More on Schumer’s Kerfuffle with the White House on US-Israel Relations

-

schumer netanyahu.jpgThe other day I wrote a piece about Senator Schumer‘s bashing of Rahm Emanuel, Jim Jones and President Obama for their US-Israel policy that questioned whether the Senator realized just how, well, over the line he had gone.
The Financial Times in a piece by Edward Luce and Daniel Dombey captured well the tension between the Senator and the White House on this.
They write:

Robert Gibbs, Barack Obama’s spokesman, said on Friday: “I don’t think it’s a stretch to say we don’t agree with what Senator Schumer said.”

Schumer, in my view, also went over “the line” a few years ago when he pushed the mantra during a tense battle over whether the US Senate would allow the face of institutionalized Jesse Helms-inspired pugnacious nationalism, John Bolton, to become a confirmed Ambassador of the United States to the United Nations.
I want to make clear that I know that Senator Schumer is a loyal American. The dual loyalty button is a bad one to push — and I recognize that I came close to that and regret it as I think Schumer does outstanding work in just about every other policy arena but Middle East-related foreign policy. That said, I think that his flamboyance about a single issue blind spot he has deserves some political marketplace reaction. His judgment about what he is willing to deploy his political power to achieve is in question when he engages in such an uninformed, intemperate attack on the President’s policies in this complicated issue.
I don’t agree with all of AIPAC’s stands, but I listen carefully and think about the framing AIPAC offers on occasion to see whether the powerful policy group is pushing a zero sum game approach in the Middle East or one that will eventually concede to a more stable, inclusive, achieved equilibrium in the region resulting in a Palestinian state.
I am one who thinks that neither the Israelis or Palestinians deserve much more time to get on to a credible two track solution. They have both been unbelievably irresponsible with their own security interests and with their presumptions about unconditional support of the US whether or not progress is achieved. I strongly support General Jim Jones’ statement recently to the Washington Institute for Near East Policy at its 25th Anniversary Gala that the status quo is unacceptable and that achieving a two state solution to the Israel-Palestine standoff is a high level national security priority of the United States.
US Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice made similar important comments about achieving a viable Palestinian State while not allowing an erosion in Israel’s security during her remarks before the 25th Anniversary of the Arab American Institute on the same night as the WINEP gala.
I also agree with much of what Jones said assuring Israelis that their security is also of great import to the U.S. — and that these two goals are not irreconcilable.
AIPAC itself sent out this past week a roster of statements from Obama administration officials, that showed that much had been done to move the hard edged differences between the administration out of the public and into private channels.


I think it’s a good compilation that Senator Schumer would be wise to look over:

AIPAC MEMO — April 23, 2010
Administration Reaffirms Value of U.S.-Israel Alliance

ObamaSpeech292x200.jpgPresident Obama, top members of his administration and senior military leaders have highlighted the importance of the U.S.-Israel relationship and reaffirmed that a strong and secure Israel advances U.S. national security interests. They have renewed their firm commitment to Israel’s security and clearly explained that the United States cannot and does not seek to impose a peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians.
The United States has reaffirmed that the U.S.-Israel relationship is unbreakable and rooted in shared values.

“As for our relations with Israel, let me be very clear: we have a special relationship with Israel and that will not change. Our countries are bound together by shared values, deep and interwoven connections, and mutual interests.” –President Barack Obama, Letter to Alan Solow (Chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations), April 20, 2010

“We have an exceptionally strong relationship with Israel.” –Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Michael Mullen, Town Hall Meeting at the University of West Virginia, April 20, 2010

“We will never forget that since the first minutes of Israeli independence, the United States has had a special relationship with Israel. And that will not change. Why? Because this is not a commitment of Democrats or Republicans; it is a national commitment based on shared values, deep and interwoven connections, and mutual interests.” –National Security Advisor General James Jones, Remarks to the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, April 21, 2010

“Our bond with Israel is unshakable and unbreakable both as it relates to security, as it relates to the common set of value[s], and also as a common strategic vision, because the threats to Israel are similar to some of the threats the United States faced.” –White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, The Charlie Rose Show, April 19, 2010

The administration has reaffirmed that America and Israel have a strong strategic relationship that advances U.S. national security interests.

“Many of the same forces that threaten Israel also threaten the United States and our efforts to secure peace and stability in the Middle East. Our alliance with Israel serves our national security interests.” –Obama, Letter to Alan Solow (Chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations), April 20, 2010

“I can also say from long experience that our security relationship with Israel is important for America. Our military benefits from Israeli innovations in technology, from shared intelligence, from exercises that help our readiness and joint training that enhances our capabilities and from lessons learned in Israel’s own battles against terrorism and asymmetric threats.” –Jones, Remarks to the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, April 21, 2010

“We have long recognized that a strong, secure, and successful Israel is our common goal, but it is also vital to America’s strategic interests.” –Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Remarks at the Dedication of the S. Daniel Abraham Center for Middle East Peace, April 15, 2010

“Israel…has been, is and will be an important strategic ally of the United States.” –Commander of U.S. Central Command Gen. David Petraeus, Remarks to the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, April 13, 2010

“The Israelis, of course, remain a vital ally and a cornerstone of our regional security commitments.” –Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Michael Mullen, Chairman’s Corner Blog, February 23, 2010

“As we strive toward a comprehensive peace in the region between Israel and its neighbors, the closeness of our defense relationship and cooperation with Israel will continue.” —Department of Defense Quadrennial Defense Review Report, February 2010

The United States is strongly committed to maintaining Israel’s security.

“As we continue to strive for lasting peace agreements between Israel, the Palestinians, and Israel’s neighbors, all sides should understand that our commitment to Israel’s security is unshakeable and that no wedge will be driven between us. We will have our differences, but when we do, we will work to resolve them as close allies.” –Obama, Letter to Alan Solow (Chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations), April 20, 2010

“The United States will never waiver in defense of Israel’s security. That is why we provide billions of dollars annually in security assistance to Israel, why we have reinvigorated our consultations to ensure Israel’s Qualitative Military Edge, and why we undertake joint military exercises, such as the Juniper Cobra ballistic missile defense exercise that involved more than 1,000 United States servicemen and women. We view these efforts as essential elements of our regional security approach, because many of the same forces that threaten Israel also threaten the United States.” –Jones, Remarks to the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, April 21, 2010

“I know how rock solid and unwavering [President Obama’s] commitment is to Israel’s security and Israel’s future.” –Clinton, Remarks at the Dedication of the S. Daniel Abraham Center for Middle East Peace, April 15, 2010

The Obama administration has made clear that solutions cannot be imposed on Israel and the Palestinians from the outside.

“I am deeply committed to fulfilling the important role the United States must play for peace to be realized, but I also recognize that in order for any agreement to endure, peace cannot be imposed from the outside; it must be negotiated directly by the leaders who are required to make the hard choices and compromises that take on history.” –Obama, Letter to Alan Solow (Chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations), April 20, 2010

“In our pursuit of a two-state solution, we recognize that peace must be made by the parties and cannot be imposed from the outside.” –Jones, Remarks to the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, April 21, 2010

Again, the framing is AIPAC’s, but the content and tone are temperate and informed. This is the kind of informed approach that Senator Schumer might consider in conveying his own differences with the administration.
There are legitimate differences in the debate about how to approach a Rubik’s Cube like challenge in Israel-Palestine and broader Middle East policy. I try to consider alternative approaches that create a strategic leap forward for US policy and which will deliver on a viable Palestinian state with a unified, competent government and a secure and prosperous Israel that can begin engaging normally with its Arab neighbors in the region.
That is the goal.
— Steve Clemons

Comments

240 comments on “More on Schumer’s Kerfuffle with the White House on US-Israel Relations

  1. marcus says:

    “incitement to hate”-coupled with your threats of violence and sympathy-contact with fanatic Ishmaelites-fanatic “big nazis” will be enough to get you on the no-fly list.
    (no international interstate for you)

    Reply

  2. Carroll says:

    Posted by marcus, May 05 2010, 12:40PM – Link
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    The Israelis are ‘midget’ nazis.
    ‘Big’ nazis fight real soliders, not women and children.
    Israeli citizens are exactly like and as guilty as German citizens during WWII.
    Zionist in our congress like Schumer and Ackerman are traitors to this country.
    Zionism is a cult.
    Israel is a failed state because Zionist aren’t capable of governing themselves or anyone else.
    They are the world’s eternal welfare babies, incapable of making it on their own.
    They are also the worlds’s most professional, longest running whiners.
    Zionist are bad for America and all living things.
    Isn’t free speech grand?
    I would love to see the zionistas try to censor criticism of Jewish zionist, Israel or anything else in this country..really love for you to try…cause it would put you all back on the international interstate looking for a new nest to foul faster than you could say anti semite.

    Reply

  3. Paul Norheim says:

    What distinguishes the comments of “marcus” from the rest of
    the crowd here, is that his repulsive “political position” essentially
    functions as an alibi for his main activity: writing dirty personal
    remarks against fellow commenters – especially against Carroll.
    I have never seen a less constructive commenter here since I
    started reading TWN three years ago.

    Reply

  4. Paul Norheim says:

    Well, just to make one thing clear: there IS a huge gap between
    the sometimes nasty POA and the always creepy and obnoxious
    marcus.

    Reply

  5. marcus says:

    the nazi memorabilia collector upstairs and the sexual degenerate in the basement-throw in some islamic terrorists…..
    now if thats the opponents Israel and her supporters have to deal with…well,we cant lose.

    Reply

  6. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “As to whether Israeli forces committed war crimes or not it

    Reply

  7. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “As to whether Israeli forces committed war crimes or not it

    Reply

  8. JohnH says:

    Nadine spews crap again: “Arabs cannot commit war crimes.” Of course they can. But nobody spends their waking hours here trying to justify Egyptian crimes. But people like Nadine, kotz and marcus do spend hours justifying Israeli ethnic cleansing, theft of land and resources, crimes against humanity, etc.
    I’d love to see an Egyptian propagandist show up here–he’d receive the same treatment as hasbaristas. But I think Egyptian propagandists know better than to try.
    Nadine doesn’t.

    Reply

  9. kotzabasis says:

    Norheim
    In your psychological agitation and murky mind, whenever you are reading anything that I write, you missed in this case the semi-column next to the word

    Reply

  10. nadine says:

    Paul, actually judging if any military action constitutes a war crime requires objectively (there’s that verboten word again) observing what the military forces were, what their military objectives were, what tactics they were using, and what the commanders on the ground could have reasonably known or assumed. Then you have to decide what the “proper” minimum use of military force was in that situation, and decide whether the actual force used exceeded the proper amount by enough to constitute a war crime. In short, context matters.
    Of course POA uses a simpler method: he just calls everything Israel does a war crime, without bothering with such details.
    I notice he still hasn’t deigned to notice the Egyptians killing 4 Gazan smugglers the other day (the Egyptians say they didn’t use poison gas; they just blew up the end of the tunnel, which must have caused people inside to suffocate.) Can anyone doubt that this too would have been a “war crime” if Israel had done it? But for POA, Arabs cannot commit war crimes. So I’m not going to buy his extremely biased take on the situation.

    Reply

  11. Carroll says:

    Posted by kotzabasis, May 02 2010, 10:34PM – Link
    The Legend of POA
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Utter bullshit,as usual.
    POA is condemning war crimes. YOU are supporting, calling for and justifying them.
    Actually, worms, maggots,cockroaches and etc. is probably too mild a description for blood thirsty
    zionist like you, wig, marcus and nadine.
    Consider yourself fortunate that you are hiding behind the net and all you get is verbal harassment.
    Step out into the real world with your vile, racist, nazi mentality and spiel and you might someday be met with bulldozers, tear canisters and bullets.
    POA is actually the most civilized among us. He rails against the injustice and the needless dying.
    Those who want to ‘discuss the atrocities”
    in oh, so correct ‘form and language’, as if what Israel is doing as I type this is just another policy matter and not one of human lives being destroyed at this very moment in Palestine…are the truly uncivilized and irredeemable narcissist poseurs for whom I/P is just another topic for them to opine on.
    I/P is not a board game for the bored. The Israeli occupation is KILLING people in Palestine. The Israeli occupation of our US government is KILLING our country’s reputation.
    Get it?
    Therefore they are no language rules except for the really profane and sick sexual and personal attacks….which wig, marcus and sweetness have all indulged in.
    POA has not done that.

    Reply

  12. Carroll says:

    Posted by kotzabasis, May 02 2010, 10:34PM – Link
    The Legend of POA
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Utter bullshit,as usual.
    POA is condemning war crimes. YOU are supporting, calling for and justifying them.
    Actually, worms, maggots,cockroaches and etc. is probably too mild a description for blood thirsty
    zionist like you, wig, marcus and nadine.
    Consider yourself fortunate that you are hiding behind the net and all you get is verbal harassment.
    Step out into the real world with your vile, racist, nazi mentality and spiel and you might someday be met with bulldozers, tear canisters and bullets.
    POA is actually the most civilized among us. He rails against the injustice and the needless dying.
    Those who want to ‘discuss the atrocities”
    in oh, so correct ‘form and language’, as if what Israel is doing as I type this is just another policy matter and not one of human lives being destroyed at this very moment in Palestine…are the truly uncivilized and irredeemable narcissist poseurs for whom I/P is just another topic for them to opine on.
    I/P is not a board game for the bored. The Israeli occupation is KILLING people in Palestine. The Israeli occupation of our US government is KILLING our country’s reputation.
    Get it?
    Therefore they are no language rules except for the really profane and sick sexual and personal attacks….which wig, marcus and sweetness have all indulged in.
    POA has not done that.

    Reply

  13. Paul Norheim says:

    “You do not see a huge gap between being using terms like
    “jackass”, “sack of shit”, “wretch”, versus saying things like Carroll
    has “anal sex with Arab men”?”
    I certainly do, POA. However, since you insist on dancing on thin
    ice, I think you’ve compared Questions and others here with
    insects, maggots, worms, and harassed certain commenters with
    an intensity and regularity that, as I see it, makes the gap a bit
    narrower.
    I wanted to focus on the general, ideological gap and Kotz’ s
    absurd “war crime” fantasies. As for ad hominem attacks, I’m not
    so sure I would make such a fuzz about the nuances if I were
    you.

    Reply

  14. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “That’s the difference, Kotzabasis”
    There are other differences, Paul. You do not see a huge gap between being using terms like “jackass”, “sack of shit”, “wretch”, versus saying things like Carroll has “anal sex with Arab men”? Or proudly insinuating that you have hacked into someone’s computer, and found something on their browser that would lead you to believe that maybe you “sucked Arafat’s dick”?
    No Paul, there is NO parrallel here. NONE. Not only is there a gigantic gap in ideology, but in language the intent and the usage are miles apart. Have you evcer seen me call anyone something as vulgarly sexist as “cunt”? Well, we have seen Sweetness do that. (A blog zionist). Have you ever seen me attempt to win an argument or insult a blog opponent by implications about their body parts, such as Wig-wag’s, (a blog zionist), pathetic posts about penis size??? Then there is Marcus, (a blog zionist), who is obviuously so fuckin’ gutless and lacking in character that he is willing to proudly claim he can hack your computer, and who insults by vulgar sexual references, such as “having anal sex with Arab men”, or “sucking Arafat’s dick”. And as you well know, Marcus is not the first wackjob zionist troll to slither through here defecating on every thread he touches.
    I don’t expect someone like this demented outback jackass Kotz to discern a difference, because his defense of the indefensible has already provided ample evidense through which to judge his character. But certainly I expect a more discerning analysis from those such as yourself.

    Reply

  15. Paul Norheim says:

    Kotzabasis said to POA:
    “If you had a modicum of proclivity for introspection you would
    have seen in the ranting ATROCIOUS language you use against
    Nadine, WigWag and others, such as Birbaum and Marcus, its
    parallel…”
    It’s parallel?
    So you admit that the language of Marcus and a couple of
    others in that camp is parallel to POA’s language? I somehow
    agree.
    So what’s the difference?
    Sure, POA is on thin ice here, attacking others for vulgar
    language…. And he is too often bullying his opponents. But why
    don’t you express any fear that Marcus and others who disagree
    with POA – some of whom use a similar language – also are
    capable of war crimes, since the vulgar language of POA is an
    indication of this capability?
    You don’t think Marcus is capable of war crimes, while POA is?
    Personally, Kotz, I have no idea who is actually capable of
    committing war crimes. You never know before it happens…
    However, if you take a closer look at this matter, you’ll see that
    Marcus already DEFENDS war crimes. I could provide a dozen of
    quotes, if you’re interested, from Marcus’ posts here, defending
    ethnic cleansing and so forth. So does WigWag (I can document
    that too – but I know that you are familiar with his recent
    “Dresden approach” to Gaza…), as well as Nadine (see the
    Goldstone report).
    And so do you, Kotzabasis. You defend war crimes on a regular
    basis at the Washington Note.
    Sure, POA is often nasty. But fantasies aside, the documented
    fact is this: POA has NEVER defended war crimes or other
    crimes. On an almost daily basis he attacks those responsible
    for war crimes, and regularly also those defending them.
    While WigWag, Nadine, yourself, and Marcus – regardless of the
    language you use – frequently defend those very same war
    crimes and other abuses he focuses on.
    That’s the difference, Kotzabasis. It’s certainly amusing to read
    your phantasies about how POA may in this or that situation
    have committed atrocities. But your group have been defending
    similar atrocities – documented atrocities – nonstop at this
    blog.
    I am less interested in the atrocities you’re capable of doing in
    hypothetical situations, than in the actual atrocities that you
    explicitly defend.
    This pisses me more off than POA’s language.

    Reply

  16. JohnH says:

    Nadine, you might consider reading articles before you comment and draw false conclusions! Unconfirmed media reports reported that Netanyahu said he made an offer. A diplomatic source said he didn’t!
    So what’s the offer? Hel-looo?!?
    As far as I can tell, Likud maintains its unblemished record of intransigence while appearing to be reasonable by playing media games, something you must know all about.
    It still appears that there is no Israeli partner for peace.

    Reply

  17. kotzabasis says:

    The Legend of POA
    If you had a modicum of proclivity for introspection you would have seen in the ranting ATROCIOUS language you use against Nadine, WigWag and others, such as Birbaum and Marcus, its parallel: If you ever were involved in war you would have committed the greatest ATROCITIES, like your narrative, imaginable against unarmed civilians far outstripping in scale and barbarity even the imaginary atrocities of your bete noir, the Israelis. You would have been hanged as the greatest of American war criminals.
    And in the ‘seriality’ of your posts on the same subject, you reveal both the inferiority of your intellectual status and the guilty conscience of one who cannot seriously contend with one’s opponents. You are always in the perennial state of either redacting or inflating your original statements since you deeply feel you missed your points.

    Reply

  18. nadine says:

    “Interesting that the most repulsively vulgar and obnoxious of the people that post here are staunchly zionist, isn’t it? ”
    LOL, that’s hysterical. When you look up “lack of self-awareness” in the dictionary, POS, your own picture will be staring out at you. You are the walking paradigm for argument by vulgar insults instead of facts or logic.

    Reply

  19. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “I feel like I`m at the bottom of a dirty drainpipe.”
    You ARE the bottom of a dirty drainpipe.
    Interesting that the most repulsively vulgar and obnoxious of the people that post here are staunchly zionist, isn’t it? Wig-wag’s penis posts, your references to fellatio and sodomy. And as you know, you aren’t the first filthy minded gutter dwelling zionist to post this garbage here.
    You really do the Jews and the Israelis proud, jackass. I’m sure they really appreciate your”efforts” on their behalf.

    Reply

  20. nadine says:

    JohnH, I’m sorry you think that Abu Mazen (Mahmoud Abbas) is a hallucinating Schizophrenic. You must think so, for how else could Abu Mazen keep turning down offers for a Palestinian state (cf http://www.jpost.com/Israel/Article.aspx?id=173838) that you insist were never offered? Abu Mazen should check himself into a mental hospital at once.

    Reply

  21. nadine says:

    Two quotes. First:
    “American Jews who care deeply about Israel can be divided into three broad categories. The first two are what I call

    Reply

  22. JohnH says:

    “I feel like I`m at the bottom of a dirty drainpipe.”
    I assume you haven’t taken up residence there, and that it’s only the way you look at the world…

    Reply

  23. marcus says:

    `BREAKING NEWS `
    It has just been reported in the Economist that certain traffic lights leading out of jerusalemm are racist,apartheid !!
    Allegedly the lights from arab neighborhoods take longer to turn green than the ones from jewish hoods (this is BS,the timing of the lights has to do with traffic volume and road capacity)
    I forget did the NAZIS do something similar
    This matter should be brought before the UN security Council.
    I and( I am not alone on this blog ) am OUTRAGED

    Reply

  24. JohnH says:

    Dig ’em up birnbaum–you’re full of unfounded allegations but short on substance.
    Show me some clear evidence that Likud–contrary to its record of total intransigence–envisions ever trading anything for peace. The Palestinian side has indicated many times–including Fatah’s recognition of Israel–that it is willing to trade.
    Come on, birnbaum, put up or shut up. Show me! Yes we can go on forever, you offering up unsubstantiated allegations while I offer well know, concrete examples and direct quotes of Israeli leaders.
    You lost this argument. Deal with it.

    Reply

  25. Carroll says:

    http://coteret.com/2010/04/28/administering-corporal-punishment-to-a-young-popular-terrorist/
    Pictures don’t lie.
    Maybe I should buy some pepper spray and if I run into a swarthy fire breathing zionista I can pepper spray his eyes and claim he was acting suspicous and looked like a terrorist to me.
    Nazis.

    Reply

  26. Carroll says:

    Prediction.
    There will be no two state solution.
    In 10 years Israel will be a full blown apartheid state.
    Anti semitism will once again be rampant in the world due to the zionist and the association of Jews with the Jewish State of apartheid Israel.
    How the world will deal with these two phenomenons is anyone’s guess.

    Reply

  27. larry birnbaum says:

    For every quote from Shamir, we can dig up a corresponding and far worse quote from Arafat. No insight is yielded by this sort of “facts and analysis.
    Re Mearsheimer: he has in his hands a list. I think we can discern where he’s going. And it will show where he started.

    Reply

  28. JohnH says:

    Mearsheimer said, “Israel and its supporters have been able to do a good job of keeping the mainstream media in the United States from telling the truth about what Israel is doing to the Palestinians in the Occupied Territories. But the Internet is a game changer. It not only makes it easy for the opponents of apartheid to get the real story out to the world, but it also allows Americans to learn the story that the New York Times and the Washington Post have been hiding from them.”
    Irony of ironies! The New York Times hid Hitler’s ethnic cleansing and extermination of Jews from the American public for many years, because “it could be bad for business” with Germany. So what was the lesson Zionists learned from it? Get the New York Times to be an objective and unbiased newspaper? No! Of course not!
    Because of the characteristics of the New York market and the paper’s ownership, Zionists knew that they were in a perfect position to use The New York Times to cover up the ethnic cleansing and war crimes of the Zionist project. Ah, yes, “a light unto humanity.” [Not!]
    According to that logic, it must now be time to bring down the internet to assure the success of the Zionist project.

    Reply

  29. [] says:

    Then, in honor of Professor Mearsheimer’s honesty, fairness and bravery, and with the exception of Jdell, and other Jews who may so inclined, Afrikaners: Go fuck yourselves!
    PissedOffAustralian

    Reply

  30. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “Any here on this blog?”
    One. “Jdell”.
    The obvious others are simply bigots and liars, defending the indefensible.

    Reply

  31. Carroll says:

    Posted by [], May 01 2010, 5:48AM – Link
    Rather I think the Israel is a cargo-cult
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Zionism is a cult.
    Read Jacqueline Rose’s “The Question of Zion”.
    The jews drawn to zionism are the same as any maladjusted and disturbed individuals drawn to any cult.
    Picture zionist Israel with it’s self built walled in ghetto as similar to the Jim Jones outpost separated from the ‘others’ and the world by their self induced specialness and persecution delusions and there you have it.
    As with any cult, the group reinforces their delusions and serves to ‘justify’ their actions.

    Reply

  32. Carroll says:

    Posted by [], May 01 2010, 5:48AM – Link
    Rather I think the Israel is a cargo-cult
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Zionism is a cult.
    Read Jacqueline Rose’s “The Question of Zion”.
    The jews drawn to zionism are the same as any maladjusted and disturbed individuals drawn to any cult.
    Picture zionist Israel with it’s self built walled in ghetto as similar to the Jim Jones outpost separated from the ‘others’ and the world by their self induced specialness and persecution delusions and there you have it.
    As with any cult, the group reinforces their delusions and serves to ‘justify’ any of their actions.

    Reply

  33. [] says:

    Edited Transcript of Remarks by Professor John J. Mearsheimer can be found here
    http://www.thejerusalemfund.org/ht/display/ContentDetails/i/10418
    I note:
    “To give you a better sense of what I mean when I use the term righteous Jews, let me give you some names of people and organizations that I would put in this category. The list would include Noam Chomsky, Roger Cohen, Richard Falk, Norman Finkelstein, Tony Judt, Tony Karon, Naomi Klein, MJ Rosenberg, Sara Roy, and Philip Weiss of Mondoweiss fame, just to name a few. I would also include many of the individuals associated with J Street and everyone associated with Jewish Voice for Peace, as well as distinguished international figures such as Judge Richard Goldstone. Furthermore, I would apply the label to the many American Jews who work for different human rights organizations, such as Kenneth Roth of Human Rights Watch.”
    Any here on this blog?

