'Futile Ritual' Seen in U.S. Veto on Gaza Attack

The U.S. veto of a U.N. Security Council resolution condemning the Israeli attack that killed 20 Palestinian civilians last week has incensed Middle East commentators, including some Israelis.

"This resolution does not display an evenhanded characterization of the recent events in Gaza," said U.N. Ambassador John Bolton on Saturday. A spokesman for Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas replied that the veto "will encourage Israel to continue its escalation against the Palestinian people."

The Palestinian victims, including seven children and four women, died in an artillery barrage on the town of Beit Hanoun. They lived in an apartment building a few hundred yards away from an area where Palestinian militants had fired homemade rockets at Israel 12 hours earlier. Israel said the killings were unintentional results of a "technical failure" and expressed regrets.

Within hours of the veto, Arab foreign ministers meeting in Cairo said they would seek to send funds for the rebuilding of Beit Hanoun, despite a Western-led ban on financial aid to the Hamas-led Palestinian government, according to the BBC.

The Beit Hanoun tragedy has become yet another chapter in what the Agence France Presse called Washington's "troubled Middle East policy."

While most countries condemned the attacks, "the American position is different," wrote the London-based Al Hayat (in Arabic). "Condoleezza Rice expressed, in a phone conversation, her 'regrets' to the Palestinian president, but this didn't prevent the US representative in the UN from opposing the veto in the Security Council...It's clear that there is a problem in the White House's political thought. How does the White House keep silent in front of the massacre of women and children by the Israeli forces and accuses Islam of being 'fascist'?"

Al Rai, the Jordanian daily, expressed similar disillusionment at the U.S. veto.

"The American veto against the resolution condemning the Israeli massacre in Beit Hanoun is disappointing. It is disappointing for all those who wished that the Bush administration, after its defeat in the recent elections, will readjust its policy," Al Rai's editors said (in Arabic).

"The American veto can be justified neither morally nor politically. It is all the more unjustified that the initiators of the resolution accepted all the remarks and amendments proposed by the member states. They even added an article condemning the launching of the Palestinian rockets on Israel. But all this didn't convince Washington nor its delegate in the UN, John Bolton."

'Futile Rituals'

For some commentators, the scenario was all too familiar.

"We have seen the same futile rituals repeat and reproduce themselves ad nauseam," wrote Khalid Amayreh in the pro-Hamas Palestine Information Center Web site.

"Israel commits a massacre, the Arab League or a given Arab country asks for an urgent session of the UN Security Council, behind-the-curtain bargaining takes place, and then the US scuttles the resolution, with its veto power."

"And then everyone goes back to the previous mode, awaiting the next massacre, to be followed by the next American veto..."

Palestinian blogger Leila Haddad, writing for Israel's Ynet News, said, "I am sick of hearing the 'we regrets' and 'sorries' and the empty promises of investigations that never materialize and whose only purpose is to exonerate the accused."

Akiva Eldar of Haaretz also noted a familiarity in last week's events: "Every time an errant bomb that's launched to execute a Palestinian 'wanted man' kills people who are obviously 'innocent bystanders,' mainly women and children, there is first an expression of heartfelt regret...the defense minister, known as 'the man of peace,' immediately appoints a special investigator to examine the 'mishap' and to ascertain that a 'tragedy' of this kind will not recur. Until the next time," Eldar wrote.

"In other words, don't judge us according to the harsh consequences of our actions. What counts is our good intentions."

YNet's Alex Fishman wrote that Israeli "hearts have hardened" over the Palestinian civilian death toll.

"Is it really necessary? Does it really serve our national interests? We deserve to know whether such occurrences simply boil down to bad luck, or whether this bad luck is built into the system."

The editors of the conservative Jerusalem Post were among the few who did not blame the Israeli government.

"The international concern and anger at these deaths is understandable," they wrote. "But the question must be asked: Why did the Security Council not meet to condemn the firing of hundreds of Kassam missiles aimed deliberately to kill Israeli civilians?"

"Though the international community approaches this matter with no small amount of cynicism, it is clear to all who is responsible for the fighting in Gaza. It remains the case today, as it did after Israel withdrew completely from Gaza in August 2005, that all the Palestinians need to do to end Israel's military operations is to stop attacking Israel," the editors wrote. "It is equally clear that the killing of civilians that Israel has mistakenly done and apologized for, the Palestinian leadership has deliberately initiated and proudly promises to continue in the future."

A 'Green Light' for Violence

Around the Middle East, most commentators say the U.S. veto will encourage more Israeli attacks on Palestinian civilians. Editors of the Arab News in Saudi Arabia called the veto a "green light" for more violence. "It means Israel literally gets away with murder."

The editors of the Gulf News asked, "Can any country in the world (other than Israel) get away with this type of behaviour? No. Israel is unique. With the backing and blind support of the world's sole imperialistic power, Israel goes it alone as the country being allowed to carry out such crimes without being checked (even at the UN level). The strength and solidness of Israel's official lobby in Washington DC, the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) provides the main explanation behind the Jewish state's strength and control."

The Khaleej Times, an English-language daily based in Dubai, scorned Israel's expressions of regret. "Of course, Ehud Olmert 'regrets' the killing of women and children. And of course, he will do it again -- and again without batting an eye."

"And why should Israel do otherwise? Who is going to stop its brave soldiers? After all, Israel has got away with murder for the past half a century. And it will continue to get away in the time to come. Unless the so-called international community stirs out of its cocoon of indifference to stop Israel's murderous campaign in the Occupied Territories against a totally defenceless people."

***

Tunisian journalist Hmida Ben Romdhane contributed to this post. Romdhane is the editor-in-chief of the international desk of the Tunisian daily newspaper "La Presse." He is with washingtonpost.com for several weeks as part of a two-month fellowship sponsored by the U.S. Department of State and the International Research and Exchanges Board.

By Jefferson Morley |  November 14, 2006; 9:00 AM ET  | Category:  Mideast
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Comments

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Do people understand that we cannot trumpet about human rights violations in other areas of the world if we do not hold our own allies accountable? Allies who are firing the munitions we gave them.
"It was a targeting mistake." No the mistake was to fire at all. If the gun hadn't fired, there would have been no mistake.

Posted by: Thom | November 14, 2006 09:54 AM

Should have read "targeting error" at both ends of the second paragraph.

Posted by: Thom | November 14, 2006 09:55 AM

Let's see what happens now the the DEMOCRATS are in control! Errrr, oh wait...

PfP

Posted by: Patriot-for-Peace | November 14, 2006 10:22 AM

"all the Palestinians need to do to end Israel's military operations is to stop attacking Israel"

Says it all...
And maybe also recognize Israel, trade with Israel, learn from the agricultural, technological, and political parts of Israel.
Just imagine if Israel acted like it's accusors... kick most of the Arabs/Muslims/Christians out of the country with no compensation and only the possessions they can carry.
Ad infinitim...

Posted by: the rest of the story | November 14, 2006 10:27 AM

And if the world is so concerned about the loss of "innocent" lives, perhaps it's not too late to intervene in Darfur, where the body count is significantly higher.
Or doesn't that count because it's Muslims doing the killing?

Posted by: the rest of the story | November 14, 2006 10:31 AM

Rest of the story: "Just imagine if Israel acted like it's accusors... kick most of the Arabs/Muslims/Christians out of the country with no compensation and only the possessions they can carry."

We would be where we are now, because they did do that!

Posted by: Thom | November 14, 2006 10:35 AM

the rest of the story | November 14, 2006 10:27 AM: That is exactly what Israel did. In 1948, the non-Jews were kicked out with only what they could carry. And since 1967, whenever Israel decides to plant a 'settlement' in the occupied territories, the residents are kicked out without notice. Is it any wonder that there is resistance? And since we finance it, is it any wonder why we are viewed as hypocrites?

Posted by: AM, Vienna, VA | November 14, 2006 10:48 AM

not to insult the blogosphere, but why is this story not in the rest of the newspaper? WP, you're not doing your job very well when addiction to the internet is a "front" page headline on washingtonpost.com, and legitimate international news is relegated to a blog discussion.

Posted by: seriously? | November 14, 2006 10:51 AM

The world isn't interest in Darfur, because it's harder to generate the "us v. them" mentality that the Arab governments have managed to perpetuate in their self-serving hold on power.

Posted by: DC | November 14, 2006 10:56 AM

"The world isn't interest in Darfur, because it's harder to generate the "us v. them" mentality that the Arab governments have managed to perpetuate in their self-serving hold on power."

The Arabs are the ones doing this? What are you smoking? (and where can I find some)
Try listening to any Israeli rhetoric, and tell me who is using us-vs-them

Posted by: | November 14, 2006 11:07 AM

Israel has long been a leech on the American soul...and certainly it's treasury. It isn't as tough the US has stood successfully with Israel against the world. We have lost our place in the world,
and in roster of decency, come to the breaking point under this president. Did he salute on November 11th, did the blood drip from his hands...American and Palestinian and Lebanese and Iraqui, for example? Has everyone read the Erlanger two day series in the Times? Framed perfectly, sickening.

Posted by: I Fred | November 14, 2006 11:18 AM

Our constant support for Israel is turning into an idiosyncrasy. Why are we doing that, what are the benefits for the US, what is our risk if we tell Israel that they are on their own? Olmert, yesterday, putting his arms around Bush in the White House is disgusting - who is in charge here? Another 2 years of Bush - by then the Middle East is a disaster: Iraq in ruins, Gaza murdered, Lebanon destroyed, Syria getting stronger, Iran in full control. Really a mess thanks to Bush.

One other related issue, this morning in the NYTimes Blogs could be written about "Evangelicals Supporting Israel in Gods Foreign Policy" and how this affected the recent elections here. Within an our some 80 highly critical views of mixing politics and religion and the insanities of todays christian religion in the USA. The TIMES quickly removed these blogs. Why?!

Posted by: Fred - New York | November 14, 2006 11:25 AM

Here is some good background that explains how we got to where we are regarding Israeli policy: http://www.lrb.co.uk/v28/n06/mear01_.html

Posted by: Mike | November 14, 2006 11:33 AM

The repeated rhetorical question Why They Hate Us? has an accurate answer in that customary Veto. The existing taboo of any criticism of policies and violent acts by Israel results in resentment exploited by terrorist organizations to recruit suicide bombers. Why we don't see the lethal repercussion of such blind umbrella of unconditional protection?

Posted by: j.moreno | November 14, 2006 11:38 AM

Unbearable as it is to listen to Olmert and AIRPAC-- et.al. screaming that we must immediatel attack Iran...and demonize Syria, and Lebanon, etc., put off Palestine,it serves a mighty purpose. Even as we prepare to join the civilized world in diplomacy, even the idiotic religious right, in part, now sees the Israeli game...how we got into Iraq. How the US has been dragged around by the nose. A good backlash should be expected, not that the election wasn't just that.

Posted by: Kaaren | November 14, 2006 11:58 AM

Not Israel haters but truth speakers Gwen. Please stick to the debate - why is the US backing a murderous country which is only a leech on the soul of America and has totally corrupted America's foreign policy. Read history and heed the warnings of America's founding fathers who told us not to get entangled in foreign alliances lest we lose our away - alas a stupid president has done just that.

Posted by: Rob | November 14, 2006 12:05 PM

"Us v. Them" has been mentioned a few times. Both sides have an us v. them mentality, and both sides have done horrible things to the other, especially to civilians. It is clearly impossible to leave it to the parties at hand to get along. The hatred is so deep now, it is at every level of both societies.

The US should recognize this hatred on BOTH sides, and step from one side it has called just and good, and see both sides for what they are: human, both good & bad. Only then can we work towards a peaceful solution.

Of course, that would require nuance, intellect, and heart. Three things this administration lacks.

Posted by: DC | November 14, 2006 12:09 PM

Wow, name calling Gwen & Thomas? Impressive.

Posted by: DC | November 14, 2006 12:11 PM

Leave Israel to Israelis and see how they deal with it. That should settle this issue once and for all. No more vetos, no more stupidity!

Posted by: Steely | November 14, 2006 12:12 PM

HERE'S something to contemplate. The Israeli lobbying group, AIRPAC, has been lobbying hard for Congresswoman Jane Harmon to be made
chairman of the House Intelligence Comittee.
Now, why would that be? What else? Good God.

Posted by: Connie contemplate | November 14, 2006 12:14 PM

PfP the democrats are not yet in control, and this kind of thing has nothing to do with Congress or who has the balance of power in Washington. This is totally on the White House.
And to Gwen and your comment about Israel haters. Personally I think Israel is just as Bob Dylan penned, The Neighborhood Bully. They slaughter civilians on a regular basis. I think they're bordering on being a terrorist state and I think Ariel Sharon was one of the biggest butchers in world history. I consider him the same as any other terrorist. I think Israel is a despicable nation, despite the fact that george bush has embraced their foreign policy in that Israel and the US are allowed to attack any country or entity they wish to, and everyone else had better fall in line or they could be next. Unless you're a country that can stand up to us, then we'll quiver and quake when you bark. I'll admit to hating Israel. I think it's a bully terrorist nation. I'm on the Palestinian's side. And I personally hope Iran tells the US and Israel to go screw themselves and develop all of the weapons they want to. I'm not an expert in these matters, so I don't understand how the US can say it's okay for Israel to have nuclear weapons but Iran or any other country can't. If I were in Palestine I would do exactly what they do in standing up to the terrorist/bully. If I were in Iran I would build nuclear weapons to protect my country from Israel. Screw Israel, they're butchers and terrorists.

Posted by: Glen | November 14, 2006 12:57 PM

"The world isn't interest in Darfur, because it's harder to generate the "us v. them" mentality that the Arab governments have managed to perpetuate in their self-serving hold on power."

Good Point. If these Islamo-fascists are so concerned about human rights, how come there's no rush to the security council about Darfur where the death toll is in the hundreds of thousands if not millions?

Oh, I know - because this isn't really about human rights. Its about Muslims once again expressing their petty prejudices. After all, Muslims can murder Christians in Bali, Madrid,London, New York, Philipines, Beslan; Jews in Israel; Hindus in the Kashmir; Other Muslims in Iraq, Afghanistan, Egypt, etc. And of course that's not a crime. Its only a crime if a non-Muslim dares to strike back.

Posted by: APS | November 14, 2006 01:11 PM

I often read the Israeli paper Haaretz on line, and many Israeli writers in that paper are horrified by this event. I think everyone should be horrified by this action.
I wrote to my elected representatives protesting the veto, and warning that it put a target on the back of our soldiers in the Middle East. But, of course, they have little concern for our soldiers and send them into harms way with too few of them or ill equiped for a long term operations.
Except for the last Rabin government most of them resemble the Bush Administration and have about the same level of competence and morality.
As in every country, there are good people in Israel, but, there is a tendency to reach for the gun to solve international problems. I think they really could have peace if they relied more on diplomacy.

Posted by: P. J. Casey | November 14, 2006 01:31 PM

Not that I'm going to change any minds, but:
Why are there more non-Jews in Israel than in all of the Arab/Muslim countries combined?
If Israel is so terrible, why do the didn't exist before 1967 so called Palestinians want to work in Israel?
Why wasn't there a Palestinian state formed pre-1967 when Egypt and Jordan controlled the territory?
It was the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem and other Arab leaders who ordered the civilians to get out of the way of their 5 invading armies in 1948 so that they could finish Hitler's work and push the Jews into the sea. This was their answer to a partition plan, after the Jews had legally acquired land at inflated prices, rather than live in peace, in their own country, and that would have left Israel smaller and more vunerable than ever.
The Arabs have not changed unsuccessful tactics: During the "War of Attrition" Egypt and Syria fired indiscriminatly into civilian areas, hezbolla does the same from Lebanon, and now the "Palestinians" do it from Gaza and the West Bank. Where is the comdenation? Where is the comdendation of the Muslim terrorist suicide bombers killing people in restaurants, movie theaters, resorts, weddings, and on buses?

Why do "they" fear to sitting down, talking, and keeping their word?

And shall we blame the 10 year Iran-Iraq war on Israel? Or maybe the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait? The lack of democracy in the Arab/Muslim world? The lack of religious or gender freedom? The Taliban in Afghanistan?
Who do you trust more with the "bomb?" Israel or Iran? Who would use it defensively and who to "wipe a blot off the map"?

Take your heads out of your b***s and stop repeating your lies.

Posted by: the rest of the story | November 14, 2006 01:39 PM

A very interesting dicsussion. First, Israel and Palestine get so much more attention than Darfur because it is a key to the whole region. And Darfur gets its fair share of media coverage too, there are several conflicts which don't.

Second, you are not an Israel hater if you speak critically of it's policies. Heck, it's not even antisemitism to not recognize the state of Israel, an often heard accusation, at least in Norway.

To my point: The unconditional support of the strong side in this deadlocked conflict creates hate and frustration, and makes US insistence on human rights and an end to violence in other parts of the world carry much less weight. If you want to change leadership in Iran, give the palestinians protection. Ahmedinejad's raison d'etre will vanish.

Posted by: Johan, Norway | November 14, 2006 01:44 PM

I need emotional and mental help because I have a different opinion than you do? The United States isn't the world's authority. We're not in charge of the world, only America. Point out any factual errors, if you just disagree I don't think that qualifies me for needing mental assistance. Let's see. Was Ariel Sharon a civilian slaughtering butcher? In my opinion he was. Is Iran a sovereign nation? They certainly are. Is Israel a terrorist nation? It is in my opinion. They regularly bomb neighborhoods and slaughter civilians, but you think that's okay?
I think anyone who tells someone else that they need emotional and mental assistance because they disagree is pretty much a moron.
I hate Israel. I'm allowed to. I'm allowed to think, say and do anything I want within the confines of the law. Unlike Israel and the US who scoff at any law they consider inconvenient.
I stand by my comments. Israel is a terrorist nation that is hated by much of the world for good reason. If they end up getting nuked, I'd figure they pretty much had it coming.

Posted by: glen | November 14, 2006 01:45 PM

I need emotional and mental help because I have a different opinion than you do? The United States isn't the world's authority. We're not in charge of the world, only America. Point out any factual errors, if you just disagree I don't think that qualifies me for needing mental assistance. Let's see. Was Ariel Sharon a civilian slaughtering butcher? In my opinion he was. Is Iran a sovereign nation? They certainly are. Is Israel a terrorist nation? It is in my opinion. They regularly bomb neighborhoods and slaughter civilians, but you think that's okay?
I think anyone who tells someone else that they need emotional and mental assistance because they disagree is pretty much a moron.
I hate Israel. I'm allowed to. I'm allowed to think, say and do anything I want within the confines of the law. Unlike Israel and the US who scoff at any law they consider inconvenient.
I stand by my comments. Israel is a terrorist nation that is hated by much of the world for good reason. If they end up getting nuked, I'd figure they pretty much had it coming.

Posted by: glen | November 14, 2006 01:47 PM

U.S. policy on the Arab-Israeli conflict: if Arabs kill Israelis, that earns swift condemnation from Washington, but when Israel kills Arabs, Washington thinks that's just fine. That was essentially the U.S. position on Israel's invasion of Lebanon (and its killing of 10 times as many Lebanese civilians as died in Israel) and, once again, it's the U.S. position on Israel's latest killings of Arabs in the Gaza Strip.
This blatantly one-sided foreign policy -- which holds that Israel is always right, and Arabs are always wrong -- explains why the U.S., and Americans in general, are so detested throughout the Arab and Muslim world. It also explains why Arabs and Muslims view the entire West with such disdain.
So U.S. foreign policy is not only putting the U.S. in great danger; it is also exposing the rest of us, throughout the entire Western world, to great danger. All the more reason for those of us in Western Europe to end our historic alliance with Washington and forge an independent, credible path.

Posted by: Giovanni | November 14, 2006 01:52 PM

Fascinating reading. Lots of "Israel should" or "should not be there", "they did" or "didn't start killing Arabs" and many more profound opinions. The bottom line is that Israel was created by force by the Western World because of WW2 guilt-feelings. Right now it excists because of USA help - when that stops they are gone. That is the $64 question. Bush being so pro-Olmert yesterday means nothing - see what happened to Rumsfeld last week. My guess is that Israel is on the way out.

Posted by: Chuck @ San Diego | November 14, 2006 01:55 PM

The Jerusalem Post's point is valid, however an American veto in this instance is a demonstration that our diplomacy is wholly reactive.

No American interest was served by identifying ourselves with what was obviously a careless application of firepower in a populated area. Even if the argument that Palestinian rocket attacks provoke Israeli responses is valid in the abstract, in the real world the appearance given here is that the United States government responds reflexively to avoid actions likely to embarrass the Israeli government no matter what the circumstances. The impression thus presented that American policy is being effectively made in a foreign capitol is neither useful nor especially dignified, however much applause it wins our UN ambassador with organized groups supporting his renomination.

With respect to this incident abstention would have been a perfectly acceptable step to take. I'm sorry it wasn't.

Posted by: Zathras | November 14, 2006 01:59 PM

Was the Resolution one sided? Of course it was but, rather than veto it we should have immediately introduced one of our own.

Posted by: gregdn | November 14, 2006 02:58 PM

What is a crime for Adolf, Hermann, Wilhelm, Hans, Fritz and Martin,is also a crime for David, Moshe, Golda, Yitzhak, Ariel and Ehud, as well as for George, Donald, Paul, Colin, Condoleeza and Charlie. No futile ritual amounting to a permanent disgrace will ever change that.

Posted by: Robert Rose | November 14, 2006 03:26 PM

Constantly observed facts:

1. The US obeys any instructions from Israel. "What Lola wants, Lola gets."

2. Bush was Sharon's b1tch, now passed on to Olmert.

3. The interests of the American people are not first in this situation.

4. Justification: "They may be genocidal war criminals, but they are our genocidal war criminals."

5. A lesson well learned: Palestinians are to our strong ally what they were to their earlier tormentors, "trash and subhumanity."

Posted by: BobK | November 14, 2006 03:36 PM

The U.S. veto will make it easier for some countries to veto resolutions on Iran.

Posted by: Jean-Paul | November 14, 2006 04:09 PM


Any history book worth anything will tell you that the creation of Israel had nothing to do with WWII guilt feelings. The wheels of a Zionist state had been in motion well before WWII even started.

Zionists buying Palestinian land back then at inflated prices really says it all, doesn't it?

Posted by: Abe | November 14, 2006 04:11 PM

Wow all the lunatics are out tonight. When the world stops applying a different standard to Israel then the US will stop having to veto resolutions.

12 palestinians get killed--emergency UN meeting.

100,000 people in darfur killed--yawn

Posted by: Dave | November 14, 2006 04:29 PM

I haven't been able to get the image of John Bolton's arm literally shooting straight up in the air like a rocket in his overwhelming need to veto any condemnation of the killing of those children and their families.
And I can't get the images of the childrens' broken, limp bodies out of my head either.

No Glen, you are not mad. You are sane.

This was a terrorist act because it is terrorizing a whole people. And the US is supporting this terrorism because it is supporting Israel.

Bombing Lebanon to smithereens was also a terrorist act. The US through Condi Rice actively lengthened the time the carpet bombing continued. Wiping out the entire south end of Lebanon achieved nothing for either Israel or the US, and brought terror, death, destruction and ruin to their whole country. This is terrorism.

We need to look at ourselves as a country and decide who we want to be.

Posted by: Marilyn | November 14, 2006 05:03 PM

U.N. Pledges $77M for Darfur Forces
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RE: All those who are shifting this debate away from Israel, to Darfur - this happened just yesterday


By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Published: November 13, 2006
Filed at 10:48 p.m. ET

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) -- The United Nations said Monday it has pledged about $77 million in personnel and equipment to help the overwhelmed African Union force in Darfur as Sudan blocks the world body from sending its own peacekeepers to the war-torn region.

************

Now can we get back to slagging Israel please?

Posted by: Abe | November 14, 2006 05:18 PM

Bottom line: The mighty U.S. is Israel's puppet. The American Israel Political Affairs Committee (AIPAC) lobby controls the U.S. Congress. Period...

Posted by: David | November 14, 2006 05:28 PM

Thanks to Dave for that scholarly and "Accurate" insight revealing how "12 Palestinians get killed-UN emergency meeting, 100k people killed in Darfur-yawn." Killing any human being for political ideology or a distorted religious belief is wrong anyway you look at it. What makes you believe that people of conscience would not speak out and act against such crimes against humanity,regardless of religious beliefs, Dave? Do you think that being a Christian or a Jew or a Muslim gives one some kind of monopoly on morality? Secondly, I challenge you to live in Gaza for 6 months under Zionist occupation, and see how benevolent the Israeis are to you! You will see in excruciating detail where our $3 billion in annual US taxpayer monies go, and probably be the first to express their outrage against the longest running military occupation in the history of armed conflict.

Posted by: Syed | November 14, 2006 05:41 PM

And for those who brand us antisemites, consider this: In 1944 Warsaw, the jews initiated a doomed uprising against their Nazi tormenters. This is now considered an act of heroism and the actions comprised thereof are enshrined in the Holocaust museum right here in DC. Those who dared resist the Nazis with whatever crude weapons they possessed are now lauded as heroes of a great resistence movement, yet those who dare resist another illegal occupation of their homeland are branded terrorists merely for defending their honor with equally crude weapons and for living on that very soil for generations, prior to the arrival of European jewish refugees in 1948. And Glen, it's OK to be furious with how the AIPAC lobby steals $3 billion of US taxpayer monies and sends it to Tel Aviv in order to steal more and more land through either their colonization enterprise or outright property confiscation and demolition of other's homes. I would be mad as hell too! As a human being: regardless of whether one is a Christian, Jew or a Muslim, how are such things human values?? Is oppression of another people, in either Darfur or Palestine a human value?

Posted by: Syed | November 14, 2006 06:02 PM

Does anyone have a memory longer than 6 years? Support of Israel is not something that Bush just suddenly discovered. The US has provided strong, some might say one-sided, support to Israel for years regardless of who the president was. Was the veto wrong? Probably. Would it have changed anything? Probably not. The UN is, has been and will continue to be impotent - a useless organization. Peace and a homeland for Palistinians will happen just as soon as Palistinians start acting like a people that deserve a country. In fact, they could have it virtually overnight and all they would need to do is 2 simple things:

1) Acknowledge blowing up innocent people on buses, restaurants, etc is morally wrong and stop doing it.
2) Acknowledge and codify Israel's right to exist.

That's it. But how serious can you take a people that on one hand elects a party created to bring about the destruction of Israel and then on the other hand says it wants peace with Israel? If memory serves, it was Arafat that walked away from the peace table as soon as the main course was served. The Palistinians have caused their own problems and deserve what they get.

Posted by: Dave | November 14, 2006 06:50 PM

What makes this whole thing asinine is that Israel admits that the firing of the rockets from the grove (the supposed target) took place 12 hours before. What firer of rockets sticks around for 12 hours waiting for a response from Israel?

The point is--as has been made previously--that the gun should never have been fired in the first place. Whoever ordered the launching of that bomb should have known better, and he or she should be forced to take responsibility. For the first time, I agree with the NRA when they say, "don't blame the gun, blame the guy who fired it."

When and if American elections become publicly funded, our obscene genuflecting toward Israel will end. You can bet on it. Hopefully, it will happen sooner.

Posted by: Leigh | November 14, 2006 07:22 PM

Jerusalem Post: "The international concern and anger at these deaths is understandable, but the question must be asked: Why did the Security Council not meet to condemn the firing of hundreds of Kassam missiles aimed deliberately to kill Israeli civilians?"

Er...maybe because the feeble Qassem campaign hasn't killed a single Israeli this year.

Posted by: OD | November 14, 2006 08:11 PM

it's too bad america is doing israel's every bidding, losing her sovereignity and influence in the world and getting nothing for it but grief.

it's sad israel doesn't know her acts of terrorising civilians have reduced her, in the eyes of the world, to the despicable enemies she fights.

anyway, while you guys get bogged down in that middle east quicksand, asia is slowly taking the driver's seat. i foresee that in my lifetime.

Posted by: Ching Chee Choong, Malaysia | November 14, 2006 09:05 PM

"When and if American elections become publicly funded, our obscene genuflecting toward Israel will end. You can bet on it. Hopefully, it will happen sooner."

Posted by: Leigh | November 14, 2006 07:22 PM

I wish that were true, Leigh. Unfortunately, even without the money to dangle in front of hungry political candidates, AIPAC and its ilk will still have lots of power--the power to mobilize voters.

There are large concentrations of Jewish voters in key swing states, e.g., Florida. And, there are tens of millions of deluded Christian evangelicals ("the nuts," as the White House calls them when they're not listening) who think the US has a biblical obligation to defend Israel no matter what the cost.

The situation is, in some ways, analogous to Germany's relationship with Austria before WWI. Germany was the strongest nation-state in Europe. Austria was a rickety empire in terminal decline. Primarily for cultural reasons, but to some extent for geopolitical reasons, Germany provided Austria with security guarantees.

Before he died, Bismarck was alleged to have said: "We have tethered ourselves to a corpse." Indeed.

Austria's reckless declaration of war against Serbia after the assassination of Franz Ferdinand caused the chain reaction with which we are now all familiar. Suddenly, Germany was fighting an ultimately disasterous war on multiple fronts, in large part because of the vanity, insecurity, and aggressiveness of Austria...which in large part acted that way because it knew it could count on Germany's security guarantees.

If the United States continues to allow itself to be mindlessly tethered to Israel, don't be surprised if we someday suffer Germany's fate.

Posted by: LWP | November 14, 2006 09:09 PM

Hello LWP. AIPAC's stock has been badly damaged in Washington military/intelligence circles by Larry Franklin's espionage conviction.

Posted by: OD | November 14, 2006 10:34 PM

AIPAC and "deluded Christian evangelicals" are not the reason there is support for Israel in the US. It has to do with the fact that Israel, unlike the Palestinians, does not fund, support and endorse putting bombs on peoples backs and sending them into markets to blow people up. Most educated people realize that that really is not an appropriate response to any grievence.

Posted by: Dave! | November 14, 2006 10:52 PM

Jews and arabs have been killing each other for thousands of years.And to think they are distant cousins.I say leave them to destroy each other with their hate.They deserve each other.One is not better than the other,they hate equally.They could care less if they bring the unclean world into a major conflict,because they both believe they have gods blessing to kill in his name.As for us favoring israel,well zionism has a trillion dollars set aside to make sure jewish prophesy is fulfilled.And if you want action on dafor,hire aipac to do their bidding.Or find an old parchement that states that moses dug a well there.

Posted by: gentile | November 14, 2006 11:18 PM

No dave they support israel to remove and kill palestinians.Because jews use lazer guided bombs,does not account for the 3000 palestinian civillians killed in the last year or so.Does it matter to you dave how a person is murdered,is their moral murder dave.Oh ya when you are doing it to get back the promised land.

Posted by: gentile | November 14, 2006 11:37 PM

Dave - "12 palestinians get killed--emergency UN meeting.

100,000 people in darfur killed--yawn"

Well, that's what it looks like at face value. I support any country's right to protect itself. However, this isn't a matter of just 12 Palestinians getting killed. It's the State of Israel blowing up a building and murdering women and children. It is what it is.

This is not the first time Israel has done this. And had they shown ANY compassion, there would not have been a resolution. They expressed "regret" and pretty much said that they'll do it again. This has happened over and over and over again.

The fact that Israel controls the majority of banking institutions and governments is also scary in the sense that one would wonder how far they would go to achieve their goals.

The point is, Israel is allowed to blow up homes in Palestine to protect their interests, but what defense does Palestine has against Israeli incursions?

Nevertheless, I do agree that Palestine won't change its fortune until they completely stop all attacks on Israel. But this is a separate issue that needs to be looked at independently. Palestine DOES need to recognize Israel's right to exist.

Posted by: KJ | November 15, 2006 12:02 AM

Hi OD,

I suspect you're right with respect to military/intelligence circles. Unfortunately, elected officials are the primary problem.

The 410-8 vote by the House in favor of a resolution supporting Israel's actions in Lebanon over the summer speaks volumes about AIPAC's (and similar organizations) continued ability to stifle reasoned consideration of the facts. Add an evangelical President to the mix, and it's an explosive combination of manipulation, intimidation, and stupidity.

Dave,

Of course you're right that Americans are rightly horrified by Palestinian (and other Arab) suicide bombers. They see such images all the time and have been conditioned to believe this behavior takes place in some unexplainable vacuum.

What they don't often see and hear is the other side of the story--i.e, why it is that young Palestinians are willing to blow themselves up in crowded markets.

And, any major American public official who would dare to talk at length about that other side of the story--Israel's bad behavior--would quickly be villified by AIPAC and the like.

You should read the Mearsheimer/Walt article on the Israel Lobby at the London Review of Books web site.

Though I wasn't impressed by all of their arguments, their central thesis seems sound to me: Despite the fact that Israel is not a strategic asset to the US, the US provides Israel with obscene amounts of military, economic, and diplomatic aid (e.g., the veto that is the subject of this thread), which is ultimately to the detriment of US interests.

I've seen several critiques of the Mearsheimer/Walt piece. Some are just childish hatchet jobs screaming "anti-Semites". Others do a good job of challenging minor assertions in the piece. I have yet to see a single critique, though, that has even tried to challenge the central thesis.

In order to do so, one would have to be able to demonstrate that Israel is a strategic asset to the US, and is such a valuable strategic asset that it deserves the unprecedented levels of support it receives.

Absent that, I'll stand by my assertion that, contrary to its own interests, America supports Israel because of AIPAC (and its ilk) and "the nuts."

Posted by: LWP | November 15, 2006 12:34 AM

Yes it is true that Israel has bigger/better weapons than the Palestinians. And yes, using those weapons in its defense sometimes kills innocent people. The difference is that Israel's intent is to take out people like Hamas bomb makers or people firing rockets into Israel. The Palestinian intent is to blow up as many innocent Israelis as possible. Notice they do not target Israeli soldiers - just kids on a bus. Israel did not say that they would target innocent children. They said they would continue to take out the people bent on destroying them. That is the difference.

So how should the Palestinians fight back? Maybe they could try something radical like a "Gandhi" non-violent approach. Maybe they could talk to the Russians/Iranians/etc and get better weapons. Or maybe they should continue doing what they are doing and go down in history having their sole claim to fame being inventing the suicide bomber.

Posted by: Dave! | November 15, 2006 12:38 AM

Having now read Mearsheimer/Walt piece (thanks LWP), I'm not sure that i have the energy to completely critique it but i'll offer this. I would argue that Israel IS a vital strategic asset as well as the underdog of the region. It's a democracy - not a perfect one, but one nonetheless (much like the US). The US prefers democracies, benevolent dictators, evil dictators in that order. As we all know, the US can't establish democracies everywhere so we make friends with dictators when its in our best interest. Is Israel our best ally? No. Everyone can't be your best friend, can they? Shared terrorist threat? The terrorist organisations that threaten Israel DO threaten the United States - these actions don't happen in a vaccume. If they prove to be somewhat effective, they will be utilized elsewhere. When people start to justify and celebrate suicide bombers, it makes it easier for others to do it. Osama bin Laden was inspired because of our cooperation with Saudi Arabia (specifically the AF base there), not Israel. Incidentally, the Saudis lobby pretty good here.

As for the David and Goliath analogy, there are still countries, political parties, heads of state that still want to wipe Israel off the map. And the recent Israeli debacle in Lebanon shows that despite all the military support they receive, they just don't have that big of an advantage.

If AIPAC is the reason for the US support, i'll need to amend my previous post to include the suggestion that in order to solve all their problems, the Palestinians need to do a better job with their Lobby. Until then, i'll take the Vetos.

Posted by: Dave! | November 15, 2006 01:46 AM

"We must expel Arabs and take their places."
- David Ben Gurion, 1937, Ben Gurion and the Palestine Arabs, Oxford University Press, 1985.

"We must use terror, assassination, intimidation, land confiscation, and the cutting of all social services to rid the Galilee of its Arab population."
- David Ben-Gurion, May 1948, to the General Staff. From Ben-Gurion, A Biography, by Michael Ben-Zohar, Delacorte, New York 1978.

"Jewish villages were built in the place of Arab villages. You do not even know the names of these Arab villages, and I do not blame you because geography books no longer exist. Not only do the books not exist, the Arab villages are not there either. Nahlal arose in the place of Mahlul; Kibbutz Gvat in the place of Jibta; Kibbutz Sarid in the place of Huneifis; and Kefar Yehushua in the place of Tal al-Shuman. There is not a single place built in this country that did not have a former Arab population."
- David Ben Gurion, quoted in The Jewish Paradox, by Nahum Goldmann, Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1978, p. 99.

"It is the duty of Israeli leaders to explain to public opinion, clearly and courageously, a certain number of facts that are forgotten with time. The first of these is that there is no Zionism, colonialization, or Jewish State without the eviction of the Arabs and the expropriation of their lands."
- Ariel Sharon, Israeli Foreign Minister, addressing a meeting of militants from the extreme right-wing Tsomet Party, Agence France Presse, November 15, 1998.

"Everybody has to move, run and grab as many (Palestinian) hilltops as they can to enlarge the (Jewish) settlements because everything we take now will stay ours...Everything we don't grab will go to them."
- Ariel Sharon, Israeli Foreign Minister, addressing a meeting of the Tsomet Party, Agence France Presse, Nov. 15, 1998.

Posted by: Sensi | November 15, 2006 06:00 AM

I think the self-named post from 'Gentile' says it all. There is nothing Jews can do to prevent this type of hatred. Israel was not 'created' in the 1940s; it was the third time it had to be rebuilt after it was destroyed. Jewish history pre-dates that of most other cultures in the world. The illness is in those who 'want to wipe other off the face of the map'. Any act of defence by israel is labeled as terrorism if any innocent is killed. Therefore the logic of these anti-israel arguments is 'die quietly please'. Mo wonder earth is off the interstella tourist map. What exactly does it say about human beings when they speak but nonsence and evil comes from their mouth and lips. It is not Israel that will get what they deserve, it is humanity. And one thing: Sovereignty is receiprocal, any state that challenges the sovereignty of another, loose their own; that is the law. So Iran just ceased to exist...go go go marines.

Posted by: zened | November 15, 2006 06:25 AM

the rest of the story

"all the Palestinians need to do to end Israel's military operations is to stop attacking Israel"

All the Israel' have to do is to stop stealing the Palestinians land.

Posted by: Ben | November 15, 2006 08:22 AM

Steely


You are right on the money!

Posted by: Tom | November 15, 2006 08:31 AM

Hi Glen,

love to read your honest opinion.

It's not difficult to understand where you come from if you are not following blindly the Jew's and their supporters.

And what about Israel? Time is not on their side. There will be a time when the US will drop to support them. Let's see where their arrogance will get them then.

If you want to know now? Just check their history.

Posted by: Bob | November 15, 2006 08:54 AM

Jean-Paul


Very smart! Good observation.

Posted by: | November 15, 2006 08:59 AM

Dave

I guess In your opinion killing people with an f14 or a tank or a bulldozer is an appropriate response to any grievance. But killing people with "bombs on peoples backs" is an inappropriate response.

I would think that any educated people should realize either action is not an appropriate response to any grievance.

Posted by: Joe | November 15, 2006 09:32 AM

Joe,

It's the "intent" that is important. Killing of innocent people by suicide bomber is an inappropriate response because the innocent people are the targets. In a conflict, both soldiers and innocent people die. Always have and always will. When your intent is to kill those that are actually fighting you and those nearby are killed, the "collateral damage" is certainly not a good thing. But the intent is kill those that are fighting you. That is substantially different than the intent of a suicide bomber. Now is it ALWAYS the case that Israel just targets people with military significance or those engaged in battle? Probably not - but it is safe to say that it is not their normal strategy (unlike Palestinian suicide bombers).

Posted by: Dave! | November 15, 2006 10:34 AM

As long as the zionists contiue to hijack each and every goverment in the free world,all will fall.Zionists care little about anything but a jewish majority for jews only.It is scarry to think that in private clubs all around the world zionists are meeting.And they are discussing ways to get money from the goyim to prop up their racist state.How many times has an american jewish politician raved about the melting pot called America,then went home and sent money to israel for a jewish majority.I have always believed it would be zionists that bring the world to a nother major war.Israel is a racist state.If america followed the policies of israel the goverment would be blown up.For centuries jews have been killing palestinians at will,while we support it.They are not a light onto the world,they are a cancer built on greed and deciet,they are an eye for an eye people.But if they can get two eyes for one that is better.But to think there moral compass is guided by the belief god has commanded them to kill,so their is a jewish majority.Scarry stuff those zionists,clever and deciet is there trade mark.And spin is there specialty.Now if they can just buy enough press to get there peace full message out.

Posted by: goyim | November 15, 2006 02:09 PM

dave

bla bla bla bla.....

Posted by: Joe | November 15, 2006 03:06 PM

Take heart, those of you who value the security and future of the US more than you do the racist dreams of Israeli Settlers in the West Bank and Jerusalem;

1) Jimmy Carter will soon release a book which compares Israel to South Africas Apartheid system.

2) James Baker is already suggesting very strongly that the only way to peace in Iraq
and for the stability of the entire middle east is by securing a viable peace (read the end of the settlements and occupation) once and for all for the Palestinians. Furthermore, he feels it is absolutely necessary to (rather than bombing them back into the stone age) engage the help of Iran and Syria in securing Iraq, which will only happen as the result of forcing Israel to the negotiating table on the Palestinians and the return of the Golan Heights.

3)The UN has released a report that more or less insinuates the same thing.

4) Walt and Mearshiemers book ( The Israel Lobby) will be published soon.

5) The FBI is investigating AIPAC on new charges of trying to influence key cabinet posts in the senate, and the trials of the two senior AIPAC officials charged with stealing US intelligence regarding Iran are going to face trial soon.

6) Just in time for Carters Book release, the Israeli Knesset has accepted Avigdor Lieberman and his racist faction into the government. This is a man who makes PW Botha look like a Pacifist with Deep concerns for human rights. Hopefully, he will provide the narrative to cast the entire Israeli settlement movement in the light it deserves to be seen in by the average US citizen; as racist ultranationalist nutjobs who have dragged this nation into an avoidable war on terror by using corruption and greed in US politics to their advantage. Netanyahu also seems determined to create the same image by spouting all of this BS about it being 1938 and Iran being nazi germany. Rather, I think this is actually 2006 and Israel is South Africa but with 200 Nukes and alot of US politicians in their pockets).

These and many other developments seem to indicate that a perfect storm is brewing that may finally spell the end of the ultranationalsit Israeli chokehold on US politics.

So, RIP Israeli Settler Movement, and hopefully, there will be happier days ahead for the US, the rest of the world, and Israel as well. Look at South Africa, they got over their social diseases without the destruction of the country or any mass killings. We held out to the almost bloody end in supporting South Africa as well, but finally relented to the type of pressure that is currently amassing against the Israeli settler movement. In fact I think its safe to say that as bad as it was, South Africas Policies never created any where near as much damage for the US as Israels settler movement has (read 9/11 and the entire war on terror). I am sure their days are numbered.


J

Posted by: J | November 15, 2006 05:24 PM

The suicide bomb was not invented by Arabs, but by the Tamil Tigers

Posted by: Tania | November 15, 2006 07:28 PM

J

You are so right!

Posted by: | November 15, 2006 08:31 PM

FYI - While the Tamil Tigers may have perfected it...From Wikipedia
The first modern suicide bombing occurred in Iran in 1980 when 13-year old Hossein Fahmideh detonated himself as he ran up to an Iraqi tank at a key point in a battle of the Iran-Iraq War. Lebanon, during its civil war, saw a modern suicide bombing: the Islamic Dawa Party's car bombing of the Iraqi embassy in Beirut, in December 1981. Hezbollah's bombing of the U.S. embassy in April 1983 and attack on United States Marine and French barracks in October 1983 brought suicide bombings international attention. Other parties to the civil war were quick to adopt the tactic, and by 1999 factions such as Hezbollah, the Amal Movement, the Ba'ath Party, and the Syrian Social Nationalist Party had carried out around 50 suicide bombings between them.

Posted by: Dave! | November 15, 2006 10:47 PM

If Israel was as bad as you all are trying to make out: It would use some of its neutron bombs to kill all those who refuse to accept its right to exist. Then it would capture the oil fields of the arab gulf to prevent any sanctions from the west or security council. Then jewish scientists would release a genetic disease that would kill everyone who does not share their old DNA (yes they have this so watch out). Then they would declare a jewish holy war against those cultures that have committed mass murder against them in the past (although there is no concept of holy war for jews - just muslims and christians), which is pretty much all countries except maybe Thailand. Remember you owe many of your important inventions and ideas to the Jews who taught them to you. When you discover how much has been stolen from the Jews, perhaps you might start to appreciate how unhappy they are at your racist hate. Christians and Muslims have both stolen the majority of Jewish philosophy and ethics for their religions and cultures. Many of the anti-semitic 'facts' quoted above are incorrect. All that is true is that many of you have been driven by your own illness to spew hate across these forums. You are the ones who are sick, both socially and mentally. This level of hatred is not excused by lack of education. Why dont you all go over and have a drink with Mel Gibson; he might listen to you. You haters do not deserve the benefits of the jewish culture you live in, if you insult their right to exist. Without jews america would not have developed many leading edge technologies, including the ability to win WW2 against the Japanese using - that is right - the jewish technology of the atom. None of you could have figured it out without the jews. Kill them ? You will die soon after. Let them live? They will provide you with more essential technology. For a human to call for the destruction on an entire people shows the lack of develoment in that person's mind. There are a lot of under-developed minds on this blog. Most of you are past education and have found yourselves practising the devil worship of race-hate. I bet some of you even dress up in black uniforms in the quiet of your homes.

Posted by: Zened | November 16, 2006 05:39 AM

The lack of education in th U.S. is astonishing.
No wonder the democrats won.
I'll wager 98% of the people on this blog have no clue of history.
Just wait for the democratic onslaught to begin. Hold on to your wallets and hide your guns, they will be coming after both.

Posted by: Mark | November 16, 2006 07:21 AM

Tania:

Actually, the Tamil Tigers learned the game after it had been invented.

The first of the breed, a horse-cart bomb, exploded in 1920s Wall Street (meant by an anarchist for JP Morgan, missed JP but not bystanders).

The improved kind, an explosive packed truck, was introduced by Stern Gang freedom-fighters into a British police station in Haifa, 1947.

The practice was then courteously extended to Palestinians civilians. Related perhaps to the "inflated land prices" mentioned by an earlier poster.


Through the postings in this blog and many others, a not-so-unsubtle trend may be discerned: some Americans have been knocked conscious, and are freeing themselves from unconditional submission to their criminal mini-me masters.

Posted by: PhilV | November 16, 2006 09:56 AM

After reading Zened's post (pls fix the Enter key)"

I, for one, welcome our new master race overlords.


Posted by: HS | November 16, 2006 10:03 AM

Zened,

You're right to lament the racists posts here. Ironically, of course, yours is one of them.

Here's another irony for you. Of course it's true that some of America's finest scientists have been Jewish. You seem to think, though, that they've all been Jewish. In fact, many were ex-Nazis. Though I'm not an expert on this issue, I'd wager the US (and the former Soviet Union) owes as much to Nazi scientists as to Jewish scientists for the development of our space and nuclear programs.

Mark,

Yes, I too find it challenging to read through the posts that evidence a clear lack of education. For example, people who spell "democrats" as such, when what they mean is "Democrats."

Posted by: LWP | November 16, 2006 01:50 PM

Zened & Mark

I agree, we are stupid!

We are sending Israel billions of our tax $s. every year plus guns and political support.

Bla bla bla.....we are not "for the destruction on an entire people", but sure, we are sick and tired of your arrogance.

No more stupidity! No more billions etc. Stand on your own feet!

Now, you can go on with your bla bla bla about black uniforms and our lack of our education.

Posted by: Joe | November 16, 2006 02:09 PM

Zened,

No normal person here is advocating the end of a people or anything like that. Goyim's remarks are of course not those of a normal person.

I wonder what you might have to say about my earlier post and the points that I made.

Do you advocate the settler movement in Israel. If so, what do you propose to do with the Palestinians?

Regarding Jewish acheivments in science, they are numerous, yet no normal scientist would ever suggest that anyone could ever invent or discover anything (even Einstein) without standing on the shoulders of many other researchers, who are, by the way not all jewish.

Indeed, stand up for your people and your country, but not at the expense of others please. It makes you sound racist and it only hurts your case.

J

Posted by: J | November 16, 2006 07:14 PM

J,

While no normal person HERE is advocating the end of a people, the elected officials governing the Palestinians are.

Posted by: Dave! | November 16, 2006 08:20 PM

Dave!,

If Israel was doing to your family and country men what they have been doing to the Palestinians for the last 40 years, I suspect you might not be so keen on offering them peace either.

Until the spread of the settlements and occupation of Palestinian lands are finally put to an end, how can people in Palestine recognize Israel? Which borders of Israel should they recognize, the ones defined by the land being stolen at this very moment or the ones that will occur as the result of the land being stolen tommorow? Israel itself does not even recognize its own borders in a way that is consistent with the view of any other country in the world, including the US, so why should the Palestinians be forced to make this ridiculus concession?

Keep in mind, that at any time that the palestinians have honored a cease fire, (put aside the damage that they try to do to Israel) Israel has continued to do the damage they do to the palestinians in the form of the occupation and consistent growth of the settlements. Israel has withheld the human rights of millions of people for more than 40 years now in a concerted effort to ethnically cleanse as much land as possible. This predictably leads to violence.

Have you ever pondered what would happen if someone suggested that we engage in the same policies here that the Isrealis do? That is to say, make the decision that the US is a country that god gave to Caucasion Christians? Try to put all other minorities whom we3 disapprove of in large prison camps while trying to arrange sending them all back to their countries of origin so that we can maintain a perpetual white christian majority?

That is the policy of the KKK. Thank god they were never able to enlist the assistance of Congress and the US army in order to try to make their dreams a reality in this country.

From that perspective, it still baffles me when people refer to the special relationship and similarities the US and Israel have. We Jail KKK members who try to do that sort of thing, and Israel backs them with an Army and all of the resources of their government.

Avigodr Lieberman even has a plan to trade the lands in Israel that have high Israeli/Arab populations to the palestinians for areas in the west bank in order to further ethnically cleanse Israel.

Honestly, Dave, you should try to learn a little more about the situation and the treatment that the Palestinians have been subjected to for the last 40 years right up until this very moment. You might start demanding that Israel begin to comport itself in a manner consistent with the human and civil rights policies that US ( and most civilized countries in the world )demand rather than complaining about the rather tepid and pathetic response that the Palestinians have been able to muster agaisnt them in response to such attrocities over the last 40 years.

J

Posted by: J | November 17, 2006 03:43 AM

Zened,
The Isralis couldn't even stop the Hezbollah..even with the weapons and time given them by the US. And let them drop one anything from the sky. See how many nuclear capable countries you can name who'd love an excuse to do Israel. (Maybe they'd send little leaflets first telling them to get out...like Israel did in Lebanon before the savage bombing) OR, since you like the idea bombing so much, you'd consider that using neutrons on Israel would leave the infrastructure in
intact...and the Palestininans finally could return to their homes. If there's been any improvement, it could be called RENT.
DO be careful what bombings you wish for. Don't wish for any.

Posted by: Irritated | November 17, 2006 12:06 PM

Some of the postings above are truly sad and unhappy. Who would like being part of a group or country so universally and constantly hated? Not I. It is centuries old and prevasive. Can anyone argue that? But GOOD GOD, don't the hated ever wonder why? And realize that it is growing because of Israel's actions? Everyone else isn't wrong, or if they are, they won't change. Why not seek to live in the world as other civilized nations do.

Posted by: Unhappy, sorry | November 17, 2006 12:20 PM

J,
I'm not saying that the Palestinians don't have legitimate issues. I'm not saying that they haven't been wronged. I'm saying that their response to this is wrong. Continuing your KKK analogy, the response of the "minorities that the KKK disapproves of" would be to randomly start blowing up innocent people at markets, on buses, etc. That response would not and should not garner them much support, no matter how just their cause.

Recognizing Israel's right to exist is completely different than agreeing to a map. Recognizing everyone's right to exist in the region has to do with the fundamental acceptance of the rights of everyone involved. Agreeing to a map is really a detail that can only be figured out afterwards. I would argue that, tepid and pathetic as their response may (or may not) be, the Palestinians have been shooting themselves in the foot. I just can't muster up a lot of sympathy for a people that embraces suicide bombing and the annihilation of a country. Which is why i suggest that after 40 years, maybe they should think about changing tactics since their current response does not seem to be working.

Israel has acknowledged the right of a Palestinian state. They have been willing to trade land for peace (unsuccessfully). They have closed a number (yes not all that everyone would like) of the settlements. And for their part, the Palestinians have sporadically suspended suicide bombing, elected Hamas who is committed to the destruction of Israel, and walked away from a peace settlement because the two sides basically could not agree on how to divide up part of one city. When you dismiss and excuse suicide bombings as just some "tepid response", you start to legitimize it instead of condemning it for the evil, brutal and morally reprehensible act that it is.

Posted by: Dave! | November 17, 2006 02:41 PM

One keeps hearing that Israel MUST be recognized. Why? With their short bloody history and stated goals of land grab and ethnic cleansing.
And one keeps hearing Israel has a right to exist. Question the same, why? UN said so? Israel routinely flouts UN resolutions and forms.

Posted by: unanswered | November 17, 2006 03:10 PM

Dave,

The Millions of people who live in Isarael have very nice lives and even those that are the worst off live reasonably comfortably, more or less like America.

If you know anything about the occupied territories, you know that the daily lives of people there is a constant struggle of poverty and hoplessness, enforced by israeli control of almost every aspect of their lives. They live under occupation with few rights. This has persisted for more than 40 years.

So, if your making judgements about who is more barbaric, I find it difficult to believe that you suggest that although Israel has killed 3 times as many palestinians compared to Israelis killed in suicide bombings, with a grossly larger margin of innocent women and children included in that number, while at the same time ruining the lives of virtually millions of people across whole generations, forcing them to live in sqalor and isolation, that the palestinians METHOD of retaliation is somehow so unacceptable that it makes up for the fact that the Israeli settlement movement and it's backer in the US are the sole cause of the entire conflict. In other words, when you end the occupationa and withdraw the settlers from the west bank, the overwhelming majority of the violence will end.


Furthermore, you somehow accept out of hand the massive fire storm of Islamic terror from other countries that has been inspired by Israel's barbarity, which has now finally been pointed at the US for our ongoing complicity in this disaster that is called the settlements.

I, however, think it is incumbent upon us to force Israel to remove all these settlements and then help the Palestinians get a viable nation going with as much aid as we can muster.

Why must this barbarity from the settlement movement be tolerated? It does nothing to Protect Isreal OR the US, although people act as though the sky would fall on us if we got tough with Israel and forced it to abandon something that is akin to the slavery that we fought a civil war in this country to end. We certainly are going to have to clean house in the Congress in this country if we ever want to see a quick end to this madness.

It turns my stomach to see Nancy Pelosi and Howard Dean act as though each move they make in Congress is a carefully planned part of a symphony of morality, and then watch them turn around and get out the white hoods and the burning crosses when it comes to the Palestinians, simply because it helps line their pockets.

As I suggested to you earlier, learn more about whom it is your defending and what it is they are actually doing. They are uttlery morally reprehensible.

J

Posted by: J | November 17, 2006 07:40 PM

Dave,

I forgot to add that in order to recogize another nation, it's borders must absolutely be set, especially if they are a neighboring country. How long do you suppose we would continue to "recognize" canada in the form that they insist on being recogzied if they began to insist that all of the bordering states in the US belonged to them and took military action to effect that claim? There would be a dispute because a great deal of what they would like us to recognize as Canada would in fact be a large part of the US. Therefore, we would not "recognize" them if that was even really at issue in such a situation.

In fact, as opposed to talking about recognition, we would bomb the hell out of them until they gave us back our land without a further quarrel. Unfortunately for the Palestinians, they don't have stealth bombers. So they send in suicide Bombers, which is a "tepid and pathetic" respose in comparison, but one which they will probably continue to employ until the US finally does the right thing and reigns in it's socially ill, special friend, Israel.

J

Posted by: J | November 17, 2006 07:55 PM

J,

The Palestinians had their homeland. All Arafat had to do was sign on the dotted line in early 2001. Here is what they could have had:
- an independent Palestinian state covering 95 percent of the West Bank and all of Gaza.
- Palestinian control over Haram al-Sharif
They would have had to give up their demand for a right of return for Palestinian refugees -- and their descendants -- who fled or were driven out of Israel in 1948. Not an easy deal for either side but a real chance for a Palestine. Mind you, during these peace talks, numerous bombs went off in Israel injuring and killing many.

I think that your are still not getting it with the right to exist thing. First off, the US has already fought, bought and decided its borders with its neighbors. If the US had map issues with Canada, we would argue, get mad, go to the International Boundary Commission (http://www.internationalboundarycommission.org/ibcpg2.htm) where the US and Canada have already resolved numerous border issues. I would imagine that things would get very heated. But despite the disagreement over the border, the US would still acknowledge that there should be a Canada. They may not know exactly what it would look like, but they wouldn't claim that Canada had no right to exist. And i feel safe in saying that neither side would be sending suicide bombers out.

Maps and borders constantly change. Countries change due to many things including wars and the UN. To the post that questioned why Israel had to be recognized, given their "short bloody history", you seem to be missing several dozen volumes from your history library. Israel has been around in that area since at least 1000 BC. In those 3000+ years, they have experienced their share of oppression, barbarism and the like. People seem to think that the Palestinians are the only people in recent memory to go through some hardship. Over the last 40 years, I think that many people, including, just to name a few, those in Darfur, Rwanda, Bosnia, Iraq, Cambodia, Uganda, Chile and probably most of eastern Europe under the communists would have been willing to trade places with the Palestinians. In fact, there might even be people living in New Orleans that would be open to a trade. So spare me the sob stories about the poor Palestinians - they do it to themselves and have been for over 40 years.

Posted by: Dave! | November 18, 2006 02:14 AM

Dave
Really, what does one say to your posts. I'm not complaining, it isn't as though anyone believes any of your stuff.

Posted by: blather | November 18, 2006 11:20 AM

Blather - therein lies the problem...

Posted by: Dave! | November 18, 2006 04:38 PM

Another view, esp. inlight of the assasination, by non-Jewish, non-American, non-Israeli subversives/terrorists of the Lebanese Christian Cabinet Minister.
Who do you trust? Me, I trust when someone says they are going to destroy Israel, that they mean what they say, and I'd do anything in my power to stop them.

"A vacuum, however, cannot be filled by simply repackaging the policies that failed to fill it, namely the Quartet's road map and Israel's unilateral withdrawal track. Both these policies have become stalled, or worse, because they ignore the root cause of the problem. Both pretend that the obstacle to peace is the lack of a Palestinian state, when in reality the obstacle to such a state - and to Arab-Israeli peace - is the Arab refusal to accept Israel's right to exist."

"It has been obvious at least since 2000, when Ehud Barak offered Yasser Arafat a state on a silver platter, that the Palestinians could have a state over almost all of the West Bank and all of Gaza whenever they wanted. The fight is not over the remaining narrow strips of land but over something much more fundamental, whether the Palestinians and the rest of the Arab world are willing to give up their desire to destroy Israel itself."

Posted by: the rest of the story | November 21, 2006 09:40 AM

the rest of the story,

So Israel lays waste to Lebanon for the second time, destabilizing the once US friendly government and, because they ultimatly los the war, have empowered hezbollah and it's supporters. This leads to an assassination of a leader opposed to hezbollahs goals. This could have been perpetrated by Hezbollah, by free agents, or even by Israel itself. But who needlessly created the atmospere where this act could have such a resounding impact? Israel.

If you want to keep score regarding who seems to threaten whom more, then lets see.....

Lebanon; utterly destroyed twice by Israel, occupied about 7 different times now by israel, many thousands of lebanese prisoners in Israel,Thousands of innocent cilvilians killed. Cluster bombs and land mines planted by Israel leaving huge portions of the country uninhabitiable. constant fly overs and cross border manuevers into Lebanon.

Israel; currently, two soldiers held prisoner. in comparison, very minor damage
from rocket fire, (fired only during Isreals latest attack upon Lebanon), a few hundred dead soldiers and only minor civilian casualties.

It seems that Israel is, if judged by it's actions, committed to the Destruction of Lebanon, not the other way around.

J

Posted by: J | November 23, 2006 04:32 AM

A segment of Dave's "argument"

"They would have had to give up their demand for a right of return for Palestinian refugees -- and their descendants -- who fled or were driven out of Israel in 1948. Not an easy deal for either side but a real chance for a
Palestine"

So Dave why do Jew's from around the world who have had nothing to do with the real estate known as israel have the right to return there after 1500 years or so but people who physically lived on that land 60 years ago and their children and grandchildren have no right of return?

As I said on another blog if Sammy Davis Jr. were still alive he could have more rights in israel than someone who's family has farmed the land for generation's....fairness and equality in israeli society is a myth.


Posted by: Angus | November 26, 2006 06:20 AM

And as for this crock I don't know where to begin....I suppose it's the mentality of an abuser to the abused to say ..hey ther are people worse off than you so be grateful.....

Dave's partial post.

"People seem to think that the Palestinians are the only people in recent memory to go through some hardship. Over the last 40 years, I think that many people, including, just to name a few, those in Darfur, Rwanda, Bosnia, Iraq, Cambodia, Uganda, Chile and probably most of eastern Europe under the communists would have been willing to trade places with the Palestinians. In fact, there might even be people living in New Orleans that would be open to a trade. So spare me the sob stories about the poor Palestinians - they do it to themselves and have been for over 40 years."

Interesting how often israelis and their supporters use the "short skirt" defense to justify their crimes....

Posted by: Angus | November 26, 2006 06:27 AM

"So Dave why do Jew's from around the world who have had nothing to do with the real estate known as israel have the right to return there after 1500 years or so but people who physically lived on that land 60 years ago and their children and grandchildren have no right of return?"

Well, because the land is critically important to both Arabs and Jews (and Christians for that matter) from a religious perspective and they should really be able to live together and share it so that each might be able enjoy its historic past. Politically, it has to be a two state solution.

Also, to say that up until 60 years ago there have been NO Jews there for 1500 years is quite a bit of an exaggeration, to say the least. The Jews have been forced out of the area by numerous peoples over the last several thousand years. Because of this they have no claim? This arguement goes back at least 3000 years - so naturally it should be settled based on how it was 60 years ago?

And as far as the "short skirt" defense goes, the arguments have implied that the Palestinians are the most mistreated group in the world in the last 60 years. That is simply not the case or even close to it (as the numerous examples pointed out). That's not to say that it excuses Israeli wrongs, because it doesn't. But invalid comparisons (South African apartheid) need to be pointed out.

Posted by: Dave! | November 27, 2006 12:35 PM

Dave, allow me to state a few facts about the Israeli-Palesinian situation that might, just possibly, enlighten you...

1. Israel has a right to exist, because she is home to five million people who desire to live in their own, independent and secure state.

2. Israel does NOT have a right to exist, simply because three thousand or so years ago some prophet proclaimed to the Jews' religious forebears that 'God' had promised the land to them.

3. Israel's borders are fixed and internationally recognized as being the 1967-armistice line, known more commonly as the Green Line.

4. Israel has been in control of the West Bank for 39 years now.

5. She has never moved to annex the West Bank, which would have given the Palestinians Israeli citizenship and would have dramatically altered her demographic makeup.

6. Instead, she has been slowly but steadily colonizing the most fertile areas of the West Bank, expropriating privately-owned land, refusing to sell or rent state-owned lands.

7. Israel refuses to issue building permits to Palestinians in East Jerusalem. When they do build new houses, she retaliates by demolishing those constructions and transfering title to Jews.

8. Suicide bombings are a relatively recent development, at least as a Palestinian tactic. Do you really believe that there is a difference between a Palestinian with a bomb on his back and an Israeli soldier with a gun in his hands? Both target civilians. As a matter of fact, ever since the South African War of 1899-1902 (more commonly known as the Anglo-Boer War) civilians have been the main target in ALL wars.

9. The total Arab population currently living within the confines of Israel & Palestine makes up about 40% of the two countries' combined population. The rest are Jews. Israel's Green Line borders give her almost 80% of the two countries' total area.

10. Once may be an accident, twice may be mistake, but a hundred 'accidental' massacres of innocent women and children? When one has access to the most sophisticated arsenal of weaponry in the world?

11. Israel spends 75 cents on every Jewish family, child, community and business for every 25 cents that she spends on her own Arab citizens.

12. Way back in 1980 the PLO (you know, Arafat's Palestinian Liberation Organization) had altered its charter to remove any reference to the destruction of Israel.

13. More recently the Arab League issued a Saudi-led offer to establish full normal relations with Israel, in return for the establishment of a Palestinian state in the 1967-borders.

14. Israel has signed peace treaties with Jordan and Egypt. Both are Arab countries. Not a single one of their citizens had engaged in acts of violence against Israel since those treaties were signed. Israel's flag flies above Israeli embassies in both countries' capitals.

15. During the Palestinian Intifadah thousands of Palestinian civilians had been killed. In comparison, less than a thousand Israeli civilians had been killed.

Dave, I can go on and on and on. The only complaint that the West (and Israel) seems to have against the Palestinians is that they commit suicide bombings against Israeli civilians. The list of Arab complaints against Israel seems inexhaustible.

Posted by: Nico de Lange, Cape Town | November 27, 2006 03:40 PM

Nico de Lange

Well spoken!

Posted by: Gido | November 28, 2006 08:20 PM

Nico and Gido,
1,2. OK.
3. Not quite - the current Palestinian government (Hamas) (as well as many others within the Palestinian community) does not recognize this border and while Israel would probably go with the line, i don't believe that they have officially acknowledged it - and at this point, those are the 2 opinions that really matter.
4. Control of the West Bank for 39 years - and counting since it was won in the 6 Day War by Israel. Land won during a war is what it is.
5,6,7,11. Granted, not completely acceptable way to go about things, but, see #4.
8&10 and conclusion. YES - there is a huge difference between a Palestinian with a bomb on his back and an Israeli (or Palestinian) soldier with a gun in his hands. One is intentionally going after innocent and ONLY innocent civilians (100% of the time). The other can use their weapon on either civilians or people that are trying to kill them, launching rockets, etc. Do accidents happen? Yes. Are there probably instances where it is not an accident? Most probably. But to excuse suicide bombing as just a normal, acceptable part of war (akin to a soldier with a gun) is to not fully recognize the evilness of the intent of the act.
9. There is only one country (Israel) at the moment regardless of population statistics.
12. Not so. The charter to this day has not been officially amended although there are the letters sent during Oslo that many feel suffice. Given the history of both sides, official would be better.
13. Good start.
14. Nice model - I think that it has been peaceful on both sides. Interestingly, noth Egypt and Jordan have officially recognized Israel's right to exist. Perhaps the Palestinians and the rest of the countries in the region should use this model.
15. I would say that that just means that the Israelis have been more successful in not getting their civilians killed. It would be better if both sides were a lot more successful in not getting their civilians killed (but because Israel has more sophisticated weapons, its logical that more Palestinians would be killed - not acceptable, but logical nonetheless). I'm not sure i see the point of this statement - because more Palestinians have been killed means what? That their points are more valid? Their cause more just? More innocent Germans were killed during WWII than Americans. That's supposed to make me feel sympathy? Don't take that to mean that i am equating the Palestinians with the Nazis (i'm not). The point is that the numbers of innocents killed on both sides is too many. If the elected Palestinian government would review numbers 8, 13 and 14, number 15 could probably drop off the list.

The Israeli complaints are suicide bombings/terrorism, failure to recognize the right to exist (or in many cases, calling for the destruction of Israel) and being attacked numerous times over its history.

Posted by: Dave! | November 29, 2006 09:42 PM

From Dave:

"Also, to say that up until 60 years ago there have been NO Jews there for 1500 years is quite a bit of an exaggeration, to say the least. The Jews have been forced out of the area by numerous peoples over the last several thousand years. Because of this they have no claim? This arguement goes back at least 3000 years - so naturally it should be settled based on how it was 60 years ago?"

The truth is the majority of ashkenazi's "returnees" are of Khazar heritage and as such have no basis of claim to the Palestinian's land.

Off you go to your mitichindrial DNA studies - but to save you time....

less than 40% no matter how you spin it.

Posted by: Angus | November 29, 2006 11:46 PM

Dave, Dave, Dave...what a heartless, coldblooded person you are!

Ofcourse there is no difference whatsoever between a Palestinian suicide bomber and an Israeli soldier...like I said, both deliberately target civilians in the opposing camp. I think my statement that a hundred 'accidental' civilian massacres by Israeli soldiers cannot possibly be 'accidental' serves as enough evidence to support my claim.

As for the point of my nr. 15 - it actually links up with the previous paragraph...thousands of Palestinian civilians have been killed during the Intifadah. I cannot for one moment accept that the majority, or as you would claim, all or nearly all of those killings were 'accidental' by nature. Sorry, Dave, but it simply does not make logical sense - not when the Israeli army is equipped with the best American high-precision, high-tech weapons.

That is why America has lost all credibility that she might have enjoyed in the Arab world at one point or another - because she stands by and allows her unofficial 51st state to commit such atrocities on such a vast scale without doing anything about it.

The hypocrisy of the American position becomes even more clear when one remembers that up till the start of the First Intifadah Israel had never even considered granting the Palestinians their independence, nor allowing them a say in running their own lives - despite the fact that the Palestinian civilian population had never been involved in violence against Israel before the First Intifadah.

Tell me, Dave, if you were in the Palestinians' situation, would you merely sit back and accept the theft of your land by foreigners, the terrorizing of your family, the suppression of your rights, the denigration of your humanity?

Because that is exactly what the Israeli's are are expecting from the Palestinians, Dave. None of the Israeli 'peace' offers thus far had approached 'fair' and 'just'.

Posted by: Nico de Lange | December 1, 2006 11:20 AM

Being equipped with the best American high-precision, high-tech weapons does not mean that innocent people don't get killled. Of course they will despite the fact that they are not the targets. When a Palestinian bomb maker sets up shop in or next to a school or day care center, kids are going to get killed if the bomb maker becomes a target. That is the unfortunate nature of war. But the intent of that action is to kill the bomb maker, not the kids. When a suicide bomber blows up a bus, the intent is to kill everyone around - period. All innocent. There is a difference and people need to recognize this, its huge, and it is one of the main reasons Palestinians have trouble getting support from the west. Its a barbaric act.

The last 'offer' on the table (that Arafat walked away from) included an independent Palestinian state covering 95 percent of the West Bank and all of Gaza plus Palestinian control over Haram al-Sharif. That offer seems to me to approach 'fair' - if you are thinking about a two state solution. If you don't believe there should be both a Palestine and an Israel, then there really can't be any 'deal' with an Israel.

Posted by: Dave! | December 2, 2006 06:46 PM

Dave,

Read President Carters Current Book,
Palestine; Peace not Apartheid. It thouroughly debunks your often told lie about the deal your refering to. The deal sucked, and arafat never even was given a chance to accept it in the first place. Your wrong. It's untrue. repeating it often does not change that fact.

Furthermore, if I told you that one way to help the security of the US was to take 450,000 american civilians and move them to Iraq in order to settle Iraq, would that seem like a reasonable idea to you?
We, of course, would then need to surround them with a small army to ensure their protection. We would also have to come up with some cover story for their presence, such as "god gave us this land, because we conquered it" or some such B.S.

If we did that, and then started increasing the number of settlers and the size of the settlements, how long do you think it would take us to bring "peace" to Iraq, while simultaneously settling part of it?

The up side is that we could do just as the Israelis do, and blame all violence aimed at the military and new settlers as further proof of how important it is to keep the settlements, in that the Iraqis are such brutal and dangerous people. The down side would be that we would remain in Iraq, sustaining huge casualties, and eventually terrorist attacks on our own shores, for as long as we engaged in such mad, brutal, unjustified behavior.

If this does not seem like a good idea to you, I find it difficult to see how you condone the US being dragged into endless wars and further 9/11s by continuing to help Israel sustain exactly the same situation in the occupied territories.

It is a crime agaisnt humanity. Plain and simple. God willing, the Iraq study group will fully support Carters views and finally scare the cowards in congress and the house (and the white house as well) into finally doing away with the settlements by making all support of Israel conditional upon removal of the settlements and the end of the occupation.

In the short run, UN troops, assisted by an arab peacekeeping force, could safeguard the West bank and East Jerusalem (and Gaza too if possible) until an orderly transition could be secured.

J

Posted by: J | December 4, 2006 03:35 PM

With all due respect, i have no intention of reading the senile ramblings of arguably the worst US president (and easily worst ex-president) in the last 100 or so years. I will say that his interpretation of events does appear to be different from those of people who were actually there. Most first hand accounts tend to see it differently from President Carter. Of course he would not blame Arafat, they were friends for years. They had, for reasons that escape me, some sort of bond between them. In fact, if anyone could find a harsh, no scratch that, critical word that Carter has said against any Arab, Palestinian or Arafat in particular, I would be amazed. Carter seems to go out of his way over the years praising all sorts of dictators and terrorists (including but not limited to Hammas, Castro, Arafat, Yugoslavia's Tito, Romainia's Ceausescu, Haiti's C├ędras, Kim Il Sung, and Nicaragua's Ortega). IMHO, he needs to give up his delusion that he is still president and stop meddling in world affairs.

9/11 being the result of US support of Israel is a myth. By OBL's own admission, Al-Qaeda was born when Saudi Arabia allowed US troops to deploy on their soil during the first Gulf War. It has nothing to do with the Israeli/Palestinian problem.

The settlement lands were won during war. That is not a cover story, that is a fact. Ownership of land tends to change after wars. I guess in your view, the US should end the "occupation of Mexicans" and return Texas and California to Mexico?

Posted by: Dave! | December 5, 2006 12:30 AM

Dave, I cut and pasted this from another forum in response to another of your empty attacks on Carter and his views of the occupied territories;

Dave,

If you disagree with Jimmy Carters politics, how about How about Bush's Father, who tried to cut off all funding of Israel until they did just what Jimmy Carter is suggesting? How about James Baker, who backed Bush I then, and will probably suggest the same thing in the form of the ISG's recommendations? how about Tony Blair, who told congress that there will never be and end to the war on terror ( and recently, again stating the same thing regarding peace in Iraq) until until the settlements are removed? how about Colin Powell, who said that middle eastern terrorism of the type that caused 9/11 is inspired by the Israeli/ Palestinian conflict? How about Bill Clinton, who said that a fair and eqitable resolution to the settlements problem would "remove the philosphical underpinning of terrorist recruitment in the middle east"? How about Pat Buchanon? How about 147 nations of the UN, voting in the last few days for Israel to remove the settlements, who were opposed by only 7 countries, including, Australia, Israel, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Palau and the United States? ( I can't decide whether to laugh out loud or hang my head in shame when I consider the implications of that particular coalition of countries.)

It would seem as though the vast majority of the rest of the world disagrees with you, as well as a whole host of extremely qualified people from both the right and left of American Politics.

If I were you , I would think very carefully before I tried to discount the entire list of people and nations that I just presented for your consideration.
On the other hand, go ahead, I'm sure you will try.

J

Posted by: J | December 5, 2006 01:02 AM

Dave,

In addition, you managed to dodge a large part of my previous post. We fought a war in Iraq. We Won. Do we own it? Who in the world would ever agree with us if we came to that conclusion? How long would it take to convince the Iraqi people that Iraq or some large part of it is now part of the US? I doubt there ever would be peace. especially if we moved 2 or 3 million american citizens there to settle it. IE, it would be just like the occupied territories; a liability to the US and eventually to every US ally the world over.

Furthermore, if Israel "won" the occupied territories, (the geneva convention absolutely prohibits the settlement of any area that is occupied during war) then they "won" the people as well, who would then become Israeli citizens. No? if not, then what should happen to them? your analysis has absolutely no precident whatosever, unless you want to compare it to Nazi Germany, who wanted to conquer other lands, murder or otherwise ethnically cleanse the inhabitants, and keep the spoils for themselves, although I know you don't want to compare Israel to Nazi Germany, and neither do I.

J

Posted by: J | December 5, 2006 01:27 AM

We won the war in Iraq? Really?!? That's an interesting take the current situation there. However, for the sake of this discussion, I'll say we won. We could choose to keep it permanently and settle there. To say that situation would be problematic would be a huge understatement. We definitely shouldn't do it. But we could do it if we chose to. However, we did not go in with that intention (regardless of why you think the US went in, i don't think there is anybody that believes the US wanted to make it the 51st state). From the beginning, the US said it planned to relinquish control and return it to the Iraqi people. Additionally, Iraq does not border the US and there are not the same security issues as are present between the Arabs and Palestinian and the Israelis. The US has oceans between itself and the countries that want to wipe it off the map. Much like real estate, it's about location, location, location.

Posted by: Dave! | December 5, 2006 02:08 PM

Dave,

you still refuse to answer the question I am asking. We beat the Iraqi Army, and now occupy the country. Just as in the case of the occupied territories, there is chaos and a rising insurgency. Would any other country in the world reconize an attempt by the US to Claim Iraq as "ours" while kicking the current residents out of the country and into neighboring Countries so that it could be settled by American citizens?

If you don't think that such a thing could ever be legitimized, then how can you say the same about the Israelis stealing the occupied territories and removing the righful residents from the land so that it could be settled by Israelis?

You would be quite alone in your opinion if you did. (see the list of people and nations that disagree with you in my 2nd from last post.)

J

Posted by: J | December 5, 2006 06:34 PM

J - I believe that i did answer that the US COULD do it if it wanted to (in this case it doesn't). It would initially be problematic. And no, the rest of the world would not, at least initially, condone it. But really, what is a "legitimate" country? How long does it need to be a country before it becomes "legitimate"? 57 years? Hopefully less that 230 years so that i know i am residing in a "legitimate" country. The point is that countries and borders continually change for numerous reasons, sometimes just but mostly not (at least in someones eyes - generally the people that lost that battle or war). Native Americans, Mexicans, and the British have all had issues with the formation of America. Is the US considered legitimate? If not, what country is or could possibly be? And yet, amazingly, there is peace between the US, Britain, Mexico and Native Americans. How can that be? The US is probably guilty of "stealing the occupied territories (of Native Americans) and removing the righful residents from the land so that it could be settled by (mostly European Americans)".

Posted by: Dave! | December 6, 2006 05:50 PM

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