Mustafa Barghouti, Yossi Klein Halevi, and Yoram Peri Offer Depressing Analysis of the Israeli Elections

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I encourage you to watch this 15 minute analysis of the Israeli elections from Fareed Zakaria’s GPS. Former Palestinian Presidential candidate Mustafa Barghouti, Shalem Center Senior Fellow Yossi Klein Halevi, and American University Professor Yoram Peri offer a bleak assessment of the Israeli elections and the prospects for a peace agreement.
I think this kind of back and forth supports the view that Steve Clemons and others have taken – that the Israelis and Palestinians are incapable of solving their problems on their own – and the United States must engage regional and international stakeholders before the facts on the ground become even worse.
–Ben Katcher

Comments

77 comments on “Mustafa Barghouti, Yossi Klein Halevi, and Yoram Peri Offer Depressing Analysis of the Israeli Elections

  1. Sweetness says:

    Cee writes: “How silly. I only mentioned it after Nasi tried the Jew
    hatred nonsense. Is this author on how Israel uses people
    Jewish?
    Here’s the deal:
    • One of the anti-Semite’s creeds is: I don’t hate Jews; I just
    hate what they–generally their “leaders” do–and am, in fact,
    trying to protect them against the inevitable blowblack when all
    the Jews have to pay the price for just a few.
    • One of the common strategies is: I can’t possibly be selling
    anti-Semitism because, see?, here’s a Jew saying/doing the
    same thing.
    The absurdity of this strategy–and it’s total dislocation from
    the truth–should be obvious at a moment’s glance. Jews are
    perfectly capable of saying terrible things, holding to falsehoods,
    and doing all of the bad things everyone else does. The FACT
    that a Jew said or did something says nothing about the truth of
    the statement or the morality of the act. Period.
    So your quoting a Jew and making note of it says NOTHING
    about whether the quote is true or whether Cee spouts anti-
    Semitic nonsense. The fact that she thinks it does shows her
    poor thinking skills. Quoting someone, Worth, who, apparently
    is a non-Jew is equally meaningless in accessing what Cee
    believes or in evaluating the accuracy of what Worth says.
    (Small aside: Even though Carroll used to go on about how Jews
    are always trying to keep themselves “separate,” it’s entirely
    possible that “Worth” IS a Jew, but changed his name to fit in. A
    good friend of mine has the name Smith which, I can assure you,
    was not his family’s name back in Galicia.)
    Onto Cee’s article…
    Apparently, we are to believe that because Jarrah “appears to
    have been” a spy for Israel…and Jarrah’s cousin (let’s accept
    that’s true) was (let’s say this is true, too) one of the 19 hijackers
    (weren’t they Saudis?) that we are to draw the conclusion
    that…what? 9/11 was an Israeli plot? Wasn’t it our very own
    POA who cried foul when Barghouti’s distant relative was
    brought into the circle of suspicion?
    Apparently, Cee thinks it’s a bad thing that Israel has spies.
    Okay, I can get with that. But what does Cee have to say about
    all the other countries, including our own, who field armies of
    spies? Seemingly nothing. Somehow, we are to swallow the
    notion that it’s PARTICULARLY noxious when Israel does.
    My question is…why?

    Reply

  2. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Gads, can’t you at least use a little imagination in your efforts to insult? Or at least a little originality?
    Even Varanasi’s “handyman” slurs show more inventiveness than your boring banter.
    Geez man, you better stick to brief, shallow, and meaningless comments about issues. You’re far better at that than you are trying to out insult a real pro.
    BTW;
    .
    That’s a period.
    ,
    That’s a comma.
    P
    That’s a capital letter.

    Thats an apostrophe.

    That’s acne.

    Reply

  3. ... says:

    keep the diarrhea flowing pos…

    Reply

  4. PissedOffAmerican says:

    BTW, Pimples, the cost for bee pollination is figured by the acre. To be exact, the current price, according to my grower customer, is $350.00 per acre.
    Now mind you, Pimples, big agri-business is no longer conducted by tobacco spitting yahoos wearing overalls and muttering about Aunt Betty’s ailing heifer. Most of these people have extensive educations, and use state of the art science to maximize yields.
    So, lets take your incredibly stupid comment, “i doubt the guy profiting off him to such an extent is interested in telling him about them either….”, and have a look at it.
    If the bee contractor is getting $350.00 an acre, wouldn’t it behoove him to use the most efficient pollinator as possible? Greater pollination per bee=faster pollination=less hives=less employees=less equipment=less overhead…@$350.00 per acre=greater profit.
    So, when examined, does your comment really make any sense?
    Look. You don’t like my posting style. Fine. Tough shit.
    I don’t have much respect for your lazy and stupid ommission of proper punctuation either. Big effin’ deal. But I haven’t made it my online project to make it my business to constantly remind you I think your posting style is ignorant, uninteresting, unimiginative, and aesthetically unattractive.
    Perhaps your fascination with my abrasiveness is a bit obsessive. Ya think?
    I note you share styles with the Varanauseum Trollifeceseum insect. Perhaps its merely an indicator of the youth the two of you must share. My daughter used to use your literary style, but she grew out of it, finally, at twenty one years of age. One hopes you will mature at a comparable rate.
    Or, if you’ve passed that milestone already, there’s always re-incarnation. If you’re lucky, you’ll come back as a Mason bee, and you can sting me in the ass, after which you can blissfully pollinate to your heart’s content. But karma will undoubtedly find you teaching basic English writing skills to first graders at an elementary school in Arvin, where 99% of the kids don’t speak English.

    Reply

  5. ... says:

    keep th4e diarrhea flowing pos…

    Reply

  6. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Yank that corncob out, you jackass. You haven’t shown me a damned thing that says I should give a shit about your opinion.
    And do you really think the high end agricultural contractors got to be high end by ripping off third generation farmers? But hey, maybe you’re right. A guy farming a few thousand acres of almonds, as just ONE aspect of his farming operation, obviously could use the advice of some online idiot that is too fuckin’ lazy to even bother to punctuate.
    I’ll pass your advice on to him. I’m sure he will demand your name, and offer you an immediate consulting position.

    Reply

  7. ... says:

    a lot of folks aren’t aware of mason bees or that they pollinate at about 100 x the rate of a regular bee..i doubt the guy profiting off him to such an extent is interested in telling him about them either….
    your sense of hostility and humour seem intimately tied… being antagonistic and hostile, calling others names and being derogatory on a regular basis is nothing to be proud of poa.. pos appears to be a better pseudonym for you.. if you want to cop your bullshit attitude with me here anymore expect to be referred to as such…

    Reply

  8. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “mention to the almond grove guy spending that money for bee’s to check into getting some mason bees.. they pollinate at a much higher rate then regular bees and some people are unfamiliar with them.. i am sure they can survive in california..”
    Gee, Pimples.
    I hardly think I need to lecture a major almond grower, who just spent four hundred thou on bee pollination, on the finer points of bee keeping.
    I’m quite sure the contractor he uses, who does a coupla million a year, is quite capable, and far more versed in what species work most efficiently for a healthy grove.
    But thanks for your advice.
    Are you an expert on bees, or is your insect expertise limited to cultivating the admiration of online gnats, such as the Varanauseum Trollifeceseum that has infested our favorite forest of debate?