    Reply

  34. [] says:

    Rather I think the Israel is a cargo-cult that believes ‘stuff’ drops from the sky god if they just do certain things. Like for the Pacific Island varieties, the USA is just such a sky god. One day the cargo will run out, long before the rain-dancing stops imo.
    This “excerpt from the The Hisham Sharabi Memorial Lecture delivered by Professor John Mearsheimer at the Palestine Center in Washington D.C. on April 29, 2010” is an interesting read.
    http://english.aljazeera.net/focus/2010/04/2010430183148967987.html
    The Future of Palestine: Righteous Jews vs. the New Afrikaners
    …There is going to be a Greater Israel between the Jordan and the Mediterranean. In fact, I would argue that it already exists. But who will live there and what kind of political system will it have? . . . .
    For starters, the discrimination and repression that is the essence of apartheid will be increasingly visible to people all around the world. Israel and its supporters have been able to do a good job of keeping the mainstream media in the United States from telling the truth about what Israel is doing to the Palestinians in the Occupied Territories. But the Internet is a game changer. It not only makes it easy for the opponents of apartheid to get the real story out to the world, but it also allows Americans to learn the story that the New York Times and the Washington Post have been hiding from them. Over time, this situation may even force these two media institutions to cover the story more accurately themselves. . . .
    The main problem that Israel

    Reply

  35. JohnH says:

    Thought for the evening–Israel is a Jewish North Korea. Nuclear armed, passionately ethnocentric, constantly provocative. The difference being that the United States supports one rogue but not the other.

    Reply

  36. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Ah, Marcus.
    It does you proud when you show yourself to us in such an open and unabashed manner. Wig-wag and Nadine must consider themselves very lucky to have you in their corner. Three peas in a pod, working hard to nurture anti-semitism.

    Reply

  37. JohnH says:

    birnbaum–I haven’t seen you be able to refute many of the facts I have presented. Like the quotes from Yitzhak Shamir showing Likud’s preference to maintain appearances while conceding nothing. Or the fact Likud has never initiated a major peace negotiation. Or the fact that the Taba and Oslo peace processes both ended with Likud. Or that Likud has offered no prospects for any concessions, except for the extremely nebulous notion of a “Palestinian state.”
    And I haven’t seen you provide any facts to support your allegations about the Palestinians being worse yet.
    I agree the the Palestinians should negotiate with Likud, but given Likud’s dismal track record (why you deny), it is reasonable for them to receive concrete assurances that Likud is willing to make concessions in return for Palestinian concessions. Otherwise, what’s the point?
    But this is all probably a moot discussion anyway. Though many think the time for a two state solution is long past, Obama is trying to throw Israel a lifeline and still get to a two state solution along the narrow path still open. But Bibi will most likely be too pig headed to recognize a lifeline when he sees one.
    Then Likud will most likely lead Israel into its dead end, which will precipitate a major crisis if not a catastrophe. When that happens, serious analysts are starting to envision the need to wind up the Zionist project gracefully to prevent Israel from taking the world down with it.
    For 60 years, Israel’s leadership has had plenty of opportunities to deal fairly with Palestinians under its control. But Israeli leadership, and particularly the “religious” nationalists, have constantly refused to acknowledge that “chosen people” have an obligation to recognize the “unchosen” as full human beings.
    And frankly, when the shi*t hits the fan, I’ll miss this bunch of war criminals as much as I miss the National Party of South Africa. Likud learned all the wrong lessons from WWII–how to be cruel and oppressive, not respectful and inclusive other ethnic groups.

    Reply

  38. larry birnbaum says:

    Leaving aside your “facts and analysis”, let’s say I agree with your conclusion. And not just me, but the Palestinians themselves: They absolutely SHOULD NOT negotiate with Israel.
    Hurray. The world is now instantly a better place. No negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.
    Glad we could solve that one. Boy, those “facts and analyses” really help to move the ball forward. Next up, global warming.

    Reply

  39. JohnH says:

    birnbaum–it’s easy to make allegations. Why don’t you back them up with facts and analysis, like I do?
    1) The Palestinian side has a history of making major concessions (Oslo, Taba). Likud has none.
    2) Arafat successfully negotiated Oslo. Likud staunchly opposed all negotiations, including Oslo and Taba.
    3) The Arab side is proposing to make major concessions. Likud refuses to acknowledge the Arab peace initiative or offer any concessions of its own.
    birnbaum–what’s your point in denying Likud’s intransigence? And why do you think the Palestinian side should sit down, without any indication Likud intends to deal seriously, something unprecedented for them?

    Reply

  40. larry birnbaum says:

    Parameterization bug in the program’s format statements, now fixed:
    “In sum,
    1. Look up the “constitutions” of the PLO and/or Hamas.
    2. Arafat and Meshaal have opposed previous peace processes and ended them when given the chance. Abu Mazen currently refuses to negotiate.
    3. H has been unable to provide a shred of evidence that Abu Mazen / Meshaal or the PA / PLO / Hamas is currently willing to concede anything to Israel, other than some nebulous notion of a state without secure and recognized borders.”

    Reply

  41. larry birnbaum says:

    Mutatis mutandis, ad infinitum:
    “In sum,
    1.
    2. have opposed previous peace processes and ended them when given the chance. currently refuses to negotiate.
    3. has been unable to provide a shred of evidence that or the is currently willing to concede anything to Israel, other than some nebulous notion of a state without secure and recognized borders.”
    I could write a program to do this. In fact, I did.

    Reply

  42. JohnH says:

    Bye-Bye birnbaum. You could have ended this long ago by conceding that Likud has no intention of making peace if it entails concessions.
    In sum,
    1) I provided proof that Likud’s stated historical strategy is to concede nothing but to appear reasonable.
    2) Bibi and Likud have opposed previous peace processes and ended them when given the chance.
    3) Birnbaum and Nadine have been unable to provide a shred of evidence that Bibi or Likud is currently willing to concede anything to the Palestinians, other than some nebulous notion of a state, somewhere.
    Yet for some strange reason, birnbaum thinks that Palestinians should gladly sit down with Likud without any indication that Likud has the least intention of conceding anything. Furthermore, the Palestinian side knows that it is almost certainly being set up for blame when negotiations prove fruitless.
    God, Larry, do you waste your life chasing phantoms, as you ask Palestinians to do? Do you get blamed for your failure to catch phantoms, too?

    Reply

  43. larry birnbaum says:

    Shall I dig up some equivalent (or worse) statement by Arafat, or Meshaal, or perhaps Abu Mazen himself?
    We can keep this up forever — “I DARE you to show me any evidence that the PLO/PA/Hamas has changed its stripes.” “Quite simply there is no Palestinian partner for peace.” Etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. ad nauseum. It’s unproductive.
    And it’s tedious. So I’ll let you get in some last-word blaming and name-calling since you enjoy it so much.
    Buh-bye.

    Reply

  44. JohnH says:

    birnbaum–so you deny that Shamir said that his position was to appear reasonable but never concede ANYTHING relating to the goal of a Greater Israel? Come on! Deny it!
    And will you deny that Bibi has always been a fervent opponent of any peace process. Remember, he took office 1996 on a strong platform of opposing Oslo and not doing anything further on the Palestinian track, essentially sabotaging the whole Oslo process.
    Sharon took office in 2001 and refused to follow up on the substantial progress realized at Taba.
    Now Bibi is back, picking up exactly where he left off–no negotiations that will concede anything.
    Likud has never been interested in negotiations. But they are interested, as Yitzhak Shamir clearly stated, in the appearance of being reasonable (peace processing) WHILE CONCEDING NOTHING.
    birnbaum–I DARE you to show me any evidence that Likud has changed its stripes.
    Quite simply there is no Israeli partner for peace.

    Reply

  45. larry birnbaum says:

    “H — enough BS! The PA/PLO/Hamas [take your pick] has never negotiated with Likud and never will. [They refuse even as this utterly uniformative back-and-forth proceeds.] And you have absolutely failed to provide any evidence that they will.”
    See what I mean?
    The way to find out if someone is going to negotiate in good faith is to try to negotiate in good faith. I will say one thing: It is very likely the case that a deal Netanyahu would be willing and able to offer is probably less than Olmert was willing and able to offer. Perhaps it would have been wise for the Palestinians to engage seriously with him; but they didn’t.

    Reply

  46. JohnH says:

    birnbaum–enough BS! Likud has never negotiated with Palestinians and never will. And you have absolutely failed to provide any evidence that they will.

    Reply

  47. larry birnbaum says:

    Mutatis mutandis:
    “Blah-blah-blah “humiliation”, Arab Peace Plan, blah blah blah. Bottom line: the Palestinians have walked away from a number of explicit proposals without making any counter-proposal; they’ve never seriously negotiated for peace and never will. They prefer war, the perfect expression of both Arab nationalism and Islamic fundamentalism, to peace that concedes secure and recognized borders. Like his protege [sic] Arafat, Abu Mazen knows (barely) “how to display the tactics of moderation, but without conceding anything on the goal — the integrity of Arab Palestine. What is this talk about “political settlements”? [Abu Mazen] will carry on … talks for ten years,” without ever conceding anything but pursuing the campaign of terror against the Israeli population.”
    See how easy it is to vent? You can take an emotional diatribe like this and substitute entities and events all day long. Do you imagine that this kind of statement is somehow supposed to be a model for a contribution to our understanding of this problem? You still haven’t made a single rational assertion of a set of joint steps — as opposed to emotional assertions that Israel is required to make unilateral concessions — that might reasonably be taken by both sides to move the ball forward.
    It’s literally meaningless.

    Reply

  48. JohnH says:

    Blah-blah-blah Palestinian “state”, temporary borders, blah-blah-blah. Bottom line: Likud has never negotiated for peace and never will. They prefer war, the perfect expression of Zionism, to peace that concedes an dunam of land. Like his protege Shamir, Bibi knows (barely) “how to display the tactics of moderation, but without conceding anything on the goal–the integrity of the Land of Israel. What is this talk about ‘political settlements’? [Bibi will] carry on autonomy talks for ten years,” without ever conceding anything but pursuing the campaign of terror against the Palestinian population.
    Face it, Nadine: Israel is the problem, because the Zionist leadership prefers land and war over peace with Palestinians.

    Reply

  49. larry birnbaum says:

    If the Palestinians want a state, they’ll negotiate.
    There’s this thing called the contrapositive that can also be applied in this instance.

    Reply

  50. nadine says:

    BTW, JohnH, the Palestinian state in temporary borders was specified in Phase II of the 2003 Quartet Roadmap. That’s what Bibi said he would agree to. Why don’t you go read it? The Palestinians refused it then and Abu Mazen refuses it now. If Abu Mazen wants to see what Bibi will offer, why won’t he negotiate? After all, nobody is asking HIM for a single precondition.

    Reply

  51. nadine says:

    Congratulations, JohnH. You’re a legend in your own mind.

    Reply

  52. JohnH says:

    Well, POA, I expected some push back against my reference to the Israeli campaign of terror against the Palestinian population. But your daily posts shove that campaign of terror into the faces of the nakba-denying hasbaristas, so there is no denying it.

    Reply

  53. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “Because you POS, they are part of an ongoing conflict with Hamas…..”
    Oh, hey, well that explains dumping raw sewage on Palestinan crops. Thanks for cluing us in, you slimey racist ghoul.
    “…. but you don’t care about context and you think Hamas are angels without responsibility for anything. All you care about is your hatred of the Joooos”
    Why don’t you ask the rest of this blog who they think the bigot is. Your accusations of “anti-semitism” don’t work here, worm. I don’t hate “Jews”, but I gotta admit, scum like you is pretty low on my favorites list.

    Reply

  54. JohnH says:

    Time to declare VICTORY, kick back and down a few brews. Despite repeated challenges on my part, the hasbaristas can show NOTHING that demonstrates Likud’s interest in peace.
    If Likud were interested in peace, they would have SOMETHING to offer, besides some extremely nebulous notion of a “Palestinian state.” When has Bibi even floated ideas about what peace might look like?
    If Likud were interested in peace, they would signal their interest by making a concrete peace gesture, or a proposal at least as well formulated as the Arab peace proposal.
    But Likud prefers to wage war, something “religious” nationalists consider the perfect expression of Zionism. Likud shows no intention of stopping their campaign of terror against the Palestinian population until either the Palestinians disappear or are disappeared. If I am wrong SHOW ME the Likud documents.
    Instead of real peace, Likud offers NOTHING beyond the rhetoric of peace, which is contradicted by belligerent actions and accompanied by stonewalling any peace initiative, something Likud Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir described as Likud tactics.
    In short, LIKUD HAS NOTHING TO OFFER when it comes to making peace. Likud can only envision offers continuing the unsustainable status quo.

    Reply

  55. larry birnbaum says:

    I haven’t a clue what Netanyahu will be willing or able to offer. Neither have you. If and when the PA agrees to negotiations, we’ll find out.

    Reply

  56. nadine says:

    Because you POS, they are part of an ongoing conflict with Hamas, but you don’t care about context and you think Hamas are angels without responsibility for anything. All you care about is your hatred of the Joooos.
    BTW, Egypt gassed a smuggling tunnel yesterday and killed four Gazan smugglers. Hamas seems pretty pissed about that. Does that rise to “atrocity” level, or is Egypt permanently exempt from atrocity charges?

    Reply

  57. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Hey Larry, you bigoted jackass. How come you racist scumbags never comment on the VERY REAL instances of Israeli attrocities???
    Go screw yourself.
    http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/LD29Ak01.html
    Excerpt….
    The leading academic specialist on Gaza, Harvard scholar Sara Roy, adds:
    Gaza is an example of a society that has been deliberately reduced to a state of abject destitution, its once productive population transformed into one of aid-dependent paupers … Gaza’s subjection began long before Israel’s recent war against it [December 2008]. The Israeli occupation – now largely forgotten or denied by the international community – has devastated Gaza’s economy and people, especially since 2006 … After Israel’s December [2008] assault, Gaza’s already compromised conditions have become virtually unlivable. Livelihoods, homes, and public infrastructure have been damaged or destroyed on a scale that even the Israel Defense Forces admitted was indefensible.

    Reply

  58. larry birnbaum says:

    The inimitable Pissed Off “American”. Whose favorite phrase is “sacks of shit.”
    Another moral genius.

    Reply

  59. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Settler Sewage Ruins Palestinian Crops, Drinking Water
    by Mel Frykberg, April 29, 2010
    BEIT UMMAR, West Bank

    Reply

  60. JohnH says:

    Nadine and birnbaum–you still refuse to answer the fundamental question. Is Likud willing to offer ANYTHING for peace? I still DARE you to show me the MINIMUM offer.
    As for the “promised” Palestinian state, I DARE you to show me any Likud document that specifically refers to offering area A. Bibi has referred to a “Palestinian state,” but NEVER said where it was to be located, even vaguely.
    The basic point is that if Israel is not willing to make even a MINIMUM offer in good faith, what’s the point of negotiating? The Arab side has laid out a starting point for negotiations, but the Israeli side has failed to do even that. That’s why the ball is in Israel’s court to make a peace gesture. Without it, what’s for the Palestinian side to negotiate?
    Fact is, Likud is not willing to negotiate anything but the Palestinians removal of themselves.

    Reply

  61. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Take a look at this photograph. It shows a 15 year old Palestinian boy, being held down as one of the nazi/racist piece of shit Israeli SS stormtrooper jackboots sprays pepper spray point blank into the youth’s eyes.
    http://palestinenote.com/cs/blogs/blogs/archive/2010/04/29/administering-corporal-punishment-to-a-young-popular-terrorist.aspx

    Reply

  62. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “BTW all these adolescent druggies playing “human rights” action heroes should be banned from entering the country,Israel should just let in the human sheilds (those I like,very entertaining), especially that idiot who tried to stop a bulldozer with her hands,her parents should be ashamed for raising such a fool. TALK ABOUT TOO STUPID TO LIVE !”
    You should be banned from the site for such crap, Marcus. But you won’t be.
    And you truly are a maggot, and work very diligently to prove it. If you, Nadine, and Birnbaum represent the Jews, color me completely and irrevocably anti-semitic. You epitomize the kind of asshole that instills hatred in whomever is unfortunate enough to have had you slither into their life.
    Hey Wig-wag, you ever heard the old adage about “the company you keep”?

    Reply

  63. nadine says:

    JohnH, now you are really being dense. Bibi has accepted a Palestinian state and he has not repudiated Oslo. That was the specific step he took in his speech of last June, a step no Likud Prime Minister had taken before. That means Area A, where 95% of the Palestinians on the West Bank live under PA rule, is already part of the future Palestinian state; the rest of the West Bank (and possible land swaps inside Israel) is up for negotiation. Bibi offered a state in 60% of the WB with temporary borders as a starter; the rest by negotiation; Abu Mazen refused.
    Of course Bibi isn’t going to START by laying out his maximum offer (though the previous Israeli offers of 95% + land swaps are hanging out there and would force Bibi to eventually offer as much). He wants to negotiate. Nobody negotiates by laying out his maximum offer on Day One.
    If that so-called Arab League peace plan was a starting point to negotiations, the Israelis would be very interested in it. The problem with it is that the Arab League presents it as a take-it-or-leave-it proposition, and doesn’t even commit themselves to giving recognition and normalization if Israel did take it! This isn’t negotiation. This is Lucy holding out the football and saying, “Come on, kick it, Charlie Brown. I won’t pull it away this time.”

    Reply

  64. larry birnbaum says:

    OK, so the situation is this: the Arabs have stated that they are willing to recognize Israel except for the slight matter of secure and recognized borders. And Netanyahu has stated that Israel is willing to recognize a Palestinian state except for the slight matter of secure and recognized borders.
    I’m tempted to say I DARE you to show me any document that shows what the Palestinians (or Saudis or whomever) are willing to give up permanently regarding the claim that Palestinian Arab refugees from 1948 and their descendents have the right to live in Israel. And please don’t cite the temporary hudna that Hamas is offering.)
    Instead, I’ll just offer my hope that serious negotiations can begin soon.
    Of course, since as far as I can tell you still don’t understand the meaning of the word “border”, I wonder what you think the word “negotation” means. Probably that Israel is supposed to give up something unilaterally. Perhaps that’s how you negotiate. If so I recommend you get a good lawyer to do that sort of thing for you.

    Reply

  65. JohnH says:

    birnbaum–to restate the obvious, the Arab peace plan is not the final peace treaty, but they have revealed some of the things they are prepared to offer.
    But where is the comparable document from Likud? There is none because Likud has no intention of giving up anything. How can you anyone negotiate with a party like Likud that simply does not want to give anything up?
    I DARE you to show me any document that shows what Likud is prepared to give up permanently for the sake of peace. (Please don’t cite this temporary, localized, conditional settlement freeze.) You can say that I’m blaming Likud, but until their intransigence ends, there is no hope for peace short of Palestinians agreeing to remove themselves from the Occupied Territories, which will not happen.

    Reply

  66. larry birnbaum says:

    So at the risk of restating the obvious, however tedious it might be, the “Arab Peace Plan” continues to claim the right for refugees from 1948 and their descendents to live in Israeli territory, including any territory within the 1949 Armistice line. Which is to say, they don’t recognize Israel’s sovereign right to determine who gets to cross the “border” and live inside Israel. Which is to say, it isn’t actually a border at all. This was the entire point of my somewhat pedantic exercise in semantics above: A “border” which doesn’t give you the right to control who gets to cross it and live in your territory isn’t in fact a border at all.
    Which is to say, the “Arab Peace Plan,” while a step forward, does not in fact offer a “secure and recognized boundary” between Israel and the Arabs. So the Israeli counter-offer is of a Palestinian state, no specified borders. Which means Jerusalem remains entirely in Israeli hands, as do the settlements, certainly those adjacent to the 1949 Armistice line, and maybe more.
    In other words, what remains to be resolved is to trade an actual, real border — which is to say, Arab recognition of Israeli sovereignty and the right to determine who crosses the border and lives in Israel; which is to say, an explicit renunciation of the claim that refugees from 1948 and their descendents have the right to live in Israel — for additional territory and, possibly, the division of Jerusalem in a number of ways.
    So, you know, let the negotiation begin. But don’t pretend the Arabs have offered peace, because until they offer “secure and recognized boundaries” — and they haven’t — they haven’t offered peace.
    I will pass on the question of whether the claim that they have is disingenuous, or merely dense.

    Reply

  67. JohnH says:

    Nadine–I repeat, I DARE you to show me any Likud document that envisions any rights for Gentiles– Palestinian, Arab, or Christian in the Occupied Territories.
    Of course, Gentile rights are threatened every day in Israel, by systematic discrimination and by Foreign Minister Lieberman’s proposal to get rid of Israeli Arabs.

    Reply

  68. JohnH says:

    Where does Netanyahu plan to put that “Palestinian State?” In Jordan? In Sinai? In Syria? In the Mediterranean? He doesn’t say!!! “We’re prepared to have– a Palestinian state next to a Jewish state.” That’s all he said.
    Also, Hamas political leader has offered to Khaled Meshaal clearly stated, “the Hamas movement will only establish a Palestinian state within the borders of 1967; that includes East Jerusalem and the West Bank.” Why won’t Bibi reciprocate?
    The Arab peace plan is fairly specific: “The acceptance of the establishment of a sovereign independent Palestinian state on the Palestinian territories occupied since June 4, 1967 in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, with East Jerusalem as its capital.” Why doesn’t Bibi say that?
    And the Arab peace plan specifically offers to “1)
    Consider the Arab-Israeli conflict ended, and enter into a peace agreement with Israel, and provide security for all the states of the region, and 2) Establish normal relations with Israel in the context of this comprehensive peace.” Show me the comparable Likud offer!!!
    And BTW, besides Btselem, Peace Now continues to document specific instances of Israeli confiscation of Palestinian land without compensation.
    http://peacenow[dot]org.il/site/en/peace.asp?pi=61&fld=495&docid=3497
    As for ethnic cleansing, here’s a wonderful discussion of how it works, little by little, day by day–http://www.antiwar[dot]com/hacohen/h123002.html

    Reply

  69. Carroll says:

    Add these names to the list of Schumers.
    Traitors and International Law criminals.
    Sickening.
    Clean up America’s government or BWTTGASO.
    2 liberal NY congressmen

    Reply

  70. Carroll says:

    Add these names to the list of Schumers.
    Traitors and International Law criminals.
    Sickening.
    Clean up America’s government or BWTTGASO.
    2 liberal NY congressmen

    Reply

  71. nadine says:

    JohnH, interesting report from Peace Now, and serious if true, but Peace Now does not have a great record with the facts. Give them a chance for a sensational headline, and facts go out the window:
    “”The media whirlwind surrounding this report has just begun,” Americans for Peace Now boasted Nov. 21, 2006 with the release of a document charging that Palestinians privately own 40 percent of the lands upon which settlements are built.
    The stunning case of Ma’aleh Adumim, 86.4 percent of which was reportedly private Palestinian land, was singled out in many international media outlets, the New York Times among them.
    When the report again made headlines just last week, Peace Now was not so ecstatic. “Military database released to Peace Now shows little
    land seized from Palestinians to build largest West Bank settlement,” was the headline in the International Herald Tribune March 14, prompting the organization to swing into damage-control mode. In the much publicized case of Ma’aleh Adumim, Peace Now was off by a factor of 15,900 percent; 0.5 percent – not 86.4 percent – was built on private Palestinian land.”
    http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3379237,00.html
    The left-wing groups and Palestinians figured out years ago that reporters will never, ever check the numbers you give them if it’s sensational attack against Israel.

    Reply

  72. larry birnbaum says:

    nadine, as far as I know he isn’t related.
    I appreciate what you’re trying to do; I agree with much (not all) that you have to say.
    I understand also marcus’s frustrations.
    But, while I have my own beliefs, obviously, I’m no longer that interested in arguing about who did what to whom and how horrible they are for doing it. It isn’t going to get us anywhere.

    Reply

  73. nadine says:

    “Larry, in the short term, Israel holds all the cards.” (JohnH)
    Israel wants acceptance and normal relations with the Arab world. Do they have it? No. So obviously, they don’t hold all the cards or they would have it. Israel would much rather the Taba negotiation had worked, and they had a peaceful open border with a peaceful Palestinian state.
    “Israel obviously seems not to attach urgency to a negotiated peace. As WW has opined in the past, she/they are very content with the status quo. She spoke the truth, and probably why the zionists are so upset with Obama’s miniscule efforts to raise the ante.”
    That’s true but not because they don’t want peace; they just understand that it is impossible right now. Abbas is so weak he’s going to ask the Arab League’s permission to even start proximity talks (a 20 year step backwards for the Palestinians), and Hamas won’t negotiate at all.
    When you push peace negotiations, you get lots of terror attacks and a high body count. So it’s doubly stupid to do that when there is no prospect of success. What Israel is objecting to is Obama’s pressure to make them give away serious concessions whose implications Obama doesn’t begin to understand, in return for less than nothing.
    At that, Israel is willing to negotiate but the Palestinians are not. So it is the Palestinian who attach no urgency at all to peace negotiations. You infantilize the Palestinians by treating them as non-actors.

    Reply

  74. nadine says:

    Larry, good points, but JohnH seems impervious to logic. For example, it never seems to occur to him why, if it was Israel’s intention to ethnically cleanse the West Bank (which he continually accuses them of doing), the Arab population of the West Bank has tripled in the last 40 years. Earth to JohnH: populations that are really being ethnically cleansed, whether by duress or outright force, see their numbers drop sharply, to zero or near zero. Like, for example, the Jews of Iraq or Morocco. Or the Christian Arabs of Bethlehem. If the numbers triple, they’re not being ethnically cleansed.
    Did you see
    Minority Report
    Human Rights Watch fights a civil war over Israel.
    Benjamin Birbaum
    http://www.tnr.com/article/minority-report-2
    in TNR? BTW, Larry, is the author a relative of yours? It’s a good review of how shoddy and biased against Israel HRW has become in recent years (neglecting their original purpose of investigating abuses in unfree countries), so much so that their own founder, Bob Bernstein, had to break with them and upbraid them in the NYT. I would ask all the posters on this thread to read the article, and consider how much of what they think they know about Israel comes from this source.
    JohH, Here is the link to the Likud Prime Minister Netanyahu’s speech last June where he accepted a Palestinian State:
    http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2009/06/15/eveningnews/main5090328.shtml
    That’s a Likud document that envisions rights for Palestinians.
    As for rights for Gentiles, are you kidding me? Are you really not aware that 25% of Israeli citizens are not Jewish, and still vote and have the full rights of citizens? That includes the Arab residents of East Jerusalem if they want it (they can choose whether or not to claim Israeli citizenship. But they get the Israeli ID card and services regardless.)
    JohnH, you really need to demonstrate the ability to take facts — not opinion, but plain uncontested facts — on board here.

