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Aug 12, 2006 1:25 am


Dead Tired



I called my friend Moe in Beirut the other night. He sounded tired, dead tired. Not the tired I'm used to him being, which is when it's 4am and we're just finishing a session in his recording studio in northern Beirut and going out for a late night chicken and hummus. Instead, it's the tired of someone who's been up all night wondering if his apartment building will still be standing in the morning; whether the latest Hezbollah attack will prompt Israel finally to carry out its threat to attack central and northern Beirut (which has largely been spared in the fighting so far because so much of it is owned by European capital and Israel hasn't wanted to piss them off unless it "has to"). Tired of wondering if life as he knew is over for good.


I know the feeling; when I was in Iraq in 2004 I spent my nights sitting in the hall way on the 7th floor of my hotel--the Aghadir, on Salahhhadun Street, which was a huge, ugly, but importantly, very solidly built cement hotel. I and my companions figured that if any RPGs came through the windows we'd at least be safer in the halls because the walls were at least two feet thick. And all the cheap yet delicious local Arak--at 50 cents a bottle, without a doubt the best alcohol bargain in the world helped the evenings pass by a bit more easily, despite the concussive sounds of shells periodically going off nearby, the rumble of American convoys all night long down the street, and relentless sounds of gunfire.

When insurgents blew up the hotel around the block, shattering most of the windows in the front of my hotel with it, I decided to move in with Iraqi friends in a poor/working class neighborhood a half mile away. In their tiny apartment, however, I felt even more claustrophobic, and my heart raced unimaginably fast with each explosion, rumble of tanks or burst of nearby gunfire (all of which sound much worse in a 100 year old small tenement building than they do in a twenty year old large hotel). I would not wish this experience--so mild compared with what people in Lebanon and Israel are going through--on anyone.

Moe, the lead singer of one of Lebanon's premier rock groups, The Kordz (www.thekordz.com) was a seasoned pro at this, however, having grown up in the last war. But he never thought he'd have to relive his youth, blasting heavy metal at night in his headphones to drown out the violence outside just like he did twenty years ago. His dreams of a future in Lebanon are shattered; he's looking for a way out. A gig possibility in Germany, maybe a job in London. Maybe he'll stay, if things quite down soon or if he just can't get out (Israel is slowly suffocating Beirut by bombing all the bridges in and out of the city, leaving its residents no way to leave. Please remember this when they bomb the heart of the city and claim, as Alan Dershowitz has done, that any civilians left must be Hezbollah supporters because they were "warned" to leave).

So who am I to complain. Yes, I have not slept more than five hours a night since at least the second week of the war, but that's by choice, and no one is trying to bomb me out of existence, as is happening to friends and loved ones in Haifa as well as Beirut.

But lack of sleep is not why I'm tired. I'm tired because almost daily I am involved in some sort of interview or debate, in print, cyberspace, radio or television, where I am confronted with streams of lies, half truths, disinformation and propaganda parading around as the truth, which is spewed out with such velocity (and often venom) that it is impossible to begin to respond to most of them. And so the audience can only be left to assume that they are true.

This is nothing new. Several years ago I was called a liar on national radio by the right wing Jewish talk show host Dennis Prager because during a commercial break he couldn't find "proof" through google of a Palestinian anti-Hamas demonstration I said I had witnessed http://www.ocweekly.com/ink/03/28/news-levine.php. From the moment he called me a liar, every caller to his show picked up on that theme and my credibility was gone. Of course, I wasn't lying; I found the proof the old fashioned way, in the newspaper, and sent it to him as he promised to retract his statement and put me on his show again if i could prove that the protest had taken place. Needless to say he did no such thing.

