Defending Condi: Olmert Shames Himself in Kick-in-the-Teeth Attack on Rice

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condoleezza_rice.jpg
No matter what one may think of Condoleezza Rice’s diplomatic record — which I think is better than many liberal critics gauge — the fact that Israel Prime Minister Ehud Olmert gave her a kick in the teeth as she departs her office is obnoxious and harmful all around.
Olmert also seemed to convey that he had George W. Bush on a little puppet string — that he could pull the United States President out of a meeting and compel Bush to veto the course that Secretary Rice was going and had been empowered to do by that same President. True or not, Olmert crossed a real line in his statement.
This kind of arrogance from Israel’s leadership only erodes enthusiasm for Israel’s posture in the Middle East.
Perhaps Israel’s so-called defensive efforts that have killed nearly 1,000 people — and many innocents among them — and this high-ended, stridently unfriendly treatment of Condoleezza Rice will help to decrease the emotional enthusiasm for Israel’s Gaza raids.
It is certainly sending a signal to many in the incoming Obama administration that while there are convergent American and Israeli interests — friendship and trust are eroding whether one wants to admit publicly or not.
Shaming a US President and Secretary of State may not change the course in policy and may not shift America’s general approach to the region, at least for the time being, but it does take the fizz out of the unique relationship.
From an AFP story today:

US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was left shame-faced after President George W. Bush ordered her to abstain in a key UN vote on the Gaza war, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said on Monday.
“She was left shamed. A resolution that she prepared and arranged, and in the end she did not vote in favour,” Olmert said in a speech in the southern town of Ashkelon.
The UN Security Council passed a resolution last Thursday calling for an immediate ceasefire in the three-week-old conflict in the Gaza Strip and an Israeli withdrawal from Gaza where hundreds have been killed.
Fourteen of the council’s 15 members voted in favour of the resolution, which was later rejected by both Israel and Hamas.
The United States, Israel’s main ally, had initially been expected to vote in line with the other 14 but Rice later became the sole abstention.
“In the night between Thursday and Friday, when the secretary of state wanted to lead the vote on a ceasefire at the Security Council, we did not want her to vote in favour,” Olmert said.

Condoleezza Rice has worked hard on the Israel-Palestine peace process — and her efforts failed. But I had the privilege of sitting in with her in a meeting that she held in her office with former Israel Foreign Minister Shlomo Ben-Ami and was impressed by her retention of and facility with the details of the Arab-Israel morass.
She was optimistic when we met — and very committed to what she thought was a sensible track that would offer a “mature” course of action for all of the parties involved.
Olmert is the one who should be shame-faced.
Lots of people want to take pot shots at the outgoing foreign policy and national security team — but in this case — it is Israel’s leadership that has misbehaved and overshot. . .again.
The appropriate thing for Condoleezza Rice to do right now is return the favor to Olmert by actually working in her final days on the job to implement immediately that UN Cease Fire Resolution.
And maybe George W. Bush can pull Olmert out of a speech to let him know what’s going down.
— Steve Clemons

Comments

235 comments on “Defending Condi: Olmert Shames Himself in Kick-in-the-Teeth Attack on Rice

  1. Paul Norheim says:

    I agree, Arthur. Especially on the blogosphere, and even more
    when someone have been at war with each other in the past.
    Peace, and cheers!

    Reply

  2. arthurdecco says:

    Humour is the most difficult type of writing, don’t you think, Paul?

    Reply

  3. Paul Norheim says:

    You`ve been using ArthurDecco as your nom de plume since the
    70`s? Pretty impressive – almost as long as the Phantom 😉
    But – as everybody here knows: I`m more honest than you!
    However, I`m a liar compared to varanasi, who is much more
    honest than Carroll, but less honest than rich…
    Oops, that was not true! I knew it the millisecond after I wrote
    it 🙂

    Reply

  4. arthurdecco says:

    Funny post varanasi. It’s too bad your political opinions rub up against the kool-aid end of the spectrum. Otherwise you could be some fun.
    “But everybody on this scene, and everybody watching the spectacle, should realize that claims of dishonesty are not very credible, coming from a voice using a mask. Demanding
    honesty and authenticity from someone calling themselves …, jj, WigWag or ArthurDecco is ridiculous.” Posted by Paul Norheim
    Oh yeah? Tell that to the Lone Ranger or The Phantom. 😉
    How about I identify myself as John Hagerman-Smith? Does that make me more credible? Or…say…Samuel Clemons?!?
    Not that it matters, Paul, but I have been using arthurdecco as my nom de plume since the 70’s. He’s as me as me gets.
    Your point is fatuous… nah… it’s ridiculous!
    We inhabit a world made up out of IDEAS on the internet, Paul. What matters our face, our profession, our name? If I present a point of view, I know soon enough if it is a sound one. Or not. There are any number of intelligent, informed people contributing here who are more than capable of pointing out the absurdities that dot my submissions in much the same way I do yours.
    Knowing my name won’t change what I think or the effect it has on the ongoing discussion. Nor will it impact my honesty. I’m my own arbiter of that and I can assure you that I have NEVER typed a thought I didn’t think was true at the time of writing.
    That’s not to say I haven’t laid some whoppers on the net but the millisecond I’ve discovered my mistake(s) and learned what I had thought/said was wrong I have retracted my statement and apologized for it if necessary.
    Let’s focus on the essence of what we’re here for, which is, (I think), sharing and disseminating information and opinion.
    That’s complicated enough for me without having to delve into trivial dead end issues that lead nowhere helpful – issues like our “names”…
    So…

    Reply

  5. varanasi says:

    You’re right POA and DonS.
    I’ve been sent by the hasbara to harass you. i have been charged with the task of countering your anti-israel views in hopes of reaching the hearts and minds of the esteemed readers of these comment threads.
    clealry, POA has become much too powerful a voice in the realm of U.S. foreign policy and DonS and Rich are hot on his heels. we simply cannot let these heavyweights whisper in the ears of the high and mighty any longer. rumor even has it that POA was in the final running for a DAS position in the new obama administration. but, he surmised that his position and power at TWN is a greater pedestal from which to shape the geopolitical policies of the united states of america.
    my superiors and accomplices will stop at nothing to take issue with the policy positions of this trifecta of TWN regulars. they are simply too powerful to have their views left unchecked.
    check the trees. ditch your cell phones. double-lock your doors.
    the hasbara is hot on your heels 😉
    HAHA!

    Reply

  6. DonS says:

    ” . . . This blog is too irrelevent to warrant monitoring by the powers. ”
    Yeah, right. LOL ; ~ (

    Reply

  7. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Paul and Don….
    Haven’t you been reading varanasi? This blog is too irrelevent to warrant monitoring by the powers.

    Reply

  8. Paul Norheim says:

    You may ask why so many people actually use monikers writing
    on political blogs. An old blogosphere habit? Maybe. Or is it out
    of a certain fear, as I, perhaps a bit to quickly, assumed?
    At the moment, I observe that people are questioning and
    opposing the powerful and their ideologies, screaming and
    cursing through masks. And I wonder if these masks, this
    anonymity is more connected to freedom or fear.

    Reply

  9. DonS says:

    P. Nordheim says “And then there is the particular US atmosphere during the
    Cheney/Bush years: a lot of American commenters at TWN
    would probably not write so openly and critical against the
    current semi-dictatorial leaders of the nation, if they had to use
    their own names. ”
    I’m definitely of two minds on this. 1) I definitely don’t trustr the bastards and want to protect my privacy — though, like others — I don’t doubt the Federal creeps can trace my IP number,etc. to my bed anytime they choose and 2) I want to publically shove it in their fascist faces and dare them to come after me (as long as I could be guaranteed a good lawyer to tell the story as I’m going down).
    America, what a concept.

    Reply

  10. Paul Norheim says:

    As a matter of fact, our own conservative foreign minister in
    those days was very eager to participate in the orgies as well, but
    was held back by our Christian prime minister – God bless him!

    Reply

  11. Paul Norheim says:

    “tortured morality”… interesting formulation, Bert, it made me
    think.
    But yeah, more power to Jerry and his “back end” musings! And
    we shouldn`t forget the pleasures provided to the British
    gentlemen at Downing Street while George, Donald, Dick & Condi
    were dealing with their back ends! The orgies around 2002-06…

    Reply

  12. Bert Nowak says:

    Hold it! Stop right there.
    Jerry, that was hilarious. You brought me to tears. Paul, for me that means his ‘stand up’ was a very pleasant and much needed release from the tortured morality you so eloquently represent.
    I look on in shame at some of this human race. To think that my good neighbour could be the likes of Mengele Or an American inspiring the development and use of these weapons on a collective encircled population. check it out!
    In early July, shortly after the beginning of Israel’s bloody military siege of the Gaza Strip, reports began to appear that Israeli forces were using a new weapon that inflicted strange and untreatable wounds, and significantly increased the death tolls of Israel’s attacks. (1)(2)
    Italian investigators have reported evidence that the unidentified Israeli weapon is probably Dense Inert Metal Explosives, or DIME, a so-called LCD (“low collateral damage”) weapon developed by the United States Air Force. (3)
    DIME bombs blast a superheated “micro-shrapnel” of powdered heavy metal tungsten alloy (HMTA). Studies indicate that HMTA embedded in the body disrupts biochemistry and rapidly causes cancer. Like depleted uranium (DU), HMTA is genotoxic—it is capable of inflicting genetic mutations. (4-10)
    Publicly slated for deployment in 2008, DIME bombs are small but unusually powerful. Their carbon fiber casings make “more of the blast energy…available as blast as opposed to being absorbed in [a] steel case”. The carbon reportedly breaks into “thousands of harmless fibers” to prevent unintended casualties from casing shrapnel. (11)
    The ‘footprint’ of the DIME blast is much smaller than a conventional bomb’s, because gravity and air resistance quickly drag the dense, finely powdered “micro-shrapnel” to the ground. The blast radius is reportedly as small as 25 feet. (12)(13)
    DIME is part of the Air Force’s Focused Lethality Munitions (FLM) program, which is expected to “allow” the targeting of “terrorists” wherever they are, even in places “previously off limits to the warfighter.” (14)
    The ideal of FLM is to reliably kill every human within the blast zone—one way or another. It is ‘total war’ on a 50-foot circle, within which deaths are not admitted as collateral, but purchased as insurance. Israel’s new weapon “slices” off its victims’ legs, leaving “signs of heat and burns near the point of the amputation”. It’s “as if a saw was used to cut through the bone”, according to Dr. Habas al-Wahid, head of the ER at Gaza’s Shuhada al-Aqsa hospital. (15)

    Reply

  13. Paul Norheim says:

    Don, your points are valid. My guess is that even if we removed
    the names and monikers completely, many of us would be able
    to identify several of our fellow commenters easily – just like
    identifying a relative or friend walking on the other side of the
    street by the way they are walking. (Or being able to distinguish
    between Hemingway and Thomas Wolfe after reading just a
    couple of sentences, without knowing the name of the author)
    So it`s possible to talk about a certain “credibility of character”,
    style and “trademark”.
    But “honesty” is a very tricky concept when we are dealing with
    anonymous texts. Are you more honest and authentic if you
    tend to articulate feelings with strong and expressive words,
    and less so if you chose to keep your feelings for yourself? (Or
    is the former a drama queen and the latter a gentleman?)
    Are you a liar if your feelings contradict your opinions, and
    honest if you base your opinions more on feelings than
    reasoning?
    Here I think we frequently see accusations based on simplified
    assumptions and premises – a caricatural example would be if I
    said: I`m more honest than you because I am a leftist, while
    you joined the army and the GOP.
    And then there is the particular US atmosphere during the
    Cheney/Bush years: a lot of American commenters at TWN
    would probably not write so openly and critical against the
    current semi-dictatorial leaders of the nation, if they had to use
    their own names. Suspicions are easily evoked; a certain
    element of paranoia and hysteria as well, more related to the
    political atmosphere than to the individual commenter.

    Reply

  14. DonS says:

    Olmert: That’s my story and I’m sticking to it”
    http://thinkprogress.org/2009/01/14/olmert-stands-by-bush/

    Reply

  15. DonS says:

    Paul,
    I recognize your argument about provenence of commenters. However, though we use screen names, over time, consistency , trustworthiness, style , background (even age, sex, race, education, etc, etc.), sophistocation, reliability, etc., can be gleaned, depending on how transparent we choose to be. And over years it becomes almost a trademark, so that “my name” means something to the hundreds, thousands (?) of readers/lurkers who tune in. The importance of my actual name, location, etc.? Not so much. Unless, of course, it’s Rockefeller.

    Reply

  16. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Hey Jerry. Careful man, you might excite Harry Reid.
    On second thought, keep it up, maybe Congress will trample each other in their rush to have a turn.

    Reply

  17. Hawthorn says:

    Back end is (among other things) a business term referring to the deferred part of a transaction. In this case Olmert’s p***ing off the State Department, the UN mission staff, and possibly the Obama transition’s Israel desk might have long term consequences for Israel, but whoever wins the upcoming elections will have to deal with them.

    Reply

  18. Jerry says:

    “Livni can deal with the back end”
    What are you saying here? Livni can deal with our “back end” like Ohlmert and Israel has been dealing with the “back end” of the United States for decades? Livni then is no different than Ohlmert in abusing our “back end”? Are you talking “strap-on”, buddy?

    Reply

  19. Hawthorn says:

    For my part I wasn’t really trying to discuss missiles here, but just the computerized gatling cannon system that some folks think would solve the problem, but which really wouldn’t. Clearly some targets that Hamas has chosen to hit in the absence of any AM system would be better protected, so they would either put their $500 pipe rockets back in the truck and go aim them someplace without the expensive robot defender – or else mass enough of them in one launch to get past Centurion and give the government a bigger black eye. And the headlines would continue.
    As for Olmert’s little outburst, you can take it as symptomatic of the contempt in which USG43 is held in the region. What matters is not whether the lame duck PM really hauled the lame duck POTUS out of a speech or meeting, but that he knew he could retail that anecdote in public without fear of consequences. Obama has not been damaged by Condi’s floundering, and Livni can deal with the back end, so why shouldn’t Olmert brag?

    Reply

  20. Jerry says:

    Hold it! Stop right there.
    It has come to my attention that we have once again been strayed off topic into some hoity-toity intellectual claptrap about missiles. Well Steve put a missile picture on a post where missile are supposed to be discussed, they ain’t supposed to be in here.
    The topic here is, and I repeat, IS
    How Ohlmert shouted out to the whole God damn world that the American government is his bitch, and whaddaya gonna do about it cause we can destroy youse guys one way or da other either retail or wholesale, see. That’s what he said.
    So let’s have some good ole down home outrage God damnmit about Ohlmert whipping out his schlong and giving us all the golden shower routine.
    C’mon let’s whip up some furor, and don’t let the Hasbros, or whomever them Israeli agents are to drive our rage into a ditch with some artsy-fartsy parlez vous crapola about who has the bigger horseshit missile system and why they are so fugging awesome.

    Reply

  21. questions says:

    As for research, NIS one billion isn’t a billion dollars. Find a currency conversion website.

    Reply

  22. questions says:

    Hey POA,
    The tone control in your last piece is impressive! But your satire misses the point that when one side deploys defense, the other side shifts offense. Hamas does not use all of its weapons at once, nor does it spend all of its resources on weapons, so clearly it is making some strategic choices about how to use what it has. Israel’s behavior shapes Hamas’s strategy. If Israel changes its strategy, then Hamas responds. Not sure why this concept is so difficult to see or so worthy of a satirical turn.
    I did not out of hand dismiss contractor malfeasance or profiteering or lying. They may, each of them, be involved. But there are strategic reasons for not deploying missile defense, and these reasons should be considered. A modest point, if you ask me.
    The Ha’aretz piece above is one of the things I found the other day. I’m in no position to evaluate Dr. Nathan Farber’s claims as reported. I’m glad that you are, though. My guess is that you could find US papers with articles about can’t miss weapons the US military isn’t using, but again, I don’t know for sure.
    And just as a side note, only seemingly off topic, when the US cracks down on illegal drug smuggling, a perfectly stable and profitable venture in normal political times, the crackdown causes the traffickers to change strategies. The drugs are developed with higher potency so that smaller shipments can be used, the routes shift, the people who actually carry the drugs end up having to hide them more creatively. The US can announce that it has done something to stop trafficking, but what it really has done is to give incentives to dealers to manufacture new versions of the drugs.
    That’s what strategic moves do in game situations. One side shifts, the other responds. You don’t start out at some optimal point from which you never shift. Hamas is doing what it does right now in response to the current situation. If Israel shifts the strategy, so will Hamas. So, indeed, Hamas could easily put more resources into more effective weapons. They’ll have little choice if they wish to remain in credible power. Who’s going to support them if all their missiles are harmlessly blown up? (If that’s even possible — something I doubt.)
    And as for the numbers game, read over some old Soviet deterrence lit (Mearsheimer’s field of expertise before he got into the ME stuff). I’m not the inventor of any of the ideas behind deterrence and stability, anti-missile defenses and destabilization. Really. If you can blow up a decent percentage of someone else’s offense, you encourage that someone else to engage in first strikes with massively damaging force BEFORE you can deploy the proposed system. (This stuff was all over the press during Reagan’s reign.) On the non-nuclear level, you encourage the development of more and more-effective weapons.
    What would you do if the neighborhood bully was a few weeks from getting an armored suit?
    The real scandal here might just be that Israel and Hamas need each other as opposites in order to maintain their respective identities. That seems to me to be the real crime. The bombing campaigns are desirable on both sides and neither side is an honest broker.

    Reply

  23. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Note in the above article, Israel has already invested 1 billion on Iron Dome, a system that MAY be operational in 2010 at the soonest. You could buy a lot of Phalanx systems, at 15 mil apiece, for a billion bucks.
    So is “expense” really a valid excuse for not deploying these weapons?
    I think the prize for most interesting rebuttal has to go to Questions. His contention that Hamas has no incentive to pursue more effective rocketry because Israel hasn’t deployed Phalanx, is a true classic.
    Of course, Israel seems to think they have the answer to stopping the rocket attacks. All they need do is just incinerate a few hundred Palestinian babies, destroy the civilian infrastructure, starve whomever survives, and claim they did it all in “self defense”. Thats bound to work, isn’t it?

    Reply

  24. PissedOffAmerican says:

    http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/954317.html
    Last update – 16:10 14/02/2008
    Ballistic expert: Israel ignoring option of U.S. anti-rocket system
    By Yossi Melman, Haaretz Correspondent
    Dr. Nathan Farber is a ballistic expert who has been persistently trying, to no avail, to present to the Defense Ministry what he sees as a possibly imminent solution to Qassam fire from Gaza.
    Farber’s suggestion is to deploy American artillery batteries called Phalanx around the Qassam-battered town of Sderot, to intercept the rockets fired by Palestinians.
    The U.S. army has been successfully operating the system in Iraq, where it provides its bases with protection from rockets and mortar shells. Canada is also considering deploying it in Afghanistan.
    Advertisement
    Farber told Haaretz his suggestion should not be rejected out of hand. He said that the system could be tested with a budget of no more than $1 million, even in the “battlefield” itself, by deploying one or two Phalanx batteries near Sderot.
    But for some reason the Defense Ministry maintains his suggestion is impracticable, although it has never been tested.
    Farber is not an eccentric – his credentials include vast knowledge of and experience in shells and ballistics. He is an accredited aeronautical engineer, a lecturer at the Technion, Israel’s Institute of Technology, and a veteran of the Israel Military Industries (IMI).
    When his tenure as the IMI missile department’s chief scientist ended, he worked as an advisor to the Israel Air Force and the American Missile Defense Administration. Previously, he had been an IAF anti-aircraft officer and later senior intelligence officer.
    The Phalanx anti-aircraft artillery system, manufactured by the American Reytheon company, was initially developed for battleships.
    A Phalanx battery includes four 20mm-wide shells and radar that tracks the missile, assesses its trajectory and intercepts it from a range of up to a 1.5 km.
    Unlike any other system, Phalanx is capable of firing up to 6,000 shells per minute, which are twice as fast as a Qassam rocket (with a speed of more than a kilometer per second). As of today, the system is installed in some IDF battleships.
    Farber claims that five batteries will adequately cover the western Negev, and will not cause environmental damage. “Because of their exceptionally high speed, the shells that don’t hit Qassams will land in the sea,” he said, “although the chances of a direct hit are high.”
    For years the security establishment has stymied any initiative to develop short- and medium-range missile interception systems, claiming they were wasteful and of questionable efficiency.
    Even after the Second Lebanon War, during which the missile threat on Israel’s home front materialized, the Defense Ministry remained resolute. An expert panel, headed by then Defense Ministry director general Gaby Ashkenazi (the incumbent Chief of Staff), was eventually set up, following pressure exerted by then defense minister Amir Peretz.
    The panel decided to commission Rafael Arms Development Authority to develop two interception systems: Iron Dome, for short-range rockets (like Qassams and Katyushas) and Magic Wand for long-range missiles (up to 200 km), to be developed in conjunction with Reytheon.
    A shadow of malpractice was cast on the decision to allocate a development budget of over NIS 1 billion to Rafael, as one of the panel members, Yedidya Yaari, was the former managing director of the authority.
    The problem remains that Iron Dome will be operative within three years at the earliest.
    “Why not deploy Phalanx batteries in the meanwhile, and protect the residents of Sderot?” asks Farber.
    “It will be cheaper, no less efficient, and above all provide immediate protection. If it’s good enough for the Americans in Iraq, why can’t it be good for us?”
    The Defense Ministry provided no definite answer as to why Farber’s suggestion hasn’t been considered.
    A spokesman said that “while the development of Iron Dome is underway, the security establishment continues to consider other options, including the American LUWD system. So far, we haven’t found a system that meets our demands, but we continue to look into newly developed as well as existing systems.”
    Former deputy defense minister Ephraim Sneh said that the Ashkenazi Commission considered every available option and made its decision on a “purely professional basis. The allegations that financial motives were at issue are malicious.”

    Reply

  25. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Again, Hawthorne’s argument would seem to imply that an inability to stop ALL the rockets is a sound reason for not stopping some of the rockets.
    From the above cited links…
    “While the C-RAM is fully operational and would be available for immediate deployment in, say, Sderot, which has been hit by hundreds of Kassam rockets over the past three weeks, Israel’s Defense Ministry has decided not to purchase the system. Instead, it is investing its resources in the “Iron Dome” – an antirocket missile system under development by the Rafael Armament Development Authority and expected to be operational by 2011.”
    “Uzi Rubin, a missile expert and a former director of the ministry’s Homa Missile Defense Agency, told The Jerusalem Post on Sunday that the C-RAM was capable of providing medium-level protection for places such as Sderot. According to Rubin, four C-RAM systems – at a cost of $15 million a piece – could effectively defend Sderot from Kassam rockets.”
    End excerpt…
    I wonder, Hawthorne, if you’d be willing to reveal your credentials, that would give us cause to place your credibility on a par with Uzi Rubin’s?
    From what I have read, the general consensus is that this system could be used with some effectiveness at stopping a large number of these rockets. Of course, there are expert dissenting opinions, as there always is. But isn’t the idea to stop Israeli fatalities?
    As far as expense goes, it is my understanding that the Phalanx system us far cheaper than the one being developed by the Israelis. And uh, what is the invasion of Gaza costing, both in treasure, and lives?
    And, I would like you to provide us with some sort of evidence that Hamas has, or has had, the CAPABILITY to “fire 15 of them at once in a spread pattern”. Of course they’d “like to”. But have they? Can they? Somehow I doubt it.

    Reply

  26. Hawthorn says:

    Centurion or Phalanx B is the Army version, yes, I just wanted to make sure people were talking about this general CRAM type of system. To the best of my knowledge the IDF has not completed any purchases yet although it’s hard to imagine Gates saying no under present circumstances. Part of the problem may be that Israel is working on its own equivalent and may feel that outsourcing would kill the R&D.
    The thing to be emphasized about CRAM is that it is a point defense. It is great for protecting an important target like a FOB or a radar installation. It is not good for protecting enormous swaths of inhabited territory that can be struck anywhere at random for terrorist purposes. It is not even that great for protecting “downtown” because the impacted missile is still a headline in the “suburbs.”
    Nor is the system cheap – about $15 million per installation, fancy ammo extra. A Qassam costs under $500, and Hamas would be happy to fire 15 of them at once in a spread pattern since it doesn’t matter where they land.
    I just don’t want people to have unrealistic hopes that there’s some magic shield waiting for deployment that would erase this whole problem. Nothing will do that except multi state diplomacy and buy-in from all major stakeholders. Let’s hope that’s still a possibility.

    Reply

  27. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Questions, I am greatly heartened by your hypothesis.
    It is truly wonderous and enlightening to know that Hamas is not seeking better weaponry and more advanced rocketry because of Israel’s failure to deploy the Phalanx system. Such logic is awe inspiring in its complexity, abstraction of thought, and courageous disregard for logic and common sense.
    Moreover, your contention that a political solution can be reached far more realistically by a bombing campaign and invasion than by deploying defensive weaponry is brilliant. Quite honestly, I would have never thought of such an innovative route to achieving the diplomatic high ground. You are to be commended for thinking outside the box. Dead bodies being a faster route to peace than saved lives is an extremely modern train of thought, and you are in the company of many great and noble world leaders in advancing this nobel argument.
    Sily me, in my archaic and simple way of thinking, I thought that the invasion of Gaza was IN FACT, a “military solution”. But hey, what do I know, eh? I wrongly thought that had Israel deployed a defensive anti-missile system, shown an honest attempt to use known technology to protect its citizens, and had any success wioth the ffort, would have placed them in a superior diplomatic position to seek a political solution, than the images of Palestinian fathers holding up the bodies of babies fryed in White Phosphorous. But again, what do I know?
    Yes, its good to know that Israel has successfully gained the high diplomatic ground, and has stopped Hamas from seeking superior rocketry. Hallelujah, good news for once.

    Reply

  28. PissedOnIngrate says:

    ROFLMAO!!!!
    Great post. We could use a resident fop to temper the crass and uneducated nattering of lowly peons such as myself.
    BTW, did anyone catch the news that Obama has hired the most expensive and sought after Interior Designer on the west coast to dress up the castle for he and his? I’ve worked with this guy a few years back, and he definitely has what it takes to make sure that Obama’s shit never stinks again.
    “Change”, another word for “redecorate”.

    Reply

  29. Anonymous III says:

    Why should the elite commenters on this blog bother with those here of the lower class who are easily identified by their rough language and simple thought processes that comes off for the most part as a hatred and envy for those more accomplished and of higher standing than they could ever hope to achieve. POA is a working man, he pounds down nails as a carpenter, and he is bitter about his lot in life. Others here who are foul mouthed and full of venom are decidedly also of the lower stratus of society; how could it be otherwise. Let’s let them squabble and fight amongst themselves in their mud, their own blood, and their beer, while we retire as ladies and gentleman to a virtual drawing room within this blog for tea and civil discussion. We should each know our place and not intrude on each other. The cursing will just not do and a separation of the classes in a must here if we are to get anywhere with the issues of the day.
    Thank you.

    Reply

  30. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Paul, far more expert people than me have already addressed his argument. In the links I supplied above this one.
    Are you slobbering on yourself this morning? You are getting shrill.
    But here you go……
    “I assume all this talk about Phalanx refers to the MK15 “seawhiz” system…..”
    No. I am referring to the C-Ram system that is a land based variation of the Vulcan Phalanx. The MK15 “seawhiz” is designed for usage on naval ships to target fix winged aircraft and missiles, and is a much older version of the Phalanx system.
    “You can’t use Phalanx effectively to defend a populated border….”
    Perhaps not, but the systems could be deployed strategically around towns such as sderot, with some effectiveness. And obviously, if you read the information I have supplied, there are a few experts that would disagree with your assessment.
    The argument that you won’t be able to stop ALL the rockets just doesn’t make sense. If you stop even 50% of the rockets, doesn’t it follow that you would prevent 50% of the deaths due to these rocket attacks? Are you saying, “we can’t stop them all, so we won’t bother to stop any of them”?
    “If you targeted Qassams with Phalanx you would be side-shooting at a tiny target over a populated area. Your ordnance will kill people, and if you hit the missile, it will break up and kill people”
    Actually, the 22 millimeter rounds are designed to explode in the air if they do not connect with the target. (as cited in the above articles). And your correct description of the rockets as being little larger that a bat would seem to render your argument as laughable. Are you contending that small non-explosive pieces of a baseball bat, falling from the sky, are more prone to kill people than an explosive baseball bat, falling from the sky, is?
    Come on, you can do better than that, cancha?
    Honestly, Paul, with just a little reading, you could have pokes holes in Hawthorne’s post. What were you saying about “rationale debate”?

    Reply

  31. Paul Norheim says:

    Exactly. He didn`t lick your ass, so why should you bother to
    address his argument?

    Reply

  32. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Obviously hawthorne has the same affliction that Paul and varanasi do, an aversion to even minimal research.
    I won’t even bother to address his argument unless pressed. His post is full of mistakes that can only be the product of a lack of even moderate research. The majority of his points are rebutted in the articles I posted above. Perhaps he should have taken time to read those articles before commenting.

    Reply

  33. questions says:

    Hey POA,
    Many thanks for the kind words!!!!!!!!! It’s nice to know you’re so attuned to why I post here!! I feel better already!
    But probably you’re right. There’s no strategic calculus involved in any deployment decisions, and no stretching of the truth in any claims of reliability of the defense system and Hawthorn’s post above is probably irrelevant, too. Israel just wants to kill itself some Palestinians and so it won’t defend itself so that it has an excuse to defend itself. Yeah, right…..

    Reply

  34. Bert Nowak says:

    As everyone here recognizes, Paul included, the venom for Israel lies just or unjustly below the surface. I believe it is just.
    For your information, Paul’s synopsis of this thread has a sociological bend that represents most peoples vanities of intellect and emotion as he represents the bent observers point of view. If he means to mollify the last few days energy, well maybe but he is not interested in a double blind sampling of his work. He simply tries to tamp down another version of the humanness brought on by the sickening militancy of a Zionist with or without power.
    Shooting fish in a barrel is the same a shooting people in a barrel called Gaza. When we see the inversion (it could be us should we live in Gaza or the West Bank) the anger rises to meet the foe. The killers work with the same ferociousness as Stalin or Hitler or Truman or Churchill or Sharon or Bush’s or Milosevic and these are only some of the white guys. Consider the many others of colour like Hirohito or Pol Pot or Suharto or Kambanda or Hassan al-Bashir.
    These are murderers of the past and present. Who are the murderers of the future? They are growing up, as we watch with baited breath.
    Get involved, learn about who they are. In my mind why doesn’t matter because any reason will do.
    Condi takes it on the chin for a whimpish Bush. That matters less to a guy who gets his guidance from the highest authority. Christ is out of the loop.

    Reply

  35. Hawthorn says:

    I assume all this talk about Phalanx refers to the MK15 “seawhiz” system. You can’t use Phalanx effectively to defend a populated border, it’s designed for point defense (like a ship or the White House) where the threats are coming at you – and dropping them in chunks at a relatively close distance is acceptable.
    The little Qassam rockets Hamas was lobbing over the border are usually the size of a baseball bat, made of steel and the cheapest explosive components they can scrounge up. They’re completely ballistic and unguided once launched, and their “target” is any random spot in a populated area.
    If you targeted Qassams with Phalanx you would be side-shooting at a tiny target over a populated area. Your ordnance will kill people, and if you hit the missile, it will break up and kill people.
    Antimissile has its uses, but this is not one of them.

    Reply

  36. varanasi says:

    “As for varanasi, my opinion stands, he is as big a jackass as I’ve ever seen post here.”
    coming from the pathetic likes of you, i take this as a high compliment.
    thank you, POI
    P.S. the personal animosity and hatred that you have directed towards me has actually inspired me to post more frequently. i (somewhat embarrassingly) derive a perverse pleasure in watching you freak out over everything i say and your whole, “varanasi is as fake as a three dollar bill” routine takes the cake!
    like i said, POI, be careful with the paranoia. pretty soon you’re going to be seeing hasbara in the trees outside your window 😉

    Reply

  37. Paul Norheim says:

    Comme Arthur Rimbaud, je est un autre.
    (Je suis d`Ethiopie, et je reside en Harar.)
    POA, au contraire, est le m̻me vieille terrier Рamericaine, bien
    sure! Actuellement il est Rambo.

    Reply

  38. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Sorry Paul, but “go screw yourself” is far less pretentious than your language lesson.
    And the patronizingly “wise” posture you assume occassionally is so effin’ syrupy that if the readers could vomit in a literary sense, you’d be wading in the stuff.
    As for varanasi, my opinion stands, he is as big a jackass as I’ve ever seen post here.
    And “questions”, your last post, inventing a political “complexity” to the Phalanx issue, is probably one of the most asinine, obsfucating, and blatant efforts at mental masturbation that I have seen in a long time.

    Reply

  39. gggrrrufff says:

    Je suis americaine, qui, c’est vrai. Et nous sommes le plus grand pays de tous l’histoire du monde. Et notre militaire destruirais toute de Norge si nous desirons. Donc, tait-toi!
    Rimbaud
    …. non, non, non, c’est Rambeaux, qui, c’est mon vrai personne.

    Reply

  40. Paul Norheim says:

    Gggrrruff,
    hvis noen mistenker meg for å være amerikaner, og ikke
    nordmann, blir jeg, når sant skal sies, mer stolt enn ergerlig. Men
    allerede rett etter å ha postet en kommentar, som den ovenfor,
    finner jeg idiotiske feil. Da trøster jeg meg med at mange av dere
    amerikanere også begår språklige feil på deres eget morsmål.
    Det kan kanskje være på sin plass å nevne her, som jeg har nevnt
    før på TWN, at jeg på norsk heter Pål Norheim, og ikke Paul. Men
    tegnet “Ã¥” mangler pÃ¥ engelske tastaturer, sÃ¥ jeg finner det mer
    praktisk Ã¥ skrive “Paul” nÃ¥r jeg kommuniserer pÃ¥ engelsk.
    “Faux pas”? Personellement, je crois que vous êtes francais, et
    pas americaine!

    Reply

  41. varanasi says:

    so identity police, do you think “dov” is really an israeli?
    paul is right, this line of questioning is ridiculous on the internet.
    clearly, paul is an articulate and intelligent person with his own opinions. does it really matter if he lives in norway or nebraska?
    this witch hunting is stupid and indicative of the antagonism and group-think of the majority of regulars on this blog.
    instead of analyzing the syntax and semantics of posts, why can’t people respectfully disagree with the opinions of others?

    Reply

  42. dov says:

    I’m with varanasi,
    Ohlmert is the worst Israeli PM ever and does not serve well the interests of our Zionist cause, and he makes it hell trying to defend Israel. We have lost more reputation under Ohlmert than any other PM in Israel’s history. It is a very hard job having to clean up the messes he leaves behind, and this latest bit where he tells the world we have the USA, our sugar daddy, on puppet strings ……. well, let’s change the subject, pulleasse!

    Reply

  43. gggrrrufff says:

    That is pretty damn good English for a Norwegian, Paul. Better throw in a few grammatical faux pas to make yourself more honest to your persona.

    Reply

  44. varanasi says:

    questions wrote:
    “Have read that the “called away from a speech” part is untrue. Bush wasn’t speaking at the time of the phone call, he was merely in Philadelphia. Can’t remember where I came across this, but a journalist-type actually fact-checked the schedules apparently.”
    this sounds more like it. i never believed that the President would leave the stage, mid-speech to take a phone call. just didn’t make sense to me. the original quote from ohlmert struck me much more as school yard boast where he clearly stretched the truth.
    but, my original comment stands:
    ohlmert: worst PM ever!

    Reply

  45. Paul Norheim says:

    Arthur,
    how would you define the comment section of TWN?
    A very simple answer would be: it`s an open forum where
    anyone who do not break a rather liberal set of rules (like
    spamming, ad hominem attacks etc) write comments linked to
    Steve`s original post – i.e. on topic.
    Who define what is”spamming”, what is “ad hominem attacks”,
    what is “on topic”? Answer: Steve does.
    In practice however, the answer is slightly more complicated.
    But I believe the reasons for this are simple: Steve does not only
    want informed and intelligent comments; he also wants
    temperature, passions, tensions, real disagreement and
    polemical fights. And to get that, you have to be quite liberal
    with regards to those rules.
    I would guess that most of the regular commenters here often
    go off topic, and sometimes this is a good thing because the
    original post was not very interesting, topic-wise (like “I am off
    to Chicago today”), or because the discussion develops in a
    lively way into certain interesting directions.
    And sometimes we go off topic in a disturbing and nonsensical
    manner, as we all know. Our challenge, and Steve`s as well, is
    to keep the debate interesting, in a somewhat reasonable
    proximity to the original topic, and to balance “interesting” with
    “on topic.”
    Then we have “spam”. We have had some spammers here, and
    although the capthca mechanism takes care of most of it,
    sometimes Steve have removed comments or banned
    commenters due to spam. On the other hand, he has tolerated
    Tahoe, a typical spammer. Why? My guess is that Tahoe
    represents opinions Steve wants to see represented in the
    comment section, perhaps for the sake of “balance”; perhaps for
    the sake of “temperature”. Tahoe provokes reactions, and since
    no persons with a proven record of independent thinking and
    an ability to involve in a real dialogue about ideas have taken
    that role so far, I guess that Steve decided that he had to accept
    the spamming version of that position.
    But sometimes commenters have informed Steve about a certain
    spammer, and Steve removed the comments of that spammer.
    He doesn`t have the time to read everything on the treads; thus
    we cry out for him. The same goes for racist adn ad hominem
    remarks – the latest example was a few days ago when POA, I
    and others protested against a commenter writing racist
    remarks attributing them to a well known figure in public life.
    Steve thanked us and removed the comment.
    Personally, I tend to think of the comment section as a scene,
    where actors represent different ideas and the fight between
    those ideas. Who are these actors? Answer: we don`t know.
    Some people use their own names, and we may google them to
    verify their existence. But most people here use different
    monikers, as masks or personas through which they display
    certain characters. They may be saying what they are saying in
    “real life”, they may be trying out certain ideas, they may be
    provocateurs saying things for the sake of provocation, or they
    may say the opposite of what they mean.
    The case is: due to the use of monikers and the scene
    (cyberspace), we have no reliable means to judge whether x, y
    or z is honest or not, whether x is a male or female, whether y
    comes from Florida or Ghana, or whether z is 19 or 79 years
    old. What we have is the ideas, the information (that may be
    verified or falsified) and a subjective, rather arbitrary estimate of
    the degree of credibility of the characters representing those
    ideas and opinions. And the latter is, unfortunately, not very
    reliable. I can say, Arthur, that I am more honest than you, or
    you can say that you are more honest than me, but we can`t
    prove our claim. The readers and fellow commenters can guess,
    but none of them possess reliable information or means to
    decide this. Thus claims of “dishonesty” become a polemical
    weapon among others: I say that you are dishonest, and if the
    readers believe me, I have the upper hand. But whether the
    claim is true or not is anybody`s guess.
    Anybody who may have wasted their time reading my posts
    during the last couple of weeks will see that I have been much
    more engaged in polemics against TonyForesta`s pro Israel
    mass murder theory, WigWags claim that the Israel/Palestine
    conflict does not affect the outer world (the Arab streets,
    jihadist groups like al Qaeda etc) and other pro Israel
    statements, than anything else. Admittedly I reacted when I felt
    that rich, some days ago, went to far in interpreting Varanasi,
    and acted like an inquisition. And admittedly I once said that
    POA crossed a line against WigWag. POA does not tolerate this
    kind of correction, and predictably harassed me for saying this.
    Then rich jumped on it, claiming that I was not credible, and
    now you say that you are more honest than me. Frankly, Arthur,
    I have no idea who is the most or least “honest” person at TWN.
    I certainly do not think that my opponents in the battle of
    opinions in general is less honest than me. But who am I to
    know?
    But everybody on this scene, and everybody watching the
    spectacle, should realize that claims of dishonesty are not very
    credible, coming from a voice using a mask. Demanding
    honesty and authenticity from someone calling themselves …,
    jj, WigWag or ArthurDecco is ridiculous. If you and others try to
    put me in the same camp as varanasi, WigWag and TonyF, then
    fine, you`re welcome. But it smells of immature group thinking,
    and everybody can check it out and realize that the claims are
    absurd.
    And I don´t know who made the biggest contribution to
    diverting this thread: WigWag, who somehow mostly moved in a
    reasonable proximity of the original topic (except for a couple
    of the references to the Clinton hearings), or those who made a
    circus by asking others to screw themselves, arguing about
    underwear and meth, or disputing the authenticity of fellow
    commenters. WigWag talked about Egypt`s role in a ceasefire;
    POA about Phalanx. Was POA on topic, and WigWag not? It
    depends on the eyes. If you want to know what I meant related
    to the direct topic, you`ll find it by checking some of the very
    first comments on this monster thread. I have nothing to add to
    that topic.

    Reply

  46. Paul Norheim says:

    “BIN LADEN CALLS FOR JIHAD IN GAZA
    CBS News: Al Qaeda Boss Says Israel Attacked Because Of
    America’s Fading Dominance, End Of Bush Mandate
    LONDON, Jan. 14, 2009
    Al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden has called for jihad in the Gaza
    Strip, urging Muslims to wage holy war as the only way to defeat
    Israel.
    The message came in an audio downloaded Wednesday by CBS
    News from a Web site frequently used to disseminate al Qaeda
    propaganda. The audio was produced by al Qaeda’s media wing,
    as-Sahab.
    It was impossible to indisputably confirm the authenticity of the
    recording, but the voice appeared to be that of the terror
    group’s leader. The audio has not been heard before. The last
    known audio address from bin Laden was released on May 19,
    2008.
    The audio, about 22 minutes long, is titled: “A Call for Jihad to
    Stop the Aggression on Gaza. The message of Sheikh Osama Bin
    Laden to the Muslim Ummah.”
    Its release came on the 19th day of Israel’s military campaign in
    the Gaza Strip targeting Hamas militants, which Palestinian
    doctors say has left 940 people dead, less than half of whom
    were combatants.
    Bin Laden says the decline of the America’s dominance on the
    world stage was one of the main factors which prompted Israel
    to go on the offensive in Gaza.
    “The great and swift decline in America’s influence is one of the
    most important motivations for Israelis to wage such a barbaric
    attack on Gaza, in a bid to try and make use of the last days of
    (President) Bush’s mandate and the neo-conservatives,” he says.
    “Israelis are in a rush to get rid of their enemies in Gaza, and
    replace them with (Palestinian President Mahmoud) Abbas and
    his administration, in order for him to protect their backs. They
    thus carried out this horrific butchery before the end of Bush’s
    term in office before the American weakness shows even more.”
    Bin Laden says Bush has left President-elect Barack Obama with
    “two bitter choices,” and wonders aloud whether the next
    American leader will be able to keep up the fight against al
    Qaeda and other terrorist groups.
    “Can America keep up the war with us for more decades to
    come? All reports and analysis indicate that this is not possible.
    In fact, 75 percent of American people are happy with the
    departure of the president who got them into wars they could
    not possibly win.”
    Bin Laden goes on to say President Bush “drowned” the
    American people in economic woes and “left his successor a
    difficult legacy, and left him one of two bitter choices… The
    worst heritage is when a man inherits a long guerrilla warfare
    with a persevering, patient enemy – a war that is funded by
    usury. If he (Obama) withdraws from the war, that would be a
    military defeat, and if he goes on with it, he’ll drown in
    economic crisis.”
    Bin Laden predicts that Obama will be unable to solve the
    economic problems facing America.
    Quoting Obama’s vice-presidential pick, Joe Biden, bin Laden
    says, “Here’s Biden, the deputy of the newly elected president,
    saying: ‘The crisis is even worse that we expected, and the
    entire American economy is in peril.’”
    It was the latest attack on Obama by an al Qaeda figurehead.
    Bin Laden’s deputy, Ayman al-Zawahiri, accused Obama of
    standing behind the “massacre of Gaza” in an audio released
    earlier this month.
    Bin Laden taunts President Bush over his pledge to abolish
    terrorism and kill or arrest terrorist leaders – a promise the
    outgoing American President couldn’t keep, according to the al
    Qaeda chief.
    “A group of your sons declared Jihad on that single power, the
    Hitler of our time, we thus broke its horn, struck his fortress
    and demolished his tower. He thus became enraged and said he
    would bring the leaders of the Mujahideen, dead or alive, to
    regain America’s stature in the world and set it as an example
    for everybody,” bin Laden said.”

    Reply

  47. arthurdecco says:

    Questions, Who cares if Bush was called away from a speech or not? Stop trying to take our eyes off the ball. The issue under discussion is the fact that Olmert, a discredited, hugely unpopular FOREIGN war criminal politico has the power to order the President of the United States to change the planned vote of his Secretary of State at the United Nations to better support the continuing war crimes of Israel!
    At least now we can finally put to rest the assertion that AIPAC or the “Jewish Lobby” is a lobby like any other, only one of the voices whispering in the ears of the powerful. We now have confirmation that the US government, no matter which party is in power, is ultimately controlled by unfriendly foreign interests in all the ways that matter. This quick peek behind the screens that normally shield the powers-that-be from public view confirms that.

    Reply

  48. questions says:

    arthurdecco,
    Have read that the “called away from a speech” part is untrue. Bush wasn’t speaking at the time of the phone call, he was merely in Philadelphia. Can’t remember where I came across this, but a journalist-type actually fact-checked the schedules apparently.

    Reply

  49. questions says:

    One last attempt to think strategically on the Phalanx “issue.” The success rate for anti-missile technology is given as a percentage. A percentage can be very small when expressed as a fraction (the anti-missile technology only allows 10% or 20% of the incoming missiles to hit their targets.) But 10/100 or 20/100 is a relation rather than an absolute number. So how do you increase the absolute number? You send more missiles….. By deploying imperfect anti-missile defenses, Israel would create an incentive for Hamas to do two very destabilizing things: send more missiles AND send better missiles. Why create the incentive? In trying to “save” some lives, this move would risk even more lives.
    This kind of escalation and escalation dominance is precisely what the Cold War was about. Better to have lower level fighting than to escalate. We need a political solution not a military solution.
    Defense doesn’t make as much sense as you’d think, sometimes. Game theory has a lot of this stuff figured out. Unilateral moves do a disservice to the whole. And so it’s quite possible that missile defense is merely foolish. It’s also possible that contractor corruption is involved (as was hinted above). Nothing new about that. It’s also quite possible that the success rate, and the missile defense itself, is phony. (Nothing new in that either.)