    Reply

  75. JohnH says:

    birnbaum–I DARE you to show me any Likud document that envisions any rights for Gentiles– Palestinian, Arab, or Christian.
    To have a realistic path towards peace, the “religious” nationalist mindset must make provision for people besides the “chosen ones.” The Palestinian authority already recognized Israel, so Israel must make some gestures towards recognizing Palestinian rights. Else, what’ the point of negotiating?

    Reply

  76. larry birnbaum says:

    John, I’ve asked a bunch of times what you suggest a realistic path towards a peace agreement might look like. You won’t address the issue.
    I don’t have nadine’s stamina so we need to stop now.

    Reply

  77. JohnH says:

    birnbaum–do you seriously think that the “religious” nationalists running the show will agree to any permanent solution that falls short of their stated goals? Their objectives implicitly mean that most Palestinians living in Judea, Samaria, and Jerusalem will disappear or be disappeared? Given this mindset, what’s for Palestinians to negotiate, the time and transportation methods for their removal?
    Show me a shred of evidence that Likud will ever concede Palestinians anything short of their own removal.

    Reply

  78. larry birnbaum says:

    JohnH, I’m not rationalizing anything. I asked you to propose a realistic path towards “secure and recognized borders.” Propose something.

    Reply

  79. larry birnbaum says:

    I agree that Israel holds more cards at this time; I don’t agree it holds “all the cards.”
    So how about this: suppose I grant, for the sake of discussion, that at this stage Israel should do a bit more than the Arabs. Nevertheless, steps must still be reciprocal, even if the Arabs’ first step is smaller. Tell me what that step is. Anything.
    Because, it’s your position that Israel isn’t in a hurry to negotiate peace? My sincere position is that the Arabs aren’t in a hurry to negotiate peace. They’re refusing to negotiate right now for example.

    Reply

  80. JohnH says:

    In his rationalizations, birnbaum conveniently ignores the stated goals and tactics of the “religious” nationalist Likud movement.
    According to the hasbara, the Palestinians must make a peace offering, but Israel must make none. But Palestinians have been there, done that with nothing to show for it (Fatah recognized Israel.) Now it’s Israel’s turn.
    But Israel will NEVER make a meaningful peace offering, because peace is not the overriding goal. Land is the goal. “The 1999 Likud charter emphasized the right of settlement in “Judea, Samaria and Azzah” and claim “the Jordan River as the permanent eastern border to Israel.”
    And Yitzak Shamir clearly described the stonewalling and delays (peace proccessing) used as the primary tactic to prevent a negotiated settlement and eventually secure all the land:
    “In my political activity I know how to display the tactics of moderation, but without conceding anything on the goal–the integrity of the Land of Israel. In my eyes, anyone who is not in accord with this, does not belong to the national movement…What is this talk about ‘political settlements’? I would have carried on autonomy talks for ten years, and meanwhile we would have reached half a million people in Judea and Samaria.”

    Reply

  81. DonS says:

    Larry, in the short term, Israel holds all the cards. They must be more forthcoming with confidence building measures. Other zionistas here head off this reasoning by claiming that any such measure as [they deem to have been proffered] result only in those cagey Palestinians just waiting for more. We disagree heartily that Israel has shown good faith; that is a point that belies factual proof.
    Israel obviously seems not to attach urgency to a negotiated peace. As WW has opined in the past, she/they are very content with the status quo. She spoke the truth, and probably why the zionists are so upset with Obama’s miniscule efforts to raise the ante.

    Reply

  82. larry birnbaum says:

    Your proposal is unrealistic because it asks Israel to concede things unilaterally. Tell me what the PA needs to do in order for Israel to reduce the number of what you view as “multiple, redundant checkpoints.” Tell me what Hamas needs to do in exchange for Israel loosening the blockade of Gaza.

    Reply

  83. larry birnbaum says:

    You continue to talk about “blame.” It’s irrelevant. I blame the Arabs for rejecting the UN Partition Plan. That’s also irrelevant. Tell me what you think could be a workable, realistic path to “secure and recognized borders” between Israel and the Palestinian Arabs.

    Reply

  84. JohnH says:

    Peace has to begin by Israel reducing the effects of its stifling, brutal occupation. In short order Israel needs to stop settlement activity, theft of land and begin to loosen the blockade of Gaza and ease up on behavior designed to humiliate Palestinians, such as multiple, redundant checkpoints.
    You have to give Palestinians hope, else there’s nothing to negotiate. Problem is that hope is the last thing that “religious” nationalists now in charge want to give. “Religious” nationalists simply want to humiliate and brutalize Palestinians until the disappear.

    Reply

  85. JohnH says:

    birnbaum–what BS! Let’s not blame Arabs for Israeli theft of land. This is about Eretz Israel–the whole of Israel including Judea and Samaria, and possibly a lot more.
    Israel controls the Occupied Territories. Israel encourages its settlers to conduct ethnic cleansing wherever they want in the Occupied Territories, even in the middle of large Arab cities, like Hebron.

    Reply

  86. larry birnbaum says:

    This is what I meant about Clemons’s “emotionalism” in my comment on his original somewhat hysterical attack on Senator Schumer. Do you feel the need to castigate Israel and attack them for their “moral depravity”? Do whatever makes you happy. But if you hope for peace, think about what can bring peace about. Tell me what you think a workable, realistic path to “secure and recognized borders” in both directions might look like. And if it starts with, Israel needs to unilaterally concede this or that to the Arabs and then we may perhaps to begin, understand that that’s not a workable, realistic path and think about some other approach.

    Reply

  87. JohnH says:

    “We left our property behind, so we are free to steal property from anyone, wherever and whenever we want. And our children and grandchildren are entitled to the same rights in perpetuity.”
    What a perfect illustration of the lawlessness and moral depravity prevalent in the minds of so many “religious” nationalists!
    I wonder what Moses would have said about that? Oh, I remember: “You shall not steal…you shall not covet your neighbor

    Reply

  88. larry birnbaum says:

    JohnH,
    If you want to get angry about this, get angry about it. But despite whatever you may believe, there is NO BORDER RECOGNIZED BY THE ARABS between Israel and the Palestinian Arabs because the Arabs do not recognize any such border including specifically Israel’s sovereign right to determine who gets to live within the Israeli territory demarcated by such a border, because the Arabs claim the right for refugees from 1948 and their descendents to cross wherever such a border might be placed (for example the 1949 Armistice line) to settle in that territory. For peace to be achieved, it doesn’t matter what is “internationally recognized.” It matters what the ARABS RECOGNIZE, including specifically the Palestinian Arabs. If Switzerland, or the UK, or the UN, “recognizes” the 1949 Armistice line as the border, but the Arabs don’t agree, then there aren’t “secure and recognized borders” and their will be no peace.

    Reply

  89. cause&effect says:

    The barbaric acts of the Nazis towards a range of social minorities (Jews, Roma etc) during WW2 cannot be condoned — but in hindsight, with the evidence before us today on the plains of Palestine, it is more understandable why there was such hatred of Jews in Germany at the time and why no other country jumped at the chance of taking large numbers of European Jewish refugees at the time. Comes down to trust, loyalty and evolving beyond primitive tribalism into a tolerant state.
    Individually, Jews seem no different to any other humans. But on mass, and especially those from Russian backgrounds, become complete arrogant jerks and just plain trouble.
    I’ve always wondered why their all powerful G-d punished them so harshly with events like the Nazi holocaust. Could it be that, knowing the future of their misdeeds in Palestine, the collective karma was required to paid for ‘up front’?
    Or is their strange twisted mystical self-sacrificing and self-justifying logic about being the ‘special’ ones the root cause of their incapacity to harmonize with others and live in peace?
    The Zionist emotional bank account has been bankrupt for quite a while, but perhaps now other non-Zionist Jews should start to be concerned about the broader effects of this persecution of the Palestinians in their own traditional homeland. It must be getting to that stage where normal people, not blinkered by millennial fevers, start to wonder what the essential difference is between Zionists and Nazi beliefs and behavior?
    The barbaric acts of the Zionists towards the Palestinians today also cannot be condoned by anyone except bigots. A pox on those who try to justify Israel dumping white phosphorous on defenseless women and children today while condemning German gas chambers in the 1940’s.

    Reply

  90. larry birnbaum says:

    Don,
    This is like right of way or trademark: Legally speaking, if you claim a right of way or a trademark, you have to exercise and enforce it. This is why, for example, the United States insists on regularly traversing the polar oceans north of Canada with nuclear submarines (and some of these passages are between islands claimed by Canada) over the objections of the Canadian government — and, reciprocally, why the Canadian government objects. We traverse these passages to keep alive our claim that they are opean ocean; Canada objects to keep alive its claim that they are Canadian sovereign waters. Canada has even contemplated from time to time building a fleet of icebreakes aimed at attempting to enforce their claim.
    And by the way do you actually doubt that the reason we are able to do so over Canadian objection, and their (sensible) decision not to attempt to prevent our subs from actually traversing what they claim as their territory, is due to the power imbalance between our two nations? Or that if it were the US that were claiming the territory, and Canada that were disputing it, that they wouldn’t actually attempt to exercise the rights they claim?
    We maintain bases in Antarctica by the way in part for a similar reason.
    So, no, of course the Arabs aren’t settling inside Israel — but that’s only because they can’t. They continue to claim the right to do so. To achieve peace, however, they must give up this claim, i.e., they must de jure recognize a border over which Israel has sovereign control. In exchange, they will get Israeli recognition of their de jure control over a territory with a “secure and recognized border.” But why should Israel unilaterally cede control over who gets to live in this territory, and therefore the existence of a de facto border in one direction, without the Arabs reciprocally conceding the existence of a border in the other direction?
    I just don’t think anyone in their shoes would do such a thing. I don’t think you would, I don’t think Steve Clemons would, I don’t even think the most rabid Israel-haters who comment on this blog would. It wouldn’t make sense from a negotiating perspective to give this up in the absence of a reciprocal concession.
    So I’m just going to say this: the way forward is clear. Peace equals “secure and recognized borders.” The Palestinian Arabs don’t like Israeli land-grabs in the occupied territories? I don’t blame them. I’d feel exactly the same way. But they aren’t going to get something for nothing. No rational actor would do that. The way for them to end Israel’s refusal to recognize a real border they control, i.e., one that includes recognition of their right to control who gets to settle in the territory within that border, is to negotiate an agreement that recognizes a real border that Israel controls, i.e., one that includes a recognition of Israel’s right to control who gets to settle in the territory within that border.
    That’s the overarching logic of the situation. The rest is just jockeying for negotiating position. The Palestinians can continue to jockey away for a better position — that’s their right. In that case Israel will continue to settle. The cost is the disapproval or even emnity of people like you. My guess is that that isn’t enough to make it worthwhile for Israel to make this concession unilaterally. In about 5 more months, if serious negotiations aren’t underway, Israeli settlement will resume, because the cost of not doing so will be too high from their perspective.

    Reply

  91. JohnH says:

    Birnbaum’s amazingly disingenuous argument–there is no border (dispute internationally recognized green line establishing the boundaries of the Occupied Territories), therefore Israelis are entitled to steal whatever they want!
    No, Larry, the reason for settlements is that Israel wants Judea and Samaria and all the lands within it. And Israel would be happy if Palestinians would just disappear. (Amazing how there is no protest to that obvious fact, though Ahmadinejad gets pilloried for saying the say thing about Israel.)

    Reply

  92. JohnH says:

    Nadine, Queen of Denial, is frantically trying to dispute the fact that most settlements were built on stolen Palestinian property or that Palestinians were subject to ethnic cleansing, a crime against humanity. But here are the facts:
    19,800 acres of the land used by the settlements, nearly 40% of the total, is private Palestinian land
    86.4% of Maale Adumim is built on privately-owned land
    This is considered illegal under international law according to Fourth Geneva Convention (article 49), which prohibits an occupying power transferring citizens from its own territory to occupied territory.
    The data on which the findings are based comes from a 2004 survey by the Civil Administration, which manages the civilian aspects of Israel’s occupation of the West Bank.
    The data was leaked to Peace Now via an official in the Civil Administration. The group says the government had refused to give this information to it.
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/6168752.stm

    Reply

  93. DonS says:

    Larry, your explanation is clear enough. But the settlements are clearly more than just the signifier of the border question. The border question existed before the first settlement, or the second, or the hundreth (by the way, are there comparable Arab settlements within the de facto land mass of Israel? I think not)
    For Israel to ‘renounce’ settlements would not really say much about the border question at all, since that question has existed all along in the absence of a peace treaty. What it does say is that Israel is, by increments, claiming every inch of land it can grab. And, again, exactly how much land have Palestinians grabbed in return?
    More importantly,what ‘renouncing’ settlements would signify is that Israel is 1) willing to abide by international law and 2) willing to take the number one step to show they are serious about normalizing relations 3) are serious about negotiations.
    But this has not happened, and instead the world is treated to the Israeli two step: advance one kilometer, promise to think about delaying a permit. But overall, the past decades have only witnessed more land grab. Gaza was viewed as a losing hand for the Israelis, who ‘withdrew’ because it is far more manageable for them as a completely dominated ghetto.

    Reply

  94. PissedOffAmerican says:

    I see Israel has murdered another peaceful protestor, a teen. As usual, despite a video of the circumstances of the killing, which clearly shows the youth was no threat, Israel LIES about the reason for the murder.
    No one will be held responsible for using a human being for sport, simple target practice. Do these fucking nazis laugh when they score a kill? Does one or all of their buddies say “Wow, nice shot man”? Do they go to the bar afterwards and brag about it? Is there betting involved?
    These people are fucking scum. As is the hasbarist garbage that posts here, defending Israel while ignoring such events.
    http://palestinenote.com/cs/blogs/topnews/archive/2010/04/29/video-israelis-shoot-teenager-protesting-at-gaza-border.aspx
    VIDEO: ISRAELIS SHOOT TEENAGER PROTESTING AT GAZA BORDER
    ISRAELI RIGHTS GROUP B’TSELEM RELEASES A VIDEO OF A 19-YEAR-OLD PALESTINIAN FELLED BY ISRAELI FIRE DURING A NON-VIOLENT PROTEST IN GAZA
    Wednesday, Ahmad Silman Salem Dib, 19, was killed by Israeli fire during a peaceful protest on the Gaza border, Israeli human rights group B’Tselem reports. Thursday B’Tselem released a video by Muhammad Sabah showing the demonstration, the placement of the Israeli convoy, the shooting, and the aftermath.
    Only a few minutes long, Sabah’s video shows the demonstrators, scores of young men chanting, waving Palestinian flags, playing music, and throwing stones. Near the end of the footage, the sound of a bullet whizzing through the air can be heard, and initially the protestors cheer when it seems no one has been hurt. Then it becomes clear Dib has been hit, and the revelry of the protest decrescendos as the everyone rushes to record what happened to their friend and get him to the hospital. Dib died of his wounds.
    Military officials say the Palestinians entered a “no-go” zone at the border, Ynet News reports. They also say Dib approached the fence, which prompted the gun fire, but that is not evident in the video.
    The demonstration consisted of Palestinians and leftist internationals. One foreign activists told Reuters, “These are non-violent demonstrations against the Israeli imposition of the buffer zone.
    “The Israelis say they can shoot anyone in this area. But it annexes Palestinian farmland. It annexes land where Palestinians live and work.”
    Ynet says these border demonstrations in Gaza began last month and they model them after those in the West Bank against the Bil’in wall and other Israeli installations.

    Reply

  95. larry birnbaum says:

    I will try to explain the logic of settlements. I apologize in advance for the pedantry of this explanation. It turns on actually thinking clearly about what the word “border” means.
    What Israel needs out of any peace agreement with the Arabs is “secure and recognized borders.” What does “secure and recognized border” mean? It means, among other things, that Israel has the sovereign right to control who crosses that border, and that the Arabs in general and the Palestinian Arabs in particular recognize that sovereign right and do not dispute it in any way. For if they claim in any way that Israel does not have the right to control who crosses the border, it isn’t really a border.
    This is where the refugees from 1948 and their descendents come in. If the Arabs insist that these refugees and their descendents have the right to live in Israel, they are saying that they have the right to cross the border. Which is to say, they do NOT in fact recognize Israel’s sovereign right to control who crosses the border. In which case it isn’t really a border.
    In other words, the key issue for Israel in any peace agreement is de jure Arab recognition of this border AS A BORDER. This doesn’t mean that refugees from 1948 and their descendents aren’t due some recognition of and redress for their plight. It does however mean that the Arabs must give up the claim that these people have the right to live in Israel.
    So that’s what the negotiation is about for Israel. For the Palestinians, it’s really reciprocal — or at least, if there’s any chance for peace whatsoever, it’s reciprocal. They need recognition of a genuine border, which means THEY control who gets to cross that border to live inside their territory.
    When Israelis settle in the occupied territories, that implies a non-recognition of a border — but of course the Arabs haven’t recognized a border either. For Israel to renounce settlements is for Israel to de facto recognize a border over which the Palestinians get to determine who gets to cross it to live inside their territory. However, just from a negotiating perspective, it makes no sense for them to concede a one-way border.
    To put this another way: if the Palestinians want Israel to renounce any settlement in the occupied territories — i.e., recognize a border — then they need to renounce any right for refugees from 1948 and their descendents to live inside Israel — i.e., they too need to recognize a border. They can demand and receive all sorts of compensation for doing so, but recognize the border they must. Otherwise it simply makes no sense for Israel to give this away without getting anything in return.
    I’m not saying this is a happy situation. I’m saying that the logic compels what’s going on. If it were Steve Clemons in charge, he’d be doing the same thing.

    Reply

  96. DonS says:

    “Despite all the propaganda, most of the world knows the score. (John H)
    “On German language news web sites that have comments I have noticed the same hasbarists that we have here, but there is significant and knowledgeably effective push back. (Dirk)
    Who says that AIPAC staffers don’t earn their salary, and probably bonuses?
    The main zionistas here, when they are not arguing that might makes right, argue that Israels brutal behavior, for a supposedly civilized nation, is justified because Jews were treated badly at other times, and in other places in the world. The simple adage ‘two wrongs don’t make a right’ seems to have slipped from their basic reasoning. In any case, it is totally irrelevant to the current situation vis a vis Israel and the Palestinians.
    It is, however, that manipulation of emotional and moral guilt that continues to be the main weapon in the arsenal of propaganda by which Israel continues to keep it primary lap dog, the US, on the task of promoting the ‘poor Israel/bad Arabs-Muslims’ narrative, and thwarting the mandates of the UN which must be the basis for civilized understanding of the situation.
    Dirk mentions Germany as welcoming to Israelis as well. Can one doubt that Israel holds the hole card, perhaps justifiably, in controlling the official narrative of that nation?
    We seem to be in a phase where Israel’s image is a bit tarnished. Hench the battle of the polls we have been treated to here in TWN comments. But it is in that arena that the right wing zionists and their supporters know that the struggle to control the narrative is fought. And if Israel must orchestrate another ‘hot’ episode to galvanize the struggle, so be it.
    Arguably, of course with enough resistance from the other side, Israel has pursued this strategy successfully for decades.
    As others have noted, the corresponding case for Arab responsibility is roundly, and fully, and often inaccurately made by the zionistas. I defer to their commments.

    Reply

  97. trnn says:

    “Whistleblower: Why We Really Go to War – Col. Lawrence Wilkerson, former Colin Powell. Chief of Staff”
    http://therealnews.com/t2/component/seyret/?task=videodirectlink&id=6139

    Reply

  98. Dirk says:

    Very interesting “War and Peace” by Paul. I’m not sure if young people in Berlin really are as pro Israel as you say, but I would guess not. I did read that Germany is a “new” favorite place for the ever shrinking number of places that Israelis can travel to. On German language news web sites that have comments I have noticed the same hasbarists that we have here, but there is significant and knowledgeably effective push back.
    Wig-Wag writes:
    “Why exactly is that stranger than the widely held Muslim belief that martyrs are rewarded by Allah in heaven and provided with 40 virgins?”
    Please, everyone knows it’s 72 virgins. Is this the new AIPAC deflation line.

    Reply

  99. nadine says:

    This is part of an article about the “Nakhba” of the Jews of Morocco. They’re not kidding when the say that the Jews lived a degraded existence even before Israel was founded. It was a Jim Crow system where the Jews were the niggers. Explain to me, Paul, why these Jews shouldn’t hate the Arabs who stole THEIR land? Why does it all work in only one direction?
    “…Only in later years did Dina come to appreciate the constant pressure her parents had endured before their departure. There were small things

    Reply

  100. nadine says:

    Is there anywhere that Btselem talks about who were the actual property owners of what became the Israeli settlements, besides “Palestinians”? It makes a difference whether the land was private property or state property. If it was state property that passed from Jordanian to Israeli control, then which “Palestinians” was it stolen from?

    Reply

  101. JohnH says:

    That BBC poll also showed that the percentage viewing Israel favorablly dropped from 47% to 40%. Another shift like that almost guarantees that more Americans will view Israel unfavorably than favorably.
    Well, folks, that’s what it’s about. Likud, AIPAC, Nadine, Wig, and kotz are all frantically trying to prevent Israel’s abysmal reputation from falling further. That’s why we’ve been inundated with a constant stream of BS.

    Reply

  102. JohnH says:

    New BBC poll: “Iran is the least favourably viewed nation (15%), followed by Pakistan (16%), North Korea (17%), Israel (19%)…”
    Gee, I wonder why Israel got slammed! Sounds like respondents don’t think countries should commit crimes against humanity or let their settlers steal land.
    Despite Nadine’s attempts to cover it up, “Israel has stolen thousands of dunams of land from the Palestinians. On this land, Israel has established dozens of settlements in which hundreds of thousands of Israeli civilians now live. http://www.btselem.org/English/Settlements/
    Of course, I could waste my time agreeing with the consensus on Iran, Pakistan and North Korea, but those countries don’t have propagandists like Nadine trying to characterize them as a “light unto nations.” Only Israel has legions of propagandists trying to convince us that Israel has the most humane military on earth, that illegal settlements are legal, that war crimes in Gaza were all the Palestinians’ fault.
    Despite all the propaganda, most of the world knows the score.

    Reply

  103. nadine says:

    Ah yes, Chomsky, the Ur-Regressive-Progressive. The lies he has told are without number.
    I’ll never forget his reaction to 9/11. He said it wasn’t as bad as when Clinton bombed an aspirin factory in the Sudan.

    Reply

  104. nadine says:

    “But you’ll not be able to push me to blame Arabs IN THE
    CONTEXT OF ISRAELIS STEALING THEIR LAND.” (Paul Norheim)
    According to you, Israelis stole all the land of Palestine, and the attempts to find a peaceful win-win settlement of affairs, too numerous to mention, for the last 80 years, or the wars the Arabs started with the plainly stated intent to kill the Jews, are all irrelevant because the Arabs lost.
    What can I suppose from this account, but that you would rather the Arabs had won?

    Reply

  105. Kathleen Grasso Andersen says:

    Noam Chomsky on Israel-Palestine and prospects for a peac eful settlement…http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article25333.htm

    Reply

  106. Paul Norheim says:

    Well, Nadine, I’ll take that risk. As a matter of fact, I actually do
    my best to give the impression that Jews should be persecuted,
    scapegoated, and thrown into the Mediterranean.
    Happy now?
    Above on this thread I just provided a catalogue of Arab sins,
    and my personal opinion is that the Arab slave trade (mostly
    women, and especially in East Africa) was probably worse for
    the African continent than the American slave traffic. And it is
    still going on.
    But you’ll not be able to push me to blame Arabs IN THE
    CONTEXT OF ISRAELIS STEALING THEIR LAND.
    Encourage the Israelis to stop stealing, then we can start
    discussing Arab morality or lack thereof in this context.
    If this position, and my comments above, give you the
    subjective impression that I want to destroy Israel and kill the
    Jews, then feel free to have that impression. But if you would
    prefer to sue your elementary school for not having learnt you
    how to read properly, I would encourage you to do so. I think
    you have a very strong case, and if you want me to, I am willing
    to provide an abundance of material from this blog as proof.

    Reply

  107. nadine says:

    “if you will, of course this is largely irrelevant as long as it was
    not the Arabs who stole the homes of the Jews, but the Jews
    who stole the homes of the Arabs.”
    Try telling that to the Jews who used to live in Baghdad. Before WWII, Baghdad was 40% Jewish and it was a wealthy community that had been there for 2500 years. All gone overnight, all their property confiscated.
    Since we can’t run an alternate history, we can’t know what Ben Gurion’s attitude to the Arabs would have been had there been no war in 1948. We do know that until the war, the Zionists had bought their land (a very different story from French and British colonies), not seized anything, and were promising to respect minority rights in Israel. Since there wasn’t even a day’s reprieve between Israeli independence and the Arab invasion, we can’t know more than that.
    If you keep ignoring and dismissing this stuff, Paul, you run the risk of giving the impression that Jews are the one allowable scapegoat people whom it is okay to attack, deport and dispossess.

