Today on Blogcritics
Home » Who Is To Blame For The Gaza Killings?

Who Is To Blame For The Gaza Killings?

Please Share...Print this pageTweet about this on Twitter0Share on Facebook0Share on Google+0Pin on Pinterest0Share on TumblrShare on StumbleUpon0Share on Reddit0Email this to someone

Charles Krauthammer has a column in the Washington Post today. In it, he deals with whether or not the killing of the family in Gaza was down to an Israeli shell – of course, he only mentions Israeli arguments for why it couldn't have been, and makes no mention of any counter-arguments, save that they exist.

"Why would Israel deliberately shell a peaceful family on a beach?" he asks. Well, firstly, there are possible motives – for instance to attempt to influence the result of the upcoming Palestinian referendum on the 'Prisoner's Document'. But anyway, who's accusing Israel of deliberately targeting Palestinian civilians? It's just that Israel doesn't care about Palestinian "collateral damage".

Krauthammer frames the tone of the article from the first paragraph, describing how PA President Abbas describes the act as "genocide". If this is true and in context – I can' tell because he didn't provide a source – then it is, of course, ridiculous. But what Abbas says or doesn't say makes no difference to the morality of killing a civilian family, which means he only mentioned it to immediately put the reader against the side of the Palestinians.

However, the article then gets more interesting. Krauthammer says, OK, let's assume for a second that we do not know who caused the shelling (no assumption necessary – that's the reality).

Even then, Krauthammer says, we must ask ourselves, "Who is to blame if Palestinians are setting up rocket launchers to attack Israel — and placing them 400 yards from a beach crowded with Palestinian families on the Muslim Sabbath?"

The answer? "This is another example of the Palestinians' classic and cowardly human-shield tactic — attacking innocent Israeli civilians while hiding behind innocent Palestinian civilians."

Well, at least he managed to bring himself to admit the Palestinian civilians the terrorists are "hiding behind" are innocent. Because, of course, it was innocents that were killed. To understand this concept of "collateral damage" properly, let's export it to a familiar environment. Imagine a gunman, heavily armed, has run into a block of flats. Police helicopters are outside, as are cop cars and policemen and the whole works. Is it justified for the army/police force to then bomb the block of flats in an attempt to get the gunman? Are the civilian casualties acceptable "collateral damage"?

Charles Krauthammer certainly appears to think so. After all, it was the gunman's fault for hiding in the flats in the first place.

Also, note how the first sentence brands all Palestinians as terrorists – "the Palestinians' classic and cowardly human-shield tactic". Nice.

Krauthammer then, ludicrously, tries to pretend that somehow Western media are pro-Palestinian, ever eager to ignore Palestinian suicide bombings whilst making a big deal of Israeli massacres. This is obviously garbage – the mainstream media are completely pro-Israeli biased. Since when have you read an article referring to the IDF as committing terrorism (for example)?

Krauthammer then poses another, "even larger" question that is not being asked. Namely, "Whether the rocket bases are near civilian beaches or in remote areas, why are the Gazans launching any rockets at Israel in the first place — about 1,000 in the past year?"
Note again the grouping of all Gazans as terrorists.

"To get Israel to remove its settlers, end the occupation and let the Palestinians achieve dignity and independence? But Israel did exactly that in Gaza last year. It completely evacuated Gaza, dismantled all its military installations, removed its soldiers, destroyed all Israeli settlements and expelled all 7,000 Israeli settlers."

This is very interesting. Yes, settlements were dismantled and military force was re-deployed. Does this mean withdrawal? Does it mean Gaza is independent? Gaza still depends completely on Israel for supply of electricity, water, gas and petrol, and the Israeli Shekel is still the local currency. Israel retains complete control over Gazan airspace and territorial waters, meaning Israel effectively controls what goes in and out of Gaza. Gazans don't have control over their seaport or airport. Israel also still occupies what is called the Philadelphi corridor – a strip of land on the Egypt-Gaza border.

Israel controls the international crossing points, and controls the issuing of Palestinian identity cards (and therefore controls all the population data), and all Palestinians must be registered with Israel's Interior Ministry.

All this is not mentioning the terrible state Gaza is in as a result of years of Israeli occupation. Since 2000, the economies of the Gaza Strip and the West Bank have lost $6.4 billion and suffered $3.5 billion in damage at the hands of the Israeli army. In other words, the "occupied Palestinian territory has lost at least one fifth of its economic base over the last four years as a consequence of war and occupation."

Over the past five years, Israel has destroyed over 4,600 homes, as well as schools, roads, hospitals, factories, fields, etc. Some Palestinians were denied access to education and health-care due to Israeli roadblocks.

About 42% of Gazans are categorised by the World Food Programme as "food insecure". Unemployment rates are 35%-40% – and Israel is working to further reduce the number of Palestinian jobs available within Israel.

In short – Gaza is in economic ruin, largely as result of Israeli occupation. It is not an independent state – rather, Israel has returned some land in return for keeping conditions basically the same, only now it can claim to have no responsibility for Gaza and it gained good PR to help it in its quest to keep squatting on West Bank land.

So much for "Gaza became the first independent Palestinian territory ever." And Krauthammer wonders why there is violence against Israel? Well, despite all that I have just said, the question isn't really relevant anyway. Unless Krauthammer is claiming the civilians were at fault for firing rockets into Israel, the question of why some people do fire rockets into Israel is a separate one.

"And what have the Palestinians done with this independence"?, Krauthammer asks. "They have used their freedom to launch rockets at civilians in nearby Israeli towns." Note again the grouping of all Palestinians together as terrorists.

Now Krauthammer makes a strange (to say the least) hypothesis: "the Palestinians prefer victimhood to statehood."

What does he use to support this accusation? The Palestinian refusal to sign at Camp David. What did Camp David offer, according to Krauthammer? "a Palestinian state — with its capital in Jerusalem, with not a single Jewish settler remaining in Palestine, and on a contiguous territory encompassing 95 percent of the West Bank (Israel making up the other 5 percent with pieces of Israel proper)."

Now, let's have a look at what was actually offered at the Camp David summit.
The summit at Camp David was based on the earlier Beilin-Abu Mazen Plan, accepted (shamefully) by Arafat.

The Beilin-Abu Mazen Plan did not offer to give up "95 percent" of the West Bank. It offered Palestinian "sovereignty" over 90-95% – but what did this 'sovereignty' actually mean? Well, inside the Palestinian 'sovereign area', 50 Israeli settlements would remain intact and Israeli armed forces would remain in the Jordan Valley.

The Beilin-Abu Mazen Plan did not offer the Palestinians a "capital in Jerusalem" – it offered them a capital in the remote village of Abu-Dis.

So what about Camp David? Well, at Camp David, Ehud Barak was prepared to offer even less than what was agreed in the Beilin-Abu Mazen Plan.

1. In the Beilin-Abu Mazen plan, the big settlement blocks in which reside 150,000 Israeli settlers would be annexed to Israel. To achieve this, a very windy map was drawn up, surrounding those settlements but not annexing the surrounding Israeli land. In Camp David, Barak straightened out these lines, meaning not just the settlements but also the land around and between them was annexed to Israel. Thus, about 120,000 Palestinian residents would be annexed into Israel. These residents would not be given Israeli citizenship, and would vote in the Palestinian elections. Thus, Palestinian land would be annexed without giving any rights to the annexed Palestinians.

2. At Camp David, Barak did not offer the Palestinians a capital in East Jerusalem. Israel conquered East Jerusalem in 1967, and has illegally occupied it ever since. It is the economic and cultural capital of the Palestinian West Bank. But, by the Camp David proposals, it would not be the capital of any future Palestinian state. At Camp David, the Palestinians were offered the village of Abu-Dis, to be renamed as Al-Quds, as their capital.

3. Camp David did not offer the Palestinians 90% of the West Bank (Krauthammer got his 95% figure from the Beilin-Abu Mazen Plan). It offered them 60% – but even in this 60% there were around 40 isolated Israeli settlements. Thus, even though Israel would have annexed 10% of the West Bank leaving the Palestinians 'state' with 90% of the West Bank, 40% percent of the 'state' would be lands confiscated and fully controlled by Israel. Palestinians would not be allowed to build, farm, settle and, in the case of some areas of the Jordan Valley, they would not even be allowed to pass through them.

4. Crucially, Barak demanded at Camp David that this would be a "final" agreement. If Arafat had accepted the document, all future Palestinian claims regarding Jerusalem, the right of return, the fact that Israeli settlers remained on the West Bank, and so on, would be relinquished.

Thus, Arafat did not sign the Camp David agreement, because it was a disgrace that 'gave' the Palestinians nothing.

Do we hear any of this from Krauthammer's article? No. What we get is this: "The Palestinian answer? War again – Yasser Arafat's terror war, aka the second intifada, which killed a thousand Jews.

Okay, first, it should be noted that in 1988, and again in Oslo, the Palestinians accepted Israel up to the 1967 borders. That is, they accepted the loss of 78% of former Palestine. Now, they were just waiting for Israel to hand over the remaining 22%. And waiting and waiting and waiting.

The Second – and violent – Intifada started in 2000, when Sharon visited the al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem. The mosque is located on Temple Mount (or Haram al Sharif), a scared site for both Jews and Muslims.

For years, there was no Israeli claim on the Temple Mount – except from a few religious lunatics. On the contrary, there was a deliberate attempt to play down its importance. After Camp David, however, Barak chose to make the issue centre of attention, with an Israeli claim over the holiest Muslim site in the Occupied Territories.

Palestinian anger and frustration was high after the disappointment once again of realising that the Israelis were willing to offer nothing substantive at Camp David, and were still unwilling to live up to their Oslo obligations.

So when, in the last week of September 2000, Likud leader Ariel Sharon announced he would exercise his right to visit the Mount, the PA warned him the move could have terrible consequences.

So what did Barak do? He not only allowed it, but ordered a huge military and police presence to accompany Sharon. The visit was an obvious provocation, justified by the flimsiest of excuses (he 'went to check whether or not archaeological remains had been vandalised').

This led to rioting, demonstrations and, ultimately, the al-Aqsa (or Second) Intifada.
Hardly as simplistic as Krauthammer likes to make out, is it?

"They are offered an independent state. They are given all of Gaza. And they respond with rocket attacks into peaceful Israeli towns — in pre-1967 Israel proper, mind you."

I don't know whether to laugh or cry at this sentence. They are "given" Gaza? Wow, that was generous! No, Gaza was returned, belatedly, to the Palestinians, except that, actually, it wasn't returned at all. Independent state? Nope. Note: again Krauthammer is grouping all Palestinians as terrorists ("they respond with rocket attacks").

"What can Israel do but try to take out those rocket bases and their crews?", he asks. Well, they can start by engaging in serious negotiations. This would definitely involve retreating to the 1967 border and offering the Palestinians East Jerusalem as a capital.

That is how peace will be achieved – but to do this there needs to be sufficient political will in either America or Israel.This in turn will only be achieved by mass public pressure, which first and foremost requires an informed public. This will not be achieved by journalists such as Krauthammer apologising for Israeli imperialism and terror, and using selective or outright false information to try and justify blaming the victims for their oppression.


Sources

· This excerpt from Israel/Palestine: How to End the War of 1948, Tanya Reinhart
· 'Gaza's Future', Sara Roy
· Wikipedia

Powered by

About asdfasdf

  • emanuel appel

    Sir/ Madam,

    While crocodile tears are spilt for Arabs, nothing is said about innocent Israelis killed in suicide bombings. The implication, of course, is that all Jews are guilty and their death is deserved.

    War, declared by the arabs, means that they will get killed, whether guerillas or civilians just like Israeli civilians and soldiers get killed.

  • http://www.partisantimes.com Dr Politico

    Heatherlander,

    While I’d like to offer a comprehensive critique of your entry, it will have to wait until tomorrow–it’s late and I’m tired. However, I would likle to take a stab at your conclusion:

    “What can Israel do but try to take out those rocket bases and their crews?”, he asks. Well, they can start by engaging in serious negotiations.

    I find it troubling that you call on Israel to get serious without the slightest mention of Hamas’ role in all this. Perhaps you ought to call on Hamas to get serious and renounce terrorism. Perhaps they can start by revising their Charter, which calls for Israel’s destruction. And, by the way, you constantly “note” Krauthammer’s generalization of the Palestinians. Read over the Charter and please “note” the constant reference to Jews, rather than Israel.

    If you plan on accusing someone else of bias, try to lose your own.

    Dr Politico

  • http://heathlander.wordpress.com Jamie Stern-Weiner

    “While crocodile tears are spilt for Arabs, nothing is said about innocent Israelis killed in suicide bombings.”

    On the contrary; a lot is said about them. And rightly too, any death is terrible. Unfortunately, the same does not appear to apply for Palestinian deaths, which is wrong.

    “War, declared by the arabs, means that they will get killed”

    What war, declared by the arabs? I mean, firstly, its obviously not a war in the traditional sense of the word anyay, its far more complicated. But when did the Palestinians declare war?

    “I find it troubling that you call on Israel to get serious without the slightest mention of Hamas’ role in all this.”

    Yes, Hamas does have a role, unfortunately. I talk about Israel because 1) the Palestinians have made huge concessions already, 2) the Palestinians have previously attempted serious negotiations and Israel hasn’t (see Taba) and 3) someone has to make the first move, and Israel is in a better position to make it and, as the occupying power, has the responsibility to make it.

    “Read over the Charter and please “note” the constant reference to Jews, rather than Israel.”

    I’m sure you will not be surprised to learn that I am no fan of the Hamas Charter either.
    But on that point – Israelis do that all the time. All this talk of the “demographic problem”, the “Jewish state”, etc. is patently racist, but its acceptable in Israeli society.

  • emanuel appel

    “What war, declared by the arabs? I mean, firstly, its obviously not a war in the traditional sense of the word anyay, its far more complicated. But when did the Palestinians declare war?”

    Sir,
    The Arabs declared war as far back as 1920.
    Your comments show the grossest ignorance of the conflict.
    The arabs have made no concessions at all. They have the nerve to be the weaker party and yet threaten to kill and de-nationalize those, Israel, who could crush them if they had the killer instinct. The arabs have elected Hamas who explicitly calls for the destruction of Israel. If their Charter and what they say every day is not enough, then you are a biased and deluded partisan of the arabs.

    Say that and don’t pretend to be impartial.

  • http://heathlander.wordpress.com Jamie Stern-Weiner

    Well, firstly I don’t knoe why you keep saying ‘arabs’ – we’re talking about the Palestinians here, not all Arabs.

    Secondly, yes there have been many wars involving Israel and Arabic countries. But the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as it is today is not war in the conventional sense – it is a military occupation.

    As for the election of Hamas – yes, they do call for the destruction of Israel, although they have made it pretty clear that they’d settle for an Israel that sticks to the 1967 borders.
    The opinion of the Palestinian people is very much in favour of a two-state solution – the election of Hamas was largely a protest vote at the innefficient and corrupt Fatah.

  • http://www.partisantimes.com Dr Politico

    “All this talk of the “demographic problem”, the “Jewish state”, etc. is patently racist, but its acceptable in Israeli society.”

    You need to review your facts of the Middle East. Jews have been effectively cleansed from most countries in the region. Palestinians won’t allow a *single* Jew to live on their holy soil. Israelis can’t even step foot in certain countries. Jews can never become citizens in Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, etc. etc. etc.

    Still, 20% of Israeli citizens are Arab Muslims (approximately 2 million). You’re singling out Israel, which happens to have the most tolerant policy in the *entire* Middle East.

    You may want to rethink which countries you point to as being “patently racist.”

  • http://heathlander.wordpress.com Jamie Stern-Weiner

    “Palestinians won’t allow a *single* Jew to live on their holy soil.”

    By ‘holy soil’ I presume you mean the West Bank? Because if you’re talking about the whole of historical Palestine, then that’s not true. The majority of Palestinians support a two state solution, with Israel existing inside the 1967 borders.

    “Jews have been effectively cleansed from most countries in the region…Jews can never become citizens in Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, etc. etc. etc.”

    And is that acceptable? No, racism is unnacceptable and should be opposed everywhere, including in Israel.

    “You’re singling out Israel, which happens to have the most tolerant policy in the *entire* Middle East.”

    I’m singling out Israel in this discussion because of the reference to the racism present in the Hamas Charter.

    But anyway, Israel is a democracy and it is supposedly part of the civilised world, and is treated as such by Western nations. It is therefore more important to point out the deep flaws in Israel than it is to point out those same flaws in undemocratic countries that aren’t accepted as ‘civilised’ by the international community.
    Although of course, as I have already said, racism should be condemned everywhere.

    As to the Israeli Arabs – they are often discriminated against, and in some respects they are treated like second-class citizens. But anyway I don’t think trying to show that Israel is less racist than other Middle Eastern countries is a good way of showing that they aren’t racist. It will just show they are less racist.

  • http://www.partisantimes.com Dr Politico

    “As to the Israeli Arabs – they are often discriminated against, and in some respects they are treated like second-class citizens.”

    Regurgitating unsupported rhetoric won’t win an argument on this one. If what you say is true — which it isn’t — then Israel would be the same as EVERY Western nation, where minorities are “in some respects treated like second-class citizens.” Surely, you’d agree that minorities in this country often feel discriminated against.

    “But anyway I don’t think trying to show that Israel is less racist than other Middle Eastern countries is a good way of showing that they aren’t racist. It will just show they are less racist.”

    You sure love throwing around the term “racist” without supporting it. To conclude that Israel is racist would require a highly prejudiced view of the world. Throughout the world, countries act in such a way that maximizes their own self-interest (read: safety). Israel is in a situation that other countries cannot relate to. That dozens of countries are sworn to Israel’s destruction, and all are within a short distance, requires special considerations. I do not deny that some of Israel’s policies are far less than aesthetically pleasing. HOWEVER, given the situation that they are in, I don’t see a reasonable alternative.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    I’ve stayed away from commenting on this article because I did not want to spoil a relatively good mood. I’ve had two hours to consider the idiocy spouted by the author of the article and his supporters.

    But let me make this crystal clear. In writing this, I do not defend Krauthammer who is not worth talking about. I defend the cause of my people against lies written on Blog Critics.

    Let’s start with the repetition of the Arab bullshit line about Sharon’s visit to the Temple Mount. This is in the article.

    So when, in the last week of September 2000, Likud leader Ariel Sharon announced he would exercise his right to visit the Mount, the PA warned him the move could have terrible consequences.

    So what did Barak do? He not only allowed it, but ordered a huge military and police presence to accompany Sharon. The visit was an obvious provocation, justified by the flimsiest of excuses (he ‘went to check whether or not archaeological remains had been vandalised’).

    The Temple Mount is ours, and we are kind enough to allow the Waqf to administer it. They’ve abused their rights on OUR Temple Mount. The day will come when because of this abuse, the entire Temple Mount will collapse in an earthquake, bringing down their mosques along with it, but I digress.

    I have it on good authority from reliable people who back the Arab cause here that Arafat was peparing for a war against Israel in July, 2000. Ariel Sharon’s “visit” to the Temple Mount was an excuse to begin the this war.

    I’ve dealt in detail with the illegal expulsion of Israeli citizens from their homes in Gaza and the destruction of their livelihoods elsewhere. But now let us look at what appeasement strategies by the traitors on government hill in Jerusalem get us. Again from the article.

    “To get Israel to remove its settlers, end the occupation and let the Palestinians achieve dignity and independence? But Israel did exactly that in Gaza last year. It completely evacuated Gaza, dismantled all its military installations, removed its soldiers, destroyed all Israeli settlements and expelled all 7,000 Israeli settlers.”

    This is very interesting. Yes, settlements were dismantled and military force was re-deployed. Does this mean withdrawal? Does it mean Gaza is independent? Gaza still depends completely on Israel for supply of electricity, water, gas and petrol, and the Israeli Shekel is still the local currency. Israel retains complete control over Gazan airspace and territorial waters, meaning Israel effectively controls what goes in and out of Gaza. Gazans don’t have control over their seaport or airport. Israel also still occupies what is called the Philadelphi Corridor – a strip of land on the Egypt-Gaza border.

    First of all, Israel neither occupies nor controls the Philadelphi Corridor. Egypt and the PA do – which means that Egypt really does.

    Second of all, Israel controls what goes into Gaza from Israel.

    Thirdly, since there is no sovereign country called “Palestine,” thank G-d, the territorial waters around Gaza remain Israeli territorial waters.

    Finally, it is not the fault of the State of Israel if the pathetic thugocracy in Ramallah has been too busy stealing money from all and sundry to figure out an Arab substitute for the shekel, and an independent Arab link to Egypt for electricity or water.

    It is not the fault of the State of Israel if the Gazans were too stupid a mob to restrain themselves from destroying their source of future income, the stolen greenhouses of the Gush Katif enterprise. The Israeli government stole it from the legitimate owners, performed a lot of financial maneuvers to get them out of “their” hands, but the mobs in Gaza were so filled with Jew hatred that they could not restrain themselves from destroying the greenhouses! The Arab bastards and all the European and American bastards who support them are lucky that we Jews are a more restrained people. If we were as restrained as the Arab mobs, all the Arabs in this country would be dead.

    Terrorists – and the thugocracy in Ramallah and Gaza is nothing but a bunch of terrorists – are incapable of thinking in terms of running a nation in peace, and growing an economy. THAT is the essential AND SUBTLE difference between a freedom fighter who has to resort to terrorism to win freedom, like Menahem Begin or Yitzhak Shamir, and a terrorist like the late unlamented Arafat and the present crew of pigs who “run” the PA.

    But the preceding six paragraphs are a mere critique of the faults of the bullshit tossed about above.

    Ther big point is that after ruining the lives of its own citizens, the Israeli government is still viewed as an illegal occupier, constantly being dragged over the coals for the purported “sins” of existing by this author while the “poor Palestinians” seem to have enough water and enough electricity and enough food to launch Qassam after Qassam at Israel, constantly trying to achieve their real goal – killing Jews. And not a word is said.

    A true patriotic policy that would deal with Gaza in short order would be to cut off the water, cut off the electricity, block all foostuffs from coming into its territory until the rebels in Gaza – and that is what they are – rebels – lay down their arms or die of starvation. An entity that seeks war should get war, not this crappy substitute of an appeasement policy by traitors on government hill in Jerusalem.

    Then the Heatherlander will have something to complain about.

  • http://heathlander.wordpress.com Jamie Stern-Weiner

    “You sure love throwing around the term “racist” without supporting it. To conclude that Israel is racist would require a highly prejudiced view of the world.”

    Firstly, I didn’t brand Israel as a country racist. I mentioned that racism, for example in talk of the ‘demographic character’ of the state, is acceptable in Israeli society. I can’t understand how you can disagree with this, especially if the reason for your disagreement is simply that racism is also present in other Middle Eastern countries.

    “The Temple Mount is ours, and we are kind enough to allow the Waqf to administer it. They’ve abused their rights on OUR Temple Mount. The day will come when because of this abuse, the entire Temple Mount will collapse in an earthquake, bringing down their mosques along with it, but I digress.”

    Well, both sides claim exclusivity to the Mount. Israel took control of the area in the Six Day War – they also took control of the West Bank. Is the West Bank “ours”? The point was that, especially coming after the disappointment of the Camp David talks, Sharon’s visit to the Temple Mount accompanied by so many armed personnel was clearly provocative, and did spark rioting and dmeonstrations and killings and all the rest of it.

    “First of all, Israel neither occupies nor controls the Philadelphi Corridor. Egypt and the PA do – which means that Egypt really does.”

    Erp. OK sorry for that, it appears my source on that was a bit out of date.

    “It is not the fault of the State of Israel if the Gazans were too stupid a mob to restrain themselves from destroying their source of future income, the stolen greenhouses of the Gush Katif enterprise.”

    No. It is largely the fault of Israel for reducing Gaza to the state it is now in. When one a complete economic veto of an area’s economy and use it as often as Israel does, when for years Israel has destroyed houses, fields, hospitals and infrastructure and when for years a few thousand settlers have occupied a third of the land leaving the million Palestinians the other two-thirds, it isn’t surprising (or shouldn’t be) that when you leave, the place is going to be in a bit of a mess.

    “Terrorists – and the thugocracy in Ramallah and Gaza is nothing but a bunch of terrorists – are incapable of thinking in terms of running a nation in peace, and growing an economy.”

    Before you can think of running a nation, you have to first have a nation. You have your powerful neighbour’s acceptance of your right to exist as a nation (not mere words, but actual acceptance). I find it amazing that anyone can possibly blame the people who have been occupied for decades for the mess they are in (‘though of course, the succesive governments of Palestine have been about as helpful to the Palestinian cause as the successive Israeli governments – but it’s not really about them).

    “Ther big point is that after ruining the lives of its own citizens, the Israeli government is still viewed as an illegal occupier, constantly being dragged over the coals for the purported “sins” of existing by this author while the “poor Palestinians” seem to have enough water and enough electricity and enough food to launch Qassam after Qassam at Israel”

    In the long run, the Israeli government is ruining the lives of its own citizens. A peaceful, stable Palestinian state is good for both Israel and the Palestinians, and the world, and the Israeli governments’ continued policy of either unilateralism or not engaging in serious negotiations is harmful to all parties.
    And it is not the Palestinians that launch rockets at Israel, it is Palestinian terrorists. And, like all criminals, they should be dealt with.
    But if you want to talk about deaths on both sides, then there really is no symmetry.

    “constantly trying to achieve their real goal – killing Jews.”

    Well, I can’t speak for the terrorists, but that wouldn’t be surprising. I do know that the majority of the Palestinian people want a two state solution, not death to all Jews.

    “A true patriotic policy that would deal with Gaza in short order would be to cut off the water, cut off the electricity, block all foostuffs from coming into its territory until the rebels in Gaza – and that is what they are – rebels – lay down their arms or die of starvation.”

    Well, I don’t know what you mean by a “patriotic policy”. I know that when you say they would die of starvation, you’re right. That’s exactly what would happen, the terrorist aswell as civilians, chilren and the elderly in particular.
    The “entity”, as you put it, does not seek war, unless by “entity” you are talking solely about groups like Islamic Jihad. The Palestinian people want peace.

    The real solution will not come from this hatred of Palestinians, or from Palestinian hatred of Israel. There WILL have to be a two-state solution, and the Palestinians will have to be given a viable state. Viable means contiguous, with an East Jerusalem capital and occupying all of the West Bank and Gaza (sensible negotiations could result in land swaps, which would be sensible).

    How can there be any other solution?

  • troll

    if the Palestinian Arabs want a country to call home they should focus on replacing the Hashemite dynasty in Amman with a government of their own and claim the land east of the River

    everyone talks of going back to the ’67 borders…why not the ’22 borders

    this is not to excuse the Zionists and Palestinian Jews of the ethnic cleansing and racist governance that has occurred on their internationally assigned patch of sand – a problem that belongs before a world court judging crimes against humanity IMO

    troll

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Comment #10 – outsiders who do not know the facts on the ground here trying to tell us folk who live here how to stuff falafel into pita… Uh huh… And we’re supposed to listen to your delusions. Yeah, right.

    Nation-building does not mean building an army – unless you need one. It does not mean diverting billions of dollars of international aid to a personal bank accunt in Switzerland or Paris. It does not mean engaging in terror when engaging in terror is not necessary.

    The bald facts of the matter are these. The Arabs living in Judea, Samaria and Gaza had it better under Israeli rule than under the thug Israel imported to control them, and to get the western powers off its back for a little while.

    Even if they were underpaid in the work they did for Israelis, and they were, the wages were steady. The work was there. Food was on the table. For the most part, problem free travel to and from Israel, as well as to much of the Arab world was not merely a possibility, but reality.

    Had the fellow who ran Orient House (I forget his name) been the Arab leader of the PA, it is likely that a substitute currency would have been developed and implemented bit by bit, that infrastructure would have been improved, that there would have been little if any terror and that some base of prosperity for the Arab controlled areas of Judea, Samaria and Gaza would hve been developed, so that wages in the Arab territories could go up. It is possible that a native born coterie of leaders would have developed and a country would have been in the making.

    It would have been very hard for Israelis to oppose the kind of settlement you suggest in your comment. I certainly would not have.

    That is not what occurred at all. In fact, it probably was not even meant to occur at all.

    The Israeli government wanted a dictatorship to ride rough shod over the Arabs so that they could pull troops out and not spend money trying to police Judea and Samaria. The idea was to shut down the Civil Administration, which was how Israel governed the Arab towns and villages, and hand it over to Arafat and his deputies. Supposedly, there was going to be as “peace dividend”.

    The Israeli government (Rabin, Beilin, Peres, etc.) did not care what Arafat did or didn’t do, so long as there was no rebellion (intifada) or terror. They armed the bastard to the teeth so that he could run his little dictatorship without having to rely on Israel. He eliminated the native cadre of leadership that had developed and put his thieves in charge.

    In addition, Jewish ownership of land in the territory controlled by the PA was a crime punishable by death, and a steady campaign of anti-Jewish literature was produced, often through the good offices of UNESCO, and other UN organizations. “Palestinian” TV had a hate Israel and hate Jew slant, but in the prosperous nineties, Israelis didn’t pay attention. They were too busy making money in the dot.com boom to care.

    This bunch of thieves concentrated on buying arms, stealing money from legitimate businessmen, abusing the rights of the Christians living under their rule, and in cooperation with Israeli authorities, engaging in selective terror designed to pick off and kill the leaders of the Jewish community in Judea and Samaria, largely rabbis.

    In addition, the Israeli leaders decided that if Arafat could make a fortune, so could they. So Israeli politicians developed backdoor avenues to Arafat and his henchmen and cut business deals to make money. The big shots involved in setting all this up was a fellow who has since died, named Ginossar, and Dov Weissglass. One result of all these machinations was the granting to Martin Schlaf, an Austrian Jew, the exclusive right to build gasmbling establishments in the territory of the PA. The now defunct establishment in Jericho developed from this deal.

    When the PA and the Israeli gov’t didn’t quite get along, suicide bombers were sent in by Arafat. That was the “peace dividend” Israelis got from Oslo – funerals, tears and terror.

    That is what really happened. When Arafat decided he could not get anything else from Israel through empty promises, he decided to go to war.

    This is why any “two state” solution is just so much bunkum. This is why there is no Arab infrastructure or planning to develop a country. This is why the territory under the rule of the PA is degenerating into chaos, and why the living standard of the Arabs has dropped so much. This is why any Arab with brains or money wants to get the hell out of the country.

    This is why in the Arab elections last January, the Arabs voted for Hamas, even though they know that Hamas had been nurtured by the Shabak (Israel Secret Police) in the ’80’s and why they were so pissed off at Israelis, who created this nightmare for them.

    If you want to blame the State of Israel for anything, blame it for bringing in Arafat and creating a criminal régime in Ramallah. Blame the leadership of the State for not having the guts or the brains to figure out a way to partner with the Arabs instead of sucking at the nipple of the EU and the USA. Blame the leaders of the State of Israel for being nothing but criminals and for bringing a mafiacracy first to the Arab territories here, and now to Israel itself.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    The “poor Palestinians” get more of their needs fulfilled – no, not money to develop businesses, not medicine, not food. From the United state, one million rounds of ammo and 1,000 M16’s for Force 17. From
    World Net Daily.

    It was the United States that coordinated the transfer of 3,000
    American-made M-16 assault rifles and over one million rounds of
    ammunition last week by Israel to Force 17, the presidential guard
    units of Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, WorldNetDaily
    has learned. And a senior member of Force 17, in an exclusive
    interview with WND, says the weapons will be shared with the Al Aqsa
    Martyrs Brigades terror group and utilized for attacks against Jews.
    Read the latest now on WND.com.

    And this from Haaretz on-line.

    Security sources: Weapons smuggling from Egypt into Gaza has ballooned
    By Avi Issacharoff, Haaretz Correspondent 17 June 2006

    Yup – just what the “poor Palestinians” need to develop peace, right?

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Jamie,

    You were born here and you still do not get it?
    In order to accomplish all the nation building now, you need an “occupation on humanitarian grounds”.

    But by who? And why? You need to start asking “why?”

    Why did the leadership of Israel choose such a bloody and destructive path in 1992? Why are more arms being shipped to what is nothing more than a criminal organization by the United States now? Why are effective measures not being taken to 1)provide Arabs with work and 2) insure the security of Israelis? Why does the government of Israel insist that it can withdraw from Judea and Samaria and get peace when every cession of our land has only brought war and death?

    Instead of beating the dead horse of the illusions of Oslo and hoping it will miraculously arise, you should start asking questions – why?

    Lama u’madúa? Nu?

  • troll

    Ruvy – I understand that you are more interested in the here and now and in problems that can be solved rather than in ‘water under the bridge’…my questions here are more academic and concern the back story

    would you say that the property rights of the Arabs living in what became Israel were respected as called for in all international agreements concerned with the disposition of the British mandate and the creation of a Jewish state – ?

    consider this map which I snatched from somewhere on the web (sorry source – I can’t remember who you are off hand)…it seems to show a dispersed Arab population and a different story than the one where Arabs came to the area looking for work as ‘domestics’

    you call it your land but how was this transfer of ownership accomplished – ?

    as devil’s advocate – can’t the Israeli government be blamed for this theft (through forced sales at best – ?) which on paper at least was never intended by the international community

    troll

  • http://heathlander.wordpress.com Jamie Stern-Weiner

    “Yup – just what the “poor Palestinians” need to develop peace, right?”

    No – for peace to develop the Palestinians need to be given a viable, indpependent state.

    “In order to accomplish all the nation building now, you need an “occupation on humanitarian grounds”. ”

    No, you don’t. What’s needed is to recignise the destructive forces in this situation, and stop them. The single largest destructive force is the ongoing, illegal occupation, and it is relatively simple to stop.

    Once the Palestinians have a viable state comprising of a contiguous West Bank plus Gaza, then we can move on to other steps. Steps such as attempting to provide Palestinians with work, should they want it, or providing expertise or aid to help them get on their feet.

    But the important thing is that the first step has to be a viable Palestinian state, and the first step towards that is engaging n serious negotiations. That means being willing to return East Jerusalem and the West Bank.

    “Why does the government of Israel insist that it can withdraw from Judea and Samaria and get peace when every cession of our land has only brought war and death?”

    Virtually every cession of land has a) looked good on paper but actually wasn;t much of an improvement (see Gaza) and b) been accompanied by expansions of settlements in the West Bank.

    The truth is that Israel has a moral obligation to return the territories it is occupying. It should do this even if there is not terrorist threat.

    But since firstly, among the Israeli religious extremists who hold way too much influence sensible morality doesn’t appear to exist and secondly, there is a terrorist threat, withdrawing from the West Bank is also strategically sensible.

    There will always be terrorists. Terrorists are criminals, and what they want or what their motives are are not important. WHat is important is why they are so popular. Why they arne’t isolated and hated by the community. Why they are able to draw so much support from the people who’s lives they are making miserable.

    The answer to that is that Islamic Jihad and ordinary Palestinians share one thing – a hatred of Israeli interference in Palestine that often translates into hatred of Israel itself.

    The hatred of Israeli policies is completely justified, although of course translating that into killing civilians is not. There are simple steps that can be taken to reduce or even eliminate such hatred. The obvious one is to withdraw from the Occupied Territories.

    Whilst there will be still be terrorists, they will be much easier to deal with and will enjoy far less support amongst the Palestinian people, and so will pose much less a threat.

  • troll

    Jamie Stern-Weiner – *There are simple steps that can be taken to reduce or even eliminate such hatred. The obvious one is to withdraw from the Occupied Territories.*

    why should anyone think that this is more than deceptive rhetoric and that the desire of the Palestinian Arabs is other than to drive the Palestinian Jews back into compounds around the coastal cities and eventually into the sea – ?

    troll

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Troll,

    The first thing I did was to look at the map. It is a fairly good map, though carefully skewed in its terminology (Zionist colony vs Palestinian village) to infer that Jews had never been here previously and that the term ‘Palestinian’ referred only to Arabs. Also it shows the 1922 borders with 1920 data. This is because if it had shown the 1920 borders, the mandate of “Palestine” would have included BOTH banks of the Jordan, something this group desperately wanted to avoid doing. Now that I think about it, the map was carefully skewed in other ways too. The dots were somewhat oversized, to give the impression of a dispersed Arab population.

    This situation on the ground changed radically between 1922 and 1947. Most of the land that Jews acquired was obtained up until 1947 was either purchased or reclaimed with no owners on it, or in a number of instances, consisted of villages built over-night. Ottoman real estate law, which still pertains in Judea and Samaria and governed the entire British Mandate, allowed for such things.

    Once war broke out in late 1947, all the neat landowning lines became blurred by fighting. In some instances, attempts were made to persuade Arabs to remain where they were. In the majority of cases this did not occur. When Arab armies invaded the country from outside the country in 1948, they told the villagers to leave, promising a victory. But, save for the Arab Legion, they were unable to deliver on the promise.

    For the most part, the new government of Israel did not want the Arabs to stay.

    Property rights were not respected. The property rights of Arabs here were not “respected” as they had effectively abandoned their homes. The government of Israel was not going to welcome a fifth column of potential terrorists into the country after fighting them in Jaffa, Haifa, Tzfat and Lod.

    This, particularly in light of the fact that Arab states refused to even recognize the existence of Israel, let alone negotiate peace. If you wish to understand the back story, this is a very salient fact that cannot be allowed to slip the mind. No peace, no negotiations, no recognition. It was the basic fact of life then, and in many ways is still the basic fact of life now.

    IN ADDITION, the property rights of Jews in Iraq and other Arab countries ceased to exist and they had to be rescued from those countries and bought home. The international agreements did not contemplate the Arab pogroms against Jews in Arab countries, nor did they contemplate the changes in international borders due to the fighting here.

    IN ADDITION TO ALL THIS, the king of Jordan tried to style himself King of the Palestinians, and the Egytians ran Gaza nearly as a prison camp. So the Arab state that should have come into existence in 1948 never did. This too is a big part of the back story.

    Disregarding religious considerations, this entire country is ours by right of conquest in defensive wars.

    The Israel government is guilty of the same theft that other nations have been guilty of by virtue of war and conquest. Check out a map of Europe and its changes over the last 100 years.

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    Oh Ruvy, where did I fail?

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Jamie,

    You repeat all the same crap over and over like a broken record. “Illegal occupation,” “viable state,” etc. etc.

    You act as if Oslo never occurred and a Jew like me is supposed to be stupid enough to buy bricks of shit packaged as bricks of gold – as though the last 14 years never happened.

    Sorry. The last 14 years did happen, and due to the treason of our own leaders our nation is much weaker. Due to the theft of the Arab terrorists, the Arabs are much poorer.

    The rich shits in North Tel Aviv talk like you do. When a Qassam missile hits the Ashkelon electric plant and they can’t turn their computers or electric coffee grinders for a few days, they will just begin to wake up. You, on the other hand, from your perch outside of this country, will never awaken.

    Doze on, Jamie. I do not wish to disturb yur dreams or fantasies.

  • troll

    (in fairness [and with a little history search] these are the guys who produced the map – definately from an Arab POV explaining its skewed nature but not undermining the underlying questions of land ownership and the ethnic cleansing of what became Israel – the history of which Ruvy laid out in #18)

  • http://absent-mind.blogspot.com/ Jet in Columbus

    Ruvy #20 much much better, consise and to the point, and I’m afraid I even agree!

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Nice job, Troll. I’ve heard of these guys and read some of their literature. The map that PASSIA has on its web-site seems to indicate a willingness for a “two-state” solution.

    I tried tracing the “dtaos” site further and it was one greasy pig to handle.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Jet,

    Analysis and explanation take time and need to be precise. That’s the trouble wirh reading a contract, too.

    Once somebody starts repeating himself endlessly, it ain’t hard to tell him so in a couple of words.

  • troll

    (actually I make no secret of my identity – it’s easy to tract through dtaos and old comments…I picked up this moniker at a time when I figured

    1 – I don’t write well enough to produce posts in any timely fashion

    and

    2 – BC was desperately in need of a old school troll)

  • Bliffle

    That’s war. People die, even The Innocent, sometimes accidentally, but sometimes on purpose. It will always be so. The proponents of war usually think otherwise when they start, sometimes talking about “surgical airstrikes”: this from people who have never been in an operating room.

  • Clavos

    Bliffle,

    …or a war.

  • http://heathlander.wordpress.com Jamie Stern-Weiner

    “why should anyone think that this is more than deceptive rhetoric and that the desire of the Palestinian Arabs is other than to drive the Palestinian Jews back into compounds around the coastal cities and eventually into the sea – ?”

    Well, because firstly in polls of public opinion rhetoric isn’t usually present, and secondly because Palestinians are PEOPLE, people who have suffered alot and most have no wish to continue suffering.

    “You repeat all the same crap over and over like a broken record. “Illegal occupation,” “viable state,” etc. etc.”

    Well, it isn’t crap, it’s sense. It is an illegal occupation and the only way to safety and stability is by creating a viable Palestinian state. What, do you want me to change my miund every time so you don’t have to re-read the same words? So far, you haven’t really discussed how to create a peaceful Israel and Palestine, nor have you even attempted to do so. Instead you like throwing insults around and mentioning that I don’t live in Israel, as if that somehow means I’m wrong and you aren’t. Are you actually interested in having a discussion or do you come here simply to throw cheap shots and make yourself feel good?
    Nevertheless…

    “You act as if Oslo never occurred and a Jew like me is supposed to be stupid enough to buy bricks of shit packaged as bricks of gold – as though the last 14 years never happened. ”

    No I don’t – Oslo wasn’t a serious attempt to create a viable Palestinian state either. There *was* one set of serious negotiations, those that took place at Taba – however just as things were getting somewhere Barak left.

    “The last 14 years did happen, and due to the treason of our own leaders our nation is much weaker. Due to the theft of the Arab terrorists, the Arabs are much poorer.”

    I don’t know what you mean by ‘weaker’ If you mean less secure, then yes, the current policy of perpetuating an illegal occupation does create enemies, and those enemies tend to fight back when they can.
    The Palestinians (I don’t know why you generalise with ‘Arabs’ have got poorer for a number of reasons, two major ones being the occupation and the corruptness of Fatah.

    “The rich shits in North Tel Aviv talk like you do. When a Qassam missile hits the Ashkelon electric plant and they can’t turn their computers or electric coffee grinders for a few days, they will just begin to wake up.”

    What’s your point? Yes, we all know that some Palestinians fire homemade rockets into Israel. I thought we were trying to delve a bit deeper. You know, with questions like ‘why?’ or ‘how shall we stop this?’.

  • troll

    Jamie Stern-Weiner – *…in polls of public opinion rhetoric isn’t usually present*

    I’ve seen polls of Palestinian Arab opinion showing all sorts of contradictory results concerning the question of recognizing Israel…what poll are you referring to – ?

    troll

  • http://www.partisantimes.com Dr Politico

    “Oslo wasn’t a serious attempt to create a viable Palestinian state either.”

    Where do you get your information from — Al Jazeera?

    Oslo was a very serious attempt that would have given the Palestinians about 97% of the occupied territories with E. Jerusalem as its capital. Arafat walked out on that one, which Prince Bandar of saudi Arabia called “a crime against the Palestinians.”

    Elsa Walsh did a series of interviews with Prince Bandar, who helped Arafat with negotiations at Oslo, for the New Yorker. Read them. You’ll see just how serious Oslo was and how Arafat cheated his people and the entire region.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Jamie,

    Where did you get the notion that occupying territory conquered in a defensive war was illegal? You repeat this endlessly as though it were written in stone. Maybe you should try to justify this line of reasoning if you “want to delve deeper.”

    And where did you get the notion that for us to settle our own country was illegal? If you are a Jew, you are shooting yourself – and us – in the foot.

    Now, just so you understand with crystal clarity what the treason of the Israeli leadership is; putting a terrorist in power next door, pulling out of south Lebanon and allowing a ten thousand missle forward offensive force to threaten the country, failing to crush Arab terror when it showed itself – there are ways to do this without bombing weddings like the Americans do, following a program of killing off the Jewish leadership in Judea and Samaria using Arab proxies; all this has made the country weaker. It has been made even weaker by pulling out of Gaza.

    Now Qassams scrape at Ashkelon. As I pointed out before, when the rich complacent shits in north Tel Aviv cannot turn on thir computers or their electric coffee grinders because the Ashkelon power plant has cut off thir juice after being hit by a Qassam missile, they will begin to comprehend the enormity of their stupidity.

    Firmly controlling our land from the river to the sea made us strong – refusing to do so has made us weak. The bottom line, whether you like this fact or not, is that the world thinks it would be much better off with all of us Jews dead. We Jews will not survive by catering to the wishes of a world that wants us dead. We’ll survive by making it clear to that world that trying to kill us is not worth the candle.

    The security of the State of Israel was not enhanced and has not been enhanced by any action of the government since 1992. Each step away from firm control of the land has led to greater insecurity, and to greater weakness.

    The world does not respect wimps. It respects people who will kill with ferocity to protect what is theirs. That is why the South Syrian Arabs – NOT PALESTINIANS AS THEY WOULD HAVE YOU CALL THEM – living in our land have garnered so much respect while we have lost so much. They refuse to compromise what they believe is theirs and we are willing to fritter away what is ours by right in a vain attempt to please the goyim who want us dead.

    Thus, we have earned their contempt. People who think like you do earn us the contempt of our enemies – and even of out friends. The leadership here thinks like you do. They do not believe in the rightness or the righteousness of their cause. They are cowards at heart and the whole world can see their cowardice.

  • http://parodieslost.typepad.com mschannon

    What continues to frustrate me to no end is the total lack of any historical knowledge among the Israel bashers. The Palestinians were given a state–it was called Jordan, but the Hashemite butchers after 1947 drove them out.

    From 1947 to 1967, both Jordan, which controlled the west bank and Egypt which controlled Gaza could have created a unified Palestinian state. Instead, they kept the Palestinians in camps, refused to let them built a social or economic infrastructure, and fed them stories about someday being able to drive the Jews back into the sea.

    Give me one other example of where a country which took over land during a war ever gave it back with no concessions in return. Just one.

    War sucks, innocent people die. Your example of a police action is totally inappropriate to a war, but it helps you make your distorted point. I’m sorry that innocent Palestinians get killed, but I blame the terrorists who use them as shields, not the Israelis for protecting their land, their homes, and their lives. Why is that so hard for you to understand?

    Hamas is the ruling Palestinian power and calls for the destruction of Israel–and Israel should help them? That’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard.

    But again–just one case where a country that was at war and conquered land gave it back without getting something concrete, real, tangible, useful, viable in return. You can’t. There isn’t any, but you want the Israelis to do that.

    And who are they dealing with? People dedicated to their destruction. The Palestinian covenenant still calls for the destruction of Israel. For all Israel has done in returning land, it has gotten nothing in return but continuing criticism.

    This continuing barage of criticism towards Israel is immorality at its worst. You’re holding them to a standard that no other country in history has had to abide by.

  • troll

    *The Palestinians were given a state–it was called Jordan, but the Hashemite butchers after 1947 drove them out.*

    Mark – the way I read it in ’21 the Brits were working out their plans for the Palestinian Mandate (all of which was meant as a Jewish state per the Balfour Declaration) when the Hashemites occupied the Mandate’s territory up to the River without resistance – established monarchical rule there – and were quickly recognized by Britain

    opportunistic as ever the Brits wanted to sell Transjordan as a solution to any Palestinian Arab problem allowing them to magnanimously propose a homeland for the Jews west of the River (administered by them – of course)

    the dual goals set up an unstable situation as the requirements of the Mandate were specific that Arab interests west of the River were not to be confused with those of Transjordan and that Arab rights were not to be abrogated

    in ’48 the Hashemites occupied the West Bank which instead of incorporating into Jordan they choose to administer which as you point out they did in a most uncivil manner until ’67 when the Israelis conquered it

    troll

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Hmmm…

    King Abdallah has a South Syrian Arab for a queen and screws her – the same relationship that the Bedouin government has to the majority of “Jordanians”?

    I get regular reports of what the opposition to the king in Amman is up to and essentially, if the Arabs could set up a “Palestinian” entity and be rid of Israeli conrol entirely, the opposition would waste little time in uniting on both banks of the Jordan. The next step would be the extirpation of Israel entirely. That is their agenda. I doubt if the western powers who play with this region like a bloody toy would allow any such thing to come to pass…

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Mark,

    For all Israel has done in returning land, it has gotten nothing in return but continuing criticism.

    You are a writer. You should know the power of words. “Returning land?” You defeat your own cause with such phrases. The land is ours by right of conquest in a defensive war, and was ours, by declaration of Lord Balfour incorporated in the Mandate Charter of the League of Nations – and more importantly, much more importantly, the word of G-d.

    If you say you are “returning land”, you admit that you have stolen it and reduce yourself (and all of us) to the status of special pleaders, impotent Shylocks whining to be allowed to retain a few ounces of a pound of flesh seized illegally. The precise policy of the Olmert “regime,” BTW. By your words, you have rendered impotent our entire claim to the country. Is that your goal?

    That is the power of your words, Mark. Watch them and think carefully.

  • http://heathlander.wordpress.com Jamie Stern-Weiner

    An independent report is needed because it is ludicrous to expect the suspect to investigate his own (alleged) crimes.

    It is not an unfounded assumption that Israeli shells were responsible, both because they often are and because of the findings of the Human Rights Watch investigator (plus the fact that it would have had to have been a big coincidence for an unexploded device to have gone off in the same region and roughly at the same time as shells from Israel were being fired.) Then there’s the fact that one of the shells is unaccounted for. Then there’s the apparent inconsistencies between what Israeli sources claim happened and what Palestinian sources claim happened (for example, Israel says there was a large time difference between when the last of its shells were fired and when the family was killed, whereas a Palestinian hospital reported it had recieved an ermegency call form the area one minute before Israel’s last shell was fired).

    I don’t know what happened, neither does the Secretary General (which is why he should have restricted his announcement to a call for an international investigation).

    As to your claims of UN bias – overall, the UN as an organisation is of course extremely biased towards Israel, because of the US veto. But UN investigations aren’t representative of UN member states, they are just teams of experts in their field of studies, and so no obvious bias should occur.

  • methuselah

    What’s amazing to see is that the USA is punishing transgressors of Aby Ghraib and other violations, whereas the collective muslim governments of the mideast have shown NO or NONE of that interest in prosecuting their own violators. For example, a maniac muslim who had kiled an american during an airplane highjacking was recently returned to Lebanon where he enjoyed a heros welcome and a slap on the wrist.

    Muslim governments are simply barred from prosecuting muslim crimes against ‘infidels’ by the condition of their beliefs.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Jamie,

    It looks like the article you were responding to was pulled in an anti-spam campaign today. But I found this one as well that answers you claims to need “independent” investigation from the UN. The relevant link in the Süddeutsche Zeitung is a live one. Enjoy.

    Pallywood: German Expose of Palestinian media hi-jinx in Gaza beach tragedy

    19.06.2006
    The German Suedduetche Zeitung ran the following article with a detailed examination of the evidence in the Gaza Bearch shooting. It clarifies many of the problems with the story disseminated by the Palestinians and media.

    The Middle East: The war of images Seven casualties in Gaza beach: Was it a shelling attack by Israel? Or an exploding Palestinian land mine? An example of how sometimes Palestinians bend the truth. by Thorsten Schmitz

    Source (in German, with photos:
    Süddeutsche Zeitung

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Jamie, et al,

    Don’t go to the Süddeutsche Zeitung link I listed. I won’t work and may force your internet to shut down. Go the the Pallywood link that Chris Rose was nice enough to activate. From there follow the link to the Süddeutsche Zeiting, which is in German.

    Thanks Chris!

  • http://parodieslost.typepad.com mschannon

    Ruvy, my apologies if I offended you by using the phrase “returning land,” but one can take that in a number of ways. You know it is not my goal to render impotent your claims. I shall, in the future, be more careful.

    In Decaf Veritas

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Mark,

    I was not offended at all. Just wanted to point out how a careless choice of words based on just following what the MSM puts out can be damaging to both you and me. This carelessness and lazy thinking is the hallmark of the editorial staff at the Voice of Israel, Israel Broadcasting, and Haaretz.

    We’re arguing for our lives, Mark.

  • http://heathlander.wordpress.com Jamie Stern-Weiner

    Yes, I’ve seen Pallywood before. Undoubtedly, the Palestinian do sometimes fake things to try and gain moral sympathy. That, after all, is the only real weapon they have (and this why terrorist groups harm the Palestinian cause so much).

    An independent UN investigation with access to intelligence from both sides is needed because only then will an objective (or more so than anything else) conclusion be reached. It will also show that Israel is not immune from punishment and that the international community cares about Palestinian deaths.

  • http://www.partisantimes.com Dr Politico

    Jamie,

    “An independent report is needed because it is ludicrous to expect the suspect to investigate his own (alleged) crimes. . . . and because of the findings of the Human Rights Watch investigator”

    You are no doubt talking of Marc Garlasco. Well, Galasco was invited to investigate the IDF’s findings and he praised the IDF. Also, he concluded that the IDF’s findings could not be contradicted. Read about it here.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Jamie,

    At present, there is no South Syrian Arab organization that can figure its way out of the mess the terrorists and other fools have wroght.

    The approach that is taken by Hamas is rooted in Islam, an Islam similar to that of the Moslem Brotherhood which is rooted in those of the Wahhabi and Salafi movements. The idea is simple. Israeli Jews are not Moslems – they need to die.

    The approach taken by “nationalist” Arab movements was to view the Israeli entity as the mere puppet of the United States. This was represented by th PLO and other terror clones. PASSIA’s map, referenced by Troll, talks about “Zionist colonies” as opposed to “Palestinian villages”. The victiory of Hamas over the PLO has consigned the secular nationalist view to the opposition – in an Arab society, this often means the grave.

    Arabs living here by and large are more religious than Jews are and dislike Jews for religious reasons. They do not respect secular Jews because of their behavior. Islam generally condemns those Jews who do not put G-d first, who do not keep the Sabbath and who dress and behave in an immodest manner – all to be found on any Tel Aviv Street and on too many Jerusalem streets as well.

    The vast majority of Israelis who have fallen for the Oslo peace delusions – or who would go further thinking that peace can be had with Arabs living here without fundamental change in their outlook – are just such Israelis. They are people who run away from Judaism and from G-d, seeking instead acceptance by a “post Christian” (pagan) society where they will be just like everyone else. They condemn Israel and the Covenant that links them to their G-d – sometimes hiding under “intellectualism”, like Noam Chomsky, sometimes hiding under “practical” politics, like Jeff Halper of ICAHD, and sometimes under “altruistic” motives like Uri Avneri.

    It’s a nice idea. German Jews did something very similar a century ago. But it, like the efforts of the German Jews, “Germans of the Mosaic persuasion”, will fail. The white powder of six million Jews who were murdered is the proof of that. Many, if not most American Jews, are trying to do the same thing now. But people who refuse to learn the lessons of history are doomed to repeat them. The American Jewish community is dissappearing in intermarriage and assimilation – a “kinder, gentler Holocaust”.

    I’ll get back to this later. I have a court appearance today soon and gotta run.

  • http://heathlander.wordpress.com Jamie Stern-Weiner

    “At present, there is no South Syrian Arab organization that can figure its way out of the mess the terrorists and other fools have wroght.”

    Not on their own, no. What is needed is a co-operative effort between an Israeli government that is truly committed to peace and a Palestinian government who shares those aims. At the moment, largely due to Israel’s increasing use of disproportionate force against Palestinians (which, by the way, constitutes a war crime under international law) and the perpetuation and, in some case, enlargement of illegal settlements, the Palestinians are being pushed AWAY from the moderate end of the spectrum and towards Hamas/Islamic Jihad/etc.

    “The approach taken by “nationalist” Arab movements was to view the Israeli entity as the mere puppet of the United States.”

    Well, to a significant extent, it is, in the sense that it depends on the US for political support (how many times has that US veto scrapped a UN resolution regarding Israel/Palestine?) and for military superiority (without which the current situation could not continue).

    “The vast majority of Israelis who have fallen for the Oslo peace delusions – or who would go further thinking that peace can be had with Arabs living here without fundamental change in their outlook – are just such Israelis.”

    The Oslo accords were a step forward in that they established the principle of negotiations and cooperation and in that Arafat recognised Israel, but they were never proper negotiations for peace. All the key issues, such as settlements and East Jerusalem, were not discussed. So if anyone had any “delusions” that the accords would lead to peace then yes, obviously, they were wrong. But in no way does that mean negotiations that WERE serious about peace would fail.

    I’m sure no-one really thinks that the current situation can continue. Perpetual war is not a desirable solution for anyone. To avoid perpetual war requires either a) one side to be wiped out (not going to happen, and an even less desirable outcome than perpetual war) or b) a peace settlement. It’s really a no-brainer. What’s more complicated is the terms of such a settlement, but to discuss those requires a committment to bilateralism and to serious negotiations. These two requisites are sadly very much lacking on the Israeli side.

    “The American Jewish community is dissappearing in intermarriage and assimilation – a “kinder, gentler Holocaust”.”

    Well, unless I’m misunderstanding you, I think that’s a very strange thing to say. So what if Jews intermarry with non-Jews? Since when has being a Jew been an inherently good quality that must be defended? To compare it with the Holocaust..well, I don’t understand it. Perhaps you can elaborate when you get back from court.

  • troll

    (is ‘uncircumcised Jew’ an oxymoron – ?

    what happens when there is no one to light the candles

    troll)

  • Ruvy from Jerusalem

    Like I said, Jamie, those who fail to learn from their mistakes in history, are doomed to repeat them.

    “So what if Jews intermarry with non-Jews? Since when has being a Jew been an inherently good quality that must be defended?”

    The answer:

    The vast majority of Israelis who have fallen for the Oslo peace delusions are people who run away from Judaism and from G-d, seeking instead acceptance by a “post Christian” (pagan) society where they will be just like everyone else.

    It’s a nice idea. German Jews did something very similar a century ago. But it, like the efforts of the German Jews, “Germans of the Mosaic persuasion”, will fail. Many, if not most American Jews, are trying to do the same thing now.

    If you are a Jew and you don’t understand why you should strive to have Jewish children, you do not understand your heritage at all.

    Read Betrayal at Brandeis University – Another Sign of the Failure of the American Jewish Experiment and perhaps you will understand.

  • http://heathlander.wordpress.com Jamie Stern-Weiner

    “If you are a Jew and you don’t understand why you should strive to have Jewish children, you do not understand your heritage at all.”

    I am a Jew, but I don’t care that I am. It means absolutely nothing, except that it is likely that I share a greater proportion of my genes with a group of people than with others. Which also means nothing.

    The Holocaust did not happen because Jews tried to ‘fit in’ with Germans. It happened for a number of reason, one being that people in desperate times like having a scapegoat, and what are Jews if not the eternal scapegoats.

    If anything, the Holocaust taught us that we need to *stop* segregating ourselves, both mentally and in actuality, into these artificial groups, not, as you’re suggesting, to segregate further.

  • http://parodieslost.typepad.com mschannon

    Jamie, you’re missing something fundamental in what Ruvy’s trying to say. I’m an agnostic Jew who’s married two shiksas, which means that had I been foolish enough to pass my genes on, my children wouldn’t be considered Jewish.

    For some reason that I’ve never understood, Jews go out of their way to keep people from converting. We’re our own worst enemies in terms of propogating the cultue/religion.

    But if this keeps up, we’ll disappear as a cultural/relgious entity, and I have to confess having very mixed feelings about that.

    Jews have made extraordinary contributions to society in virtually every realm of human endeavor. Would those people have made those contributions if they were Mormons or Unitarians? I don’t know. But there is something special about the Jewish experience–not all of it good–but it’s disappearing and we Jews are as responsible as anyone.

    If we decide that’s the way we want it, fine…let the culture/religion die…but it should be a conscious decision, one based on thought and reflection, not on personal idiosyncracies.

    It’s too late for me to do anything personally about it (Doctor V took care of that, plus at my age, who’d want little bastards running around) but it’s not too late to engage in the debate.

    Jews have been around for over 5000 years. Are we really willing to let them disappear because it’s convenient?

    It occurs to me that this is a whole other discussion…BC Jews United debating what our future should be. Israel is only one part of the equation, important dependent on your religious perspective, but, worldwide, I’m not sure I want to see us become a footnote to history.

    Phew…maybe i’ll try to write about this, but I’m not sure I’m the right person.

  • http://heathlander.wordpress.com Jamie Stern-Weiner

    “Would those people have made those contributions if they were Mormons or Unitarians? I don’t know. But there is something special about the Jewish experience”

    There is in the sense that Jews feel this closeness and together-ness, perhaps because of what happened in Europe. That has also led to things like Jewish humour, for example.
    I’m not saying let the culture die. I’m saying the culture has nothing, really, to do with whether you’re Jewish at all. It has everything to do with whether you see yourself as Jewish, whether others see as Jewish and your surroundings as you grow up.

  • Ruvy from Jerusalem

    Mark,

    Arguing with Jamie over Jewish identity is a waste of time. Jamie said it all in 1½ sentences. “I am a Jew, but I don’t care that I am. It means absolutely nothing,……”

    May the Almighty forgive me for saying something that might reduce the honor of a fellow Jew, but Jamie is eactly the person I have described in comments #45 and #47. He doesn’t care. “S’leint nisht tzu hockn kup afn vant,” – it doesn’t pay to knock your head on the wall. Nothing will get him to change his mind or even consider that there might be another point of view. Bear in mind, this does not directly concern politics, which what Jamie wrote about.

    It is THE central issue for us.

    “It occurs to me that this is a whole other discussion…BC Jews United debating what our future should be. Israel is only one part of the equation,…”

    You sound very much like the late Isaac Asimov in your attitudes. You may not have the mastery over Yiddish that he had, and you probably do not know a lot of the rules you break – he did. But please do not take that as criticism – Asimov was one of the best writers we’ve produced.

    Be that as it may, Israel is not just “one part of the equation.” Israel is home. There are two essential parts of the equation of Jewish identity that make us strong – attempting to adhere to the Law (wrestling with it – or its Giver), and Israel. All the other elements in the equation eventually lead us to “I am a Jew, but I don’t care that I am. It means absolutely nothing,……”

    That is oblivion for our people – death. Once you reach this point, you no longer need “the gentile” to stab you in the back, slit your throat or stuff you into a gas chamber – that is a mere coup de gras.

    I have already attempted to tackle thw issue of the Jewish future in America. That was what my article about Brandeis was all about. One option is to go there and register arguments. Very few have done this.

    So, in fact, you are the one to write the article on this issue of Jewish identity and the Jewish future. You do struggle with faith and you care about Israel. You live in exile, as do most of the other Jews who write or work on BC.

    “But if this keeps up, we’ll disappear as a cultural/relgious entity, and I have to confess having very mixed feelings about that.”

    You’ve not yet reached Jamie’s level.

    That says it all.

  • http://alienboysworld.blogspot.com Christopher Rose

    Ruvy, you really ought to give up writing asbout politics. All your ideas are so delusional and paranoid as to be actually unhelpful.

    In summary, your own government are traitors, the USA and Europe are interfering ignorant busybodies who don’t understand Israel’s special problems and only you and a few other special believers understand the real issues.

    Frankly it’s all just a variation on the standard “me first and to hell with the rest of you” bullshit that so many other countries come out with.

    There is NOTHING more special about any one group of humans than any other and it’s about time we ALL came to terms with that.

    Finally, your assertion that Jamie’s view that it means nothing to be a Jew is in some way a problem is the exact inversion of reality. It’s because people like you think Jews, Moslems, Americans or whatever are in some way superior is the cause of all the problems.

    Please wake up from this paranoid nightmare that has such a firm grip on your mind, it’s not doing you, your credibility or your “people” any good at all and the constant message of arrogance and hate you keep pimping is deeply offensive to people of good will everywhere in the world.

  • http://heathlander.wordpress.com Jamie Stern-Weiner

    “Nothing will get him to change his mind or even consider that there might be another point of view. Bear in mind, this does not directly concern politics, which what Jamie wrote about.”

    I think it does directly concern politics, because it if less people had their minds shut by religion a rational, sensible settlement would be far more likely (that isn’t to say religion is the only, or even the main, factor in the ongoing conflict).

    “Be that as it may, Israel is not just “one part of the equation.” Israel is home.”

    Yes – but that’s not the end of the story, surely? After all, it is not just Jews that need a home. At the moment, Israel is causing the suffering of another people, and this cannot be allowed to continue. So, we can argue about the ways in which to end the suffering, butsurely we can all accept that it does have to end, right?

    “That is oblivion for our people – death.”

    On the contrary – it is exactly by separating people into these artifical groups that has caused so much death and misery. It leads to wars between factions/races/nationalities/religions and descrimination based on those same superficialities.
    The ideal would be that no-one thought of themselves as belonging to a race group, or a religion group, or a country group, but rather that everyone simply thought of themselves as ‘human’.
    This is unlikely to happen, since it goes against our evolutionary build, but atleast we can attempt to transcend the group boundaries rather than fortify them.

    “You’ve not yet reached Jamie’s level.”

    But keep practising! :)

  • Ruvy from Jerusalem

    Chris,

    People of “good will” need to demonstrate this good will in a concrete manner. Stopping the genocide in Darfur, ending the holding of slaves in Saudi Arabia, seeing to it that families in southeat Asia (and elsewhere) do not have to sell their daughters into prostitution to put food on the table, are just a few of the examples that come to mind off the top of my head. Ridding North Korea of the crazies running the place and seeing to it that all of Korea can eat decently is another.

    In short, either you do something, or being a person of “good will” is just a phrase thrown around with the farts and the cigarette smoke.

    When I mean “stopping,” I mean concrete steps that actually cause the evil to cease. I hate to tell you this, but I have attempted some concrete steps from my position of powerlessness – not things one can talk about on-line – to promote peace in this troubled region.

    You’re not a bad sort, Chris. But you do not understand anything about the issues under discussion in the preceding 6 or so comments which deal with Jewish identity, and which do not deal with the problems of conflict in this region.

    I don’t agree with Jamie – I disagree with him violently. But he was born here, he knows what is to live here and whatever I’ll say of his views about Jewish identity, he understands to a degree whereof he speaks. And he has relatives in cemeteries here who have fought and died to defend this land. You may agree with what he writes, and that is fine, but you do not understand him – or me.

    If you want to approach that understanding, take the train to Barcelona, find a Catalan who voted for a special relationship with the Kingdom of Spain, a fellow whose family has lived in Catalonia for a few centuries, and sit and listen as he explains why.

  • http://alienboysworld.blogspot.com Christopher Rose

    Thanks for modestly not dismissing MY opinion out of hand Ruvy. You seem to have forgotten that I have a vested interest in what happens in Israel and to Jews, seeing as my own family had to flee Germany about 60 years ago.

    Your argument that you have to live in Israel to have a valid perspective is just more special pleading on your part – and total bollocks to boot.

    You’re not a bad sort, Ruvy, but you’re so close to the fucking trees you can’t even tell you’re in a forest. Don’t tell me I don’t have the right to an opinion on the issue.

    And if you want to get into Spanish politics, you might want to look at what Franco did to Andalucia and where the resistance to his evil regime really started before lecturing me on the issue.

    Nice attempt at patronising me out of the debate though, a tactic you’ve tried before. Ain’t never gonna work, mind you…

  • Ruvy from Jerusalem

    Chris writes,

    “And if you want to get into Spanish politics, you might want to look at what Franco did to Andalucia and where the resistance to his evil regime really started before lecturing me on the issue.”

    I’d be the last fellow to lecture you about Spanish politics. You live there. And I’m sure you’ve heard all about the evils of the Falangists from folks in Andalucia. And more to the point, the fact that you live there gives you a valid perspective, as opposed to us spectators from elsewhere, just as my NOT having lived in the States for a number of years reduces the validity of my comments on events there. But I wasn’t talking about the evils of Franco’s regime, or even Spanish politics per se, I was talking about national identity suppressed and finally being reclaimed.

    I will say this, though. As evil as Franco was, and he was an evil man in many ways, Jews who fled to Spain from France under Franco’s rule during the 1940’s were not deported to be killed. No Jews were.

    If you have a vested interest in what happens to Jews, Chris, you might want to start trying to understand the world from their points of view – and those points of view do differ tremendously. You know the old joke, two Jews, three synagogues, the third being the one they both boycott. Jamie’s is closer to your worldview (he goes to Al Jazeera for his news – check out the other article he’s posted), and you’ve had a bellyfull of mine – but their are other points of view… You may not like nationalism or religion but it’s all part of the falafel mix.

  • http://alienboysworld.blogspot.com Christopher Rose

    Some fascinating history from from Wikipedia

    Marranos (1492-1858)
    The history of the Jews henceforth in Spain is that of the Maranos, whose numbers, as has been shown, had been increased by no less than 50,000 during the period of expulsion.

    As Spain got possession of the New World, the Maranos attempted to find a refuge from the Inquisition in both the East and the West Indies, where they often came in contact with relatives who had remained true to their faith, or had become reconverted in Holland or elsewhere.

    These formed business alliances with their relatives remaining in Spain, so that a large portion of the shipping and importing industry of that country fell into the hands of the Maranos and their Jewish relatives elsewhere.

    The wealth thus acquired was often sequestrated into the coffers of the Inquisition; but this treatment led to reprisals on the part of the Maranos abroad, and there can be no doubt that the decline of Spanish commerce in the seventeenth century was due in large measure to the activities of the Maranos of Holland, Italy, and England, who diverted trade from Spain to those countries.

    When Spain was at war with any of these countries Jewish intermediation was utilized to obtain knowledge of Spanish naval activity.

    In this indirect way the Maranos, who had been the occasion of the expulsion, became a nemesis to the Spanish kingdom. It is, however, incorrect to suppose, as is usually done, that the immediate results of the expulsion of the Jews from Spain were disastrous either to the commerce or to the power of the Iberian kingdom.

    So far from this being the case, Spain rose to its greatest height immediately after the expulsion of the Jews, the century succeeding that event culminating in the world-power of Philip II, who in 1580 was ruler of the New World, of the Spanish Netherlands, and of Portugal, as well as of Spain.

    The intellectual loss was perhaps more direct. A large number of Spanish poets and other Jewish writers and thinkers who traced their origin from the exile were lost to Spain, including men like Spinoza, De Silva, Manasseh b. Israel, the Disraelis, but not, as is often claimed, the Montefiores who were of Italian descent although in London they did belong to the Congregation of Spanish and Portuguese Jews.

    Modern times (1858-)

    When Spain got a new Constitution in 1868, Jews were permitted to tread once more upon Spanish soil, but the edict of expulsion was not repealed until 1968. Small numbers of Jews started to arrive in Spain in the 19th century, and synagogues were opened in Madrid and Barcelona.

    The Jews of Morocco, where the initial welcome had turned to oppression as centuries passed by, had welcomed the Spanish troops conquering Spanish Morocco as their liberators. Spanish historians started to take an interest in the Sephardim and their Spanish dialect.

    The government of Miguel Primo de Rivera decreed the right to Spanish citizenship of Sephardim.

    During World War II the neutrality of Francoist Spain, in spite of the rhetoric against the “Judaeo-Masonic conspiracy”, allowed 25,600 Jews to use the country as an escape route from the European theater of war, as long as they “passed through leaving no trace”.

    Furthermore, Spanish diplomats such as Ángel Sanz Briz and Giorgio Perlasca protected some 4,000 Jews and accepted 2,750 Jewish refugees from Hungary.

    Spain and Israel

    Francoist Spain did not establish diplomatic relations with the new state of Israel. Israel, in turn, opposed the admission of Spain into the United Nations as a friend of Nazi Germany. Spain cultivated the relations with Arab countries, but also assisted Moroccan and Egyptian Jews against pogroms.

    The later Israeli ambassador Shlomo Ben Ami still remembers the Spanish Legion escorting his family out of Tangiers towards Israeli ships anchored in Ceuta. During the Spanish transition to democracy, the recognition of Israel was one of the issues of modernization.

    The UCD governments were divided. They did not want to risk the Arab friendship (Canarian independentism could find support among them) and subjected the establishment to the beginning of a durable solution of the Israeli-Arab conflict.

    The discovery of ETA members receiving training in camps of Palestinian militias diminished the sympathy of the Spanish government towards their cause.

    After years of negotiations, the PSOE government of Felipe González established relations with Israel in 1986, denying links between relations and the admission of Spain into the European Economic Community. Spain tries to serve as a bridge between Israel and the Arabs as seen in the Madrid Conference of 1991.

    Modern Jewish community

    The Federación de Comunidades Israelitas de España is the central body for the Jews in Spain, and Jewish day schools exist in Barcelona, Madrid, and Málaga.

    There are around 14,000 Jews in Spain today. Melilla maintains an old community of Moroccan Jews. Some famous Spaniards of Jewish descent are the businesswomen Alicia and Esther Koplowitz and the politician Enrique Múgica Herzog.

  • http://heathlander.wordpress.com Jamie Stern-Weiner

    “Jamie’s is closer to your worldview (he goes to Al Jazeera for his news – check out the other article he’s posted)”

    I read from many sources – occasionally al-Jazeera is one of them (I don’t have time to read all the major news sources every day).

    It is interesting that you see this as a negative, particularly in the light of your comments in the very same post – “you might want to start trying to understand the world from their points of view”.

  • Ruvy from Jerusalem

    Chris,

    Very interesting. Nice to see that expelled “conversos” were able to damage Spain after being expelled from their homes there. I had not known that at all.

    You do know that the word, “marrano” means “pig” or “pork” in Spanish and that the word “judío” is virtually a curse – the word in modern Spanish for Jew being hebréo. The people called pigs by the good Catholics of Spain call themselves “conversos” (converts) or anusím (forced ones) and many are seeking out thir roots in Judaism at long last. There is a large converso community on the Balearic Islands, and lots of conversos live in Costa Rica and northwestern Mexico.

    It strikes me that there is lots more to be added to the wikipedia.com article…

  • Ruvy from Jerusalem

    Jamie, I do not davka see using Al Jazeera as a negative. I’ve used it myself on occasion in posting here. But it does have an anti-Israel, slant, to put it mildly.

  • troll

    in traditional societies throughout the Americas loss of renewal rituals is viewed as the grandest of tragedies with dire consequences for society and the world

    tribes that allowed the continuity to lapse generally fell apart

    and now they thank their stars for the new organizing principle…the ca$ino

    troll

  • Ruvy from Jerusalem

    Chris, Troll,

    As I’ve pointed out elsewhere, there are others who share my politial point of view without necessarily sharing my religious one…

    This story came in to my e-mail box today. There was no URL so I’m repeating the entore story verbatim here. Arutz Sheva is an independent news provider in Israel and the government has tried several times to shut it down.

    GSS Issues Stern Warning to Arutz Sheva’s Eran Sternberg
    19:32 Jun 20, ’06 / 24 Sivan 5766
    by Nissan Ratzlav-Katz

    Eran Sternberg, director of Arutz Sheva’s televised programming, was forcibly detained and questioned by General Security Services (GSS) on Tuesday. They warned him that he “had best be careful.”

    The GSS (Israel’s domestic intelligence agency) claimed that Sternberg engaged in violent incitement against officers of the law. Sternberg, who was the former spokesman for the Gaza Coast Regional Council before the uprooting of the Jewish communities of Gaza, vehemently denies the allegations.

    Sternberg, 31 and a father of four, currently lives in Yad Binyamin, between Beit Shemesh and Ashdod, together with his expelled neighbors from the former northern Gush Katif community of Ganei Tal.

    This morning (Tuesday) at 6:00 a.m., three state agents arrived at the Sternberg home and forcibly arrested Eran. He was released after 20 minutes of interrogation, at the end of which Sternberg said his interrogators told him that they do not have clear evidence of the alleged incitement. Nonetheless, according to Sternberg, the GSS agents concluded with a warning that he was “walking a bad path” and that he “had best be careful.”

    Speaking with Arutz Sheva after his release, Sternberg said, “I have not been involved in any sort of violence against the police and I will not be involved in anything related to violence. It is all lies and deception.” He also emphasized that whatever he may have said, it is nothing in comparison with public statements made by the Left.

    Member of Knesset Aryeh Eldad (National Union-NRP) said the police and GSS were abusing their authority, in order to silence government critics. It is absurd that law enforcement agencies were silencing Jewish dissent while “Arabs who praise the actions of terrorists walk around free,” Eldad said.

    The Movement for the Whole Land of Israel and representatives of the Nahalal Forum, grassroots movements of secular and labor Zionist activists, reacted with rage at what they called “the false arrest” of Eran Sternberg.

    Tzafrir Ronen, a spokesman for the Nahalal group, said:

    “Eran Sternberg is a public figure, a journalist, a television station manager – his words represent a clear, loud voice in favor of democracy. Olmert is the one violating democracy. We all remember how, after he and Ariel Sharon swore to respect the referendum among the Likud voters, he contemptuously trampled it and charged ahead to the cheers of the protective media. Who is the violator of the law and democracy? By what right does the GSS arrest a journalist? Did the GSS take the time to arrest Professor Sternhal, who called for the terrorists to murder settlers? Has the GSS become a completely political organization? Has it lost the understanding of its role?”

    Ronen compared Sternberg to the socialist pioneers of the early Zionist movement who founded kibbutzes such as Ein Harod, Degania, Hanita and Kinneret.

    “We, people of the labor settlement movement, the Nahalal Forum, stand behind [Sternberg] and we condemn the attempts to shut voices by the current regime of darkness in Israel,” Ronen declared, adding, “Instead of fighting against the enemies of Israel, against the 1,000 rockets that have landed on the towns surrounding Gaza and Sderot, the ‘hero’ Olmert and ‘Generalissimo’ Peretz choose to arrest the nation’s pioneers. You will not succeed in strangling pioneering and Zionist Israel….”

  • http://alienboysworld.blogspot.com Christopher Rose

    er, so what would be your point?

  • Ruvy from Jerusalem

    Chris,

    “…so what would be your point?”

    To quote a Brit I know who lives in Spain, “In summary, your own government are traitors,” but it’s not only me and a few other special believers understand the real issues.

  • Bliffle

    “Who Is To Blame For The Gaza Killings?” asks the title of this article.

    I can think of three candidates:

    1-terrorists who hide among the Gaza general population,

    2-Gazans who allow terrorists to hide among them, perhaps alibi for them, perhaps encourage them,

    3-soldiers who can’t easily separate Gazans from (non-uniformed guerilla) terrorists when they are receiving fire.

  • http://heathlander.wordpress.com Jamie Stern-Weiner

    so it has nothing to do with..

    4. The fact that Palestinians are still occupied and still stateless.

    ?

  • Bliffle

    “4. The fact that Palestinians are still occupied and still stateless.”

    The title asks “Who…?” not “What…?”.

  • http://heathlander.wordpress.com Jamie Stern-Weiner

    Oh yeh. Fine. So it has nothing to do with the occupiers, then?

  • troll

    blame it on G-d I say…as in “Did you see what God just did to us?” – Dr Gonzo

    troll

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Jamie, just wehn you thought it was safe to tuck this baby away, comes a story to blast apart the Arabs lies…

    Received in my in-box this morning:

    THE GAZA BEACH TRUTH

    1.How could it be that at the scene of the incident there was a cameraman‏ from the start to finish, and the quality of the pictures could have him win a‏ prize as photographer of the year‏?

    2. As a former soldier who has fired‏ artillery before I can say that if artillery fire was the cause of this‏ incident you would have seen a
    huge crater, but no picture of the incident‏ shows this‏.

    3. Pay attention to the crying of the girl, the people who‏ pick up the sheets, the arrival of the stretcher. The photographer had to be‏ just
    a few meters away to be able to get such high quality‏ pictures‏.

    4. There were claims of seven killed, and the pictures passed‏ around show the girl crying next to her father’s body. Where are the‏ other
    dead bodies? Did they leave the body of the father for the‏ cameraman to be able to take pictures of a girl crying next to it‏?

    5. That same girl that was crying right after the incident explains to all the‏ foreign news organizations professionally the whole timeline
    and information‏ about what happened during the incident on the beach without even crying‏. Would such a young girl who had just experienced
    a big trauma really be able‏ to do that‏?

    6. They show Ismail Hiniya (Hamas terrorist leader) visiting‏ injured in the hospital. For there to be seven deaths and dozens of injured‏ in
    such a open field, on a sandy field, you need a round with a‏ explosive head of at least 20kg – the Israeli navy warships on the coast of‏ Gaza
    do not have such rounds‏.

    7. In one of the pictures you can see‏ something that looks like a metal plate next to the girl, similar to such a‏ structure found in land
    mine‏s.

    8. Because the probability of IDF‏ artillery having been fired is almost zero, in order to kill a whole family‏ you would need to have a sniper kill each one, one by one. No Israeli soldier‏ would do so‏.

    9. The rounds used by the Israeli navy are 76mm and their‏ aim is targeted destruction of buildings. The effect of them on sand is‏ very
    small, because it is sandy and a wide open space‏.

    10. Add to all‏ of this the fact we are dealing with one of the most corrupted, dark and‏ lying regimes of the world that has a history of
    great information campaigns‏, and you will see that this whole incident was one great act by the PA yet‏ again‏.

  • http://heathlander.wordpress.com Jamie Stern-Weiner

    Well, firstly it would be nice to know who sent the e-mail (if it was sent by ‘Mothers Against South Syrian Arabs’ or whatever, it is unlikely to be objective – as highlighted by Point 10).

    Firstly, a lot of those points seem a bit stretched. No-one doubts that there were civilian deaths – are you trying to suggest that Hamas killed a Palestinian family for propaganda purposes? And that the family actually co-operated with it?
    That seems very unlikely, but not as unlikely as the Israeli story – that there was an explosion in the same area and at roughly the same time that the IDF was shelling, and that the one shell of the six that were fired that is ‘unaccounted for’ was not the one that hit the beach. Right.

    But what is more important is the principle. Firstly, that Israel and the international community feel it is acceptable to refuse a UN investigation (it would not be “worthwhile”).

    Secondly, it was not an isolated incident. There is often “collateral damage” caused by Israeli airstrikes. Just a few days after the Gaza incident there was another in which 10 Palestinian civilians were killed. The point is that according to international law, responding to a threat with disproportionate force in full knowledge that civilian casualties are likely constitutes a war crime. As such, when multiple civilians are murdered, a full, transparent and impartial investigation is needed.

  • Robin Bather

    It is interesting to see just what glib false arguements Ruvy and Appel can find to try and justify the occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem, the valleys to the east of Jerusalem, the Golan Heights, the Shebaa farms, and now again Gaza………….have I missed any?
    I don’t doubt that many Israelis are now having wet dreams about occupying Lebanon and Iran……and then, who knows?

    Irgun43 (one of the infamous Israeli terrorist organizations) is Appel’s email address. Appropriate for someone who hates all arabs and Palestinians with a hatred that leaves the Nazi leaders in the shade.
    And the Palestinian family that the Israel army wiped off the map recently? Oh, they don’t matter, they were just Palestinians after all.
    Can we really be surprised that racism and anti semitism exists when people like Luvy and Appel spew forth their evil hatred?

    PS
    I am sure there are good kind intelligent Israelis and New Jersey Jews, but they don’t blog here.

  • http://parodieslost.typepad.com mschannon

    Your name should be Blather, not Bather. Do a little reading of the history of the region before you spout off revealing your ignorance. Also, when you’re ready to give the U.S. back to the Native Americans, I’ll listen seriously to your pitiful whining about how the poor Palestinians are so mistreated.

    You do know, by the way, that from 1949 to 1967, the Arabs could have created a Palestinian state in Gaza and the West bank. Egypt controlled Gaza and Jordan controlled the West Bank. They kept the “Palestinians” in camps, refused to allow them to build towns, and treated them like slaves.

    But they didn’t because the Arabs hate the “Palestinians” and always have. Read about how Black September came about–I’ll bet you think it had something to do with Israel…you’d be wrong.

  • http://heathlander.wordpress.com Jamie Stern-Weiner

    “You do know, by the way, that from 1949 to 1967, the Arabs could have created a Palestinian state in Gaza and the West bank. Egypt controlled Gaza and Jordan controlled the West Bank. They kept the “Palestinians” in camps, refused to allow them to build towns, and treated them like slaves.”

    What’s your point? Yes, it’s true that the Palestinian refugees have suffered not just because of Israel, but also because of the willingness of the Arabic countries (with the partial exception of Jordan) to use them as political pawns to try and attack the state of Israel.

    Does this mean the Palestinians have not really suffered? No. Does it undermine their case in any way? No. What relevance, then, does it have here?

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Jamie,

    The relevance that Mark’s point has here is that you ask “who is to BLAME?” In assessing BLAME, you are assessing responsibility.

    So you can’t just shrug off the decisive actions of Arab states between 1949 and 1967 in terms of dealing with the Arab refugee problem.

    If you are unable to lay blame where it belongs, and you evidently are unable to, because a huge portion of that blame would fall on Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, and the Gulf States, then don’t ask the question.

    If you indeed wish to “l’hatHíl m’Hadásh” to start anew, to turn the bloody page and write upon a fresh slate with peace in mind, put away the musty UN resolutions, the bullshit Geneva Convention, the Oslo Death plan and all the other trash and start indeed from anew.

    If you are unwilling or unable to do this, then you are just another propagandist advocating death for Jews with a Jewish name – like Amira Hass, Uri Avneri, Noam Chomsky, Jeffrey Halper, Aliza Olmert, Dana Olmert, and a whole pack of other traitors. Your writings speak for you – eloquently – and put you in clearly in THAT camp.

  • malcontent

    “Also, when you’re ready to give the U.S. back to the Native Americans, I’ll listen seriously to your pitiful whining about how the poor Palestinians are so mistreated.”

    We the people of the united states are a civilized nation. Although we committed unspeakable atrocities against the native peoples of our land (just like you are doing with the people you have conquered) we eventually recognized the error of our ways, came to peace with them, and made them full citizens who are entitled to all rights of all other citizens.

    Israel is not a civilized nation. It did not make the people it conquered citizens like all other civilized nations did.

    Israel like ruvy says is hated by it’s neighbors as well as the rest of the world. Jews like ruvy believe that this is the way it should be, torah says so. The religious fanatics who run the country have to commit atrocities on a regular basis in order to be hated. It’s what their god told them to do.

    There will never be peace in the middle east. Too much bloodlust, too much pleasure in killing, too much god.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Malcontent,

    An old Jewish grandma, beset by an enemy mob trying to destroy her home once said, “better to get bad press than a beautiful obituary.”

    Golda Meir was very right in her words. They are just for you this Friday.

    Shabbat Shalom,
    Reuven

  • Bliffle

    It would simplify the situation in the mideast if we simply declared, once and for all, that there are no ‘innocent victims’ on either side. Then they could let fly at each other without let or hinder and resolve the problems (or not, but at least they’d quit their eternal annoying whining about innocent victims).

    After all, a very good case can be made that there are no innocent victims, even among the mothers who give birth to the oppressors/usurpers/terrorists, and the infant oppressors, etc., themselves.

    It might speed an end to this annoyance, once one side gains sufficient leverage to successfully exterminate the other. And we outsiders wouldn’t be constantly perplexed trying to weigh moral judgements (which we are poorly prepared by our own circumstance to judge) on the relative merits and ethics and moralities of the various baby killers.

    At least one side in the middle east agrees with me already.

  • http://heathlander.wordpress.com Jamie Stern-Weiner

    “The relevance that Mark’s point has here is that you ask “who is to BLAME?” In assessing BLAME, you are assessing responsibility.”

    I was under the impression, and still am, that Mark’s point was a reply to an earlier comment made by Robin Bather, which had little to do with blame at all.

    But anyway, I have no interest in shirking responsibility for the plight of Palestinians off anybody. All I am interested in is how to ensure the suffering of innocents and the injustice does not continue. That’s not to say history isn’t important – it is – just that blaming Arab countries for not giving a shit about the Palestinians does not excuse Israel for behaving the same.

    “If you are unwilling or unable to do this, then you are just another propagandist advocating death for Jews with a Jewish name – like Amira Hass, Uri Avneri, Noam Chomsky, Jeffrey Halper, Aliza Olmert, Dana Olmert, and a whole pack of other traitors. Your writings speak for you – eloquently – and put you in clearly in THAT camp.”

    Well firstly, that is obviously ridiculous. Disagreeing with Israeli policies is not advocating death for Jews, and I’m sure you must realise this. But anyway, I would gladly be in the ‘camp’ of Amira Hass and Noam Chomsky – both excellent, brave, compassionate and intelligent people of conscience.

  • http://parodieslost.typepad.com mschannon

    Jamie, what would you have Israel do? Other than Egypt and Jordan, there is not one country in the Mideast that hasn’t called and isn’t working for the destruction of the country and the slaughter of the Israelis.

    They give Gaza back, and the people elect a terrorist group, Hamas, which continues to fire rockets into Israel.

    They withdraw from southern Lebanon only to see the world allow the murderous scum Hezbollah, financed and controlled by Iran and Syria take control and launch an offensive against them.

    They had also agreed to give back most of the so-called West Bank–a stupid strategic move–but they did it.

    And the response? Iran calls for the destruction of Israel. Syria and Iran arm Hezbollah and Hamas.

    The so-called Palestinians are in the plight they’re in today for two reasons: Jordan and Egypt kept them that way from 1949-1967, and then the corrupt PLO thugs robbed them blind, taking money that could have been used to rebuild the land to line their own pockets.

    I’m so tired of of Arab apologists whining about the poor “Palestinians” who have no idea of the history of the region.

    And Malcontent, it’s not fair to take good drugs and not share them. By coincidence, we watched Little Big Man last night. Go rent it. Oh we’ve done wonders for the Native Americans…do you read anything or just opine? We gave them the worst land in the country, have treated them like second-class citizens, and have done nothing to remediate the damage we caused them.

    America civilized? By what standards? We’re becoming a nation of thugs, ideologues, haters, war mongers, and arrogant morons.

    Israel is not a civilized nation. It did not make the people it conquered citizens like all other civilized nations did. This is ignorant almost beyond belief. Arabs living in Israel fare a hell of a lot better than those living in their own territory.

    Oh, why do we even bother, Ruvy. People only want to spread their opinions like manure; there’s no interest in dialogue or learning or understanding. I hereby cease posting from this thread.

    In Jameson Veritas

  • http://heathlander.wordpress.com Jamie Stern-Weiner

    Well, cease posting you may, but I’m sure you don’t really think I’m not interested in learning or understanding. I never disagree with you without saying clearly exactly why, and I’m certainly open to changing my mind.

    Right. Firstly, you forgot Turkey, but anyway Israel is not fighting for its existence any more. Iran and Syria are not a threat to Israel, except to the extent that they stabilise the region and/or sponsor groups like Hizbullah. They are not even close to a threat to the existence of Israel.

    “They give Gaza back, and the people elect a terrorist group, Hamas, which continues to fire rockets into Israel.”

    Israel did not give Gaza back, they merely withdrew the few thousand settlers and troops and left Gaza to rot. I’ll leave it to Gideon Levy to expand:

    “Israel left Gaza only partially, and in a distorted manner. The disengagement plan, which was labeled with fancy titles like “partition” and “an end to the occupation,” did result in the dismantling of settlements and the Israel Defense Forces’ departure from Gaza, but it did almost nothing to change the living conditions for the residents of the Strip. Gaza is still a prison and its inhabitants are still doomed to live in poverty and oppression. Israel closes them off from the sea, the air and land, except for a limited safety valve at the Rafah crossing. They cannot visit their relatives in the West Bank or look for work in Israel, upon which the Gazan economy has been dependent for some 40 years. Sometimes goods can be transported, sometimes not. Gaza has no chance of escaping its poverty under these conditions. Nobody will invest in it, nobody can develop it, nobody can feel free in it. Israel left the cage, threw away the keys and left the residents to their bitter fate.”

    You said: “They had also agreed to give back most of the so-called West Bank–a stupid strategic move–but they did it.”

    I don’t know why you keep saying ‘give back’ as it Israel’s doing the Palestinians some sort of favour. Under international law, the Palestinians are entitled to 100% of the West Bank and Gaza. Therefore, a more accurate statement would be to say that the Palestinians agreed to compromise on the issue of borders. However, the Israelis have never offered a serious peace settlement, and so one has never been agreed.

    “The so-called Palestinians are in the plight they’re in today for two reasons: Jordan and Egypt kept them that way from 1949-1967, and then the corrupt PLO thugs robbed them blind, taking money that could have been used to rebuild the land to line their own pockets.”

    Yes, it is true that the Palestinians have been treated outrageously not just by Israel. So what? Israel is the country that is perpetuating the longest illegal occupation in the world today. Blaming others doesn’t reduce Israel’s responsibility.

%d bloggers like this: