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With Gaza, Journalists Fail Again

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Posted on Jan 26, 2009
AP photo / Sebastian Scheiner

A rainbow, as if projected by the American media, is seen over the northern Gaza Strip, from the Israel-Gaza Border.

By Chris Hedges

(Page 2)

It was Israel, not Hamas, which violated the truce established last June. This was never made clear in any of the press reports. Hamas agreed to halt rocket fire into Gaza in exchange for an Israeli promise to ease the draconian siege that made the shipment of vital material and food into Gaza nearly impossible. And once the agreement was reached, the Hamas rocket fire ended. Israel, however, never upheld its end of the agreement. It increased the severity of the siege. U.N. agencies complained. International relief organizations condemned the Israeli blockade. And there were even rumblings inside Israel. Shmuel Zakai, an Israeli brigadier general who resigned as commander of the Israel Defense Forces’ Gaza Division and was forcibly discharged from the military amid allegations that he leaked information to the media, told the Israeli newspaper Haaretz on Dec. 22 that the Israeli government had made a “central error” during the tahdiyeh, the six-month period of relative truce, by failing “to take advantage of the calm to improve, rather than markedly worsen, the economic plight of the Palestinians of the Strip. … [W]hen you create a tahdiyeh, and the economic pressure on the Strip continues,” Zakai said, “it is obvious that Hamas will try to reach an improved tahdiyeh, and that their way to achieve this is resumed Qassam fire. … You cannot just land blows, leave the Palestinians in Gaza in the economic distress they’re in, and expect that Hamas will just sit around and do nothing.”

Israel, we know from papers such as Haaretz, started planning this assault last March. The Israeli army deliberately broke the truce when it carried out an attack on Nov. 4 that killed six Hamas fighters. It timed the attack, the heavy air and naval bombardment and the invasion of Gaza to coincide with the waning weeks of the Bush administration. Israel knew it would be given carte blanche by the White House. Hamas responded to the Nov. 4 provocation in the way Israel anticipated. It fired Qassam rockets and Grad missiles into Israel to retaliate. But even then Hamas offered to extend the truce if Israel would lift the blockade. Israel refused. Operation Cast Lead was unleashed.

Henry Siegman, the director of the U.S./Middle East Project at the Council of Foreign Relations, noted correctly that Israel “could have met its obligation to protect its citizens by agreeing to ease the blockade, but it didn’t even try. It cannot be said that Israel launched its assault to protect its citizens from rockets. It did so to protect its right to continue the strangulation of Gaza’s population.”

There were a few flashes of integrity in the American press. The Wall Street Journal ran a thoughtful piece, “How Israel Helped to Spawn Hamas,” on Jan. 24 that was unusual in view of the acceptance in U.S. press coverage that Hamas is nothing more than an Islamo-fascist organization that understands only violence. And some journalists from news organizations such as the BBC did a good job once they were finally permitted to enter Gaza. Jimmy Carter wrote an Op-Ed article in The Washington Post detailing his and the Carter Center’s efforts to prevent the conflict. This article was an important refutation of the Israeli argument, although it was ignored by the rest of the media. But these were isolated cases. The publishers, news executives and editors largely accepted without any real protest Israel’s ban on coverage and allowed Israeli officials to fill their news pages and airtime with fabrications and distortions. And this made the war crimes carried out by the Israeli army easier to commit and prolong.

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Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, who is acutely aware of Israel’s violations of international law, has already begun to reassure his commanders that they will be protected from war crimes prosecution.

“The commanders and soldiers that were sent on the task in Gaza should know that they are safe from any tribunal and that the State of Israel will assist them in this issue and protect them as they protected us with their bodies during the military operation in Gaza,” he said.

Israel’s brutal military tactics, despite the lack of coverage in the American press, have come under intense international scrutiny. Human rights groups, including Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, blame the high civilian death toll on indiscriminate firing and shelling, as well as the use of white phosphorus shells in civilian areas. Israel has admitted using white phosphorus in Gaza but insists the chemical, used for smoke screens and to mark spots to be shelled or bombed, was not used directly against civilians.

Hamas is an unsavory organization. It has made life miserable for many in Gaza and carried out a series of death-squad-style executions of alleged opponents. But Hamas, elected to power in 2006, also brought effective civil control to Gaza. Gaza, ruled by warring factions, warlords, clans, kidnapping rings and criminal gangs, had descended into chaos under Mahmoud Abbas’ corrupt Fatah-led government. Hamas, once it assumed power, halted suicide bombing attacks on Israel. It ended rocket fire into Israel for almost a year. It upheld its agreement with Israel. Hamas’ willingness to negotiate with Israel, albeit through Egyptian intermediaries, led al-Qaida, which has been working to make inroads among the Palestinians, to condemn the Hamas leadership as collaborators.

Israel and the United States carried out an abortive and desperate attempt to overthrow Hamas by arming and backing a Fatah putsch in June 2007. They wanted to install the pliant Abbas in power. Hamas resisted, often with violent brutality, and expelled Abbas and the Fatah leadership from Gaza to the West Bank. Israel has now decided to do the dirty job itself. It will not work. Israel broke and discredited Yasser Arafat and Fatah in much the same manner. Abbas and Fatah have no authority or credibility left. Abbas is seen by most Palestinians as a pliant Israeli stooge. Israel is now destroying Hamas. Radical Islamic groups, such as al-Qaida, far more violent and irrational, stand poised to replace Hamas. And Israel will one day look wistfully at Hamas just as it does now at Fatah. But by then, with Israel surrounded by radical Islamic regimes in Egypt, Syria, Lebanon and even Jordan, as well as fighting a homegrown al-Qaida movement among the Palestinians, it may be too late.

The Israeli government bears the responsibility for its crimes. But by giving credibility to the lies and false narratives Israel uses to justify wholesale slaughter we empower not only Israel’s willful self-destruction but our own. The press, as happened during the buildup to the Iraq war, was again feckless and gutless. It bent to the will of the powerful. It abandoned its sacred contract with its readers, listeners and viewers to always tell the truth. It chattered about nothing. It obscured the facts. It did this while hundreds of women and children were torn to shreds by iron fragmentation bombs in a flagrant violation of international law. And as it failed it lauded itself for doing “a fair, balanced and complete job.”

Chris Hedges’ Truthdig column appears Mondays. He is a veteran journalist and the former New York Times Mideast bureau chief.


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By sacred cow, January 29, 2009 at 8:08 pm Link to this comment

Of course we are right about the gross lies and human rights violations of the Palestinian People. The human condition always amazes me: Jews meeting out the same treatment received at the hands of the Nazi’s ... but somehow different because now it is they who are the arbiters. The suffering and indescribable atrocities suffered by the Palestinians at the hands of their “master race” defy understanding ... luckilly, we as humans will be gone from the scene in short order and what is left of the earth will be inherited by more noble creatures.

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By sacred cow, January 29, 2009 at 8:03 pm Link to this comment

Shingo, thanks.

I remember sitting - impatiently - in “Vahan’s” hair salon as a young boy, waiting for my mother to have her hair coiffed. Vahan was an Armenian immigrant - we know about their genocide at the hands of the Turks. I remember - I overheard him telling my mother (herself an anti-authoritarian i.e., a questioner) that the Palestinians got “screwed”. Fast forward to my second year of law school in London. Professor Giorg Schwartzenberger (“man from black mountain, as he told us was the meaning of his name) taught at Oxford and was the world’s renowned expert in international law at the time (1975-76 school year - I took his international law course). Professor Schwartzenberger was a German born and educated Jew who escaped Nazi Germany to England. He said to us in class one day “I was invited to become a citizen of Israel (Israel has from the beginning and continues the effort to create a Jewish majority - and Professor Schwartzenberger was a plum, an important man). Quoting the Professor: “I told them ‘No’! I will not be part of a country that is in violation of international law. What has happened to the Palestinian People is as great an injustice as the Nazi holocaust”. The seed of inquiry was planted!

I read Dean’s book “Conservatives without Conscience”; that is where I learned of Altemeyer’s book, which Dean touted and borrowed from in wholesale fashion for his arguement. By the way, Altemeyer’s book can be read online ... try a google!

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By Marilyn A.F., January 29, 2009 at 7:38 pm Link to this comment

Oh, I do love psycho babble, especially when it is cover for an attitudinal amateur agenda.  (Excuse me, if I guess; bad habit of mine; I can read texts, too.)

I just posted a link to the Geert Wilders film “FITNA” which demystifies Islamic culture.  He
says the Koran is Islam and is the crux of an Islamic need to kill and conquer.  I forgot to log in so it may take a while to come up.  I recommed viewing it.  If you have a strong stomach and free will.

I also recommend listening to Wafa Sultan, a Syrian born Arab-American psychologist who takes on Muslim clerics and entrenched ideologues.  They label her a heretic; she has received death threats but she will not be silenced.  I admire that in a woman.  Just Google her name and you will find videos on Youtube.

Here is a link to a video of an Egyptian cleric who will clarify the Islamist position on Jews.  Be advised, again here are graphic pictures—Jews in ovens; Jews in shallow graves; Jews in internment camps.  I find this interesting.  He praises Hitler for exterminating so many Jewish people; that must be a bit of a conundrum for Holocaust deniers.

http://atlasshrugs2000.typepad.com/atlas_shrugs/islamic_jew_hatred/

Then there is another film of English policemen being chased down a street for blocks by peacefully demonstrating Muslims who are incensed at the Gazan massacre.  They demonstrate in peace; they chant and give praise for their religious convictions, interspersed with expletives against the English cops who are there to keep order and give them the legal right to protest something happening 3000 miles away. (I find a bit of irony in this; who said irony is dead?)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=97hyDRjdXCE

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By Shingo, January 29, 2009 at 7:20 pm Link to this comment

Well put sacred cow,

John Dean wrote a book, Conservatives without Conscience, which documents how right wing mind works.  It’s a tribal fixation centered around an authority figure.  Even in the face of overwhelming evidence, the rabid right wing mind will defend it’s leader to the death, even turning on any of their own that break ranks.

Hence we have the Israeli defenders, who:
in spite of the fact that Israel slaughtering unarmed civilians,
in spite of the fact that Israel broke the ceasefire, in spite of the fact that Israel refuse to honour the Camp David agreement,
in spite of the fact that Israel was founded on terrorism and still honors those terrorists,
in spite of the fact that Israel ethically cleansed 700,000 Arabs in 1948
in spite of the fact that Israel has the 4th most powerful military in the world, in spite of the fact that Israel has 200 nukes,
in spite of the fact that Israel is occupying land that does not belong to them,
in spite of the fact that Israel refuses to abide by over 90 UN resolutions,
in spite of the fact that Israel continues to demolish Palestinian homes and orchards,
in spite of the fact that Israel has blockaded Gaza for more than 18 months
in spite of the fact that Israel’s leaders have made it clear they have no intention of negotiating a peace deal

still insist to this day that:
Israel does all it can to avoid harming civilians,
that Hamas broke the ceasefire,
that 700,000 Arabs left of their own accord in 1948and that Israel asked them to come back,
that Israel really wants to honor the Camp David agreement,
that the only terrorists are Muslims,
that Israel is a vulnerable and defenseless little state,
that Israel is not occupying land, but living on the land that was promised to them by God
that the same UN that legitimatized Israel in the first place, is really out to get them,
that Israel has stopped expanding settlements in the West Bank and that the homes and orchards it demolishes are sitting on top of tunnels used by terrorists,
that the blockade of Gaza isn’t really a blockade
that Israel is a pace loving country that want to help the Arabs, even though the Arabs can’t help themselves.

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By Nozferatu, January 29, 2009 at 7:16 pm Link to this comment

TropicGirl,

There is really no point arguing with people like Laura S because there is no one in hell she can comprehend what the Palestinians are going through.

While people over there are having their guts spilled and children lying next to their dead parents blown apart for 3 days…3 FREAKING DAYS…because IDF aholes won’t let the RED CROSS come through…she’s sitting in a coffee shop, sipping coffee and vomiting drivel ala carte.

While over 350 children have been murdered in 3 weeks, the “poor” kids she talks about can’t go to school…poor them. 

I’m sick and tired of useless, morally bankrupt people like her.  I hope to hell that this conflict shows Israelis for who they are as a whole.

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By Marilyn A.F., January 29, 2009 at 7:02 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I have just viewed the movie “FITNA” put together by a Dutch parlimentarian, Geert Wilders. He is being prosecuted in his country for his outspoken condemnation of the Koran and its message of hate and violence—against all unbelievers.

My reaction is one of total disbelieve at the disregard for human life and humane values demonstrated in this film.  A member of the British Parliament invited Wilders to screen the film in London, along with a frank, democratic discussion of the issues it raised. A fellow member, Lord Ahmed,  decried the move and promised he would call on 10,000 English Muslims to protest and deny entry to Wilders.  (Where is the old English can-do attitude?)

It worked, the screening was cancelled.  I found this information at a British blog owned by an Anglican Bishop.  His forum was open to all ideas, pro and con.  But most comments stated that
England was being overrun by militant Islamists who were growing more arrogant with demands, ignoring the English traditions and laws. As here in the States, the native citizens are finding it more difficult to go about their lives with any normalcy.

In continental Europe, the Muslim population has exploded; every host country is realizing the falacy of unchecked entry in the pursuit of their liberal principles. They stand to lose cultural identity and sovereignty as alien religious dogma drowns out individual freedom.  The Koran is Islam, as Wilders explains, and encourages hate and violence.

http://archbishop-cranmer.blogspot/2009/01/lord-ahmed-threatens-parliament-into.html

Scroll down for link to movie. Warning: graphic
violence depicted.  This is not about religious freedom; it is about separation of church and state, or lack thereof.

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By sacred cow, January 29, 2009 at 6:40 pm Link to this comment

What we have with Laura is a classic case of what I call “imprismment”. After WWII and Hitler, the study of “authoritarian” personalities has been of interest to the study of psychology. Laura fits in nicely with these studies. First, I recommend Robert Altemeyer’s book “Authoritarians”, which may explain Laura as an “authoritarian follower”. These types are almost universally members of the right - or conservative - side of the political spectrum. More importantly, they suffer an overriding compulstion to obey the established order and march in line with tribal mantra - they need to be led, they need something to believe in, they are unable or unwilling to think for themselves. The only thing worse are what Altemeyer calls the “double/doubles”, or the authoritarian personality types that seek to lead rather than follow. Laura may also fit the characteristics of other studies (see John Jost et al of Stanford and now of NYU; also, American Psychologist, v.61) that explore the conservative - or political right - as having certain characteristics such as a need for order and dogma, fear of what Randolph and other Federalists called the “follies of democracy”, and the need for structure and loyalty to the established, elitist order. Laura can’t help herself. Newer studies suggest there is a genetic basis for these characteristics (John Alford, Rice U in Houston; also, “New Science” magazine: “Two Tribes”). I suspect others on this post are zionist apologists; not Laura - she suffers a defective genotype.

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By Shingo, January 29, 2009 at 5:42 pm Link to this comment

Another thing Laura,

You said that the Iraqi people didn’t try to overthrow Saddam.  Evidently you never heard of the Shiite uprising after the Gulf War.  Under encouragement from Bush Snr (and the understanding that the US would provide support) the Shiites tried to overthrow Saddam, but he crushed them.

The US gave no such support.

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PatrickHenry's avatar

By PatrickHenry, January 29, 2009 at 3:23 pm Link to this comment

By vancemack, January 29 at 1:04 pm #

Spin it Mack.

Criticism of Israel makes a person a “jew hater”?

If you value, love and respect jews you admire Israel?

Are those my options?

The truth lay somewhere in between.

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By tropicgirl, January 29, 2009 at 3:01 pm Link to this comment

If you are trying to say that the ignorant Europeans didn’t murder women based upon superstition (not even breaking the law) then you are wrong.

If you think westerners and Europeans didn’t murder women based upon the fact that they were native (i.e. not human) then you are wrong.

If you think that westerners, Europeans and Americans TODAY are not raping Muslim women, you are wrong.

And if you think its not the Israeli, western, European goal to demoralize the Islamic world so that the women are forced into prostitution, you are wrong.

If you think Muslim women are the only ones to veil themselves and that this is some sort of a handicap, rather than protection, you are wrong. Many of us Catholics did it symbolically in church for years.

And don’t give me that sanctimonious crap about wanting to protect women. Do you know what happens to a country when it is demoralized, bombed, occupied, blockaded, sanctioned to hell, starved and so on?  The women and children become prostitutes, slaves, sick and deathly.

This is the new Israeli-American chant. Protect the women. Better yet, they take CIA propaganda money and go into Muslim countries, get a bunch of women to “stand up” for western values. Then their neighbors take revenge, which is expected. Its almost like Petreus, the Death Squad Guy stirring up brother against brother. But these women don’t even get the big money. They are simply used like any native person that has been used by Europe and the west. 

