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The Passion appeals to the unwary

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Spirited discusssion of Mel Gibson‘s new movie, The Passion of the Christ, is increasing in the blogosphere. The loudest and most uncompromising voices tend to be those of those on the Right, who, while not necessarily members of the reactionary arm of Catholicism, are sympathetic to its embrace of “traditional values.” Another type of defender hails from the ‘it is just a movie’ school of thought. The following are typical are of the comments I’ve read by them.

In any case, while I understand people being a little concerned about Catholic attitudes when it comes to Jews, I think you should have a little, er, faith. No one’s walking out of this movie a Jew-hater who wasn’t already a Jew-hater walking in. I wouldn’t worry unduly, then, about anger and revenge: At the very least, it’s hard for me to imagine sitting through two hours of seeing a guy flayed alive and nailed to a piece of wood, and then coming out of theater like, “You know what I could really go for right now? More violence.”
NC

Dear “ALL” I have yet to see this film, but I have read masses upon masses of reviews, insults, praise about it, and one thing has come to mind. You cannot blame a film for enciting jew hating maniacs, you either are one or you are not. I find it a total insult to any human being on this planet to suggest a film can be responsible for hatred of the jews or any other belief system. I myself will go to see the film on it’s release in Britain and no matter what I may think of it I WILL NOT come away with the feeling that somehow the jewish people are responsible for jesus death, this is probably because I have my own beliefs in spiritual matters and no one will change that, as I am sure most people on this planet who has any sanity will not be turned into pyschopathic religious haters. So my message being, all you subjective bigots out there “GET A LIFE ITS ONLY A FILM”, if we all had this reaction to the horrors that actually do go on in this world we could eradicate it over night.

Sophie

I do not expect anti-Jewish riots in Pasadena and Des Moines as a result of The Passion, but I think the film could be harmful. The reason is: Art can reflect and exacerbate preexisting social problems in a society.

Before scoffing at the idea, I recommend considering two films that reflected and exacerbated bigotry toward African-Americans, Birth of a Nation and Gone With the Wind. Obviously, neither movie, nor the books they were based on, can be held responsible for the our nation’s 400-year-old romance with racism. But, what they did was support the notion that slavery, segregation and dehumanization of human beings in general is a romance, not an evil. Along with other cultural encouragement, they gave both the developing bigot and the confirmed bigot confirmation of his beliefs. I believe a movie that revives the myth of the Jews being solely, or mainly, responsible for the death of Christ could have the same impact.

For me, the genesis of The Passion of the Christ in adherents to the reactionary wing of Catholicism makes the intent behind the movie dubious. The Catholic Traditionalist Movement and Opus Dei both wish to return us to a time when issues of social justice were ignored and a rigid adherence to authoritarian doctrine was demanded. The movement also wishes to grow. The easiest way to do that is to attract like-minded persons from Protestant denominations to Catholicism. Since the reactionaries believe the Reformation should never have occurred, there is additional grounds for seeking out ‘lost’ Catholics. The Passion could easily become a method of recruitment for CTM and OD, as well as a way to reassure anti-Semites they have been right all along.

Note: This entry also appeared at Silver Rights.

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About The Diva

  • debbie

    Mac,

    Have you seen the movie?

    I have and there was nothing new in the movie that wasn’t already in the New Testament (in regards to why Jesus gave his life). I just don’t understand the anti-Semitec charges. I don’t care what Gibson’s father believes….the movie follows the Gospels. At no time in the movie does it portray ‘Jews’ as the reason for Christ’s crucifixion. It clearly shows that Christ willingly gave his life for us, and he continued to pray for forgivness for the people.

    This movie was very inspiring to me personally, it gave me a deep sense of love, hope and forgivenss. Here was our Lord, willingly giving his life up in the most horrific way so that we all could be forgiven. How much love does that take?

    The loudest criticism has come from people that have not seen the movie and state that they have no intention of seeing the movie. How can you criticize something that you haven’t seen?

  • shaun

    “At no time in the movie does it portray ‘Jews’ as the reason for Christ’s crucifixion.” uuhhh, did you see the same movie i did? They did portatray the jews as the instegator of jesus’ crucifiction. whether jesus did it willingly or not he did not saw whip me and stick me to a stake, that was the jews. The portrial, i feel, is an accurate on of the jews

  • debbie

    “”At no time in the movie does it portray ‘Jews’ as the reason for Christ’s crucifixion.” uuhhh, did you see the same movie i did?”

    Yes, I did…I saw Christ tell his diciples that he was willingly giving his life for them, I saw Christ heal the ear of one of the Roman guards that came to arrest him, I saw Christ praying for His Father to forgive them because they didn’t know what they were doing.

    I also saw in that the movie portrayed demons going into the high priests and the crowd making them act that way. It was all fortold in the Scriptures, Jesus knew that this was why he was born. So, taking those points into consideration I didn’t see the ‘Jews’ as the reason for the crucifixion. I saw all of humanity as the reason for the crucifixion.

  • shaun

    “I also saw in that the movie portrayed demons going into the high priests and the crowd making them act that way.” again, same movie? I don’t know where you are getting your info from, but that’s is wrong. the demons never entered anyone. The only demons in the movie were there divil, the demons harrasing judas, and the jews

  • Eric Olsen

    Shaun, why don’t you find something a little more useful to do with your time than spouting your poorly spelled, logically vacant, mentally warped, morally repugnant, and just plain boring anti-Semitism? It’s really old and since you haven’t the slightest objective substantiation for your foolish hate, there isn’t even anything to be learned from it.

  • shaun

    oohh sweet eric, i wish i ahd time to gather sources for my argument, but i am doing these posts at work in my free time not leaving much time to do that. you are pretty hot tempered about this topic, sorry. don’t mean to piss you off so much. If putting me down makes you feel better go for it. I am stating what i know and feel.

  • Eric Olsen

    The exact point I am making is that you don’t “know” anything about it, and all you “feel” is baseless hate.

  • Dawn

    Shaun,

    If you have enough time to leave a comment, could you also find the time to spell at least half of it correctly?

    You are a pathetic dipshit, you’re so stupid in fact, that I am wondering if you are just teasing us.

  • http://www.foliage.com/~marks Mark Saleski

    i dunno…the email is tucker69…that’s so kewl & klever!

    ;-)

  • shaun

    ok you guys. Fuck you all!! ya don’t know shit about me, and you are right i don’t thake this site or any of you sorry motherfucker seriously. Ya wanna talk shit and call me stupid, good for you. You all can huddle in front of your computers and blab shit at me.
    ya sit on a computer all day bitch, it is funny, i posted a few comments and ya’ll take it upon yourselves to be the jew defenders. great.

  • Eric Olsen

    “Jew Defenders” – I like that, maybe a TV show in the works.

  • NC

    You made these points in another thread, Mac, so I’ll repeat the point I made to you there in response: So what? I agree that art can reflect/exacerbate social problems; I also agree that the traditionalist Catholic movement, like any movement, seeks to grow. So what? What exactly are you getting at, aside from the fact that you obviously wish “The Passion” hadn’t been made? Should we not go see it, lest it trigger some kind of long-dormant Jew-killing impulse lurking deep inside our Christian consciousness? Should we not be allowed to see it? I keep waiting for the “therefore” in your comments about this.

    I also don’t grasp what Mel Gibson’s intentions have to do with my enjoyment of his film. Lots of filmmakers intend a lot of things with their films that I, for one reason or another, don’t buy into. But in any event, we’ll never quite know what Mel intended for the simple reason that we can’t get in his head. So why worry about it? In fact, let me ask you this: What did Spike Lee intend when he made “Malcolm X” (a film which, incidentally, this purveyor of “traditional values” thought was fabulous)? Was he going for black pride? Was he going for something more general, i.e., the story of a free-thinker who fought against prejudice? Or was he trying to incite the black community to take up arms against The Man? I’m not sure, and–here’s the important point–I don’t care. I enjoyed the movie on my own terms, just like anyone enjoys any movie, and I wouldn’t knock it just because it may have “reflect[ed] and exacerbate[d] preexisting social problems in a society.” That’s what good art does. That’s life.

  • Eric Olsen

    So NC, did you like The Passion?

  • NC

    Did you? Did Mac?

