be intimidated by these zionist monsters.


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By lilmamzer, June 5, 2007 at 1:37 pm Link to this comment

International law makes a clear distinction between land “occupied” during a war of aggression and land taken as a result of a defensive war.
  On June 5, 1967, Jordan attacked Israel. Suburbs of Tel Aviv were shelled by artillery. Israel’s largest military airfield, Ramat David, was shelled. Jordanian warplanes attacked the central Israeli towns of Netanya and Kfar Saba. Thousands of mortar shells rained down on western Jerusalem, targeting Israel’s parliament building and the prime minister’s office.
  Twenty Israelis died in these attacks; 1,000 were wounded; 900 buildings were damaged.
  Only after coming under fire and sustaining casualties did the Israeli military respond against Jordanian forces in the West Bank.

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By lilmamzer, June 5, 2007 at 1:36 pm Link to this comment

Chris Hedges calls Israel’s remarkable 1967 victory against huge odds a Pyrrhic victory. It was not, and here, courtesy of Bret Stephens, are just a few reasons why not:

It is often said today that the Six-Day War humiliated the Arabs and propelled the region into future rounds of fighting. Yet only a few days before the outbreak of the war, Iraq’s then-President Abdul Rahman Aref saw it as “our opportunity…to wipe Israel off the map,” describing the war as the Arabs’ chance “to wipe out the ignominy which has been with us since 1948.”

It is said that the Palestinian movement was born from Israel’s occupation of Gaza and the West Bank. Yet the Palestine Liberation Organization was already in its third year of operations when the war began.

To read some recent accounts, a more sagacious Israel could have followed up its historic victory with peace overtures. In fact, the Israeli cabinet agreed on June 19, 1967, to offer the Sinai to Egypt and the Golan to Syria in exchange for peace deals. In Khartoum that September, the Arab League declared “no peace with Israel, no recognition of Israel, no negotiations with it.”

On June 5, 1967, Israel was a poor, desperately vulnerable country, which threw the dice on its own survival in the most audacious military strike of the 20th century. It is infinitely richer and more powerful today, and sure in its alliance with the U.S. If these are the fruits of Israel’s “Pyrrhic victory,” it needs more such of them.

Wheree were the patheitc voices of those like the Truthdig Brownshirts BEFORE the ‘67 war, when Egypt and Jordan were the occupying forces in Gaza and Judea/Shomron? Were there protests against the Egyptians and Jordanians? Of course not. Did anyone ask why Egypt and Jordan didn’t offer statehood to the Palestinian Arabs? Of course not. Perhaps becasuse everyone understood those Arabs to be Egyptians and Jordanians, that “Palestinian Arabs” are, in fact, a fiction created by the 22 Arab nation-states as a tool to destroy the Jews. They tried, and they failed.

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By lilmamzer, June 5, 2007 at 1:18 pm Link to this comment

#75498 by Inherit The Wind: You think doing away with Isreal will solve anything? Are you that blind?  What the HELL is so wrong with a decent, fair 2-state solution that allows both nations to stop attacking each other?

ITW, any outcome which leaves a sovereign Jewish presence is axiomatically unfair to the Truthdig jihadi crowd. It’s not the circumstances of Israel’s re-establishment, society, struggles, and development that cause Hedges et al to think and talk like David Duke, it’s the very existence of free and independent Jews. The only solution these creeps are looking for is another Final Solution.
You make a reasoned and impassioned argument, but reason has no place here, unfortunately. Facts are inconvenient and ignored altogether (just read the Hedges article and you know what I mean). This site is nothing more than a gathering place for bigots. Their only saving grace is that they wear it proudly on their sleeves - no guile or sophistication at all.

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By Inherit The Wind, June 5, 2007 at 10:58 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“Billy the Dik on 6/05 at 8:57 am
(67 comments total)

Inherit the Flatulence, no secret insight.  You’re just blowing smoke.  Read “Middle East Illusions” (written by a Jew with dignity by the way), backed up by thousands of footnotes and sources, then try to offer your parents’ and grandparents’ monstrous excuses.  If you have the integrity to supplement your diet of apologetics for your favorite quasi-nazis’ crimes against humanity with some truth and respect for life other than your own “tribe’s”, your view will probably be no more reasonable, but at least it’ll be “secretly” informed.  BTW, I’ve read Dershowitz’s hate-mongering justifications for hate-mongering and I’m tired of vomiting. “

Name-calling. That’s all you are good for.  You are a hypocrite who holds Jews to a standard you don’t hold their Arab opponents to.  Everyone of you haters of Jews and Israel avoids constantly the fact that you are defending the regimes of brutal dictators.

You think doing away with Isreal will solve anything? Are you that blind?  What the HELL is so wrong with a decent, fair 2-state solution that allows both nations to stop attacking each other?

But I realize that Billy the Dik (well-named) wants peace too. After all, won’t it be really peaceful when the 5 or 6 million Jews in Israel are all slaughtered?  I mean, there’s nothing as peaceful as a dead man.

Israelis are scared.  They’ve been under attack for 60 years and today is the 40th anniversary of Nasser’s attempt to kill every Jew in the Middle East, which was his sworn goal.

Every chance the Palestinians have had to live in peace they have rejected.  How many tables did Arafat walk away from (while making himself a billionaire)?

But atrocities are a two-way street.  Why let an ambulance through a check-point when you know in the past arms and explosives have been smuggled in that way?  Humanity goes both ways. If the Palestinian terrorists will hide behind civilians aren’t they just as wrong as Israelis who fire at them and kill those civilians in the process?

Atrocity breed atrocity.  Blow up a bus full of students? Blow up a pizza shop full of children?  Make every Israeli afraid in their beds and for their children?  The natural response is to crush and drive away those who will do that, and to isolate them from you.

Yet people like Billy the Dik argue that Israelis should allow the terrorists free access to Jewish homes, synagogues, schools and businesses.  Jews should allow themselves and their children to be slaughtered randomly, and any attempt to stop that is “Apartheid” and “ethnic cleansing” and “nazism”.

It is none of those things.  It is self-defense.  Those who deliberately commit atrocities are, at times (but not enough), brought to justice in Israel, but never in Arab lands.

You want it to end? There are only 3 ways to end the conflict:
1) Kill all the Jews in Israel.
2) Kill all the Arabs in Israel, the West Bank and Gaza.
3) Give the Jews in Israel a way to not be afraid of their Arab neighbors.  And vice versa.

To many here advocate 1) and Billy the Dik is one of them.

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By bigjimbo, June 5, 2007 at 10:53 am Link to this comment

I was serving as an Air Force officer in Vietnam at the time of the 6-day war.  My primary memory and lasting emotional pain is the criminal and deliberate attack on the US Liberty and the deaths of many sailors.  I don’t buy the lie that it was an accident.  Why was the US Navy blocked from making a thorough and comprehensive investigation.  Israel is a country that was created in deceit.  It appalls me that we in the US continue to substantially subsidize a country that is basically a mad dog.  The US support of Israel is the primary and virtually the only reason that the Islamic world hates the US.  The US has never complained about Israel having nuclear weapons.  Jonathon Pollard did greivious harm to US security and Israel continues to press for his release.  How do we salvage the current situation?  My best guess to insist that Israel return to its pre-67 borders, and make Jerusalem an international city. Elimination of Israeli settlements.  Return the Golan Heights.  Make Gaza a ward of Egypt, since it is not viable in its present form.  There is no current or foreseeable threat to Israel’s security even if it returns to the pre-67 borders, especially if it is guaranteed by the UN.

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By Rob Thair, June 5, 2007 at 10:03 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“Israel” is simply a destination and theoretical base for the jewish diaspora.  To assign the name “Israel,” is to offer recognition for a disintegrating ideology that has resorted to genocide as it clings to the remnants of “land” they have stolen.  The jewish community has sacrificed any legitimacy they may have enjoyed over the last five years.  The reality may be that they reasoned that without the atrocities they would have ceased to exist and that may be true.  However, the world community’s decision to offer any credibility to the tribal artifact of this diaspora, is to cave in to brutality they own.  Until this diaspora is corralled and forced to forsake their racist Zionist ideology, the whole world will continue to suffer for the mistaken recognition.

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By Peter RV, June 5, 2007 at 9:00 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

God Bless you Chris Hedges! You are telling it like it is.
  Now,it is up to the rest of us to shield you from this Screeming Storm-Peddlers of Anti-Semitism.
(If you happen to be a Jew, so much the worse, you won’t be able to avoid the epithet of a “self-hating” one)
  Now, the first reactions from these, are as predictable as the sunrise tomorrow.
  ” Always Jews guilty”, “we are tired of hearing the same Jew bashing filth” or,” those who agree are Arab imposteurs” or how about “Israel has the right of self-defense”,or “Israel’s enemies are terrorists” etc.
  Hedges puts squarely the responsability for the sloughter of Palestinians by the “only democracy in the Middle East”, on the cowardly silence of the West.
  I, myself, became first aware of the Palestinian sufferings on reading Maxim Ghilan’s book called ” How Israel Lost its Soul”. The book was written in 1974. I was absolutely shocked to learn that the Arab Population (Palestinisns) were held under a strict dusk-to-dawn curfew, already for twenty years at that time. Ghilan, of course had to run out of the free democratic Israel, just as Ilan Pappe did some thirty years later.
  Israel is obviously in a state of nazism from which it can’t get out by its own means.
  No more than Germany could.