So when you see a group of women attacked, and it gets on the news immediately, even though the war if Gaza does not, you have to find out who instigated them, perhaps paid them, and whether it was really good for them in the long run. Its really victimization.

If you really want to help these women, don’t white phosphorus their children, starve them, force them into prostitution, incarcerate their sons, fathers, husbands and brothers.

I was wondering, is there any Israeli spokesperson without a facial tick?

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By Shingo, January 29, 2009 at 2:44 pm Link to this comment

Laura,

>> The U.N. recognizes Israel as a legal, valid state and there are legal, valid borders to go with it. 

Yet Israel refuses to respect those “valid” borders.

>>> The Jews could not rise up and get rid of Hitler because they were not the majority.  The Iraqis could do so with Saddam (since Shi’ites are in the majority).

How so?  Saddam controlled all the wealth and the military aparatus.  There is no difference.

Yes,And Israel does exist and yes, they are occupying land outside the valid borders. 

Israel started the 1967 war which led to the seizue of the West Bank. 

Israel also drove out 700,000 Arabs during the 1948 war.

Both acts contravene international law.

Israel’s leaders, even Olmert and Livni agree that Israel’s future hangs on the creation of a 2 state solution. They agree that the West Bank must be returned.

If not, Israel wil cease ot be a Jewish state.

The trouble is that Israel has a kind if collective scytzophrenia. They know they have to facilitate a 2 state solution, yet their policies are makinig that impossible.

You are right.  Terrorism has not advanced their cause, but when al lpeaceful optins fail or are rejetected, they are faced with either dyign quietly or fighting back. 

Suggesting that terrorism has become a lifestyle choice for the Arabs is like saying that war and a permanent state fo fear and anxiety has become one for the Iraelis.

In many ways, that is the case.  Mark Regev, the Isrelai spokesman, admitted that Hamas had ceased firing rockets into Gaza, yet Israel broke the ceasfire anyway.  Tzipi Livni has said that a long cesefire is not in Israel’s interests.  Why?

The answer is simple.  Israel does not want peace and it is trying to prevent Hamas from becomming a legitimate political entitiy by attacking teh Palestinians.

Your blinkeredness and indoctrination are a sight to behold.

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By Laura Schneider, January 29, 2009 at 2:34 pm Link to this comment

tropicgirl,

Your unbelievably inaccurate view of Islam and the Arab and Persian world, in particular, is staggering.

I am a member of Amnesty Internationl.  One of the causes that I supported and followed with rapt attention is regarding the woman who was going to be killed under Shariah law for committing adultery (evidenced by her pregnancy).  Anyone ever ask what happened to the man she committed adultery with?

And then there’s the women who get raped.  They are executed.  Their attackers are not.

And then there’s “honor” killings, which now are permitted in Britain, which has caved and allowed Muslims to practice Shariah law even when it conflicts with British law.  Not all British women are equal, I suppose.

And the movie “Not Without my Daughter” starring Sally Fields is another telling of the story of how women are treated in Muslim countries.

Yet we Westerners are the savages?  You must be joking.  Well, you probably aren’t, and it wouldn’t be funny if you were, given the serious nature of the mistreatment and abuse of women in Middle Eastern culture and under Shariah law.

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By vancemack, January 29, 2009 at 2:16 pm Link to this comment

“The Muslim religion has lifted countless Arabs, Africans American blacks and others from the moral destruction of western values which treated them as slaves.”

HOLY CRAP!!!

I was pretty much done with this inane thread til that line caught my eye…
Are you absofreakinloootely SERIOUS???

If you had ANY concept of what middle eastern muslims thought of blacks…or Africans…nah…its too easy…

You THINK you know bigotry? Well…so did many of our black officers in the military. Right up until they visited the middle east.

What is practiced in America is a blend of “give em what they want to hear” muslim religion. And BTW I LOVEthe time I spent in the middle east…all 4 years and all the different people. The GREAT majority are not the terrorists that people imagine…but you dont know muslims…and you dont have a CLUE about how they treat Africans.

In MOST PARTS of the world, corrupt leaders use the Muslim religion as a hook to manipulate thems whats got nuthin to loose. Id really encourage you to actually STUDY what happens around the world.

At its core, the Muslim faith is really no better or worse than any other religion. But the way it is used? Please.

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By vancemack, January 29, 2009 at 2:06 pm Link to this comment

Oh wait…dang…I forget to inlcude my favorite part…the sputtering idiocy of…

“This…is…TRUTHDIG!””

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By vancemack, January 29, 2009 at 2:04 pm Link to this comment

I wonder…

If Israel were to negotiate a land swap…parcel the size of Gaza attached to the south west corner of the west bank…and allowed for a two country solution…Isareal and Palestine…separate and independent…would there be peace? Would the daily attacks from the west bank cease? Would they be able to peacefully coexist?

And before anyone says Palestinians already honored the cease fire…please…dont make me repost the 8 different pages of documented attacks that occured throughout 2008. I really am tired of the argument because really…some of you people argue like the black night from Monty Python. (“palestine honored the cease fire” ummm…well…actually there here literally HUNDREDS of continued mortar and missile attacks throughout the course of the year…“well…uh uh!” Look…here is page after page after page detailing the attacks WITH sources…“so? u h uh! They honored the cease fire”)

Seriously…short of eliminating Israel altogether (which is the course of action the bigots and jew haters here prefer) is there a solution or hope for longterm peaceful resolution?

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By tropicgirl, January 29, 2009 at 1:47 pm Link to this comment

I really meant to log off but this Laura, what a troll. It illustrates your basic ignorance of Muslims throughout history. Did you know>>>

Muslims practiced tolerant conquest and allowed most of the territories they conquered to continue to practice their religion, stay intact, and prosper? This is contrary to the “Christian” conquests.

Muslims brought Europe out of the Dark Ages of religion and ignorance and suffering when Europe resumed contact with them, because they had preserved the entire knowledge of the world after the Christian Crusades destroyed it. They are the fathers of The Renaissance.

Muslims invented the banking system and the credit system we have today. Most oppose excessive interests rates contrary to Jews and Christians.

The Muslims were the only (re) conquerers of Jerusalem that didn’t turn the current inhabitants into a “pool of blood up to the knees”.

Muslims preserved the worlds knowledge regarding medicine, astronomy, technology, art and more. We wouldn’t have an enlightened culture if not for them and would still be killing witches, sleeping in ashes, eating grease, suffering from filth plagues, remaining ignorant of the massive advances of art, science and culture that happened during the ages between Babylon and the Romans.

The Muslim religion has lifted countless Arabs, Africans American blacks and others from the moral destruction of western values which treated them as slaves.

Muslims far outnumber Jews in the combined area of Israel, Gaza and the West Bank and if Israel doesn’t accept a decent two state solution (its too late anyway) then there will be a ONE state with everyone being equal in rights, in which Israel will just disappear. I think this is what will eventually happen if Israel doesn’t complete its genocide first.

Muslim law is one of the most moral and respected laws with regard to fair treatment in marriage, parental treatment, treatment of one’s neighbor, stealing, oppression, honor, modesty, jihad, giving to charity, and much more. Contrast this to the Israelis who had to be told how to go to the bathroom by Moses (look it up).

I could go on but Laura really isn’t worth the pain. A simple college course on Art History would even help her if she could understand it. Its not just ignorance, its stupidity. And, we all know, you can do a lot to educate but you can’t fix stupid.

Sorry for all the posts.

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By Laura Schneider, January 29, 2009 at 1:26 pm Link to this comment

sacred cow,

How far do you want to go back to decide who owns a piece of property?  This region has been inhabited and invaded by one tribe or another for centuries.  At what point do we stop and decide?  When it is convenient for your cause?

The U.N. recognizes Israel as a legal, valid state and there are legal, valid borders to go with it.  Comparing a minority population within Nazi Germany to a majority population that comprises an entire country is not valid either.  The Jews could not rise up and get rid of Hitler because they were not the majority.  The Iraqis could do so with Saddam (since Shi’ites are in the majority).

What is, is.  And Israel does exist.  They are not occupying land, they have valid borders.  The Palestinians displaced by the formation of Israel and its annexation of territory during wars it did not start, but did win, are the unfortunate victims of war on the losing side.  Rather than get on with their lives and work for a solution that will be a win-win for both sides, they hang on to distant history with a vengeance, and it does not improve their lvies or the lives of their children.

It would be much like the Southern states engaging in terrorism rather than accept the outcome of the Civil War.  It’s over.  It’s time to move on.

And there is no evidence that terrorism has advanced their cause.  It has simply created a violent, dangerous atmosphere for their victims and, even more important, for themselves.

It has become a lifestyle choice, not a cause with a positive, realistic goal.

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By cyrena, January 29, 2009 at 1:24 pm Link to this comment

By Laura Schneider, January 29 at 9:19 am #

Sadly, this pervasive attitude against Israel is either labelled as Zionist (which I am not—neither Jew or specifically supporting any religious domination).  Nor am I a hater of Muslims.  But I do acknowledge the reality that Islam, as it is PRACTICED, is, by and large, intolerant of other religions and dedicated toward world domination.

~~~

Laura, this is BULLSHIT. It’s not about Islam, and Zionism isn’t a religion, and the 40 plus year carnage perpetrated by Israel against those in the illegally occupied (by Israeli settlers) territories of Palestine is the only TERROR going on.

Why do you insist on assuming the rest of us to be as ignorant as YOU apparently are?

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By Shingo, January 29, 2009 at 1:10 pm Link to this comment

Laura,

You are confused and sadly, quite ingnorant.

If anyone has come close to World domination, it is the West, particularly the US, who has 700 military bases in 135 countries.  Many complain that the US get sblamed for the trouble that occurrs throughout the world, but then, there is good reason.

If you want to be honest about terrorists, then you have to go back before the sixties to 1947 and 1948, when the Irgun, the Stern and Hagana were blowing up the King David Hotel, murdering British troops and UN envoys, not to mention, carrying out the Nakba in 1948.

What has Israel done about these terorrists?  At least 3 of the leaders of these gans went on to become PM’s of Israel, and the daugher of one, is running for PM in the Feb elections.

Looking at Israel today, One woudl agree that the Zionist terrorists were in it for the violence, destruction and power.  They are using one cause to maintin supporter, but as you point out, at their core they are addicted to the violence and destruction because it creates fear (among the Israelis as well as the Arabs), which gives them power.

Yes, fear is their pay-off, especially with the right wing like Netneyahu and Lieberman, who’s popularity is at an all time high.

Hamas and Hezbollah are natinalist organisations that were essentially created by Israel.

Hams was supported and financed to be a cats paw to the PLO.  Nevertheless, Hamas is dedicated to a Palestinian state.

Hezbollah only exist today because Isrel invaded Lebanon in 1982, occupied it for 18 years and killed 18,000 people in the process. Hezbollah, like the Frenchg resistance or the patriost during the war against the British, drove them out.

THe reason Israel was created byu the West was to
(1) to keep the Middle East in turmoil, which keeps the Arab caountries divided; (2) to maintai a US military presence in the region.

Israel is an tool being exploited by the US. If Israel were to cease to exist tomorrow, there wodl be peace and acalm in the ME, but that is unrealistic as Israel is not going anywhere.

There is no equaivalent of Hitler. He was an extremist leading a highly industriliased and wealthy country and amassed one o the worlds most powerful armies.  No Arab state is even close to this.

Wake up Laura.  You are doing a going to huse lenghts here to avoid accepting the elephant in teh room. Israel stole land from the Arabs and refuses to give it back.  They say they will retun the West Bank, but in reality, they refuse to.  In December of 2008, the US and Israel voted against a resoltuon the Palestinians shoudl have self determination.  the Vote was 175-5 for the resolution.

One of the reasons I opposed the war in Iraq was because I believe that no government can exist against its people’s will.

>>> If the majority of the Iraqis were truly committed to getting rid of Saddam, they would have done it without us.

That’s like saying if the majority of the Jews were truly committed to getting rid of Hitler, they would have.

You see how pathetic your logic is Laura?  The minute it is applied to Israel, it reveals what a rogue state it is and what a biggot you are.

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By Ed Harges, January 29, 2009 at 12:52 pm Link to this comment

Laura Schneider just goes on and on.

Israel, not Hamas, broke the ceasefire.

She didn’t think we knew that.

But now that she knows we do know that, she’s going off about how bad Islam is.

What does that mean? That the ceasefire was never valid anyway, because Islam is so awful?

I think what this really means is that she’s not arguing in good faith. She’s just throwing crap randomly.

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By sacred cow, January 29, 2009 at 12:03 pm Link to this comment

Laura Darling - you are wrong headed in so many ways I don’t know where to begin. But lets try these:
1. zionisms is a political movement, not a religion
2. “Not every Jew is a zionist and not every zionist is a Jew” - Alfred Lillienthal
3. There are more christian missionaries in the world than muslim ... christians are on crusades ... we are over there; they are not occupying our lands
4.Are you including state terrorism in your defintion?
5. Israel, as so many posters have tried to teach you, is the obstructionist to peace with the expansionist agenda (“ersetz israel”, aka “greater israel”). Israel is occupying Arab and Muslim land.
Might I suggest, again, Norman Finkelstein’s short history to be found at Counterpunch?
6. If you are opposed to the Iraq war because you don’t believe one people should control or govern another against their will, why are you supporting the very same thing in the occupied territories? Do you know who was there first? Do you know who had their land taken from them? What would you do if that happened to you?

 

One thing we learned about terrorists in the sixties is that when one terrorist cause was taken off the table, most of the core group migrated to other causes.  What does this say?  Terrorists are in it for the violence, destruction and power.  They will use whatever cause celeb to recruit supporters, but at their core they are addicted to the violence and destruction because it creates fear, which gives them power.  So, fear is their pay-off.

Hamas, Hesbollah and all the other Iran-supported terrorism is designed to accomplish several goals:  (1) to keep the Middle East in turmoil, which raises the price of oil and empowers their countries and the terrorists they fund; (2) to keep their people united against a common enemy (just like Hitler—remember Neimöller’s poem?); and (3) to keep their own region united with each other instead of fighting each other (which, given the tribal structure of most of these countries, would likely happen internally and regionally). 

Israel is an excuse - the Western lifestyle is an excuse—for their terrorist activities, their recruiting, their funding, etc.  If Israel were to cease to exist tomorrow, another cause would take its place very quickly.  It would have to.  Otherwise, these countries and this region would quickly descend into war against each other.  This region has been marked by chaos for centuries.  We did not create it, and we cannot fix it.  Selling the idea that we can to Westerners is a means of manipulating us into a delusional compliant state where we will do anything to appease these guys in order to achieve peace.

We tried that once already with Hitler.  Neville Chamberlain is the poster boy for appeasement.  And where did that get us?

Wake up to the reality.  If moderate Muslims are the majority and they do not support this violence and terrorism, why don’t they rise up and defeat it?  Or at least vote these guys out?  They didn’t.  They voted them in.

One of the reasons I opposed the war in Iraq was because I believe that no government can exist against its people’s will.  If the majority of the Iraqis were truly committed to getting rid of Saddam, they would have done it without us.

The same is true for Palestine.  If they did not see Hamas as representing their best interests, Hamas would be out, terrorism would be over, and Israel and Palestine could coexist peacefully.

Such is not the case.

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By tropicgirl, January 29, 2009 at 10:27 am Link to this comment

I would hold the same standard for those who work on pathetic Wall Street. Get your money wherever you can however long you want, but karma does exist. How is selling narcotics different from this?  It too, feeds families.

And since you brought up children, what would you say to THEM about your employer Caterpillar and Rachel Corrie? After all, it is children that are getting killed in Gaza. What do you think they would say in response”, “great job mom and dad, get your money where you can, thanks for all the cell phones, and by the way, why don’t I work for a hedge fund that follows no employment regulations, ships jobs offseas, uses drug money to bolster its cash flow and eventually breaks the US and world banks…”  Somewhere this has to end. And where is all the so-called religion these families claim to know so much about? Certainly didn’t get to their morals.

I don’t think there is anything funny about any of this. And you will gradually see even American advertising (a culprit) veer away from luxury, who-cares about-anyone advertising motifs toward more ethical, low-tech, non-luxury lifestyle, think-about-what-you-are-doing advertising, as that is the way our corrective economy and conscience will go.

If you really want to know, Naomi Klein, who is perhaps one of the (Western) leaders in the Boycott, Divest, Sanction movement has just posted on After Downing Street a very useful article. If you follow her you can stay pretty much up to date. Here is the link (not to divert from Truthdig, an EXCELLENT blog and Huffpo refuge, no doubt):
http://www.afterdowningstreet.org/node/39341

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By Laura Schneider, January 29, 2009 at 10:19 am Link to this comment

Sadly, this pervasive attitude against Israel is either labelled as Zionist (which I am not—neither Jew or specifically supporting any religious domination).  Nor am I a hater of Muslims.  But I do acknowledge the reality that Islam, as it is PRACTICED, is, by and large, intolerant of other religions and dedicated toward world domination.

One thing we learned about terrorists in the sixties is that when one terrorist cause was taken off the table, most of the core group migrated to other causes.  What does this say?  Terrorists are in it for the violence, destruction and power.  They will use whatever cause celeb to recruit supporters, but at their core they are addicted to the violence and destruction because it creates fear, which gives them power.  So, fear is their pay-off.

Hamas, Hesbollah and all the other Iran-supported terrorism is designed to accomplish several goals:  (1) to keep the Middle East in turmoil, which raises the price of oil and empowers their countries and the terrorists they fund; (2) to keep their people united against a common enemy (just like Hitler—remember Neimöller’s poem?); and (3) to keep their own region united with each other instead of fighting each other (which, given the tribal structure of most of these countries, would likely happen internally and regionally). 

Israel is an excuse - the Western lifestyle is an excuse—for their terrorist activities, their recruiting, their funding, etc.  If Israel were to cease to exist tomorrow, another cause would take its place very quickly.  It would have to.  Otherwise, these countries and this region would quickly descend into war against each other.  This region has been marked by chaos for centuries.  We did not create it, and we cannot fix it.  Selling the idea that we can to Westerners is a means of manipulating us into a delusional compliant state where we will do anything to appease these guys in order to achieve peace.

We tried that once already with Hitler.  Neville Chamberlain is the poster boy for appeasement.  And where did that get us?

Wake up to the reality.  If moderate Muslims are the majority and they do not support this violence and terrorism, why don’t they rise up and defeat it?  Or at least vote these guys out?  They didn’t.  They voted them in.

One of the reasons I opposed the war in Iraq was because I believe that no government can exist against its people’s will.  If the majority of the Iraqis were truly committed to getting rid of Saddam, they would have done it without us.

The same is true for Palestine.  If they did not see Hamas as representing their best interests, Hamas would be out, terrorism would be over, and Israel and Palestine could coexist peacefully.

Such is not the case.

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By Nozferatu, January 29, 2009 at 9:39 am Link to this comment

Can anyone offer a comprehensive list of what Israeli companies are involved with companies here?  Like ATT,etc…so we can boycott these bastards once and for all?

I sometimes wonder if truthdig isn’t a ploy to get people to post here instead of elsewhere…considering who the Editor and Publisher are.

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By Folktruther, January 29, 2009 at 9:38 am Link to this comment

OK, Tropicgirl, you make a distinction between the Catapillar business power structure and the workers losing their jobs.  But there is nothing pathetic about jobs, tropicgirl, when you’ve got kids to feed. Workers have no control over the coporations they work for, but need the money to feed their families.  It is a tragedy when they lose their jobs, no matter how evil the corporation.

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By tropicgirl, January 29, 2009 at 8:26 am Link to this comment

The time has come for everyone in this country to take personal responsibility for the horror that the relationship between the US and Israel has become.  If you work for a company that is such a great partner as Caterpillar was to the destruction of Gaza and other places, and the illegal settlement activity, and the vigilanti activity of the Israelis and their army of hate, and the actual death of an American citizen, you should have something to say.

If you don’t know about it then thats another problem which you are also responsible for.

If you don’t care, then don’t assume anyone will care for you when you lose your pathetic job in this pathetically indifferent society.

You never spoke up or did an damn thing.

boycott.  divest.  sanction.  This is the only way to combat apartheid and genocide.

(Anyway, the chickens are coming home to roost on the whole over-construction mentality whether in this country, or the forced-settlements around the world.  Its economically, morally and environmental impossible anymore, including Afghanistan. So don’t mourn for Caterpillar, they are the Blackwater, or should I say Raytheon of the construction industry in my opinion and are just as uncaring.)

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By troublesum, January 29, 2009 at 6:38 am Link to this comment

The press is giving Obama a pass on these issues.  He needs to be asked directly about the latest UN resolution of December 2008.  It is very simple and straightforward: shall the Palestinian people have the right to self determination?  If he is opposed to that he needs to explain why.  The press corps in Washington is impressed with his ability to speak complete, gramatically correct sentences, but they need to get over that and get down to specifics.

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By geronimo, January 28, 2009 at 11:21 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

We Can Turn The Public Towards Supporting Justice For The Palestinians.

“How?”

“By pointing out tht our government’s support of Israel puts us all at risk.”

“Based on?”

“What the perpetrators of 0/11 are saying.”

“Why will that change public opinion?”

“Self-interest.”

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By Sepharad, January 28, 2009 at 11:21 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Shingo—As much as I scorn fraternizing with the enemy, was just scrolling down reading earlier posts and one of yours made me laugh out loud, knocking the ice packs on my knee and ankle onto the floor. It was your reference to an “Israel amen corner.” For such a confirmed and blinkered Israel-hater you sure don’t know much about Israelis, or Jews for that matter. We can and do argue about ANYTHING, even things we essentially agree on. We argue with our friends, our enemies, our loved ones, people we don’t even know. Someone will probably argue with me about my comments re arguing. You should attend a session of the Knesset sometime. There is not, could never be, an “Israel amen corner.” Good grief.

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By Sepharad, January 28, 2009 at 10:55 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Shingo—

See my post on “Why do so few speak up for Gaza” Jan. 28, 2:15. Was not so sleepy then.

To answer your question: Of course I know Hamas is Sunni. Nevertheless Shiia Iran is supporting them just as they support Hezbollah to increase their influence against Sunni governments such as Egypt and Jordan. They’ve long cozied up to Syria, whose leader is neither Shiia nor traditional Sunni but some bizarre sect. It’s a power thing and a fundamentalist violent Islamist thing.

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By Robert, January 28, 2009 at 10:36 pm Link to this comment

Neither The US Nor Israel Is A “Genuine Party To Peace.”

By Noam Chomsky

January 28, 2009 “Information Clearinghouse”—Barack Obama is recognized to be a person of acute intelligence, a legal scholar, careful with his choice of words. He deserves to be taken seriously - both what he says, and what he omits. Particularly significant is his first substantive statement on foreign affairs, on January 22, at the State Department, when introducing George Mitchell to serve as his special envoy for Middle East peace.

Mitchell is to focus his attention on the Israel-Palestine problem, in the wake of the recent US-Israeli invasion of Gaza. During the murderous assault, Obama remained silent apart from a few platitudes, because, he said, there is only one president - a fact that did not silence him on many other issues. His campaign did, however, repeat his statement that “if missiles were falling where my two daughters sleep, I would do everything in order to stop that.” He was referring to Israeli children, not the hundreds of Palestinian children being butchered by US arms, about whom he could not speak, because there was only one president.

On January 22, however, the one president was Barack Obama, so he could speak freely about these matters - avoiding, however, the attack on Gaza, which had, conveniently, been called off just before the inauguration.

Obama’s talk emphasized his commitment to a peaceful settlement. He left its contours vague, apart from one specific proposal: “the Arab peace initiative,” Obama said, “contains constructive elements that could help advance these efforts. Now is the time for Arab states to act on the initiative’s promise by supporting the Palestinian government under President Abbas and Prime Minister Fayyad, taking steps towards normalizing relations with Israel, and by standing up to extremism that threatens us all.”

Obama is not directly falsifying the Arab League proposal, but the carefully framed deceit is instructive.

The Arab League peace proposal does indeed call for normalization of relations with Israel - in the context - repeat, in the context of a two-state settlement in terms of the longstanding international consensus, which the US and Israel have blocked for over 30 years, in international isolation, and still do. The core of the Arab League proposal, as Obama and his Mideast advisers know very well, is its call for a peaceful political settlement in these terms, which are well-known, and recognized to be the only basis for the peaceful settlement to which Obama professes to be committed. The omission of that crucial fact can hardly be accidental, and signals clearly that Obama envisions no departure from US rejectionism. His call for the Arab states to act on a corollary to their proposal, while the US ignores even the existence of its central content, which is the precondition for the corollary, surpasses cynicism.

The most significant acts to undermine a peaceful settlement are the daily US-backed actions in the occupied territories, all recognized to be criminal: taking over valuable land and resources and constructing what the leading architect of the plan, Ariel Sharon, called “Bantustans” for Palestinians - an unfair comparison because the Bantustans were far more viable than the fragments left to Palestinians under Sharon’s conception, now being realized. But the US and Israel even continue to oppose a political settlement in words, most recently in December 2008, when the US and Israel (and a few Pacific islands) voted against a UN resolution supporting “the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination” (passed 173 to 5, US-Israel opposed, with evasive pretexts).”

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article21858.htm

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By Shingo, January 28, 2009 at 10:09 pm Link to this comment

yes Folktruther,

Zionist shills often like to pose as moderate, independents, but they soon expose themselves.

Marylin,

The only points you made were shot down easily because there were all based on signature Zionist propaganda.

>> You remember that, don’t you, when 5 Arab brethern
nations attacked a tiny, defenseless entity called
the Jewish homeland

If the tiny entity you are referring to was so defenseless , and if it had not been armed, it would not exist today.

Secondly, the tiny, defenseless entity was being run by terrorist gangs that were blowing up the King David Hotel, while also murdering British soldiers and UN envoys.  Yes, those were the founding fathers of Israel.

If it was the Jews hating international community that gave the Zionists the land.

>> The dense population of the Gazan ghetto is of their own design.

Gaza is an open air prison and the most densely populated region in the world.  The prison guards are Israel. Perhaps you believe that the Warsaw Ghetto was also designed by the Jewish inhabitants?

Here is a montage comparing Gaza to the horror the Jews faced. I’m sure it will warm your heart.

http://www.normanfinkelstein.com/article.php?pg=11&ar=2510

>> Yasser Arafat exhorted the women to use their wombs as a weapon; they would soon overrun the area by simply out-producing Jews.

Impoverished 3rd world populations always have higher birth rates than developed countries.

>> OMG!  The millions meant for infrastructure and hospitals, et al.

The word corruption and Israeli Prime Ministers has become synonymous - including Olmert. For that matter, how many Israeli PMs have been war criminals and terrorist leaders?

>> Who did I hear say Abu Abbas was a member of the
venal Black September squad

Didn’t Patrick Seal write a book that exposed Abu Nidal and a working for the Mossad?  Ooooops!! Yes, lovely fellows those Mossad guys.

>> Or before or after the Munich Olympic massacre of Israeli athletes in 1972?  My memory is fuzzy on some details.

You lament the deaths of 21 Olympic Athletes, while the IDF kill that many children on an average week.

>> Are the Israelis any better?

Better at wholesale slaughter and starting wars, definitely.

>>  They do allow citizens religious freedom; they do allow Arab representation in government

As of last week they didn’t. Arab Israeli’s are treated as 4th class citizens.  Tzipi Livni (daughter of terrorist Irgun commander) said in an interview recently that Arab Israelis will have to face a future outside of Israel.

>> they do not teach toddlers to hate systematically

They just tech them to write poems on the shells of 500lb bobs that are about to be dropped on civilian populations.

>> You want pictures of what Israel is dealing with?

I’ll do you one better and give you a link tot his:

http://www.informationliberation.com/files/192642682_2fea4cce66_o.jpg

You are not a free thinker Marylin.  You are an apologist for genocide and human slaughter.  You are the one resorting to racist stereotypes and denegrading Muslims and Arabs and using Zionist bile to do it.

Only a derranged zealout could convince themselves that the state with the 4th most powerful army in the world, along with 200 nukes, and the largest recipient of foreign aid in the world, is any kid of underdog.

We know we won’t change my mind, because your mind is imperviosu to truth and reality.  Your priorities are obvious.  To further the humanitarian disaster in Gaza and enable the genocide of Arabs.

21 Arab States have agreed to recognize Israel’s right to exist.  Israel refuses.

Every year, Israel rejects motions at the UN to enable a Palestinians state to exist.

BTW.  Israel is not the Jewish homeland - it is a Zionist project and was conceived by atheists who ad no regard for Jews.

So feel free to continue supporting war crimes and supporting crimes against humanity.  I’m sure you believe it’s the honorable thing to do.

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By Folktruther, January 28, 2009 at 9:23 pm Link to this comment

I’ve gone thourgh your posts, Marzlyn, and I think you are an Israeli shill.  You know too much about Zionist arguments while maintaining that you are independant and giving your own opinion.