    Reply

  50. arthurdecco says:

    “What make you, POA, rich, ArthurDecco and others think that you are more honest and straight forward than her? To me it smells like a dirty polemical trick, actually a bit dishonest.” Paul Norheim
    I can’t speak for the others, Paul, but I consider myself more honest and straightforward than WigWag because I am. And for the record, Paul, I also consider myself more honest and straightforward that you too. Your wind-bag-sermonizing, hubris and old-maidish scolding have gotten old with me “real quick”.
    Wigwag is a proven serial liar, a dissembler, a propagandist, and an emotionally damaged, paranoid American Jew who sees an anti-Semite under every bed and behind every criticism of Israel and the sociopathological construct we all know as Zionism.
    WigWag has time and time again attempted to divert attention from the issues under discussion in order to sow confusion and disrupt the flow of information that he/she deems a “threat” to Jews generally and Israel specifically.
    These latest attempts to divert our attention away from the fact that the latest odious Israeli war criminal and common crook Olmert had the power to have the Shrub called away from a speech he was making in order to force his fellow war criminal Condi Rice to change her voting intentions to better reflect the interests of the rabid leadership of Israel and its traitorous American co-conspirators in AIPAC speaks volumes as to WigWag’s motivations and honesty.
    You don’t see it that way. That’s okay. But stop labeling those of us who do see clearly with crap like “To me it smells like a dirty polemical trick, actually a bit dishonest.”
    Judging by my careful reading of the comments on this thread, it isn’t POA, rich, me or “others” who are up to “dirty polemical tricks” – it’s you, WigWag, that nattering fool varanasi, Liaska and the particularly obnoxious bigot, jj skinner (amongst others) who are.
    Not surprisingly, you’ve got it upside down and backwards.
    Again.

    Reply

  51. Holy Moely says:

    The problem with the Israelis not purchasing these Phalanx systems to protect their towns is surely not because of money, at the tune of 15 million apiece. We give them $3 billion in aid every year and they gots no money? Hey, how about we purchase the Phalanx for them and take the price out of that hand-out. Or, if they would have some heads roll over here if we did that, why not just give them to them on lease for $19.95 per quarter, ok, ok, per year then. Nobody could figure this out, or nobody wanted to? These Phalanx probably would have ruined their scheme that led to their current misguided psychopathic bloodly mess.

    Reply

  52. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Apparently I was confused as to the Raytheon connection. Raytheon actually markets the C-Ram Phalanx system, and the “competing” system the Israels are developing is being developed by an Israeli arms producer. That really explains quite a bit, doesn’t it?
    Its interesting that the lowest success ratio I have seen cited is 70%. That means 70 rockets out of one hundred would be stopped from killing Israeli citizens. That not exactly a condemning statistic, is it? The deeper you dig, the more inexplicable it becomes that Israel refuses to take immediate steps to protect its citizens. Unless, of course, you consider the distinct possibility that Israel DOES NOT WANT TO STOP THE ROCKETS.
    From the “Weapons Survey” site….
    http://www.weaponsurvey.com/kbase/reddawn.htm
    Excerpt….
    “Although an early warning system has been installed in certain sectors, the Government of Israel has yet to deploy a functioning missile defense system. However, it should be noted that the C-RAM (manufactured by Raytheon) is fully operational and available for immediate deployment. Nevertheless, the Israeli MOD has decided not to purchase the system, instead opting for the the Iron Dome, an antirocket missile system under development by RAFAEL and expected to be operational only by 2011. According to sources in the Defense Ministry, the C-RAM system was checked by its Research & Development Directorate (MAFAT) and found to be unsuitable for Sderot, as the system could only protect isolated areas of several hundred square meters.
    However, Sean Osborne, Associate Director of NEIN Military Affairs, tells WeaponSurvey that: “C-RAM is deployed at US FOBs (Forward Operating Bases) all over Iraq – not just in the so-called Green Zone. C-RAMs success rate in shooting mortar rounds and other incoming indirect ordnance out of the sky is better than 85% according to data I’ve received from those who’ve installed these systems in Iraq. C-RAM counter-fires which miss the incoming target do not simply fall to ground – each 20mm round is fused to self-destruct if contact is not made with the target.
    “The IDF Research & Development Directorate (MAFAT) refusal to acquire and deploy the C-RAM system in defense of Sderot or other Israeli towns is several echelons below unfortunate, and appears to be couched in political considerations which have nothing to do with the suffering of the citizens of Sderot. The non-acquisition is sending a message of abandonment to the women and children of Sderot who are under severe traumatic stress and psychological pressures not unlike that of soldiers in combat.”
    The C-RAM is a radar-controlled gun adapted from a US Navy original, which can fire 4,500 rounds a minute and destroy incoming mortar bombs before impact. According to Jane’s Defense Weekly, the Land-based Phalanx Weapon System (LPWS) “is a reconfigured variant of the widely sold Phalanx 20 mm shipborne close-in weapon system [that] combines a 20 mm M61A1 Gatling gun with a Ku-band search-and-track radar featuring closed loop spotting.”
    And heres more, from the Jerusalem Post…
    http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull&cid=1180867542904
    Jun 4, 2007
    Israel spurns C-Ram rocket defense
    By YAAKOV KATZ
    While Israel is still years away from developing a Kassam rocket defense system, Great Britain announced last week it is deploying a new antirocket and antimortar cannon in Iraq.
    Britain’s Ministry of Defense has decided to spend 500 million on new protective equipment for troops stationed in Iraq, according to media reports last week, including a rapid-fire cannon called the C-RAM (Counter-Rocket, Artillery and Mortar) that reportedly has a 70 percent to 80 percent success rate in intercepting incoming shells and rockets.
    The first C-RAM, manufactured by Raytheon, was sent to Iraq last year and is used by the Americans to protect the Green Zone in Baghdad. The C-RAM is a variant of the American Vulcan Phalanx, a 20mm cannon designed to defend navy ships from missiles. The cannon is controlled by radar that detects and locks in on incoming enemy projectiles.
    While the C-RAM is fully operational and would be available for immediate deployment in, say, Sderot, which has been hit by hundreds of Kassam rockets over the past three weeks, Israel’s Defense Ministry has decided not to purchase the system. Instead, it is investing its resources in the “Iron Dome” – an antirocket missile system under development by the Rafael Armament Development Authority and expected to be operational by 2011.
    Uzi Rubin, a missile expert and a former director of the ministry’s Homa Missile Defense Agency, told The Jerusalem Post on Sunday that the C-RAM was capable of providing medium-level protection for places such as Sderot. According to Rubin, four C-RAM systems – at a cost of $15 million a piece – could effectively defend Sderot from Kassam rockets.
    While also calling for the development of a laser-based system to defend Sderot in the long term, Rubin said the C-RAM – which is capable of protecting isolated military outposts and installations – could provide an effective defense in Sderot and should have been bought by Israel years ago.
    “It is a system that has proven to be quite successful,” he said. “It disturbs me that nothing was done for years to locate and procure or develop a system that works.”
    continues….

    Reply

  53. Outraged American says:

    Israel does have a propaganda outlet called “Megaphone,” with
    volunteers worldwide who are sent alerts and links to comment
    sections anytime Israel’s actions are questioned.
    Varanasi, what part of India are you from and where do you live
    now? Are you a member of the BJP (Hindu Nationalist Party, very
    anti-Muslim)?
    Also Varanasi, how do you figure that the U.S. has influenced
    India for hundreds of years? Can you cite some examples of the
    U.S. using her influence on India in the 1800s?
    I’ve mentioned that I spent eight years in India. I have traveled
    widely there.
    So Varanasi, I’d be really interested in hearing something about
    your background and why you feel that, as an Indian, Israel
    should be defended while she commits the genocide of an Arab
    population, some of whom are Christians.

    Reply

  54. questions says:

    POA,
    I appreciate the passion and sense of immediacy you’re feeling. You don’t need to “yell” though. As I said above, the Phalanx system seems to have an 80% accuracy according to PUBLIC records. For all I know, it’s really an 8% accuracy rate. (Hence the Star Wars/SDI reference.) Shooting at moving targets, even in gatling fashion, is an inexact science. (Hence the Star Wars/SDI reference.) It’s quite possible that Raytheon has faked data and there’s a disinformation campaign. (Hence the Star Wars/SDI reference.) It’s quite possible that Israel sees the system as a strategic mistake. Sometimes defense is offense in sheep’s clothing. (Hence the Star Wars/SDI reference.)I don’t really know. I’m not an expert on the IDF, but I have a few common sense responses that may or may not be correct. I’m not making an argument about Israel’s intentions so much as speculating within a fairly normal range of possibilities that come up in strategic thinking. (So I don’t think it was criminal of me to invoke Star Wars/SDI.)
    If the Phalanx system is real, it is honestly quite possible that analysts have decided that it would be more dangerous to deploy it. It’s quite possible there’s a conspiracy. A lot of things are possible.

    Reply

  55. Paul Norheim says:

    POA,
    please show some patience, will you? I don`t have the time to do
    any extensive research into the Phalanx system yet.
    As a matter of fact, I`m still trying to find the truth regarding
    Sarah Palin`s pregnancy coverup – remember that? Actually, it
    was her daugther`s baby, right? Most newspapers and blogs
    claimed, and still claim that these was just false rumors, but I am
    not sure, since you jumped on it and claimed that it actually was
    the truth, and nothing but the truth. And when POA says so…
    Yeah, there are really fishy elements in the narrative told by Palin
    and the hospital, so I`ll have to do some further research into it
    before jumping on the Phalanx story.

    Reply

  56. Cee says:

    Carroll,
    I don’t think Condi has tried. The first thing she should do and has never done is tell the truth.
    Israel is responsible for this situation.
    Same with J Steet. What Israel is doing isn’t defense.
    Murder!
    Qaddoura Fares, head of the Palestinian Prisoners Society, said that Israel’s kidnapping of civilians in Gaza and the media blackout on the issue is very serious, as it gives the Israeli Army a free hand to assassinate kidnapped residents.
    Fares added that the army is not providing any information about the number of kidnapped residents or their whereabouts “Which gives the army the opportunity to execute them, throw their bodies in the streets, and claim that they were killed in during clashes”.
    http://www.imemc.org/article/58411

    Reply

  57. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Varanazi..
    You’re a liar. I never claimed that Phalanx was “under development”.
    But of course, you will provide no link to my comment that you assert I made, eh?
    You’re sure a slimy little worm, arencha?

    Reply

  58. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Questions…Reagan’s “star wars” has absolutely NOTHING to add of relevence to this topic. When discussing “Star wars” you are discussing a missile defense systen designed to target inter-continental ballistic missiles.
    The missiles launched by hamas are short range land based trajectery missiles. They go up, and come down, all in a very short distance with not a whole lot of altitude. The Phalanx system does not target a missile with a missile, as I explained above.
    It seems your argument furthers my contention that Israel has no desire to stop these rocket attacks, and is blatantly lying when it claims to be assuming a defensive posture. So you agree that Israel is actually sacrificing its own citizens to provide the justification for its treatment of the Gaza Palestinian population?
    Thank you for at least making an effort at research, even if your “Star Wars” angle is completely and utterly irrelevant. Varanasi should follow your example, in the hopes he doesn’t continue to make such an ass of himself.
    And perhaps Paul, after recovering from his poor “how dare he” indignation at my honest appraisal of where he can stick his “ad hominem” admonishment, will take the time to inform himself, albiet belatedly.

    Reply

  59. Bert Nowak says:

    wigwag
    I hear yah
    ‘But of course the piece de resistance is witnessing the most ardent Obama supporters come to the realization that their hopes for the man they anointed as their hero were nothing but their own narcissistic pipe dreams.’
    and when the time comes and it will, as it’s been said ‘payback is a bitch’
    but you have no tears to cry for anyone.

    Reply

  60. questions says:

    POA,
    Hadn’t followed up at all on Phalanx. It’s been a difficult start to the year. But I just did a bit of searching. I have a couple of somewhat less conspiracy theoretical possibilities.
    First, Reagan’s Star Wars fantasy of knocking out every missile with ABMs shot from outer space or whatever was utter nonsense. The testing never worked in real life situations; it was always rigged for “success”. BUT, the deployment or even funding of Star Wars was inherently destabilizing. Relations between countries, even given regular small and medium and proxy wars, can remain stable if the weapons and tactics remain stable. There is a kind of stability in the Israel/Gaza mess — a weird kind, and one with more death than I’d like, but stability nonetheless. The tunnels, weapons, bombings, tactics and players are familiar to both sides.
    If you put in a missile defense that is 80% effective (the number I saw for Phalanx), you instantly destabilize relations. How would Hamas respond? What would Egypt or Iran or Syria do? What new factions do you create? What new elements do you add to the system?
    Both sides, Israel and Palestine, are at equilibrium, both “benefit” from the status quo in terms of sympathy from certain parties, recruitment of followers and so on. The misery “works” after a fashion. Why add something new that changes the equation and adds in variables with no known values?
    Could be conspiracy, could be stability. Could be that stability is conspiracy….

    Reply

  61. Carroll says:

    This is not the first time Olmert has done this to Condi. If you remember Condi was in meetings with Olmert when they attacked Lebanon…and she had not been informed beforehand that Israel was launching that attack at that very hour. Condi walked out of the meeting very pissed, as she should have been. I give her some credit, she has tried several things and got no back up from Bush at all.
    But who is surprised at Olmert calling the US to heel like dog? Not me. Been going on for decades.
    But let’s get to the bottom line shall we? Want a cure for the Israeli parasite?
    Then update the antiquated US Treason definitions and Laws so we can get rid of 80% of congress and the Jewish Lobby and our Israeli problem will be over.
    As Sen Schumer said during the Bolton confirmation hearings that.. “A vote against Bolton is a vote against Israel”
    As Hoyer’s said in his speech to AIPAC, …that he was taking freshmen congresspeople on a trip to Israel because it was imperative that they understand that they must support Israel.
    Could it be any clearer? You want America back…the take it back. Call them what they are…traitors.
    And no I am not going to cite all the evidence of this treason, those who haven’t seen it by now aren’t looking or are afraid, if you can believe it, of demanding their government represent their own country.
    Imagine that…being afraid to call out traitors to your country and being afraid to demand your US politicans actually serve their ‘own’ country. Freaking unbelievable.
    Anyone who doesn’t call them what they are loud and clear and work to remove them deserves to live in the US’s Israeli slave colony.

    Reply

  62. Bert Nowak says:

    Liaska, ‘quashing inflammatory rhetoric at every opportunity ‘
    you do mean phosphorus incendiaries on a civilian population.
    As Zionists of Israel have been a pariah to the peoples of Palestine since the late 1800’s we can only assume that you wash you hands in the blood of enemies made, and it will continue until stopped.
    The facts which were revealed again about ‘puppet politics’ are only significant if and only if a politician refuses to be ruled, I mean Obama.
    It’s not been a good start. Having anyone stand on a few words to justify 300 dead kids blown apart in the last week was not the North American way until Madeline Albright (Zionist) said
    ‘In 1996, Albright, a staunch supporter of the Iraq sanctions while serving during the Clinton administration as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, told Leslie Stahl of CBS’s 60 Minutes that, despite the deaths of 500,000 Iraqi children, “We think the price is worth it.”’
    So beware the Clintons!

    Reply

  63. varanasi says:

    POA wrote:
    “Tell us, varanasi, how is it you can cite a weapons technology as being “under development”, and of no use, when you’ve never even heard of the system? Could it simply be you’re full of crap?”
    idiot, i was merely responding to your incessant whining about phalanx. you were the one who said it was under development when you brought it up on the last gaza war thread. i was taking your word for it. i haven’t ever heard of it and lies outside my area of research.
    but, please do go on about the complicated web of deceit and propoganda that brings me and wigwag to TWN.
    of course we’re all organized, zionist sabateurs sent to drive the pitiful likes of you crazy!

    Reply

  64. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Well, Clement, you could do the research, but with varanasi and Paul discouraging such common sense avenues to informed opinion, I can see where you’d think uninformed input trumps no input at all.
    First, Phalanx is not a “missile system”. It is more appropriately compared to a modern day gattling gun, that shoots a huge volume of high velocity hardened projectiles, creating a veritable wall of munitions that the rocket must pass through.
    As far as a failure to deploy the system, and the reasoning behind it, you might want to ask Raytheon, who is in cahoots with Israel developing a system that is far more expensive, not available until at least 2010, and reportedly not very promising as far as effectiveness goes. But hey, it wouldn’t exactly improve the world market for Raytheon’s system if Israel successfully deployed the Phalanx system, would it?
    Besides, what excuse would Israel have to saute Palestinian babies in White Phosphorous if they successfully countered the threat of Hamas rockets?
    http://www.uruknet.info/?p=m50761&hd=&size=1&l=e

    Reply

  65. WigWag says:

    What an extraordinarily disgraceful display on the part of the Senators conducting the confirmation hearings. There were at most one or two questions about what is going on in Gaza. There was exactly one question about Cuba policy. There were scores of questions about the Clinton Global Initiative and how it might be a conflict of interest for Hillary Clinton. There were several questions about global climate change and there were numerous questions about the management of the State Department.
    There was no discussion or even mention of:
    1) Peace between Israel and Syria
    2) The ramifications of the Shiite-Sunni rift
    3) The India-Pakistan imbroglio
    4) South Asia, other than Afghanistan
    5) The situation in Burma
    6) The Bush ABM missiles in Eastern Europe
    7) Bosnia
    8) The Serbian-Kosovo issue
    9) Russia and its role in former Soviet Republics
    10) Georgia
    11) Chechnya
    12)NATO Expansion
    13) Tibet
    14) Turkey’s admission into the European Union
    15) Venezuela
    16) Central America
    17) Mexico
    18) Maritime, fishing and other issues with Canada
    19) Expansion of the UN Security Council
    20) Haiti (except for a brief mention by Senator Nelson.
    I could go on and on.
    This was a truly disgraceful display by the US Senate.

    Reply

  66. PissedOffAmeroican says:

    varansi, furiously treading water, wants the pond drained.
    Tough shit, varanasi.
    If you’re going to make an ass of yourself, I’m certainly not gonna be shy about pointing it out.
    You don’t have the luxury of telling the rest of us when a thread is “dead”.
    Tell us, varanasi, how is it you can cite a weapons technology as being “under development”, and of no use, when you’ve never even heard of the system? Could it simply be you’re full of crap?

    Reply

  67. ... says:

    jj skinner Jan 13, 1:58PM
    you appear to be saying that israel holds a ransom over the usa’s head and therefore the usa is in no position to question israel… it is an interesting view and judging on the actions of us politicians, they seem to share it..
    interesting how many regular posters get sidetracked.. i suppose i do as well from time to time.. treating others the way you would like to be treated is a good guideline to live by.. i’m not sure how many could continue if they adopted this ideology and i am not just talking israel/palestine people…

    Reply

  68. Clement Sturgis says:

    I didn’t read about no technical specs for them Phalanx missiles, but from a practical common sense point of view, ain’t them little rockets that Hamas fires off way to small and fast to be properly hit by an anti-missile missile, or are you just protecting areas where them missiles might harm folks and getting them as they are coming down on you which in that case there ain’t much movement to contend with just finding the cone of the missile which is mighty small to find with any radar I am familiar with. Just asking cause others are not addressing the subject and I’m curious. Can’t see that Israel is so heinous as to not get these missiles and try them out before committing to outright killing folks. Something don’t seem right somehow.

    Reply

  69. WigWag says:

    Good News on Cuba
    Clinton (3:36 pm EST) The President-Elect is committed to eliminating family travel restrictions and remittence restrictions on Cuba.

    Reply

  70. Paul Norheim says:

    Posted by varanasi Jan 13, 3:16PM – Link
    this. thread. is. dead.
    ———————-
    How about revitalizing it by answering my remark to you above:
    “Varanasi, there have been anti-Semitic remarks on this and
    other threads, and as you have noticed, not only you and
    WigWag, but also POA, myself and others have often reacted
    when they show up. However, you are mudding the water by
    simply including remarks critical of the US-Israel relationship,
    Zionism, the influence of AIPAC or the current attacks on Gaza
    as expressions of anti-Semitism.”
    Or would you say that you didn`t contribute to the
    pointlessness and distractions of this thread by your allusions
    to “the bathrobe and meth”?
    If you have read the posts of rich, myself and POA, you should
    know that we support Israel`s “right to exist” – rich has even
    stressed this point repeatedly. Do you still regard our critical
    posts against Israeli policy, strategy and mentality as anti-
    Semitic?

    Reply

  71. PissedOffAmerican says:

    varansi, furiously treading water, wants the pond drained.
    Tough shit, varanasi.
    If you’re going to make an ass of yourself, I’m certainly not gonna be shy about pointing it out.
    You don’t have the luxury of telling the rest of us when a thread is “dead”.
    Tell us, varanasi, how is it you can cite a weapons technology as being “under development”, and of no use, when you’ve never even heard of the system? Could it simply be you’re full of crap?

    Reply

  72. Ottovbvs says:

    This was astounding. Rice’s record is actually abysmal, she’s the weakest SoS I can remember but this was the nadir in this job. As for Bush he’s ordered off a podium by the PM of Israel. Amazing.

    Reply

  73. WigWag says:

    “WigWag says explicitly that she supports AIPAC…”
    That may be a bit of an overstatement. Sometimes I support the positions of AIPAC sometimes I don’t. And, for what it’s worth, I don’t “support” them with financial contributions.
    I didn’t agree with AIPAC on its enthusiasm for the US attack on Iraq. I thought it was a big mistake then and I still think it was a big mistake; for the United States, for Israel, for the Iraqis, for everyone.
    And as I have indicated elsewhere on this blog, I think an Israeli or American attack on Iran would be wrong and stupid. AIPAC is far more enthusiastic about a military attack on Iran than I am.
    I support AIPAC when I think they’re right and I don’t support them when I think they are wrong.

    Reply

  74. Annette says:

    DO NOT associate Israel with Olmert. He is the most despised person in the country and has been for the past two years. Unfortunately because of the way Israel holds elections, he cannot be thrown out of office as easily as many think. He is no longer the “official” PM, his days are numbered thank goodness. He only has a 3% approval rating (that is 23% less than Bush has in the U.S.). Just like the Iranians should not be blamed for their psycho, Israel should not be blamed for theirs.
    When Obama enters office, hopefully Olmert will be only a distant memory.