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By lilmamzer, June 5, 2007 at 7:11 am Link to this comment

#75430 by Greg Bacon - now at least this guy isn’t ashamed to out himself.

Truthdig - Hedges, Scheer, et. al. - at least this guy Bacon has the cojones to say what he really thinks, instead of writing slanted smear pieces filled with innuendo and historical omissions and inaccuracies. C’mon, Hedges, what’s holding you back? You could be the next David Duke.

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By Matt, June 5, 2007 at 6:43 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Hear James Yell again:

“Matt #75234 You are of course wrong and did not pay attention. Also I am not religious, in fact I dislike the concept and believe it is false.”

It is a remarkable fact that many fervent Zionists claim to be “not religious”. But when you examine what they think amd feel, it’s very clear that - though they may not believe in God - their notions about transcendent Jewish “rights to the land” and general superiority and so on are only a superficially secularized ideology based on nothing but the Jewish religious mythology of Chosenness.

James, you may not be “religious” in a certain narrow sense, but you, like all your racist Zionist ideologues, worship, essentially, the “Jewish people”, who are somehow better than mere people. You essentially worship yourselves. Therefrom spring all your difficulties.

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By Bruce May, June 5, 2007 at 5:23 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Ironically, Israeli leaders have stated the Palestinians’ case most eloquently:
David Ben Gurion (first Israeli Prime Minister): “If I were an Arab leader, I would never sign an agreement with Israel. It is normal; we have taken their country. It is true God promised it to us, but how could that interest them? Our God is not theirs. There has been Anti-Semitism, the Nazis, Hitler, Auschwitz, but was that their fault? They see but one thing: we have come and we have stolen their country. Why would they accept that?” (Quoted by Nahum Goldmann in Le Paraddoxe Juif (The Jewish Paradox), pp121.)

Moshe Dayan: “Jewish villages were built in the place of Arab villages. You do not even know the names of these Arab villages, and I do not blame you because geography books no longer exist. Not only do the books not exist, the Arab villages are not there either. Nahlal arose in the place of Mahlul; Kibbutz Gvat in the place of Jibta; Kibbutz Sarid in the place of Huneifis; and Kefar Yehushua in the place of Tal al-Shuman. There is not a single place built in this country that did not have a former Arab population.” (Address to the Technion, Haifa, reported in Haaretz, April 4, 1969.)

Historians are now taking a critical look at the ethnic cleansing that sent the Palestinians fleeing their homes (see an excellent summary with references at The formation of the state of Israel is a European-American theft of Arab land in the Middle East. But it has persisted for several generations and we cannot blame children for where they are born. The only solution now is to form two viable states.

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By Inherit The Wind, June 5, 2007 at 5:10 am Link to this comment
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But not the progressive liberal regimes of Syria, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Libya, Sudan, etc, eh?

F***in’ hypocrites.

“As “God’s Chosen People,” You better pray (not prey) as if your eternity depends on it that there is no judgement, no God.  Otherwise your kosher goose is cooked motherfuckers! “

Every Jew born since WWII grows up knowing that sooner or later the world will turn on him/her no matter his/her beliefs and look to slaughter all Jews.  The truth won’t matter, just rilin’ folks up so they don’t see who their real enemy is and take it out on Jews instead. That’s the lesson of Auschwitz, Dachau and Treblinka.

It’s obvious that “Never Again!” has become “Now!”  We are now, yet again, in the midst of a major propaganda effort to justify the genocide of Judaism. Again.

From the bizarro claims that AIPAC is running the US government (like Dick Cheney and Karl Rove are the puppets and not the puppet masters) to the total bias against Israeli actions but never a condemnation of attacks on Israeli citizens, we see it all over again.  Since Bush’s boys have destroyed the Bill of Rights, what’s to keep his successor, or that President’s successor from interning Jews?  The propaganda is there—just look at Truthdig, now Al Jazeera West as an example.  The precedents are there—ask Japanese Americans and Jose Padilla.

“Progressives” have been hijacked by the anti-semitic forces saying “poor, poor angelic Palestinians.”  Never do they say that the Palestinians are in the fix they are in by their own actions, their own doing, their own rejection of every peace initiative, and their terrorist activities against Israeli citizens, not just military targets.  Never, ever does any of the anti-semites recall Abba Eban’s prophetic words: “The Palestinians never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity.”

Somehow, somewhere, somebody always comes up with a “reasonable” reason to slaughter Jews, yet again.  This time, it’s not the Europeans doing it (they’ve been doing it for 2000 years) but Europeans and those of European descent are justifying others doing it for them this time.