With the latest war things have gotten even worse. Debating David Horowitz on Hannity and Colmes last week, I was called an apologist for terrorists and one of the most dangerous professors in America, and a disgrace, all within the first two minutes (He and Hannity also tried out the "Islamic fascism" line that the President used in his press conference after the arrest of a dozen people in London for planning to blow US-bound airliners). That's okay; I can handle that. What was worse was that most every claim he made about what was happening between Israel and Lebanon was utterly incorrect. But how to correct the record when you're too busy denying that your Osama bin Laden's favorite Jew? (One tries, that's all one can do. And judging by the loads of emails I got, some people saw through the attacks to the lack of substance beneath. Other's were too busy trying out their best Yiddish vocabulary, calling me everything from a "schmuck" to a "putz"--aren't they the same thing?--and of course, a traitor).

A few days later, I debated the head of the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations, Malcolm Hoenlein on KISS FM in NY. The same discourse prevailed: a clash of civilizations, one between good and evil, democracy and freedom versus Islamist terrorism; the usual Bush Administration arguments since the Iraqi invasion (the fact that these justifications jibe so little with reality in Iraq doesn't seem to bother those who now make them vis-a-vis Lebanon). When I attempted to point out, as I've done in previous posts, that things are more complicated than they seem, he would have none of it. It was all a jumble of half-truths, misinformation, distorted arguments and a few key facts. Little things, like Israel

He began by explaining (and repeated several times) that since its withdrawal in 2000 "all Israel wanted was security in its northern border" and did nothing to provoke the July 12 attack and kidnapping by Hezbollah (not true; in fact, Israel has repeatedly violated Lebanese sovereignty since then, as reported regularly in UNIFIL and Security Council reports); and that Hezbollah was in fact the first party to launch a large scale missile attack, during the kidnapping (not true; as the conservative and very pro-Government Jerusalem Post reported the next day, http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1150885976658&;pagename=JPost/JPArticle/ShowFull, Hezbollah fired anti-tank rockets at the patrol it attacked; certainly an immoral activity but in no way the same as launching a huge missile attack into civilian areas of Israel.

These little nuances count for a lot however. And when you have a dozen or two of them twisted this way and that, the resulting distorted picture of reality is easily confused with what actually happening; in so doing it dulls the sense of urgency or outrage that most people would otherwise feel at Israeli actions (of course, we all feel outrage at Hezbollah's actions. That's the easy part).

Hoenlein also argued that Israel always wanted peace, that Jews had the "right" to return to Israel (as if Palestinians didn't have the right to stay in Palestine), had signed fifteen agreements over the year and broke none of them, and was willing to "give up 95% of the West Bank in a peace deal" that once again the recalcitrant Palestinians rejected.

Each one of these statements is demonstrably false. Israel has regularly violated agreements its signed, particularly those related to the Oslo process. I am writing a book about these negotiations, so know something about them, but how does one explain 300 pages worth of evidence and arguments in one sentence? It's impossible, and thus it's extremely difficult to counter such arguments in the media of radio or TV. By claiming that it's true, at the very least people assume it might be true, even though empirically speaking his claim is demonstrably not true. Again, how can I explain, in the midst of so many other false claims, that the idea that Israel was willing to give up 95% of the West Bank is besides the point, since the way it has divided the territory, bisecting it with settlements and bypass roads, strangulating the Palestinian economy, and more, make the seemingly generous offer meaningless on the ground, where it counts. (For a detailed analysis of this dynamic, see Israeli geographer Jeff Halper's description of Israel's ever deepening "matrix of control" over the Occupied Territories, here http://www.mediamonitors.net/halper1.html.

Score two to Mr. Hoenlein. (That fact that the show's host kept asking us to "keep our answers short" didn't make my job any easier, since it takes a lot more words to correct misinformation than it does to throw it out there).

He made other claims too: That Ahmedinejad wants to destroy Israel. Score three, but that's only half the story, since in 2003 and 2006, as Yediot Ahronot, the conservative Israeli paper reported a few days ago, the Supreme Leader of the Revolution, Ayatollah Khameini, Ahmedinejad's superior, publicly agreed to accept a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as part of a larger settlement of outer regional issues (including its nuclear program, which Iran is clearly holding on to, at least in part, for a grand deal to trade its weapons potential for Israel's weapons). So things are a bit more complicated, once again, than the typical portrayal of Iran as a maniacal and irrational regime bent on destroying Israel and dominating the Middle East

Then there was the problem of Israeli Defense Minister Amir Peretz calling for southern Lebanon to be turned into dust. First, if I recall correctly, Hoenlein replied that he didn't really say it; then when I provided date and source (the Israeli paper Haaretz, July 28) for the comment, he claimed it was "taken out of context." As if one can say that southern Lebanon should be ground to dust in some other context. Never mind that his remarks caused an uproar in Israel precisely because the context was quite clear--and on the television sets of hundreds of millions of people around the world. But what's more, according to Hoenlein Israel non only didn't harm Lebanon, it in fact did a world of good for Lebanon during its 18 year occupation begun in 1982. He saw that with his own eyes when he visited the "good fence" which Israel set up in the waning years of the occupation. Israel even flew Lebanese to Haifa for medical treatment! As if that justifies an illegal invasion, occupation and war that killed at least 20,000 Lebanese, not to mention the Sabra and Shattila massacres. How does one counteract someone who's still stuck in an imperial mind set that sounds more like Winston Churchill speaking when he was Colonial Secretary than any honest, respectable person would dare to speak today?

But this is only half the reason I'm tired.

The other reason is that Muslim leaders--from guerrillas to presidents, in Iran, Lebanon, Palestine and elsewhere--have made it almost impossible for anyone to defend Islam and the Muslim world, and so peace and reconciliation with them, from attacks by the likes of Horowtiz and his allies. When Ahmedinejad or the founding documents of Hezbollah and Hamas speak of destroying Israel, no amount of nuance or context will convince people that reality is different from these texts or statements. When school books in Saudi Arabia and elsewhere continue to be rife with anti-Jewish or Western stereotypes, it's impossible to explain why most of them don't hate most of us. When al-Qa'eda crashes planes into American buildings, no one wants to hear that other Muslims have the "right" to defend themselves against occupation, especially when the occupier is our special ally (of course, when Muslims are occupied by our adversaries, like the Soviets or Saddam, then they not only have the right to fight the occupier, we'll help and even do the job of resisting for them). When Hezbollah fires rockets at Israeli civilian centers, everyone forgets that Israel has killed far more civilians than Hezbollah--at least so far. When after every appearance on TV I get sent emails with dozens of links to videos of al-Qa'eda beheadings, texts of jihadi documents, and the like that the sender cites as proof that all Muslims are evil and I am a self-hating, naive moron... well, after a while, it's hard to keep replying with detailed histories, explanations and clarifications.

Even the long dead are resurrected to prove the argument that Muslims are essentially irrational Jew and American haters who can only be pacified by the sword. The most famous example of this is, of course, the Mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin al-Husseini, who was a major Palestinian nationalist leader whom after his exile by the British collaborated with the Nazis. In my debate with Horowitz on Hannity last week, the first sentence out of his mouth--after being prompted by Hannity's intro question that specifically asked whether Ahmedinejad is another Hitler and "Islamo-fascism" the same as Nazism, the proof Horowitz cited for his claim that an implacable hatred permeated the Muslim world was the Grand Mufti, followed by a fallacious claim, discussed by me in an earlier posting, that the Qur'an said that "Allah won't come till all the Jews are killed."

But the greatest harm comes from the violence of groups like Hezbollah or Hamas. It is a political and moral disaster for Palestinians and Lebanese, as we see in the "dust" of Lebanon and the rubble of Gaza. Israel and the US are extremely adept at using every act of violence against them to advance their own policy goals. In Israel's case it is strengthening its control over the biblical heartland of the West Bank, all the while decrying Palestinian terrorism. In America's, it's strengthening its position in Iraq, all the while stating that we'll leave as soon as we're asked to (but the potential for full scale civil war we have generated is so bad that now neither Sunnis nor Shiites feel secure enough to ask us to leave).

I always try to explain to people that the most important thing I've learned as an historian is that History doesn't care who's right or wrong, it only cares who's smart or strong. In this regard, Palestinians have been ill-served by the leaders for decades, if not a century. Hezbollah is being portrayed as having played its hand against Israel fare more smartly than most Palestinian leaders have been able to do--and indeed, seemingly smarter than Israel has played its hand in the latest conflict. Hezbollah has also shown itself to be stronger than Israel or the world had imagined it to be. But it has done both at a terrible cost to its people that belies any sense of accomplishment it leaders can take at having stood up to the mighty IDF. Indeed, sometimes one can be too smart and strong for one's own good. Israel is now learning that lesson in spades. Let's hope it doesn't take Hezbollah fifty years to do the same.

The real question is, When is everyone going to wake up and realize that violence breeds more violence, that twisting the truth and history to support immoral policies, whether your the victim or the victimizer, makes you less strong and secure, not more. Perhaps people could think more clearly if they just got a good night's sleep. But when will that happen?




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Jim Seth Brown - 8/21/2006

o and where is all your information coming from. praiseallah.com?


Philip Tuley - 8/21/2006

The religious practices we know as Islam did, in fact, start with Muhammad, however, the belief in Allah, which is the basis of the religion, started long, long before then, according to the Qur'an.

That is where your mistake lies. You do not believe that Muhammad was following the God of Abraham, when clearly he was.

As to your last link, that made about as much sense as going to a pro-Maoist page and trying to find out what President Bush really believes. You go to a Christian propaganda site and think you're getting accuracy?


Jim Seth Brown - 8/21/2006

http://www.islam-qa.com/index.php?ln=eng&;ds=qa&lv=browse&QR=1985&dgn=4

http://www.bible.ca/islam/islam-myths-muhammad-founder-inventor-of-islam.htm

First of all do not call me ignorant. Look at those sites. If you understood anything about Islam you would know that they would tell you that the religion did begin with Mohammed, however they also believe in the teachings of the Jewish Prophets before. But people did not start practicing that until the 7th century.


Philip Tuley - 8/21/2006

hahahahaha you really got me there. You actually think that the religion started with Muhammad?

Go read, your stupidity is astounding. The Qur'an directly addresses the continuation of the lineage. Like I said before, you really are clueless.

At this point you've proven your stupidity. I have repeatedly given you citations, sources, and information, and all you can come up with is the intellectual of a schoolkid standing in the middle of a playground and going "oh yeah???"

You ignorance of the issues is astounding, and sad, given that you have no idea of any of the subjects you're spouting off about.


Jim Seth Brown - 8/21/2006

How can a religion that is nearly entirely based off of Mohammed start thousands of years before he is born. Your ignorance is astounding


Philip Tuley - 8/20/2006

And once more you show your ignorance. Islam traces its roots to Abraham, called Ibrahim in Arabic. He is one of their prophets and, according to tradition, during his sojourn through the area he built the first temple at Mecca, part of which remains in the shrine.

The temple was built to God, which is what the word "Allah" means in Arabic.

Your lack of knowledge about Islam is remarkable, given your strong opinions about something you apparently know nothing about.


Jim Seth Brown - 8/20/2006

Islam wasnt even a thought then. That religion wasnt founded until almost 600 A.D.


Philip Tuley - 8/20/2006

OK, one last time, so that maybe you can catch a clue.

You said, and I quote – “Look 18 points and you are dwelling on the times of exiles. It shows you missed the whole point, and that you failed to confront the other 17 points that might show you why Israel is the way it is.”

I refuted every point, and below you will find both the refutation, and additional information. The only one around here who is ignoring things is you. This is my last response, you have proven so far to be unable to muster a cogent argument, and I grow tired of exchanging posts with someone who cannot, and will not, do the necessary research, and instead just regurgitates “facts” that are proven fallacious.

To top it all off, none of this has anything to do with the discussion, or position, that the original entry by Mark LeVine contained.

ISRAEL AND JERUSALEM FACTS
1. ISRAEL BECAME A STATE IN 1312 B.C, TWO MILLENNIA BEFORE ISLAM;

Wrong. I’ve already documented this for you,
“Wrong. There were a variety of jewish kingdoms and states, starting in
about 1200 BC, the first mention in writing of Israel is in an Egyptian
stele from 1210, and appears to be referring to the tribe, not a location.
The kingdoms and states were intermittent, thanks to things like the
Babylonian captivities, among other interruptions. While, in 1030, Jacob
united the tribes of Israel and declared a kingdom, the kingdom did not
remain unified, splitting in 920 BC into the northern kingdom of Israel and
the southern kingdom of Judah.”

Note that “Israel” as a state did not happen until the sundering of the tribes into the kingdoms of Israel and Judah.

2. ARAB REFUGEES FROM ISRAEL BEGAN CALLING THEMSELVES "PALESTINIANS"
IN 1967, TWO DECADES AFTER (MODERN) ISRAELI STATEHOOD;

Wrong. The term “Palestinian” has been used throughout history, as I mentioned before. The use is not exclusive to Arabs, nor is it exclusive these days, since there are plenty of non-arabic Palestinians.
As I said before “Palestine, as a geographical term, existed by 1194 BC, and anyone living in
the area, or from the area, could be called, and were, "Palestinians."
There were numerous examples of this, but if you are trying to say that the
term was only used after 1967 you would be incorrect, as they were referred
to by the British in the early 1900s as Palestinians. If you are trying to
say that the term "Palestinian" as referring to the refugees took on an
exclusive meaning in '67 to refer to only Muslims, you would also be wrong,
since the term still means "a person from the area of Palestine." There are
quite a number of Palestinian Jews and Christians that would take offense at
such a statement.
As to the issue of a state of Palestine, it was originally called for in the
1919s, and most notably called for in 1920 by the Second Congress of
Muslim-Christian Associations in a letter to the League of Nations.
Palestine, as a state, was never realized at that time, but the idea that it
somehow arose in response to the re-establishment of the Jewish homeland is
a bit of revisionist history. It is true that the 1967 war and the Israel
occupation of the various territories brought the issue back into
prominence, but Palestine as a country had been discussed long before WWII.”


3. AFTER CONQUERING THE LAND IN 1272 B.C., JEWS RULED IT FOR A
THOUSAND YEARS AND MAINTAINED A CONTINUOUS PRESENCE THERE FOR 3,300
YEARS;
Once more, wrong. The Jews never ruled it for a 1000 years, they never had 1000 years of uninterupted presence. When Rome razed Jerusalem they sent the Jews out of the city, and kept them out.
As I said earlier –
“While, in 1030, Jacob
united the tribes of Israel and declared a kingdom, the kingdom did not
remain unified, splitting in 920 BC into the northern kingdom of Israel and
the southern kingdom of Judah. Cyrus the Great (576 - 529 BC) released the
Jews from the Babylonians, after defeating the Babylonians, and permitted
them to return to the region. So, to claim a continuous, uninteruppted
kingdom of Israel would be fallacious. At the time that they were conquered
by the Romans, they had only been in charge for about 300 years. Then, of
course, Jerusalem was razed in 70 AD, and the diaspora began. The state of
Israel was no more, until modern times.”


4. THE ONLY ARAB RULE FOLLOWING CONQUEST IN 633 B.C. LASTED JUST 22
YEARS;
Wrong. As I said earlier – “Oh, dear, you really don't know your history, do you? Jerusalem, with a few
minor episodes, was ruled over by a variety of Islamic states until 1517,
when it became part of the Ottoman empire, where it remained until the end
of WWI, when the entire region was then divided up as protectorates and
colonies of the victorious Allies.”

Of course, you had the laughable idea that the Ottoman empire was somehow not part of Islam, which I’m sure would have amazed them.

5. FOR OVER 3,300 YEARS, JERUSALEM WAS THE JEWISH CAPITAL. IT WAS
NEVER THE CAPITAL OF ANY ARAB OR MUSLIM ENTITY. EVEN UNDER JORDANIAN
RULE, (EAST) JERUSALEM WAS NOT MADE THE CAPITAL, AND NO ARAB LEADER
CAME TO VISIT IT;

And once again wrong. As I said –
“Let's talk a bit more about the history of Jerusalem, shall we? Jerusalem
was first founded, as near as archeological records can place it, in 3000
BC, by the Caananites.
Oddly enough, during the period of domination by the Byzantine Christian
empire, Jews were not allowed in the city. Once it was captured by the
Muslims, the city was opened to Jews and Christians, although they had to
pay a poll tax. They were allowed to practice their religion, and were
legally protected as dhimmis. Then, in 1099, the First Crusaders, defeated
the defenders of the city and slaughtered most of the Jewish and Muslim
inhabitants. After a period of back and forth ownership, in 1244 the
Ayyubids of Egypt captured the city, and it remained part of the Islamic
world until the end of the Ottoman empire.

Given Salladin's conquest of the city, among others, it is specious to claim
that it was never visited by any Arab leader.”

6. J ERUSALEM IS MENTIONED OVER 700 TIMES IN THE BIBLE, BUT NOT ONCE IS
IT MENTIONED IN THE QUR'AN;
As I said earlier – “Not using the name "Jerusalem," but it is referred to several times in the Qu'ran” Then again, look for the words “New York” in Spanish newspapers and you won’t see it, you’ll see “Nueve York,” much like we transliterate the names of cities and places to fit our language.
And truly, this is one of the stupidest points you’ve tried to make, although the whole diatribe is stupid.



7. KING DAVID FOUNDED JERUSALEM; MOHAMMED NEVER SET FOOT IN IT;

And once more, WRONG. As I said – “See above. King David most certainly did NOT found Jerusalem, he conquered it many centuries after its foundation, and Muhammad, according to tradition, did set foot in Jerusalem, hence the Dome of the Rock. (And
before you argue that there is no way that such a thing happened, consider
that the same argument, with the same validity, could be made against all of
the miracles of Christ, the burning bush, and a whole host of other miracles
throughout the Torah and New Testament. Given that we're talking about the
same God here, that's a stance that you should only take if you are willing
to admit that all miracles are questionable.)”

8. JEWS PRAY FACING JERUSALEM; MUSLIMS FACE MECCA. IF THEY ARE BETWEEN THE TWO CITIES, MUSLIMS PRAY FACING MECCA, WITH THEIR BACKS TO JERUSALEM;

And this is yet another stupid and pointless statement. Do Christians pray facing Jerusalem? No. Are there more than one sacred cities in Christianity – yes, many. Same with Islam. They choose to face the longest extant shrine to God, but that does not diminish the sacred nature of Jerusalem to their religion.


9. IN 1948, ARAB LEADERS URGED THEIR PEOPLE TO LEAVE, PROMISING TO
CLEANSE THE LAND OF JEWISH PRESENCE. 68% OF THEM FLED WITHOUT EVER
SETTING EYES ON AN ISRAELI SOLDIER;
Sources please? There is no documentation for your figures that I can find. Did the arabic leaders warn people to leave? Yes. People left because they knew there would be destruction and death in the area. So, even if 68% of them left without “ever setting eyes on an Israeli soldier,” for whatever inane reason that you see this as an issue, it means that the civilians were doing something smart – getting the heck out of harm’s way.


10. VIRTUALLY THE ENTIRE JEWISH POPULATION OF MUSLIM COUNTRIES HAD TO FLEE AS THE RESULT OF VIOLENCE AND POGROMS;

In point of fact, Jews have stayed within the various countries of Islam all along. The worst pogroms ever were brought on by Christian-lead governments, such as the Russian pogroms under the tsars, the expulsion by the Catholic kings of Spain, and many, many others.

11. SOME 630,000 ARABS LEFT ISRAEL IN 1948, WHILE CLOSE TO A MILLION
JEWS WERE FORCED TO LEAVE THE MUSLIM COUNTRIES;
First off, the last part of this statement is an overstatement. The vast majority of Jews who left Muslim countries did so because they wished to go to Israel, where they could join in with the Jewish nation that had been created. It would be stupid to insist that they wouldn’t do that, the attraction of being with those who think and worship in the same way that you do, after having spent the last 1818 years without a homeland, would be virtually irresistable.
In point of fact, there was a huge push among the Jewish populations for people to immigrate – sensing that they would need a larger population in order to become viable. Of the Morrocan Jews, the following was released –
“...These Jews constitute the best and most suitable human element for settlement in Israel's absorption centers. There were many positive aspects which I found among them: first and foremost, they all know (their agricultural) tasks, and their transfer to agricultural work in Israel will not involve physical and mental difficulties. They are satisfied with few (material needs), which will enable them to confront their early economic problems. (Yehuda Grinker (an organizer of Jewish emigration from the Atlas), The Emigration of Atlas Jews to Israel, Tel Aviv, The Association of Moroccan Immigrants in Israel, 1973.”
Oh, and while you’re at the condemnation of the discrimination against the Jews by their islamic neighbors, which did happen, you might also take a moment to commend the King Muhammad of Morocco who, in spite of the Vichy French government that he was ruled by, refused to let the Jews of his country be sent to concentration camps, protecting them from the Nazis.
Finally, lest you think that Israel had nothing to do with Muslims leaving Israel, in 1950 and 1951 they were forcibly deporting muslim inhabitants from Israeli occupied lands.


12. IN SPITE OF THE VAST TERRITORIES AT THEIR DISPOSAL, ARAB REFUGESS
WERE DELIBERATELY PREVENTED FROM ASSIMILATING INTO THEIR HOST
COUNTRIES. OF 100 MILLION REFUGEES FOLLOWING WORLD WAR 2, THEY ARE THE ONLY GROUP TO HAVE NEVER INTEGRATED WITH THEIR CORELIGIONISTS. MOST OF THE JEWISH REFUGEE S FROM EUROPE AND ARAB LANDS WERE
SETTLED IN ISRAEL, A COUNTRY NO LARGER THAN NEW JERSEY;

Let’s see – by fiat we create a country where none has been before, impose a government on it where the Muslim community that has lived there for centuries, through a variety of legal and extra-legal methods we displace them from their own homes, and we expect the other countries to absorb them. Not a stone the US should be throwing these days when it comes to immigration issues. And, pray tell, what the heck are you going on about here? What has it to do with anything? Look at our own area in Florida and you’ll see the same refusal to assimilate and become part of the larger US culture by the Cubans, who insist that they will return to reclaim their lands in the future.

In short, people who are displaced tend to not think of themselves as part of the area they have been sent to unwillingly.

13. THERE ARE 22 MUSLIM COUNTRIES, NOT COUNTING PALESTINE THERE IS
ONLY ONE JEWISH STATE. ARABS STARTED ALL FIVE WARS AGAINST ISRAEL, AND
LOST EVERY ONE OF THEM;
Except this last exchange. Oh, and of the 22 Muslim countries, how many were actively involved in the wars? Up until this last set of fighting, the Israeli forces were far better armed and trained, thanks in large part to the financing and support of the NATO nations.