  • http://macaronies.blogspot.com Mac Diva

    There is not a ‘therefore’ because I do not believe in censorship 99 percent of the time, NC. However, I do believe people should be aware of what the potential harm of supporting something they see as innocuous, but has deeper implications can be. On Mac-a-ro-nies today, I’ve borrowed comments about “The Passion” from another blog, a conservative one, incidentally. They reflect what some people see in the movie — confirmation of bigoted beliefs. I haven’t posted that entry to Blogcritics, but you can see it here. I believe Shaun is also proving the point I’m trying to make, over and over again.

    I took your and Sophie’s remarks and used them for a blog item because most of what we’re seeing in the blogosphere focuses on the first type of defender I’ve described above. But, I think believing ‘it is just a movie’ can also be dangerous.

    I got into blogging as a result of sending material I have collected over the years about the neo-Confederate movement to the most prominent liberal bloggers. It was used during the Trent Lott debacle. One thing I’ve learned by observing those people is that they use the innocuous to attract adherents. Vague appeals to their ‘heritage.’ The claim that ‘you should be able to wear anything you want to school or work.’ Assertions that ‘things were just fine in the South before the 1960s.’ All very innocuous sounding, but it leads to a hateful result. In fact, there are actually persons making a living by playing the easily led for fools.

    I am getting a ‘see the Passion’ postcard or two every day. They are lovely, full color oversize cards sent by area Roman Catholic Churches. I keep wanting to write ‘send the money you are wasting on these cards to a victim of one of your pedophile priests’ on them and send them back. This episode has made me question the priorities of your church, NC. Maybe you should, too.

  • Dawn

    I guess you could call me a “Jew defender”, if there is a need for one, then call me. I am always willing to defend anyone being mistreated based on superficial reasons like color, religion,ethnic origin etc.

    The only thing I won’t defend is ignorance.

    Now, as for the Church’s priorities. I agree that the Catholic Church has made some major and egregious offenses upon mankind, the most recent abuses most duly noted, but I know plenty of truly good and caring Catholics and have met some inspirational priests in my life.

    My issues with “the Passion” are mainly with Mel Gibson’s interpretation of those events and some potential fudging of religious “facts”. If he has a anti-Semitic bent based on that fudging, that is solely on him, not the Catholic Church as a group.

    I haven’t seen the movie, so I can’t REALLY judge is accurately – I may wait til it comes out on cable and aviod giving Mel my money.

    My question to Mac and Eric is this: is it equally wrong to bash Catholics/Catholicism as it is to bash Jews/Judism?

    I am not implying that you are, I am just wondering if it’s an equal offense.

    A

  • Eric Olsen

    Any bashing based upon “who” and not “what” is equally wrong.

    No, I haven’t seen the movie and it wasn’t a trick question. I am just curious.

    I have theological differences of opinions with Catholics, but I certainly have bigger theological differences with Jews and any other non-Christians. And I have real problems with the structure of the Catholic Church and its hierarchy, and obviously the pedophilia issue. I am pleased to hear about the changes that have been implemented since the ’60s, but I have also had personal, very specific experiences that show me the changes have not made it out to the hinterlands yet. I am afraid that a fair number of Luther’s complaints still have at least lingering validity 500 years later, and tacit or otherwise Vatican complicity in the Holocaust was only 60 years ago.

    If this current crisis leads to real change in the structure and hierarchy of the Church then it will become worthy of its members.

    And Jews aren’t perfect either, nor are Lutherans, Jains or animists.

  • http://macaronies.blogspot.com Mac Diva

    I don’t believe I am bashing the Catholic Church by criticizing “The Passion.” The controversies around the movie reveal fractures within the Church. The people most eager to promote it, the traditionalist movement, have scorned mainstream Catholicism for decades. (In fact, Hutton Gibson went so far as is to write a book titled, Is the Pope Catholic? maligning post Vatican II Catholicism.) However, with an asleep at the wheel Pope in Rome, the influence of that branch of Catholicism is growing. We may be seeing it reflected in not getting statements supportive of Vatican II in regard to the Christ’s death out of Rome during this time. The Pope’s secretary, a member of Opus Dei, seems to be the source of the claim the Pope had recommended the movie, though he backtracked later. I doubt he will prod the Pope in regard to clarifying what the Church supposedly believes about the responsibility for Christ’s death.

    My overall take on Catholocism is that there are and have been Catholics who fought for social justice, as I’ve said on other threads. However, conservatism has too often dominated the RCC. I’m also turned off by its emphasis on emotion and spectacle instead of actually getting worthwhile things that alleviate real world suffering done. If I were looking to become religious, the RCC is not where I would look.

    The strongest Catholic bashers I’ve known are ex-Catholics. I don’t believe I am qualified to give them a hand.

  • Doug

    Shaun, what are you doing back? No more anti-semitic quotes from Ben Franklin? Gee, maybe you should make some up for George Washington. I wouldn’t call myself a ‘jew defender’, I think I’m more of a ‘bitch slapper of stupid people’. Every comment you post just shows more of your ignorance, you can’t even spell properly. If you are accessing this site from work I hope your employer finds out and you get fired. Do yourself a favor and go back to browsing through your anti-semite web sites where every one can tell you what a great person you are (you aren’t BTW, but that’s just my opinion). I just want you to know that I forgive your ignorance…and your bad spelling. However, just because I forgive you doesn’t mean I want you to keep posting your ignorance…so please, just stop typing.

  • Dawn

    Eric and Mac – thank you, those were thoughtful and reasonable responses.

    And everyone knows how thoughtful and reasonable I am :)

    Mac – I also agree with you about the emotion and spectacle aspect of RCC – with so much money devoted by caring members of the church it would sure be nice to see that money given to, say poor Haitians seeking relief from poverty and hunger, than having it turned around and given back to victims as reparations because of abuse.

  • http://macaronies.blogspot.com Mac Diva

    In regard to the new television program, “Jew Defenders,” I envision Camryn Manheim (litigator), Lisa Bonet (infiltrator) and Leonard Nimoy (senior partner and philosopher) in the title role. Perhaps Britney Spears can appear in the opening two-parter.

  • NC

    I guess I found those comments a little less reasonable than Dawn did. To begin with, I’m not sure quite what to make of this:

    I am afraid that a fair number of Luther’s complaints still have at least lingering validity 500 years later . . . .

    Hopefully. Otherwise the hundreds of millions of people who prefer Catholicism to Lutheranism would be shit out of luck, wouldn’t they? You almost sound disappointed, Eric, as though the Church should be faulted for not having “seen the light” by this point. Of course that’s your right as a Protestant, but, at least among the Catholics I know, there’s no feeling that we’re waiting around for Lutherans to come back into the fold and, gee, what a shame that they haven’t done so 500 years later, huh? Honestly, with every new “Passion” post here at BC, my sense that you think Catholicism is something either to be held in contempt or otherwise condescended to becomes more and more pronounced–which is ironic, since it’s the Catholic Church that’s so often criticized for not respecting beliefs that are different from its own. Go figure.

    Mac, you said

    I am getting a ‘see the Passion’ postcard or two every day. They are lovely, full color oversize cards sent by area Roman Catholic Churches. I keep wanting to write ‘send the money you are wasting on these cards to a victim of one of your pedophile priests’ on them and send them back. This episode has made me question the priorities of your church, NC. Maybe you should, too.

    See what I mean about condescension? Let me ask you something, Mac: What does this have to do with the traditional, reactionary, Mel-Gibson-brand Catholicism you’re so worried about? Are the churches that are sending you these cards affiliated with Opus Dei? If not, why bring it up? It’s non sequiturs like this that make me wonder what’s really motivating people’s feelings in this debate. I hear the same complaint a lot from Jews who find themselves in debates about Israel. The discussion starts with a discrete topic, like the separation fence, and before too long their opponent is complaining about Jewish “influence” in America. The fact that there’s no clear connection between the two subjects except that both involve Jews makes one wonder whether it isn’t good old fashioned anti-Semitism that’s behind the complaining party’s objections.

    Which, incidentally, is also why Eric’s “Does the violent, Catholic view of the Passion cause priests to fuck children?” comment the other day pissed me off so royally. Eric actually admitted at the time that he saw no clear connection between the two, although he did gamely try to throw something together later when I pressed him on it in this thread. Needless to say, I don’t find his theory any more persuasive than I would a theory that purported to link the Jewish practice of circumcision to Jews’ guilt over their role in the death of Christ. (Since, you know, there’s a certain amount of “physicality” to both). But it’s not the fact that I find his theory specious that makes it objectionable to me; it’s the fact that he didn’t think it was particularly sound either and yet he introduced it into the debate anyway. Why? As in the example of the separation fence and Jewish “influence,” I have to wonder if it wasn’t because the pedophilia scandal provides a convenient brush with which to tar all things Catholic. And who would want to do a thing like that–except, you know, someone who’s anti-Catholic?