    Reply

  108. Paul Norheim says:

    Frankly Wigwag,
    I see no point in blaming and ridiculing the whole universe
    while concentrating on one particular phenomenon – evenly
    distributing my criticism to dozens of countries, several
    religions, and a handful of regions every time I focus on one of
    them… for what reason? To avoid that you or others may
    accuse me of hypocrisy while criticizing Israel, but not the Arabs
    – i.e. being an anti-Semite?
    To avoid being accused of being a self-hating European
    progressive for not hastily creating a catalogue of Muslim
    stupidities while focusing on Christian stupidities?
    You and Nadine provide that Muslim and Arab catalogue daily,
    so there is no need for me in that enterprise.
    If you have fun playing that game, go on, call me whatever you
    wish to.
    Intolerant? Yeah.
    Regressive-progressive? Why not?
    Longing for the 15th century among Salafists? Sure. Civilization
    was never my thing.

    Reply

  109. Paul Norheim says:

    To Nadine:
    Point 1. Of course Herzl’s ideas were not a response to
    Holocaust. His nationalism was created while nationalism was in
    vogue in Europe. The latest decades of the last century is the
    story of European nations abandoning parts of their
    sovereignity, while African nations and Israel/Palestine started
    to endorse nationalism and have struggled to find their model
    of nationalism. And within Islam, there is on one hand the
    trans-national concept of the Umma, and on the other the
    nation state. This ideological conflict is apparent in large parts
    of the Muslim world – also in Afghanistan.
    Point 2: Absolutely. Saddam’s Iraq was also an indirect result of
    the failures of the Brits.
    As to the morality of the Arabs – or their adultness/innocence,
    if you will, of course this is largely irrelevant as long as it was
    not the Arabs who stole the homes of the Jews, but the Jews
    who stole the homes of the Arabs. That’s just a basic principle
    of right or wrong related to the Arabs, and to blame those you
    stole from in addition is not my cup of tea in that context.

    Reply

  110. WigWag says:

    “Well WigWag, since you haven’t even bothered to hide your recent enthusiasm and glee while teasing reasonable, intelligent, and informed people like Dan Kervick, JohnH, and DonS for not being in line with the recent polls showing that millions of ignorant, religiously lunatic and not-so-lunatic Americans unconditionally support Israel under Netanyahu…” (Paul Norheim)
    That’s a rather intolerant statement coming from you, Paul; you wouldn’t be one of those regressive-progressives; would you?
    What makes the millions of Christian Zionists “ignorant” or “religious lunatics?” I don’t hear you calling religious Muslims lunatics very often; I’ve rarely heard you refer to the Mullahs who run Iran that way or the devout leadership of Hamas.
    What exactly is it about dispensationalist theology that seems so strange to you? Is it their belief that the ingathering of Jews in Jerusalem is a precursor to Christ’s thousand year reign on earth?
    Why exactly is that stranger than the widely held Muslim belief that martyrs are rewarded by Allah in heaven and provided with 40 virgins? Why exactly is the dispensationalist belief any more

    Reply

  111. nadine says:

    Paul, two points which you really need to take on board: 1. Zionism is not a post-Holocaust phenomenon, but one that long pre-dates the Holocaust; and 2. Many of the problems bequeathed to India/Pak and Israel/Pal can be attributed to the British Empire’s ignominious scuttle from their colonies after WWII, which guaranteed wars and refugee crises in both places.
    You cannot talk sensibly about the post WWII Mideast and not mention Britain or the Arab States.
    “And their (the Arabs’) morality or
    lack thereof, as well as their relative strength or weakness at
    that time, is largely irrelevant – as long as the outcome was that
    the Jews prevailed in the struggle. ”
    Isn’t that like saying that the Axis power’s morality or lack thereof, or relative strength or weakness, is largely irrelevant, since the outcome was that the Allies won WWII?
    The Arab States were major actors and had major influence on the outcome of the situation. To deny that is to infantilize them, exactly as you accuse others of doing. In fact, the Jews did not “prevail”. They survived, but if they had prevailed there would be no conflict today.

    Reply

  112. Paul Norheim says:

    Not of “helpless primitives”. And their (the Arabs’) morality or
    lack thereof, as well as their relative strength or weakness at
    that time, is largely irrelevant – as long as the outcome was that
    the Jews prevailed in the struggle.
    Colonizers, certainly. Implying that a large amount of Arabs lost
    their homes and their “home land”, their land and their homes,
    in the most literal sense: their neighbors, their towns, in short,
    their world – due to the creation of Israel.
    The timing of the creation of Israel was on one hand bad luck: it
    happened during a historical period when nations like England
    and France abandoned their colonial enterprises and tried to
    find a way out of it – later followed by Portugal. (The only
    empire still standing for several decades was actually Russia,
    aka the USSR).
    You couldn’t possibly find a worse time in history to decide to
    settle down somewhere and violently remove “the natives” in
    the process, than in 1948. And you would struggle to find a
    more hostile and unforgiving people than those Arabs, who
    have a good memory for past wounds.
    On the other hand the timing was literally desperate, due to the
    Holocaust and the chaos in the aftermath of the war. You have
    to be pretty dumb not to understand why millions of Jews
    wanted to create their own homeland at that point. But you have
    to be pretty dumb, or in extreme denial, not to understand why
    many Arabs started to hate the Jews after losing their home,
    their land.
    As a colonial enterprise, with all the brutality that follows, this
    was of course not in any ways comparable to the Belgians in
    Kongo during Leopold. The huge difference between this
    tragical colonial enterprise and the other ones was that the Jews
    did not primarily intend to exploit, but to settle down in the
    most literal sense of the word, and try to reestablish the
    territory they settled down in – after a very vague, for most of
    them almost mythical past, thousands of years ago – as their
    home.
    So this was of course much more vital and urgent to them than,
    say Portugal colonizing Mozambique, and then retreating in the
    mid 1970’s.
    At the same time these mostly European Jews came to the
    Middle East with the same nasty, arrogant, colonial attitude that
    their fellow European brethren and enemies just were to
    abandon. And this is the anachronistic part of the story. In the
    view of the Arabs, the Jews came in the same nasty manner that
    the Brits and the French had arrived decades, centuries before,
    and so forth…
    The rest – the decades that followed – is well known and has
    often been discussed here, and I don’t intend to get involved in
    a back and forth about that.

    Reply

  113. nadine says:

    “”If you all accuse us of being animals, let’s behave like animals!”
    I think even Nadine has expressed that sentiment a couple of
    times. ” (Paul Norheim)
    No. I never expressed the sentiment. I said that European one-sidedness would breed the the idea among Israelis that they should do what they could live with themselves, and forget trying to please people who hated their guts and wished them dead as a scapegoat for European guilt.
    “In short: The Israelis represent a continuation of the old
    abhorrent Western racist and criminal ways of exploiting others.
    The issue here is not anti-Semitism, but the West reacting
    passionately and furiously against a family member who crosses
    a line that is not acceptable anymore, because the times have
    changed.”
    Juxtapose the history of the Jews in Europe in the 20th century with that statement, and see if you can see the irony.

    Reply

  114. nadine says:

    “It is interesting that the first concept, the historical-political
    concept of “Orientalism”, was created by a Palestinian from a
    prominent and wealthy family, Edward Said, who was a
    Professor in Litterature at Columbia, New York; while the
    metaphysical-ethical concept of “The Other” was created by a
    Jew, Emmanuel Levinas, who was born in Ukraine, and endorsed
    by another Jew, the Algerian-born Jacques Derrida. ” (Paul Norheim)
    That’s an interesting take, and complements what I’ve been saying about multi-culturalism. But first you criticize the false infantilizing of Arabs & Africans, but then you switch to Israel and reflect a view entirely formed by the “Orientalist” multi-cultural view; that Israelis are colonizers of helpless primitives basically no different from the Belgians in the Congo. I do not think this is an objective view of the situation, which at a minimum must take into account the actions of Europe the Arab States for the last 70 years and regard them as actors in the drama. This does not require any pro-Zionism; just a basic sense of fairness and objectivity.
    Did you ever read the HaLevi/Risen emails at TNR?

    Reply

  115. Paul Norheim says:

    The only thing I liked about Cheney was his expressed contempt
    for polls – until I reminded myself of why he could admit this.

    Reply

  116. Paul Norheim says:

    Well WigWag,
    since you haven’t even bothered to hide your recent enthusiasm
    and glee while teasing reasonable, intelligent, and informed
    people like Dan Kervick, JohnH, and DonS for not being in line
    with the recent polls showing that millions of ignorant,
    religiously lunatic and not-so-lunatic Americans unconditionally
    support Israel under Netanyahu, it would be pretty easy to claim
    that when Zionists say that America should support Israel as a
    democracy surrounded by autocracies, the Israelis themselves,
    according to the recent polls, seem to disagree with this and
    actually abhor freedom of expression.
    If you ask me, the recent polls seem to confirm my general
    impression that Israel fervently tries to become like their
    enemies – oppressive, anti-democratic, and hostile towards
    freedom of speech and criticism of of their rulers.
    What do you think, WigWag?
    To me it seems like the Israeli majority tries to apply for
    membership among those African and Arab nations who are
    unambiguously identified as “The Other” – perhaps in the hope
    of escaping the criticism from the West?
    “If you all accuse us of being animals, let’s behave like animals!”
    I think even Nadine has expressed that sentiment a couple of
    times.

    Reply

  117. WigWag says:

    “Hey Wigwag and Nadine, this article from Haaretz today may be interesting for you and everybody else at TWN who love polls, democracy, and freedom of expression…” (Paul Norheim)
    Thanks for the results of the poll, Paul, even though the sample size is small, I don’t doubt for one minute that the poll captures the true sentiments of the Israeli public at least in a general sense.
    There is nothing unusual about societies built on liberal values witnessing large portions of their citizens eschewing those values when they think those values conflict with their personal security.
    In the United States we see the same phenomena you allude to expressed on the issue of torture. In a recent Pew poll, two thirds of Americans support the use of torture at least in some circumstances; 43 percent support the use of torture in many circumstances. Here’s the link to the data if you would like to take a look for yourself.
    http://pewresearch.org/databank/dailynumber/?NumberID=520
    We see the same thing in Europe where increasingly large numbers of Europeans believe that the values of Muslim immigrants undermine their own values. That’s why the movement to regulate religious garb is as popular as it is.
    I don’t think there is any question that politics in Israel has moved to the right and that this is a trend that will be sustained. Of course, in some respects this makes Israeli politics a mirror image of European politics which has also taken a sharp right turn; a trend that shows little sign of abating.
    There are many reasons for this, not the least being that every Israeli withdrawal has been met with increasing attacks mounted from the territory that Israel relinquished. In light of this, its little wonder that the Israeli left is moribund. And of course Israelis see that the things that bring them protection, like the separation wall that has been extraordinarily effective in stopping suicide attacks, were all opposed by the left in Europe and often in Israel itself.
    But I think the lurch to the right in Israel is motivated by a variety of other factors as well, especially the fact that political parties representing Israelis who had their origins in Arab nations and the Soviet Union have gained political power at the expense of political parties (like Labor) which represent Jews who originally emigrated to Israel from Europe.
    Liberal values as we understand them, were never as ubiquitous in the Arab nations or the Soviet Union as they were in Europe; it is hardly surprising that Jews who immigrated to Israel from those places should cleave to those values with less enthusiasm.
    I just don’t think there is any question about it; the political culture of Israel is coming to resemble that of its Arab neighbors far more than its Arab neighbors are coming to resemble Israel. I think that is a bad thing. But given how willing European leftists are to excuse Arab values, perhaps if Israelis become more like Arabs, the European left will like Israel better.
    I don’t want to take the point too far; there is still a tremendous divergence between Israeli democracy and Arab autocracy. In just a few short decades the Israelis have built a modern, thriving liberal society that Arabs haven’t been able to build in centuries.
    I think this history is one of the reasons that support for Israel has grown so dramatically in the United States. Our regressive-progressive friends have been shocked to see political support for Israel grow dramatically in the United States in the wake of Israel’s war with Lebanon and Gaza.
    One of the reasons is that while regressive-progressives may oppose massive retaliation to terrorist attacks, a significant majority of Americans support it. Americans believe that when you are attacked the correct response is to respond with overwhelming force using every weapon at your disposal. That’s what the United States did after 9/11 and it’s what the Americans are continuing to do in Pakistan and Afghanistan. The recent Quinnipiac Poll showed that Obama’s policy towards Afghanistan is the single most popular feature of his foreign policy.
    Remember that many polls demonstrate that most Americans still believe that dropping the atomic bombs in Hiroshima and Nagasaki was the right thing to do and many Americans believe that “international law” that forbids massive retaliation is little more than an anachronistic, immoral travesty; regressive-progressives in Europe and the United States may not see it that way, but most Americans do.
    I don’t have any polling data to support this, but I suspect that one of the reasons that Americans support Israel so enthusiastically is that they believe it is everything that Europe is not. Israel is pro-America; Europe is a constant thorn in America’s side (remember freedom fries?); Israel believes in fighting terrorism; Europe believes in coddling terrorists; Israel is strong; Europe is feckless.
    Superimpose on all of this the remarkable rise of dispensationalism in the United States and it becomes plain that America’s love affair with Israel will only be growing stronger. As difficult as it is for Europeans to understand, the United States is a profoundly religious society (American regressive-progressives have a hard time understanding it too). The mainline Protestant churches in the United States are in extremis; the pews are empty. Roman Catholicism is mired in scandal. On the other hand, evangelical churches, especially those that preach dispensational theology are packed to the rafters. There’s a reason evangelicals build so many mega-churches; it

    Reply

  118. Paul Norheim says:

    As a P.S. to my last comment:
    I have young friends in Berlin, artists belonging both to the
    political left and the right, who say that the young German
    radicals in Berlin are pro Israel, not pro Palestine. So I would
    assume that self criticism can go in both directions, and in any
    case is an indispensable part of the spirit both WigWag and I
    apparently cherish: The spirit of the Enlightenment.
    On the other hand, my dear old father, a teacher in maths and
    physics, a missionary and Christian conservative who once was
    the headmaster of the Ethiopian Evangelical College – where I
    grew up – was pro Israel, and among the Evangelicals who
    prayed for the wellbeing of the Israeli state and its citizens –
    against Arab terrorists.
    My rationally educated father wasn’t much into the Armageddon
    stuff, but I think my mother was to some extent – but it never
    took overhand.
    Can’t remember anything about the 1973 war and the oil crisis
    – which I doubt affected Ethiopia significantly.
    But remember reading about the Munich Black September
    actions in 1974 in Time or Newsweek, while my parents lived in
    a bungalow in Debre Zeit, a town 50 kilometers southeast of
    Addis Abeba, while I and two of my brothers lived in a boarding
    school in the capital.
    At school, I remember frequently seeing several maps of
    Palestine, The Holy Land. In the shelfs at my parents’ home,
    there were plenty of books written by missionaries. And also a
    handful of books about JFK and the Kennedy’s – my mother
    adored the Kennedy family.
    But there were also a dozen of books about Israel in the shelfs.
    “David Ben Gurion – The Lion of Israel”… Moshe Dayan, with his
    black eyepatch…Abba Eban…Golda Meir… but also pro-Israel
    books written from a Norwegian Evangelical missionary
    perspective.
    There were also many Arabs in Debre Zeit at that time; we often
    visited their shops, and their radio stations with their Arab
    music were almost too easy to find on our small transistor
    radios – loud and clear.
    But Haile Selassie balanced delicately between the Muslim world
    and Israel, which he felt connected to.
    I was 12-14 and read almost all of the books in the shelfs, not
    only Ben Gurion, Moshe Dayan, Golda Meir and “With Israel for
    Peace”, but also the Kennedy biographies – even one written by
    Mother Rose Kennedy. I read everything I stumbled upon. There
    wasn’t much more to read in my parents’ home in those days:
    they had to leave most of their books at home in Norway.
    Even today, if I were really desperate, I guess I would read a
    book called “David ben Gurion – The Lion of Israel”. For some
    people, the alphabet is like a drug: even advertisements in the
    papers may be highly interesting if there is nothing left to read.
    Years later, I remember watching the news while visiting my
    parents in the North of Norway (I lived in Oslo), and there was
    this report about the massacre in Sabra and Shatila. My father
    didn’t say much, but I could sense his silent outrage against
    Israel and Sharon’s role.
    After that evening, I can’t remember much talk about Israel
    anymore in my family. I guess that is also a sign of
    introspection.

    Reply

  119. Paul Norheim says:

    Sorry for the confusion at the beginning of my last War & Peace-
    length comment: the post ended where it belongs: here! – and
    refers to a comment by Nadine in the same thread.

    Reply

  120. Paul Norheim says:

    Although I usually regard the back and forth with partisan 24/7
    commenter Nadine as a huge distraction and a waste of time, I
    can’t resist commenting on a review Nadine referred to in the
    Schumer thread below this one – a review of a new book written
    by the French author Pascal Bruckner – because the topic is very
    interesting, and may be relevant to our often repetitive
    Israel/Palestine discussions here in general.
    FYI: This is not about “dual loyalties” and US politics in a direct
    sense, but more along the eternal lines of “Why do we always
    blame Israel, and not the Arabs?” (read: Is our hypocrisy a
    disguise for anti-Semitism).
    I’ll post this here since the former thread with the same topic is
    heading towards the archives.
    A final warning: If you hate long comments in general, you can
    stop reading right here.
    ————————-
    I’ve not read Bruckner’s book, nor yet any other reviews or
    comments related to it, and will only comment on a quote from
    the review (entirely isolated from the context of the book)
    provided by Nadine – about the current relationship between
    Europeans (“The North”) and Africans (“The South)”:
    “THE SOUTH, in contrast, is deemed perpetually innocent. (…)
    Eternal innocence means infantilizing non-Westerners;
    Europeans flatter themselves as the only adults

    Reply

  121. rc says:

    Burn the witches, stones the crows … about the same stats one would get from surveying the Mafia!

    Reply

  122. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “More than half of Jewish Israelis think human rights organizations that expose immoral behavior by Israel should not be allowed to operate freely, and think there is too much
    freedom of expression here, a recent survey found”
    Ah yes, “democracy” in action.
    “The pollsters surveyed 500 Jewish Israelis who can be considered a representative sample of the adult Jewish population”
    Its always a mistake to base policy on what racists want.
    “They found that 57.6 percent of the respondents agreed that human rights organizations that expose immoral conduct by Israel should not be allowed to operate freely”
    Speaks for itself, don’t it? Its not the “immoral conduct” that matters, its the narrative. Go ahead and incinerate those nasty sand niggers, just don’t advertise it.
    “The poll also found that most of the respondents favor punishing Israeli citizens who support sanctioning or boycotting the country, and support punishing journalists who report news that reflects badly on the actions of the defense establishment”
    We’ll put a stop to these bastards telling the truth, by golly.

    Reply

  123. Paul Norheim says:

    Hey Wigwag and Nadine,
    this article from Haaretz today may be interesting for you and
    everybody else at TWN who love polls, democracy, and freedom
    of expression:
    (I won’t provide a link, due to virus issues at Haaretz)
    “Last update – 10:34 28/04/2010
    Poll: Majority of Israel’s Jews back gag on rights groups
    By Or Kashti
    More than half of Jewish Israelis think human rights
    organizations that expose immoral behavior by Israel should
    not be allowed to operate freely, and think there is too much
    freedom of expression here, a recent survey found.
    The survey, commissioned by the Tami Steinmetz Center for
    Peace Research at Tel Aviv University, will be presented
    Wednesday at a conference on the limits of freedom of
    expression.
    The pollsters surveyed 500 Jewish Israelis who can be
    considered a representative sample of the adult Jewish
    population.
    They found that 57.6 percent of the respondents agreed that
    human rights organizations that expose immoral conduct by
    Israel should not be allowed to operate freely.
    Slightly more than half agreed that “there is too much freedom
    of expression” in Israel.
    The poll also found that most of the respondents favor
    punishing Israeli citizens who support sanctioning or boycotting
    the country, and support punishing journalists who report news
    that reflects badly on the actions of the defense establishment.
    Another 82 percent of respondents said they back stiff penalties
    for people who leak illegally obtained information exposing
    immoral conduct by the defense establishment.
    “Israelis have a distorted perception of democracy,” said Daniel
    Bar-Tal, a professor at the university’s school of education, and
    one of the conference’s organizers. “The public recognizes the
    importance of democratic values, but when they need to be
    applied, it turns out most people are almost anti-democratic.”
    Another conference participant, Ben-Gurion University’s David
    Newman, called the polling results “very worrying,” adding that
    there has been an assault on freedom of expression in recent
    years.
    “We say Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East, but in
    Europe they are beginning to think of us otherwise,” he said.
    Virtually all the respondents, 98 percent, said freedom of
    expression was important, but the picture changed when the
    questions got into the details.
    Regarding human rights groups’ rights to operate freely,
    responses varied based upon the respondents’ reported political
    views. Of those who said they were right-wing, 76 percent said
    human rights groups should not have the right to freely
    publicize immoral conduct on Israel’s part.
    The political differences were not as apparent in response to
    some other questions.
    The poll showed 65 percent of all of those questioned think the
    Israeli media should be barred from publishing news that
    defense officials think could endanger state security, even if the
    news was reported abroad.
    Another 43 percent said the media should not report
    information confirmed by Palestinian sources that could reflect
    poorly on the Israeli army. Fifty-eight percent of respondents
    opposed harsh criticism of the country, an increase of 10
    percentage points from 2003.
    “Faith in democratic values was not measured abstractly, but
    rather was put to the test regarding specific cases. Then, it
    turns out the Israeli public is not tolerant or pluralistic,” Bar-Tal
    said. “The education system teaches students about government
    authorities and election procedures, but there is no in-depth
    discussion about democratic values and [how to] instill them.
    The whole subject of values is perceived as something left-
    wing.”
    —————————
    And for the sake of “balance”, here is the view from someone
    who dislikes the NGO’s, from the same Haaretz article:
    ————————
    “In contrast to Bar-Tal and Newman, Bar-Ilan University’s Gerald
    Steinberg said in academia, “it is actually people who are
    supposed to be pluralistic, meaning people on the left, who
    oppose the freedom of expression of their critics.”
    Steinberg is an active member of the organization NGO Monitor,
    which tracks non-governmental organizations in Israel.
    “The criticism we receive is not over the details and the facts,
    but rather that we are fascists who are endangering democracy.
    Instead of opening the subject for public debate, the complaints
    against us lower the quality of debate,” he said.”

    Reply

  124. Jerry says:

    “La tyrannie de la p

    Reply

  125. Jerry says:

    The AP report says,
    “Israel’s prime minister has effectively frozen new Jewish construction in east Jerusalem….”
    It references “housing approvals” or building permits.
    It is a finesse that may lead to the beginning of indirect talks moderated by special envoy George Mitchell.
    Subtlety, sweet subtlety.
    It’s early, but let’s hope they can say, “Yes, we can!”

    Reply

  126. nadine says:

    Beats addressing the argument, huh?

    Reply

  127. downtown says:

    part of nadine’s employment contract stipulates that she must always have the last word. I hereby proudly accept the silver medal.

    Reply

  128. nadine says:

    Very interesting looking new book by the French novelist Pascal Bruckner, called The Tyranny of Guilt. Very apropos to this discussion, where we hear again & again that we must pay attention to only one thing and never look at any complexities or mitigating circumstances or further developments. Brucker discusses this kind of guilt-ridden frozen-in-time discussion in Europe. From a review:
    “Paradoxically, it is Europe

    Reply

  129. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Jerry, are you just remarkably naive, or irredeemably ignorant? If Netanyahu says he will halt settlement activity in East Jerusalem, he’s a liar. He has lied about ALL the so-called “concessions” that this pathetic SOS Clinton was so impressed with.
    Its what he does. He lies.
    Keep an eye on the “Peace Now” website. They will pull his covers.
    On another note….
    http://www.peacenow.org.il/site/en/peace.asp?pi=66&docid=4648
    Petition to High Court: State Confirms Outpost to be Authorized as a New Settlement
    Hagit Ofran 25/04/2010
    In 2001 the outpost of Derech Ha’avot was established upon the lands of the Palestinian village Alkhadr, near Bethlehem. Today there are 35 families living in the outpost with some 180 settlers.
    On September 28, 2008 Peace Now appealed to the Israeli High Court of Justice together with the Palestinian owners of the lands, demanding the enforcement of the law and the evacuation of the “Derech Ha’avot” outpost (Bethlehem area).
    As part of these hearings over this petition the State today (April 25, 2010) sent an update to the High Court of Justice, confirming that the Illegal outpost of “Derech Ha’avot” near Bethlehem would be authorized, as follows:
    “It was decided to launch a survey process to determine weather the lands of “Derech Ha’avot” are State Lands … If the process should reveal that the buildings – all or part of them – are on State Land, then their authorization will be considered. Buildings that will be found built on Private Lands – their demolition orders will be executed, according to the priorities”.
    The meaning of this declaration
    A. An official establishment of a new settlement, the first time since the Oslo Accord.
    All of the previous Israeli governments refrained from establishing new settlements since the Oslo Declaration of Principals was signed in 1993. The previous Netanyahu government decided in 1996 not to build any new settlements, and ever since, Israel has openly declared that it is not establishing any new settlements (including Netanyahu at his Bar Ilan speach: “we have no intention to build new settlements or set aside land for new settlements”).
    All new settlements that were established after 1996 were declared “Illegal Outposts” and the government issued demolition and evacuation orders against them.
    Today is the first time since 1996 that the Israeli government is officially confirming that it intends to legalize an outpost, creating de-facto a new settlement in the West Bank.
    B. A dramatic change of the policy of the Israeli government
    The petition on Derech Ha’avot drew a response from the previous Israeli government who declared to the court that the outpost was illegal, that the structures in the outpost have demolition orders, and that the demolition will take place according to the Government’s priorities. The new announcement by the government rejects the demolition of the outpost and will instead be working to authorize it.
    C. The Palestinian owners of the lands will practically lose their lands
    The Israeli government has been using in the Occupied Territories an Ottoman Law which allowed the Sultan (now the State) to declare lands as public property (State Land), in cases where lands were not cultivated for several years.
    In the case of “Derech Ha’avot”, the settlers based their claim on the argument that some parts of the parcels on which the outpost was built were not fully cultivated, and therefore are “State Land”. Even if it is “State Land”, the settlers still need to get an official allocation of the lands from the state, such an allocation was never given. However, in today’s declaration the government promises to “consider

    Reply

  130. Jerry says:

    AP report, today.
    Headline: “Israel halts east Jerusalem building”
    “The quiet halting of east Jerusalem housing approvals coincides with signs that those talks are now about to start….”
    “President Mahmoud Abbas signaled Monday he was ready to start indirect talks with Israel after weeks of hesitation.”
    Never say never!
    Regarding Senator Schumer, it sounds like he was out of the loop, which might explain his loose mouth.