    Reply

  9. Neo Controll says:

    You ‘guys’ are still going at it?
    BTW, the Sweetness/c*nt comment was real (Sweetness tells a fib?), and was removed. Not everyone has the complete truth; certainly not the Varanasibot.
    Keep trying.
    — NCHQ

    Reply

  10. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “P.S. maybe the Hasbara has erased your post”
    http://www.giyus.org/

    Reply

  11. varanasi says:

    well, only a damned fool – Cee – would insinuate that israel was involved in last year’s jihadist attack on mumbai, particularly since all the perpetrators were pakistani and pakistan officially admitted last week that the attack was planned and launched from their home soil!
    Cee is just dumb beyond belief, and yes, anti-semitic.

    Reply

  12. Cee says:

    As to Cee, she seems to think that the veracity of her piece is
    enhanced by its author being Jewish.
    How silly. I only mentioned it after Nasi tried the Jew hatred nonsense.
    Is this author on how Israel uses people Jewish?
    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/19/world/middleeast/19lebanon.html?_r=3&hp
    Lebanese in Shock Over Arrest of an Accused Spy
    By ROBERT F. WORTH
    Published: February 18, 2009
    MARAJ, Lebanon — For 25 years, Ali al-Jarrah managed to live on both sides of the bitterest divide running through this region. To friends and neighbors, he was an earnest supporter of the Palestinian cause, an affable, white-haired family man who worked as an administrator at a nearby school.
    To Israel, he appears to have been a valued spy, sending reports and taking clandestine photographs of Palestinian groups and Hezbollah since 1983.
    It is not the family’s first brush with notoriety. One of Mr. Jarrah’s cousins, Ziad al-Jarrah, was among the 19 hijackers who carried out the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, though the men were 20 years apart in age and do not appear to have known each other well.
    Mark Regev, a spokesman for Israel’s prime minister, Ehud Olmert, declined to discuss Mr. Jarrah’s situation, saying, “It is not our practice to publicly talk about any such allegations in this case or in any case.”
    Suuuuuure he kept quiet.

    Reply

  13. ... says:

    mention to the almond grove guy spending that money for bee’s to check into getting some mason bees.. they pollinate at a much higher rate then regular bees and some people are unfamiliar with them.. i am sure they can survive in california..

    Reply

  14. Sweetness says:

    POA: “Sweetness’s insulting post to Carroll was removed, varanasi,
    as it should of been. I can’t link to it.”
    Oh really? That’s convenient, especially as you’re always telling
    others to “go fetch.”

    Reply

  15. varanasi says:

    “You are welcome to dig back and pull up the comment. But you won’t, because it would underscore your misrepresentation of my comments.”
    no, i won’t, poa, because i have a full time job which commands most of my time and attention. i simply don’t have has much time on my hands as you do, to waste it searching these archives to prove a point you will never concede.
    and, no, i have no disdain for tradesmen in general. i come from india, where hundreds of millions – beautiful and insightful people – earn less than $2/day. unlike you, i could care less about your neighbors costs. $ is not a barometer for success in my book. my disdain for you is based upon your objectionable treatment of me and others on this blog
    you picked yet another fight with me in this thread. although arthur can’t see it – he lives on another planet – and cee, your fan, is too busy spreading vile innuendos about jewish conspiracies – YOU are the one who initially ruined this thread, by telling me to “go fuck myself” in response to, well, nothing.
    and that is why i mock you. you’re an easy target and a nasty man. you (and Cee) know ABSOLUTELY nothing about the country of my birth or the issues it is dealing with. you both know NOTHING about south asia in general. yet, you both think you have informed opinions. kind of like your last president, huh?
    and as far as bakersfield, i can’t think of more fitting place for you to live. although the deserts mountains and forests of california – i’ve hiked through more than 400 miles of them on the pct – are God’s country, bakersfield is something else entirely. i couldn’t get past the ever present smell of manure, or was that you?
    happy sweeping, handyman. and go easy on that bakersfield meth.

    Reply

  16. PissedOffAmerican says:

    The ONLY thing that will preclude posts from appearing is posting more than two links. Two is max.
    Sweetness’s insulting post to Carroll was removed, varanasi, as it should of been. I can’t link to it. Its interesting, however, seeing Sweetness lie about this, because I’m quite sure that I’m not the only one that remembers the slur. It reminds me of this ignorant red neck talk radio host here, Inga Barks, who once said, on the air, that “The Red Cross hates jews”, then, the following day, denied saying it. Brilliant, eh? Put your comment out for thousands to see or hear, than deny it. Might as well just open the show by saying, “Hi, I’m Inga Barks, and I’m a liar”. Or in Sweetness case, “Yeah, I know lots of people remember me posting it, but I’ll deny it anyway, not EVERYONE saw it. Someone is bound to believe me.”
    But, I do recall my comments about Mumbai, and as I recall, I commented that we cannot trust to be told the truth, that we will undoubtedly never learn the truth about the attacks. I stand by that statement. You are welcome to dig back and pull up the comment. But you won’t, because it would underscore your misrepresentation of my comments.
    I chuckle everytime I see you demean tradesmen, and paint Central California as some backwater trailer park. (You really don’t realize those kinds of comments validate everything I’ve said about you, do you?) Personally, I find the huge wealth that is in the Bakersfield area extremely refreshing compared to the Malibu/Santa Monica/Beverly Hills crowd I used to cater to. The oil and ag money is far less pretentious, the people far more pleasant to deal with.
    Yesterday, talking to one of my almond grower customers, he confided in me that his costs for bee pollination of his groves, for one month, was $411,000.00. Thats just for the bee keepers to place the hives in his groves for pollination. And the company that supplies these hives services many growers. It would be interesting to see the scorn you’d heap on the lowly owner of the company that supplies the hives for those groves, eh? Just a bee keeper in that backwater Bakersfield town, eh varanasi?
    Have I told you to go fuck yourself yet today? Thats all you deserve, varanasi. Its exactly what you’ve asked for since you got here. And I’m more than happy to oblige.

