The Ambush of Helen Thomas
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Aeon J. Skoble - 6/10/2010
Why not? What in the linked columns is false? (Not being querulous; I'm really asking.)
Jesse Walker - 6/9/2010
Oops -- I meant to link to the more recent edition of the book.
Jesse Walker - 6/9/2010
I wouldn't consider FLAME a reliable source on the Middle East, or indeed on anything. A better starting place for discussion would be this.
Aeon J. Skoble - 6/9/2010
"What I favor is a Palestine where Jews, Muslims, and Christians of any ethnicity may live peacefully side-by-side."
You're not going to get anything like that as long as all of Israel's neighbors are committed to killing all Jews and eradicating Israel.
"And a Palestine where those dispossessed of land since the foundation of the state of Israel receive just restitution and those deprived of their civil rights have those rights restored."
When all the Arab armies attacked Israel at its birth, they told those Arabs we now know as "Palestinians" to leave, promising them the spoils of victory after Israel was eliminated. The ones who remained never lost any land or civil rights. The ones who obeyed and were later made refugees by Jordan and Syria have some kind of complaint, but not against Israel.
Mark Brady - 6/9/2010
Steve, three further thoughts.
1. That the Hamas and Hezbollah authorities may in some senses be worse than Israel is neither here nor there.
2. I didn't say that Israel was "the worst of the lot" or that I endorsed what Helen Thomas said, whatever that may mean or be interpreted to mean.
3. We might both empathize with the remarks of Brendan O'Neill in his recent essay, "What the Israel-bashers learned from Bush".
Steven Horwitz - 6/9/2010
I have my charitable and uncharitable interpretations of your argument as well, and I'll stick to the charitable one just as you are.
I have no illusions that Israel's hands are clean. But whatever its sins and crimes, those of its neighbors are, in my view, greater. And I suppose we're just going to have to agree to disagree on that.
All I'm saying is that it's not a matter of fact that a libertarian perspective requires one to see the Israelis as the worst of the lot. Like some other issues, I think libertarians can disagree in good faith on this, but not if it involves endorsing what Helen Thomas said. That I cannot see the case for, unlike some of the strong criticisms of Israel's actions.
Mark Brady - 6/9/2010
A charitable interpretation is that you didn't read Gary Leupp's article very carefully. A less charitable interpretation is that you did but you don't care anyway. I'll stick to the charitable interpretation.
Steve, three thoughts.
1. Helen Thomas did not say that she "wants to send people forcibly packing back to [other] countries."
2. No, I wouldn't consider "walk[ing] up to a group of African-Americans in NYC and suggest[ing] they might consider moving to Mississippi and Alabama" any more than I would consider walk[ing] up to a group of Israelis within the internationally recognized borders of Israel (which doesn't include the Occupied Territories) and suggest they might consider moving to Germany, Poland or the United States. What I favor is a Palestine where Jews, Muslims, and Christians of any ethnicity may live peacefully side-by-side. And a Palestine where those dispossessed of land since the foundation of the state of Israel receive just restitution and those deprived of their civil rights have those rights restored.
3. I find it appalling that all too many libertarians are either oblivious to or, worse yet, are aware of but choose to condone the gross infractions of rights that the state of Israel has perpetrated since 1948.
Steven Horwitz - 6/8/2010
No sympathy from this libertarian for a woman who wants to send people forcibly packing back to countries that have a long history of trying to kill them.
Question for you Mark: would you walk up to a group of African-Americans in NYC and suggest they might consider moving to Mississippi and Alabama?
I find the implicit endorsement of Thomas's remarks to be rather disgusting myself. Perhaps more than disgusting than the remarks themselves as at least Thomas was honest and direct about things.
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