    Reply

  131. DonS says:

    Have been traveling (now in Canada, NS to be exact), and have only read TWN a little. Still it seems little has changed.
    Except Mr/Ms Tridant emerges and risks the wrath of the zionistas hereabouts. I would only caution that calling Nadine the hasbara ‘queen’ also risks setting off Wigwag, who had that sobriquet long before Nadine discovered fertile ground for hasbarist mission at TWN.
    I do wonder why Steve felt it necessary to walk back his description of Schumer around the word ‘loyalty’, although there are ways to describe his actions without using that word. Schumer’s actions reveal an individual whose mindset is one with the Israeli right wing, almost as if he is counting on cooler heads to prevent the implementation of the consequences of his words. Not that there aren’t other warmongering blowhards in Congress. But Schumer has seemed to appropriate for himself the ‘Mr holier than thou” when it comes to Israel — he can seemingly say anything he wants, however contrary to the interests of the US, with impunity. Good for the WH to say, at least, that they don’t agree with him.
    I further have to agree with whoever it was upthread who noted that Schumer really aint that much of a progressive — with a nod to the totally dyslexic discussion of how regressive progressives really are orchestrated by Wigwag.

    Reply

  132. Tridant says:

    Nadine, the Hasbara queen, writes: “I don’t think any Israeli could have fathomed that the Arab countries would be so cruel to their own people as to keep them in camps forever and never resettle them.”
    Zionists want others to solve their crimes and completely erase those pesky natives.
    Let me break this to you, Nadine: zionists are the last to lecture anyone about curelty. I will also let you in on another secret: those Palestinians you ethnically cleansed do not want to be resettled elsewhere: they want to go back to their homes and vinyards, and farms you stole to make room for European and Russian Jews.

    Reply

  133. Tridant says:

    “As for our relations with Israel, let me be very clear: we have a special relationship with Israel and that will not change. Our countries are bound together by shared values, deep and interwoven connections, and mutual interests.” –President Barack Obama, Letter to Alan Solow (Chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations), April 20, 2010
    Does our “shared values” include Jim Crow, Apartheid, land theft, Jews-only roads and towns, war crimes, expulsions, and keeping millions of natives under decades of a brutal military occupation aimed at completely dispossessing them?
    Last I checked, the US has not declared itself a itself a “White state”, or the state of the “Christian people” everywhere, and set up apartheid-like laws institutionalizing discrimination against non-whites/non-christians.

    Reply

  134. Tridant says:

    This is all baloney. For decades, the United States has been the true enabler(financially, diplomatically, and militarily) behind the Zionist colonial project. As Chas Freeman noted, “this time Apatheid has western complicity”. Talk is cheap, but one cannot expect a criminal state to behave if at the same time you fund and shield its crimilaity.
    Israel: We

    Reply

  135. JohnH says:

    Once again Nadine is prolific in her BS. Palestinians were ethnically cleansed, and Yitzhak Rabin said so in his autobiography (1996 edition):
    “We walked outside, Ben-Gurion accompanying us. Allon repeated his question: ‘What is to be done with the population?’ B.G. waved his hand in a gesture which said, ‘Drive them out!'”
    He goes on “Great suffering was inflicted upon the men taking part in the eviction action. Soldiers of the Yiftach Brigade included youth-movement graduates, who had been inculcated with values such as international brotherhood and humanness. The eviction action went beyond the concepts they were used to…Prolonged propaganda activities were required after the action to remove the bitterness.”
    Those Palestinians left inside Israel have become useful to Israeli propaganda, because people like Nadine can falsely claim that “there was no ethnic cleansing because the cleansing was not complete.” By this logic, Hitler didn’t engage in ethnic cleansing either, because he wasn’t 100% effective. I find this kind of logic to be morally abhorrent.
    What’s tragic is that values such as international brotherhood and humanness seem to be totally absent in the “religious” nationalism of Wig, kotz and Nadine.

    Reply

  136. nadine says:

    “Palestine” is predominantly a place name, Nadine, not the name of a country or “national home”. It wasn’t used under the Ottomans, but had been used under earlier Muslim rulers. But mainly it is *our* name for a place, and we recognize a Palestinian as just someone who is native to that place, and a Palestinian Arab as an Arab who is native to that place.” (Dan Kervick)
    Okay, let’s unpack that. “Palestine” is a place name, not used by the Ottomans, but used by us. Just as if we talked about what the United States was in 1500, using “United States” as name for the geographic region, even though the none of the inhabitants called it that or thought of it as one place. So far so good.
    “I have never understood why Zionists think it is so important whether the traditional inhabitants of Palestine shared some collective “national feeling” – or for that matter a feeling of having come from the same kingdom or vilayet. You describe the fact that Palestinian Arabs self-identified by town as though that is a bad or inferior thing unworthy of the world’s respect. To me, it suggests that their attachment to their local spot and their home was more direct and intense, and less diffused by attachment to broader regions or political communities.”
    Yes, I know you don’t understand, Dan. What I’m trying to explain to you is that having the idea of a country makes people behave differently from having the idea of a having a few towns that are part of a much larger set of towns. When war threatens their area of residence, they will behave differently depending on their ideas. If you don’t get that, you draw radically false conclusions about history.
    People who have a country may chose to stand and defend it. People who just have one town among many are more likely to run to a neighboring town to wait out the war. They may run over a border that doesn’t mean anything to them, but which the war solidifies into a hard border, which is what happened to the Arab refugees from Palestine in 1949. This is not about superior or inferior, it is about understanding what happened and how it happened.
    You keep talking about how the Israelis “ethnically cleared” Palestine as if it was a deliberate act on their part. It wasn’t. It was a result of the wealthier Palestinian Arabs withdrawing to the neighboring towns of Cairo or Beirut to wait out the war, and those who were left panicking when it became clear that the Jews were going to win. Being Arabs, they expected the victorious Jews to do them what they would have done to the Jews, i.e. slaughter them. So they ran. The Jews wouldn’t have slaughtered them, and didn’t slaughter those who remained, but they didn’t know that.
    There were exceptions but that is the main story, which you consistently get wrong because you don’t understand how people were thinking. You keep thinking that the Palestinian Arabs were defending their ‘country’ so they must have been driven out at gunpoint. That’s not what happened.
    After the war, Ben Gurion really agonized about letting the Arab refugees back but concluded that it would be suicidal without a peace treaty — they would be seeded with the soldiers of the next war, who would shoot the Israelis in the back when the time came. Plus, at that point in time, Israel had more Jewish refugees on its hands than it had citizens at independence. I don’t think any Israeli could have fathomed that the Arab countries would be so cruel to their own people as to keep them in camps forever and never resettle them.

    Reply

  137. JohnH says:

    Amazing how Wig, kotz and Nadine can misrepresent others’ views. To them the application of universal human rights–freedom, democracy, basic human rights–to Palestinians living under a brutal occupation is “placating Muslims.”
    Calls to stop seizing peoples houses and farms without compensation are dismissed as “placating Arabs.” Criticisms of ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity are nothing more than “placating Muslims,” who deserve no rights because they view them as a “backward, intolerant people.”
    It’s pretty clear that the Zionist religious nationalists here view themselves as above universal human values, above the law, and superior to everyone else.

    Reply

  138. WigWag says:

    “Kotzabasis, WigWag seemed to be wondering a few days ago why those posts in which you make a serious, debatable point are ignored” (Dan Kervick)
    Actually why the interesting point Kotz made is never debated is rather plain. His point was an astute one, but as I am sure Kotz would be the first to admit, it was hardly an original one. Kotz was making precisely the same point Schumer was; that by offering to conduct their negotiations for them, the Obama Administration provides an incentive for the Palestinians not to negotiate at all. Kotz, Schumer and many other sage observers have also made the point that by making demands on Israel that Obama knew, or should have known, that it wouldn’t comply with, it was Obama himself who was making his stated goal of getting negotiations started much more difficult.
    Steve Clemons in his diatribe against Schumer never responded to this point and Dan Kervick hasn’t either. Neither has any other serious commentator as far as I can tell.
    It seems to me that the lack of response to the Schumer/Kotz allegation is evidence of the fact that the point is irrefutable.
    If it’s not, someone should give it a try.
    Dan’s nasty characterization of the Christian Zionists got me thinking. Dan calls their “conceptions” “bizarre,” “fanatical” and “ever-fluctuating.”
    While Dan may not be a progressive himself, his takedown of the Christian Zionists is perfectly emblematic of the hypocrisy and intolerance of contemporary progressives.
    Today’s regressive-progressives never tire of ranting about the stupidity, mendacity and venality of the Christian right. At the same time of course, their silence about the dangers of radical Islam is deafening.
    Anyone who has an even modest appreciation of history understands that for the better part of a thousand years the Catholic Church, the Orthodox Church and various Protestant denominations have conducted a series of inquisitions, pogroms, forced conversions and various other forms of torture directed against Jews.
    After this long and brutal history, a new Christian philosophy, the various forms of dispensationalism, arises within the Protestant movement.
    Unlike virtually every other form of Christianity, these Christians believe that the Church did not replace the covenant the Almighty offered the Jews at Mt. Sinai. They believe that God’s covenant with the Jews still exists.
    Moreover, they actually like Jews and offer the Jews a critical place in the narrative of their religious beliefs. They don’t believe in forced conversions and in fact they don’t even think that proselytizing the Jews is as important as other sects; they’re willing to leave the conversion of the Jews to Jesus at the end times.
    They are even willing to offer the Jews what they think is a second chance at redemption. Most Christians believe that Jews are destined to burn in hell because they refused to accept Jesus as their Lord and Savior during their lifetimes. Many, (but not all) dispensationalists believe that during the end times Jesus will not only convert many of the Jews still alive but that he will resurrect the dead Jews and redeem them; in a sense offering them a second chance at immortality.
    Dispensationalists have affection for Jews and they are far and away the most important supporters of Jewish national aspirations; even more important than Jews themselves.
    Despite the tremendous support that they offer the Jews, their support is frequently met with insults and derision from the Jewish community itself which is overwhelmingly leftist. The vast majority of Jews support policies that the dispensationalists find profoundly disturbing like abortion and the removal of Christian symbols from the public square. Despite this, the dispensationalists, in the best Christian tradition, turn the other cheek and treat the Jews as their sisters and brothers.
    One would think that progressive people would find this something to cheer about. Instead of killing, raping and torturing Jews, finally there is a Christian sect that loves Jews.
    But instead, people like Dan, and virtually the entire progressive world find these Christians, bizarre and fanatical. Dan says their views are ever fluctuating; but I think it’s pretty apparent that if their views are fluctuating, they are moving in a profoundly positive direction.
    The tendency of progressive people to ignore radical Islam while excoriating the dispensationalists tells you everything about regressive-progressives that you need to know.
    In actuality, the attitudes of the dispensationalists towards the Jews provides strong evidence that they are actually quite a bit more progressive and forward thinking than the people who actually consider themselves to be progressive.
    Maybe before hurling any more accusations in the direction of the dispensationalists, progressive people should remember the admontion “Let he who is without sin, cast the first stone.”

    Reply

  139. rc says:

    100% POA! … except that once the Israelis have done with their ethnic and racial cleansing then they will use exactly the same argument for not being moved.

    Reply

  140. PissedOffAmerican says:

    No. The “key point” is “who IS BEING displaced, and who is displacing them?” TODAY. NOW.
    All this historical argument serves absolutely no purpose except a diversionary one. TODAY, a Palestinian, in the West Bank, or Gaza, will have a property stolen, a loved one shot, a fishing boat sank, an orchard razed, suffer an assault from a settler, be denied access to medical care….
    Need I go on? These attrocites and race based abuses occur DAILY in one of the above described forms or another.
    Wig-wag and Nadine CANNOT defend, justify, or rationalize such attrocities, so they engage posters such as yourself in these long rambling debates about irrelevent events and archaic ideology.
    Who the fuck cares? These arguments about historical justifications and misdeeds are merely a tactic to take the debate AWAY from the FACTS ON THE GROUND.

    Reply

  141. Dan Kervick says:

    “The point is, those armies existed.”
    The key point is to identify who were the invaders and who were the people being invaded. Who was displaced, and who were the people displacing them?

    Reply

  142. Dan Kervick says:

    “No, because that would not be historically accurate. It’s like talking about what the United States was in the year 1500. It wasn’t anything, yet.”
    “Palestine” is predominantly a place name, Nadine, not the name of a country or “national home”. It wasn’t used under the Ottomans, but had been used under earlier Muslim rulers. But mainly it is *our* name for a place, and we recognize a Palestinian as just someone who is native to that place, and a Palestinian Arab as an Arab who is native to that place.
    I have never understood why Zionists think it is so important whether the traditional inhabitants of Palestine shared some collective “national feeling” – or for that matter a feeling of having come from the same kingdom or vilayet. You describe the fact that Palestinian Arabs self-identified by town as though that is a bad or inferior thing unworthy of the world’s respect. To me, it suggests that their attachment to their local spot and their home was more direct and intense, and less diffused by attachment to broader regions or political communities.

    Reply

  143. Dan Kervick says:

    Kotzabasis, WigWag seemed to be wondering a few days ago why those posts in which you make a serious, debatable point are ignored. But can there be any doubt why people habitually turn you off, when so many of your posts consist in cowardly, third-person personal characterizations of other contributors, lamely shouted out to no one in particular?

    Reply

  144. kotzabasis says:

    Dan Kervick, the disciple of David Hume and Bertrand Russell, losing the argument contra WigWag on cognitive grounds attempts to save his intellectual integrity by arming himself with moral strictures.

    Reply

  145. nadine says:

    “”Amazing to write an account of 1948 that omits the armies of Transjordan, Egypt, Syria, Lebanon and Iraq.”
    Nadine, those armies were apparently trying to prevent the conquest of land in which Arabs strongly predominated by an ideologically inspired ethnic minority backed by foreign powers. The armies failed for the most part. But what would you have done if your were them? Meekly hand over your people?” (Dan Kervick)
    The point is, those armies existed. They were a lot bigger and better armed than the Zionists. Telling the story of 1948 while air-brushing those armies out of the picture is not history, but crude propaganda.

    Reply

  146. nadine says:

    “Here comes my moment…
    I think President Obama must be an imbecile.” (Wigwag)
    You just noticed? Obama is as arrogant as he is ignorant, and his reaction to mistakes to repeat them again. But apparently he has just sense enough left to understand the domestic political realities. Before his stupidity sets the Mideast ablaze, hopefully.
    I bet the Obami are cursing out the “power of AIPAC” privately, and calling on their pet leftist front group, J-Street, to combat it. Amazingly. J-Street just put forth a paper calling for the division of Jerusalem with an international body to control the Old City and Temple Mount. So it seems timely to ask again: has this soi-disant “pro-Israel” group ever supported a single pro-Israel position? Because giving away Jerusalem is NOT pro-Israel.

    Reply

  147. nadine says:

    “Wouldn’t a more common-sense way of putting this, WigWag, be to say that Palestine WAS a series of towns that spent hundreds of years under Ottoman rule (and that had spent hundreds of years under pre-Ottoman Arab rule before that)? It seems weird to say that because there was no state of the Palestinian people, there was therefore no Palestine.” (Dan Kervick)
    No, because that would not be historically accurate. It’s like talking about what the United States was in the year 1500. It wasn’t anything, yet.
    There was a series of towns in what later became Palestine that spent hundreds of years under Ottoman rule. The locals didn’t call it “Palestine.” If you asked them what country they lived in, they would have told you “Syria,” though there was little national feeling among them and they tended to self-identify by town. The Ottoman rulers didn’t call it “Palestine”. Pieces of the land were part of three larger “vilayets” or Ottoman provinces: The Vilayet of Beirut, The Vilayet of Damascus, and The Independent Sanjak of Jerusalem, where a “sanjak” is a district. There was no “Palestine” on Ottoman maps.
    In short, as far as the Turks and the Arabs were concerned, there wasn’t any such country as Palestine. There was just Syria until you went far enough south to be in Arabia. The borders were not very distinct.
    “The early Zionists frequently made reference to a place called “Palestine”. Did they not know what they were talking about?”
    Yes, they knew exactly what they were talking about, and so did the British, who called it Palestine or the Holy Land. That’s because they were Christians or Jews who remembered Roman Palestine. They were talking about an area that covers all of today’s Israel plus both the east and west banks of the River Jordan.
    Somewhere around the 19th century, as Ottoman rule waned and the influence of British consular observers became stronger in the region, the local Arabs picked up the use of the name “Filistin” from the British for the region that later became the Mandate of Palestine. But when the British arrived and drew the Mandate of Palestine on the map, it was a novel and arbitrary set of borders as far as the local Arabs were concerned.

    Reply

  148. JohnH says:

    What Wigwag said (almost,) “religious” nationalists simply won’t acknowledge that the fundamentalism sweeping [Israel] has profound implications for whether a peace deal can be forged between Israelis and Palestinians.”
    Under the guise of being a “chosen people,” “religious” nationalists regard war as the purist expression of Zionist ideals. They feel free to engage in ethnic cleansing, stealing homes and farms from their owners, and committing crimes against humanity with alarming regularity.
    And I would agree that such a society reflects 15th century values, and “it would be a good start if they started calling [such a] society what [it] actually [is]; backwards, intolerant…and extremely difficult to make peace with.”
    People like Wigwag “believe that the profound bigotry that is at the root of the [Zionist] nation should be ignored. They are so in love with an anachronistic narrative that came out of the era of colonialism that they are willing to excuse the most illiberal behavior imaginable.”
    Nothing like switching the subject from one side to the other to reveal the amazing psychological projection with which Wigwag views the Muslim world.

    Reply

  149. WigWag says:

    And you will forgive me, Dan, for being more worried about the philosophy of the radical Islamists than the premillenial dispensationalists.
    After all, if I were to fall into the hands of radical Islamists, it is highly likely that like they did with Daniel Pearl, they would harbor a desire to murder me in the most barbaric way they could think of.
    If I were to fall into the hands of a group of radical premillenial dispensationalist Protestants, at the very worst all they would try to do is convert me. If that didn’t work, they would be happy to let Jesus make the same attempt after he resurrected me during the end times.
    You know what? If Jesus actually does resurrect me after I’ve been dead for several thousand years, I think I might just have to convert after all. Once he went to all the trouble to reconstitute my disintegrated skeleton, put meat back on my bones and restore my consciousness, it really wouldn’t be sporting of me to deny his omnipotence would it?

    Reply

  150. WigWag says:

    “Today’s ultra-Zionist Jews are making a fatal mistake by throwing in their lot with the bizarre, fanatical and ever-fluctuating conceptions of Christian Zionists.” (Dan Kervick)
    Well Dan, if you were as unstinting in your criticism of the “bizarre, fanatical and ever fluctuating conceptions” of radical Islamists as you are about Christian Zionists, you might have more credibility.
    It has always been a mystery to me why anyone thinks that the theology of the premillenial dispensationalists should be particularly offensive to Jews. It is true that a basic tenet of this form of eschatological belief is that Jesus will return to earth at the end times, convert most of the Jews and that this will usher in Christ’s thousand year reign on Earth.
    So what?
    Why this should be viewed as any more offensive to Jews than Roman Catholic, Anglican or Eastern Orthodox theology which insists that the Church is the incarnation of the new covenant that replaced God’s covenant with the Jews, is a hard to fathom.
    Are the beliefs that premillenial dispensationalists have about the end times any more strange than Jews believing that the deity opposes eating animals that don’t chew their cud and have cloven hooves? Are their beliefs any less rationale than the belief that the Prophet ascended to heaven from Jerusalem on a flying horse?
    Given the history between Jews and Christians down through the centuries, I’ll take the beliefs of the premillenial dispensationalists any time. I’m delighted that they like Jews and support Israel. As for their belief that Jesus will appear someday and want to convert me and my offspring, I’ll take that up with Jesus when I see him.

    Reply

  151. Carroll says:

    There is an old proverb that says “Don’t push your enemies boat against the water, just tilt it a little so it heads toward a rock.”
    Now why did I remember that…LOL?
    I have been thinking..why does Israel need more land anyway?
    According to the CIA Factbook of 2009 as of mid-2008, the total world Jewish population was estimated at somewhere less than 15 million, or two tenths of one percent (0.2%) of total world population which is around 7 billion.
    7 million are in Israel, 6 million in the US and the others scattered around the rest of the world.
    According to Dennis Ross’s Institute for Jewish Planning, young jews are increasing marrying non jews and turning secular,becoming non practicing jews. An interesting graph at J-Street shows that
    the older dying out Jews are the supporters of Israel and interestingly the 19 to 25 jewish age group starts off as supporters of Israel but by middle age range of 35 to 45 most of them drop out of the Israel centric world.
    Maybe due to liberalism? LOL
    Anyway, not being prolific reproducers and having few children than average it’s possible and likely that zionism will ‘age out’.
    Unless all the US jews moved to Israel I see no reaons for Israel’s concern for more land…it’s their lack of resources that can’t support their population as it is now…hence the grab for Palestines.
    This is the first time I have given this any thought but I would not be surprised if zionism and the whole cult surrounding it didn’t get swept into history’s dust by the time the younger jewish generation reaches middle and old age.

    Reply

  152. JohnH says:

    Gotta love the morality of Nadine and Wigwag–“There never was a Palestine just a series of towns.” Therefore, Israel was entitled to create what the Nazis called lebensraum–ethnic cleansing–of the indigenous people and replace them with people who had lived outside Europe for milennia.
    Religious nationals constantly defend Zionist crimes against humanity, even though they have long since lost any claim to the moral high ground.

    Reply

  153. Dan Kervick says:

    “Dan Kervick has certainly been enjoying some of those moments on this thread and I say good for him.”
    I am not enjoying myself at all, WigWag.
    “Amazing to write an account of 1948 that omits the armies of Transjordan, Egypt, Syria, Lebanon and Iraq.”
    Nadine, those armies were apparently trying to prevent the conquest of land in which Arabs strongly predominated by an ideologically inspired ethnic minority backed by foreign powers. The armies failed for the most part. But what would you have done if your were them? Meekly hand over your people?

    Reply

  154. WigWag says:

    When Steve Clemons implied that Senator Schumer might be suffering from dual loyalties and might more appropriately belong in the Knesset rather than the Senate he was probably speaking with his heart. In a moment of pique he probably revealed what he really thought although after he had a chance to think about it, he must have decided that his remark was intemperate and should be clarified if not expunged.
    We all have moments like that; the difference is that well-respected and famous bloggers like Steve don’t get to enjoy those moments very much. They have credibility to maintain and careers to advance and what they say has consequences. The good news is that the rest of us get to enjoy our outbursts. We might find them entertaining or cathartic or just fun to reduce to writing.
    Dan Kervick has certainly been enjoying some of those moments on this thread and I say good for him.
    Rock on, Dan!
    Here comes my moment…
    I think President Obama must be an imbecile.
    Less than one month ago he excoriated Prime Minister Netanyahu for the announcement about building in Jerusalem and he instructed Secretary of State Clinton to badger the Prime Minister on their famous phone call. When Netanyahu came to town for the AIPAC meeting, Obama treated him rudely and Obama’s spokespeople went on all the Sunday talk shows to expound on what a bad boy Netanyahu was.
    In short, Obama made it plain to all but the most obtuse that relations between Israel and the United States had hit a new low, or at least, a low not seen in decades.
    A few short weeks later two things happened that caused Obama to rethink his temper tantrum. Like Steve Clemons with Schumer, Obama revealed his true feelings when he castigated Netanyahu but when his head caught up with his heart he decided that he had better revise and extend his remarks.
    What precipitated Obama’s about face? I suspect it was two things: Schumer threatened to go public which would have unleashed scores of other senators to heap scorn on Obama’s Middle East policies and; the Quinnipiac Poll came out showing that Obama’s policy towards the Israel-Palestine dispute was deeply unpopular not only with American Jews but with American Christians as well. Presumably his diatribe against Netanyahu played well in Europe but to his consternation, Obama must have remembered that Europeans don’t get to vote in American presidential elections.
    Now, acting with his head instead of his heart, Obama is kissing every Israeli tuchas he can sink his lips into.
    This is how Laura Rozin of Politico describes it,
    More laying on the love for Israel, as Defense Secretary Robert Gates rolls out the red carpet almost literally for Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak. From the Defense Department:
    Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates hosts an honor cordon to welcome Israel’s Minister of Defense Ehud Barak to the Pentagon today at 2 p.m. EDT. The cordon will be held on the steps of the Pentagon River Entrance. Journalists without a Pentagon building pass will be picked up at the Pentagon River Parking Entrance only. Plan to arrive no later than 30 minutes prior to the event; have proof of affiliation and two forms of photo identification. […]
    Secretary Gates and Minister Barak will conduct a brief media availability at 3 p.m. in the DoD Briefing Room, ….
    Barak was in Washington at least twice in March, and met with Gates both times, but one doesn’t remember an honor guard. The White House also made a point today to say that Obama had dropped in on a meeting of Barak with National Security Advisor Jim Jones at the White House today. Presumably, the pulling out the best china now is as much about demonstrating to Congress and Washington players the high respect Obama administration officials are demonstrating for Israeli leaders, and not because Barak has been feeling in any way neglected by the Obama administration.
    See my piece on the Obama administration launching a pro-Israel PR offensive to assure Congress and Jewish groups of its commitment to Israel’s security and to support its strategy of trying to get Israeli-Palestinian peace negotations restarted towards achieving a two-state solution.
    Barak and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (who meet at the State Department Tuesday) both speak to the American Jewish Committee conference in Washington later this week, and Attorney General Eric Holder will keynote the upcoming Anti-Defamation League conference.”
    Is Obama really so dumb that he actually thinks that anyone is going to buy his change of tune? Is he so dense that he believes that everyone is just going to forget how he behaved a few short weeks back? Does Obama really think that Americans are going to conclude that like Paul on the road to Damascus, he had an epiphany and now that instead of hating Netanyahu’s guts he respects and admires him?
    I’m afraid that for Obama the gig is up. American Jews living on the Upper West Side or Santa Monica may be comforted by Obama’s new approach, but it doesn’t matter. After all, in the next election Obama is going to win handily in New York and California. But the Jews living in Florida and the Midwest (where Obama really needs the votes) aren’t going to be convinced so easily; it’s going to take alot more than the red carpet treatment for Ehud Barak for Obama to show that he’s a penitent.
    To lots of supporters of Israel, it’s plain that the real Barack Obama is the one who revealed himself four weeks ago, not the one masquerading as a friend of Israel during the last week.
    It’s too bad that alot of innocent Democrats are going to pay the price this November because Obama revealed his true nature.
    The retraction issued by Steve Clemons is likely to be far more effective than the retraction issued by Barack Obama.
    Bloggers, no matter how charming, prescient and articulate, aren’t held to the same standards as Presidents.

    Reply

  155. Dan Kervick says:

    “Sorry Dan but you have it wrong. There never was a Palestine just a series of towns that spent hundreds of years under Ottoman rule.”
    Wouldn’t a more common-sense way of putting this, WigWag, be to say that Palestine WAS a series of towns that spent hundreds of years under Ottoman rule (and that had spent hundreds of years under pre-Ottoman Arab rule before that)? It seems weird to say that because there was no state of the Palestinian people, there was therefore no Palestine.
    The early Zionists frequently made reference to a place called “Palestine”. Did they not know what they were talking about?
    Those towns in Palestine when the Zionist movement began were predominantly Arab towns. Most of the people who lived there were Arabs. They lived in their homes. The people the Zionists eventually cleansed were cleansed from their homes.
    I reject your barbarous appeal to the ethic of conquest and your primitive and brutal conception of what makes residence in a place legitimate, and something that other people should respect.
    You should be ashamed of yourself. If a high-rolling landlord made a move to evict and displace poor blacks in Florida from the hovels he owned, and in which they had only lived for a decade, you and your liberal Jewish friends in would be outraged. You might even call a meeting. And yet you show only contempt for the attachment of Palestinian Arab farmers and townsmen to the homes and towns they and their families had established and lived in for hundreds of years. And you affect a completely unconvincing pretense of belief in the iron rights of power, strength and conquest. You can’t make that mask fit.
    While I can’t ignore the moral failings of many Palestinian Arabs, I am not impressed with the moral rectitude of their arrogant and contemptuous Israeli conquerors either. But I doubt you even believe yourself the ugly chauvinistic pretensions you are putting forward. When your arguments grow embarrassing, you start to distance yourself from fully embracing them, and hide behind polling and public opinion.
    I would rather be a dead-ender standing futilely out in the cold against brazen aggression and conquest than a front-runner taking warm comfort the in an ignorant majority of ethnic and religious chauvinists, nationalist zealots and right-wing mobs.
    Today’s ultra-Zionist Jews are making a fatal mistake by throwing in their lot with the bizarre, fanatical and ever-fluctuating conceptions of Christian Zionists. How long do you think it will be before these folks receive some wild new revelation about revised “dispensations”, and come to believe that God now wants them to start kicking Jews’ asses again? You won’t build a fortress of Jewish security out of the crumbling bricks of ignorance.

    Reply

  156. nadine says:

    You left 95% of the Arab combatants out of that history, Dan, in the interest of the making the Zionists (who were by far the underdogs) look more power than they were, and the Arabs far less powerful.
    Amazing to write an account of 1948 that omits the armies of Transjordan, Egypt, Syria, Lebanon and Iraq. It’s like writing an account of WWII that leaves out the Nazis and the army of Imperial Japan, but concentrates on the might of the Allies fighting poor little hapless Italy. Poor, poor little Italy! How unfair, their suffering! how undeserved! etc.
    btw, there were no “Palestinians” in 1948, except for the Zionists, so your use of the word is utterly anachronistic. That’s because was no such country as Arab Palestine and the Arabs didn’t want one.

    Reply

  157. Carroll says:

    Back to Iraq yesteryear…the zionistas are trying their best leak and plant stink bombs for an attack on Iran…..they think they can massage the US public into accepting it as inevitiable.
    Preparations for a military strike on Iran
    by Paul Woodward on April 26, 2010
    Ten days ago, the New York Times published a story about a memo on Iran from Defense Secretary Robert Gates to National Security Adviser Gen James Jones.
    David E Sanger and Thom Shanker reported on the contents of this memo, yet neither of them possesses a copy of the memo, nor have they read it, nor did they even report directly on its contents. In fact, it was not until after their story appeared that they received official confirmation of the memo

    Reply

  158. Dan Kervick says:

    Here’s part of what I know of the circumstances of Israel’s founding, Nadine.
    Jewish Zionist settlers owned under 7% of the land in Palestine at the time of the outbreak of the crucial events, and comprised about 33% of the population. Following a sustained campaign of terror by Zionist extremists against the British mandate-holders, the British threw up their hands and prepared to relinquish their mandate and leave. The UN General Assembly, partly caving into the terrorist pressure and partly responding to the Holocaust, authored a partition plan handing 55% of Palestine to the Zionist movement. This inexplicably generous plan was never implemented, as it was naturally accepted only by the Jewish side (not including the Irgun). The British also did not accept the plan. A civil war erupted, eventually leading the the unilateral Israeli declaration of statehood and the 1948 war as the British mandate came to an end, during which the Israelis ethnically cleansed much of the Palestinian Arab population from the 78% of Palestinian territory that they succeeded in conquering for their new self-declared state, and Transjordan’s army laid hold of the remaining 22%.

    Reply

  159. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Another long diatribe of bile from Wig-Wag.
    Ya gotta love the “Progressive Americans have proven what their value system is when they sympathize with the most repulsive behavior imaginable” part. Note how the bigoted wretch consistently refuses to address, recognize, comment on, or defend the DAILY attrocities and “repulsive behavior” committed by the IDF. Shitting in Palestinian’s appliances in homes they have occupied, vulgar and racist graffiti on the walls, targeting peaceful protestors, using farmers as target practice, standing idly by as settlers assualt Palestinian elderly, women, or children. It just doesn’t get much more “repulsive” than that.
    Wig-wag has completely come out of the closet lately, exposing herself as a vicious bigot and a shameless mouthpiece for the unspeakable and indefensible. At least Nadine came in without camoflauge. Wig-wag, obviously, spent a good deal of time here misrepresenting herself as a “moderate”. Obviously, not so.

    Reply

  160. WigWag says:

    Sorry Dan but you have it wrong. There never was a Palestine just a series of towns that spent hundreds of years under Ottoman rule. There never was a nation that belonged to Palestinians because there hasn’t been a Palestine governed by Palestinians since ancient times and the Palestinians who ruled Palestine in those days were Jews. The only sovereigns in Palestine in modern times have been the Ottoman Turks, the British and the Israelis.
    The Arab Palestinians have never enjoyed sovereignty and nor are “entitled” to it. To get any sovereignty at all, they will have to earn it the old fashioned way; either they will win it by force of arms or they will have it bestowed upon them by a greater power like the United Nations. Alternatively, under the right circumstances, Israel might grant it to them by relinquishing some of the territory it won in battle. But they were never robbed of their nation because they never had a nation.
    But of course all of this history is largely inconsequential. The question is what happens now. The bigotry, backwardness and illiberalism of the Muslim world in general and the Arab world in particular makes arriving at a fair solution difficult if not impossible. If Israel were to relinquish the West Bank all it would bring them is missiles raining down on them from closer quarters; under these circumstances they would have to be suicidal to return any territory at all to the Palestinians. As recent waves of suicide bombing have demonstrated, it

    Reply

  161. marcus says:

    Dan, you said that “the world accepted the first stage of the zionist conquest” That`s not exactly true is it ? 20%(minimum) of the world never did, the muslims,did you forget about them ?
    I liked your post alot,apart from that,but tell me ..If an arab army burns down a synagogue and builds a mosque on top of the ruins,does the land underneath remain muslim forever ?
    What makes the land theirs exactly,the reason you offered is that they lived/occupied the land for a long time..is that it ?
    If you ask any displaced persons (N.American indians for example OR JEWS ) they will tell you that occupation FOR ANY LENGHT OF TIME is insufficient reason.
    If an Indian tells you that NYC or NY State is on Indian land I bet you`ll say yea your right but too bad so sad,that was too long ago,and the Indian is thinking,just you wait..even if it takes us 2000 years we will get it back one day ,maybe we can`t force you off so we`ll wait it out until you implode. Well thats what happened to the arabs they finally weakened enough for the jews to return.
    The jews are the Indians not the Cowboys.
    Possession is 9 tenths of the law all over the world
    BTW the jews didn`t wait 2000 years to re-claim Israel by choice,it just happened that way,there was the little problems like ,,,I don`t know…..the Ottamon EMpire,,,etc.. etc..
    One other thing it`s pure BS to say that if Israel retreats that they will live in peace

    Reply

  162. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Is there anyone here that fails to recognize that these two sacks of shit refuse to argue from a foundation of honesty? Despite example after example of Israeli attrocities committed against the Palestinian people, these two dissembling and despicable bigot/liars refuse to address the actual daily ACTIONS of the IDF (SS) jackboots.
    In the evil and blatantly perverse world that these two live in, of sanctimonious and bigoted hypocricy, the Palestinians should just bend over and accept the Israeli campaign of oppression and mass murder, because, after all, they are an inferior people, are they not?
    It sickens me to read the musings of these two abominations.
    And someone should stick a fork in Marcus, he’s not only done, he is severely overcooked. Egads, what a jackass.

    Reply

  163. Dan Kervick says:

    “How much word support did Israel gather from that step?”
    Quite a bit initially. But Israel did not follow up the withdrawal with progress on the road map, and then proceeded over the following years to turn encircled Gaza into a sort of prison camp, and finally a game preserve for religiously wired IDF hunter-soldiers. The energetic ongoing campaign of colonization in the West Bank then also lent credence to earlier suspicions that the purpose of the Gaza withdrawal was to legitimize the West Bank seizures by contrast.
    Also, the spectacle of Israel having to drag Jews kicking and screaming out of their relatively minimal holdings in occupied Gaza, and the widespread public and military sympathy for these settlers, alerted the rest of us to the dangerous and implacable zeal of much of the Israeli public and IDF, to the fiction behind Israeli claims that the settler movement represented only a radical fringe, and showed us why Israel is probably not capable of ending its occupation of the West Bank without strong outside pressure – probably including sanctions.

    Reply

  164. nadine says:

    Jackie, what are you talking about? Winston Churchill was a Zionist all his life. Here is a statement from 1954:
    “I am a Zionist, let me make that clear. I was one of the original ones after the Balfour Declaration and I have worked faithfully for it.” This was merely the introduction. He went on: “I think it is a most wonderful thing that this community should have established itself so effectively, turning the desert into fertile gardens and thriving townships, and should have afforded refuge to millions of their co-religionists who suffered so fearfully under Hitler, and not only under Hitler, persecution. I think it is a wonderful thing.” In a conversation with Israel’s Ambassador in London, Eliyahu Elath, Churchill referred to Israel’s population as “the sons of the prophets dwelling in Zion.”
    http://www.raoulwallenberg.net/?en/articles/last-romantic-zionist-gentile.945.htm

    Reply

  165. nadine says:

    It occurs to me, Dan, that with all this wailing about the “Zionist conquest” that you actually might not know how the Zionists came into possession of what land they have.
    Before 1948, the Zionists bought every piece of land they owned. Prices soared and local landowners made a killing.
    When the British withdrew in May 1948, the new state of Israel came into possession of the state-owned land inside Israel’s borders, which was about 80% of the all the land. Five Arab armies attacked attempting to destroy the new state.
    When the War of Independence ended in 1949, only 160,000 out of about 800,000 Arabs remained inside the borders of Israel, now called the Green Line. During the early 1950s, Israel declared the land owned by the Arab refugees living in other countries “abandoned” and took possession of it. Arabs who remained inside Israel became citizens and were not stripped of their property.
    This is simplified but it gives the basic outlines. Now, which part of that are you calling the “Zionist conquest”?

    Reply

  166. Jackie says:

    Dan K.,
    Your comment at 8:23 reminded me of something I read concerning the state of Israel. Churchill was against a state for the Jews because he knew they would never be happy until they had all of the land or as much as they could get, not just the amount allotted to them. His “chrystal ball” must have been working back then.

    Reply

  167. nadine says:

    “But the world accepted the first stage of the Zionist conquest long ago, whether enthusiastically, complacently or despairingly. If Israelis now withdrew to the Green Line, 90% of the world would first issue a collective gasp, and then begin to entertain the thought that maybe Israelis *do* want to end the conflict, and *don

    Reply

  168. nadine says:

    Dan, your whole myopic and historically illiterate focus on I/P warps your judgment terribly.
    There could have been two independence days celebrated in May 1948; the UN partition also created an Arab state of Palestine. But the surrounding Arab countries didn’t want Israel or Palestine to be created, and had answered all attempts at a compromise solution with the answer that war would settle the matter. They intended to slaughter the Jews; they said so quite openly, and they thought it would be easy. Oops, that didn’t work out as planned.
    The rest flowed from that, including the twin refugee crises: Arabs from Palestine, whose sufferings you are so exercised about; and Jews from the Arab lands, whose sufferings you don’t give a damn about.

    Reply

  169. nadine says:

    “The irony is that in certain respects Israel runs the risk of becoming more like the Arab nations rather than the Arab nations becoming more like Israel. This is unfortunate for the Israelis, the Arabs and everyone else.”
    Agreed; in this sense, the danger is that the Israelis may ‘go native’ among the Arabs. And the “regressive-progressives” (nice coinage) are working hard, if unwittingly, to try to bring it about.
    The more Israelis see themselves judged with grotesque one-sidedness as they try to follow the laws of the war against terrorists who attack civilians and hide behind human shields; the more Hamas- or Fatah-spawned rumors, e.g. Israelis shooting Palestinians kids to sell their organs, are simply reprinted in newspapers around the world without the slightest attempt at fact-checking; the more Palestinian terrorism and incitement is whitewashed or justified, the more Israelis will buy the argument that they are chumps to pay any attention to world opinion, because world opinion wants them dead.

    Reply

  170. Dan Kervick says:

    “Liberals used to consider that religions or cultures that treated the people as slaves of the ruler and women as livestock were backward compared to Europe and needed to be persuaded to modernize.”
    Um, yes, persuaded to modernize. Not compelled to hand over their land to foreign invaders.
    But this whole line of discussion is a ridiculous red herring, as though Jewish settlers are gobbling up Palestinian land because the Palestinians refuse to “modernize”!
    Contemporary Zionists are always trying to convince the rest of us that we should sympathize with the land-grabbERS over the land-grabbEES because the former are morally superior to the latter.
    But this line of discourse only makes Zionist behavior seem more haughty, chauvinistic and odious.

    Reply

  171. Dan Kervick says:

    Good Lord, there is always some excuse for taking Palestinian land, WigWag!
    We have to take their land because Arab women are forced to wear veils.
    We have to take their land because the Mufti liked Nazis.
    We have to take their land because the Ottomans failed to develop the Balkans.
    We have to take their land because of Salmon Rushdie.
    We have to take their land because of dhimmitude.
    We have to take their land because we

    Reply

  172. marcus says:

    Obama first salvo for the november elections was yesterday,his TV ad asked for black , latino and first time voters to come out and vote-that`s multi-culturalism for you…devisive,ethnic voting-blocs.
    It`s ruined canada and seems to be coming to the US..too bad. (it`s pitted one ethnic-group,region against the other..with the notable exception(for now) of Toronto,the most multi-cultural city in the world)
    Today in Montreal a filipino family was awarded $17,000. by a “human rights tribunal” (do you have those yet in the States ? ) for cultural insensitivity,because a lunch moniter asked the child to eat like a Canadian ie;not with his hands as apparentlly he had done in the village he came from.
    The lunch moniter has to pay 5,000.and the principale the balance…Yikes.
    In Canada we call the french and the english the ” two solitudes ”
    Multi-Cultualism is one of the defining projects of the progressives,it weakens the resolve and the rule of law of any nation and sadly the enevitable result is a push-back by the nationalists…it`s a recipe for global chaos..perhaps that is their goal , not to let a good catastrophe go to waste ?

    Reply

  173. Carroll says:

    Left roots need to make common cause with libertarian right on the issue
    by Philip Weiss on April 24, 2010

    Reply

  174. nadine says:

    “Give me a break Wigwag, exactly which enlightenment values do progressives eschew?” (JohnH)
    Objective judgment and equality before the law. Multi-culturalism says it’s impossible and should not be attempted.

    Reply

  175. JohnH says:

    Like Wigwag says, “Living in a neighborhood overrun by thugs it’s simply difficult to avoid becoming a thug yourself,” particularly when your country (Israel) has the opportunity to be the Uber-thug.
    Give me a break Wigwag, exactly which enlightenment values do progressives eschew? Last time I checked ethnic cleansing, stealing land without compensation, and crimes against humanity were not included among enlightenment values. But these are the values that Israel regularly practices.

    Reply

  176. WigWag says:

    “Liberals used to consider that religions or cultures that treated the people as slaves of the ruler and women as livestock were backward compared to Europe and needed to be persuaded to modernize…” (Nadine)
    Liberals still think that, Nadine; at least genuine liberals do. It’s people who characterize themselves as “progressive” who have lost touch with enlightenment values.
    Of course, it’s not just progressives; many of the right-wing Israeli settlers also eschew enlightenment values. The irony is that in certain respects Israel runs the risk of becoming more like the Arab nations rather than the Arab nations becoming more like Israel. This is unfortunate for the Israelis, the Arabs and everyone else.
    Living in a neighborhood overrun by thugs it’s simply difficult to avoid becoming a thug yourself, if just to protect your life and property. All too often Israel does not straddle the line as well as I wish it did. It’s understandable but still unfortunate.
    In today’s world, progressivism is little more than a synonym for intolerance. But don’t blame the liberals, Nadine, liberals endorse the enlightenment; its progressives who eschew it.
    Of course, they make an exception where their own rights are concerned.

    Reply

  177. Carroll says:

    I can’t believe supposedly intelligent people here still bother to address wigwag’s nonsense.
    The ‘only’ liberal and progressive thing wig is against is Obama’s policy on Israel.
    What wig does is shill for Israel under the guise of conservative ‘policy’ vr liberal policy, policy ‘differences’, the ‘enlightment’ etc.,etc….liberals are dumb with dumb policy on Israel…progressives are know nothings, therefore they can’t handle the Israel issue.
    What we have in each of wig’s post are tiny cupcakes called zionist jewish Israel, buried under 20 lbs. of vanilla frosting babble about right vr left and conservative and liberal foreign policy on Israel and other “global concerns” she has that she lifts from Commentary and Israel’s think tank.
    She thinks this makes her look like a serious realistic ‘policy wonk’ commenting on the wrong headedness of liberal Obama policy on Israel instead of just other ‘zionist shill’.
    I’d be better able to skim past her weird poetry and fascination with POA’s private parts than these constant ‘policy cupcake’ regurgitations.

    Reply

  178. nadine says:

    JohnH, Israel is only “sucking up” Obama’s time by Obama’s choice. It doesn’t need to “suck up” any time; the situation isn’t going anywhere, in fact it has been slowly improving on the ground as the PM Fayyad does some (unprecedented) institution building, Gen Dayton continues to train Palestinian troops, Fatah is scared enough to actually cooperate with Israel to keep Hamas down on the West Bank. Obama is threatening to derail these improvements with his ill-considered meddling.
    Obama only chose to make I/P “suck up” his time because he was stupid enough to believe his own campaign rhetoric, that everything could be solved quickly with more American engagement. All has managed to do, as Sen. Schumer correctly pointed out, is persuade the Palestinians that the US will do their negotiating for them and never commit them to anything, so they can happily sit down, refuse to negotiate for themselves, and fling wild accusations about how oppressed they are.

    Reply

  179. nadine says:

    “Why don’t we just try leading a sensible life ourselves? If it is sensible enough, others might be moved to imitate it.” (Dan Kervick)
    Ah, that’s just it, they are moved to imitate it. America is The Great Satan, and Satan is a seducer, don’t forget. Islamism is a kind of Luddite counter-revolution to the ill-conceived modernization movements of the Arab world, which usually took the form of Nazism, Socialism or Pan-Arabism.
    “When exactly is it, WigWag, that liberals mounted a crusade to transform the religion of one quarter of the world’s people, a religion that has existed since 621 CE?” (Dan Kerwick)
    Liberals used to consider that religions or cultures that treated the people as slaves of the ruler and women as livestock were backward compared to Europe and needed to be persuaded to modernize. Now, if those cultures can be classed as “victims of colonization,” their values must approved of when possible and ignored when not.

    Reply

  180. JohnH says:

    Wigwag fundamentally misunderstands progressives, when she says, “today’s regressive-progressives believe that regimes in the Arab world and the larger Muslim world should be placated.” Nothing could be further from the truth.
    Hopefully we all believe in the rule of law and universal values, neither of which is present in the dominant religious nationalist movement in Israel nor in tyrannical Arab regimes. The problem is that the United States coddles both.
    So why is there so much push back among progressives at TWN? I believe it is because the Israel right or wrong crowd is constantly trying to misrepresent the reality of Israel–a brutal, oppressive state that engages in ethnic cleansing, stealing land without compensation, and other crimes against humanity against indigenous Palestinians. The Zionists here prefer to deny that reality and defend the indefensible. And so they receive a lot of well deserved flack for their willful blindness and defense of a century of injustice towards Palestinians.
    No one disagrees that the human rights records of Saudi Arabia and other Arab allies is abysmal. But you don’t see anyone here commenting about how enlightened Arab countries are, as the Zionists here so regularly do.
    That, plus the fact that Israel sucks up an inordinate share of time, attention and government resources, all for a Zionist project of dubious strategic value and indiscernible moral value. I think the Zionists here fully understand this predicament, which is why they can never allow the public to judge Israeli policy on its merits.

    Reply

  181. WigWag says:

    Progressive people don’t need to mount a campaign to transform the Muslim world, Dan, but it would be a good start if they started calling these societies what they actually are; backwards, intolerant, impoverished and extremely difficult to make peace with.
    The idea that pulling back to some pre-identified border (whether its the 1967 border or some other border) will bring the Israelis peace (which is what they supposedly get out of the deal) is preposterous.
    Pulling back to the 1967 borders wouldn’t bring the Israelis peace even if all they had to do was negotiate with the majority of the people who comment at the Washington Note; it certainly won’t be enough to bring peace with Hamas.
    Blinded by their own hatred, progressive people simply won’t acknowledge that the fundamentalism sweeping the Muslim world, has profound implications for whether a peace deal can be forged between Israelis and Palestinians.
    This makes so many of the regressive-progressives both evil and dumb.
    It also means that they are precisely the opposite of what they think they are.

    Reply

  182. Jerry says:

    Senator Schumer called President Obama’s actions a ‘grave’ mistakee but were they?
    Where President Obama made his mistake was calling for the end of settlement activity which was a ‘naive’ mistake. Why call for something you know isn’t going to happen in the near term?
    Then, Prime Minister Netenyahu made the ‘foolish’ mistake of insulting Vice President Biden.
    Next, President Obama called out Prime Minister Netenyahu, which was ‘not’ a mistake at all, and Prime Minister Netenyahu apologized, which was ‘not’ a mistake either.
    So, nobody made a ‘grave’ mistake, not even Senator Schumer, after all, he was preaching to the choir on the particular radio station he spoke with. He wasn’t on the Senate floor calling for the House to impeach President Obama.
    It does show how easy it is to get diverted away from important issues.

    Reply

  183. Dan Kervick says:

    “Until progressivism gets back to its liberal roots…”
    When exactly is it, WigWag, that liberals mounted a crusade to transform the religion of one quarter of the world’s people, a religion that has existed since 621 CE? What roots are you talking about? I missed the great liberal crusade to stamp out Islam. You can call this “tolerating” or “placating” if you like, but I would prefer to call it “sanity”.
    Why don’t we just try leading a sensible life ourselves? If it is sensible enough, others might be moved to imitate it.