Do you really think the Middle East will become a peaceful Utopia if Israel is swallowed and becomes the 23rd Arab dictatorship?  Do you really think oil will go back down then?  Do you really think that the Moslem fundamentalists will back down then?

Would you prefer 200 nuclear warheads in the hands of Jews or Palestinians?  Or are you so naive you think they’ll be “given up”? (and to whom?)

But not a word I writewill be considered. I know a VERY progressive Jew who was very bravely involved in the 60’s civil rights movement, even putting his life on the line.  But he says to non-Jews “Sooner or later you and yours will be killing me and mine, solely for being Jews. It is inevitable”

Clearly, “Never Again!” has become “now”.  It’s the only logical inference.

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By Greg Bacon, June 5, 2007 at 3:19 am Link to this comment


“a tiny beacon of liberalism, surrounded on all sides by a giant sea of the most despicable, primitive, backward example, conservatism on the face of the Earth.”

There’s a serious disconnect from facts on this planet for the reality-denying person who wrote the above statement.

What about this Israel?

According to Israeli writer Yair Sheleg, Rabbi Kook wrote that “the difference between the Jewish soul and the souls of all non-Jews, no matter what their rank and level of understanding , is bigger and deeper than the difference between the human soul and the animal soul.” (Moses and the Prophets never taught this outrageous invention which is totally incompatible with the Abrahamic traditions).

Shortly before Israeli occupation soldiers murdered in cold blood two Gaza children , who apparently were searching for scrap metal to sell for a few cents in order to help feed their impoverished families, the former Chief rabbi of Israel, Mordechai Elyahu, urged the Israeli army and government to use the “Nazi choice” against Palestinians.

Last year, when some peace-minded Israeli activists visited Hebron and sought to erase graffiti reading “Arabs to the Oven” scrawled outside the settler compound of Abraham Avino, local settlers ganged up on the activists, calling them “Nazis, Arab lovers, and whores” as pro-settler policemen and soldiers looked on rather passively. One particularly nasty settler woman, the wife of a rabbi, shouted at one female activist, saying “How many Arabs did you sleep with today?”

About 70 years ago, wasn’t there another nation that bragged that its citizens were better than the rest of humanity?

These super-humans gave themselves the catchy title of “Master Race.”

They thought they were so much better than everyone else that they invaded and occupied other countries to prove their point.

My, how times have changed.

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By native child, June 5, 2007 at 12:33 am Link to this comment
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That’s what they did to my people too, dividing us, pushing us back, stomping on us, keeping us down, and never ever letting up, until, one day, not even a trace.

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By Inherit The Wind, June 4, 2007 at 10:20 pm Link to this comment
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Billy the Dik on 6/04 at 7:11 pm
(60 comments total)

“It is so heartbreaking to see all the apologetics for Israel’s crimes against humanity.  How many of you neo-Zionists have been to Israael?  Did you know that on hills, Palestinians are struggling for potable water?  Did you know that from where they stand they can see, across the hill and in the valley, Israel’s plush golf courses being watered with super sprinklers?  Did you know that you cannot continue to corner a whole people with US supplied weapons and torture techniques forever? “


I see. So you have some secret insight that Palestinians are dying en masse from lack of water.  Yet somehow, not even Chris Hedges seems to have picked up on this.  However, I did notice you using the age-old stereotype of “rich Jews partying” while people around them suffer in consequence.

“As “God’s Chosen People,” You better pray (not prey) as if your eternity depends on it that there is no judgement, no God.  Otherwise your kosher goose is cooked motherfuckers! “


You forgot to “Sieg Heil!” when you say that.

Every half-century or so the Jew-hating vermin come back out from under their rocks and claim they can solve the world’s ills if only all the Jews are killed.  Only this time, they are demanding that all the Jews commit suicide.  I find it hard to believe that such anti-semites as Chris Hedges and Robert Scheer dare to call themselves “progressives”.

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By Toby, June 4, 2007 at 9:47 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Israel has given itself the unenviable reputation of being the biggest bully on the block. And that’s putting it nicely.

Somewhere along the way, and apparently quite a ways back Israel decided they had the right to take at will from whomever they pleased. If they stand condemned by much of the world, they have no-one but themselves to blame.

[How the 1967 War Doomed Israel]

Now they stand as a group, those governing anyway, who see themselves not only as the center of the Earth, but the center of the Universe. Much to the chagrin and sorrow of good compassionate caring Jews allover the world.

Millions of desertations define the reasons for the sorry state of affairs surrounding the “Israeli” issue today. But the sad fact is, no matter how many reasons put forth ... there is no excuse.

An entire nation of people imprisoned by a concrete wall in their own country. Palestine.

Children murdered almost on a daily basis, for no better reason than they are not Israeli. They are Palestinian.

Hunger, lack of water and medical care. The theft of vital farm land. Unnecessary death and disease.

In Palestine.

While we as a nation look on.

But, the most reprehensible fact in all the death and destruction that has been Palestine’s lot for so many years, is that our president and our congress continually pledge allegiance to the support of Israel!

No one speaks for Palastine.

Why should one single member of our congress sit silent in face of the daily assaults Israel carries out on their neighbors?

Because there are terrorists in that neighborhood?

What do you call it when an Israeli or IDF agent shoots to kill a Palestinian child?

When a Palestinian mother sends her child off to school do you think she may wonder if that’s the last time she may see her child alive?

Is that not living with terror?

Does someone keep a score-card to rate the value of Palestinian terror over the value of Israeli terror?
Two children killed. Their crime? Flying kites while being Palestinian.

This is absolutely insane!

Lets put aside, for just one moment, our frustration over the congress’ inability, or lack of will to end the war in Iraq. To impeach Cheney. To impeach Bush. To impeach the entire administration ...
And ask just one question.

What is lacking in the collective conscience and will of our congress, when they choose to see an Israeli death as a life lost, but see the death of a Palestinian as having no value?

Dear United States Congress, at what point in time did you decide the life of a Palestinian had no value?

And, who gave you the right to make that choice?

All life is precious.
Please, somebody stop this madness!

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By lilmamzer, June 4, 2007 at 7:50 pm Link to this comment

#75282 by Frikken Kids: Before the current nation of Isreal was created in 1948, there were people living there.

Yes, most of them were Jews (shocking!) and the population distribution was the basis for the UN Partition Plan of 1947. Which the Jews accepted, and the Arabs rejected, preferring to launch a war. A war of annihilation which the Arabs started and lost. Oh, and modern Israel wasn’t “created” in 1948, she declared independence in 1948 and once again became a sovereign state, and became a UN member state. She was “created” long before that, through hard work and nation-building efforts of pioneers over many generations of Jews living and working in Israel. Jews built that nation from the ground up.
#75282 by Frikken Kids: What about all the people who were there before 1948?  Did they not have the right to self-determination on their own land?

The local Arabs had the chance for statehood as well. They rejected it. They were then occupied by the Jordanians and the Egyptians. It’s still theoretically possible for the “Palestinian” Arabs to learn how to govern themselves and not pose a threat to their neighbors and eventually gain statehood.
#75282 by Frikken Kids: What exactly is it that gives Isreal the right not only to self-determination on their land but to boldly self-determine what land is theirs no matter what anybody else says and no matter who is already living there?

That right comes from being repeatedly attacked and, in defending herself, securing territory from the aggressors. Don’t you read history?
#75282 by Frikken Kids: Should every ethnic group who used to occupy some piece of land at some point in the past - even as much as 2700 years ago - be given that land today because they have a right to self-determination?

Jews have NEVER left Israel - there has always been a continuing Jewish presence in Israel uninterrupted since antiquity, and for most of that time the majority of Jerusalem’s population was Jewish. It’s a big world, there’s room for all, including the Jews, whether you like it or not. It’s really not about you or what YOU think.
#75282 by Frikken Kids: Since the jewish people are now fighting for freedom, justice and liberty, do you think we could find some descendants of the people that were slaughtered when the Isrealites originally took control of the land and give some of Isreal’s land to them?

Good idea. Very practical and certainly pertinent. You go find some Philistines and some Amalakites and we’ll have a special UN session, OK?

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By lilmamzer, June 4, 2007 at 7:37 pm Link to this comment

#75285 by Inherit The Wind: Now we hear the same tired old cliches, but now it’s the new ones: Zionism is the same as Apartheid.  Jews have no right to self-determination, but Palestinians do. (Please explain that one).

Bingo. Arabs simply must have that 23rd independent nation-state, ESPECIALLY since, in the minds of Hedges and his crew here at Truthdig that it should replace, not complement, the Jewish state, of which there is only one.

Never mind the fairness issue, never mind the screaming double standard, never mind the selective demonization. The Jews simply must commit national suicide.

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By James Yell, June 4, 2007 at 6:48 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Matt #75234 You are of course wrong and did not pay attention. Also I am not religious, in fact I dislike the concept and believe it is false. However, the Jews never gave up their claim to their land and kept it in their hearts, but more than that Hitler and the entire western world showed they could not be counted on and millions of Jews died. I think that sometimes Isreal is like the “tail wagging the dog”, but allowing Isreal to be undone will not bring peace or reasonableness to even a part of the world.

It is unfortunate that the Jews, Moslems and Christians did not build a communial state like the Swiss nation in which there is great autonomy locally, but there is one national identity. To my knowledge this wasn’t even tried. The huge mess of homeless and poor amongst the refuges is hedious, but I didn’t get any of the nookey and I doubt you did either, so it is not our business. This mess is almost wholly the fault of “pig headness” amongst the moslems. It will not end until both the fundamentalist Jews and Islam which is almost entirely fundamentalist decide that it is better to live than to kill each other out of spite. Some times you can go home again. The Jews did, like it or not.

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By Jessica, June 4, 2007 at 6:16 pm Link to this comment

Today, national boundaries no longer define our world.  We face common problems and must work together as a world community to fight them.  The United Nation’s Millennium Development Goals, which call for cutting world hunger in half by 2015 and eliminating it altogether by 2025, are a good place to start thinking and acting with a global mindset.  It is estimated that the expenditure of a mere $19 billion would eliminate starvation and malnutrition worldwide.  In a time when the United States’ current defense budget is $522 billion, the goal of eradicating world hunger is clearly well within reach if we act together as one world.

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By I know that I know nothing, June 4, 2007 at 5:26 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Thanks Lefty and Inherit the Wind.  I have lost friends over this topic and do not even discuss it anymore.  A little historical footnote to those who call Israel a Nazi state: maybe you should research
Al-Husayni, the mufti of Jerusalem.

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By Suntouso, June 4, 2007 at 4:28 pm Link to this comment

Boy’s if listen to this builshit, then are are the dumies that I think you are..Read other stuff so you can get a full report.. I love this report but it brings me back to being the person that I am… Native_ American…

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By Spinoza, June 4, 2007 at 2:24 pm Link to this comment

Changing the subject slightly, not really!

Democracy Now (finally) is knocking the shit out the Save Darfur humanitarian bombers. Excellent interview refuting the Save Darfur Right Wingers (who are mostly Jewish lead).

It looks like people are finally waking up to the fact that this save Darfur crowd is a right wing scam that is being promoted by Israel and the USA for their own imperialist reasons.

When discussing Israel it is important to mention that the country is led by the far right and not all Jews agree with their fascistic view point.

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By Inherit The Wind, June 4, 2007 at 2:11 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

About every 50-60 years, all the evils in the world are blamed, yet again, on the perfect scapegoat, the Jews.

There’s always a good, logical reason.  There’s always all the “facts” that “everybody knows”.  It always makes perfect sense at the time.

But 50 years later and every after, it is glaringly obvious that it was never justified.

The same old tired cliches are dragged out “They love money more than anything” “They have the Devil’s touch for making money”, and the old standby “They need the blood of a Christian (now Moslem) child to make the Passover matzohs” (the Blood Libel).

Then there are some new ones.  In the 1920’s it was all pseudo-scientific and based on Social Darwinism with competition between all the races on Earth.  Of course the main competition was between the Aryan race and the bastard mongrel Jewish race.  It all made perfect sense and “everyone knew” it was true.

And they sent 6.5 million Jews to die because of it.

Now we hear the same tired old cliches, but now it’s the new ones: Zionism is the same as Apartheid.  Jews have no right to self-determination, but Palestinians do. (Please explain that one).

The Jews in Israel are all evil and all practicing torture, murder and ethnic cleansing, but there’s never any recognition of Israel’s right to exist. After all, the half-century cycle is here: It’s time, yet again, to wipe out the Jews.  After all, “everybody knows” that the liberal, progressive Jews are in a deep conspiracy with the radical orthodox Jews to wipe out the peaceful Palestinians who never did them any harm.

This will bring peace, utopia and a wonderful brotherly love between all the Arab nations, who will then gladly supply all the cheap oil the industrial world needs.

Every 50 years the world thinks it can avoid solving its problems by slaughtering Jews once again.

And stupid schmucks like Chris Hedges goes along, unable to see the forest for the trees.

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By Frikken Kids, June 4, 2007 at 2:07 pm Link to this comment


Before the current nation of Isreal was created in 1948, there were people living there.  You say that the jewish people are now the rightfull owners of that land and they have the right to self-determination in their land.  What about all the people who were there before 1948?  Did they not have the right to self-determination on their own land? Do the farmers who are cut off from their fields by Isreal’s wall not have the right to self-determination on their land.

What exactly is it that gives Isreal the right not only to self-determination on their land but to boldly self-determine what land is theirs no matter what anybody else says and no matter who is already living there? 

Should every ethnic group who used to occupy some piece of land at some point in the past - even as much as 2700 years ago - be given that land today because they have a right to self-determination? 

Do the jewish people still get to say they have a right to the land even though according to their own history they only originally gained posession of that land - 2900 years ago - by ethnically cleansing it of the people who already lived there, and also (I would think) had rights to self-determination in their lands? 

Since the jewish people are now fighting for freedom, justice and liberty, do you think we could find some descendants of the people that were slaughtered when the Isrealites originally took control of the land and give some of Isreal’s land to them?  It would only make sense, wouldn’t it?

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By 7man, June 4, 2007 at 2:01 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The Neanderthals also were forced out of Isreal before it had a name. Even the Neanderthals in D.C aren’t suggesting that they return to this ancient homeland despite the fact the they once had a nice cave overlooking the Dead Sea.

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By lilmamzer, June 4, 2007 at 1:41 pm Link to this comment

#75242 by Frikken Kids: Does this give them eternal claim to that particular patch of desert?  No.  Does that excuse their barbaric treatment of the Palestinians?  Not even close.

I am a secularist and a Jewish nationalist. I do not take what the Bible says literally at all. But the fact is that Israel always was and always will be the homeland of the Jewish nation. There has been an unbroken presence of Jews in their land since the destruction of the Second Temple by the Romans in 70 CE, and the majority of today’s Israeli Jews are part of the 800,000 disposessed refugees from Arab nations who resettled in Israel and made productive lives for themselves. And even now they have to endure the barbaric treatment at the hands of the Arabs again as Sderot is bombarded daily by missiles from Jew-free Gaza. There is tremendous historical significance in this, and it is not lost on Jews in Israel and around the world. The “barbaric treatment” you speak of is mis-directed, but you would have to be a true student of history to understand that, not just a mouthpiece regurgitating far-left memes and slogans. The Arabs have 22 independent nations states comprising 250,000,000 people spreading across nearly 5,000 miles of territory. The Jews have a legitimate claim to self-determination on one tiny spot of land for only 7 million citizens, and their fight for survival is a story of freedom, justice, and liberty that cannot be drowned out by the demonization of people like Hedges or you.

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By lilmamzer, June 4, 2007 at 1:29 pm Link to this comment

#75234 by Matt: There is no “right” of people to create national states based on ethnicity.

It is a right that the Jewish people reserve for themselves. It’s called self-determination. When you argue as vehemently for the delegitimization of Portugal, Sri Lanka, France, Norway, South Africa, Egypt, Iran, Mexico, and any other nation on the planet, I will listen to you. But when you single out the Jews, it is only the sound of a bigot that is heard.

#75234 by Matt: There is no secular legal or moral authority for the concept that America Jews who move to the West Bank are living in their “homeland.” It’s just your stupid ethnic/religious ideology, which no one else is compelled to share.

Nobody is compelling or even asking you to “share” anything. Don’t like Israel? Who the fuck cares, don’t go there. Thanks for calling the Jewish people their and their millenia-old culture and history “stupid”. That is a very learned and erudite opinion and certainly qualifies you as an intellect among intellects.

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By Daoud Ali, June 4, 2007 at 12:50 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Excellent article.  Unpopular or not, the truth is still the truth.  Respect.

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By Hammo, June 4, 2007 at 11:42 am Link to this comment

As Hedges indicates, sometimes there is “blowback” to various policies and actions.

Negative unintended consequences can be quite significant or severe, obvious or subtle. Victims of abuse can become perpetrators of abuse.

Some of the factors relating to Hedges observations are touched on in the article:

“Psychology and the human heart are keys in winning the war, the peace”

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By Frikken Kids, June 4, 2007 at 10:51 am Link to this comment

To lilmamzer,

Just because a book of fairy tales says that Isreal is the promised land of the Jews doesn’t make it so.  Biblical Isreal ceased to exist before 700 BC.  That’s 2700 years ago!  And in the bible, where you can read the Jewish version of how they came to their promised land, we find out that they only came to occupy the land by slaughtering hundreds of thousands of people (women and children included) to purify the land.

Does this give them eternal claim to that particular patch of desert?  No.  Does that excuse their barbaric treatment of the Palestinians?  Not even close. 

Now quick, since I think their behavior is monsterous, call me an anti-semite before somebody else does!  Hedges too, that bastard!  Say it loud:  It’s THIER LAND!  GOD GAVE IT TO THEM!!!!

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By Matt, June 4, 2007 at 10:00 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Hear James Yell: “The root of the problem is the refusal to recognize the right of Jews to self-determination in their own homeland.”

There is no “right” of people to create national states based on ethnicity. There is no secular legal or moral authority for the concept that America Jews who move to the West Bank are living in their “homeland.” It’s just your stupid ethnic/religious ideology, which no one else is compelled to share.

And there is CERTAINLY no reason that the US government should be required to serve as the financial and military guarantor of “success” for your ridiculous ethno-nationalist project.

Yell, James, as loud as you want - but you will never turn your nonsense into sense.

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By kiskiminetas, June 4, 2007 at 9:55 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Raphael Lemkin is the Polish-Jewish jurist who, having fled the Nazi invasion of Poland for refuge in the U.S., coined the word “genocide” in 1943. He defined genocide as:

“A coordinated plan of different actions aiming at the destruction of essential foundations of the life of national groups, with the aim of annihilating the groups themselves. The objectives of such a plan would be the disintegration of the political and social institutions, of culture, language, national feelings, religion, and the economic existence of national groups, and the destruction of the personal security, liberty, health, dignity, and even the lives of the individuals belonging to such groups.”

Exactly what the Zionists are doing to the Palestinians, in broad daylight.  Jews committing genocide.  That’s how badly they want all of Palestine.

How do Israelis get away with this?  This is the question that needs to be asked.  And answered.

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By lilmamzer, June 4, 2007 at 9:48 am Link to this comment

Hedges writes his usual hatchet job and the Truthdig chorus swells in appreciation.
Actually, the so-called occupation is perfectly legal and necessary, given that Israel fought a defensive war against enemies who openly stated their genocidal intentions.
The root of the problem is the refusal to recognize the right of Jews to self-determination in their own homeland. The Arabs made pogroms against the Jews in Hebron and Jerusalem in 1929, slaughtering hundreds. They made war in 1948 and for decades afterwards. They have 22 nation-states and continue to deny the legitimacy of the tiny single state the Jews claim as their own. Hedges seems to find this central fact too unimportant to mention. That’s why he is a bigoted hack. The tragic irony is that the so-called Palestinian Arabs could have had their 23rd Arab nation-state when it was offered as part of the UN Partition Plan in 1947, but they preferred attempted genocide of the Jews instead. They lost. Mutual recognition of two states for two peoples was accepted by Israel. Rejected by the Arabs. That’s the truth not reported in Truthdig. Hedges would have us believe Israel is illegitimate for having the balls to find ways to survive and thrive as a free and democratic society despite the odds. He is wrong.

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By James Yell, June 4, 2007 at 7:59 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Why should Isreal be held to a different standard than say Turkey, which has occupied Greek land by force for decades? The fact remains that in an area that last was ruled by its occupants, it was the Jews who lived on this land and had a government of their own almost 2000 years ago. They were forced out of their land by the Babylon, they returned and then they were forced out by the Romans. They came home, bought land and were determined to have their own homeland again. The Moslems living in the area did not ever rule themselves. It wasn’t until about 1000 years ago that the Moslems overwhelmed the Greco-Roman governments of the area and the land was ruled from outside ever since until the time that Isreal declared its independence. The resident moslems did not ask to create a united government with the Jews, but left their homes largely ahead of invading moslem armies, in hopes the Jews would be driven into the sea. Forty years ago a war was started again by Islam and the Jews finished it. It would be nice if a civil government could be formed, but it is on the heads of Islam to accept the Jewish State and their own part in their present misery. It will take either a high crime, or a rational agreement between the Jews and Moslems to effect peace. I for one would not ask Isreal to trust, until such time that Islam talks about peace with deeds instead of as a way to obscure their hostility until they can gain the upper hand.

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By Matt, June 4, 2007 at 7:41 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Great essay, Chris! Tony Karon, a senior editor for, also wrote a beautiful essay that comes to much the same conclusion.

Mr. Karon, who is South African-born and Jewish, posted the essay on his blog site, which is called “Rootless Cosmopolitan”.

Article: “How the 1967 War Doomed Israel” by Tony Karon:

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By Crimson Ghost, June 4, 2007 at 5:17 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Unfortunately the evil done by the Israel lobby far exceeds muzzling criticism of that nation’s savage brutality towards the Palestinians.

9/11,  the Iraq war, threats to bomb Iran, the spread of terrorism throughout the Middle East, the erosion of civil liberties at home—would any of this have happened absent the sinister influence of powerful Israel firsters in both parties.

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By Tom Doff, June 4, 2007 at 4:27 am Link to this comment
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Speaking of the ‘Law of Unintended Consequences’, the Israeli/zionist future is a perfect example that, in addition to often turning out badly, the Law occasionally results in unexpected outcomes of Truth, Justice and Fairness.

Can anyone imagine a long-term future for Israel/zionism that will enable them to survive as an entity, controlling the walled-in lands they have stolen? Enable them to continue as a controlling power of the middle-east, even with their shadowy, off-stage threat of nuclear arms?

The very best they can hope for is self-immolation, self-annihilation in the process of trying to annihilate their enemies. They have so alienated the world, they have become pariahs, deservedly. They have so hated those who disagree, they have become Nazies.

They will soon become proof that their concept of ‘God’s Will’, is fallacious.

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