    By the way, Mac, how did you manage to deduce what the Catholic Church’s priorities are from the fact that you received a few postcards from the local parish? The worst scandal in its 2,000 years of existence, legal liability to the tune of half a billion dollars and climbing, the shaken faith of millions upon millions of worshippers and, worst of all, thousands of children’s lives ruined, but you think that the thirty cents it cost to mail that postcard proves that what the Pope is really worried about is people seeing Mel Gibson’s movie. Super.

    I’m gonna go get some coffee now. Hopefully by the time I get back Eric will have a theory about how the Catholic view of the Passion maybe, possibly, kinda sorta caused the Church’s complicity in Nazi war crimes. Because, hey–violence!

  • debbie

    All I can tell you is what I felt as I watched the movie and it wasn’t anti-Semitism, and it wasn’t hate.

    I meant everything that I said in my previous posts. People will see whatever is in their heart, in the movie.

    Eric, did you really say that?????

  • http://macaronies.blogspot.com Mac Diva

    Wow, are you off the mark, NC. I am very much opposed to Israel’s refusal to share a certain piece of real estate with a group of human beings who have just as valid a claim to it as Israeli Jews do — Palestinians. So are many American Jews. My ex refused to visit Israel as long as reactionaries dominate the government there. Nor would he contribute to conservative Jewish charities. I am also wary of the influence of some Jews on American domestic and foreign policy, as you would know if you had looked at Hal’s ‘neo-cons’ thread. But, I don’t credit their wrongheadedness to them being Jewish — that is when one becomes anti-Semitic. Those Jews, a minority, BTW, aren’t “bad people,” they are people with bad ideas that I don’t want to see in power any more than I want to see Christians or atheists with bad ideas in power.

    In regard to Opus Dei, individuals join, not churches. Since OD has its own hierarchy, including a bishop, it does not need approval from diocesian officials for anything it does. It is possible for OD members to dominate a given church or diocese, of course. But, an individual priest, from say St. Mark’s, could be behind the cards from there. I suspect that mainstream priests are going along with the fervor around “The Passion” because it may draw people and money to their churches. Or, like some people here, they may regard the flip side of the equation as innocuous.

  • NC

    debbie–Eric did not use those words. Here’s what he said (from this thread):

    I wonder if there is any connection whatsoever between the conservative Catholic theological elevation of the Passion (the bloody torture and execution of Jesus) over the Resurrection (wherein His divinity was made manifest and believers’ salvation confirmed) and the statistics released today revealing that AT LEAST (with 14% of precincts not reporting) 4% of Catholic priests have been accused of molesting children since 1950 – not that I have any idea what that connecton might be.

    I apologize for the confusion. I used the quotation marks as a way of showing that Eric’s view was not my own, on the assumption that people would recognize from the strong language and sarcasm that it wasn’t actually a direct quote. Anyway, hope this sets the record straight. It was his point but they were my words.

  • shaun

    doug i love how you think you would whoop my ass, and if ya saw my buddy in high school you would kick his ass. Yes, i fucked up a lot of my spelling. Again, rushing messages from work. You all have this vision of me, it is funny. You are just sooo intimidating. Go on with your bad-ass self. P.S. fuck isreali jews!!

  • Doug

    Shaun, here’s a clue for you (since 3rd grade spelling seems to be more than you can handle). Type your posts in Word and use spell check, then cut and paste…oh wait your Boss might catch you and fire you. I love that you are ignorant, well that’s the way the saying goes…Ignorance is bliss. Enjoy your bliss.

  • Eric Olsen

    There is much confusion seeping in here. I thought I had stated my position regarding the Catholic Church plainly. I will do so again.

    My only difference with practicing Catholics is doctrinal and solely related to my own personal beliefs, which I freely recognize as my own personal beliefs and not inherently superior to Catholic beliefs in any way. In essence they are that I don’t need a church to act as intermediary between God and me, I don’t need to confess to a human or be granted dispensation by a human for my sins. I also see the Resurrection as predominant over the Passion in spiritual importance. This is simple Protestant vs. Catholic doctrinal difference, hasn’t changed in 500 years and won’t likely change. It’s just belief.

    But I very much question the structure of the Catholic Church, which has allowed pedophilia to flourish virtually unchecked until recently, which was at least passively complicit in the Holocaust, which until recently declared itself (which the Pope still does) infallible, which has set itself up as a necessary intermediary between God and man – talk about job security – and the resultant arrogance and egoism inherent in being the only Portal to God, and a lingering (if not official) exceptionalism.

    I have seen all of the latter in full display as recently as a few years ago when my brother was married in the Catholic Church and the treatment all non-Catholic particpants in the ceremony received at the hands of a preposterously imperious, dismissive, effeminate, dictatorial, cruel priest, and the cowed acceptance of his behavior and proclamations by the Catholic family, who told us flat out: whatever the priest says is right, he’s the priest and God’s representative on earth. There was nothing remotely “liberalized” about any of this – it was fascistic, literally.

    These are my concerns about the structure of the Catholic Church and I repeat, completely apart from theology, these were many of the same concerns Luther had 500 years ago.

    Does ANYONE defend any of this? I can’t imagine how or why.

  • Doug

    Eric,
    What I have found, recently coming back to the Catholic Church, is that many (maybe most) Catholics are extremely uneducated about their own Church. In one of our services a visiting Priest asked everyone to bring their Bibles to the next service as he wanted to go through the Sermon on the Mount. One woman actually said “Father, we don’t read the Bible…we’re Catholics”. I cracked up…along with a few others but the rest of the congregation didn’t see the humour. The Priest went on to explain that Catholics should and are encouraged to read the Bible. This ignorance along with the structure of the Church allows Priestly dictators to survive, as you have discovered. Hopefully, this will change if Catholics are able to keep the pressure on our leaders.

  • Eric Olsen

    Doug, I hope so and wish you nothing but the best.

  • http://macaronies.blogspot.com Mac Diva

    After thinking about it some more, I reached some of the same conclusions as Eric in regard to the RCC. And, I really don’t believe we have been all that hard on the Catholic Church. For example, we have not even mentioned that big female pachyderm half hidden under the Church’s rug — the woman problem.

    I can’t congratulate the RCC too much over its settlement in the molestation cases for several reasons.

    *I worked on a case involving the Church in Seattle years ago. I did the footwork and research. That meant touring the evasions of the RCC over a 30-40 year period as they moved the offending priests from parish to parish, with an occassional rest break at their facility for ‘depressed’ priests in New Mexico. There is no question that Church brass have known they have a problem with child-molesting priests since before I was born. They simply did not care as long as the priests were performing their functions. Doing the research also meant talking to the victims and seeing how far the damage went. Several of the people I interviewed and deposed had third hand victims — people they sexually abused after learning how from priests. The worst I recall was a boy who did everything to his little sister the priest had done to him.

    *The settlement is probably a drop in the bucket. Most victims of sexual abuse are reluctant to come forward. The settlement is only to named plaintiffs. There are many more potential plaintiffs.

    *The acknowledged proportion of priests who are abusers — seven percent — is just the tip of the iceberg, probably. That number is drawn from the names in the settled cases, which as I said before is far from all there are. Short of acknowledging rot among the priesthood in this regard, period, and perhaps changing recruitment to include married men or men who intend to marry, I suspect a high level of sexual abuse will continue. The RCC has made itself attractive to sexual deviants with its male only policy and secrecy.

    Before NC says this is Catholic bashing, let me demur. The millions of lay Catholics are responsible in only the most attenuated way. However, the leadership of the RCC, like the leadership of any other body, is responsible for what the organization it controls does. Therefore, I will not balk at criticizing it.

  • Eric Olsen

    I shant argue with that.

  • Red

    Umm, just because you feel strongly about something doesn’t mean you have to insult someone else’s intelligence. If their argument is illogical and poor, it should be obvious to others without your slander of their character. If you talk condescendingly to others, it only makes you look conceited, not smart. For example:

    Shaun, why don’t you find something a little more useful to do with your time than spouting your poorly spelled, logically vacant, mentally warped, morally repugnant, and just plain boring anti-Semitism? It’s really old and since you haven’t the slightest objective substantiation for your foolish hate, there isn’t even anything to be learned from it.
    -Eric Olsen (The Passion Appeals to the Unwary #5)

    We’re here to discuss, not destroy. Talk to each other. Think about this comment from one of our people:

    Human Nature lacks a lot.
    -Mac Diva (Blogcritics – Please Listen Up #24)

    I am overjoyed that someone besides me realizes this. Guess what! None of us are perfect and have all the answers. The idea is, together, debating, we can come up with collective, better answers, not just the most stubborn person’s answers, who is always right, dammit. Human nature does lack a lot. Is someone claiming to be exempt from the shortcomings of human nature? That’s what we do when we act superior to our fellow man. Condemning someone’s views or intelligence on the basis of a handful of posts is as illogical and ridiculous as the claims these people make.

    In conclusion, I shan’t argue with you. I have never, in my life, seen anyone convinced of anything by arguing. The only way I’ve ever seen someone change their views is by a respectful presentation by both sides. Talk becomes futile when someone is determined to be the person who is always right, dammit.

    Personally, I think Mel Gibson’s movie “The Passion” is good, for what he wanted to make it. That’s all I have to say about it.

  • Eric Olsen

    Red, I appreciate and admire the sentiment, but I am sincerely NOT here to try to reason with a semi-literate screaming anti-Semite, who learned all he knows about Jews from a hate-drooling Palestinian neighbor, although I did make the effort over the course of two separate days. The time came to cut my losses.

  • http://fando.blogs.com Natalie Davis

    Eric: “I have seen all of the latter in full display as recently as a few years ago when my brother was married in the Catholic Church and the treatment all non-Catholic particpants in the ceremony received at the hands of a preposterously imperious, dismissive, effeminate, dictatorial, cruel priest, and the cowed acceptance of his behavior and proclamations by the Catholic family, who told us flat out: whatever the priest says is right, he’s the priest and God’s representative on earth. There was nothing remotely “liberalized” about any of this – it was fascistic, literally. …

    Does ANYONE defend any of this?”

    Yeah. What’s wrong with being “effeminate”?

    Otherwise, I agree with you. What’s wrong with the church of my birth is pretty much the same thing Luther complained about around 500 years ago.

    MD: “[T]he leadership of the RCC, like the leadership of any other body, is responsible for what the organization it controls does. Therefore, I will not balk at criticizing it.

    Amen to that. I’ve said all along that my beef is not with the laity or with the majority of good, honorable priests, but with the red-hatted, greedy, power-mad, control-freak men in charge.

    And I am proud to be a Jew Defender, but I won’t defend Ariel Sharon and his crew.

  • http://www.blogbloke.com BB

    Christ is nondenominational ;)

  • shaun

    Eric, i am tired of arguing with you. I hope i can find time outside of work and really sit down to have an all out discussion with. for the time being label me whatever you want. And as for my Palestinian friend, he is a pusblished poet on hi way to florida to read one of his poems in front of 30,000 people. I have talked him, his family and friends, and that has affected my views, but i have done my research from various countries trying to get the broadest view on the subject of jews (especially isreali jews). What i have found is that the u.s. and isreal, mainly, view the conflicts over their as one sided. The portray the jews as the victims and the Palestinians as the “terrorists”. I is tragic.

  • Eric Olsen

    Okay Shaun, that is certainly more reasonable and had things begun on tha tfooting, I am certain they wouldn’t have degenerated so quickly into name-calling. However, I still vehemently disagree with your worldview regarding Jews, and in the case of israel, the Jews ARE the victims and the Palestinians ARE the terrorists when it comes to suicide bombers, and other such attacks. Arafat and the corrupt PA clearly does not want to make peace with Israel and is perfectly happy for its young men and women to die while he clings to power.

  • Dawn

    Not to mention they like to blow up buses full of children. That is the most vile act on earth.

    Blow up buses full of child molestors for crying out loud.

  • shaun

    Eric, the thing you have to ask your self is what would drive a person to do that? The isreali’s kill the Palestinians at a rate of 2 to 1. the only difference is they have tanks and planes to do it with. I will give you an example. My friend (Palestinian), one of his close friends was a suicide bomber, his reason, his entire family was killed by a mortar shell from an isreali tank, that was shot at them because thay were out past curfew.

  • Tyra

    Shaun, you made the opposing viewpoint perfectly. The Israelis are people of logic and law which, incidentally, dictates most of western culture. They say don’t do this (curfew) or we are going to retaliate (mortar) in a controlled manner and then they follow through with it. They are perfectly capable of killing every Palestinian in that region of the world at a moments notice if they so choose. They are lucky that the Palestinians do not have the same capabilites.

    Palestinians oftentimes attack Israelis indiscriminately killing women and children and anyone else vulnerable according to no law or warning system. Palestinians have irrational, uncontrolled rage while Israelis use extremely patient, measured response.

    Were the Palestinians shortchanged on the land deal, Yes. Does that justify killing women and children indiscriminately, No.

    Second question. Was The Passion anti-semetic? Absolutely not. Anyone who says the Jews were not responbsible for Jesus death obviously did not read the same bible I did. It told a story the way it was recorded. Just like you would make a movie about Fascism, early America, slavery, etc. You are not condoning those activities or sponsoring hatred of the perpetrators of the injustice you are just recreating the events as they have been passed down to you.

  • shaun

    “They are perfectly capable of killing every Palestinian in that region of the world at a moments notice if they so choose.” Correct Tyra, and i truly believe they would, but do you think the wourld would stand by and let. No, that is why they don’t. Like the six day war, the had no plans of stopping the attacks, but the U.N. stepped in and told them to stop.

    What gives the isreali’s the right to impose curfew and check points and fences. And if you think that isreali’s are not killing women and children, you are flat out wrong. I have seen photos, and do and official documents of large numbers being killed. Like i said before a 2 to 1 ratio. Isreali jews are extremely smart and know how to use politics and power to gain support.

    If you compare american news stations to lets say al-jazeera ( i know, they are one-sided the other way ) or even bbc you can tell how one-sided american support is which is terrible.

  • Red

    “I am sincerely NOT here to try to reason with a semi-literate screaming anti-Semite.”
    -Eric Olsen (The Passion Appeals to the Unwary #34)

    You don’t have to reason with him, just don’t call him names. I think he is literate. I don’t see him as necessarily anti-Semitic. He has reasons for what he believes, he doesn’t just flat out hate Jewish people for no reason. If you think that he’s anti-Semitic for some reason, say, “I think you are anti-Semitic because of this reason.” Don’t say, “You are anti-Semitic, you screaming, drooling idiot who is so racist that it’s not worth my time to argue with you, you are worth less than other people.” If you hate someone for being anti-Semitic (not that this is a case of that), you are only continuing the cycle of hate. Jesus said, “Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.” I believe that we can’t control what other people do, but we can control what we do; if we fight fire with fire everything’s going to burn.

  • Dawn

    Red

    Question for you:

    When one states:

    “P.S. fuck isreali jews!!”

    What exactly should we deduct about that person?

    How about you lecture and teach Shaun the same “lesson” you are foisting on Eric?

  • shaun

    i posted that after all you guys started attacking me. I tried not to get personal, and i even tried to keep it as light hearted as possible. you guys sarted person attacks on me. Me and eric were actually beginning to have a real discussion in earlier posts, but eric didn’t respond to comment 40

  • Eric Olsen

    What is there to say? I am sorry whenever (relative) innocents are killed or hurt. I feel bad for the Palestinian people, who are caught between a rock and a hard place. But they have allowed themselves to be “led” and manipulated by autocratic, corrupt, disingenuous, murderous thugs who don’t give a damn about them, about peace, or about anything else other than maintaining their own power. When the Palestinian people – who approve of the murder of innocent men, women and children in the 75% range – to toss out this “leadership,” stop terrorist attacks, and pursue genuine peace with Israel, then I will be even more concerned about their fate.

    Imagine that you had met an Israeli who had had his entire family wiped out by a Palestinian suicide bombing, instead of meeting the Palestinian? Then you might hate all Palestinians than all Jews.

  • shaun

    I agree my view of the situation has been more in support of the palastinian people. It is a vicious cycle. It has become a situation of both sides wanting vengance for innocent family members being killed.

    What upsets me is how one-sided our support is. We say that we are trying to make peace, but then then we attack arabian countries, and we say that we are in full support of isreal. That seems more like forcing palestine into whatever the isreali’s and american decide. I just don’t see a good end to it. I guess what really upsets me about the isreali’s is that they are so powerful they can humiliate the palatinians and they can do with them as they please.

    Do you see any realistic resolution to the conflict?

  • Shark

    Someone at Bellevue Institute for Dyslexic Insane Racists left Shaun’s cell door unlocked again and he was able to knuckle-walk over to a computer and type:

    “Do you see any realistic resolution to the conflict?”

    Yeah, Shaun, since the last time you were fully conscious, we decided we’re gonna kill all the Arabs.

    Now go back to your room.

  • shaun

    shark, fuck you. Just posting to talk shit. Make an intellengent response of stay the fuck out of the conversation.

    “Yeah, Shaun, since the last time you were fully conscious, we decided we’re gonna kill all the Arabs.”

    You post a comment like that, then you have the balls to talk shit about my intellegence level. Fuck off

  • http://www.morethings.com/log Al Barger

    Oh the shark bites with his teeth dear
    And he keeps them pearly white!

    Shark rocks!

  • Shark

    Al, who luvs ya, babe!

    S: Make an intellengent response of stay the fuck out of the conversation.

    Dude, if that were the criteria, you’d have been born without typing fingers.

    …um, or maybe you were.

    Nevermind.

  • shaun

    Make an intellengent response of stay the fuck out of the conversation.

    I meant or not of asshole

  • Chris Kent

    Ouch! There’s just way too much bad language in here! I picked the wrong room at the wrong time….

  • Eric Olsen

    Shaun, again it’s perspective. I’m not sure how you can “blame” the Israelis for being “strong”: if they weren’t they wouldn’t exist, they are universally hated, reviled and wished out of existence by every country in the region, and virtually every Muslim-dominated country on earth. And our support makes that strength possible, ie, that existence possible.

    As ugly and grim as the situation is now, it can be resolved: if the Palestinians renounce terror, stop practicing it, boot out the Palestinian Authority, and negotiate in good faith with Israel, they will have their own country.

  • Dawn

    I have to give Shaun some credit, he seems to be making a genuine attempt to understand his own ignorance.

    That is commendable.

  • shaun

    First of all, fuck you dawn

    Eric, where in that description do the isreali’s give up anything!? That is what i mean when i said the jews are forcing the Palestinians into anything they decide is good for them. The palastinians where ther first, yet they have their land taken from them and they are stripped of all their rights. Seems a little unfair to me.

  • Cameron

    To Eric:

    “if the Palestinians renounce terror, stop practicing it”…
    How can the Palestinian people renounce terror when the only people defending them (not the US, the UN, or the EU are doing anything for the Palestinians on the frontlines) are these “terrorists”. If you were in the Palestinian situation (which none of you could even begin to fathom), you would realize that the world has shunned you as a people, and you will view (whether it’s right or wrong) these “terrorists” as freedom fighters.

    “boot out the Palestinian Authority”…
    This process is virtually impossible due to the situation on the ground (fighting), and the simple fact that for an occuppied nation to simply “boot” out a governing entity would spark a civil war amongst the Palestinians themselves, and escalate the cycle of violence between the Palestinians and Israelis, therefore rendering the results and reprucussions of that “simple” task one of the most devestating human catastrophies of this century.

    Look at it this way:

    Every Palestinian under the age of 37 has grown up under harsh militaristic occupation. Palestinians are slowly being killed…14 yesterday, 2 tommorrow, 5 the next. Palestinians make up for the largest refugee (whether displaced or fled from war) population in the world. How many of them are left? The refugees have no right of return, yet the Ethiopian Jew who has never traveled outside of Africa or even seen an Israeli has the right to illegally inhabit a settlement on Palestinian territory, or the group of Indians who claim they are one of the lost tribes of Israel who were given a settlement in the West Bank. The Palestinians are a very faithfull people, now combine desperation with pride and you have the indigenous people of Palestine…the last of a dying breed and will do anything to defend their ancestral homeland.

  • Eric Olsen

    Cameron, the key to the whole thing is to renounce terror once and for all. Period. This romance with death – their own and the Israeli’s – is at the core of their problems.

    With that done, and with an unambiguous acceptance of the legitimacy and permanence of the state of israel, the Palestinians would receive much more sympathy from everyone, including the Americans and Israelis, the majority of whom want to see a peaceful settlement and are comfortable with a Palestinian state.

    False pride, unwillingness to compromise or even acknowledge reality, a cult of death, and a corrupt and autocratic leadership – don’t blame Israel for any of these problems.

  • shaun

    Eric, again i ask you, where in that “resolution” do the isreali’s give up anything. Seems like the palastinians are the one’s expected to give everything up, which they have been do the whole time

  • shaun

    Eric, again i ask you, where in that “resolution” do the isreali’s give up anything. It seems like the palastinians are the one’s expected to give everything up, which they have been do the whole time. When do the jews start to give things up. Example land, control, rights

  • Cameron

    “including the Americans and Israelis, the majority of whom want to see a peaceful settlement and are comfortable with a Palestinian state.”…
    I am not denying that the fact they “want” a legitimate Palestinian state, but they want it on their own terms, & most of those terms are in violation of international law. So the Palestinians are not just going to accept any offers at a “negotiation” table that the Israeli government makes. See that is one of the most overlooked problems, the international community simply expects the Palestinians to settle, which will not happen, so both sides have an obligation of modifying their terms, not just the Palestinians.

    “False pride, unwillingness to compromise or even acknowledge reality, a cult of death, and a corrupt and autocratic leadership – don’t blame Israel for any of these problems.”…
    You are neglecting the most important factor in the conflict…the illegal occupation of Palestinian land! & who is to liable on that account? As much as you would hate to say it, it is the Israelis. The Palestinians did not ask to be occuppied by the British, Jordanians, and Israelis, these unfortunate events occurred when these countries took turns one after the other of oppressing a vulnerable people, and they are sick of it & will continue to resist.

    “cult of death”…
    When the Americans were fighting for independence from the British, they used many unconventional methods of fighting, hit-and-run attacks, & self-sacrifice missions, but they were pegged freedom-fighters. Now i am not condoning Hamas and Islamic Jihad, in fact i despise them, but they are not the Aum Shinrikyo Movement, they are fighting for independence, what do you think their reason for fighting is? Although they may try to justify the killing of civilians, their motives are not just plucked out of the sky. They do not use the brutal and unlawful occupation as a front or scapegoat for their actions, it is the fundamental basis for their actions!

  • http://macaronies.blogspot.com Mac Diva

    Have any of the more capable commenters on this thread written a blog entry that pulls together reasons for supporting the Palestinians’ struggle for self-determination? If so, I would be interested in reading and possible linking to it. I meant to do an update on the topic myself, but I’m very busy and have promised out* a lot of my virtual real estate for the week and more. Cameron, you just about have the makings for such an entry with your comments. Let me know if you put one together.

    *Promised out is when I tell people I will revisit an entry they are interested in or promise them links.

  • Cameron

    ” If so, I would be interested in reading and possible linking to it. I meant to do an update on the topic myself, but I’m very busy and have promised out* a lot of my virtual real estate for the week and more. Cameron, you just about have the makings for such an entry with your comments. Let me know if you put one together.

    *Promised out is when I tell people I will revisit an entry they are interested in or promise them links.”

    …who cares? really, talk about having “any of the more capable commenters on this thread written a blog entry”…write some insightful commentary, not insignificant psuedo-babble.

  • http://macaronies.blogspot.com Mac Diva

    LOL! I am one of the few people on the thread willing to give Cameron a listen and his response is to attack me? People are strange.

  • Shark

    MD: “Have any of the more capable commenters on this thread written a blog entry.. for supporting the Palestinians’ struggle for self-determination? I meant to do an update on the topic myself…

    TRANSLATION: I’m one of the ‘more capable’ commenters, in case you hadn’t noticed.

    MD: “…but I’m very busy and have promised out* a lot of my virtual real estate. Promised out is when I tell people I will revisit an entry they are interested in…”

    TRANSLATION: I’m VERY popular!

    MD: “I am one of the few people…to give Cameron a listen and his response is to attack me?”

    HINT: I believe his term “insignificant psuedo-babble” is the operative phrase.

    Mac, ever get the feeling that the universe is a black-tie and tux party and you showed up in a clown suit with a “kick me” sign on your back?

  • Eric Olsen

    Cameron, just because the Palestinians have decided that NOW is the time when they will dig their collective heels in the sand, doesn’t mean that is a very wise position to take. They are going to have to share the land, which historically, by the way, belonged to the Jews first, and they are going to have to compromise, and they are going to have to negotiate in good faith. This is reality – the rest is death cult fantasy. The Israelis have already agreed to give things up, and in good faith, real negotiations they will give up more. What they will not do is yield to terrorism. When the Palestinians decide to collectively grow up, give up the fantasy of somehow, someday chasing the Jews into the sea and reclaiming ALL of “Palestine,” then the world – including Israel and the US – will take them seriously.

  • shaun

    again what are the isreali’s giving up!? the palastinians have already ahd most of their land taken from them, and their rights as citizens. Eric, when do the isreali’s start to do something in their effort for peace. They are building a wall that seperate the people!

  • Cameron

    To Mac,

    I am sorry for my comment, i gave your comments a quick read & percieved it in a sarcastic fashion. Once again i apologize and am glad you are open for discussion on this topic.

  • Eric Olsen

    The Isrealis will dismantle the settlements, pull back some and agree to be good neighbors. A good final settlement means no one is happy, everyone gave up something, but all can live with it. Wouldn’t that be better than what we have now?

  • Cameron

    Eric:

    “They are going to have to share the land, which historically, by the way, belonged to the Jews first”…
    Palestine is the name recorded in the history and scriptures of the country. It derives from the name of its ORIGINAL inhabitants, the Philistines, which the Old Testament books of Genesis, Deuteronomy and Joshua acknowledge. The Palestinians are descendants of the Philistines, Canaanites, and even the Phoenicians. So the Jews technically were not the original inhabitants, but the indigenous peoples had no problem with the Jews living there, in fact they lived together in harmony. Generally speaking, notwithstanding the matter of its name, the history of Palestine fits the pattern of other countries in the region: a country inhabited by different peoples, with rule passing successively between many tribes, nations and ethnic groups, some of whom were immigrants and some of whom were invaders, a country that has seen many wars and stood witness to waves of human immigration from all directions. From an historical perspective, therefore, no one has the right to assert that it is their land, for that would amount to no more than an unsubstantiated claim. And if no one party can claim the right to one part of Palestine, neither can they lay just claim to any other part. When Pharaoh let the people go, God did not lead them by way of the land of the Philistines.
    The Holy Land was given to the Jewish people on the condition that they observe the Torah and its commandments. When they failed to do this, their sovereignty over the land was taken from them, and they went into exile. From that time, they were prohibited with a very grave prohibition to establish a Jewish independent sovereignty in the Holy Land or anywhere throughout the world. Rather, they are obligated to be loyal to the nations under whose protection we dwell. This situation has existed for close to 2000 years when the Jewish people were dispersed throughout all corners of the world. During this time, the Jews always remained faithful to the country in which they lived. Jews throughout all generations yearned to grace the sacred soil of the Holy Land and to live there. However, their sole purpose was to fulfill the commandments dependent upon the land and to absorb its holiness. Never did they have any nationalist or sovereign intent whatsoever which, as mentioned above, is forbidden to them. Actual Torah Jewry has never ever recognized the Zionist state. Palestinians (whether be Muslims or Christians) do not deny the fact that a Jewish community has a right to live there, but they believe that the state should be shared by the 2 peoples (& whoever else lives there such as a large Armenian population and so on) and governed EQUALLY by the two people.

    “and they are going to have to negotiate in good faith.”…
    How much of their ancestral homeland have they already given? Palestinians suffer from a host of grossly discriminatory measures. These include the very fundamental right to citizenship which the Israeli government dispenses freely to all professed Jewish immigrants (most of whom have no ancestral relationship with Palestine) while denying citizenship to Palestinians who were born there. Palestinians under Israeli control are denied freedom of expression, freedom of movement and to a large extent economic freedom, including the right to retain or purchase property. They have been deprived of water for agricultural purposes and much of their land has been seized (in effect, stolen) and placed at the disposal of foreign-born Jews. That’s not even the half of what Palestinians have negotiated (lost).

    I can really go on and on about this…but Eric you have not provided logical evidence that states Israel has “given up” anything.

  • Cameron

    “The Isrealis will dismantle the settlements, pull back some and agree to be good neighbors.”…

    “Figures released by Israel’s Central Bureau of Statistics show that new building in Jewish settlements increased last year by 35%. Human rights organisations say that there are around 400,000 settlers in east Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza living in more than 120 settlements. Under international law, the settlements are considered illegal…the increase, in what is known here as ‘settlement activity’, confirms what everyone here already knows: that in this particular area, Israel has ignored its obligations as set out in the international peace plan, the roadmap…the news that settlement housing has increased would seem to be odds with the fact that Mr Sharon has recently pledged to evacuate settlers from the Gaza Strip as part of his own so-called disengagement plan…certainly, many Palestinians are sceptical that a full withdrawal from Gaza will ever take place.” – By James Reynolds BBC correspondent in Jerusalem

    Now I know you are going to reply and say “well the Palestinians have not owned up to their part”, but how are the Palestinians going to have the desire to do their part when the Israelis are still conducting land confiscations and expansion of ILLEGAL settlements on Palestinian territory?

  • Eric Olsen

    Whether or not the settlements are illegal, I disagreee with them and think they are bad policy. So do a large number of Israelis. I do not think the government of Israel is perfect or above reproach, and neither do the Israeilis themselves: they are among the most contentious electorates on earth. But they are an electorate unlike any other country in the Middle East, or certainly the Palestinians, who are ruled with a iron hand, threats of vigilante murder, by a corrupt gang of thieves.

    The Palestinians have every right to negotiate for the best deal they can get – it’s a political not military matter – but in order to do so they must stop what amounts to state sponsored terrorism against Israel. Will they get exactly what they want? No, because a) what they really want is the eradication of the state of Israel b) if they do finally negotiate in good faith, no one ever gets everything they want.

    What Israel wants at this point is security – only the Palestinians can give it to them. Only the palestinians can stop the dance of death, Israel isn’t going anywhere.

  • http://www.corinna-hasofferett.com Corinna Hasofferett

    Oh, my!
    I feel like a little child sitting under the table and listening to the adults discussing her in different terms…
    Just a few examples, as I cannot write too much (being a writer I am my own boss, and I might be fired if I take too long).
    1.
    Tyra.
    “…Anyone who says the Jews were not responbsible for Jesus’ death obviously did not read the same bible I did.”
    Can you bring me a quotation from the Bible I’ve been reading all my life or from the New Testament stating that the Jews were responsible for Jesus death? How many Jews did it take to kill our Joseph? There might have been then only a few hundred thousands Hebrew people.
    Probably not enough since some Romans had to chip in and do the job…

    Do you realize that this is a generalization, the same one that was instilled in yours and your ancestors’ teaching generation upon generation?

    Are you going to pass it on to your children and grandchildren?

    2.
    Cameron: “…When the Americans were fighting for independence from the British, they used many unconventional methods of fighting, hit-and-run attacks, & self-sacrifice missions, but they were pegged freedom-fighters.”

    Do you mean the immigrants who settled in North America? They were also pegged pioneers while they were killing and robbing the American indigenous.

    “…Palestine is the name recorded in the history and scriptures of the country. It derives from the name of its ORIGINAL inhabitants, the Philistines, which the Old Testament books of Genesis, Deuteronomy and Joshua acknowledge.”

    Let’s face history:

    3000 – 1100 B.C., Canaanite civilization covered what is today Israel, the West Bank, Lebanon and much of Syria and Jordan…

    ca 1,800 BC., Israeli conquest of Canaan.

    2nd century AD:
    Romans destroy the second Temple and expell the Israelis.

    7th century BC
    The land of Canaan, including the Land of Israel became a predominately Arab and Islamic country by the end of the seventh century with the Arab Islamic conquest.

    Cameron, we have a proverb in Hebrew: “Whoever lives in a glass house, should not throw stones”.

    Your honest conclusion should be to pack and go back to the country you or your ancestors immigrated from and return the land to the remnants of the indigenuous who, as far as I know, live in “reservations”.

    Both the Palestinian and the Israelis have right to the land of Canaan. There is enough room for everybody. The majority of people in Israel want peace, do not support the settlements and are fed up with the situation no less than the regular Palestinian. Right now we are ruled by insanity and fanatic extremists. Don’t ask what the Middle East can do for you. Ask what you can DO for both thy Palestinian and Israeli neighbors.

  • Cameron

    “the Palestinians, who are ruled with a iron hand, threats of vigilante murder, by a corrupt gang of thieves.”…
    Who told you Palestinians were ruled by an iron fist? Have you been there? Have you seen this? I was just there a couple of months ago and saw nothing of that sort, nor did i hear any Palestinian complain about how the PA is mistreating them, in fact the PA is not governing enough, so how can it rule with an iron fist? However, they did complain about the ongoing Israeli occupation that has devestated the political, economic, and social infastructure in the areas. The Palestinians cannot even begin to feel the effects of the PA’s supposed “iron fist” whith the Israeli military breathing down their necks. I am totally opposed to the Palestinian Authority (absolutely despise them, as do most of the Palestinians themselves), & nobody is denying the fact that there is corruption, but can you honestly say there isn’t any corruption in the Israeli government (i.e. Ariel Sharon & his son taking bribes from businessmen, Sharon’s war trials, etc.) I am sure every Palestinian would tell you he would rather have the freedom or right to be ruled by the iron fist of his own people, rather than the iron fist of a foreign people.

    “state sponsored terrorism against Israel”…
    Hmmm…and the IDF is not a state-sponsored terrorist wing of the govt?

    “what they really want is the eradication of the state of Israel”…
    I have already responded to virtually this exact comment that you have previously posted.

    “What Israel wants at this point is security – only the Palestinians can give it to them. Only the palestinians can stop the dance of death, Israel isn’t going anywhere.”…
    Of course Israel wants security, but the Palestinians want the security of knowing they will not be shot for getting milk from the grocery store, they want the security of knowing their house will not be confiscated to build more settlements for foreign-born Jews, they want the security of knowing they will not be spit on, beaten up, and humiliated for no reason. You actually think that a people that is going through all these things & have absolutely no power & freedom can provide security? or is it the wealthy occuppying power (that has one of the strongest militaries in the world) that can actually provide it?

  • http://www.corinna-hasofferett.com Corinna Hasofferett

    Should be of course not BC but:
    “7th century AD
    The land of Canaan, including the Land of Israel became a predominately Arab and Islamic country by the end of the seventh century with the Arab Islamic conquest.”

  • Cameron

    “Do you mean the immigrants who settled in North America? They were also pegged pioneers while they were killing and robbing the American indigenous.”…
    That is exactly what i mean. What’s the argument?

    “Your honest conclusion should be to pack and go back to the country you or your ancestors immigrated from and return the land to the remnants of the indigenuous who, as far as I know, live in “reservations”.”…
    Nowhere in any of my comments did i suggest anyone return to “the country your ancestors immigrated from”. So you are not reading previous commentary.

    “Both the Palestinian and the Israelis have right to the land of Canaan. There is enough room for everybody.”…
    Again, what do you think i have been saying for the last 3 or 4 comments? Jeez read them thoroughly or don’t comment.

  • http://www.corinna-hasofferett.com Corinna Hasofferett

    Hi Cameron. Is there a rational reason to communicate not that politely, to put it gently? Will it help you argument or harm it?

    I’ve read and am reading you in full. I feel that one half of each sentence and paragraph of yours pulls to one direction while the other half seems to push it’s conclusion to an opposite one. It’s bound to be misguiding, especially as you enforce your statement with the pronounciation of a Witness.

    I’m living here, not on a short visit, so I had the opportunity to witness, and quite actively, the reality in both Israel and the Occupied Territories.

    1.

    You pronounce that “Palestine is the name of the country recorded in the history and scriptures. It derives from the name of its ORIGINAL inhabitants, the Philistines, which the Old Testament books of Genesis, Deuteronomy and Joshua acknowledge.”

    History and the scriptures have it wrong when they call parts of it The Land of Israel? Don’t you realize that this argument leads to denial of the right of Israel to revival and return to their homeland, that by using it you appropriate old and undying slogans of fierce Palestinian and Arab fundamentalists?

    2.

    You state that throughout history people were wandering to new places and countries, that the conquest of America was part of this trend, and then you bring into this crowd the fortunate children of Israel. Is it so?

    Were the European pioneers in America stateless people discriminated against and living daily in fear for their lives? Had the Anglo Saxons etc. prayed “Next Year in New York”? Had they among their rituals fasted in memory of expulsions and the destruction of the Temple of Columbus?

    3.

    Everywhere, and for two thousand years the Jewish people were subserviant to the kings and lords, sometimes somehow suffered, allways derided. debased, used as the scapegoat to manipulate peoples’ frustration and anger away from the real cause.

    4.

    Then, the first part of your argument states that “The Palestinians are descendants of the Philistines, Canaanites, and even the Phoenicians. So the Jews technically were not the original inhabitants, but the indigenous peoples had no problem with the Jews living there, in fact they lived together in harmony.”

    So who are the indigenous? The invaders?

    5.

    As for “harmony”, rest assured that the British and the Arab fundamentalists created as much harmony as possible with their Divide and Rule methods.

    All these in a time when there was no State of Israel, no Israeli Greatest Army in the World, and a definite agreement was reached by the Israeli community and leadership to have “two States to two Peoples”.

    6.

    You claim time and again that the Palestinian terrorists are not terrorists, all they want is to liberate their country.

    It it were true, they would have fought the army and not antagonize the whole people of Israel.

    They are blunt/honest enough to declare that the Land of Israel from sea to sea is theirs alone and that they won’t accept less than Everything.

    This is the goal of their liberation struggle, of their killings within Israel – to terrorize the innocents into despair and “return” to the Diaspora’s joys.

    7.

    In such an atmosphere of complete misery, despair and mistrust, is it a wonder that Sharon came to be chosen?
    He can only thank Hamas & Co. no less than Arafat, Hamas & Co. owe their thanks to the present goverment (and both to the man who assasinated Rabin) for their popularity.

    8.

    The Occupation is not a major factor but a symptom and outcome of two goverments far from being benign, intelligent and farsighted.

    9.

    In a fierce debate, it takes action –
    not words – by either a real leader from among the two (like Saadat) or an outside Moderator (like Carter) or both, to cut in and stop those horses leading us, and not only us, to a horrible disaster.

    The situation is insane, with extremists on both sides driving us, Israelis and Palestinians, madly into a vicious cycle.

    Judgemental attitudes against one of the parties are futile and contribute no good, to say the least.

  • Eric Olsen

    Thanks Corinna, reasonable, knowledgable and authoritative. I am pleased to hear my conception of the situation is not inconsistent with your own.

  • sheri

    I’ll second that Eric…ty Corinna

  • http://www.corinna-hasofferett.com Corinna Hasofferett

    Bowing deeply in all directions while heavily bombed with flowers…

  • Shark

    Corinna, thanks for the lessons.

    You give me hope, just the tiniest, but any amount is rare these days.

    I had to pause for a moment to consider the internet — what an incredible blessing it is to be able to have a real-time conversation with an Israeli citizen. How the riotous rabble of a typical ‘message board’ knee-deep in impersonal accusations and abstractions can play host to the real words of a real person living in that ‘abstraction’ and reporting the concrete realities to the faceless disembodied.

    And how that could divert the flood of evil, one drop at a time.

    Shalom.

    PS: re.#4 – In the long march of history, there really are NO “indigenous” peoples, as we’re all from somewhere else— and great-great-grandfather was probably the same guy.

  • Cameron

    “that by using it you appropriate old and undying slogans of fierce Palestinian and Arab fundamentalists?”…
    Palestine was the name before any of that even existed. So would you like me to readdress the documented historical name just because some people take pride in it? Good one.

    “You state that throughout history people were wandering to new places and countries, that the conquest of America was part of this trend, and then you bring into this crowd the fortunate children of Israel. Is it so?”…
    Yes. doesn’t history state so? Jewish/Hebrew history even proclaims that. & I am not condemning the “fortunate children of Israel” for living there under any circumstances whatsoever. Again. what is your arguement?

    “Were the European pioneers in America stateless people discriminated against and living daily in fear for their lives? Had the Anglo Saxons etc. prayed “Next Year in New York”? Had they among their rituals fasted in memory of expulsions and the destruction of the Temple of Columbus?”…
    No. Where in any of my comments do i even give this impression?

    “Everywhere, and for two thousand years the Jewish people were subserviant to the kings and lords, sometimes somehow suffered, allways derided. debased, used as the scapegoat to manipulate peoples’ frustration and anger away from the real cause.”…
    I never denied this. So, again where is the arguement?

    “Then, the first part of your argument states that “The Palestinians are descendants of the Philistines, Canaanites, and even the Phoenicians. So the Jews technically were not the original inhabitants, but the indigenous peoples had no problem with the Jews living there, in fact they lived together in harmony.””…
    The indigenous people consisted of everyone. I am in no way saying the Jews should not live there! You are quoting me, and giving no real alternative arguement to my comments.

    “You claim time and again that the Palestinian terrorists are not terrorists, all they want is to liberate their country. It it were true, they would have fought the army and not antagonize the whole people of Israel.”…
    Hamas vs. IDF…hmmm. No need to even reply.

    “They are blunt/honest enough to declare that the Land of Israel from sea to sea is theirs alone and that they won’t accept less than Everything.”…
    Everyone knows this, so why are you re-stating this? Did i deny this fact?

    “In such an atmosphere of complete misery, despair and mistrust, is it a wonder that Sharon came to be chosen?
    He can only thank Hamas & Co.”…
    Again, did anyone deny this? Hamas & Co. could also thank the Israeli government for their existence.

    “The Occupation is not a major factor but a symptom”…
    If the occupation is not a “major factor”, then why is there fighting? That is the main factor. & no one is saying it is not the governments fault.

    “In a fierce debate, it takes action –
    not words – by either a real leader from among the two (like Saadat) or an outside Moderator (like Carter) or both, to cut in and stop those horses leading us, and not only us, to a horrible disaster.”…
    Agreed.

    “Judgemental attitudes against one of the parties are futile and contribute no good, to say the least.”…
    Also agreed.

    I have to say that in all of your “arguements”, i did not see any real opposition to anything i had to say. They were more like aggressive reiterations.

  • Dawn

    Shaun

    Right back at ya buddy. I was being sincere and generous, but hell if you are too ignorant to know the definition of ignorance, let me provide it for you:

    ig·no·rance [ ígnərəns ]

    noun

    1. lack of knowledge: lack of knowledge or education
    2. unawareness: unawareness of something, often of something important

    Have a nice day.

  • http://www.corinna-hasofferett.com Corinna Hasofferett

    Dear Cameron,
    I’m not telling you what you are thinking or feeling, I’m telling you how your statements are perceived when ambivalent.

    If you percieve my writing as aggressive, then maybe it’s time you visit my website and get to know me a bit better.

    I do appreciate your compassion and hope that your next visit to the region will be longer and to both Palestine and Israel and then you’ll be able to learn the mirrored situation on the other side of The Wall

    The biblical name is “the land of Canaan”. That’s the Promised land Moses led the tribes of Israel to. The Pleshet family tribe, is mentioned in the Bible as making a pact with Abraham. Can you imagine a large population making a pact with this small family of Abraham?

    Originally from the neighboring Northern islands of the Mediterranian the Pleshet were too weak to fight the Greece invasions and drifted toward the seaside of Canaan in growing numbers until they outnumbered the 12 tribes of Israel now settled in regions of Canaan/The Promised Land, following Joshua’s conquest.

    After the 7th century AD, with the Islamic conquest, Canaan became known by the Arabic word – philistinne. (I hope I’m spelling it correctly in English).

    Hence the word Palestine, coined much later by the Western world. During the British colonization every resident here, Jewish, Arab, Greek, Turkish, was considered Palestinian by the British Authority. For the people of Israel their ancestors’ name held a much greater appeal.

    Indeed my argument was that we shouldn’t readress the historical/biblical names. A name is one’s identity. With all the indigenous people of old gone, there remained here two nationalities, the Arab Palestinian and the Israelis.

    It so happens that those names are manipulated by fundamentalists on both side as an argument for sole ownership of the sunny region. Please do go thorough your writings and see why I was misled into believing you have adopted the Islamist slogans crying aloud: We’ve been here before, it’s our land from time immemorial, we alone own this land and not those foreigners, who have recently appeared here out of the blue.

    Only because of this I’m dealing with the names issue. In my opinion it is a private issue and not an argument. The real issue is the Present and how can we deal with it in a rational way. The point is not the Hammas via IDF – I agree with you that Hamas via innocent children is a much easier task. Are the Hamas intent of liberating Palestine from Israeli children, women, the old and the innocent?

    All they achieved was to bring enough people to such despair and mistrust that enabled Sharon’e election and goverment.

    Same goes for the horrible situation in the Palestinian Authority regions.

    For me and for Both our peoples here those are not arguments but fateful issues touching our very existence. So I always appreciate clearly and well informed attitudes.

    I’m happy we seem to have now so many points of mutual agreement. If only Sharon and Arafat were doing half that well.

  • http://www.corinna-hasofferett.com Corinna Hasofferett

    I agree with you Shark re the Internet. I’m daily gratified. How could I otherwise have met you people? You can imagine what a great contradiction it is to the lonelines experienced here, and how much it empowers me to be able to reach out to the world. In my Hebrew blog not only am I able to voice my support for peace and nonsupport for the goverment, but also somehow with the Internet we are able to learn how many we are, and how much room there still is, thanks to this, for better times.

    I also agree with you re the indigenous, I believe we all are the indigenous of the same planet, the only problem makers being the ones who must have it all and do not hesitate to gamble with our lives, not theirs.

    Now I must go back to my writing. I’ve been running wild for too long and am about to be fired by Corinna Hasofferett…

  • Cameron

    “The point is not the Hammas via IDF – I agree with you that Hamas via innocent children is a much easier task. Are the Hamas intent of liberating Palestine from Israeli children, women, the old and the innocent?”…
    Yes, unfortunately it probably is their atrocious method, just as the muder of the innocent is the IDF’s method in the Palestinian territories. I cannot even differentiate between the 2 groups when it comes to the death of civilians.

    I am also interested to know what you usually write about. Because I have been indulging in a little writing lately also.

  • Eric Olsen

    Cameron, that is exactly your problem: that you cannot differentiate between the methods and ideals of the Israelis and the methods and ideals of Hamas and its ilk.

  • Cameron

    “Cameron, that is exactly your problem: that you cannot differentiate between the methods and ideals of the Israelis and the methods and ideals of Hamas and its ilk.”…

    How is that a problem? I think both groups murder innocent civilians. Are you suggesting that i support the methods of the IDF? As if their methods do not just add to the cycle of violence.

  • Eric Olsen

    No, they most certainly do not murder innocent civilians, in fact they go out of their way to avoid such a thing, sometimes to their own physical detriment. Are their mistakes, accidents, civilian casualties? yes, and this is always tragic, but it is not intentional, it is not a policy of the state and the people.

  • shaun

    Eric, why are some of the Passion of crist sites people were posting on showing zero posts

  • shaun

    Eric what gives you the right to say cameron is wrong. You have no idea what it is really like over there. He lived there!! The only person i have seen that has any right to argue with cameron on this topic is corinna because she lives it every day. And the worst part is that she seems to be the most understanding one on this site.

  • shaun

    “Mel Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ”

    Where did all the posts go?

  • http://www.corinna-hasofferett.com Corinna Hasofferett

    Oh, sweet Shaun, why is it worst to have understanding? Isn’t it something one should strive for throughout life? And don’t you fear that when questioning Eric’s right of opinion because he is not from my region, you deny yours as well?

    Now, take three days to meditate honestly and in depths on these, and then respond, please. You might be surprised how different your response will be by then.

    Keep growing!

  • http://www.corinna-hasofferett.com Corinna Hasofferett

    Dear Cameron, as for your response, I feel that Eric has answered it. While it’s not a policy of the Army to purposefully harm the innocents, not all the Israeli soldiers are angels, and things are getting worse from day to day. Remember that not long ago an young Jewish Israeli was shot by an Israeli soldier, and wounded, while demostrating against the Wall. Remember on the other hand the young woman at the Gazza post (where Palestinians leave for work in Israel) who told Security that she has some metal implanted in her knee, which will cause the alarm to ring, was let in – only to blow herself up. It is an insufferable and most painful situation. If indeed the army is about to leave behind the Gazza strip, and the Palestinian Authority will take charge, then maybe we are about to witness a change for the better. The Israel soldiers and their parents will be for sure only happy. I’m not that sure the Hamass & Co. will happily accept unemployment, as the Madrid tragedy yesterday proved.

    As for my writing, if you’ll click on my name you’ll be taken to my multilingual web-site wich has a large English section and gives lots of information about my writing.

  • http://don'thaveone Luis

    Bravo!
    Some one has noticed that most Catholics don’t know about their own Church. It is just sad that there is no recognition, tough, to the fact that Jesus only founded one Church and to the fact that the only one Church, which can link itself to the one Jesus founded upon Peter, is the Catholic Church. Catholics are the only ones that can say that they can link Pope John Paul II, to Peter. 263 Popes in between in a direct chain.