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How the Anti-Semites of Hezbollah Have Sent Anne Frank Back Into Hiding

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Posted on Dec 4, 2009
Anne Frank's diary
AP / Evert Elzinga

A facsimile of Anne Frank’s diary is displayed during a press conference at Anne Frank House in Amsterdam last June 11.

By Robert Fisk

Editor’s note: This article was originally printed in The Independent.

“This young woman who upsets people ...” was the headline in Lebanon’s L’Orient Littáraire yesterday [Thursday]. The teenager was Anne Frank, who died of typhoid at Bergen-Belsen in 1945 after being betrayed to the Nazi authorities, along with her family, in her Amsterdam “safe house”. The upset people were the Lebanese Hizbollah, who successfully persuaded teachers at a Beirut school to withdraw an English language primer from the library after it discovered extracts from Anne Frank’s world-famous diary in the book. Yesterday, in a brave and literary defence of freedom of speech, Michel Hajji Georgiou told his readers why this act of censorship was against the Arabs.

Anne Frank, he said, was “a child in revolt against fear, against intolerance, against a mad world, who escapes her Lebanese critics ... Anne, under injustice, in a suffering transcended by art and writing, is nothing less than the sister of the Palestinian or Lebanese children in the novels of Elias Khoury or Ghassan Kanafani ... of the British children in J G Ballard’s Empire of the Sun and John Boorman’s Hope and Glory.”

Jews and Israelis may object to the parallel – indeed, will object to the parallel – between Jewish suffering under the Nazis and Palestinian suffering under the Israelis, but they should at least admire Georgiou’s front-page article. It is accompanied by a large and well-known photograph of Anne, smiling in all innocence into the camera, unaware how short her life will be. The Jewish Holocaust is not a subject which Arabs have learned to live with. While Arab censorship is not as outrageous as Turkish laws against all mention of the 1915 Christian Armenian Holocaust by the Muslim Ottoman Turks – which can send writers to prison – Hitler’s Mein Kampf is freely on sale in Beirut and reference to the Jewish Holocaust has been censored on television.

When I made a two-and-a-half-hour documentary on the Arab-Israeli conflict, Lebanon’s New TV channel initially cut out a 16-minute sequence on the murder of Polish Jews whose surviving families eventually arrived in Israel. Only after angry remonstrations did I persuade the station’s owner to show the uncut film – which he did the following night. But being the first Westerner to put the Jewish Holocaust on a Lebanese television channel did not win any favours. Respectable, well educated families in Beirut argued with me for years afterwards that the Nazi massacres were either exaggerated or non-existent.

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There is no doubt that Israel’s use of the Holocaust to suppress any legitimate criticism of Israel’s current brutality towards the Palestinians has much to do with this. Holocaust denial is anti-Semitic, but the facile slander of anti-Semitism against anyone who condemns Israel’s outrageous behaviour towards its neighbours long ago provoked a deep sense of cynicism among Arabs towards the facts of 20th century Jewish history in Europe. The insistence of Palestinian academics such as Edward Said that the Jewish Holocaust should not be denied – on the basis that a denial of one people’s suffering automatically negated another people’s suffering (the Palestinians, albeit on a far smaller scale) – has received little understanding in the Muslim world. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s ravings about the Holocaust have only encouraged the habit of “denialism”.

A pity. For while serious study of the subject might have been denied to pupils at a school at Mseitbeh – a Shia suburb of Beirut – who were using The Interactive Reader Plus for English Learners, Lebanese students are also deprived of Victor Klemperer’s diaries. Klemperer, a German Jewish academic, condemned the Jewish colonisation of pre-Second World War Palestine even as he and his wife were threatened by the Nazis in his native Dresden. Ironically, I bought my copy of Klemperer’s books in highly Islamic Pakistan.

In other words, not all Jewish Holocaust survivors – or victims – would automatically have supported the creation of the State of Israel. Israel’s constant demonisation of Palestinians as Nazis – the late prime minister Menachem Begin specifically compared Yasser Arafat to Hitler – finds its apotheosis in the Holocaust museum at Yad Vashem outside Jerusalem where the equally late Grand Mufti Haj Amin al-Husseini is pictured with Hitler. Al-Husseini’s picture is real; Israel’s racist foreign minister used it a few weeks ago to further demean the Palestinians, although it is immensely to Israel’s credit that the fairest biography of this anti-Jewish figure was written by a former Israeli military governor of Gaza.

Hizbollah, of course, has well and truly managed to put its foot in it in Beirut. Its Al Manar television station criticised Anne Frank’s diaries because they are “devoted to the persecution of the Jews… Even more dangerous still is the dramatic and theatrical way in which the diary is written – it is full of emotion.” Poor 15-year old Anne Frank’s record of her suffering was not unemotional enough for the warriors of the Hizbollah, her book mere proof of “the Zionist invasion of [Lebanese] education.” In fairness, Beirut’s bookshops show no fear of selling books on the Jewish Holocaust and the evils of the Second World War. The Jews of Lebanon were once counted in their thousands; many came from Nazi Germany en route to Palestine but stayed because they loved the country and the Arab people. The government is repairing the old Jewish synagogue whose roof was shot off in 1982 – by an Israeli gunboat.


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Robert's avatar

By Robert, December 31, 2009 at 4:31 pm Link to this comment

US Congressmen Fighting for Gaza

By Al Jazeera

A year after Israel’s war on Gaza, the territory is still struggling to rebuild.

In the weeks after the offensive, politicians from around the world visited the Strip and made promises to help.

But it appears many of those pledges have not been delivered.

Al Jazeera’s Todd Baer caught up with two US Democratic congressmen whose efforts to lift the Israeli blockade on Gaza are being met with stiff resistance.

Posted December 30, 2009

=============

It seems that we have two US congressmen out of 435 who still have a sense for justice, human rights, truth and to be in support & on the side of victims…the Palestinians. Watch this short video with the US congressmen viewing/inspecting the destruction in Gaza that Israel’s army with its massive and destructive weapons have left behind:


http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article24291.htm

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By Sodium, December 30, 2009 at 5:20 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

For Night-Gaunt and Robert,

Thank you both for your kind words.Most appreciated.

I wish you the best of wishes for the New Year and beyond.

Yours truly,
  S

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Night-Gaunt's avatar

By Night-Gaunt, December 30, 2009 at 12:29 pm Link to this comment

I must say I am impressed with you depth and breadth of knowledge in this area and find it welcome to these pages. I agree with your present assessment of Israel and Palestine. Sadly many Israeli’s find that their gov’t is acting against the best interests of Israel as a whole. Much like our gov’t has been here in the USA. In certain ways there is a terrible parallel between Israel and the USA both in the kinds of people in power and what their motivations are to do the things that hurt so many others. It is the kind of barbarism that is hidden at home but done overseas—the kinds of nobles that Nietzsche spoke of. The ones who liked to take off their mask of civilization to hunt to maintain their “blond beast nature” the lion heart if I may. How many of our past presidents haven’t killed overseas? Doesn’t everyone of them have a blood ritual of murder for “geo-political purposes” to anoint themselves into office? Blood on the hands. Until that ends and the support of others like them in other countries ends it will continue.

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By Sodium, December 30, 2009 at 10:36 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Re: Sepharad,December 23 at 4:26 am

THE SECOND POINT:
=================

“I think it is dishonest to quote anti-Israel Jews as an argument against its existence.”

Sepharad,

It is very hard for me to believe you have written the above sentence!!

There are three distortions in the above quoted comment of yours. They are:

* DISHONEST.

* ARGUMENT.

* AGAINST ITS EXISTENCE.

I shall show you how wrong and rather miserable
such kind of talk that will serve no constructive purpose and at the end one will realize it was nothing but a total waste of time. My human decency has compelled me to respond just to help you out so that you may not repeat such kind of garbage with somebody else.

* DISHONEST:
============
It seems to me that I really have hit a sensetive nerve when I mentioned to ardee why my wonderful Jewish and old mentors had condemned Zionism: “BECAUSE OF ITS POLITICAL EXPLOITATION OF JUDAISM”. I see nothing even come close to describe it as DISHONEST. But never mind.Since you think it is DISHONEST,I will agree with you,for a while,and for the sake of maintaining acceptable tone for a matured discussion.I will follow exactly your logic to show you the following contradictions in your way of thinking:

~ I consider it DISHONEST to quote Dr.Foad Ajami,who is the least respected in the Arab American community,to demonize the Arab states and their history. You had done so just a few months ago.

~ I consider it DISHONEST to coddle a confirmed bigot by ardee,ITW(both are Jewish)and myself,just to use him or her as a tool to demonize the Arab countries so that Israel would look much better “in light years”,as you put.

~ I consider it DISHONEST to keep using the Arab Human Development Report as a tools to keep demonizing the whole Arab World so that Israel would look shiny.

~ I consider it DISHONEST to claim you want peace and at the same time you assault the Arab States with uncalled for nor justified claims the intent of which unhealthy for peace.

I can go on and on but I believe you have enough intelligence to comprehend what I am trying to convey to you.

Please remember what I have tressed before that if you really want peace with your enemies,you have to walk with them humbly to reach that cherished goal.

* ARGUMENT:
===========
I refuse to get involved in ARGUMENT. I wellcome a dialogue or discussion or exchange of views constructively,when I have the time. If you consider my current exchange of views with you an ARGUMENT,I wish to withdraw from it immediately. I simply cannot stand arguments.Period.

*AGAINST ITS EXISTENCE:
=======================
I wish to assure you and assure anybody else interested that I did not mention nor had in mind in the slightest degree possible that the existence of Israel was in question when I expressed in an earlier post to ardee about the two Jewish gentlemen who were my mentors about Zionism in the 1950s and part of 1960s. I further assure you and assure anybody else interested that I want the Jews to have their secure place under the sun and under the moon as well,like any other group in this entropic world.

Unfortunately,with its current repressive policy against the Palestinians,Israel is making its own security in total jeopardy. The sweep of history is unpredictable. I dare say a new idea,although I had said it sparingly in time past: The genuine security of Israel and all Jews everywhere is with the Arab world,not in Europe,the PLACE OF THE HOLOCAUST,but with the Arab world of a population of 320 million,supported and backed by 1.1 billion Muslims world wide. Israel should recognize this important fact and and equally important is to recognize it is existing in an Arab neighborhood and should act gracefully accordingly. Forget about playing a game of chess: one day making alliance with Iran/al-Shah and next day an alliance with Turkey;all aimed against the Arab world and none of it lasted.CHANGE DIRECTION CLOSER TO SELF.

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By Robert, December 30, 2009 at 9:50 am Link to this comment

By Sodium, December 29 at 11:50 am #
(Unregistered commenter)

For Robert:

“Robert,

This is to let you know that after reading every link you have cited in your highly informative posts,has been printed out from my computer’s printer and added to a thick file entitled “Links from Robert Posts”. I do the same for other related links given by others,just to keep the records straight for my understanding of the conflict,although I may or may not use the information in the future,depending on the circumstances and the nature of what is encountered. Through trials for errors,I have found this method of filing to be effective for my objective and had served me well. I would recommend it for all students of the conflict,regardless of their points of view concerning the conflict,especially if one cannot find what one is looking for in the computer,especially those who are illitrate in computer manipulations,like myself who belongs to the SLIDE RULE generation.”

===============

Sodium,

I just wanted to say “thank you” for your post(s) on TD. Your inputs reveal that you have traveled/lived all over the Mid-East & acquired facts/knowledge to this Palestinian/Arab/Israeli conflict. Your eyes have seen the miserable conditions that the Palestinian refugees have been putting up with for over 60 years. No justice, no rights, no compensations and certainly no recognition.

The TRUTH must be brought to the surface for all readers to read/search and its with people like you and many others who care about justice, truth/facts, honesty and conviction who are help to achieve these objectives.

As you may have seen the many pale propaganda attempts by zionism/Israel’s pundits to ridicule the information/facts and try to throw the readers off-course and other diversion tactics.

We must stay focused on the truth as much as possible.

I wish you & your family the best of health & A Happy New Year.

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By johannes, December 30, 2009 at 3:55 am Link to this comment

To Sodium,

Its maby of topic, but your writing about snipers in Iraq, The same has happened in the war in Yougoslavia, A young lady showed to an Frans journalist, that afther her work in the famelie bakery, she wenth up to the loft, their see took her sharpshooting rifle, and started very cool to aim on people moving on the other side of the river, and killing or at least wounding them, this people where Serbs.

What hate can do !!

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By johannes, December 30, 2009 at 3:55 am Link to this comment

To Sodium,

Its maby of topic, but your writing about snipers in Iraq, The same has happened in the war in Yougoslavia, A young lady showed to an Frans journalist, that afther her work in the famelie bakery, she wenth up to the loft, their see took her sharpshooting rifle, and started very cool to aim on people moving on the other side of the river, and killing or at least wounding them, this people where Serbs.

What hate can do !!

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By Sodium, December 30, 2009 at 3:23 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Re: Sepharad,December 23 at 4:26 am.

THE FIRST POINT:
================
“I do not understand why educated people such as you,Sodium,and ardee haven’t studied the massive amounts of material generated by Arab scholars in the reform report backed by the UN. There are at least five annual whitepapers by now,and they make themselves quite clear.”

For your information,There are now seven such redundant and boring reports. Their existence have been well known to me,but I have never taken them seriously because their contents were well known to me and even well known to the average Arab citizen in the streets of Arab World and no need for “scholars?” to write them. The UN does not back them up as you have claimed. In fact,the UN considers them divisive. There were some UN emplyees who analyze them and made some comments about them. That is quite different from being backed by the UN as you claimed. The World Bank does not even recognize them. The World Bank coordinates closely with the UN for allocation of funds and lending of money for human development world wide.

Four weeks ago I watched a heated debate between intellectuals from the University of Jordan,on Aljazeera internet Arabic program called “Al-Etijah Al-Mua’akis”,translation:“The opposite Direction” which in the end meant"The other opinion”. One view was defending the reports and another view was totally against them because the people who wrote them were after power-they wanted to be part of the ruling class. Now you figure it out.

Inspite of all of the foregoing which question the the credibility of the reports,I will provide you with two paragraphs of the report and leave to your imagination as how such reports help us in achieving peace:

“The Arab political scene is quite varied.Some states categorically prohobit any political organization.Other states allow conditional political pluralism and as a rule,ban the strongest and most important opposition party,while favoring the party established by the ruling authority.States which allow party activity nonyheless try to trip up opposition parties,by depriving them of resources and media coverage,controlling nomination and election procedures,using the judiciary,the army and security services to curtail their activities,hounding their leaders and activists and tempering with election polls.”

Another revealing paragraph from the same Arab Human Development Report(AHDR):

“The first(AHDR)also affirmed that the Israeli occupation of Palestinian land is one of the most significant impediments to human development in the Arab countries,in that it constitute an obvious threat to security and peace across the region.Occupation has also given Arab regimes a pretext for postponing internal reform and has embarrassed Arab reformists by making the confrontation of external threats to the region a higher priority than internal reforms.”

Questions for you,Sepharad:

(1)Have you studied the (AHDR)? If so,what is the importance that you could find from your studying the reports?

(2)Which of the quoted two paragraphs above impedes more the desired development in the Arab States?

(3)If the Arab countries are the most or least developed in every field known to the human kind,why should that prevent the Israelis and the palestinians from reaching a comprehensive peace agreement based on all UN resolutions dealing with the conflict,especially UN resolutions 242 and 338?

Final words:The way you have been using the AHDR as an excuse to demonize the Arab States reflects unfavorably on you,Sepharad,and tells me you just give lips service to peace and your basic aim is just to propagandize for Israel.That reminds me of an Arab folklore tale called “MISMAR GOHA”.MISMAR in Arabic means a NAIL and GOHA is the name of a wise-fool in Arabic folklore.Hence,“MISMAR GOHA” in Arabic becomes “GOHA’S NAIL” or “NAIL OF GOHA” in English.I am running out of space and I cannot tell you the tale here,but perhaps in future.

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By Sodium, December 29, 2009 at 3:02 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Night-Gaunt,

I have appreciated reading your post about STATISTICS,especially the approximate 100 to 1 ratio of Palestinians killed to Israelis. And you have mentioned similar ratio exists in Iraq-that is 100 Iraqis killed to one American.

I had read some times ago( I believe in 2005 ) in several Arabic newspapers that they claimed that some Israeli terrorism “experts?” were in Iraq training some American military snipers how to fight terrorists en masse. I dismissed what I read then as baseless,since there was no evidence to re-affirm the newspapers claims. After reading your last post dealing with the similar STATISTICAL data in Iraq as it is the case in Israel,I wonder now that perhaps,and just perhaps,what I read in the Arabic newspapers in 2005 might have been accurate after all!!!

Any way,I have appreciated reading your post. Keep it up and thank you for the STATISTICAL information.

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Night-Gaunt's avatar

By Night-Gaunt, December 29, 2009 at 12:51 pm Link to this comment

The statistical average of death ratios between Palestinian and Israeli is 100 to 1. That is for every Israeli that dies a general number of 100 (little more or less) will die. A similar ratio you find with the United States in places like Iraq. When you fight another in asymmetrical warfare you want the locals to pay dearly for every one they injure or kill of you. If one person from a village is suspected you wipe out that village or maybe just that family. The hot cruelty and cold calculation of empire and throw weight strength of arms over morality and goodness for all. It is goodness for the conquerors at any price they want their subjects to pay.

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By Sodium, December 29, 2009 at 11:55 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Re: Sepharad,December 23 at 4:26 am.

As I have promised you that I will respond to your above post,after my wife enjoys her three days of Christmas receiving relatives and friends at our house.

Since I have no idea what will come to my mind while typing the responses to you,I think it is wise to split this response into two or three parts,lest I end-up struggling with the limit of 4000 words for one single post,according to Truthdig rules.

Since brewerstroupe and Robert have thoughtfully responded to most of the points embodied in your above Re,I will concentrate on two points that they have not covered in their respective responses. And those two points are the following,and I quote them for your convenience and mine:

THE FIRST POINT:
================
” I do not understand why educated people such as you,Sodium,and ardee haven’t studied the massive amount of material generated by Arab scholars in the reform report backed by the UN. There are at least five annual whitepapers by now,and they make themselves quite clear.”

THE SECOND POINT:
=================
” I think it is dishonest to quote anti-Israel Jews as an argument against its existence.”

Please consider this entire post as an introduction to what is coming in the next two posts in which of each of the two points cited above would each be responded to in a seperate post.

              STAY TUNED.
            ============

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By Sodium, December 29, 2009 at 9:39 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Re: ardee,December 27 at 7:33 am.

ardee has written the following comment,addressing Sepharad:

Quote
======

I do not understand your ignoring the blatant statistical evidence that Palestinians are dying in far,far greater numbers than are your “poor besieged Israelis.”

Unquote
=======

ardee,

I can see now why you are a strong supporter of Ralph Nader. Your conscience is just as good as his and your humanistic principles do not allow you to be otherwise.

I consider the word “STATISTICAL” you intelligently used very crucial in any kind of human endeavor.

Why?

Answer: I have a weak heart due to heart ailment for the last three years. To “baby” my heart for survival and to hang on a little longer so that my beautiful grandchilder may know me a little better,I have subscribed to heart newsletters published by Mayo Clinic,Harvard University Medical School and Cleveland Clinic(the best in the world for heart according to U.S.Report and World News magazine).

From those Heart Newsletters,I get the latest news related to heart ailments. And the following conclusion of mine is derived from my reading those three newsletters and other periodicals:

Every new development related to heart diseases has been based on enormous STASTICAL data collected from different but closely related research projects conducted by the staff of those three great American institutions and their collegues across America. Recent STATISTICAL research data has shown that STATIN drugs such as Dristan,Zucoor,Lapatore etc…damage the human muscles and the damage can be permanent in some human bodies.

As far as I am concerned,ignoring STASTISTICAL data is equivalent to ignoring reality.

ardee: thank you for the pleasure you have provided by using the word “STATISTICAL” that has spurred me to make the above comments for the benefits of all. Most appreciated.

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By johannes, December 29, 2009 at 8:37 am Link to this comment

Robert,

It very tru wath you are writing and citating, but Israel is not the only ” MONSTER BEYOND CONTROL “, if their wash only one, wath an lucky world we should have.

Salutations

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By Sodium, December 29, 2009 at 7:50 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

For Robert:

Robert,

This is to let you know that after reading every link you have cited in your highly informative posts,has been printed out from my computer’s printer and added to a thick file entitled “Links from Robert Posts”. I do the same for other related links given by others,just to keep the records straight for my understanding of the conflict,although I may or may not use the information in the future,depending on the circumstances and the nature of what is encountered. Through trials for errors,I have found this method of filing to be effective for my objective and had served me well. I would recommend it for all students of the conflict,regardless of their points of view concerning the conflict,especially if one cannot find what one is looking for in the computer,especially those who are illitrate in computer manipulations,like myself who belongs to the SLIDE RULE generation.

I also record in a special notebook what I consider important points when I read,whether I read books or articles. It is a habit that has stuck with me since my undergraduate years,through the gradute schools and through my working career,especially in meetings and negotiations with tough clients like the Saudis, Kuwaitis,Syrians,Iraqis and Iranians(up to 1978 for Iranians,when my boss in the U.S.sent me an urgent Telex,ordering me to stop travelling to Iran because of the turmoil there,then). Knowing the Arabic language and its literutures,culture and history was a great help. Otherwise,most likely I would have failed in my mission for the multi-national corporation I was acting on its behalf. In short,the habit of taking notes in one’s activities in any human endeavors may prove helpful later.

Whenever I had free time from work duties,I paid visits to the largest Paleatinian Refugees Camps in Jordan,Syria and Lebanon:

In Jordan:
==========
Wahadat Refugees Camp in Amman,Jordan.
Baqa’a Refugees Camp in Amman,Jordan.

In Syria:
==========
Yarmouk Refugees Camp in Damascus,Syria

In Lebanon:
===========
Sabra and Shatila Refugees Camp in Beirut,Lebanon.       

Some of those Palestinian refugees showed me old looking keys for their homes,farms and small businesses they were forced out of at gun point;their tormenters were telling them you either leave or else. They all said that they had no other alternative but to leave. Some said that they fled to save their lives because of the massacres were taken place,especially the one which took place at the Palestinian village of Dir Yaseen,near Jerusalem. In his book entitled “The Revolt”,Menachem Begin,the former leader of a terrorist organization called Irgun,brags about how,after committing the massacre at Dir Yaseen,the movevement of his forces of terrorists became easy,and I quote,“LIKE A KNIFE THROUGH BUTTER”. That had taken place in 1947,just a few months before the creation of Israel in 1948. In the late 1970s,Mr.Begin became the Prime Minister of Israel. How peace can visit that part of the world is just hard to imagine,but I feel that inspite of unfavorable odds one must not give up.

Robert: I went through all of the foregoing just to inform you how important your reliable links have been to me,inspite of the fact that I am well aware of the conflict from day one to present time. And all your sincere and dedicated efforts,striving for justice for the victimized Palestinians,are most appreciated by people like me. And more importantly,such efforts of yours can enlighten people who have no idea what is going on. Just keep ignoring the silly and childlish name calling and sarcasm. Your time is much more important than responding to such garbages.

And thank you for your obvious compassion for the overly and overly brutalized Palestinians. I keep wondering how do they put-up with their agonies,on daily basis,when I could not put-up with NOT having electricity for two hours because of severe weather passing through where I live. I just wonder!!

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By Sodium, December 29, 2009 at 12:24 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Re: brewrstroupe,December 20 at 5:31 am.

brewerstroupe,

I do thank you for the mondoweiss link. I am in the process of gathering information about Philip Weiss and what really caused him to start such a website.I will follow your suggestion and pay visits to mondoweiss website on regular basis.

It seems to me that ardee has expressed exactly what I have felt about the tragic story of Dr.Abdallah Alsaafin and his family,in that it should be told again and again till the self-respecting people of the world can extrapolate as to what has been happening to the Palestinian people for the last 60 years.

Thank you again for an excellent link that,in my opinion,must be read by all who are concerned about JUSTICE and about THE UNIVERSAL DECLERETION OF HUMAN RIGHTS.

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By Robert, December 28, 2009 at 7:57 pm Link to this comment

“Genocide in Slow Motion.”

By Alan Hart

“December 28, 2009 “Information Clearing House”—On the first anniversary of the beginning of Israel’s war on the Gaza Strip – in my view it was a demonstration of Israeli state terrorism at its most naked – it’s not enough to say that the governments of the Western powers (and others) are complicit in Israel’s on-going collective punishment of 1.5 million Palestinians, 53% of whom are children.

What is actually happening in the blockaded Gaza Strip, and less obviously on the occupied West Bank, is the continuation by stealth of Zionism’s ethnic cleansing of Palestine. My friend Professor Ilan Pappe, Israel’s leading “revisionist” (meaning honest) historian and author of The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine, would and has put it another way. What we are witnessing is, in his words, “genocide in slow motion.” And that, really, is what the governments of the Western powers (and others) are complicit in.

The question that provokes in my mind is: Why, really, are the major powers (and others) allowing it to happen?

The only answer that makes some sense to me is this. They have concluded, but cannot say, that nuclear-armed Israel, with the assistance of the Zionist lobby in all of its manifestations, is a monster beyond control.

In my analysis it’s possible to identify the moment in history when the major powers abandoned any hope they might have had of containing Zionism’s colonial ambitions.”

==========

Click on link for the rest of article:


http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article24270.htm

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By Robert, December 28, 2009 at 7:47 pm Link to this comment

Blowin’ In The Wind


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wAe_WcC-XrY

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By Inherit The Wind, December 28, 2009 at 4:25 pm Link to this comment

Naturally, Robert-the-Bigot buys into the latest version of the old “Blood Libel”.  Is there NO lie about Jews this bigot won’t buy into?

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By Robert, December 27, 2009 at 12:58 pm Link to this comment

Doctor admits Israeli pathologists harvested organs without consent

12.21.2009 | The Guardian

Israel has admitted pathologists harvested organs from dead Palestinians, and others, without the consent of their families – a practice it said ended in the 1990s – it emerged at the weekend.

The admission, by the former head of the country’s forensic institute, followed a furious row prompted by a Swedish newspaper reporting that Israel was killing Palestinians in order to use their organs – a charge that Israel denied and called “antisemitic”.

The revelation, in a television documentary, is likely to generate anger in the Arab and Muslim world and reinforce sinister stereotypes of Israel and its attitude to Palestinians. Iran’s state-run Press TV tonight reported the story, illustrated with photographs of dead or badly injured Palestinians.

Ahmed Tibi, an Israeli Arab MP, said the report incriminated the Israeli army.

The story emerged in an interview with Dr Yehuda Hiss, former head of the Abu Kabir forensic institute near Tel Aviv. The interview was conducted in 2000 by an American academic who released it because of the row between Israel and Sweden over a report in the Stockholm newspaper Aftonbladet.

Channel 2 TV reported that in the 1990s, specialists at Abu Kabir harvested skin, corneas, heart valves and bones from the bodies of Israeli soldiers, Israeli citizens, Palestinians and foreign workers, often without permission from relatives.

The Israeli military confirmed to the programme that the practice took place, but added: “This activity ended a decade ago and does not happen any longer.”

Hiss said: “We started to harvest corneas … whatever was done was highly informal. No permission was asked from the family.””

**********

Well how many denial verisions/claims have we heard from all of Israel’s/zionism’s pundits, including the ones on TD, flatly denying this above topic? Then they resorted to their antisemetic tactics…you know the usual mode/tune.

Click on link for the rest of this article:

http://www.normanfinkelstein.com/it-appears-that-yet-again-they-protest-too-much/

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By Robert, December 27, 2009 at 12:41 pm Link to this comment

sepharad continues to sling zionism/Israel’s propaganda verions/claims…

******

By Sepharad, December 27 at 10:05 pm #

“Robert—“Slinging/narrative?” A new term I haven’t heard. Everyone picks the narrative they want to believe, I suppose. You buy ISM’s version, I think they always are coming from the sane propaganda place and don’t believe much of what they say on any subject. I’ve read Mother Jones since its beginnings and they don’t do pro-fascist axe-grinding. I have no problems with you or anyone else not seeing the world the way I do, but some of you guys apparently want lockstep thinking. I care about Israel enough to keep trying to change the things that are wrong because I think it deserves and needs to exist.”

================

Josua Hammer’s article printed in Mother Jones…where he is just spewing Israel’s claims & propaganda regarding the crushing murder of Rachel Corrie and villification of ISM. He is just one of so many pundits for Israel’s claims & who could care less about accurate reporting/narratives when it comes to Israel’s killing trails.

Hammer gives no indication that he has viewed the footage of his fellow Middle East journalists. However he admits to having viewed an Israeli propaganda video that was produced specifically to absolve the military of any responsiblity in Rachel Corrie’s death. The video, along with a PowerPoint slideshow that was distributed to US Congress members, was produced prior to the conclusion of the Israeli investigation.

This does not keep Hammer from finding that the propaganda video—which featured the inside of a D9 bulldozer—made “a credible case” of innocence for the Israelis. Nor does he wonder why the Israeli investigation, which he states was supposed to be “transparent,” has not been made public. And nor does he mention that according to the Israeli investigation, at no point did the bulldozer even drive over Corrie’s body, clearly contradicting the tread marks that appear in the photo reproduced in the Mother Jones article, not to mention contradicting the Israeli autopsy report and all the eyewitnesses who were interviewed for the investigation.


BTW, the Israeli IDF bulldozer killer…walked away scott-free after he crushed Rachel TWICE with his 9 TON army bulldozer.

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By ardee, December 27, 2009 at 3:33 am Link to this comment

Sepharad, December 27 at 1:05 am #

Robert—“Slinging/narrative?” A new term I haven’t heard. Everyone picks the narrative they want to believe, I suppose.

I understand your attempt to trivialize the position of those who, instead of “picking a narrative”, express outrage at the govt sanctioned slaughter of a group of poor, homeless and desperate exiles from their former homes.

I do not understand your ignoring the blatant statistical evidence that Palestinians are dying in far, far greater numbers than are your “poor besieged Israelis”.

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By Sepharad, December 26, 2009 at 9:05 pm Link to this comment

Robert—“Slinging/narrative?” A new term I haven’t heard. Everyone picks the narrative they want to believe, I suppose. You buy ISM’s version, I think they always are coming from the sane propaganda place and don’t believe much of what they say on any subject. I’ve read Mother Jones since its beginnings and they don’t do pro-fascist axe-grinding. I have no problems with you or anyone else not seeing the world the way I do, but some of you guys apparently want lockstep thinking. I care about Israel enough to keep trying to change the things that are wrong because I think it deserves and needs to exist. You don’t. (Oh—you might be interested in a couple of books coming out on Gaza massacres in ‘56, during the Suez Canal crisis.)

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By brewerstroupe, December 26, 2009 at 2:03 pm Link to this comment

In civilized societies, punishment is meted out after due process of law. Collective punishment is expressly forbidden.

Such principles pertain even in times of War.

To be a Palestinian in the occupied territories is to live under a regime where a mere functionary of the occupying power can issue an order to have you or your family killed, destroy your home or imprison you on suspicion of criminality.

The presumption of innocence is the foundation of civil society. Every act of violence committed by Israel that is not a response to an immediate and deadly threat offends this most basic principle. It is not a defense to claim that the victims of such acts were criminal. One is not a criminal until convicted by a court of one’s peers.

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By Robert, December 26, 2009 at 11:13 am Link to this comment

sepharad’s hasbara narratives just don’t seem to be influencing the TRUTH/FACTS seekers.

===================

By Sepharad, December 24 at 4:52 pm #

(PART 1)

“This same strategy was used trying to discourage suicide bombing in Israel—demolishing the bomber’s family’s home—i.e., destroy property instead of killing people.) Property and not lives is not ideal but saner than killing people.”

*****************


Mother Jones Smears Rachel Corrie

Specious Journalism in Defense of Killers

By PHAN NGUYEN


As well, Hammer informs us that when the Israeli military conducts home demolitions, “residents can gather their belongings; and each house is searched for occupants before it is demolished.There have been numerous cases that prove otherwise. We can read one such Human Rights Watch report from Rafah in late 2002: “At least 20 people were injured, nine of them children, when the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) prevented residents from evacuating their home while the IDF was demolishing the next-door house…” Just two weeks before Corrie was killed, a pregnant Palestinian woman, Nuha Sweidan, was killed in the process of an Israeli-conducted house demolition. And in the cases where residents are actually allowed to “gather their belongings,” Hammer fails to mention that such accomodations are often afforded fifteen minutes or less. Again, Hammer saw fit to print the Israeli claims and felt no need to question them in the face of documented facts.”

————-

Click on link for the rest of details:

http://www.counterpunch.org/nguyen09202003.html

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By Robert, December 25, 2009 at 10:34 pm Link to this comment

sepharad,

I want you to know that your hasbara/propaganda “slinging-narrative” attempts are NOT altering anyone’s conceptions here. Your are having a hard time at trying to convince people who have informed opinions and/or knowledge regarding this very conflict.

Readers who wish to seek FACTS/TRUTH regarding this topic will be able to see right through your deceptive zionist hasbara/propaganda ways. Your attempts at trying to confuse the facts, sidetracking, manipulations…etc…have not worked very well for you at all and you are not influencing many readers…may be a handful or less in the last couple of years on TD.

I think that your biggest fears/frustrations on TD seem to come from seeing and reading informed comments/posts and this informed information will influence American readers regarding the facts/truth about your Apartheid Israel. The more informed Americans become on this topic, the less support Israel will get. Slowly but surely…Israel’s support would dwindle in American’s hearts and minds because of its criminal & barbaric slaughter of Palestinians, Lebanese, Arabs, unarmed populations/civilians, women, children and American lives…all funded with American money.

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By Robert, December 25, 2009 at 8:44 pm Link to this comment

sepharad’s hasbara narrative:

Robert—Thank you for your post that included a link to a story that cited Mother Jones’ investigative report (by Joshua Hammer) on Rachel Corrie’s death. I read that article and think that it fairly represents Corrie’s tragic death, which is not different than my own understanding of what happened. I also read other links you provided and they raised the question of whether the weapons smuggling tunnel opened into the Nasrallah house—a question not conclusively answered. I’d like to know that. Hammer’s story did a much better job of Rachel’s mindset and the activities of ISM, which explain why she put herself in such a dangerous position.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


“FACT: One article that has fostered this myth and others is “The Death of Rachel Corrie” by Joshua Hammer, published in Mother Jones.21 However, Phan Nguyen proved that Hammer’s article was littered with errors, and that important parts were culled from right-wing websites with little credibility.22

In her writing23 and a videotaped interview24 from Rafah, Rachel Corrie lucidly depicted the daily events in the lives of ordinary Palestinians in Rafah. Rachel’s accounts of destruction in Rafah generally correspond with the descriptions and conclusions of respected third party organizations like Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International.”

http://www.ifamericansknew.org/cur_sit/rc-myth&fact;.html

==============

September 20, 2003

Mother Jones Smears Rachel Corrie

Specious Journalism in Defense of Killers

By PHAN NGUYEN

Mother Jones demonstrated how low it could set its standards for investigative journalism when it hired Newsweek reporter Joshua Hammer to surf the web and write a 7000-word feature story on Rachel Corrie and the International Solidarity Movement (“The Death of Rachel Corrie”, Sept/Oct 2003). It appears that fact-checking and verification was not a priority in the production of this article. Before I had even finished reading the Hammer’s smear job I had already discovered that the writer had no shame in culling information from indiscriminate websurfing. Take, for instance, Hammer’s description of a memorial service held for Corrie in Rafah soon after she was killed:

  Days after Corrie’s death, Arafat’s Fatah Party sponsored a memorial service for her in Rafah, attended by representatives of Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades as well as ordinary Palestinians. Midway through the service, an Israeli tank pulled up beside the mourners and sprayed them with tear gas. Peace activists chased the tank and tossed flowers, and the Israeli soldiers inside threatened, in return, to run them down. After 15 minutes of cat and mouse, Israeli bulldozers and APCs rolled in, firing guns and percussion bombs and putting a quick end to the memorial.

What struck me as I read it was that I had seen the exact same phrasing before. So I looked it up and found an article by Sandra Jordan in the UK Observer from March 23:”

~~~~~~~~
Click on for the rest of the FACTS:

http://www.counterpunch.org/nguyen09202003.html

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By brewerstroupe, December 25, 2009 at 1:38 pm Link to this comment

Sepharad.

This latest post places you, in my view at least, firmly in the camp of those who seek to obfuscate rather than inform.

“I didn’t say the wall stopped illegal workers, just suicide bombers”

Please explain to the readers how the wall which is incapable of stemming the tide of thousands of workers is somehow capable of stopping suicide bombers and why the Hamas moratorium on suicide bombing is not a more credible reason for the cessation of this practice.

Hamas have a great deal more support and influence than is reported in the MSM.

“Ironically Thursday’s poll found that Hamas has stronger support in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, still administered by Abbas, than it does in its own Gaza bastion…...the poll gave Hamas 29 percent support against 24.5 percent for its rival.
The balance was shared by a myriad of smaller parties.
Some 27.7 percent of those questioned said they trusted Hamas, compared with 26 percent for Fatah.” 

Fatah and the Palestinian Authority are a minority propped up by Israel and the Neo con sponsored U.S. administration. See:
http://www.vanityfair.com/politics/features/2008/04/gaza200804
See also:
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/comment/columnists/guest_contributors/article5420584.ece

“two IDF soldiers were sleeping in their tent when Hizbullah crossed the border, snatched and murdered them”

This does not conform to any report I have read (please post a source) but, for the sake of argument, let us assume it is true. What do you suppose the 40 or so Palestinian Politicians imprisoned by Israel were doing when “captured”?. How about those immolated along with their families in targeted assassinations, the most famous of whom, Ahmed Yassin, had been confined to a wheelchair since the age of 12 and was killed along with 9 innocent bystanders?
Your double standard is breathtaking.

“I also wish you would reread Inherit the Wind’s Dec. 6 comment”

I believe I have already addressed ITW’s remarks. Suggest you reiterate what you perceive I might have missed.

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By Sepharad, December 25, 2009 at 9:14 am Link to this comment

brewerstroupe—I didn’t say the wall stopped illegal workers, just suicide bombers who have more to lose from being caught up in Israeli sweeps along the wall. Hamas can say anything they want, but it doesn’t have so much influence on the West Bank that it would reduce suicide bombing by 85%. They can’t even stop other militant groups in Gaza from engaging Israel. They have fighters in the West Bank sometimes engaging Palestinian security forces, less often Israeli soldiers because the Palestinian police are becoming more experienced, better trained and equipped than they had been for a long time.  With Hamas killing Fatah sympathizers in Gaza, just how much effect do you think they have on Fatah and West Bank civilians and the Al Aqsa brigade? We were staying with Palestinian friends in East Jerusalem last fall and would have visited Hebron where their relatives are as well as an old man we met who wanted us to ride his horses with him(near Bethlehem), but could not do either because of Hamas fighting in those areas. Our friends also said not just we would have been endangered but also themselves and the old horsemen for associating with us. (They are planning to move to the U.S. as soon as the youngest son finishes his degree at Al Quds U.
because they are fed up with the politics (as Israelis and Palestinians should have settled the problems long ago), with the militants in their neighborhood, and with constant tension. They’re not selling their house, however, just renting it because they might someday want to return when there is peace.)

Re kidnapping, the two IDF soldiers were sleeping in their tent when Hizbullah crossed the border, snatched and murdered them; Shalit and his companions were not doing anything when they were attacked at night, certainly not captured while on the offense. In Gaza during Operation Cast Lead, there were booby traps set specifically to capture soldiers, but in combat anyone captured is a POW, not a kidnapped victim. It does explain the officers’ injunctions to soldiers to do anything to avoid capture, which I think may have led to taking less care to avoid civilian casualties, and to an attitude of aggressive anger in many soldiers’ minds.
As I’ve written elsewhere, I consider Israel’s willingness to exchange hundreds of prisoners for one or two Israeli soldiers, even their remains, a bad idea that inspired the H&H strategy of kidnapping.

I also wish you would reread Inherit the Wind’s Dec. 6 comment because I would address the same comments and questions to you.

Robert—Thank you for your post that included a link to a story that cited Mother Jones’ investigative report (by Joshua Hammer) on Rachel Corrie’s death. I read that article and think that it fairly represents Corrie’s tragic death, which is not different than my own understanding of what happened. I also read other links you provided and they raised the question of whether the weapons smuggling tunnel opened into the Nasrallah house—a question not conclusively answered. I’d like to know that. Hammer’s story did a much better job of Rachel’s mindset and the activities of ISM, which explain why she put herself in such a dangerous position.

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By brewerstroupe, December 24, 2009 at 7:38 pm Link to this comment

“The next attempt to stop suicide bombers was the Wall. It works; suicide bomb attacks have dropped by 85%.”

This is the sort of nonsense that leads me to believe that Sepharad is not dealing from a full or straight deck.

“Last night, Israeli television broadcast a report showing Tel Aviv police hunting Palestinian workers who bypass the Wall to look for work.

A Channel Two camera crew accompanied Israeli police patrols as they raided construction sites and arrested workers who were sleeping outside or in builders’ workshops…

The report revealed that Israeli police said they arrested 17,620 Palestinian workers inside the Green Line during the last two months. It also reported that 2,552 were arrested in the past two weeks…

The report said in conclusion: “The wall, siege, security cordon, police patrols and border guards have not prevented tens of thousands of workers from reaching Tel Aviv every month”.

The moratorium on suicide bombing was instigated by Hamas.

They KNOW kidnapping a soldier and/or constant rocketing will provoke Israel to invade a highly-populated area—Gaza, South Lebanon—and make damned sure significant civilian casualties are caused.

The answer should be obvious. As rocket fire has caused at most just 12 deaths since 2000 (less than a half a percent of the Israeli road toll) and only one soldier has been captured (kidnapped is such a silly word to describe the capture of a heavily armed combatant) - perhaps Israel should resist the impulse to kill hundreds of Palestinian civilians in response??

“Jews are civil liberties obsessed

Yeah right:

“Abdallah Abu Rahmah, a school teacher and coordinator of the Bil’in Popular Committee Against the Wall, was indicted in an Israeli military court yesterday. Abu Rahmah was slapped with an arms possession charge for collecting used tear gas canisters shot at demonstrators in Bil’in by the army and showcasing them in his home.”

Abu Rahmah had collected used tear gas containers and arranged them into the international peace symbol in a display outside his home.

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By Robert, December 24, 2009 at 5:49 pm Link to this comment

sepharad writes:

“or if Israel does not react, giving the terrorists free hands to kidnap Israeli soldiers or civilians and to shoot rockets with longer range and higher impacts than ever before.  This is why I see Israel as existentially threatened.”

===========


Political Prisoners in Israel/Palestine


1 Israeli is being held prisoner by Palestinians, while 7,383 Palestinians are currently imprisoned by Israel.


Since the beginning of the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories in 1967, over 650,000 Palestinians have been detained by Israel. This forms approximately 20% of the total Palestinian population in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT).”

*********

Click on link to view chart, number of child prisoner/detainee, women, legislative…etc…in Israeli prisons:


http://www.ifamericansknew.org/stats/prisoners.html

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By Robert, December 24, 2009 at 4:58 pm Link to this comment

“One such tunnel opened into a house that the bulldozer that killed Rachel Corrie was demolishing, as punishment for weapons smuggling.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


MYTH: “Rachel Corrie was killed while preventing the Israeli Army from destroying arms smuggling tunnels used by terrorists.


FACT:  “Rachel was standing in front of the home of friends – pharmacist Samir Nasrallah, his brother Khaled Nasrallah, and their wives and children. The Israeli government has never accused Samir or Khaled Nasrallah or their wives or children of links to terrorism. The Israeli army has never claimed that the Nasrallah home hid a weapons smuggling tunnel.

In the seven months after Rachel’s death the Israeli army demolished all the other homes in the neighborhood, with the exception of the Nasrallahs’ house, not the treatment one would accord a building concealing a weapons smuggling tunnel. The Nasrallahs finally were forced from their isolated home on October 17, 2003. It was demolished shortly thereafter.15

Khaled Nasrallah and his wife and child came to the US in June 2005 to join Rachel’s parents, Cindy and Craig Corrie, for a speaking tour. Reporting on the tour, the Jewish Journal explained that, “The IDF did not respond to a question about whether the Nasrallahs had ever been suspected or accused of any illegal activities. However, family members were not judged a threat by U.S. customs officials, who allowed the Nasrallahs to enter this country.”16 The US consulate conducts a security check with Israeli intelligence before granting Palestinians visas. The Israeli Government permitted the Nasrallahs to travel unescorted to Tel Aviv for the purpose of applying for U.S. visas, a courtesy unlikely to be granted to those posing any threat.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~

Click on link for Facts VS Myths/Lies:

http://www.ifamericansknew.org/cur_sit/rc-myth&fact;.html

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By Robert, December 24, 2009 at 4:39 pm Link to this comment

sepharad writes:

“This same strategy was used trying to discourage suicide bombing in Israel—demolishing the bomber’s family’s home—i.e., destroy property instead of killing people.)”
~~~~~~~~~~~~


Homes Demolished in Israel and Palestine

0 Israeli homes have been demolished by Palestinians and 24,145 Palestinian homes have been demolished by Israel since 1967.

Chart showing that a 18 thousand Palestinian homes have been demolished by Israelis while no Israeli home has been demolished by Palestinians.

“Any humanitarian looking at the sheer number of innocent civilians who have lost their homes can only condemn Israel’s house demolition policy as a hugely disproportionate military response by an occupation army… It is a policy that creates only hardship and bitterness, and in the end can only undermine hope for future reconciliation and peace.”

– Peter Hansen, Commissioner General of UNRWA

““The IDF carries out three types of house demolitions. Most are carried out in the framework of what Israel calls ‘clearing operations,’ which are intended to meet what Israel defines as ‘military needs.’ These operations take place primarily in the Gaza Strip: along the Egyptian border, which passes through Rafah and its refugee camps; around settlements and army posts; alongside roads used by settlers and IDF forces; and in the northern part of the Gaza Strip [...]”

~~~~~~~~~~~

Click on link to view details, charts & summary:

http://www.ifamericansknew.org/stats/homes.html

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By Sepharad, December 24, 2009 at 3:17 pm Link to this comment

Sodium, as always I’ll be interested in what you say, even if we continue to disagree, because you know so many things. I don’t do “damage control” because it’s silly, because I have things I’d much rather be doing, and if I’m not honest here there is no point posting. What worries me, though, is the power of narrative—change the narrative and you don’t change reality but you can screw up people’s actions as well as their perception of history, and I do not believe that lies ever moved anything in a righteous direction.

Happy New Year!
Sepharad

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By Sepharad, December 24, 2009 at 2:55 pm Link to this comment

ardee, PART II continued (for the third time; computer keeps malfunctioning and I’ve loost near-complete comments)

(Just realized you did not connect “sane and rational” with warfare.)

In the West Bank, IDF also demolished homes of suicide bombers. They also fought militants and searched for planners of the bombings, bomb makers, and fighting sometimes erupted that killed or injured passers-by. The next attempt to stop suicide bombers was the Wall. It works; suicide bomb attacks have dropped by 85%. But the Wall, like the checkpoints, also messes up life for Palestinians on the West Banks. Palestinians aided byt Israeli advocates have sometimes gone to Israerli courts and gotten the wall or fence moved to not keep a family from its orchard or to separate people from their villages. And still there is violence: militant Jews and militant Arabs still kill each other in the territory. This will not stop until Palestine is an independent state and people who can’t treat each other respectfully will be dealing with an Arab court.

A newish strategy Israel has to contend with is the kidnapping of soldiers and Israel’s insane policy of trading 100s of prisoners for one Israeli soldier or even bodily remains. Hamas and Hizbullah are too clever to not take full advantage of this. They KNOW kidnapping a soldier and/or constant rocketing will provoke Israel to invade a highly-populated area—Gaza, South Lebanon—and make damned sure significant civilian casualties are caused. (In Gaza, officers told soldiers “No more Galits” and in so many words to shoot their way out no matter what the price and if about to be captured shoot yourself.)

The sane and rational things Israelis are doing to help and not hurt Palestinians are small things—economic development, communities in which Jews and West Bank Arabs live together, send their kids to school together, and established 80+ human rights groups (needed because situations there tend to be so fraught, and because most Jews are civil liberties obsessed—not any particular ethnic-based virtue but because Jews have beeen small endangered minorities long enough to know that what happens to one can happen to everyone.

These little things are nothing when weighed against a Likud governmeent—and nothing against the overwhelming threat to Israel as long as its enemies (quietly bankrolled by Iran and to a smaller extent Syria) can always hide behind huge numbers of deaths if Israel does react as in Gaza and Lebanon - or if Israel does not react, giving the terrorists free hands to kidnap Israeli soldiers or civilians and to shoot rockets with longer range and higher impacts than ever before.  This is why I see Israel as existentially threatened.

And no I don’t think Israel should attack Iran—that will only make them more isolated than theey are, cause millions of Iranian casualties. I have no idea whether Ahmadinejad would launch a nuclear attack against Israel. The one hopeful factor is that Iran’s new missiles can reach not only Israel but some Euro countries and an American oilfield somwhere. Someone else will do it if necessary but Israel shouldn’t.

Hope you and Sodium and Inherit and brewerstroupe are enjoying your holidays. We’re going to move around a bit so computering will be spotty at best.

To gain a slight credibility in demonstrating my trust of Palestinians: My ungovernable fears, in this order: Going to a dentist, meeting a venomous snake, being lost in a blizzard. My dentist is a Palestinian.

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By Sepharad, December 24, 2009 at 12:52 pm Link to this comment

(PART 1)

ardee, I wish I could say things that would be more acceptable to you and Sodium, but if I’m not honest there’d be no point. I don’t think it’s so much that Israel is misunderstood but that the Arabs who do not want peace and the pressures and influence they bring to bear both on the Palestinians and the Israelis are either not noticed or are condoned (though I hope that last is not the case with you and Sodium, as I like and respect you both).

Within Israel there ARE Arab-haters and religious zealots, as well as Israelis who are distrustful, frightened, or angry (some of whom therefore oppose taking any risks to make peace, but MORE of whom still want to move forward toward negotiating a fair deal with the Palestinians—were that not true, Livni, willing to negotiate East Jerusalem, would not have received more votes than Netanyahu).

The U.S. does not consider Mexico an existential threat because they are not shooting rockets and sending suicide bombers across the border. (The illegal immigration is a whole other topic to discuss elsewhere.) Also, the U.S. is huge, diverse, and has abundant natural resources. Israel is small, with limited natural resources.

What must happen eventually, and the sooner the better, is for Israel to recognize the Jews’ part in the suffering and displacement of the ancestors of the refugees, and to compensate their descendents by giving them money to build houses on the West Bank. Israel is and must increase cooperating to develop Palestine economically. An independent Palestine also needs an army and security forces to fight their enemies within and without. The EU, some European countries on their own and the U.S. are already sending hundreds of millions to the West Bank for paying, equipping and training military and police. Israel has also begun training Palestinian police.

Peace Now recently opened a now-functioning hotline on which any West Bank resident can report any Jews building additions, new buildings—anything prohibited by the existing freeze. Peace Now reports these violations immediately to the people responsible for enforcing the freeze, eliminating the rationale “we didn’t find out un til it was to late.”

Re being outbred: Outbreeding the Israeli Jews numerically is a conscious (and public) strategy of the Palestinians. Arafat famously declared that the ultimate weapon was the Palestinian womb. More recently, a Hamas leader in Gaza told a visiting NYTimes reporter that “We love to procreate!” Then pointed outside the window to a large group of little boys in uniform armed and drilling proudly. He said he himself had seven sons, one killed in an Israeli airstrike on headquarters. (Palestinian children watch a Big-Bird-Sesame Street type show that long featured Farfel the Mouse until he martyred himself. He’s been replaced, but the children are encouraged to venerate martyrs and become one themselves some day.)
  Ariel Sharon pulled all the Jewish settlers out of Gaza largely because of demographics—their numbers were being overwhelmed by the larger numbers of Palestinian births per family—and only secondarily because it would give some indication how Palestinians would react to Israel if there were no Jews in their territory.

RE “sane and rational” warfare (an oxymoron, but I know what you mean): In Gaza, Israel initially responded to rocketing by trying to close tunnels used for weapons smuggling. (One such tunnel opened into a house that the bulldozer that killed Rachel Corrie was demolishing, as punishment for weapons smuggling. This same strategy was used trying to discourage suicide bombing in Israel—demolishing the bomber’s family’s home—i.e., destroy property instead of killing people.) Property and not lives is not ideal but saner than killing people. (In my mind, the idea of the neutron bomb, which kills people but doesn’t affect infrastructure, is immoral, insane and vicious.)

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By Sodium, December 24, 2009 at 6:46 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Re: Sepharad,December 23 at 4:26 am.

Sepharad,

I will respond to your above Re after the Christmas three days,(yes,for three days my wife annual habit for receiving relative and friends in our house),I will respond to your above Re.

Spending a few days with my wife along with our children and especially with our grandchildren is much more important than responding to your unreal “husbara”,as Brewerstroupe intelligently put it in one of his/her usually most reliable and effective posts I have ever encountered. Thank you brewerstroupe.

Inspite of total disagreement with you,I wish you a very very Happy Holiday Season. And I Mean it. I consider my disagreement wiyh you as NOT PERSONAL AT ALL.

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By Robert, December 23, 2009 at 9:36 am Link to this comment

sepharad wrote:

“Re checkpoint removal—An article by a writer for the UK’s Independent was reprinted in the Wall Street Journal (think I cited the date at the time, was either Dec. 2 or 9) described his visit and assessment of Nablus, primarily economy but also normalcy of life at night, people in the cafes, shopping, walking around and visiting. He said that 35 checkpoints had been removed from Nablus. Recently read in the Israeli press that Netanyahu has taken down “100” checkpoints but it did not specify which ones or where, and round numbers are easy to toss around.”
~~~~~~~~~~

October 23-25, 2009

An Interview with Bill and Kathleen Christison

Palestine in Pieces

By JEFF GORE

“The “model cities” in Jenin and Nablus and the “model checkpoints” such as Huwara are the exceptions in the Palestinians’ grinding life under occupation. Movement from one area to another is still severely restricted. Most West Bank Palestinians still cannot visit Jerusalem. Those who have work permits to enter Jerusalem must still wait for hours in endless lines to enter the city and pass through multiple security checks, including biometric checks that leave a record of when they entered the city and whether they have exited by the end of the day. Israeli settlements continue to be built and expanded on confiscated Palestinian land. The road network connecting the settlements to each other and to Israel, on which Palestinians may not drive, continues to be expanded, cutting off increasing numbers of Palestinians from each other. Palestinians are still harassed and physically attacked by aggressive Israeli settlers. Olive groves and other agricultural land continue to be confiscated, destroyed, burned, either by settlers or by bulldozers clearing land for more settlements or for the Separation Wall. Construction of the Wall is proceeding, cutting off more Palestinian land from its owners.

Non-violent protesters who demonstrate regularly against the Wall continue to be shot and killed or imprisoned. While newly trained, spiffily uniformed Palestinian security forces patrol city streets during the day, Israeli forces control the night and therefore control the entire territory. They conduct middle-of-the-night raids in villages throughout the West Bank, arresting young Palestinian men on suspicion merely of being Palestinian, beating or even shooting anyone who resists. In Jerusalem, where the Netanyahu government is currently concentrating its harshest oppression, the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians continues quite openly. Palestinian homes continue to be demolished for no other reason than that they are in Israel’s way—in the way of the Wall’s advance, or of the next new or expanding Israeli settlement, or of Israel’s efforts to depopulate the land of Palestinians and create a Jewish majority. Palestinian families continue to be evicted from their homes so that Israeli settlers can live in them.”

Click on link for the rest of article:


http://www.counterpunch.org/gore10232009.html

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By ardee, December 23, 2009 at 4:01 am Link to this comment

Oh sepharad you tend to make defending you a real chore…..

I’ve never been paid for any of this, but know that Israel’s existence is very much in question: from 1)the demographic growth rate of the Palestinians as opposed to the smaller number of children most Jewish families are having (except for the hyper-orthodox and some of the settlers, who seem to be trying to keep the numbers up); 2) Israel’s inability to defend herself from enemies ensconced in large numbers of civilians without killing or hurting noncombatants; 3) countries outside of Israel whose liberals cannot understand the pressures on and lack of feasible options for Israel

I guess that the USA is in equal danger if one only considers the birth rate of its neighbors to the South, heh?

Israel is quite capable of defending itself apparently and always has been it would seem. Its failure lies in its bloodthirsty methodologies. If its enemies “hide” within civilian populations then perhaps Israel might consider sane and rational means; such as working with local govts and police forces, contributing to the Palestinian well being rather than being the chief reason they live in poverty, desperation and fear.

Poor, poor Israel, so misunderstood that others believe those five hundred pound bombs Israel drops on occupied apartment buildings are dropped with hatred instead of love,huh?

Public opinion is absolutely correct about Israeli actions, thus changing those actions would certainly change the opinions. Withdrawal of illegal settlements from Gaza, ending the blockage of foodstuffs and medicines from reaching Palestinians in desperate need of such, donating monies and labor to the rebuilding of the destruction of infrastructure by the IDF, working with, not against the govt of Palestine, recognition of the rights of Palestinians to actually have a country and be treated as human beings. Perhaps even turning the other cheek on occasion might be in order as well.

Palestinians are people, subject to the same desires as folks everywhere, security, jobs, hope for the future. If Israel were to assist them in achieving those goals, and the nation you defend stands opposed to each and every one of them, Israel itself might find peace.

Instead you make apologies for actions that are beneath any such.

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By Sepharad, December 23, 2009 at 12:26 am Link to this comment

Re checkpoint removal—An article by a writer for the UK’s Independent was reprinted in the Wall Street Journal (think I cited the date at the time, was either Dec. 2 or 9) described his visit and assessment of Nablus, primarily economy but also normalcy of life at night, people in the cafes, shopping, walking around and visiting. He said that 35 checkpoints had been removed from Nablus. Recently read in the Israeli press that Netanyahu has taken down “100” checkpoints but it did not specify which ones or where, and round numbers are easy to toss around.

Sodium, I would be glad to write officially for Israel but I don’t. I post here, I do some writing to media reported in Honest Reporting (Jerusalem-based group that asks media to retract statements or photos that are inaccurate; often they do, but the retractions are buried way back in the papers usually and mentioned by broadcasters, but briefly, and thus have far less impact than the impression left by the error/s), and post on Israeli political sites reflecting the basic positions of the party founded by Peace Now, Meretz. Because of the Likud government in power now, I’m spending more time than usual on the last category and therefore less on TD and Honest Reporting. I’ve never been paid for any of this, but know that Israel’s existence is very much in question: from 1)the demographic growth rate of the Palestinians as opposed to the smaller number of children most Jewish families are having (except for the hyper-orthodox and some of the settlers, who seem to be trying to keep the numbers up); 2) Israel’s inability to defend herself from enemies ensconced in large numbers of civilians without killing or hurting noncombatants; 3) countries outside of Israel whose liberals cannot understand the pressures on and lack of feasible options for Israel—which, combined with the fact that Arabs have all the oil, and small countries in Europe are becoming afraid of the growing Muslim populations and to placate them are increasingly hostile to Israel—makes them hypercritical of Israel while turning blind eyes to much worse things going on in the world, a sort of pandering out of fear to the Muslim community at large i.e. “We’re nice to you and bad to Israel so please don’t blow up our trains buses etc.”

I don’t understand why educated people such as you, Sodium, and ardee haven’t studied the massive amounts of material generated by Arab scholars in the reform reports backed by the UN. There are at least five annual whitepapers by now, and they make themselves quite clear.

I’m aware that Israelis have done terrible things to Palestinians, and that Palestinians have done terrible things to Israelis and each other. Through Meretz and some of the political sites I try to have some effect on the Israeli behavior, however slight, but only the Moslems can affect their societies. I do think that many Palestinians are advanced more than other Arab communities and that there is still some hope for that elusive two-state solution, but it will require the right leaders on both sides. At present, both sides are underserved leadership-wise.

Israel has not and will not create anything even close to the scale of carnage indulged in by European imperialists, and from the 16th century on Europeans seeking a new start in the New World and in effect did combined genocide and ethnic cleansing of the Native Americans (who many centuries ago did the same Russian tsars and Stalin in the past and by Muslims against one another forever and showing no signs of abating.

I think it is dishonest to quote anti-Israel Jews as an argument against its existence. We are just as varied and variable as any ancient-based tribe—just as you of Goth, Norman, Saxon, and other earlier tribal DNA. Why should Jews not be able to live in the land of our historical and cultural origin (if we are crazy enough to do so)? Some of the most religious Jews say only God can restore Israel, not mere men.

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By Robert, December 22, 2009 at 9:25 pm Link to this comment

Gaza Must Be Rebuilt Now

We can wait no longer to restart the peace process. The human suffering demands urgent relief

By Jimmy Carter

“December 21, 2009 “The Guardian”—It is generally recognised that the Middle East peace process is in the doldrums, almost moribund. Israeli settlement expansion within Palestine continues, and PLO leaders refuse to join in renewed peace talks without a settlement freeze, knowing that no Arab or Islamic nation will accept any comprehensive agreement while Israel retains control of East Jerusalem.

US objections have impeded Egyptian efforts to resolve differences between Hamas and Fatah that could lead to 2010 elections. With this stalemate, PLO leaders have decided that President Mahmoud Abbas will continue in power until elections can be held - a decision condemned by many Palestinians.

Even though Syria and Israel under the Olmert government had almost reached an agreement with Turkey’s help, the current prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, rejects Turkey as a mediator on the Golan Heights. No apparent alternative is in the offing.

The UN general assembly approved a report issued by its human rights council that called on Israel and the Palestinians to investigate charges of war crimes during the recent Gaza war, but positive responses seem unlikely.

In summary: UN resolutions, Geneva conventions, previous agreements between Israelis and Palestinians, the Arab peace initiative, and official policies of the US and other nations are all being ignored. In the meantime, the demolition of Arab houses, expansion of Israeli settlements in East Jerusalem and the West Bank, and Palestinian recalcitrance threaten any real prospect for peace.

Of more immediate concern, those under siege in Gaza face another winter of intense personal suffering. I visited Gaza after the devastating January war and observed homeless people huddling in makeshift tents, under plastic sheets, or in caves dug into the debris of their former homes. Despite offers by Palestinian leaders and international agencies to guarantee no use of imported materials for even defensive military purposes, cement, lumber, and panes of glass are not being permitted to pass entry points into Gaza. The US and other nations have accepted this abhorrent situation without forceful corrective action.”
~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Click on link for the rest of article:


http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article24231.htm

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By Robert, December 22, 2009 at 9:18 pm Link to this comment

By Sodium, December 22 at 3:00 am #
(Unregistered commenter)

hope22Re: Robert,December 19 at 3:25 pm.

@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

Sodium,

Just wanted to convey my sincerest thanks for your support to human rights, fairness, truth, international law, equality, justice, honesty & much more.

I’ll do my best to keep posting in regards to above; the TRUTH needs to be brought to the surface so readers can see & search for themselves.

When one tells the TRUTH, then there is NO fear to remember what was posted and/or said.

I wish you & the family A MERRY CHRISTMAS & A HAPPY/PEACEFUL NEW YEAR.

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By Sodium, December 21, 2009 at 11:00 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

hope22Re: Robert,December 19 at 3:25 pm.

Quote
======

Sodium…I just read your above dated post and I could sense tharit came after much thought/search from within your mind & heart. You had something to say for the sake of honesty,integrity & self-respect…and you just did it without any ill feeling.

Unquote
========

Robert,

Please accept my sincere: “THANK YOU” for your kind words quoted in the above quote. Most appreciated. And the whole post of yours,as specified in Re above,has been printed out and I filed it with the other outstanding posts of yours. Altough I am well aware of the conflict from A to Z,I have always always found something of value in your outstanding posts. Never stop. Keep them coming,inspite of the silly and childlish names calling and unworthy offence through intimidation,the sole purpose of which is to silence you and silence others knowledgeable persons like you. Just keep posting and keep moving from one forum to another,if it appears to you appropriate to post.

Happy Holidy to all,including to those I disagree with.

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By ardee, December 20, 2009 at 8:41 am Link to this comment

brewerstroupe, December 20 at 5:31 am

I thank you for this link to a story needing retelling, again and again if necessary, to let the message sink in; Israel is acting with cruelty and bureaucratic stupidity, and reacting to terrorism created by Israel’s own refusal to treat humans with compassion and common sense with brutality.

I believe sepharad an intelligent woman, and one who doesn’t consciously support the cruelty of Israel. That support comes from the typical blindness of so many Jews around the world who believe the existence of Israel is threatened, even after sixty odd years of that existence.

In this belief she mirrors that of much of my own family, in large part. I think it a real pity, especially because, if that existence is at all threatened, and I do not believe it is, the threat comes from the horrific actions of Israel itself.

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By brewerstroupe, December 20, 2009 at 1:31 am Link to this comment

Astonishing to see this thread still alive. I had composed a long reply to Sepharad, based on the notion that he/she is a sincere poster but, after re-reading some of the posts and noting that they reference standard hasbara talking points that have been soundly defeated ad nauseum, arrived at the same conclusion as Ardee, Robert and Sodium.

Here is a piece which, despite it’s lack of drama, I find illustrates the “banality of evil” contained within the Israeli occupation:

http://mondoweiss.net/2009/12/one-palestinian-familys-story-illustrates-the-absurdity-and-intention-of-israeli-policy.html

Phil Weiss does marvelous work and I strongly advise everyone interested in this conflict to monitor his site.

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By Sodium, December 19, 2009 at 1:21 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Re: ardee,December 19 at 8:52 am

ardee,

This is to re-affiem that I have never doubted for one single minute Sepharad’s intelligence.I had explicitly said so in time past. I had even said,meant every word I said,that she was/is a real lady I was/am willing to walk the extra mile with to accommodate what was possible to accommodate of her beliefs,as long as she and I maintained honest intents for reaching an agreement on issues we had disagreements. I have lived up to my promise by making a point refraining from making a single negative comment about Zionists,although I have maintained my belief that Zionism is a destructive political ideology due to what it had done to the Palestinians and it never ceased doing for the last 60 years.As Mahatma Gandhi once said:“hate the sin but not the sinners”.My former mentors about Zionism,in my youthful years,were two Rabbis: the late Rabbi Elmer Burger and the late Rabbi Alfred Lilianthal.Both had told me they condemned Zionism for what it had done to Judaism:political exploitations,pure and simple,althought they both had profound compassion for the Palestinians.But they were straight forward with me in that their main reason for condemning Zionism was what it did to Judaism.Well,I condemn Zionism for what it has done to the Palestians and I do not condemn the Zionists because they are humanbeings first and last,and I do hope one day their belief in Zionism will fade away as the beliefs in other “isms” have faded away with the passage of time. That is the foundation I had built my constructive exchanges with Sepharad in the last year or so.

To maintain a constructive dialogue with her I could have deliberately overlooked her attempts in painting Israel’s advancement compared to the Arab states,whose language,literatures,history and culture I admire immensly,and as she proudly stated “in light years”?.Inspite of the IMPLICIT insult to all Arab states she claimed to want to have peace with.

Two years ago,I had made a trip to Jordan to see some Jordanian and some old American friends who had decided to spend the rest of their lives there.I was exceedingly amazed and pleased by the progress that had/have been made since I returned to the U.S.in 1990,just one month before the First Gulf War started in 1991.For the six million citizens of Jordan there are now 22 colleges,accredited universities world wide,King Hussein Medical City conducts open heart surgeries on daily basis,different organs planting in the human bodies,when the organs are available and I was told at “The City”-that what the Jordanians called it for short-that they had/have dirrect lines of communications with Mayo Clinic in Minnesota and Harvard University Medical School in Massachusetts.I saw hospitals or clinics in almost every town I had to visit to see my old friends.That is one Arab country that its history says that it had not one single university in 1960 and only one single private hospital called “The Italian Hospital” run by Italian Catholic nuns and physicians. Now this Hospital has ended up in the very old section of Amman,capital of Jordan.The progress is truly amazing in the true meaning of the world.One can extrapolate according to his/her mental horizon and true knowledge(not propaganda)about the rest of the Arab states.That does not mean they have no problems.They do and big problems.Overcoming them requires time.That is my response to the “IMPLICITE” insulting propaganda against the Arab States.

My main displeasure with Sepharad’s post was her obvious coddling of a bigoted European just to score a cheap point against the Arab states.Yeah,the bigot this time is in Europe where the Holocaust had taken place,not in the Arab and Muslim world.This point should never be overlooked by all who cared for justice:

HOLOCAUST PLACE.

ardee:Please notice that the key words in my response to Sepharad are “I am now INCLINED to believe Folktruther etc..” That does NOT mean I have already believed.

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By Robert, December 19, 2009 at 11:25 am Link to this comment

By Sodium, December 18 at 1:07 pm #
(Unregistered commenter)

“I very much regret to tell you that I have become more inclined now to believe Folktruther and Robert that you are merely a PUBLIC RELATIONS FRONT FOR THE ISRAELI APARTHEID GOVERMENT.”
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Sodium…I just read your above dated post and I could sense that it came after much thought/search from within your mind & heart. You had something to say for the sake of honesty, integrity & self-respect…and you just did it without any ill feelings.

I have sensed that much of Sepharad’s comments/posts are for “damage control/public relations”. Just like I mentioned in my previous comment on this thread, Sepharad uses several tactics to try to sway and/or manipulate readers to support Israel & Zionism’s policies against the Palestinians/Arabs. I think that many well read hardcore zionists fear that their Israel/zionism is slowly losing support in the US/Europe. I firmly believe that Zionism is the worst enemy for Jews. Israel/Zionism has been conducting the most vicious ethnic cleansing, brutal massacres of Palestinians/Lebanese/Arabs for decades and at the same time stealing their land and natural resources.

$3-5 billion dollars of our American taxpayer’s money annually goes to Israel/Zionism each year in full support of their brutal occupation and their “for Jews only colonies/settlements” in the Occupied Territories. The American taxpayers & Jews who don’t support Israel’s Zionism are in someway complicit of Israel’s IDF/army’s war crimes, disregard for human rights, international law and much more.

The TRUTH must be posted and made available for readers to see & search. For way too long the majority of Americans have relied on a mostly Zionist controlled News Medias, but I think that things are changing…slowly but surely.

Hardcore Zionists try to use all sorts of tactics to prevent the truth/information from being distributed to the public, but almost NEVER do they try to prove the information wrong.

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By ardee, December 19, 2009 at 4:52 am Link to this comment

Sodium, December 18 at 1:07 pm

We share a passion for our beliefs, and we are both capable of excoriating those we think phony, agendized or capable of distortion of fact and logic in order to make a political point.

But we do differ in our opinion of sepharad as an agent of Israeli propaganda. I think her quite intelligent and , when compared to the few who infest this forum with right wing rant and sheer stupidities, a breath of fresh air as well.

I certainly do not share her penchant for excusing the horrific actions of the Israeli govt or her attempts to paint the Arab world in a poorer light in order to make Israel more attractive. But I do prefer her style over that of many others here.

This place would be rather boring if we all agreed on everything, thus I welcome debate with one who may be very, very wrong yet can express herself so very much better than our resident kooks and liars.

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By Sodium, December 18, 2009 at 9:07 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Re: Sepharad,December 16 at 9:11 pm.

Sepharad,

You must be kidding!!

You must be kidding!!

You must be kidding!!

I do not believe in what I have read in your above post. It is all a typical Zionist propaganda I have battled against for the last 50 years. And yet you kept telling me that you wanted peace with the Palestinians and the rest of the Arab world and I took you on your own word. What I have detected from your post referred to above a political propagandist of the first order.

How dare you caddling a European bigot to score a cheap shot of propaganda against the Arab states with whom you have said time and time again you want peace. If you really want peace with your enemies,you have to walk humbly with them toward that cherished goal,not manipulating a bigot for cheap propaganda for your APARTHEID ISRAEL?? And at the top of all of that you unashamedly calling it democracy!!  Give me a break.

I just wonder who is manipulating whom!! Perhaps,it is a mutual manipulation;each for different agenda,or at least for different goals.

Just to show you how wrong it is to caddle obvious bigots,I refer you to the the following post of mine to read for your own benefit and enlightenment:

Earth to the Ground.
Now on page (4).
Title: “Jewish Groups Object to Switzerland’s Miranet Ban”,published on December 3,2009.
By Sodium,December 7 at 3:40 am.

I even suggest to you to read every post on that particular thread.

I have come to believe from reading your recent posts that you are really a hard core Zionist incurable to become more Jewish and less of a Zionist,or at least less of an ideologue. I regret that I had believed otherwise-that is, you can,sooner or later,be free from the enslavement of the ideology of “ISM”. All kind of “ISM” 

I very much regret to tell you that I have become more inclined now to believe Folktruther and Robert that you are merely a PUBLIC RELATIONS FRONT FOR THE ISRAELI APARTHEID GOVERMENT. You are here just,as Folktruther used to describe you,for damage control and public relations. And of course,I cannot say as Folktruther used to say that you were paid to do so by the Mossad, because I had/have no proof for such a claim. Only when I do,I will say it.

Sepharad: I truly regret I have to write all of the above to you,but I felt I had to do it if I wanted to be honest with myself first and with you second and with everyone else third. Otherwise I would have lost all my self-respect. And I am not prepared to do that for you or for any other human being living in this miserable world of ours. Take good care of yourself.

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By Robert, December 16, 2009 at 9:24 pm Link to this comment

By Robert, December 15 at 11:29 pm #

By Sepharad, December 15 at 4:09 am

“The only sane thing Netanyahu has done is to remove many of the check points, particularly in Nablus, which is becoming one of the most economically important town in the West Bank.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Sepharad…let me get this straight, you are saying that Netanyahu has removed many of the Israeli IDF checkpoints in the Occupied territories, “particularly in Nablus.”

Would you care to give us an approximate number or an exact number, if possible, of how many checkpoints have been removed by Netanyahu?

*****

Sepharad...I must conclude that you were reporting what Netanyahu was lying and deceptively telling the world that he has removed many of the Israeli army’s military checkpoints in the Occupied Territories. In other words, NO checkpoints have been removed!.

I must tell you this and without any ill feelings…I see much of what you attempt to report/post on the topic of Palestinian/Arab/Israeli conflict is in some way dishonest/deceptive. I can almost clearly see what your goals/objectives are on TD. Your attempts are so transparent…you have been trying to alter readers conceptions, recruiting methods, change their minds, diversions, planting doubt, PR ways and others… in order for them to be more/supportive of pro-Israel/policies.

I do remember your deceptive and unconvincing arguments during Israel’s brutal army assault on Gaza last year. Israel was using just about every massive weapon in its arsenal on a mostly civilian and unarmed population. They even used white phosphorus bombs on women and children. And you were trying to tell us on TD that Israel’s army did NOT use white phosphorus in Gaza. You went as far as to tell us that Israel has the most moral army in the world ...1600 Palestinians were killed and many of them were women and children.

I do remember your stand regarding the death of our American and peace loving Rachel Corrie who was murdered by an Israeli IDF killer, the driver of an Israeli army bulldozer. He crushed her and ran over her TWICE with his 9 ton bulldozer.

I can go on and on regarding your unconvincing and deceptive arguments attempts when it comes to this topic of Palestinian/Arab/Israeli issues.

Just about all your attempts at trying to report positive things about Israel is NOT at all convincing. A lot of Americans are beginning to read and find the TRUTH about Israel’s discrimination policies and its brutal occupation of the Palestinian people.

When reporters/historians, such as yourself, begin to report/post truth and be on the side of justice, humanity, human rights, freedom for all people, then one can maybe say their arguments have a better chance at convincing and changing readers’ minds.

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By Sepharad, December 16, 2009 at 5:11 pm Link to this comment

Johannes, I’m glad your son went to Israel and Egypt. I think he was right in his observations. Israel’s democratic society is quite different from Arab states, and light years ahead in the way people treat other people. I’m also rather pessimistic that it will be possible to make a genuine peace with the Moslems, but many of the Palestinians are not as critical of Israel as most of the posters on this website, and most of them understand the reality of the difference between an Israeli government and one run by Hamas, or Hezbollah. There is so much bitterness and a sense of betrayal on both sides that the achievement of two states living together in peace would be a true miracle. I hope it happens and will do what I can to encourage it, because there is no real alternative for Israel. And I’m getting very tired of defending Israel from people who seems to spend all their time focusing their hatred on that state when there are so many worse problems in the world. It’s almost a ritual, seems like. I’m glad to read the post from ilona@israel—she’s right, but no doubt will be savaged by the Let’sHateIsrael crew. Sometimes I wonder what they do with the rest of their lives. It would help if these people looked up and read the many Arab scholars who’ve published numerous UN-sponsored whitepapers on why Arab societies have been stuck in dysfunction for so long. But that would require giving up the idea that everything wrong in the Arab world (and beyond) can be laid at the feet of the Israelis and move on to address the real problems afflicting the world in general and this country, U.S., in particular.

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By brewerstroupe, December 16, 2009 at 2:42 pm Link to this comment

The number is staggering, to say the least. A total of 4,577 Palestinian residents of Jerusalem were stripped of their residency rights in 2008 alone, 35 percent of all east Jerusalemites who lost their residency rights since 1967 and more than any average year since Israel’s occupation of the eastern sector of the city almost 42 years ago. For the less versed in the ways of Israel where Palestinian residency rights in Jerusalem are concerned, here is a quick rundown. Upon Israel’s occupation in 1967 of east Jerusalem, those Palestinians who had stayed in their homes were included in Israel’s census of the city and granted “permanent residency”. This, by no means is citizenship, which Israel also duly offered to the war torn residents of the even more war torn neighborhoods of Jerusalem. But taking on Israeli citizenship was, for most Palestinians, tantamount to high treason, given that they would assume the nationality of the country that had usurped most of their homeland and made hundreds of thousands of their fellow Palestinians refugees either outside the borders of Palestine or within it. Not to mention that one condition for citizenship was to swear allegiance to Israel.

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By ilona@israel, December 16, 2009 at 12:36 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

dear muscleboy! its nice and sweet that you belive in love. the problem is-muslims dont belive that love between our people is possible and continiue to bomb our cities. what about hezzbolah-yes arabs are also part of semit group of people, if you mean that. if not-its arab terror organization

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By Sepharad, December 16, 2009 at 10:58 am Link to this comment

ardee—It’s hard for me to believe that Bibi has changed his spots (see article in today’s NYTimes) but easier to believe he is a pragmatist and is willing to buck his own Likud base to do what he thinks is necessary for Israel. I expect he does want the two states now that he sees the necessity, but he will have to make a lot of changes on the ground. Actions, not words, are what I’m waiting for, but also think those of us in Meretz and other leftish parties should support him in dismantling and freezing settlements and all the rest. I don’t trust the governing Palestinians either, but that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t be pleased at any cessation of hostilities. cooperation and recognition of the many Palestinians who do in fact work with Israeli Arabs and Jews alike to build their economy. Progress is progress; it would take a fool or an ideologue to not accept a hand when it’s offered and backed up by action. Unfortunately I also believe Johannes is correct.

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By johannes, December 16, 2009 at 10:33 am Link to this comment

To Sepharad,


I am still very pesimistic about the Israel- Palastine affaire, Itzak Rabin wash ” MABY ” on the right direction, but as I see an hear how the Islam speaks and behaves against the other thinking and living people I do not see peace comming, My son visited Israel and he told me that the difference between the state Israel and Palastine, is much bigger as only between to differend religions, its an enormess undervaluation of the democratic fors of Israel.

By his visit to Egypt, he told me it wash so sick making the treadmend of the Cops and other non Islam religions, and it is not even discutable, for the Moslims this people and their lives are inexcisting,
so he is an fervent non belefer in what they say or their prommesess, it are enemys of humanety he says, yes maby but not all I hope.

Salutation

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By ardee, December 16, 2009 at 4:18 am Link to this comment

http://www.tikkun.org/article.php/20091109180649355

The link is to a speech given by Netanyahu to the United Nations, one in which he claims to have removed “hundreds” of such checkpoints. I believe that this is what Sepharad references.

Now the question remains, does one believe Bibi when most of his actions remain provocative and brutal?

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By Robert, December 15, 2009 at 7:29 pm Link to this comment

By Sepharad, December 15 at 4:09 am

“The only sane thing Netanyahu has done is to remove many of the check points, particularly in Nablus, which is becoming one of the most economically important town in the West Bank.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Sepharad...let me get this straight, you are saying that Netanyahu has removed many of the Israeli IDF checkpoints in the Occupied territories, “particularly in Nablus.”

Would you care to give us an approximate number or an exact number, if possible, of how many checkpoints have been removed by Netanyahu?


The are over 500 Israeli checkpoints and roadblocks in the Occupied territories which restricts the movements of every Palestinian and harshly impacts their lives. There is severe food & economic crises as a results of Israel’s brutal army enforcing movement restrictions with the continued policy of illegal Israeli demolitions of Palestinian homes, land and water resources thefts/control and the systematic enforcement of Apartheid policies against Palestinians in their own Occupied land.

As you know, none of the above applies to the Jewish Only Settlements and/or being Jewish in the Occupied Territories.

TRUTH & JUSTICE are on the side of the oppressed!

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By ardee, December 15, 2009 at 3:59 am Link to this comment

I truly want a peaceful Israel and Palestine, both secure and both prospering, and don’t think either is possible without the other.

I do not doubt you,Sepharad, and I think the same wish is almost universal excepting for a small and unstable group of haters. But, if we wish to work for such as you desire, the first step seems obviously the condemnation of the evils committed in this conflict.

The simple fact that the death rolls are so very heavily weighted towards the Palestinian refugees, the responses of the IDF so very heavy handed and all out of proportion to the acts of the (proportionally) few terrorists, the insistence upon usurping Gaza with settlements as provocation all beg for one seeking humanity to stand against such actions.

I find you an intelligent and capable defender of Israel’s right to exist, and I share that defense. But I see clearly the obligation of the nation of Israel to act in a manner they have so far avoided while you seemingly lack such a position.

I would welcome you to the side of real justice, and hope you might mention the fact that Israel violates , not only law, but humanity, when it drops bombs on crowded apartment buildings in response to a single and highly inaccurate missile
attack that kills noone and provokes such horrific responses.

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By Sepharad, December 15, 2009 at 12:09 am Link to this comment

ardee and brewerstroupe—I guess we will be in perpetual disagreement on the path to rebirth of Israel. I’d never say Zionists were saints, but there is so much contradictory material on the role of the British and interaction of Arabs and Jews that we’d all probably have to read thousands of pages in addition to what we’ve already read and there is just not enough time. I’ve read sources that are not in agreement with things I’d thought true previously and have assimilated these. I’ve never sought to portray a shining perfect country but have wanted the truth for myself. I’m not in the habit of pursuing delusional narratives. But I do believe the things I’ve written here. brewerstroupe, there is a lot of material on the mufti, and he was never in fear of losing his country but just happened to agree with the Nazi program; was primarily a seeker of the main chance.

Tom Gross, Jerusalem correspondent for the Sunday Telegraph, published an article in the Wall Street Journal 12/2/09 re the state of the West Bank. Must say he was more sanguine than I would have thought, though what he wrote of Nablus I observed first hand in Nov. ‘08, though when I was there I didn’t get to go elsewhere in the West Bank because a Palestinian friend in East Jerusalem told me there were too many Hamas and other outside militants in places like Hebron and Nabilya, engaged in sporadic battles with Palestinian police, so it would be dangerous for us (and for him to be seen with us in these places).

Abbas’ statement in this article seem to be inconsistent with his recent remarks re not standing for election possibly, but Salam Fayyad hasn’t said anything to contradict his optimism in this story. Like anything that is all one side or the other—i.e. everything is horrible or everything is blooming—I take some of it with a grain of salt. But you might find it of interest just as a balancing influence on the uniformly grim input on this site.

I truly want a peaceful Israel and Palestine, both secure and both prospering, and don’t think either is possible without the other.

johannes, thank you for your comment. I’m very emotionally and familially attached to Israel but I do try to not be unrealistic. Nothing comes from fairytales; you can only build on reality and at the moment what is good for both Palestinians and Israelis is opposition to rightwing and theocratic policies. The only sane thing Netanyahu has done is to remove many of the check points, particularly in Nablus, which is becoming one of the most economically important town in the West Bank. (How much that can be extended depends on how well Palestinian security forces can combat the Hamas militants in other areas of the West Bank—their fortunes in Gaza really depend on disrupting the fledgling economic growth in the West Bank.)

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By Robert, December 14, 2009 at 7:06 pm Link to this comment

December 14, 2009

Power and Theft

The Israeli Stranglehold

By PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS

” “Settlers attack West Bank mosque and burn holy Muslim books” was a London Times headline on December 11, 2009.

These attacks, together with the demolition of Palestinian homes, the uprooting of Palestinians’ olive groves, the innumerable checkpoints that prevent Palestinians from accessing schools, work, and medical care, the Israeli Wall that denies Palestinians access to the land stolen from them, and the isolation and blockade of the Gaza Ghetto, are part of the Israeli government’s policy of genocide for the Palestinians.

The Israel Lobby has such power over America that even former President Jimmy Carter, a good friend of Israel, is demonized for using the polite term—apartheid—for the genocide that has occurred over the decades during which American “Christian” preachers, together with bought-and-paid-for politicians, justified Israel’s policy of slow genocide for Palestine.

Israelis who still have a moral conscience—a small part of the population—endeavor to use moral protests against the inhumanity of the Israeli government. Israelis Jeff Halper and Angela Godfrey-Goldstein lead the Israeli Committee Against House Demolition (ICAHD), a non-violent, direct-action group established to oppose and resist Israeli demolition of Palestinian homes in the Occupied Territories.

Under international law an occupier by military force is forbidden to steal the occupied land. The US, however, has protected Israel’s violation of international law for decades by vetoing UN resolutions. Israel has been able to steal Palestine from the Palestinians, because the US government used its power to prevent Israel from being held accountable under international law.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Click on link for the rest of article:

http://www.counterpunch.org/roberts12142009.html

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By brewerstroupe, December 14, 2009 at 5:13 pm Link to this comment

Just checked my link to the Ankara document and found it faulty. Try this:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lehi_(group)#Contact_with_Nazi_authorities

For some unknown reason it will only work if you cut and paste it to your address bar.

Lenni Brenner has a summary of the proposal here:

http://www.marxists.de/middleast/brenner/irgunazi.htm

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By brewerstroupe, December 13, 2009 at 9:35 pm Link to this comment

You are very welcome ardee. I don’t maintain that the conclusions I draw from what I read are beyond dispute. I prefer it when a reader is inspired to look little deeper and draw their own - even if they differ from mine.

There are no irrational actors in these conflicts. The informed audience knows Hamlet’s madness isn’t real. If we accept that the Palestinians act out of “hate” or “fanaticism” (irrational motives), we are like someone who believes Hamlet is indeed mad and therefore doesn’t understand the play.

Understanding the History of Zionism and the History of the Palestinian people up to and including the 1948 War is the key to understanding the current pattern of events.

As an example, take what Sepharad alleges:

“even were it not for the activities of the Germans in Jerusalem and the Mufti’s colllaboration with the SS both in Europe and in Palestine.”

Anyone cognizant of the History knows that the Mufti was under threat of arrest by the British for his pro-independence activities and had very few options other than to take refuge with the enemy of those who pursued him.
The Irgun (Lehi), on the other hand, were under no such pressure yet they offered full military cooperation with Germany and sought assistance with “the establishment of the historic Jewish state on a national and totalitarian basis, bound by a treaty with the German Reich.”

Each of these parties acted rationally given the context of the times. The Mufti, gravely concerned with losing his entire country and in danger anywhere outside Axis territory made a reasonable choice, as did those intent on wresting control of Palestine for themselves.

History has a way of upsetting commonly accepted notions. In the light of it we can clearly understand the motives of both parties in the example above and form an opinion as to the moral issue.
In this case I see the Mufti holding the higher moral ground as the defender of his land and the Irgun as the aggressors, intent on taking it from him. At the very least, I suggest that the one cancels the other out and so the “Nazi Mufti” argument adds nothing to the debate.

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By ardee, December 13, 2009 at 6:42 am Link to this comment

brewerstroupe, December 12 at 7:53 pm

Thanks for taking time to fill a a gap in my education. I will certainly explore this bit of history further.

There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio,
Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.
 
  William Shakespeare, “Hamlet”, Act 1 scene 5

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By brewerstroupe, December 12, 2009 at 3:53 pm Link to this comment

ardee.

The Brits have been severely criticized by both sides of this conflict, which probably indicates they tried to satisfy all and wound up pleasing no-one. The fact is that both sides had their ardent supporters within the British Government and public opinion ebbed and flowed, as did policy. Administrators on the ground in Palestine often instigated policies at variance with the official stance, due to their own partisan ideas. Orde Wingate was a particularly egregious example.
It is all too often thought that the conflict erupted as an Arab/Jewish conflict in 1948 but the History shows an increasing struggle for Palestinian self-determination (which was to be their reward for support against the Ottomans during WWI) in the decades between the World Wars. The pattern of Palestinian action during this period mirrors that of independence movements everywhere particularly the Algerian struggle for self-rule. Jewish immigration was a complicating factor but did not become the primary cause until later.

Here is more on the Jewish Auxiliary Police:

“The Jewish Supernumerary Police (sometimes referred to as Jewish Auxiliary Police) were a branch of the Guards (Notrim) set up by the British in Mandate Palestine in June 1936. Around 22,000 Notrim were appointed, armed and equipped by the British to act as a protective militia for Jewish settlements. This force “soon became a legal cover for the Haganah and an increasingly effective shield against Arab forays”.[1]

The British authorities gradually expanded the Supernumerary Police from 6,000 to 14,000. Those trained became the nucleus of the Haganah,[2] which itself became the main constituent of the Israel Defense Forces during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War.

The other branch of the Notrim was an élite mobile force known as the Jewish Settlement Police.”

One can only imagine the dismay felt by Palestinians as their promised self-determination was deluged under a tsunami of Jewish immigration and frustrated by British vacillation and increased support for the Zionists prior to and succeeding WWII.

This whole catastrophe might have been avoided if the Brits had swiftly granted independence to Palestine after WWI. Then as now however, Zionist sympathizers exerted huge pressure on the British Government which led to an attempt at compromise.

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By ardee, December 12, 2009 at 1:11 pm Link to this comment

brewerstroupe, December 12 at 3:37 pm #

That the Brits favored the Palestinians is something of a myth. At Cabinet level they tried to achieve a compromise but on the ground, Commanders like the odious Wingate waged savage war on Arab Independence:

  ” the British lost control of Jerusalem, Nablus, and Hebron. During this period from 1936–1939, known as the Great Arab Revolt or the “Great Uprising”, British forces, supported by 6,000 armed Jewish auxiliary police,[12] suppressed the widespread riots.

As Israel was founded on May 14th 1948 I am in the dark as to how Jewish auxiliary police were being used in 1936?

I am not claiming falsehood, only seeking to repair an apparent gap in my own knowledge apparently.

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By brewerstroupe, December 12, 2009 at 11:37 am Link to this comment

That the Brits favored the Palestinians is something of a myth. At Cabinet level they tried to achieve a compromise but on the ground, Commanders like the odious Wingate waged savage war on Arab Independence:

” the British lost control of Jerusalem, Nablus, and Hebron. During this period from 1936–1939, known as the Great Arab Revolt or the “Great Uprising”, British forces, supported by 6,000 armed Jewish auxiliary police,[12] suppressed the widespread riots.

In another significant development during this time the British officer Charles Orde Wingate (who supported a Zionist revival for religious reasons[13]) organized Special Night Squads composed of British soldiers and Haganah mercenaries, which “scored significant successes against the Arab rebels in the lower Galilee and in the Jezreel valley”[14] by conducting raids on Arab villages. The squads were rumored to have used excessive and indiscriminate force, which has been cited by Israeli academic Anita Shapira.[15] The Haganah mobilized up to 20,000 policemen, field troops and night squads; the latter included Yigal Allon and Moshe Dayan. Significantly, from 1936 to 1945, whilst establishing collaborative security arrangements with the Jewish Agency, the British confiscated 13,200 firearms from Arabs and 521 weapons from Jews.
....In assessing the overall impact of the revolt on subsequent events Rashid Khalidi argues that its negative effects on Palestinian national leadership, social cohesion and military capabilities contributed to the outcome of 1948 because “when the Palestinians faced their most fateful challenge in 1947–49, they were still suffering from the British repression of 1936–39, and were in effect without a unified leadership. Indeed, it might be argued that they were virtually without any leadership at all”“

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By johannes, December 12, 2009 at 7:01 am Link to this comment

Bon jour Sepharad,

Its a pleasure to see some one growing up, and to criticize the very bad behavior of his country and people, againt them coming with all kinds of not valid, and sound arguments.

I am standing behind you for the full 100%, Johannes

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By ardee, December 12, 2009 at 3:59 am Link to this comment

Sepharad, December 11 at 5:47 pm

Your citing of the influence of the British that led, in large part, to the violence of the formation of the state of Israel is accurate insofar as it goes.

True, Britain thought that, if a massacre of refugees surviving the Holocaust only to be murdered by Arabs occurred, the world would ask Britain to retake its colony in order to stop that slaughter. True that they handed over the police stations, really armed little forts,to the Arabs thus setting up such events.

But, sepharad the simple truth is that the eviction of a million Arabs had been planned for since 1937, the sixty years of horrible mistreatment of Arabs by Israelis seems to transcend historical events that only slightly influenced these plans and actions.

No, dear lady, as much as I respect your right to such opinion, and as much as I enjoy the way you frame your arguments , I must reject them as avoiding the obvious holocaust Israel perpetrates upon the evicted Arabs for so very, very long.

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By Robert, December 11, 2009 at 10:53 pm Link to this comment

By Sepharad, December 11 at 5:47 pm

“Robert—no genocide by Jews intended or committed. No equivalency whatever.”

“Arabs massacred Jews and Jews retaliated fiercely, in desperate and inexcusable ways. At any point, some sanity and sense on either side would have made a huge difference in how the two Semitic cousins related and behaved with one another.”
*********

Sepharad,

It was NOT the Palestinians who introduced and/or brought terrorism to Palestine. It was the Zionists who terrorized civilians, villages, market places, offices which resulted in so many killings & massacres of innocent civilians of Arabs, Jews & British personnel.

Here is a small list of quotes below that may shed more light on this tragic conflict:


“We must expel Arabs and take their places.”
—David Ben Gurion, 1937, Ben Gurion and the Palestine Arabs, Oxford University Press, 1985.

“We must use terror, assassination, intimidation, land confiscation, and the cutting of all social services to rid the Galilee of its Arab population.”
—David Ben-Gurion, May 1948, to the General Staff.  From Ben-Gurion, A Biography, by Michael Ben-Zohar, Delacorte, New York 1978.

“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), pp. 121-122.

“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.”
—David Ben Gurion, quoted in The Jewish Paradox, by Nahum Goldmann, Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1978, p. 99.

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By Robert, December 11, 2009 at 10:30 pm Link to this comment

By Sepharad, December 11 at 5:47 pm

“Robert—no genocide by Jews intended or committed. No equivalency whatever. 100 truckloads of food and other humanitarian aid go into Gaza daily, though the Israelis have no control over Hamas practice of requisitioning much of it for their supporters. Just what do think Hamas is doing in Gaza? Gazans treated in hospitals outside of Gaza, especially members of Fatah, don’t want to be sent back there—not out of fear of Israelis but fear of Hamas.”
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Elbow to Elbow, Like Cattle

The Cruel Line into Gaza

By GIDEON LEVY

“The Erez border crossing is desolate—Palestinians are not allowed to cross there, foreigners are rarely allowed to cross and Israeli journalists have also been prohibited from crossing during the past two weeks. Only wheelchairs are occasionally pushed through the long “sleeves” of the security check, leading a deadly ill person or someone seriously injured by the IDF to or from treatment in Israel. The large terminal Israel built, a concrete and glass monster that looks like a splendid shopping mall, juts up like a particularly tasteless joke, a mockery. At the Karni crossing, the only supply channel for 1.5 million people, only 12 trucks per day have passed since January. According to the “crossings accord” signed a year ago, Israel committed to allowing 400 trucks a day to pass through. The excuse: security, as usual.”

http://www.counterpunch.org/levy12112006.html

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By Sepharad, December 11, 2009 at 1:47 pm Link to this comment

Sean2009, you obviously missed my statement that anyone who cares about Israel should oppose not only the current rightwing government but also the theocrats fighting to control the state—and that rabbi your link specifies is one of the worst of the worst. (Ariel Sharon smacked down this man and his ilk, but unfortunately the rabbi has a friendlier audience in Binyamin Netanyahu. If I had my way, the rebbe either would be imprisoned for hate speech and incitement to violence, or banished to Iran where he and Ahmadinejad could go at it one on one but leave the rest of the Israelis and Iranians out of their insane religious-based hatred.

Robert—no genocide by Jews intended or committed. No equivalency whatever. 100 truckloads of food and other humanitarian aid go into Gaza daily, though the Israelis have no control over Hamas practice of requisitioning much of it for their supporters. Just what do think Hamas is doing in Gaza? Gazans treated in hospitals outside of Gaza, especially members of Fatah, don’t want to be sent back there—not out of fear of Israelis but fear of Hamas.

ardee, I respect your opinions for their articulate and overarching humaneness and clarity, but disagree just a little with your most recent post. I honestly believe that without the Britiish colonization and presence in a region in which there was already a scattering of Jewish communal and individual craftsmen, farmers and shepherds in the Palestinian countryside along with Arabs in similar endeavors (the greatest number of Jews lived in Jerusalem and had done so despite the Romans, not just the religious but an active scholarly group noted throughout medieval and later history) there would have been far less friction between the local Arabs and the larger number of modern Jewish Zionists who trickled in from the late 19th century until the larger number before, during and after WWII—including the 900,000 expelled from Arab countries. The Brits preferred Arabs to Jews, especially the frantic pushy refugee Jews, and behaved disgracefully throughout the late ‘20s, ‘30s and even the ‘40s, confiscating weapons from Jews and standing aside during predictable rioting in which armed Arabs massacred unarmed Jews. This sort of thing, combined with Ben Gurion’s statement that incoming Zionists would displace local Arabs, made cooperation on both sides much less likely, even were it not for the activities of the Germans in Jerusalem and the Mufti’s colllaboration with the SS both in Europe and in Palestine. (The Mufti caused many Jewish deaths in Europe, and raised Arab troops to fight on Hitler’s side against the Brits and Allies in North Africa. The Jews in Palestine formed a brigade and put themselves in service to the British in Europe as well as North Africa. Palestinian Jews also formed the only military unit that attempted to rescue European Jews. (All died of course, but at least they tried. London and the U.S. did nothing militarily to rescue Jews and Poles and gypsies and homosexuals and Russians, although they knew by ‘41 what was going on.)

Some of the Jews who had lived alongside Arabs in Palestine for many generations under Ottoman rule tried to maintain the pre-British balance between the two communities, and so did some of their Arab neighboors. But the pressures of the war, the bigotry of many of the British occupiers and the appearance of so many refugees destabilized the always delicate status quo. Whipped up by firebrands on both sides, Arabs massacred Jews and Jews retaliated fiercely, in desperate and inexcusable ways. At any point, some sanity and sense on either side would have made a huge difference in how the two Semitic cousins related and behaved with one another. Israel took in refugee Jews; Arab countries refused to take in refugee Arabs from Palestine; the rapacious Arab overlords made money and helped refugee Arabs keep hatred alive—and that is still the situation.

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By Robert, December 10, 2009 at 7:42 pm Link to this comment

Compare pictures - facts and truth on the new holocaust  


THE GRANDCHILDREN OF HOLOCAUST SURVIVORS FROM WORLD WAR II ARE DOING TO THE PALESTINIANS EXACTLY WHAT WAS DONE TO THEM BY NAZI GERMANY …
BUILDING WALLS & FENCES TO KEEP PEOPLE IN PRISON

~~~~~~~

Click on link to view these horrific & incredible photos. See & judge for yourself:

http://mwcnews.net/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=27972&Itemid=26

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By Sean2009, December 10, 2009 at 7:03 pm Link to this comment

>One lesson of the Holocaust: if someone tells you he is going too destroy your people (as Hitler did in “Mein Kampf”) even before he has the power to, BELIEVE the reality of the threat and act accordingly.

Rabbi calls for annihilation of Arabs

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/1270038.stm

Perhaps the Arabs should heed your advice as well.

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By ardee, December 10, 2009 at 5:48 pm Link to this comment

Anne Frank suffered and died under a regime dedicated to genocide; Palestinian children suffer and die in wars provoked by Hamas and Hezbollah and other militants who hate Israel more than they love their own children. Indeed, the Islamists herd the Palestinian and other Arabs into martyrhood by all means available, largely for the pr boost.

Sepharad you always post with an eloquence and an elegance that I much appreciate. But all your talent cannot hide the fact that Israel itself created this situation by summarily ousting three quarters of a million residents of the territory that became that nation. David ben Gurion had planned, as early as 1937, to oust a million Arabs once the State of Israel was created but fell a quarter million shy.

Since that ouster Israel has itself lent much fuel to the fires stirred by Hamas and Hezbollah, fires that could have so easily been banked long ago with decent, humane treatment of Palestinians by the govt of Israel.

It makes little sense to me to place the blame on those who now hate Israel , not so much for its existence, but for what that existence has meant in terms of severe hardship and death to so very many. Had the nation of Israel extended its hand to the Palestinian people from the first those few who hate Jews would have had little fuel and even less support.

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By Sepharad, December 10, 2009 at 3:06 pm Link to this comment

Inherit, you’ve said most of what I could say. Only addition is that for years I’ve urged Jews to stop with the Holocaust card (though that period sent my grandmother’s family into the gas) for one reason only: it seemed that most people loved Anne Frank but disliked live Jews building their own nation so there would never be a world in which Jews could not go home when their countries became insane.  Being perceived as easy victims is not good for Jews or anyone else because it only encourages would-be victimizers.

I recently visited the history museum where the Warsaw ghetto uprising occurred (from which Menachem Begin emerged) and then was persuaded by my husband to visit Auschwitz-Birkenau, which I have never wanted to do. I’ve never thought the Holocaust was NOT real, but being there, where so many Poles, gypsies and Jews were murdered, seeing the hair and the cloth the waste-not-want-not Germans wove it into, the looted items, the memos and letters and endless documents created by the Germans, the faces of the inmates and their stories, also made it crystal clear to me that there is zero equivalency between the acts of Israeli Jews and Nazis. Israeli Jews have never sought to exterminate Arabs; Arabs/Palestinians living in Israel do have equal rights if not equal obligations (i.e. they vote and can serve in the Knesset but are not, like Jews, required to join IDF though many, many Israeli Arabs and Druze do enlist). Trying to comprehend the evil of Auschwitz-Birkenau also made clear, however, that when Israel is laboring under a rightwing government as it is now, and when it’s secular government is attacked by the theocrats who want to change it, as they are now, all of us who want Israel to survive as a righteous nation need to help the Israeli opposition to these things prevail. (Tzipi Livni and her adherents are fighting hard, but it would help if American Jews supported them as much as is possible.) If good people do nothing, then the worst WILL prevail.

Anne Frank suffered and died under a regime dedicated to genocide; Palestinian children suffer and die in wars provoked by Hamas and Hezbollah and other militants who hate Israel more than they love their own children. Indeed, the Islamists herd the Palestinian and other Arabs into martyrhood by all means available, largely for the pr boost.

One lesson of the Holocaust: if someone tells you he is going too destroy your people (as Hitler did in “Mein Kampf”) even before he has the power to, BELIEVE the reality of the threat and act accordingly. Likewise, Hamas, Hezbollah and Ahmadinejad have trumpeted over and over their desire to destroy the Jews of Israel (and elsewhere if they can manage it). So let’s BELIEVE they mean what they say, or we will be lost, just like the European Jews who had lived in those countries for hundreds of years and felt that the good Europeans, the cultured Europeans, would (many Jews believed) could never seriously go along with mass murder aiming unmistakably at genocide.

Remember: mass murder with the purpose of genocide is something that NO Israli ever has or ever would consider. Israelis will fight to survive, however, and no one should expect otherwise.

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By Archie1954, December 9, 2009 at 11:26 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Israel has always stated that Zionism is a secular movement and not religious. The term Jews refers to the followers of Judaism, a religion. when the president of Iran stated that Israel would be swallowed by the sands of time he was in fact referring to the potential opening up of that country to all of its inhabitants including Palestinians and other Moslems. Why Israel should grant citizenship only to Jews when it is a secular country is beyond me. If all peoples of the area were equal citizens there would be no “Israel” as it is currently comprised, it would in fact, be a new entity. The entity implied in the Iranian president’s message about the current Israel being swallowed up, the idea being of course, that a new entity would emerge.

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By Sean2009, December 9, 2009 at 4:01 am Link to this comment

The headline for this article is utterly ridiculous. Fisk is once again letting his hatred of Hezbollah get the better of his faculties. There is nothing “anti-Semitic” about wanting to censor an entry about Anne Frank from a Lebanese school book. Hezbollah is not denying the Holocaust, or the reality of Frank’s story. They are simply refusing to include in a Lebanese textbook a Holocaust story that has been exploited to death by Zionist propaganda to justify Israel’s barbarous and aggressive history. The Lebanese people are under no obligation to carry water for Zionist propagandists, even when the propaganda is based on a terrible reality. What about you, Mr Fisk?

It is explicitly this kind of exploitation that Ahmadinejad denounces when he talks about the “myth” of the Holocaust. He never denied the Holocaust occurred, but questioned why the Palestinians should have paid the price for it—a question which rather necessitates a prior acceptance of the Holocaust. Perhaps the better word is “mythos” of the Holocaust, where remembering the Holocaust has become a cult that suffuses Jewish culture and immunizes Jews from the harsh realities of what Israel really is and always has been.

Hezbollah is right not to play this game. Lebanese kids can learn about Jewish suffering when Israel stops inflicting suffering on their country

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By brewerstroupe, December 9, 2009 at 12:15 am Link to this comment

ITW.

This will have to be my last contribution. The topic is about to disappear down the drain and I am frightfully busy at this time.

We are probably arguing at cross purposes. You reference the condition of those Arab citizens living in present-day Israel whereas I am more concerned with those who own homes in Israel but are prevented by military force from returning to them. Their title is upheld by the United Nations and the actions Israel has taken to deny them are expressly prohibited by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. They are the indigenous owners of much of Israel and as such, should automatically be citizens of whatever State is formed on their land.

There is not, as far as I know, any analogous situation in contemporary Latin America or the U.S. and to find examples of colonial powers conducting such expulsions, as perpetrated by Zionists in 1947-8, one has to travel some centuries back in time. Even then, most colonial projects allowed the indigenous populace to remain as second-class citizens.
That is the crux of my argument and I do not think your post has put much of a dent in it. On this occasion we shall have to leave it up to the readers to decide.

The Irish example is interesting but hardly analogous given that the Union with Ireland Act of 1800 added 100 Irish MPs to the House of Commons. This would be like the Israel adding members from the Occupied Territory to the Knesset. Were Israel to follow the example Britain set two hundred years ago, I would not be here arguing the point as that is pretty much what I advocate, a single, multicultural State with universal franchise, equal rights and a Land Court empowered to settle refugee claims.

No doubt we will debate again and I look forward to that.

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By Robert, December 8, 2009 at 9:25 pm Link to this comment

December 8, 2009

How Israel Slipped the Snare of “Particular Concern”

Through the State Department Looking Glass

By KEVIN MINK

“Leave it to the State Department to soft-pedal religious extremism in the Middle East. Oh not in, say, Iran or Saudi Arabia. In the most recent edition of the department’s annual Report on International Religious Freedom, both are designated “Countries of Particular Concern,” members of a select group chastised for their extreme intolerance. Which is as it should be.

But where is State’s acknowledgement of the happenings – from the absurd to the inhumane – in another, nearby country, where religious chauvinism has reached depths equaling those among any of its neighbors? I’m talking, of course, about the State of Israel – a place unfit, it seems, for any “particular concern” from Hillary & Co.

Certainly, the Report reports on Israel. But to avoid grouping the Jewish State with Iran, Saudi Arabia, and similarly intolerant countries, its authors resort to language one can only describe as Carrollian, leading readers through a looking glass in which words, as Humpty Dumpty would have it, mean anything theychoose them to mean, nothing more and nothing less.

So while a reality-based Israeli reporter, writing in Ha’aretz, can say that “Israel dismally fails the requirements of a tolerant pluralistic society,” the State Department authors mean for us to believe something else entirely. Forget “dismal.” According to them, the behavior of Israeli Jews towards the Palestinians – Christian and Muslim – has merely “strained” the relationship between the two.

It’s an interesting locution, given that, just three years ago, then-Prime Minister Olmert told a beaming Congress that his “people” had an “eternal and historic right” to all of Palestine. Given, too, that in past months, alert readers of the foreign press have seen the following items:

  *

    Israeli groups, both public and private, have launched efforts to prevent Jewish women from dating and marrying Arab men – this, after an opinion poll found that more than 50% of Jewish Israelis equate intermarriage with “national treason.” Journalist Jonathan Cook reported on a religious organization, Yad L’Achim, dedicated to “saving” – through military-style “rescues” – Jewish women from their significant Arab others. “The Jewish soul is a precious, all-too-rare resource, and we are not prepared to give up on even a single one,” says the group’s website.”
~~~~~~~~~~~~

Click on link for the rest of article:

http://www.counterpunch.org/mink12082009.html

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By Robert, December 8, 2009 at 6:11 pm Link to this comment

The US Cash Behind Extremist Settlers

The Hebron Fund is raising vast sums for Israeli settlements that violate the Geneva convention, with little scrutiny

By Andrew Kadi and Aaron Levitt

“December 08, 2009 “The Guardian” - Last month, a Brooklyn-based non-profit organization called the Hebron Fund, which supports Jewish settlers in the Israeli-occupied city of Hebron, held a fundraiser at the New York Mets’ stadium, Citi Field.

The fundraiser went forward despite calls for its cancellation from grassroots human rights organizations from the US, Palestine and Israel. The fact that the Hebron Fund likely raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for extremist Israeli settlers at a major US venue with little public scrutiny is a troubling sign for those who hope that the US can play a constructive role in achieving a just peace in the Middle East.

Perhaps more worryingly, according to Washington Post columnist David Ignatius: “A search of IRS records identified 28 US charitable groups that made a total of $33.4m in tax-exempt contributions to settlements and related organizations between 2004 and 2007.” Some of the larger organizations, including Friends of the Ateret Cohanim and Friends of Ir David, both leading the Jewish settler takeover of Palestinian East Jerusalem, are based in New York City.

Israeli settlements violate the Geneva convention’s prohibition against an occupying power transferring its population into occupied territory, and Israeli settlement expansion directly contradicts the US call for a settlement freeze.

Hebron’s Jewish settlers, who are supported by the Hebron Fund, are openly fundraising in New York City. Under the protection of the Israeli military, they are expanding settlements in Hebron’s Old City and driving out the Palestinian residents.

The Hebron Fund’s extremist positions are clear. Hebron Fund executive director Yossi Baumol told The American Prospect that “[d]emocracy is poison to Arabs”, “Israel must not give Arabs a say in how the country is run” and “[y]ou’ll never get the truth out of an Arab”. Hebron’s chief rabbi, Dov Lior, a featured participant in some Hebron Fund events, recently praised a new book that says it is permitted for a Jew to kill civilians who provide moral support to an enemy of the Jews, and to even kill young children, if it is foreseeable that they will grow up to become enemies.

Settlers and the Israeli army routinely attack and terrorise Palestinians in Hebron, according to human rights groups such as B’Tselem in Israel. In 1994, Hebron settler Baruch Goldstein massacred 29 unarmed Palestinians who were praying in a Hebron mosque. One of the honorees at the 2009 Hebron Fund dinner, Noam Arnon, called Goldstein “an extraordinary person’’ in 1995. In 1990 Arnon called three Jewish terrorists who were convicted of killing three Palestinians and maiming two Palestinian mayors “heroes”.

Though the Hebron Fund tells the IRS that its purpose is to “promote social and educational wellbeing”, in 2008 Baumol assured New York radio listeners: “There are real facts on the ground that are created by people helping the Hebron Fund and coming to our dinners.”

A 2007 appeal explained: “Dozens of new families can now come live in Hebron ... waiting for you to be their partners in the redemption of Hebron.”

Baumol dedicated the 2009 fundraiser to protesting at “racist limitations, led by President Barack Obama on Jewish growth”.

Settlers frequently claim that preventing Jews from living anywhere they want in the Israeli-occupied West Bank is “racist”, regardless of the settlers’ severe infringement on the rights of longstanding Palestinian residents.”
***
Click link for the rest:

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article24134.htm

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By Howard, December 8, 2009 at 1:09 pm Link to this comment

Ahh, what a beatiful country Lebanon was.  The Switzerland of the Mid-East.  Now that Hezballah has got its tentacles on the landscape and it is funded by Iran and Syria its a disaster there. The article surely shows it.

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By Inherit The Wind, December 8, 2009 at 10:28 am Link to this comment

Brewerstroupe:
Your assertion that ALL the examples I named share full rights in their own countries now is simply not true.  One can argue that IN LAW, Arab Israelis have full rights (and I believe they should) but it’s clear that IN FACT they have a hell of a time getting the courts to enforce that (which they occasionally do.)

So…In South America there is ONE Head of State who is Native American, Morales in Bolivia who is not only the sole Native American HOS, he’s the first.  From the Rio Grande to Cape Horn the heads of state are, with the exception of Morales, NEVER Native American—so it’s hard to believe they have full rights IN FACT anywhere South of the US border.

In Northern Ireland, the battles for equal rights for the Irish Catholics went clear up into the 1990s, when George Schulz was able to negotiate what seems to be the FIRST lasting peace.  So THEIR equality is maybe 10 years old and their INequality is 400 years old.

As for Poland and Germany, the peoples there were forcibly moved out by the Soviets—so there are no native peoples in those areas any more.  As the historians like to describe it, Poland was moved West.

In the US, the definition of what constitutes an Indian Tribe is decided by the US courts, and clear-cut tribes may be defined as NOT existing to benefit others.  Where NY and NJ meet there’s a would-be tribe that was denied “tribalship” by the courts.  Curiously, the newspapers and TV media didn’t pick up the obvious:  A Tribal Reservation there would be eligible to run a casino—and at such a short distance from NYC it would badly hurt Foxwoods and Atlantic City…can’t let THAT happen, now can we?

There still is no Native American on the Supreme Court, but there have been a couple in the Senate and House.

So the contention that Israel is unique in its treatment of its Arab citizens is patently false as are so many of the Israel-haters’ assertions about that nation.

I have nothing against truth. I have everything against falsehoods presented as truth.

BTW, when Robert posted his thread-killing articles written by OTHER people, he ignored the issue of the thread:  The attempt to discredit the authenticity of Anne Frank’s diary in the Arab world.

Now we see the Holocaust-deniers coming out from under their rocks again CLAIMING crap like nobody can produce a record of a single person who died in Auschwitz.  My sister-in-law’s parents came through there, have the tatoos and saw the slaughter first hand.

But, the reason for Holocaust denial is plain: If you can cast doubt on this, the BEST documented genocide ever (Germans are meticulous record keepers) then you can cast doubt on the WHOLE concept of the evilness of Nazi-ism.

And, if you can do THAT, then you can revive the Nazis’ mantras:
Whites are superior to everyone else.
Jews are a problem that needs to be eliminated.
Racial politics and policies are legitimate (unless they are used by Jews in Israel).

Simple. Obvious. Despicable.

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By dihey, December 8, 2009 at 7:14 am Link to this comment

In 1943 when I lived in Amsterdam we had three Jewish friends semi-hidden in our house. This was also betrayed and my mother spent nine month in the Dutch concentration camp Vught. Two of our friends actually escaped. One of them still lives in a kibbutz in Israel.

Based on my wartime experience (I was seventeen at the time) I fully understand and support the absolute need of Jews everywhere to be as safe as non-Jews. However, I have always questioned the UN’s decision to partition a land which it had inherited as a mandate from the League of Nations. I am still at a loss to comprehend from where the UN got its legal justification to do this ugly deed. My opinion is that the UN at the time arrogantly averred: “we can do this, period”.

I also question the validity of the so-called Balfour declaration which ridiculously but typical British promised the Jews a home in a land that was then part of the Ottoman Empire where Balfour had no right to “give anything away”.

The deduction of all of these shenanigans is pretty clear to me. The Western Democracies never wanted to take responsibility for the security of Jews elsewhere (and to some extent in their own states) but shoved it cowardly off on the Arabic land of Palestine. Any criticism by citizens of Western Democracies of Arabic news channels or literature today is therefore utterly hollow and hypocritical.

Ask yourself: would I in 1945 have advocated that all surviving holocaust Jews should be allowed to immigrate to the USA immediately? Would I still offer this to all threatened Jews not living in Israel today?

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By johannes, December 8, 2009 at 3:26 am Link to this comment

The real reason behind the Hollocaust will never by publist, this naked truth is just build on a human fault, and from that side you never can come near the truth, while this port is market with the label anti-Semiet.

To understand bether some backgrounds, reed the history of the Wittgenstein famelie, who wend from Jews to Katholic, and from katholic back to Jewes, and this where not the real poor paupers the Maranen.

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By Robert, December 7, 2009 at 6:42 pm Link to this comment

Education or Mind Infection?

A speech Nurit Peled Elhanan gave at Connecticut College, New London, CT on 27 September 2006.

“All of you dead children were deceived, because your death has achieved nothing at all and the world goes on living as if your blood had never been shed. Because the leaders of the world keep playing their murderous games, using you as their dice and our grief as fuel for their killing machines. Because children are abstract entities for generals and grief is a political tool. Living at both sides, that of the victims and that of the killers, I keep asking myself, what are the means by which good Israeli children are turned into murdering monsters, what are the means by which they are so mind-infected as to kill and torture and humiliate other children, their parents and grandparents, and sacrifice their own life for nothing but the folly and megalomania of their chiefs? In the so-called Western enlightened world everyone feels very well-founded when they blame Islam for suicide bombing and terror. But who would ever blame Judaism for murder? And yet, Ulta Orthodox Jewish children who have never left Brooklyn know that to kill Arabs is a ‘mitzva’ (holy commandment) for they are ‘vilde hayeths’ (wild beasts). And Israeli children actually commit the crimes of slaughter and torture.  Neither Judaism nor Islam nor any religion for that matter are the cause for murder and terror. Racist education is. American imperialism is, and Israeli ruthless regime of occupation is. The women and children who suffer most from western violence today are Muslim women but racism has its way and the blame for their suffering is attributed to their being Muslim.

The western world today is infected with fear of Islam and of the Muslim womb. Great France of liberte egalite and fraternite is scared of little head-scarved girls, Jewish Israel calls in public speeches and schoolbooks the Arab citizens of Israel a demographic nightmare and the enemy from within. As for the Palestinians refugees living under occupation, they are defined in Israeli history school books as a ‘problem to be solved”. Not long ago the Jews were a problem to be solved.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Click on link for the rest of Nurit Peled’s speech:


Dr. Nurit Peled-Elhanan is a Lecturer in Language Education at Hebrew University in Jerusalem specializing in discourse in Israeli education with emphasis on visual and verbal presentation of Palestinian and non-western Jews.”

http://www.gilasvirsky.com/nuritpeled1.html

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By brewerstroupe, December 7, 2009 at 3:27 pm Link to this comment

Palestinian History and Identity in Israeli Schools

“In April 2004, I left my post at the Ministry of Education, but I continued to follow the government’s development of the curriculum. A new high school curriculum was issued in 200733, which was followed in 2008 by a new curriculum for elementary and middle school levels,34 replacing both the 1976 and 1999 curricula. The new curriculum for elementary school completely erased modern Palestinian history. Also erased was the unit called “The History of Arab-Palestinian Society in the Modern Era” for high schoolers. Again, the Zionist historical narrative is imposed on Palestinian students in history textbooks which ignore the history and culture of the Palestinian people. Just as in the period before 1975, anything connected to the history of the Palestinian people has been erased in the revised curricula of 2007 and 2008.”

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By brewerstroupe, December 7, 2009 at 2:12 pm Link to this comment

GoyToy

Thanks for the kind words.

I am utterly opposed to the kind of thing that montanawildhack referenced - the suppression of inquiry into WWII. Not because I wish to deny the Holocaust or diminish it in any way - I want to understand it.

There are many curious facts such as the training farms that are well documented. When I was researching, I saw a photograph of one of them purported to have been taken in 1944, with the Star of David still flying from a flagpole. Unfortunately it disappeared off the net. Here are two others from Yad Vashem:
http://www1.yadvashem.org/about_yad/magazine/magazine_49/pdf/10_b.pdf
(Bottom of the page)
http://www1.yadvashem.org/yv/en/exhibitions/this_month/september/05.asp

The official Zionist narrative says they were set up by Zionist Jews but that is neither supported by the documents or common sense - we do not believe that much happened in Nazi Germany without official approval and there is much to suggest that they were in fact a Nazi initiative - not the least, Hannah Arendt’s account.

If you are interested in that period, a good starting point is Lenni Brenner, a marxist Jew who has written quite extensively and made his books freely available on the net:

http://www.marxists.de/middleast/brenner/index.htm
http://www.marxists.de/middleast/ironwall/index.htm
http://www.counterpunch.org/brenner05252005.html

He is well referenced but I suggest you cross-check for your own sake. Some of the facts he presents belie the established narrative to such an extent that I felt bound to seek confirmation from other sources. The supporting documents are mostly in the public domain yet rarely known.

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By brewerstroupe, December 7, 2009 at 2:09 pm Link to this comment

Time constraints prohibit a comprehensive post.

IHW:
“We see even here a poster claiming that part of the Diary…..etc”
I tried to make it clear that I make no claims regarding the diary. I simply relayed a comment made to me by a Lebanese friend that the reason given for dropping the book from school curricula was the doubt about its veracity. The argument about ball point pens is just silly. They were not around in wartime Europe and The German investigation raised many other doubts about the handwriting. I have not seen the BKA report and quite frankly I have better things to do with my time that chase it down down. Whether or not The Diary of Anne Frank is genuine adds nothing to our knowledge of History but a discussion about the dropping of the book from school curricula would not be complete without reference to the controversy.

MvGuy
“hypocrisy of devaluing the suffering and injustice that Anne Frank suffered…”

Israel’s official banning of any mention of the Naqba is Israeli schools devalues the suffering of the entire Palestinian people and bans an entire library full of books.
I have argued that this kind of tit for tat tactic is silly but understandable. Hypocrisy breeds hypocrisy and right wing Israelis indulge in it all the time. Avigdor Lieberman recently ordered copies of the notorious wartime photograph of Hitler meeting the then Mufti of Jerusalem distributed for display in Israeli embassies. No mention is made of the well-documented offer of collaboration Yitzak Shamir made to the Reich.
In my view this is monumental hypocrisy.

The headline “the Anti-Semites of Hezbollah” struck me as rather stupid.
Hizbollah have defended Southern Lebanon from Israeli attack on numerous occasions and bear witness to several atrocious massacres. To call them anti-Semites is quite ridiculous. Anti-semitism, by definition, is an irrational hatred. Southern Lebanese have a very rational basis for their dislike of Israelis and withdrawing this book from school curricula is understandable in that context.
On reflection, I noticed that the headline spells “Hezbollah” with an “e” rather than Fisk’s habitual “i” (Hizbollah) so one must assume the headline was someone else’s work. That person needs to know that “anti-Semitic” is not a term applicable to people who have been attacked by Israel - their antipathy is not a prejudice.
Neither is mine.

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By 7up, December 7, 2009 at 1:26 pm Link to this comment

Fisk writes

“Holocaust denial is anti-Semitic, but the facile slander of anti-Semitism against anyone who condemns Israel’s outrageous behaviour towards its neighbours long ago provoked a deep sense of cynicism among Arabs towards the facts of 20th century Jewish history in Europe.”

Exactly why is questioning the evidence for the holocaust anti-semitic?  Bradley Smith, a well-known holocaust denier, currently is placing ads in many college newspapers, asking for the name of one person who died in an Auschwitz gas chamber, along with proof of that fact.  To date he has been villified in print by professors, administrators, editors, and students, but, none has even attempted to answer the question.  Is that question anti-semitic?  Can you answer it?  Don’t you think someone should, just to shut Smith up?

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By prole, December 7, 2009 at 12:35 pm Link to this comment

The usually cogent Robert Fisk lurches in many different direction in this disjointed outburst. Michel Hajji Georgiou’s own righteous reprimand comes a month after the incident described (as does Fisk’s), so it’s certainly taken the pot a while to boil. Fisk recounts Georgiou’s remarks, which originally appeared in a very small French language newspaper in Beirut, at some length. As for the indomitable Hezbollah’s position, he provides a few clauses from an Al-Manar report. A fuller explanation for the textbook excision however came from MP Hussein Hajj Hassan who criticized the school for showing poor judgement in picking out its textbooks and told al-Manar: “These respected, established schools are teaching the so-called tragedy this girl lived, and yet they are ashamed to teach the tragedy of the Lebanese people, the tragedy of the Palestinian people… the tragedy of the people of the south under the hands of Zionist occupation.” Of course, most importantly, the tragedy of the people of the south under the hands of zionist occupation has now ended thanks to the intrepid efforts of the heroic Hezbollah. Fisk also neglects to mention, despite his great outrage over censorship, that al-Manar station broadcasts are censored in the U.S. and it is illegal for anyone to transmit the station’s broadcasts in the alleged home of free speech with its vaunted First Amendment rights. Curiously enough Fisk also fails to recall another incident of similar implication that happened a month earlier across the border in the Zionist entity. In October, Haaretz reported that Israel’s Education Ministry removed all copies of a history textbook from classes because it sought to present both Israeli and Arab perspectives on the displacement of some 750,000 Palestinians during the fighting that erupted after the creation of the Jewish state in 1948. The textbook, for 11th and 12th grade students, contained both versions of the events side-by-side, but according to Haaretz the ministry took issue with the Palestinian version. It quoted the passage in question as saying: “The Palestinians and the Arab countries contended that most of the refugees were civilians who were attacked and expelled from their homes by armed Jewish forces, which instituted a policy of ethnic cleansing.” Haaretz reported the textbooks would be reissued after “corrections” are made. Presumably with the personal stamp of approval of Netanyahu. But maybe there’s a distinction to be made here between zionist “corrections” and Hezbollah “censorship”. We await further words of englightenment from the tireless defenders of free speech like Fisk and Georgiou. In the meantime, the heroic Hezbollah will go on matching the zionazis tit for tat.

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By Sodium, December 7, 2009 at 11:49 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Re: Muscleboy,December 5 at 9:12 pm.

Muscleboy,

I must admit that I am impressed by your knowledge with regard to the origin of all known and recorded Semitic languages. Because of that,the following words and their pronounciations amongst Arabic,Aramaic and Hebrew languages may give more credence to your above Re:

Arabic       Aramaic     English Trans.
==============================================
Ana Howa       Ana Ho     I am


Arabic       Hebrew     English Trans.
==============================================
Salam         Shalom     Peace

 

Arabic       Hebrew       English Trans.
===============================================
Aleikum Salam Aleikum Shalom   Peace be upon you

 

Arabic       Hebrew       English Trans.
=================================================
Al-Alam Haza   Haolem Hazih     This World

 

I thought that you might be interested in the above closely related pronounciations which really give more support to your above Re.

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By johannes, December 7, 2009 at 7:55 am Link to this comment

To Ardee,

Its senseless and pointless to exchange thoughts with some person who is reading not what you have sayd in your writing, but what he likes to make up of what he is reading, thats not fair, but in that way you are always just, well felicitations with your way of discuteren

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By ardee, December 7, 2009 at 6:01 am Link to this comment

Night-Gaunt, December 6 at 4:19 pm #


Actually the ball point pen was created in 1891 so what to make of that?

*********************************************

Well, yes and no:

http://www.ideafinder.com/history/inventions/ballpen.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ballpoint_pen

http://www.essortment.com/all/historyofbal_rgos.htm

What a world when we cannot agree upon anything!

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By ardee, December 7, 2009 at 4:12 am Link to this comment

johannes, December 6 at 1:49 pm #

To Ardee,


I think here are you writing over some body who you think to know, this is never happened to me before, you are cutting here very deep in my feelings as an human and humanist, I never have used words as you are putting in my mouith….

Err Johannes, you have posted in open forum, your words are available for all to read and you have been judged by them.

You stated that “jews and muslims” are only guests in other nations and thus have no rights to equal justice or fairness. You say the Muslims have a real nerve requesting to be allowed to build minarets in their neighborhoods in Switzerland, according to you, because their home is in the Middle East.

What a crock are your empty protestations , especially when compared to your actual words.

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By Xntrk, December 7, 2009 at 12:40 am Link to this comment

I should never type this link. I copied this from my browser, directly. It’ untouched by human thumbs…

http://www.venezuelanalysis.com/

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By MvGuy, December 6, 2009 at 9:20 pm Link to this comment

So many comments I’m not sure this is the place to thank
Robert Fisk for another enlightening view of life and it’s actors…”  It is an sad wonderful tale…..  How we all are inhuman when it suits our interests…

Thank You too Michel Hajji Georgiou for having the clarity of mind and the humanity to notice the problim and hypocrisy of devaluing the suffering and injustice that Anne Frank suffered…!!!!!!  You are the hero of this tale…...

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By Robert, December 6, 2009 at 6:14 pm Link to this comment

“What a Way to Mark Independence Day”

Paramilitary Police Attack Al-Nakba March

By JONATHAN COOK

Nazareth.

“It has been a week of adulation from world leaders, ostentatious displays of military prowess, and street parties. Heads of state have rubbed shoulders with celebrities to pay homage to the Jewish state on its 60th birthday, while a million Israelis reportedly headed off to the country’s forests to enjoy the national pastime: a barbecue.

But this year’s Independence Day festivities have concealed as much as they have revealed. The images of joy and celebration seen by the world have failed to acknowledge the reality of a deeply divided Israel, shared by two peoples with conflicting memories and claims to the land.

They have also served to shield from view the fact that the Palestinians’ dispossession is continuing in both the occupied territories and inside Israel itself. Far from being a historical event, Israel’s “independence”—and the ever greater toll it is inflicting on the Palestinian people—is very much a live issue.

Away from the cameras, a fifth of the Israeli population—more than one million Palestinian citizens—remembered al-Nakba, the Catastrophe of 1948 that befell the Palestinian people as the Jewish state was built on the ruins of their society.

As it has been doing for the past decade, Israel’s Palestinian minority staged an alternative act of commemoration: a procession of families, many of them refugees from the 1948 war, to one of more than 400 Palestinian villages erased by Israel in a monumental act of state vandalism after the fighting. The villages were destroyed to ensure that the 750,000 Palestinians expelled from the state under the cover of war never return.

But in a sign of how far Israel still is from coming to terms with the circumstances of its birth, this year’s march was forcibly broken up by the Israeli police. They clubbed unarmed demonstrators with batons and fired tear gas and stun grenades into crowds of families that included young children.

Although most of the refugees from the 1948 war—numbering in their millions—ended up in camps in neighbouring Arab states, a few remained inside Israel. Today one in four Palestinian citizens of Israel is either a refugee or descended from one. Not only have they been denied the right ever to return to their homes, like the other refugees, but many live tantalisingly close to their former communities.

The destroyed Palestinian villages have either been reinvented as exclusive Jewish communities or buried under the foliage of national forestation programmes overseen by the Jewish National Fund and paid for with charitable donations from American and European Jews.

There have been many Nakba processions held over the past week but the march across fields close by the city of Nazareth was the only one whose destination was a former Palestinian village now occupied by Jews.”
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Click on link for the rest of article:

http://www.counterpunch.org/cook05162008.html

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By brewerstroupe, December 6, 2009 at 4:50 pm Link to this comment

Xntrk
PS.
I forgot to mention Iraq and Afghanistan. I simply deplore both of these forays into old-style colonialism.

BTW, the link to Venezuelanalysis is faulty.

I am very busy today but there are more posts I would like to comment on. Will try to find time tonight.
Compliments to everyone on the civility of this debate.

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By brewerstroupe, December 6, 2009 at 4:38 pm Link to this comment

Xntrk

You make some good points. Corporate and economic colonialism has taken over and I have strong objections to it. There are major differences with old style colonization by conquest however and I think my point remains valid. The new colonialism does not evict people from their homes at gunpoint and disenfranchise the indigenous people.

Another point I forgot to mention to ITW is the fact that the indigenous peoples in most former colonies now have full citizenship and social integration is well established.
Maori ancestry is a source of pride in New Zealand. I do not have it but my children and grandchildren do, which pleases me greatly. Two or three generations ago this was not the case and the Maori race were branded with the self same epithets used against Arabs - lazy, violent etc.
It is interesting to observe that this sort of thing petered out as more and more land claims were settled. I would bet money on the same result in Palestine.
I have suggested to our Minister of Foreign Affairs that NZ should offer its expertise in indigenous land rights law to the government of Israel. It would be worth it just to hear them splutter!!

I am not sure how many folk realize how pivotal the land issue is. Israel has invested huge effort in persuading the World that the issue is “terrorism”, “Arab intransigence” and obduracy.
If they continue to hide their collective head in the sand and hope the land issue will go away, the problems will simply increase. From the moment they acknowledge it, the problems will begin to decrease.
Hamas have offered a ten year absolute truce to work out the details of settlement:

Our message to the Israelis is this: we do not fight you because you belong to a certain faith or culture. Jews have lived in the Muslim world for 13 centuries in peace and harmony; they are in our religion “the people of the book” who have a covenant from God and His Messenger Muhammad (peace be upon him) to be respected and protected. Our conflict with you is not religious but political. We have no problem with Jews who have not attacked us - our problem is with those who came to our land, imposed themselves on us by force, destroyed our society and banished our people.

We shall never recognise the right of any power to rob us of our land and deny us our national rights. We shall never recognise the legitimacy of a Zionist state created on our soil in order to atone for somebody else’s sins or solve somebody else’s problem. But if you are willing to accept the principle of a long-term truce, we are prepared to negotiate the terms. Hamas is extending a hand of peace to those who are truly interested in a peace based on justice.

· Khalid Mish’al is head of the political bureau of Hamas

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By Robert, December 6, 2009 at 4:05 pm Link to this comment

Anger over Palestinian Nakba ban proposal 


“Nakba Day, as Palestinians call it, is an important date in the political calendar

Israeli campaigners and left-wing lawmakers have condemned moves to ban Israeli Arabs from marking the Nakba - the Palestinian “catastrophe” of 1948.

On Sunday an Israeli government panel backed putting the bill, proposed by the party of far-right Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman, before parliament.

A Labour minister opposed it; Hadash, a mainly Arab party, called it “racist”.

Some 700,000 Palestinians fled or were forced from their homes in 1948-49 as Israel claimed its independence.

About 20% of Israel’s population are descended from Arab citizens of British Mandate Palestine who remained on the territory that became Israel.

Strengthening unity

Along with Palestinians in the West Bank, Gaza and around the world, Israeli Arabs mark the yearly Nakba anniversary on 15 May with mourning and commemoration events.


The bill could impair freedom of expression and freedom of protest and achieve the opposite goal

Social Affairs Minister Isaac Herzog
Israelis celebrate their Independence Day, marking the creation of their state, at the same time of year, although according to the Hebrew calendar.

Under the proposed legislation, people caught marking the Nakba could be jailed for up to three years.

Avigdor Lieberman’s party, Yisrael Beiteinu, says the bill is “intended to strengthen unity in the state of Israel”.”
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Click on link for the rest of article:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/8066892.stm

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By Xntrk, December 6, 2009 at 3:40 pm Link to this comment

After posting my comment concerning modern day colonialism, I visited http://www.venzuelanalysis.com

The first article I read was a lengthy discussion of the genocide and colonizing of Latin America. It included a discussion of these ongoing activities by the Empire to the North.

It is long, well documented, and fascinating:
From Conquistadores, Dictators and Multinationals to the Bolivarian Revolution
December 4th 2009, by Maria Paez Victor - Znet

Check it out, it is definitely worth your time.

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