    Reply

  17. questions says:

    Hey ArthurDecco,
    I just looked up the book you’re referring to. It doesn’t look super-convincing to me (too general a theory to explain anything accurately) but it doesn’t look like something that was censored. More likely the automated system had some issue. If you put too many links in a post, it’s automatically rejected. If you’ve posted too many times in a day, it’s rejected…. Sometimes the captcha thing seems to have a mind of its own. But Steve doesn’t seem to remove things unless he’s editing his own work, kicking out an advertiser, or removing wickedness. And this thread clearly hasn’t descended to “wickedness”…..

    Reply

  18. varanasi says:

    “What’s going on? What madness is this?”
    uh, how can i say this diplomatically? … i think you’re a tad bit out of touch, arthur.
    reread this post and tell me who first injected the BS.
    your buddy, the pissed off handyman, is the one who destroyed this thread. not me. not sweetness. not “…”
    although, Cee’s cleary anti-semitic and brainless innuendo about israel’s involvement in the mumbai attacks – which pakistan has already taken responsibility for – also insults the collective intelligence of TWN readers.
    P.S. maybe the Hasbara has erased your post 😉

    Reply

  19. arthurdecco says:

    Last night I submitted a post that referred to John Ralston Saul’s seminal book, ‘Voltaire’s Bastards’ as a way to somehow explain the rationale behind Varanasi’s appalling rudeness and inability to argue constructively and honestly and my post was “held for review”. This after Varanasi told me in an earlier post to “Go Fuck Yourself, arthurdecco”. Nice touch that.
    I came online tonight expecting to either read my post or to read an explanation from Steve Clemons for why it was refused publication. Nothing.
    Instead I read even more asinine back and forths, high fives and other bullshit from the same venal clowns that never ever bring an original thought to any conversation they infect.
    Puzzling, for sure. But then I have no way of crawling inside Mr. Clemons’ head in order to see what has motivated this act of censorship. And he obviously doesn’t consider it necessary to offer me an explanation for why dishonest creeps like our latest idiot, Varanasi, or the old stand bys Tahoe Editor, Sweetness, et al are permitted free reign to insult, demean or lie about anyone or anything they choose but I’m not allowed to challenge these cretins without being held for review, which actually appears to mean: Not allowed to post?
    What’s going on? What madness is this?

    Reply

  20. Sweetness says:

    Okay, I guess it’s time for a little late afternoon humor.
    POA quotes me: “As I said when you first brought this up a while
    back…it must have been you who issued that epithet (assuming
    it was issued at all)”
    Then POA says…
    Actually, what you said was “I don’t recall”.
    But what POA leaves out is that I then said something like:
    “Must have been you.”
    The same thing I’m saying now. It’s much more your style than
    mine.
    As to Cee, she seems to think that the veracity of her piece is
    enhanced by its author being Jewish. This is one of Carroll’s
    gambits: If a Jew said it about another Jew, it must be true.
    But let’s just go along for the ride. Let’s assume that Mossad
    used the Chabad house for meetings with Hindu parties. What
    is wrong with that? Does that, in your view, justify the killing of
    innocent people? Don’t Indians or the Indian government get to
    meet with whomever they want, especially in India? Do
    Pakistanis have the right to come to India and kill Indians and
    others visiting someone else’s country?
    As far as arms selling goes, I wish it didn’t happen. But Israel
    isn’t even close in size to the biggest arms sellers, including the
    US, Russia, probably China. I guess you could say that arms
    dealers always “hope” for war, so maybe Israel “hopes” for
    eternal strife between India and Pakistan, but she’s hardly
    CAUSING the strife as you attempt to say in your usual ham-
    handed and oblique way. Nor could she prevent peace from
    breaking out. You seem to be a big believer in the long arm of
    the Zionist spider, or some such.
    When the world stops selling and buying arms for all sorts of
    horrible and legitimate (I guess) purposes, please let me know.

    Reply

  21. varanasi says:

    Cee,
    clearly you represent the “bottom of the barrel” in TWN readership.
    congratulations on making a fool of yourself in an international forum.
    but don’t worry, you and your buddies poa and carroll can still pontificate about the “jewish conspiracy,” even in india.
    i wonder if you are shameless and shameful or just plain stupid…

    Reply

  22. Cee says:

    Nasi,
    Boo hoo. Now address why India is closing down those hostels.
    More from the site above. btw…the author is Jewish.
    Because Lubavitcher outreach offices are located in some of the most important political, corporate and university centers throughout the world, the Lubavitchers have put together a network that is incomparable for corporate and international espionage as well as for the secret exchange of information. Because Chabad Houses could potentially act as safe houses, where there would be no record of a person’s stay, the Lubavitcher outreach network is far superior to that of Aish HaTorah for covert operations.
    Most people do not take the Lubavitchers seriously, but I have visited Chabad houses and encountered senior Israeli government or military officials (and probably intelligence agents). One can easily imagine that Neocon intelligentsia trying to develop a relationship with Hindutva (हिन्दुत्व) intelligentsia or politicians might have used the Chabad Nariman House as a meeting place.
    Because the Lubavitchers provide an unconditional welcome to all Jews in the hope of bringing them closer to the Lubavitcher way of life, not only have the Lubavitchers been open to potential subversion by Israeli intelligence organizations, but in general Mossad and Shin Bet have found it quite easy to penetrate the haredi community as the two organizations managed to do both in Israel and also in the USA during the Yossele Affair

    Reply

  23. varanasi says:

    and, btw, after the BS posted above, is it permissible to call poa’s buddy, Cee, an anti-semite???
    i mean he/she is still posting derogatory jewish conspiracies for the attack on mumbai a full week after the pakistanis admitted responsibility!
    if this isn’t an example of “prejudice against people of jewish lineage,” then i don’t know what is.

    Reply

  24. varanasi says:

    yeah, and i recall you claiming that the mumbai attack was most likely a false flag operation to damn muslims, poa.
    why don’t you practice what you preach and post a link to sweetness’ supposed slander?
    you’re a complete joke, handyman.

    Reply

  25. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “As I said when you first brought this up a while back…it must have been you who issued that epithet (assuming it was issued at all)”
    Actually, what you said was “I don’t recall”.
    However, Sweetness, I’m quite sure Carroll DOES recall.
    Do you think we post in a vacuum, here, Sweetness?

    Reply

  26. varanasi says:

    the handyman (poa) is SUCH a joke! he’s literally morphed into a greater personification of stupid, right before our eyes!
    anyone is free to read this short thread and see just who started this fight (poa – again)
    i guess we’re to believe that he never obsesses on this blog about false flag ops (really?)
    and speaking about hypocrisy, i *love* the unsubstantiated claim about sweetness calling the dimwit, front porch rocking carroll a c**t!
    methinks you’ve jumped the shark, handyman… along with your dumb as rocks cadre like Cee.
    HA!

    Reply

  27. Sweetness says:

    From POA’s Hall of Shame: “Where were you when Sweetness called
    Carroll a “cunt”?”
    As I said when you first brought this up a while back…it must have
    been you who issued that epithet (assuming it was issued at all).
    It’s much more your style than mine.

    Reply

  28. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “notice how you negate your own question which was initially directed at varanasi when it is directed at you??”
    I’m not “negating” anything. It is you and this excrement eating gnat varanasi that are moaning and groaning about my lack of civility. Do you see me whining hypocritically? Note Sweetness, decrying my posting style. Where were you when Sweetness called Carroll a “cunt”?
    Varanasi’s hypocricy seems to have just pfffed right on by your poor incensed sensitivities, Pimples.
    Take varanasi’s first post on this thread, directed towards me. It contains three distinct misrepresentations of my postings. When called on it, the sniveling little prick says he doesn’t “have time” to provide substantiation for his assertions. You don’t find that as irritating, or as “uncivil” as me telling him to fuck off?
    Personally, Pimples, I think your priorities are all screwed up. But thats just my opinion. You’ve just been branded “nice” by the trollish little twerp, so heck, you must have something goin’ for you, eh? Lucky you. Have you been flippin’ over rocks to find friends all your life, or is this a first for you?

    Reply

  29. TonyForesta says:

    There is no end to this horrible conflict. Both side are intactable, cemented in their own respective self interests, and all sides are drenched in oceans of innocent blood. Recognize, that this debate is futile, impotent, and moot. The only way forward is more of the same, or radical total CHANGE! CHANGE wherein both sides actually work toward compromise and some common ground.
    If not – then more of the same grotesque bloodshed and silly meaningless babel will ensue, and NOTHING will change. NOT one thing or aspect or practical alteration of the current dynamics defining the Palestinian/Israeli conflict will change.
    Have at it vampires. Drink to your cold hard hearts content. Enjoy the carnage and pretend you really care about any side of this horrorshow. NOTHING WILL CHANGE!

    Reply

  30. ... says:

    Posted by PissedOffAmerican, Feb 18 2009, 10:33PM – Link
    “poa – why don’t you tell us why you deserve civility or respect?”
    Its something I don’t ask for, so whether or not I “deserve” it is irrelevant. —
    notice how you negate your own question which was initially directed at varanasi when it is directed at you??
    “Go ahead, varanasi, tell me why you deserve civility or respect.””
    personally i think everyone has a responsibility for civility and respect on these message boards, and i believe it’s a prerequisite for harmonious human interaction.. perhaps you think differently… the number of posters you go out of your way to express hostility towards is noted by anyone who spends time here.. it is a reflection on you more then anything else and i’m not sure you’re mature enough to recognize it… while you offer some valuable insights and thoughts on issues discussed here at the washington note, the downside is exampled once again on this thread…

    Reply

  31. varanasi says:

    what a fricken’ joke. and these are the handyman’s fans. sheesh.

    Reply

  32. Sweetness says:

    Let’s see…
    “…a credible hypothesis…”
    “…is supposed to be a preferred…”
    “…one could even imagine…”
    “…and even asked…”
    “…seems to have…”
    “…and possibly even further back…”
    “…would have been both predictable…”
    “…where it is reasonable to suspect…”
    Anyone up for a genuine copy of a fake Dior?
    Come back when you facts. You pretend to respect facts. But
    maybe only if they point in one direction.
    You have the same mental acuity as Carroll. One has to wonder
    if you even read what you post or understand it. I suppose you,
    too, are the product of a segregationist education.

    Reply

  33. Cee says:

    Top Chef is over. I’m back.
    Yeah, Nasi. Mumble, mumble, mumble…
    http://eaazi.blogspot.com/2008/12/chabad-lubavitch-dangerous-game.html
    Chabad Lubavitch’ Dangerous Game
    Attacking Mumbai and World Economy
    Are Israelis really always guilty?
    The same logic that applies to ISI rogue elements applies even more to Israeli intelligence. As a matter of open Israeli foreign policy, the Israeli government and American Neocon intelligentsia have been cultivating the Indian government and especially Hindutva parties as allies against Islam. In addition India is a major client of Israel as a purchaser of military and counterterrorism technology.
    The last thing Israel wants is a cooling of Indian-Pakistani tension, which would mean a decrease of sales of Israeli military technology and a cooling of the Israel-India relationship because of the hostility of India’s 150-175 million Muslims and of many Indian non-Muslims to Zionism and the State of Israel. (Remember that before the collapse of the Soviet Union, the relationship between India and Israel was not merely cold but frigid.)
    Not only is incitement of rogue elements of ISI by Israeli agents provocateurs a credible hypothesis, but pulling strings behind groups hostile to Israel is even supposed to be a preferred Israeli intelligence tactic because it makes it so much harder to obtain information about Israeli puppeteers.
    One could even imagine that an Israeli agent directed the attack planners to the Chabad House and even asked the Holtzbergs (or in particular Rivkah Holtzberg) to provide space to the attackers, who could scout out targets without the Holtzbergs or anyone else being aware of the plot in the works.
    Israeli intelligence seems to have a policy of treating saya`nim and Jewish bystanders as completely expendable at least as far back the Lavon Affair in Egypt and possibly even further back to pre-state days when there were only amateur intelligence organizations associated with various Zionist militias and terrorist groups.
    For the Zionist leadership, dead Jews have always served as an excellent means to increase sympathy for Zionism, and from the standpoint of Israeli intelligence the killing of the Holtzbergs would have been both predictable and desirable.
    The Mumbai Attack is not the first Indian situation where it is reasonable to suspect the unseen hand of Israeli intelligence.

    Reply

  34. varanasi says:

    none of the nice people here like you, poa.
    you don’t play well with others.
    something tells me you’re a lonely man.
    i’m sorry.

    Reply

  35. varanasi says:

    sweetness,
    so, i’m not the only one who has tangled with the pissed off, meth-smoking handyman in bakersfield? surprise, surprise.
    i actually find it amusing to “engage” him, but as this thread proves, he is an aggressive bully, and there is simply no nice way to respond to “go fuck yourself.”
    but, his few dim witted defenders are the ones who really crack me up. criticizing me for being rude to a guy who just told me to fuck off on a foreign policy blog. i mean, really? ha!

    Reply

  36. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “poa – why don’t you tell us why you deserve civility or respect?”
    Its something I don’t ask for, so whether or not I “deserve” it is irrelevant.
    If I was you, I would be more concerned with this insipid worm varanasi twisting the commentary of others, than I would with me telling him to fuck off for doing it.
    But hey, Pimples, I appreciate your input.

    Reply

  37. varanasi says:

    Posted by Cee, Feb 18 2009, 1:55PM – Link
    Varanasi,
    From he described as his occupation, POA is a master craftsman.
    You are an ass.
    I do remember you emphasizing the possibility of a “false flag”
    attack in Mumbai in order to downplay the dire international
    I think it was as well. So does India. They shut down the hostel where Israelis could turn to when they had drug and alcohol problems.
    ——-
    cee, oh, cee. whatever are we ever to do with you? you’re barely monosyllabic and obviously living on some deserted island, but, what the heck, i’ll humor you.
    the mumbai attack was *not* a false flag operation. the interior minister of pakistan admitted last thursday that the plan was hatched (mostly) in pakistan and perpetrated (mostly) by pakistanis. this significant, and unprecedented admission, was an international, above the fold headline through the weekend.
    the fact that your ilk always finds a way to bring israel and jews into your imagined, nefarious conspiracies are, well….
    there is a name for that phenomena.

    Reply

  38. arthurdecco says:

    Varanasi, I’m just now re-reading one of the seminal books of our times, (published 1992), “Voltaire’s Bastards, The Dictatorship of Reason in the West”, by John Ralston Saul. It’s an easy-to-read, thought-provoking, non-doctrinaire, common sense series of explanations for the fatal flaws found everywhere within our modern western world’s administrations of everything. Saul also peripherally writes about what motivates and conditions the individuals who choose to join in the steady drip drip drip dissolution of our commonly-held political and social rights and responsibilities – the people who deliberately undermine our commonly-held beliefs and interests by working from within our western ‘systems’ to ‘improve’ them in a large part because they have been convinced by their teachers and their peers they know better than anyone outside their restrictive cliques how best to manage, control and even manipulate the rest of us in the area of their specialties. (I often think of these people as technocratic star f_ckers and/or ambitious idiots – more-than-willing occupants of a perpetual motion machine designed to repeat the same discredited ideas ad infinitum as a means of maintaining the status quo for the privileged few they enthusiastically serve. I rarely think of them as well-rounded individuals capable of reaching a consensus with those who live in the real world outside the confines of their individual, feudal ‘specialties’.)
    Someone like you, Varanasi – someone who has demonstrated the ability to talk out of both sides of your mouth simultaneously while adamantly denying you’re doing so – perhaps you’ll be able to rationalize away Mr. Saul’s disturbing reassessment of the importance of westernized ‘Reason’ in a way that excuses your own participation in crimes committed in Reason’s name.
    Still, as long as there is time, there is hope… Read the book. Re-read it if you’ve already half-heartedly skimmed it as part of your required course reading at a good university.
    I hope reading ‘Voltaire’s Bastards’ leads to a change in how you challenge or engage those who disagree with you. I vainly hope it becomes a Road to Damascus moment for you.
    For comments on John Ralston Saul and his works:
    http://www.amazon.co.uk/Voltaires-Bastards-Dictatorship-Reason-West/dp/0029277256
    http://www.muslimedia.com/ARCHIVES/book98/voltaire.htm
    http://www.johnralstonsaul.com/REV_Equilibrium_Geddes.html
    http://dymade.blogspot.com/2006/08/on-equilibrium-2001-by-john-ralston.html

    Reply

  39. Sweetness says:

    To Varanasi,
    I’ve watched with some detached amusement at your various
    tangles with POA.
    All I can tell you is that every so often someone “like you” (and I
    mean no disrespect by that) comes along and has the EXACT
    SAME “conversation” with POA, virtually WORD FOR WORD.
    They try all the same approaches you’ve tried, believe me.
    Outrage. Umbrage. Trading insults. Reasoning. Nothing
    changes.
    A little while ago, it was Tahoe Editor. Now it’s you.
    My advice would be to ignore him. That’s why God created the
    scroll wheel on the mouse. Say your piece and be done with it.
    Then sit back and wait for the next sucker to come along…

    Reply

  40. Sweetness says:

    Gee, Cee, one would really have to “read” this article “closely” to
    find any sort of serious criminal–or criminal at all–behavior.
    Illegally establishing a business?
    Where are the details?
    Where is the “big crime?”
    I’d reset your Google Alert key word chain for…”bigger fish.”

    Reply

  41. Cee says:

    Can someone explain how the criminals stayed in the Nariman House?
    Did anyone explain this to the authorities in India?
    Israeli backpackers in India lose safe haven
    Israeli hikers in India could always rely on the ‘Safe Home’ (Bayit Cham) run by the Israeli government to bail them out of trouble. Now India’s authorities shut it down
    Itamar Eichner Published: 02.08.08, 13:25 / Israel News
    India with its exotic appeal has always been a favorite post-military destination for young Israelis. Along with Indian’s enchanting Eastern allure, however, many youngsters also fallen prey to India’s drug culture and the assortment of hallucinogenic drugs that is readily available in the country.
    The Anti Drug Authority, in partnership with the Israel Anti Drug Abuse Foundation, established the Safe Home as a welcoming environment for young Israelis in India.
    Two locations exist, in Goa and Manali, where Israelis in India can seek information about drugs, have a connection to other Israelis, get help and counseling for those already in too deep and, when the most extreme cases arise, a caring environment with which to intercede at any level. The Safe Home also helps stranded backpackers and all other Israelis who encounter any problems while in India.
    Recently, however, Indian authorities have asked the Israeli Ambassador to India, Mark Sofer, to close down the Safe Home, and have refused to grant its workers visas to enter the country, because they feel that the Safe Home is attempting to illegally establish a business in India.
    http://www.ynet.co.il/english/articles/0,7340,L-3504340,00.html

    Reply

  42. Cee says:

    Varanasi,
    From he described as his occupation, POA is a master craftsman.
    You are an ass.
    I do remember you emphasizing the possibility of a “false flag”
    attack in Mumbai in order to downplay the dire international
    I think it was as well. So does India. They shut down the hostel where Israelis could turn to when they had drug and alcohol problems.

    Reply

  43. ... says:

    poa – why don’t you tell us why you deserve civility or respect? perhaps you can tell us why you feel justified in thinking it’s okay to be uncivil and disrespectful or others generally and in a place that is a shared community (message boards on the washington note) in particular??

    Reply

  44. PissedOffAmerican says:

    I’m a little curious. I would like to know why this irritating little prick varanasi thinks he is deserving of respect or civility?
    Does he think one or two inaccurate rebuttals to my comment directed at Joe erases his prior commentaries? And now we can simply have civil discourse as if he had never exposed himself as the unmittigated asshole troll we all know he is?
    Go ahead, varanasi, tell me why you deserve civility or respect.

    Reply

  45. varanasi says:

    “Varanasi, I thought we were well rid of you. ”
    sorry to disappoint you, arthur, but i’m quite amused by this blog and the reactions of a few of the “regulars,” including yourself.
    i also find some of the measured debate to be somewhat interesting.
    so, no, you’re not “well rid” of me. the TWN comment sections serve as periodic comic relief for me as i work.
    p.s. i love your “indulged, spoiled brat” characterization! if you only knew! 🙂

    Reply

  46. varanasi says:

    i’ll never understand you guys, so…
    Go Fuck Yourself, arthurdecco.
    is that better? sorry about the handyman snark. you’re right, there’s no place for it here, huh?
    i guess outright profanity is the preferred means of communication on TWN
    btw, read this very short thread and tell me who injected ad hominem, vulgarity first.
    i’ll give you a hint, it was poa… again.
    of course his unprovoked admonition to “go fuck myself” was an example of perfectly acceptable discourse, right?
    i find this “under-the-rock” TWN subculture fascinating.

    Reply

  47. arthurdecco says:

    Varanasi, I thought we were well rid of you.
    Fyi, the “handyman” members of this forum have demonstrated time and time again a level of understanding of the issues under discussion that eclipses your cartoon versions of world events.
    You consistently demonstrate the analytical skills and the emotional responses of an indulged, emotionally stunted, spoiled brat. Calling your opponents “handyman” as a means of demeaning their opinions is the act of a child. It’s the IDEAS presented you have to rebut if you’re to be taken seriously. You’re not going to convince anyone by insulting others unnecessarily.
    So Grow Up.

    Reply

  48. Varanasi says:

    Don’t get so angry handyman.
    I do remember you emphasizing the possibility of a “false flag”
    attack in Mumbai in order to downplay the dire international
    threat of Islamic jihadism. You do spend a lot of time talking
    about false flag ops -even in regards to 9-11, so excuse me if I
    made a mistake. I don’t have the excess time on my hands that
    you do and I can’t search these archives.

    Reply

  49. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “you overstate the rate of these incidents…”
    Show me where I assign a “rate of these incidents”.
    “and ignore the real and growing menace of jihadism”
    Yeah, when I said “Islamic acts of terrorism against the United States or Israel is self defeating for the Muslims. In fact, every vicious Islamic terrorist act against Israel, the United States, or even opposing Islamic sects,….” I musta just been ignoring the “menace of jihadism”, right?
    “i remember you claiming a few months ago that the jihadist attack in mumbai was likely a “flase flag” operation…”
    Liar.
    Go fuck yourself, varanasi.

    Reply

  50. ... says:

    whatever you say jihad james…

    Reply

  51. James says:

    Mustafa “Jihad” Barghouti was born in al-Quds.

    Reply

  52. James says:

    It is so funny to listen to Mustafa “Jihad” Barghouti talk about corruption and peace.

    Reply

  53. .. says:

    might doesn’t make right, especially when it is used for the wrong reasons..

    Reply

  54. TonyForesta says:

    They may be on “shaky (legal or moral) ground as you see it,” whomeveryouare – but if “they” are the dominant military power, backed unconditionally by an even larger military power -then taking “…away land from others due a political decision or religious belief” will continue unabated.

    Reply

  55. ... says:

    varanasi – we need to move forward collectively… greed may be an innate human characteristic but so is compassion and generosity.. what do we want to put forward that is in everyone’s best interests?
    back to the thread : those who believe they can take away land from others due a political decision or religious belief and etc are on shaky ground as i see it…

    Reply

  56. varanasi says:

    greed is only part of the explanation, … , and paradoxically, it – as an innate human characteristic – may also account for some good in the world.
    the root causes of poverty also revolve around issues of governance, demographics and social factors, healh care, environmental factors, cultural explanations, structural distortions, agricultural distortions, class conflict and geography.
    ok. gotta run.

    Reply

  57. ... says:

    varanasi.. the ‘have nots’ always suffer.. i am idealistic, but not unrealistic in recognizing the root cause of much of the suffering – greed….

    Reply

  58. varanasi says:

    my last sentence wasn’t directed at you, …
    but, i still believe you’re demonstrating a level of naivete when it comes to a hypothetical collapse of the world monetary system.
    the have-nots will suffer (and are suffering now with this current economic crisis) disproportionately more than the greedy consumers and war profiteers of the industrialized world.

    Reply

  59. ... says:

    varanasi with similar due respect – the world monetary system has created more pain then good.. when greed is the driving force and it’s not acknowledged as such, it’s a heck of a wake up call when it does happen and it is happening… i am rooting for the demise of corruption and all that comes with it – build up in military systems being only one branch of this.. there’s a difference in what i am rooting for and how you have characterized me in your last sentence… i hope you will see that…

    Reply

  60. varanasi says:

    with all due respect, … , but yours is a naive, economic world view.
    if the u.s. “goes bankrupt,” the rest of the world will most likely “go bankrupt” with it and those living with the least will suffer the most.
    rooting for the demise of the u.s. may feel good for some, but it’s not in anyone’s best interests, unless you’re a taliban/al quaeda sympathizer living up in pakistan’s northwest frontier province.

    Reply

  61. ... says:

    joe M- i agree with a lot of what you say.. it is unlikely that the usa will change… their is too munch money tied up in continuing in the same way they have… one could hope the usa goes bankrupt so that it is unable to fund countries like israel and egypt and one never knows.. it might happen… it would be a terrible price for the american public to pay, but it is possible…

    Reply

  62. varanasi says:

    joe m wrote:
    “at least we would have support from Egypt, Jordan, Syria”
    keep dreaming, joe. this is wishful thinking. when have the syrians, jordanians or egyptians EVER been there for you or your people?

    Reply

  63. varanasi says:

    “And as you well know, false flag attacks have been used, and undoubtedly will be used, to provide the rationale for the continued demonization of the Muslim world community.”
    you overstate the rate of these incidents and ignore the real and growing menace of jihadism. i remember you claiming a few months ago that the jihadist attack in mumbai was likely a “flase flag” operation. guess you were wrong.

    Reply

  64. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “I dream of the day the USA is bloodied to such a degree that it leaves the Arabs alone”
    That will never happen. The more we are bloodied, the greater the rationale and justification for intervention, “pre-emptive” war, and support for Israel. Just look at what 9/11 wrought. Islamic acts of terrorism against the United States or Israel is self defeating for the Muslims. In fact, every vicious Islamic terrorist act against Israel, the United States, or even opposing Islamic sects, works in Israel’s best interests, and puts a smile on the faces of Islam’s worst enemies. Personally, I believe both Israel, and the neo-con movement in the United States, actually nurture Islamic acts of terrorism to justify our foreign policies as they apply to the Middle East, and Israel’s policy of slow motion genocide. And as you well know, false flag attacks have been used, and undoubtedly will be used, to provide the rationale for the continued demonization of the Muslim world community.
    You are spouting some dangerous stuff, Joe. I’d be careful if I was you. Don’t underestimate the lengths that may be gone to to shut you up. There are many who would label your “dream” a terrorist threat. And this fascist prick Dick Cheney, in league with his crew of ghouls, have managed to install the mechanism to put you away for a good long time for such words.

    Reply

  65. Joe M. says:

    DonS,
    Forget what the USA will do. I can tell you what it will do. Obama will do exactly as Clinton did, he will engage in the “peace process” he will defend Israel, and he will try his damnedest to get some “agreement” made. Maybe if we are extremely lucky, he will be more like the first Bush, and actually threaten to cut funding for Israel if it continues down it’s insane, racist, fascist path…
    Big deal. Signing some shitty paper is not enough to make peace. I don’t care how many agreements are signed, it doesn’t make things better, it doesn’t create peace. So who cares what the USA will do? Why should it matter? The USA doesn’t control Israel, and it doesn’t have the balls to challenge Israel. That’s a fact.
    So I can tell you what I think, and that’s all. And I am absolutely sure the Palestinians would be better off without any American involvement. Look at what American involvement has done to them already, it has destroyed palestine. So why do we want more American poison? Why do we want more violence, more destruction, more zionism? those are the only things the USA can bring. The USA is an evil country, and it supports the most evil countries. It has wrought destruction on the Arabs at every turn. The best thing the USA can do is get the hell out. Anything else will just be a continuation of the colonialism, the imperialism, the reign of terror the Americans bring with them everywhere they go. GO HOME YANKEES!!!
    the next question is, so, what would happen when the Americans leave? Well, at least we would be able to fight our own battles, at least we would have support from Egypt, Jordan, Syria. At least the corrupt Fatah bastards would no longer be able to claim they were workign for “peace” when they were just working in the American interest. What would happen? Those Palestinians who are independent would get stronger, those PAlestinians who represent the Palestinian people would get stronger, those palestinians who represent zionism would be destroyed, outside forces would be able to come to our aid without fear of massive economic disaster via American sanctions, Egypt would not be able to put any critic of mubarak in jail… At the very least, we would have an honest conflict.
    And so, I know Israel would crack down on us palestinians more, but that would just be a reflection of the actual conditions. Right now the USA distorts the conflict with its power and money. We could not be worse off then we are now. I dream of the day the USA is bloodied to such a degree that it leaves the Arabs alone. And if not, then at least i dream for it to come to its senses and just leave, like Ron Paul says, because it is not america’s business to colonize the world.

    Reply

  66. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “At that point Israel trots out the declaration that, as a sovereign nation it will do whatever it thinks is in its sovereign interest regardless of what others, including the US, may think. At said point, the US figuratively nods its head in agreement, and figuratively claims that it has done all it could to register ‘disapproval’ of the said action, following up with the formulation that agrees that Israel is indeed sovereign and acts in its own”
    Don, you forgot the conclusion of the dance, where we drop our drawers, bend over, and hand them a jar of KY jelly stuffed with billion dollar bills.

    Reply

  67. DonS says:

    JoeM, I agree, the US is “already a party to this conflict”, and it is attractive to imagine that withdrawing completely, whatever that might mean, can only improve the situation. But absent the possibility that the US will in fact withdraw (and assuming Israel cannot fill the material gaps elsewhere), positive engagement seems like the best shot.
    Your analogy with South Africa (interestingly Israel’s good buddy, at least in years past) is of course interesting. But the South African whites did not have a hard wired group of supporters in the US, although they did have a good deal of business support. And the Souith African blacks and ‘colored’ had less baggage as far as PR than do the Palestinians, particularly Hamas, in this era of when fear of “terrorism” is easily manipulated..
    Others than me may be better able to flesh out this analogy.

    Reply

  68. TonyForesta says:

    I watched this show live yesterday, and it proves that there is no workable solution to the Israeli Palestinian conflict. The United States, Europe, the Arab states, Russia, China, Japan, – or any other nation, or group of nations will never bring these two blood drenched hatefilled religiously distorted factions together.
    The various incendiary exchanges on TWN and other blogs always end the exact same way, with both sides blaming the other for all the problems and causes, and both side assuming intransigent positions derived from religious decree.
    Sad, but I see this conflict continuing in much the same trajectory for decades.

    Reply

  69. Joe M. says:

    DonS,
    What the USA does and does not do is it’s own decision. I am talking about the debate. It is ignorant and stupid to act like the USA isn’t already forcing a solution (or lack of one). The USA is a party to this conflict. it is ignorant and foolish to act like adding more pressure from the USA is a positive thing. Like adding more poison to a dying patient.
    And, anyway, Zionism is a cancer. 10 years before Apartheid, no one would have believed the USA would participate in boycotts and such. But it did eventually.

    Reply

  70. DonS says:

    The US is not going to eliminate its military and other support of Israel, and it is uncertain , in the absence in embargoes from most countries, whether even that would produce a result favorable for the Palestinians.
    The US may leverage aid by conditioning it on behavior. That would also imply a change in mindset and would be noticable in diplomatic terms. I have no special knowledge of the potential sequence and interaction between leveraging aid and engaging differently in diplomatic terms. I do think Israel will not pay attention unless there are sticks along with carrots. In other words, despite the insanity of the situation, I do not believe reasonableness and sanity are going to break out on their own.
    Remember the way Abrams phrased it, Israel is in the position of being the potential offerer, holding all the cards at the moment, and therefore the place where potential pressure needs to be initially applied for movement.

    Reply

  71. Joe M. says:

    Ben,
    Why do you think forcing a peace agreement on these people will create peace? this is a sickening colonial mentality.
    The biggest problem in this analysis is that it takes American support for Israel as an accepted starting point. Thus, people claim that Bush was not engaged in the “peace process”, when the reality is the opposite. By the fact that the USA supports Israel and every turn, that it provides military assistance, loans, grants, diplomatic support… these are all facts that make it impossible for the Palestinians and Israelis to negotiate fairly.
    When you say, “that the Israelis and Palestinians are incapable of solving their problems on their own – and the United States must engage regional and international stakeholders before the facts on the ground become even worse.” you totally miss the point.
    Of course the Palestinians and Israelis are incapable of “solving their problems on their own” when the USA is sickeningly supportive of Israel, when Israel has every military and diplomatic advantage… The reason the conflict continues endlessly is EXACTLY BECAUSE THE USA HAS BEEN TOO INVOLVED FOR TOO LONG, BECAUSE EUROPE FINANCES THE OCCUPATION, BECAUSE NO SET OF FAIR STANDARDS HAVE BEEN APPLIED TO THE CONFLICT. AMERICA IS A MAJOR PROBLEM. THE PROBLEM IS NOT THAT IT IS NOT INVOLVED, BUT THAT IT IS ALREADY TOO INVOLVED. GO HOME!!!
    we don’t want your imperialism, we want our freedom. You have forced the occupation on us for decades. leave us alone. leet us get our own weapons, let other arab countries have regular policies against Israel, stop funding Egypt, Jordan and others to repress their people when they show solidarity with the Palestinians.
    If it was not for American involvement, this conflict would have ended decades ago.
    Bastards like you, who think that formalizing the occupation is “peace” are delusional. The USA might be able to force a “peace” agreement, but until it gets to the root cause of the injustice, there will not be peace. ZIONISM IS THE PROBLEM. eliminate zionism, and there will be no conflict. Make israel a state for it’s people, rather than a theocratic-fascist state, and you will have peace.
    just trying to force a agreement will be a recipe for disaster. just like the Camp David agreement with egypt, if you force people to accept an unfair agreement, it will lead to repression. and in time, Egypt will explode. the same will happen in palestine if you force an unjust agreement on the Palestinians.

    Reply

  72. JohnH says:

    The Israeli electorate’s increasingly “hawkish” stance appears to be mostly a public relations problem, particularly in light of the upcoming UN conference on racism. The new government will simply represent a continuation of the fundamentally hawkish policies that Israel has pursued for decades.
    In fact, Halevi can only muster a “regrettable” regarding Lieberman. He is not even willing to repudiate his proposals. Nor is Halevi even willing to address the ethnic cleansing that affected Barghouti personally, having been banned from E. Jerusalem where he worked as a doctor for years.
    And no, I don’t agree that the parties are in a stalemate. Israel is stonewalling, as is their wont. But with Lieberman, the stonewalling will be stripped of any appearance of reasonableness. Instead, the world will see raw Israeli aggression against Palestinians–stonewalling accompanied by ethnic cleansing and apartheid.

    Reply

  73. Dan Kervick says:

    Good stuff from Marc Lynch today on Arab and Palestinian unity following Gaza and the Israeli elections:
    http://lynch.foreignpolicy.com/posts/2009/02/16/arabs_closing_ranks

    Reply

  74. WigWag says:

    I watched the Fareed Zakaria show (GPS) and have to say that he may be the only intelligent and serious journalist left on television on the main stream media in the United States. Thank goodness for Fareed Zakaria.
    The depressing thing is that the guests on the show were amongst the most reasonable of the Palestinian and Israeli protagonists. If they can’t agree on anything (and if they are barely able to conduct a civil debate), it’s hard to imagine any progress being made any time soon. After all, Israel just elected a government that will be far more recalcitrant than either of Zakaria’s two Israeli guests and Hamas is certainly far more recalcitrant than Barghouti.
    Ben Karcher repeats the Steve Clemons/Daniel Levy refrain that,
    “the Israelis and Palestinians are incapable of solving their problems on their own – and the United States must engage regional and international stakeholders before the facts on the ground become even worse.”
    What Clemons, Karcher and Levy fail to ever tell us is exactly what the evidence is that the United States, Europe, the Arab States, etc. will ever be willing to impose a settlement on the two sides. Is it theoretically possible? Sure. It’s also theoretically possible that the Serbs and Kosovars or the Georgians and South Ossetians will wake up tomorrow and embrace each other. Or maybe the world will unite to solve the problems of Pakistan or the world will come together to forge a consensus about what to do about putative Iranian nukes (assuming they ever develop them) or what to do about Darfur.
    Until Clemons, Karcher and Levy can offer us any evidence that an imposed solution is viable and even remotely likely, it’s hard to wonder why they waste their breath (or fatigue in their typing fingers) even talking about it.
    From my perspective, the Barghouti/Halevi/Peri gab fest was just more of the same old, same old. Lots of heat; very little light.
    The part of the show that Karcher didn’t link to was an extensive interview between Zakaria and Afghan President Hamid Karzai. I found it remarkable how hostile Karzai was to the Americans and British. He basically accused them of lying about corruption in his administration in order to silence him for criticizing US and British attacks on Afghan civilians. He claimed that the United States mistakenly thinks the enemy is to be found in Afghan villages when it is really to be found in Pakistan. He also said that US and British forces are killing hundreds of Afghan civilians every month which is making the insurgency much worse.
    I have no idea if Karzai is telling the truth or not, but he is certainly a very smooth talker; his command of English is extraordinarily good and he presents an interesting case.

    Reply

  75. DonS says:

    The pricipals are in a stalemate, and the US has to get over its one-sidedness. There is a dance that takes place between the US and Israel when Israel says or does something that the US doesn’t like — usually when the US finally cannot ignore the conclusion of the rest of the world on some point.
    At that point Israel trots out the declaration that, as a sovereign nation it will do whatever it thinks is in its sovereign interest regardless of what others, including the US, may think. At said point, the US figuratively nods its head in agreement, and figuratively claims that it has done all it could to register ‘disapproval’ of the said action, following up with the formulation that agrees that Israel is indeed sovereign and acts in its own.
    This dance both seeks to get the [current] administration off the hook from the “left” (although that is not an entirely accurate term) which claims the administration can and should push the Israelis harder; and it mollifies the administration critics from the “right” (the neocons, and virtually the entire US political establishment) who want Israel 1) left alone to “act in its best interest”, when it wants the US to keep out, but also 2) want the US to provide all support and succor to Israel up to that point.
    In this description of behavior, it is clear to me that only the US can make the behavioral changes needed to move the situation. Those who say there will be no peace until and unless the two parties want it just drive a stake through the heart of the possibility of effective diplomacy. To claim the US has no de facto power is patently absurd. Just absurd.
    On the internal US political dynamics of the situation, I keep coming back to the need for Obama to lead because on the ME the Congress is a disgraceful impediment to change, and Executive leadership in this foreign policy area must be determined and strong to overcome Congress fronting for Israel.

    Reply

  76. ... says:

    ben thanks – excellent interview… halevi offered a lot of ‘you’ statements, which don’t imply a whole look of ability for looking in the mirror on his part…peri talks about changing the rhetoric, but feels it is important to discuss iran and the threat of them having nuclear arms.. some change in rhetoric on his part….
    barghouti mentions 1350 citizens being murdered in the latest israel military campaign… meanwhile in the ‘mainstream news’ today israel claims approx 350 deaths…. one could say more rhetoric from both sides, although i don’t believe both sides are being heard in the mainstream media in an equal manner…
    the most touching part of the interview was the first part where barghouti discusses russian immigrants to jerusalem living in a city where he grew up and spent many years working as a doctor and is unable to be in at present… kind of like having someone else move into your house and accept it all as perfectly normal, which of course it isn’t…

    Reply

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