    Reply

  75. questions says:

    Anne Fadiman has a nice book about the Hmong people in Merced, CA, and one girl in particular who had severe epilepsy. The book discusses the culture and language clashes between the family and the local community. (I may have mentioned this book at some point, but I can’t really remember.)
    I bring this up because there is a lovely little anecdote at the beginning called “fish soup”, the point of which is to show that the starting point of a narrative is very significant and varied across cultures. If I ask you how to make fish soup, you might just google the recipe and hand it to me, or copy it from a cook book. Would you tell the story of how your dad learned to fish and how he then passed that knowledge on to you? Would you tell a fish-based creation story? Would you simply say, ladle the soup into a bowl and eat it?
    Each starting point for the narrative alters the meaning of “fish soup”, and alters the meaning of narrative itself.
    So, to get to the point, where and when one starts the narrative about Israeli-Palestinian/Gazan/Hamas/AIPAC/US Congress relations will determine what that narrative is. Each telling has a kind of validity, but only a KIND of or a partial validity. Each person posting here has a kind of validity as well, and each poster starts the narrative in a slightly different place.
    One can construct a story in which OF COURSE Hamas refuses to recognize Israel — wouldn’t you do the same? Or, OF COURSE Israel launched a war. How long would YOU put up with Mexico’s lobbing missiles on Texas? Or of course it’s a humanitarian nightmare. Why should we feel sympathy for them — or the Israelis are war criminals, so of course they block medical help and bomb hospitalsweddingsschoolsmosqueschildren innocentchildren.
    Each version has a compelling support structure, and there is no underlying correct way to tell this story. You can’t privilege one inertial frame of reference over another, nor insist on one correct starting point for a narrative over another.
    What diplomacy must do is tell stories in such a way that all sides feel some validation and yet learn to see the world anew. (Therapy has the same task.) Rather than soft or smart or hard power (from HRC’s confirmation hearing, via Steve’s visit to WorldView today), we need “narrational power.” Tell stories that get WigWag and POA to see the same thing. Tell stories that get Israelis to see the humanity and rationality of Hamas and Hamas to see the position of Israel.
    The stories that witnesses to non-violent protest tell the world are very different from the stories that partisans tell. Hamas could try to control the narrative by engaging in non-violent resistance rather than by encouraging the IDF to bomb civilians. Israel could try to control the narrative by not bombing civilians even in the face of rockets. When you receive evil but do not send it back, you are a)Kantian, b)ethical c)sympathetic d)very much not a war criminal. They could, they must, work together on a new narrative.
    Sadly, no one so far feels much of an imperative because each side is still caught up in a particular version of power politics where civilian life is cheap enough that losing a segment of the people is an acceptable cost given the rhetorical benefit. The current narrative of power relations, then, is very much implicated in the war. And both sides are caught up in this structure. So railing away at war crimes, screaming about innocent blood, declaring Israel’s right of self-defense — all of this merely endorses the failed current narrative.
    We must become writers of a completely new story, one perhaps without power relations, Biblical support, and/or geostrategic interests.

    Reply

  76. varanasi says:

    this. thread. is. dead.

    Reply

  77. Billy says:

    Hey everybody, let’s all go over to a new thread and have a knock down, drag out, over there! Whaddaya say? This was loads of fun. C’mon, let’s go over to the Israeli planes picture thread!

    Reply

  78. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “regardless, POA has hurled such vulagrities in my (and every) direction that i certainly don’t feel bad giving him a dose of his own medicine”
    Don’t you jackasses ever get tired of playing the victim in order to justify your incessant line of horseshit?

    Reply

  79. Paul Norheim says:

    “You don’t earn any credibility, Norheim, when you only
    presume to scold one side.” (rich)
    So the issue here is me telling it when I think you or some of
    your friends are crossing a line? You know very well that I
    basically share your (and POA`s) position on this issue. And you
    remember very well that I have argued passionately against
    WigWag`s position on this and several other issues.
    Credibility?
    A couple of hours ago, I said:
    “Vasranasi, there have been anti-Semitic remarks on this and
    other threads, and as you have noticed, not only you and
    WigWag, but also POA, myself and others have often reacted
    when they show up. However, you are mudding the water by
    simply including remarks critical of the US-Israel relationship,
    Zionism, the influence of AIPAC or the current attacks on Gaza
    as expressions of anti-Semitism.”
    Mudding the water indeed. But Varanasi did not answer me. He
    found it more convenient to exchange insults with POA,
    participating in this stupid circus where everybody seem to
    think that the rest of the posters are someone else than they
    claim to be.
    WigWag says explicitly that she supports AIPAC and the Israeli
    attack on Gaza. So what is she hiding, except for her real name
    (like most people here)?
    Personally, I sign my posts with my full name, and you know my
    positions. I judge the comments independently, case by case.
    Sometimes I make mistakes and misjudgments, like everybody
    here do from time to time. But there is no reason to question
    my credibility.
    I consider that a rather dirty trick, rich.
    And POA may confirm that I several times have defended him
    and said that I generally consider his positions as “sound”, as
    “common sense” – including his despair on behalf of what
    America has become during the last years. But don`t expect me
    to approve when he calls me a fool and asks me to screw
    myself.

    Reply

  80. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “the failure to deploy some type missle defense system that is in development and that i’ve frankly never heard of (and which might be of questionable utility in the current conflict)”
    And heres this jackass varanasi claiming that he has “never heard of” a weapons system, yet he is qualified to state that it is “under development”. (Which is incorrect, the system has been under deployment for some years now)
    Of course, its also an admission paralleling Paul’s, that both of them are too intellectually lazy to actually commit to some research before commenting.
    Here we have Israel claiming to be acting in self defense against a missile threat that they have refused to defend themselves against, with a known and proven defensive weapons technology; that could have, and should have, been deployed long ago. Even Haaratz has taken the Israeli leadership to task for not deploying this system.
    And this varanasi jackass? Rather than seeing the rather obvious aspect of my argument, that the Israelis could have used the Phalanx technology to counter the Hamas missile threat, which would NOT have required the blockading, starving, and invasion of Gaza, instead tries to claim that this technology would be of no use in the current state of the conflict, despite the fact the jackass says he has never heard of the Phalanx system.
    He sure knows alot about something he doesn’t know anything about, doesn’t he?
    Well, varanasi, if stopping the rockets from killing Israelis is the goal of this criminal slaughter of Palestinian men, women, and children, shooting the fucking things down before they land in Israel doesn’t make sense to you?

    Reply

  81. WigWag says:

    More evidence that Egypt is working assiduously to prevent a unified Arab response to the Israeli attack on Hamas.
    Jan 13, 2009 21:11
    Egypt rejects offer to hold emergency Arab League meeting in Qatar
    By BRENDA GAZZAR
    “Egypt has informed the Arab League that it rejects holding an emergency Arab summit in Doha, Qatar to discuss Israel’s military operation in the Gaza Strip, Arab media reported on Tuesday.
    Egypt prefers a “consultative meeting” in conjunction with an Arab economic summit that will be held in Kuwait on January 19th and 20th, the Egyptian news site Moheet.com reported…”

    Reply

  82. rich says:

    varanasi @ 2:42PM –
    quite the Stalinist when it comes to Truth, aren’tcha? Orwell, if you prefer:
    “israel not being justified in having a defensive posture towards hamas seems like a tough argument to support.”
    Get it right. Israel is not justified in having on OFFENSIVE posture towards the nation whose land they took is just plain common sense. Particularly when Hamas did not break the cease-fire, but Israel did violate the cease-fire–153 times.
    Paul Norheim @ 2:47PM –
    ” ‘That some long-overdue anger makes you more uncomfortable than than the excuses and lies used to justify 250 dead Palestinian children . .’
    “What the fuck?!”
    “MORE uncomfortable,” Norheim. “More uncomfortable than the excuses and lies,” not the actual carnage. I know where you stand, but spare us the false objectivity. Yeah, when faced with the bullshit surrounding this issue, POA is easily the healthiest guy around. Given that America has been virtually eviscerated under Bush/Cheney, it’s staggering everyone else isn’t letting loose as well. Be aware, Norheim, he’s hardly alone in pointedly exposing the nature of the lies we’ve been fed, nor alone in the long-overdue anger at the crimes this country’s committed and/or countenanced. It’s not just Israel. But expecting us to take crap or eat shit because Israel won’t take responsiblity for its method and madness is not reasonable or evenhanded. Not interested in squabbling, but the irrational charade here wont’ go unremarked.

    Reply

  83. varanasi says:

    this thread is officially dead! stick a fork in it.
    POA and Rich ride to the rescue again…
    and as far as the bathrobe and meth, i’m sure i’m WAY off the mark 😉
    regardless, POA has hurled such vulagrities in my (and every) direction that i certainly don’t feel bad giving him a dose of his own medicine.

    Reply

  84. Schlomo says:

    How the hell is Hamas going to renounce violence and the rest when they will all be dead. Hamas is over, done, finished, kaput, and we will wait for who Clinton will next make these demands of before the next round of having to kill the bastards, and on, and on, and on …….. oysie boysie …….. stop d’verldt I vhanna get off !!

    Reply

  85. rich says:

    Posted by Paul Norheim Jan 13, 2:38PM – Link
    “E-m-o-t-i-o-n-a-l h-i-j-a-c-k-i-n-g, POA.
    Insulting someone, and then demanding of the insulted to look in a certain direction.”
    Paul, this is THE technique used against objective critics of Israel’s behavior. wigwag, varanasi and other have used this ad nauseum–and you’re wrong to point it in the wrong direction “Anti-Semitism!” POA is suddenly a bathrobe-wearing meth addict and I’m somehow a monolingual keyboarder who’s never left the States. Rather than respond to substantive points, evasions, fingerpointing and shrill attacks on Hamas are heaped upon us in place of constructive, on-topic discussion. You don’t earn any credibility, Norheim, when you only presume to scold one side. varanasi has never retracted the language s/he wielded against Palestinians here, and still bears the shame and lost face.

    Reply

  86. Paul Norheim says:

    “That some long-overdue anger makes you more uncomfortable
    than than the excuses and lies used to justify 250 dead
    Palestinian children, well, it just speaks volumes.” (rich)
    What the fuck?!
    I don`t know how many comments I`ve posted in the last weeks
    condemning the Israeli attacks and attitude, and you`re telling
    me that POA calling me an idiot and asking me to go screw
    myself is justified, and simply a “sign of good health”???

    Reply

  87. varanasi says:

    israel not being justified in having a defensive posture towards hamas seems like a tough argument to support.
    the failure to deploy some type missle defense system that is in development and that i’ve frankly never heard of (and which might be of questionable utility in the current conflict) does not change the fact that hamas – as explicitly stated in their charter – is sworn to destroy israel.
    say what you will, but this fact alone justifies a defensive posture of the israelis towards hamas

    Reply

  88. rich says:

    Heh.
    Actually, Paul, POA’s only ‘disorder’ is that he communicates (i)too clearly (/ital.). That some long-overdue anger makes you more uncomfortable than than the excuses and lies used to justify 250 dead Palestinian children, well, it just speaks volumes.
    POA’s anger is a sane reaction to an insane world. It’s a sign of good health.
    I can’t follow all the arguments, but it’s no surprise any human with integrity and worth their salt, when faced with disingenuous & unresponsive excuses, off-topic bullshit, personal attacks and evasive rage–will simply call the bullshit what it is and invite the attacker to take a hike, euphemistically speaking.
    But we’ve had far too much euphemism. We’re choking on it. There is no ‘collateral damage’ when the same article quotes IDF forces as saying “we are very violent”; “we don’t distinguish or identify civilians.” The euphemism is an obscenity in that context. There is no ‘terrorism’ when it’s outright war, in self-defense. The euphemism is a lie used to excuse ethnic cleansing of native Palestinians. There is no ‘provocation’ in the rockets when Israel provided casus belli in an illegal blockade that’s starving 1.5 million people–and when Israel broke the cease-fire 153 times.
    I’ll alwasy adamantly insist on Israel’s right to exist. But “Never Again” never means Anything Goes. We need more anger, Paul Norheim, and far less docility. WE are Israel’s allies. But Israel’s badly misused us; even if the relationship is symbiotic.

    Reply

  89. JDal says:

    God bless Olmert for telling the truth about how he owns Bush and his gal pal Condi. The truth isn’t ‘bad manners’ as Clemons claims; its just the pathetic truth. Walt and Mersheimer are now standing by to accept your abject apologies for doubting their thesis about the arrogance and scandalous behavior of the Israel-Firsters.
    Starting to like this Olmert guy. Sort of a Blaggo type, with less hair.

    Reply

  90. Paul Norheim says:

    E-m-o-t-i-o-n-a-l h-i-j-a-c-k-i-n-g, POA.
    Insulting someone, and then demanding of the insulted to look in
    a certain direction.

    Reply

  91. Cee says:

    10,000 Afghanis signed up to fight in Gaza against Israel (how many get there I don’t know)–because Israel bombed civilians.
    Rich,
    The ones who can’t get to Israel said they would take it out on our soldiers.
    Obama needs to rethink sending more.
    DonS,
    Some Jews are Indian and plenty visit.
    The problem is that drugs and other recreations are readily available in many places, and while some of the ex soldiers dabble in substances to blow off steam, (forget their war crimes) Chabad rabbis are sometimes forced to supervise a drug addict who has gone too far and send for his relatives to come take him to a rehab center in Israel.
    http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/80408/israelis_in_india_where_exsoldiers.html
    Liaska.
    Why don’t you understand that never again doesn’t only apply to Jews. Elie Weisel felt that way and the Lord used Madoff to bankrupt for his dishonesty and callousness.
    JJ,
    Can I meet you at the airport and buy you a one way ticket to Israel? Find Joe the plumber.

    Reply

  92. PissedOffAmerican says:

    P-h-a-l-a-n-x, Paul. When you aren’t having your strings pulled, you might want to look into it. It tells you all you need to know about Israel’s claims of “self defense”.

    Reply

  93. WigWag says:

    Clinton repeats for a second time (2:26 pm, est):
    The preconditions for engaging Hamas are: their renouncing violence, recognizing Israel’s right to exist and their willingness to abide by past agreements between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.
    She says, this is not only my position; it is the President-Elect’s position.

    Reply

  94. Paul Norheim says:

    Your rant above, POA, just confirms that you have a serious
    communication problem.
    Just now you are standing, not behind the issues you raise, trying
    to illuminate them, but in front of them, The Pissed Off American
    himself, directing his anger in all directions simultaneously,
    screaming “idiot”, “go screw yourself”, “damned fool” etc… and
    then you expect people to obey to your agenda, doing some
    “honest” research for the “truth” that you just did your best to
    disturb by your loud, rude, assaulting presence!?
    Yeah, I predicted that someone would accuse me of feeding the
    trolls, and you fulfilled that prediction.
    Amazing.

    Reply

  95. Gato perdido says:

    Hamas is a Sunni organization, and that tarnishes quite a bit WigEag’s interpretation. I do agree so far as the complicity of the Egyptians in this mess. I am not that sure about they being happy when Jewa kill Sunni Muslims. As it is know, whatever friction there exist between Wahabi Saudis and the Persians Shia is of a secondary importance to other matter. Besides, they may find common ground when oil prices are down, and regarding Mubarak regime, I think the clock might have begun to ticking down.

    Reply

  96. jj skinner says:

    We have got to help Israel in any way possible, because if we don’t and something awful happens to them they will not only nuke the perpetrators but us as well. We are on notice and have been for a long time. So we have no choice but to do as they ask and hope they know what they are doing. And we have to say and do all the right things after Israel destroys Iranian nuclear capabilities. Somehow we have to finesse this event that’s coming so that we don’t look that culpable. It’s going to be the final blow to any illusions about Obama and he will be abandoned by his peacenik supporters for it, but he has to think of America’s safety if Iran got the bomb because of our wishy-washyness, they nuke Israel, and Israel gets back at us with a nuke or two for letting it all happen. We have to support Israel in whatever they feel is necessary to survive or they will take a big piece out of us as they are going down.

    Reply

  97. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “Well, POA, it may. But given the inexplicably rude manners you displayed in a post above, asking me to go screw myself, do you really expect me to be eager to support your points? You have a communication problem.”
    You express your opinions in accordance to my mannerisms? You form agreements or disagreements on whether or not I tell you to go screw yourself? How honest is that, Paul? If you don’t want to research an argument simply because someone tells you to go screw yourself, then I guess you think being called “anti-semitic” is a good reason to halt research into the truth as well, eh?
    Of course I told you to go screw yourself. You decry my own “ad hominem”, while applauding this hackass jackass Wigwag’s troll comment? When in fact it is YOU that raised the troll issue on this thread?
    And this isn’t the first time this varanasi has blathered this stupidity about meth. You were directly engaged in the prior debate where he used this accusation, and I didn’t see you raising any objections to that ad hominem.
    Yes Paul, you DO feed the trolls. They play you like a well tuned flute. Or, in a much more explicit, and apt, description, like a fool. You don’t find it intersting that this thread was derailed right on the heels of the issue of Phalanx being brought up?
    Are you an idiot? Do some research, you damned fool.
    And on Wigwag….
    When wigwag was arguing that Israel did not hold undo sway over American foreign policy, and that AIPAC was “just like any other lobby”, was he LYING, or has something occurred that “changed his mind”. The answer should be obvious to anyone that has followed his posting, and his schizophrenic metamorphosis. Its painfully apparent he came here as an unabashed LIAR, advancing an argument he knew to be dishonest. To wit, a propagandist. To wit, if not Hasbara, a poster with the same agenda as Hasbara.

    Reply

  98. Savanaguy says:

    From an Africana perspective, this reprehensible incident reminds me of an interview that I watched on PBS a few months prior the Iraq II war in which Bill Moyers (I stand corrected) was interviewing the distinguished UN ambassador, and humanitarian, Harry Belafonte. Belafonte accurately predicted the mendacity that was to be employed in the destruction and death that was visited on the people of Iraq. But what I vividly recall about this interview was the prophetic warning to Secretary Powell that he would be used like a “house negro” and tossed aside like a toilet paper when his sell by date was over. I trusted Belafonte instincts rather that Powell’s partly because the latter erroneously believed that his opinion would carry any weight in Bush’s white house!
    Whenever Powell would visit Israel to consult with Israeli leaders, the body language would clearly demonstrate who was the boss and that Powell’s opinion did not matter at all. If my memory is correct, Sharon even intimated to that effect prior to or after one of those visits. As the rest of the world now strongly believes, USA never was and probably never will be an honest broker in this conflict and the Olmert’s humiliating incident reinforces that belief.

    Reply

  99. ... says:

    DonS Jan 13, 12:43PM – i agree with you fully.
    WigWag Jan 13, 12:41PM – yes, it is unfortunate that senator clinton can only act as a stooge for israel and the aipac, while taking on such an important role for usa as she has been given by obama… thanks for pointing that out immediately after my post…

    Reply

  100. rich says:

    wigwag @ 1:14PM –
    “Actually, there is nothing more I could wish for. We have an Obama Administration that has appointed every pro-Israel foreign policy professional it could find. . . .
    Even better, I get to watch all the Israel haters at the Washington Note descend even further into hopelessness that their position will ever prevail.”
    Nobody here hates Israel. Israel’s actions, however, are abhorrent, counterproductive, and indefensible. Some balance to counter the transparent propaganda and plain lies is required. When used to justify an unprovoked bombing campaign, the lies and policies are both morally bankrupt and hamper America’s ability to make rational, effective decisions.
    There are substantive reasons to object to Israel’s policies, and those reasons do not devolve to nor do they default to anti-Semitism simply because you do not like that principled criticism. Time for Israel to take a little responsiblity for their actions, and the obvious and expected consequences. Long past time for Israel’s supporters to stop excusing and enabling a set of unjust, vicious policies and get started helping to ensure Israel’s actual survival.
    Because denial sure isn’t doing it.

    Reply

  101. Mr.Murder says:

    It is what it is.Ttom Friedman would basically say that Olmert told Bush and Condi to “suck on this.”
    Quagmire Accomplished!!

    Reply

  102. sphincter destroyed says:

    WigWag
    You forgot “and my thrill at seeing America take it up the ole wahzoo with that great big Jewish schvantz, oy vey, those goy grin and bear it so nicely.”

    Reply

  103. rich says:

    Liaska @ 12:43PM –
    “With all that has happened to the Jewish people . . . don’t you think that Israel should be exceedingly active in getting their side of the story out and quashing inflammatory rhetoric.”
    No, I don’t. Lies do not qualify as “their side of the story. Lies damage Israeli security, credibility, and moral standing.
    “This Israeli media campaign goes hand-in-hand with ‘Never Again!’ ”
    “Never Again!” implies great responsiblitity. “Never Again!” means Israel can never and may never do to another nation/people what was done to Jews in Europe.
    “Never Again!” means always having to examine one’s own actions, rather than demonizing and degrading an entire people based on their religion, ethnicity–or the fact that they are simply ‘in the way’.
    “Please understand!”
    Liaska, we MORE than understand. We speak up because Israel’s self-immolating policies are destroying its own future and the safety and survival of the Jewish people.
    There is NO “inflammatory rhetoric” in pointing out that “Never Again!” means Israel may not adopt the tools & techniquest that were used against the Jews. Israel may not turn Gaza into a ghetto precisely like the Warsaw Ghetto.
    The blockade is a casus belli, just as Israel declared the ’67 blockade of Israel was a casus belli. What do you expect Gazans to do? Starve? Without a peep of protest?
    Israel broke the cease-fire, Liaska–and we speak because the lies that say otherwise are damaging Israel.
    Please understand, Liaska! Nothing about “Never Again” justifies Israel’s ethnic cleansing against a third party. We need an Israel–but not at the cost of your soul, our soul, and millions of dead Palestinians. How would that make you different or better than any German?
    Liaska–persist on this path and you’ve lost the peace and the war–for good.

    Reply

  104. varanasi says:

    POA wrote:
    “He is as fake as a three dollar bill.”
    hmm… i’m wondering how i can prove that i am real?!
    or maybe i am just a hologram created by zionist operatives who are secretly running the world! this is getting good, POA. why don’t you share more of your paranoid ramblings with us?
    you’re really classing up this joint.

    Reply

  105. joey says:

    See, there’s nuttin’ to it !!
    White House: Reports of Olmert-Bush Call Inaccurate.
    REUTERS
    Reuters North American News Service
    Jan 13, 2009 09:45 EST
    WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The White House Tuesday denied reports that a telephone call by Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to President Bush forced Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to abstain in a U.N. vote on the Gaza war.
    “I’ve seen these press reports, they are inaccurate,” White House spokesman Gordon Johndroe said.
    In a speech late Monday, Olmert said he had demanded to talk to Bush with only 10 minutes to spare before a U.N. Security Council vote on a resolution opposed by Israel calling for an immediate ceasefire.
    “He gave an order to the secretary of state and she did not vote in favor of it — a resolution she cooked up, phrased, organized and maneuvered for. She was left pretty shamed and abstained on a resolution she arranged,” Olmert said.
    Arab ministers said after the U.N. vote Thursday that Rice had promised them the United States would support the resolution, but then made an apparent about-face after talking to Bush.
    A few minutes before the scheduled vote at the United Nations, Rice’s staff told reporters she would make a few brief comments beforehand, but then abruptly canceled her press appearance, saying she would instead speak to Bush by phone.
    The vote was delayed while other ministers waited for Rice to finish the call. She then entered the U.N. Security Council chamber, huddled with Arab ministers who shook their heads as she spoke to them.
    Immediately after the vote, Rice left for Washington without talking to waiting reporters. Her spokesman did not return repeated calls and e-mail over why Rice had reneged on her promise to Arab leaders to back the vote.
    Rice joined her French and British ministers in drawing up the resolution and the three Western powers haggled with Arab countries for three days over wording, which Rice told the U.N. Security Council. (Reporting by Tabassum Zakaria and Sue Pleming; Editing by Doina Chiacu)
    Source: Reuters North American News Service

    Reply

  106. jamzo says:

    bush is the bad actor here
    olmert is representing israel’s interests
    bush ordered rice to change the strategy and
    abstain from voting on her proposed cease fire
    there is a continuing pattern for justified criticism of bush actions to to blame others for what bush does
    it is as though bush is not expected to be able to stand up under pressure from cheney, olmert, sharon, etc
    i guess it implies even worse things about blair who was perceived as “defering to bush”

    Reply

  107. Paul Norheim says:

    “Its interesting too that when Wigwag should be applauding
    Obama’s appointments and apparently soon to be broken
    promises to the American people, he is instead using these
    appointments and broken promises to attack Obama for
    telegraphing an intent to closely adhere to policies that Wigwag
    has endorsed in the past. What more could this braying jackass
    Wigwag wish for than the appointments of Ross, Emanuel,
    Clinton, etc, when wishing for a continuence of our
    subservience to an Israeli agenda?”
    I agree. She uses it solely to attack Obama`s character and
    tease those who had high hopes for BO.
    “I even posted some of the conclusions from these people on a
    prior thread, Paul. It should be of interest to you that people
    like Wig wag are completely ignoring this issue.”
    Well, POA, it may. But given the inexplicably rude manners you
    displayed in a post above, asking me to go screw myself, do
    you really expect me to be eager to support your points? You
    have a communication problem.