    Reply

  184. WigWag says:

    Kotzabasis, what is remarkable to me is that your analysis, which is the same one that Schumer articulated, is never countered by people who agree with Obama. Being that they never even attempt to refute the argument, I can only assume that it is irrefutable.
    Steve Clemons is right about one thing; getting beyond a zero sum game would be a very good idea. The problem is that we never hear any credible recommendations on how to do that. I can actually think of several if anyone is interested in hearing them, but for Steve and for his fellow travelers, getting beyond a zero sum game mostly seems to center on pressuring Israel.
    The chance that pressure on Israel is going to work is zero. First, thank goodness, the type of pressure needed is politically unsustainable in the United States and will be far into the future. The European Governments can’t apply significant pressure because they are weak, feckless and suffer from disunity. It will be a miracle if they can even find a way to prevent Greece from going broke, let alone pressuring Israel. The rest of the world, especially the Chinese and Indians, couldn’t be more disinterested in the fate of the Palestinians.
    Even if pressure on Israel could be applied, it wouldn’t work. Israel is a nation that within the living memory of tens of thousands of its citizens, witnessed friends and family members annihilated. Israel is not going to take chances for peace although they might make a deal that genuinely protects their security. The world is incapable of pressuring Israel and even if the world could pressure Israel, the pressure wouldn

    Reply

  185. nadine says:

    “This is indeed a bizarre discussion – is this kind of exchanges
    normal among Zionist rightwingers in America right now?
    On one hand, there is Nadine, who takes pleasure in calling him
    Barack Hussein Obama and thinks he is a Jew hater.
    On the other, there is WigWag, who says: – No, relax, Nadine,
    it’s just that he’s bought into a philosophy that – if unopposed –
    will take us back to the 15th century.” (Paul Norheim)
    Actually, I don’t say “Barack Hussein Obama” very often — not once on this thread, for example — and if I do, so what? Isn’t that the President’s name? As for thinking that Obama is an anti-Semite, I have given my reasons. I don’t think it’s just Bibi. To Wigwag’s response that having bigoted relatives doesn’t make you bigoted, I reply: You don’t chose your relatives.
    I think WigWag summed up the long-range Balkanizing effects what I refer to as multi-culturalism rather well. Don’t you understand that Wigwag is a liberal, or perhaps I should say what used to be called a liberal before the multi-cultural progressives hijacked the name?
    Richard Haas of the Council of Foreign Relations tries to talk sense to the Obami, noting that the Taliban are fighting for Afghanistan, the Iraqi factions are fighting for the oil revenues, and Iran is fighting for hegemony over the Gulf, and not one of these motives would be removed if there was a sudden miraculous peace in I/P, which Obama can’t achieve anyway:
    The Palestine Peace Distraction http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704448304575196312204524930.html

    Reply

  186. Carroll says:

    Some comments from the Financial Times blog where Staloff accuses Walt of promoting McCarthism by pointing out the dual loyalty of Ross, WINEP and others.
    His column is so ,so…call it totally transparently stupid.
    The first poster comment below sums it up.
    http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2010/04/08/defending_dennis_ross?page=0,1
    SMCI60652
    8:19 PM ET
    April 8, 2010
    Whatever dude
    You can never alter the fact that WINEP is a creation of AIPAC and AIPAC openly advertises itself as “America’s Pro-Israel Lobby.” It’s on the front page of their friggin’ website!
    So we can go round and round in this little tongue-in-cheek game that we all agree to play with our little looks and smurks in the beltway. But just like Bibi likes to say… “Everyone Knows” what the real deal is with WINEP.
    WINEP is simply their to lend clout and credence and provide Pro-Israel staff to the executive branch, because AIPAC advertised its role just a little too well to pull off direct staffing.
    Here’s a challenge… anyone point to ONE SINGLE publication, whether it be from an Arab scholar or Non Arab scholar at WINEP, criticizing Israel (and no, not the “Israel took it too easy on Hamas or Hezbollah in this situation – that was a mistake” ruse), and we’ll talk.
    Until then, save your bologne for someone else Satloff.
    10:22 AM ET
    April 9, 2010
    why is it
    that every past president, vice president, secretary or state or defense, of the US, has gone to AIPACS conference, and non have gone to a pro-palestinian one? or a pro-any-other-country one?
    10:47 AM ET
    April 9, 2010
    “taking a whack at walt”
    reading the comments below: in summary…
    Whack off Staloff, u whack job.
    7:15 PM ET
    April 10, 2010
    Apologetic nonsense
    Dennis Ross is a neoconservative, affiliated with AIPAC. Ross is more interested in the advances of Israeli interests than that of the USA. He is directly responsible for trying to impose a non viable bantustan state for the Palestinians in Camp David 2000. Ross ignored international law and thought that the Palestinians would adhere to the bullying, bribing, blackmailing tactics of his team to accept Israeli needs, instead of Palestinian rights. His book about the Camp David exposes the contempt he had for the Palestinian negotiators and his sorry excuses for having failed the negotiations. Dennis Ross is a fraud and a despicable person, and should be regarded as such.
    8:36 PM ET
    April 8, 2010
    Dennis Ross, His agenda is Israel uber alles
    Walt is absolutely correct in raising questions about to whom Ross is loyal. There is not anything that the aggressive expansionst, apartheid nuclear armed, jewish supremacy, state of Israel that Ross would not condone or cheerlead for. Dual loyalty….you betcha. He’s NOT QUITE Richarld Perle, Feith, Wolfawitz, Libby, Larry Franklin, Martin Indyk, Jane Harman, Jack Abramoff, Marc Rich, or Jonathon Pollard. They are hall of famers. They have all lost jobs for leaking or passing documents to Israel, or passing ginned up bogus intelligence to get us into war on Israel’s behaf. They should be in prison……bubba drop the soap prison! Ross is not quite a hall of famer but his numbers are deserving of consideration. Like Rahm Emanuel, who, while the US was at war, went to Israel to put on an ISRAELI UNIFORM. Rahm doesn’t like to talk about it much. You know how heroes are…..and I don’t see him down at the American Legion much. These guys should not be trusted with a security clearance. Our country ( America) cannot afford it. Perhaps the Bureau of Weights and Measurements!

    Reply

  187. Carroll says:

    Making the rounds…and most illuminating is the comments sections at blogs on Schumer…the lava creeps on.
    Schumer Says He’s On Mission From God (To Help Israel) Plus Clay Swisher Chews Up Senator Chuck
    By M.J. Rosenberg – April 24, 2010, 9:18PM
    On Friday, I posted about Chuck Schumer’s warnings to the President not to dare challenge Binyamin Netanyahu’s settlement policy.
    Pretty ugly stuff and, happily, the White House slapped him down.
    In fact, Schumer is no great Zionist. For him, it’s just politics.
    At least, I always thought so.
    But now this from New York magazine. Here is Schumer explaining that he defends Israel because Hashem (Orthodox for God) tells him to.
    You know, my name …. comes from the word shomer, guardian, watcher. My ancestors were guardians of the ghetto wall in Chortkov. And I believe Hashem actually gave me that name. One of my roles, very important in the United States senate, is to be a shomer — to be a or the shomer Yisrael. And I will continue to be that with every bone in my body …
    Rick Santorum could not sound nuttier.
    I agree with Steve Clemons of New American Foundation who writes this in Washington Note.
    “Schumer’s screed gets to the edge of sounding as if he is more a Senator working in the Knesset than working in the United States Senate.”
    I’m going to ask a stupid question: are there no limits? Answer: there aren’t. Not until Schumer (and Boxer and Grayson and about a hundred other liberals but not on Israel) hear from their constituents, a pass and not only from J Street.
    Liberals and progressives cannot give in to their representatives on this issue. Enough is enough, even if God is giving these guys their marching orders.
    My buddy, Clay Swisher, at Al Jazeera English, who was at the 2000 Camp David summit and wrote the best book about it, has his own take on Schumer. Clay includes some great links too. Is New York really the state that gave us Senators Wagner, Lehman, Javits and Bobby Kennedy?
    Here’s Swisher…
    Israel’s man in the US Senate
    By Clayton Swisher in Americas
    Middle East
    on April 25th, 2010
    Democrat Charles Schumer takes on the Obama administration’s Middle east policy, throwing his support behind ISrael in the row over settlements.
    From my Doha perch it’s easy to avoid the whole “dual loyalty” debate currently raging in Washington. That does not mean that as a reporter I have shied away from raising it where appropriate.
    But in case anyone missed it, there has been a growing argument in recent weeks among Washington policy wonks over this very issue, with scathing editorial salvos fired between the formidable Harvard Professor Stephen Walt and the pro-Israel Washington Institute’s equally outspoken Robert Satloff.
    Their debate centres on whether “dual loyalty” is an appropriate term to use when describing US government officials who put Israel’s interests ahead of America’s, even when it jeopardizes US national security.
    According to Politico’s Ben Smith, it seems US Senator Charles Schumer (Democrat-New York) has added more grist to the intellectual food fight.
    In effect, Schumer has done to the Obama administration the equivalent of what Binyamin Netanyahu, the Israeli prime minister, did to Joe Biden, the US vice-president, on his disastrous visit to Israel in March.
    Last week, as America’s top Mideast envoy (and former Democratic Senator, one might add) was on his way to Tel Aviv, Senator Schumer quite literally aired his contempt not only for Mitchell but the entire Obama Middle East policy.
    In a radio interview with a conservative Jewish radio talk show, Schumer offered these ramblings:
    I should start by noting this is exactly the kind of proxy battle Prime Minister Netanyahu likes to fight, as former Clinton-era negotiators told me last year.
    Sowing instability in Obama’s backyard makes it ever more complicated to pursue any meaningful changes to the decades of status quo that tilt in Israel’s favour.
    Its further unclear to me just how Senator Schumer, himself a Jew, thinks the Palestinians should be “pushed to get there”.
    One wonders if he had today’s events in Silwan in mind.
    It’s one of just many provocations going on in the Arab neighborhoods of East Jerusalem that could spark into a wider, if not regional, Third Intifada.
    Its a gathering threat that the US’s Central Commander and senior Middle East general flagged in recent senate testimony. Schumer must have tuned out when General Petreus described the danger to US troops caused by Israel’s ongoing occupation.
    That, or Schumer is among those who refuse the evidence, accepted by the US’s other close foreign allies, that the denial of those inalienable rights so strongly revered by Americans, including life, liberty, and property, are corralary to Al Qaeda’s ability to draw fresh recruits.
    Political logic suggests he would be playing nice with fellow party members at this moment in time, keeping his disagreements less public, if at all.
    As uber-Washington insider Steve Clemmons points out, trashing his own team mates on national security items hardly help his bid to become the US’s next senate majority leader.
    Which is why I’m inclined to believe “dual loyalty” should instead be characterised as “single” loyalty when it comes to Israel.
    All of this, of course, could be Schumer’s savvy way of diverting attention from his own personal foibles.
    It was revealed over the weekend that his top campaign contributor, John Paulson, is a “key figure in the Goldman Sachs fraud case”.
    The mammoth hedge funder and CEO of Paulson & Co. steered $100,000 to Schumer in the first few months of 2010 alone. The Security and Exchange Commission has not charged Schumer’s top financial backer, but then again, how they spend their workday is anyone’s guess.
    As a member of the senate’s powerful Banking and Finance Committee, the body supposed to protect Americans from corporate schemes, Schumer’s association with Paulson may prove as toxic as the assets so many corporations peddled off onto millions of middle class Americans, many of them Democrats.
    Those unscrupulous links might sound typical coming out of Israel’s knesset, but one might expect the US’s distinctive legislative body to be held to a higher standard, provided all its members are on the same team.

    Reply

  188. ... says:

    i guess they must be ‘anti-semite’…………..
    when is this lie going to be put to rest? when will the nadines of the world stop using it as a battering ram on those who don’t agree with zionists?
    Video footage shows Israel firing on nonviolent protest in Gaza
    http://mondoweiss.net/2010/04/video-footage-shows-israel-firing-on-nonviolent-protest-in-gaza.html

    Reply

  189. kotzabasis says:

    Would Edward Luce and Daniel Dombey, and by implication Clemons, expect Robert Gibbs to say that Barack Obama agrees

    Reply

  190. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Yes Paul, and they consistently avoid discussion of Israeli ACTIONS, because those actual actions reveal who the true “increasingly evil, counterproductive and illogical value system”

    Reply

  191. Paul Norheim says:

    “In my opinion, it’s not that Obama is an anti-Semite; it’s that
    “…he’s bought into a philosophy, what currently passes as
    progressivism, that has morphed into an increasingly evil,
    counterproductive and illogical value system.”
    “Left to their own devices, progressive people would take us
    back to the 15th century which of course means that they are
    not progressive at all.” ” (WigWag)
    —————————–
    This is indeed a bizarre discussion – is this kind of exchanges
    normal among Zionist rightwingers in America right now?
    On one hand, there is Nadine, who takes pleasure in calling him
    Barack Hussein Obama and thinks he is a Jew hater.
    On the other, there is WigWag, who says: – No, relax, Nadine,
    it’s just that he’s bought into a philosophy that – if unopposed –
    will take us back to the 15th century.

    Reply

  192. WigWag says:

    “I do think Obama is anti-Semitic, btw; I don’t you can sit in Jeremiah Wright’s church for 20 years if you aren’t.” (Nadine)
    I understand why you say that but I don’t think you’re right. I’ve never heard about Obama saying anything anti-Semitic and there’s nothing he’s done pertinent to the Israeli-Palestinian dispute that demonstrates anti-Semitism.
    Obama has an intense dislike of Bibi (many very pro-Israel American politicians share that dislike)and he has a naive, and frankly immature sense of what it will take to create peace between Israelis and Palestinians but there’s nothing anti-Semitic about that.
    It is true that he was extraordinarily close to Reverend Wright who is a classic anti-Semite but I don’t think that means Obama has anything against Jews. I have several relatives that I am close to who have bigoted views; I don’t think that makes me a bigot.
    In my opinion, it’s not that Obama is an anti-Semite; it’s that he’s bought into a philosophy, what currently passes as progressivism, that has morphed into an increasingly evil, counterproductive and illogical value system.
    What self proclaimed progressive people support today is intolerance, religious hatred, the worst sort of sexism and hysteria.
    Left to their own devices, progressive people would take us back to the 15th century which of course means that they are not progressive at all.
    I think that Obama merely looks like an anti-Semite to you, Nadine, because like many people who come out of an academic environment, Obama is inculcated with this backwards ideology.
    You might call Obama and many of his fellow travellers a regressive-progressive.
    Hopefully these people will be beaten at the ballot box before they succeed at making the world an even more intolerant and hateful place than it already is.

    Reply

  193. PissedOffAmerican says:

    So, lets send these fuckin’ wackjobs a few more billion. After all, effigies of American Presidents are expensive.
    http://palestinenote.com/cs/blogs/blogs/archive/2010/04/26/kahanists-organize-burning-of-obama-effigies-in-ritual-bonfires-updated.aspx
    Didi Remez
    Blog Post

    Reply

  194. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Even here, the tone and narrative is shifting.
    Who can fail to note Dan’s epiphany as he tires of the lies and propaganda and becomes more disillusioned by Obama’s failure to move the bar?
    Factual information is the key, and getting that information to the public opens the door. Thats why posting FACTS at our media’s blogsites is so important. One person becomes informed, informs another, who in turn informs two more, etc..
    But even as the narrative shifts, it is my personal opinion that those who have troubled to inform themselves still do not recognize the danger Israel poses. History tells us Israel will stop at NOTHING, even murdering United States’ citizens and troops to advance their own agenda. The further Israel falls from graces, the closer we get to another Israeli false flag attack designed to garner American sympathy and support. The next “trifecta” is going to be a doozy.

    Reply

  195. Israel is on notice says:

    Egypt dismisses Israel’s Hezbollah Scud warning
    (AFP)

    Reply

  196. Dan Kervick says:

    “That’s what Goldstone is about, the attempt to deprive Israel of self-defense via lawfare.”
    Oh, BS. Israel has launched some targeted raids on Gaza rocket sites since Cast Lead, and I said nothing about them. Israel caught shit from the legitimate world community for Cast Lead because Cast Lead was atrocious. It contained several instances of indiscriminate murder and targeting of non-combatants, perpetrated by craven young religious punks egged on by their radical racist rabbis in the increasingly Jewish-jihadist IDF.
    Stop pretending Israelis can’t defend a green line border, and that that is the reason for further aggression. You already admitted Israel just wants more land.

    Reply

  197. jhm says:

    Hon. Sen. Schumer’s many progressive stands may fairly be
    lauded, but

    Reply

  198. Carroll says:

    Avri at Harrezt……
    “From the Manifesto of Marx and Engels to the “Jewish state” of Theodor Herzl, the official “Visionary of the State.”
    Herzl

    Reply

  199. Carroll says:

    Assassinating and bombing have been the Israelis favorite pastime. Here’s another American they tried to kill…our amb to Lebanon.
    http://www.jimmycarterlibrary.org/library/oralhistory/clohproject/Lebanon.pdf
    At the Carter Library are the papers and oral history of Amb John G. Dean.
    The link above is about his time as US Amb to Lebanon from 1978 to 1981.
    If you scroll down to the DEAN 241 section, about 3/4 of the way down on the page above you can find his account of how the Israelis tried to assassinate him (and his family) in 1979 while he was the US Amb to Lebanon.
    It is worth noting that Amb Dean was a German jew, immigrated to the US when he was 12 in 1938. Reading his entire background is worthwhile for anyone with the time. Especially his description on the zionist in Germany. In Dean’s account of pre Hitler Germany most upper class German Jews were fully assimilated into German society and loyal to Germany and regarded their nationality and their religion as seperate things. His description of the zionist in Germany is about their plans ‘to use German jews to divert German resources and wealth to the zionist cause and as a springboard for a Jewish homeland in Palestine. His descriptions of living in small town America after his family moved here is also very interesting.
    What earned Dean his assassination attempt by the Israelis was his reputation for promoting US even handedness in mid east policy while he was in Lebanon.
    Also he talks about the Palestines and his opinions of how Israel’s warring with Lebanon is tied to the Israelis ‘Palestine problem’.
    *One very amusing ..and typical…thing Dean related about his service in Lebanon was when a US Jewish Senator went to Lebanon to carry our a program of encouraging ‘Jews to marry Jews’ …evidently he thought this would ‘help’ Israel.

    Reply

  200. Carroll says:

    Here is the back story to Gen. Barrow’s letter from Beirut.
    Ask yourself, who really bombed the US Embassy in Beirut?
    Israel Charged with Systematic Harassment of U.S. Marines
    By Donald Neff
    Former Time Magazine Bureau Chief, Israel
    Washington Report, March 1995
    It was 12 years ago, on March 14, 1983, that the commandant of the Marine Corps sent a highly unusual letter to the secretary of defense expressing frustration and anger at Israel.
    General R.H. Barrow charged that Israeli troops were deliberately threatening the lives of Marines serving as peacekeepers in Lebanon. There was, he wrote, a systematic pattern of harassment by Israel Defense Forces (IDF) that was resulting in

    Reply

  201. Carroll says:

    People know of the USS Liberty incident in which Israel killed 34 US sailors and wounded 47.
    But there are many other eposides in which Israel has used US troops for their own agendas.
    Letter from Marine Commandant Barrow to Defense Secretary Weinberger
    April 4, 1983
    The following is the complete text of a letter from General Robert H. Barrow, Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps, to Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger. General Barrow sent a copy of the letter to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
    March 14, 1983
    Dear Mr. Secretary:
    I must formally register my deep concern over the two unprovoked incidents in Beirut of this past weekend involving Marines of the Multinational Force and members of the Israeli Defense Forces. I had considered commenting on earlier incidents between Marines and the IDF but corrective measures, which were rapidly implemented in February 1983, appeared to defuse the situation. I can no longer remain silent on this continual problem of provocation from the IDF.
    In addition to the U.S. MNF incidents, I have received information concerning serious harassing incidents by the IDF of U.S. officers attached to the United Nations Truce Supervisory Organization (UNTSO). These particular incidents involved USMC and USA officers in life-threatening situations, replete with verbal degradation of the officers, their uniform and country. Unfortunately, and of greater concern to me, incidents of this nature are the rule, rather than the exception.
    It is evident to me, and the opinion of the U.S. Commanders afloat and ashore, that the incidents between the Marines and the IDF are timed, orchestrated, and executed for obtuse Israeli political purposes. The U.S. has been prompt and forthcoming in defusing previous problems and has established a viable communications procedure between the Marines and IDF. The IDF, however, persist in creating serious incidents.
    I am distinctly proud to have Marines participating both as members of the Multinational Force and with UNTSO under the auspices of the United Nations. It is inconceivable to me why Americans -serving in peacekeeping roles-must be harassed, endangered, and degraded by an ally.
    Previous demarches and diplomatic initiatives have not eliminated difficulties between our Marines and the IDF. Additionally, the expansion of communications links and the use of Liaison Officers will not preclude additional problems, unless the attitude and actions of the Israelis are altered. It is time for firm and strong action, to demonstrate to the Israelis that a role as a peacekeeper does not presume weakness. If anything, the Israelis should respect our efforts in this region.
    Warm personal regards,
    Sincerely,
    R. H. Barrow

    Reply

  202. nadine says:

    “What we have now, actually have had all along, is a very slow moving lava stream creeping out onto the public”
    …the creep is of slugs like you making Nazi propaganda respectable again. See, you say, the Jews, you can’t trust’em, they always bring it on themselves, just like they did in Germany. Gotta remove all those dual-loyalist Elders of Zion from public life. There should be a law. Right, Carroll?

    Reply

  203. ... says:

    nadine quote “That’s what Goldstone is about, the attempt to deprive Israel of self-defense via lawfare.”
    that is what israel has done on the palestinians… make it illegal for them on all levels, even for peaceful demonstrations…
    goldstone is a wake up call to the world and israel that israel will be held accountable at some point, in spite of israels attempts at avoidance of such…

    Reply

  204. Carroll says:

    I am thinking back from the day Israel first crossed my radar screen in 2001 to today. There were a lot of people like me who heard Netanyahu’s famous Freudian slip on MSNBC about how 911 was “good for Israel” and it made the hair on the back of our necks stand up and start waving red flags.
    Then we heard the Dick Armey’s say their “number one job in congress was protecting Israel”. Then we have seen every year our politicians take the oath at AIPAC and vow to spend every last dime and drop of American blood to give Israel everything it wants. We see our politicians spend their congressional recess in Israel instead of their own districts with their own constituents. We read Ackerman’s interview in which he said “Israel was his reason for being in congress”. We heard Waxman say that “no one who isn’t sympathetic to Israel will be on his committee”. We have a VP who calls himself a zionist. We have seen the zionist mouthpieces call a former US President a anti semite and have him disinvited by democratic house members to the Democratic convention. We have watch Lieberman and others churn our resolution after resolution and bill after bill trying to set Iran up for an attack by America knowing full well the devastating consequences to the US, the ME, and the world in general, of such a war. We see our media saturated with propaganda and zionist talking points. We have seen the sleazy viciousness of the jewish community in going after people like Cole, Tutu, W&M, Freeman, Goldstone and a host of others. We have seen Israeli military aid increased even as America faces dire financial straits,Americans remain unemployed, without health care, increasing impoverished, and dumbed down by shoddy education in our schools, our infrastructure in shreds nationwide. We have watched as our politicians cheered on the bombing of Lebanon, the slaughter of Gaza and rushed Israel more weapons and thousands of gallons of jet fuel for their planes from an American refinery in Texas while Americans were paying the highest prices ever for fuel.
    We see private citizen US Jews like Lauder and Koch take out ads in the NYT, ‘approved by Netanyahu’ blasting US policy and Obama although US policy conforms to international law.
    We listen to all the little net zionist activist threaten to leave the dem party if they don’t obey Israel, brag about how they, the US Jews, control the elections because of their enclaves in NY and Fla. and etc..
    What we have now, actually have had all along, is a very slow moving lava stream creeping out onto the public regarding Israel and the Schumers among us.
    Every time the US Israeli volcano burps, the lava creeps out a little further and then further into mainstream America.
    The lava ate up the anti semite slur. It ate up the holocuast excuse.
    Now the lava is eating up the ‘Traitor’ taboo.
    Just read the comment sections of the major blogs or the WP and the NYT and or any US newspaper.
    Observe Steve, whose gut reaction was to call Schumer on his disloyalty and only walked it back due to a second thought about his career position.
    Traitor is a loaded word. And now it is becoming ‘loaded and locked’, as Ms.Palin would say, by more and more Americans as they realize exactly what has and is happening in ‘Isrmerica’ due to the influence of the jewish zionist community, their cohort evangelicals, the AIPAC owned politicians in our congress and lack of an honest media in America.
    I don’t think the zionistas are bright enough to understand the lava factor. I fully expect their eruptions to continue.

    Reply

  205. nadine says:

    As you know, Israel is perfectly capable of defending its borders, once those borders are established. It doesn’t matter if some Palestinians continue to reject Israel’s legitimacy or not.
    No, Israel is not capable, if people like you say:
    1. Israel’s efforts to make peace don’t count unless the Palestinians accept them, no matter what they offered or how hard they tried. Israeli efforts never happened.
    2. Hamas missile barrages and other terrorist attacks don’t exist or are justifiable.
    3. Israel’s attempts to defend itself from said missile barrages constitute prima facie war crimes because Hamas doesn’t wear uniforms and hides behind human shields, so civilians will suffer.
    4. The Palestinians never have no responsibilities for making peace or curbing terrorist militias. They are justified in making maximalist irridentist demands forever.
    That’s what Goldstone is about, the attempt to deprive Israel of self-defense via lawfare. Read the Traub piece I linked.
    And it certainly does matter if Palestinians accept the existence of Israel, however reluctantly, or if they continue a campaign of terrorist attacks against it.
    Your summary of the history is ludicrously one-sided, as if the Arabs never decided to make wars, or never did anything but suffer as innocent victims. I’m sure the Palestinians aren’t happy over the course of the 20th century. I’m sure the descendants of the German residents of Konigsburg aren’t happy either. But nobody stuck them in squalid refugee camps for generations until they get to go home to Kaliningrad.

    Reply

  206. JohnH says:

    “Truth is, I spent the first half of the last decade, and the majority of my adult life in the Israeli camp.”
    Out of college I worked two years in an Arab country. Whenever the subject of Israel came up, I had to finesse things, because my heart was still with Israel. Then Israel invaded Lebanon in 1982, presided over the massacres of Sabra and Shatila, and then spared Sharon, the Butcher of Beirut, from any real accountability. It was then that I got it.
    That’s why I use the words criminal and psychopath to describe the government of Israel. The only thing that restrains their behavior is fear of US public opinion. So they carry out their brutal campaign against the Palestinians very slowly and deliberately, making sure not to kill more than 1000 civilians in a few weeks or to dispossess too many all at once. Otherwise, the campaign of ethnic cleansing and concentration of the Palestinian population into walled ghettos continues without restraint.

    Reply

  207. downtown says:

    Schumer and Nadler are two of the most progressive/liberal voices on domestic issues but obstinate reactionaries on any issue concerning Israel. They are willing to suspend their “core beliefs” if they deem them to be adversarial to Israel’s cause. Ipso facto, this characteristic stands in direct opposition to the term “core belief”.

    Reply

  208. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Does anyone else take note that these dissembling bigots carry on their cross-talk while completely IGNORING the real and documented NAZI-LIKE attrocities committed daily by the IDF?
    Wig-wag’s predictions hold wieght ONLY if the narrative continues to be dictated and fabricated by the Israeli Megaphone and Hasbara efforts, in league with the lobbies here in the states. Thats why these sacks of shit never respond to the posted examples of documented attrocities committed by the IDF. These attrocities are indefensible, and simply by virtue of responding to the posting of such examples, those such as Nadine, Wig-wag, and their despicable ilk would be instrumental to a change in the content of the narrative. So instead, they just ignore these documented cases of IDF human rights abuses despite the fact that the cat is out of the bag.
    Truth is, I spent the first half of the last decade, and the majority of my adult life in the Israeli camp, having been a victim of the quite successful propaganda efforts of Israel and its lobbies, and the limited access to information that the pre-internet media afforded us. But, like I said above, the cat IS out of the bag, and momentum is building as the narrative shifts and the truth begins to rear its ugly head. I don’t envy Wig-wag’s chore, because it is becoming increasingly difficult to defend Israel without exposing yourself as an immoral and inhumane maggot. And as Nadine has so succinctly demonstrated, defending Israel with lies is simply a non-starter, because the truth is so readily accessable. Whats left then, except the vile bile that rolls of the keyboards of those such as Marcus, who don’t even bother to conceal the stench of their own ideology with anything resembling moral or humane concern for their fellow humans?
    Change the narrative, tell the truth, and Americans will cast Israel to the winds, because we are basically a good and decent people. And good and decent people cannot help but be repulsed by what Israel has become.

    Reply

  209. nadine says:

    Wigwag, you say this WH knows how to read polls, but ideology always seems to come first with this crowd. Normally, poll-reading politicians don’t use every parliamentary trick in the book to jam down sweeping legislation on a partisan vote when voters disapprove of it by 15 points or more; but we saw Obama do exactly that. He’s counting on an awfully short attention span.
    As for I/P, I think Obama has a hard time hiding his pro-Palestinian POV, and this problem will crop up whenever the subject does. I do think Obama is anti-Semitic, btw; I don’t you can sit in Jeremiah Wright’s church for 20 years if you aren’t. Obama just gives a pass to Leftist Jews like Rahm Emmanuel on the grounds that their ‘orthodox’ views excuse their unfortunate affiliations. jmho
    Judging from my liberal Jewish relatives, they figured out a while back that Jimmy Carter hated Israel, and they are starting to figure out that Barack Obama is Jimmy Carter for all intents and purposes.

    Reply

  210. Dan Kervick says:

    “If Obama doesn’t change his tune and stop insulting American Jews and tens of millions of their Christian allies by being excessively critical of Israel , it could be Netanyahu who enjoys the last laugh.”
    And when do these dead-ender American Jews plan to stop insulting the rest of us?

    Reply

  211. Dan Kervick says:

    Nadine, you are far too concerned with Palestinian words and mental attitudes, and not nearly enough focused on the bearing of those words and attitudes on achievable political realities.
    As you know, Israel is perfectly capable of defending its borders, once those borders are established. It doesn’t matter if some Palestinians continue to reject Israel’s legitimacy or not. And stealing land is stealing land. It doesn’t matter whether the people you steal it from are saints or assholes; or whether they acknowledge you, or recognize you or respect you, or whatever other gesture of submission it is that Israelis crave. Stop fixating on Palestinian thought and speech crimes against Israel. The idea that you are compelled to keep taking land because the abjectly hapless Palestinians don’t fall to their knees and mouth the correct formulas of submission is a dodge.
    The United States has now tolerated, and frequently cheered and supported, a century of dispossession of Palestinian Arabs by the Zionist movement. Your attitude always seems to be that since the Palestinian scum refuse to acquiesce submissively in the previous rounds of destruction of their homes, appropriation of their lands and razing of their villages and towns inflicted upon them, Israelis are just going to keep on taking until they do acquiesce. Well, that’s a shitty attitude, and the fact that the US Congress has allowed the United States to become associated with such a base and persecutory attitude undermines US credibility and stature every day, and exposes Americans to completely unnecessary blowback from a world that stands appalled by the approval of such blatant colonialism by the world’s preeminent democratic power.
    Are Israelis really just fighting for a secure homeland? Or are they after some weird psychic reward in the form of the humiliation and capitulation of a weak and defeated people. The way it looks to me is that a lot of Jews, with the collective consciousness of having been shat on for centuries, now have a desperate need to shit on someone else – someone far weaker than they are – to avenge themselves on the world.
    All this talk about the Palestinians refusing to *recognize* the Israelis, or acknowledge Israel’s *right to exist*. What’s the point? Is dominating the Palestinian’s physical bodies not enough for you? You need to dominate their minds and their speech as well? This concern would matter if the Palestinians had the capacity to act on their psychic resistance. But they don’t. The psychic resistance is pretty much all they have left.
    A large number of Palestinian Arabs are *never* going accept the legitimacy of Israel and the morality of its creation. What dignified human beings *could* possibly accept the legitimacy of being thrown out of their homes? Do *you* accept the legitimacy of the expulsion of Jews from Spain, or from Russia? Get real.
    How much of a victory do you need? Haven’t Zionists already taken enough? Stop stealing land from the Palestinians. Stop this thick-minded and fanatical Jewish jihad to take the last few scraps of land that you have left Palestinians after a century of despoliation.

    Reply

  212. WigWag says:

    Nadine, the White House crowd may be insular but they do know how to read polls and they are intensely concerned about getting Obama reelected.
    As the Quinnipiac Poll demonstrates, Obama’s foreign policy is actually pretty popular. The public is especially supportive of the President’s policies in Afghanistan.
    The one area where the President gets negative grades is on the Israel-Palestine issue.
    When asked, which side are you more sympathetic with, 57 percent selected Israel while a paltry 13 percent selected the Palestinians.
    When asked their opinion of Prime Minister Netanyahu, 30 percent of Americans had a favorable opinion while only 14 percent had a negative opinion; most Americans didn’t know enough to express a view.
    When asked whether the President should be a strong supporter of Israel, 66 percent of the respondents said yes while a mere 19 percent said no. But when asked if Obama was a strong supporter of Israel, only 34 percent said yes and 42 percent said no.
    These results are bad for Obama and they’re bad for Democrats. Most ominously for Obama, despite the fact that the public approves of most of his foreign policy initiatives, 44 percent of Americans disapprove of his handling of the Israel-Palestine conflict while just 35 percent approve.
    Amongst Jewish Americans (who are far more supportive of Obama in general than Christian Americans) 67 percent disapprove of his policies pertaining to the Israel-Palestinian dispute while just 28 percent approve.
    If Obama wants to be reelected he needs to turn public perception on all of this around. Jews make up a tiny percentage of the electorate, but the fact that Christian Americans are so supportive of Israel and so critical of Obama’s Middle East policies represents a major challenge for the President.
    And while Jews are very few in number, in a close Presidential election how they vote in swing states could spell the difference between victory and defeat for Obama. Jews vote in higher percentages than any other ethnic or religious group in the United States and they are amply represented in swing states.
    In Florida, there is a significant Jewish community in Dade, Broward and Palm Beach Counties. In Pennsylvania, a significant number of Jews live in the Philadelphia suburbs. In Ohio there is a wealthy, engaged and politically active Jewish community in both Cleveland and Columbus. In Colorado there is a small but significant Jewish community in and around Denver and the Jewish community in Las Vegas has grown enormously in the past decade.
    Each of these states will be in play in 2012 and Obama will not be able to afford to take any of them lightly. Obama is still significantly more popular with American Jews than with other ethnic groups but his shtick is wearing very thin very fast.
    If Obama doesn’t change his tune and stop insulting American Jews and tens of millions of their Christian allies by being excessively critical of Israel , it could be Netanyahu who enjoys the last laugh.

    Reply

  213. JohnH says:

    As Nadine says, “the other side has a different model of the world than you do.” That’s for sure.
    Condoning ethnic cleansing, illegal settlements. Embracing war as the purest expression of Zionism. Religious nationalists who believe themselves a “chosen people” whose right it is to steal land from the “unchosen.”
    Why would anyone be proud to tout that psychopathology as a desirable model?

    Reply

  214. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “It took Christiandom 2000 years to accept this plain historical fact , I think Muslims can be brought around much,much, faster”
    Of course. White phosphorous and cluster bombs really have a way of speeding things up, don’t they? Who needs gas showers when you can simply incinerate them?

    Reply

  215. nadine says:

    “The old adage goes “you can attract more flies with honey than with vinegar.” Maybe Obama should give it a try.” (WigWag)
    It’s clear the WH crowd is very insular and is dominated by Robert Malley types. Schumer sounds as if he had to lay a siege just to get the WH to listen to his opinion at all — and then they blew him off, so he went public.
    On a slightly different topic, James Traub has an interesting piece on humanitarian law, asymetric warfare and the UN in World Affairs, called “Fearful Asymmetry: Reading the Goldstone Report.” Traub notes in passing that when the Sri Lankan government killed at least 7,000 civilians in the course of crushing the Tamil Tigers, the UN Human Rights Council not only did not send a Goldstone to investigate them, it actually commended them on their humane handling of the affair.
    Money graf:
    Public reaction to allegations of human rights law violations has itself become a matter of strategic calculation in the struggle between Israel and Hamas, as it has in other insurgencies against Western powers. (Provoking a state contemptuous of human rights into violating such standards has little public-relations value, which is probably why, say, the Chechens never tried such a tactic against Russia.) A report by Israel

    Reply

  216. WigWag says:

    “Senator Chuck Schumer may have just lost any shot at succeeding Harry Reid as Senate Majority Leader if the Nevada Senator stumbles in the upcoming tough 2010 challenge he is facing.” (Steve Clemons)
    In his previous post excoriating Schumer, Steve speculated about the effect that Schumer’s condemnation of Obama’s Middle East policy might have the New York Senators attempt to become Senate Majority Leader.
    Thanks to Obama, things look so bad for the Democrats that it’s not beyond the realm of possibility that Schumer might just be competing for the role of Senate Minority Leader not Senate Majority Leader.
    But one way or the other, there is likely to be a race to lead the Senate Democrats. Reid looks like he’s a dead man walking. Likely Republican candidate Sue Lowden is handily ahead of Reid in all of the polls. She’s a former reporter for the NBC affiliate in Las Vegas, a former State Senator and previously served as the head of the Nevada Republican Party. Reid won his last few elections by incredibly small margins, but it is still astonishing to see how poorly he is doing against Lowden.
    The former Miss New Jersey has based her campaign on overturning the recently passed health insurance reforms, eliminating the capital gains tax and opposing same-sex marriage.
    The fact that she looks like she’s very likely to prevail shows how deeply unpopular Obama is in this swing state. Last time around Obama won Nevada; in 2012 unless there is a major turn around, the state will go Republican.
    Harry Reid has been a strong supporter of Israel but Lowden is even more willing to challenge the Administration if it allows any space between itself and the Netanyahu Government.
    Here’s a little bit of what Lowden has said on the subject,
    “Israel is not just a global democracy worth defending

    Reply

  217. nadine says:

    Dan, someday you’re going to have to accept that the other side has a different model of the world than you do. We’re not just “twisted by partisanship” or “blinded by love”, we think we have a working model of goals and motivations but you don’t.
    I think your model of the world says the less powerful or non-western players cannot be taken at face value for believing what they say they believe, which is that Israel must be destroyed. So we’re back to pretending that Hamas does not exist, or shucks, they may say that, but they can’t really believe it; they really just want a state in the WB and Gaza. I think this is counter-productive wishful thinking.
    If you’re right, Israeli unilateral pullbacks might lead to progress; but if I’m right, they will only lead to new demands and more war. So far, I submit that the track record of unilateral Israeli pullbacks suggests that I’m right.

    Reply

  218. samuelburke says:

    you did a good job apologizing or shall we say clearing the record
    about having insinuated that an american jew in the senate has
    dual loyalty….mazel tov to you and whoever chastised you.
    you get to go to more parties in washington and more invites to the
    bestest parties.

    Reply

  219. ... says:

    dan and paul – thanks for your comments… steve seems to be skating on thin ice and appears to want to take back a previous post by stating “I want to make clear that I know that Senator Schumer is a loyal American.”
    loyalty is the issue… are these politicians and individuals who are so very one sided in their views on all things to do with israel the right people to be directing and having input on usa foreign policy? loyalty is definitely an issue and the question has to be asked : where does their loyalty reside in – israel or the usa? to say both is to avoid the question…

    Reply

  220. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Yeah Schumer is a GREAT fuckin’ American. A real patriot. And if Israel gets us into a war with Iran, I’m sure he will celebrate what will undoubtedly be a burgeoning body count, and Schumer will praise the adventure.
    These people are a blight on mankind. What Israel is doing is despicable beyond redemption, and anyone continuing to support the daily attrocities committed by Israel can ONLY be doing so through a preverse kind of bigotry that turns day into night, black into white.
    Read the comments of Marcus, Birnbaum, Nadine. These people NURTURE anti-semitism with their
    hateful indifference to Palestinian suffering and Israel attrocities. How is Schumer different from these three? He is NO KIND of patriot. Whatever he has accomplished for good is tempered by his complicity in evil. A truly good man could NEVER support what Israel is doing.

    Reply

  221. Dan Kervick says:

    “You are trying to turn a basic foreign policy disagreement into a loyalty litmus test.”
    Loyalty-shmoyalty. I just think a lot of American Zionists are blinded by love, and are in extreme denial about the nature of the Israeli state and society to which they are fatally attracted, and about the tremendous risks that the US public is exposed to by the US government’s frequent public endorsements of territorial aggression, colonialism and brutal collective retribution by their ally.
    Of course, there are some people – both Jewish and non-Jewish, for whom either ethnic fidelity or religious commitments take strong precedence over the sometimes conflicting demands of citizenship, or the appeal of fellowship and camaraderie with their countrymen. These folks will not be moved much by evidence of adverse security impacts on Americans, no matter how strong that evidence becomes.
    But there are many other people who just need to wake up and have a, “My God, what have we done?” moment.

    Reply

  222. JohnH says:

    Not all of us are enamored with Schumer.
    1) He represents Wall Street
    2) He represents Israel
    3) As head of the DSCC, he was responsible for selecting conservative, business-oriented Democrats and stiffing others with more grassroots support.
    It’s obvious whose side Schumer is on, and it’s not ours.

    Reply

  223. Joe M. says:

    just for the sake of clarity, i did not mean, in any way, to equate any Palestinians to the level of zionist. I would never equate the occupied with the occupier.
    Long live Palestine! And the zionists will either grant us our rights to our land, or we will fight until they go back to Europe. That is their only choice.
    Regardless of what some colonial imperialist like Clemons thinks is “responsible”.

    Reply

  224. Joe M. says:

    Clemons says:
    “They have both been unbelievably irresponsible with their own security interests and with their presumptions about unconditional support of the US whether or not progress is achieved.”
    The unbelievable thing is that you, Mr. Clemons, have such a colonial mind. The implications in this statement is that you think you rule the world, and have the right to define the conflict yourself, without respect to the reality of people living that reality.
    You may go to parties with state department officials, and the occasional palestinian or zionist hoodlums, but it’s not your right to dictate the situation. Just because you have power, does not mean you are just or have the right to dominate.
    It is too sad that the rest of the world can’t control your shitty life the way you want to control theirs. That they can’t say your think tank is corrupt and withdraw funding, or that they can’t sanction your DC home, force you to live in a cage like Gaza, and occupy your land, ethnically cleanse your family, then call you “unbelievably irresponsible” for putting the Palestinians of Gaza at risk because you refuse to make peace while you starve!
    People like you are the reason this conflict continues, it’s certainly not the fault of the Palestinians. You fund Israel, you support arms sales to Israel, maintaining the “special relationship” where the USA is party to the occupation, fund the occupation, provide the weapons used to control and destroy the Palestinians… and you have the audacity to say that “both” are causing you to suffer! Clemons, You can be a real bastard, you know that?
    Leave us alone. It’s when I hear people like you, who think you are enlightened in your support for occupation and oppression, that I am most disgusted.
    It’s truly pathetic. get a damn life, and leave us out of it.

    Reply

  225. Outraged American says:

    I would say what I think of Netan- Schumer but it would be
    unprintable on a family website.
    Just go see what Norheim quoted from Caroll’s quote from
    Schumer’s radio interview. It’s right above here, so it shouldn’t be
    hard, even for the mentally challenged. *cough*
    Then remember Waco. The doco “Waco: The Rules of Engagement”,
    will allow you to watch Schumer in action as he defends the killing
    of American citizens, including innocent children, by the US
    government.
    Waco: the Gaza Strip in Texas? Wonder what Schmuer “the
    guardian” would do if the FBI took out the settlers in East
    Jerusalem and the West Bank for being “religious fanatics”?

    Reply

  226. Paul Norheim says:

    I doubt anybody here thinks that Schumer is a hypocrite. Lack of
    ideological and intellectual coherence, yes – but that is
    something he shares with a lot of progressive American Jews.
    But there is no reason to believe that he is not sincere:
    “Nachum, my name as you know comes from a Hebrew word. It
    comes from the word shomer, which mean guardian. My
    ancestors were guardians of the ghetto wall in Chortkov and I
    believe Hashem, actually, gave me name as one of my roles that
    is very important in the United States Senate to be a shomer to
    be A. a shomer for Israel and I will continue to be that with
    every bone in my body for of the other is against me.”
    From a recent radio interview, quoted by Carroll on a thread
    below.

    Reply

  227. marcus says:

    The core issue is the arabs non-acceptance of a soveriegn jewish state.period.
    ANY solution that does not address this will fail.
    The only resolution (for the long run ) is ironically,religous in nature, religon I think is the root of the problem and the solution.
    If and when the muslim world learns to respect and accept judaism-then there will be peace-not before.
    Advocating one geo- political solution after another is counter-productive and disingenuous.
    I appreciate steve`s balanced views but the current track is guaranteed to fail. If he trully wants to “consider alternative approachs” he should try mine.
    You don`t have to be jewish to appreciate the foundational role of judaism to Islam and Christianity.
    It took Christiandom 2000 years to accept this plain historical fact , I think Muslims can be brought around much,much, faster.

    Reply

  228. larry birnbaum says:

    I am impressed by Steve Clemons’s willingness to walk back his overheated and dangerous rhetoric in this instance and to take responsibility for it publicly.
    What I would say additionally to him, and many of the folks above: You find Schumer to be a credible and progressive guy on many issues. You must imagine then that he’s being a hypocrite about Israel because he and many of his constituents are Jewish. Thus Clemons’s “blind spot” locution.
    I think it would be worth your while to give him the credit that he isn’t simply being a hypocrite, and entertain the possibility that his positions on the Arab-Israel conflict and how it might be resolved are genuinely what a credible and progressive person might conclude from serious study and reflection. That, in other words, it is you who may have the “blind spot”, because your diagnosis of why he is taking the positions he takes is too superficial. If you want to be genuinely serious in thinking about this subject, you shouldn’t let yourself and your thinking of the hook so easily.

    Reply

  229. nadine says:

    “But these America Zionists need to start doing more to prove they have their priorities in order when the security of the US public is in question.” (Dan Kervick)
    Dan, you do realize this is a “you have to stop beating your wife” kind of proposal? I think your notion that American troops are endangered by new apartments in Ramat Shlomo is quite frankly insane, so I certainly don’t intend to reorder any of my priorities to get in line with it.
    You are trying to turn a basic foreign policy disagreement into a loyalty litmus test.

    Reply

  230. nadine says:

    Jerry, proving you won’t be bullied by picking fights with small allied states while humbly “engaging” with large enemy states, is the foreign policy equivalent of proving you’re a tough guy by running away from the bully at the neighborhood bar, then going home and kicking your dog. It doesn’t impress anybody.

    Reply

  231. nadine says:

    “The question is whether a two-state solution will solve anything as long as regional actors see the two state solution as an interim step which makes their attacks on Israel even more effective than they already are.
    Given the ability of assymetric warfare to inflict damage and given the reluctance of the international community to sanction massive retaliation against those carrying out assymetric warfare, a two-state solution might be a long time in coming.” (WigWag)
    Thank you for injecting this dose of reality. For the life of me, I don’t understand how a position like Steve Clemons (“they’ve both been irresponsible”) can be called “realist” when it is so detached from reality. Does Steve really believe that you can make the problem of Hamas and Iran go away by pretending it isn’t there?
    Yet that is Obama’s position, which Steve is loyally backing. The WH answer to pushback from Congress against Israel bashing is a new PR blitz. That seems to be this WH’s answer to everything: don’t change the problematic policy, just have a PR blitz. The counter-productive policy remains in place.
    This will not end well.

    Reply

  232. David says:

    Having followed the Palestine-Israel debacle since college half a century ago, I have alternated between hope for some semblance of a positive resolution and serious doubts that Israel is about anything but expansion through permanent settlements. I have no idea how the Palestinians are supposed to absorb and accept what has been done and is being done to them. And I have no respect for most of their leadership, which has mostly proved a boon for Israel’s rapacious leadership. Just look at a map of Israeli settlements in the Occupied Territories, and the arguments of apologists for current Israeli policy fall flat on their faces.
    Chuck Shumer, who has made sense on so many issues, seems so blinded on this issue that he cannot make good sense, and so lashes out. There is nothing reasoned or responsible about his attack on the administration.

    Reply

  233. Jerry says:

    Hey, I admire President Obama for coming to the defense of his Vice President.
    The call-out had the desired effect, it let the ‘world’ know:
    1.) that the President supports his team,
    2.) that the President is not afraid to take on Israel,
    3.) that the President won’t be bullied,
    4.) that it required an apology which Netenyahu delivered at the White House, and
    5.) that VP Biden will be back.
    The call-out may have rattled conservative, American Jews but that is their problem. Maybe they should put a leash on their prima donnas.
    President Obama’s position with regard to Israel is well known as he stated it in Cairo.
    Having served in the Senate, President Obama knows Senator Schumer: no foul called.

    Reply

  234. Dan Kervick says:

    Schumer has done great work for liberals on judiciary issues over the years. He’s not afraid to fight to keep conservative ideologues off the bench.
    But these America Zionists need to start doing more to prove they have their priorities in order when the security of the US public is in question. The US public can’t be required to carry the albatross of Israel’s rogue behavior forever, nor put up forever with all the blowback that posture brings.
    Even Schumer seems to agree that Biden is a good guy. But Israeli intransigence had clearly driven Biden to the end of his rope during his recent trip to Israel. He was forced to remind his hosts that America *lives* are at stake. And Biden was only echoing the point David Petraeus had already made without the Bidenesque passion.

    Reply

  235. WigWag says:

    Steve, everyone gets carried away talking about the Middle East, not just you. It’s an occupational hazard of caring deeply about a subject.
    Your discussion of Israeli security is interesting. You say,
    “I also agree with much of what Jones said assuring Israelis that their security is also of great import to the U.S. — and that these two goals are not irreconcilable.”
    It is unclear whether Israeli security and the creation of a Palestinian nation are compatible as long as a significant portion of the Palestinian population cleaves to the views of Islamist groups like Hamas. It is also unclear that Israel can ever be secure next to a Palestinian nation as long as Iran has the inclination and ability to ship rockets to recalcitrant Palestinian groups.
    Of course a two state solution is both desirable and inevitable; Palestinians must govern themselves just like Israelis must govern themselves. The question is whether a two state solution is possible without destroying Hamas and degrading Iran first.
    It might be possible but the challenges are daunting. The idea that inserting international troops as peacekeepers or even U.S. or NATO troops solves the problem is simply untrue. It took U.S. troops 3 years to secure the ten mile stretch of road from the Iraqi Airport to downtown Baghdad.
    The Center for a New American Security (CNAS) has issued a very thoughtful report on the difficulties that a peacekeeping force in the Middle East would encounter. The last and most interesting chapter is written by Israel-critic Mark Lynch.
    It is worth a careful look. Here’s the link,
    http://www.cnas.org/node/4362
    Without a two state solution the misery of both sides in the Israel-Palestine dispute will continue unabated. The question is whether a two-state solution will solve anything as long as regional actors see the two state solution as an interim step which makes their attacks on Israel even more effective than they already are.
    Given the ability of assymetric warfare to inflict damage and given the reluctance of the international community to sanction massive retaliation against those carrying out assymetric warfare, a two-state solution might be a long time in coming.

    Reply

  236. JohnH says:

    I have no doubt that Schumer is a loyal American. I DO doubt his fitness to be a legislator when he implicitly supports criminal activities, such as illegal settlements.

    Reply

  237. Steve Clemons says:

    Roberto — I care. I think Schumer has raised lots of doubts about his judgment, and I called him on it. I think he crossed lines. I don’t need to go over lines myself in challenging his obsessive compulsive behavior on Israel that leads him to views that undermine America’s interests — and frankly, Israel’s. All best, steve

    Reply

  238. Roberto Antonio Hussein Eder says:

    Steve,
    Sometimes your comments bewilder me. You say, “I want to make clear that I know that Senator Schumer is a loyal American.” Frankly, who cares? And what does it mean to be a “loyal” Ametrican? C’mon, Steve, your comment implies that loyalty is a virtue, no matter what the government’s position and no matter how outrageous it might be.

    Reply

  239. Outraged American says:

    Schumer & Netan YaHoo- separated at birth? Only their mother
    knows for sure.
    Waco…Chuck. Is that what you have planned for all of us?

    Reply

Add your comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *