Surviving While Grabbing the Third Rail

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This is a guest note by Stephen M. Walt. The essay, which TWN encouraged Walt to publish after outlines of it appeared in private correspondence, first appeared on Walt’s Foreign Policy blog. Walt is the Robert and Renee Belfer Professor of International Affairs at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.
walt_stephen.jpgOn Grabbing the Third Rail
Last week a colleague who has been facing repeated and unfair attacks in the media and the blogosphere (for making arguments that cut against the conventional wisdom) sent around an email asking a number of friends and associates (including me) for advice on how to deal with the attacks.
Having been smeared in similar fashion myself, I circulated a list of the lessons I learned from my own experience with “grabbing the third rail.” A few of the recipients thought the list was helpful, so I decided to revise it and post it here. If any readers are contemplating tackling a controversial subject–and I hope some of you will–you’ll need to be ready should opponents decide not to address your arguments in a rational fashion, but to attack your character, misrepresent your position, and impugn your motives instead.
If they take the low road, here are ten guidelines for dealing with it. (The advice itself is politically neutral: it applies regardless of the issue in question and no matter which side you’re on.)
1. Think Through Your “Media Strategy” before You Go Public. If you are an academic taking on a “third rail” issue for the first time, you are likely to face a level of public and media scrutiny that you have never experienced before. It is therefore a good idea to think through your basic approach to the media before the firestorm hits. Are you willing to go on TV or radio to defend your views? Are there media outlets that you hope to cultivate, as well as some you should avoid? Are you open to public debate on the issue, and if so, with whom?
Do you plan a “full-court” media blitz to advance your position (an article, a book, a lecture tour, a set of op-eds, etc.), or do you intend to confine yourself to purely academic outlets and let the pundits take it from there? There is no right answer to these questions, of course, and how you answer them depends in good part on your own proclivities and those of your opponents. But planning ahead will leave you better prepared when the phone starts ringing off the hook and there’s a reporter–or even someone like Bill O’Reilly or Jon Stewart–on the other end. Don’t be afraid to listen to professional advice here (such as the media office at your university or research organization), especially if it’s your first time in the shark tank. It’s also a good idea to let your superiors know what’s coming; deans, center directors, and college presidents don’t like surprises.
2. You Have Less Control Than You Think. Although it helps to have thought about your strategy beforehand, there will always be surprises and you will have to think on your feet and improvise wisely. Sometimes real-world events will vindicate your position and enhance your credibility (as the 2006 Lebanon War did for my co-author and myself), but at other times you may have to explain why events aren’t conforming to your position. A vicious attack may arrive from an unexpected source and leave you reeling, or you may get an unsolicited endorsement that validates your views. Bottom line: life is full of surprises, so be ready to roll with the punches and seize the opportunities.
3. Never Get Mad. Let your critics throw the mud, but you should always stick to the facts, especially when they are on your side. In my own case, many of the people who attacked me and my co-author proved to be unwitting allies, because they lost their cool in public or in print, made wild charges and ad hominem arguments, and generally acted in a transparently mean-spirited manner. It always works to your advantage when opponents act in an uncivil fashion, because it causes almost everyone else to swing your way
Of course, it can be infuriating when critics misrepresent your work, and nobody likes to have malicious falsehoods broadcast about them. But the fact that someone is making false charges against you does not mean that others are persuaded by the malicious rhetoric. Most people are quite adept at separating facts from lies, and that is especially true when the charges are over-the-top. In short, the more ludicrous the charges, the more critics undermine their own case. So stick to the high ground; the view is nicer up there.
4. Don’t Respond to Every Single Attack. A well-organized smear campaign will try to bury you in an avalanche flurry of bogus charges, many of which are simply not worth answering. It is easier for opponents to dream up false charges than it is for you to refute each one, and you will exhaust yourself rebutting every critical word directed at you. So focus mainly on answering the more intelligent criticisms while ignoring the more outrageous ones, which you should treat with the contempt they deserve. Finally, make sure every one of your answers is measured and filled with the relevant facts. Do not engage in ad hominem attacks of any sort, no matter how tempting it may be to hit back.
5. Explain to Your Audience What Is Going On. When refuting bogus charges, make it clear to readers or viewers why your opponents are attacking you in underhanded ways. When you are the object of a politically motivated smear campaign, others need to understand that your critics are not objective referees offering disinterested commentary. Be sure to raise the obvious question: why are your opponents using smear tactics like guilt-by-association and name-calling to shut down genuine debate or discredit your views? Why are they unwilling to engage in a calm and rational exchange of ideas? Let others know that it is probably because your critics are aware that you have valid points to make and that many people will find your views persuasive if they get a chance to judge them for themselves.
6. The More Compelling Your Arguments Are, The Nastier the Attacks Will Be. If critics can refute your evidence or your logic, then that’s what they will do and it will be very effective. However, if you have made a powerful case and there aren’t any obvious weaknesses in it, your adversaries are likely to misrepresent what you have said and throw lots of mud at you. What else are they going to do when the evidence is against them?
This kind of behavior contrasts sharply with what one is accustomed to in academia, where well-crafted arguments are usually treated with respect, even by those who disagree with them. In the academic world, the better your arguments are, the more likely it is that critics will deal with them fairly. But if you are in a very public spat about a controversial issue like gay marriage or abortion or gun control, a solid and well-documented argument will probably attract more scurrilous attacks than a flimsy argument that is easily refuted. So be prepared.
7. You Need Allies. Anyone engaged on a controversial issue needs allies on both the professional and personal fronts. When the smearing starts, it is of enormous value to have friends and associates publicly stand up and defend you and your work. At the same time, support from colleagues, friends, and family is critical to maintaining one’s morale. Facing a seemingly endless barrage of personal attacks as well as hostile and unfair criticisms of one’s work can be exhausting and dispiriting, which is why you need others to stand behind you when the going gets tough. That does not mean you just want mindless cheerleaders, of course; sometimes allies help us the most when they warn us we are heading off course.
One more thing: if you’re taking one a powerful set of opponents, don’t be surprised or disappointed when people tell you privately that that they agree with you and admire what you are doing, but never say so publicly. Be realistic; even basically good people are reluctant to take on powerful individuals or institutions, especially when they might pay a price for doing so.
8. Be Willing to Admit When You’re Wrong, But Don’t Adopt a Defensive Crouch. Nobody writing on a controversial and contested subject is infallible, and you’re bound to make a mistake or two along the way. There’s no harm in admitting to errors when they occur; indeed, harm is done when you make a mistake and then try to deny it. More generally, however, it makes good sense to make your case assertively and not shy away from engaging your critics. In short, the best defense is a smart offense, even when you are acknowledging errors or offering a correction. For illustrations of how my co-author and I tried to do this, see here, here, and here.
9. Challenging Orthodoxy Is a Form of “Asymmetric Conflict”: You Win By “Not Losing.” When someone challenges a taboo or takes on some well-entrenched conventional wisdom, his or her opponents invariably have the upper hand at first. They will seek to silence or discredit you as quickly as they can, so that your perspective, which they obviously won’t like, does not gain any traction with the public. But this means that as long as you remain part of the debate, you’re winning. Minds don’t change overnight, and it is difficult to know how well an intellectual campaign is going at any particular point in time. So get ready for an emotional roller coaster–some days you might think you’re winning big, while other days the deck will appear to be stacked against you. But the real question is: are you still in the game?
The good news is that if you have facts and logic on your side, your position is almost certain to improve over time. It is also worth noting that a protracted debate allows you to refine your own arguments and figure out better ways to refute your opponents’ claims. In brief, think of yourself as being engaged in a “long war,” and keep striving.
10. Don’t Forget to Feel Good about Yourself and the Enterprise in Which You Are Engaged. Waging a battle in which you are being unfairly attacked is hard work, and you will sometimes feels like Sisyphus rolling the proverbial stone endlessly uphill. But it can also be tremendously gratifying. You’ll wage the struggle more effectively if you find ways to keep your spirits up, and if you never lose sight of the worthiness of your cause. Keeping your sense of humor intact helps too; because some of the attacks you will face ar bound to be pretty comical. So while you’re out there slaying your chosen dragon, make sure you have some fun too.
— Stephen Walt

Comments

94 comments on “Surviving While Grabbing the Third Rail

  1. Realist Writer says:

    It’s funny that this entire debate in the comments is only focused on Walt’s beliefs concerning a on-going conflict between two ethnic groups, when the belief in promoting UNORTHODOX views can be used by anybody, for anything. In fact, all these arguments concerning the validity of Walt’s beliefs might want to use Walt’s checklist to attack Mr. Walt.

    Reply

  2. samuelburke says:

    i guess when you’re special the rules don’t apply.
    that’s like saying that the law doesn’t apply.
    if some of you who are the product of the greatest assault on
    truth by the superimposition of an idea ever woke up, you
    wouldn’t be where you are today and, the world would be at
    peace.

    Reply

  3. nadine says:

    Carroll, shame is the flip side of honor. It an honor/shame based culture you must seek honor and avoid shame.
    The ethnographic terms are a “shame-based” culture vs. a “guilt-based” culture. The distinction is, what keeps someone behaving the right way? Is it because God sees him all the time and will punish him with guilt if he sins? That’s a guilt-based culture. Europe and America have traditionally had guilt-based cultures. So do the Jews. Or is it because if he is caught doing something wrong, he will be shamed and lose face in the sight of his family/neighbors/countrymen? That’s a shame based culture. Arabs and Japanese, to give two examples, traditionally had shame-based cultures. The corollary to a shame-based culture is that if no neighbors are around to see what you do, all bets tend to be off.

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  4. Carroll says:

    The Palestines are a ‘shame based’ culture?
    That’s news to the world as everything ever said or written about the Arab culture for better or worse attributes it to the Arab “honor” based culture. That’s why the fanatics who kill women are called honor based killings. And then not as widespread or accepted as you would have people believe.
    Arguing about religious groups marriage rules is ridiculous at any rate because it’s open to interperation based on writings centuries ago and
    also interpreted differently by people in the same religion.
    The difference I see between the jewish restriction and Islam restricitons…and particularly in present day, is that for Jews it’s about maintaining their “race” or tribe and for Muslims it’s more about adhering to “religion”.
    “Marrying non-Muslims”
    What is Islam’s standings on:
    Non-muslim man marrying a muslim woman
    Muslim man marrying non-muslim woman
    “Non-muslim” refers to Christians, Hindus etc.
    Reply
    A few aspects of your question are directly covered by the Qur’an, while in case of a few others the matter would be decided by Ijteha’d. For instance, the Qur’an has clearly stated that:
    Women from the people of the book, that is Jewish and Christian women are lawful (in marriage) for Muslim men (Al-Ma’idah 5: 5) ; and
    Polytheist (Mushriq) men and women are unlawful (in marriage) for Muslim men and women (Al-Baqarah 2: 221).
    Although the verses from which these directives are derived may be interpretted slightly differently. For instance, in the case of women from amongst the people of the book, one could be of the opinion that
    the permission has been granted without any qualifications, that is, all Jewish and Christian women, under all circumstances are lawful to be taken in marriage by Muslim men; and
    the permission was granted only when Islam became the dominant force in the region (the conditions prevalent at the time of the revelation of Al-Ma’idah) and therefore the marriage with Jewish and Christian women is permitted only when the social and cultural values of Islam become the dominant values of the society in which the man and the woman, who intend to marry are living.
    In the same way, one may interpret Al-Baqarah 2: 221 as:
    prohibiting all men and women with polytheistic beliefs, as the words might apparently suggest. This interpretation will mean that all groups present in the world that hold any form of polytheistic belief or indulge in any kind of polytheistic practice shall stand prohibited for Muslim men and women. According to this interpretation all the sects of Hindus, Christians, Jews and Muslims that, in the eyes of another sect, hold a polytheistic belief or indulge in a polytheistic practice shall stand prohibited for that sect;
    prohibiting only those men and women for marriage who, like the Quraish of Mekkah and the Bani Isma’il, hold polytheism to be the true religious belief. This interpretation implies that a person may hold a certain polytheistic belief without ascribing to polytheism and without holding polytheism to be correct, as is the case with some of the Jews, some of the Christians and also some Muslims. No one among these three groups holds polytheism to be the correct religious belief but may due to some philosophical error or a misunderstanding indulge in polytheistic practices. This interpretation would mean that all those groups that ascribe to polytheism and hold polytheism as the correct belief and openly accept polytheism as their religious belief are prohibited for Muslims. Other groups that do not ascribe to polytheism although, due to any reason, hold and indulge in polytheistic beliefs and practices are not covered in this verse. According to this interpretation all those religions (or any sects of that religion) that hold polytheism to be the true belief shall stand prohibited for Muslim men and women. Many sects of Hindus that hold polytheism as their belief shall fall in this category; and
    prohibiting only the men and women of the Bani Isma’il. That is, this verse does not prohibit all polytheists but actually prohibits marital and social relations with the Bani Isma’il only because of their particular position of rejecting the messenger of Allah who was sent to them. It should be remembered that according to the Qur’an the rejection of Bani Isma’il was not like that of any other group of the world. The Bani Isma’il rejected faith after itmam e hujjah1 and because of that had to face the consequences of their rejection in the life of this world as well as in the hereafter. It should also be remembered that the word “Mushriq” has been used in the Qur’an only for the Bani Isma’il. This view shall imply that all the non-Muslim groups of the world – also including Hindus – shall now be given the same position as is given in the Qur’an to the people of the book – the Jews and the Christians.
    The case of a Muslim woman marrying a non-Muslim man – besides that of prohibiting polytheist men for them – has not been directly covered in the Qur’an. One may hold the opinion that by permitting marriage between Muslim men and Jewish and Christian women, the Qur’an has also permitted marriage between Muslim women and Jewish and Christian men. While on the other hand, one may hold the opinion that by specifically mentioning the permission of marriage between Muslim men and Jewish and Christian women, the Qur’an has expressed its dislike for marriage between Christian or Jewish men with a Muslim woman.
    As the above explanation would clearly show the issue could have various answers. A person should consider the reasoning of the parties holding these different opinions and follow the particular opinion that in his understanding is the strongest and closest to the directives of the Qur’an.
    http://www.understanding-islam.com/rs/s-053.htm

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  5. nadine says:

    The Palestinians are not monsters at all. They are a shame-based culture with serious rules about maintaining the honor of women. Rules that say a Muslim man may MAY marry a non-Muslim woman (so long as the children are Muslim) but a Muslim woman MAY NOT marry a non-Muslim man. Rules so serious that they are enforced with violence. Rules so serious that they will cause an entire family to be shunned if they break them. Rules so serious that even prosperous modern-thinking Israeli Arab families apparently do not dare to adopt the modern of way of thinking and let their daughters marry whomever they choose. I hope they will eventually. But apparently they can’t yet, or we would see marriages with a Jewish husband and a Muslim wife, and we don’t.
    See, POS once again displays the kneejerk multi-culti response. We’re all supposed to pretend that Palestinian society works by the same rules as American society. If somebody notices that Palestinian society has different values and different rules, then they are a “liar,” a “racist” and all the other charming names he calls me. POS is the TWN enforcer of the multi-culti game of “let’s pretend”. At least he thinks he is.