    Reply

  108. WigWag says:

    “What more could… Wigwag wish for than the appointments of Ross, Emanuel, Clinton, etc, when wishing for a continuance of our subservience to an Israeli agenda?”
    Actually, there is nothing more I could wish for. We have an Obama Administration that has appointed every pro-Israel foreign policy professional it could find. We have a Chief of Staff whose father lives in Israel. We have a Vice President who may be the most pro-Israel Vice President in history. We have the new Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, saying “you cannot negotiate with Hamas until it renounces violence, recognizes Israel and agrees to abide by past agreements. That for me is just an absolute. That is my position, it is the President-Elect’s position and it is America’s position.” In doing so, she directly contradicted the predictions that Steve Clemons made in his Observer article.
    But if that wasn’t good enough; we have Israel degrading and embarrassing Hamas with the help of Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and the Palestinian Authority.
    Even better, I get to watch all the Israel haters at the Washington Note descend even further into hopelessness that their position will ever prevail.
    But of course the piece de resistance is witnessing the most ardent Obama supporters come to the realization that their hopes for the man they anointed as their hero were nothing but their own narcissistic pipe dreams.

    Reply

  109. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “What if the whole world turned anti-Semitic again”
    Keep incinerating children, and you might just pull it off.

    Reply

  110. Paul Norheim says:

    Thanks for the link, Don.
    I actually found it somewhere in the Washington Post as well. It
    should have been on their front page though. But I`m not
    surprised that they`re hiding it, forcing the readers to actively
    search for this embarrassing story.
    Vasranasi, there have been anti-Semitic remarks on this and
    other threads, and as you have noticed, not only you and
    WigWag, but also POA, myself and others have often reacted
    when they show up. However, you are mudding the water by
    simply including remarks critical of the US-Israel relationship,
    Zionism, the influence of AIPAC or the current attacks on Gaza as
    expressions of anti-Semitism.

    Reply

  111. Same As It Ever Was says:

    “On Israel, you cannot negotiate with Hamas until it renounces violence, recognizes Israel and agrees to abide by past agreements. That for me is just an absolute. That is my position, it is the President-Elect’s position and it is America’s position,” said Hillary Clinton as she wiped Olmert’s bukake from her hair (and she told him, “Not in my hair, not in my hair,” but that’s where he unloaded anyway.)

    Reply

  112. DonS says:

    Oh, and by the way, “Liaska”, very nice attempt at a humble sounding, almost immigrantish, just escaped the concentration camp persona. Hmmmm, maybe there is something to this hasbara stuff.

    Reply

  113. DonS says:

    Liaska, current ” anti-Semitic feeling are at a fevered pitch with all the bloodshed in Gaza” (which I don’t even buy you characterization of increase in anti-semetism) could have been avoided presently if Israel had not taken the decision to bloodily massacre innocents. Please understand.

    Reply

  114. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “Actually, I think you`re on to something there. I hope someone with more competence on the technical aspects will support your claims. As a layman I find it interesting, and I wouldn`t be surprised if you were right.”
    But what, you’re too lazy to do a bit of research, to see what the people with “more competence on the technical aspects” say about the issue? What, you think I raised this issue in a fuckin’ vacuum, and didn’t devote mysdelf to some research on the issue, seeking out the published opinions and conclusions of what the people with “more competence on the technical aspects” had to say about it? I even posted some of the conclusions from these people on a prior thread, Paul. It should be of interest to you that people like Wig wag are completely ignoring this issue.
    And, DonS…
    An “educated Indian” needs to resort to calling someone a “meth addict” to defend Israeli motives, agendas, and actions? Why? Why raise the canard of “anti-semitism” so virulently in Israel’s defense if you are Indian? No, varanasi is just another fraudulent personna, assuming an internet pose designed to mask the loyalties and motives behind his argument, and imply an impartiality that doesn’t really exist.
    He is as fake as a three dollar bill.
    The interesting thing about Wigwag’s braying is that it has become completely polar to his position of just a few months ago. Totally denying Israel’s undo influence on American foreignj policy, Wigwag offered the mirror image of the argument that this jackass Varanasi is now offering, that Israel does not largely influence, and even dictate, American foreign in the middle east. In fact, Wigwag is now underscoring that premise, and offering arguments that strongly buttress arguments he used to oppose. Its interesting too that when Wigwag should be applauding Obama’s appointments and apparently soon to be broken promises to the American people, he is instead using these appointments and broken promises to attack Obama for telegraphing an intent to closely adhere to policies that Wigwag has endorsed in the past. What more could this braying jackass Wigwag wish for than the appointments of Ross, Emanuel, Clinton, etc, when wishing for a continuence of our subservience to an Israeli agenda?
    Wigwag’s droppings here have become the spore of a schizophrenic donkey, amusing, yet kinda sad too. Its appropriate that varanazi and wigwag are posting at the same time. Varanazi is deja vu Wigwag.

    Reply

  115. DonS says:

    “…”, “honest broker” isn’t even in the room, much less on the table. Only those with Obama-is-God stars in their eyes think he could roll back the damage that’s been done to the notion of “honest broker” by the shameful behavior of successive administrations, and the prostration to AIPAC influence and connected money in the American political system.
    Case in point: Howard Dean, circa presidential debates; self distructs, attacked by other candidates for even mentioning the phrase “honest broker”

    Reply

  116. Liaska says:

    With all that has happened to the Jewish people over history because of disinformation about them distributed by anti-Semitic people, churches, organizations, media, and governments, don’t you think that Israel should be exceedingly active in getting their side of the story out and quashing inflammatory rhetoric at every opportunity wherever it presents itself especially in these times when anti-Semitic feeling are at a fevered pitch with all the bloodshed in Gaza.
    They have to mount an information offensive for their own safety. What if the whole world turned anti-Semitic again.
    This Israeli media campaign goes hand-in-hand with “Never Again!”
    Please understand!

    Reply

  117. WigWag says:

    Senator Clinton on Hamas:
    “On Israel, you cannot negotiate with Hamas until it renounces violence, recognizes Israel and agrees to abide by past agreements. That for me is just an absolute. That is my position, it is the President-Elect’s position and it is America’s position.”

    Reply

  118. ... says:

    you’re all looking foolish for getting sidetracked…
    >>”I said: ‘Get me President Bush on the phone,'” Olmert said in a speech in the southern Israeli city of Ashkelon. “They said he was in the middle of giving a speech in Philadelphia. I said I didn’t care: ‘I need to talk to him now.’ He got off the podium and spoke to me.”<<
    apparently no one is disputing whether this did or didn’t happen…no one appears to be disputing this conversation altered the direction of the usa’s vote on the resolution either… it says a lot!!!
    think about what this implies.. can the usa be an honest broker in the mideast? would the hamas leader be able to get bush to walk off a podium and take a call? would the hamas leader have the ability to alter the direction of a resolution vote by the us??

    Reply

  119. ketam says:

    Here is my message for Condi: The President, whom you have, I suppose, devotedly served for the past eight years, trusts a foreign leader more that he trusts you. I hope this is a lesson for your future life.

    Reply

  120. DonS says:

    Paul, here’s today NYT, from search on paper’s website. I haven’t researched much. But, you know, despite it’s actual orientation, the NYT continues to be considers a liberal rag by the powers that be.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/13/washington/13olmert.html?_r=1&scp=1&sq=rice%20olmert%20bush%20gaza%20resolution&st=cse

    Reply

  121. WigWag says:

    “WigWag, I do not understand. Why would 007 of MI-5 be interested in shilling for Israel?”
    Well you know that Great Britain is merely America’s lap-dog; Tony Blair, Gordon Brown, etc. For goodness sakes, man, it was only 140 years ago that Great Britain actually had a Jewish Prime Minister (Benjamin Disraeli).
    America is Israel’s greatest friend so Great Britain is Israel’s second greatest friend. That’s why MI-5 agents like me are so interested in shilling for Israel.
    I can’t say anything else about it though. You know; everything else is classified. And if I told you, I’d have to kill you.

    Reply

  122. varanasi says:

    yeah, POA. believe it or not some of us indians ditched the kurta and sandals long ago.
    we go to your schools, teach in your universities and some of us even pay your taxes. shocked?!
    we rock facebook, watch the nfl and need to catch up on “lost” before the new season starts.
    wake up and open your eyes, old man. the world has changed.

    Reply

  123. Paul Norheim says:

    Hey brokenrecord, POA, DonS, rich and others: have you yet seen
    any coverage of the Olmert/Rice/Bush story in large US
    newspapers or TV channels? I`ve seen it referred to in at least
    three of our papers.

    Reply

  124. Donald Pleasance says:

    WigWag, I do not understand.
    Why would 007 of MI-5 be interested in shilling for Israel?

    Reply

  125. DonS says:

    “is anyone here really so naive they think this jackass is Indian?”
    Oh, I don’t know POA. Educated Indians I know are quite on the uptake when it comes to Americanisms, but they sometimes miss the the exact cutural flavor for obvious reasons. And, I guess, it would only matter if someone were posing as Indian, or other ethnicity, to gain credibility on the subject . . .

    Reply

  126. brokenrecord says:

    Yo, Wig, what’s with this Clinton and Afghanistan business; and Law of the Sea. This thread is about how Olmert, AIPAC, Zionists have control of US foreign policy as demonstrated by Olmert’s comments posted by Steve. Why change the subject to Afghanistan and whatnot? We’ll have plenty of time to discuss Afghanistan later, I’m sure.
    C’mon, let’s continue cursing about Israel’s undue influence on American foreign policy making us look like fools.

    Reply

  127. WigWag says:

    Clinton on subject of interest to Steve Clemons
    “Passage of Law of the Sea Treaty will be one of my highest priorities.”

    Reply

  128. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Heres the definition of “short bus”, as defined in the “urban dictionary” website.
    http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=short%20bus
    Now, when noting varanasi’s comments about me “posting in my underwear”, his insinuations that I am a meth addict, his reference to Bakersfield and meth, and his use of the English language slang term “short bus”, is anyone here really so naive they think this jackass is Indian?

    Reply

  129. WigWag says:

    “And Steve does not care whether you, or Wiggy, or anybody else is Hasbara…”
    Actually, I’m not Hasbara, but you’re close. I’m MI-5 and my code name is 007.
    For those who are interested, I prefer my martinis shaken, not stirred!

    Reply

  130. Bil says:

    I eagerly await MORE from Steve on Condi the Incompetent’s
    record,
    “which I think is better than many liberal critics gauge”.
    Not me. She doesn’t even have my sympathy for having to work
    with total assholes like Cheney and Rumsfeld, because she took the
    job and they WERE competent in their own Neocon way.

    Reply

  131. rich says:

    wigwag’s compulsive pretense that Obama’s adherence to broad & standard U.S. policy is a some sort of betrayal won’t last. Obama’s methods will differ, but there’s never been any doubt he’ll maintain classic national security stance–even where it hurts us/creates blowback. Eventually wigwag’ll fall silent, as s/he evades battles s/he’s lost:
    wigwag @ 7:02PM, one thread up-
    Till: “As Lawrence Wright often remarks, “if the Israeli-Palestinian crisis were resolved tomorrow,” bin Laden “would be heartbroken.” The conflict remains his bread and butter.”
    wigwag: “Repeating a canard over and over again doesn’t make it true. If there is empirical evidence to suggest this is accurate Wright or Till should cite it.”
    He cited Wright. And it’s not a canard. We’ve cited multiple contemporary and historical cases. Ignoring the evidence doesn’t make it go away.
    Muhamad Atta was motivated by Israel’s bombing of civilians in a UN building in ’96. Of COURSE bin Laden thrives off the Isr-Pal conflict–Atta joined up with him and flew a jet into the World Trade Center because of Israel’s military offensive.
    10,000 Afghanis signed up to fight in Gaza against Israel (how many get there I don’t know)–because Israel bombed civilians. Two Israeli merchants were shot in Germany last week.
    “Iraqi cleric Muqtada al-Sadr called on Iraqis to kill US troops in Iraq in revenge for the Israeli assault on the people of Gaza. “I call upon the honest Iraqi resistance to carry out revenge operations against the great accomplice of the Zionist enemy…”
    http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5hwK_CSpBxsNuVUEaDuOwmSSCiqGwD95IHRT80

    Reply

  132. rich says:

    wigwag’s compulsive pretense that Obama’s adherence to broad & standard U.S. policy is a some sort of betrayal won’t last. Obama’s methods will differ, but there’s never been any doubt he’ll maintain classic national security stance–even where it hurts us/creates blowback. Eventually wigwag’ll fall silent, as s/he evades battles s/he’s lost:
    wigwag @ 7:02PM, one thread up-
    Till: “As Lawrence Wright often remarks, “if the Israeli-Palestinian crisis were resolved tomorrow,” bin Laden “would be heartbroken.” The conflict remains his bread and butter.”
    wigwag: “Repeating a canard over and over again doesn’t make it true. If there is empirical evidence to suggest this is accurate Wright or Till should cite it.”
    He cited Wright. And it’s not a canard. We’ve cited multiple contemporary and historical cases. Ignoring the evidence doesn’t make it go away.
    Muhamad Atta was motivated by Israel’s bombing of civilians in a UN building in ’96. Of COURSE bin Laden thrives off the Isr-Pal conflict–Atta joined up with him and flew a jet into the World Trade Center because of Israel’s military offensive.
    10,000 Afghanis signed up to fight in Gaza against Israel (how many get there I don’t know)–because Israel bombed civilians. Two Israeli merchants were shot in Germany last week.
    “Iraqi cleric Muqtada al-Sadr called on Iraqis to kill US troops in Iraq in revenge for the Israeli assault on the people of Gaza. “I call upon the honest Iraqi resistance to carry out revenge operations against the great accomplice of the Zionist enemy…”
    http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5hwK_CSpBxsNuVUEaDuOwmSSCiqGwD95IHRT80

    Reply

  133. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Is varanasi so ignorant that he thinks this crystal meth stupidity lends him credibility?
    Many posters here cannot fail to see the repetition of this line of insult, resorted to by a number of past posters that were reading from the same script varanasi is obviously reading from. Its always the same old crap from these assholes.

    Reply

  134. Derban in the Bourbon says:

    Varanasi, you read that stuff about Hasbara? And Steve does not care whether you, or Wiggy, or anybody else is Hasbara; they are welcome to post here I’m sure. But it is good to know that a major foreign led disinformation campaign is being operated worldwide, don’t you think? With that information one can be wary of the source of pro-Israel commentary in a world that is generally fed up with their behavior. Maybe you are on the square, maybe not, but at least we are aware that we are perhaps being played. Nothing wrong with being alert to mischief.
    Keep up the good work, and welcome, whoever you may be.

    Reply

  135. WigWag says:

    Senator Clinton on Afghanistan:
    “President-Elect Obama has adopted a “more for more” strategy. More American troops matched by more NATO troops and more effective Afghan assistance. It is imperative that we work with friends in Afghanistan and Pakistan to persuade those two countries that their security is at risk from what is going on in the border regions…We will be redeploying some of the troops coming out if Iraq into Afghanistan.”

    Reply

  136. DonS says:

    What’s your point Wigwag? That US foreign policy, under whatever administration, is in the hands of AIPAC? Point taken.

    Reply

  137. Neo Controll says:

    Varanasi: “stop with the paranoid nonsense and name calling”
    Varanasi: “POA is really lame, but he is funny in a “short bus” kind of way.”
    “Short bus”. An ignorant, sterotypical slur on the mentally retarded. Far more offensive than calling someone a jerk straight out.
    — NHQ

    Reply

  138. WigWag says:

    Steve’s original post here was on Secretary of State Rice and how she was treated by Prime Minister Olmert. Well Secretary of State Designate Clinton is currently testifying at her confirmation hearing and saying some very interesting things. I hope Obama supporters are watching it.
    Senator Kerry (Chairman, Foreign Relations Committee): “Senator Clinton, is it the policy of the incoming administration as a bottom line that it is unacceptable that Iran has a nuclear weapon under any circumstances and that we will take whatever steps necessary to prevent it, or is it merely undesirable for Iran to have nuclear weapons?”
    Clinton: “Senator Obama has stated repeatedly that it is completely unacceptable for Iran to obtain nuclear weapons….
    “We will make the case that a nuclear armed Iran is in no one’s interest in any circumstances. We will try to get greater international support for sanctions…But let me be clear; when it comes to Iran, no options are off the table.”

    Reply

  139. ... says:

    Posted by …… Jan 12, 10:14PM
    next time you’d like to mimic me, do some counting on the dots, lol… i can see my posts disturb you!

    Reply

  140. varanasi says:

    POA:
    stop with the paranoid nonsense and name calling. it adds nothing positive to this blog and it only impedes substantive debate and demeans TWN as a whole. do you think serious policy-makers, scholars, or thinkers take your blather seriously?
    steve is welcome to contact me at my personal email address if he has any questions or concerns about the integrity and independence of my comments and opinions.
    and, uh, big boy… we indians know all about meth and bakersfield 😉

    Reply

  141. PissedOffAmerican says:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hasbara
    Israeli government hasbara
    The Israeli Foreign Affairs Ministry[3], the diplomatic arm of the Government of Israel, was an original co-sponsor of the Hasbara Fellowships activities of Aish HaTorah. The Jewish Agency for Israel, Department for Jewish Zionist Education, operates a campaign, “Hasbara, Israeli Advocacy, Your Guide to the Middle East Conflict”.[2] The trip is still run by Aish HaTorah, but the Israeli government is no longer involved.[3]
    In 2002, the Israeli State Comptroller’s office issued a report critical of Israel’s PR efforts, “A lack of an overall strategic public relations conception and objective” and lack of coordination between the various organizations were mentioned. Funding levels are modest; the Ministry of Foreign Affairs spent about US$8.6 million on these efforts in 2002, and the Government Press Office was only budgeted at US$100,000.[4]
    A new “Hasbara czar”, Yarden Vatikay, was appointed by the Israeli government in February, 2008. He heads a “unit to coordinate Israel’s domestic and foreign media policy”. [6]
    In 2009, Israel’s foreign ministry organized volunteers to flood news websites with pro-Israeli comments related to Operation Cast Lead in Gaza.[7]

    Reply

  142. DonS says:

    Varanasi says “DonS: as ususal you completely misconstrue my comments”. If you are speaking specifically to me, you are wrong, or don’t remember, since I have never responded to a comment of your previously, though I have observed them. You constantly claim to be misinterpreted. If this is true then it is a constant problem of you ability to express yourself in English — which I doubt. Folks here generally follow arguments pretty well, so using the “misinterpreted” dodge works for just so long before the writer gets a rep.
    Substantively, while you may have been intending to point out the simple fact about relative non-repression of speech in the US (not to address the access to media issue) you chose to make that point in response to a [pony up] comment indicating the exact pragmatic ‘limits’ to expression incumbent on Washington insiders — e.g., Steve — thereby discounting the comment entirely, or at least missing the more nuanced point. Platitudes and shibboleths don’t prove a thing.
    I find it is better to make a comment that I can stick with most of the time rather than having to explain, back down, or claim being misunderstood? Think about it. You clearly have the ability to think, and honest thinking is welcomed here.

    Reply

  143. Cunigundis says:

    Cee,
    Obama will be no different.
    You have to remember that we are going all the way to Armageddon on this train. It is written.
    Nobody should fret. All is in the Hands of the Lord.
    Sit back, relax, and enjoy the scenery on this awesome prophesied journey.

    Reply

  144. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “is it really so surprising to you that some people don’t see israel as the pariah that you do?”
    Notice how this varansi asshole completely avoided comnmenting on the posts I put up that demonstrated the extremely high volume of anti-Israel sentiment on Obama’s website?
    “that’s it, POA. the hasbara has targeted TWN. HAHAHA!”
    Varanasi’s argument is almost verbatim IDENTICAL to the arguments offered by Wig-wag when wig-wag first arrived here. Is that a coincidence?
    Steve’s blog is in contention for high standing in the blog community, regularly has topics dealing almost exclusively with foreign policy as it relates to the middle east, is widely read in Washington DC, has been regularly cited on MSNBC, and has posted guest commentary from both well know pro-Israel think tankers as well as Palestinian statesman. But this asshole varanasi would have you believe that Steve’s blog’s standing is not high enough to warrant the attention of Hasbara or AIPAC. The insipid little puke even goes so far as to cast me as a lunatic or a paranoid for my logical assumption that commentary on The Washington Note is undoubtedly monitored by both AIPAC and the Hasbara.
    And varanasi, do you realize what an asshole you make of yourself with this crystal meth stupidity, and how completely it blows your “Indian” personna out of the water?
    http://vineyardsaker.blogspot.com/2009/01/hasbara-spam-alert.html
    Saturday, January 10, 2009
    Hasbara spam alert
    by Richard Silverstein for the Guardian
    The hasbara brigade strikes again! You always hear about Israeli attempts at media manipulation. Everyone knows it’s going on but usually the process happens through cyber insurgents like those involved with Giyus (and its media monitoring software, Megaphone). Now, we know that the Israeli foreign ministry itself is orchestrating propaganda efforts designed to flood news websites with pro-Israel arguments and information.
    A reader of my blog has received the following email which documents both the efforts and the agency that originated them. The solicitation to become a pro-Israel “media volunteer” also includes a list of media links which the ministry would like addressed by pro-Israel comments:
    Dear friends,
    We hold the [sic] military supremacy, yet fail the battle over the international media. We need to buy time for the IDF to succeed, and the least we can do is spare some (additional) minutes on the net. The ministry of foreign affairs is putting great efforts in balancing the media, but we all know it’s a battle of numbers. The more we post, blog, talkback, vote – the more likely we gain positive sentiment.
    I was asked by the ministry of foreign affairs to arrange a network of volunteers, who are willing to contribute to this effort. If you’re up to it you will receive a daily messages & media package as well as targets.
    If you wish to participate, please respond to this email.
    My friend did so and received this official communique from the ministry with talking points about Operation Cast Lead which s/he was to use in her/his propaganda efforts. Among the links was was a Peter Beaumont Cif piece. The following were identified as “target sites”: the Times, the Guardian, Sky News, BBC, Yahoo!News, Huffington Post, and the Dutch Telegraaf. Also targeted were other media sites in Dutch, Spanish, German and French considered critical of the invasion.
    Locally, here in Seattle, peace activists held a rally at our federal building attended by 500 protesters. In the foreign ministry communique issued the next day, activists were directed to comment in the Seattle Post Intelligencer’s article about the demonstration. The comment thread for the article is riddled with clear hasbara “plants” who distort the balance and tone of the discussion with their programmed arguments, making it much more favorable than it otherwise would be.
    Here the foreign ministry’s coordinator describes a meeting he attended at the government’s offical office:
    Hi all,
    I had a meeting in the ministry of foreign affairs today, and was very happy to hear that their metrics show that Israel’s position in the internet is getting better every day. It means that you’re doing a good job! MFA are concerned with the biased public opinion in Europe. So please focus your efforts on European media.
    What can you do to help?
    – Identify internet battle-grounds in different languages, and let me know
    – Comment/post/vote in the listed links and others; you can use the material attached below
    – Write letters to authors and editors. Identify yourself as a local resident
    – Have your friends join this activity
    This message was meant to encourage the pro-Israel activists in their work:
    World governments are still patient with Israel’s justified operation in Gaza. The [sic] public opinion, on the other hand, is impatient, to say the least. This gap will soon close – it always does.
    It is our goal to shift the public opinion, as conveyed in the internet; avoiding, or at least minimising, sanctions by world leaders. We need to buy the IDF enough time to achieve its goals.
    continues…..

    Reply

  145. varanasi says:

    “touche varanasi, I am all for leaving your part of the world alone and free of American boolsheet, weapons, everything.”
    sorry. it’s already a few hundred years to late for that.

    Reply

  146. Al says:

    touche varanasi, I am all for leaving your part of the world alone and free of American boolsheet, weapons, everything. We know nothing and should respect others knowledge of things we can know nothing about and let the cards fall where they may abroad.

    Reply

  147. Cee says:

    Condoleezza Rice has worked hard on the Israel-Palestine peace process
    Get the fuck outta here! She’s a Christian fundamentalist SLAVE who has worked hard at following orders.
    Remember her “birth pangs” remark.
    Will Obama be a slave too?

    Reply

  148. varanasi says:

    Al wrote:
    “Israel doing the US bidding in the Middle East?; you are ignorant varanasi. The Israelis are now victims of the US, eh?”
    clearly the israeli’s are not victims of the u.s., nor is the u.s. govt. a victim of israel. imo, the relationship is a (mostly) symbiotic relationship.
    “Stick to your Indian politics; you have displayed that you know nothing about what goes on over here.”
    touche. and perhaps you and others should follow your own advice and not blow hard about political events taking place in my part of the world or in countries which you have never even visited!
    but of course your opinion is the informed one, right? of course.

    Reply

  149. varanasi says:

    DonS: as ususal you completely misconstrue my comments. of course i’m not telling anyone to “shut up.” i’m just pounting out the obvious: there is nobody silencing public debate about israel in the u.s.a.
    POA: you’re right. wigwag, tony foresta and i are agents of the hasbara. but, be careful with the crystal meth. i heard that it creates extreme paranoia.
    that’s it, POA. the hasbara has targeted TWN. HAHAHA!
    is it really so surprising to you that some people don’t see israel as the pariah that you do?
    but i guess it’s easier to assign nefarious motives your critics, right?

    Reply

  150. Al says:

    I believe the ponyup dude is writing about the silencing of the American media, the silencing of the politicians, the silencing of the Washington political class. Someone who stands up to Israel in these three groups will be risking their careers. Israel is the third rail of American politics, and one will be destroyed in Washington if they do not say what is expected of them as far as Israel goes. Regular everyday American citizens who realize what is happening can bitch all they want about their country being had and the most that will happen to them is being labelled an anti-Semites by the ignorant naive likes of you, varanasi, and they will go about there business.
    Israel doing the US bidding in the Middle East?; you are ignorant varanasi. The Israelis are now victims of the US, eh?
    Stick to your Indian politics; you have displayed that you know nothing about what goes on over here, or you do know and lie for Israel’s sake.
    If it is anti-Semetic to be a patriotic American looking out for the interests of my country, then I will gladly be anti-Semetic and the like minded should also wear that badge proudly. Then maybe that label won’t have such power and another manipulative tool shall be removed from your toolbox.

    Reply

  151. PissedOffAmerican says:

    I see some asshole has turned to sputtering on about “anti-semitism”. We’ve seen it before. When the charge can’t be leveled by the existing comments, some “first time poster” will suddenly show up, salt the thread with some outlandishly anti-semitic comment, providing the fodder for these blathering jackasses like varanasi to twist the debate.
    Its also obvious that varanasi hasn’t got a fucking clue about how Hasbara operates, how they recruit, and how insiduious their efforts are. Or, of course, he’s completely aware of howe they operate, what they do, and how they do it. My bet? The latter.
    And Paul, when did you start giving a shit about being “on topic”? Are your own divergences the only acceptable ones?

    Reply

  152. Syed Qamar Afzal Rizvi says:

    Thanks to the Bush -Condi political honeymoon, that they are leaving behind them a horrific legacy of trails and tribulations that would have to be faced by the next US- administration, yet hopefully the next american administration(under Barack Obama) would prevent from facing the retribution of the follies committed by both Bush and Condi.

    Reply

  153. DonS says:

    shorter Varanasi . . keep your mouth shut because you should be grateful to have the right to express yourself.
    Truely, how pathetic. U.S., of all Security member, abstains from cease fire vote it proposed. Adminstration unanimously blames Hamas. Senate/House raise virtual unaimous pro-Israel resoultion anytime Israel coughs. AIPAC exempt from registering as a foreign agent.
    Yeah, right Varanasi, the “undue influence” argument is all a figment of our imagination. You’re the one who sees clearly.

    Reply

  154. rich says:

    One thing TWN readers abroad may not know is that what little news Americans get is completely one-sided. It’s totally sanitized and carries only the party line used to explain Israel’s current bombing campaign. TWN commenters work for balance.
    But it turns out Israel broke the cease-fire, not Hamas. Uri Avnery–an Israeli journalist–recounts a little history for us, explaining how Israel brought Hamas to power and how Israel instigated the current bombing campaign.
    “As a matter of fact, the cease-fire did not collapse, because there was no real cease-fire to start with. The main requirement for any cease-fire in the Gaza Strip must be the opening of the border crossings. There can be no life in Gaza without a steady flow of supplies. But the crossings were not opened, except for a few hours now and again. The blockade on land, on sea and in the air against a million and a half human beings is an act of war, as much as any dropping of bombs or launching of rockets. It paralyzes life in the Gaza Strip: eliminating most sources of employment, pushing hundreds of thousands to the brink of starvation, stopping most hospitals from functioning, disrupting the supply of electricity and water.
    “Those who decided to close the crossings – under whatever pretext – knew that there is no real cease-fire under these conditions.
    “That is the main thing. Then there came the small provocations which were designed to get Hamas to react. After several months, in which hardly any Qassam rockets were launched, an army unit was sent into the Strip “in order to destroy a tunnel that came close to the border fence”. From a purely military point of view, it would have made more sense to lay an ambush on our side of the fence. But the aim was to find a pretext for the termination of the cease-fire, in a way that made it plausible to put the blame on the Palestinians. And indeed, after several such small actions, in which Hamas fighters were killed, Hamas retaliated with a massive launch of rockets, and – lo and behold – the cease-fire was at an end. Everybody blamed Hamas.
    “Since then the wheel has turned. Hamas has now become the current Satan, and the PLO is considered by many in Israel almost as a branch of the Zionist organization. The logical conclusion for an Israeli government seeking peace would have been to make wide-ranging concessions to the Fatah leadership: ending of the occupation, signing of a peace treaty, foundation of the State of Palestine, withdrawal to the 1967 borders, a reasonable solution of the refugee problem, release of all Palestinian prisoners. That would have arrested the rise of Hamas for sure.
    “But logic has little influence on politics. Nothing of this sort happened. On the contrary, after the murder of Arafat, Ariel Sharon declared that Mahmoud Abbas, who took his place, was a “plucked chicken”. Abbas was not allowed the slightest political achievement. The negotiations, under American auspices, became a joke. The most authentic Fatah leader, Marwan Barghouti, was sent to prison for life. Instead of a massive prisoner release, there were petty and insulting “gestures”.
    “Abbas was systematically humiliated, Fatah looked like an empty shell and Hamas won a resounding victory in the Palestinian election – the most democratic election ever held in the Arab world. Israel boycotted the elected government. In the ensuing internal struggle, Hamas assumed direct control over the Gaza Strip.
    http://www.thepeoplesvoice.org/TPV3/Voices.php/2009/01/02/the-calculations-behind-israela-8217-s-s#more1677

    Reply

  155. varanasi says:

    frankly, i am surprised by all the tired, old anti semitism popping up on this thread. as i keep saying, it is straight out of The Protocols of the Elders of Zion – the grand Jewish conspiracy. sad to read that tripe here and i must say that it cheapens TWN as a whole.
    pony up wrote:
    “Steve is courageous for posting this and hopefully someday America will not cower in fear before the Israeli lobby that silences and keeps us from the truth of how our country is being abused.”
    how pathetic. i’m guessing you’re an american pony-up, right? do you really feel silenced? what about bert nowack, POA or Pat buchanan (who is also referenced in this thread)? have they been silenced as well? clearly you know NOTHING about real repressive societies, where freedom of speech is more a dream than reality.
    what none of you anti-israel critics here can fathom is that israel is many respects a U.S. proxy in the ME. israel has done YOUR bidding for years and not the other way around.
    lastly, you want to really see what it’s like to cower in fear, without civil liberties, before a repressive govt?
    go to saudi arabia, syria, iran, iraq, burma, north korea, or any other totalitarian state.
    my guess is that you’ve never been anywhere close.
    your complaints about the lack of freedom in america are an affront to the billions of people who are really living with no freedom of speech, press or right of assembly.

    Reply

  156. ponyup says:

    samuel burke, by making this post Steve came as close as he can if he wants to work in Washington to calling out the Zionists, Israelis, Jewish money, on their manipulation of the United States. He put this discussion on the table, something very few would be willing to do, and he will let his commenters say what he cannot. These are the first steps in trying the get this truth to be regular public fare. Steve is courageous for posting this and hopefully someday America will not cower in fear before the Israeli lobby that silences and keeps us from the truth of how our country is being abused.

    Reply

  157. Gibbonyansis says:

    No, Tony, no,
    You first have to clean your own house of these mass murderers, then you can go on to mass murdering the other mass murderers and with these mass murderers more innocent not mass murderers will die. But you are an American in the greatest country in the world with the biggest military ever and you will be watching it all on TV sitting on your couch with your popcorn. That’s mere entertainment for you, no bomb is going to come crashing through your roof, only in your wildest fantasies will you personally have to defend your fat American family from jihadis. You make them up in your Hollywood infected imagination coming after you and now you and other crazy right wing Americans want endless glorious war to be inflicted on the peoples of the world because your government failed you and the towers came down. You profess to hate Bush, but you are just like him and his mindset. Go jack off to a Rambo movie crazy American and leave the peoples of the world alone, you mass murderer Americans and the enablers of mass murderers around the world that feeds idiots around the world from your military industrial complex war machine upon which your whole mass murdering country is built. Mass murder the mass murders amongst yourselves and that will be a good first for the sake of world peace.

    Reply

  158. Paul Norheim says:

    Norwegian newspapers wrote about the Olmert story. I checked
    the net versions of New York Times and Washington Post:
    Nothing. Zero.

    Reply

  159. samuel burke says:

    and maybe you can open your trap and talk about the israeli
    lobby in your country…you know, the one that pressures your
    nations politicians into bowing their knees to the whims and
    wishes of the criminal state of israel.
    fear rules americas politicians and other politico types like you
    steve.
    its the power of the israeli lobby that needs to be addressed.
    pat buchanan is right….the congress of the united states is
    israeli occupied territory.

    Reply

  160. DonS says:

    Israel is clever at leveraging events to justify force, and to manipulate the US easily. The Zionists and enablers here attempt to piggyback on that, but this playing field is more level without institutional biases dictating the “truth”. They don’t like it. And, by the way, the “guilt” issue is always used, but has no impact on this board except to the gullible; IT is the ultimate non sequitur, and buys into the assertion that Israelis are due more than others and can make their own rules more than others, and still claim to be civilized in their actions. I am sick of the AIPAC clones here and elsewhere slandering Jews by their tactics; and so are more and more fellow Jews

    Reply

  161. TonyForesta says:

    It is fruitless, not to mention tedious Paul Norheim to respond to you mangling of my commentary and silly insults. You continually resort to cherrypicking words or phrases out of the larger message to conform to your preconcieved notions of me as insane or drunk or simplistic or racist or whatever. Have at it brother. You hold to you opinions and I’ll hold to mine. What you do not do however is address the basic issues, or counter in anyway the basic message. If you bother to read my commentary, it said – {If that ever truly happened, (that being hunting, capturing, or preferably killing every massmurderer on earth and all those who aid and abet them) there would only be a few hundred million people left of earth, and they perhaps could live happily ever after with peace on earth and good will towards men. The point be the world is full of massmurderers and those who aid and abet them on every side in every nation and in every culture.
    My focus is on eliminating massmurderers specifically, all of them (regardless of the flag, flavor, or prophet) and rejecting, renouncing, repudiating, and refusing to tolerate massmurder of innocents for any reason, under any circumstances.
    The “serious issues and far reaching consequences” you are so keen on discussing are directly involved with the massmurder of innocents by jihadis, by Israel, by America, in Africa, in Russia, in China, and all over this wild and violent planet. Each respective side holds to some perverted malignant validation for massmurder of innocents and just and necessary to achieve that particular entities goals. My point is that it is the massmurderers themselves that must be eliminated, and the idea or notion that massmurder is ever legitimate for any reason, under any cicumstances, by any tribe, cult, klan, clique, nation, oligarch, corporation, group, cabal, or individual that must be excoriated from the hearts, minds, and policies of humanity.
    Tragically, since man is such a bloodthirsty beast, – I do not see much hope. So given that reality, I look to my personal radius of interests and choose to target the massmurderers that most directly threaten my family, my loved ones, my country, and me. That would be the freaks and malignant sexually repressed mysoginist perverts in jihadist islam.
    I offer no apologies for those positions. While I hope and pray, (and I am not depressed, in fact I just won a nice acting gig and am rather elated) that humanity evolves beyond an unquenchable lust for blood. I don’t really see that happening, but I do hold and pray for that dim hope.
    I do not see where there is anthing gained by burying ones head in the sand, closing ones eyes and ears, and denying facts, and reality.
    Better to accept the horrorshow reality we all must hazard and endure, then to pretend that anyone is actually working to right the terrible wrongs that afflict and will ultimately destroy humanity.

    Reply

  162. TokyoTom says:

    I think that this op-ed by German demographer about the responsibility that Western governments have for literally feeding the growth of a Gazan “youth bulge” that has litle to do but fight to be rather ineresting:
    http://www.iht.com/articles/2008/01/17/opinion/edheinsohn.php.
    However, I think Israel bears a share of the responsibility for keeping the conflict alive, continually undermining the ability of Palestinians to either integrate or self-govern and then fuelling despair by cutting off Gaza economically from Israel and the West Bank.

    Reply

  163. Paul Norheim says:

    “If that ever truly happened, there would only be a few hundred
    million people left of earth, and they perhaps could live happily
    ever after with peace on earth and good will towards men.
    Tragically, I don’t see this happening, so jihadist islam is from
    my American perspective the most obvious group to target. Get
    rid or those malignant, perverted, mysoginist, primitive
    monsters, and go down the list.”
    The reason why the well meaning Tony is so depressed, is that
    he realizes that America will not have the guts, nor the will and
    ability to kill most of the people on planet earth – required to
    achieve his goal of peace on earth.
    I am not trying to be polemical here, I am just referring to his
    own words. Obviously his world view and suggestions is utter
    madness, containing visions of, I wouldn`t say genocide, but
    certainly something much worse than that, and on a scale much
    larger than his enemies ever dreamt about.
    I don´t want to be unkind to Tony, but his visions of a tolerant
    community accepting other tolerant people after exterminating
    the majority of people on earth is pure lunacy, madness, as
    demonstrated by his comment above mine.
    If TonyForesta hadn`t been such a frequent poster here, I would
    have ignored him. But he has been mixing this crazy message
    with his rants against the Bush government for quite a while
    now, gaining some credibility among certain commenters.
    However, after studying his last comment, I would guess that
    everybody here, with the possible exception of kotzabasis,
    would agree with me that Tony`s posts belong in an asylum,
    and certainly not on a political blog dealing with serious issues
    with far reaching consequences.
    If the insanity of his last post is not due to some unfortunate
    heavy drinking, drugs, or medication, TonyForesta`s logic is the
    logic of his enemies: the logic of a crazy mass murderer,
    believing that everything will be fine if we kill thousands,
    millions, or – as in poor Tony`s case – billions of people.
    He`s been suggesting this for weeks, and just now he laid out
    the consequences of his dreams, if they ever were fulfilled. If
    you ask me, enough is enough. I think Steve should send him
    an e-mail.

    Reply

  164. TonyForesta says:

    Good point copake, and in other thread I have said the exact same thing. Zionist massmurderers, evangelical massmurders, jihadist massmurderers, hindu massmurderers and every one or thing that would resort to massmurder or aid and abet massmurderers should be mercilessly hunted, captured, and killed.
    If that ever truly happened, there would only be a few hundred million people left of earth, and they perhaps could live happily ever after with peace on earth and good will towards men. Tragically, I don’t see this happening, so jihadist islam is from my American perspective the most obvious group to target. Get rid or those malignant, perverted, mysoginist, primitive monsters, and go down the list.
    Ultimately if humanity could evolve to a point where the larger majority rejects, renounces, repudiates, and condemns massmurder for any reason, or under any circumstances, – then there might be some hope for all humanity. Tragically, -I don’t see any evidence of humanity evolving along these vectors, so I am selfishly looking after my own immediate concerns and the most obvious threat to my family, loved ones, and my country. But your point is well taken and poignant.

    Reply

  165. jay d. ell says:

    Varanasi, who said anything about “anyone”? You are quite naive I see, and that “interests” read what is written here and try to shape the discussion is not all that important. Be who you are, discuss, listen, learn. There is no reason to fear ideas no matter where they come from. Have a good night.

    Reply

  166. Bert Nowak says:

    Are you accusing me of being a Christian?
    All Americans need to know how radical Islamists plan to destroy Israel, subjugate Christianity, and turn the West (Europe and the United States) into Islamic countries. We must awaken to this threat and arm ourselves with knowledge.
    wahahahahahahahaha
    or join a kibbutz where knowledge is your friend as I am your friend and you are mine. shalom
    what is the dirty little secret that the profligates of Zion need to tell me? oh yah, oh yah
    I will f*ck you up
    Have a good day lol

    Reply

  167. varanasi says:

    hey, bert nowack, aren’t you late for your Klan meeting?
    p.s jews also have horns *wink* *wink*

    Reply

  168. copake says:

    Tony,
    you say “…… every jihadist massmurderer and all those who aid and abet them on the planet, must be mercilessly hunted, captured, or preferrably killed.”
    Why only “jihadist massmurderer” why not just “massmurderer”?
    Massmurderer is not only limited to Isalm.

    Reply

  169. varanasi says:

    sorry, jy d. ell, but i don’t trust you.
    according to yours and POA’s flawed logic, anyone who supports the position of israel is elevated to the level of some ginned-up “Protocols of the Elders of Zion” zionist consipracy. this is BS.

    Reply

  170. jay d. ell says:

    Don’t be so naive varanasi. There is Hasbara here, there and everywhere Israel is being discussed. They are not agents, as in secret agents, but ultra-supporters of the State of Israel; they are real people. And if nation in the world this kind of grassroots effort it sure is Israel.
    They are here, and not for POA, but for all of us. They are nice people who have their side of the story to diseminate. Trust me.

    Reply

  171. TonyForesta says:

    I’m trying to communicate this point as simplistically as possible Paul Norheim. America has the right and indeed to the duty to strike at and eliminate threats anywhere on earth, at any time those threats are discovered.
    America does NOT have the right, nor is there any sound reason or justification for attacking, invading, and occupying any soveriegn nation.
    The only reason to invade and occupy any nation is to maraud that nations resources (Iraq, Afghanistan) or to totally annihiate that nation government, infrastructure and many of it’s people (Germany through actuall invasion and relentless bombing, and Japan through the worlds only use of nulcear weapons)
    You buy into the ridiculous fiction that jihadist massmurder gangs pose some existential threat to America, ignoring the fact the bush crime family cabals, and cheney and rumsfeld particularly armed and trained al Quaida, the ISI and so their proxy the Taliban, the Iranian government, and all the socalled evildoers. Yesterdays freedom fighters majikally morph into tomorrows evildoers, only to shapeshift again into todays (awakening counsels) all for policital expediency and wanton profiteering.
    Ignore all the jibberish pimped and bruted by the bushgov. No one syllable is true or base in any fact or reality. Every word ever pimped or bruted by anyone in the bushgov is a naked patent lie.
    From 9/11, to WMD, to Iraq, to Afghanistan, to Iran to Palestine, to torture, to spying on Americans without just cause, or due process, to to the fundamentals of the economy being sound, and on and on and on, and I could go on for hundred of pages – NOT ONE WORD WAS OR IS TRUE. EVERY SINGLE WORD PIMPED or BRUTED BY THE BUSHGOV PROFITEERS IS A PATENT LIE!!
    That said every jihadist massmurderer and all those who aid and abet them on the planet, must be mercilessly hunted, captured, or preferrably killed.

    Reply

  172. Bert Nowak says:

    there is very little to say to a Jew who would kill your children or theirs. Not one single Palestinian pushed a single Jewish victim into a chamber of death. Not one but that doesn’t bother or make a difference to a murderer Nazi or a murderer Zionist.
    Don’t ask for mercy and don’t give it. Life is a game of risk and reward.
    The table is set and the winds are gathering. America is weak, China is rising, Russia has found its feet.
    Protagonists, to your corner.
    POLAND’S HOLOCAUST: 6 MILLION CITIZENS DEAD
    (3 MILLION CHRISTIANS and 3 MILLION JEWS)
    a murderer is a murderer Jew or Gentile

    Reply

  173. Gary Selten says:

    That Israel, AIPAC, and Jewish money, all manipulate the USA to do as they are told is and has been a well known fact for a long time, but for Olmert to actually brag about it publicly is like someone announcing to the world with you standing there that they have been having sex with your wife and they will continue to do so, chump.

    Reply

  174. varanasi says:

    POA is really lame, but he is funny in a “short bus” kind of way.
    he thinks that the Hasbara has deployed agents to TWN to argue with him?! HAHA!! as if there aren’t real people who disagree with him.
    talk about taking yourself way too seriously!

    Reply

  175. WigWag says:

    Relations between Egypt and Hamas have gotten so bad that they don’t seem to be able to talk with each other directly. They need Turkey to be an interlocutor between them. To wit:
    JPost
    Jan 12, 2009 23:44
    Turkey playing key role in Hamas-Egypt talks
    By HERB KEINON
    “The intensive diplomatic activity taking place in Cairo is centered on developing an international monitoring force significantly different than anything that now exists in the world, since it will monitor a cease-fire not between two states, but between a state and a non-state actor, Western diplomatic sources said Monday.
    According to the sources, Turkey is playing a key role in the talks because Hamas – due to its tensions with Egypt – currently has more confidence in Turkey than it does in Egypt.
    Egypt has, to an unprecedented degree, been critical of Hamas and what it has brought upon the Gazan population The sources said that Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s foreign policy advisor, Ahmet Davutoglu, was instrumental in convincing Hamas representatives to go to Cairo for the talks. He is reportedly intimately involved in the discussions. Davutoglu was the key go-between in the indirect talks between Israel and Syria that Turkey was mediating last year.
    According to the sources, in the current talks Turkey is acting as the mediator between Egypt and Hamas, and not between Hamas and Israel. One Israeli source said that Israel’s relationship with Turkey has been set back considerably because of Erdogan’s extremely harsh criticisms of Operation Cast Lead.
    “Erdogan has removed Turkey from the game,” the source said. “We have lost trust in him.”
    But this loss of Israeli faith in Erdogan has apparently gained him stature in Hamas’s eyes. Turkey sees its role, according to Western officials, not to replace Egypt, but to help Egypt deal with Hamas…
    Quartet Middle East envoy Tony Blair said Monday during a visit to Cairo that the elements for a cease-fire were in place and expressed hope he would see one “in the coming days.” The former British prime minister met with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak while in Cairo following meetings with Israel’s leaders Sunday.
    “It is going to have to be worked on very hard, and it has got to be credible,” said Blair about an agreement, which he said must stop supplies of weapons to Gaza and open the crossings to the besieged territory.
    France, meanwhile, said European military observers should be sent to Gaza to monitor any eventual cease-fire between Israel and Hamas.
    “There need to be European observers,” Bernard Kouchner said on Europe-1 Radio, adding that the group could be expanded to include monitors from other regions. He said they should include military observers, “to testify to the maintained cease-fire.”
    German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said during his visit to Israel Sunday that Germany would be willing to send technical experts to assist on the border…
    Israel, meanwhile, still yet has to decide for itself the sequence of events if an accord on a mechanism could be agreed upon.
    While Defense Minister Ehud Barak has indicated that he wants the cease-fire to be dependent on the establishment of an effective border mechanism, Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni maintains that Israel should stop fighting when it reaches its goals, independent on whether a mechanism is established.
    In Livni’s mind, Israel’s deterrence – and not an international mechanism – will be what will keep Hamas from firing missiles in the future. At the same time, she is in favor of an agreement that would establish a mechanism on the border, but doesn’t want Israel’s decision on when to stop the fighting bound to it… ”

    Reply

  176. Paul Norheim says:

    “So what’s new?”
    Nothing, unless US main stream media inform the American
    people about what Olmert said.

    Reply

  177. jacqueline says:

    OK, let’s get back to discussing the crux of what Steve’s post was about:
    In summary: Olmert told the world that the Israelis can tell America what to do whenever they please and America hops to it.
    So vhat’s new?

    Reply

  178. Paul Norheim says:

    “Gads, I’m not gonna get roped into this horseshit again.”
    Good.
    “Address a post at me when you want to discuss Israel’s failure
    to deploy Phalanx, Paul and Wigwag.”
    Actually, I think you`re on to something there. I hope someone
    with more competence on the technical aspects will support
    your claims. As a layman I find it interesting, and I wouldn`t be
    surprised if you were right.
    “Or tell me the difference between marching Palestinans into a
    building that is subsequently bombed, or marching Jews into
    poisonous showers.
    Until then, go screw yourself.”
    You know my answer, but since this thread was about another
    issue, and since you had absolutely no reason to address this to
    me, I have the pleasure to say: go screw yourself, POA.

    Reply

  179. grrrufff says:

    The difference POA is there were less than a hundred Palestinians marched into a building to be bombed, while their were 2 million Jews marched into the showers. It’s at matter of numbers. When the Israeli start major league extermination like the Nazis did, then your bellyaching will be properly considered.

    Reply

  180. Amos says:

    You all seem to forget that through your grandparents and parents, you are all collectively guilty of helping indirectly the Nazi extermination of the Jews.
    WigWag points this out nicely in reminding us about Julius Streicher.
    Now you must help with the extermination of another people because you failed to stop the extermination of the current exterminators.
    You cannot get out of this bind as your people are beholden to the Jewish people through an eternal guilt that they can play on you like pushing buttons.
    What are you going to do, America? The Israelis own you. How are you going to get out of your enslavement. How you gonna beat the guilt tripping. Saying “Yass Massa” ain’t gonna do it; yous gonna hafta have a slave rebellion somehow but right now you a poor sorry snivilin’ bunch.

    Reply

  181. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Gads, I’m not gonna get roped into this horseshit again.
    Address a post at me when you want to discuss Israel’s failure to deploy Phalanx, Paul and Wigwag.
    Thats the issue I raised, in response to Wigwag’s assertion that Israel wants to stop the rocket attacks.
    Or tell me the difference between marching Palestinans into a building that is subsequently bombed, or marching Jews into poisonous showers.
    Until then, go screw yourself.

    Reply

  182. Paul Norheim says:

    “Oh yeah, right, Norheim. Am I wrong stating that Wigwag
    ALWAYS falls on the side of the Israelis?
    I’m a troll for saying it?” (POA)
    No, nor is she a troll because she is “always falling on the side
    of the Israelis”, or you for falling on the side of the Palestinians.
    And it was you who first, long ago, absurdly claimed that she,
    questions, Sweetness and others were trolls. As a matter of fact,
    you even claimed that I was a troll on the first post I
    commented, long ago. And now you`re even speculating
    whether varanasi might be a troll…
    “Call it trolling. Call it anything you want. Just another red
    herring to cover your tracks.” (DonS)
    DonS,
    WigWag stated clearly, several days ago, without any moral
    pretensions, that she unambiguously supported the Israeli
    attack on Gaza.
    After that I`ve seen several posters claiming that she is
    “dishonest” – and now creating “smokescreens” to “cover (her)
    tracks”.
    What make you, POA, rich, ArthurDecco and others think that
    you are more honest and straight forward than her?
    To me it smells like a dirty polemical trick, actually a bit
    dishonest.

    Reply

  183. Bert Nowak says:

    pon_zionists
    a world of shame came to fruition by the end of wwii
    zionists angled for palestine not canan (jewish homeland + or -) with the scurvy english. they try to scrub the land with the blood of vanquished philistines, while america pines the 2nd coming. everyone else gets used and abused as the no neck players tell nonsense to any who wish to titillate another possibility.
    in the end you sing the same song and you really don’t care. rachel corrie
    their song goes like this “this land was your land, now its my land from the mediterranean waters to a blood soaked dead sea…..
    intellectual dribble from a golem will find an arab, egyptian or persian to mock. the petulance allows a nation to avoid a greater but never ending quibble as to whether god is guilty of abandonment or did they reap what was sown or like Job did they need to prove their loyalty. at any rate the idol they have sold their souls for is the new israel.
    zionist and israelis alike can only hope karma is a myth.

    Reply

  184. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Oh yeah, right, Norheim. Am I wrong stating that Wigwag ALWAYS falls on the side of the Israelis?
    I’m a troll for saying it?
    Did you see the dissembling jackass respond to the comment about Phalanx, which was the meat of the post?
    Look, you want to defend Wigwag’s constant dissembling horseshit, avoidance of issues, and silences about Israeli atrocities, fine. But don’t expect me to tone down my rhetoruic towards someone whom I honestly consider to be an unmittigated jackass.

    Reply

  185. DonS says:

    Wigwag, on the subject of Zionism, you came onto this board an apologist, provaocateur, some time ago and, prolifically, you remain one. Doesn’t matter what the topic is the same: defending Israel at all cost. All smokescreen to defend the AIPAC/Zionist agenda.
    Call it trolling. Call it anything you want. Just another red herring to cover your tracks.

    Reply

  186. Paul Norheim says:

    Come on, POA, you`re crossing a line in ad hominem attacks.
    I would advice WigWag not to respond to this.

    Reply

  187. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “I don’t think we have any trolls on this thread; just people voicing differing opinions. But if anyone can be accused of being a troll, POA and DonS are the two most likely candidates”
    Care to comment on Phalanx, and Israel’s failure to deploy?
    Or how about Israel shoving one hundred some odd Palestinians into a single building, then bombing it?
    So, you dissembling little propagandizing hasbara pissant. You baited me into pointing out what an asshole you are again.
    Fine.
    But don’t think the readers here have missed the fact that you avoid comment about what your monstrous heroes are doing in Palestine. Too despicable for even you to defend, eh?

    Reply

  188. WigWag says:

    “What do you idiots need, a Julius Streicher to point it out to you?”
    …refers approvingly to Julius Streicher.
    Julius Streicher
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    “Julius Streicher (12 February 1885 – 16 October 1946) was a prominent Nazi prior to World War II. He was the founder and publisher of Der Stürmer newspaper, which became a central element of the Nazi propaganda machine. His publishing firm also released three anti-Semitic books for children, including the 1938 Der Giftpilz (The Poison Mushroom), one of the most widespread pieces of propaganda, which purported to warn about insidious dangers Jews posed by using the metaphor of an attractive yet deadly mushroom. After the war, he was convicted of crimes against humanity and executed.”

    Reply

  189. Paul Norheim says:

    ….., thanks, but spare us for Julius Streicher and your anti-
    Semitic hatred. If you have any familiarity with the comments
    here, you would see that a lot of commenters don`t approve the
    current symbiotic relationship between the USA and Israel.
    And BTW, not all of us commenting here are Americans.

    Reply

  190. varanasi says:

    after reading the post before mine, i feel like i need a shower. it really reflects badly upon the online-community which steve has worked so hard to create
    i may as well just use my time to reread “The Protocols of the Elders of Zion”.

    Reply

  191. WigWag says:

    Sorry, … you don’t get to define the subject of this thread.
    This is an exact quote from Steve’s post:
    “The appropriate thing for Condoleezza Rice to do right now is return the favor to Olmert by actually working in her final days on the job to implement immediately that UN Cease Fire Resolution. “
    Every one of my comments on this thread has been pertinent to Steve’s remark. It is certainly on topic to point out that nothing that the UN (or for that matter the US)does can facilitate a truce if Egypt doesn’t want one. You can agree; you can disagree; but you can’t claim that it isn’t a direct response to something Steve Clemons said.
    So sorry to spoil your fun though.

    Reply

  192. varanasi says:

    DonS wrote:
    “Wigwag, you have no credibility. None. ALL of your rhetoric is fodder for the radical Zionist cause. Your words can’t be trusted on this subject. Very sad.”
    nice, don, nice. way to engage a thoughtful contributor who happens to disagree with you.
    imo, these threads would be completely useless without wigwag’s unpopular posts. i’m surprised by how many of the regulars around here don’t want to have their left-wing, anti-israel, protectionist views challenged. not sure why all the fear and anger when communicating on a public policy blog! kudos to TonyForesta and Wig Wag for not wasting time badmouthing other posters, but rather poltitely and clearly offering their opinions.

    Reply

  193. ...... says:

    You damned stupid Americans are taking WigWags bait in her frantic attempts to change the subject. Her first thoughts upon seeing this post was “Is this good for the Jews?” and “What will the gentiles think?”, and she goes into Change the subject mode.
    The subject is NOT Rice, it is NOT Bush, get out of your tunnel vision! It is about the United States of American being slaves to Zionists and Israel.
    What do you idiots need, a Julius Streicher to point it out to you?

    Reply

  194. Paul Norheim says:

    “I don’t think we have any trolls on this thread; just people
    voicing differing opinions.”
    I agree, and I am sorry if I evoked that old issue again.

    Reply

  195. WigWag says:

    From Wikipedia:
    “An Internet troll, or simply troll in Internet slang, is someone who posts controversial, inflammatory, irrelevant or off-topic messages in an online community, such as an online discussion forum or chat room, with the intention of provoking other users into an emotional response[1] or to generally disrupt normal on-topic discussion.[2]”
    I don’t think we have any trolls on this thread; just people voicing differing opinions. But if anyone can be accused of being a troll, POA and DonS are the two most likely candidates.
    Instead of attacking what I said; they attacked me. Rather troll-like; don’t you think?

    Reply

  196. Susan says:

    Let’s hear it for eroding “enthusiasm for Israel’s posture in the Middle East”!
    They all deserve much more than a kick in the teeth.

    Reply

  197. Paul Norheim says:

    I may risk the good old accusation of “feeding the trolls”, but I
    think it`s well worth listening to what WigWag said somewhere
    above:
    “Paradoxically, if Israel destroys Hamas it is a sign that they do
    want to negotiate. If they let Hamas survive, it’s a sign that they
    want the appearance of negotiation but with little real progress.
    The existence of Hamas is Israel’s best excuse for not reaching
    a deal. They know that Hamas and Fatah will never reconcile
    (especially now) and that Hamas will always stand in the way of
    any deal negotiated by President Abbas and the Palestinian
    Authority. If Israel doesn’t want to reach a deal, letting a
    chastened but still radical Hamas survive to stand in the way is
    the smartest thing for the Israelis to do.
    On the other hand, if Israel destroys Hamas, their best excuse
    for intransigence disappears. The Palestinian Authority and
    President Abbas want a deal and are prepared to give up a lot to
    get one. But to get a deal, Israel will also have to give up a lot.
    Once Hamas is gone, Israel’s excuse to delay will be gone.
    President Obama and the Europeans will push aggressively for a
    settlement and Israel will have little excuse not to reach one.”

    Reply

  198. WigWag says:

    Of particular interest are the comments made by the Fatah official in this article. To wit:
    Jan 12, 2009 21:05 | Updated Jan 12, 2009 23:57
    Haniyeh: We’ll deal positively with any cease-fire initiative
    By KHALED ABU TOAMEH
    For the first time since the beginning of the IDF military operation in the Gaza Strip, Hamas on Monday openly signaled its willingness to accept a cease-fire with Israel.
    The message from Hamas was issued by its prime minister, Ismail Haniyeh, who has been in hiding since the beginning of the offensive.
    Haniyeh’s remarks contradict fiery statements made by Hamas leaders in Syria and Lebanon.
    Haniyeh said in a televised speech that Hamas would cooperate with any initiative to stop the offensive and reopen the border crossings into the Gaza Strip.
    We will deal positively with any initiative aimed at ending the offensive,” he said.
    However, Haniyeh said that Hamas would also continue to fight against the “occupation forces” of Israel.
    We are confident that eventually we would achieve victory and crush the aggression,” he said. “The intifada must continue because the occupation is continuing to kill.”
    Haniyeh claimed that at least half of the Palestinians killed in the IDF operation were women and children. “Victory comes to those who believe in Allah and carry out his commandments,” he added, citing several versus from the Koran.
    “We have confidence in Allah because He’s on our side. We are nearing victory over the Zionist war machine. After 17 days of fighting, I can say that the Gaza Strip and faith will prevail. With Allah’s help, the Palestinian people will prevail over the infidels.”
    Haniyeh’s speech, which ended with a prayer, was seen by some Palestinians as an admission of defeat. A Fatah official in Ramallah said the speech reflected Hamas’s growing predicament.
    “This speech shows that Hamas has been defeated,” he said. “Haniyeh has actually raised the white flag.”
    The official pointed out that the speech was also an indication of the growing rift between the Hamas leadership in the Gaza Strip and the one in Damascus and Beirut.
    “The Hamas leaders in the Gaza Strip are desperate for a cease-fire,” he said. “After more than two weeks of fighting, they are tired and frustrated.”
    The Fatah official said that Haniyeh’s remarks were likely to escalate tensions between the two leaderships. “I don’t think [Damascus-based Hamas leader] Khaled Mashaal is going to like what Haniyeh said,” he remarked. “The Hamas leaders in Damascus and Beirut are under heavy pressure from the Syrians and Iranians not to accept the latest Egyptian cease-fire initiative.”
    A Hamas delegation returned to Cairo Tuesday night carrying the movement’s response to the Egyptian initiative, which calls for an immediate cease-fire between Israel and the Islamist movement.
    The four-member delegation held talks in Cairo earlier this week with Egyptian Intelligence Chief Omar Suleiman before heading to Damascus for consultations with Hamas leaders.
    The delegation had originally expressed reservations about some points in the Egyptian proposal, especially regarding the Rafah border crossing and the deployment of an international force in the Gaza Strip. The delegation also voiced opposition to declaring a long-term cease-fire with Israel.
    Osama Hamdan, the Hamas representative in Lebanon, denied that the Egyptians had set an ultimatum to Hamas to accept their initiative. “No one can impose a deadline on us,” he said. “Everything now depends on whether the Egyptians accept our reservations over their proposal.” He expressed hope that the Egyptians would accept Hamas’s reservations over the cease-fire initiative. He added that Hamas was demanding an immediate halt to the Israeli operation before discussing the issue of a cease-fire.
    In a related development, the Hamas government said that it would continue to function despite the “reoccupation” of the Gaza Strip by Israel.
    “We are continuing to assume our responsibilities although the Gaza Strip has been divided,” said a statement issued by the Hamas government. “We are continuing to provide the citizens with various services.”

    Reply

  199. DonS says:

    I get your point, Paul
    But I’m with the push the envelope crowd, not the “saving grace” crowd. Life is too short and the stakes to high to give much of a good goddam for Condi’s relatively less corruptness . . .not that I beoieve she isn’t.

    Reply

  200. Paul Norheim says:

    The performance of Condoleezza Rice has been poor, and in
    some crucial moments disastrous. However, she`s been a counter
    weight to Cheney, Abrams, Bolton and others during the last
    years, in situations that could have evolved to even more
    nightmarish scenarios – among them a possible attack on Iran.
    The pragmatic Steve Clemons recognizes this, and my point was
    to praise him for saying so at a time when it would have been
    more convenient in Washington DC to blame her.

    Reply

  201. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “JohnH also says “Again, Israel’s goal is to stop the rockets, but never have to negotiate.”
    Wigwag says….”This is only partially true. Certainly Israel wants to stop the rocket fire; any nation would”
    Apparently, if either of you care to do the digging I did, you both are wrong about Israel’s desire to put a stop to the rocket fire.
    The rockets cause very little damage, and the excuse they provide for Israel to continue to starve, abuse, and murder the Palestinian people is apparently worth the minor loss of life the Israelis experience.
    Its interesting to me that no one seems to want to comment on Israel’s failure to deploy the Phalanx defense system, which would most probably be able to stop a considerable percentage of the Hamas rockets. Further, the high velocity of the Phalanx projectiles would send them out to sea when they fail to hit their target, resulting in very little “collateral damage” to the Palestinian civilian population.
    Its laughable seeing these lying monsters justify mass murder by claiming to be acting in “self defense”, when in fact they refuse to actually defend their own people from the Hamas rockets. This is a proven weapons technology, that is readibly available to the Israelis for minimal cost. In fact, the system is installed on some Israeli warships, and most of our own cruisers, battleships, and carriers.
    However, as I’ve commented before, its asinine discussing the Isr/Pal thing with Wig-wag, because he would defend Israel if it was selling Cooked Palestinian in Wine Sauce.

    Reply

  202. DonS says:

    Wigwag:
    “Hamas seems to be on the run.”
    “I speculate (but admit it’s pure speculation without any evidence), that Obama gave the green-light for Israel to attack Hamas, ahead of time.”
    Wigwag, you have no credibility. None. ALL of your rhetoric is fodder for the radical Zionist cause. Your words can’t be trusted on this subject. Very sad.

    Reply

  203. DonS says:

    Paul says “Steve, it would probably have been “smarter” to join the choir
    attacking her as she departs her office – kudos to you for
    defending her in these circumstances (and I say this regardless
    of my opinion of her performance).”
    Kudos, maybe. Or maybe we have really come a state that this tortured very proper diplomatic language comes across as brave.
    What should be really trumpeted here should be in bold print headlines. Americans are that dumb and brainwashed.
    As to Wigwag’s attempt to parse the Egypt connection in terms of intra Islamic conflict, hatred and history, quoting Al Jazerra, it sounds important, but the fact is that Egypt could have shut down the commercial and military tunnels into Gaza anytime they chose. That they have not indicates only that Egypt is treacherous, not that it is out to crush Hamas. And after the last war involving Israel and Egypt I don’t think it takes much intelligence to figure out who is calling the shots, Israel or Egypt.
    Between candidates for “most pathetic” stooge, Rice or Bush, take your pick. Me, I’m finished with debating whether Israel calls [too many of] the shots in the US. It’s been obvious, not for days weeks, months or years. For decades. Just getting worse.
    As to the ‘slight’ of Rice, I imagine a proper diplomatic protest will be lodged ‘at the higest level’. It’ll make for lot’s of laughs in the Knesset. The Jerusalem Post wil rap the Americans for being out of line.

    Reply

  204. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “On the US side, Bush is the one who comes out poorly here, not Rice. The President of the United States stops a speech and leaves the stage because the Prime Minister of Israel demands it? What have this country and its highest office come to?”
    Kind of shoots holes in Wig-wag’s longstanding constant braying that Israel doesn’t have an unhealthy amount of sway over Washington, doesn’t it?

    Reply

  205. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Rice is a war criminal, a known liar, and has gotten away with ignoring a Congressional subpoena. She has a large degree of culpability in the uneccesary, illegal, immoral, and despicable murder of over one million Iraqi citizens. Rice should stand before the Hague, right next to Cheney, Bush, Rumsfeld, Gonzales, etc..
    Of all the despicable monstrosities that Steve chooses to defend here on this blog, I think his defense of Rice is the most irritating to me. This team of criminals in this Administration have brought this nation to its knees, have soiled everything we once stood for, and are going to walk away unaccountable, unpunished, wealthy, and as a result, still wielding influence.
    When Washington insiders and pundits slather praise on these despicable criminals, it robs them of credibility, and renders their own integrity as being suspect. It pains me everytime I see Steve praise Rice, because it doesn’t fit in the neat little happy box I’m comfortable placing Steve in.
    But I wonder, how can anyone fail to see Rice’s high level of culpability in serious war crimes? How can anyone overlook her perjurious statements in the run-up to the Iraq war? How can anyone excuse her open defiance and disdain for the rule of law when ignoring Congressional subpoena power?

    Reply

  206. WigWag says:

    JohnH asks, “But why couldn’t Egypt stop the smuggling before?”
    Egypt could have stopped the smuggling anytime it wanted to. As long as Hamas was relatively weak and responsive to Egyptian overtures, Egypt was unconcerned about Hamas. As Hamas got stronger, Egypt found them to be more and more of a threat. Egypt was especially worried that the new found strength of Hamas was emboldening the Egyptian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood. As Iran got stronger as a result of the Iraq War and the overthrow of the Taliban in Afghanistan, Hamas, which is an Iranian proxy, looked increasingly worrisome to Egypt. Egypt was especially enraged when Hamas ignored its demand that the cease fire that expired last month be extended. That’s when Egypt decided to withdraw its objection to Israel teaching Hamas a lesson. But don’t take my word for it. Go and read Haaretz, Al Jazeera or both. It’s all spelled out there. Just don’t bother reading the New York Times, the Washington Post or the Guardian. You’ll find nothing insightful in any of those newspapers. They’ve covered the Israel-Hamas conflict with all of the same intelligence and sophistication with which they covered the Iraq War.
    JohnH also says “Again, Israel’s goal is to stop the rockets, but never have to negotiate.”
    This is only partially true. Certainly Israel wants to stop the rocket fire; any nation would. But whether Israel wants to negotiate is an open question. The best way to find out is to watch whether Israel completely destroys Hamas.
    Hamas seems to be on the run. While the Hamas political leaders in Syria remain defiant, Middle Eastern newspapers are reporting tonight that the Hamas leaders in Gaza are desperate for a cease fire on almost any terms. Egypt has achieved its goal, Hamas has been humiliated.
    Paradoxically, if Israel destroys Hamas it is a sign that they do want to negotiate. If they let Hamas survive, it’s a sign that they want the appearance of negotiation but with little real progress.
    The existence of Hamas is Israel’s best excuse for not reaching a deal. They know that Hamas and Fatah will never reconcile (especially now) and that Hamas will always stand in the way of any deal negotiated by President Abbas and the Palestinian Authority. If Israel doesn’t want to reach a deal, letting a chastened but still radical Hamas survive to stand in the way is the smartest thing for the Israelis to do.
    On the other hand, if Israel destroys Hamas, their best excuse for intransigence disappears. The Palestinian Authority and President Abbas want a deal and are prepared to give up a lot to get one. But to get a deal, Israel will also have to give up a lot. Once Hamas is gone, Israel’s excuse to delay will be gone. President Obama and the Europeans will push aggressively for a settlement and Israel will have little excuse not to reach one.
    I speculate (but admit it’s pure speculation without any evidence), that Obama gave the green-light for Israel to attack Hamas, ahead of time. I believe Obama knew that with Hamas out of the way, peace between Israel and the Palestinian Authority was more likely than with Hamas constantly throwing monkey wrenches into the process. I also believe that Obama thought that a successful Israeli operation would make it more likely that the next government in Israel would comprise a coalition between Labor and Kadima (who are more willing to compromise) than Likud (which is the most recalcitrant of the main stream parties in Israel.)
    Regardless of whether my speculation about Obama is right, watch what happens in the next few days.
    If Israel agrees to a quick cease fire and lets Hamas survive it means there is less likely to be a peace deal than if Israel continues to attack and destroys Hamas as a political movement.
    By the way, for what little it’s worth; my bet is that Israel prefers an emasculated version of Hamas to no Hamas at all.

    Reply

  207. Paul Norheim says:

    Ah, the invasion of Iraq was wrong, but not the invasion of
    Afghanistan?
    Let me see… In the post above this you said: “Every jihadi
    massmurderer, every imam, every cleric, every
    follower, everyone on earth who aids and abets jihadist islam
    must be hunted, captured, or preferrably killed.”
    So you would blame Bush for attacking Iraq instead of Syria,
    Iran, and several other nations who have protected and
    supported different jihadist groups?
    You`re blaming him for not being consequent in his Global War
    on Terrorism?
    And you`re blaming the war industry for not being idealists,
    making the weapons for this global war for free, instead of
    making a profit, and the politicians for being paid by these
    industries?
    But why blame Bush in the context of the Gaza attacks? Isn`t he
    on your side here, securing the continuation of the killings? And
    you`re not nice with Condi either, who secured the killings in
    Lebanon in 2006 (against Hisbullah and the civilian population
    we`re whining about). And you say that “Rice and Bush deserve
    to be “kicked in the teeth”.”
    That doesn`t add up, does it?
    Because if not for Bush and Rice, the Israelis would have to
    retreat before the “jihadists” were killed.
    No, Tony, I have no “distaste” for you personally. I think you
    somehow are a well meaning and confused guy. But I have to
    admit that watching you committing intellectual harakiri at TWN
    is a sad spectacle.
    You`re more Bushist than Bush. A pity you didn`t work for him
    during all these years, helping him implementing his doctrine in
    a pure way.

    Reply

  208. TonyForesta says:

    You always purposefully take statements out of context to your preconcieved opinions about me personally. The sentence you question read – (All this whining and crying about innocent Palestinains and ignoring hamas massmurder operations, and hamas’s blooddrenched jihaid charter calling for the elimination of Isreal are hollow and moot {in light of the far greater, far more horrible, bloody, costly slaugher and wanton profiteering ongoing in Iraq and Afghanistan by the pathological liars in bushgov.})
    There is a huge difference Mr Norheim which your obvious distaste for me personally blinds you to recognizing.
    Here where I differ from the bushgov.
    America must abide by the rule of law.
    America must honor, protect, and defend the Constitution.
    America does not need to torture.
    Invasions and occupations are oldword bloody costly fruitless, impotent, and suicidal endeavors against 4th generation military threats.
    America must conduct covert, special ops, and police actions againts jihadi threats that requires cooperation with our allies.
    Wanton profiteering is criminal and treasonous.
    Intentionally decieving the American people
    America has the legal right, and the moral necessisty to actively eliminate every jihadist threat and all those who aid and abet them on the planet.
    The bushgov approaches the same shared goals of eliminating jihadist threat by purposefully NOT eliminating jihadist threats ( Saudi financing, and wahabi imams, as well as hamas, islamic jihad, hezbollah, are totally ignored and recused by the bushgov) and instead the bushgov focuses entirely on prosecuting the polar opposite approaches of massive land invasions and occupations, and resulting wanton profiteering, glorifying medieval and perverted torture polcies, raping, shredding, dismantling, perverting, betraying, and re-engineering the Constitution, and the rule of law, profiteering wantonly in and from every nefarious process, ruthless sliming every one on earth who questions of opposed the bushgov policies and again erecting a shadow government of private military, private intelligence industrial complexes beholden to the bushgov alone, without accounting, accountability, or any review, recourse, or remedy for abuse, – and again profiteering wantonly in and from the process.

    Reply

  209. ... says:

    wigwag quote >>No, I don’t care who gets the “blame.” I’m just presenting the facts as spelled out by Al Jazeera. It’s an “analysis” of the conflct widely shared in the Arab world.<<
    i like that word ‘facts’ thrown in.. there are facts and then their are facts! changing this story to be about egypt instead of a un sanction that olmert wanted the usa to vote a certain way is a factual comment on the nature of your post… the ‘facts’ as they relate to this specific story have been thrown overboard to make more general comments on ‘egypt’ nowhere mentioned in this article…
    perhaps steve would like you write a separate story on egypts negation of responsibility towards the crisis in the mid east more generally and you can shower us with the ‘facts’ with pleasure…

    Reply

  210. Paul Norheim says:

    TonyForesta, after reading your comments about the current
    events in the Israel/Palestine conflict, I have absolutely no clue
    anymore to why on earth you oppose the “Bush gov”.
    Admittedly, your world view is much less sophisticated then even
    his, but it`s certainly going in the same direction, isn`t it?
    What exactly are you opposing with regards to Bush`s global war
    on terrorism? Isn`t that the same as your home spun theory that
    if “we” kill the “mass murders”, sim salabim, the planet will be
    fine?

    Reply

  211. WigWag says:

    “wigwag would like egypt to shoulder the blame for the usa failing to vote in favour of a resolution…”
    “I think WigWag rather takes comfort in this analysis.”
    No, I don’t care who gets the “blame.” I’m just presenting the facts as spelled out by Al Jazeera. It’s an “analysis” of the conflct widely shared in the Arab world.
    In fact, it’s a view shared by Hamas, Hezbollah and Iran. They all blame Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and the Palestinian Authority as much as they blame Israel.
    Just about everyone thinks the road to a truce runs through Egypt. It’s Egypt that’s negotiating with Israel, France, the European Union, the Palestinian Authority and Hamas.
    Everyone knows that it’s Israel that’s attacking Hamas but that it’s Egypt that is intent on humiliating Hamas.
    Or maybe I should say, everyone in the Arab world knows it; everyone in Israel knows it.
    The only people who don’t know it are the credulous Western press and a few people who read the Washington Note.

    Reply

  212. Deeds says:

    As an American, I’m really insulted by this behavior. Israel’s open scorn for us is a national embarrassment.
    We have battered wife syndrome:
    Maybe if we take them back and give them FIVE billion dollars, then they’ll start listening to us!

    Reply

  213. Paul Norheim says:

    “All this whining and crying about innocent Palestinains and
    ignoring hamas massmurder operations…”
    Tony, who exactly do you refer to, ignoring or approving the
    Hamas tactics? Do you really see “whining and crying about
    innocent Palestinians” as a big problem in the current drama?
    “Hollow and moot” in light of far greater crimes, is that what you
    have to say about people protesting the slaughtering going on in
    Gaza?

    Reply

  214. TonyForesta says:

    Rice and Bush deserve to be “kicked in the teeth”. The great tragedy for everyone involved is the vaccuous lack of real leadership in the bushgov, who for eight horrible, bloody, coslty, deceptive, years of criminal conduct enforced their will with a gun, and by ruthlessly sliming every opponent with a slurry of scurrilous lies.
    Rice did leave shamed face, and so will bush. Both of these treacherous ferociously partisan warmongers and profiteers have brought nothing but carnage, monsterous costs, debts, and deficits, and shame to America.
    No one seemed to care that much about the 100s of thousands of innocent Iraqi’s, or Afghani’ slaughtered and killed by the bushgov’s deceptions, warmongering, and wanton warprofiteering.
    Israel for all its warts, mistakes, and overreach has a more legitimate cause, and case for culling hamas, (not Palestinians) than the pathological liars in the bushgov have for either Afghanistan or Iraq.
    All this whining and crying about innocent Palestinains and ignoring hamas massmurder operations, and hamas’s blooddrenched jihaid charter calling for the elimination of Isreal are hollow and moot in light of the far greater, far more horrible, bloody, costly slaugher and wanton profiteering ongoing in Iraq and Afghanistan by the pathological liars in bushgov. Throw shoe! Insult, debase, spurn, and shame these beast till end of time, – because that is exactly what rice, bush, cheney, and all the pathological liars and war profiteers in bushgov rightfully deserve.
    America will pay a terrible price for failing to hold these criminals, traitors, perverts, pathological liars, and wanton profiteers accountable. Shaming everyn one them is the least we can we expect.

    Reply

  215. Paul Norheim says:

    “wigwag would like egypt to shoulder the blame for the usa
    failing to vote in favour of a resolution” (…)
    …, I think WigWag rather takes comfort in this analysis. The
    prospect of Israel being backed by several Arab tyrants due to
    common interests, is good news for pro-Israelis who agree on
    the current strategy.

    Reply

  216. ... says:

    wigwag would like egypt to shoulder the blame for the usa failing to vote in favour of a resolution… no wigwag, you can thank american politicians who have neither the guts or the fortitude to stand up to olmert… egypt is not helping any either, but the usa has no backbone or legitimacy on anything to do with israel… of course the usa funds egypt and that might be a factor is why they are as spineless as they are as well…
    follow the money….

    Reply

  217. JohnH says:

    Wigwag may be accurately representing the views of Israel, Sarkozy, Bush and the Arab tyrants (Mubarak, Abdullah, Abdullah II and Abbas).
    However, I don’t see how it will work. In order to survive without ever having to give anything up (i.e.–avoid peace negotiations), Israel must stop the rocket fire. Otherwise, over time, Hamas and Hezbollah will increasing gain deterrence against Israeli attacks. Tough never able to inflict as much damage on Israel as Israel can on them, Arab rockets could still inflict a lot of damage and cause emigration of Israel’s best and brightest. Again, Israel’s goal is to stop the rockets, but never have to negotiate.
    To stop the rockets, they must stop the smuggling. But why couldn’t Egypt stop the smuggling before? What has changed now? If anything, Egyptian border agents have more reason than ever to be sympathetic to the plight of the Palestinians and, given sufficient remuneration, turn a blind eye to smuggling. American, European or Turkish monitors could be gamed, simply because they’re foreign.
    If what Wigwag said is true, it sounds like they all sat around and agreed to this elegant theory that most likely won’t stand being tested. And ultimately, Israel will be back to culling the Palestinian population again and creating more hatred in the process.

    Reply

  218. HaHaHa says:

    Reading these posts, you people here so far sooo naive.
    That fucking Israeli just told you all what has been going on for 60 fucking years and right to your dumb goy faces, and you all ho-hum.
    Bend over, we got an even bigger schvantz for you!
    You Americans turn into such pansy assed fruitcakes when the Jewish mensch show up. God damn John Wayne turns into Richard Simmons.
    Condoleeza Rice is not the one that got shamed, it was all Americans who now have been shown the video of their ongoing ass raping at the hands of Jews, Zionists, and Israel.
    How you bitches doin’?

    Reply

  219. ed says:

    “Maybe this is just one more case of the incompetence of Secretary Rice.”
    Oh, you think so, doctor?

    Reply

  220. Paul Norheim says:

    In other words: If one state in the Middle East (Israel) continues to
    act exactly like the British, French and German colonialists 100
    years ago, the legitimacy of the regimes supporting that state in
    the region will slowly erode.

    Reply

  221. Paul Norheim says:

    I think you`re right, WigWag. Egypt and other Arab states now
    share the bad judgement of Israel and America that you can
    eliminate movements like Hamas by bombing them AND the
    Palestinian civilians.
    It may backfire on all the players.
    From a BBC commenter: “Major Gen Uzi Dayan, the former
    Chairman of the Israeli National Security Council, said Israel’s
    real goal should be to surround the Gaza Strip and “dismantle”
    the Hamas regime.
    Asked who would run Gaza in its place, Gen Dayan said this
    was none of Israel’s business.
    “I prefer a vacuum to what is there now,” he told me.
    Gen Dayan was giving his own view, not the official Israeli
    position, but as Israeli troops press home their campaign inside
    the Gaza Strip, and diplomacy fails to bring the conflict to an
    end, some are wondering whether Israel really knows where it is
    heading.
    “I can’t see any evidence that it was a thought-through
    operation, from a political point of view,” said Yossi Mekelberg,
    an associate fellow of London’s Chatham House think tank.
    “And if it creates a political vacuum, even more extreme
    elements can enter into this equation,” he added.
    ———-
    That was exactly what happened when tIsrael got rid of Arafat:
    they got Hamas. Judging by their strategies, it looks like they
    are begging for the extremists to represent the Palestinians,
    legitimating a refusal to talk and negotiate, legitimating sealing
    off Gaza, starvation, bombs.
    The dilemma is that the “extremists” currently also represent
    the democratic forces in many parts of the Middle East. And by
    starving and bombing them, by choosing State terrorism as a
    tactic, you reinforce them. This may also affect Egypt, Saudi
    Arabia etc in the long run.

    Reply

  222. varanasi says:

    IF this report is true, ohlmert may have just sealed his fate as the worst israeli PM EVER!
    but i must say, that after reading the report, i find it hard to believe that even a failed leader like ohlmert would go on the record or even on background with this s$%t – even if it IS true!

    Reply

  223. WigWag says:

    “The appropriate thing for Condoleezza Rice to do right now is return the favor to Olmert by actually working in her final days on the job to implement immediately that UN Cease Fire Resolution. “
    The biggest obstacle to a ceasefire is not Israel and it’s not even Hamas, it’s Egypt.
    The secret affection between Israel and Egypt is plain to see for everyone except the credulous main stream media in the West. But you would think that foreign policy aficionados at the Washington Note would figure out what virtually everyone in the Arab world understands; that Israel is fighting this war with Hamas not only on its own behalf, but also on behalf of Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and the Palestinian Authority. If these Sunni Arab States were really afraid of what their own citizens thought, they wouldn’t have egged Israel on to attack Hamas (as Egypt and the Palestinian Authority did) or acquiesced to the invasion as Jordan and Saudi Arabia did).
    Maybe the people who post at the Washington Note should read Al Jazeera more carefully. If they had, they would have learned:
    (1)Foreign Minister Livni visited with President Mubarak in advance of the bombing campaign and he gave it the “green-light.”
    (2)King Abdullah of Jordan took advantage of the fact that everyone’s attention was diverted by the Gaza imbroglio to fire the head of his security service who had reached out to Hamas, General Mohammad Dahabi, and replaced him with a new intelligence chief, General Mohammad Rakkad, who has impeccable terror fighting credentials and has excellent relations with Israel.
    (3)President Abbas personally suggested Hamas operatives for Israel to target and Mohammad Dahlan informed Israel where they were likely to find arms caches.
    (4)Saudi Arabia stymied the Arab League from meeting to form a coherent and unified response to the Israeli attack.
    According to Secretary Rice, Tony Blair, President Sarkozy and everyone else, for the Israeli invasion of Gaza to end three things have to happen: (1) the rockets into Israel have to stop; (2) the Philadelphia corridor (on the Egyptian side of its border with Gaza) has to be policed so Hamas can’t smuggle in ordinance through tunnels; and (3) the Rafah Crossing has to be opened to the free flow of goods for normal trade.
    Israel has already accomplished the first goal. If Israel declares a cease fire, Hamas won’t dare continue to send rockets into Israel. Gaza residents wouldn’t let them; it would be political suicide for Hamas if they continued to shoot off rockets thus inviting further Israeli retaliation.
    Policing the Gaza-Sinai Border and opening up the Rafah Crossing is solely within the discretion of Egypt. The Egyptians could easily agree to station American, European or Turkish experts or even troops on its border with Gaza to prevent Hamas from digging tunnels. They will eventually acquiesce to this, but for now they are delaying a deal on stationing the needed monitors because they want Israel’s invasion to continue.
    Similarly they are delaying a deal on opening Rafah by insisting that European monitors must be accompanied by Palestinian Authority (read Fatah) troops (something they know Hamas objects to vehemently); again, because they want Israel’s invasion to continue.
    It’s not that complicated; Egypt hates and fears Iran. Hamas is an Iranian proxy. Egypt wants Hamas severely damaged if not destroyed. The Israelis are slowly but surely accomplishing this. Egypt will make a deal when they’ve decided that Hamas has been sufficiently degraded.
    The reason that we don’t have a cease fire yet; is that Egypt and its Sunni Arab allies don’t want one; they want Hamas to take even more punishment.
    If Al Jazeera understands this, why doesn’t Steve Clemons?

    Reply

  224. Eric Gammill says:

    I wonder if the quotes from this speech will graces the pages of
    the Post tomorrow? A quick google search show vast reportage of
    Olmert’s statements from foreign sources, but only a few U.S.
    sources. ABC even goes so far as to quote hardline statements
    made by Olmert without quotes about how he shamed Sec. Rice
    and called Bush off the podium while making a speech.
    Somehow I bet that this kind of talk from our “ally” won’t get
    much coverage here. The same as the Isreali’s decision today to
    disallow Arab political parties to participate in the upcoming
    elections. Some “Democracy” we are supporting over there…

    Reply

  225. Don Bacon says:

    Excuse me, it should have been ‘Justin’ Raimondo in my comment above.

    Reply

  226. ... says:

    paul – i 2nd your comment on steves response towards condi rice..
    AndrewMehd. – if the word “homeland” doesn’t conjure up germany 1930’s, i don’t know what does… vee must protect zee homeland.. right.. it might look like a good cover to some, for all sorts of atrocities, which bush has clearly demonstrated.. Eliot Engel’s logic is similarly screwed… there are some posters here who have taken a similar line of reasoning as hard as that might be to believe~!

    Reply

  227. Paul Norheim says:

    BTW: Ehud Barak`s words that the goal of the attacks on Gaza
    was to change or reshape the realities also sounded like Rove in
    his heydays.
    The difference is that most Americans now have realized that
    Bush & Co were bad for the country, while brutes like Livni, Barak
    and Netanyahu still enjoy strong support among their population.

    Reply

  228. JohnH says:

    “This kind of arrogance from Israel’s leadership only erodes enthusiasm for Israel’s posture in the Middle East.” Good! Let them become ever more arrogant.
    The problem with Washington is that increased Israeli arrogance only heightens their enthusiasm for Israeli brutality. Stupid is as stupid does.
    As for Olmert’s statement, there is always hell to pay for telling the truth. Condi and Bush should have been outed long ago. Condi may have had good intentions and good “retention of and facility with the details of the Arab-Israel morass,” but she what did she accomplish? As for Bush, clueless as ever.

    Reply

  229. AndrewMehd. says:

    What’s fascinating about this week are the parallels between the Bush’s rationale for his own actions, which he himself detailed today at his press conference, and the Israeli rationale for its attacks on Gaza. Today at his press conference, Bush declared that, over the past eight years, he did what he did because of the need to “protect the homeland.” What an interesting new legal doctrine! Whenever an action is done in the name of security, it’s justifiable. In other words, Bush had the right to conduct illegal interrogations and wiretapping as long as he did it because he feared for the homeland. In the same way, the Israelis and their supporters in Washington have declared that no matter what Israel does in Gaza, it’s justifiable because of the Hamas rocket attacks. In fact, Eliot Engel, in an interview on Al Jazeera, went as far to say that its unfair to talk about whether or not Israel’s attacks are “disproportionate” because Israel did what it did under the fear of Hamas attacks.

    Reply

  230. Paul Norheim says:

    Steve, it would probably have been “smarter” to join the choir
    attacking her as she departs her office – kudos to you for
    defending her in these circumstances (and I say this regardless
    of my opinion of her performance).
    Olmert? He sounds like Rove, Cheney or Rumsfeld six or seven
    years ago. Did he have a senior moment, believing that he
    represented the one and only superpower on the planet? Or
    does Mossad have so much info on Bush`s past that they can
    treat him like a hostage? Unbelievable.
    In any case, after 9/11 it`s been hard to distinguish between
    the attitude of the Israelis and the Bush administration: they
    share that mixture of fear, paranoia, arrogance, of ruthlessness,
    of political and strategic miscalculations to such a degree that
    they seem to have become one country.

    Reply

  231. Don Bacon says:

    Jason Raimondo over at antiwar.com has been saying for years that that the US is a client state of Israel, rather than the other way ’round, a concept that I have disagreed with. But this episode makes his case, doesn’t it.

    Reply

  232. ... says:

    glad to know who the boss is!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! in spite of what is said – look at the results..
    olmert wasn’t diplomatic, lol… how very crude of him to say it like it is, lol… instead of saying “jump” and rice or bush saying ” how high?” it came off a bit less stellar…

    Reply

  233. Dan Kervick says:

    There is something almost comic about Olmert’s plebian and uncouth braggadocio in this account. For those who didn’t read the whole story, Olmert goes on about how he got his way.
    “I said ‘get me President Bush on the phone’. They said he was in the middle of giving a speech in Philadelphia. I said I didn’t care. ‘I need to talk to him now’. He got off the podium and spoke to me.”
    “I told him the United States could not vote in favour. It cannot vote in favour of such a resolution. He immediately called the secretary of state and told her not to vote in favour.”
    On the US side, Bush is the one who comes out poorly here, not Rice. The President of the United States stops a speech and leaves the stage because the Prime Minister of Israel demands it? What have this country and its highest office come to?
    One thing that is remarkable about this unfolding story is that when the US abstained on the resolution, rather than voting against it, that was portrayed by some on the left as a great victory. But then it turned out that the other members of the security council had worked very hard with Rice to negotiate an acceptable resolution, and fully expected her to vote for it, and were then shocked by the US abstention.
    I’d love to have a tape of that Bush-Rice conversation.

    Reply

  234. John says:

    It would seem that Mr Ol-Murderer has lost it. Surely it’s time for the US to cut the umbilical cord?

    Reply

  235. WigWag says:

    Or maybe the problem was that Secretary Rice authored a resolution that her own boss didn’t approve of. Maybe she should have checked with President Bush before pushing for the amendment which was ultimately rejected by both Hamas and Israel.
    Maybe this is just one more case of the incompetence of Secretary Rice.

    Reply

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