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[P]
Anti-semitism, or something worse?

By iGrrrl in Op-Ed
Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:26:48 AM EST
Tags: Politics (all tags)
Politics

There is an interesting move afoot in some US universities. Vocal faculty and students, by no means a majority, are calling for their institutions to divest their endowment portfolios of stock in companies that do business with Israel. The movement compares itself to the divestment strategy used to put pressure on the Apartheid government of South Africa. In that case, the goal was to combat obvious oppression of the black population by a white minority. The case can be made, whether one agrees with it or not, that the Israelis' behavior toward the Palestinians is comparable.

The movement has been dubbed anti-Semitic by Harvard University President Lawrence Summers, and the proponents vilified as racist. Why, the question is asked, aren't they agitating for pressure against countries like China, or several African nations, or any number of places where a specific ethnic population is being severely oppressed by those in power.

Why indeed?


Dr. Summer's speech was labeled as paranoia by the Boston Globe and applauded by the Washington Times. The question has brought some very deep emotions to the fore. I have mixed opinions about the divestiture movement. On Wednesday, September 25, the Boston based radio call-in show On Point hosted Alan Dershowitz, professor at Harvard Law School, and Francis Boyle, professor of international law at the University of Illinois College of Law. Mr. Boyle is one of the leaders of the divestiture movement, and Mr. Dershowitz is firmly in the camp that believes the movement to be anti-Semitic. in other interviews, Dershowitz has summed up my ambivalence on the Israel/Palestine issue. I don't like what Israel is doing. I think it is stupid and counter-productive. I don't like the fact that American-built and financed planes bomb civilian Palestinians. On the other hand, I cannot support terrorist tactics and terrorists by labeling them "freedom fighters." I see nothing black and white. To my eyes, both sides have perpetrated villainous acts.

But such behavior is not the sole province of these two opponents in the Middle East. A simple Google Search on human rights violations turns up pages on the oppression of Tamils in Sri Lanka, of Kurds in Turkey, of Tibetans in China. My feeling about these situations is similar to my feelings about the Israel/Palestine situation, and thus I do not believe my dislike of Israel's policies stems from any deeply buried anti-Jewish sentiment. When Dershowitz raised the question of why divestiture pressure was not being brought to bear on countries besides Israel, I suddenly realized the answer.

Racism.

I do not believe it is the racism that Dershowitz and Summers believe it to be. No, not anti-semitism at all. The difference in fact lies in a very subtle and unconscious attitude. The countries chosen for divestiture pressure have (or had, in the case of South Africa) a White, European government. The countries we do not target, despite similar levels of oppression, have non-White governments.

I do not know whether we (speaking globally as The West) are simply more outraged by people who we feel are like us behaving in ways we cannot condone, or whether we just don't expect high moral behavior from people who we feel are not like us. I think most people who are working for divestiture in Israel would vigorously deny this, and I think they would protest too much.

They can protest all they want, but now the question has been asked. Do we not put similar pressure on non-White human rights violators because we unconsciously do not expect better of them?

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Display: Sort:
Anti-semitism, or something worse? | 439 comments (431 topical, 8 editorial, 0 hidden)
Obvious Answer (3.20 / 10) (#3)
by SPrintF on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 09:07:14 PM EST

Divesture of investments in Israel might actually, eventually help change Israel's policies. The other countries you mention, Sri Lanka, Turkey, China, would probably just shrug and go about their business.

No it would not (2.66 / 3) (#11)
by RyoCokey on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 10:03:18 PM EST

Not so long as they receive billions in US aid. That's enough to offset and awful lot of business loss, especially for such a small country.



The issue here is not the facts; Right - so how does this apply to Mr. Scott Ritter?
[
Parent ]
Not anymore. (3.00 / 1) (#22)
by Apuleius on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 10:57:14 PM EST

That used to be true. But nowadays Israelis no longer give a rat's ass.


There is a time and a place for everything, and it's called college. (The South Park chef)
[ Parent ]
The problem (3.50 / 8) (#5)
by bayankaran on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 09:13:09 PM EST

The difference in fact lies in a very subtle and unconscious attitude.

Is it unconscious or subconcious?

I do not know whether we (speaking globally as The West) are simply more outraged by people who we feel are like us behaving in ways we cannot condone, or whether we just don't expect high moral behavior from people who we feel are not like us.

Here lies another problem. When did the West become the champion of human rights? Parading human rights causes by the so-called West is very selective and only when there is no oil, diamonds, market, trade or in short - MONEY- involved.

I dislike Mugabe of Zimbabwe. But when he reminded others during the recent African Unity Congress that he and his party introduced democracy to his country and not Britain or Tony Blair...yes, it was true.

When did the West become the guardians of democracy or human rights or freedom...when they ran short of colonies to occupy.

Yes, it is a rant, but isnt it true?

I think it's interesting you brought that up (2.20 / 10) (#13)
by Subtillus on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 10:20:24 PM EST

I have been thinking about this ever since the U.S. invaded Afganistan; the atrocities not mentioned on CNN could fill an encyclopedia. Food packages were dropped into mine fields intentionaly, livestock were killed en masse, grain was spilled.
NO, I don't have an online look up-able source, this is from a friend in the service.

A superior infrastructure and technology sector does not make for a more moral nation.

In short, to answer your rant, yeah, SO TRUE .

[ Parent ]
False (2.66 / 3) (#32)
by godix on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 11:24:25 PM EST

"Food packages were dropped into mine fields intentionaly"

This has been repeatedly claimed and repeatedly proven false. If the best you can do for a source 'a friend in the military' then please do us all a favor and quit repeating unproven inflamatory claims.


Love, like god, only exist at orgasm and agnoy


[ Parent ]
Fair enough. (4.00 / 1) (#200)
by aprentic on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 02:54:22 PM EST

Subtillus cited an unverifiable source, which is next to useless.
What's your source on the proof that his claim is false?

[ Parent ]
rights (4.00 / 2) (#30)
by godix on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 11:22:40 PM EST

"When did the West become the champion of human rights?"

Somewhere around the 60's, at least in public perception. The black and womens movements brought these issues to the forefront of people's minds. This is of course for America only, some European countries have been champions of human rights much long while others are to this day the type of countries the 'west' champions against.

"West is very selective and only when there is no oil, diamonds, market, trade or in short - MONEY- involved."

While in general I agree, I would like to point out Bosnia and Timor (Australia is generally lumped in with the 'west' regardless of geography) as counterexamples.

"When did the West become the guardians of democracy or human rights or freedom...when they ran short of colonies to occupy."

Colonization is pretty much a thing of the past, and it's certainly more complex than how you put it. America has rarely been interesting in colonies. Out of all the European countries only England, France, Spain, and Portugal were intersted in colonies. Many colonies were given self rule in a peaceful manor. The 'west' didn't become interested in human rights because of colonies, they became interested in human rights because of a gradual public realization that everyone deserves some basic rights, not just citizens of certain countries.



Love, like god, only exist at orgasm and agnoy


[ Parent ]
Bzzt, thanks for playing ... (3.00 / 3) (#104)
by L Satyl on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:33:14 AM EST

America has rarely been interesting in colonies.
You mean, apart from Alaska, Hawaii, the Phillipines, Puerto Rico, and Guam?

Out of all the European countries only England, France, Spain, and Portugal were intersted in colonies.
Well, they were all interested :-). In 18th/19th century however, France, Brittain and Russia were seen as colonial superpowers. Spain and Portugal were the fromer colonial superpowers in decline. Lesser colonial powers were Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands, and even Danmark. Germany, Austria-Hungary and Turkey wanted to be colonial powers, which was one of the major reasons for WWI. The only other colonial power was Japan.

Many colonies were given self rule in a peaceful manor.
Urm, define peaceful. The European nations had to be pressurized to give up their profitable colonies. Both by the U.S., and by native uprisings.

The 'west' didn't become interested in human rights because of colonies, they became interested in human rights because of a gradual public realization that everyone deserves some basic rights, not just citizens of certain countries.
I think you're giving the West and its citizens too much credit here. Human rights as we know them now were created actually by a very gradual process lasting more than a century. Starting with the French revolution 1789, the emancipation of the citizen, on through slavery abolishment and voting rights for women during the 18th and 19th century, and only ending with the universal declaration of human rights in 1948.

And in plenty of ways it is a still ongoing process.



[ Parent ]
Junk the term "anti-semitism" (3.00 / 13) (#6)
by leviramsey on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 09:13:50 PM EST

At least in the context of the Israel/Palestine debate. After all, anti-Semitism has nothing to do with it. Remember, by definition, the Palestinians and all Arabs are Semites (arguably more Semitic than most of the population of Israel).



that's not the definition of the term (4.00 / 7) (#9)
by Delirium on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 09:50:27 PM EST

While the etymological origin of the term "anti-semitic" is obviously from "opposition to Semites," that is not the term's meaning in modern English. It very clearly and consistently refers to discrimination against Jews. As such, merely mentally replace "anti-Semitic" with "anti-Jewish" if you prefer. In either case, the meaning is clear, so quibbling over etymological particulars isn't particularly useful.

If you prefer a dictionary definition, here's American Heritage's 2000 definition:

1. Hostility toward or prejudice against Jews or Judaism.
2. Discrimination against Jews.
Is there any particular reason you are interested in the technical classifications of "Semites" and "non-Semites" when the current article clearly (both from the common use of the word and the context) refers to antipathy directed towards Jews, or is this merely an attempt to shift the focus from substantative discussion?

[ Parent ]
It's a pet peeve of mine... (n/t) (none / 0) (#10)
by leviramsey on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 09:52:43 PM EST



[ Parent ]
Actually, it's an interesting example of ... (4.50 / 4) (#15)
by pyramid termite on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 10:42:55 PM EST

... how more "Westernized" Semites are considered to be more representative than those other Semites, who don't count as much. Considered in the context of a debate on whether the West expects more from Western people more than non-Western people, it leads me to wonder if the West identifies Western leaning people as more representative of a race than the non-Western people belonging to that race. It's a kind of cultural imperialism by definition.

On the Internet, anyone can accuse you of being a dog.
[ Parent ]
Not quite (4.25 / 4) (#33)
by gibichung on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 11:26:54 PM EST

It's a question of geographic proximity. At the time, there were no other Semites in Europe.

There's nothing more to it.

-----
"No man is above the law and no man is below it; nor do we ask any man's permission when we require him to obey it." -- Theodore Roosevelt
[ Parent ]

The term means jew hatred (4.50 / 4) (#17)
by strlen on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 10:45:36 PM EST

The term originated in late 19th century Europe, and it was created as a more scientific way of saying "Jew Hater", since at that time, Jews were pretty much the only semites in Europe. And if yout think Arab's can't be jew haters, well you think wrong. There's a good to reason to why there were over 800,000 jews in Iraq in 1940's and there are less than 100 now. And google for 'dhimmi'.  Actually, though, I wouldn't mind the term Jew-Hater being used instead though, it would even further the point.

--
[T]he strongest man in the world is he who stands most alone. - Henrik Ibsen.
[ Parent ]
That's bullshit, and you know it. (4.00 / 6) (#19)
by Demiurge on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 10:51:40 PM EST

In common usage, anti-semite means anti-Jew, and you as well as every single poster here knows that. Regardless of whether you think anti-semitism plays a role in the Israel/Palestine conflict, you can't sidestep the question with cheap semantic tricks.

[ Parent ]
However... (3.42 / 7) (#37)
by leviramsey on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 11:59:08 PM EST

It is a necessary semantic debate, because the effects of the inaccuracy do color the debate. The implication of anti-semite == anti-jew (and only anti-jew) implies that only jews are semites, which flies in the face of the facts that:

  • Jews compose a minority of semites (they are outnumbered by arabs)
  • A substantial portion of jews are not semites.

Reserving the term for solely hatred of jews serves only to provide a further separation of the members of the semitic peoples and makes reconciliation that much harder, for it forces the arab to deny their heritage.

This is akin to saying equating subjects of the Queen of England to being WASPs (and vice-versa).



[ Parent ]
Again, that's bullshit and you know it. (3.66 / 3) (#46)
by Otter on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:55:36 AM EST

"Semite", in this context, refers to Jews. It always has, and is universally understood to do so. People argue with that for only two reasons: a misguided attempt to display their cleverness and a desire to dismiss prejudice against Jews through a threadbare semantic trick.

Do you seriously think that the heritage of "Semite" is more important to arabs (sic) than the acknowledgement or dismissal of anti-semitism is to Jews? Who is ripping up whose history here?

[ Parent ]

Which one am I, then? (3.00 / 2) (#47)
by leviramsey on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:00:21 AM EST

People argue with that for only two reasons: a misguided attempt to display their cleverness and a desire to dismiss prejudice against Jews through a threadbare semantic trick.

Am I attempting to display cleverness or am I trying to dismiss prejudice against Jews?

Or perhaps, I honestly believe that, at the very least, the term anti-Semitic should be expanded to include anti-Arab acts?



[ Parent ]
Couldn't tell you (3.00 / 2) (#221)
by Otter on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 04:40:43 PM EST

I don't claim to know the answer to that.

This guy is trying to show off how daintily he can skate to the edge of overt anti-Semitism, with his "blood-libellous" and "Israeli-state" and "European phenomenon". Whatever. Yeah, I'm impressed with his cleverly nuanced medievalism. How subversive!

What your goal is, though, I couldn't tell you. Could you explain why you could possibly think it's important to erase the universally accepted term for one of history's most pervasive and destructive biases to come up with a word for a generalized prejudice against "Semites" that doesn't actually exist?

Anyway, I'm not arguing this topic any more here. If people feel the urge to discuss it further with me, my email is above.

[ Parent ]

Simple logic (4.00 / 1) (#242)
by leviramsey on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 07:27:05 PM EST

Usage of the term "anti-Semitism" to mean anti-Jew is ultimately to use a euphemism. Also, who is hurt by expanding the definition of anti-Semitism to include acts of hatred against all Semites?

The only argument for excluding anti-Arab from anti-Semite is one of tradition; at least that is the only argument that has been trotted out in this forum, or any other forum I have been a part of. However, tradition does not make things right. There was a long tradition in various Christian circles that Jews were in a league with Satan; that the Jewish people were guilty of deicide ("His blood be on our hands forever", and so forth), when in reality, if Jesus' blood was on anyone's hands it was the Roman governor Pilate. Traditions have the annoying tendency of being flat-out wrong, and can't really be within the scope of valid and rational argument.

When faced between an option that has no rational argument to recommend it and an option which has a [trivial, even] rational argument against it.

Additionally, I feel that the implication of usage of the term anti-Semite to mean anti-Jew is that it reinforces the notion that non-Jewish Semites are not "real" Semites, for hatred of them doesn't rise to anti-Semitism.



[ Parent ]
Uh... no (3.33 / 3) (#73)
by delmoi on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 04:06:20 AM EST

Semite has always meant semite, and anti-semetic has always meant "anti-jew".

"antiphony" and "phony" have nothing to do with eachother either...
--
"'argumentation' is not a word, idiot." -- thelizman
[ Parent ]
Restated (2.50 / 2) (#197)
by Otter on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 02:35:56 PM EST

The fragment "semite" in "anti-semite" and related words refers to Jews, not to Semitic anthropological or linguistic groups. To use your example, "phony", in the context of the word "antiphony", refers to the sound of speech.

[ Parent ]
"common usage" (5.00 / 1) (#41)
by Meatbomb on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:38:13 AM EST

Me, and the folk I hang with, use the terms "semite" and "semitic" to refer to the slightly darker-skinned but mostly Euro-looking folk who live/come from the middle east.

But that's just me.



_______________

Good News for Liberal Democracy!

[ Parent ]
Semites (5.00 / 1) (#43)
by gibichung on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:42:38 AM EST

Speak Semitic languages, or are descended from peoples who did.

-----
"No man is above the law and no man is below it; nor do we ask any man's permission when we require him to obey it." -- Theodore Roosevelt
[ Parent ]
thanks for the clartification... (none / 0) (#44)
by Meatbomb on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:46:32 AM EST

Just curious, does my misrepresentation still more or less map onto the proper one?

_______________

Good News for Liberal Democracy!

[ Parent ]
No. (4.50 / 2) (#51)
by gibichung on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:15:09 AM EST

Today's Semites are a diverse lot. The rise of Islam brought a culture and language to formerly heterogeneous peoples over a large area who we now call just call "Arabs." The Jewish Diaspora lead to much intermixing and the results are obvious. There exist both fair-skinned, blue-eyed Jews and fair-skinned, blue-eyed Arabs.

And, of course, there are many other (generally) "darker skinned people with European features" living in the Middle East today: Turks1, Kurds2, and Iranians come to mind.

1.) Not all 'Turks' are Caucasian, but neither are they all dark-skinned or Mongolian.
2.) I am aware that Kurds are technically Iranians.


-----
"No man is above the law and no man is below it; nor do we ask any man's permission when we require him to obey it." -- Theodore Roosevelt
[ Parent ]

Yes (5.00 / 2) (#252)
by Arker on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 08:02:31 PM EST

Semitic languages are classified in two families, North Semitic and South Semitic, each of which has two subfamilies.

Northern Semitic has Northwest and Northeast Semitic as subfamilies.

Akkadian, known also as Assyro-babylonian, is the only example I can think of for Northwest Semitic. The first record of the language is in the form of place names recorded by Sumerians in the 27th century B.C. This was in Mesopotamia, present day Iraq. The Akkadian Empire starts about 2350, the Sumerian city states fall under its rule, and the Sumerian language is supplanted by it. Later, after the collapse of the Empire, Akkadian itself was supplanted by related Semitic languages, mostly Aramaic and Arabic. In both cases, note that this is a linguistic, not a 'racial' change - many present day Arab speaking Iraqis are direct descendents of the Akkadians and or the Sumerians - it is simply the languages that went in and out of use due to political changes.

Northeast Semitic includes Phoenician, Moabite, Aramaic, Ugaritic, and Hebrew. All of these languages were spoken in early times in the area of Palestine and Lebanon, and there is no evidence to suggest 'racial' distinctions between those peoples, the difference were relatively minor cultural and linguistic ones. The ancient Hebrews, for instance, were not distinguishable 'racially' from the other inhabitants of that area, they were distinguished solely on the basis of language, culture, and religion. Also note that, while those Jews whose ancestors spent long periods of time in diaspora in Europe, East Asia, or Africa have intermarried and become racially indistinguishable from the host populations, the Sephardim remain racially indistinguishable from the other Palestinians.

South Semitic also has two subfamilies, Southwest and Southeast Semitic.

Southeast Semitic includes both Classical Arabic (the language of the Quran, used throughout the Middle East in much the way Latin was once used throughout Europe) and the modern Arabic dialects, which bear the same sort of relationship to it that French, Italian, Romanian, Spanish, etc. bear to Classical Latin (although a little less removed.)

Southwest Semitic includes a group of dead languages from the southern part of the Arabian Peninsula, notably Hamaryitic which is often referred to simply as 'South Arabic' - a dead language known from thousands of inscriptions in and around modern Yemen. This family also includes several languages spoken either formerly or currently in the area of Ethiopia and Eritrea, including Amharic, Geez, Sabean, Tigre, etc. These languages were introduced from Arabia before Southwest Semitic tongues in Arabia were supplanted by the ancestor of Classical Arabic.

So, yes, with the caution that 'race' is not a scientifically useful word, in the common sense of it implied from your post, you are quite correct. With the exception of populations who have been racially assimilated into a larger surrounding group outside of the original range of the Semitic languages, speakers of Semitic languages show the same 'racial' characteristics as modern day Arabs, with little or nothing to distinguish one group from another.



[ Parent ]
Thanks for the info! (nt) (none / 0) (#296)
by Meatbomb on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 03:35:17 AM EST



_______________

Good News for Liberal Democracy!

[ Parent ]
Yes, but you should still junk the word. (3.00 / 1) (#72)
by delmoi on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 04:04:20 AM EST

"antiphony." has nothing to do with what the word "phony" means, and "anti-semitism" == "anti-jewish". Old school anti-jews chose the word because it sounded cool.

However, it is kind of confusing and stupid to use in the current debate.
--
"'argumentation' is not a word, idiot." -- thelizman
[ Parent ]
phony (5.00 / 1) (#201)
by aprentic on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 03:03:58 PM EST

is slang which originally refered to someone who sounded as if they were on a phone ie fake.
Phone is, of course, a abreviation of telephone.
This in turn is derived from "tele" and "phono" meaning "distant" and "sound".
Antiphony is derived from the words "anti" and "phono" meaning "opposit" and "sound".
So you see antiphony has quite alot to do with phoney.

[ Parent ]
why not use anti-Jew? (2.50 / 2) (#114)
by bigdavex on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:57:23 AM EST

If everyone "knows" that anti-semitic and anti-Jew are equivalent, why not use the term anti-Jew and have the added benefit of being correct? Is anyone confused by anti-Jew? What's the added benefit of saying anti-semitic? Proving the speaker knows the word?

[ Parent ]
No, it's the truth, you're the one bullshitting... (1.20 / 5) (#146)
by Arker on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:24:04 AM EST

...and if you don't know it, you should.

If you mean anti-jewish, say anti-jewish.

What possible reason could you have to insist on insisting on misusing anti-semitic instead? Tradition? Only if misinterpreted. Anti-semitism has been mostly used to refer to anti-jewish sentiment, but that is, as another poster (who ironically was agreeing with your position, in a wonderful example of the fallacy ignoratio elenchi) pointed out, it was appropriate because it was in a context where jews were the only semites to be referred to. But in the context of this discussion, and in the broader context in which modern discussions occur, jews are a minority of semites, so that logic no longer holds.



[ Parent ]
A little history lesson (3.66 / 3) (#153)
by gibichung on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:00:47 PM EST

The word "Semitic" dates from the middle of the 19th century.

There was never a group of people who called themselves "the Semites"; it refers to a family of languages identified as being related to Hebrew. The Semites were people who speak (or spoke) those languages. The word only came to refer to a race after being used to describe the Jews.

Consider the application of "Indo-European" as opposed to just "European." If both were just called "European," could you tell the difference based on the context in which it was used? I hope so.

-----
"No man is above the law and no man is below it; nor do we ask any man's permission when we require him to obey it." -- Theodore Roosevelt
[ Parent ]

To clarify (2.66 / 3) (#166)
by gibichung on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:34:37 PM EST

In the past:

When you called an Arab a Semite, it was because he spoke a Semitic language.

When you called a Jew a Semite, it was because he a member of the Jewish "race."

From this, it should be obvious why "anti-Semitism" refers to anti-Jewish racism.

-----
"No man is above the law and no man is below it; nor do we ask any man's permission when we require him to obey it." -- Theodore Roosevelt
[ Parent ]

Speak for yourself (4.00 / 4) (#179)
by rantweasel on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:18:19 PM EST

I think that there are many people who make the distinction between Semitic Jews & non-Semitic Jews.  It's just like the distinction between Indian Muslims and Arab Muslims, or Vietnamese Catholics and French Catholics, and so on.  Same religion, different racial background.

mathias

[ Parent ]

religion is irrelevant (3.33 / 3) (#185)
by gibichung on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:42:47 PM EST

That's nonsense. Semitic is a family of languages; Semites are people who speak those languages. The word "race" has many meanings, but when someone like TE Shaw writes about the "Semitic Race," he is speaking about ethnicity, not race as we generally understand it.

-----
"No man is above the law and no man is below it; nor do we ask any man's permission when we require him to obey it." -- Theodore Roosevelt
[ Parent ]
No, religion is relevant (5.00 / 1) (#194)
by rantweasel on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 02:21:55 PM EST

Semite != Jew

see <a href="http://www.m-w.com/cgi-bin/dictionary?book=Dictionary&va=Semites">here</a>

<a href="http://www.bartleby.com/65/se/Semite.html">here</a>

and <a href="http://mb-soft.com/believe/txo/semites.htm">here</a>

Note the use of phrases like "Jews and other Semites" or "The most prominent Semites today are Arabs and Jews".  So religion is an issue, and it really is a valid semantic claim.  I tend to agree that it's understood to mean anti-Jew, but that doesn't make it correct, just like the whole hacker/cracker diatribe.

mathias

[ Parent ]

D'oh! (1.00 / 2) (#198)
by rantweasel on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 02:47:35 PM EST

Sorry about that, I forgot the auto-format.

It's <a href="http://www.m-w.com/cgi-bin/dictionary?book=Dictionary&va=Semites">here</a>,
<a href="http://www.bartleby.com/65/se/Semite.html">here</a>,
and <a href="http://mb-soft.com/believe/txo/semites.htm">here</a>.

mathias

[ Parent ]

"correctness" (3.00 / 2) (#199)
by gibichung on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 02:47:37 PM EST

I am arguing the origin of the term and offering an explanation for the logic that allowed it to come into common usage. As for the "correctness" of the term, as cr8dle2grave pointed out: Usage is the sole determinant of meaning.

But I must reiterate, Semitic is not a race. It is a family of languages spoken by diverse peoples.

-----
"No man is above the law and no man is below it; nor do we ask any man's permission when we require him to obey it." -- Theodore Roosevelt
[ Parent ]

'Semitic Race' (2.66 / 3) (#234)
by Arker on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 06:05:35 PM EST

Race is not a scientifically useful word, so any discussion of it is going to suffer from the fact that it is, essentially, a discussion of vague and unquantifiable characteristics.

That said, if you're arguing against my point, I'll accept your argument and point out that you've just shot yourself in the foot, so to speak.

This is because, if we are going to talk about a 'semitic race' it's clearly going to include all arabs, and only some jews (the Sephardim, but not the Ashkenazim who are clearly white europeans racially, or the Chinese, Indian, or black African Jews - all except the Sephardim are jewish culturally but have intermarried with their host populations to the extent they are no longer racially distinct.) So you just diluted the jewish component of the broader set of Semites and made them an even smaller minority.



[ Parent ]
There is no "Semitic race" (3.50 / 2) (#286)
by gibichung on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 01:07:17 AM EST

and I can't help but wonder if you believe that your low comment ratings will change it -- because your nonsensical argument surely won't.
This is because, if we are going to talk about a 'semitic race' it's clearly going to include all arabs,
It most certainly would not. Take, for instance, the Egyptians. Are they Arabs? Certainly. But were they Semites two thousand years ago? Most certainly not. The Arabic language and the Arab culture were introduced to the area later; the people, for the most part, are not descended from the original Arabs at all.

Language does not equate to race or ethnicity.

-----
"No man is above the law and no man is below it; nor do we ask any man's permission when we require him to obey it." -- Theodore Roosevelt
[ Parent ]

Shoot yourself in the foot *again* (1.75 / 4) (#332)
by Arker on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 02:53:56 PM EST

It's hilarious, first you or one of your friends goes through and rates all my posts here down, then when I bother to go through and rate the thread you call foul. A pretty good reflection of your maturity level it seems, and a pretty good reason I will be trying not to respond to your posts in the future - from the looks of them their stupidity is usually pretty readily apparent, but in this case they might sound good to someone that doesn't have a hair up their arse, as the saying goes, about the particular field.

Now, you wrote (starting with you quoting me):

This is because, if we are going to talk about a 'semitic race' it's clearly going to include all arabs,

It most certainly would not. Take, for instance, the Egyptians. Are they Arabs? Certainly. But were they Semites two thousand years ago? Most certainly not. The Arabic language and the Arab culture were introduced to the area later; the people, for the most part, are not descended from the original Arabs at all.

Actually, again reminding everyone that this silly 'race' thread was not my idea, and I don't place any stock in it myself, you're once again shooting yourself in the foot. No, Coptic (the ur-language in Egypt, or at least the living language descended from that) is usually not considered a Semitic language, although actually a few linguists have argued that it is. But at the very least, it's a Hamitic language, a member of the north-African language family that's very closely related to the Semitic family... if they aren't Semites they're the Semites closest known cousins.

Gibichung, I must thank you for making your ignorance, your arrogance, and your PC smugness so obvious to me here, it will save me time in the future. But I'm afraid you're just not amusing anymore... you'll just have to find someone else to troll now. Have fun...



[ Parent ]
I must commend you (3.00 / 4) (#338)
by gibichung on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 03:23:31 PM EST

...on your capacity for willful ignorance. I am not bringing the question of the value of race, but simply stating that language does not equate to race. Semitic describes a family of languages. This is simple enough, and you've offered to evidence to contradict this statement.

While this is unrelated to the discussion, I have no qualms with your comment ratings, only in your obvious (and now confirmed) motivation: to punish those who disagree with you. Now, you've all but admitted that you are seeking revenge for comment ratings that "(I) or one of (my) friends" have made. But now you're calling me immature.

While I could degrade you farther, it would serve no purpose but to escalate this pointless discussion. Hopefully, after you've had some time cool off and to consider yourself objectively, you'll come to see my point of view.

-----
"No man is above the law and no man is below it; nor do we ask any man's permission when we require him to obey it." -- Theodore Roosevelt
[ Parent ]

No... (3.66 / 3) (#172)
by cr8dle2grave on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:58:20 PM EST

...you sir are committing a common etymological fallacy. Usage is the sole determinant of meaning.

---
Unity of mankind means: No escape for anyone anywhere. - Milan Kundera


[ Parent ]
Hey, Arker (3.00 / 3) (#298)
by cr8dle2grave on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 04:01:34 AM EST

Care to defend yourself against the charge of etymological fallacy (of which you obviously guilty), or would you just prefer to continue abusing the rating system.

---
Unity of mankind means: No escape for anyone anywhere. - Milan Kundera


[ Parent ]
Race or Culture (3.62 / 8) (#8)
by marx on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 09:50:04 PM EST

I think you're fundamentally right, but reaching the conclusion of racism is essentially sensationalism. Some western people may identify strongly with their race, but most identify with their culture, not their race (excepting local variations, such as Texas).

The mechanism is the same though. Oppressors we can identify with are going to be more criticized than those we cannot identify with. Israel has a predominantly western culture, so it's natural that westerners identify with Israel.

Join me in the War on Torture: help eradicate torture from the world by holding torturers accountable.

I'm just curious, but have you ever been to Texas? (2.00 / 1) (#31)
by Bill Barth on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 11:23:16 PM EST


Yes...I am a rocket scientist.
[ Parent ]
No (none / 0) (#50)
by marx on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:12:38 AM EST

Have you ever been to Iraq?

Join me in the War on Torture: help eradicate torture from the world by holding torturers accountable.
[ Parent ]

An interesting question (3.42 / 14) (#16)
by Demiurge on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 10:44:47 PM EST

Kurdish oppression in Iraq and Turkey, Tibetan and religious oppression in China, oppression of Christians in Indonesia, Chechens in Russia, the list goes on and on and on. Most are far more grievous that what is going on in the Occupied Territories.

So, why is such a disproportionate amount of negative attention, bordering on outright hatred, heaped upon Israel, which is, after all, the only Jewish state. Why no mention in the UN of the Saudi's or Jordan's even worse treatment of Palestinians?

I can't recall the source of this remark, but before 1939, the graffiti in Europe read "Jews to Palestine". Now it's "Jews out of Palestine".

I don't think it's as simple as anti-semitism. Indeed, there are many virulent anti-semites in the anti-Israel movement. But what about the rest? Why is their ire so provoked by Israel, but untroubled by far worse atrocities around the globe?

One almost decent reason why. (3.50 / 2) (#20)
by Apuleius on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 10:56:04 PM EST

Until this wave of violence, outside pressure on the Israelis actually worked, while the same cannot be said of China, Indonesia, Russia, and only recently has outside pressure actually gotten the Turks to change their ways. That is why some (mind all: some) of these protesters concentrated their attention on Israel. However, the current protest movement is showing signs of overt antisemitism, and it is unlikely to work. Israel has begun to tune out completely when it comes to outside opinion, because of the noticeable lack of similar pressure to get the Arabs to change their ways.


There is a time and a place for everything, and it's called college. (The South Park chef)
[ Parent ]
Amos Oz is the source of that remark. (NT) (none / 0) (#23)
by Apuleius on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 10:57:55 PM EST




There is a time and a place for everything, and it's called college. (The South Park chef)
[ Parent ]
An interesting question part two (3.00 / 2) (#26)
by medham on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 11:05:45 PM EST

Which country is Harvard most heavily invested in: a) Israel b) Iraq?

Too easy? How about Israel vs. Turkey? Israel vs. Russia? Israel vs. Saudi Arabia?

The real 'medham' has userid 6831.
[ Parent ]

Harvard (none / 0) (#136)
by br284 on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:55:25 AM EST

You might look into the amount of cash that goes into Harvard from the Saudi royal families before you cite that as the main reason for Harvard's apparently pro-Jewish statments.

If I'm not mistaken, many wealthy Saudis have contributed much to Harvard financially over the years -- including the bin Laden clan (though not Osama in particular).

-Chris

[ Parent ]

An interesting question part three (none / 0) (#202)
by Stickerboy on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 03:09:17 PM EST

Which country are investments held by Harvard more heavily invested in: a) China b) Israel?

When I see a cry from the same divestment proponents to sell all stocks that do business with China, I'll take them seriously.

Until then, I'll know that they value their university's portfolio worth more than their priority on human rights.


[ Parent ]

did you read the article? (none / 0) (#27)
by tebrow on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 11:06:49 PM EST

I think you did, because your comment is a point-for-point restatement of the article, minus the conclusion.

[ Parent ]
That's what I'm saying (none / 0) (#58)
by Demiurge on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 02:02:45 AM EST

The article has some good points, but as you so brilliantly pointed out, I disagree with the conclusion. It's not about Israel being 'white' or "one of us", you can say the same for Australia or Russia. The difference between Israel and every other country is that Israel is the only Jewish State.

[ Parent ]
Only the media... (5.00 / 1) (#38)
by treat on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:01:32 AM EST

Why is their ire so provoked by Israel, but untroubled by far worse atrocities around the globe?

I'm afraid the answer may simply be that people only become aware of world events from the media. Every day there is a report on Israel. There simply isn't as much coverage of any other such conflict. I can't remember the last article I read about Chechnya or Tibet or dozens of other places I didnt even know had a war going on. But about Israel, every suicide bombing is news.

[ Parent ]

But why so much attention on Israel? (none / 0) (#57)
by Demiurge on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 02:00:17 AM EST

And not on other spots around the globe? That's the question.

[ Parent ]
Because (3.00 / 2) (#65)
by Noam Chompsky on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 03:20:11 AM EST

the preoccupation of academics is academia, and the three things you should know about academia are, Jewish professors, left-wing professors, and a strong anti-Israel bias in the left. So we are discussing University politics is my guess.

The intelligentsia is the source of misery in the modern world, you know. Clever men too stupid to recognize that words are the essential constituent and conduit of evil.

---
"They are in love. Fuck the war."
[ Parent ]

Typical (3.00 / 1) (#108)
by upsilon on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:41:36 AM EST

Hell, no, it's a Jewish thing. The United States has more Jews living here than any other country in the world. As such, it's perfectly natural that they be concerned with events in Israel (where many many American Jews have relatives).

And if the US pays attention to it, large portions of the rest of the Western world will follow suit.
--
Once, I was the King of Spain.
[ Parent ]

semitic on both sides (none / 0) (#130)
by killmepleez on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:49:13 AM EST

That, alone, would not be sufficient. The reason we are, on the whole, obsessed with Israel is:
1) what you said.
2) the large, influential christian population is heaven-bent on forcing, step by step, world events to conform to their apocalyptic prophecies.
Together, these loud and obnoxious people duopolize public discourse in the US. That's why every time Arafat sneezes it goes front-page.

If anyone doubts the hidden number of evangelicals who would cum in their pants to see the Eschaton occur in their lifetime, explain how four books by a celebrity evangelist previously unknown to the mainstream managed to sell 50 million copies of his books in only two years.

For example, from bn.com Reader Reviews: "Fiction? Think again! They call it "Christian Science Fiction." I prefer to call it "Fact Based Fiction." Even without a Bible -- and please don't set that aside -- all one need do is look around. What LaHaye and Jenkins are portraying is not only likely, IT IS INEVITABLE!" This type of thinking is quite common in the fundamentalist circles with which I have frequent contact. Tim Lahaye's ghost-written novels are "Christian Science Fiction"? Poor Mary Baker Eddy is spinning in her grave.

--

__
"I instantly realized that everything in my life that I thought was unfixable was totally fixable - except for having just jumped."
--from "Jumpers" in The New Yorker, October 13, 2003.
[ Parent ]
Heh. (3.50 / 2) (#132)
by br284 on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:52:48 AM EST

"Clever men too stupid to recognize that words are the essential constituent and conduit of evil."

Damn the advent of spoken language! Back to grunting it is for me. Oog ergh hmph!

-Chris

[ Parent ]

"Language is a virus." -William S.Burrou (none / 0) (#273)
by felixrayman on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:19:31 PM EST



Call Donald Rumsfeld and tell him our sorry asses are ready to go home. Tell him to come spend a night in our building. - Pfc. Matthew C. O'Dell

[ Parent ]
Israel is kind of "one of us" (4.33 / 3) (#40)
by Delirium on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:08:19 AM EST

To some extent at least, Israel is seen as a modern western nation, so they're "one of us" from the Westerner's point of view. This makes them amenable to things like lobbying, political pressure, direct appeals to their (mostly educated with Western values) citizenry, etc. Thus it seems "approachable" to the West -- the Israelis do things the West doesn't like, but all things considered they're reasonable people and not entirely unlike us, so we can reason with them (perhaps rather virulently at times).

Turkey, the Philippines, China, etc., on the other hand, are definitely not "one of us." They're crazy foreigners with crazy foreign values, and the average Westerner really has no idea what the hell is going on there, why, or how to possibly fix it. The cultures are in many cases not even remotely similar, the governments aren't as democratic and transparent, etc. Basically your average westerner doesn't understand the problems there fully, and even if they did wouldn't have a great idea how to solve them (and even if they did, wouldn't have an idea how to convince the country to actually use our solution).

[ Parent ]

Which is basically what the article is saying (nt) (none / 0) (#55)
by magney on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:35:31 AM EST


Do I look like I speak for my employer?
[ Parent ]

Except it calls it racism, which it's not [nt] (none / 0) (#63)
by marx on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 02:58:55 AM EST


Join me in the War on Torture: help eradicate torture from the world by holding torturers accountable.
[ Parent ]

It's bigotry, atleast (none / 0) (#138)
by bke on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:07:39 AM EST

And I have to say that I personal have problems seeing a meaningful dividing line between bigotry against other cultures and racism. The mechanism is entierly the same, and there is so much overlap that it seems to me at least futile to make the distinction. It's semantics, that is all.

--
Read, think, spread!
http://www.toad.com/gnu/whatswrong.html
[ Parent ]

I don't really see that (none / 0) (#181)
by Delirium on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:21:51 PM EST

If anything, it's bigotry against the rest of the world -- they're crazy foreign people we don't understand so we avoid thinking about them and their problems as much as possible. Israelis are essentially westerners, so we feel we understand their situation and how to solve it better. I don't see how that's anti-Semitism.

Now there may be some anti-Semitism involved in the criticism of Israel (from people who are inclined to criticize them because of their Jewish character, and so look for any excuse to do so), but I'm not sure it's the primary reason.

[ Parent ]

Here's a brief preview of my new K5 Story: (4.00 / 1) (#82)
by Demiurge on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 05:54:47 AM EST

"How not to abuse the rating system"

In general, I think it's horribly tacky to whine about how people are rating you. But I'm getting sick and tired of seeing posts(mine as well as others) get 1s and 0s from people who either disagree with the previously stated beliefs of the author, or simply disagree with the view put forth in the post.

The rating system is supposed to rate the quality of the argument put forth, it's not supposed to be a scale of the rater's intolerance and close-mindedness.

[ Parent ]
Quality? (none / 0) (#307)
by RoOoBo on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 05:42:59 AM EST

If you think that manipulation of information for trying to state your point is a 'quality argument' then that's fine, let's rate all Demiurge to 5.

I have rated down some of your post, but for example not the one about Jordan discrimination of palestinian (because that is actually quite true). Most arabs governments don't really give a shit about palestinian people.

But this doesn't means that Israel is the 'chosen people' who has never and will never do something wrong.

Israelians sucks, Palestinian sucks, Jews sucks and Islamics sucks too (in fact any religion just plainly sucks in my opinion). But this doesn't mean I rate all those suckins at the same level. And I have some tendency to try to go against the 'strongs' that abuse the 'weaks'. In many parameters Palestinian can be considered far more weak than Israel (from military power, to international - real - support, to amount of money to amount of territory controlled, to whatever you want) so I'm more pro Palestinian than pro Israelian. However I don't like Palestinian terrorism although I could see why do they do it (and it isn't as some pro Israelians seems to think because they are evil). People is pleople, either you, a palestinian, an israeli or me. Just think about what you would think if you were oppresed or if you were beign a terrorist target, or if you had any chance of changing something (palestinian can't hardly vote some 'semi-government' without any kind of power or support from the palestinian terrorist organization but israelians can vote for the government who is controlling their army).



[ Parent ]
Links please (none / 0) (#120)
by salsaman on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:12:04 AM EST

Why no mention in the UN of the Saudi's or Jordan's even worse treatment of Palestinians?

I wasn't aware of this. Can you provide some links to hard evidence of it ? Were there actual government policies involved ?

[ Parent ]

Yes, there were. (4.50 / 2) (#251)
by Demiurge on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 07:51:49 PM EST

Jordan forcefully expelled the PLO and the Palestinians. Of course, they did try to assasinate the king, but then again it's not as if Palestinians haven't been slaughtering Israelis for decades.

[ Parent ]
There are many reasons. Here's one of mine (none / 0) (#380)
by kcbrown on Mon Sep 30, 2002 at 12:26:48 AM EST

So, why is such a disproportionate amount of negative attention, bordering on outright hatred, heaped upon Israel, which is, after all, the only Jewish state. Why no mention in the UN of the Saudi's or Jordan's even worse treatment of Palestinians?
Simple: because I tend to focus on people who are hypocritical first.

The people in Israel are descended from people who have been persecuted horribly in the past, with the Holocaust being the worst of it in recent memory.

If there is any group of people who should be refraining from committing atrocities against another group of people, and who should understand the consequences of oppressing others, it's the Jews in Israel! These are the people who claim the moral high ground because of the persecution they have endured in the past.

But the fact that they are now engaging in actions similar in nature to (if not exactly the same as) the ones they suffered from means that they no longer have the moral high ground. Quite the opposite: these actions make the Jews in Israel hypocrites of the worst kind.

I do not condone oppression of any kind. But if someone engages in it because of some belief system that they're being consistent with, I can at least respect that a little -- I can at least understand that there is a consistent reason for what they're doing, even if I disagree with that reason.

But the Israeli Jews are beneath my contempt for acting in a manner completely inconsistent with their claims of being a persecuted people.

[ Parent ]

"We" (4.22 / 9) (#18)
by J'raxis on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 10:47:49 PM EST

There seem to be plenty of groups that want to boycott China because of Tibet. There seem to be a few wanting to boycott Turkey over the treatment of Kurds.

— The Raxis

[ J’raxis·Com | Liberty in your lifetime ]

What about Russia? (3.33 / 6) (#21)
by Demiurge on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 10:57:07 PM EST

The rather brutal oppression of Chechens receive next to no oppression in the media, or concern from 'activists'.

I think you raise some interesting points, but your conclusion is flawed. It's not because Israel is 'white'. It has more to do with how Israel is the only Jewish state.

What are you implying? (none / 0) (#88)
by jcolter on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 06:30:53 AM EST

I for one am very concerned with the Chechen situation.  However, I think the you are trying to make this point:

iGrrrl has it backwards.  Our anger at Israel has do to the fact that we hold them in lower esteem because of their Sematic identity. Contrasting with the Russians whom we identify with do to our perceived common White identity.

iGrrrl maintains that politically motivated disruptions seem to only be seriously entertained in cultures that we identify with (more or less).  You say she is wrong in her assumptions due to our culture (at least amongst certain groups) hating Jews.

Correct?

[ Parent ]

I thought about that (4.00 / 1) (#102)
by iGrrrl on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:16:22 AM EST

For most residents of the US, Russia is the Other. During the Reagan years we heard a lot of rhetoric about the Evil Empire, etc. We do not, generally, assume that Russia or other former Soviet countries are "like us."

--
You cannot have a reasonable conversation with someone who regards other people as toys to be played with. localroger
remove apostrophe for email.
[ Parent ]

Chechens (5.00 / 4) (#131)
by br284 on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:50:15 AM EST

Before September 11: the Chechens were freedom fighters against the bad Russians. Americans used Chechen fighting as a diplomatic tool against the Russians. Since Americans like freedom fighters, "poor oppressed Chechens".

Post September 11: the Chechens are fighting alongside al Quaeda in Chechnya. Russians say, "I told you so" and used Chechen fighting as a diplomatic tool against the Americans. Since Americans hate terrorists, "damn extremist Chechens".

It's pretty simple why there is little media coverage about the Chechens nowadays.

-Chris

[ Parent ]

Israel vs. Russia (none / 0) (#170)
by louboy on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:54:08 PM EST

I think it's because we expect MORE from Israel. They are supposedly a Western democracy, and so other Westerners hold them to a high standard. Russia, though primarily white, is only marginally part of the "West." Chechnya might as well be the Congo. Israel, though, is part of the "Western Democracy Club," and so we expect more from them.

[ Parent ]
Visibility (none / 0) (#206)
by aprentic on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 03:33:26 PM EST

There are plenty of activists who are concerned about the oppression of the Chechens, and the Tibetans, and the Taiwanese, and Indian Muslims.
But nobody ever defends the actions of the brutal oppressors in these cases.

The reasons you hear more debate about Israel is that whenever someone complains about the IDF killing a bunch of civilians there's a bunch of people ready to make all kinds of excuses for their actions.

[ Parent ]

Important note (3.66 / 12) (#24)
by medham on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 11:00:18 PM EST

Just because there are not calls for divestiture in other countries that abuse human rights does not imply that divesting in Israel is wrong. If this is a good thing for universities to do with countries that abuse human rights, then any time they do it is a positive step towards the ultimate goal.

Of course, there is no chance that any U.S. university will do such a thing.

Israel is, along with Egypt and Colombia, the largest recipient of U.S. military aid, and is thus deservedly high-visibility. It's no coincidence that all of these countries have poor (Israel) to monstrous (Egypt and Colombia) human rights records.

The real 'medham' has userid 6831.

Not "It's wrong" but "They're wrong (3.00 / 3) (#29)
by Otter on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 11:22:20 PM EST

Just because there are not calls for divestiture in other countries that abuse human rights does not imply that divesting in Israel is wrong.

No, but it does point out that the motivation for singling out Israel comes from a timeless hostility that is so deeply ingrained that most of the people involved are completely oblivious to what they're doing. This is a) an important issue in and of itself and b) casts serious doubt on the ability of those people to distinguish right and wrong on this topic.

It's no coincidence that all of these countries have poor (Israel) to monstrous (Egypt and Colombia) human rights records.

First, the recipients of the most US military aid, by far, are Western Europe, South Korea and Japan. The countries you mention are the ones that defend themselves, with the US picking up soem of the cost. Second, no, it's no coincidence -- those countries are face to face with some serious social pathologies and can't afford the niceties of, say, a Sweden. (Not to dismiss some things Israel does that are misguided or flat out wrong, fundamental problems in Colombia or the flat-out wretchedness of Egypt. But you have problem and cause backwards.)

[ Parent ]

Well (3.50 / 6) (#35)
by medham on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 11:41:25 PM EST

The "timeless hostility" you refer to is almost certainly the European phenomenon of anti-Semitism. Problem is, though, that criticism of the policies of the Israeli-state are not categorically anti-Semitic. In fact, I'd say that almost none of the people who support divestiture hate Jews. It's blood-libellous to imply otherwise.

Your other remarks are comically inaccurate, as I'm sure would be obvious if you were to stop to think about them. Do you really think Japan, with its enormous GNP, gets more military aid than Israel?

The real 'medham' has userid 6831.
[ Parent ]

"Blood-libellous" is there to bait me, i (4.00 / 3) (#42)
by Otter on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:39:18 AM EST

Problem is, though, that criticism of the policies of the Israeli-state are not categorically anti-Semitic. In fact, I'd say that almost none of the people who support divestiture hate Jews.

Remember what the topic was? Of course disagreement with Israeli policies isn't intrinsically anti-semitic. I disagree with many of them, almost all Israelis, be they Jewish, Muslim, Christian or Druze, disagree with many of them and it's perfectly valid to argue with all of them.

Criticizing Israel in a frothing rage, describing it in outlandish terms and calling for recriminations vastly out of proportionate to the standards that would be applied to any other country -- that is a consequence of anti-semitism. I agree that virtually all the advocates of divestiture can sincerely claim that they don't "hate" Jews. So can the people at Amnesty International and the British journalists who cranked out lie after lie about mass graves in Jenin, the Belgians indicting Ariel Sharon for war crimes and the folks snidely throwing around accusations of blood libel as though it applies to me, not to the Egyptian government newspaper that just this week was claiming that Jews drink the blood of Arab children. That doesn't change the fact that they're in the grip of thousands of years of singling out and marginalizing Jews.

Sorry if the truth hurts. That's just what it is.

Your other remarks are comically inaccurate, as I'm sure would be obvious if you were to stop to think about them.

Yeah, I wrote that with one eye on the Simpsons. Let's try it again. Israel gets $3B a year to enable it to defend itself. That's called "US military aid". South Korea has its direct defense picked up by the US for $25B a year, plus tremendous human effort. That's called "US military spending". Same for Japan ($20B) and Western Europe ($100B). (These numbers are from memory, and may be off but are close.)

My point remains: it's a lot easier to score points with NGO's when hundreds of thousands of US troops are there keeping the peace at their own expense than if you have to do it yourself.

[ Parent ]

Yes (3.00 / 2) (#48)
by medham on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:03:36 AM EST

Criminal indeed for those Belgians to rescind their prosecution of a world-recognized war criminal because of political pressure.

U.S. troops are in Asia to maintain U.S. hegemony, not for the "defense" of the countries. Japan could easily defend itself and South Korea against North Korea, China, and Russia if it so chose. You are correct that there is no substantial difference between the motivations for aid, however.

If you replace "Israel" with any country, and "anti-Semitism" with "anti-whatever," whatever substance there is to your point remains--leading me to conclude that it's pointless.

The real 'medham' has userid 6831.
[ Parent ]

World recognized war criminal. (4.00 / 3) (#56)
by sonovel on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:45:59 AM EST

So what exacly made him so much worse than, say, Assad, or Hussein (Saddam or the king of Jordan, take your pick)?

Or is it not that he is really worse, just that there is something else about him and his nation?

Heck, why doesn't anyone give a damn about the actual people who committed the crime? Some of them are leaders in the Lebenese government today!

Pick a theory --

Israel is held to different standards due to anti-semitism.

Israel is held to different standards due to its close relationship to the U.S.

Israel is held to different standards due to the belief that other middle eastern nations can't be held to the same ethical standards as the "western" Israel.

Any other theories?

The fact is that Israel is no worse and far better than many other countries that get far less criticism from the rest of the world. Many nations are far more opressive, murderous, and expansionistic, but recieve far less criticism from the world press and even the U.N. Many other conflics have killed far far more people over the last several years and decades. Israel is a special case in the U.N. and is denied rights that all other nations have there.

Explaining this is left as an excercise for the reader. The explinations I can come up with range from ugly to uglier.


[ Parent ]

I wish there were a raised ebrow smiley (4.50 / 2) (#128)
by br284 on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:44:24 AM EST

I'm wondering how you think it is possible for the Japanese to stand against the Russians and Chinese without American aid. Granted, I doubt that Russia or China will be invading Japan anytime soon, but if they did and Japan was the sole state to have to stand against either one, say goodbye to Pokemon. There is no way that Japan in their current form could resist either military.

-Chris

[ Parent ]

Japan (5.00 / 5) (#134)
by CodeWright on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:54:44 AM EST

Is widely recognized as the third most powerful nuclear power (after the US and former Soviet Union). Although the Japanese do not have a nuclear arsenal established, they have stockpiled 400 tons of weapons grade uranium and plutonium, along with all the difficult to find parts for warhead assembly (zirconium tubes, etc).

Japan has already demonstrated the capability of building interplanetary probes (thus, globally capable ICBMs -- better than China) and has an indigenous microelectronics industry (thus, the capability of building the finely tuned trigger assemblies required for third stage atomic devices -- also called thermonuclear or hydrogen bomb)

These things all add up to why Japan is called the world's pre-eminent "Virtual Nuclear Power". It is surmised that they would be capable of rapidly assembling between 200-1200 warheads and delivery systems within 6-12 months (which would put them on a strategic par with US or Russia).

WMDs aside, Japan also possesses one of the pre-eminent fielded MBT (main battle tank) designs, and their own F-16J squadrons. Neither Russia nor China has a prayer of conventional invasion against Japan (for the same reason that China hasn't invaded Taiwan -- sufficient ground force to effect a beachhead cannot survive the crossing of the Formosa Straits or the Sea of Japan).

--
"Humanity's combination of reckless stupidity and disrespect for the mistakes of others is, I think, what makes us great." --Parent ]
Muchos Gracias (none / 0) (#147)
by br284 on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:30:56 AM EST

Thanks for the information. And here I was thinking that all the Japanese did was make electronics and pop-laden animated movies. *ducks*

One question that I have about the weapons and military might that you've described is how much of that is due to American aid. Did the Japanese find the way to the bomb and other weapons themselves, or was it handed to them in pieces by the Americans with a manual to put it together?

-Chris

[ Parent ]

During World War II (5.00 / 3) (#183)
by CodeWright on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:38:16 PM EST

The Japanese had an atom bomb project themselves. Their principle heavy water extraction and uranium purification sites were actually located in Korea, where the Soviet Union captured them in the closing days of the war. The Soviet capture of the Japanese atom bomb project infrastructure was actually a tremendous leg up for the Russians -- since the US had already captured most of the German atom bomb scientists.
Furthermore, near the end of the war, once the Germans had given up on producing their own atomic weapons, they began shipping their fissionable material en masse via submarine to the Japanese (who were closer to being production ready, but had a much smaller reserve of fissionable materials, having started later).

The principle reason the Germans stopped developing the bomb was that the British and Americans made sabotage of the German hydrogen bomb project a top priority (note that the US did not have a functional hydrogen bomb until well into the 50s). The bulk of the German heavy water reserves were located in Norway and destroyed by British bomber missions early in the war.

In the post-war era, the United States dictated (after the Japanese unconditional surrender) that the Japanese had to foreswear any standing military. This was later amended to permit the Japanese to have a "civil defense force" whose role would be a combination of the US Coast Guard, National Guard, and Merchant Marine. This new Japanese civil defense organization was imaginatively (and euphemistically) named the "Self Defense Force".

Part of the US effort to de-militarize the Japanese was the redirection of their industry into "non-military" endeavors. The atomic know-how of the Japanese was encouraged in the direction of contained power generation as opposed to the uncontained kind (bombs). Similarly, the Japanese shipbuilding industry that had produced the world's largest battleships and carriers was re-focused on building the world's first supertankers (to feed growing US demand for oil).

In the fight against Communism, the US found a staunch ally in Japan -- the Japanese military-industrial complex had been left intact by MacArthur as the mechanism by which US policy was implemented in Japan. By remaining in power, the decidedly fascist nature of the quasi-feudal military leadership was adamantly opposed to the creeping growth of Communism.

Thus, although the basic industrial know-how already existed in Japan, there was very little restriction on the free passage of information between the US and Japan -- leading to parallel development of advanced nuclear and electronic capabilities in both countries.

Between 1945 and the present, the SDF has evolved into a modern standing army, although with public relations overatures to the effect that it is merely a civil emergency response force (note: this civil defense force has the second most advanced main battle tank in the world, inter-regional ballistic missiles, AEGIS-like destroyers and light cruisers, satellite recon, diesel-electric hunter/killer subs, etc). Until the late 90s, the Japanese were comfortable basking in the military might of their US allies and didn't publicly flaunt the might of their own military force. However, by the late 90s, the Japanese began "preparedness exercises" throughout the Pacific, demonstrating the functional nature of their standing military to their neighbors (read: Korea, China, Russia, and the uS).

In one sense, the reason that China is reluctant to initiate any conflict in Asia is that they know Japan is just itching for a good excuse to begin "peacekeeping" in the Southeast Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere.

If this didn't answer your questions or if you want further clarification, feel free to post a reply and I'll see what I can do (including references; the above was all from memory).

--
"Humanity's combination of reckless stupidity and disrespect for the mistakes of others is, I think, what makes us great." --Parent ]
Thanks again (none / 0) (#196)
by br284 on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 02:24:23 PM EST

I think you've answered all of my questions more than I expected. I knew that Japan was an economic power, but from all the news I'd been reading, I had assumed that it depended on the USA for defense against agressors like China and Russia. I guess they do a good job spinning press that they only have a smaller force than in reality -- great strategic thinking.

Once more, thanks. This is the stuff that I come here for.

-Chris

[ Parent ]

That's bullshit. (3.00 / 3) (#71)
by delmoi on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 03:47:59 AM EST

Criticizing Israel in a frothing rage, describing it in outlandish terms ... is a consequence of anti-semitism

Is it? Or maybe it's just that isreal is in the news every day and people are exposed to whats going on there?

Claming that anyone angry at isreal and no other countries is due to anti-semitism is an argument that makes me physicaly ill

(actualy, thats probably the caffine I took to do my homework... why am I on k5? ah whatever.)
--
"'argumentation' is not a word, idiot." -- thelizman
[ Parent ]
"The European phenomenon of anti-Semitism?&qu (4.66 / 3) (#175)
by seb on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:03:22 PM EST

"It doesn't happen here" is a dangerous opinion to have.  

Antisemitism in the US

Anti-Semitism in the Arab world

(Both from the Anti-Defamation League)

[ Parent ]

I'm sorry (1.00 / 2) (#285)
by medham on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 12:55:05 AM EST

For ignoring the rampant anti-semitism practiced by the indigenous peoples of this continent when the Europeans came.

The real 'medham' has userid 6831.
[ Parent ]

Confused (none / 0) (#372)
by seb on Sun Sep 29, 2002 at 12:42:45 PM EST

Hmm, so I misunderstood your intent there - but I'm curious as to why specifying it as a "European" phenomenon is relevant to your argument...?

[ Parent ]
Okay. My Take. (3.92 / 13) (#28)
by /dev/trash on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 11:10:50 PM EST

Anti-Semitic - killing/herding Jews into camps.
Not Anti-Semitic - criticizing Israel's politics.

---
Updated 02/20/2004
New Site
How clever of you. (2.77 / 9) (#52)
by Demiurge on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:20:52 AM EST

Not anti-semitic - Raising objection to Israeli policies in a clear and thoughful manner.

Anti-semitic - "those fuckin Zio-nazis deserve everything they get i hope hamas kills every last one".

[ Parent ]
isn't that actualy anti-zionist? (nt) (3.50 / 2) (#70)
by delmoi on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 03:43:57 AM EST


--
"'argumentation' is not a word, idiot." -- thelizman
[ Parent ]
Allow me to explain something to you... (2.66 / 6) (#80)
by Demiurge on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 05:44:54 AM EST

Zionism is the belief that the Jewish people are entitled to live freely, without persecution, in a homeland of their own. It does not state that Jews should rule the Middle East, it does not state that Jews are superior to Arabs.

There are those, mostly anti-semitic, who attempt to distort and pervert the usage of the word. Claiming a Zionist is a racist and imperialist is as sensible as claiming that every feminist is a man-hating lesbian.

In the present day, unless you're an orthodox Jew who opposes Zionism because you believe only God can rebuild Israel, to call yourself an anti-Zionist is nothing other than using a weasel-word for anti-semite.

[ Parent ]
homeland of their own (4.00 / 2) (#85)
by jcolter on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 06:13:42 AM EST

There in lies the crux of the problem right?  Obviously, being the land is contested by different groups the issue of the present conflict is not so crystal clear.

Could I in a modern sense be a Zionist if I felt that perhaps the relocation of Jews to another land was appropriate?  I don't think so.  At this day and age, what we are discussing is who gets to occupy the land in that Mid Eastern region.  

[ Parent ]

Entitlement (3.00 / 1) (#109)
by lb008d on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:42:57 AM EST

Zionism is the belief that the Jewish people are entitled to live freely, without persecution, in a homeland of their own

Why should any religious/ethnic/social group feel entitled to a "homeland"? Is this belief soly based on that ancient book?

"Kuro5hin: politics and pretension, from the $3,000 leather recliners on the hill overlooking the trenches."DarkZero
[ Parent ]

No (2.50 / 2) (#112)
by Peaker on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:54:42 AM EST

Its based on the fact that Jews are otherwise persecuted, and thus dream to have their own homeland free of persecution.

Also note that the vast majority of other religions and ethnic groups have their homelands where they constitute a majority.

[ Parent ]

May you point me out ... (3.00 / 1) (#117)
by Tezcatlipoca on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:03:12 AM EST

... to the Budhist homeland please?

And although it is understandable that one wants to live free of prosecution, is it reasonable to do so at the expense of the same safeguards for others?

0wr F4th3R, wh0 0wnz h34\/3n, j00 r0x0rs!
M4y 4|| 0wr b4s3 s0m3d4y Bl0ng t0 j00!
M4y j00 0wn 34rth juss |1|3 j00 0wn h34\/3n.
G1v3 us th1s
[ Parent ]

Budhists and Palestinians (3.00 / 3) (#119)
by Peaker on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:09:40 AM EST

Budhists are in the minority of religions/clutures/ethnic groups that do not have their own homeland.

"Palestinian" is a new word from the late 60's, and Israel was built in a land where there were a bunch of arab tribes, and not a nation's "home land". Their ethnicity was arab, their religion was Islam and Christianity. They had plenty of Islamic/Christian arab home lands to choose from, so Israel's choice of a location didn't really displace an only homeland of any other religion or ethnic group.

[ Parent ]

um, OK, how about where you live, then? (5.00 / 3) (#168)
by ethereal on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:52:00 PM EST

Surely there are plenty of places for people of your cultural/religious affiliation to go, right? You won't care if we build a new Zion or Palestine right where you live, then. I'm sure you'll be happy to give up where you live, and where your ancestors have lived for many years, just so that an ethnic group that you don't belong to (and may, in fact, have some longstanding disagreements with) can have a homeland. And the really funny thing is that this decision is being made by some Brits or Yanks far away in order to satisfy their vague strategic goals for the region, and they happen to think that where you live is more somebody else's home than it is yours. Because hey, we're all entitled to a homeland - but where you live right now isn't yours, so move along, buddy.

The whole homeland argument is ridiculous on its face; it's indefensible to displace whole populations just so some other population can feel that their religious/cultural destiny is somewhat more fulfilled. I'm sorry that the Jews were persecuted, but that doesn't give the world the right to hand them somebody else's land or entitle them to any sympathy when the previous occupants aren't too excited about having to either leave, or else be second-class citizens of Zion.

That being said, they're not going anywhere now, so all parties should start learning how to live together. But they shouldn't defend their past mistakes on the nebulous grounds of "homeland"; that just leads to a game of historical one-upsmanship.

--

Stand up for your right to not believe: Americans United for Separation of Church and State
[ Parent ]

Reply (5.00 / 1) (#230)
by Peaker on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 05:33:47 PM EST

Surely there are plenty of places for people of your cultural/religious affiliation to go, right? You won't care if we build a new Zion or Palestine right where you live, then. I'm sure you'll be happy to give up where you live, and where your ancestors have lived for many years, just so that an ethnic group that you don't belong to (and may, in fact, have some longstanding disagreements with) can have a homeland.

Actually I'm Israeli so this doesn't really apply to me :)

I'm sorry that the Jews were persecuted, but that doesn't give the world the right to hand them somebody else's land or entitle them to any sympathy when the previous occupants aren't too excited about having to either leave, or else be second-class citizens of Zion.

Since there was no country in Israel, just a British mandate, and since nobody was "kicked out", but land was actually bought, this doesn't apply. Only when the British left did the UN proposition to divide Palestine into two states was offerred. Until that proposition all Jewish lands were bought via money, not displacing anyone.

Ofcourse when those Jews declared their independence in their bought land, the local arab tribes got upset and along with all arab neighbours, declared war on the new Jewish state. It is only then, that the first lands were taken by force. Only when the arabs declared: "Your homeland, although it is on legimitiately bought territories, and formally accepted by the UN as a Jewish homeland, is not acceptable to us, because we want the control of this entire land", only then was anyone displaced, and not to "make room" but as part of war.

[ Parent ]

Nice lies (3.00 / 2) (#240)
by linca on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 06:50:30 PM EST

Actually I'm Israeli so this doesn't really apply to me :) /

I thought the whole point of Israel was that in other parts of the worlds,some people wanted to seize what little pieces of homeland the jews had, through killing them all? This applies quite much to Israelis. That is their claim to legitimity.

/Ofcourse when those Jews declared their independence in their bought land

Of course jews owned only 7 per cent of current day Israel, and the UN proposal gave them more than half. Jews didn't declare independence on "their bought land", and indeed, had to boot many an Arab from their land - even the one given to them by the UN.


[ Parent ]

Learn to read and write (1.66 / 3) (#263)
by Peaker on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:22:11 PM EST

When I said "This doesn't apply to me", I was referring to his "What if you were kicked out of your homeland because you have other homelands to go to?". Well, it doesn't apply because I don't have other homelands to go to.

Jews owned just 7 percent, but the UN had given them a lot more than that, to reflect the amount of Jews in the area and the population size change trend.

Ofcourse, the Jews did not have time to even set up the exact borders for the new state as they were attacked on the day after its independence was declared.

[ Parent ]

How generous of the UN (N/T) (3.00 / 1) (#272)
by felixrayman on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:06:45 PM EST



Call Donald Rumsfeld and tell him our sorry asses are ready to go home. Tell him to come spend a night in our building. - Pfc. Matthew C. O'Dell

[ Parent ]
OK, didn't see that one coming. (5.00 / 1) (#281)
by ethereal on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 12:16:54 AM EST

It figures that I would have to argue with an actual Israeli. :)

Although I don't think that really changes my argument that much; I still don't think anyone's entitled to take a homeland from others by force, if the others are just as established there. Real living people, of whatever preexisting cultural or religious background, are more important than the fulfillment of a nationalist dream, no matter how well-intentioned.

I will point out that the British had made promises for Palestine that inevitably influenced the eventual UN decision; it's not like the Brits didn't have any say in how things turned out. IIRC they over-promised the same land, creating more problems than they solved.

And, I can't really fault someone who, having lived on their land and not sold it to proto-Israelis (see other posts - it wasn't all sold), wasn't about to turn it over on the bequest of the UN either. I'm not sure you want to defend Israel on the strength of "following UN decisions", anyway - there are plenty of UN resolutions that the Israelis haven't lived up to.

It's a big mess, caused by a lot of people with decidedly little empathy for the average guy on the ground. Arabs did bad things, Israelis did bad things, and they're both still at it. I just hate to see "homeland" used as an excuse for it, that's all. Just admit that in the past there were some problems acknowledging the basic humanity of the other side, and try emphasizing that humanity a little more in the future.

--

Stand up for your right to not believe: Americans United for Separation of Church and State
[ Parent ]

Irrelevant (5.00 / 1) (#310)
by zocky on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 07:27:35 AM EST

Although I do agree that after 50 years and a couple of generation Israel has the right to survive, I can't agree with "the land was legally bought" argument.

Ownership of land doesn't have much to do with the right to a state. What's more, it's completely irrelevant to it. Imagine some guy in Texas (or in Negev, for that matter) buying a 100 km2 and declaring it an independent state. He would either be laughed at or crushed militarilly.

Note that Serbs actually owned over 60% of land in Bosnia, where they constituted about 30-35% of the population. That didn't get them a homeland on 60% of the territory. Should it have?

Should rich people be able to buy land and procclaim independence?

p.s.: Serbs in Bosnia didn't own most of the land because they were rich, but because virtually all Muslims (35-40% of population) lived in cities, so the land was mostly owned by Serbs and Croats.

---
I mean, if coal can be converted to energy, then couldn't diamonds?
[ Parent ]

you could say its Tibet (NT) (none / 0) (#156)
by zzzeek on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:11:52 PM EST



[ Parent ]
India (Buda didn't live in Tibet) (NT) (none / 0) (#306)
by RoOoBo on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 05:17:02 AM EST



[ Parent ]
Move to the US then for a homeland (4.00 / 1) (#121)
by lb008d on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:12:55 AM EST

Seriously - there are more Jews here anyway. Or does the religious significance of their current location have something to do with it?

"Kuro5hin: politics and pretension, from the $3,000 leather recliners on the hill overlooking the trenches."DarkZero
[ Parent ]

"More Jews" (2.66 / 3) (#165)
by Peaker on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:34:19 PM EST

But those Jews do not constitute a majority and therefore may be subject to persecution.

The population size does not matter, the ratio does.

[ Parent ]

So really what it means (4.00 / 1) (#314)
by lb008d on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 10:52:16 AM EST

is that Jews want a racially and religiously segregated place they can live in. Even though that notion sounds a bit isolationist, or worse, racist, why don't Zionists just come out and say it?

Or would their rhetoric start to sound similar to those in the US who want a segregated homeland of their own?

"Kuro5hin: politics and pretension, from the $3,000 leather recliners on the hill overlooking the trenches."DarkZero
[ Parent ]

Not quite true. (5.00 / 3) (#116)
by Tezcatlipoca on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:00:50 AM EST

Zionism, as first envisaged, did not care about Arabs because it practically did not acknowledge they where in Palestine-Israel in the first place.
Read this interesting article about it.
If you can, read also The Economist article entitled "A blueprint of Israel, dreaming of Altneuland".
Basically the funders of the Zionist movement saw themselves as civilizers, but civilizers in the sense that XIX century colonial powers understood civilizing: we conquer, we opress, we kill (Belgium in Congo) but, oh yes, we civilize.
I don't know what name to give To completely ignore hundreds of thousends of people when you are building or planning to build a new nation. Racism is too strong a term? OK, what about cynicism, ignorance, prepotence. Choose the word, I dare you to find a postive one.

0wr F4th3R, wh0 0wnz h34\/3n, j00 r0x0rs!
M4y 4|| 0wr b4s3 s0m3d4y Bl0ng t0 j00!
M4y j00 0wn 34rth juss |1|3 j00 0wn h34\/3n.
G1v3 us th1s
[ Parent ]
Wrong (5.00 / 1) (#249)
by Demiurge on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 07:46:46 PM EST

Early on, there were even many Arab intellectuals who identified with Zionism. Arabs weren't at the forefront of Zionist thought because there was no conflict with them, not because they were considered inferior.

The idea that Zionism is somehow racist or imperialist is a complete and utter lie propagated by its enemies. Zionism is, just like Arab nationalism, an outgrowth of the belief in self-government and self-determination. It is, if anything, anti-colonial.

[ Parent ]
Did you read "Altneuland"? (none / 0) (#391)
by Tezcatlipoca on Mon Sep 30, 2002 at 06:45:51 PM EST

All is there. The enemies of Zionism get enough ammunition from the Father of the movement....

0wr F4th3R, wh0 0wnz h34\/3n, j00 r0x0rs!
M4y 4|| 0wr b4s3 s0m3d4y Bl0ng t0 j00!
M4y j00 0wn 34rth juss |1|3 j00 0wn h34\/3n.
G1v3 us th1s
[ Parent ]
Another possibility (2.75 / 4) (#34)
by chemista on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 11:28:29 PM EST

One of the things Israel and South Africa have in common, and all the other conditions you described do not, is a strong economy (or at least South Africa's economy was strong until severe mismanagement by the currently governing coalitions). It isn't at all irrational to expect countries with more financial stability being put to the fire more than those that do not.

Having said that, Israel/Palestine seems to be wholly intractable -- at some point, someone will have to provide somewhere for the displaced Palestinians to go.
Stop reminding people about the overvalued stock market! I'm depending on that overvalued stock market to retire some day! - porkchop_d_clown
Displace (3.00 / 1) (#305)
by RoOoBo on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 05:11:37 AM EST

Having said that, Israel/Palestine seems to be wholly intractable -- at some point, someone will have to provide somewhere for the displaced Palestinians to go

For example to their home? It isn't as any part (included Palestinian in Israel) is that much interested in what happens to Palestinian displaced outside Israel (Syria, Jordan, ...).

But being a troll I could say that Jews are more used to 'be moved around' than Palestinian so perhaps they should be who for someone should provide somewhere to go.

Or maybe just someone could try (something that is almost unimaginable it seems) to get both living together.



[ Parent ]
Is there a doubt? (2.75 / 8) (#36)
by godix on Thu Sep 26, 2002 at 11:42:59 PM EST

Of course the 'west' is racist. I'm surpised there's even a doubt about it. If there is anyone out there who doesn't think the west is racist, answer these questions for me:
What country controled the american colonies before they became the US?
What country controlled Chad when it was a colony?
Can you name the leader of England, America, or Germany?
Can you name the leader of Pakastan, Taiwan, or the Phillapines?
Do you have reasonably well informed opinions of Americas foreign policy?
Do you have reasonably well informed opinions of South Africas policy?
Off the top of your head how many countries in Europe and North America can you name?
Off the top of your head how many countries in Africa and the Pacific islands can you name?
Does an English subject have the right to own a firearm?
Does a Micronesian citizen have the right to own a firearm?
Did you realize the micronesia question was a slight trick because Micronesia is an American protectorate?
How many roman emperors can you name?
How many Zulu chiefs can you name?

Starting to see a pattern in the questions you can and can't answer easily?

On the other hand, it's not just the west. If you asked an African these exact same questions I doubt they'd be able to answer any except those that directly affected them.


Love, like god, only exist at orgasm and agnoy


Pakastan and the Phillapines (3.00 / 3) (#45)
by DarkZero on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:49:16 AM EST

Can you name the leader of Pakastan, Taiwan, or the Phillapines?

I'm not aware of who the leaders of Pakastan and the Phillapines are, but the leader of Pakistan (an ACTUAL COUNTRY) is General Pervez Musharraf and the leader of the Philippines (yet another ACTUAL COUNTRY) is President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

Before you criticize the West's knowledge of the rest of the world, you should learn how to spell your criticism, as well as the names of some of the countries that you mention in that criticism. "Pakistan" isn't even PRONOUNCED "Pakastan" in either the West or in Pakistan itself. You may also want to learn about the apostrophe.

[ Parent ]

Re: Pakastan and the Phillapines (none / 0) (#59)
by blakdogg on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 02:09:19 AM EST

Despite your attack on his/her grammar and/or spelling an interesting point is made. A greater emphasis is placed on europe than other continents. And this bias will obviously influence our thinking
Woe be onto the United Nations, there nothing but a front.
[ Parent ]
Pruhnunce whut? (none / 0) (#62)
by yami on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 02:38:31 AM EST

Like many Midwesterners I pronounce "Pakistan" with a schwa - virtually indistinguishable from the way I would pronounce "Pakastan" "Pakustan" or "Pakostan". I also say "Phill-uh-peens". Shitting upon middle vowels like that is a time-honored family tradition.

Before you criticize another user's hasty typing, you should meticulously research all your hyperbole. That way you'll really impress the K5 chicks.

___
I'm wanking harder than you are.
[ Parent ]

hrm... (none / 0) (#69)
by delmoi on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 03:43:06 AM EST

Are you trying to say Taiwan is not an ACTUAL COUNTRY?

:P
--
"'argumentation' is not a word, idiot." -- thelizman
[ Parent ]
Race (4.00 / 3) (#49)
by marx on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:07:20 AM EST

What do any of these questions have to do with race?

Here are my questions:

What is the name of the prime minister of Great Britain?
What is the name of the prime minister of Norway?

What conclusion can you draw from your answers?

Join me in the War on Torture: help eradicate torture from the world by holding torturers accountable.
[ Parent ]

Zulu chiefs (4.25 / 4) (#54)
by gibichung on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:30:15 AM EST

Until the beginning of the 19th century, the Zulu were a minor tribe that never numbered more than a few thousand. During their short independence, they only had a handful of leaders.

As far as I know, I can name a greater percentage of Zulu than of Romans.

-----
"No man is above the law and no man is below it; nor do we ask any man's permission when we require him to obey it." -- Theodore Roosevelt
[ Parent ]

Yawn. (4.66 / 6) (#68)
by delmoi on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 03:40:46 AM EST

What country colonized India?
What country first colonized California?

Can you name the leader of Pakistan, Iraq, Or China?
Can you name the leader of Luxemburg, Portugal, or Norway?

Do you have an opinion on the new Zealand's foreign policy?
Do you have an opinion on India's foreign policy?

How much religious freedom exists in China?
How much in Australia? (Less then you would think...)

How many Chinese dynasties can you name?
How many kings of Poland can you name?

See a pattern?
--
"'argumentation' is not a word, idiot." -- thelizman
[ Parent ]
Australia [OT] (none / 0) (#77)
by Ubiq on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 05:05:06 AM EST

How much in Australia? (Less then you would think...)

Interesting, how is religious freedom restricted in Australia?



[ Parent ]
It's not (4.00 / 1) (#127)
by goonie on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:41:27 AM EST

Australia has at least as much religious freedom as the US. Probably more, in that Australians, even outside the big cities, don't die of shock if you profess to be an atheist.

Within a couple of kilometres of me (admittedly I'm fairly close to the centre of Melbourne), there's Anglican, Catholic, Greek Orthodox, Ukrainian Orthodox, Ukrainian Catholic, Uniting (a merger of the Presbyterians, Lutherans, Methodists and somebody else IIRC), churches catering to the Chinese community (not sure what denomination they are), mosques, Kingdom Halls, and that's only the ones I've seen. There's no nearby synagogues AFAIK, but that's because the Jewish community is largely based in a suburb the other side of the city. There's a decent size Indian community, but they don't seem to have places of worship here (don't know much about Hinduism, but they seem to have temples elsewhere so presumably there must be one or two here). It's pretty much live and let live. Once or twice there has been occasional attacks on mosques and synagogues (that I can recall seeing on the news). That occurs everywhere, including the US. The cops protect both so people can worship in safety.

Governments fund private religious schools in Australia (something I object to, because I'd prefer *no* funding of private schooling), but they fund everybody. That includes Christian schools of a variety of denominations, Jewish schools, and more recently Islamic schools.

We have anti-discrimination laws banning people being restricted from employment and other services because of their religion.

Now, whilst we don't have the same constitutional guarantees of freedom of religion that the US has, I can't see what more we could do in practical terms to let people believe in whatever combination of gods they choose.

[ Parent ]

Quite the contrary (none / 0) (#379)
by mta on Sun Sep 29, 2002 at 11:42:09 PM EST

How much in Australia? (Less then you would think...)

Freedom of religion is one of only 2 rights given to Australians in the Constitution! So I'd argue it was treated with great importance by the writers of the constitution, and hence the political system which is bound by this document.

The 2nd right is freedom of speech.

[ Parent ]
Use the force, Bruce. (none / 0) (#421)
by Zathrus on Wed Oct 02, 2002 at 07:17:37 AM EST

"Interesting, how is religious freedom restricted in Australia?"
I thinks he/she is referring to the refusal of the census department to acknowledge Jedi Knight as a valid religion...


"like a Mazda commercial with that creepy "zoom zoom" kid that goes on too long." - Filthy Critic
[ Parent ]
What the pattern indicates (none / 0) (#238)
by Sloppy on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 06:27:40 PM EST

I don't see how the pattern of knowledge indicates anything in regards to racism. I don't know the name of New Zealand's leader(s?), either. Does that mean I'm anti-sheep?
"RSA, 2048, seeks sexy young entropic lover, for several clock cycles of prime passion..."
[ Parent ]
One difference (4.43 / 16) (#39)
by RelliK on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:06:38 AM EST

is that in the case of Israel's oppression of Palestinians, US is actively supporting that apartheid regime, so something can be done about: stop supporting it. That is not the case with Tamils in Sri Lanka, of Kurds in Turkey, of Tibetans in China
---
Under capitalism man exploits man, under communism it's just the opposite.
Another difference (1.80 / 5) (#53)
by sonovel on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:25:24 AM EST

is that in the case of Palestinian murder of Israeli noncombatants and extrajudicial death penalties on fellow Palestinians, European nations are actively supporting that murderous dictatorship, so something can be done about: stop supporting it.


[ Parent ]
Awww, how cute. (2.66 / 3) (#162)
by sonovel on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:29:29 PM EST

I guess I hurt widle Wellik's feewings!

[ Parent ]
you are a troll (3.00 / 2) (#210)
by RelliK on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 03:49:18 PM EST

see here. European nations are certainly not providing any support for Palestinians. They may grumble once in a while, but at the end of the day they tacitly accept the injustice, thanks to the pressure from US.
---
Under capitalism man exploits man, under communism it's just the opposite.
[ Parent ]
No support? (2.50 / 2) (#216)
by sonovel on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 04:12:11 PM EST

Bullshit.

European nations provide lots of money and other support to Arafat and the PA.

[ Parent ]

Nice Reply, MrY. (3.00 / 1) (#289)
by sonovel on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 01:32:51 AM EST

You don't like the fact that Europe gives money and other aid to the PA and Arafat?

I mean, the post I responded to claimed that no such aid existed. I disagreed (and happen to be right in my disagreement, and this post provides proof.).

You apparently think my disagreement with an untruth is only one step up from spam.

Why is that?

Rate this one low too, and prove that you don't care about facts when they don't support your opinions.

[ Parent ]

European aid (4.00 / 1) (#303)
by RoOoBo on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 04:52:45 AM EST

In fact most of the building that Israel has destroyed in the last year have been paid with european taxes. A wonderful idea would be to sue Israel for that destruction, what a pity that Europe doesn't works as US in this matter.

But helping an underdeveloped 'nation' (if the kind of autonomy palestinian had until a year ago can be called so) isn't the same as supporting terrorist attacks.

Europe has not been paying to the suicide bombers or terrorist organizations. In any case the worst they have done is to feed a bit the corruption of Arafat government which can be considered a standard practice for any third world country anyway.

But US is paying THE WEAPONS that Israel uses to attack for 'self-defense' palestinians. That is, if self-defence is to use a F16 to bomb some civilian buildings, it doesn't matter if there is a dangerous terrorist or not there (we don't use to bomb a bank if there is a dangerous thief gang there) what it is used to prosecute crimes in a democracy is the police not the Air Force. Maybe Israel isn't any more a democracy (voting doesn't count as democracy, URSS had also elections, one party elections).



[ Parent ]
Money from the PA paid for attacks. (4.00 / 1) (#319)
by sonovel on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 11:51:49 AM EST

Europe pays and paid something like 50%+ of the PA's bufget.

Very good evidence exists that the PA supports terrorism. After all, the Karine A affair was an attempt by the PA to smuggle massive amounts of prohibited arms. Some of these arms that could only be useful for terrorist attacks. For example, what possible use could the PA have for two tons of semtex!

In addition to this, there are close ties between Arafat and the Al Aqsa Brigades, a group that has committed attacks that can only be considered terrorist attacks (i.e. attacks on civilians within Israel).

Also, Israel has massive amounts of records that indicate that the PA personally approved and funded attacks.

So do you really think that all the money provided by the EU went only towards buildings?

[ Parent ]

Funds (4.00 / 1) (#339)
by RoOoBo on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 03:31:44 PM EST

Very good evidence exists that the PA supports terrorism. After all, the Karine A affair was an attempt by the PA to smuggle massive amounts of prohibited arms. Some of these arms that could only be useful for terrorist attacks. For example, what possible use could the PA have for two tons of semtex!

In fact the PLO (which is who form the PA goverment) has always being a terrorist organization.

I wonder if the weapons were for the own PA 'police' force in case it had to fight against Israel. Which is more likely as it was one of the PA force officers who was selected as scapegoat, and Arafat controls more directly the PA force that it 'supposedly' controls the current terrorist branch of PLO (Al Aqsa).

So do you really think that all the money provided by the EU went only towards buildings?

I wonder if you have any prove, as you have stated it isn't the only source funding of the PA (Arab League for example). Other sources are more prone to be 'missused' without any surveillance. But it is more than likely that some level of corruption happenned either for private profit or to help the PA or PLO organization.

But illegally substracting funds for other purposes by the PA isn't the same as funding an army as does US does.



[ Parent ]
Money. (3.00 / 1) (#343)
by sonovel on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 04:41:54 PM EST

Money is money.

Once it is put in a pile, each euro, dollar, etc. is the same as any other.

Even if the PA needed buildings, and spent only "EU money" on them, but used "other money" on terrorism, then the EU still pays for terrorism. The funds provided by Europe frees up other funds for little things like 2 tons of semtex.

It is an inescapable conclusion. By funding the PA and Arafat, the EU also funds terrorism.

[ Parent ]

Sure? (3.00 / 1) (#347)
by RoOoBo on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 05:09:49 PM EST

American guy buys gas for its car. This gas is produced by an american oil company who gets paid by the american guy. The oil comes from a Arabia Saudi oil well which is owned by a Saudi richman. So the American guy pays to the richman. But this Saudi guy really hates US troops in their sacred land so he donates some money to a 'strange' arab aid organization which in fact is funding Al Qeda. So the american guy is funding Al Qeda.

LETS JUST STOP FUNDING TERRISTS, STOP BUYING GAS.

If you can't see the difference between funding terrorism and international aid (or any kind of money) being missused then you should be starting to stop buying gas.



[ Parent ]
Yes. (3.00 / 1) (#349)
by sonovel on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 05:21:41 PM EST

By paying the Saudis, in some sense the U.S. is funding terrorists.

However, the world runs on that oil. Stopping buying it is slightly difficult. Stopping funding of Arafat and the PA is just a tiny bit easier.

Of course, since Europe imports a greater percentage of its oil from the Middle East than the U.S. does, Europe isn't exactly a shining example of not funding terrorism that way either.

Even food aid props up bad governments. It is really a bunch of bad choices all around. The U.S. provided a lot of food and other non-monetary aid to Afghanistan. While the goal is noble (and perhaps better than letting Afghanis starve), it still propped up that regime. Same goes for aid to lousy African governments. North Korea is also supported this way, with the U.S. providing a large part of the world's food aid to them too.

[ Parent ]

So (none / 0) (#364)
by RoOoBo on Sun Sep 29, 2002 at 03:38:44 AM EST

.. the western world just have to close itself in their own caves and remain there afraid of everyone else in the world.

Very rational indeed.

The problem isn't neither the aid or the people outside the western world but their leaders (most of the time supported by the western world leaders).

And the problems aren't resolved doing nothing but trying to help who tries to solve the problem even if their wrong sometimes.

BTW, most of the world (even the western world) isn't really that obsessed with terrorism. There are far more important problems that a bunch of idiots trying to kill someone to get some time in the TV news.



[ Parent ]
Reading comprehension. (none / 0) (#371)
by sonovel on Sun Sep 29, 2002 at 12:25:17 PM EST

When I said that the world runs on oil, perhaps that indicates that I think it is hard to give up?

So don't put words in my mouth, especially when they are a transparent distortion of what I said.

And what the heck do you think I've been saying about western support for bad leaders?

Europe supports a dictator who funds and plans terrorism. The European monetary and other support for this dictator therefore means that European governments fund terrorism.

Paying for oil also pays for terrorism. However, getting rid of this dependence on oil is very hard. Stopping support of Arafat and the PA is much easier (can you understand it better without the sarcasm?).

 

[ Parent ]

Hard (none / 0) (#373)
by RoOoBo on Sun Sep 29, 2002 at 12:56:11 PM EST

Paying for oil also pays for terrorism. However, getting rid of this dependence on oil is very hard. Stopping support of Arafat and the PA is much easier (can you understand it better without the sarcasm?).

Supporting oppresed people (yes PA, Arafat and the people they theorically represent are oppresed) is something that some people is hard of getting rid of.



[ Parent ]
Supporting Arafat. (none / 0) (#375)
by sonovel on Sun Sep 29, 2002 at 01:15:50 PM EST

Supporting Arafat to get rid of oppression sounds like a nice idea, but he and his organization oppress his own people!

So supporting a dictator to help fix oppression seems a little strange.

You might want to look at the use of torture, extrajudicial death penalty, suppression of speech, etc, etc, that Arafat and the PA are responsible for against their fellow Palestinians! This of course totally ignores the war crimes committed by groups like the Al Aqsa brigades against Israel.

[ Parent ]

Turkey (4.00 / 2) (#74)
by borderline on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 04:10:43 AM EST

Turkey is a member of NATO, and they buy a lot of arms from the US. That might not qualify as active support, but it's certainly looking the other way.

[ Parent ]
it's looking the other way, yes (4.50 / 2) (#214)
by RelliK on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 04:04:32 PM EST

but at least it's not actively supporting. Turkey may have bought weapons from US but Israel gets them for free (or rather paid for by US taxpayers). Also, pressure on Turkey actually works because there is no arrogant superpower pushing the other way. Recently, European nations got Turkey to stop the persecution of Kurds and eliminate the death sentence as a condition of being accepted into the European Union. If they tried the same thing with Israel, US would immediately jump to Israel's defence and force them to back down. With US's support -- both military and political -- Israel can continue being an arrogant bully.
---
Under capitalism man exploits man, under communism it's just the opposite.
[ Parent ]
Wrong (3.00 / 5) (#83)
by Demiurge on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 05:58:10 AM EST

The US is certainly very actively supporting Turkey, and is expanding relations with China and Russia.

The reason it SEEMS that the US gives more consideration to Israel is because more anti-Israelis and anti-semites harp on it.

[ Parent ]
Mostly right, actually (none / 0) (#111)
by danny on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:52:05 AM EST

"Expanding relations with" is a far cry from "supplying billions of dollars a year of weapons to"!! US support for Turkey is substantially less than US support for Israel. Egypt might be more comparable. However while Egypt's human rights record is poor, it is not occupying a neigbouring state.

Danny.
[900 book reviews and other stuff]
[ Parent ]

nonsense (5.00 / 3) (#149)
by RelliK on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:48:53 AM EST

Israel is the largest US foreign aid recepient. That "aid" comes in the form of weapons.
---
Under capitalism man exploits man, under communism it's just the opposite.
[ Parent ]
The title of your article, (3.00 / 5) (#60)
by hettb on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 02:23:30 AM EST

Anti-semitism, or something worse?

and this part:

Racism. I do not believe it is the racism that Dershowitz and Summers believe it to be. No, not anti-semitism at all. The difference in fact lies in a very subtle and unconscious attitude. The countries chosen for divestiture pressure have (or had, in the case of South Africa) a White, European government. The countries we do not target, despite similar levels of oppression, have non-White governments.

So you believe that anti-semitism is somehow better or more justified than racism directed at non-Jewish people?

Not at all (4.00 / 1) (#107)
by iGrrrl on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:38:09 AM EST

Good question, but the answer is no.

In fact, I'm suggesting that it is not anti-semitism but pro-Westernism. In otherwords, rather than being prejudiced against Israel and Israelis, we have more positive expectations of them because culturally we feel they are "one of us."

--
You cannot have a reasonable conversation with someone who regards other people as toys to be played with. localroger
remove apostrophe for email.
[ Parent ]

That is not what I am talking about. (2.00 / 3) (#125)
by hettb on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:34:42 AM EST

In fact, I'm suggesting that it is not anti-semitism but pro-Westernism. In otherwords, rather than being prejudiced against Israel and Israelis, we have more positive expectations of them because culturally we feel they are "one of us."I understood that, but it's not related to my question. But you also said that it is because of racism against non-westerners, non-wites, that Israel is so harshly criticized.

The title is "Anti-semitism, or is it something worse?". The only thing mentioned in your article that is (at least) as bad as anti-semitism, is the racism directed at non-whites. It is thus implied by the title that that racism is worse than anti-semitism, hence my question: Why should anti-semitism not be as bad as other kinds of racism?

[ Parent ]

I need to go to bed. (1.00 / 3) (#129)
by hettb on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:44:47 AM EST

In fact, I'm suggesting that it is not anti-semitism but pro-Westernism. In otherwords, rather than being prejudiced against Israel and Israelis, we have more positive expectations of them because culturally we feel they are "one of us."

I understood that, but it's not related to my question. My point is this: You also said that it is because of racism against non-westerners, non-whites, that Israel is so harshly criticized compared to other governments, because that racism makes the West expect less from them as from "western" nations like Israel. (This is what the 1st paragraph should have said, I forgot this, stupid me.)

The title is "Anti-semitism, or is it something worse?". The only thing mentioned in your article that is (at least) as bad as anti-semitism, is the racism directed at non-whites. It is thus implied by the title that that racism is worse than anti-semitism, hence my question: Why should anti-semitism not be as bad as other kinds of racism?

[ Parent ]

Another attemptd (4.00 / 1) (#159)
by iGrrrl on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:21:18 PM EST

You asked:
Why should anti-semitism not be as bad as other kinds of racism?
In general it simply is one form of racism. You are absolutely correct that it is no better or worse.

If my premise is correct, the reason I think it is worse is that the racismd (or "culturism") is unfocused and unrecognized. It's still just racism on one level, but on another it pervades every single political decision made with respect to these countries.

--
You cannot have a reasonable conversation with someone who regards other people as toys to be played with. localroger
remove apostrophe for email.
[ Parent ]

I don't think it's racism (3.28 / 7) (#61)
by karb on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 02:25:25 AM EST

I swear I'm not trying to be incendiary :)

I think it's probably some combination of two things:

  1. The US left's sympathy with europe on political issues, and europe doesn't like israel. I'm not sure why europe feels that way.
  2. The right likes israel. Hence, the left must learn to dislike them. Why do you think the right is all of the sudden so intelligent about solutions to malaria in africa? Is it because we are renowned for our commitment to ease the suffering of others? :) :) Or, just maybe, maybe, we enjoy being anti-anti-chemicalists :)
I think the racism angle is good, though, because, frankly, that's a language the left understands, and it's such a taboo in our society. You'll have more results with that than trying to explain that other people are more oppressed, or trying to comvince them the violence is bilateral.

Frankly, I think the U.S. should withdraw from the region and cut off every country but jordan (I really like jordan) from any sort of non-humanitarian aid. The arab countries would get to rejoice for a whole week before israeli tanks were advancing through the streets of baghdad (sp?). :)
--
Who is the geek who would risk his neck for his brother geek?

Diffrentiate (4.25 / 4) (#76)
by Znork on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 04:36:55 AM EST

Most of Europe has no problem with Israel. There are a lot of people who dont like Ariel Sharon or his policies tho. As there are in Israel.

The reason a lot of people feel that way about Ariel Sharon is because he's not being very constructive and he has a history of not very constructive solutions. Europe would like people to stop blowing eachother and themselves up in the middle east, and Sharon is not acting in a way that, short of complete genocide of the Palestinians, will ever allow the region to cool down.

[ Parent ]

Then why is it working? (3.54 / 11) (#90)
by Demiurge on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 06:57:10 AM EST

While suicide bombings have not stopped, their intensity and frequency have diminished due to Sharon's heavy-handed tactics. Doves and peacemakers like Rabin and Barak have only incited the slaughter of more Israelis. One of the greatest tragedies of the conflict is that the Palestinians, having shown no interest in the carrot, are now getting the stick.

[ Parent ]
If either side decided it would stand down, (2.50 / 2) (#95)
by karb on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 08:11:28 AM EST

regardless of casualties, this current spate of violence would be over in three weeks, tops.
--
Who is the geek who would risk his neck for his brother geek?
[ Parent ]
Nope (3.00 / 4) (#110)
by Peaker on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:46:05 AM EST

There has been quiet from the Israeli side for a lot more than 3 weeks, and yet it didn't help.

Also note that when the Palestinians initiated this violence, Israel's response was localized against the attacking riots, and yet the Palestinians escalated and escalated the violence until it got out of hand.

[ Parent ]

Quiet? (3.66 / 3) (#150)
by Kropotnik on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:53:11 AM EST

What do you mean by quiet? Just because the Israelis haven't bombed any apartments with F16s recently they are still in occupation, enforcing a curfew, preventing Palestinians from working or studying, getting food, water or basic medical supplies, shooting at kids throwing stones, ambulances etc... How would you like living like that? How would it make you feel about Israelis?

[ Parent ]
Why are you assuming (3.75 / 4) (#160)
by Peaker on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:26:42 PM EST

that I'm referring to Now?

I'm referring to Israeli quiet from the time of Barak, when Sharon was not elected yet.

Lack of Palestinian violence always resulted in IDF withdrawing from occupied areas and letting both sides have their peace.

Its when there are multiple terrorist murder attempts at innocent cilvians every day, that can only be stopped by occupation that it occurs.

The mere fact that Israel is occupying is due to the lack of quiet. Any attempts at withdrawal so far have yielded more terror, but it seems that the Palestinians are losing their trust in terror so it may end soon.

[ Parent ]

i disagree (4.00 / 2) (#164)
by karb on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:32:26 PM EST

I really don't believe there has been a time since the fun started that israel has ever been quiet for more than three weeks. Right now they are besieging arafat's compound, and just launched a sloppy attack that wounded 35 civilians.

I'm not demonizing israel. However, they _and_ the palestinians are both at fault. Either one of them could end it if they desired. But they'd prefer to keep killing each other. And they both share an equal, low, moral ground.
--
Who is the geek who would risk his neck for his brother geek?
[ Parent ]

Working? (3.50 / 2) (#145)
by Znork on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:21:07 AM EST

Working by what measure? You'd have to measure at a rather specific point in time to classify them as working.

If you look at the time before Sharon and compare the number of bombings during Sharons rule, they definitely arent working. If you compare Sharon plus the heaviest handed tactics he's come up with this far with the time before Sharon they still arent working.

[ Parent ]

two reasons that i can think of... (4.33 / 3) (#143)
by chopper on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:19:03 AM EST

...why Europe generally has at least a distaste for Israel and its policies.

first, there's the occupation. there are still a number of Europeans who remember being occupied by one country or another (note, this is not meant to compare Israel to some awful European regime), and have an utter hatred for occupation of any kind. unfortunately, those kinds of wounds run very deep, and thus many oppose Israel merely on those grounds.

second, Europe was and always will be great supporters of the UN, and Israel and the UN have been at odds for quite some time now.

give a man a fish,he'll eat for a day

give a man religion and he'll starve to death while praying for a fish
[ Parent ]

semetiphalic? (4.23 / 13) (#66)
by delmoi on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 03:20:54 AM EST

I think part of it has to do not with anti-Jewish ness, but rather a sort of pro-Jewishness in America. We "expect more" from the Jews, because we view them as more civilized, westernized, etc.

Certainly before sept 11th brought the current isreal/palistine situation to bore for a lot of us I always considered Judaism to be 'better' then Christianity or Islam (on the same plain as Buddhism, for example). I certainly do not anymore.

Another big point is saliency. America has the largest Jewish population of any country in the world (including Israel), the vast majority of whom occupy the higher social ranking. Thus, many influential people actually know or have met Jews. We also give Israel tons of money. So it's at the forefront of the debate.

Finally. A lot of people, including myself are just sickened by the way a lot of Isreal's spokespeople like to play the anti-Semitism card when anyone tries to oppose their policies. It's complete bullshit.
--
"'argumentation' is not a word, idiot." -- thelizman
Yes (5.00 / 3) (#124)
by greenrd on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:20:52 AM EST

A lot of people, including myself are just sickened by the way a lot of Isreal's spokespeople like to play the anti-Semitism card when anyone tries to oppose their policies. It's complete bullshit.

Yes. Funnily enough, just yesterday I read a Letter to the Editor in a UK newspaper from the Board of Deputies of British Jews (IIRC) saying that John Pilger "again repeated the unsubstantiated slur that pro-Israel advocates accuses Israel's critics of anti-Semitism", or words to that effect.

That was highly, uh, cynical.

Really, the charge is quite absurd. Yes of course there will be anti-Semitic elements that are attracted to the campaign, I'm sure... but the pro-Palestinian movement as a whole, no, I don't think so. It's like saying Free Tibet campaigners are racist against the Chinese because they choose to focus their energy on the Tibet issue... does putting your heart and soul into one campaign imply that you don't care about anything else? Not at all - it is because people only have a finite amount of time to spend on campaigning, and don't want to spread themselves too thin, and have to prioritise. America spends millions every year funding Israel's military - that's one reason why Israel is a special cause, and why so many anti-American Arabs cite the Israel/Palestine issue as being so tied to American hegemony.


"Capitalism is the absurd belief that the worst of men, for the worst of reasons, will somehow work for the benefit of us all." -- John Maynard Keynes
[ Parent ]

Crushed Hopes (3.50 / 4) (#67)
by yami on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 03:24:30 AM EST

Israel was supposed to put an end to the persecution of Jews and make sure the Holocaust never happens again and maybe be some kind of warm fuzzy homeland; all very idealistic things.

Crushed idealism hurts. The oppressive regimes in China and Turkey are awful, but very few Westerners have spent emotional energy thinking they'd make the world a better place.

___
I'm wanking harder than you are.

bah (3.70 / 10) (#75)
by boxed on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 04:31:09 AM EST

There ARE movements against China, but they're all inefficient because China is so big that the US has no real economic power over it. The point of the matter here is to fight the wars you can win. The fight to make Israel back off enough for the Palestinians to be able to hold back the fundamentalists on their side is not totally hopeless. The fight to move China out of Tibet (which is what you're talking about I assume, since that's the only ethnical group China is/have been oppressing), is an exercise in futility.

Screaming "anti-sematism" at anyone who does anything against the state of Israel is a sure way of fucking the israelis over by giving them an excuse and a motivation to become like the nazis many of them were running from. If you dance with the devil etc.

"Anti-semetic!" has become a new "witch!", "communist!" or "pedophile!". Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition!

Bullshit. (1.33 / 15) (#81)
by Demiurge on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 05:50:33 AM EST

It's tough to oppose China. Fuck the Tibetans, let them rot in their forced labor camps.

Shrill anti-semites will never effect Israeli foreign policy. But that's ok, because those filthy Jews are a bunch of fascists and need to be taken care of.

To compare the legitimate self defense steps taken by Israel to the unspeakable atrocities committed by Hitler(and now being carried out in a fashion just as gruesome by the Palestinians, who have become worshippers of Moloch) is an unbelievable insult not only to Israelis, but also to all those, jewish and otherwise, who suffered and died under Hitler.

[ Parent ]
huh? (3.57 / 7) (#92)
by boxed on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 07:44:47 AM EST

It's tough to oppose China. Fuck the Tibetans, let them rot in their forced labor camps.
Huh? Are you trying to be sarcastic or something?
Shrill anti-semites will never effect Israeli foreign policy. But that's ok, because those filthy Jews are a bunch of fascists and need to be taken care of.
I assume this is also an attempt at sarcasm. You fail quite horribly becuase you think that anti-zionism is anti-semitic. This is silly. I have a half-brother who is Jewish and his grandparents survived the concentration camps. They are great people and I respect them immenseley. I have no respect, however, for those who have survived the Nazi horrors and go out and take land by violence and further goes on and oppresses other ethnic groups.
To compare the legitimate self defense steps taken by Israel to the unspeakable atrocities committed by Hitler(and now being carried out in a fashion just as gruesome by the Palestinians, who have become worshippers of Moloch) is an unbelievable insult not only to Israelis, but also to all those, jewish and otherwise, who suffered and died under Hitler.
Legitimate self defense? If Israels steps are legitimate self defense then so is the palestinian terrorism. Personally I think both sides are equally evil but in different ways. Furthermore, to claim that the palestinians are doing anything even close to what Hitler did is just plain silly. The palestinian people doesn't even have enough water because the state of Israel (in an act of "self-defense") has siezed control over the fresh water and gives only as much as they care to the palestinian people. To claim that the palestinians, who don't even have enough water, is oppressing Israels people isn't even silly, it's downright idiotic.

Peace will never come to Israel/Palestine as long as people insist on their stupid need for "self-defense", which is in fact revenge. Both sides need to forgive some small things here and there, so that the trend is towards less violence because people are forgiving and compassionate.

You can NEVER solve a violent ethnic conflict except by forgiveness on both sides or genocide. I for one am not too fond of the second alternative, although it sounds to me like you are.

[ Parent ]

Oppressed Groups in China (4.00 / 1) (#178)
by Dest on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:17:56 PM EST

Note : This ISN'T Dest, just a friend using his computer. Just wanted to mention that the Tibetans aren't the only oppressed groups in China. The Muslims in the Xijiang (I think...) region to the Northwest, and the Mongols in the Northeast would be a couple, with fairly violent oppression against the muslims happening in recent years. There are probably numerous other groups, though - China is full of ethnic minorities. - Alex

----
Dest

"Bah. You have no taste, you won't be getting better than tofurkey bukkake." -- Ni
[ Parent ]
Damn (4.71 / 21) (#78)
by Betcour on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 05:15:26 AM EST

Israeli != Jewish
Jewish != Israeli

You'll find Jewish peoples who critize Israel. You'll find antisemit peoples who support with Israel. You'll also find black Palestinians who are Israeli citizen and Boudhists !

I'm really tired of people throwing "hot words" (such as "racist" "antisemit" "sexist" "commie") at people they disagree with. Shall a Jewish person who oppose Israel considered antisemit or racist ? Is a 10 yo Palestinian kid who throws rocks at a tank razing his house a racist ?

If you actually stopped to think instead of spout. (3.09 / 11) (#86)
by Demiurge on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 06:16:32 AM EST

..ing your usual rhetoric, you would realize how wrong you are.

The point the article is trying to make is not that anyone who criticizes Israel is anti-semitic. The issue it's trying to raise is, "Why is Israel the subject of a disproportionate amount of criticism?" And what about those who claim to only be "anti-Zionist", but express "solidarity" and support for the actions of murderous terrorist groups like Hamas and Al-Aqsa? You think they're going to be offering the same support to the Basque ETA? I don't fucking think so? Why is that? Could it maybe possibly have something to do with anti-semitism? Like how many of the ideas and opinions expressed by rapid "anti-Zionists" are startingly similiar to those of pre-WW2 anti-semites? Or the fact that like pre-WW2 Europe, the center of European anti-semitism(excuse me, anti-zionism) is once again Paris, where the PM declares that it's "too hard" to protect Jews after a spate of attacks on synagogues?

Claiming that no(or even an insignificant amount) of the vitriolic criticism levelled at Israel has nothing to do with anti-semitism is like claiming that lynchings and Jim Crow laws had nothing do with racism. It's a cop-out, and it doesn't fool anyone.

[ Parent ]
Disproportionate ? (3.16 / 6) (#113)
by salsaman on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:56:35 AM EST

"Why is Israel the subject of a disproportionate amount of criticism?"

Disproportionate ? Israel has several times invaded their neighbours. When Iraq did the same thing, and invaded Kuwait, the response was to go to war with Iraq. So how can merely criticising a country be disproportionate, whereas killing 100,000+ citizens of another country not be disproportionate ? Or substitute Serbia for Israel, and Kosovo for Palestine. Is NATO anti-Christian for attacking Serbia ? That is just the most fuckwitted thing I have ever heard.

And as for anti-semetism, well it seems irrelevant to me whether Israel is a Jewish state or not. If a country does something wrong they should be criticised for it, regardless of whether the state religion of that country is Judaism, Islam, Christianity or anything else you could think of.

[ Parent ]

Pardon ? (2.33 / 3) (#123)
by Simon Kinahan on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:15:27 AM EST

Israel has seized territory from its neighbours, but on all but one of those occasions it was fighting for its existence against a concerted attack by those neighbours. The territories it retains, as parts of mandate Palestine, do not belong to its neighbours either.

Simon

If you disagree, post, don't moderate
[ Parent ]
ETA (5.00 / 6) (#122)
by Simon Kinahan on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:13:28 AM EST

Unfortunately quite a number of European leftists have at one time or another expressed solidarity with ETA. Similarly, quite a number of Americans have expressed sympathy with their "brothers" in the IRA.

There is a rather clear distinction between the Basque and Palestinian situations. The Basque country is an autonomous region of Spain with more powers than any other such region. The Basque language is taught in schools. The Basque government runs its own policies for everything apart from foreign and defense policy. Basque nationalists are popular, but very few people support full independence, in the Basque country or in Spain as a whole. The Spanish government is not in the habit of using millitary hardware against civilian settlements (although, of course, a previous Spanish governemnt did just that).

In contrast, the Palestinian territories are, and have been for most of the time since 1967, simply occupied territories. Their inhabitants do not have Israeli citizenship. They have alternated been millitary government, and utterly ineffective self-government. They are routinely deprived, by Israel and "their own side" of their civil rights, and not only as a consequence of the current conflict. They are dispossessed to build settlements. Their lives are taken in a pretty cavalier manner, in both suicide bombings and the "reprisals" taken for them.

Simon

If you disagree, post, don't moderate
[ Parent ]

Question: (none / 0) (#103)
by iGrrrl on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:20:12 AM EST

Are you referring to Summers and Dershowitz, or to the article? If to the article, please give a reason why.

I agree with you that Israel != Jewish, and vice versa. Dershowitz is Jewish, and does criticize Israel very publically.

My point was to address the question of why Israel is being targeted by people who would never call themselves anti-semitic. Please feel free to disagree with my point, but please do so directly.

--
You cannot have a reasonable conversation with someone who regards other people as toys to be played with. localroger
remove apostrophe for email.
[ Parent ]

Answer (none / 0) (#225)
by Betcour on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 05:11:47 PM EST

Are you referring to Summers and Dershowitz, or to the article?

Yes I was, sorry for not being clearer on that.

My point was to address the question of why Israel is being targeted by people who would never call themselves anti-semitic.

Many reasons :
  • Israel is supposed to a democracy. People expect it to behave like a democracy and not like a racist theocracy.
  • Israel is small : 5 million citizens. China is big : 1,1 billion citizens. Which one do you think is the easiest to change with economic sanctions ?
  • Israel is on the news every nite (despite their attempt to silence the medias sometimes by shooting at journalists). On the other hand China is hardly on the news, and the pictures that come out of it are very controlled. Seeing Palestinian kids getting shot or bombed is boung to generate critics.
I don't see antisemitism anywhere in those reasons !

[ Parent ]
Read the whole article (none / 0) (#184)
by Sloppy on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:39:04 PM EST

Upon reading the "Racism" paragraph, I was ready to unleash nuclear hellfire flamage upon iGrrrl. But then I read the rest. You should too.

The idea being put forth isn't that it's anti-Jew racism. The idea being put forth is that it's anti-Black, anti-Kurd, anti-Oriental racism; it's that we're singling out Israel because we have higher expectations from them than we do from China or Turkey.

I still think it's bullshit, but I'm less sure, and at worst it's a pretty interesting idea to at least consider.
"RSA, 2048, seeks sexy young entropic lover, for several clock cycles of prime passion..."
[ Parent ]

Pain in the ass (1.72 / 11) (#79)
by SanSeveroPrince on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 05:22:21 AM EST

Stop being so touchy. When a country is standing next to several billion tonnes of petrol and howling ragheads, all about to blow up, it does not make sense to invest in their economy, does it?

Israel is in the spotlight because it's part of the unofficial club of Western Countries. They are 'our kind of people', and as such we expect them to be nice to the cameras.
China and all those other countries were Forsaken by God (tm), they are most definitely NOT our kind of people, they stink, they do not wash AND they eat white children, so why bother showing our disapproval towards them? Besides, we may need to sell them stuff soon, so why piss them off?

The story of Israel and Palestine is full of self pity and endless recrimination. Calling up anti-semitism each time the west falls out of love with Israel (and it happens very often) is a little silly.

And one last note that's going to make this total flamebait, even though it's not my intention. I have been thinking half seriously about this for a little while now, and I would like some serious feedback if anybody has anything to offer except words of righteous anger.

Three of the most technologically advanced civilizations in the world, over the course of three thousand years, tried to get rid of the jews because they're such a pain in the ass. Whining about their promised land and making a mess all over the doors with lamb's blood and calling down rains of fire and whatnot...
The Egyptians could not stand the jews.
The Romans could not stand the jews.
The Third Reich targeted the jews as the easiest group to use as a scapegoat, while stealing all their money.
Don't you think there is a very easy to spot common denominator there? Why are jews so hard to like?

----

Life is a tragedy to those who feel, and a comedy to those who think


We've got ourselves a live one! (2.45 / 11) (#84)
by Demiurge on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 06:10:36 AM EST

Wow, most of K5's anti-semites usually coached their hatred of Jews as "anti-Zionism" or something equally ridiculous.

The honesty you show in your bigotry and intolerance is refreshing. You come out and say it. You're like Hitler, without the leadership ability or the weird mustache or the incestual relationship with a cousin.

[ Parent ]
I'll take that as a compliment... (nt) (none / 0) (#98)
by SanSeveroPrince on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 08:37:51 AM EST



----

Life is a tragedy to those who feel, and a comedy to those who think


[ Parent ]
In case you want a serious answer.... (4.00 / 6) (#89)
by Demiurge on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 06:36:05 AM EST

The Egyptian Kingdom was based on an incredibly oppressive hierarchy where most of the population lived in serfdom and slavery. They didn't like the Jews.

The Romans slaughtered mercilessly anyone who dared oppose them. They made a public sport out of gory executions. Their ideas didn't fit with Jewish ideas either.

Hitler's Third Reich was probably the most evil government of the 20th century. They didn't like Jews either.

And of course, an intolerant, ignorant, hate-filled bigot like you doesn't like Jews either. If these are the kinds of people who dislike Jews, then Jews must be great.

[ Parent ]
In case you wanted to be taken seriously.... (4.00 / 2) (#96)
by SanSeveroPrince on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 08:20:22 AM EST

To start with, I'm not prejudiced against jews in a racist way. They are a bunch of immature, whiny, backstabbing idiots, JUST LIKE THE REST OF HUMANITY.
If you like, I'm the universal racist. White, black, yellow, red, grey, green, I don't care what colour you are, YOU SUCK.

You seem to have a very hazy view of history, and you stupidly confuse it with morals.
The Egyptian empire was not 'incredibly oppressive'. It was the ONLY kind of empire available at the time. They did not like the jews because they made lousy, bitchy slaves. That's history.

The Romans were the most civilized imperialists this world has ever seen. After being conquered, a people could keep their language, culture AND LEADERS, as long as they paid taxes. That is, everyone could keep their culture except for the jews. They had to be kicked all over the place to be kept in line. Obviously the Roman consuls could not stand their pious whining. And please notice, that if the romans had been as bloodthirsty as you like to state, they'd have simply spared us the whole Middle East hassle, and killed the lot of them. They did not.

Hitler's Third Reich actually LIKED the jews. In the first drafts of Mein Kampf, Hitler considered the jews to be one of the races closest to his precious arian ideal, in his little 'race top ten'.
However, when the time came to find a scapegoat for people to beat on, someone they could rob and murder without anyone but other jews complaining, the choice was really, really easy: NO ONE liked the jews, and they could almost surgically be removed from the population causing the minimum of stir. Don't come back telling me how your great, great-aunt had her jew lover taken away: she was one of the only three cases, OK?

Your fantasies are always an entertaining read. It may be a good idea to know what the hell you're talking about, though, especially when you're making an ass of yourself talking about history.

----

Life is a tragedy to those who feel, and a comedy to those who think


[ Parent ]
actually modern archeology has shown that... (4.50 / 2) (#94)
by boxed on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 08:09:45 AM EST

...the egyptians didn't oppress the jews any more than any other ethnic group within its borders. As for the romans... well, it's pretty much the same, they oppressed anyone who had any chance of threating thier power. Jews being rather rich and well educated IS a clear threat. It all comes down to a single fact: the jews have a multi-thousand year culture of high education. This is why they are deemed as dangerous and are persecuted. Not very surprising imho, although it is a sad testament to humanities will to rather pull down the rich/educated than to educate/enrich themselves.

[ Parent ]
not oppression... (5.00 / 2) (#97)
by SanSeveroPrince on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 08:36:48 AM EST

but the last info I checked had both the Egyptians kicking the jews out and the Romans taking a hard line with their terrorist tactics (no, people, I'm not trolling)

----

Life is a tragedy to those who feel, and a comedy to those who think


[ Parent ]
"The Japanese and the Jews" by Isaiah Be (none / 0) (#137)
by sye on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:00:24 AM EST

That book is a fun and VERY informative book. The author is a Jew born and raised in Japan. I am a Chinese. So far in my life, i only picked up one foe and she claims herself to be of jewry ancestry although by my knowledge of Judaism, i claim that she is NOT. I believe the best thing for us (non-jewish) people to do is NOT to be involved in things that YOU don't really have any understanding or have any blood bondage with IT.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
commentary - For a better sye@K5
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
ripple me ~~> ~allthingsgo: gateway to Garden of Perfect Brightess in CNY/BTC/LTC/DRK
rubbing u ~~> ~procrasti: getaway to HE'LL
Hey! at least he was in a stable relationship. - procrasti
enter K5 via Blastar.in
[ Parent ]

you are like a grammar nazi, but for jews (5.00 / 1) (#157)
by tebrow on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:16:23 PM EST

Yes, Jewish people are certainly the common denominator there, but my guess as to the relationship between the three dispositions would be causality, rather than a constant factor. That is, I think that disfavor of Jews in Europe was augmented greatly by past disfavor in ancient Rome (and several instances between), which may have even derived from Jews' original enslavement by Egyptians.

[ Parent ]
Well.. (none / 0) (#336)
by SanSeveroPrince on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 03:20:43 PM EST

..if none of the many 'several instances' thought that changing their minds about the jews was worth the effort, then there may well be a constant factor.

Good point about causality, though. The new kid moving into the new school with a bad record and all....

----

Life is a tragedy to those who feel, and a comedy to those who think


[ Parent ]
For those of you who think anti-semitism plays no. (2.73 / 15) (#87)
by Demiurge on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 06:24:37 AM EST

role in criticm of Israel, I'm going to let the words of a far superior writer, Martin Peretz, speak for me:

Tom Paulin, a lousy but famous poet and a regular panelist on the BBC2 arts program "Late Review," gave an interview to the Egyptian weekly Al-Ahram in which he said that "Brooklyn-born" settlers in Israel "should be shot dead.... [T]hey are Nazis.... [I] feel nothing but hatred for them." Paulin's venom toward Israel is nothing new. He once called its army the "Zionist S.S." and charged that it systematically murders "little Palestinian boy[s]." In Al-Ahram he explained, "I can understand how suicide bombers feel. It is an expression of deep injustice and tragedy." He did, to be fair, express one scruple about the random butchery of innocent Israelis: He worried that the murders might not crush Israel's spirit. The attacks on Israeli "civilians, in fact, boost morale" among the Jews, admitted Paulin despairingly. If only the Jews would collapse in the face of terror and abandon their country to the people who want them dead.

And from another article...
The headquarters of anti-Semitic Europe today, just as during the Third Republic, is Paris. Every day brings news of another violent crime against French Jews and Jewish institutions, a wave of violence that most of the French oppose, but which the government of Jacques Chirac and Lionel Jospin has tolerated, even indulged, for far too long. Paris is also the headquarters of anti-American Europe. The latest expression of French anti-Americanism--aside from books claiming that the United States blew up the World Trade Center itself (see "Plot Development," by Max Berley, page 16)--is concern for the life of Zacarias Moussaoui, a French citizen and, according to the Justice Department, the would-be twentieth September 11 skyjacker. The U.S. government has charged him with six counts of conspiracy and will request the death penalty, which France abolished in 1981. The prospect of citoyen Moussaoui's execution has driven official Paris apoplectic. Yet the French are not exactly evenhanded in their hostility to capital punishment. After all, what have they said about the execution of suspected "conspirators" by France's ally, the Palestinian Authority? Last week, with the complicity of Arafat's regime, eleven supposed collaborators with Israel were murdered, their bodies dragged through the streets. A few days ago, six other such "collaborators" were sentenced to death by a quickie P.A. tribunal. But not a word has been heard from the enlightened anti-death penalty French, who seem to think that only the United States and Israel kill.


If anti-semitism has nothing to do with it, how do you explain the intense and violent hatred towards Israel by those who claim to be no more than "anti-zionists"? How do you explain the ridiculous and two-faced hypocrisy exhibited by the French and other constant Israeli critics?

how I would explain it (2.33 / 3) (#93)
by boxed on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 08:03:35 AM EST

There's a difference between Israel and other oppressive regimes: the Israelis should know better. Take the example of China: only an extremely small percentage have experienced the oppression they are not putting on the Tibetans (remember the Japanese invasion during WWII), and the western world definetely has forgotten about these Japanese atrocities. Israel however is governed by jews that often have direct ancestors or themselves have survived the death camps of the Nazis. For such a people to try to use force to further their own aims, and for such a people to put people in camps and tatoo number on them (!) is viewed (rightly imho) as not only immoral (like turkey, china and other regimes) but unnacceptable due to their pretty recent own submersion in such evil. If you dance with the devil, you don't change the devil, the devil changes you.

[ Parent ]
A serious question.. (4.33 / 3) (#100)
by ignatiusst on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:10:35 AM EST

Though it may come off as sounding flippant and disrespectful, I would like to ask how you would suggest I criticize (or show my displeasure with) Israel without being labeled an anti-Semetic racist?

Is it impossible to shout "Israel Sucks!" without people standing in the wings ready to denounce you for a Jew-baiting Nazi? Should I just keep my displeasure with Israel to myself from now on.. just let them do what they want and keep my mouth shut?

When a true genius appears in the world, you may know him by this sign, that the dunces are all in confederacy against him. -- Jonathan Swift
[ Parent ]

When you can explain... (none / 0) (#105)
by Skywise on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:34:42 AM EST

How I can say the "NAACP sucks!" without being labeled a racist.  Especially when I can say "the KKK sucks!" all day without complaint because it's "true".

The fact of the matter is that if you target any group (except the KKK) formed on racial lines, you're going to be called a racist bigot.  Which is what the conservatives have been having to deal with for quite some time.


[ Parent ]

(And for the record) (none / 0) (#106)
by Skywise on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:37:15 AM EST

I believe in the NAACP ideals (though not necessarily their recent actions.)

[ Parent ]
A couple of points... (2.00 / 1) (#133)
by DingBat1 on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:53:28 AM EST


First, I see nothing particularly wrong with condemning Israel while at the same time ignoring China.

Too often, people who insist on "consistency" are simply using it to hamstring action. I may or may not get around to China but right now I wanna talk about Israel. The fact that I don't want to talk about China right now is irrelevant and does nothing to weaken my case against Israel.

Btw, I'm not anti-Israel, I'm simply denouncing the need for foolish consistency.

Secondly, I've pretty much come to discount France (as a country) as worthy of respect, attention or anything else. I don't normally like to link past actions to current events but in their case I make an exception.

Other than the Rwandans themselves, France is pretty much directly responsible for the deaths of up to a million people in that country in what was clearly an act of genocide. They armed the country to the teeth in the name of "francophone" solidarity. The people responsible for those actions are still in power there and for them to have the audacity to point fingers at ANY other country on this planet just fills me with disgust.

[ Parent ]

Israel and anti-semitism (5.00 / 1) (#231)
by Amesha Spentas on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 05:38:10 PM EST

If anti-Semitism has nothing to do with it, how do you explain the intense and violent hatred towards Israel by those who claim to be no more than "anti-Zionists"? How do you explain the ridiculous and two-faced hypocrisy exhibited by the French and other constant Israeli critics?

Ok let's see here. I am not personally knowledgeable about the two specific examples that you raise here. However there is a rather large gaping hole in your logic. There truly are people who are anti-Semites and they most likely hate Israel. There also are people who hate Israel that are not anti-Semites. There are Jews in those opposition groups. They do not believe that the country of Israel should behave as is has/is. Are they anti-Semites? Of course not. There are also Americans who oppose the American government, not because they hate Americans (the people) but because they hate what America is doing in their name. Some would call these people unpatriotic or traitors. Those that would use such names are wrong. In any democratic country (Which both the United States and Israel claim to be. China does not.) it is not just a freedom but a requirement to oppose the actions of your government if you believe them unjust. Otherwise you allow tyranny to exist. In fact the founding fathers of the US called an effective and vocal opposition to be an imperative to any true democracy.

Second, I believe that the reason that such a drastic action in opposition to Israel is not because these people are racist one way or the other. I believe the reason they advocate such drastic action is because it would have the greatest chance of effecting change in Israel. Israel is dependent/cooperative on/with the US for it's military, (supplies, training, technology) financial support, and defense. (Notice the separation between defense and military. While the military is responsible for defense it is not the only function it provides. (Again much like the US, Israel uses it's military to project might and to enforce its will.) As the Israeli military is often called on to conduct what are purportedly police actions.
Because Israel is so coupled with US interests and the US in general, the possibility of success from such an action is much greater. As a thought experiment Compare the effects of a US embargo against China (Not to hard since we effectively did that in the 70's and 80's and a good part of the 90's) to what the effects would be if the US embargoed Israel. Despite what some people would have you believe, Israel would collapse. Most likely within a few months. This is why this method of protest is being proposed and attempted. It has the greatest chance of success.

Registered to die for the government at 18, and had to pay postage on the registration form - AnalogBoy
[ Parent ]

Allow me to sum up the entire anti-Semitic issue: (2.42 / 7) (#91)
by Rogerborg on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 07:26:06 AM EST

No, no, no - it's spelled Raymod Luxury Yacht, but it's pronounced 'Throatwobbler Mangrove'.

Discuss it all you like, but you're very silly men and I'm not going to debate with you.  You can collect your noses at reception.  Now go away.

"Exterminate all rational thought." - W.S. Burroughs

Not anti semetic, symptomatic of US culture (3.14 / 7) (#99)
by jester69 on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:08:21 AM EST

This just shows what is wrong with america today.

If two people get in a barfight because they are both assholes, used to be if one died the other got manslaughter.

Nowadays, if the two jerks get in a fight and the one that dies happens to be a "favored minority" (read non-middle eastern) now its a hate crime & everybody calls for the death penalty.

I guess the best way to sum this phenomenon up is to say, that in todays USian political climate if two different races are involved in any kind of altercation, race is used as the de facto defining factor regardless of circumstance.

So, I would say that people believing that supporting divestiture is a racist thing RATHER than the more obvious and logical conclusion that it is an opposition of israels politics is a symptom of the myopic fervor with which all americans want to ascribe any disagreement or altercation to race rather than any actual racism on the part of the divestiture activists.

Take care,

Jester
Its a lemming thing, Jeep owners would understand.

Doh, mistake... (3.00 / 1) (#101)
by jester69 on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:12:01 AM EST

i wrote "myopic fervor with which all americans want"

Should be:

"myopic fervor with which most americans seem to want"
Its a lemming thing, Jeep owners would understand.
[ Parent ]

Stop being purposefully ignorant. (2.00 / 2) (#195)
by Jman1 on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 02:23:13 PM EST

"Nowadays, if the two jerks get in a fight and the one that dies happens to be a "favored minority" (read non-middle eastern) now its a hate crime & everybody calls for the death penalty." Ridiculous and untrue. A hate crime is a crime motivated by hateful discrimination, not a crime against someone who "happens to be a favored minority." And there is virtually NO overlap between people who believe in hate crime legistlation and people who support the death penalty. Asshole.

[ Parent ]
Oohhh, ad hominem attacks, i'm so shamed. (1.00 / 1) (#222)
by jester69 on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 04:48:14 PM EST

Geez,

When someone calls me asshole that immediately convinces me i'm wrong, good show! Where did you learn debate?

As to my being right or wrong, you really gave me nothing to respond to as you challenged my unsubstantiated assertions with more unsubstatiated assertions. Why on earth I am expected to change my mind based on the same poor reasoning that failed to change your mind I have no idea...

Regardless, too much in the United States is attributed to race. Peopel are people for gods sake, and bringing up the race card to sidestep a direct attack on ones politics is cowardly and lacks imaginiation.

peas,

Jester

Its a lemming thing, Jeep owners would understand.
[ Parent ]

Not race, culture ... (4.20 / 10) (#115)
by Simon Kinahan on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:00:39 AM EST

Israel comes in for criticism because they share the same political culture as the rest of the west. They aspire towards equal treatment under the law, representative government, and so on.

Other countries that have no history (or no history the average person is aware of) of persuing these ideals, do not come in for such criticism, because first of all they are not being inconsistent, and secondly it is easier to assume that they are merely uneducated. The second is probably wrong, but it isn't racist, I think.

The same goes for the particular reasons South Africa was persued for its racist policies, I suspect.

Simon

If you disagree, post, don't moderate

Demotivators.com - "Consulting" (4.84 / 13) (#118)
by jabber on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:07:15 AM EST

"If you're not part of the solution, there's good money to be made in prolonging the problem."

I think what you bring up is a case of this self-preserving phenomenon. Anything that anyone opposes can be torqued into a Political Correctness issue, and the sheeple just fall in step.

Look at the likes of Al Sharpton, or Jesse Jackson, and their most recent grandstanding over some quips in the movie Barbershop. Same thing. If it wasn't for people like these guys, the average American would quickly forget that there even is such a thing as RACISM. Thank God we have someone watching our backs, reminding us to constantly ponder the vast differences between the races. This way we never loose sight of how important it is to be respectful of each other, instead of just living together in harmony like a single race of humans. But I digress.

I think that what you raise also brings to mind the different priorities and agendas of those in charge, and those controlled. Those controlled seem to seek to leverage economic power for the sake of morality, and have chosen to target the most hypocritical exemplar of human rights abuse as a starting point.

Those in charge know that morals are variable things, that the Palestinians have less to offer the world economically than the Israelis (note the distinction from "The Jews"), and that the economic status quo is what is keeping them in charge in the first place. To combat dissent, they make sweeping, all-encompassing statements like "Why not boycott China as well", they garnish liberally with the American bugbear of "discrimination" and "racism", and the sheeple fall in step.

Damn it! You hit a nerve. To paraphrase a friend of mine, "Beware the lollipop of complacency, one lick and you'll suck forever!" I'll go back to work now.

[TINK5C] |"Is K5 my kapusta intellectual teddy bear?"| "Yes"

Jesse Jackson is one fishy character (none / 0) (#163)
by Fon2d2 on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:29:36 PM EST

This article sums up my feelings about him fairly well.

[ Parent ]
"Sheeple? Another idiot extremist. (3.50 / 2) (#245)
by Demiurge on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 07:33:05 PM EST

You're one of the fringe-left morons who believes that every American who fails to unfailingly endorse your divisive, shrill polemics are duped animals, aren't you? There's a reason far-left nuts like you are marginalized in American politics, it's because the American polity actually has some common sense.

[ Parent ]
Gosh, half of the American polity don't vote (5.00 / 1) (#262)
by pyramid termite on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:21:40 PM EST

I'll let other people debate whether that's common sense or not.

On the Internet, anyone can accuse you of being a dog.
[ Parent ]
On the contrary (5.00 / 1) (#279)
by jabber on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 12:04:29 AM EST

I have no problem with anyone who disagrees with me, so long as it isn't simply because a talking head on telavishun told them "the truth". I'll go toe to toe with someone who disagrees with me, and after agreeing to disagree, we'll both walk away better informed. And we'll have more respect than before, for each other's well thought out and deeply considered opinions. That's fine, and I am all for it.

If you and I disagree because we're both equally well informed, and after consideration, we've arrived at different conclusions, that is fine. In fact, that is preferable, because my mind is broadened by the experience of sparing with yours. What I'm opposed to is the boxed, one-size-fits-all sort of opinion that most people I meet on a daily basis seem to carry.

That is why I use the term "sheeple". Because the people I apply that term to form their opinion based on the opinion of the majority, not on personal deliberation. The people I call "sheeple" do not ask for the justification behind what they are fed, they simply think as they are told. To me, anyone who accepts someone else's ideas as their own without question is not a whole person. A whole, thinking person respects, acknowledges, but still questions authority, that authority being leaders, teachers, traditions and beliefs.

To give a broader example, someone who believes in God because a pastor told them to, because the Bible tells them to, and ultimately because God said so, doesn't count highly in my book. Someone who has questioned religion, who has brought the God concept to bare, and who after judicious consideration decided that there is something to it after all, has my respect as a person of Faith, and an intelligent one at that.

I hope that clarifies what I consider to be common sense. If you still think I'm an elitist, aloof bastard, or a purposefully contrary idiot, fine. I can't change your mind. All I can do it tell you why I think the way I do. If that's not enough of an explanation, then either I'm crazy - in which case further conversation is a waste of your time - or you're the bigot - and further conversation is a waste of my time. If, on the other hand, I've explained myself to your satisfaction, then there may be a great deal for us to discuss, and learn. In any case, I've said my peace.

[TINK5C] |"Is K5 my kapusta intellectual teddy bear?"| "Yes"
[ Parent ]

Not just Israel (4.50 / 4) (#126)
by AndrewH on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:40:07 AM EST

Speaking as a European (British), I see this as a clear reason for the European dislike of the Bush regime in the USA and, though he has kept a much lower profile, of the Howard regime in Australia.
John Wilkes Booth, Lee Harvey Oswald, John Hinckley Jr — where are you now that we need you?
Not just race then (none / 0) (#294)
by pde on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 03:22:03 AM EST

But language too, perhaps?  

As an Australian, I'm beetroot-embarassed about Howard, have an intense dislike of Bush, and even get jumpy at the thought of Maggie having tea parties with Pinochet.

But how high does Berlusconi place on our irit list?

Visit Computerbank, a GNU/Linux based charity
[ Parent ]

Both Sides are Missing the Point (3.88 / 9) (#135)
by outlyer on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:55:08 AM EST

First, cries of anti-semitism over Iraeli policies are about as knee jerk as can be imagined. This is similar to the "if you're not with us, you're against us" rhetoric the Bush Administration is spewing.

Being wrong and Jewish still makes you wrong. But simply being Jewish doesn't make you wrong. Seems like simple logic to me.

That said, I don't see why we're not supportive of Israel. There are a number of oppressed regions in the world, most of whom do not get the press time that the palestinians are getting. It seems that terrorism is working, considering the global sympathy they get, versus say, Chechnya, which doesn't engage in civilian attacks the way that the terrorists among the palestinians do. The more we sympathize with palestinian terrorists, the more we are encouraging others to try similar tactics. We should reward people who open a dialogue, not people who blow up innocent people.

There was a line in the West Wing that sounds pretty familar right now:
    "What do you call a society that has to live everyday with the idea that the pizza place you're eating in could just blow up without any warning?"

    "Israel."
So, yes, I sympathize with the reaction Israel has been having, I don't agree that arguing with them is anti-semetism. I sympathize, but I do still think that Sharon is a war monger.

Ignorance of Daily Life in Palistine (4.12 / 8) (#144)
by blackpaw on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:20:32 AM EST

There was a line in the West Wing that sounds pretty familar right now: "What do you call a society that has to live everyday with the idea that the pizza place you're eating in could just blow up without any warning?"

"Israel."

Perhaps they should ask - "what do you call a society were an entire city of 200,000 people can be confined to their houses for days on end, with poor to no water, bugger all food, sod all modern amenities, just so a few religious nuts can celibrate a festival under armed guard in the middle of their city"

"Palistine"

Also consider:

  • 10 minute drives taking 5 hours because of checkpoints
  • Illegal settlements being made on your land
  • 1000's of acres of your farmland being leveled to provide security for aforementioned settlements
  • State sanctioned torture
  • Demonstrator's being dispersed with live fire (and people wonder why the palistines dont demonstare more oftent !)
  • The list go's on and on ...


[ Parent ]
I concede that. (4.33 / 3) (#148)
by outlyer on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:33:27 AM EST

I don't disagree that the majority of Palestinians live in terrible conditions. What I'm saying is that a number of people in other regimes are similarly downtrodden, but they do not all resort to same tactics that the Palestinian terrorists do.

Remember Gandhi? He won by being so clean, honest, and peaceful that it was impossible to brand him as anything negative. World sympathy in his favour enabled him to free his country. That, is the right way to fight oppressive regimes.

To put it another way; if you killed my son, daughter or wife, I wouldn't give a crap how long it took you to get to work; how you were oppressed etc.  You would have lost any sympathy I had for your plight in one swoop.  

[ Parent ]

Ghandi (4.33 / 6) (#173)
by RoOoBo on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:01:35 PM EST

Remember Gandhi? He won by being so clean, honest, and peaceful that it was impossible to brand him as anything negative. World sympathy in his favour enabled him to free his country. That, is the right way to fight oppressive regimes.

The problem is that Israel isn't UK.

You can say what you want but starting from the Oslo process there were many years of 'peace', until some 'minor' incident in which Sharon was involved happenned.

There is also the problem that none of the Israel governments after Rabin did nothing to continue the peace process. What now is happening is not only because some Palestinian terrorist got rampage without any provocation.



[ Parent ]
Gandhi / Indian independence (4.50 / 2) (#207)
by winthrop on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 03:41:31 PM EST

Remember Gandhi? He won by being so clean, honest, and peaceful that it was impossible to brand him as anything negative. World sympathy in his favour enabled him to free his country. That, is the right way to fight oppressive regimes.

This is far from clear. During World War 2, there was an armed uprising, led by Subhas Chandra Bose, of soldiers from the British Indian Army who had been captured by Axis powers and released to fight the British. The actual military result was not a big factor, but many people think that this was one of the reasons Britain gave up India; it became clear that their army was no longer reliable, and they would have to up the percentage of Brits in it in order to retain control.

Gandhi himself in the days before independence contemplated, if not endorsed, violence; anyway, it's not entirely clear that the Independence campaigners paid attention to their leaders; the final, incredible push was made while most of the top-level leaders were in jail.

I'm not saying that non-violence is a worthless tactic, just that the true history of the independence push in India is far more complicated than you make it out to be, and it would be erroneous to draw conclusions about the efficacy of non-violence.

[ Parent ]

Oh please. (4.50 / 2) (#218)
by Estanislao Martínez on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 04:33:59 PM EST

Don't you believe that the fact that India got it's independence in 1949 (IIRC) might have had something at all to do with the fact that the British got rid of their whole empire in the decades after WWII?

--em
[ Parent ]

A different kind of logic (3.25 / 4) (#182)
by cestmoi on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:28:03 PM EST

Being wrong and Jewish still makes you wrong. But simply being Jewish doesn't make you wrong. Seems like simple logic to me.

Simple logic isn't an issue. The "you must be anti-semitic because you don't agree with me..." argument is an attempt to distract. It's a logical tactic if your goal is to win no matter what the cost.

Labeling the divestiture folks anti-semitic is an ad hominem attack. Ad hominem attacks are used when the losing side has run out of logical arguments. It's an attempt to make one feel guilty for simply thinking that Israel might be evil for doing things like firing a missile into a crowded street.

[ Parent ]

Chechnyans attack civilians too (5.00 / 1) (#227)
by zerblat on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 05:25:48 PM EST

It seems that terrorism is working, considering the global sympathy they get, versus say, Chechnya, which doesn't engage in civilian attacks the way that the terrorists among the palestinians do.

Actually, they have. For example, during 1999 at least 300 innocent people were killed in Moscow in terrorist bombings of apartment buildings.

Just like the Israeli goverment uses palestinian terrorism to justify the palestine war, the Russian goverment is using Chechnyan terrorism to justify their war in Chechnya -- long before Septemper 11.

[ Parent ]

Chechnya == Crime. (none / 0) (#301)
by tkatchev on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 04:31:59 AM EST

Chechens control a significant percentage of the crime cartel in Russia -- for example, things like money laundering, illegal oil and weapons trade, etc. The Chechen crime lords make incredible amounts of money -- measured in billions -- which they invest into keeping the war going on both sides. Instability is very advantageous to organized crime.

Also, what you miss is the fact that, for the most part, Chechens are killing off themselves. Their culture has a very intricate tradition of blood feuds, and after two hundred years of intermittent wars, now everybody is an enemy to everybody else.

Also, another point: the militant "separatist" are actually hired mercenaries from all over the world -- from Saudi Arabia to Ukraine to the United Kingdom. The ethnic Chechens have a relatively small stake in organized resistance. (Ethnic Chechens mostly do unorganized, small-scale guerilla attacks and petty terrorism.)

Finally, a last point: there are probably more Chechens in European Russia than there in Chechnya. (I'm not sure about his, but I'm sure that the numbers are comparable.)

   -- Signed, Lev Andropoff, cosmonaut.
[ Parent ]

Important point (4.60 / 10) (#139)
by zocky on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:08:08 AM EST

Unlike Chechnya, Kurdistan, Tibet, etc., the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is carried out in westernized urban surroundings.

Face it, reporters find it easier and more comfortable to report on Israel, South Africa, Northern Ireland, Basque Country etc. All the action is going on in close proximity of hotels and bars. Also, urban warfare affects the lives of many people at once - everybody who is in the city knows and talks about it, so there is much more information available. It is also generally safer for reporters to talk to informants in a shabby caffe in the city than out in the woods.

What do you think people prefer watching? Footage of a suicide bombing that killed three or a reporter telling about alleged murder of hundreds in a mountain village nobody (including the reporter) has ever heard about? Israel is just the most appropriate subject.

---
I mean, if coal can be converted to energy, then couldn't diamonds?

It a clear cut case (4.00 / 11) (#140)
by blackpaw on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:10:11 AM EST

Israel is oppressing the Palestinians with policies very clearly modeled after South African apartheid - Bantusians, little to no civil rights econmic oppression and good old state sponsered terrorism. The only question is why is it taking the west so long to get over it collective holocaust guilt trip.

Not clear cut to Clinton and his lead negotiator. (3.50 / 2) (#167)
by sonovel on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:49:58 PM EST

The Bantustan argument is denied by Clinton and his lead negotiator.

The proposal that Arafat refused to even discuss wasn't as you describe it according to the brokers of that deal.

So this isn't quite as clear cut as you make it out to be.

Of course, if you listen to only one side of the discussion, you can make this argument. But the substantial disagreement by several of the people involved makes you conclusion anything but "clear cut".

This doesn't even have anything to do with the extreme proven duplicity of Arafat. But you can ignore all that and buy right into his propaganda.

[ Parent ]

Refused to discuss what? (5.00 / 2) (#259)
by felixrayman on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:25:30 PM EST

What did Arafat refuse to discuss? Talks continued after the Camp David talks, specifically the Taba negotiations, which were unilaterally broken off by Barak. The truth is here.

Call Donald Rumsfeld and tell him our sorry asses are ready to go home. Tell him to come spend a night in our building. - Pfc. Matthew C. O'Dell

[ Parent ]
Again. (4.00 / 1) (#282)
by sonovel on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 12:35:13 AM EST

Clinton and his lead negotiator deny this. They both claim that Arafat walked when a very genorous offer was on the table.

That is what on side says. The other disagrees.

Therefore the situation is very far from "clear cut". See how the situation is only clear cut if looked at from one side?

[ Parent ]

Here's Dennis Ross on the situation (none / 0) (#283)
by sonovel on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 12:44:02 AM EST

Here's an interview with Deniss Ross where he says Arafat walked.

Now maybe he and Clinton are lying (with Clinton that's always a possibility), but unless you were there, you can't deny that this at least means that the situation isn't clear cut. At most, it shows that Arafat didn't really want to negotiate.

[ Parent ]

You get your news from FOX? (4.00 / 1) (#287)
by felixrayman on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 01:11:07 AM EST

At most, it shows that Arafat didn't really want to negotiate

Reading your link, ( and I trust Fox News about as much as indymedia, that is to say not at all ) it looks like an offer was made, Arafat came back with a counterproposal, and he was told 'How dare you not take our offer as it is'.

For example, your link has the quote:

'He wouldn't even countenance the idea that the Israelis would be able to operate in Palestinian airspace'

What the fuck? He's supposedly being offered a state and then told he would not even have control over the airspace? Get a clue.

And then we have gems like this one:

The only new idea he raised at Camp David was that the temple didn't exist in Jerusalem, it existed in Nablus.

HUME: This is the temple where Ariel Sharon paid a visit, which was used as a kind of a pre-text for the beginning of the new intifada, correct?

ROSS: This is the core of the Jewish faith.

HUME: Right.

ROSS: So he was denying the core of the Jewish faith there.

This is journalism? How does this in anyway contradict what is in the FAIR article, that is, that there were negotiations, Arafat made counter proposals and was then told by Barak to go pound sand?

Call Donald Rumsfeld and tell him our sorry asses are ready to go home. Tell him to come spend a night in our building. - Pfc. Matthew C. O'Dell

[ Parent ]
interview (3.00 / 1) (#288)
by sonovel on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 01:20:40 AM EST

Do you know what an interview is?

Are you saying that Fox made it up?

Ross says Arafat walked. He also says that there were no cantons, ie. no Bantustan.

He was there. Maybe he is lying, maybe not. Either way, the situation isn't "clear cut".

And nice selective quoting, too.

[ Parent ]

interview. (none / 0) (#291)
by felixrayman on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 01:55:22 AM EST

And nice selective quoting, too.

Nice selective debating. Is a 'state' that doesn't control its airspace a state? Did I claim in this thread that the offer included cantons?

I'm saying that the FOX interviewer was trying to prove an editorial point and masking it in the form of an interview. And I'm saying that anyone who claims Arafat walked away from the Taba negotiations had better have a hell of a lot better evidence than a fucking FOX interview to weigh against the thousands of news reports at the time that reported the events as they happened.

The situation at Taba is as clear cut as it can be. Barak made proposals, Arafat made counter-proposals, Sharon said 'It's all a moot point because I won't honor a word of it', Barak ordered his negotiators out of Taba, Sharon won the election and got exactly what he wanted, a war with the Palestinians. I can't make it any more clear cut for you, sorry.

Call Donald Rumsfeld and tell him our sorry asses are ready to go home. Tell him to come spend a night in our building. - Pfc. Matthew C. O'Dell

[ Parent ]
FOX ROX! (none / 0) (#404)
by Wulfius on Tue Oct 01, 2002 at 03:19:43 AM EST

"FOXNEWS THE NETWORK AMERICA TRUSTS"
"FOXNEWS WE REPORT, YOU DECIDE"

These are propaganda slogans the world had
not seen since the darkest depths of Stalinist Soviet Union.
---

---
"We must believe in free will, we have no choice."
http://wulfspawprints.blogspot.com/ - Not a journal dammit!
[ Parent ]

Barak walked and Sharon mooted the point. (5.00 / 1) (#290)
by felixrayman on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 01:46:35 AM EST

They both claim that Arafat walked when a very genorous offer was on the table.

Here is an excerpt from a BBC article about the end of the Taba negotiations:

"Mr Barak's decision to call off any further peace talks with the Palestinians until after the election followed a vitriolic speech by the Palestinian leader, Yasser Arafat, at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

Mr Barak's security adviser, Danny Yatom, called Mr Arafat's speech "bellicose, inflammatory and intolerable".

Mr Arafat condemned what he called "barbaric" Israeli aggression against the Palestinians.

He was more conciliatory on Monday, however, after late-night talks with UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan at a Davos hotel.

"We don't want a breakdown in the peace process. We will continue with the peace process despite the difficulties we are facing," Mr Arafat said."


This was after Sharon (who was ahead in the polls) had already said he would not honor any agreement reached at Taba. From a CNN article:

The sides have been racing against time, trying to achieve at least the outline of a peace deal before Israel's ballot, in which Barak faces hardliner Ariel Sharon.

Sharon, who maintains a double-digit lead in polls, says he would not honor any agreement Barak reaches before the election.

But Palestinian negotiator Nabil Shaath left the door open for continuing the peace effort.

"We are keen to reach an agreement with whoever is the prime minister of Israel because ... without an agreement our people will continue to suffer," he said.


From everything I can find in the media, the FAIR article I referenced above is accurate...Barak walked away from the Taba negotiations after Arafat had made counter proposals to the Israeli offers. If you know of reputable sources that say Arafat walked away from Taba while Barak was willing to negotiate, by all means post them, I'd love to see them. Put them right next to the links you have that claim Sharon didn't really say he would ignore any agreement reached at Taba if he was elected.

Call Donald Rumsfeld and tell him our sorry asses are ready to go home. Tell him to come spend a night in our building. - Pfc. Matthew C. O'Dell

[ Parent ]
In the News (4.25 / 8) (#141)
by Happy Monkey on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:11:58 AM EST

Which country seems more likely to pull the West into a major war? Israel, China, or Turkey? Prior to September 11, the answer was China, and there was a great deal of agitation to sever ties with China, despite an extreme push in the other direction by the US government. Now, Israel is the most dangerous of our trade associates, and they are getting the attention.

Just pointing out another factor.
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Length 17, Width 3
You couldn't be more wrong. (3.00 / 3) (#247)
by Demiurge on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 07:43:03 PM EST

Israel isn't going to pull the West into a major war because it can whip all of its enemies.

A conflict between Turkey and Greece over Cyprus, both NATO members, is far more likely to create a widespread conflict. So are US actions in Iraq. Iraq disentigrates instead of simply changing regimes, Kurds in Iraq and Turkey start agitating for a greater Kurdistan, Turkey invades Northern Iraq to put them down, and it's now a NATO problem

[ Parent ]
Yes I could. (5.00 / 1) (#274)
by Happy Monkey on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:31:54 PM EST

Indeed, a Turkey vs Greece military confrontation would be more politically damaging, and a China vs. anybody fight would be more physically damaging than a fight in the Middle East. However, it is Israel that is most likely to actually do it. In addition, it is Israel that is in the news more than China these days, let alone Turkey, thus attracting more protest.
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[ Parent ]
not true and none of the above (4.00 / 1) (#361)
by mami on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 10:29:10 PM EST

currently the unidentified individual evildoing terrorist is the one which will pull the West into a major war. And because the terrorist can't attached beyond reasonable doubt to a certain nation, any nation who is accidentically getting on the nerves of the current US administration could be the "official" proxy country that "causes" a major war.

[ Parent ]
Out of scope (none / 0) (#368)
by Happy Monkey on Sun Sep 29, 2002 at 08:25:25 AM EST

It's hard to say if you are being wry when you use the term "evildoing", but I'll assume you're serious. This article is about agitation to sever trade ties with Israel. Of course the country that is actually going to pull the West into war is most likely the USA, but we can't sever ties with ourselves. And we've already severed most of our economic ties to our "proxy country" Iraq, so there's no issue there. So we're back to Israel.
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[ Parent ]
Well... (4.75 / 12) (#142)
by FourDegreez on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:18:17 AM EST

There are groups that put pressure on non-white human rights offendors, but you are correct that most of the focus is now on Irael. Dershowitz recently argued on Salon.com that the reason is because the Palestinian campaign of terror is effective. It worked. It got people to pay notice and brought their cause to the fore on the world stage. Interesting that his tune has now changed, the winds have shifted, and it's become a race issue to Mr. Dershowitz. I wonder what it will be tomorrow. I'm not saying that there is no truth to his claims about terrorism, but I feel he is an "Israel, right or wrong" commentator and thus should be taken with a grain of salt.

I think part of the reason for a disproportionate amount of outrage being leveled against Irael, at least for protestors in the US, is due to the US's continued and unparalleled support for Israel since its inception. The US sends more foreign aid to Israel than to any other country, and we've supplied them with the very weapons they use on Palestinians. The US looked the other way when Israel developed a nuclear arsenal. The US regularly and unilaterally vetos UN resolutions that are unfavorable to Israel, and looks the other way when Israel ignores the resolutions that do get passed. The US has only in the past year made any statements regarding an independent Palestinian state. I think a lot of Americans oppose Israel specifically because the US is so intrinsically linked with it. This fact amplifies the outrage: WE are complicit in the oppression of the Palestinians.

The foreign support lie (2.20 / 5) (#244)
by Demiurge on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 07:29:59 PM EST

The idea that the US is propping up Israel from collapsing is ridiculous. US aid was a far larger factor fourty years ago, today Israel could do without.

You know what country comes close after in terms of US aid? Egypt. Total up all the aid given to the various Arab nations which vehemently oppose Israel's right to exist, and see which gets more US aid.

[ Parent ]
... is not a lie! (5.00 / 4) (#270)
by kurthr on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:50:19 PM EST

I encourage you to examine the actual reported aid. I'm certain that Israel could survive the loss of US economic aid, but it would be quite painfull. US aid comprises ~4% of Israel's $100 billion total GDP. Yep, about $4,000,000,000 a year in military, economic, and trade subsidy or loans per year.

http://www.us-israel.org/jsource/US-Israel/U.S._Assistance_to_Israel1.html http://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/geos/is.html http://www.mof.gov.il/hachnasot/eo02_07/eo02_07.pdf

This doesn't include certain military development contracts which can come to a few hundred million dollars a year or some $10billion in loan guarantees made over the last decade. I guess the other telling point, however, is that some 40% of Israel's trade goes to the US and another 30% to Europe. This makes Israel overall very sensitive to the politcal situation with the US and EU.

[ Parent ]

Knowledge of the campaign... (4.64 / 14) (#151)
by winthrop on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:53:26 AM EST

Hi,

I'm very bemused by having an entire story and lots of comments speculating on the motives of a campaign, with very little comment as to who the people who make up the campaign are.

As I'm personally involved with many people pushing for divestiture and Palestinian causes in general, and I covered a protest of Summers' remarks for Indymedia, I thought I'd share my experience and my own speculation on the reasons for the push in the Israeli divestiture campaign.

First of all, the activists in most campaigns for Palestinian causes I've seen (all in America) are 95% Arab, Jewish, or socialist/anarchist, in descending order of quantity, with some overlap, of course. Lately, there have been an influx of black people, many of them veterans of the South Africa anti-apartheid campaign. I think it's safe to say that the Arabs and the Jews are involved for personal reasons (many of them have friends or relatives living in Israel/Palestine) or group reasons (many of the Jews are there as a "Not in my name" sort of thing).

So then, why are the rest, the socialists, anarchists, liberals, and anti-apartheiders there, and not trying to divest from Turkey, or some such thing? For starters, many of them are involved in lots of other issues. Noam Chomsky, for example, recently went to Turkey to defend a publisher publishing books mentioning the Kurdish situation in Southeastern Turkey. It's common to see the same people at a "Free Palestine" rally one day, a "Justice for Janitors" rally the next, and an anti-IMF rally the weekend after (if they aren't all round up into one big event). It wouldn't be surprising to see some Falun Gong practitioners at all three.

But still, Israel is getting a much greater share of the attention, and it's worthy to ask why. I think iGrrrl is partially right, that many of the (American-born, non-Arab) protesters share a general Western racism, they can relate to Israel more, and are thus more willing to act against it, while they barely have a concept of what life is like in Africa or Sri Lanka, and wouldn't even know where to start. But there's a lot of other factors:

  • Mainstream media. Like it or not, the American left sets its priorities almost entirely in reaction to the American establishment. When George Bush makes a big push on Iraq in the papers, people pay attention. When they silently attack the Phillipines and Georgia, not much gets done.
  • Funding/Organization. Many of the people helping out on Israel/Palestine campaigns are full-time activists; they are involved in such a wide range of issues that they're willing to show up for whatever campaign is going strong at the current time that fits close enough to their world view (as almost all Palestinian activists in the states are pushing for a democratic, secular state, that fits well). The Arabs and Jews who work specifically on this issue are well-enough organized that the rest of the activists can just show up and plug in.

Anyway, just some ideas off the cuff of my head. How the Left sets its priorities in general is an extremely interesting question with very complex answers I'm sure. It's a question that some people (not enough, I think) on the Left have begun to think about. (In the words of one filmmaker I met, it's all part of the non-profit industrial complex. :)

By the way, the idea that the Left is driven by anti-Semitism is simply so preposterous, I don't know where to start. At one anti-Zionist rally I attended, two or three anti-Semites showed up and tried to hand out fliers until they were surrounded on three sides by people shouting "NAZIS OUT! NAZIS OUT!" and they decided to go home.

How incredibly amusing. Anti-Zionism not bigoted? (3.00 / 4) (#243)
by Demiurge on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 07:28:08 PM EST

At one anti-Zionist rally I attended, two or three anti-Semites showed up and tried to hand out fliers until they were surrounded on three sides by people shouting "NAZIS OUT! NAZIS OUT!"


No anti-semitism, eh? What about when some leftist groups shouts the same thing when pro-Israeli activists show up? Because I've seen the exact same ideas expressed in places like K5. That the Israelis are "Nazis" and they need to "get out" of the Middle East. No one is claiming that there can be no legitimate criticism of Israel. But there is the taint of anti-semitism in a good deal of anti-Israeli movements. Anti-Zionism says Jews don't deserve their own homeland, but Palestinians get another Arab state. I can think of little that's more bigoted.

[ Parent ]
My only answer to that is ... (4.00 / 2) (#264)
by pyramid termite on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:28:20 PM EST

... nationalism is stupid, especially nationalism based on religion, race, or ethnic identity. A good look at history or a newspaper will give you all the proof you need. One thing I like about America is that we actually want a pluralistic society.

On the Internet, anyone can accuse you of being a dog.
[ Parent ]
Well... (none / 0) (#295)
by cr8dle2grave on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 03:28:27 AM EST

...I'm generally pretty sympathetic to the Israeli position these days, but I'm decidedly anti-Zionist and I consider the creation of the Israeli state one of the largest blunders of the 20th century. Don't get me wrong, I believe the current state of Israel enjoys an unquestionable right to exist on the basis of something akin to the common law notion of adverse possession (the considerable improvements they have made to the land more than justify their current claims to possession), but were it 1948 I would be strongly advocating that every government refuse to support the nascent Israeli state, and perhaps advocating that military support be given their adversaries.

---
Unity of mankind means: No escape for anyone anywhere. - Milan Kundera


[ Parent ]
If it wasn't for the keywords (3.70 / 10) (#152)
by zipper on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:57:00 AM EST

Like anti-semitism, israel, and palestinian this would never have made it to the front page. Why? Because the argument is stupid. "HEY, QUIT CRITICIZING THE ISRAELIS BECAUSE OTHER PEOPLE ARE DOING BAD THINGS TOO".

Hear that? We can't prosecute this murderer because other people are killing people too.

You can call people who disagree with you anti-semitic as much as you like, at the end of the day you'll still be wrong.

---
This account has been neutered by rusty and can no longer rate or post comments. Way to go fearless leader!
Did you even read the article? (1.80 / 5) (#155)
by hettb on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:09:27 PM EST

Quote:

I do not believe it is the racism that Dershowitz and Summers believe it to be. No, not anti-semitism at all. The difference in fact lies in a very subtle and unconscious attitude.

The countries chosen for divestiture pressure have (or had, in the case of South Africa) a White, European government. The countries we do not target, despite similar levels of oppression, have non-White governments. I do not know whether we (speaking globally as The West) are simply more outraged by people who we feel are like us behaving in ways we cannot condone, or whether we just don't expect high moral behavior from people who we feel are not like us. I think most people who are working for divestiture in Israel would vigorously deny this, and I think they would protest too much.

[ Parent ]

His Point Stands (4.00 / 2) (#169)
by virg on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:54:01 PM EST

His point is still valid, despite that not being the basis of your article comment. You present a false dichotomy, and he says it's "none of the above", and so do I. From the article:
I do not know whether we (speaking globally as The West) are simply more outraged by people who we feel are like us behaving in ways we cannot condone, or whether we just don't expect high moral behavior from people who we feel are not like us.
I don't think it's either of these things to any appreciable degree. The way I see things, they're the ones getting the microscope treatment because they're in the news these days. Think back. How many people screamed for divestiture from China when the Tianenmen Square debacle was happening? How many of them are still calling for it? There's a new target, and the fact that Israel is the target of opportunity these days does not invalidate the arguments of the divestiture proponents, nor does it make those people unilaterally anti-Semitic or racist. When Israel's defenders ask, "why Israel?" I answer, "why not?"

Virg
"Imagine (it won't be hard) that most people would prefer seeing Carrot Top beaten to death with a bag of walnuts." - Jmzero
[ Parent ]
Irrelevancy as misdirection and delaying tactic (3.00 / 2) (#177)
by DingBat1 on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:10:56 PM EST


Agreed.

I'm basically on the fence when it comes to Israel: They do stupid things and the Palestinians never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity.

But one thing I do know is that it's becoming more common to throw irrelevancies into an argument to deflect attention from the topic at hand.

Who cares about China? We're talking about Israel now. If you want to talk about China, fine, we can talk about China. But I totally fail to see how China's misdeeds in any way affects Israel, the Palestinians, or a discussion of their situation.

There's no rule in the books that says I have to meet someone elses definition of consistent.


[ Parent ]

It seems you didn't understand what (1.50 / 6) (#189)
by hettb on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:53:13 PM EST

I was trying to express in this comment at all. If you could be bothered, please read this easier to read comment.

[ Parent ]
What are you talking about? (1.80 / 5) (#186)
by hettb on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:43:52 PM EST

This comment claimed that the poster of the article called people who criticize Israel "antisemites" :

"You can call people who disagree with you anti-semitic as much as you like, at the end of the day you'll still be wrong."

Then I quoted a portion of the article, which indicates that the author of the article didn't "call people who disagree with you anti-semitic":

"I do not believe it is the racism that Dershowitz and Summers believe it to be. No, not anti-semitism at all."

*I* didn't present a dichotomy because *I* didn't even write anything, *I* only quoted from the article. That's why everything was in italics.

I don't know whether it's because of anti-semitismm, racism against non-Westerners or other reason that people criticize Isral and I don't care. I was merely trying to point out that the author of the article didn't alledge that people who criticize Israel are antisemites, as the poster of the comment I replied to said.

[ Parent ]

Settle down skippy. (none / 0) (#191)
by zipper on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 02:12:33 PM EST

First off, the last line of my comment wasn't referring to the author of the article, it was in reference to the people who disagree with the divestiture movement.

You're attacking me because of one (admittedly poorly worded) line. The rest of my argument stands. There's no meat to this article, it's "You're a bad person if you criticize this group instead of that one". We're not holding anybody to different standards, we're just dealing with them one at a time.

Secondly, what the poster alleged was that people who criticize the Israelis are racist because they're holding them to a higher standard than anyone else. Supposedly, it's not anti-semitism, it's racism.

dictionary.com promptly puts this argument in its place:

anti-semite -- adj : discriminatory especially on the basis of race or religion [syn: racist, antiblack, anti-Semitic, anti-Semite(a)] n : someone who hates and would persecute Jews [syn: anti-Semite, Jew-baiter]

See that there? "Syn. Racism"

Anti-semitism is just a section of racism, if it would make you feel better, I could use the more generic word next time.

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This account has been neutered by rusty and can no longer rate or post comments. Way to go fearless leader!
[ Parent ]
Stop putting words in my mouth! (2.00 / 4) (#203)
by hettb on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 03:11:08 PM EST

You're attacking me because of one (admittedly poorly worded) line.

Learn from your mistake.

The rest of my argument stands. There's no meat to this article, it's "You're a bad person if you criticize this group instead of that one". We're not holding anybody to different standards, we're just dealing with them one at a time.

Was I attacking "the rest of your argument"? Where did I say that I agreed with the article? What you wrote is completely irrelevant to my posts.

Secondly, what the poster alleged was that people who criticize the Israelis are racist because they're holding them to a higher standard than anyone else. Supposedly, it's not anti-semitism, it's racism. ... Anti-semitism is just a section of racism

Yes, antisemitism is a subset racism. Who would have thought? But you got what the author was trying to say the wrong way round (regardless of whether (s)he is right or not):

The author meant that people who (harshly) criticize Israel are racist not because they hold Israelis to a higher standard, but the Chinese, Africans ("non-whites" as the author put it) to a lower standard because "you shoudn't expect anything better from them"; therefore, in the author's opinion, they are racist, but not antisemitic, because that racism is not directed at Jews but at "non-whites." Whether the author is right in asserting that this is the critics' true motivation, is a completely different question.

Now stop putting words in my mouth and improve your reading comprehension skills.

[ Parent ]

Er... (4.00 / 1) (#205)
by zipper on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 03:32:06 PM EST

Holding one group to a higher standard is the same as holding everybody else to a lower standard.

You never did well with logic, did you?

Analogy:
me: Left is the opposite of right!
you: No, you've got it backwards, right is the opposite of left!

The statement is the same.

---
This account has been neutered by rusty and can no longer rate or post comments. Way to go fearless leader!
[ Parent ]
Improve your reading comprehension skills. (2.00 / 4) (#212)
by hettb on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 03:50:50 PM EST

Holding one group to a higher standard is the same as holding everybody else to a lower standard.

I was merely explaining the position of the author to you, since you didn't understand her article. I did not say that I agreed with the author's theory. You are again putting words in my mouth. How many times do I have to repeat myself?

According to the author's logic(which may or may not be correct), the standards the Israelis are held to are the standards that ALL "Western"/"white"/"civilized" nations are held to. Since the "West" also includes non-Jewish people, this isn't, following the author's logic, anti-semitism.

According to the author, this also means that Israel's critics (subconsciously) consider other nations they allegedly (according to the author) do not criticize, to be "uncivilized."

[ Parent ]

The extreme right wanting to have cake and eat it. (3.10 / 10) (#154)
by Tezcatlipoca on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:07:02 PM EST

The right wing Christians in the US have got this belief that if the Bible says something, then it must be literally true. The problem with that is, that if that thing has not happened, maybe, just maybe, reality needs a helping hand from a friendly extreme right Christian to make reality conform to the Holly Scripture.
The extreme right Christians truly believe that there should be a state for the Jewish people because they are the choosen ones according to the Bible. Somewhere it says it is their land, though on the Muslims if the Bible writers overlook that the Holly land would be inhabited by them a few hundred years later (obvisouly divine inspiration does not reach into the future).
So Israel is born, basically ignoring the concerns of Arab residents in the region (see my previous posting in this discussion, it points to an interesting article that better describes the situation), the funny thing is that all those unreconstructed Socialists that governed Israel during its infancy would eventually find their best allies in the right wing Christians in the US.
I guess I don't need to go and fish information around to probe that these people have a lot of political influence in many spheres of public life in the US. Eventually they made sure that Israel should be an US issue, and since the late 60s it has been so, once something becomes and US issue no country dealing with the US can ignore the issue any longer.The superpower's issues become worldwide ones.
Once something becomes a worldwide issue, it takes a life of its own. Here the media makes its appearence, once the media joins in the fest the real issues are diluted, the entertainment quota and the value for shareholders takes over.
I have no better explanation. Nobody cares about Turkey not because racism, or as some have sugested even "reverse racism" (in which nothing black in nature can be touched with the petal of a journalistic comment) but because there is no lobby group in the US interested enough in neither part of the conflict.
The case of South Africa is not comparable in my opinion: the abhorrence of the apartheid regime struck any decent person since such perversion was instituted. As we know when it comes to Palestine-Israel all seems a fuzzy depressing grey in which no part has a high moral ground anymore and in which both parts have become victims of their mutual hate and most worringly, of their own hate against their enemy.

0wr F4th3R, wh0 0wnz h34\/3n, j00 r0x0rs!
M4y 4|| 0wr b4s3 s0m3d4y Bl0ng t0 j00!
M4y j00 0wn 34rth juss |1|3 j00 0wn h34\/3n.
G1v3 us th1s
Absolutely! (4.00 / 1) (#161)
by the on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:27:40 PM EST

In particular dispensationalists, of which there are a great many, believe that Israel has a central role to play in the lead up to the apocalypse. These views have become popular in other strands of Christianity too. A google search in Israel and dispensationalism turns up lots of interesting documentation - including criticisms of dispensationlism by non-dispensationalist Christians.

--
The Definite Article
[ Parent ]
(O/T) That is quite possibly... (5.00 / 1) (#171)
by InigoMontoya on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:54:18 PM EST

...the most utterly cool sig I've ever witnessed.

InigoMontoya
This signature is self-referential.
mistersite.net
[ Parent ]

Except for the tact that... (3.50 / 2) (#174)
by Skywise on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:02:35 PM EST

Many "right wing" Christians blame the Jews for killing Jesus and believe that wiping out the Jews will be just retribution.  These would include the Catholics, the protestants and the baptists.

Many "right wing" Christians see these sort of actions of the US government as part of the Zionist conspiracy to eventually control the world and subjugation of Christianity to that ideal as part of the plan.

In truth, alot of foreign policy has been dictated because of guilt brought on by the Anti-Defamation Legaue, which brought about many changes in American attitudes towards civil rights.  (For instance, it was not uncommon for anti-semitic attitudes to appear through television programs through the early 60's.  It was a conscious, controlled effort by the ADL to call for, and get those changes made so that such a thing doesn't happen at all now.)

Did it work?  Well, take a look at what you just posted...  US policy allows Christians in China and Africa to be slaughtered, but goes out of its way to protect Israel... even though Israel openly dictates terms of its alliance.

Is that religious dogmatism at work?  Really?

[ Parent ]

In their mentality there may be no contradiction. (none / 0) (#302)
by Tezcatlipoca on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 04:52:17 AM EST

Israel may have a place on Earth: a physical place where God allowed Jews to settle but also Jews can become an easy escapegoat to hate when necessary.

These people are trying to make reality fit a world explained by a book that is full of contradictions if read literally.

0wr F4th3R, wh0 0wnz h34\/3n, j00 r0x0rs!
M4y 4|| 0wr b4s3 s0m3d4y Bl0ng t0 j00!
M4y j00 0wn 34rth juss |1|3 j00 0wn h34\/3n.
G1v3 us th1s
[ Parent ]

Are you sure (none / 0) (#309)
by Skywise on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 06:45:46 AM EST

You're not describing yourself?

[ Parent ]
Escapegoat? (none / 0) (#354)
by cr8dle2grave on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 05:49:44 PM EST

Would that be Bedouin version of a life boat?

---
Unity of mankind means: No escape for anyone anywhere. - Milan Kundera


[ Parent ]
Ok, you win.. (4.50 / 14) (#158)
by bobaloo on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 12:20:06 PM EST

For years I've tried to rationally, and civilly, disagree with the policies of the Israeli government, their refusal to abide by UN Security Council resolutions, their occupation of territory, their treatment of minorities and citizens of the occupied territories and their manipulation of the US government, while supporting the Israeli people; in the same manner that I hope persons in other countries can distinguish between the actions of the US government and the citizens of this country.

Of course, I have been called anti-semitic for daring to criticize, and for years I have tried to defend myself against these accusations.

OK, you win, fuck it. I'm anti-semitic, oh, AND a racist. So what? I refuse to curl into a ball and cry for the sins of someone else's ancestors, I'm going to keep doing exactly what I've been doing. Hope you're happy...

You know, the funny thing is... (3.70 / 10) (#176)
by What She Said on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:04:26 PM EST

I hear people yelling "anti-Semitism" when it's a fact that the Jews aren't the only Semitic people. Guess who else is Semitic? Yep, that's right...the very same people that Israel is killing every day. Gee, imagine that. Israel itself is anti-Semitic.

 Things that make you go "Hmmm..."

Sem·ite, noun.
1. A member of a group of Semitic-speaking peoples of the Near East and northern Africa, including the Arabs, Arameans, Babylonians, Carthaginians, Ethiopians, Hebrews, and Phoenicians.


Re: You know, the funny thing is... (4.00 / 1) (#223)
by zerblat on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 04:52:57 PM EST

Yeah, well that's just the way it is. The everyday usage of words doesn't always correspond to their original meaning.

Cau·ca·sian

  1. Anthropology. Of or being a major human racial classification traditionally distinguished by physical characteristics such as very light to brown skin pigmentation and straight to wavy or curly hair, and including peoples indigenous to Europe, northern Africa, western Asia, and India. No longer in scientific use. See Usage Note at race.
  2. Of or relating to the Caucasus region or its peoples, languages, or cultures.
  3. Of or relating to a group of three language families spoken in the region of the Caucasus mountains, including Chechen, Abkhaz, and the Kartvelian languages.
Ar·y·an n.
  1. Indo-Iranian. No longer in technical use.
  2. A member of the people who spoke the parent language of the Indo-European languages. No longer in technical use.
  3. A member of any people speaking an Indo-European language. No longer in technical use.
  4. In Nazism and neo-Nazism, a non-Jewish Caucasian, especially one of Nordic type, supposed to be part of a master race.

And my pet peeve:

pathetic
\Pa*thet"ic\, a. [L. patheticus, Gr. ?, fr. ?, ?, to suffer: cf. F. path['e]tique. See Pathos.] 1. Expressing or showing anger; passionate. [Obs.]

2. Affecting or moving the tender emotions, esp. pity or grief; full of pathos; as, a pathetic song or story. ``Pathetic action.'' --Macaulay.

[ Parent ]

Even more fun is the family trees... (none / 0) (#315)
by thogard on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 11:09:12 AM EST

Abraham had two sons, one's offspring are the Jews and the other's are in many places in the Arabic world including the Palestinians. According to Jewish ledgend, Abraham was a Jew and so his childrend must be Jewish. The Muslims claim Abraham was one of theirs. The interesting part about this is that most of the food customs and strict rules that both religions share where handed down after Abraham's time but they have many things in common. While both religions pinpoint where the split happended was with his sons Isaac and Ishmael, its clear that there wasn't a seperation in their rules and teaching until much when the Romans got involved in the region and then the major split happend in the 7th centruy when Mohamad rewrote the book. Both religions also share a great deal of inaccurate historical stories such as anything involving Egypt. I suspect the location that both religions describe as Egypt is somewhere on either the Tigress and Eurphraties rivers.

[ Parent ]
shaming your peers (3.00 / 2) (#180)
by louboy on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:19:29 PM EST

I fail to see how this is anti-semitism or "worse".

Israel is part of the mainstream of Western civilization, and so we Westerners expect more from them.

In your personal life, if you hear a story about a stranger who behaves in an unethical manner, are you likely to try to change that person's behavior? What if they are a friend of yours? What about a close family member? It's only natural to hold your peers to higher standards.

Israel is our (us = Europe, and the English-speaking democracies)"peer." The idea is to shame Israel for behaving outside the boundaries of what is acceptable by Western libeeral civilization.

What about the Palestinians? (4.33 / 3) (#187)
by Skywise on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:48:12 PM EST

Shouldn't we "shame" them for behaving outside the boundaries of waht is acceptable by Western Liberal Civilization?

What makes Israel "our" (us = US and the english speaking democracies) peer and the Palestinians not?  Because "we" say so?

Or maybe its because Israel will listen to us and the Palestinians won't...

[ Parent ]

Let's see: (3.00 / 1) (#190)
by Jman1 on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 02:01:34 PM EST

"What makes Israel "our" (us = US and the english speaking democracies) peer and the Palestinians not? Because "we" say so?" Real democracy. Real economy. Education.

[ Parent ]
why? (none / 0) (#268)
by whichmike on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:45:28 PM EST

Because the Israeli government is the de facto political representative(to the outside world)of Israel and its suburb, Palestine, Yasser A notwithstanding. Who would one speak to about starting a business in Palestine, that was not overseen by an Israeli agency? A school? A loan?

[ Parent ]
Israelis as westerners (5.00 / 1) (#192)
by louboy on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 02:13:08 PM EST

Because Israel is a western country. It was created by European Jews, has a European-style government, nominally professes Western Enlightenment values (human rights, democracy, secularism, etc.).

A good friend of mine gets in a fight with someone I don't know very well, or have much in common with. In fact, this other guys is kind of a jerk. The fight is over a stupid issue where both of them are being pig-headed jerks. What do I do?

A) Support my friend, even though he's being a moron and a brute?

B) Tell the other guy to back off? Even though he doesn't know me or like me and is unlikely to listen? And besides, my friend was pushing him around first?

C) Tell my friend to back off and stop being an asshole? To be the big man and behave ethically...

I vote for C. But maybe that's just me.

[ Parent ]

Bad analogies... (2.00 / 1) (#204)
by Skywise on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 03:30:17 PM EST

China professes human rights and secularism and a limited form of democracy (Believing that pure individuality is harmful to a society).  Aside from them not being from Europe, could they be "Western"?
What if they fully adopted democracy?  Would that make them Western?  Should China then be subject to European judgment?  When should Europe be subject to Chinese judgment?

My point was that you say it's okay to control their actions because they are part of "you".  When that's a subjective viewpoint.

As for your bar analogy, try this one:

Your friend wins season passes to a football game at seat 17-A and B.  You go to see the game, but somebody else is in your seats.  After some bickering you talk to stadium security, they claim they've always had seats 17-A and B, but security verifies your tickets and kicks them out.
The next game you go to, they're there again, but before you can call security, they up and smack your friend in the face.  He defends himself, security comes and ejects them and you watch the game.  Third game, again, they're in your seats and as soon as they see you begin attacking your friend again.  At the 4th game, your friend preemptively smacks them around.  At the 5th game, your friend arrives hours early, only to be attacked by them when they come to claim their seats.

What do you do?

a> Support your friend, even though he's being childish?

b> tell the other guy to back off?

c>  Tell your friend to back off?


[ Parent ]

Yes, culture is subjective (none / 0) (#217)
by louboy on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 04:12:19 PM EST

Yes, cultures and civilizations are subjective. I'm not making any essentialist claims here about the "soul" of a civilization. I think it's pretty uncontroversial to say that Israel is part of the West, and China is not. Take a poll of Americans and Europeans and ask who they feel more culturally similar to, Israelis, Palestinians, or Chinese? Just a wild guess: I think the vast majority would choose Israelis. Ask the same question to Israelis, about Americans, Palestinians, and Chinese. Most would probably feel that Americans are more culturally similar. Civilizations/cultures/nations can be more or less "related" to one another. Those to whom we are more "related" are, as I claimed in a previous post, our peers.

Which leads me to ask you, what is your point? I'm making four points, and I'm not sure where exactly you disagree.

1) There is such a thing as "Western culture." Part of this culture is a set of ethical, philosophical, and political ideals generally called "Enlightenment values".

2) Israel is a part of Western culture.

3) It makes sense to hold your peers to higher standards of behavior than "strangers".

4) Since Israel is our (Euro/Anglo-democracy) peer, it makes sense to take them to task in a way that we do not take China or petty third-world dictatorships to task.



[ Parent ]

Already being Punished (2.00 / 2) (#233)
by blackpaw on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 06:02:41 PM EST

Shouldn't we "shame" them for behaving outside the boundaries of waht is acceptable by Western Liberal Civilization?

Because the palistinians are already being "punished" far more harshly by the israelis then a civilised country would ever consider reasonable

[ Parent ]

Nice Try (4.25 / 8) (#188)
by Sloppy on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 01:50:08 PM EST

Nice try, but there are other ways that Israel distinguishes itself from China besides race.

The reason I hold Israel to a higher standard than China (and therefore flame Israel more) isn't race. It's because the pretenses. China makes no excuses and tells no (credible) lies to cover up its injustice. Israel does. Israel appears to be a democracy. I expect more from a modern democracy than I expect from a communist dictatorship, because of the very political labels that I just cited earlier in this sentence.
"RSA, 2048, seeks sexy young entropic lover, for several clock cycles of prime passion..."

Not good examples (4.63 / 11) (#193)
by the womble on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 02:17:18 PM EST

Tamils in Sri Lanka, of Kurds in Turkey, of Tibetans in China

Only one of your three examples is valid, which is the Tibetans. However there are already organisations that campaign for Tibet so you could equally well ask them why they do not campaign for Palestinians. You need different organisations for different situations and people will invariably campaign for what they personally feel most strongly for.

While there is do doubt about the oppression of the Kurds. it is hardly useful to apply further commerical pressure on Iraq given that it is already subject to very heavy international sanctions.

Sri Lankan Tamils are not oppressed in that sense although there is a certain amount of discrimination. I would say that in matters of employment Sri Lankan Tamils are less discriminated against than Asians in Britain - as a half Tamil Sri Lankan living in Britain I have some direct experience. Many are succesful professionals and businessemen and I very much doubt you will find Palestinians (or Israeli Arabs in similar positions). Examples:

There may be some under-representation in politics with only three Tamils in the current cabinet. That said it is probably better than the success of non-whites in the US or the UK.

Just taking into account people I know personally:

  • The CEO of the stockbroker I worked for in Sri Lanka.
  • A former solicitor general
  • A number of senior civil servants (I mean in the top non-political layer of government in a UK type system).
  • A relative of mine who owns a private hospital, others in his familly run other businesses.
  • My great grandparents (who were Indian tamils who emigated to Sri Lanka) on both sides of my mother's family ran successful businesses.
  • Lots of accountants, lawyers and similar professionals in senior positions.
Next time, do not believe what you read on the web, it may turn out to be terrorist propaganda AGAIN.

Kurds (none / 0) (#321)
by Simon Kinahan on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 11:58:03 AM EST

As the parent post quoted, iGrrrl was talking about Kurds in Turkey, not Iraq. Turkey, Iran and Syria all have substantial Kurdish populations, as well as Iraq. Kurds in Turkey face considerable discrimination, and, indeed, risk of millitary action. Turkey is a close ally of the West, being part of NATO, and Israel's only Muslim friend.  As such, it would be quite effective to apply commercial pressure to Turkey, although I expect to see flocks of flying blue pigs first.

Simon

If you disagree, post, don't moderate
[ Parent ]
Oops (2.00 / 3) (#386)
by the womble on Mon Sep 30, 2002 at 02:07:07 PM EST

My mistake.

I know nothing about the Turkish situation so I will not say anything further, other than I was udner the impression that they were coming under EU pressure over human rights (although I do not know if this is serious or merely a nominal pressure).

[ Parent ]

or something worse? (3.33 / 3) (#208)
by whichmike on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 03:42:11 PM EST

I've always been of the apprehension that anti-semitism IS racism of a specific type. Since most of the people who harbor racist notions have a special place in their belief set for arabs and jews, the term is almost redundant. I am very much against what appear to be spiteful policies that Israel regularly implements against palestinians, but I do understand that right or wrong, the civilian populace should be able to live without fear of terrorist attacks from either side.

Enough of anti-semitism! (3.50 / 4) (#209)
by Niha on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 03:45:31 PM EST

About this, what I have to say is that I am quite tired of that matter of anti-semitism. Of course what Hitler did was really horrible, but that it is not something that allows Israel government to do whatever it wants, and there shouldn´t be any problem in criticize what it is doing. Saying also that as sick as Israel government makes me feel, so do palestinians terrorists.It seems that both of them work consciously(I have not strong enough word for them) or unconsciously(they would be insane in that case)against peace.

You're missing the obvious: laziness (4.00 / 7) (#211)
by Otto Surly on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 03:49:23 PM EST

While there are many countries ruled by brutal, murderous authoritarian regimes that regularly engage in torture and scoff at the notion of due process, not all of them are front-page or at least near-front-page news on a daily basis. The only ones I can think of off-hand, in fact, are China, Iraq, and Israel. (Afghanistan was on the radar briefly, of course.) I contend that this is why people are bothering to protest those countries and not others. If you're lazy about your information gathering, you are the bitch of the mass media. (I'm not going to speculate about what, if any, sinister motives the mass media have for their focus.)

As for why China instead of Israel, well, it's simple: boycotting Israel costs nothing. Israel is a puny, irrelevant little micro-state that everyone pats on the head and says "oh, you're so cute, you have technology" to. I'm not aware of any products I use that are made in Israel. On the other hand, pretty much everything in my office but the furniture and the electronics was made (evidently by enslaved political prisoners) in China. Boycotting China would be a huge inconvenience and, because I am a soulless monster and don't give a damn whose blood and bones are mixed into the very mortar of my culture of convenience, I'm not going to.



--
I can't wait to see The Two Towers. Man, that Legolas chick is hot.
Authoritarian regimes that use torture? (2.25 / 4) (#224)
by tkatchev on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 05:08:04 PM EST

What, like the U.S.?

Hey, I have a good idea -- why don't you boycott your own self.

   -- Signed, Lev Andropoff, cosmonaut.
[ Parent ]

The US and ways it sucks (2.50 / 2) (#236)
by Otto Surly on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 06:17:08 PM EST

Your comment is as the gibbering of wild monkeys. Let us discuss the flaws therein:

  • I live in the US. I can't avoid buying from Americans. The products I buy from them tend to be made elsewhere anyway, but the American middle-men always get a cut.
  • The US is tending dangerously toward authoritarianism, I agree—but it's not there yet. Likewise, even though the laws against torture and laws that require due process are often ignored, they exist and are often enforced. I'm unhappy with the state of the US, but it's not a police state on the order of Israel quite yet.


--
I can't wait to see The Two Towers. Man, that Legolas chick is hot.
[ Parent ]
Groundless accusations are no contribution here. (2.66 / 3) (#237)
by daystrom on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 06:17:51 PM EST

Mr. tkatchev,

You make a very serious claim here and yet you provide no evidence to back it up. Please site instances of US state-sponsored torture and I will immediately apologize for even bringing this up.

regards,
RCM

P.S. I am not a yank but from Canada, a nation where torture, oppression, and evil rules the day.

[ Parent ]
OK. (none / 0) (#300)
by tkatchev on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 04:22:06 AM EST

Here is a link. It's an over-the-top troll, and supports drug abuse, to boot -- but, there is a serious point there.

Personally, I think anybody who is White and lives in a suburban area has absolutely no moral or ethical justification to justify the downplaying of the horrible human rights abuses that take place in the U.S. You, personally, are part of the problem.

Black America has been facing genocide for several hundred years now, and, unlike your favourite pet Arabs, they do not have the benefit of billions of dollars of oil money and support from militant dictatorship countries.

   -- Signed, Lev Andropoff, cosmonaut.
[ Parent ]

So I'm OK (none / 0) (#326)
by Otto Surly on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 01:26:34 PM EST

...because I'm a Yellowish-Pink Person and live in the Inner City&tm;, right? Furrfu.

The US does bad stuff. China, Iraq, and Israel do the bad stuff we do plus a metric buttload of other stuff. That's doesn't mean we're OK, but it does mean we have a morally legitimate position when yelling at them to cut it the fuck out. There's a school of thought that says "clean your own house first", but there's another school of thought that says "clean the dirtiest house first", yes?

But I'm a lazy fuck and argue about this stuff on K5 instead of productively setting tires on fire or whatever, so I guess my opinion is irrelevant, right?



--
I can't wait to see The Two Towers. Man, that Legolas chick is hot.
[ Parent ]
Yes. (none / 0) (#327)
by tkatchev on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 01:36:50 PM EST

Most people would argue that the U.S. is the dirtiest house.

Who are you to argue? You have no claim to go againt the majority of the world's people's opinion unless you were some sort of fascist misanthrope. Which brings me right back into the first sentence of this post.

To reiterate: WAKE UP, YOU ARE THE EVIL EMPIRE.

   -- Signed, Lev Andropoff, cosmonaut.
[ Parent ]

[Jaw drops] (none / 0) (#328)
by Otto Surly on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 01:52:02 PM EST

So you believe that the majority of the world's people have an opinion that the US is the most evil nation per capita on Earth. Where do you get this idea? Do you have statistics, or are you just making it up?

Even supposing that were the case, it's entirely possible for three billion people to be right and three billion people plus one to be wrong. "Majority rules" is about the third stupidest thing to say in a debate. Uninformed opinions count for zero in anything but actual violence.



--
I can't wait to see The Two Towers. Man, that Legolas chick is hot.
[ Parent ]
tell ya what (none / 0) (#329)
by adequate nathan on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 02:09:52 PM EST

Why not answer the allegation that the American prison system sponsors millions of rapes a year? That's the issue here. And, for the record, this is something not sponsored in China and Israel and Britain. It's an American thing.

Nathan
"For me -- ugghhh, arrgghh."
-Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chrétien, in Frank magazine, Jan. 20th 2003

Join the petition: Rusty! Make dumped stories & discussion public!
[ Parent ]

I did. (none / 0) (#330)
by Otto Surly on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 02:18:50 PM EST

I asserted (with as much support as the post I was replying to) that rape is also a feature of prisons in China and Israel. Feel free to produce statistics stating otherwise. And why are you bringing up Britain? I'm perfectly willing to admit that Britain has a better system than we do. At no point did I say we're the best; I said we're not the worst.

--
I can't wait to see The Two Towers. Man, that Legolas chick is hot.
[ Parent ]
arf (none / 0) (#353)
by adequate nathan on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 05:48:39 PM EST

rape is also a feature of prisons in China and Israel

Link please.

Now, here are some links describing the by now common-knowledge situation of rapes being widespread in American prisons.

link "nearly one in ten..." link
The HRW report on prison rape is the seminal work in the field due to the dearth of official acknowledgement accompanying this problem. Your turn, skippy.

Nathan
"For me -- ugghhh, arrgghh."
-Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chrétien, in Frank magazine, Jan. 20th 2003

Join the petition: Rusty! Make dumped stories & discussion public!
[ Parent ]

No stats for you (none / 0) (#374)
by Otto Surly on Sun Sep 29, 2002 at 01:04:24 PM EST

HRW and others discuss the problem of prison rape in the US, and then mention that they mostly can't get access to that sort of information in the other places they're concerned about. That said, do you seriously mean to suggest that nations that have actual policies of the use of torture to interrogate, control, and punish prisoners are going to do a better job of protecting prisoners from each other? Or that countries that don't let Amnesty International look at the state of their prisoners are treating them better than those that do?



--
I can't wait to see The Two Towers. Man, that Legolas chick is hot.
[ Parent ]
how about answering the question (none / 0) (#384)
by adequate nathan on Mon Sep 30, 2002 at 09:06:18 AM EST

And telling me of the reports of widespread prison rape in Israel?

Listen, you have no arguments, you filthy troll you. Of course prison rape exists in some countries (I've heard it reported as taking place in Turkey, for example, and so has T H Lawrence.) But the fact that there are no substantive reports from most countries is hardly evidence that it takes place on a larger scale abroad.

Nathan
"For me -- ugghhh, arrgghh."
-Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chrétien, in Frank magazine, Jan. 20th 2003

Join the petition: Rusty! Make dumped stories & discussion public!
[ Parent ]

Do science-fu (none / 0) (#388)
by Otto Surly on Mon Sep 30, 2002 at 02:54:35 PM EST

I'm not trolling; I am working on inference from a limited set of data. In the absence of data, reason has to do. Prison rape requires (1) prisoners inclined to commit rape and (2) guards disinclined to protect the prisoners. It seems clear that states that torture their prisoners are unlikely to have (2), and the US provides data that suggest that violent criminals in general satisfy (1). It seems to me that one could falsify my conclusion by presenting statistics (which are evidently unavailable), by providing evidence that US prisoners are unusually inclined to rape other prisoners, or by providing evidence that, while China and Israel are cruel to their prisoners, they are selectively compassionate to the degree of protecting them from rape by one another.



--
I can't wait to see The Two Towers. Man, that Legolas chick is hot.
[ Parent ]
in other words (none / 0) (#389)
by adequate nathan on Mon Sep 30, 2002 at 03:50:04 PM EST

You've conceded my point: that the USA perpetrates enormous human rights abuses in its prisons. You claim that the fact that China and Israel don't somehow makes them worse than the USA.

No science to be seen here - it's pure ideology.

Nathan
"For me -- ugghhh, arrgghh."
-Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chrétien, in Frank magazine, Jan. 20th 2003

Join the petition: Rusty! Make dumped stories & discussion public!
[ Parent ]

No new concession (none / 0) (#390)
by Otto Surly on Mon Sep 30, 2002 at 05:41:59 PM EST

Did you read my comments? The bits where I talk about how the US prison system is known to suck, and assert that China and Israel (mostly likey) have that and (definitely) have officially-sanctioned torture and are therefore worse? You're not replying to what I'm saying, you're replying to a straw man.

--
I can't wait to see The Two Towers. Man, that Legolas chick is hot.
[ Parent ]
did you read /my/ comments (none / 0) (#393)
by adequate nathan on Mon Sep 30, 2002 at 09:19:00 PM EST

Where I claimed that the 'suckiness' of the US prison system is human-rights crime by any standard?

Nathan
"For me -- ugghhh, arrgghh."
-Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chrétien, in Frank magazine, Jan. 20th 2003

Join the petition: Rusty! Make dumped stories & discussion public!
[ Parent ]

Yes, and I continue to agree with you on that pt. (none / 0) (#411)
by Otto Surly on Tue Oct 01, 2002 at 10:05:23 AM EST

This entire thread has been about the relatively boring topic of who is more evil than whom, spinning off from the original idea of "the US shouldn't criticize anyone else because they are just as bad" (with which I disagree vehemently).

--
I can't wait to see The Two Towers. Man, that Legolas chick is hot.
[ Parent ]
Yes. (none / 0) (#363)
by tkatchev on Sun Sep 29, 2002 at 03:14:58 AM EST

Yes, I do belive that.

And the reason that I do is that I am one of those "other" people that lives "out there" and communicates with the Europeans, the brown, and the "oppressed" people.

   -- Signed, Lev Andropoff, cosmonaut.
[ Parent ]

Bully for you (none / 0) (#376)
by Otto Surly on Sun Sep 29, 2002 at 01:33:39 PM EST

So what you're saying is that:

  • the people you associate with agree with you more often than not, and that that is somehow unusual and/or a meaningful survey of opinions worldwide; and
  • that, contrary to my experience in practice, the majority of people have well-informed and accurate opinions?

What color is the sky on your world? On my planet (I call it "Earth") I continue to assert that most people have only a stereotyped understanding of how other countries work, and that even so, I have my doubts that most people see America as a den of iniquity that is much worse than the den of iniquity they live in.



--
I can't wait to see The Two Towers. Man, that Legolas chick is hot.
[ Parent ]
Lets count the US sponsored torturers shall we (none / 0) (#417)
by walwyn on Tue Oct 01, 2002 at 07:18:04 PM EST

  1. Abacha, General Sani - Nigeria
  2. Amin, Idi - Uganda
  3. Banzer, Colonel Hugo - Bolivia
  4. Batista, Fulgencio - Cuba
  5. Bolkiah, Sir Hassanal - Brunei
  6. Botha, P.W. - South Africa
  7. Branco, General Humberto - Brazil
  8. Cedras, Raoul - Haiti
  9. Cerezo, Vinicio - Guatemala
  10. Chiang Kai-Shek - Taiwan
  11. Cordova, Roberto Suazo - Honduras
  12. Christiani, Alfredo - El Salvador
  13. Diem, Ngo Dihn - Vietnam
  14. Doe, General Samuel - Liberia
  15. Duvalier, Francois - Haiti
  16. Duvalier, Jean Claude- Haiti
  17. Fahd bin'Abdul-'Aziz, King - Saudi Arabia
  18. Franco, General Francisco - Spain
  19. Hitler, Adolf - Germany
  20. Hassan II- Morocco
  21. Marcos, Ferdinand - Philippines
  22. Martinez, General Maximiliano Hernandez - El Salvador
  23. Mobutu Sese Seko - Zaire
  24. Noriega, General Manuel - Panama
  25. Ozal, Turgut - Turkey
  26. Pahlevi, Shah Mohammed Reza - Iran
  27. Papadopoulos, George - Greece
  28. Park Chung Hee - South Korea
  29. Pinochet, General Augusto - Chile
  30. Pol Pot- Cambodia
  31. Rabuka, General Sitiveni - Fiji
  32. Montt, General Efrain Rios - Guatemala
  33. Salassie, Halie - Ethiopia
  34. Salazar, Antonio de Oliveira - Portugal
  35. Somoza, Anastasio Jr. - Nicaragua
  36. Somoza, Anastasio, Sr. - Nicaragua
  37. Smith, Ian - Rhodesia
  38. Stroessner, Alfredo - Paraguay
  39. Suharto, General - Indonesia
  40. Trujillo, Rafael Leonidas - Dominican Republic
  41. Videla, General Jorge Rafael - Argentina
  42. Zia Ul-Haq, Mohammed - Pakistan
But you tell that to the kids of today and they wont believe you!
----
Professor Moriarty - Bugs, Sculpture, Tombs, and Stained Glass
[ Parent ]
Internal/external (none / 0) (#439)
by Otto Surly on Tue Nov 05, 2002 at 11:27:17 PM EST

I don't think anybody's claiming that the US doesn't support brutal, murderous dictatorships; we're just asserting that it isn't (yet?) itself one.

--
I can't wait to see The Two Towers. Man, that Legolas chick is hot.
[ Parent ]
I think it is because you are 0wn3d (3.00 / 7) (#213)
by mlapanadras on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 03:52:13 PM EST

Anti-Israel movements in US and Europe are directly or indirectly supported by Arab's money. It is not a crime though - just face it. In the same manner pro-Israel movements could be supported by Jewish (or sometimes Christians) money.

However there is only very limited quantity of Kurd or Tibetian millionaires around. To build public awareness you need a lot of money - to print leaflets, organize marches, shot movies, bribe congressman and all that stuff.

Freedom costs money. (In contrast, terrorism and dictatorship is relatively cheap.)

Anti-Israeli movement support (none / 0) (#403)
by Wulfius on Tue Oct 01, 2002 at 03:10:51 AM EST

Anti-Israeli movement in europe is supported by
the brutal, genocidal acts of Israeli government.

You see europe had a first hand experience of genocide in the past. That is why its so apparent to them.

Just because you were abused as a child does
not give you the right to abuse children.

Conversly, the anti-arab movement is supported by
US money. So now that we have the support out of
the way, why dont we the fuck stop this 'you poked
me in the eye first' bullshit and get to solving
the problem eh?

---
"We must believe in free will, we have no choice."
http://wulfspawprints.blogspot.com/ - Not a journal dammit!
[ Parent ]

Spot on (3.33 / 6) (#215)
by cr8dle2grave on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 04:12:01 PM EST

For what it is worth, I think you're essentially correct in saying that Israel is held to a higher standard due to their being a modern "western" nation. Although, as others have pointed out, I think it is more a cultural distinction than a racial one. I can't speak with certainty for anyone else, but I know that I personally hold Israel to higher standard than many other nations because of it's western character (I feel similarly about Japan as well).

There is, I believe, another factor which nobody has yet raised that contributes greatly to the disproportionate international emphasis on Israeli transgressions: the Organization of Islamic States comprises nearly a full 1/3 of the UN General Assembly (57 full members and 3 observers out of 190 UN members (actually 191, as East Timor joined today)). This makes the Islamic states a powerful block in the General Assembly and for the last 40+ years they have jointly made Israel an ongoing issue.  

---
Unity of mankind means: No escape for anyone anywhere. - Milan Kundera


Israel and higher standards (1.00 / 2) (#277)
by ka9dgx on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:53:51 PM EST

Israel has racked up 64 resolutions against them, for their systematic destruction of Palestine. I believe this is the root cause of the problem. If they could just get off the Zionist Extremist kick, they might just be able to get along with everyone.

--Mike--

[ Parent ]

(very OT): The name is not East-Timor (none / 0) (#311)
by mirleid on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 08:03:02 AM EST

The correct name is Timor-Leste.



Chickens don't give milk
[ Parent ]
Thanks (n/t) (none / 0) (#334)
by cr8dle2grave on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 03:11:21 PM EST


---
Unity of mankind means: No escape for anyone anywhere. - Milan Kundera


[ Parent ]
Hmmm (4.40 / 5) (#219)
by PhillipW on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 04:35:11 PM EST

I don't know that it's racism really. I think the fact that the Israel/Palestine conflict is far more visible than any of the others has a lot to do with it.

Some would also argue that our support of Israel is what makes us a target for terrorists. This could be another reason. More people would probably wake up to the situation in China if Tibetans were crashing into our skyscrapers.



-Phil
No, the Tibetans have gotten world-wide ... (5.00 / 1) (#265)
by pyramid termite on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:32:45 PM EST

... attention for their cause by NOT using violence, by using their exile to share their religion and culture with the rest of the world.

On the Internet, anyone can accuse you of being a dog.
[ Parent ]
So, let me see if I get this. (4.69 / 13) (#220)
by spcmanspiff on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 04:36:57 PM EST

  • Protesters are louder and more insistent in criticizing Israel than they are about other human rights abusers
  • This is because they unconciously 'expect better' from Whites.
  • Thus, racism!
I call BS.

The author has conveniently left out many other reasons for the focus on Israel:

  • There is an active dialog / argument going back and forth re: Israel; on other issues protestors are mostly ignored and without any high-profile opposition. I mean, when was the last time you saw somebody arguing on network TV that China is right to crack down on Falun Gong? Volume goes up in an active argument.
  • The United States and European governments have funded Israel, provided it arms, and otherwise continued strong support. Protest movements are directed against our own countries as much as, if not more than, Israel. Are protestors wrong to hold their own governments to a higher standard?
  • Just how much investment do individuals have in China, or Turkey, or the Congo, or these other places? Where foreign investment exists at all, it is usually in the form of international corporations -- and even crazy hippies aren't so stupid that they think they can convince, say, DeBeers to halt all mine investments in Africa because of human rights abuses. Divestment is being tried on Israel, and was used on South Africa, because it has a chance in hell of being effective and useful.
Although Israel is, as the author says, "White," there is no evidence that has anything at all to do with the focus on it as a human rights abuser.

I've seen the race card played with increasing frequency as a tactic to discredit leftists. It's very effective, especially since the left has a chicken-little habit of playing race games itself, but at the end of the day it's a stupid rhetorical trick with little substance behind it.

This article doesn't do that, but makes good ammo for those who do. Shame it was so vapid.

 

Israel and China (5.00 / 12) (#226)
by Oh Man on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 05:22:08 PM EST

The difference is that Chinese abuses of human rights are not supported and financed by you. Yes, if you are a US taxpayer you are paying for Israeli weapons (and bulldozers). On top of that, if you want to send additional contribution to Israeli army, yes you heard that right - Israeli army, you get a tax break (guess who is picking up the tab - bingo, other taxpayers).

At least Chinese human rights record has been consistently condemned by the US government. By contrast Israel is being rewarded with $3bn+ a year, latest weapons and intelligence plus political support.

The human rights situations are not comparable (3.00 / 7) (#241)
by Demiurge on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 07:23:41 PM EST

The widespread and systemic oppression of dissident in groups to China can not even be compared by the legitimate but perhaps heavy-handed Israeli response to Palestinian slaughter.

[ Parent ]
legitimate? (3.80 / 5) (#248)
by Oh Man on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 07:45:29 PM EST

You have a funny definition of the word legitimate if you can apply it to Israeli occupation of Palestinian land. What dictionary are you using?

Webster has the following definitions, perhaps you are refering to the 5th meaning since the first 4 seem to mean exactly the opposite from the Israeli actions:

Main Entry: 1le·git·i·mate
Pronunciation: li-'ji-t&-m&t
Function: adjective
Etymology: Middle English legitimat, from Medieval Latin legitimatus, past participle of legitimare to legitimate, from Latin legitimus legitimate, from leg-, lex law
Date: 15th century
1 a : lawfully begotten; specifically : born in wedlock b : having full filial rights and obligations by birth <a legitimate child>
2 : being exactly as purposed : neither spurious nor false <legitimate grievance> <a legitimate practitioner>
3 a : accordant with law or with established legal forms and requirements <a legitimate government> b : ruling by or based on the strict principle of hereditary right <a legitimate king>
4 : conforming to recognized principles or accepted rules and standards <legitimate advertising expenditure> <legitimate inference>
5 : relating to plays acted by professional actors but not including revues, burlesque, or some forms of musical comedy <the legitimate theater>


[ Parent ]

In China, my tax dollars aren't paying for it (nt) (5.00 / 1) (#266)
by pyramid termite on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:33:53 PM EST


On the Internet, anyone can accuse you of being a dog.
[ Parent ]
I support the PRC every day (5.00 / 5) (#255)
by Lode Runner on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 08:36:51 PM EST

$16 shoes from Sears
$50 bike from Walmart
$2 Hint-Mint tin from Barnes and Noble

and much of that other cheap stuff I'm buying comes to the West from factories run by some of China's nastiest generals.

Would you want to work in the factory where they make those watches you can buy from gumball machines? Does granting the PRC "most favored" trading status encourage or discourage exploitation and oppression?

If you ask me, we who want to catalyze change should be complaining to the gov't about Israel and divesting from companies that run companies in China. This is pretty much the opposite of what the left is doing at present.

[ Parent ]

Are you joking? (5.00 / 1) (#342)
by broken77 on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 04:36:40 PM EST

One of the champion causes of the left is labor. Which encompasses fighting sweatshop labor, unsafe working conditions, child labor, slave labor and other practices which occur all over the world and especially in China. Ask a "leftist" what they think about Wal-Mart, and if they shop there. They have also had the state of Israel in the crosshairs for many years now. They are just changing their tactics.

In short... Bad comparison.

I'm starting to doubt all this happy propaganda about Islam being a religion of peace. Heck, it's just as bad as Christianity. -- Dphitz
[ Parent ]

I know (3.00 / 1) (#346)
by Lode Runner on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 04:59:44 PM EST

plenty of leftists who shop at Wal-Mart. They're poor and it's cheap. The left has long since moved away from its pro-labor roots; middle-class kids just aren't fired up over economic exploitation the way they are over political oppression. Plus, labor itself hasn't trusted the youth since the '60s. Yesterday, good working-class (and mostly black) men thoroughly enjoyed smacking these new leftists with batons and stuffing them into paddy-wagons.

[ Parent ]
Kids (none / 0) (#348)
by broken77 on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 05:12:50 PM EST

middle-class kids just aren't fired up over economic exploitation the way they are over political oppression
Exactly... "Kids". Give them a few years to figure it all out. And anyway, many of them are. I was. I can remember being angry at Wal-Mart and so forth at the age of 14 even. And there really is somewhat of a Communist movement with the younger left these days. I'm not sure if your friends are really leftist or not. I guess I'd have to take your word on it, because we probably wouldn't agree on the definitions anyway.

I'm starting to doubt all this happy propaganda about Islam being a religion of peace. Heck, it's just as bad as Christianity. -- Dphitz
[ Parent ]

Yes, it is antisemitism. (2.13 / 15) (#228)
by Apuleius on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 05:28:04 PM EST

In a nutshell, here is why the anti-Israel crowd is wrong. And the crowd's insistence on ignoring why it is wrong, is in turn the reason it can be considered anti-semitic. It takes at least a dose of antisemitism to be an apologist for Hamas, knowing full well that the Hamas charter cites the Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion and advocates outright genocide against the Jews.

It takes at least a dose of antisemitism to be an apologist for Islamic Jihad, when onw knoes that the IJ advocates imposing Sharia Law on Jews (something only slightly less pleasant than the Jim Crow laws of old.

It takes at least a dose of antisemitism to insist on ignoring the same strains of prejudice coming from the mouthpiece media of the Palestinian authority.

It takes at least a dose of antisemitism to go on and on about Israel's oppression of the Palestinians knowing full well that a. the Palestinian authority demands its territories be rendered 100% Jew-free and that b. the oppression and discrimination against Jews practiced by neighboring Arab countries makes Israel look downright angelic.

The insistence of Israel bashers on ignoring these issues reveals them to be at least somewhat antisemitic.




There is a time and a place for everything, and it's called college. (The South Park chef)
Yes, it is antisemitism. (2.38 / 18) (#229)
by Apuleius on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 05:28:33 PM EST

In a nutshell, here is why the anti-Israel crowd is wrong. And the crowd's insistence on ignoring why it is wrong, is in turn the reason it can be considered anti-semitic. It takes at least a dose of antisemitism to be an apologist for Hamas, knowing full well that the Hamas charter cites the Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion and advocates outright genocide against the Jews.

It takes at least a dose of antisemitism to be an apologist for Islamic Jihad, when onw knoes that the IJ advocates imposing Sharia Law on Jews (something only slightly less pleasant than the Jim Crow laws of old.

It takes at least a dose of antisemitism to insist on ignoring the same strains of prejudice coming from the mouthpiece media of the Palestinian authority.

It takes at least a dose of antisemitism to go on and on about Israel's oppression of the Palestinians knowing full well that a. the Palestinian authority demands its territories be rendered 100% Jew-free and that b. the oppression and discrimination against Jews practiced by neighboring Arab countries makes Israel look downright angelic.

The insistence of Israel bashers on ignoring these issues reveals them to be at least somewhat antisemitic.




There is a time and a place for everything, and it's called college. (The South Park chef)
Disagree with Israeli govt. != antisemitism (4.80 / 5) (#232)
by Lizard on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 05:52:27 PM EST

I am not an apologist for Hamas. I don't support with Islamic Jihad. I'm not an antisemite.

I do disagree with the way that Isreal is handling the Palestinian issue. I think that they are being unnecessarily brutal and unjust. I also think that my government (USA) should not be in a position which supports Isreal.

However, do not think that because I'm saying that Isreal is in the wrong that I believe for a minute that Palestine is in the right. Both parties in this confilct are guilty of atrocities and should be punished by the world community for their behavior.
________________________
Just Because I Can!
[ Parent ]

But.. (none / 0) (#316)
by Apuleius on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 11:24:14 AM EST

Insisting that Israel do nothing and let Hamas run wild would make you an apologist for Hamas, and a likely antisemite. And that is exactly what Israel bashers insist on.


There is a time and a place for everything, and it's called college. (The South Park chef)
[ Parent ]
Running wild (5.00 / 1) (#345)
by aspartame on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 04:54:39 PM EST

Insist they do nothing? Israel bashers?

Oh, right. Because Israel's current Palestine policy is the only possible response to terrorist attacks. Obviously, if I think Israel's policy is morally wrong and counterproductive (because it props up Arafat and prevents moderate Palestinians from gaining any political traction), then I must be advocating that Israelis do NOTHING and just let themselves be be terrorised.

The strawman and the false dichotomy are the rhetorical tactics of a person who knows in their heart that they are wrong.



--
180 times sweeter than sugar
[ Parent ]
OK, so what would you suggest? (none / 0) (#387)
by Adam Tarr on Mon Sep 30, 2002 at 02:13:40 PM EST

I think Israel's policy is morally wrong and counterproductive (because it props up Arafat and prevents moderate Palestinians from gaining any political traction)
Well, Arafat has done a good job of playing himself up as a martyr against Israel, which has given him some credibility. But is this really what has prevented the moderates from gaining ground? I think the main thing that's kept moderates in Palestine from gaining ground is that most of them are dead, or laying low to stay alive.

Frequently, you hear the stories about five or six "IDF collaborators" being hung in the town square after the IDF withdraws from a Palestinian town. Generally, the definition of an "IDF collaborator" is someone who doesn't support the terrorists, or someone who doesn't let the terrorists hide in their home. The extremists maintain their grip in Palestine not just because Israeli and Palestinian Authority policy has led to an extreme situation, but also because the extremists have suppressed most moderate voices.

Finally, as I ask in the title, what would you suggest as the alternative Israeili policy? They offered the PA autonomy in fall 2000, and it was turned it down. When the terror started, they tried low-key responses first. Finally, as the terror got worse and worse, Israel elected Sharon and he tried to be harder on terror. When the terror attacks got still worse in the spring, Sharon finally went to the extreme and brought the army in to the West Bank and Gaza to try and capture the terrorists. Terror attacks did slow down somewhat, but the international outcry caused a softening of IDF policies, with a commensurate rise again in terror attacks. Now we are on another up-cycle of IDF activities, and (surprise surprise) the terror attacks seem to have slowed down again.

The conclusion I draw from all this is that the PA decided not to take peace, and they have never made a good-faith effort to stop the terror atttacks in the current intafada. Indeed, they released a huge number of terrorists from prison immediately before the current conflict began. This unconscionable act gets remarkably little coverage, and it shows just how absurd the whole "the PA is being prevented from rounding up the terrorists" argument is.

Saying that Israel should give the PA what they want, i.e. a totally independent state and "right of return" for hundreds of thousands of Palestinians who have never lived in the place they are "returning" to, is simply not an option. It wasn't even an option after 8 years of relative peace and quiet in 2000, when Barak offered up the absolute best possible deal any Israeli elected official could ever support. Moreover, giving a better offer than the 2000 one would give an unambiguous message that terrorism works, and that more terror can bring about the end of Israel.

So the question is, what would you suggest Israel do to stop the terrorists? The currest aggresive pursuit strategy, while morally questionable, seems to be the only strategy that has shown success against a foe that hides among a civillian population and regularly attacks civillian targets. Should Israel let the PA do the job, even though they have demonstrated repeatedly that they will ignore the terrorists at best, and facilitate them at worst? If not, then what is the better policy? What's false about Aepulius's "false dichotomy"?

[ Parent ]

Israel needs a regime change first. (none / 0) (#437)
by ragnarok on Sun Oct 13, 2002 at 07:48:12 AM EST

But is this really what has prevented the moderates from gaining ground? I think the main thing that's kept moderates in Palestine from gaining ground is that most of them are dead, or laying low to stay alive.

I beg to differ. The Palestinian moderates were effectively silenced by Israel's refusal to stop the settlement program, although it had been agreed it was to stop.

Moreover, giving a better offer than the 2000 one would give an unambiguous message that terrorism works, and that more terror can bring about the end of Israel.

Interesting. So you'd fall in line with the current tack, which is to talk about "transfer" and give the extremists even more traction, since they don't have anything to lose by destroying Israel completely? No, Ariel Sharon's true face was made abundantly plain and obvious in Sabra and Shatila and this time round he's taking out Israel as well.


"And it came to healed until all the gift and pow, I, the Lord, to divide; wherefore behold, all yea, I was left alone....", Joseph Smith's evil twin sis
[ Parent ]

By your definition... (4.00 / 2) (#239)
by mvsgeek on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 06:43:20 PM EST

... I'm a eugenically obsessed new breed of nazi.
I'm not sure why you'd reckon that anybody who either sympathizes with the Palestinan cause (regardless of blame), or that views extremism as just that to be antisemitic.
Frankly, if it makes you feel better to label me as an antisemite, then go right ahead, but I think it truly fails to get any argument resolved. All this does is impede discussion about the matter for the sake of owning the "moral high ground" and is nothing more than inflammatory rhetoric.
Calling me or anybody else under your loose definition of what constitutes an antisemite sets the dangerous precedent of not recognizing ACTUAL antisemites and the true vileness of hate filled people.
- mvsgeek
[ Parent ]
Support Hamas = antisemite? (3.60 / 5) (#250)
by MeanGene on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 07:50:25 PM EST

Of course, then the Israeli government has to be deemed self-hating antisemites.

Israeli government breast-fed Hamas against Arafat's PLO 20 years ago pretty much the same way as CIA birthed Osama bin Laden and the whole jihad thing against Soviet Union.

Too bad their intelligence handlers didn't realize they're working with the kind of people who don't like to be tossed aside like a used tampon.  Now we all have to pay for these escapades in realpolitik.


[ Parent ]

Oh, for crying out loud. (1.00 / 1) (#254)
by Apuleius on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 08:25:30 PM EST

Israel supported Hamas when Hamas was just a charity. After Hamas began conducting terror attacks, Israel stopped supporting.


There is a time and a place for everything, and it's called college. (The South Park chef)
[ Parent ]
Charity? (none / 0) (#402)
by Wulfius on Tue Oct 01, 2002 at 03:06:42 AM EST

Oh for the naivety of youth.

Hamas was 'charity' in the same way soviet spetznatz commandos were 'sport teams'
designed to infiltrate and attack europe before WWIII broke up.

Grow up kid.


---
"We must believe in free will, we have no choice."
http://wulfspawprints.blogspot.com/ - Not a journal dammit!
[ Parent ]

Two Wrongs Don't Make a Right (none / 0) (#313)
by JChen on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 10:05:56 AM EST

Example:

I go over and kill your family.

Does that make it right for you to come over and kill mine?

Let us do as we say.
[ Parent ]

Wrong analogy. (none / 0) (#317)
by Apuleius on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 11:30:41 AM EST

A quick answer is that in the Middle East, yes, it is right. We still have blood feuds in the ME, and for the last 100 years or so there was not a single day in which there was not a blood feud in force somewhere in the region. But a more relevant answer is that the right thing is to go in and kill YOU. And if, like many Hamasniks, you are chickenshit enough to hide behind your own family when the IDF comes after your sorry ass, well, too damn bad for them.


There is a time and a place for everything, and it's called college. (The South Park chef)
[ Parent ]
Looks over sea of glass and smoking rubble ... (none / 0) (#325)
by pyramid termite on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 12:39:43 PM EST

... "Well, those people in the Middle East may all be dead, but they were damned well right!!"

On the Internet, anyone can accuse you of being a dog.
[ Parent ]
Dumbass. (2.00 / 8) (#235)
by bjlhct on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 06:15:58 PM EST

People are trying to "do something" (oh yes, they have the best intention) about Israel because it's visible. You hear about it in the news, etc. So it's what's on their minds.

And the "mainstream media" doing the is part of why I come to K5. Your analysis is poorly thought out and tries to lead the reader around. Most of what this topic has generated is a dogpile pile of trolls.

+1FPers, what were you thinking?
* Beware, gentle knight - the greatest monster of them all is reason. -Cervantes

Good question (3.50 / 2) (#246)
by vlad123 on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 07:33:50 PM EST

You are asking: Do we not put similar pressure on non-White human rights violators because we unconsciously do not expect better of them?

I don't think so. I think the main reason for this is our own pure hypocrisy. We are no willing to admit that non-white people are just as bad, as we are - and probably much more (they often behave less ethically). It would wreak havoc with our simply minded politically correct brains to accept that fact.

Missing (and thereby proving) iGrrrl's point (3.92 / 13) (#253)
by Lode Runner on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 08:10:04 PM EST

Today, IGrrrl has once again proven the dictum that if you want to see the left at its very worst, you must attack it from the left.

From the responses to this excellent article, it is clear that there are many K5ers who presume themselves to be guardians of freedom, opponents of facism, and banishers of racism and hatred. And it is just as clear that very few of these people have thought hard enough about their specific positions or the consistancy of their arguments.

It was especially disappointing to see K5 progressives go "reactionary" when a critic trotted out what they perceived to be their good works (e.g. the divestiture movement) as evidence of their own shortcomings. So, let's step back and pick apart the knee-jerk responses to the article, namely that: 1) Israel really is the worst problem and therefore must be addressed first; 2) we're in no way racist because there are no bonafide anti-semites involved in the divestiture movement.

To the first point I would ask: given where else university endowments have been invested, why is Israel the first on the chopping block? Why before the PRC? Because Israelis are "white" and therefore can be reasoned with more readily than the others? Or has something else put Israel in the hotseat?

To the second point I would ask: are you not disturbed that honest-to-goodness bigots like David Duke and "Angry" Ahmed Amr share your positions and provide you with resources and encouragement? Both of these chaps repeatedly defend their anti-semitism by falsely claiming to be "purely anti-zionist." When will you acknowledge that anti-semitic and anti-zionist are not mutually exclusive positions and purge your ranks of those who can't/won't make the distinction?

Also proving iGrrrl's basic argument is the curious fact that nobody here seems to give the Muslim campus organizations much credit. If we want to reconcile the divestiture movement's exclusive focus on Israel (arguably not the worst human-rights violator) with the left's claim that it is against all oppression, then we need to look at the agency of non-Westerners. When we do, we see that middle-class, western leftist groups have not been at the forefront of the divestiture movement; rather, they have followed the lead of Muslim groups, ones who couldn't give a rat's ass about other causes of the left like Tibet or the Congo or even the Kurds (sic).

Here's what happened: highly organized and motivated groups of Muslim activists (mainly Arabs and Pakistanis) initiated the divestiture movement and flakey leftist groups hitched their star to the cause only after it got going. What we saw today here on K5 are the complications that arise when people on the left won't reconcile their beliefs about their own objectivity/rationality with the fact that Palestine, even if it is not the world's most burning problem, is the issue that got the most people moving and therefore has shaped the left's discourse.

That's right, brown non-Westerners have shaped the discourse of the left and surprise, surprise white, upper-middle class paternalist lefties who never gave the darkies much credit for anything can't see this; and it's been amusing to watch them bend over backwards to try to describe their current positions as the product of rational deliberation.

Now before you "1" or "0" me with disgust and storm off to indymedia or The Nation (Hitchens just quit, so it's safe again...), ask yourself this: how would the divestiture movement look if the voices that called for it were coming just as loudly from the Congo and the Andes as they are from the Middle East and were from Southern Africa?

Hmmm, no. (3.00 / 1) (#271)
by aziegler on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:54:58 PM EST

I agree that there is probably an amount of unthinking following in this, but I happen to think that the Israeli treatment of the Palestinians is apartheid. I disagree with the point of the original article, though, because Canada and the Commonwealth are exercising economic options against Zimbabwe for Mugabe's beahviour. Most countries aren't exercising the actions that should be taken against China and other human rights violators that they should be, though. It's frustrating.

-austin

[ Parent ]

as i said (2.00 / 1) (#344)
by Lode Runner on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 04:47:48 PM EST

"it's been amusing to watch them bend over backwards to try to describe their current positions as the product of rational deliberation."

Ask yourself this, why are the Commonwealth governments attacking Mugabe for trying to eradicate the last pockets of white plantations in his country? You deride Israel's "apartheid" and yet you cheer your government on when it acts on behalf of actual Apartheid supporters in Southern Africa.

[ Parent ]

Sorry, but ... you're wrong. (4.00 / 1) (#355)
by aziegler on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 06:15:40 PM EST

These folks were happily welcomed by Zimbabwe -- a lot of people LEFT after the British government left.

What's happening in Zimbabwe is simply hooliganism -- armed hooliganism, but hooliganism nonetheless.

If Zimbabwe wanted to do this properly, it would buy out those farmers. Instead, it's using thuggery tactics.

I suggest you actually learn something about the Zimbabwe situation before you start suggesting that the white farmers are 'supporters of Apartheid'. Racist? Perhaps. But unlike the government of Mugabe (which won only because it intimidated the opposition parties and voters), these folks aren't in a position of power to enforce their putative racism. As Israel and Mugabe are doing, in fact.

-austin

[ Parent ]

yet another (1.00 / 2) (#356)
by Lode Runner on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 06:47:55 PM EST

state-worshipper rushes to defend the imperial antics of the Canadian and British governments. History: Mugabe led a liberation army against a terrible colonial occupation. Some whites stayed after the revolution because they wanted to continue to live (semi-autonmously) like kings; they were tolerated by the natives because their plantations could be taxed. Mugabe promised his people liberty and when, 20 years after the revolution supposedly ended, they continue to see their brethren exploited on the whites' farms, they expect him to deliver. And to think that you call a push for socioeconomic justice "simply hooliganism."

Mugabe is indeed heavy-handed, but when Mugabe's victims were exclusively black, did the Empire^H^H^H^H^H^HCommonwealth care?

[ Parent ]

+1 FP, and a round of friday tequillas (3.00 / 1) (#256)
by faustus on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:02:01 PM EST

I'd have to agree with this in general. However the reason people don't divest in China isn't soley because of an ambivilant racism, there are also economic factors which make it hard to pull out of such a lucrative market. Furthermore, NGOs and G7 countries have been pressing China to fix their spotted human rights record. The west isn't totally ignoring the South like you seem to be suggesting.

Africa has always been ruled by iron fists, from modern dictators, back to the British, back to ancient african kingdoms. Compare that with North America, which was really founded upon democratic ideals (yes I know about the Native Indians), and you can see that the people of these places will have vastly different political value systems. They have simply adopted them from their predecessors; Africans are used to dictators, we are not. For clarity, look at the UK where a rigid class system still exists from the centuries of monarchy that prevailed before democracy was initiated. It takes a bloody long time to break from the societal constructions of the past.

Therefore, it should not be suprising that people are inherently racist, as modern society as late as the turn of the century bought into an elitist social racism based on Darwinism. Society just doesn't lose those beliefs when professors discover that those ideas are wrong. Instead it takes education and a long time. Left-leftwing zealots have been too indocrinated with the speed at which they can change the channel on the TV for this to be acceptable. Please deal with it.

Class system? (none / 0) (#258)
by the on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:25:14 PM EST

For clarity, look at the UK where a rigid class system still exists from the centuries of monarchy
Would you like to point out how the existence of said class system actually actually manifests itself in a difference between the lives of people in the US and UK today?

--
The Definite Article
[ Parent ]
For me it's simple. (4.60 / 10) (#257)
by wji on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:12:12 PM EST

Myanmar, North Korea, Zimbabwe, etc don't depend almost exclusively on American money and products to carry out their repression; Israel does. So a boycott is going to be a much more effective tactic.

You're absolutely right that the Israeli government's actions in Palestine aren't so high up on the scale, but I think the left here is being led more by the mainstream media than by some sinister motive (or by domestic Muslim groups as others have suggested.) Palestine is in the news more than, say, Colombia or Myanmar, so we end up thinking more about it. To me it's really that simple.

In conclusion, the Powerpuff Girls are a reactionary, pseudo-feminist enterprise.

Expect more Serious Examination of Israel (2.14 / 7) (#260)
by nomoreh1b on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:43:57 PM EST

The root behind all of this:
For years, the US media has been extremely friendly to Israel because the US media is largely owned/managed by Jews. Now, the US Muslim population is growing rapidly-and they expect to be heard--and they have enough money and organization they will be heard. The US Muslim population is according to the American Muslim Council larger than the US Jewish population(some dispute the AMC figures). Still, noone disputes that Islam is a growing force in the US--so I'd expect a lot more of re-examination of Israel in the US in years to come. There is just a whole range of opinion here that most Americans have just never had any exposure to at all.

The other factor operating here:
for many academics, the "Establishment" in academia is extremely pro-Israel because there are quite a few Jews in Academia and there are also quite a few members of liberal protestant sects that traditionally had associations with the Jewish community (i.e. dating from the days when Tynsdale got Rabbinical texts to translate the Bible during the protestant reformation). There is a lot of status in US academia associated with being anti-establishment and taking the moral high ground--so we will invetibly see more attacks on the pro-Israel establishment.

Shut up... (1.00 / 1) (#297)
by cr8dle2grave on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 03:48:17 AM EST

...your continuing moronic and facile reasoning by racial category is getting annoying.

---
Unity of mankind means: No escape for anyone anywhere. - Milan Kundera


[ Parent ]
The palestinians are semites too. (2.42 / 7) (#261)
by Lester Walker on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 09:47:29 PM EST

So the issue of Anti-semitism is rather a mute point i would think.


True, but: (2.00 / 1) (#269)
by aziegler on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:46:00 PM EST

Unfortunately, anti-semitism has taken on the meaning of "anti-Jew", even if it's not really true for many Jews (of Ashkenazi origin, from European descent, as opposed to those of Sephardic origin).

[ Parent ]
my understanding... (none / 0) (#292)
by khallow on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 02:01:09 AM EST

Unfortunately, anti-semitism has taken on the meaning of "anti-Jew", even if it's not really true for many Jews (of Ashkenazi origin, from European descent, as opposed to those of Sephardic origin).

My understanding is that genetically, the Jewish ethnic groups are very coherent. Ie, Ashkenazi Jews are much closer to Sephardic Jews than to the average European. Certainly, the story about Ashkenazi Jews being descended from Tartars has to be false. An alternate theory is that Ashkenazi Jews are the remnant of the Jews that settled in Europe during the days of the Roman Empire.

Stating the obvious since 1969.
[ Parent ]

OED (5.00 / 1) (#284)
by srichman on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 12:45:48 AM EST

You're using the derivation of a word to draw an incorrect conclusion about the word's meaning.

Anti-semitism doesn't mean "being against Semites;" it never has. The OED (which is very good about including old and obsolete definitions of words if they differ from current usage) has only the following definition:

anti-Semitism
[f. ANTI- + SEMITISM.]
Theory, action, or practice directed against the Jews. Hence anti-'Semite, one who is hostile or opposed to the Jews; anti-Se'mitic a.

1881 Athenæum 3 Sept. 305/2 The author, apparently an anti-Semite. Ibid., Anti-Semitic literature is very prosperous in Germany. 1882 Athenæum 11 Feb. 184/1 In these days of anti-Semitism. 1935 Economist 24 Aug. 366/1 The Nazi Party stalwarts..have all been leading an anti-Semitic, anti-Catholic, anti-Protestant..crusade. 1941 J. S. HUXLEY Uniqueness of Man ii. 50 Germanic nationalism on the one hand and anti-Semitism on the other.



[ Parent ]
anti-semitism (2.00 / 1) (#293)
by felixrayman on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 02:09:16 AM EST

Anti-semitism doesn't mean "being against Semites;" it never has.

You might want to contact Webster's about their refusal to go along completely with your definition:

anti-semitism
\An`ti-Sem"i*tism\, n. Opposition to, or hatred of, Semites, esp. Jews. -- An`ti-Sem\"ite, n. -- An`ti-Sem*it\"ic, a. Source: Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary, © 1996, 1998 MICRA, Inc.

Call Donald Rumsfeld and tell him our sorry asses are ready to go home. Tell him to come spend a night in our building. - Pfc. Matthew C. O'Dell

[ Parent ]
And... (3.00 / 1) (#352)
by cr8dle2grave on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 05:47:33 PM EST

Websters is to the OED as the Akron Community College is to Harvard.

---
Unity of mankind means: No escape for anyone anywhere. - Milan Kundera


[ Parent ]
The word is "moot" (n/t) (none / 0) (#341)
by broken77 on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 04:10:47 PM EST


I'm starting to doubt all this happy propaganda about Islam being a religion of peace. Heck, it's just as bad as Christianity. -- Dphitz
[ Parent ]

Reason (4.66 / 15) (#267)
by felixrayman on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 10:40:27 PM EST

OK first of all your assumptions are wrong, people DO agitate for pressure against China over issues such as Tibet. I see Free Tibet bumper stickers all the time while I have never seen a Free Palestine one ( sure theyre out there though... ) and I have never heard a major pop culture figure take a 'Isreal the hell out of Palestine' stance the way such figures have taken a 'China the hell out of Tibet' stance. So with China out of the picture your question boils down to the question of 'Why is there a small but existent voice in Western countries that criticizes Israel over the Palestine issue, but no such voice regarding, say, the downtrodden white farmers of Zimbabwe?'.

So without further ado, here is my list of reasons for this discrepancy.

1) Foreign aid. Israel is a relatively rich country that is given billions in foreign aid by the US. If the US gave billions in foreign aid to Zimbabwe do you think there would be more or less criticism of Zimbabwe by the people who now criticize Israel's occupation of Palestine?

2) Military aid. Much of the equipment used by Israel in its military occupation of Palestine is given to it by the US. If Zimbabwe was using Apache helicopters given to it by the US to drive white farmers off their land, do you think there would be more or less criticism of Zimbabwe by the people who now criticize Israel's occupation of Palestine?

3) Democracy and western values. Israel claims to share them - the occupation of Palestine is inconsistent with them.

4) Sharon. Related to 3). He was found (by Israel itself) to be nominally responsible for the comission of war crimes, yet the Israeli public elected him, and this is not the first instance of Israel electing people responsible for war crimes. This is not the case of a single dictator with brutal aims. This is the case of an entire society choosing such a person as their representative in the world.

5) The Holocaust. Its always interesting to see how someone who has been badly mistreated will act once they have the same power over someone else that their former tormentors had over them. Israel fails the hypocrisy test miserably.

6) The media. Count the number of column inches in the NY Times, Washington Post, and Wall Street Journal editorial pages devoted to Israel's treatment of Palestine over the last year compared to the nunmber of column inches in said publications covering Zimbabwe's treatment of white farmers. If papers owned and operated by people from Zimbabwe had huge circulations in the US, you might see the situation change.

7) Roots of the crisis. Many of the situations you described are partially to blame on Western involvement, but none of them so directly as the situtation in Palestine. The UK and US directly caused the crisis - it is natural that people in those countries accept some of the responsibility for solving it.

8) Colonialism. The situation in Palestine has all the ugly attributes of old-style colonialism that the left in the US loves to hate. The situation in Zimbabwe is quite the opposite.

And in interests of full disclosure, my position on the above issues are
1) Use economic and political incentives to get Israel the hell out of Palestine
2) Use economic and political incentives to get China the hell out of Tibet (and to keep it out of Taiwan).
3) Accept the white farmers of Zimbabwe as refugees in Europe and the US and laugh while the rest of Zimbabwe starves.

Call Donald Rumsfeld and tell him our sorry asses are ready to go home. Tell him to come spend a night in our building. - Pfc. Matthew C. O'Dell

Generally good, a few nits (5.00 / 2) (#312)
by HidingMyName on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 08:57:36 AM EST

5) The Holocaust. Its always interesting to see how someone who has been badly mistreated will act once they have the same power over someone else that their former tormentors had over them. Israel fails the hypocrisy test miserably.
I think the concern that they don't suffer another genocide directed at them by a larger surrounding population is (in their eyes) a larger concern. I'm not Jewish, but when I speak to Jewish people about Israel, this seems to be a major concern (as well as a view that this is their "religious homeland").
6) The media. Count the number of column inches in the NY Times, Washington Post, and Wall Street Journal editorial pages devoted to Israel's treatment of Palestine over the last year compared to the nunmber of column inches in said publications covering Zimbabwe's treatment of white farmers. If papers owned and operated by people from Zimbabwe had huge circulations in the US, you might see the situation change.
You are right in that many influential people in the U.S. are Jewish. However, our population of Irish heritage here is large (perhaps larger in number), but we hear a lot less about Ireland. I suspect this has more to do with the fact that people view ethnic heritage differently than the combination of ethnic and religious heritage that is in Jewish culture. The closest comparison (but it is not really the same) might be the way the Catholics view the Vatican (although in the U.S. many are upset with the Vatican over recent scandals).
7) Roots of the crisis. Many of the situations you described are partially to blame on Western involvement, but none of them so directly as the situtation in Palestine. The UK and US directly caused the crisis - it is natural that people in those countries accept some of the responsibility for solving it.
Perhaps this reflects the addage "The road to hell is paved with good intentions.". The creation of Israel was motivated to give a sanctuary to the Jews after extreme persecution. It is unique in that other groups are also heavily persecuted but no international group tries to give them sanctuary.
8) Colonialism. The situation in Palestine has all the ugly attributes of old-style colonialism that the left in the US loves to hate. The situation in Zimbabwe is quite the opposite.
I guess there is some colonialism, since many of the people who live there were not born there. However, it is not traditional colonialism, in the sense that settlers from many countries go there, not just one (Russian Jews, Ethiopian Jews, and others all go there).
And in interests of full disclosure, my position on the above issues are 1) Use economic and political incentives to get Israel the hell out of Palestine 2) Use economic and political incentives to get China the hell out of Tibet (and to keep it out of Taiwan). 3) Accept the white farmers of Zimbabwe as refugees in Europe and the US and laugh while the rest of Zimbabwe starves.
On Point 3), I have been to Zimbabwe. I agree that the people most competent to manage the farms are the whites there (the blacks have historically been disenfranchised, and under the current regime are probably not sufficiently educated to run the farms). Automated modern agriculture is likely to fail if they subdivide the land into subsistence style plots among the relatively large number of people who want to settle there when the whites are driven out. However the largely white ownership is a historical artifact of the colinization. If the whites are driven out, they will lose their farms and their life savings are typically heavily invested back into the farms. They don't want to walk away from that (otherwise they would be requesting asylum at the U.S or U.K. embassy already). I feel sorry for both the farmers and the native black population, the current leadership over there is not good. I was there about 10 years ago for a visit, and during that time the stores in the country ran out of (among other things) Sugar, although Zimbabwe was at the time a major sugar producer. It came back on the market after a few weeks with a nice steep price increase.

[ Parent ]
Excellent post (5.00 / 1) (#340)
by broken77 on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 04:09:27 PM EST

I would like to add, however, the point that the Israel-Palestine situation is one that has reached international critical-mass. That is, the conflict in that region is the source of so much anti-western (and especially anti-U.S.) sentiment from the middle east. Some may suggest it's one of the major factors behind the 9-11 attacks. Settling the conflict in this region could ease tensions in one blow like nothing else could. I also see this as a major factor in people's interest in this particular situation over, say, the Tibetans, who are peaceful by nature and won't start another World War.

I'm starting to doubt all this happy propaganda about Islam being a religion of peace. Heck, it's just as bad as Christianity. -- Dphitz
[ Parent ]

A few comments... (none / 0) (#429)
by maunleon on Thu Oct 03, 2002 at 02:08:25 AM EST

Foreign aid. Israel is a relatively rich country that is given billions in foreign aid by the US.
What exactly is Israel's source of income? Yes, they do have income, but my comment is in the answer to that question.
If Zimbabwe was using Apache helicopters given to it by the US to drive white farmers off their land, do you think there would be more or less criticism of Zimbabwe by the people who now criticize Israel's occupation of Palestine?
MUCH less. It is not cool to criticize black governments. Case in point, South Africa. With all the gains in freedom by black people in South Africa, the standard of living has arguably gone down for all involved, and crime has shot up. However, Mandela gets his nose in every international conflict, trying to pretend South Africa now flows with milk and honey.
Democracy and western values. Israel claims to share them - the occupation of Palestine is inconsistent with them.
Democracy still has the concept of martial law. I would submit that Israel has been under martial law for years now. Western values? What the hell are those? Obviously US values differ than mainland europe values, judging by popular position on Iraq.
[Sharon] was found (by Israel itself) to be nominally responsible for the comission of war crimes, yet the Israeli public elected him, and this is not the first instance of Israel electing people responsible for war crimes
Would it have anything to do with the situation that Israel is in, and the people wanting a strong, militant leader in power who will not give away at the negotiation table everything that Israeli people have died for, for the last 50 years?
If papers owned and operated by people from Zimbabwe had huge circulations in the US, you might see the situation change.
Owned by people from Zimbawe, or by people who happen to be of that bloodline? Just because someone was born in Zimbawe, it doesn't mean they can find Zimbawe on the map.
The UK and US directly caused the crisis
The problem with this statement is that you can pick whatever time frame is convenient for you to enforce your point. I could very well argue that the "convert to our religion or die" attitude of Islam has a lot to do with this situation.
1) Use economic and political incentives to get Israel the hell out of Palestine
Might work, but once that happens, do you think that the arab world will say "okay, we got what we wanted, we are happy now" ? Or is the more likely scenario that they will continue their attack on israel? The governments in that area need Israel as a scapegoat for their failures.
2) Use economic and political incentives to get China the hell out of Tibet (and to keep it out of Taiwan).
I agree, and it should start with the removal of the "most favorite nation" trading status. However this will hurt the US economy since China is a very important growing market. By imposing sanctions, US companies will lose market position to non US companies at a critical time.
3) Accept the white farmers of Zimbabwe as refugees in Europe and the US and laugh while the rest of Zimbabwe starves.
Nope.. that would be called "racist."

[ Parent ]
The right question is... (3.00 / 2) (#275)
by florin on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:32:54 PM EST

Do we not put similar pressure on non-White human rights violators because we unconsciously do not expect better of them?

The right question is: Do we not put similar pressure on non-White human rights violators because we unconsciously think only white are capable of such bad things?

Disclaimer: i am white.

Not only white... (2.00 / 1) (#278)
by worth on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:58:10 PM EST

Not only white, but also Romanian ;)

[ Parent ]
Absolutely disagree (3.00 / 1) (#323)
by iGrrrl on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 12:26:31 PM EST

Florin said: "The right question is: Do we not put similar pressure on non-White human rights violators because we unconsciously think only white are capable of such bad things? "

You missed my point entirely. The premise of the op-ed piece is that we don't put pressure on non-White/European governments because we don't expect any better of them. That is the insidious subtle racism I'm suggesting may be the case.

--
You cannot have a reasonable conversation with someone who regards other people as toys to be played with. localroger
remove apostrophe for email.
[ Parent ]

i know (4.00 / 1) (#381)
by florin on Mon Sep 30, 2002 at 01:20:14 AM EST

I just tried to twist the perspective completely. However, i think my question is still worth thinking of.

[ Parent ]
oh my what a nutty troll (nt) (5.00 / 1) (#360)
by mami on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 09:59:30 PM EST



[ Parent ]
Anti Israel != Anti Jew (4.50 / 6) (#276)
by Dillenger69 on Fri Sep 27, 2002 at 11:42:16 PM EST

Why do people always equal anti Israeli sentiment with anti Jewish sentiment? (I know why, just begining with the rhetorical) I'm quite anti Israeli but I have no problem with people being Jewish at all. It's the government over there that's oppresive and violent (not without some small justification). They only happen to all be Jewish, much like American leaders are all Christian. Once people can separate the Jewish/Israeli thing then they will see clearer. Unfortunatley, I don't see that happening.
Alright, who do I complain to? Some guy sold me a ticket for a tour of the "Cave at Emptor," but it turns out there's no such place!
American leaers are definitely not Christians. (2.00 / 3) (#299)
by tkatchev on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 04:08:45 AM EST

Rather, they are protestant.

   -- Signed, Lev Andropoff, cosmonaut.
[ Parent ]

Protestant = Christian (none / 0) (#320)
by Dillenger69 on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 11:53:26 AM EST

I was talking from my perspective since I am not Christian. I do not believe that Jesus is the savior of anything nor do I believe that his father created the universe.

Anyone who believes that Jesus is the son of God and the savior of mankind is a Christian. Catholics, Protestants, generic Christians, Evangelicals ... they are all Christians.

They are all different varieties of Christian but that doesn't make them any less Christian.
Each president of the U.S. has been a Christian to some degree. At least compared to me.
----
Alright, who do I complain to? Some guy sold me a ticket for a tour of the "Cave at Emptor," but it turns out there's no such place!
[ Parent ]
Not true... (none / 0) (#324)
by Skywise on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 12:37:28 PM EST

Jefferson was a deist, Lincoln was widely believed to be an atheist, but called upon God in his speeches because it's what the people would respond to.

Next you'll be telling me that all terrorists have been Muslim... at least compared to you...

[ Parent ]

True, most of the early ones were deists (none / 0) (#350)
by Big Sexxy Joe on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 05:29:46 PM EST

In addition to Jefferson, Washington, Adams and Madison were deists. Ben Franklin was a deist, too.

I'm like Jesus, only better.
Democracy Now! - your daily, uncensored, corporate-free grassroots news hour
[ Parent ]
Yes ... (none / 0) (#377)
by Dillenger69 on Sun Sep 29, 2002 at 01:48:30 PM EST

Yes, they were Deists ... However, I've read Franklin and Jefferson and they approached it from a very Christian perspective.

Back to my original statement for clarification...

The comparisson I was trying to make was that equating anti Israeli to be anti Jewish it like calling everyone who is anti American, anti Christian.
----
Alright, who do I complain to? Some guy sold me a ticket for a tour of the "Cave at Emptor," but it turns out there's no such place!
[ Parent ]
reply to anti-semitism or worse (4.33 / 3) (#280)
by olaf on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 12:08:46 AM EST

Do you have anything to back up what you're saying or is it just an observation?

Opinion-Editorial (5.00 / 1) (#322)
by iGrrrl on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 12:22:00 PM EST

This was an observation that occurred to me while listening to Dershowitz and Boyle square off. As has been pointed out, it may be more appropriately labeled something like "culture-ism".

It is my opinion that the question is worth asking, and the discussion useful.

--
You cannot have a reasonable conversation with someone who regards other people as toys to be played with. localroger
remove apostrophe for email.
[ Parent ]

Racism or Poor Comparisons? (4.75 / 4) (#304)
by opendna on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 04:55:43 AM EST

Why did world leaders like Blair and Bush condemn Zimbabwe for it's blatent apartheid subjugating white farmers while supporting Isreal's continuing apartheid subjugating Palestinians?

Is that racism?

The other examples you gave (Sri Lanka, Turkey, China) are of civil conflict over national identity, not of a legal system of apartheid. Thus they are poor comparisons to the South African divestiture campaign.

Which is not to say divestiture campaigns wouldn't be warranted against those countries...

The choice of tactics is rarely a direct response to the problem. Isreal is susceptable to divestiture because Americans have such large holdings in the country, so the campaign could concievably have an affect. A divestiture campaign against Iraq (which is more notorious than Turkey for its oppression of Kurds) would have virtually no affect at all. Similarly, China would just be forced to go back to an ideologically pure economic system.

I've said enough.



Thank you (3.00 / 1) (#335)
by egh on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 03:16:16 PM EST

Thanks. You've put sort of garbage story in exactly the perspective it needs.

[ Parent ]
Politicism (4.33 / 6) (#308)
by eliwap on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 06:11:43 AM EST

The differences that you're talking about is not racism but "politicism" in that Western Styled Democracies holds itself up to somewhat higher self proclaimed moral standard. In most circumstances. This is true with some exceptions, which in the case when democracies have to deal with terrorism. This was true with Turkey and the Kurds, Russia and Chechnia, the US and Afghanistan, Israel and the Palestinians.

Once a war has commenced, collective punishment has commenced. That's part of the horrific nature of this beast.

Terrorism is looked on by the West as urban guerilla warfare and is totally intolerable to Western Democracies. Terrorism negates the rule of law. It breaks one of the basic premises of the Geneva Convention which is to not attack non-combatants and obsolves any responsibility of the responding party to adhere to it (a broken contract, implicit, or explicit, is a broken contract).

The West does not condone terrorism, does not accept any justification for it and makes no apology for responding to it. If Ruling authorities are complicit in terrorism, the West generally speaking tells the government that is forced in a position of self defence to "be careful" when it comes to civilian populations and acknowledges and sympathises with the plight of the civilian populations affected by the response. But the practical response to the terrorists has always been and always will be; "you started it, sorry you should have expected a response, don't expect any help from us. Stop the terrorism, and we'll see what we can do."

The PA under the current leadership has continuously made the statement that their security forces are not there to provide security for Israel. When the security forces were intact, the PA did not arrest terrorism. In the places where they remain intact such as Gaza they still do not arrest terrorism. In effect, the PA has not made it illegal to kill Jews whether they are in Israel proper, or the territories. While the PA does not make and active effort to stop terrorism where they have the capability to do so, they condone it. The implicit approval of terrorism, of murder in the first degree of Jews is Anti-Semitism. When it comes to this issue, anti Israel, is Anti-Semitism.

The PA initiated this war 2 years ago knowing full well that they had absolutely no chance of winning anything other than propoganda sympathy points in the West by protesting Israeli aggression when they lost and Israeli oppression when the Israeli Government responded. The current 2 years of Palestinian terrorism has not been directed at Israel but rather at the public opinion of Western Democracies.

Shame on all who would continue to support a man who would provoke a response he knew would cause his own people extreme suffering for the sake of trying to gain political and diplomatic support that has never and will never come.

"Understanding is the basis of communications. Enlarge your mind to multiple points of view. The world is infinitely larger than your huge ego. -- Hey I said that :)"

Should no people rebel? (none / 0) (#398)
by crunchycookies on Mon Sep 30, 2002 at 10:57:30 PM EST

The Palestinian people are fighting to overthrow the brutal racist government of Israel. That is surely a worthy goal. I think that the Israeli government could be overthrown by peaceful means. I believe that a Palestinian Nelson Mandella could lead a movement that could replace the Israeli governemt with one that represented all the people of Palestine.

The problem with this is that Israel keeps assassinating Palestinian leaders. The campaign of assassination gets the easy targets. The hardened military commanders are as skilled at avoiding the assassins as they are at planning bombings in Israel.

If Israel keeps assassinating Palestinians they will be left with only the hardened military men to negotiate with when it come times to move to a truly representative government.



[ Parent ]

The Problem is !!! (none / 0) (#401)
by eliwap on Tue Oct 01, 2002 at 12:43:07 AM EST

These assasinate Palestinian Leaders Plan and Order the murder of Isreali Citizens.

"Understanding is the basis of communications. Enlarge your mind to multiple points of view. The world is infinitely larger than your huge ego. -- Hey I said that :)"
[ Parent ]

Huh? (none / 0) (#414)
by graz on Tue Oct 01, 2002 at 01:30:25 PM EST

"replace the Israeli governemt with one that represented all the people of Palestine"

That's a very telling arguement. You repeatedly hear Hamas and other terrorist groups argue that they just want Palestine. They neglect to mention that they consider Palestine to include all of Israel.

Israel is a democracy. If the majority of the citizens want a differnt goverment they get one. Even the Arab-Israelis realize that life in Israel is better than life under Arafat. That's why Arab-Israels have been largely silent. They are pressured by the Palestinians to speak out against Israel and they refuse. Why would they give up a government that gives them freedom of speach and the right to vote for a dictatorship under the terrorist Arafat?

Israel keeps killing Palestinian terrorist while trying to minimize civilian casualties. Palestinians keep blowing up buses full of civilians -- many of them children. Who has the moral high ground there?

If Israel keeps assassinating terrorists they will eventually be left with fewer terrorists. We're already seeing that with fewer murders of Israeli citizens by bombers.

If the Palestinians want a country they can return to the negotiating table and decide which concessions are worth a country. Israel has repeatedly offered them the West Bank and Gaza which they've turned down. How much land do they want? Will they settle for anything less than driving all the Jews out of Israel?

[ Parent ]

Heh. (none / 0) (#434)
by wrffr on Wed Oct 09, 2002 at 01:37:47 AM EST

The Palestinian people are fighting to overthrow the brutal racist government of Israel.
If you actually believe this, I've got a bridge to sell you.

[ Parent ]
you are right on the point and wrong as well (4.75 / 4) (#318)
by mami on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 11:51:09 AM EST

You are right to the point in your observation that most of the time we don't expect the same high moral behavior from people who are not white. But I won't accept the idea to call a matter of racism in all cases.

Of course you avoid to define racism in your article. Usual everybody does, especially those, who are fast to accuse people of being racists.

Why do we tend to look the other way, when some non white tribal or freedom fighting groups revolt and engage in clearly genocidal atrocities against each other? Why do "we whites" barely engage in calling the UN to do their usually pretty ineffective work, whereas we tend to engage really fast, if the same atrocities are happening in Eastern Europe among white "tribes"?

Though it may look racist, I think it's something else. If you would care to define racism, you would have link the motivation of your reactions or inactions toward a group of people solely on the fact that the people you support or oppose to are biologically (genetically), different from yourself.

It is rarely the case that people actually base their actions on a pure racial basis. Racist explanations given by the Nazis, Aryan Nation-types of people, are most often a simple distraction trick to justify their grab for power. That doesn't mean that they are not racist, but it's rarely racism itself which motivates them.

The moment you use those tricks (playing the race card, if you want to use a more sugarcoated term), you become a racist in my books. When Hitler started to "measure the noses, ears and brains of Jews" to prove his point of "Arian superiority", he stepped into the territory of " pure racism".

When "extreme libertarian capitalist purists" argue that "blacks in the US" or "poor black villagers" in the sub-saharan Africa are simply "not ready" for the higher wisdoms of their own ideologies, because they are "too lazy and undisciplined to work hard" etc., they step into the territory of "racism".

When same groups in the US try to "play one ethnic minority against the other, saying that one group is more successful "to make it in America" then another ethnic group", they base their arguments purely on the affiliation of a immigrant minority to a race or ethnicity. That is racist, pure and simple.

Now, when Saddam calls the support of Israeli and US policies "support of Zionism", is that racist or not? Let's try to find out:

Definition of Zionism:

Zi·on·ism Pronunciation Key (z-nzm) n.

A Jewish movement that arose in the late 19th century in response to growing anti-Semitism and sought to reestablish a Jewish homeland in Palestine. Modern Zionism is concerned with the support and development of the state of Israel.

1. Zionism Zionism, modern political movement for reconstituting a Jewish national state in Palestine. Early Years The rise of the Zionist movement in the late 19th cent. was influenced by nationalist currents in Europe, as well as by the secularization of Jewish life in Eastern Europe.

Definition of Judaism:
Judaism Related: Judaism (joo´deizem, joo´de-), the religious beliefs and practices and the way of life of the Jews . The term itself was first used by Hellenized Jews to describe their religious practice, but it is of predominantly modern usage; it is not used in the Bible or in Rabbinic literature and only rarely in the literature of the medieval period. The word Torah is employed when referring to the divinely revealed teachings of Jewish law and belief. Judaism is used more broadly, including also the totality of human interpretation and practice. Thus, one may speak of "secular Judaism," referring to an adherence to values expressed by Judaism but removed from any religious context. The most important holy days in Judaism are the weekly Sabbath , the major holidays of Rosh ha-Shanah , Yom Kippur , Sukkoth (see Tabernacles, Feast of ), Simhat Torah,Passover , and Shavuot , and the minor holidays of Hanukkah , Purim , and Tisha B'Av.
Definition of Semitism:
I couldn't find it. I could only find a definition for Anti-Semitism.
Definition of Anti-Semitism:
anti-Semitism Related: Judaism

(ante-sem´itizem, anti-) , form of prejudice against Jews , ranging from antipathy to violent hatred. Before the 19th cent., anti-Semitism was largely religious and was expressed in the later Middle Ages by sporadic persecutions and expulsions notably the expulsion from Spain under Ferdinand and Isabella and in severe economic and personal restrictions (see ghetto ). However, since Jews were generally restricted to the pursuit of occupations that were taboo, such as moneylending, the sentiment was also economic in nature.

Definition of a Jew:
Jews, Related: Judaism

[from Judah ], traditionally, descendants of Judah, the fourth son of Jacob, whose tribe, with that of his half brother Benjamin, made up the kingdom of Judah; historically, members of the worldwide community of adherents to Judaism . The degree to which national and religious elements of Jewish culture interact has varied throughout history and has been a matter of considerable debate. There were approximately 17.8 million Jews in the world in 1990, with 8 million in the Americas (of which about 5.7 million were in the United States), 3.5 million in Israel, and 3.5 million in Europe.

If the above definitions are correct, Jews are related to each other by genetic inheritance. I don't know if that is still true today, if that is a question in dispute among Jews themselves or if it's simply an outdated view of Judaism.

May be if I would ask the question like this, I could get some answers:

If I were born to Jewish parents, could I ever become something else than a Jew? If I said to my parents, I don't believe in the religious teachings of Judaism, am I then still a Jew due to my biological inheritance or would I stop to be a Jew?
I don't know the answer, but like to get one from a seriously knowledgeable Jew.

If there is a secular Judaism, that would mean even without being born by a Jewish mother, any person could become Jewish and live according to the teachings of Judaism. If that is true, then Judaism wouldn't be related genetically to a race, and being against Zionist or Jews (Judaism) would not be a racist expression, but a political and secular one.

If it's not true, and if Judaism is related to a tribe, into which you have to be born into and can't become a member by deliberately choosing Judaism as your life-style and religious beliefs, then being against Judaism or Zionists is a racist attitude.

Vice versa it would mean that actions by Jews or Zionists, not only can be considered as always being racist, but they logically must be considered as racist. The opposite would also be true, if you declare that Judaism is not related and linked genetically to a tribe or race, their actions never could be considered to be racist. Take your pick.

Now, if a knowledgeable Jew could explain to me, if I, not born to a Jewish mother, can become a Jew, can be a Zionist, can be a Semite or can become an Israeli national, I would be able to make up my mind, if I should consider a political opposition against the Israeli government's policies right now a racist attitude or not.

I could also make up my mind, if I should consider Saddam's accusations against the Zionist a racist attitude, and if I should consider the support of Israeli policies a racist support. D'oh.

Before someone enlightens me in this respect, I would like to come back to racism unrelated to the Jewish/Zionist/Semite/Israeli question.

How much we consider our actions to be based on racism, is really a matter of our honest self-examination of our motives.

Is the silence of Afro-Americans toward the atrocities of African dictators in former Zaire, toward tribal atrocities among Tutsis and Hutus, or toward rebel's atrocities against civilians in Sierra Leone, Angola, Mozambique racist when you compare that to their vocal opposition toward the atrocities the white Southern African government engaged in with their black population?

How about the other way around? Is the silence of white Americans toward the atrocities of the same above mentioned groups racism?

I think it depends. The policies of the white Southern African government against their own black population were constitutionally based on race. You had to be categorized "genetically" and were treated unequally in front of the law according to your racial categorizations.

Because you can't choose your genes, you can't choose your affiliation to a race and you can't avoid to be categorized according to your race. If you are living in a country, which engages in racially based categorization schemes and allows different legal treatment of its citizens on the basis of such categorization, you live in a racist hell. So, Southern African policies were racist, plain and simple. Support of those policies by other nations can be considered as supporting racism.

According to this the Afro-American reaction against the Southern African policies and the support of (some) white Americans toward Southern African policies are both "racist", because once you can define a nation engaging in racist policies, your opposition or support becomes "racist" as well.

So, is Mugabe's policies to throw out white farmers from their land, racist or not? And is your opposition or support of Mugabe's policies racist? Of course it is, it has to be as soon as you can prove that a policy, treatment or legal inequality of a group of citizens is being based on their genetically defined race and/or ethnicity. The same is true for your support or opposition to the regime that preceded Mugabe. The policies to take away land from Africans for the advantage of white Africans was based on race.

Now, another question: When does support or oppression of a religion becomes racist?

As soon as the religion itself is intertwined with your genetically defined ethnicity and race. Your support or opposition of a religion becomes racist as well. Whose fault is in that case the sin of "racism"?

If I decide to consider a religion to be a dangerous threat to my livelihood and survival, because the religion teaches that I am an evil-doing unbeliever and must be fought against and possible killed, then I am confronted with two possibilities:

Either the religion, who teaches that I am the evil-doer, is a religion, which is linked to a genetically based race or ethnicity or that religion is not.

If the former is the case (religion linked genetically to a tribe or race), people of that religion become racists (against me) and I become a racist (against them) by default, because I have no choice over my own race and therefore have no chance of not belonging to the evildoing unbelievers and have no chance to belong to the holy good-doer-race-religion. No luck for both sides.

If the latter (no linkage of religion to race/ethnicity) is the case, the religion, which teaches the murder of the unbelievers is necessary, is committing a crime against human rights of other human beings. They are engaging in crimes against humanity, as outlined in the UN charter, and I, opposing them, become someone acting in self-defense of my human and civil rights. There is nothing racist about it on both sides, but it's deeply criminal and/or unethical.

Aside from religion and race, people are killing each other for the sake of their "ideologies", where the ideologies usually just define how to distribute the wealth of the globe among its inhabitants. Ideologies are chosen and not related in any way to your ethnicity or race or religion.

Therefore, the silence of white American administration toward or their support of corrupt, tyrannical dictatorships in Africa, as well as the silence of Afro-Americans toward the same, can not be viewed as racist, because those corrupt regimes don't based their oppression on racial discrimination, but on accepting and using flaws and unethical business methods of capitalist or socialist ideologies with the intent to oppress their own people and gain financial and political power over them. Of course they always try to distract those motives and play the "tribal card" as well.

Answers (3.83 / 6) (#331)
by eliwap on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 02:46:02 PM EST

Q. "If I were born to Jewish parents, could I ever become something else than a Jew? If I said to my parents, I don't believe in the religious teachings of Judaism, am I then still a Jew due to my biological inheritance or would I stop to be a Jew?"

A According to the definition you provided once a Jew, always a Jew. As always an individual can identify themselves any way they want to, but there are genetic commonalities more common to Jews than any other group which include predispositions toward and away from certain diseases.

An individual who decides to follow the teachings of another religion, religiously speaking is not a practiciing Jew and if the Israeli society were practicing the religion strictly according to the Torah those individuals would be cast out of their communities. They would no longer be considered Jews by the community.

Q. "If there is a secular Judaism, that would mean even without being born by a Jewish mother, any person could become Jewish and live according to the teachings of Judaism. If that is true, then Judaism wouldn't be related genetically to a race, and being against Zionist or Jews (Judaism) would not be a racist expression, but a political and secular one."

A. There is no such thing as secular Judiasm, however, there are secular Jews that is people of Jewish descent that do not adhere to any religion. In order for an individual who was not born to Jewish parents to become a Jew an individual must prove his commitment to living a "Jewish" lifestyle to a Rabinical Court" Think of this as a Naturalization Process where an individual learns and commits oneself to the traditions and customs of a particular nation that the individual decides to adopt. If an individual converts, in countries other than Israel, through either Reform, Conservative, or Orthodox movements, the State of Israel will consider that individual a Jew with the full right of return. Within Israel, the conversion can only be performed by the Orthodox movement. There has been an ongoing and intense debate within Israel regarding the justness of excluding the other two major movements and much effort to try to reconcile them.

Q "...if Judaism is related to a tribe, into which you have to be born into and can't become a member by deliberately choosing Judaism as your life-style and religious beliefs, then being against Judaism or Zionists is a racist attitude."

A. Because the vast majority of Jews are born Jews, and there is genetic distinctivnesses within the Jewish populations then being against Jews is being racist.

If you are against the Israeli right to defend against terrorism, then you are a racist.

If you are against the Palestinian right to their own national homeland, you are also a racist.

If you support the planned and deliberate murder of innocent civilians because of their nationality or religious affiliation, you are also racist.

The comparison between corrupt and brutal dictatorships in Africa and to Israeli policies is also racist.

Israel's response in the territories is born of a legitmate desire and right to defend the Citizens of Israel from terrorism which tries to hide itself within the heart of civilian population centers. The terrorists hide themselves within these population centers as a deterrant to "civilized countries" because of the potential harm to those populations that comes from responding to them in these areas. If the deterrant would be successful then the terrorists would have a free hand to continue to murder with impunity. The terrorists not only murder, they also deliberately put in harms way there own bretherin with the hope that when they are harmed, that others would come to their rescue. It has never happened.

If major riots broke out in any urban area what would be the brutallity utilized by police agencies?

Israel's "oppressive policies," (military activity to defend the Citizens in Israel), in the territories would end once the terrorism ends. The terrorism can only end under two conditions. The first, is that those individuals who continue to perpetrate acts of terror decide to stop. The second way is if the terrorists are arrested forcibly. If the Palestinian leadership and consquently, their security forces refuse to do it, then the IDF must.

Israel's defence policy enacted within the territories are not enacted because the population there is Palestinian, Arab, Muslim, Christiian, Black, White, Yellow nor Red. It is enacted because terrorists that plan and perpetrate the deliberate murder of Israeli Citizens hide within the terroritories and Israel is duty bound to protect the Citizens of Israel from them.

If one would consider the surrounding and arresting of mass murderers oppression then so be it. But that individual would be a racist.

"Understanding is the basis of communications. Enlarge your mind to multiple points of view. The world is infinitely larger than your huge ego. -- Hey I said that :)"
[ Parent ]

Thanks for your answers (5.00 / 1) (#351)
by mami on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 05:46:17 PM EST

I pretty much understand your points, but am losing you somewhere in the middle. Let me try to go through them:

Q "...if Judaism is related to a tribe, into which you have to be born into and can't become a member by deliberately choosing Judaism as your life-style and religious beliefs, then being against Judaism or Zionists is a racist attitude."

A. Because the vast majority of Jews are born Jews, and there is genetic distinctivnesses within the Jewish populations then being against Jews is being racist.
My emphasis in my above paragraph should be read as follows: If the Jews are born Jews and therefore their Jewishness can't be considered untied to their race, every criticism against any Jewish lifestyle or policies can be considered racist, but that's a definition of racism, which no "negative meaning". It's racism by default due to the definition of what constitutes a Jew.

If you are against the Israeli right to defend against terrorism, then you are a racist.

Well, I am not at all against the Israeli right to defend against terrorism within their own borders. I am also not against the American's right to defend against terrorism within their own borders. If I would be against it in the Israeli case, I would be declared a racist, if I would be against it in the American case, I would not be declared a racist, but most probably a leftist, socialist, anti-American ideologist.

So, the definition of me being racist is dependent on the fact that the Jews define themselves and their homeland on the basis of their race, due to the definition of their religion being tied to their inheritance.

If you are against the Palestinian right to their own national homeland, you are also a racist.

Well, I am not against their right to own a national homeland. Is being a Palestinian based on genetic make-up and race too? Can a blond German Lutheran become a blond Palestinian Muslim?

If you support the planned and deliberate murder of innocent civilians because of their nationality or religious affiliation, you are also racist.

No, here I disagree. Because your nationality and your religious affiliation is not a genetically given fact, you can't change, your nationality and religion most of the time can be deliberately chosen.

Example. I am German and I am protestant. I can choose both, my nationality and my religious beliefs and affiliation. If I wanted to, I can stop being a German Lutheran and choose to become an American Muslim, for example.

I can take the bible as something else than "God's words". I can say tomorrow, I don't believe in the bible as being "God's words" and can choose to believe in the Qu'ran and take those word's as holy.

Short, as long as the religion allows you to either believe in it or not, either join in faith or leave it, as long as the religion is not tied to my genetic make-up, my opposition to such a religion wouldn't be racist. I would most probably be a extremist fundamentalist, but not a racist.

If my religion though would teach me, in the name of God's word, to kill all people, who are white kaucasians, I would be a racist and an extremist fundamentalist. If I am a zealot Christian, who thinks he has to convert all other people through his imposed missionary activities, I would be an extremist fundamentalist Christian, but not yet a racist.

The same is true for my nationality. If the Japanese allow me to become a citizen of Japan, I am a Japanese, even though my race is for the time being not very asian-japanese-like. Therefore, if I would start to kill innocent civilians on the basis of their nationality, I am not a racist, but most likely in engaged in a war of my country against another country.

For example, if I would be a terrorist, who preaches to kill all Americans, I can't be much of a racist, because how many races would I have to be against and kill, when it comes to kill all Americans? So, my killing of Americans wouldn't be racist, but politically or religiously motivated murder.

The comparison between corrupt and brutal dictatorships in Africa and to Israeli policies is also racist.

I regret that I obviously was not able to express myself better, because I certainly didn't intend to compare Israeli policies to policies of corrupt and brutal dictatorships found in some African nations. I do consider a lot of African dictatorship's actions (and certainly not Israel's policies) in violation of human and civil rights and consider them highly criminal and unethical, but not automatically racist. You would have to have a thorough look at each individual case of atrocities to define them as being truly racially motivated or caused by something else.

Israel's response in the territories is born of a legitimate desire and right to defend the Citizens of Israel from terrorism which tries to hide itself within the heart of civilian population centers.

I agree completely, I just don't understand why you mention it. Was I so unclear in what I tried to say? Could I be mistaken?

What I tried to say is that people can always call Israel's actions as being racist, as long Jews and Israel's policies can defined as being related to a race. As long as Judaism is race related, people will be able to call Jewish or Israeli policies racist.

In the case of Israel, as you explained so kindly and thoroughly, I understand now, that I can become a "naturalized Jew", if I "pledge" to the Jewish lifestyle and teaching and if my pledge is accepted by the orthodox movement.

This tells me now, that I, white, blond, German and Lutheran could eventually become a white, blond, Israeli Jew. That being said, Jewishness can't be anymore defined as race based. May be in reality that is still a rare event, but if it were for me, I think I could very well be a Jew, if one would let me be one, ie the fact that I am not a born Jew wouldn't prevent me from becoming one.

The terrorists hide themselves within these population centers as a deterrant to "civilized countries" because of the potential harm to those populations that comes from responding to them in these areas. If the deterrant would be successful then the terrorists would have a free hand to continue to murder with impunity. The terrorists not only murder, they also deliberately put in harms way there own bretherin with the hope that when they are harmed, that others would come to their rescue. It has never happened.

I agree fully with that paragraph. May be the confusion comes from the fact that "racism" is always considered to be something evil. Let's say being Jewish would be strictly related to a race, so that you could relate all of the Jewish lifestyle, policies etc. as race-based and therefore allows non Jews to judge all of Israeli's unpopular actions as "racist", though they are not "truly racist".

If the Jewish religion though would teach to kill all people, who are not Jewish and have blond hair, then those actions would be "truly racist".

My impression is that the Jewish religion doesn't teach aggressiveness or oppression of any other religions that tie their beliefs to their own race. So, I hope that makes it clear.

Bottomline, there are four ways you can "justify" criminal murder of innocent people:

1. because you belong to a certain race 2. because you believe in a certain religion 3. because you believe in a certain ideology 4. because you have a certain nationality.

Only justification number one, your race, can't be evaded by the potential victim and therefore racism remains the ultimate evil doing. The control over your race is beyond your influence. Your control over religious affiliation (as long as the religion is not tied to your genetic make-up), your ideology, your nationality is not beyond your influence.

[ Parent ]

Ahh... (5.00 / 1) (#357)
by eliwap on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 07:51:10 PM EST

First let me apologize. I realize that it was not your intention to compare Israeli policy to those of the Dictatorships that you mentioned. It seemed to me that you were trying to tie the two together to bait what usually turns into Jew and Israel bashing. I was obviously mistaken by this perception and I apologize.

In regard to your very strict definition of race, you have generally answered your own questions. Currently, I believe, one would be very hard pressed to find anyone with a gentic makeup that one could consider "pure." I tend to doubt that such a thing ever existed. Be that as it may as one can be adopted into a family they then can be a member of that family. That individual would be entitled to the same inheritence as any other member of that family.

Currently, in keeping with your strict of definition, you could not become a Palestinian, because currently there is no formal territorial entity recognized as Palestine. I for one and many others are hoping that the Palestinian Arabs do find themselves with a homeland, living peacefully side by side with Israel.

There is no race known as Palestinian. Palestinians are Arabs -- Muslim and Christian. They are known as Palestinians because they have lived in the territory that has been known as Palestine. These people hope to have a homeland parcelled within that territory that they wish to call Palestine. It will be up to them if and when this homeland is established whether to allow you to become a naturallized citizen.

Regarding the future of your offspring. They would eventually assimilate genetically into the local population. In the case of you as an individual becoming Jewish, this adoption, would eventually lead to your offspring, after several genrations, having a genetic makeup more in common with Jews than Germans. The same is true of Arabs etc. In effect, you would have "adopted" the genetic make up of the nationality you have chosen to join.

One of things taught within Jewish religion, is that this religion is the Jewish Religion exclusively. It does not exclude the right of Individuals to believe and live as they please. However, the religion does teach that if the other nations want to live right in G-d's eye then they should be following a smaller version of the set of laws handed to Israel. Israel's conduct in the world, according to the religion, is guided by the Ten Commandments given to Moses. The conduct of the other nations are to have been guided by the Seven Commandments handed down to Noah. The expression of religious, and civil codes were to be expanded from these basic prinicples. The Jewish Religion does not in any way condone the initiation of acts of violence towards any one. But it does command compensation for harm done to anyone. It does call for self defence. It does also call for the equality of all people under law.

An inidividual can "justify" to themselves an act of evil that they themselves have instigated. But there really is no justification at all.

"Understanding is the basis of communications. Enlarge your mind to multiple points of view. The world is infinitely larger than your huge ego. -- Hey I said that :)"
[ Parent ]

beautiful answers ... (none / 0) (#358)
by mami on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 09:46:53 PM EST

Currently, I believe, one would be very hard pressed to find anyone with a gentic makeup that one could consider "pure."

Of course, and I am sure you know that iGrrl works in genetics. She knows best and many know that what we consider our "racial features" makes less than one percent of our genetic code.

Regarding the future of your offspring. They would eventually assimilate genetically into the local population. In the case of you as an individual becoming Jewish, this adoption, would eventually lead to your offspring, after several genrations, having a genetic makeup more in common with Jews than Germans.

Yes, but here is what I don't understand. Why, if racially different people mix, over the course of generations, don't blend into a mix, but generate "more racially distinct differences".

Isn't it true that basically you can do what you want, mix and blend as much as you like, and still end up always to create diverse and different races? Whatever you mix up and blend ends up separate again. I think of races and with it racism as a built-in design feature of how genetically our reproduction works. Why then would it make sense to accuse each other of our racist features and attitudes?

I guess I leave it at that and enjoy our racial diversity and differences for a while.

[ Parent ]

Inheritence (5.00 / 1) (#365)
by eliwap on Sun Sep 29, 2002 at 04:42:35 AM EST

The general answer to your main question is that any living organism is built up from the genetic code of their parents. Individuals inherit the genetic traits and characteristics of their parents.

"Why, if racially different people mix, over the course of generations, don't blend into a mix, but generate "more racially distinct differences""

Becuase, people have tended throughout most of time to have been born, live, get married and die within their local communities. It has only been in recent history that people have been able to migrate with relative ease. Be that as it may, diversity does occur, and the truth of astonishing variety is qutie evident in the faces of the more than 5 billion of us on the planet. You would be hard pressed to find anyone that looks exactly the same. Even in the case of identical twins differences in their appearance and personality show up. But the basic building blocks that go into making a basic organism remains relatively constant because people tend to remain in the communities of their birth. And this translates into genetically distinct racial characteristics.

While it is very true that each individual is unique and yes, it is very true that each individual should be and under "normal" circumstances judged as an individual, there are certain events, natural and man made that have consquences on the collective. An earth quake is collective, Wars are collective endeavours. These events have consquences. Under the circumstances where consquences to a collective are man made by a collective the cause is usually attributed to an "offending" collective.

Communities form because we are social animals. We naturally form collectives and that usually over time forms racial distinctions.

We are also territorial organism. Strangers have, historically been considered threats to the collective. It has only been in recent times and in those countries where the horrors of WWI and WWII were experienced first hand did xenophobic thinking make way for something new.

If anything positive at all came from these major cataclysms is that European war mongering came to an end and a new attitude grew out of its extremely long infancy where all human beings and the whole of the world are to be considered as one large community. The idea of the human race started to become the predominant attitude in Western culture as a way of educating away from war. If everyone and everywhere is your part of your community then making war would be making war on yourself and your family. This is simply a great and wonderful event in human social evolution. It is not, however, genetic evolution. It is redirecting natural human instinct through a different rational, making, in my opinion, a more whole human being.

You would be hard pressed to find a democracy, anywhere that excludes anyone on the basis of race. This, by the way, includes Israel. There are many people with different skin tones ranging from deep dark black to lily white. The Jewish nation has assimilated, over time, people whose ancesteral heritage originated from Africa, Asia, Europe and of course the Middle East. Members of different races and cultures from the whole of the "Old World" has immigrated into the Jewish Nation. Like I said I doubt very much that there really is or ever has been any such thing as a "pure" race.

But the West is not the whole of the world and there are many peoples and cultures that continue to consider that the best approach to protecting what is theirs is to be elitest and exclusive. We call these people, racists, extremists, or fundamentalists. The prevailinig attitude in the West regarding "Human Universality" should continued to be taught, promoted and lived. This however, should not be approached naively. Nor should this be done through martyrdom.

Our racial diversity and cultural differences are indeed something we should enjoy. It is something to celebrate. In food, culture, philosophy, arts and science. We all have something to learn from each other, individually and collectively. After all, we are one species, one race and the whole of this world is the inheritance of everybody. How can there be peace between cultures when we are hard pressed to make peace between individuals beacuse of the circumstances of their birth. There will only be peace on earth when we can celebrate our differences, because, every individual is different. This is what makes us all the same.

"Understanding is the basis of communications. Enlarge your mind to multiple points of view. The world is infinitely larger than your huge ego. -- Hey I said that :)"
[ Parent ]

Thank you ! (none / 0) (#367)
by mami on Sun Sep 29, 2002 at 07:41:21 AM EST

You would be hard pressed to find a democracy, anywhere that excludes anyone on the basis of race. This, by the way, includes Israel. There are many people with different skin tones ranging from deep dark black to lily white. The Jewish nation has assimilated, over time, people whose ancesteral heritage originated from Africa, Asia, Europe and of course the Middle East. Members of different races and cultures from the whole of the "Old World" has immigrated into the Jewish Nation. Like I said I doubt very much that there really is or ever has been any such thing as a "pure" race.

That is the most amazing aspect of it all and I am glad it turns out to be that way.

But the basic building blocks that go into making a basic organism remains relatively constant because people tend to remain in the communities of their birth.

Which basically is the result of most of us not being able to trust and understand anything else than that you have learned to understand during your upbringing from your parents and community.

Our capacity to trust, understand and have compassion for people and conditions beyond our horizons is limited physically and geographically, even with all the digital connections that seems to help us overcome those limitations. We still are very local animals.

Our last resort in testing whom we trust is almost always watching minute details in body language and facial expressions, as well as our intellectual willingness to put people's reactions in context to their community surroundings. Our emotional capacity to "feel" other community's hardships, when we try to trust the "stranger" though, is definitely limited.

[ Parent ]

Had to think about this!! (5.00 / 1) (#382)
by eliwap on Mon Sep 30, 2002 at 05:28:47 AM EST

Our capacity to trust, understand and have compassion for people and conditions beyond our horizons is limited physically and geographically, even with all the digital connections that seems to help us overcome those limitations. We still are very local animals.

I must respectfully disagree with this. What is difficult here is that people have a difficult time getting past their sociallization. Europe is an extrodinary example of this. Who would have thought that after centuries of the worst blood letting the worst has ever known, Europe would transform itself into a federated political, legal and economic collective where cooperation and community extends to the whole of those nations which have embraced the concept ot the European Union. Another example of this is the relationship between the US and Britian. A railways and roads connect France and England. What about the France and Germany. Germany and the rest of the world. Eastern Europe and Western Europe. The democratic countries in South East Asia. The list goes on.

Trust or mistrust for others is something taught. Their has been in recent history a great many examples of peace popping up without anyone having to conquer anyone. All it took was the mutual effort of former advisaries to accept the good will of the either side and the goodness of the people. Whether one side "understands" the other is totally irrelevant. All it takes is the effort to ensure peace at any cost. And if clarification is required then ask for it. The idea here is that when national and individual ambitions get redirected by a rational that indicates that these goals can best be achieved through a mutual cooperative effort rather than an effort to suppress the ambitions of a perceived adversary then peace breaks out and resources that have gone into maintaining the adversarial endeavor can be redirected toward each others mutual goals, which for normal people is to make a good life for oneself and family.

But this requires mutual effort. Effort from both adversaries. Unilateral peace is suicidal.

It turns out, when good relationships exist between individuals and groups differences are minimized to point of being invisible and irrelevant, indeed, those differences become a source of delight and pleasure.

The simplest expression that I can come up with is the success of "ethnic" restaurants. Metaphorically speaking... Approach the world with attitude of being a good king treating all others as though they also were a good king of equal standing, you will have made a good friend for life.

"Understanding is the basis of communications. Enlarge your mind to multiple points of view. The world is infinitely larger than your huge ego. -- Hey I said that :)"
[ Parent ]

I admire your positive outlook (none / 0) (#383)
by mami on Mon Sep 30, 2002 at 08:14:12 AM EST

and am flattered how you see the developments in Europe. What those developments represent is simply the fact that we know each other quite well and may feel there are more urgent problems to solve together, which harm us all, than solve problems, which would divide us against each other (hopefully, I cross my fingers ...)

Trust or mistrust for others is something taught

There I would answer that everything is taught. When you say we need to overcome our socialization, I would ask, overcome it into what? Our socialization is not only the tool that teaches us to mistrust, it teaches us to trust as well.

Overcoming socialization would then mean nothing more than growing up, making up your own mind about the ethical worth of what you have been taught to trust and mistrust, and eventually come up with another evaluation.

That you could only do, when you had the chance to know people, you have been taught to mistrust in your socialization process, so thoroughly that you can make a change and learn to "trust" them.

So, I would argue, you can only learn to trust that what you know well. And you can know well only those people and situations, you really live with and live through. Trust needs more than "intellectual understanding", it needs "emotional intelligence", which you learn only in real world human interactions. And our real world human interactions are limited geographically and biologically.

Otherwise I agree with all you say. Your example of the "ethnic" restaurant, I think, unintentionally supports my point. People, who eat together, express their trust in each other and their desire to get to know each other real well. Inviting someone to eat with you is the most amicably guesture to express your willingness to trust.

It's a very ancient concept. I remember that in the customs of some African very tiny tribe to eat from the same plate is the most honest display of trust and love. But with how many people can you eat from one plate in your lifetime? Here you go... that's what I meant with us being "local" animals. :-)

[ Parent ]

Know thyself (5.00 / 1) (#406)
by eliwap on Tue Oct 01, 2002 at 05:36:29 AM EST

I agree with your statement regarding "emotional intelligence", but what is really needed given a "normal" person is an honest and thorough understanding of oneself, ones wishes, and ones desires.

The vast "Silent Majority" would like nothing more than to live a relatively prosperous healthy life, get married, raise their kids, be close to their families and friends, and to be well thought of within their community. Most normal people have no desire to harm anyone, to hate anyone nor to see anything bad happen to anyone.

If most of these attributes describes you, or me, maybe they describe just about everyone. Maybe strangers that live beyond our local perceptions are not that hard to trust. Because, if there is one good person, maybe just maybe there is more than one. And maybe just maybe the goodness within people is a normal and natural thing.

If some insult did occur and the above is true, then more than likely that insult was unintentional, the result of some misunderstanding which could be graciously resolved with discussion and good will with the aim of a fair and generous resolution to both parties of just about any dispute. I must add here, not a resolution that gains competitive selfish advantage, a resolution that assumes mistrust and evil intent, but a resolution that is as generous for everyone as possible and that usually means that "you can't get it all." It does mean you can usually get almost all if the effort is genuinely cooperative and honestly looks out for the best interest of everyone. Compromise is always necessary. Sometimes, very very painful ones.

What is usually true is that peoples don't provoke conflict on a collective scale. Leaders convince people to join. It is the main reason why democracies tend not to start or provoke wars. The leaders and ethical guide of these type of governments is the people -- the kind of people described earlier. But these governments have a tendancy to be feroucious in war also because, when attacked or significantly threatened the common person becomes extremely angry. Their perception is that they have done nothing to warrant the attack and a strong sense of justice takes over (some would call it revenge -- I would not). Of course their are exceptions.

The more meglomaniacal leader's, of autocratic regimes are the ones that tend to threaten, provoke and initiate collective armed conflict, either to hide their regimes corruption by blaming all their woes on some other party, for personal status (saving face) or personal wealth. These type of leaders tend to lie to their people or perhaps to themselves that it is all for the good of the country. With no open or critical discussion, without the entire picture provided by dissension it becomes next to impossible for local populations to anything other than to trust their leader. I would not call these "leaders" leaders -- squandering resources and people that would be better served generating industry and consquently greater prosperity. Of course there are exceptions.

But, in the end, if an individual gets to really know oneself then extending that knowledge of ones "basic self", ones basic humanity to all of humanity really is not that big leap. It just takes some honesty.

"Understanding is the basis of communications. Enlarge your mind to multiple points of view. The world is infinitely larger than your huge ego. -- Hey I said that :)"
[ Parent ]

Speaking about honesty and trust (none / 0) (#407)
by mami on Tue Oct 01, 2002 at 07:18:13 AM EST

Maybe strangers that live beyond our local perceptions are not that hard to trust. Because, if there is one good person, maybe just maybe there is more than one. And maybe just maybe the goodness within people is a normal and natural thing.

I often have asked myself which side in us wins. Trusting in the goodness people have within, or fear and distrust of the possible people's evil or selfish intent. I am not that convinced (as you seem to be) about the trusting part being the winner.

Even if people don't always end up mistrusting and killing or oppressing each other, usually what they end up doing (out of muted and silent fear and distrust) is to self-segregate.

The best thing that can happen between strangers, who don't know what to think about each other, is that they respectfully agree to limit their own freedoms in the intent to not intrude each other's privacy and not to violate each other's basic human rights.

Most people can handle this only with a "healthy" distance of each other, so first thing they do is they accept and practice self-segregation.(That alone people already often mistake with racism). You can call yourself lucky, if you have the space to do so. I believe it is for a reason that specifically in the US the ideas of "minding your own business" of "protecting your own private spheres" and accepting the "stranger's" life-style, but only at a distance, have developed so strongly.

Too many strangers found each other side by side, but all needed to survive. The American experience is therefore unique, but you can observe this struggle between mistrust and trust, mingling and deliberate self-segregation very clearly.

... but a resolution that is as generous for everyone as possible and that usually means that "you can't get it all."

I agree, but then let's be honest, who would have to learn this more than the "libertarian purist", who does everything and wants everything in the name of "freedom" and usually not only wants it all, but often gets it all as well.

What is usually true is that peoples don't provoke conflict on a collective scale. Leaders convince people to join.

True, just look how hard they are at work right now ...

The leaders and ethical guide of these type of governments is the people

I doubt that. Each person has his own ethical guide. If you are in the government and have the power to lead a people according to your own ethical guide, believe me, the government representative tries to guide the people and lead them wherever they want the people to go, not the other way around.

And because the elected governmental officials have the military, police and legislative power to impose their own ethics on the people, it's the responsibility of a few in power how they use their influence to massage the ethical behaviour of the common men. Look at your government right now. Tremendously important decisions of ethical nature depend on a handful of men, most of them not better equipped to make those decisions than any ordinary, common man on the street.

But these governments have a tendancy to be feroucious in war also because, when attacked or significantly threatened the common person becomes extremely angry.

Usually the common person becomes extremely angry only, if they are personally and directly attacked and stripped off their basic civil rights, so that they have to become angry to have the courage to protect their lives.

It is the individual government representative's ethics that counts. They have the power to control the people's anger, to allow the "ferociousness" of the people (or their own) to get out of hand or to guide them towards less ferocious solutions.

The more meglomaniacal leader's, of autocratic regimes are the ones that tend to threaten, provoke and initiate collective armed conflict, either to hide their regimes corruption by blaming all their woes on some other party, for personal status (saving face) or personal wealth. These type of leaders tend to lie to their people or perhaps to themselves that it is all for the good of the country.

I agree, just that it's not only true for leaders of autocratic regimes. It is true and counts for any political representative, who has legislative, executive or judicial power. The fact that they received that power through elections in a constitutional democracy, doesn't guarantee that their own personal "bad ethics" can't lead to the same negative results. You can threaten, invoke, blame, cheat for "saving your face and your wealth" successfully in any kind of political system.

It's still the individual's responsibility how he uses the power the people have entrusted him with.

With no open or critical discussion, without the entire picture provided by dissension it becomes next to impossible for local populations to anything other than to trust their leader.

No, here I would disagree. People are much smarter than that. They know exactly whom they trust and whom not. It's the power the political representatives have over the people's lives and fate that is the key to people being able to voice their trust or distrust without repercussions and act accordingly.

And even though critical discussions (the most critical discussions tend to be the ones, which are held behind closed doors in totalitarian regimes) tend to make you believe that they help prevent a democratically elected meglomaniac personality in power to change their unethical behavior, there seems to be a lot of wishful thinking in that.

I have never seen a more free press, a more worldwide distributed open political discussion via the media than today. I don't see that we are more capable to prevent the meglomaniacs in power of whatever regimes from abusing the power. You can talk all day long and in the end, while talking, the people in power decide what they want.

I do believe that the responsibility lies in the hands of a very few and that the ethics of the common man, the people, is not capable of guiding their leaders easily. If they were able to do so, we wouldn't see so many helpless civil disobedience attmpts or civil wars of people against their political representatives. It's usually a sign that the people don't know better to "correct" the unethical decisions their leaders have made.



[ Parent ]

Palestinian Race (4.00 / 1) (#427)
by Nelziq on Wed Oct 02, 2002 at 10:32:11 PM EST

There is no race known as Palestinian.

Palestinians are Arabs -- Muslim and Christian. They are known as Palestinians because they have lived in the territory that has been known as Palestine.

This is not entirely true. I can testify that one can identify other Palestinian Arabs by physical appearance as distinct from Jordanian, Iraqi, or Egyptian Arabs. Arabs a far from a homogenous race. Some egyptian or yemeni arabs can be as dark skinned as any african while syrians can be as light skinned as any european. Their other physical features vary as much. One might infer from this that a sampling of palestinian arabs could show a common and to some extent distinct genetic makeup. Thus one might be justified in describing Palestinians as a race.

This of course doesnt even take into account the idea of "percieved" race. For example several Americans in the Sihk and Indian community were the victims of hate crimes after 9/11 under the misperception that they were arabs. Nevertheless one could still describe these acts as "racist".

The same could be said about Palestinians. If Palestinians are seen as a race and negatively treated because of that perception, one could describe that treatment as racist. I think, then, that Israeli treatment of Palestinians could easily be considered as racist, regardless of whether one believes this treatment is justified or not.

[ Parent ]

Fuzzy semantics (5.00 / 2) (#369)
by opilio on Sun Sep 29, 2002 at 09:30:28 AM EST

Thank you first for demonstrating how difficult it is to arrive at a proper definition of "racism". eliwap and yourself went into that in great detail; I would like to make a slightly different point.

Getting the terminology straight is a good thing in the first place, still: The real question isn't what constitutes racism, the question is: Does it matter?

How important is it really to know what a race actually is, or indeed, if there is any substance to that concept? Anthropologists may have a legitimate interest to think about that, but elsewhere such a debate almost inevitably turns into comparisons of the ethical, intellectual etc. merits of basically random groups of people. Racists certainly don't need facts. The only need some biological distinguishing feature of the people they hate. And even if it's not there, so what? They'll pretend this particular blond and blue-eyed Jew is just the exception that proves the rule! If the Nazi "race researchers" had concluded there was no such thing as a Jewish or an Aryan or any other race, would that have changed Nazi policies in any way? My guess is they would have put those results somewhere were nobody would ever find them.

In fact, they weren't always very consequent the other way around either. Maybe you know that famous Göring quote "I determine who is a Jew."

So, racism doesn't depend much on who or what its victims really are, but on what racists want them to be. Some stuff to illustrate my point: www.greeklife.ucla.edu/janeelliott.htm

There's yet another reason why the word "racism" (and "xenophobia" in much the same fashion) is used in the fuzzy way it is. That is, there seems to be no equally snappy word for "hating somebody for his - perceived or actual - belonging to a - perceived or actually existing - certain group or category of people." People tend to use the word "racism" if they criticize the behaviour I tried to describe. Note that I don't want to offer this as a definition of racism, but as a concept in dire need of a word. It might help in showing what's wrong with debates where §SOMEONE is called a racist for propagating his hatred against §WHATEVER_COLLECTIVE, and then a debate starts about whether §WHATEVER_COLLECTIVE are really a race or not. §SOMEONE himself or §SOMEBODYELSE then explains that §WHATEVER_COLLECTIVE are not a race and that §SOMEONE therefore is not a racist. As if that mattered. As if that didn't make the §WORDTOBEINVENTED he shows any less inhuman and disgusting.

One more point: People tend to get right away into debates about what "the" Palestinians or "the" Israelis or "the" Americans did or didn't or should or mustn't do. Next, you trap yourself in a "us" vs. "them" dichotomy. Apuleius provides a distressing example of that attitude. We should never forget that we are talking about real people here, individuals that is, persons, humans, not some abstractions conveniently offered by our respective languages. So, "hating person A for (in perception or reality) belonging to the same group as person B whom one hates already" is not necessarily racism, but it definitely amounts to §WORDTOBEINVENTED. That very same mentality shows in equating Israel with its current government, regardless of the motives - saying all Israelis are as bad as their government, or saying everybody who criticizes that government is anti-Israeli or even antisemitic.

---
Und die Halme schrein, wenn du den Rasen mähst. -- Element of Crime, Mach das Licht aus, wenn du gehst
[ Parent ]

Oh, great answers today... :-) (5.00 / 1) (#370)
by mami on Sun Sep 29, 2002 at 12:00:04 PM EST

I want to make it short. To me this is the essential sentence (and I agree with it hundred percent) in your comment:

So, racism doesn't depend much on who or what its victims really are, but on what racists want them to be.

I am not that apt to express it so exact to the point than you did, but tried to get somewhat at this it in my second comment to eliwap under "bottomline".

I think, the only reason, why so many people are fast to identify human rights violation of one group of people versus another group of people as racism, is because that accusation or justification is an immediate negotiation stopper and it is the easy way out to avoid thinking a problem through in honesty.

For example, if I accuse you and say that your violations of my human rights are based on racism, then I terminate any further discussion and dismiss any other option to find solutions to the problem between you and me.

Because if it is my race, I can't do anything about it, and reasonable argument to modify your or my behavior can never be brought into play.

That's the only reason why people LOVE to identify anything as racist, because it saves you the pain to analyze the real problem of a dispute between quarreling parties.

So, when then real racism is the real motive, or if racism is put on top of another motivation (like simple lust for power of a psychopath who wants to be the future leader and dictator, may be even a "benign" dictator, who wants to establish his god-like status with the help of a totalitarian police state), we have the real evil in the form of holocausts, genocide or constitutional slavery etc.

Well, thanks for the answer, I really got something out of this exchange.

[ Parent ]

answers to questions (none / 0) (#433)
by vmarks on Tue Oct 08, 2002 at 09:41:27 AM EST

If I were born to Jewish parents, could I ever become something else than a Jew? If I said to my parents, I don't believe in the religious teachings of Judaism, am I then still a Jew due to my biological inheritance or would I stop to be a Jew? I don't know the answer, but like to get one from a seriously knowledgeable Jew.

If you were born to Jewish parents, you could decide to act according to the rules and precepts of another religion, and reject your Judaism- however, in the eyes of the Orthodox Rabbis, it would not make you any less Jewish, simply acting outside Jewish law.

If you're Jewish by birth, it is because G-d caused it. Who are you to say G-d got it wrong?

If there is a secular Judaism, that would mean even without being born by a Jewish mother, any person could become Jewish and live according to the teachings of Judaism. If that is true, then Judaism wouldn't be related genetically to a race, and being against Zionist or Jews (Judaism) would not be a racist expression, but a political and secular one.

Look to the story of Naomi and Ruth in the Torah. It is the story of the first conversion to Judaism. In fact, the Rabbis teach that the person who converts is somehow "more" Jewish than the person who has simply been born Jewish, because the convert came to Judaism on his own, and worked for it.

If it's not true, and if Judaism is related to a tribe, into which you have to be born into and can't become a member by deliberately choosing Judaism as your life-style and religious beliefs, then being against Judaism or Zionists is a racist attitude.

Vice versa it would mean that actions by Jews or Zionists, not only can be considered as always being racist, but they logically must be considered as racist. The opposite would also be true, if you declare that Judaism is not related and linked genetically to a tribe or race, their actions never could be considered to be racist. Take your pick.

Except that it isn't an wholly an either/or proposition. You could dye your skin black as night and never become an African-American. You could bleach your skin as white as snow, and never become Caucasian. You can convert to Judaism.

That said, there is some scientific evidence to show that Ashkenazi Jews are genetically linked. But it doesn't show that Sephardic Jews are linked to Ashkenazi Jews, or that Oriental Jews are linked to Ethopian Jews.

Now, if a knowledgeable Jew could explain to me, if I, not born to a Jewish mother, can become a Jew, can be a Zionist, can be a Semite or can become an Israeli national, I would be able to make up my mind, if I should consider a political opposition against the Israeli government's policies right now a racist attitude or not.

Thank you for using the conjuntion or. You can be a Jew who converted to Judaism, not born to a Jewish mother. You can become a Zionist, simply by adopting Zionist goals / beliefs. Going by the hard-fast definition of a Semite, one from the Middle-East, you really couldn't change where you were born- but then, neither can Jews born in America, Asia, Africa, or Europe. Anti-semitism really strays from its definition as applying only to people of Middle East origin, and applies to Jews in standard use. If you're Jewish (by birth, or by choice) and someone makes an Anti-Jewish (Anti-semitic) remark or action, you're going to be offended. As a Jewish convert, you can become an Israeli citizen. -- but as another poster said, it's the speaker of racist invective that determines if it's racist, not the target. Goerring said, "I determine who is a Jew."

[ Parent ]

but however (none / 0) (#436)
by ragnarok on Fri Oct 11, 2002 at 08:09:20 AM EST

if you convert to Christianity. Then you are treated as scum.


"And it came to healed until all the gift and pow, I, the Lord, to divide; wherefore behold, all yea, I was left alone....", Joseph Smith's evil twin sis
[ Parent ]

good story... (3.00 / 1) (#333)
by grahamtastic42 on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 03:05:58 PM EST

rather, good quesion. at the time i am reading this there are 322 resposes. that has got to be near some kind of record. that isn't even acounting for the short length.

The case can be made (1.00 / 2) (#337)
by Buenaventura Durruti on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 03:22:06 PM EST

The case can be made, whether one agrees with it or not, that the Israelis' behavior toward the Palestinians is comparable.

No, It isn't, It is still worse.

And that is different from antisemitism how? (3.00 / 2) (#359)
by davka on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 09:58:35 PM EST

How deeply have you considered the nature of antisemitism?

Europeans chose to hate Jews, rather than Chinese, Turks or Indians, because the Jews were close and familiar and could (more or less plausibly) personify the great evils of modern Europe itself: science, religion, capitalism, communism etc. according to taste.

In medieval times, before modern antisemitism, the Christians believed that the Jews, as God's chosen people, were held to a higher standard, and, when found wanting by this standard, were forever damned by God, who than chose the Christians instead. The Jews were like the Christians because they believed in the same god, but their refusal to recognise Christ couldn't be condoned, and so they were hated with much more ferocity than were the Chinese, Indians etc. who worshipped other gods altogether.

So your explanation of anti-Israel sentiment doesn't really differentiate it from plain old antisemitism.

anti-semitism (none / 0) (#410)
by christfokkar on Tue Oct 01, 2002 at 09:45:39 AM EST

So your explanation of anti-Israel sentiment doesn't really differentiate it from plain old antisemitism.

Ummm...what's wrong with anti-semitism?

You conveniently fail to expand on this point.

I am quite opposed to anyone discriminating based on people's genetic imprint.  

At the same time, I am morally opposed to any group that imposes rigid inbreeding tactics on their offspring.

[ Parent ]

Why Israel? (1.66 / 3) (#362)
by hypno on Sat Sep 28, 2002 at 11:51:44 PM EST

Perhaps because out of all the other oppressive and brutal regimes the US funds and supports (ie, the persecution of Kurds in turkey and more or less everywhere), Israel is the worst?
Possibly. But you have to start somewhere.

Regime? (none / 0) (#415)
by graz on Tue Oct 01, 2002 at 01:38:10 PM EST

Calling Israel brutal and oppressive with the Palestinians, Syrians, Saudis and Egyptians so close by borders on the absurd.

Israel is the lone democracy in the Middle East. It alone has as free press and a democracy. It alone protects the rights of minorities. The Palestinians murder their own people without so much as a trial. An Israeli (or even a Palestinian) accused of a crime has the right to a trial in an indepentant judiciary.

Israel is in tight spot currently. The Palestinians have chosen violence over talk. They've rejected an offer that would have given them a country in the West Bank and Gaza. What more do they want?

If the world were full of more Israels, more democracies, more free press, more governments responsive to their people the world would be a better place.

[ Parent ]

This is why. (4.66 / 3) (#366)
by Pyrion on Sun Sep 29, 2002 at 04:58:00 AM EST

Israel, as a representative democracy (like the United States), is held to a higher standard of conduct than the nations that are governed by ignorants and totalitarian dictatorships. The protests against the non-White governments won't work simply because they could care less what the United States thinks of them.
--
"There is much pleasure to be gained from useless knowledge." - Bertrand Russell
Israel is not a democracy. (none / 0) (#395)
by crunchycookies on Mon Sep 30, 2002 at 10:34:42 PM EST

Israel is no more a democracy than Apartheid South Africa. That is to say, they are a sham democracy. In Israel, as under Apartheid, your rights are dependent on your religion and ethnic background. The Palestinians are rebelling against this corrupt system as did the Africans rebel against Apartheid.



[ Parent ]

Absolutely Not True (none / 0) (#399)
by eliwap on Tue Oct 01, 2002 at 12:34:45 AM EST


"Understanding is the basis of communications. Enlarge your mind to multiple points of view. The world is infinitely larger than your huge ego. -- Hey I said that :)"
[ Parent ]

Absolutely true (none / 0) (#400)
by Wulfius on Tue Oct 01, 2002 at 12:42:21 AM EST

Well, largely true.

Arabs in the occupied territories do not get a vote in the Israel government.
Ergo, Israel and the territories which it occupies are not a democracy.

Spin on that.

Now the solution is easy.
Leave the occupied territories.

However, the loss of such a magnificent diversion
weapon that distracts our people from nosediving econmony must not be allowed to happen.

---
"We must believe in free will, we have no choice."
http://wulfspawprints.blogspot.com/ - Not a journal dammit!
[ Parent ]

Absolutely Not True (none / 0) (#405)
by eliwap on Tue Oct 01, 2002 at 04:34:32 AM EST

Israel has not and will not annex the Territories.

Arabs in the Territories are not and have no desire, even if things were peaceful to be Isreali Citizens. I believe that only Citizens can vote.

Israel has the right to defend itself like any nations whether you are or are not a democracy.

You want Israel to leave the Territories, then the Terrritories should stop attacking Isreal.

"Understanding is the basis of communications. Enlarge your mind to multiple points of view. The world is infinitely larger than your huge ego. -- Hey I said that :)"
[ Parent ]

We love you too!!! (none / 0) (#435)
by ragnarok on Fri Oct 11, 2002 at 07:55:49 AM EST

Israel has not and will not annex the Territories.

Fine, so the settlers are an illusion then, brought on by the consumption of too much chicken soup for the sole? soul?.

Arabs in the Territories are not and have no desire, even if things were peaceful to be Isreali Citizens. I believe that only Citizens can vote.

Go to the head of the class, Eliwap. You've actually told the truth. That didn't hurt a bit, did it? Now if Israel insists on maintaining control of the Territories come hell or high water, through indirect means as much as through direct means - eg those Kahanista settlers - then its democratic institutions will of course be corrupted.

Israel has the right to defend itself like any nations whether or not you are a democracy.

Like the Palestinians have the right to defend themselves against the thieving settlers? Or is Ghetto Yisrael (hardly Medinat Yisrael!) unwilling to grant them that simple human right?

You want Israel to leave the Territories, then the Terrritories should stop attacking Israel.

I see. So, like a story I learnt when I was a kid, Israel will quite cheerfully go down, down, down, still clinging on to the Palestinian Territories, way below the surface of liquidity into the uttermost depths of bankruptcy of supply, ethics and morality, rather than give up its claim to the Territories. And as far as the Territories attacking Israel, might you consider the differences in the size of the armed forces of the Territories and Israel? Palestine is David; Israel is Goliath.


"And it came to healed until all the gift and pow, I, the Lord, to divide; wherefore behold, all yea, I was left alone....", Joseph Smith's evil twin sis
[ Parent ]

Settlement Shmettlements (none / 0) (#438)
by eliwap on Sun Oct 13, 2002 at 07:03:50 PM EST

I'm getting real sick and tired of hearing that the settlements are the cause of all evil. While your point is a valid one -- up to a point. Must one remind you again that the settlements were up for dismanteling on signing of a final status agreement. The settlements are a side show that is distracting from the real issue. The round and round and round we go again violence is the real and only issue that is root cause of the suffering of the general Palestinian and Israeli populations.

The strength of military might has nothing to do with it. Automatically making the assumption that might is wrong is self defeating and morally, ethically and legally bankrupt. If some one out of the blue started attacking you or your family you would use every means at your disposal to defend yourself and your family regardless of the consequences to the one that you attacked. Even if you killed that individual. You would feel bad, maybe horribly guilty, but you would move on, knowing that you did the right thing, protecting your family. Unless, of course, you have a martyr complex. So ... puleeze ... knock of with the hypocrisy.

Yes... anyone would have the right to defend themselves against violent attack. But let me remind you again. Israel did not start it. There is not nor has there ever been an independant Palestinian State. There is legitimacy to their national aspirations, but not at the expense of anyone's blood. They decided to resort to violence when they were disapointed that they were not going to get everything they wanted. Now... they, you and people like you when Israel uses it's might to defend its citizens claim Israeli aggression. Maybe you think that the terrorists who committed the barbarity of 9/11 were poor and defenceless. What about those innocents in Bali just the other day.

These terrorists are not freedom fighters, there is nothing noble about them. They are criminals, cowards, hiding in their bomb houses among average people, planning the destruction of innocent people. But, unlike crack houses in the US, there is not nor has there ever been any police force to arrest these terrorists.

The strength of military might has nothing to do with anything. Automatically making the assumption that might is wrong is self defeating and morally, ethically and legally bankrupt. If someone out of the blue started attacking you or your family you would use every means at your disposal to defend yourself and your family regardless of the consequences to the one against whom you retaliated; even if you killed that individual. You would feel bad, maybe horribly guilty, but you would move on, knowing that you did the right thing protecting your family -- unless, of course, you have a martyr complex. So ... puleeze ... enough of the hypocrisy.

"Understanding is the basis of communications. Enlarge your mind to multiple points of view. The world is infinitely larger than your huge ego. -- Hey I said that :)"
[ Parent ]

Israel certainly is a democracy (none / 0) (#413)
by graz on Tue Oct 01, 2002 at 01:18:47 PM EST

Israel is a democracy and counts many Arabs and Muslims among it's citizens. The CIA Fact Book (hey, they're good for something) lists the non-Jewish (mostly Arab) population as 19.9% and the Muslim population as 14.6%. Those citizens get to vote and are represented in the Knesset by Arabs. They are also protected by Israels courts and the rule of law -- two things the Palestinian Authority is sadly lacking.

Residents of the West Bank and Gaza are in a civic limbo. Until Arafat returned they were under nominal Israeli control -- they voted for their local leaders, they had laws they could count on and an independant juduciary. Under Arafat they've lost all those. Palestinians lack of voting is Arafat's issue, not Israels.

Can you imagine a Jew as a citizen in any Palestinian State? Can you imagine a democratic Palestinian State?

[ Parent ]

There *are* other divestiture movements! (4.75 / 4) (#378)
by shinshin on Sun Sep 29, 2002 at 09:31:58 PM EST

Dershowitz thinks that by simply claiming that there are not divestiture movements for Turkey, China, and Sri Lanka, people will take it at face value, and thus follow his conclusions that the people who are calling for Israeli divestment are raging Jew-haters. The fact that the poster of this article would have not even have questioned this premise enough to do 5 minutes of research to discover otherwise is a tribute to the hype that statements like Dershowitz's can generate.

There are divestiture movements for China, Turkey, and Sri Lanka. Many, many such movements. The majority of the people that signed the academic petition for Israeli divestiture are also active in these movements, and have signed similiar petitions. This can be researched and proven quite simply. Dershowitz knows this full well, but tried to obfuscate the issue in order to advance his agenda. Summers is just a stooge who will say anything to avoid getting in trouble.

In reaction to people who say "why, then, haven't I heard of these other divestiture petitions", I would ask: how did you hear about the Israeli divestiture petition? Was it from the people who signed the petition itself, or from people crying "Jew Haters!"?

The fact that critics of the Israel divestment petition never actually address the contents of the petition, but instead resort to name-calling, says a lot about these critics. Read the petition and decide for yourself.

____
We believe he has, in fact, reconstituted nuclear weapons --Dick Cheney, Meet the Press, March 16, 2003
Excellent point (none / 0) (#408)
by lugumbashi on Tue Oct 01, 2002 at 08:20:29 AM EST

I hadn't heard of this petition before it was raised here on Kuro5hin.

About Larry Summers, for me he is forever associated with his World Bank memo that said underdeveloped countries are "underpolluted" and that Africa should market itself as a toxic waste dump. He claimed that it was a joke and a mistake but to me it clearly shows his morals, before he learned to be discreet.
-"Guinness thaw tool in jew me dinner ouzel?"
[ Parent ]

To the question: Why the Israeli focus mainly? (4.00 / 1) (#385)
by bolix on Mon Sep 30, 2002 at 10:42:59 AM EST

Israeli conflicts are high profile media events. Morbid statistics (bodycount) indicate the conflict is disproportionately skewed to the "US" armed and trained forces. Students are liberally biased. Students are prone to underdog sympathies. Students like attention. The media is lazy. 1+1=2

Anti-semitism , Insanity, and Arab Billions (3.60 / 5) (#392)
by OldCoder on Mon Sep 30, 2002 at 08:44:04 PM EST

All the Israelis have asked of the Palestinians is for the Palestinians to recognize the UN Partition of the area into Israel and Jordan. If the Palestinians would have just recognized Israel and signed a peace treaty there wouldn't have been a conflict.

The 54 years of Arab/Palestinian warfare against Israel has made Israel afraid of a Palestinian State in the belly of Israel proper.

Muslim law (Sharia) decrees that Jew and Christians are second class citizens with restricted rights and increased taxes. Do you wonder that the Israelis won't accept this? For 40 years the Arabs/Palestinians have taken the position that the Jews in Israel must either leave or live under Sharia, and that the Jewish State must be replaced with a Muslim one.

Yes, the Palestinians talk about a secular democratic state, but that means a state rigged to have a Muslim majority, which will establish a Muslim Sharia regime.

Starting in the 90's, the Palestinians have been talking about recognizing Israel. The Israelis simply don't know whether to believe them. Especially since the Palestinians simply broke off negotiations to start another intifada.

Remember, the Israelis elected Barak to make peace, the Palestinians then started an uprising which "elected" Ariel Sharon. The Palestinians want war more than they want a Palestinian State.

If the Israelis acted like any other nation, they would have counter-attacked and destroyed the Palestinian entity with full military force. What we are seeing is neither apartheid nor racism, it is a very muted self defence.

There is a reason that the Jordanian government doesnt' trust the PA or the PLO, and that is the warlike nature of the Palestinian leadership.

Do you think that the issue would have dragged on for so long if the people moving into Palestine were Muslims, or converted to Islam upon arrival? The issue is the intolerance of the Arabs.

The reason for the intolerance of Israel is only partially racism and anti-semitism, it is insanity.

Virtually all countries have been established by brute force, the exception is those countries established by the UN, such as Israel and Jordan. If that is not legitimate, then what is?

There is no way, shape, manner or form in which the Israeli behavior is even slightly similar to apartheid. The treatment of Muslim Arab Israelis is exemplary and in no way mimics the oppression of the Black Africans under Apartheid.

The Occupation of the West Bank and Gaza started and is maintained ONLY as a response to unremitted hostility, violence, murder and general warfare from the Arab side. If the Arabs hadn't insisted on trying to annihilate the Jews the Occupation would not exist. The Israeli conditions for the end of the Occupation are simple and extemely modest: An end to warfare and the recognition of Israel. Could they possibly demand less?

--
By reading this signature, you have agreed.
Copyright © 2004 OldCoder

Hysterical Devotion (none / 0) (#396)
by mami on Mon Sep 30, 2002 at 10:53:16 PM EST

You offer a pretty good overall analysis here. Thanks.

The issue is the intolerance of the Arabs

May be a lot of hysterical devotion to any "chosen" leader, they happen to have, plays a role as well.

I think they "learn" their devotion and an almost hysterical desire to martyr themselves for the leader "du temps" very early on. The way they demonstrate their willingness to fight, reflects a lot of signs of brute force brainwashing methods on Palestinian/Arab little kids. The brainwashing is done with a lot of true love (no sarcasm here) from the elderlies to the youngsters.

The effects are pretty much unbeatable, very hard to overcome. That kind of socialization (as eliwap would say) sticks and follows you like your shadow. Add to this the humiliation of lifelong residency in "refugee camps" and you can easily imagine and understand why a Palestinian young man (or woman) end up in fights that seem to be insane.

[ Parent ]

I am sorry for the grammar mistakes (none / 0) (#397)
by mami on Mon Sep 30, 2002 at 10:56:08 PM EST

should read... why a Palestinian young man ends up in fights...

[ Parent ]
I can see the hysteria, but where's the analysis? (none / 0) (#409)
by opilio on Tue Oct 01, 2002 at 09:41:10 AM EST

You are German, too, aren't you? This Telepolis article might interest you.

I am sad I have to disagree with you: OldCoder's comment doesn't contain any analysis at all, it would be more appropriate to say that it is adding insult to injury, really. "Hysterical devotion" would be a good description, too. It comes down to "it's all *their* fault!" and "our guys never did anything wrong!", but repeating nonsense doesn't make it any more true. Let me pick just a few goodies.

All the Israelis have asked of the Palestinians is for the Palestinians to recognize the UN Partition of the area into Israel and Jordan

That might have been true in 1948. Not that today's Israelis would likely wish for the borders proposed by the UN back then. Today, Israel controls 100% of "the area" and the Palestinians have zero. And then, it's "the" and "the" all the time. So, my proposal for a rewording of that sentence, making it applicable to today's situation: "All the PA has asked of the Israel is for Israel to recognize the partition as outlined in UN resolutions and to retreat from the occupied territories." Of course, that is not going to happen as long as the present Israeli government is in power. Not as long as it relies on the so called settlers. There a about 400,000 of them now, and guess what, that number has increased after Oslo, and after Barak came to power, and after Sharon came to power. I can't say I'm surprised there is no epidemic outbreak of love and trust for Israel among the Palestinians. If anything, I'm surprised there are still Palestinians who believe in the possibility of peace and work for it.

[T]he Palestinians simply broke off negotiations to start another intifada.

Two assumptions in here.
One, that the PLO or the PA ordered or initiated the current intifada, and that there was no spontaneity involved. I don't have anything to say for or against that, it just reminds me of the gaping hole in media coverage of the whole issue, as far as explaining the way Palestinian society works is concerned. The only thing I ever hear is that the Israeli government claims Arafat himself is behind the latest suicide attack, and that he denies it. Given that I trust both sources about as far as I can throw an elephant, I really don't know what to make of it. Seeing Arafat's headquarter in ruins and his administration close to nonexistent, the "evil mastermind" allegation does look a bit silly though.
Secondly, claiming that the Palestinians "simply" broke off the talks cannot even be blamed on ignorance anymore. It may serve to appease Israeli rightwingers' consciences, but it is still a lie. Here is what looks to me as a credible explanation of what went wrong in Camp David, and there's a lot more out there on that. Leftist loonies and pacifist hippies like myself might want to look here. Otherwise, here's a heap of documents for you. Much more importantly, being able to put the blame on the other guy may feel nice, but it doesn't help.Trying to understand the position of the people you have to negotiate with might be a better idea.

If the Israelis acted like any other nation, they would have counter-attacked and destroyed the Palestinian entity with full military force.

Think a moment what that actually means. I'm not even pointing to the unproven allegation that the PA is directing Palestian terrorism ("Bah, they're all the same anyway, dirty bastards!"). Is there any such thing as a PA left except on paper? Whom do you attack then? No need to be picky, those subhuman devils are born terrorists anyway. I can only guess OldCoders agrees with that Israeli army official who thought it would be a good idea to learn from the way the German Wehrmacht handled the Warsaw ghetto uprising.(Can't find the quote right now, there seems to be some problem with the Ha'aretz site.)

Do you think that the issue would have dragged on for so long if the people moving into Palestine were Muslims, or converted to Islam upon arrival?

One only has to look into Jordan and Lebanon to see that the answer is "yes"! And the Palestinians moving in there didn't even declare independence for half of their host country...

Virtually all countries have been established by brute force, the exception is those countries established by the UN, such as Israel and Jordan.

Yes, and it all happened in 1896, right when Theodor Herzl had published his book and everybody was so delighted, and no Irgun or anything was needed to push the British and the UN a bit. And the savage natives were happy with the decisions the wise white men had made for them. Sure.

The treatment of Muslim Arab Israelis is exemplary and in no way mimics the oppression of the Black Africans under Apartheid.

I beg to differ. As far as the Palestinians in the occupied territories are concerned, Desmond Tutu, who should know better than most of us, has this to say.

I could go on and on, but I won't. There's a reason I inserted my comment here and not directly under OldCoder's pamphlet. He splendidly illustrates a point you made in a previous post (btw, danke für die Blumen):

That's the only reason why people LOVE to identify anything as racist, because it saves you the pain to analyze the real problem of a dispute between quarreling parties.

(OldCoder says - in bold - the problem is the intolerance of the Arabs, and he gets there using an infuriatingly stupid and inhumane argument. See above.)

Now, as painful as it is, the idiots will never die out, including racists (or whatever you call them - I still haven't found a better word). What really vexes me, are people like eliwag or Paul Spiegel, who manage to "reconcile" their apparently sincere beautiful humanist principles with outright racism when adressing concrete issues, and who do so by willfully ignoring the facts that would shatter their cherished beliefs (and I do stop to wonder where my own blind spots are). Most prominently, people still argue that it is the current Israeli government's (i.e. implicite General Ariel "Bulldozer" Sharon's) goal to put an end to terror and achieve a fair peace settlement. Why, anybody with a brain between his ears must realize that this is not true! (And of course, wondering whether the end really justifies the means is for loosers, right?) Upholding one's delusions for emotional comfort is one thing, doing this and thereby condoning or actually supporting crimes against humanity is a different matter.

---
Und die Halme schrein, wenn du den Rasen mähst. -- Element of Crime, Mach das Licht aus, wenn du gehst
[ Parent ]

It's not my role to comment on this, (none / 0) (#418)
by mami on Tue Oct 01, 2002 at 10:57:03 PM EST

because you use my comment to OldCoder's analysis as a shield to not responding directly to him.

My comment to his analysis was meant to be an invitation to continue the discussion to comments of leftist loonies and pacifist hippies like you :-), which I anticipated of coming in.

I have read your comments and find that your accusations are like typical hippy racist bashing, you come from the loony, pacifist, liberal left and accuse him of having a love affair with the right-wing Wehrmacht's methods. Bravo.

I don't see why your own accusations wouldn't demonstrate the exact same behavior you accuse him of. What I find especially annoying in those kind of remarks is, that you don't know with whom you are talking. Chances are, in talking to Americans that are a bit old, (OldCoder seems to be old, don't you think?) that those, who you accuse of having a love affair with Wehrmacht methods, might just have saved your parents or grandparents from more of the "blessings" of the Wehrmacht treatment.

I don't get it. Why by now the Germans still don't get it in their thick skull that it doesn't make sense to accuse the people who truely sacrificed their lives to fight the German Wehrmacht of loving the Wehrmacht's methods of oppression of the Jews in the Ghettos, which of course was alos more the work of the SS.

I mean, if you are lax and pull the "Nazi" or the "Hitler" card to accuse anybody who is not so obviously, nilly-willy, all over the board a liberal at first glance, of being a racist, you don't need to be amazed that Americans get p**ssed.

What do you say to Colin Powell? Is he a racist too and in love with "Wehrmacht methods" just because he has the spine to analyse a problem heads on. Get real.

I respectfully deny to take sides of which side has done in the past what kind of mistakes, be it the Israeli or the Palestinians.

But I agree fully with Israel's right of self-defense against terror attacks within its own borders. I also support OldCoder's evaluation in that regard.

That does not mean that I am uncapable of seeing a self-defense doctrine being abused when it gets abused.

I wouldn't in the world make a fixed judgement about which measures of self-defense are adaequate and which are not. I believe the situation changes almost daily and I change my judgements about it almost daily as well.

I don't think that the fate of the Palestinians can be compared to oppression in South Africa under Apartheid and think that OldCoder's remarks in that regards are very true and it's even a shame that people make that comparison.

Desmond Tutu is a nice man and I don't deny him the respect for his role he obviously holds, but honestly my true respect is somewhat limited. I don't know why you automatically believe that he should know better than most of us.

I would rather listen to what Mandela has to say. Mandela has no need to "make speeches" for the sake of making speeches like Desmond Tutu has to.

I know Shibley Telhami from comments he made on TV and think he is very accurate and balanced in what he says. His article you linked to is too long for me to comment on and read through right now. But I can say I was impressed with his analysis before.

I don't see at all what you have against the remarks by Paul Spiegel. I support them carte blanche. The only thing I could say is that he believes that the war against terror can be won with military interventions and with weapons. May be it can, but I wouldn't be that hopeful. On the other hand it is quite clear that nobody has a better solution to fight terrorism. So, what do you have against Spiegel's remarks? I start to doubt your balance and suspect some unfounded bias.

Basically, I feel you have used me to avoid, as you so aptly seem to recognize in others, to think through the real problems. Instead you rather accuse OldCoder and others of being racists, Nazis and bulldozers. Here we go. May be you start a dialogue and start to change your own love affair with "playing the race and Nazi card" first. It's always good to start a change with yourself, that should always work. :-)

[ Parent ]

sermon (none / 0) (#424)
by opilio on Wed Oct 02, 2002 at 12:31:30 PM EST

It's not my role to comment on this, because you use my comment to OldCoder's analysis as a shield to not responding directly to him.

When beginning to write my post, I originally wanted to address your remarks on "hysterical devotion" and that sentence I quoted, just throwing in a few sentences about that "pretty good overall analysis", but then I got carried away and the "few sentences" became quite a sermon. Maybe I had better splitted it up and posted the major part of it as a reply to OldCoder. My bad. OTOH, if you wanted to "invit[e] to continue the discussion", maybe my mistake was not so bad after all.

and accuse him of having a love affair with the right-wing Wehrmacht's methods.

I apologize again. I should learn to avoid buzzwords, it ruined my point. What infuriated me about OldCoder's statement, was the obvious refusal to think it to the end. I guess you know the pattern: People demand "decisive measures" by the government, the police, whatever, to get rid of a problem, or more appropriately to get it out of their sight. Junkies out of our neighborhood, illegal immigrants out, crack down on terrorism - we don't care what happens to those addicts, human right abuse in immigrants' home countries - not our business, Afghanistan - where's that, again? Leave the details and the responsibility to the experts. "Destroying the Palestinian entity with full military force"? That might sound convincing to Israelis who simply want the terror to stop, so that they can lead a normal live again. I can certainly understand that on an emotional level, and I can see the appeal Sharon's promise of bringing security by a hard line approach had to many Israeli voters. However, that doesn't dispense voters in a democratic country from thinking a bit about what the slogans catered to them really mean. What does "destroying the Palestinian entity with full military force" mean? Fighting the mighty Palestinian tanks and bombers? Or the messy situation we see now? If one doesn't want the present limbo to last forever, there are only two ways out of that: Either the Israeli settlers and Israeli army move out of the occupied territories and the Palestinians get their state at last, or the Palestinians are expelled. No doubt Sharon would prefer the second "solution", if he had his way. No doubt either that many people who voted for him don't care a bit about the occupied territories and don't advocate expulsion, but that doesn't mean they don't share any responsibility for their representatives' actions. It's a democracy, after all.

I don't see why your own accusations wouldn't demonstrate the exact same behavior you accuse him of.

In addressing OldCoder's stance, which sums up as "it is all the Arabs' fault", I apparently didn't make it clear enough that I reject the opposite "it is all the Israelis' fault" just as vigourously. In my mind, that goes without saying for a leftist loonie (in other words, for someone who takes human rights seriously), but I should have clarified it anyhow. So, that's the difference.

My mentioning of that infamous Wehrmacht quote might have been a mistake, the real scandal is that that IDF official made it. No, the real scandal are the attitude it reveals and the willingness of some people to ignore this and to go on phantasizing about "very muted self defence".
I have no idea about how old or of which nationality OldCoder is. Chances are, he might be younger than 75, imagine! I am happy and grateful to the veterans, that I don't have to live in a nazi state. It is a horrible idea. Still, I don't get it how that supposedly means I have to look the other way when somebody spreads hate speech and denies crimes against humanity in a present conflict.

I respectfully deny to take sides of which side has done in the past what kind of mistakes, be it the Israeli or the Palestinians.

I take note that it's just politeness when you call a piece of furious Arab-bashing propaganda "a pretty good overall analysis", and that you don't really mean it. Fine.

But I agree fully with Israel's right of self-defense against terror attacks within its own borders.

So do I.

I also support OldCoder's evaluation in that regard.

Where is that evaluation, please? I just don't see it. He doesn't even mention terror attacks. All he says is that the occupation exists only because the Arabs are all racist, anti-semitic and insane.

In my opinion that qualifies as "sav[ing] you the pain to analyze the real problem of a dispute between quarreling parties", as you yourself put it. And your sentence really hits the decisive point: Both sides have to acknowledge first that they are actually quarelling parties, that have to get to some sort of a settlement, if they want to ever end their quarrels. You might or might not think that OldCoders assessment of who is morally responsible for the present state of affairs is correct. You, it seems, do, I don't. So what? If you really want to achieve a compromise, you will have to deal with the people who are there.

And you could say that I did just the same in my post, and you would be right, how embarassing. I stand corrected. (No irony, I really should have done better.)

I don't know why you automatically believe that he should know better than most of us.

My wild assumption here is that most k5ers aren't black South Africans. That doesn't make bishop Tutu an expert on Middle Eastern affairs, of course, but it does add to his credibility when he says he sees something familiar there.

My default is to be suspicious if somebody tells me all is perfect ("The treatment of Muslim Arab Israelis is exemplary", in OldCoders words, and he doesn't even adress the treatment of Palestinians in the occupied territories, that's why I put the italics into my previous comment), especially if somebody else tells me it isn't. Now, if I want to refer to "somebody else" on an internet forum, I cannot really say "My pal soso told me so, take it or leave it!" and expect to be taken seriously. I'd rather include a source you are likely to ever have heard of.

Saying what I think is wrong about Paul Spiegel's speech would fill another post at least as long as this one already is. I'll have to cut it short, lest I should never finish and post this one and you think I'm cowardly hiding.

I notice I misspelled eliwap. My apologies.

Just a few choice quotes from and remarks on Spiegel's speech:

(...)Israel's so called "cruelties"(...)

His inverted commas, not mine. That speech was held while the Israeli government still was busy making excuses why nobody, particularly not the press and the UNHCR, was allowed to enter the Jenin refugee camp. Human Rights Watch went there later.

On a side note, the rest of that sentence, while seemingly accusing foreign armchair politicians of criticizing Israel unfairly from a safe distance, entirely omits the fact, as does the entire speech, that there are Israelis who are threatened by terror, and who still stand up against Sharon, because they understand that his policies are not only bad for the Palestinians, but damaging Israel as well. If Spiegel called me an armchair politician, he would be right, obviously; generously including the Israeli peace activists in this accusation is nothing I find acceptable.

Here in the west we unfortunately have to listen to strange justifications of terror. They then declare that it was Israel's own fault, that terror was a consequence of the occupation, the poverty, the suppression.

Now this is great. You notice how Spiegel silently equates two things that don't have anything to do with each other, don't you? If you tell someone that something bad happening to him is his own fault, what you really mean is that he deserved it, right? That's what Spiegel suggests people criticizing Israel's government do, note that he also speaks of "justifications", not "explanations". An explanation is saying that "terror was a consequence of the occupation, the poverty, the suppression", and a valid one at that. He is absolutely right that no reason whatsoever can justify murder; if you want to stop terrorism, however, I think it would be a good idea to try and understand why people become terrorists. No justification, just trying to find out.

He later talks about Clinton's Taba peace plan: This plan could have ended the despair of the Palestinian people at once.

Noam Chomsky, calls this plan "a few steps towards a Bantustan-style settlement of the kind that South Africa instituted in the darkest days of Apartheid." But then, he is just another leftist loonie, of course.

Spiegel quotes Golda Meir. That's Golda "a land without a people for a people without a land" "there is no Palestinian people" Meir. She said: "There will only be peace between Palestinians and Israelis when the Palestinians love their children more than they hate us." Am I alone in finding this absolutely revolting? And this was in a speech supposed to support a peaceful settlement in the Middle East, mind you.

And finally, a quote from you again:

[I]t is quite clear that nobody has a better solution [than military interventions and weapons] to fight terrorism.

I guess it is quite clear by now that I absolutely disagree. And I won't even go into why I don't believe the Sharon government actually wants peace, as opposed to the majority of the Israeli people. If you care to find out, read any odd book or article by Uri Avnery on that subject. On the other hand, Hamas or Jihad people might agree with you, provided you replace "terrorism" with "state terrorism" or "cruel occupation" or whatever their usage requires.

---
Und die Halme schrein, wenn du den Rasen mähst. -- Element of Crime, Mach das Licht aus, wenn du gehst
[ Parent ]

What the heck is Chomsky talking about? (none / 0) (#425)
by Adam Tarr on Wed Oct 02, 2002 at 06:58:52 PM EST

He later talks about Clinton's Taba peace plan: This plan could have ended the despair of the Palestinian people at once.

Noam Chomsky, calls this plan "a few steps towards a Bantustan-style settlement of the kind that South Africa instituted in the darkest days of Apartheid." But then, he is just another leftist loonie, of course.

Well, no argument on that. Chomsky is tireless in his casting of the Palestinians as the victims, regardless of what they choose to do.

Really, look at the Taba proposal. As you can see, it gives 95% of the West Bank and Gaza to the Palestinians, plus it gives a chink of land adjacent to overcrowded Gaza that makes up for the 5%. Basically, every Palestinian neighborhood ends up under Palestinian control. Their country gets recognized as independent by Israel, and it is a contiguous territory on the West Bank (not three sections like Chomsky claims). The website I get this from is unambiguously pro-Palestinian, by the way.

The idea that the Palestinian state would be a client state of Israel like the Apartheid states were is pretty absurd. Moreover, the territorial and administrative points of the proposal were basically agreed to by both sides. The only real sticking points were the status of the Temple Mount (a point that, while emotionally important, is comically esoteric for the day-to-day existance of anyone in the region) and the so-called "right of return." Right of return is a pretty silly idea for a two major reasons:

1) At the same time (ca. 1948) that ~700,000 refugees fled Israel, nearly that many Jews fled the West Bank, Gaza, and the rest of the Arab world for Israel. Nobody is asking for "right of return" of Jews to Hebron, or for reparations for those refugees. The difference is that while Israel absorbed its refugees, Jordan and Egypt callously left them without a home so that they would be pawns in negotiations. (In 1967, they became Israel's problem.)

2) The vast majority of the refugees who fled Israel in 1948 are no longer alive, and the houses they lived in no longer exist. The "right of return" is just a historical abstraction that could be used to justify a huge influx of immigrants into Israel. Israel was amenable in 2000 to allowing the actual surviving refugees to return.

(note: I am aware that this last argument could be twisted around to argue against Zionism. The difference is that the original Zionist settlers were not moving into an overcrowded area and pushing others out. The other difference is that the Jews had no home, whereas the Palestinian refugees are being offered a home right where they are now.)

[Golda Meir] said: "There will only be peace between Palestinians and Israelis when the Palestinians love their children more than they hate us." Am I alone in finding this absolutely revolting? And this was in a speech supposed to support a peaceful settlement in the Middle East, mind you.
Uh... could you help me out here? When I read that, I understand Meir to mean that once the Palestinians "love their children more than they hate [the Israelis]", they will stop pushing their children to become suicide bombers and kill Jews along with themselves. I don't see anything revolting about hoping that that stops. I do see something horrible about the glorification of "martyrdom" that happens in Palestine now.

[ Parent ]
Must disagree with a couple of important facts (5.00 / 1) (#430)
by eliwap on Thu Oct 03, 2002 at 04:18:25 AM EST

1) At the same time (ca. 1948) that ~700,000 refugees fled Israel, nearly that many Jews fled the West Bank, Gaza, and the rest of the Arab world for Israel. Nobody is asking for "right of return" of Jews to Hebron, or for reparations for those refugees. The difference is that while Israel absorbed its refugees, Jordan and Egypt callously left them without a home so that they would be pawns in negotiations. (In 1967, they became Israel's problem.)

Here is one of the main problems. And leads to a general confusion. The very real issue of "Settlements" While it is true Israeli negotiation does not lay claim to Hebron and indeed offers the evacuation of the vast majority of settlements, excluding a relatively small area but with a relatively large population. This is why the compensation of land in Gaza was offerred. There are a great many in the Settlement movement and indeed the many in the Israeli right wing that will not reliquish one inch of what is "Greater Israel." These people do have a political voice and I expect that when the time comes to evacuate these settlements there will be a significant degree of civil disobediance. This was the case when Israel evacuated the settlements in Sinai when the peace treaty with Egypt was implemented. There is no reason to think that things would be different in this case either. Perhaps even worse, because Sinai was never part of the Historical Jewish homeland. The West Bank and Gaze has been. Simalarly, on the Palestinian side, there continues to be many with the desire to have the whole of what has been called Palestine. This over romanticised idealism has in no small way contributed to the continuation of the Tragedy that befalls both people. But again, to clarify, there is no "Right of Return" to those territories as part of the Israeli negotiating position.

2) The vast majority of the refugees who fled Israel in 1948 are no longer alive, and the houses they lived in no longer exist. The "right of return" is just a historical abstraction that could be used to justify a huge influx of immigrants into Israel. Israel was amenable in 2000 to allowing the actual surviving refugees to return.

The continued debate as to who left their homes and why to my mind is the main reason that this conflict continues to linger and explode. Both parties continue to refuse to take, in large part, responsibility for their actions and to live up to the consquences of those actions.

Simply put, some Palestinians left their homes when the Invading Arab armies invaded the newly formed State of Israel on the promise that they would push the Jews into the sea. Others were forced out by the Israeli Army. In my opinion, those that left of their own volition should accept the ramifications of their actions. Those that were forced out by the IDF should receive some sort of compensation. Of course monetary compensation can not really compensate for a beloved home. But, the problem with the "Right of Return" to Israel proper is that it would in a very real way alter the demographics to the detriment of Israel as a Jewish homeland.

Israel is not amenable to accepting all the surviving refugees, but is willing to make certain exceptions regarding family reunification.

The situation of Palestinian refugees in Arab countries is trully abismal. The vast majority squaller away in poverty and hoplessness. They are not offered citizenship. They are not allowed to work. They are in many cases, denied education. This is breeding ground for religious inspired terrorism where anyone that claims to be the messenger of G-ds word can provide hope "if only..." And unfotunately, from my understanding, peace between Israel and the Palestinians will not alter this situation within those countries. The West has graciously offerred to take in some. But, the vast majority, in order to have their dignity returned will have to move into the newly established Palestinian State.

"Understanding is the basis of communications. Enlarge your mind to multiple points of view. The world is infinitely larger than your huge ego. -- Hey I said that :)"
[ Parent ]

Honey, calm down a bit, will you? (none / 0) (#426)
by mami on Wed Oct 02, 2002 at 10:16:57 PM EST

Wow! I am known to be able to get quite emotional and carried away with words at times, but you seem to beat me quite a bit in that regard. Are you a woman by any chance? (just supporting my favorite stereotypes :-))Usually that's what people say, if someone is a bit too wordy and emotional. Or is it because we are Germans and can't just make it any shorter? :-) (May be we should get an Italian to comment ... that would make us look "really straight forward to the point".)

Ok, I have to respond another time, it's too much to read through. And again you try to draw me into a discussion which should take place between you and OldCoder and not between me and you. Just one little remark to one sentence that sticked with me glancing through your comment.

and accuse him of having a love affair with the right-wing Wehrmacht's methods.

I apologize again. I should learn to avoid buzzwords, it ruined my point

Yes, and it ruined your capability to support Americans, who don't think that differently than you do, for the same reasons I mentioned before.

You make a mistake to believe only the 70 year olds and up in the US feel deeply insulted to be seen as Nazi supporters, the next generation and the grandsons get vexed (as you say it) even more. They don't take that as lax as you might think, just because they are younger.

Of course a German can't understand, why one can't compare a neo-conservative's thinking and propaganda with neo-conservative thinking and propaganda during the Nazi times, if it sounds so similar to our ears.

But the fathers, uncles, brothers of more liberal democrats in the US may support some of your points, but would get up in arms against you for this remark. So, you lost a chance to make some friends. And I think it would help, if Germans finally would get this. It's very easy to understand and the logic is on their side. Their guys fought the Nazis, our guys were the Nazis. Period. Simple as that.

And you have to "understand and take" this, even if the very reasons I mentioned make the US neo-conservatives somewhat "untouchables" and us Germans liberals always the dummies that end up allowing the "the Nazis-likes" to get into power.

You claim to take "human rights really seriously". I wouldn't be amazed if OldCoder would claim the same for himself. How then is it possible that you both come up at opposite ends of how to protect them?

People accuse each other of being Nazis all day long recently. The Palestinians have publicly on US TV accused the Isrealis to be Nazis. The Germans accuse the neo-conservatives of the US of being Nazis, the US accuses Saddam to be worser than worse and more worse than Hitler, I mean, wouldn't it be easier to just tell me who is not a Nazi in these days? Just give me a break. Get some sleep. Tomorrow is a another day.

As you may realize too, OldCoder isn't answering, he doesn't care and lets you screaming all day long. So, as long as you don't find a better tactic to engage him in discussion about your point of views, you either will end up shouting into the forest all by yourself or you are forced to ignore him as much as he ignores you. It looks like you are on the losing end, because he was less emotional and less insulting than you were. (May be not in your ears, but in his ears for sure).



[ Parent ]

You're not racist. You hate everybody. (none / 0) (#419)
by eliwap on Wed Oct 02, 2002 at 05:11:48 AM EST

Look buddy :)

Normally I wouldn't justify your personal attack on me like this with a response but in your case I'll make an exception.

If you believe that one side deserves advantage over the other mearly because of race, then I'm afraid you are the racist. Israel has the right to defend herself against murderers. If you believe that weakness is right and might is wrong, then you are a racist. Justice is for everybody, strong and weak alike. Murder is a crime.

Unfortunately whether you are blind to it or not -- without any documentation, proofs, or analysis Arafat has at the very least been complicit; even if you believe that he has no infrastructure to combat terror currently. There is a reason for this. He did nothing in the past to arrest those that would plan and execute murder of Israeli Citizens except issue declarations. Words mean nothing unless accompanied by action. He did nothing.

So, it would seem, you advocate the continued murder of Israeli citizens whether they be Arab, Jew, Christian or Muslim, because you seem fit to judge self defence as wanton act of oppression.

Hey you're not racist. You hate everybody.

"Understanding is the basis of communications. Enlarge your mind to multiple points of view. The world is infinitely larger than your huge ego. -- Hey I said that :)"
[ Parent ]

Re: Anti-semitism , Insanity, and Arab Billions (5.00 / 1) (#422)
by thedude314 on Wed Oct 02, 2002 at 10:01:07 AM EST

First off, Islamic Sharia does NOT decree that Jews, Christians or any other religious group be treated as second class citizens. This is just completely wrong.
In fact, Muslim men are allowed to marry Jewish and Christian women. And they certainly aren't allowed to treat their wives as second class citizens (even though, unfortunately, that may be the practice in certain countries...).
Islam dictates that all other religious groups must be allowed to practice their religions freely. In fact, the wailing wall, Judaism's most important religious site, was restored specifically for the Jewish population of Jerusalem by the Muslims.
And you talk about Palestinians not holding up to agreements? What about the Oslo accord that was agreed to by Israel, but completely ignored and not implemented. And what about the long list (much longer than that of Iraq's) of UN Resolutions that Israel is in violation of?
And about the occupation. Israel demands an end to violence and terrorism? Well the intifadah is a phenomenon of the 90's. But the occupation has been going on for decades. There currently is an arab majority if you include all of israel and the occupied territories, but that is changing since Israel automatically grants citizenship to anyone that moves there from other parts of the world and claims to be jewish. While the arabs that live in Israel and the Palestinians that want to return to their land are denied full or even partial citizenship.
And then there's suicide bombers. Yes, they are completely wrong, and are murderers for killing innocent people. But the number of civilians they murder pales in comparison to the number of arab civilians (be they palestinian or even israeli arabs) by the IDF.
There really is only one thing I can agree with you on. The situation of palestinians isn't that similar to that of the ANC and blacks in South Africa under apartheid. While both governments had support for their oppression from the US. The ANC never had to deal with helicopter gunships firing missiles into residential areas. Palestinians do.

[ Parent ]
Agreements (none / 0) (#423)
by eliwap on Wed Oct 02, 2002 at 10:52:54 AM EST

What about arresting and extroditing terrorists. What about refraining from incitement. What about and what about and what about.

Bottom line. Israel was slowly withdrawing from the Territories as the negotiations progressed. The Palestinians under the leadership of Arafat began a campaign of violence over 2 years ago that has not let up. The IDF did not really move back into the towns and cities until very recently. Albeit there has been a severe blockade because of the effort to halt the terrorism at the checkpoints and that the PA would live up to the commitments they signed onto regarding terrorism and security. When that didn't happen the IDF moved back in. As you can see, there has been an extremely significant drop in the mortality rate of civilians. Casualty figures in my opion are still exceedingly high but the mortality rate has certainly droped.

Moral of the story -- hit somebody, expect to get hit back. Want to live in peace? Live in peace.

"Understanding is the basis of communications. Enlarge your mind to multiple points of view. The world is infinitely larger than your huge ego. -- Hey I said that :)"
[ Parent ]

The ANC never slaughtered children (none / 0) (#432)
by Hapa on Mon Oct 07, 2002 at 11:26:41 AM EST

on their way to school, nor did they recruit gullible and easily-influenced youth to destroy themselves and civilians. You cannot legitimize suicide bombers.
Let's try, for the hell of it:
If the suicide bombers are attacking the oppressors of Palestine, take a look at the victims: they have all been civilians, with the vast majority being schoolchildren and senior citizens. Can one honestly believe that these are the true enemies of the people of Palestine?
The true enemy of Palestine is the leadership of Yasser Arafat, and the symbiotic relationship between the present P.A and the terrorist organisations Hamas and Hezbollah... without a legitimate government, the Palestinian people are a lost cause diplomatically and will tragically not garner any support from the western Governments.

[ Parent ]
I believe it can be summed up (none / 0) (#431)
by Hapa on Mon Oct 07, 2002 at 11:21:02 AM EST

in a classic quote from a pro-Israeli protest that I was relayed:
"If the Israelis put down their weapons tomorrow, every Jewish man, woman and child in the state would be slaughtered. If the Palestinians put down their weapons and ceased the suicide bombings, they would have independence and peace."

[ Parent ]
The reason is that we bank roll Israel! (1.00 / 1) (#394)
by crunchycookies on Mon Sep 30, 2002 at 10:27:43 PM EST

Israel is different than all other countries, it is the one country that we bankroll. Israel oppresses the Palestinians using our weapons and money. That gives us the right to demand that they stop. The divestment movement is a small part in the struggle to stop Israeli oppression. If Israel wants peace they should give the Palestinians their rights.



We give money to many countries (none / 0) (#412)
by graz on Tue Oct 01, 2002 at 01:07:00 PM EST

Israel is not the one country that we bankroll. We give money to many countries including Russia, Egypt and the Palestinian Authority just to name a few. (I know technically the PA isn't a country - but they get money -- I'm also not sure how current our financial aid to them is).

Giving them money gives us the right to ask that they stop or withdraw funding. Israeli oppression is a phrase that's often tossed around. Israel only enters the West Bank and Gaza strip to defennd themselves against terrorists. When the Palestinians stop blowing up civilians they'll find less military in their homes.

I much prefer to support a democracy with a free press and the rule of law over a dictatorship or "thug-ocracy".

[ Parent ]

Live Jews are unsuitable for victim fetishists (5.00 / 1) (#416)
by eodell on Tue Oct 01, 2002 at 06:13:13 PM EST

I suspect that, when it gets down to it, the irrational, vitriolic, and basically inconsistent hatred of Israel demonstrated in campus politics exists because the student population contains the greatest concentration of victim fetishists -- for obvious reasons of age and maturity -- and the present-day self-defense of Israeli Jews against Palestinian serial killers diminishes the utility of dead Holocaust victims as the touchstone of all victim politics.

To put it another way, a dead Jew burned in the ovens of Auschwitz or machine-gunned and tangled in barbed wire is a hell of a lot more useful to leftist victim fetishists than a live Jew who shoots back when some fascist thug tries to murder his kids on the way to school.

Mind you, I don't think there's much anti-Semitism as such operating here. Anti-Semitism would be positively healthy by comparison. Instead, the active principle is a vicarious identification with murder victims bordering on necrophilia.

Reactionary Post-Modernism (5.00 / 1) (#420)
by aitrus on Wed Oct 02, 2002 at 06:12:39 AM EST

It's a racist reaction from people on the fringe of post modernism.  They reject all that is western and "white", because it's represents much of what's succesfull and, thus, capitalist.

When a palestinian blows himself up in an Israeli cafe, they can't accept that it's a cultural defect in Islam.  It naturally had to be a result of something Israel did and thus deserved.  It's a morally bankrupt belief.  Now, note that I'm saying nothing of Post Modernism itself.  Merely the people who take it too far.

Honestly, the divesting movement is stupid and serves no purpose.  Economically, it hurts the universities more than Israel, and logically it just doesn't make sense.

Missing the point (2.00 / 1) (#428)
by ariux on Wed Oct 02, 2002 at 11:57:15 PM EST

You grow up getting shot at and racially villified by your neighbors, and you'll be under no illusions about their racism. Small wonder that, when you see some giving a speech to a roomful of nodding westerners, it takes some extra depth of character to work out that the westerners are just well-meaning dupes. (Note, by the way, that the pronoun "you" in this paragraph fits either party.)

Palestinian and Israeli travelers to the US both tend to be genuinely surprised by the way ethnic groups get along here, relatively speaking. That idea just wasn't part of their mental scenery before.

Anti-semitism, or something worse? | 439 comments (431 topical, 8 editorial, 0 hidden)
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