    Reply

  6. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Because the some Muslims treat intermarriage more harshly than the Israelis do, Nadine would have us believe the Israeli’s racist mindset and policy advocations are A-OK. Note Nadine’s willingness to imply that all Muslim’s are slobbering monsters, that will behead you at the drop of a hat if you dare stray outside the faith in your relationships.
    You find no such stereotyping of Jews in my comments or opinions, do you? I specifically target egregious Israeli policies for my derision. But throughout Nadine’s narrative you find all arabs and Muslims being sterotypically placed in a single category. This is the base foundation of all bigotry, this propensity to remove individuality and differences, choosing instead to attribute to an entire people one single and all encompassing social “character”.

    Reply

  7. nadine says:

    “It gets really dicey to figure out what’s ok and what’s not ok when one steps into someone else’s life. This is what the multi-culti crowd is really dealing with.” (questions)
    Yes, except the multi-culti crowd is not really dealing with it; they are playing games of “let’s pretend” instead. People on “our” side of the fence may be criticized freely, but people on “their” side of the fence may not; so we’ll just pretend they are just like us and ignore evidence to the contrary.
    POS is just an extreme example of plucking things out of context to slam Israel with. Do you think he really cares whether this Shas-allied group’s motivation is to save women from abusive situations or to prevent Jewish women from marrying Muslims? Of course not; he’ll slam Israel for “racism” either way. But the Palestinian habit of preventing Arab women from marrying Jews by killing them gets a free pass. I’m not kidding, mixed marriages the other way just don’t happen.
    This is one of the internal contradictions of multi-culturalism. One the one hand, it makes a fetish of cultural boundaries, on the other, it denies that different cultures can have fundamentally different values, some of which may be abhorrent to our own.

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  8. questions says:

    My apologies for thinking you were a libertarian. I will take you off my “libertarian” list.

    Reply

  9. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “Or maybe I’ve been wrong about you and you haven’t expressed support for libertarianism and/or Ron Paul. Feel free to correct me, or insult me — either way”
    How about I do both, as your condescending horseshit deserves both.
    I have sometimes complimented some of Ron Paul’s positions, and always complimented his longetivity of conviction. The last time I commented on this blog about Ron Paul, I was less than complimentary about him and his associations. These facts make me a Liberatarian? I don’t think so.
    What does the equally complimentary comments I’ve tossed in Kucinich’s direction make me, questions? And I have criticized Kucinich as well.
    No, questions, you are pulling this garbage out of your ass. You seem to be of the mind that you can categorize and shoehorn people into neat little niches in order to support your convoluted intellectual flatulence.
    Kramer is despicable for his policy advocations, and I don’t need to look inside for any lurking inner character defect to reach the conclusion that Kramer is despicable. And I certainly don’t need some obsfucating intellectual prig throwing out a bunch of idiotic psycho babble or asinine and presumptive finger pointing that is not only off base, but extremely petty and condescending.
    My suggestion to you would be a little more time looking inside yourself, (instead of making assumptions about others), and a little less time trying to score little gold stars on the internet by blathering forth with your reading list every time your poor pathetic academic ego needs a power boost.

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  10. questions says:

    Wow, it left out my teensy bit of html code. Interesting. I put in the code for “end” — the angle brackets with the slash in the middle. Curious.

    Reply

  11. questions says:

    “Should we immediately get morally introvert when we see
    someone butchering someone, because our own uncle killed his
    neighbor 25 years ago?
    Explain this to me, Questions: Why on earth shouldn’t we have
    permission to condemn the real Kramer while we permanently
    struggle with our inner Kramer? Isn’t this our human condition:
    to simultaneously struggle with the Kramer within us AND the
    one on the outside?”
    ****
    Again, not quite my point. First, of course, it’s not a matter of my granting permission or not. I certainly don’t have any power or authority. I know almost no html and so I would have a hard time setting up a website. I could probably figure out the color codes and I think that means “end”. So it wouldn’t be much of a website where I could actually stop people from doing anything.
    Second, condemnation can be utterly appropriate. I personally prefer condemnation with a very very strong dose of self-understanding and contemplation. The more you see how much you, too, are implicated in things, the harder it is to merely condemn the other and the more you begin to see that as crazy and wicked as the other person is, in fact you are too.
    So it’s not, again, a command to avoid condemnation, but it is a hope that a strong dose of local self awareness will accompany that condemnation.

    Reply

  12. questions says:

    “Are you saying that we NEVER should condemn anything in a
    political or private context? Because condemnation is ALWAYS a
    convenient escape route to avoid our own moral depravation?”
    ****
    No, not at all. But when one condemns, one probably ought to take a moment to look for similarities and patterns and analogues.
    The US has benefited from a lot of nasty behavior we see Israel copying. From racism and exploitation to land grabs and war crimes, we have benefited as well. When the rhetoric hits Israel and refuses to acknowledge in the same breath and with as much repetition that we do it, have done it, benefit from it, draw our wealth from it… I get a little uneasy.
    Take for example the posts right above about the interference with Arab/Israeli dating. To the extent that there’s actual domestic violence, clearly Nadine is right that interference is good. To the extent that this is the ultra right wing Shas party, I kind of think Nadine’s defense might be off a bit, but I’m not there to know for sure. I have suspicions.
    It’s not like the US has a great track record on this issue either. So, again, the condemnation of Shas’s behavior is most likely right, but it’s not like Shas is alone in the world in its quest for racial purity. So go ahead and condemn, but give some context, too.

    Reply

  13. questions says:

    “On a general level, philosophically and morally spoken, this
    would indeed be valid point, if you had modified it slightly:
    “Condemning Kramer CAN easily serve as a way to avoid our
    seeing our own Kramer.”
    This is true on a general level: Condemning Hitler can easily
    serve as…condemning Pol Pot can easily serve as…etc.
    But with this in mind, we are talking about specific statements
    in a specific political context here. And in a concrete situation, a
    specific political context, you sometimes have to take a stand.
    Even condemn certain actions or statements. ”
    ****
    Paul, fair enough modification! Thanks.
    As for the condemnation/take a stand stuff, indeed I have said multiple times in various ways that the guy is batshit crazy. I think that cutting welfare in medias res is criminal. There are many other directions one can go to help make space for people. One does not need to stop people from making people.
    And at the same time, I think it’s worth thinking through just how much seemingly charitable organizations might actually end up doing the Kramer shuffle w/o Kramer’s direct rhetoric. This I leave as an open question. Probably there are a lot of situationally specific groups and people and ideas that would have to be dealt with individually. But I guess I’d want to reserve some space for the possibility that what Kramer wants explicitly, others might be working for in unaware fashion.
    It gets really dicey to figure out what’s ok and what’s not ok when one steps into someone else’s life. This is what the multi-culti crowd is really dealing with. It’s a huge social science/practical issue and a huge social theory issue as well. What are the boundaries between individuals, between states and individuals, between cultures? What does it mean to cross these, are there non-instrumental ways to do this?
    I have frequently advocated for “soft power” around here and lately I have started to wonder more about “soft” and “power” and I have started noting that making sure that the “other” is at the center of the project is really important.
    If we make the Palestinians more like us SO THAT we have an easier time I would say this is not so good. If we make space for the Palestinians to make themselves more like what they want, this is better. Again, I don’t want to fix some kind of category such that the Palestinians ARE something that they have to attain (I’m not that much of an essentialist), but the interference, leading, guiding issues really do need to be confronted if we’re going to treat soft power as anything other than hegemony and the continuation of politics by means other than out and out war.
    Hope this is clear enough for now. It’s thought under construction rather than any finished project.

    Reply

  14. questions says:

    POA, what do you think libertarianism advocates if not the dismantling of the social welfare state? Maybe you use the word in a different way from how I understand it. Feel free to define the term so that it does not include funding cuts, it keeps taxes fairly high to support social services…and then prove that somehow that definition fits into any kind of traditional notion of libertarianism.
    And feel free to send a link to a Ron Paul policy site that shows that he supports a robust social welfare state, higher taxes to cover insurance, significant regulation on corporations and the like.
    Or maybe I’ve been wrong about you and you haven’t expressed support for libertarianism and/or Ron Paul. Feel free to correct me, or insult me — either way.
    Note by the way, I used the word “presumably” precisely because I was ascribing to you or presuming something about you without absolute confirmation.
    *****
    Sweetness, not sure if you’re suggesting that I’m not thoroughly disgusted with the eugenics crowd — believe me, I am.
    We have a long and sad history of implicit and explicit eugenics programs in the US — forced sterilizations and judicially mandated use of Depo are the obvious ones, but at some level, our housing patterns and imprisonment patterns and welfare patterns end up with eugenics results even if they lack the intent or even if the intent is buried under a lot of displacements of meanings.
    I find a lot to be disgusted with in the US, so much so that the shock, shock there’s eugenics happening at Harvard schtick is a little much. It’s not shocking, it’s expected. Disgusting, for sure, but I’ve made that clear. But definitely not shocking.

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  15. nadine says:

    “These girls come from a poor socio-economic background,” Babyouf explains. “They don’t get enough attention. Very often these are unpopular girls whose appearance is unattractive, and these men use this,” he said.
    “It’s happening across the country and in Tel Aviv, too, but it’s particularly rife in Jaffa and the south of the city, where the population is more diverse,” said a Shas activists who had been running the part-time religious schools for 20 years and can only be identified as N. “They got out hunting for girls… we’re talking about local Arabs and Arabs from villages coming to Tel Aviv for work. At first they shower them with love and money, they spoil them, and then they take them back to their village – usually after getting married. From our experience we know this is where this Romeo and Juliet plot turns into an action movie. They become enslaved. We had some really hard cases of girls who approached us and we helped them. They were begging to leave but their Arab boyfriends wouldn’t let them.””
    Yup, sounds like nothing whatsoever could motivate this effort but pure racism.
    Did you notice, POS, that nobody is discussing the opposite problem, Arab girls marrying Jewish boys? That’s because it doesn’t happen. Why not? Because the girls’ families would murder them in a honor killing.
    I’m sure you like that solution so much better, POS, than the “racism” of the Jews. Heads the whole problem off right at the pass. And of course whatever the Palestinians do cannot be called “racist”. Leftists think that only white people and Jews can be racists.
    You can’t parody this bias. But it works if it’s aimed at people who know nothing.

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  16. PissedOffAmerican says:

    http://palestinenote.com/cs/blogs/blogs/archive/2010/02/24/tel-aviv-presents-municipal-program-to-prevent-arab-boys-from-dating-jewish-girls.aspx
    By Dimi Reider
    Tel Aviv presents: Municipal program to prevent Arab boys from dating Jewish girls
    Maariv reported on February 23 that the Tel Aviv municipality launched a “counselling program” to “help” Jewish girls who date and/or marry Arab boys.
    Grassroots and governmental campaigning against interfaith mingling is nothing new in Israel: Just a few months ago there was a “task force” set up by the municipalioty of Petah Tikva, which is basically a suburb of Tel Aviv. The job of the task force was to patrol the city at night and break up Arab-Jewish dates. The London Times also covered the activities of a concerned parents’ group vigilante gang patrolling the rapidly integrating Jerusalem neighborhood of Pisgat Ze’ev, intimidating mixed couples.
    On top of that, we have the activities of a huge, quasi-paramilitary group called Yad Leachim that goes on army-style”rescue operations” of Jewish women from their Gentile husbands (homegrown terrorist Jacob Teitel boasts working with them for a while, which they deny), and, lest we forget, the insane Jewish Agency campaign about non-Jewish partners kidnapping 50% of the young Jews in the Diaspora.
    But this is the first time officially sanctioned racism, funded by taxpayers, has come to Tel Aviv, Israel’s liberal heartland.
    continues……
    http://palestinenote.com/cs/blogs/blogs/archive/2010/02/24/tel-aviv-presents-municipal-program-to-prevent-arab-boys-from-dating-jewish-girls.aspx

    Reply

  17. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “Q says: “Mostly, I think I want to foreclose the possibility of condemning Kramer as a self-purification ritual. It’s just too
    damned easy to say, “Oohh, that Kramer is a very very bad bad man. And I am not Kramer. So I am not a very very bad bad man.”
    Is there no end to your horseshit? Why don’t you leave it at simple introspection, instead of being so patronizingly presumptive that you think you can speak for others here. I am NOTHING like you, thank God. It seems, on this thread, you are a bigger jackass than you usually are, attributing mindsets and motives to people you don’t really know ANYTHING about. You are batting ZERO, so far in your asinine comments and conclusions about me on this thread. Just because I have advocated cutting funding to Israel, you come up with…”All the libertarians around here — POA, OA for sure, JamesL, too– presumably they want all sorts of funds cut to all sorts of things and they probably wanted to end welfare as well”…despite the fact I have NEVER even discussed cutting funding for domestic programs, or anything else except Israel. Nor have I ever uttered a peep here about welfare. Then, just because I support gun ownership, you surmise that I kill things, and enjoy it.
    Despite your obvious conceit, and your smug satisfaction with your own ability to confuse the wisdom of wiping one’s own behind, truth is, from what I’ve read, you don’t know squat. And your presumptive and off base prattle on this thread only reinforces my opinion of you. You’re a supercilious ass, questions.

    Reply

  18. Sweetness says:

    Q says: “Mostly, I think I want to foreclose the possibility of
    condemning Kramer as a self-purification ritual. It’s just too
    damned easy to say, “Oohh, that Kramer is a very very bad bad
    man. And I am not Kramer. So I am not a very very bad bad man.”
    And that, I sometimes think, is a ritual around here. Far better to
    identify Kramer’s bizarro worldview and realize that it is paralleled
    by, twinned with, copied from lots of other examples, many of
    which are really familiar and have been pretty popular in this
    country.”
    I can see this. But we could say–how bizarre and horrible Kramer
    is–and look! now I see that we’re just like him!

    Reply

  19. questions says:

    And quickly, I’m not so sure about the intentions of NGOs. The issues of respect for where and what people are vs. altering them to make them more like “us”, the issues of helping in appropriate manner vs. in a manner we would like are significant issues.
    Does money only flow when it feels good? Does the cause have to be cute? Does it have to serve some fantasy of progress?
    Remember, when Kant talks about intentions vs. outcomes, he really means “from duty and not from inclination” so there can’t be any kind of ulterios motive in the push towards westernization. So for Kant, there might be far greater moral issues.
    REALLY gotta get stuff done!

    Reply

  20. questions says:

    Paul, swamped day, quick response, will try to do better much later or tomorrow….
    My point was not at all to say don’t comdemn Kramer; rather my point was to make sure that the ver easy “I condemn Kramer” does not in the least substitute for proper self-examination. It’s simply far too easy to go around “condemning” things, and people, and places, and actions. What have you done by “condemning?” You’ve taken care of your conscience and you’ve not really gone any farther than that.
    And if you’re one of the resident libertarians, one of the residents of land that was taken through war, genocide, and general cruelty and then you only condemn Kramer, and if you’re one of the resident tax-cutters and you only worry about Kramer, then what really ahve you done?
    I have some issues with the kind of displacement that seems to happen when, say, Kramer, become a placeholder for a lot of other problems. So, for me, it seems to be an important move to find the parallels between the kind of shit Kramer advocates and the kind of shit, say, Reagan or Ron Paul advocates. Nadine on the far right, libertarians on the farther right. It’s kind of all the same to me, and I think the displacement issues around her are huge.
    Anyway, I really do have actual work to do…. So I will return to this when I have a chance. Thanks for civil tone even as you are full of wonderment at what I post!

    Reply

  21. Paul Norheim says:

    Questions,
    As so often before I am puzzled by your response to the
    Kramer/Heinsohn statements. I sometimes appreciate your
    contrarian approach – but……………..
    you said:
    “I think what concerns me in this is that what goes for good
    social policy in one guise is actually eugenics in another. That
    is, precisely the same result comes from a slight tweaking of
    the process.”
    As a self proclaimed disciple of Kant, Questions, this is a lousy
    and highly artificial argument. Although a debate regarding the
    methods of the NGO’s is legitimate, the INTENTION of Kramer’s
    suggestion is “demographic disarmament”, while the NGO’s try
    to create an artificial environment emulating the one in modern
    and wealthy societies, conditions where you don’t have to get
    many children as a life insurance.
    You may argue against the ethical implications of the methods,
    or question the efficiency and results of such policies. But the
    goals or intentions of these NGO’s are neither to “arm” nor
    “disarm” the Arabs. That’s the crucial difference here.
    What puzzles me more, however is this:
    Questions said: “Condemning Kramer is a way to avoid our
    seeing our own, ummm, inner Kramer, and so we feel
    inoculated by lashing out at the evil without. It’s this move I
    dislike.”
    On a general level, philosophically and morally spoken, this
    would indeed be valid point, if you had modified it slightly:
    “Condemning Kramer CAN easily serve as a way to avoid our
    seeing our own Kramer.”
    This is true on a general level: Condemning Hitler can easily
    serve as…condemning Pol Pot can easily serve as…etc.
    But with this in mind, we are talking about specific statements
    in a specific political context here. And in a concrete situation, a
    specific political context, you sometimes have to take a stand.
    Even condemn certain actions or statements.
    Or as a minima moralia: not attack, out of some general
    principle, those who condemn these specific statements or
    actions.
    The Kramer issue is one of those examples when it should be
    easy to say that this is plain wrong! And then you may – if you
    find plausible reasons to do so – address SPECIFICALLY how
    those who condemn Kramer do this as a way to avoid seeing
    their own Kramer. If you have any evidence that this is the case,
    and not just on a vague, general level, this is of course
    legitimate.
    Are you saying that we NEVER should condemn anything in a
    political or private context? Because condemnation is ALWAYS a
    convenient escape route to avoid our own moral depravation?
    Even I can see, to give an extreme example, that condemning
    Hitler and Gestapo and the extermination of Jews, homosexuals
    and other groups, can serve as an excuse for our own sins. And
    the same goes for condemning the mass murder under Stalin. It
    not only served, and still today serves as an escape route in
    different ways, but also as a justification of our own ideologies
    and societies. Fine. I can see that.
    But does this mean that we should never condemn
    contemporary statements and actions, statements given in a
    specific political context, statements we regard as inhuman and
    dangerous?
    Should we immediately get morally introvert when we see
    someone butchering someone, because our own uncle killed his
    neighbor 25 years ago?
    Explain this to me, Questions: Why on earth shouldn’t we have
    permission to condemn the real Kramer while we permanently
    struggle with our inner Kramer? Isn’t this our human condition:
    to simultaneously struggle with the Kramer within us AND the
    one on the outside?

    Reply

  22. questions says:

    Nadine, channel Reagan, et al. — the beginnings of ending welfare came because people were convinced that we innocent white tax payers were paying lazy non-white non-innocent non-tax-payers to have multiple babies. The racist dog whistles were all over the place. The facts never intervened. The idea that the additional amount per baby did not at all compensate for the actual expenses of said baby didn’t come up on the right.
    The fact is that turning AFDC into TANF has been a mixed mess for a lot of people. Some launched work lives. Many of those lives were at the very low end of the pay scale, and came complete with routine job loss at the first hint of a child care problem. At this point, so many of those low end jobs are gone that TANF will likely go down as a cruel disaster. The unemployment rate at the low end of the economy is 30%. At the high end, it’s 3% according to something I saw recently. Part of our economy is in depression and part is at full employment. TANF is a disaster for the 30% end.
    The hardship involved in altering financial supports in the middle of the game should be taken seriously. Even if one wanted to give you a brownie point for noting demographic issues, the kind of solution you seem to support is so cruel as to be unacceptable. Rather than cut support and “force” Hamas to DO something (you’ve already defined Hamas as that which does not care to DO things anyway), maybe we need to go a different direction.
    Like, maybe Israel needs to allow the importation of, I dunno, cement? Crazy idea, that. Maybe there are construction jobs that could become available? Maybe some of the random shooting-for-fun shit could be dealt with? Maybe the crazed settles could be governed instead of allowed free reign? What a thought.
    But in a war of attrition, every item is dual use. Why, they could use yarn to make bombs, so they can’t have yarn to knit baby booties. And books about Abe Lincoln could be used a bombs, so we can’t have the Gazan 4th graders learn any Lincoln! (snark)
    Since everything is potentially a bomb, and every person is potentially a bomber…. Don’t you see how far this mess has disintegrated? How unreal the terms are anymore?

    Reply

  23. questions says:

    Fair enough, you only said you MIGHT want to shoot something. And I assumed that “something” would be a living thing, and not, say a soda can. So you shoot soda cans? The poor cans. I wonder if they suffer. Hope you don’t shoot straw pushing weasels, by the way!
    Sincerely,
    A straw pushing weasel

    Reply

  24. nadine says:

    “Japan has an aging population. I assume we aren’t going to enforce pregnancies in one way or another. If they pay their own women to have kids, at least it’s an internal decision. But if we pay them, it’s a little gross.” (questions)
    But that’s exactly what we are doing in Gaza, paying their women to have kids. So on the one hand you say doing it is gross, but on the other stopping doing it is tatamount to genocide. You’re making no sense. Nobody is proposing to forbid them to have as many kids as they want, just stop paying them to do it.
    Any pressure that fell on Hamas to provide actual jobs for people would be a side benefit. You have no idea the extent to which UNWRA subsidizes perpetual jihad. You just join the crowd saying, oh look, there’s no peace. Must be Israel’s fault, who else could it be?

    Reply

  25. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “I just think it’s a little weird to enjoy killing”
    There you go again, you jackass. Did I say I “enjoy” killing? No.
    Did I say I might want to shoot a living thing??? No.
    Point of fact, I haven’t hunted in years. My dad had a commercial hunting lodge, and I kinda got my fill of it,
    You ever eat elk steak? Far superior than beef.
    You ever shoot trap or skeet? Great fun.
    Stop shoehorning me into your cute little categories you feel are needed to make your point.
    One, you don’t know what the hell you’re talking about.
    And two, it exposes you as a disingenuous straw pushing little weasel.

    Reply

  26. questions says:

    No, POA, actually, it doesn’t frost anything, not cake, not hair, not Jack. I just think it’s a little weird to enjoy killing. But plenty of people seem to. Funny thing how culture can make you think that what you do is ok, even if someone else thinks it’s a little weird or even immoral. Culture’s a funny thing that way.
    ******
    And Sweetness, thanks again for the reply.
    I agree that our doing something doesn’t excuse someone else’s doing it as well, and so I certainly wouldn’t condone that Kramer guy just because the US does it too. I think it the other way around, though. Condemning Kramer is a way to avoid our seeing our own, ummm, inner Kramer, and so we feel inoculated by lashing out at the evil without. It’s this move I dislike.
    (Starvation is my word for what happens when you cut off aid to people who have few or no other resources.)
    And as for NGOs, clearly there’s good work done, much more work to do, people who really do need and want the support. Again, though, there’s this nuanced moment when the help could conceivably become coercion. I think of missionary work this way mostly because I cannot imagine the need to be Christianized. To the extent that outreach ends up pushing people, I have some discomfort. And I’m guessing that a fair amount of outreach really does get kind of pushy.
    I don’t want to reify any kind of natural state or overly value “untouched by western memes” because any such category has its own problems, so I see this side too.
    Mostly, I think I want to foreclose the possibility of condemning Kramer as a self-purification ritual. It’s just too damned easy to say, “Oohh, that Kramer is a very very bad bad man. And I am not Kramer. So I am not a very very bad bad man.” And that, I sometimes think, is a ritual around here. Far better to identify Kramer’s bizarro worldview and realize that it is paralleled by, twinned with, copied from lots of other examples, many of which are really familiar and have been pretty popular in this country.

    Reply

  27. PissedOffAmerican says:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Koenig_Memorandum
    Koenig Memorandum
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    The Koenig Memorandum (also known as The Koenig Report) was a confidential and internal Israeli government document authored in April 1976 by Yisrael Koenig, a member of the Alignment (then the ruling party), who served as the Northern District Commissioner of the Ministry of the Interior for 26 years.[1][2]
    The document put forward a number of strategic goals and tactical steps aimed at reducing the number and influence of Arab citizens of Israel in the Galilee region. Outlining what he viewed as “objective thought that ensures the long-term Jewish national interests”, Koenig stressed the need to “examine the possibility of diluting existing Arab population concentrations”.[3]
    The leaking of the report by the Israeli newspaper Al-Hamishmar is frequently referred to as “a major turning point in the relationship between the Israeli State and the Palestinian minority.”[4]
    The Koenig Memorandum was the first publicly available document to outline some of the “policies of discrimination and containment” that Palestinian citizens have been subject to since 1948, reflecting “planning and deliberations at the policy-making circles.”[4] Its publication also exposed policy options that Israeli policy makers were considering prior to Land Day, as its first (main) section was finalized on 1 March – one month before the events of Land Day.[4]
    Although the Israeli Government never officially acknowledged that official government policies were guided by this plan, some of Koenig’s recommendations were implemented, particularly those regarding the expansion of land expropriations from Arab owners and the establishment of new Jewish settlements in the area in order to fragment and contain the Palestinian Arab population in Israel.[3][5][6]
    Additionally, both the Tel Aviv magazine, New Outlook and the New York newspaper Jewish Press reported in the fall of 1976 that Koenig had collaborated with prominent activists in Mapai, the party of Ben-Gurion, Eshkol, Meir, Peres and Rabin to prepare the report, and that Zvi Aldoraty, Mapai candidate for Director of Arab Affairs, was a major co-author.[7]
    The Koenig Memorandum came to the public’s attention in September 1976, when it was reprinted in full in Al Hamishmar, a Hebrew-language newspaper in Israel.[8]
    Its publication provoked widespread debate in both the domestic and international arena.
    The comments of the Egyptian Representative to the United Nations Security Council, Abdul Meguid, provide one illustration of such debate in the international arena. At a meeting of the Security Council on November 1, 1976, Meguid stated, “The aims of the Israeli Government are well known, but recently one of these official plans came to the notice of public opinion: it is a secret document, known as the Koenig memorandum, presented to the Office of the Prime Minister by Mr. Koenig, who is a high official in the Israeli Interior Ministry and is responsible for the treatment of Arabs in Israel. The Israeli Government is somewhat embarrassed — or so it says — not because of the contents of this memorandum, but only because it was brought to the attention of world public opinion.”[9]
    Continues…..