Olmert has stated publcally that Israel was going to train an ‘army’ of bloggers to counter indepenedant opinion on the Internet.  I think you are part of that army, fortunately not a very effective part.

But you served a very useful purpose in getting TDers to research material that hasn’t been presented before, and to present their arguments in a very effective way.  We need more people like you, Maralyn.  Send us more Zionists!

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By Birch, January 28, 2009 at 9:11 pm Link to this comment

The blogosphere ain’t doing so well either. If any of you have wandered onto HuffPost recently you may noted that on any stories related to Gaza, the IDF trolls seem to have unlimited access to post their comments, but you can forget about making any response because your comments will be “moderated” out of existence. I was wondering what was going on until I came across a piece by Justin Raimondo (01/02/09) at Anti-war.com. He writes the following:

“There’s a ready explanation of why, as the Israelis pound Gaza, the formerly antiwar Huffington Post has become a cheerleader for the IDF: it is due entirely to this.
When Arianna nabbed $25 million from Oak Investment Partners, of Palo Alto, California, she was acquired by a financial network that also has significant investments in the Israeli arms industry – an industry, I might add, directly subsidized and controlled by the Israeli government. For example, Oak Investment has invested in IET/Intelligent Electronics, now morphed into Clickservice Software, an Israeli-based company that makes sophisticated weapons systems and sells them to clients such as “an unnamed Far Eastern country.” Oak Investment partner Fred Harman now sits on the Huffington Post’s board.
Case closed. Mystery solved.”

Thanks to TruthDig for providing an honest and open forum.

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By Marilyn A.F., January 28, 2009 at 8:33 pm Link to this comment

Goodness, I haven’t encountered this much hostility since I threw my support to Hillary. And at that time, I concluded there was a concerted circling of wagons—by what we rational thinkers came to realize were Kool Aid sipping “Bots.”  But that’s old news.

Also, though my post was not riddled with links (videos or commentary from “unbiased” independent sources; forgive me I just sort of wondered onto this site and decided to put in my two cents), I scored some valid points. But, hey, if you want documentation. (I said it was my opinion and I mean it was MY opinion—not ruminations from some groupspeak think tanks—now that you broach the subject of propaganda tracts.)  I can search my files—from the inception of Israel.

You remember that, don’t you, when 5 Arab brethern
nations attacked a tiny, defenseless entity called
the Jewish homeland because they were the hated,
gasp, Jews? Because they were Jews and everyone hated Jews It was internationally sanctioned to
hate them.  It is also universally irrational.

And that was before the Israelis were armed for
mortal combat in the name of survival.  Just to enlighten you all—all misguided leftist shills (yes, I know there are many people of Jewish extraction who are still tied to ANSWER and other
left/right nexus hangers-on) the dense population of the Gazan ghetto is of their own design.

Yasser Arafat exhorted the women to use their wombs as a weapon; they would soon overrun the area by simply out-producing Jews. Now there is an inspired, enlightened plan.  That advise given while Arafat was building up his fortune—handouts from well wishers—neted after he paid off his corrupted PA officals and military officers.  OMG!  The millions meant for infrastructure and hospitals, et al. went to enrich those high on the Palestinian food chain. 

Who did I hear say Abu Abbas was a member of the
venal Black September squad, notable for hijacking an Italian cruise ship and pushing a Jewish man in a wheelchair into the Mediterranean sea?...lovely fellows.  Now was that before or after multible airline hijackings?  Or before or after the Munich Olympic massacre of Israeli athletes in 1972?  My memory is fuzzy on some details. 

The Palestinians may have many citizens who are peaceful but not enough to throw out the corrupted and vicious leaders who have led them down the path to ruin.  Are the Israelis any better?

I happen to think so, with a few exceptions.  They do allow citizens religious freedom; they do allow
Arab representation in government; they do not swath women in shrouds and condemn them to death for minor infractions; they do not teach toddlers to hate systematically and dress them in military fatigues with mock bombs strapped to tiny bodies or begin to instruct them in military maneuvers before they enter kindergarten.

You want pictures of what Israel is dealing with?
Google “Radical Children” and see it in living color. IF, Google has not been instructed to take down those clips by now at the behest of American-Islamists who hold the OIL trump card.

I suggest, ladies and gentlemen, who have no compunction about citing me and other free thinkers—
who will not be cowed by threats and harassment—for ignorance, bias, bigotry and racism, that you are living in a world of illusion.  For whatever your reasons.  I have always supported the underdog.  I have at times belonged to most every progressive help organization in the country; I have contributed to any number of charities, regardless of race or religion and will continue to do so.  You won’t change my mind and I won’t change my priorities.

When the Muslim communities recognize Israel’s right to exist and make an effort to live in peace, put away the guns, I will give them my most wholehearted well wishes.  Until then, I back the Jewish homeland in their struggle.  I have gained nothing by my choice except my own self-respect.  If that puts your britches in a tight bunch, tough cookies!

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By geronimo, January 28, 2009 at 7:12 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

What Do Gaza & Sabra And Shatila Have In Common?

“Corpses lying in the alleyways, rubble everywhere and the stench of sewage in the streets.”

“Anything else?”

“The same culprit.”

“Namely?”

“Israel, with U.S. backing.”

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By Shingo, January 28, 2009 at 7:00 pm Link to this comment

Thanks for raising the report from Human rights watch Ed.

I fact, a US army report, based on interviews with Israeli soldiers, concluded that there was no systematic reporting of Hazbollah using civilians in a combat zone as shields.

This is clearly one of the main reasons for the Israeli military blocking reporters from entering Gaza.  they didn’t want these inconvenient truths to merge.

Poor Marilyn is clearly ignorant of these realities.

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By Ed Harges, January 28, 2009 at 6:38 pm Link to this comment

Marilyn A.F writes:

“They hid behind their women and children; what sort of man does that?”

This is one of the Zionists’ favorite lies, to justify their deliberate slaughter and destruction of whole neighborhoods and families. Israel was pushing the same lie about Hezbollah after their 2006 orgy of destruction in Lebanon.

Well, Marilyn, Human Rights Watch did a study (Human Rights Watch, Why They Died: Civilian casualties in Lebanon during the 2006 war [New York: 2007]), and you know what they found? This:

“...in all but a few of the cases of civilian deaths we investigated, Hezbollah fighters had not mixed with the civilian population or taken other actions to contribute to the targeting of a particular home or vehicle by Israeli forces.”

(Oh, and Marilyn - don’t try making demographic claims about yourself to score some cheap credibility (“Well, I’m gay, and I happen to believe that gay people should not be allowed to teach in our schools…”. ). You know, it’s so easy to lie about that in a forum like this, and it kind of raises a red flag when you start out with that sort of thing. A very fishy red flag.)

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By sacred cow, January 28, 2009 at 4:46 pm Link to this comment

By Marilyn A.F., January 28 at 2:38 pm #
(Unregistered commenter)

“Gee, I am not Jewish and no longer a Democrat (now a proud indy); I am fairly well-educated on current events, as well as the history of Israel’s coming of age.” 

How special you are - does your education of Israel’s “coming of age” include the zionist lie “a land without a people and a people without a land”? Or the first terrorist campaign in the Mid East - the targeted bombing of Brits at the King David Hotel by zionist terror squads? Or how about the Israeli stern and irgun terrorist squads that drove Palestinians from their land and to which current Israeli Foreign Affairs minister Tzipi Livni claims ascendancy through her father? How about the attack on the US intelligence ship Liberty carried out to conceal the truth that Israel started the ‘67 war with Egypt? Spying on America? 

George Orwell tried to warn you ... Your racial and cultural presumptions about Muslims are evidence of your successful indoctrination - like the nazis, you march in lockstep with previous non-individuals unable to think for themselves who practiced their hatred on the “savages” that often saved early Americans from themselves, or the “nigger”, the “Hun”, the “Jap”, the “gook” and now the “islamo-fascist”.

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By diamond, January 28, 2009 at 4:44 pm Link to this comment

Marilyn A.F. you are not an independent thinker, as you try to portray yourself. You simply don’t give equal weight to the rights of the Palestinians. You believe in ‘Israel first, last and every time’ which is how the mess in the Middle East was created in the first place. What you don’t seem to be able to grasp is that you can only stand on people’s necks for so long, and when they finally get out from under your jackboot -watch out! That’s the message being carried by the rockets but Israel is blind and deaf to it. A parent who beats a child into submission and rules it by fear will get a nasty suprise when that child gets big enough to punch back. Israel simply cannot go on dominating the region by fear and violence. It is a short term solution to a long term problem. America has found this out in Iraq and Afghanistan: the Israeli tactics America adopted, of torture, unjust imprisonment and the use of murder as a method of social control don’t work. They have failed all through history and they will fail Israel too. I learned this in grade three when I read the story of William Tell. Where have you been?

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By Shingo, January 28, 2009 at 4:36 pm Link to this comment

Marilyn A.F

part 2 of 2

>> They are not victims as much of Israel expansionism as of Arab intransigence.

Really?  So how do you explain the fact that Israel are still blockading Gaza. and controlling land, sea and air access to it?

how do you explain the fact that settlements in the West Bank continue to expand, and with Israeli government support?

>> We in the U.S. had best tend to our own welfare and stop bashing Israel for fighting against a movement bent on stealth conquest of democratic societies.

Excellent idea. Let’s tend to our own welfare and also stop sending Israel billions in aid and arms too shall we?

>> I suggest you read up on what is happening in Europe and other areas where militant Islam is allowed to flourish.

Very little in fact.  The myth that militant Islam is flourishing in Europe is far mongering.  What is happening is that Muslims around the world are being radicalized by US foreign policy and Israel’s genocial behavior.

>> Britain has lost control of its courts, allowing
murder in Muslim communities to be judged by Islamic codes

Rubbish.  All that has happened, is that some Muslims have asked that divorces be handled according to Sharia law.  This is optional for Muslims couples who wish to use this option.  This has been the status quo for the Jewish community for decades.

>> Fatwas are issued routinely.

Rubbish.  They are rare and outlawed throughout Europe.

>> demand Hamas recognize Israel and make peace with a two-state solution.

They already did in 2006.  Now what?

>> If Israel then fails to honor the commitment, I will also judge their lapses.

They have and you haven’t. 

>>> The Arabs seldom honor their own laws, except when it is politically expedient, much less international rules.

Racist , ignorant bile.

>> Hamas can now sit back and wait for the next billion-dollar aid package to rebuild what they have with intent essentially destroyed.

That’s like saying the Jews asked for the Holocaust.

>> They hid behind their women and children; what sort of man does that?

The had nowhere to hide you ignoramus.  Gaza is he most densely populated region in the world and what’s more it is walled in - it is an open air prison.

And explain how white phosphorous bombs are suppose to distinguish between Hamas, women and children?

BTW.  It appears that IDF soldiers shot Palestinians children carrying white flags.  I guess that Hamas are to blame for that too?

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By Shingo, January 28, 2009 at 4:35 pm Link to this comment

Marilyn A.F

part 1 of 2

Not only are you a bigot, but a very ignorant one.

>> Hamas, Hizbollah, the Islamists worldwide must recognize Israel’s right to exist.  Come to the table with 21st century enlightenment.

They did this 6 years ago.  The League of Arab nations offered to recognize Israel as per the 1967 borders.  Hams signed this agreement. Israel rejected it.

>> Israel is a viable, modern, self-sustaining state. 

That has yet to be proven.  Israel remains the worlds larget recipient of aid and has been since 1967.

>> Palestine is not, as tribal groups never agreed to partition after two world wars. 

The reason Palestine is not viable is because:

a) it does not exist
b) it used to exist, until Israel divided it, stole from it and broke it up into no contiguous enclaves.
c) Israel controls the air, land and sea of Gaza and the West Bank.
d) in 2008 at he UN, the US and Israel voted against allowing the Palestinians autonomy and self-determination

>> If Israel were to leave the Holy Land tomorrow, internecine war would ensue between Hamas and Fatah or whatever group might rise up in the wake of total anarchy.

Wrong again.  Before the Israeli siege on Gaza, Hamas and Fatah were about to hold talks about forming a unity government.  They tried to do that in 2006 also, but the Us and Israel blocked those talks and fomented a coup against Hamas.

Israel’s greatest fear is a united Palestinians government, because they would be forced to negotiate with them - ie. give up the West Bank.

>> Hizbollah could conceivably invade and assume title.

Wrong. Hizbollah are a Lebanese nationalist movement who’s concerns are in Lebanon.

>> They cannot throw off medieval culture and break the bonds of serfdom. I don’t have to enumerate the status of women and children under Shariah Law.

The percentage of women and children under Shariah Law in the Muslim world is a tiny minority. You display ignorance of eh subject.

>>> Israel is dealing with people who want it both ways.

Wrong again.  In 2006, Hams voiced their support for a 2 state solution.  Israel rejected the offer.  The reason being that it would mean giving up the West Bank. It is Israel who want it both ways.

>> Rockets and suicide bombings are just as lethal as sophisticated arms in intent, if not delivery.

If that were true, then the ratio of Paletinians killed to Israelis would not be 350:1.

>> Hamas will use a lull in fighting to restock its
arsenal with guns and rockets smuggled in through
tunnels between Gaza and Egypt

So what?  Israel continue to be armed.  Why shouldn’t Hamas, who are the democratically elected governmnt?

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PatrickHenry's avatar

By PatrickHenry, January 28, 2009 at 4:16 pm Link to this comment

By Marilyn A.F., January 28 at 2:38 pm #

“They hid behind their women and children; what sort of man does that?”

Fortunately not the same kind which bombs women and children.

Your a zionist, being a jew has nothing to do with anything.

Maybe Israel should recognize Hamas right to exist as the democratically elected party at the head of government there.

If Hamas is using this opportunity to restock their arnaments I suggest more effective anti-air and anti-armor weapons, the ones they currenty use suck.

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By Nozferatu, January 28, 2009 at 3:44 pm Link to this comment

Finkelstein rocks…I love this guy.

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By Marilyn A.F., January 28, 2009 at 3:38 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Gee, I am not Jewish and no longer a Democrat (now a proud indy); I am fairly well-educated on current events, as well as the history of Israel’s coming of age.  But I find myself a minority among minorities regard the Gazan intervention.  I am inclined to defend Israel.

In order to encompass all the pros and cons dealing with the above conflict, you would have to spend a lifetime researching, meditating and praying for divine wisdom.  No one, save a monk or recluse, would expend that much energy.  So let us just say
I have an opinion based on my own reading, my own
set of values, my own conclusions.

Hamas, Hizbollah, the Islamists worldwide must recognize Israel’s right to exist.  Come to the table with 21st century enlightenment.  Israel is a viable, modern, self-sustaining state.  Palestine is not, as tribal groups never agreed to partition after two world wars.  They still live in an essentially tribal construct.

If Israel were to leave the Holy Land tomorrow, internecine war would ensue between Hamas and Fatah or whatever group might rise up in the wake of total anarchy.  Hizbollah could conceivably invade and assume title.  And there goes the neighborhood.

That is my opinion. And Israel, for whatever her many deficiencies, has made an effort to engage modernity.  Islam, en masse, has not; sectarian cults are too fractionalized by their own skewed ideologies.  Only the Islamic countries that have embraced democracy to some extent know freedom of expression and movement.  There is a reason they
generally languish in social stagnation.  They cannot throw off medieval culture and break the bonds of serfdom. I don’t have to enumerate the status of women and children under Shariah Law.

That is not the fault of Westerners.  Israel is dealing with people who want it both ways.  And it is ironic why so many well-meaning leftists come automatically to their defense.  The double standard is applied daily to Palestinian misbehavior.  Rockets and suicide bombings are just as lethal as sophisticated arms in intent, if not delivery. 

Hamas will use a lull in fighting to restock its
arsenal with guns and rockets smuggled in through
tunnels between Gaza and Egypt; they are not being parachuted in via storks, contrary to many authors of pro-Hamas rhetoric.  They are not victims as much of Israel expansionism as of Arab intransigence.

That again, is cultural, not even so much a political position. And when you are living by enshrined religious zealotry, Lord help your opponent.  Suicide is inculcated within that doctrine. 

The left-leaning cover for the obvious is only lending fuel to bad behavior.  We in the U.S. had best tend to our own welfare and stop bashing Israel for fighting against a movement bent on stealth conquest of democratic societies.  I suggest you read up on what is happening in Europe and other areas where militant Islam is allowed to flourish.

Britain has lost control of its courts, allowing
murder in Muslim communities to be judged by Islamic codes, which dictates honor killings of “bad” women or the assassination of detractors of Islam’s undemocratic lifestyle.  Fatwas are issued routinely. (Research the film maker Van Gogh murder in the Netherlands a few years ago by an angry muslim extremist.)

Get to the crux of the problem or refrain from constant harping on Israeli atrocities; demand
Hamas recognize Israel and make peace with a two-
state solution.  If Israel then fails to honor the commitment, I will also judge their lapses.  The Arabs seldom honor their own laws, except when it is politically expedient, much less international rules. 

Hamas can now sit back and wait for the next billion-dollar aid package to rebuild what they have with intent essentially destroyed.  They hid behind their women and children; what sort of man does that?

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By Nozferatu, January 28, 2009 at 3:36 pm Link to this comment

Vancemack…you are right…for the longest time the bigots and haters have been on the jewish side.  For the longest time, we’ve had to endure the lies and nonsense they’ve been feeding us through their channels.

So it’s no wonder people are sick of it and frustrated.

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By Nozferatu, January 28, 2009 at 3:35 pm Link to this comment

Laura…

I think you got owned…so I won’t go into it too much…and your pathetic picture what border people go through in Israel…who shouldn’t be there in the first place.

Hmmmm…I think living in Gaza is just “slightly” worse.  A lot more dead bodies…very children going to school, no bomb shelters, very little work, and the fear of some IDF tool coming over the border to demolish their homes.

Get a grip of reality…you’re delusional.

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PatrickHenry's avatar

By PatrickHenry, January 28, 2009 at 3:05 pm Link to this comment

More evidence of the callous disregard for life Israeli warfighters have against a largely unarmed populace.

http://www.amnesty.org/en/news-and-updates/news/israeli-army-used-flechettes-against-gaza-civilians-20090127

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Robert's avatar

By Robert, January 28, 2009 at 3:03 pm Link to this comment

Finkelstein in Toronto: “Bernie M. Farber of the Canadian Jewish Congress was very upset by what’s going on… what upset Mr. Farber? He said he saw burning Israeli flags at a demonstration. But the burning flesh of Palestinian children, incinerated by the white phosphorus, that doesn’t upset the [Chief Executive Officer] of the Canadian Jewish Congress?”

University of Toronto at Mississauga

01.12.09 | YouTube.com
By atrofimo

http://www.normanfinkelstein.com/article.php?pg=11&ar=2613

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By sacred cow, January 28, 2009 at 1:41 pm Link to this comment

“Laurie Darling” (a tribute to Larry McMurtry and his masterpiece “Lonesome Dove”) ... maybe you should take a few moments and read some recent offerings from courageous American Jews who will tell the truth about Israel’s human rights violations in what was once the Palestinian Homeland. Try Henry Siegman’s “Israel Lies” or Norman Finkelstein’s brief history of Israel aggression in today’s Counterpunch tableau. Fellow truthdiggers like Shingo and Ed Harges are exactly right - Finkelstein, whose parents survived the Nazi terror, makes the very same point as they that Israel is the actor that has prevented and is not interested in any kind of peace - it would derail their intention to grab more land, build more settlements, etc. It is the big lie in America that the Palestinians are portrayed as the terrorists when in fact it is the Israei’s ... thus all the chatter about who controls our media!

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By Shingo, January 28, 2009 at 1:14 pm Link to this comment

Laura Schneider,

First, the press ain’t liberal.  If they were, Bush 41 would never have gotten into the WH and we would never have been lied intothe Iraq war.

Hamas controls NO access to the territory. Israel does.  It was Israel, who vilated the rulings of it’s own supreme sourt, and prevented journalists from entering Gaza, not Hamas.

Hte only information coming out of the territories was state sanctioned Isreli propaghanda.  Jouralists had to accept what they were told.  The victimization of Palestinainsn is not a myth, it has been a reality since 1948.

>> The Palestinian people have had a number of opportunities to resolve the conflict. 

False, but go on.

>> Israel has given back land won during several wars and settled by Israelis, uprooting the settlers at Israel’s expense. 

False on all fronts. Israel has not given back the West Bank, which it agreed o at Camp David, and it blockaded Gaza since 2005.

The expense was met by foreign donors and as always, the US. Al Settlers received very generous compensation.

The greenhouses wre almost entirely destroyed byuteh settlers as they left, even though they were paid to leave them in tact.

Hamas, the same Hamas that Israel helped to create, are now the democraticalyl elected government, so yes, they run.  Isrel continues to ccupy and control the West Bank, with Abbas as it’s puppet. 

>>> They will only be happy if Israel ceases to exist.

Wring again.  Since 2006, Hamas has repeatedly called for a 2 state solution.

The reality, is that Israel does not want a partner for peace.  It will do what it can to prolong negotiations until it gets exactly what it wants.

If no one seems to be fretting over all the bombs Hamas lobs at Israel daily, it’s becasue less than 2 people a year aer killed by these bombs, whereas in the West Bank alone, 400 Palestinians were killed last year.

Israel have alwyas chosen land over peace. The rockets (not bombs) are comming becasue Israel refuses to abode by international law and lift the blockade - which is an act of war.

>> What about the Israeli children who live in fear?  No one seems to care about them.

Not even the Israelis it seems.  What was that quote from Bill Clinton again?

>> Save the outrage for true victims, like the people in Darfur.

Why do Zionist all point to Darfur every time Israel commits a slaughter fo Arabs?

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By Ed Harges, January 28, 2009 at 1:05 pm Link to this comment

re: By Laura Schneider, January 28 at 10:54 am #

Laura Writes:

I suggest YOU plant YOUR ass in Israel in one of the border towns.  Perhaps you might feel differently when a Hamas rocket (supplied most likely by Iranian funding) lands in YOUR living room or YOUR child’s school.  Or maybe a few weeks spent running to and from a bomb shelter while trying to carry on work, school and life might change your perspective….

Laura, honey, this is Truthdig. We know stuff. We’re not the audience you may be used to encountering. We’re not your usual American liberal shaygetz fools who know only what the New York times tells us, who will just accept your propaganda about poor dear gentle enlightened Israel inexplicably hated by the Palestinians. That breed of liberal is vanishing fast. If you’re looking for sentimental ignorant goyim who can believe your crap, you’re soon going to be pretty much down to the Christian Zionists in Tennessee and Arkansas. Even the politicians are now only pretending to believe you.

So anyway, Laura dear: Hamas did halt its rocket fire. It observed the June ceasefire for several months. But Israel never honored its end of the ceasefire agreement, which required for example that the blockade be ended.

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By sacred cow, January 28, 2009 at 12:37 pm Link to this comment

Laura Schneider ... more of Jeffrey Blankfort’s list

STEPHEN SPIELBERG, co-owner of Dreamworks
JEFFREY KATZENBERG, co-owner of Dreamworks
DAVID GEFFEN, co-owner of Dreamworks
LLYOD BRAUN, chair of ABC Entertainment
JORDAN LEVIN, president of Warner Bros. Entertainment
MAX MUTCHNICK, co-executive producer of NBC’s “Good Morning Miami”
DAVID KOHAN, co-executive producer of NBC’s “Good Morning Miami”
HOWARD STRINGER, chief of Sony Corp. of America
AMY PASCAL, chair of Columbia Pictures
JOEL KLEIN, chair and CEO of Bertelsmann’s American operations
ROBERT SILLERMAN, founder of Clear Channel Communications
BRIAN GRADEN, president of MTV entertainment
IVAN SEIDENBERG, CEO of Verizon Communications
WOLF BLITZER, host of CNN’s Late Edition
LARRY KING, host of Larry King Live
TED KOPPEL, host of ABC’s Nightline
ANDREA KOPPEL, CNN Reporter
PAULA ZAHN, CNN Host
MIKE WALLACE, Host of CBS, 60 Minutes
BARBARA WALTERS, Host, ABC’s 20-20
.
MICHAEL LEDEEN, editor of National Review
BRUCE NUSSBAUM, editorial page editor, Business Week
DONALD GRAHAM, Chair and CEO of Newsweek and Washington Post, son
of
CATHERINE GRAHAM MEYER, former owner of the Washington Post
HOWARD FINEMAN, Chief Political Columnist, Newsweek
WILLIAM KRISTOL, Editor, Weekly Standard, Exec. Director Project for
a New American Century
RON ROSENTHAL, Managing Editor, San Francisco Chronicle
PHIL BRONSTEIN, Executive Editor, San Francisco Chronicle,
RON OWENS, Talk Show Host, KGO (ABC-Capitol Cities, San Francisco)
JOHN ROTHMAN, Talk Show Host, KGO (ABC-Capitol Cities, San Francisco)
MICHAEL SAVAGE, Talk Show Host, KFSO (ABC-Capitol Cities, San Francisco) Syndicated in 100 markets
MICHAEL MEDVED, Talk Show Host, on 124 AM stations
DENNIS PRAGER, Talk Show Host, nationally syndicated from LA. Has Israeli flag on his home page.
BEN WATTENBERG, Moderator, PBS Think Tank.
ANDREW LACK, president of NBC
DANIEL MENAKER, Executive Director, Harper Collins
DAVID REZNIK, Editor, The New Yorker
NICHOLAS LEHMANN, writer, the New York
HENRICK HERTZBERG, Talk of the Town editor, The New Yorker
SAMUEL NEWHOUSE JR, and DONALD NEWHOUSE own Newhouse Publications, includes 26 newspapers in 22 cities; the Conde Nast magazine group, includes The New Yorker; Parade, the Sunday newspaper supplement; American City Business Journals, business newspapers published in more than 30 major cities in America; and interests in cable television programming and cable systems serving 1 million homes.
DONALD NEWHOUSE, chairman of the board of directors, Associated Press.
PETER R KANN, CEO, Wall Street Journal, Barron’s
RALPH J. & BRIAN ROBERTS, Owners, Comcast-ATT Cable TV.
LAWRENCE KIRSHBAUM, CEO, AOL-Time Warner Book Group

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By sacred cow, January 28, 2009 at 12:34 pm Link to this comment

Jeffrey Blankfort is a Jewish American- not that it should matter. This list shall be posted in two segments because it exceeds the limit of 4000 words allowed in these posts.

JEWS IN THE MEDIA 4.3.3
Compiled by Jeffrey Blankfort

MORTIMER ZUCKERMAN, owner of NY Daily News, US News & World Report and chair of the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish American Organizations, one of the largest pro-Israel lobbying groups.
LESLIE MOONVES, president of CBS television, great-nephew of David Ben-Gurion, and co-chair with Norman Ornstein of the Advisory Committee on Public Interest Obligation of Digital TV Producers, appointed by Clinton.
JONATHAN MILLER, chair and CEO of AOL division of AOL-Time-Warner
NEIL SHAPIRO, president of NBC News
JEFF GASPIN, Executive Vice-President, Programming, NBC
DAVID WESTIN, president of ABC News
SUMNER REDSTONE, CEO of Viacom, “world’s biggest media giant” (Economist, 11/23/2) owns Viacom cable, CBS and MTVs all over the world, Blockbuster video rentals and Black Entertainment TV.
MICHAEL EISNER, major owner of Walt Disney, Capitol Cities, ABC.
RUPERT MURDOCH, Owner Fox TV, New York Post, London Times, News of the World (Jewish mother)
MEL KARMAZIN, president of CBS
DON HEWITT, Exec. Director, 60 Minutes, CBS
JEFF FAGER, Exec. Director, 60 Minutes II. CBS
DAVID POLTRACK, Executive Vice-President, Research and Planning, CBS
SANDY KRUSHOW, Chair, Fox Entertainment
LLOYD BRAUN, Chair, ABC Entertainment
BARRY MEYER, chair, Warner Bros.
SHERRY LANSING. President of Paramount Communications and Chairman of Paramount Pictures’ Motion Picture Group.
HARVEY WEINSTEIN, CEO. Miramax Films.
BRAD SIEGEL., President, Turner Entertainment.
PETER CHERNIN, second in-command at Rupert Murdoch’s News. Corp., owner of Fox TV
MARTY PERETZ, owner and publisher of the New Republic, which openly identifies itself as pro-Israel. Al Gore credits Marty with being his “mentor.”
ARTHUR O. SULZBERGER, JR., publisher of the NY Times, the Boston Globe and other publications.
WILLIAM SAFIRE, syndicated columnist for the NYT.
TOM FRIEDMAN, syndicated columnist for the NYT.
CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER, syndicated columnist for the Washington Post. Honored by Honest Reporting.com, website monitoring “anti-Israel media.”
RICHARD COHEN, syndicated columnist for the Washington Post
JEFF JACOBY, syndicated columnist for the Boston Globe
NORMAN ORNSTEIN, American Enterprise Inst., regular columnist for USA Today, news analyst for CBS, and co-chair with Leslie Moonves of the Advisory Committee on Public Interest Obligation of Digital TV Producers, appointed by Clinton.
ARIE FLEISCHER, Dubya’s press secretary.
STEPHEN EMERSON, every media outlet’s first choice as an expert on domestic terrorism.
DAVID SCHNEIDERMAN, owner of the Village Voice and the New Times network of “alternative weeklies.”
DENNIS LEIBOWITZ, head of Act II Partners, a media hedge fund
KENNETH POLLACK, for CIA analysts, director of Saban Center for Middle East Policy, writes op-eds in NY Times, New Yorker
BARRY DILLER, chair of USA Interactive, former owner of Universal Entertainment
KENNETH ROTH, Executive Director of Human Rights Watch
RICHARD LEIBNER, runs the N.S. Bienstock talent agency, which represents 600 news personalities such as Dan Rather, Dianne Sawyer and Bill O’Reilly.
TERRY SEMEL, CEO, Yahoo, former chair, Warner Bros.
MARK GOLIN, VP and Creative Director, AOL
WARREN LIEBERFORD, Pres., Warner Bros. Home Video Div. of AOL- TimeWarner
JEFFREY ZUCKER, President of NBC Entertainment
JACK MYERS, NBC, chief….NYT 5.14.2
SANDY GRUSHOW, chair of Fox Entertainment
GAIL BERMAN, president of Fox Entertainment

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By sacred cow, January 28, 2009 at 12:28 pm Link to this comment

Laura Schneider, something for you to consider (part 2 will follow)(by the way, Dr. Lillienthal is Jewish - not that it should matter):

Dr Alfred Lilienthal courageously published his book The Zionist Connection back in 1978, outlining the record of major Israeli human rights violations and ascribing the problem to Zionist media and political control in the US. Here are a few brief excerpts:
‘One-sided reportage on terrorism, in which cause is never related to effect, was assured because the most effective component of the Jewish connection is probably that of media control. It is well known that American public opinion molders have long been largely influenced by a handful of powerful newspapers, including the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the St Louis Post-Dispatch – owned respectively by the Sulzbergers, Eugene Meyer and now his daughter Katherine Graham (half-Jewish, who also owns Newsweek), and the Pulitzers, a Hungarian Jewish family. ‘Walter Annenberg, who served as Nixon’s ambassador to Britain, owned the Philadelphia Enquirer, The Morning Telegraph, Seventeen, and TV Guide as well as several television stations. Samuel Newhouse, of Jewish background, owns some forty-nine newspapers, including the influential Newsday on Long Island, four television stations, a number of radio stations and a cluster of vital magazines, including Vogue, Glamour, Mademoiselle and House and Garden.
‘Other newspapers, not Jewish-owned, have top editors, directors and advertising chiefs who are Jewish. All the leading magazines, ranging from Commentary, Esquire, Ladies Home Journal, New York Review of Books, New Yorker and US News and World Report have Jews in key positions as publishers, editors, or managing editors. These people at very least have the veto power over what appears in their publications. No one is about to take Israel to task - for fear of being out of line with the boss’
Much has happened in the more than twenty years since Alfred Lilienthal wrote about the situation.  The big three in television broadcasting used to be ABC, CBS and NBC. Each was controlled by a Jew since its inception: ABC by Leonard Goldenson; NBC by the Sarnoffs, David and Robert; and CBS by William Paley and then by Laurence Tisch.
The largest media conglomerate today is AOL Time Warner. The Time Warner half of this combination has until recently been run by Gerald Levin, and it is not surprising that the editor-in chief of Time is Norman Pearlstine (have a look yourself) and the managing editor is Walter Isaacson. Levin bought CNN from Ted Turner. HBO, the country’s largest pay-TV cable network, is a subsidiary of Time Warner.
The second-largest media conglomerate is Walt Disney. Its chairman and CEO is Michael Eisner, a Jewish ‘control freak’. Joseph E Roth, a Jew, heads Walt Disney Studios. Disney owns Miramax Films, headed by the Weinstein brothers. Eisner also acquired control of ABC TV network.
Number three media conglomerate is Viacom headed by Sumner Redstone (born Murray Rothstein) who owns 76% of the shares. Viacom is the world’s largest provider of cable programming and it produces and distributes TV programmes for the three largest TV networks. Viacom owns some of the largest book publishers in the US.
Dream Works, formed by Steven Spielberg, David Geffen and Jeffrey Katzenberg, produces movies, animated films, TV programmes and recorded music.

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By vancemack, January 28, 2009 at 12:23 pm Link to this comment

Since the facts seem to matter not at all to the bigots and jew haters on this posting (hey! look…the ‘zionist’ can call names too!!! Ha! Ya morons!), I’ll just point out the OH so glaringly obvious.

The name of the site is TRUTHDIG. That name implies a willingness to examine BOTH sides, to assess BOTH sides, to look both at the black, the white, and also the varying shades of gray, and then assess historical fact and relevance. THAT is the job of a journalist.

I AGREE that the media is slanted and biased tho I truly wonder if ANYONE here really reads the media reports that they decry (example…the NUMEROUS main stream media attacks against Israel that apparently the bigots here arent bothering to read.

The writers on this site are ALSO slanted. Now…if instead if stating TRUTH they simply said “the anti Israel point of view”, THAT would be the ‘truth.’ Unfortunately truth and facts dont seem to concern the bigots and jew haters (say…this is kind of fun this name calling thing).

Like Israel, dont like Israel…its immaterial. The fact of the matter is that for whatever reason, the UN in 1948 reestablished Jewish control over the land now known as Israel. They fight today as they have fought since biblical times.

Go look out your window. You can probably see further from wherever you are than the borders of Israel exist. Contrary to the lies stated here in the article, the Palestinian attacks on Israel have NEVER stopped (I have posted something like 8 pages of documented attacks from January to december of 2008). While there are people on both sides that DO want peace, there are far more that will insist that shall NEVER be peace and they will do everything in their power to ensure it.

Until there is an effective plan for peace, the two sides will fight. Thats a given.

Ive reviewed the articles on this website and strange…I dont see a plethora of articles condemning Palestine, Lebanon, or Iran. That…you disgusting bigots and jew haters (hey do you hate ALL ethnic minorities or are you selective in your hatred?) is called Bias.

Oh…but it is a FAMILIAR bias. You dont see people going to Muslim countries and protesting against Al Qaida and other extremist Muslim groups as they slaughter innocent and unarmed men, women and children. Why is that they protests are reserved for America? Could it be that for from letting you vent your impotent rage they would take you, demonstrate what torture was REALLY all about, and then chant glorious praise to Allah while they methodically severe your head from your shoulders?

You are the same idiots that glorify Castro, Chavez, and Che. You claim an erosion of your freedoms of speech…usually at vast rallies with people getting PAID to vent their hatred…and then applaud the progressive leadership of Chavez.

In a word…laughable. Well…another word….disgusting.

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By Laura Schneider, January 28, 2009 at 11:54 am Link to this comment

The Jews in entertainment do not control journalism, the corporations that own the media broadcasting (like GE) do, and they will do what is good for business, not what they think is right.

As for victims, the Palestinians are victims of their own design.  They continue to elect and support Islamic extremists like Hamas.  If they didn’t bomb Israel daily, Israel would not be retaliating in defense.

I suggest YOU plant YOUR ass in Israel in one of the border towns.  Perhaps you might feel differently when a Hamas rocket (supplied most likely by Iranian funding) lands in YOUR living room or YOUR child’s school.  Or maybe a few weeks spent running to and from a bomb shelter while trying to carry on work, school and life might change your perspective….

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Robert's avatar

By Robert, January 28, 2009 at 11:45 am Link to this comment

By blutenhalbmond, January 28 at 6:49 am #
(Unregistered commenter)

Robert,

You write that “Rachel Corrie was the first US citizen to fall victim to Israel’s indiscriminate lethal force…” But doesn’t that honour belong to the naval personnel of the USS Liberty?

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

blutenhalbmond,

You are absolutely correct; I have overlooked that tragic event. Thank you for reminding me.

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By Nozferatu, January 28, 2009 at 11:45 am Link to this comment

““The liberal press (and this is coming from a moderate Democrat) has been hoodwinked by the clever Islamic extremists once again. “”

OMG…that has to be the most retarded thing I’ve read all day….thanks so much for the laugh. LOL

Honestly I didn’t know all those jewish names in entertainment….Goldberg, Seinfeld, David, Cohen, Bacall, Shatner, Spielberg, etc etc etc etc etc…a mile long…all making millions…were working for Islamic extremists….

Really Laura Schneider, you should tell us these things before we make such bold accusations.

Well..if you don’t think Palestinians are victims, then I suggest you go plant your ass in Gaza and enjoy the shelling.  Let us know how that goes.

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By Laura Schneider, January 28, 2009 at 11:24 am Link to this comment

The liberal press (and this is coming from a moderate Democrat) has been hoodwinked by the clever Islamic extremists once again.  Hamas controls access to virtually all territory and all information coming out of the territories it controls.  It shows journalists what it wants them to see.  Islamic groups all over Europe and in America are capitalizing on Western “guilt” at their “plight.”  This victimization is largely a myth created by Islamic extremists in order to put political pressure on pro-Israel governments and organizations.

The reality is, and I think it was Bill Clinton who said it (please someone, if you know give the exact quote):

The israeli-Palestinian conflict will never be resolved so long as Palestinians choose their ideology over their children’s future.

The Palestinian people have had a number of opportunities to resolve the conflict.  Israel has given back land won during several wars and settled by Israelis, uprooting the settlers at Israel’s expense.  They left greenhouses in tact which could have provided food and income to the Palestinians, but the Palestinians CHOSE to destroy them instead, and now they whine about starvation and poor living conditions.  But it is never enough.  Islamic extremists, which (though Hamas is moreso and Fatah less so) run Gaza and the West Bank, for all practical purposes, will not be content to have their own country ADJACENT to Israel.  They will only be happy if Israel ceases to exist.

Given that reality, there is nothing Israel can do to resolve the conflict short of conquest.

No one seems to be fretting over all the bombs Hamas lobs at Israel daily, which has been going on for years now.  What about the Israeli children who live in fear?  No one seems to care about them.

Give me a break.  Save the outrage for true victims, like the people in Darfur.

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By Birch, January 28, 2009 at 9:47 am Link to this comment

If you would like to help the Palestinians recover from the devastation caused by the Israeli slaughter, you can do so at the following link:

??http://www.dec.org.uk/??

It’s a UK coalition of humanitarian aid agencies.  You can donate with any valid US credit card.

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By sacred cow, January 28, 2009 at 9:38 am Link to this comment

Nozferatu said this:
“Mr. Hedges,
The American press isn’t gutless, it’s IN ON IT.  Why don’t you just admit once and for all that the jews have influence in media and entertainment? 
Why is this such a difficult thing to comprehend?
nozferatu”

Of course Nozferatu is correct ... everyone should read the work of Richard Blankfort, a courageos American Jew critical of zionism and willing to speak truth to power - his work is titled “Jewish control of the media”. Ditto Alfred Lillienthal, who discusses the plan to control our media in his book “The Zionist Connection”.

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By Robert, January 28, 2009 at 9:07 am Link to this comment

January 28, 2009

Behind the Bloodbath in Gaza
Foiling Another Palestinian “Peace Offensive”

By NORMAN FINKELSTEIN

“Early speculation on the motive behind Israel’s slaughter in Gaza that began on 27 December 2008 and continued till 18 January 2009 centered on the upcoming elections in Israel.  The jockeying for votes was no doubt a factor in this Sparta-like society consumed by “revenge and the thirst for blood,” where killing Arabs is a sure crowd-pleaser.  (Polls during the war showed that 80-90 percent of Israeli Jews supported it.)  But as Israeli journalist Gideon Levy pointed out on Democracy Now!, “Israel went through a very similar war…two-and-a-half years ago [in Lebanon], when there were no elections.”  When crucial state interests are at stake, Israeli ruling elites seldom launch major operations for narrowly electoral gains.  It is true that Prime Minister Menachem Begin’s decision to bomb the Iraqi OSIRAK reactor in 1981 was an electoral ploy, but the strategic stakes in the strike on Iraq were puny; contrary to widespread belief, Saddam Hussein had not embarked on a nuclear weapons program prior to the bombing.  The fundamental motives behind the latest Israeli attack on Gaza lie elsewhere: (1) in the need to restore Israel’s “deterrence capacity,” and (2) in the threat posed by a new Palestinian “peace offensive.”

Israel’s “larger concern” in the current offensive, New York Times Middle East correspondent Ethan Bronner reported, quoting Israeli sources, was to “re-establish Israeli deterrence,” because “its enemies are less afraid of it than they once were, or should be.”  Preserving its deterrence capacity has always loomed large in Israeli strategic doctrine.  Indeed, it was the main impetus behind Israel’s first-strike against Egypt in June 1967 that resulted in Israel’s occupation of Gaza (and the West Bank).  To justify the onslaught on Gaza, Israeli historian Benny Morris wrote that “[m]any Israelis feel that the walls…are closing in…much as they felt in early June 1967.”  Ordinary Israelis no doubt felt threatened in June 1967, but—as Morris surely knows—the Israeli leadership experienced no such trepidation.  After Israel threatened and laid plans to attack Syria, Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser declared the Straits of Tiran closed to Israeli shipping, but Israel made almost no use of the Straits (apart from the passage of oil, of which Israel then had ample stocks) and, anyhow, Nasser did not in practice enforce the blockade, vessels passing freely through the Straits within days of his announcement.  In addition, multiple U.S. intelligence agencies had concluded that the Egyptians did not intend to attack Israel and that, in the improbable case that they did, alone or in concert with other Arab countries, Israel would—in President Lyndon Johnson’s words—“whip the hell out of them.”  The head of the Mossad told senior American officials on 1 June 1967 that “there were no differences between the U.S. and the Israelis on the military intelligence picture or its interpretation.”  The predicament for Israel was rather the growing perception in the Arab world, spurred by Nasser’s radical nationalism and climaxing in his defiant gestures in May 1967, that it would no longer have to follow Israeli orders.  Thus, Divisional Commander Ariel Sharon admonished those in the Israeli cabinet hesitant to launch a first-strike that Israel was losing its “deterrence capability…our main weapon—the fear of us.”  Israel unleashed the June 1967 war “to restore the credibility of Israeli deterrence” (Israeli strategic analyst Zeev Maoz)”

http://www.counterpunch.org/finkelstein01282009.html

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By Fadel Abdallah, January 28, 2009 at 8:48 am Link to this comment

To the ugly Zionists on Truthdig!

I challenge you to watch the following segment from the

CBS 60 Minutes Exposing Israeli Apartheid and its crimes and violations of basic human rights!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MYAgyv2MKyI&feature; =email

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By blutenhalbmond, January 28, 2009 at 7:49 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Robert,

You write that “Rachel Corrie was the first US citizen to fall victim to Israel’s indiscriminate lethal force…” But doesn’t that honour belong to the naval personnel of the USS Liberty?

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By marta, January 28, 2009 at 4:47 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

How can Obama say we are not your enemy to the Middle East, and continue the mlssile strikes in Pakistan, and killings in Afghanistan? The Bush Regime, Israel,and Britian were the Axis of Evil to eliminate as many Arabs as possible, because they stood in the way of the OIL PIPE LINE, except Israel, who want also all the land, and are determined to kill as many Palestinians, and other Arabs to get it. Land and Oil mean more than human lives. So now, is Obama continueing where Bush left off, by waging more attacks, and sending Billions to Israel???????????

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By cyrena, January 28, 2009 at 2:33 am Link to this comment

Robert…

“Rachel saw & witnessed Israel’s brutal policy. She was murdered in cold blood & yet most Americans are unaware of the real story.”

~~~

I would agree that most Americans are unaware of the real story of Rachel Corrie’s death, but I’m not one of them.

In fact, I’m very well aware of the cold blooded murders of others. However, *I* did not witness that particular atrocity myself, so I know as much as you do, and probably from the same sources.

So, addressing the crimes of Israel (ANY of them) with ME, is the same as preaching to a compliant choir. I already KNOW the deal. Believe it or not, this crises is older than me, and I’ve been to the battlefield area often enough to have a good idea of what the set-up is.

That said, it IS true that most Americans are unaware of this, so hopefully somebody gained some new information from your rant here. It’s impressive enough for those who didn’t know before hand.

I’m honestly not sure what you really expected the US to do, though theoretically, they should have called for an investigation into her death. But then, it’s Israel, and they already gave THEIR explanation. What did you REALLY expect the then US Administration to do? NOTHING. They didn’t say a damn thing to Israel about their treatment of Richard Falk last month either, when he was there as a UN Envoy, but traveling on a US passport, since he is a US citizen. They detained him for hours at the airport…did the standard enhanced interrogation, and the whole nine yards, and then expelled him. That was just before the start of the last massacre. Nobody from the former thug regime even mentioned it.

THIS IS ROUTINE SHIT for Israel!!!! WE KNOW THIS. It’s not like we haven’t seen 40 years worth of this behavior by Israel.

So OBVIOUSLY, Rachel was probably NOT the first American casualty, nor does it make a whole lot of difference that she happened to be American. It’s the hundreds of thousands of cold blooded murders that have come before hers that make us know the cancer that is Israel. We also know that little of the Israeli side of ANY story is ever anything close to the truth.

At the same time, common sense IS always helpful, and Rachel was as you say, a 23-year old student, and probably very idealistic. There would have been NO reason for her to think that IDF tanks would run her over. But there was EVERY reason for others of us to know that was a possibility, because they’ve DONE IT BEFORE.

So the brutality of the Israeli regime is not a matter for debate. We already know it.

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By A B Josef, January 28, 2009 at 1:07 am Link to this comment
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There are two fatal errors of fact and law in this article: Israel does not occupy Gaza. It does not permit the use of its territory for transport into or our out Gaza at times deemed proper by Israel.  That does not amount to occupation.  Egypt has a border crossing that it could open to its brother Arabs. Israel does control the sea border with Gaza. That also does not constitute occupation.  Proportionality in the laws of war has nothing what so ever to do with number of casualties or the technological superiority of one side.  Israel may properly make war on “Gaza” proportionate to what ever it takes to eliminate the risk of rockets continuing at any level.  The suppressed premise in this article is that proportionality requires that Israel limit itself to a defense that kills no more Arabs then Arabs killed Israelis. That is nonscense… As ridicules as to think that France, Germany, Russia, England or the USA would permit 6,000 rockets to be fired into their territory, killing civilians and destroying property and putting 10% of their population into bomb shelters for years without a response that prevented the threat from continuing. It would have been perfectly proper for Israel to make war until all of Gaza was empty after asking all noncombatants to leave the area.

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By Nozferatu, January 27, 2009 at 11:31 pm Link to this comment

Mr. Hedges,

The American press isn’t gutless, it’s IN ON IT.  Why don’t you just admit once and for all that the jews have influence in media and entertainment? 

Why is this such a difficult thing to comprehend?

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By colin2626262, January 27, 2009 at 11:27 pm Link to this comment

Hey, Chris

I read your articles every week.  I think this is one of the weaker ones you’ve written.  Anyone with a computer can look on the internet to get a glimpse of the reality of war.  Everyone knows what happened in Gaza.  It was a massacre of a civilian population.  The only points of contention are 1) Why did it happen? and 2) Who was responsible?

The first point is debated back and forth between supporters of Israel and supporters of the Palestinians.  The supporters of Israel say Hamas is a terrorist organization that needs to be destroyed because it threatens the lives of Israeli civilians.  The supporters of the Palestinians say Israel is to blame for imposing a blockade, reducing access to basic necessities and impoverishing the 1.5 million people in Gaza, who have a right to resist this oppression, which includes military incursions that target Palestinian militants but which also kill and maim civilians.

The second point is debated as well.  The supporters of Israel say Israelis want peace but the Palestinians don’t.  The supporters of the Palestinians say the Palestinians want peace but the Israelis don’t.  Therefore, the other side is always responsible for the flare-ups in violence, and there are numerous details that can be used to substantiate either side, depending on one’s perspective, whether it’s political, religious, historical, ideological, ethnic, moral, or any other point of view.

Taking these opposing sides into account, it’s hard to imagine why you’d be so focused on the media.  We have enough information as it is. 

Just to return to your last article about pacifism and Reinhold Niebuhr, I found out Barack Obama has said he learned a lot from reading Niebuhr.  This is the same Obama you and other people on the left love to denounce.  I’ve read your articles on Obama, who recently gave an interview geared toward the Arab and Muslim world, in which he said the U.S. hasn’t been perfect.  In Niebuhr’s terms, that’s a realistic outcome of our lives, since we’re subject to sin.  Why do you write articles attacking Obama and yet praise Obama’s “favorite philosopher,” Reinhold Niebuhr?  Aren’t you being a bit hypocritical?  Also, why are you denouncing Israel for going to war against the Palestinians?  They’re not pacifists.  What do you expect them to do?  Turn the other cheek?  You’re not a pacifist, so why are you writing articles condemning others for not being pacifists?

My intention isn’t malicious in asking these questions.  I simply don’t understand your motives.  It’s important for everyone who talks about faith in God to become like God, in other words, to become nonviolent, that is, a pacifist.  I would hope you might take my thoughts into consideration in perceptive writing you do, both in your books and articles.

Colin

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By Shingo, January 27, 2009 at 11:25 pm Link to this comment

Sepharad,

An intelligent person usually does some research and independent analysis before regurgitating propaganda and jingoistic platitudes.

The “death-loving fascists” you refer to:
a) in 2006, said they would support a 2 state solution
b) are signatories to the offer from the League of Arab States, which offers to recognize Israel as per the 1967 borders and normalize relations with Israel.

You seem to have missed another very important point.  Hamas became the democratically elected leaders in Gaza in 2006.  They don’t continue to push Palestinians, they are running the place with remarklable success given the blockade that has been imposed on them for the past 18 months.

In the summer of 2003, Hamas undertook a unilateral ceasefire, while Israel continued to murder and kidnap Palestinians from Gaza.

If you were intelligent, you would know by now that Hamas did NOT provoke Israel into a response.  It was Israel who a) refused to lift the blockade on Gazza as per the June 2008 agreement (thereby violating the terms of the ceasfire) and b) who violated the ceasefire on November 4th, with their attack on the Gazan’s side of the border.

How many links will it require to prove this to you?

Erdogan: Israel broke 6-month truce
http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1232643740818&pagename=JPost/JPArticle/ShowFull

Israel rejected an offer by Hamas to renew the ceasefire agreement in December.
http://www.ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=45350

If you were intelligent, you would know this.

Please enlighten us on what “media” has been cowed to Hamas the benefit of the doubt?

The media, as you put it, having been banned from entering Gaza by Isral, did nothing but repeat Israeli propaganda thoughout the entire conflict. So much for being cowed.

Israel didn’t prescision bomb.  Since when did white phosphorous bombs and anti-personnel weapons designed to penetrate dense vegetation like flechettes, qualify as precision weapons?

http://www.amnesty.org/en/news-and-updates/news/israeli-army-used-flechettes-against-gaza-civilians-20090127

More than half of those killed were civilians.  A third were children.  There was no precision.  This was a slaughter against an urban population who had nowhere to hide.

Even Shimon Perez boasted that the aim was to inflict pain on the Gazan’s - NOT Hamas, but the population of Gaza.

Iran’s Shiia regime does not dominate in Gaza.  Hamas as Sunni.

In intelligent person would know that too.

>> Need to go to sleep.

Yes. Do.  You clearly need it.

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By Robert, January 27, 2009 at 10:29 pm Link to this comment

By cyrena, January 27 at 2:03 pm #

“Now of course soldiers aren’t supposed to be psycho OR prone to panic, and of course we know they aren’t supposed to kill and/or injure CIVILIANS either. So yeah, these soldiers should be tried for her Rachel’s death, but that’s only the tip of the iceberg. Just as all of the ‘details’ of Rachel’s death have probably not come out, there are thousands upon thousands of others still under Israel’s torture boot heel, and nobody ever hears about them, outside of the institution that Israel has set-up for them.”

********

cyrena,


Rachel Corrie, a 23-year-old student from Olympia, Washington, was murdered while attempting to prevent an Israeli army bulldozer from demolishing a Palestinian home near the southern Gaza city of Rafah. Despite being dressed in a bright colored orange vest, with reflective stripes, and carrying a bullhorn in broad daylight, Israel claimed the IDF soldier driving a 52 ton D-9 bulldozer “could not see” his victim, as he mercilessly crushed her.

When photographs emerged clearly depicting this horrific crime, the Israeli military immediately accused Rachel Corrie of being “irresponsible”, as though this justified deliberate death.

Rachel Corrie was the first US citizen to fall victim to Israel’s indiscriminate lethal force; her death remains ruled as an accident, without any objections from the US government. In fact, the perpetuation of the most brutal (and last remaining) military occupation in history “enjoys” the cover of impunity provided by its strategic alliance with the US, which has produced an alarming formula for lawlessness, radicalization, violence, genocide and destabilization in the region.

And so, it is with the blessings of the US that Corrie’s IDF killer walked away scott-free. As Israeli tanks roll through Palestinian villages, towns, and refugee camps; as Apache gunships, F-16, F-18, Tanks shell homes and assassinate their human targets; as Palestinian land is stolen and Israeli settlements are expanding; as Israeli prisons swell with well over 10,000 Palestinians and the separation “Apartheid” wall turns all Palestinian areas into prisons and isolation cells; for the last 8 years Washington turned a blind eye.

Rachel Corrie came to the Palestinian territory armed with only her humanity. She believed in non-violent resistance and paid for it with her own life. While her family and friends continue calling for an independent investigation, perhaps knowing that Palestinians remember the selflessness and bravery of a young woman, whose life was callously snuffed out at 23, brings some comfort.

Rachel saw & witnessed Israel’s brutal policy. She was murdered in cold blood & yet most Americans are unaware of the real story.

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By Sepharad, January 27, 2009 at 10:27 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Shingo, No intelligent person, including myself, has to make up lies about Hamas—they’re proud of what they are—and yes, “death-loving fascists” about covers it. They’ve written books about themselves that I’ve read, they’ve constantly stated what their position is regarding Israel (i.e., denying its right to exist), they continue to push Palestinians around with no bloody regard for life whatsoever (except their own; martyrdom is for their young recruits and their unfortunate subject population, while the leaders hide underground after repeatedly provoking Israel into a response that cost way too many Gazans their lives.

In my opinion, the media has indeed failed by being so cowed that they’ve given Hamas the benefit of the doubt for years. Liberal who Prefers No Bias gave a link that opens one’s eyes to the essence of Hamas: opportunistic fundamentalists. There are many other news reports from Gaza by foreign journalists now able to go in and speak with the people and examine the battlefield. I’ve described these on other threads so won’t again, but they generally show that Israel’s precision bombing did its work well—no sign of carpet bombing or other terror-spreading methods used by many other countries during, after and since WWII, and NO obvious targeting of civilians.

The Saudis sent money into Gaza to make sure the Sunni Arab presence was bolstered a bit rather than letting Iran’s Shiia extremist regime dominate more than it ever had till very recently.

(Not done here but will post more later. Earlier. Need to go to sleep.)

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By Rajan, January 27, 2009 at 10:08 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Barack Obama has exhibited his absolute incompetence and lack of perception in his foreign policy initiatives by appointing his own Middle East envoy, George Mitchell – an act which promptly undermines the status of Tony Blair who is already officiating as the Middle East mediator on behalf of the world community. What will be the role of Blair now?  Is he expected to trail behind Mitchell holding his coat tails?  It is such unilateral actions without consultations with other important nations or the UN taken by George W Bush which Obama himself was constantly railing against in his campaign speeches.

Just because George Mitchell was successful (at least to the extent of halting temporarily the IRA terrorist outrages) in his role as the mediator in the Northern Ireland problem, there is no guarantee that he will make any similar headway in solving the Middle East crisis too.  The obvious reason is that the similarity between the two issues stops with the involvement of ruthless militant groups in both of them in battling with a governmental authority.  The Provisional IRA’s declared goal was to separate the Northern Ireland province from the British monarchy and merge it with the Irish   Republic.  But, the Irish government itself, over a period of time, got tired and sick   of the IRA’s atrocities committed ostensibly on its behalf,  renounced its own claim to the Northern Ireland and also totally disowned the terrorist outfit.  Hence, the IRA was left as an orphan without any cause to fight for. It was, therefore, question of time before the IRA, hunted down as it was by both the British and the Irish governments,  would eagerly opt for the terrorist analogue of Chapter 11 protection. George Mitchell joined the fray as a mediator at the most opportune moment when all the parties involved were hungering for a pause in hostilities and was, therefore, able to gobble up all the credit. It seems to have been forgotten that it was Tony Blair’s key role as the British Prime Minister at that time which greatly facilitated George Mitchell’s mediation effort.

But,  with the Palestinian problem, the situation is entirely different.  It would be a grave blunder to compare the Palestinian militants like the Hamas with the Provisional IRA.  The Palestinian guerrillas draw full support, both moral as well as material,  not only from all Arab nations but also from other Muslim countries.  On the other hand,  the IRA is now totally friendless.  Even the maverick elements among the pub-crawling Irish community in New York, who once provided them with moral and financial support, seem to have forsaken them now.

When viewed against the above background, George Mitchell is not likely to score any home runs with the Palestinian problem any time soon.  It is a thoughtless, undiplomatic and knee-jerk step for Barack Obama to have appointed him as a counterfoil to Tony Blair who was entrusted with the same task only a year ago by the Middle East Diplomatic Quartet, comprising the UN, the European Union, the Russian Federation and also the US. Tony Blair is a former three-term Prime Minister of a country which is a permanent member of the UN Security Council whereas George Mitchell is only a former US Senator. Obama’s action in this matter reminds one of the old adage:  “Too many cooks will spoil the broth”.  It would have been fitting and proper if George Mitchell were deputed to assist and advise Tony Blair in his mediation efforts. If launching him on a parallel, indepenent orbit for the same purpose is not an explicit   vote of no confidence in Blair’s competence as a mediator, what else is it?  Possibly, if Tony Blair is not acceptable to the new US administration, the more decent thing to do would have been to drop a hint to him to withdraw himself voluntarily citing some personal reasons (like desiring to spend more time with his family) before the new envoy is appointed.

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By Ed Harges, January 27, 2009 at 9:49 pm Link to this comment

re: By Robert, January 27 at 7:17 pm:

Thanks for that link, Robert. It is invaluable.

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By Ed Harges, January 27, 2009 at 9:37 pm Link to this comment

re: By Shingo, January 27 at 5:37 pm:

You know, I really get sick of the way Zionists harp on this asinine idea that the solution is for the Palestinians simply to go live in some other Arab country.

Imagine if you lived in a town in southern Belgium, across the border from France, and some colonizers came and kicked everybody out of the town, saying:

“Well, to us, you’re ethnically interchangeable with French people, and so you can just as well go live in France, and France should be happy to have you - and if they don’t happily accept you, that just shows that you French-type people have no compassion for each other — and you can’t expect us colonists to have more compassion for you than you have for each other!”

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By Robert, January 27, 2009 at 8:37 pm Link to this comment

Jan 27

CBS 60 Minutes Exposing Israeli Apartheid

“Frankly, I am stunned that CBS would be this honest about what is going on in Israel and Palestine. I sort of quit watching the show back when EP Don Hewitt admitted biasing the show’s segment on Gennifer Flowers to help Bill Clinton get into the White House.”


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MYAgyv2MKyI&feature=email

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By Robert, January 27, 2009 at 8:17 pm Link to this comment

Gaza 2009

We Will Never Forget

Montage documenting the genocide committed by Israel in “Operation Cast Lead”.

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article21852.htm

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By Fadel Abdallah, January 27, 2009 at 7:23 pm Link to this comment

It’s not only journalists who with Gaza fail again, but it’s all universal justice and basic human rights that failed the test.

I don’t place all the blame on Israel for its continues sincerely to work on doing the evil things it was created to do in the first place, but I place the whole blame on the U.S. political-military establishment, and by extension on American citizens, by allowing themselves to so cowardly succumb to the Zionist control of such big country.

And while this country we call home is falling apart, no son of a bitch politician have the courage to raise his voice and declare, “Enough is enough!”

All the blood in Gaza and before that in Iraq and Afghanistan is on the hands of every American, including this writer, who failed to take drastic action to right these perpetuated wrongs! We all deserve to go to hell!

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By Shift, January 27, 2009 at 7:00 pm Link to this comment

Chris Hedges, by witnessing the Zionist orchestrated backlash against you personally and your writing here at TruthDig, I’m drawn to the conclusion that your analysis is striking home and drawing blood.  Thank you for your voice of courage and clarity.

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By Shingo, January 27, 2009 at 6:37 pm Link to this comment

Sepharad,

Yes, the Arab states have a great deal to answer for, but that does not alleviate Israel’s crimes.

You sound like an intelligent person, yet the first thing you you when presenting your argument was too reach for the straw man that anyone here wants Israel to vanish. Why the need to lie?

It wasn’t Hamas that led to the bashing of the Palestinians.  In fact, it was, as Chomsky and Finkelstein put it, Hamas’ peace offensive that motivated Israel to launch the December attacks.  Not only were Hamas adhering to the ceasefire very well (eve Israel’s intel acknowledged that Hamas were very effective is qeulling rocket fire from militants), but Hamas were trying to have the truce extended.  On top of this, Hamas were also about to have talks with Fattah about a unity government.

This is the last thing Israel wants, because a unity government would force Israel to negotiate the West Bank.  The last time Hamas and Fatah tried to have such talks, the US and Israel fomented a coup to overthrown Hamas.

Israel’s hoeps are that they can deal with Fatah, who are very weak, and get what they want out of the West Bank.  They know that Hamas will not back down from their claim to the West Bank, so Israel is playing the old game of divide and conquer.

You exhibit superficial positions on this matter by resorting to stereotypes when depicting Hamas.

You ignore the fundamental fact that the reason Palestinians are huddled in refugee camps is becasue Isrel made them into refugees in 1948.  Your blinkeredness prevents you from recognizing this basic truth.

We know Israel wants the Arab states to take the Palestinians into their countries, but the Arabs states don;t want that and neither do the refugees.  The Palestinians are entitled to their won state. How ironic that Israel’s defenders always claim that the Arabs don’t recognize Israel, yet Israel refuses to recognize a Palestinian state?

The reason 900,000 Jews were booted out of Arab countries after the ‘48 war, is becasue 700,000 Arabs were booted out of Palestine during the war.

>>>How many Palestinians (outside of Gaza) do you see living in former Jewish homes with businesses that gave them a leg up into the next phase of their existence?

And how many Jews do you see living in former Palestinains homes in Israel? How ironic that the town of Sderot was originally an Arab town that Isral seized?

How do YOU think all these things make the Palestinians feel?

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By Shingo, January 27, 2009 at 6:18 pm Link to this comment

ThnkUBush,

>> I hope you soon learn that you are a cause of misery. Your way is certain death to another human being!

That’s pretty rich coming from a cheer leader for unnecessary wars.

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By John B Thompson, Jr., January 27, 2009 at 6:09 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I think Mr. Hedges point of journalistic integrity is well put. He should find another job as soon as possible as journalism, as a profession, has totally lost its credibility. His last minute condemnation of Israel is as pathetic as our votes for Democratic/Labor/Socialist candidates. Only a complete boycott of the system insisting on the rule of law will suffice. May I suggest carpentry, Mr. Hedges? I’m a cook.

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By Ed Harges, January 27, 2009 at 5:46 pm Link to this comment

Israel is not a country. It’s some kind of fking death cult, masquerading as a country.

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By ThnkUBush, January 27, 2009 at 5:40 pm Link to this comment

nefertiti,Diomond,

Yes, I am aware of the machinations at the U.N. and the history there in regards to Israel. Much of what you both claim is correct.

Will both of you share with us the other sides of that six sided dice? A single side teaches us nothing.

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By ThnkUBush, January 27, 2009 at 5:32 pm Link to this comment

RdV,

You believe I am Jewish. This alone exposes your bias, poor perception of religion and lack of quality analysis.

I hope you soon learn that you are a cause of misery. Your way is certain death to another human being!

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By Sepharad, January 27, 2009 at 4:11 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Folktruther, vance mack and I are not colleagues but I’m certainly in agreement with everything he says.

RdV, re “Et tu Truthdig”—I doubt zionists will ever overrun truthdig, but I am certainly delighted to hear from a few people who don’t want Israel to vanish—and who present facts instead of stream-of-consciousness rambles based on having ingested too much politically-correct pablum.

I do think there are some Palestinians left who aren’t uniformly negative about Israel and in fact hope for better things to come—I know some of them—but the history is long, no one likes to see their own people getting bashed even if it’s brought on by heartless jerks like Hamas, and it is very dangerous to be openly willing to extend a hand in peace or even in a business cooperative sense to Israel. The militants kill people for a lot less. And I know to a certainty that there are MANY Israelis who want peace, a normal life, normal neighbors. But Israelis like all of us are subject to fear, and begin to dislike intensely people from whom they receive nothing but violence. A two-state solution is the only one, but both states have to respect the right of the other to exist. Reading as many Truthdig posts I do, I sometimes wonder if, given that despite all their advantages diggers can’t recognize destructive death-loving fascists when they see them, there’s any hope for anyone at all?

Israelis probably have more fond feelings for the Palestinians than any other country in the Middle East. Why do you think they are still huddled in refugee camps on the Lebanon border, why King Hussein used his fierce Bedouin legion to drive them from his country, etc? Even Yasser Arafat said, after an expression of concern for the Palestinians by Osama bin Laden, that this was the first time anyone had mentioned them or given them a thought. The Palestinians are the bloody flag the Arabs and Iranians wave when it suits them to distract their own people. Obviously they didn’t take the Palestinians into their countries to build a new society—in contrast to Israel’s sudden influx and absorption of 900,000 Jews booted out of Arab countries after the ‘48 war (in what the Arab League’s Iraqi delegate called “a population exchange.”  What a cruel lie. How many Palestinians (outside of Gaza) do you see living in former Jewish homes with businesses that gave them a leg up into the next phase of their existence? How do you think all these things make the Palestinians feel? And how often do people screwed over by their own family displace their anger elsewhere?

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By Sepharad, January 27, 2009 at 3:37 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

This article’s author hasn’t read the NYTimes much. On day a week or two ago I picked up the Times and the entire op ed page was completely taken up by several pro-Hamas anti-Israel articles. Also,last week I think, one of the Times’ main correspondents from the Middle East, Ethan Bronner, took up a lot of space explaining to critics of the Times’ coverage how they do it, how much some of them risk—especially Tagreed El-Khoury, who was in a Gaza hospital when a Hamas fighter right in front of her blew the brains out of a man who was either Fatah or possible collaborator of Israel or both.

Back in the days just before the second intifada, by the way, militants began being executing people who had set up cross-border economic enterprises of various types with Israeli Arabs and Jew. During the intifada, such people were virtually all shot dead as collaborators, found the next day with hands tied behind their places of business along with any Israelis, Arab or Jew, crazy enough to be with their colleagues trying to keep things going. I believe that such people were targeted because militants KNOW that once people have enough to fill their stomachs, get their children decent educations and get a life they are not going to be so interested in jihadi enterprises of any kind. It took a very long time—‘08 in fact—before any such major cross-border operations were even started in the West Bank. Hamas’ function is to keep ordinary life impossible, hardly worth living. They don’t WANT peace, they refuse to recognize Israel’s right to exist and if any Gazans have the temerity to disagree with that (or if they are Fatah sympathizers) they get whacked. EU’s Michel squarely placed most of the blame on Hamas, for deliberately provoking what would be a disaster for the citizens supposedly under their “protection.”

Re Rachel Corrie—I would add to Inherit’s “don’t get in front of a machine” the qualification “that is armored so that the driver’s visibility is limited well above the ground directly in front of him.” What the bulldozer was doing there in the first place was razing a house into which a weapon’s smuggling tunnel opened.

What Rachel was there doing, probably unintentionally, was enabling weapons smuggling. She was used, quite cynically, because she wanted to stand up for what she perceived as an underdog. And The Gazans are certainly underdogs, But their best hope is peace with Israel, a side-by-side Palestinian state that has an economy, an army and police to keep the nutters like Hamas from fomenting endless war, so that small states like Palestine and Israel might eventually form a commercial Middle Eastern union that will raise their prospects considerably. This is wnat most Israelis want too, but there has been so much blood spilled, so much hatred taught (3-year-olds learning that Jews are “apes and pigs” and encouraging poor young men that their martyrdom will be not only glorious but also will see that their families are cared for).

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By Shingo, January 27, 2009 at 3:34 pm Link to this comment

Well put Diamond,

Thankubush exemplifies the derangements that has permeated much of the Israeli amen corner.  .  You completely devastated the rampant racism that has become the bedrock of their ideology.0

It’s ironic that you should mention Israel’s hatred of the UN, the same body that gave it legitimacy to begin with.

Israel was never a beacon of democracy.  Setting aside it’s addiction to war and violence, it is an apartheid state, which is anathema to democracy. Even among the various Jewish races, there is a class system, with the Ethiopian Jews only above the status of the Arab civilians.

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By cyrena, January 27, 2009 at 3:03 pm Link to this comment

1 of 2
By Inherit The Wind, January 27 at 4:21 am

•  “..Should these soldiers be tried for her death? Probably.  But when you put your body in front of a machine, you better be sure the operator isn’t prone to panic and isn’t psycho either…”
Well said ITW. And, there’s ALWAYS something to be said for common sense, eh? That’s especially the case when half the world population seems to be prone to panic and/or psycho. Or, maybe it’s closer to 1 out of 3, with the majority of them in the USA.
Now of course soldiers aren’t supposed to be psycho OR prone to panic, and of course we know they aren’t supposed to kill and/or injure CIVILIANS either. So yeah, these soldiers should be tried for her Rachel’s death, but that’s only the tip of the iceberg. Just as all of the ‘details’ of Rachel’s death have probably not come out, there are thousands upon thousands of others still under Israel’s torture boot heel, and nobody ever hears about them, outside of the institution that Israel has set-up for them.

One of our local professors has written an excellent book on the Israeli Military Court System for the West Bank and Gaza. I would say that it’s definitely worth the read, as an academic more than a journalistic piece of work. I discovered recently (or the author did) that the IDF has apparently read it as well, and may be taking some hints from it. Here’s a short description..

Lisa Hajjar
Courting Conflict
The Israeli Military Court System in the West Bank and Gaza

Description

Israel’s military court system, a centerpiece of Israel’s apparatus of control in the West Bank and Gaza since 1967, has prosecuted hundreds of thousands of Palestinians. This authoritative book provides a rare look at an institution that lies both figuratively and literally at the center of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Lisa Hajjar has conducted in-depth interviews with dozens of Israelis and Palestinians—including judges, prosecutors, defense lawyers, defendants, and translators—about their experiences and practices to explain how this system functions, and how its functioning has affected the conflict. Her lucid, richly detailed, and theoretically sophisticated study highlights the array of problems and debates that characterize Israel’s military courts as it asks how the law is deployed to protect and further the interests of the Israeli state and how it has been used to articulate and defend the rights of Palestinians living under occupation.

Continues

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By cyrena, January 27, 2009 at 3:01 pm Link to this comment

2 of 2

“Hajjar takes the reader on a journey to the courts themselves, providing her audience with a sense of the random bargaining and humiliation and the seemingly endless tension informing the judicial interactions. [Her] intervention is unique in the literature on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”—Neve Gordon, The Nation

“Hajjar’s book on the Israeli military court system brings together rich ethnographic and historical knowledge with cutting-edge theoretical sophistication.”—Austin Sarat, coeditor of Cultural Analysis, Cultural Studies, and the Law

“This book will be the most authoritative source on the subject for years to come.”—James Ron, author of Frontiers and Ghettos

“With a stunning display of academic mastery, Hajjar provides a definitive and remarkably balanced account of how Israeli military courts operate in the occupied Palestinian territories. Illuminating this hitherto neglected facet of Israel/Palestine by empirically grounded research is also a major contribution to the wider role and limits of law in situations of acute conflict.”—Richard Falk, author of The Great Terror War

“Hajjar’s sociological and political achievement is both more focused and more general than her study’s historical frame. She shows exactly how the military court system in the Occupied Territories was and is a cruel parody of justice—yet also a faithful representation of Israel’s liberal legality.”—Stanley Cohen, Martin White Professor of Sociology, London School of Economics

About The Author
Lisa Hajjar is Associate Professor in the Law and Society Program at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

http://www.ucpress.edu/books/pages/10233.php

Meantime, I think we’re all ready for journalists to go back to being real journalists. I also have a measure of confidence that will happen as we return to an open and more democratic society. I hate reminding everybody, (but somebody has to do it) that for the past 8 years, we have been (as G. Anderson so eloquently put it) a gnats eyelash distance away from a full dictatorship. The real journalists are long gone, dead, imprisoned, intimidated into silence, or on the payroll of propagandists. The Ministry of Propaganda under the former Thug regime has been as effective as Hitler’s was.

The whole “Theme” for the “War on Terror” has allowed that propaganda to fundamentally change the way we live our lives, individually and collectively. There’s a lot of damage to undo.

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By Bilejones, January 27, 2009 at 2:53 pm Link to this comment
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“Journalists” didn’t fail, they succeeded in presenting the events in exactly the way their masters wanted then to. To assume that they are anything other than corporate propagandists is stunningly naive.

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By nefertiti, January 27, 2009 at 2:12 pm Link to this comment

ThnkUBush

BOTH israel and Hamas did not think much of the latest UN resolution on Gaza (since the Siege and the blockade was not taken into account and all the gates keep getting locked and the keys are with israel )

Do you know how many UN resolutions Israel simply ignored and no one threatning it like they do to any other country . check the numbers here .

http://www.thefairandbalancednews.com/pages/Israel Resolutions.htm

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By Folktruther, January 27, 2009 at 2:04 pm Link to this comment

The main historical problem is not the Israeli power structure.  It is the American Zionist power struture.  Rich American Zionists support the Likud policy of ethnic cleansing, which is now supported by the leaders of all of Israel’s major parties.

If the American power structure said to the Isralis, and Hamas: a two state solution on UN lines or no more aid, trade, or military support, the matter could be settled in a week.  But the US says the contrary and has for decades; NO TWO STATE SOLUTION, onder the public relations cover of supporting one.

It does so AGAINST US INTERESTS, because US Zionists put Israeli interests, The Homeland, over US interests. Fanatically.  The only two prsidents that put restrictions on Israel, Carter and Bush 1, were defeated in their second elections.  The Zionists have a lot of money, a lot of media, and a lot of organization.

Do you think Obama is going to buck them?  Only if you are Cyrena or Tony Wicher or other Obaamanites.

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By diamond, January 27, 2009 at 1:44 pm Link to this comment

Thankubush, I’m glad you mentioned UN resolutions: are you aware that Israel is currently in violation of no less than 90 UN resolutions? Israel hates the UN, has no respect for it and regards it as an enemy: like the Red Cross. Ask yourself what kind of nation can Israel be when its enemies are the UN, the Red Cross and above all journalists who were kept out of Gaza for the entire massacre? Your reasoning on this is bizarre but not without precedent. The way you talk about other Arab nations is typical. The ploy goes like this: the Palestinians are bad (a) because even other Arab nations hate them and won’t help them or the Palestinians are bad because (b) other Arab nations do support and help them which means they’re terrorists too and they’re all a THREAT TO THE WEST. Catch 22 rejigged. Any way you roll the dice the Palestinians lose and that’s how Israel likes it. When the Indonesian army and its Timorese militas went on the rampage in East Timor, slaughtering civilians as if they were vermin, a large group of Timorese civilians fled to the UN compound and the UN workers stayed there,refusing to pull out even though they believed the compound might be ourrun, terrified and not knowing if they would survive the night. But they stayed and saved those people’s lives because the bloodthirsty,rampaging armed men didn’t dare to attack the UN. They knew there would be consequences. Israel dropped white phosphorous bombs on the UN because they know there will be no consequences. Not for them. They can slaughter children and there are no consequences. Not for them. There are those who say Israel is a beacon of democracy in the Middle East. All I can say is that beacon went out a long time ago. I also heard that Saudi Arabia is giving $1 billion to rebuild Gaza. Maybe everyone doesn’t hate the Palestinians after all.

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By Ed Harges, January 27, 2009 at 1:19 pm Link to this comment

Glenn Greenwald, a writer at Salon.com who is Jewish and who as far as I can tell does not yearn for Israel’s Jews to be wiped out in a new Holocaust, nevertheless believes that it’s just crazy for the US to continue supporting Israel’s wars, especially given our economic condition:

What possible justification is there for using American resources—the American military—to patrol the Red Sea in order to ensure that Gazans remain defenseless?  That question is particularly pronounced given that the U.S. is already shoveling, and will continue to shovel, billions and billions of dollars to Israel in military and other aid.  Why, on top of all of that, are increasingly scarce American resources, rather than Israeli resources, being used to bar Palestinians from obtaining weapons?  And why—as it is more vital than ever that we extricate ourselves from Middle Eastern conflicts—are we making ourselves still more of a partisan and combatant in this most entrenched and religiously-driven territorial dispute over the West Bank and Gaza Strip?

Israel is hardly the only country which the U.S. expends vast resources—including military resources—to defend and protect, and all of those commitments ought to be seriously re-examined.  But none of those other commitments entail anywhere near the costs—on every level—of our seemingly limitless willingness, eagerness, to involve ourselves so directly and self-destructively in every last conflict that Israel has.  Given what we are constantly being told is the grave economic peril the U.S. faces, shouldn’t we be moving in exactly the opposite direction than the imperial expansion which we continue to pursue?

http://www.salon.com/opinion/greenwald/2009/01/26/israel/index.html

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By prole, January 27, 2009 at 12:30 pm Link to this comment

This article has a lot to recommend it, it should indeed have been recommended for inclusion in the mainstream media to help fill the willful void of malign neglect in the journalistic wasteland. So it’s a little surprising then that the author didn’t use his extensive personal and professional contacts at the NY Times to petition his close acquaintances there for publication in their op-ed section. Of course, it wouldn’t be accepted but it might make for interesting reading later, to present an expose of the editorial rejection process of such a piece, naming names of those responsible and pretexts given, rather than just making vague allusions to “pliant stenographers and echo chambers” It’s all true enough, but alas, it doesn’t change much. “Take that credibility away and we become little more than propagandists and advertisers” – which is exactly the point, take the advertisers away, and you may get back a large measure of your credibility, or at least that potential, should you avail yourself of it. “By refusing to expose lies we destroy, in the end, ourselves” – if only it were true! Unfortunately, it hasn’t destroyed them yet. In the end, what destroys the mercantile media more quickly than loss of credibility, is loss of advertising revenues. “Al-Jazeera, along with a handful of local reporters in Gaza, which upheld the honor of our trade” didn’t have to please the same advertisers that the Times and their commercial cohorts did. But the Wall St Journal does, so it’s perhaps not surprising that their “thoughtful” “integrity” should start from most of the same premises as their compatriots in “the moral void of American journalism”. They may at times take a slightly more pragmatic tack but it’s still about “Israel’s efforts to find a pliant Palestinian partner that is both credible with Palestinians and willing to eschew violence” in the morally-neutered, contrived context of, “Since 1948, when the state of Israel was established, Israelis and Palestinians have each asserted claims over the same territory.” It’s a more nuts-and-bolts assessment of the need of the Zionazis to at last break the spirit of resistance and arrive at their fallback position of establishing a Vichy-style regime among occupied Palestine, if they can’t achieve their long-standing cherished goal of ‘ethnic cleansing’. The two competing strands of Zionazi intent come together in grotesque convergence in the despicable metaphor of Arieh Spitzen, the former head of the Israeli military’s Department of Palestinian Affairs who reveals the Chosen People’s bestial mindset by musing on a recurrent theme of Islamists as insects, “attempts to stop it are akin to trying to change the internal rhythms of nature: ‘It is like saying: ‘I will kill all the mosquitoes.’ But then you get even worse insects that will kill you…You break the balance. You kill Hamas you might get al Qaeda.”  This then is the dilemma of the Zionazi axis in the U.S. and Israel, to cause excruciating suffering among “the mosquitos” in Gaza (and the West Bank) but not so as to get “even worse insects” that will kill you. The Zionazis are craven cowards who have always been afraid of a fair fight and would prefer to swat “mosquitos” with fragmentation bombs and chemical weapons.  Still, imperial journalism might have some small value, after all. If “by giving credibility to the lies and false narratives Israel uses to justify wholesale slaughter we empower not only Israel’s willful self-destruction but our own”, then it can’t be all bad!

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By Volma, January 27, 2009 at 12:27 pm Link to this comment

Rachel Corrie, was a young idealist a lamb slaughtered for her attempt for social justice…What does Inherit the Wind’s comparison of the Boston Massacre have to do with the murder of Rachel Corrie?  Because the event that occurred over 100 years ago was not accurately portrayed in our history books, it’s a logical conclusion that the story of her murder is not being told correctly or accurately?...I suppose the Palestinians had snow balls filled with rocks, bats flying, hitting the bulldozer, yes it all fits together well…Thanks for the illogical, inaccurate, justification for the murder of a young idealistic girl who saw social injustice and was standing up for what was right…Oh and guess what, there were plenty of credible witnesses when this happened, (oh I forget the Palestinian’s and anyone who sympathizes for their plight are not credible) The only reason nothing has been done, no one has been charge, the story has been deliberately discounted, lied about suppressed is because it doesn’t serve the powers that be to do what is right…I hear a lot of words to deflect the truth, accusations, and “Non Factual Facts” Just words….There are absolutely overwhelming current events, statistics and witnessed factual events that are getting through to the public, if they want to listen, to clearly see that Israel is simply in the wrong…The lies, shifting blame, using the old models of martyrdom, lying, illogical logic tactics, historical allegories that have nothing to do with the actual facts…Insanity Reigns, it’s a instinct or reaction to cover up their obvious brutality, and hate and it’s not working…Hate begets hate, what Israel is doing is creating a rebound of international distrust and even hate for their fascist religious agenda…The truth of what is going on is becoming clear for all to see, and it’s good…Because if Israel doesn’t shift their stance, Israel will fall, and I guess the “Born Agains” will be disappointed that Armageddon, the Rapture, and the Second Coming of Christ prophesy s won’t be fulfilled….I for one am very pleased that the crazy lunatics who want to kill off most of the people of the earth for their religious beliefs are being exposed for what they are…The pro Israel, Bush thugs, war mongers, greedy, money grubbing, power hungry, murderers who manipulate and use the ignorant superstitious religious and greedy for their evil agenda’s have taught me so much…I have been learning the skills of how to separate the propaganda, misinformation created to confuse, mislead, misdirect from the heart of the issue…Using the magical words to emotionally confuse, distort, create doubt is becoming passe, I think too many humans are starting to catch on to this game…And you know what happens when people actually become aware, and knowledge replaced ignorance and fear….OH Oh, it’s like, just exactly like, the “Wizard of OZ” where Dorothy throws water on the witch, accidentally of course, and this ends the wicked witch’s fascist empire! She melts, crying “Oh What A world, what a world” Oh don’t quote me on the actual words that the wicked witch uses, because, well I am not sure they are quotes from the wicked witch…But you can go to the many witnesses who saw her melt, the Flying Monkey’s, and the Witches personal army, they saw it happen, and as memory serves, they all broke out in song…Ding Dong the Witch is Dead…I actually witnessed this event, but would need to get the ole VHS tape out, convert it to digital and put it up on You Tube, if it’s not already there…Google it!

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By WR Curley, January 27, 2009 at 12:07 pm Link to this comment
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Absolutely spot-on, Mr. Harges. Whatever else we may bring to the discussion, our inexhaustible appetites for self-delusion should be left at home.

Realists run the world. Moralists fret about it. If you’d like to join the debate at a meaningful level, you must drop the moralist cant and face facts.

Israelis I’ve spoken to equate the Palestinian problem with the European conquest of the “New World”. “Our Arabs are like your Indians,” they say, with consummate certainty (and no little relish). “They must be swept aside to make room for our nation to grow.”

Well, I’ve forgotten which dauntless Indian fighter from the American frontier I quote here, but one of them - when asked about the unapologetic slaughter of the children of the plains tribes - said, “Nits make lice”.

And so it goes.

The problem that the non-Zionist citizens of the western european nations face is not the nasty, endless little squabble out there on the goat-barrens of Palestine. The problem we face is that the Zionists have taken control of the means of the debate, and of the terms of the debate, and therefor of the probable outcome of the debate.

Rham Emmanuel, the new White House gatekeeper, is the son of an Irgun terrorist. He is an Israeli citizen, and an officer of the IDF. This is symtomatic of the extent to which the means of the debate are currently controlled. That this fact is not noted - with appropriate alarm - in the mainstream media is also symptomatic. Until we find the cojones, as a non-Zionist supermajority, to demand a proper debate, we will be forever doomed to suffer the fore-ordained outcome of the debate.

And this, to “vancemack” and his ilk…the tide is rising. Read the posts. Dependable, card-carrying, life-long liberals like me (a Jew in the maternal branch of the tree, for a time a resident of Israel) have had it up to here. Americans will not long suffer to be told, as Olmhert openly told the Knesset, that Congress is his puppet. Arrogance and vainglory lead to one place only. Your “people” have been there many times before.

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By Ed Harges, January 27, 2009 at 9:58 am Link to this comment

re: By Eso, January 27 at 8:10 am:

The cruelty of Israel is inherent. It cannot exist without expansion, and it cannot expand without constant, deliberately hateful violence.

Israel’s project of expanding its territory is particularly problematic when compared with many other expansionist imperial projects. This is because Israel, as a state explicitly founded to be a self-ruling “democracy” on religious/ethnic exclusionist principles, can never politically absorb the conquered peoples living in the acquired territory.

These people must remain permanently an “enemy within” and a “demographic problem” if Israel is to hold onto both the seized territory and its self-styled raison d’etre. It’s constitutionally impossible for Israel to accept the conquered people, and for the conquered people to accept Israeli domination.

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