    Reply

  28. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “Any move towards peace is like POA’s giving up his gun — ain’t gonna happen because you never know, you might have to shoot something”
    Actually, you idiot, I might not “have to” shoot something, I might simply WANT to shoot something.
    Frosts your ass, don’t it?

    Reply

  29. Sweetness says:

    Q: I think what concerns me in this is that what goes for good
    social policy in one guise is actually eugenics in another.
    Now is this “teaching” really less coercive? From what I read, no
    one is talking about forcing women on to Depo (that’s done
    more in the US to teen moms); rather, the proposal seems to be
    something right out of reforming welfare as we know it.
    First, then, how much space is there between these guys and the
    Reagan-Freako crowd? And second, we should remember that
    this stuff is precisely what the US did as a matter of social
    policy. We cut off aid with a similar hope in the background.
    Now, on the non-coercive version, NGOs go in, or clinics start
    up in neighborhoods, and women are encouraged to have fewer
    babies. Because I don’t really trust the line between persuasion
    and force, I wonder how much force there really is in this kind of
    “encouragement.”
    I think it’s really important to make sure that we do not find
    alien the barbarism of others, but realize that their barbarism is
    really a lot like ours. It’s too easy to be shocked by some
    conservative Harvard researcher — it plays into Harvarphobia
    and it allows us to escape thorough self-examination.
    SN: I see your point and agree with it. I’ll have to dig into
    Kramer and attendant articles to see about “details.” I think you
    can agree that if “starvation” is involved, it crosses a line that we
    didn’t cross (I don’t think) with welfare reform.
    But self-examination can result in paralysis. IOW, we refuse to
    do something because we’ve done the same thing, whether
    worse or not quite so bad. It’s impossible to clear the waterfront
    all at once. But yes, pointing fingers–what do they say?–three
    are pointing back at you. But the fact that we’ve done X doesn’t
    mean we have to condone other people doing X. Might be
    hypocritical, but it still strikes me as the right thing to do.
    Q: All the libertarians around here — POA, OA for sure, JamesL,
    too– presumably they want all sorts of funds cut to all sorts of
    things and they probably wanted to end welfare as well. If not,
    then the libertarian line they take around here is nonsense.
    Assuming good faith libertarianism then, they should be on the
    happier side for aid cuts and personal responsibility! So the
    shocked, shocked that gambling is happening here mode is a
    little hard for me to take.
    SN: Libertarianism–to cut to the chase– is a sad sick joke that
    is enjoying a resurgence of favor now. People latch onto Paul
    because he was anti-war and wants to cut funding to Israel. He
    also wants to destroy every stitch of our social safety net and
    more–but keep the military! Cause it’s in the Constitution.
    And keep the guns because, as you say, we might need to shoot
    somebody. Yes, they sound like the settlers. You’re right.
    Q: So first, again the guys advocating this are off their rockers.
    Second, it’s possible that NGOs are more problematic than I had
    thought, third, the libertarians around here are being
    inconsistent I think, and finally, we are not as different as we
    might like to be.
    SN: Yes, but hypocrisy, though an important issue, isn’t the
    issue here. IMO. I don’t know if NGO education is really
    coercion. Sure, probably, to some extent in that we’re trying to
    influence, change what those people would otherwise do on
    their own. But there are a lot of things they’d do on their own,
    like, maybe, drink dirty water, contract AIDS.

    Reply

  30. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “All the libertarians around here — POA, OA for sure, JamesL, too– presumably they want all sorts of funds cut to all sorts of things and they probably wanted to end welfare as well”
    Oh go screw yourself. Don’t assume, or mold me into some concoction that fits whatever asinine and convoluted premise you want to advance.
    You really are a blathering presumptive jackass, questions.

    Reply

  31. Carroll says:

    Posted by Sweetness, Feb 23 2010, 11:05AM – Link>>>>>>>>>>>
    One man’s bigot/terrorist is another man’s windmill tilter/freedom fighter.
    Really sweetie…’take my advice’ sounds a lot like hand over your wallet ‘or else’….no thanks. LOL

    Reply

  32. questions says:

    Thing is, Nadine, there are other ways to handle young populations. So, yes, the fact is that there are lots of young people. Marriage, starting households, basic education and university training, having an economy to join, finding a meaningful place in society — all of this is complex. One doesn’t attempt to starve a population to make decisions that are rational according to, say, your view of things.
    And remember, the funding cuts affect actually existing people who are blockaded, whose agriculture is wrecked, who are shot at by touchy boy soldiers, who aren’t allowed to import basic goods….
    Japan has an aging population. I assume we aren’t going to enforce pregnancies in one way or another. If they pay their own women to have kids, at least it’s an internal decision. But if we pay them, it’s a little gross. And if we coerce even more, by say, refusing to buy Toyotas until women are having 3 kids a piece, well, we wouldn’t do that.
    The US is aging, and unless immigration keeps up, we’re going to be our own demographic bulge and we will burden the world in our own ways. Should other nations try to make us have babies? Should Baby Rubin have, I don’t know, 10 sibs to make up for all the ticking clocks that stopped?
    Number of children needs to be a private decision and it simply has to be supported as needed by the public. There just are things we pay for even if we don’t want them and aren’t interested. Welcome to the social world.
    And underlying the whole Israel issue here is a deep sense of besieged, beleaguered, benighted survivalism. Perhaps there’s room to research connections between the gun nuts in the US and the nuts in Israel. We don’t need guns here because we’re really not on the brink of being taken over by whatever. Maybe we should try to understand Israel that way. Any move towards peace is like POA’s giving up his gun — ain’t gonna happen because you never know, you might have to shoot something. The fundamental lack of anything like trust is Hobbesian to its core.

    Reply

  33. Outraged American says:

    I helped market WAG THE DOG internationally. I really did.
    Applebaum was behind the Syrian musicians on her plane were
    “terrorists” absurdity.
    Applebaum is a lame but total bullshitter, in my opinion. And I’m
    sure, given her name, that Applebaum is a good Muslim girl.
    *ROLLS EYES* I think my eyes are in the neighbors’ yard at this
    point because I’ve been rolling them so much.
    So I’m willing to put in $50,000 to the pot to send Applebaum back
    to Israel where she belongs.

    Reply

  34. Carroll says:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/02/22/AR2010022203528.html
    Prepare for war with Iran — in case Israel strikes
    By Anne ApplebaumTuesday,
    February 23, 2010
    (paragraph)
    “If that ever happened, then the 2 a.m. phone call would be followed by retaliation, some of which would be directed at us, our troops in Iraq, our ships at sea. I don’t want this to happen — but I do want us to be prepared if it does. Contrary to Palin, I do not think Obama would restore the fortunes of his presidency by bombing Iran, like a character out of that movie “Wag the Dog.” But I do hope that this administration is ready, militarily and psychologically, not for a war of choice but for an unwanted war of necessity. This is real life, after all, not Hollywood’>>>>>>>>>
    This is an interesting piece of propaganda “lite”.
    One day we have propaganda “hard” by Cohen in the WP, the next day Applebaum de-cafe.
    You have to read the entire article to get the drifting around from Obama to Palin to Pipes to the final purpose of the article.
    Which is to position any US involvement in a war with Iran as a result of Israeli actions, as a “unwanted war of necessity” to save Israel Israel…instead of a premptive ‘war of choice”.
    I like to read some of the zio fifth column in the Iran war movement because there is always some
    really amateurish mistake that gives away their articles for what they are. In this case, besides the transparent exchange of war of choice to unwanted war of necessity, is Applebaum’s plea to Obama and the US to “be prepared in the event”. As if an old hand in DC like herself really thinks it hasn’t already been considered and planned for by the US.
    One encouraging thing,or maybe not since DC doesn’t give a fig for American opinion or welfare, is these pieces aimed at easing the public into their war on Iran are failing if you go by the ridicule her column got from WP readers.
    Sometimes I wish the Israeli war crowd were smarter because it is usually the stupid people you hang with that get you in trouble.

    Reply

  35. Outraged American says:

    Jesus Christ (that’s the favorite swearword of MOT’s in Hollywood
    BTW) now I’m going to have to explain my statement.
    I am willing to fund birth control, that’s what I meant.
    F-ing $90,000 in taxes last year, most of which went to fund war.
    NOPE. Killing is killing and I’m consistent. I don’t want to fund
    abortion and I don’t want to fund war.
    We’re killing kids who were actually wanted, while expecting people
    like me to fund people who want to kill their own kids. The latter
    are useless and need to figure out where to put a condom.
    Hint: it’s near where your little man is.

    Reply

  36. nadine says:

    “Nice acedemic discussion of “youth bulge”. Could refer to any stressed population, eh?” (DonS)
    No. It couldn’t. It refers to a particular demographic situation where at least half the population is under 25.
    These are facts we are discussing. It’s you who declare a whole class of inconvenient facts “racist” so you never have to deal with them and you can feel superior putting down anybody who tries to deal with them.

    Reply

  37. DonS says:

    Nice acedemic discussion of “youth bulge”. Could refer to any stressed population, eh?
    Throw in zionist twist and we have not-so-benign racism. Call it eugenics if you want. I’ll just say this dude Kramer isn’t doing very well covering his tracks.

    Reply

  38. questions says:

    samuelburke,
    Wow, thanks for the video link to the Finklestein extravaganza.
    Jean-Francois Lyotard wrote a really interesting book called The Differend and I think it must have had that interview in mind!
    In a differend situation, neither side can survive the admission that the other side exists as a point of view. Lyotard uses this concept to characterize what happens when a Holocaust denier meets with a Holocaust survivor. The denier cannot hold his own views in the face of a survivor and prefers the annihilation of the survivor over the the loss of his own narrative. The survivor, of course, cannot see the denier’s point of view without equal self-annihilation. So what do they do?
    In the same way, Finklestein and Gissin simply cannot admit one another’s narratives. If Gissin goes even half a step towards Finklestein, what happens to his grandfather and the bible and gun? What happens to his claim to his own life? What happens if he admits to the criminality of his own survival? When the scars of barely surviving meet with the guilt of violence to survive, you get an “abnormal state.”
    On the other side, Finklestein has a commitment to a truth that cannot see the narrative from Gissin’s side, cannot see Hamas the way that Gissin HAS to see Hamas.
    Finklestein is probably a lot closer to the right depiction of events, but it’s not enough to depict events. Events, facts, fit into narratives, and at the level of narrative, a certain kind of truth fades.
    The bulldozing of the chickens — war crime — if it’s a crime to destroy agriculture. Or, the bulldozing of the chickens — justified because Hamas is criminal and taking from criminals is no crime.
    There is no way to settle this difference, this differend, until the entire discourse and set of meanings and associations fades and is supplanted by some very different way of thinking.
    These guys will never, can never, see each other’s faces.
    So, samuelburke, laugh and cry both. It’s the tragedy of human kind, and the comedy of our very absurd existence.

    Reply

  39. nadine says:

    Sweetness, it is not “genocidal” to observe that societies that have a youth bulge (especially if many of the young men are unmarried and find it very difficult to marry) are far more ready to fight wars than other societies. It is just historical observation.
    Now, add in some factors in Gaza:
    1. There is a tremendous youth bulge in Gaza.
    2. It’s hard for a poor man to marry in Gaza. Arab culture works the way ours did the 19th century; a man is supposed to provide a home and income for his family. Tough for the umpteenth son of a poor family in a place without a good economy.
    3. Polygamy takes up the slack and allows poor women to marry, but not poor men.
    4. The youth of Gaza are being raised in a “culture of death” where the noblest career choice presented to them, the one everybody says is the very best thing they could hope to do, is to become a shahid and die killing Jews. Literally, Hamas TV sends this message to kids from pre-school up.
    Kramer is just suggesting that we stop paying to make the situation worse. And yes, WE are paying through the UN and directly as well. Hamas could not afford to wage jihad if it had to feed Gaza itself.
    To suggest refugee stipends be rejiggered is just to bring refugee stipends in line with the salaries of working men and women, who don’t get a pay raise every time they have a new baby. THEY have to think about what size family they can afford, but yet we never hear about how this arrangement is “genocidal”.
    Of course, there is a proper way to lower family size that is completely in accord with all human rights: make people prosperous. Once they enter the middle class, they don’t want 17 kids. They limit family size themselves. However, Hamas has other plans for Gaza, which don’t include a functioning economy.

    Reply

  40. Outraged American says:

    I want useless people to stop having useless kids and I’m willing to
    fund that. How’s that for being a libertarian?

    Reply

  41. questions says:

    I think what concerns me in this is that what goes for good social policy in one guise is actually eugenics in another. That is, precisely the same result comes from a slight tweaking of the process. Rather than cut funding and let the women “choose” to have fewer kids, we send in NGOs to “teach” the women to have fewer kids.
    Now is this “teaching” really less coercive? From what I read, no one is talking about forcing women on to Depo (that’s done more in the US to teen moms); rather, the proposal seems to be something right out of reforming welfare as we know it. Remember Reagan’s whole line about all those welfare queens and their Caddies and their millions of children they had solely to collect larger aid checks…. And all those children Freakonomicked into little criminals who then went away after they all got aborted….
    First, then, how much space is there between these guys and the Reagan-Freako crowd? And second, we should remember that this stuff is precisely what the US did as a matter of social policy. We cut off aid with a similar hope in the background.
    Now, on the non-coercive version, NGOs go in, or clinics start up in neighborhoods, and women are encouraged to have fewer babies. Because I don’t really trust the line between persuasion and force, I wonder how much force there really is in this kind of “encouragement.”
    I think it’s really important to make sure that we do not find alien the barbarism of others, but realize that their barbarism is really a lot like ours. It’s too easy to be shocked by some conservative Harvard researcher — it plays into Harvarphobia and it allows us to escape thorough self-examination.
    All the libertarians around here — POA, OA for sure, JamesL, too– presumably they want all sorts of funds cut to all sorts of things and they probably wanted to end welfare as well. If not, then the libertarian line they take around here is nonsense. Assuming good faith libertarianism then, they should be on the happier side for aid cuts and personal responsibility! So the shocked, shocked that gambling is happening here mode is a little hard for me to take.
    So first, again the guys advocating this are off their rockers. Second, it’s possible that NGOs are more problematic than I had thought, third, the libertarians around here are being inconsistent I think, and finally, we are not as different as we might like to be.

    Reply

  42. samuelburke says:

    pat buchanan wrote that.
    “Yet, now that Barack Obama has
    embraced neo-socialism, Republicans are about to be given a
    second chance. And just as Rahm Emanuel said liberal
    Democrats should not let a financial crisis go to waste, but
    exploit it to ram through their agenda, the right should use the
    opportunity of the fiscal crisis to take an axe to the warfare
    state.”
    http://www.lewrockwell.com/buchanan/buchanan131.html

    Reply

  43. ... says:

    sweetness quote “Upgrade your prescription.” just tell me what yours is so i know what to not take…

    Reply

  44. Sweetness says:

    Samuel Burke writes: “Yet, now that Barack Obama has
    embraced neo-socialism, Republicans are about to be given a
    second chance. And just as Rahm Emanuel said liberal
    Democrats should not let a financial crisis go to waste, but
    exploit it to ram through their agenda, the right should use the
    opportunity of the fiscal crisis to take an axe to the warfare
    state.”
    Ron Paul stands for a return to Gilded Age economics where
    there are caverns dividing the rich and poor and the middle class
    is hardly to be found. The economic stability promised by doing
    away with the Fed and going back onto gold is illusory and this
    is proven by the fact that there were MANY VERY BAD crashes
    before Teddy Roosevelt’s reforms.
    Unfortunately, right now, the average disgruntled voter doesn’t
    understand the draconian nature of the libertarian dystopian
    vision–but when he does, he will reject it.
    For one thing, it represents a dismantling of every aspect of our
    government except the military and a few other minor things.
    My prediction? The Birchers, libertarians, and other whack jobs
    have been emboldened to come out of the closet and step out
    onto a branch where everyone can see exactly who they are.
    They think “the people” agree with them. But like the proverbial
    cartoon character, they are sawing off the branch behind them.
    And should they succeed with their agenda, and “the people” get
    to examine their handywork…folks are going to be really, really
    angry at what’s been done in their name.

    Reply

  45. Sweetness says:

    Q: I am not in the least going to defend what I take to be
    Kramer’s fairly awful views. But I will put in the following. Many
    women’s rights activists argue that empowering women is the
    best way to allow for political and economic development and
    will allow women to choose their family size. This choosing is
    generally an opting for far smaller families. Which means fewer
    children. Which is where the left and the right seem to meet.
    SN: True, but…this “modest proposal” (you get the reference,
    yes?) is NOT “empowering women.” I think we can agree on
    that. This is “enforced family planning”–the opposite to
    empowerment–and, as Paul notes, it’s being done within a
    specific political context for political aims.
    Q: Kinda funny in a sick way? Kramer thinks we should starve
    Palestinian women into birth control. Feminists think we should
    fund women into birth control. The same results — a more
    mature population, less of a child burden per mother,
    opportunities for self-development, less radicalism, easier times
    for all.
    SN: But the results aren’t the same. In one case, you have, at
    the very least, starved women. In the other case, you have
    “funded” women. How much more different could they be?
    Q: So those who are on the panic end of the scale, please
    respond to the more positive version of encouraging as opposed
    to enforcing family-size reduction policies. I’m beginning to
    have a harder time with this issue suddenly.
    SN: I can’t see a more “encouraging” version of this proposal as I
    understand it.
    Q: Is is, then, immoral to support women’s lib/feminism if part
    of the outcome is precisely what Kramer wants?
    SN: If the means are immoral–starving–and the ends aren’t to
    create smaller, happier, healthier, and wealthier families, but
    fewer enemies–I’d have to say it was immoral. Wouldn’t you?
    Unless you’re going to posit all-out war here. But even then, I
    imagine starving the enemy is a war crime, no? I actually don’t
    know, but…
    Q: Is it merely a matter of means — as long as it’s empowering,
    it’s ok, but if it disempowers it’s not? Are there ways to draw
    lines through here to avoid all the vile possibilities?
    SN: I don’t see how. Seems to me that family planning has to be
    voluntary to be moral. Otherwise, you open the door to enforced
    sterilization, etc. The question of how many babies a family
    should have is a large one, but that’s not what’s at issue here, as
    far as I can see.
    Q: Consider this a discussion topic, not an occasion for name
    calling? Is it even possible around here anymore?
    SN: Hmmm. Probably not.

    Reply

  46. Sweetness says:

    Posted by nadine, Feb 23 2010, 2:35AM – Link
    Sweetness, What is so appalling about suggesting that UN aid
    should be rejiggered so that having as many babies as humanly
    possible is no longer a profit center for refugees? Gaza is full of
    families with twenty kids (average births per woman: 8), living off
    UN aid for generations.
    You sound like the NY Times in 1995, going on about how kids
    would starve in the street if Clinton signed welfare reform.”
    Nadine, I haven’t listened to Kramer yet, but…
    Norheim pretty much states what I was going to on first blush.

    Reply

  47. Sweetness says:

    …, “paul norheim – thanks for your 722am feb 23rd comment and
    follow up to questions…. i appreciate your posts here… i doubt
    you’ll hear from nadine or sweetness on your 722am post either…”
    You really have trouble reading, don’t you?
    Upgrade your prescription.

    Reply

  48. ... says:

    paul norheim – thanks for your 722am feb 23rd comment and follow up to questions…. i appreciate your posts here… i doubt you’ll hear from nadine or sweetness on your 722am post either…

    Reply

  49. David says:

    “What’s interesting is that nary a month goes by that we don’t hear about some academic losing his job because of anti-Israel statements. Yet this fucking maggot Kramer, no doubt, will retain his position at Harvard for opinions that are dangerously toxic in an academic setting.”
    As a retired community college instructor who witnessed this dynamic, although it was regarding other issues at the time, a dynamic which harkens back to my uncle’s experience at the University of Michigan during the height of McCarthyism, I have to say that this time, if anything, your tone is softer than what is justified, POA. The guy is way beyond a maggot, and actually not analogous, because maggots perform positive functions in the life cycle. This bastard is a destroyer without a redeeming positive function.
    It never ceases to amaze me the extent to which an abused person or an abused population will imitate the behavior of the abuser, apparently never really grasping what the hell they are doing in keeping the cycle of evil going. Either that, or they really are rendered so dysfunctional that it becomes simply the way life works for them.

    Reply

  50. Outraged American says:

    A Zionist calling someone else a “racist bigot”. I need my smelling
    salts
    They’re probably hidden between my well worn copies of the
    “Protocols of the Elders of ZIon” and “Mein Kampf.”

    Reply

  51. samuelburke says:

    does this make you want to laugh or cry or laugh then cry.
    http://www.normanfinkelstein.com/ariel-sharons-press-
    secretary-and-finkelstein-agree-israel-is-not-a-normal-state/

    Reply

  52. questions says:

    Sorry, “current legislation” should read “current recession.”
    Maybe I need a break from typing.

    Reply

  53. questions says:

    Nadine, kids are definitely suffering under welfare reform. Those 5 year limits are going to be tested severely by the current legislation.
    I believe we stopped collecting data on former welfare recipients so that we could avoid finding out just how much suffering there might be.
    Really, the hard nosed attacks on the very existence of those you’ve deemed your enemies (anyone who isn’t wealthy) is really over the top.
    Even Aristotle, that patrician, that aristocrat, that classist, realized that lower class people, “democrats,” were necessary elements in society. Even Aristotle knew that these people had an important role.
    But you somehow don’t seem to see this point.
    Once there’s a person, once there’s a face, once there’s suffering, there’s infinite debt and responsibility. Look at someone’s eyes and say the same kinds of things you post here. Deny the validity of the existence of another person face to face. Try it. If you can do it, more’s the shame.

    Reply

  54. samuelburke says:

    Everywhere opportunity is sought.
    http://www.lewrockwell.com/buchanan/buchanan131.html
    “How could conservatives whose defining virtue is prudence and
    who pride themselves on following the lamp of experience have
    been taken into camp by the hustlers and hucksters of empire?
    Yet, now that Barack Obama has embraced neo-socialism,
    Republicans are about to be given a second chance. And just as
    Rahm Emanuel said liberal Democrats should not let a financial
    crisis go to waste, but exploit it to ram through their agenda, the
    right should use the opportunity of the fiscal crisis to take an
    axe to the warfare state.
    Ron Paul’s victory at CPAC may be a sign the prodigal sons of
    the right are casting off the heresy of neoconservatism and
    coming home to first principles.”

    Reply

  55. Sweetness says:

    Carroll: “Actually I don’t post those things with any
    regularlity….other than one that I posted to nadine I don’t
    remember any..although it’s possible I flipped another nadine
    type off with one.”
    Ah, Carroll, you post a lot, but even EYE can remember your
    hauling out Churchill said this or that about the Jews and
    therefore there must be “something to it”…back when I was
    posting regularly. So maybe it was the luck of the draw, or
    maybe you do it more often than you think. Like an alcoholic.
    Your latest string of comments have been a series of shrugs,
    switch backs, incoherencies, semi-retractions, and nonsensical
    strawmen.
    When Norheim had you dead to rights, you struck out at him like
    a cornered animal. So much for following Walt’s advice, eh?
    My advice to you is: Don’t publish racist garbage. And if you
    publish it, expect to be called a bigot. Because that is exactly
    what you will be.

    Reply

  56. questions says:

    I am not in the least going to defend what I take to be Kramer’s fairly awful views. But I will put in the following. Many women’s rights activists argue that empowering women is the best way to allow for political and economic development and will allow women to choose their family size. This choosing is generally an opting for far smaller families. Which means fewer children. Which is where the left and the right seem to meet.
    Kinda funny in a sick way? Kramer thinks we should starve Palestinian women into birth control. Feminists think we should fund women into birth control. The same results — a more mature population, less of a child burden per mother, opportunities for self-development, less radicalism, easier times for all.
    So those who are on the panic end of the scale, please respond to the more positive version of encouraging as opposed to enforcing family-size reduction policies. I’m beginning to have a harder time with this issue suddenly.
    Is is, then, immoral to support women’s lib/feminism if part of the outcome is precisely what Kramer wants?
    Is it merely a matter of means — as long as it’s empowering, it’s ok, but if it disempowers it’s not? Are there ways to draw lines through here to avoid all the vile possibilities?
    Consider this a discussion topic, not an occasion for name calling? Is it even possible around here anymore?

    Reply

  57. Sweetness says:

    …,: sweetness, i can never believe how anyone would agree with
    nadine… you get a prize for that, lol… i think it’s called a booby
    trap, lol..
    Read, dude, read.

    Reply

  58. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Why is anyone suprised at Kramer’s racist mindset? Or Nadine’s casual dismissal of policy advocations that would make Adolph Hitler proud?
    Whats interesting is that nary a month goes by that we don’t hear about some academic losing his job because of anti-Israel statements. Yet this fucking maggot Kramer, no doubt, will retain his position at Harvard for opinions that are dangerously toxic in an academic setting.
    http://www.vtjp.org/report/Poisoning_Palestine.htm

    Reply

  59. samuelburke says:

    this is some excellent commentary by kelly vlahos over at
    antiwar dot comm
    http://www.thewashingtonnote.com/archives/2010/02/survivin
    g_while/#comments
    “No one wanted to talk about the war or foreign policy – unless
    of course, the discussion involved attacking Iran, supporting
    Israel if it attacked Iran, or waterboarding Gitmo detainees and
    foiled underpants bombers. That last one was a real crowd-
    pleaser among the college kids.”
    only questions with answers in them were allowed to be asked
    by the proponents of free speech at cpac.
    how much less open minded can a party be?
    stay tuned and find out here.
    no spin, none at all. for real.
    the republican party for one needs transformation.
    and the democratic party must also reevaluate itself and try to
    represent the interests of the people better than it now does.

    Reply

  60. Paul Norheim says:

    Questions,
    this goes far beyond a couple of scholars confusing causation
    with correlation, or some smart American geeks delivering weird
    but entertaining theories.
    “…and we get anxiety-laden rhetoric of “they are breeding.”
    Ugh.”
    Sure, we’ve heard that in Norway too for 25 years. All of Europe
    is full of it.
    But there is much more at stake in Israel, explicitly a Jewish
    project, which on a principal level is something entirely different
    than the American project. There is plenty of evidence that
    people at the top level of science and ideology in Israel have
    been thinking, planning, and implementing policies along
    similar lines for decades: “The demographic threat” – with all
    it’s implications.
    They may or may not have thought of how UN food and
    medicine and “pre-natal promises” make the enemy stronger,
    before a professor and an expert in genocide explained it to
    them. But this way of thinking is symptomatic, beyond a mere
    logical fallacy or experts lacking context. They are talking
    directly into a specific historical a and political context, and
    they know this context and their audience.
    Heinsohn’s article appeared in the Wall Street Journal during the
    bombardment of the Gaza Strip.
    And I have no doubt that more and more Israeli citizens, scared
    by their leaders, by memories of rockets and bombed school
    busses and restaurants, scared by demagogic pundits, by
    politicians in Knesset, and by hawkish ideologues, have no
    problem understanding and accepting these premises.
    Wake up, Questions. This is ugly, and worse than you want to
    think.

    Reply

  61. questions says:

    And by the way, we get a fair amount of this kind of thinking in the US when it comes to crime, African Americans, and demographics. Raw numbers and percentages, social opportunity, major structures within the society all get misread and we get anxiety-laden rhetoric of “they are breeding.” Ugh.
    Rhetoric matters. All over the place. It matters.

    Reply

  62. questions says:

    Paul, I think that these guys are kind of like the Freakonomics authors, Leavitt and whoever. They lose sight of the humanitarian and rhetorical wickedness while diving in to a demographic outlook. The humanitarian loss is disgusting. Absolutely.
    There is, however, a long tradition in looking at European history, say, of seeing what happens to “excess” males. That is, the oldest gets the property under primogeniture and the property cannot be divided. The “surplus” sons go to the priesthood or the military. There have to be places for all the kids who are born. But to take the extra step and argue that we need to cut the birth rate by stopping aid — wow.
    What this piece you site above does, aside from demonstrating disgusting inhumanity, is to confuse a great deal of causation and correlation issues, much as Leavitt does. There may be correlations between “excess” males and war fighting, but that doesn’t mean it’s causal. There are so many other issues that go into whether or not there’s crime, or war or whatever, that this kind of foolish bad science is really unhelpful.
    Even the concept of “excess” has numerous problems with it. Ugh.

    Reply

  63. questions says:

    “3. Never Get Mad. Let your critics throw the mud, but you should always stick to the facts, especially when they are on your side. In my own case, many of the people who attacked me and my co-author proved to be unwitting allies, because they lost their cool in public or in print, made wild charges and ad hominem arguments, and generally acted in a transparently mean-spirited manner. It always works to your advantage when opponents act in an uncivil fashion, because it causes almost everyone else to swing your way”
    ****
    But the facts are always always embedded in an analytic context of one sort or another. Facts aren’t transparent, they are, rather, illuminated by metaphor or conceptual framework.
    Again, the self-confidence and mild psycho-babble when one is pitted against strong disagreement is understandable as a survival skill, but isn’t really truth-oriented.
    The point isn’t to survive — as long as you’re already tenured — it’s to have some sort of truth emerge. Even if that truth, paradoxically, is that there isn’t an overarching truth, a single causal agent moving history, an easy to discern mode of historical explanation.
    “The Lobby” substitutes for the voice-over in elementary school science films. There’s a rational causal agent, a single voice, a clear path to understanding events. But, indeed, this is a gross oversimplification of history.
    Once again, dump “The Lobby” and start over with chaos or institutions.

    Reply

  64. Paul Norheim says:

    While we’re discussing anti-Semitic tropes…
    Those who support Professor Kramer’s position (brought to our
    attention by Carroll above on this thread, from a Talking Points
    Memo post) may claim that the issue is whether UN aid should
    encourage the Arabs to have as many babies as humanly
    possible, functioning as “a profit center for refugees”, as one of
    our most charming commenters said above.
    Obviously there are other things at stake here. Following the
    link Carroll provided, I found an article written during the Israeli
    attack on Gaza one year ago in the Wall Street Journal, by a
    certain Gunnar Heinsohn, who according to the WSJ “heads the
    Raphael Lemkin Institute at the University of Bremen, Europe’s
    first institute devoted to comparative genocide research.”
    This genocide expert is obviously an ally of Professor Kramer,
    who quotes and links to Heinsohn’s article in the WSJ when
    attacked by MJ Rosenberg and others (see Carroll’s link to tpm).
    You may read the whole article here:
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123171179743471961.html
    But let me provide some excerpts:
    In this article, Heinsohn talks about “youth bulge countries”,
    where “young men tend to eliminate each other or get killed in
    aggressive wars until a balance is reached between their
    ambitions and the number of acceptable positions available in
    their society. In Arab nations such as Lebanon (150,000 dead in
    the civil war between 1975 and 1990) or Algeria (200,000 dead
    in the Islamists’ war against their own people between 1999 and
    2006), the slaughter abated only when the fertility rates in these
    countries fell from seven children per woman to fewer than
    two.”
    Heinsohn concludes: “The warring stopped because no more
    warriors were being born.”
    In Gaza however, the genocide expert complains, there has been
    no “demographic disarmament. (…) And so the killing
    continues.”
    In Gaza, unfortunately, warriors ARE being born:
    “The reason for Gaza’s endless youth bulge”, he continues, “is
    that a large majority of its population does not have to provide
    for its offspring. Most babies are fed, clothed, vaccinated and
    educated by UNRWA, the United Nations Relief and Works
    Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East. ”
    “The current situation can only get worse. Israel is being pushed
    into a corner. (…) Some 230,000 Gazan males, aged 15 to 29,
    who are available for the battlefield now, will be succeeded by
    360,000 boys under 15 (45% of all Gazan males) who could be
    taking up arms within the coming 15 years.”
    “Much is being said about Iran waging a proxy war against Israel
    by supporting Hezbollah and Hamas. One may argue that by
    fueling Gaza’s untenable population explosion, the West
    unintentionally finances a war by proxy against the Jews of
    Israel.”
    ———————————————
    Obviously, the fundamental premise of this article is that Israel
    is involved in a total war, and every Arab baby is either a future
    male warrior, or a mother giving birth to male warriors.
    Like Hamas and other terrorist organizations, Kramer and his
    ally the genocide expert regard the entire enemy population –
    or at least all the young ones among them – as legitimate
    targets. A Palestine boy is born; a future soldier is born. It’s as
    simple as that. Demographic armament.
    According to this world view, the West is (“unintentionally”)
    providing the conditions for a new Holocaust, by their pre-natal
    subsidizing of “Gaza’s extreme demographic armament”, by
    feeding, clothing, vaccinating and educating the children.
    And make no mistake, Sweetness and Questions: This is also
    Nadine’s world view, expressed from day one at this blog. She
    sees no problem whatsoever when a Jewish professor
    characterizes Palestinian males as “superfluous young men”, nor
    when his ally, genocide expert Heinsohn, writes an article about
    how to “demographically disarm” the Palestinians.
    To be honest, I don’t know what WigWag thinks about all this,
    but I would assume that she would prefer a Dresden-like
    solution as more efficient than stopping the UN from feeding
    the children.
    According to this world view, a new Holocaust in the physical
    sense is not the only threat. The “extreme demographic
    armament” of the Arabs may also destroy the Jewishness of
    Israel – a catastrophe that would be the spiritual equivalence of
    the Holocaust.
    Israel may defend itself militarily. The big question now is: how
    to protect it’s Jewishness against the extreme demographic
    armament of the Arabs, provided by the West in it’s proxy war
    against Israel?
    Tragically, these questions are at the core of the Israeli project
    today. Personally, I have no illusions: If those who currently are
    in charge in Israel have to make a choice between democracy
    and Jewishness, they will not hesitate a moment before
    choosing the latter.
    To bring a contemporary perspective to a discussion on another
    thread: Carroll’s anti-Semitic quotes from famous men would
    not be published in any respectable American newspaper today.
    But those same newspapers don’t hesitate to publish Professor
    Kramer and his ally, genocide expert Gunnar Heinsohn,
    discussing demographic disarmament of the Arabs.

    Reply

  65. questions says:

    “10. Don’t Forget to Feel Good about Yourself and the Enterprise in Which You Are Engaged. Waging a battle in which you are being unfairly attacked is hard work, and you will sometimes feels like Sisyphus rolling the proverbial stone endlessly uphill. But it can also be tremendously gratifying. You’ll wage the struggle more effectively if you find ways to keep your spirits up, and if you never lose sight of the worthiness of your cause. Keeping your sense of humor intact helps too; because some of the attacks you will face ar bound to be pretty comical. So while you’re out there slaying your chosen dragon, make sure you have some fun too.”
    ******
    The number of business types who say things like, “Ya gotta believe in your product” without putting the product, the whole business, their entire existence into some larger context so that they can evaluate what they’re doing well beyond their personal issues…. Oh my.
    You should spend much more time disbelieving in your product. Self-doubt and lack of confidence are far better analytic tools than is confidence or “believing in your product.”
    Doubt moved Descartes into insanity and then certainty. Doubt is a crucial tool. I’m certain of this!

    Reply

  66. questions says:

    Confession time as long as I’m at it:
    Mr. Walt, I am not a realist. In fact, I think realism is on the incoherent side of things. As I noted above, policy doesn’t come in Platonic Forms, but rather emerges as the product of a profoundly irrational internal process coupled with bureaucratic structures, national myths, the occasional strong personality working within and/or against these same structures. All of this works with and/or against the entire political system in a chaotic stew in which the chief goal seems to be allowing people to take or ditch credit as needed. And even this goal is problematic.
    The idea that there could be a rational response to a set of nations all of which have their own chaotic internal systems seems to me to be the height of delusional thinking. You seem to have a hope lurking that we can get things “right” but I really don’t think there’s a “right” to get to. And I’m never entirely sure there’s a “better” because, for instance “rationalizing” US/Israel/ME policy might require banning citizen input into Congress, or might require upturning fairly strong international relationships such that we signal our own instability in relations. It also makes it seem as if we cannot relate simultaneously to adversaries. (I think Steve Clemons has posted on the notion of “false choices” in this regard.) And it might turn out that the notion of “better” is as incoherent as the notion of “good” and it might even turn out that “national interest” is pretty incoherent given that nations are really aggregations of individuals. Whose interest are we really talking about when we talk about a nation’s interests? Lots of fundamental conceptual problems to work through.
    On the theoretical side, then, I think we’re better off thinking in terms of irrationalism or surrealism or insanity or ad hoc-ery in foreign policy instead of realism.
    On the practical side, I don’t think we’re buying a whole lot by dumping, half-dumping, or re-thinking US/I/ME policy. We’re going to sell weapons, we’re going to rattle sabers with Iran and smush Iraq as needed for a long time. We were messing around in the region before AIPAC was much of a thing, and we’ll continue to do so for as long as resources, area stability, and old habit are in question.
    The more likely scenario in my view is that slowly but surely, the region will go through a process of brutalization of its domestic population, attempts at democratization, further repression, and so on. Just as they’ve been doing. There’s a stability in instability. Eventually, perhaps, the pendulum swings will ease and if humanity is lucky enough, it’ll ease with something a little more humane rather than less in place. But given that I just saw a headline that Ahmadinejad is threatening to cut off the hands of demonstrators, I think we need to take a very long view of the process in, say, Iran.
    Human rights, realism, neocon democratization — these are all simplistic models for what really is a chaotic mix.
    So maybe “The Lobby” really is not the best trope for explaining things. Try for “chaos” and see what you get. The worst you could do, probably, is offend a bunch of physicists who hate having their work turned into social science metaphor, and a bunch of realists who hate discovering that they are actually Platonists in an Aristotelian world. You’ll do ok in this storm! Unless Fox goes physics (but that would impact climate change issues because they’d have to take science seriously.)

    Reply

  67. questions says:

    My few suggestions for Mr. Walt….
    1. Make sure, when you write something you know is controversial, that you are not even borrowing the slightest bit from tropes you don’t really want to borrow from. That is, don’t have a tin ear for the long history of “Jewish cabal” style thinking. You can see from the postings above that you attract “cabal” thinkers and given them seeming support.
    2. Dump “The Lobby” as a phrase (see suggestion number one). Far better to do thorough scholarship into interest groups and lobbies (get a Congr. scholar as a co-author). Do the quant work. Look at causation/correlation issues in Congress. Look at whether the money follows or leads the votes — it seems unclear in the scholarship I’ve read, at any rate. Look at the complaints a bunch of CEOs have made in the recent past that they are tired of being shaken down by candidates. If the candidates are demanding money for votes, that would seem to suggest that the push comes not from “The Lobby” but from those who want money.
    3. Look at vote counts with a suspicious eye — strategic voting is insincere, and so even vote counts need to be taken with a grain of salt. Those who vote with AIPAC’s position might be voting strategically. Again, votes in Congress are often not what they seem.
    4. Look at claims by individuals with suspicion. All of those “That’s the most powerful lobby group” claims are on the iffy side as evidence. Would you tell someone from whom you were asking for grant money, “Hey, it’s not a really important grant, and I kinda hate your organization, but gimme the money anyway”? Backing away from the individual into the quant work (I can’t even believe I’m saying this! Not being at all a quant, myself) gives you a perspective on lobbying that is actually quite telling. How much money are the individual MCs getting? What percentage of their total take are they getting? How much money does AIPAC really give out? How many reps vote against AIPAC and get no grief?
    5. What are the other possible explanations for the votes you’re worried about? Florida and NY have large numbers of interested citizens. The votes might be following the districts rather than following AIPAC et al. How many Cold Warriors are there out there who vote pro-Israel because they still see bi-polar world politics and they support a democratic regime? How much anti-Arab bias motivates votes? How much signaling w/in Congress (as in “I know nothing, but so-and-so does know the issue, so I’ll just vote with so-and-so) — how much is this kind of dynamic ascribable to “The Lobby” and how much not.
    9.5 How many reps have ACTUALLY been defeated by AIPAC? I’ve read a couple of accounts, but those are so tainted by non-AIPAC-related issues that I simply do not give any credence to the AIPAC tale.
    9.7. Is it possible that AIPAC is, in my own view, a “pufferfish” in that it puffs itself up and takes credit for much that it does not do? Is it possible that there are some very weak candidates out there who are targeted largely because they are already down and half-dead?
    10. Foreign policy does not have a Platonic Form. That is, there isn’t really one true way to relate to other countries. So the critique of US support for Israel shouldn’t rest on the rightness or wrongness of a set of commitments, or even perhaps the costs and benefits. Foreign policy comes from a broad process of dealing with domestic pressures, resource and stability considerations, old commitments, habits and historical ties, signaling to other countries…. All of this, of course, you know better than I do. In fact, this is a legitimate process for determining who friends and enemies are. The rhetoric you seem to bring to the subject seems to delegitimate the process of determining the outcome and suggests instead that there is a more correct policy. Somehow, “The Lobby” is disproportionate in its causal efficacy, and that disproportion is distorting the real true policy we would really truly have outside of a pressure system. I don’t think I like this direction very much. (See 1, above.)
    ****
    To my mind, the broader issue underlying our current ME policy is that Cold War thinking created something of a bubble in the valuation of international relationships, and this bubble, like all value bubbles, bursts at great cost to those who have built houses on it.
    The US has supported a wide variety of unsavory regimes, fought a number of wars, killed vast quantities of people, set up power structures, defense production facilities, and even rhetorical bulwarks all of which work together to produce a logic of a set of international relations. AIPAC may well be a part of this, but I don’t think it’s the most important part. I think the Cold War is probably the chief issue.
    So if I were offering some editorial advice, I’d say look more at Cold War-inspired thinking and a bit less at “The Lobby” rhetoric.
    Of course, your co-author “misses” the Cold War, and so it would take some serious introspection to get all of this straightened out. But I think you could make a case for overemphasis on the Israel/US ties (not that I really agree with this point) far more cleanly by discussing a post-Cold War bursting of a bubble than you can by getting into a fuzzy reading of domestic politics — which really functions fairly normally.
    The media storm is a sight to behold for any mild-mannered academic, but then, I’m uncomfortable enough with the rhetorical undertones of “The Lobby” that I side a bit more with the storm people than with the W and M crowd.
    I think, again, your case could be made quite differently. I think that if you have to spend a huge amount of time backing off “bin Laden sez it’s Israel” and defending yourself against anti-semitism charges, probably you could have picked a slightly different rhetorical tack and been ok.
    It’s worth looking at US/I/P relationships in multiple lights, but you have to discuss what “American interest” could possibly mean (I’m deeply unconvinced by that phrase), and you have to show that really bad things have happened with the policy as it is, and those things would have been avoided with a different policy — but, sadly, this is not the sort of thing that can actually be shown. And, of course, you run smack into the Cold War as a major cause of ME relations.
    It may also be worth looking, at this point, at the extent to which we might trust Mossad to deal with a range of assassinations more than we trust ISI. I’m guessing that the security/spy issues are huge at this point, and may actually have overtaken the Cold War hangover. But I’m no expert on this topic, so I’ll leave it as provisional.
    I wish you best of luck in the media storm, and may you not be utterly tarnished by the kooks who have grabbed onto your rhetoric for their own nasty purposes.
    Carroll, a poster here, has already latched on to your self-defense and declared that she must be doing some things absolutely correctly. You are a hero to her. Maybe that should say something.

    Reply

  68. Carroll says:

    Posted by nadine, Feb 23 2010, 2:35AM – Link
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    I can’t believe I am giving you a tip for your own well being. But call a heart specialist and a neurologist immediately. You have a severe defect in both organs.

    Reply

  69. Carroll says:

    Posted by Sweetness, Feb 23 2010, 12:48AM – Link
    >>>>>>>>>>>
    Actually I don’t post those things with any regularlity….other than one that I posted to nadine I don’t remember any..although it’s possible I flipped another nadine type off with one.
    I do post some quotes that relate to political questions concerning the wisdom of both our initial support of the creation of Israel re our actual interest in the Arab world and on current support of Israel.
    These are always cited with links to the administration’s officials being quoted that made the statements. Most often from a Presidential Library’s records or from a source such as the Library of Congress and for historical accounts of Isr and I/P the British National Acheives.
    I post them because I agree with most of them in the sense that our blind support of Israel has not been good for the US and because they show that many FP experienced people had from the begining grave concerns and that those concerns have actually materalized.
    The Truman quote about the Jews, which I would guess you are most curious about, says to me, as it obviously appeared to Truman after championing the Jewish state, that neither the US Jews nor the Israeli Jews were going to play fair with Palestine or show the slightest respect or cooperation to the US in return for what Truman had done for them.
    Or any restraint in Palestine to which Truman had also formally promised Arab and Palestines rights would be respected in any establishment of an Jewish state. Which the US has obviously did not and has not lived up to.
    Do I think that was true about the US Jewish hierachy Truman was referring to, call them somewhat righteous activist then in the aftermath of the war and fanatics or militants now, that seems to still be around? Yes I do. History has sort of borne that out in the illegal expansion of Israel despite the official, but never enforced, US position that the settlements are illegal.
    I think I will leave you to wonder about what I believe, if anything, about any other instances of he said/she said, Jews said/the others said if I am even familiar with any if them.
    As for what I think about the Jews ‘collectively’ as a group you already know that I am a bigot and anti semite..right? LOL
    But if you ask nicely and say pretty please with a cherry on top I might tell you what is in my hearts of hearts and mind concerning you and your people.

    Reply

  70. nadine says:

    Sweetness, What is so appalling about suggesting that UN aid should be rejiggered so that having as many babies as humanly possible is no longer a profit center for refugees? Gaza is full of families with twenty kids (average births per woman: 8), living off UN aid for generations.
    You sound like the NY Times in 1995, going on about how kids would starve in the street if Clinton signed welfare reform.

    Reply

  71. ... says:

    sweetness, i can never believe how anyone would agree with nadine… you get a prize for that, lol… i think it’s called a booby trap, lol..

    Reply

  72. Sweetness says:

    Nadine: “Carroll, get a grip. All he is suggesting is that the UN
    stops paying more for each baby, which encourages enormous
    families, all living on the dole.”
    Nadine, if I can bring myself to, I will listen to Kramer. But I have
    to say that this is appalling. Really disgusting. I’m sorry. I can’t
    believe I’m agreeing with Carroll, but this is way over the line.

    Reply

  73. Sweetness says:

    Carroll: “But I would actually say so what? if they said those things.
    People have their own experiences with people and groups and
    judge them by that.”
    SN: Yes, but, of course, the question wasn’t whether the quotes
    were authentic; said by those people. The question was whether
    YOU, as the poster of these quotes, believe their content to be
    true…to be true of Jews.
    And, if you don’t believe they’re true, why do you post them with
    some regularity? Answering those two questions honestly would
    be a good project for you.

    Reply

  74. Mr.Murder says:

    Moral Compass
    by digby
    “I don’t even know what to say about this:
    ‘The National Right to Life Committee, which opposes abortion rights, on Monday criticized President Obama’s proposal to give the federal government new authority to review and potentially block premium increases by private health insurers.
    Mr. Obama included the proposal in his version of a comprehensive health care overhaul unveiled by the White House on Monday. Officials said it would protect consumers from unjustified rate hikes, particularly in cases where state regulators fail or refuse to act.
    In its statement, the National Right to Life committee said that the president’s proposal “limits rights of Americans of all ages to use their own money to save their own lives.”
    Burke Balch, the director of the National Right to Life Committee’s Powell Center of Ethics, likened the president’s plan to imposing a limit on the cost of restaurant meals.”
    -Okie dokie, right to lifers are now lobbying on behalf of insurance industires.

    Reply

  75. Dan Kervick says:

    “Spit it out, man.”
    I was thinking about some of the obsessives who regularly comment over at Professor Walt’s blog at the Foreign Policy site.

    Reply

  76. Mr.Murder says:

    2. You Have Less Control Than You Think.
    Insurance lobby and pharma does control Congress, but the demands of the people *are in that body’s volition.

    Reply

  77. nadine says:

    Carroll, get a grip. All he is suggesting is that the UN stops paying more for each baby, which encourages enormous families, all living on the dole.

    Reply

  78. nadine says:

    Dan didn’t say a word about you, POA. So how come you took it personally? Guess the shoe fit, huh?

    Reply

  79. Mr.Murder says:

    1. Think Through Your “Media Strategy” before You Go Public.
    Poorly done on health care, didn’t advance talking points.
    2. You Have Less Control Than You Think.
    Insurance lobby and pharma does control Congress, but the demands of the people in that body’s volition.
    3. Never Get Mad.
    Teddy Roosevelt appeared to take it personally often enough. Winston Churchill. Never say never.
    4. Don’t Respond to Every Single Attack.
    Advance the core policy and points.
    5. Explain to Your Audience What Is Going On.
    See point four once again. Up or down vote?
    6. The More Compelling Your Arguments Are, The Nastier the Attacks Will Be.
    Who says anything about needing a prerequisite for nastiness in politics?
    7. You Need Allies.
    Allies need allies. Coalition of the bribed.
    8. Be Willing to Admit When You’re Wrong, But Don’t Adopt a Defensive Crouch.
    Feel free to admit that you assumed the Republicans would actually want progress on health care, and that it appears you were mistaken to evaluate some of them for moderates without the condition of meeting at the table to talk it out.
    9. Challenging Orthodoxy Is a Form of “Asymmetric Conflict”: You Win By “Not Losing.”
    Recall hopes of community organizing, people said there were no ways to get to where you are now. Seeing beyond limitations is illuminating.
    10. Don’t Forget to Feel Good about Yourself and the Enterprise in Which You Are Engaged.
    Don’t forget to recollect things like the success of an FDR, Ike, or Clinton in things like rebuilding a hurt economy, addressing restraint and action within international and domestic spheres, or balancing the budget.

    Reply

  80. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “Unorthodox opinions, no matter how well-defended and carefully expressed, often become a magnet for all kinds of cranks, loons and haters, who take advantage of the new shipping lanes opened up in the commerce of ideas to launch their own inane and grotesque raids, and clamor to sail under the protective flag of legitimate discourse”
    Thats an uncharacteristically cowardly comment from you, Dan.
    Spit it out, man.

    Reply

  81. Carroll says:

    O.K. this is beyond the pale of civilized thought.
    http://tpmcafe.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/02/22/is_harvard_prof_advocating_palestinian_genocide/
    Is this genocide that Prof. Martin Kramer of Harvard, the Washington Institute of Near East Policy, and president of Israel’s Shalem Center is advocating here? I think it may be as the international genocide treaty specifically bans “imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group.”
    But here, Kramer argues that a good way to stifle Palestinian radicalism is by preventing Palestinian males from growing up by stopping either their conception or their survival.
    The way to do that is to cut off international aid that engenders procreation. He also suggests that the Israeli blockade is having that effect.
    Here is part of what Kramer says.
    “Aging populations reject radical agenda and the Middle East is no different. Now eventually, this will happen among the Palestinians, too. But it will happen faster if the West stops providing pro-natal subsidies for Palestinians with refugee status. Those subsidies are one reason why in the ten years, from 1997 to 2007, Gaza’s population grew by an astonishing 40%. At that rate, Gaza’s population will double by 2030 to three million. Israel’s present sanctions on Gaza have a political aim, undermine the Hamas regime, but they also break Gaza’s runaway population growth and there is some evidence that they have. That may begin to crack the culture of martyrdom, which demands a constant supply of superfluous young men.”
    Here is Kramer’s rebuttal to my charge. In my opinion, his rebuttal is worse than his original speech. Incredible.
    mj rosenburg

    Reply

  82. Mr.Murder says:

    Up or down vote on health care? The rally cry of the right when Rove was trying best to polarize the House in parallel campaigns with Tom DeLay?
    By removing the items you took away any possible traction for the public option.
    Put in a public option, include a series of items to accelerate a service economy in the expanded field, call it job creation.
    Vote against job creation for Americans, see where it gets you.
    Let your vote stand where it is placed.

    Reply

  83. Dan Kervick says:

    Professor Walt,
    You offer much sensible advice on how to deal with unscrupulous and unrelentingly hostile opponents. But how does one deal with the ridiculous and equally damaging allies? Unorthodox opinions, no matter how well-defended and carefully expressed, often become a magnet for all kinds of cranks, loons and haters, who take advantage of the new shipping lanes opened up in the commerce of ideas to launch their own inane and grotesque raids, and clamor to sail under the protective flag of legitimate discourse. How do you keep your own little boat from being swamped by these very unhelpful fellow-voyagers? The seas are rough enough as it is.

    Reply

  84. Carroll says:

    I would say Mark Twain, if that is his true quote, was accurate. But even if it wasn’t Twain, the problem of the carpet baggers after the war who were primilary Jewish, although there were others too, was a situtation that gave Jews a bad reputation among blacks and whites. The main reason why Jews were discriminated against in the South was that lingering dislike of their post war practices that were considered sleezy by war torn blacks and whites tryihg to recover. I discovered this oddly enough in my mid twenties from a jewish friend who explained to me why jews wern’t welcomed at a famous Sea Island resort in Georgia.
    I would say the Churchill quote is legit since I read that myself in the London papers when Churchill’s historian published his papers. But since I wasn’t alive during the Russian revolution or Bolshevism and haven’t researched the claim I can’t support or contradict Churchill.
    I did however read about the book Solzhentsyn, the Noble Laureate, wrote on Bolshevism that was criticized by the Jewish community because it supposedly linked the Jews as instigators of Bolshevism. A review is on amazon but the book is hasn’t been published in English so you have to get a French or Russian or German copy translated.
    Why don’t you do that and report back to us the contents? That would a good project for you.
    As for the rest I wasn’t alive then either, As I said they came from the spin of the goggle that landed on some religious site to the best of my memory.
    But I would actually say so what? if they said those things. People have their own experiences with people and groups and judge them by that.
    Happens to all kind of people groups..rednecks, republicans, Mexicans, the French, fat people, ad nausum. It’s wrong naturally but there you go…it occurs… by most everyone like the famous nadine.
    Whatever they said, if they said it, reflects their own opinion. You aren’t going to be able to keep people from expressing their own opinions, likes, dislikes, right or wrong.
    And yea I still think you are really being dishonest if you believe in any eternally always innocent victims narratives for Jews or anyone else like the one pro Israelis jewish zionist and others promote or deny why and how it is used. Those “shicks”? really are passe.
    Now if someone says they hate Jews cause they are Jews and wants to kill or do harm to you just for being a Jew or “killing Christ” or whatever call me and I will send in an anti anti semite army to rescue you.
    Until then not really interested in the anti semite battle over victimology uses.

    Reply

  85. ... says:

    thanks for your post here stephen walt… always informative and in this example based on your own direct experience….

    Reply

  86. nadine says:

    “The same way abortion is still legal despite the time the GOP had a majority in House, Senate, and a Republican President earlier this decade.
    Ending abortion isn’t the issue, without it they’d lose a cause and rally cry. Continuing the family planning schadenfreude is the issue, the ‘means is the ends’ in this matter.” (Mr. Murder)
    Ending abortion is a wedge issue and a rallying cry, that much is true. But it’s not correct to imply that the GOP had the chance to end abortion when they held the Presidency and Congress, but passed it up.
    As we are seeing with Obamacare, holding the Presidency and Congress, even with large majorities, is not enough without broad popular support. Ending abortion does not have broad popular support. Putting limits on late-term abortion does. And that is just where we see laws being made, limiting late term abortions and other restrictions around the margins.
    I don’t think the GOP would be trying to ban abortion completely even if Roe v. Wade were overturned. In a sense Roe v. Wade favors the GOP because it protects them from pressure by the pro-life contingent to try to ban abortion, which would create a popular backlash. In that sense, Obama hasn’t been as lucky.

    Reply

  87. Mr.Murder says:

    “At the time Israel was asking for $10 billion to help them settle Jewish émigrés from the Soviet Union and elsewhere, on top of the $3 billion we were already giving them annually.”
    Still goes along with my prior request for Hillary to step up the talk on traffic….
    Refugee and emigre status as a means of pushing back on these other items.

    Reply

  88. Sweetness says:

    Hey Carroll, since you consider yourself to be a protege of Mr.
    Walt, perhaps you can tell Mr. Walt–since you refuse to tell us-
    -which of these descriptions of Jews which you have
    posted…you believe are true. Take as long as you need…
    Posted by Carroll, Feb 02 2010, 12:58AM – Link
    You really think everyone is stupid enough to believe the
    zionistas totally innocent jewish victim shick..LOL
    CICERO (Marcus Tullius Cicero). First century B.C. Roman
    stateman, writer. “The Jews belong to a dark and repulsive force.
    One knows how numerous this clique is, how they stick together
    and what power they exercise through their unions. They are a
    nation of rascals and deceivers.”
    POPE CLEMENT VIII
    “All the world suffers from the usury of the Jews, their
    monopolies and deceit. They have brought many unfortunate
    people into a state of poverty, especially the farmers, working
    class people and the very poor.
    Then as now Jews have to be reminded intermittently anew that
    they were enjoying rights in any country since they left Palestine
    and the Arabian desert, and subsequently their ethical and moral
    doctrines as well as their deeds rightly deserve to be exposed to
    criticism in whatever country they happen to live.”
    MARIA THERESA, Queen of Hungary and Bohemia (1771 – 1789)
    “Henceforth no Jew, no matter under what name, will be allowed
    to remain here without my written permission. I know of no
    other troublesome pest within the state than this race, which
    impoverished the people by their fraud, usury and money-
    lending and commits all deeds which an honorable man
    despises. Subsequently they have to be removed and excluded
    from here as much as possible.”
    WASHINGTON, GEORGE, in Maxims of George Washington by A.
    A. Appleton & Co.
    “They (the Jews) work more effectively against us, than the
    enemy’s armies. They are a hundred times more dangerous to
    our liberties and the great cause we are engaged in… It is much
    to be lamented that each state, long ago, has not hunted them
    down as pest to society and the greatest enemies we have to the
    happiness of America.”
    CHURCHILL, WINSTON.
    “In violent opposition to all this sphere of Jewish efforts rise the
    schemes of the International Jews. The adherents of this sinister
    confederacy are mostly men reared up among the unhappy
    populations of countries where Jews are persecuted on account
    of their race. Most, if not all, of them have forsaken the faith of
    their forefathers, and divorced from their minds all spiritual
    hopes of the next world.
    This movement among the Jews is not new. From the days of
    Spartacus-Weishaupt to those of Karl Marx, and down to Trotsky
    (Russia), Bela Kun (Hungary), Rosa Luxemburg (Germany), and
    Emma Goldman (United States), this world-wide revolutionary
    conspiracy for the overthrow of civilization and for the
    reconstitution of society on the basis of arrested development,
    of envious malevolence, and impossible equality, has been
    steadily growing.

    There is no need to exaggerate the part played in the creating of
    Bolshevism and in the actual bringing about of the Russian
    Revolution by these international and for the most part atheistic
    Jews. It is certainly the very great one; it probably outweighs all
    others. With the notable exception of Lenin, the majority of the
    leading figures are Jews. Moreover, the principal inspiration and
    driving power comes from the Jewish leaders… In the Soviet
    institutions the predominance of Jews is even more astounding.
    And the prominent if not the principal part in the system of
    terrorism applied by the extraordinary Commissions for
    combating Counter Revolution has been take by Jews, and in
    some notable cases by Jewesses. The same evil prominence was
    obtained by Jews in the brief period of terror during which Bela
    Kun ruled in Hungary. The same phenomenon has been
    presented in Germany (especially Bavaria), so far as this
    madness has been allowed to prey upon the temporary
    prostration of the German people.
    Although in all these countries there are many nonJews every
    whit as bad as the worst of the Jewish revolutionaries, the part
    played by the latter in proportion to their numbers in the
    population is astonishing. (“Zionism versus Bolshevism: A
    Struggle for the Soul of the Jewish People.” ILLUSTRATED
    SUNDAY HERALD, London, February 8, 1920.)
    WILHELM II. German Kaiser.
    “A Jew cannot be a true patriot. He is something different, like a
    bad insect. He must be kept apart, out of a place where he can
    do mischief – even by pogroms, if necessary.
    The Jews are responsible for Bolshevism in Russia, and Germany
    too. I was far too indulgent with them during my reign, and I
    bitterly regret the favors I showed the prominent Jewish
    bankers.” (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, July 2, 1922)
    TWAIN, MARK (S. L. Clemens)
    “In the U.S. cotton states, after the war… the Jew came down in
    force, set up shop on the plantation, supplied all the Negroes’
    wants on credit, and at the end of the season was the proprietor
    of the Negro’s share of the present crop and part of the next
    one. Before long, the whites detested the Jew.
    MENCKEN, H. L. 20th century American writer.
    “The Jews could be put down very plausibly as the most
    unpleasant race ever heard of. As commonly encountered they
    lack any of the qualities that mark the civilized man: courage,
    dignity, incorruptibility, ease, confidence. They have vanity
    without pride, voluptuousness without taste, and learning
    without wisdom. Their fortitude, such as it is, is wasted upon
    puerile objects, and their charity is mainly a form of display.”
    (Treatise on the Gods)
    BONAPARTE, NAPOLEON.
    “The Jews provided troops for my campaign in Poland, but they
    ought to reimburse me: I soon found that they are no good for
    anything but selling old clothes…”
    “Legislating must be put in effect everywhere that the general
    well-being is in danger. The government cannot look with
    indifference on the way a despicable nation takes possession of
    all the provinces of France. The Jews are the master robbers of
    the modern age; they are the carrion birds of humanity… “They
    must be treated with political justice, not with civil justice. They
    are surely not real citizens…”
    You really think everyone is stupid enough to believe the
    zionistas totally innocent jewish victim shick..LOL

    Reply

  89. Carroll says:

    It strikes me that those in congress who have broken from the Israeli amen corner have done just what Walt has outlined.
    While the militant right or wrong Israelis in the US congress scream emotionally,hurl slurs and make threats.
    There is an interesting interview of James Baker by the National Journal. I always admired Baker, not for his hard ball partisan tactitcs, but for his plain spoken, rational and no nonsense speech and approach on issues. Which is exactly what the US needs to get back to instead of PC on steriods that tip toes around and never nails the problems.
    http://www.lobelog.com/baker-accuses-obama-of-caving-in-on-israel-palestine/#more-751
    NJ: Secretary Baker, do you fault the Obama administration for initially insisting on a “freeze” on Israeli settlements, a proposal that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu rejected outright?
    Baker: I don’t fault President Obama for making settlements an issue, but I do fault him for caving in. You can’t take a position that is consistent with U.S. policy going back many years, and the minute you get push-back you soften your position. When you are dealing with foreign leaders, they can smell that kind of weakness a thousand miles away. Both Democratic and Republican administrations have long endorsed the U.S. policy that settlements are an obstacle to peace. If “land for peace” is the path to a resolution, then settlements clearly create facts on the ground that foreclose the possibility of negotiations.
    I would also stress that United States taxpayers are giving Israel roughly $3 billion each year, which amounts to something like $1,000 for every Israeli citizen, at a time when our own economy is in bad shape and a lot of Americans would appreciate that kind of helping hand from their own government.
    Given that fact, it is not unreasonable to ask the Israeli leadership to respect U.S. policy on settlements
    NJ: You were the only senior U.S. official to ever use the leverage of U.S. aid to try to halt the continuing construction of Israeli settlements in the occupied territories. Did you ever regret that decision?
    Baker: No, because if we hadn’t done that, the [1991] Madrid Conference would never have happened. But you have to remember the context. At the time Israel was asking for $10 billion to help them settle Jewish émigrés from the Soviet Union and elsewhere, on top of the $3 billion we were already giving them annually. We had also recently repealed a United Nations resolution equating Zionism with racism. We had just decimated the Iraqi military machine, removing a major threat to Israel.
    Against that backdrop, we had an opportunity to convene a historic conference where the Arabs were willing to reverse 25 years of policy and meet face-to-face with Israeli leaders. So we told the Israelis that we wouldn’t give them the extra $10 billion unless they agreed to respect the U.S. position regarding settlements.
    Israeli leaders told us they would just get the money from the U.S. Congress. Our reply was, “We’ll see you on Capitol Hill.” And we eventually won the vote on that bill. So I don’t regret that decision at all.
    Djerejian: Fundamentally, because this issue affects the United States’ core national security interests. The Arab-Israeli conflict, and especially the Palestinian issue, remains one of the most contentious and sensitive issues in the entire Muslim world. The Palestinian issue can get Muslims demonstrating in the streets from Jakarta to Nigeria to Lebanon. Osama bin Laden exploits the plight of the Palestinians, as does [Iranian President Mahmoud] Ahmadinejad, as did [former Iraqi President] Saddam Hussein.
    When the United States is expending its blood and treasure fighting insurgencies in overwhelmingly Muslim Iraq and Afghanistan, the dots are even easier to connect. It’s all part of a very important whole. We would be naive to think that resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict will eliminate the problems of terrorism and radicalization in the Islamic world, but it will go a long way toward draining the swamp of issues that extremists exploit for their own ends. So I think any American president would be well-advised to tackle this issue. How much political capital to spend at any given time, however, is a decision only the president himself can make. “>>
    I’am not posting the rest it’s too long, you can use the link.

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  90. Mr.Murder says:

    ‘Posted by nadine, Feb 21 2010, 3:43PM – Link
    “How can Arab or Persian countries be riled about Palestine and let their own lands be landmarks to suffragaette classes of import workers and sex slaves?”
    Simple. Places like Dubai are not actually riled about Palestine. It’s just a convenience to keep their population’s gaze off of the import workers, the sex slaves, and their own general corrupt misrule. That’s why they keep paying the Palestinian groups never to settle. The I/P conflict is a pillar of support for all the Arab regimes. ‘
    The same way abortion is still legal despite the time the GOP had a majority in House, Senate, and a Republican President earlier this decade.
    Ending abortion isn’t the issue, without it they’d lose a cause and rally cry. Continuing the family planning schadenfreude is the issue, the ‘means is the ends’ in this matter.
    The fact was few could really rebuff Nadine’s point made at the time,(one of the few to draw distinction) but that same point applies consistently in contrapositive fashion to I/P on both sides, in any event. To her credit she summed up a lot of triangulation items that play in this complex policy.
    Plus the human trafficing aspect vs. Dubai triangulates their own growing pressure on immigration inequities, Dubai’s sanction siphoning market, and it hedges Putin’s dealing with the EU and former East bloc countries.
    Hillary is really missing an opportunity to cement these issues across boundaries. Human trafficing is a challenge to emerging EU members, to the Iron Curtain’s aftermath, to engagement within the EU and MidEast, and as a pattern indicator on Israel/Palestine as regional precedent(see also Sudan,most of the north central and western African states).
    If Haiti can pressure Baptist relief workers to that extent on threat of jail, where are the same levers being applied due these humanitarian items to the trafficing types? The FBI probably could unleash a torrent or profiles upon that in the form of enforcement suggestions.
    It is probably the best equipped Executuive section to start expansion of the human rights umbrella.

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  91. nadine says:

    “6. The More Compelling Your Arguments Are, The Nastier the Attacks Will Be.”
    Boy, talk about self-serving. How about “Point 0: Develop rigorous arguments in the first place.” And if your arguments play into potent anti-Semitic tropes from the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, don’t be so surprised and indignant if people suspect that you too may be anti-Semitic.
    I read Walt’s defenses, and found them weakly argued. He says he never defined the “Israel lobby” as everybody who has a position he thinks is pro-Israel; he stuck to groups that call themselves pro-Israel. Fair enough, as far as it goes, though these groups often disagree with each other. But it doesn’t address Walt’s conclusion that everybody else who is “pro-Israel” (according to Walt) is pro-Israel because “Israel lobby” made them that way.

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  92. samuelburke says:

    Prof, that’s great, it looks like the Declaration of Independence.
    Great Times call for Great Men.
    america, what a country.
    God save her children.

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