14. FATAH A ND HAMAS CONSTITUTIONS STILL CALL FOR THE DESTRUCTION OF
ISRAEL. ISRAEL CEDED MOST OF THE WEST BANK AND ALL OF GAZA TO THE
PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY, AND EVEN PROVIDED IT WITH ARMS;
Yeah, Israel ceded the land back after it took it from them in the first place. The expansion of Israel during the wars was understandable, but you are missing a lot of the relevant points – Israel returned the land only after being forced to through political pressure, the “arms” that Israel provided the Palestinian Authority (note, not Hamas or Fatah) were suitable for police use, not national defense, and so on.

Should Fatah and Hamas recognize Israel’s right to exist? Yes. Even Iran’s Ayatollah Khameni has stated that the two-state solution to the area is a good one, and has implied a willingness to directly recognize Israel’s right to exist.

15. DURING THE JORDANIAN OCCUPATION, JEWISH HOLY SITES WERE VANDALIZED AND WERE OFF LIMITS TO JEWS. UNDER ISRAELI RULE, ALL MUSLIM AND CHRISTIAN HOLY SITES ARE ACCESSIBLE TO ALL FAITHS;

As I said – “Under Christian rule Jews weren't even allowed in Jerusalem. Your point?
Let's go further here, under Islamic rule, Christians and Jews were allowed
access to their holy shrines and sites. The time frame you are speaking of,
18 years long, occured during what was a cease-fire between Jordan and
Israel. Not that it excuses it, but it is a little bit different than just
stating that Jordan refused the Jews, since it also refused the Christians
at the time.”

But, let’s go a bit further, shall we? The following was a letter to the UN from the Jordanian representative regarding the treatment of Christians in Jerusalem in 1980, under Israeli control.
“Press reports in Jerusalem have given detailed coverage on the recent violent attacks on the Christian institutions in Jerusalem and the lukewarm official response to the culprits which prompted the Christian organizations to send an appeal for international guarantees for the city's Holy Places and religious communities. In bold black and red Hebrew script, the scrawled slogans on the front of the Christian bookstore at 33 Street of the Prophets in Jerusalem have carried such messages as: "Missionaries!" "Pigs!" "Dirty dogs!" "Bloodsuckers!" "Get out of here!"

"Two weeks before, we had swastikas and slogans", said Charles Kopp, who owns the bookstore in Zion House. "We have our locks stuffed with matchsticks, glue. We had our place burned five years ago. They come in and tell us this is not our place, to leave. One of them said that he was the one who burned the place and he would do it again. There is occasional spitting on our window".

Four times, stones have been thrown and glass broken at the Dormition Basilica on Mount Zion on the site where the Blessed Virgin Mary is believed to have died. A spokesman for the Mayor said the Benedictine monks there had received threatening letters.

The Russian Orthodox Church in Jerusalem staffed by Orthodox Russian priests had windows broken and walls scrawled with slogans. Another Christian bookstore near the City Hall was visited by youths who threatened the owners if they did not close down. Two weeks later rocks were hurled through the shop's windows.”

Yep, vandals exist from all sorts of religious backgrounds.

16. OUT OF 175 UNITED NATIONS SECURITY COUNCIL RESOLUTIONS UP TO 1990,
97 WERE AGAINST ISRAEL; OUT OF 690 GENERAL ASSEMBLY RESOLUTIONS, 429
WERE AGAINST ISRAEL;

Which is interesting, given the US’ ability to veto Security Council resolutions. Ever stop to think that Israel might have been doing something condemnable at the time? In point of fact, many of those resolutions were focused on Israel’s violations of UN resolutions.

18. THE U.N. WAS SILENT WHEN THE JORDANIANS DESTROYED 58 SYNAGOGUES IN THE OLD CITY OF JERUSALEM. IT REMAINED SILENT WHILE JORDAN
SYSTEMATICALLY DESECRATED THE ANCIENT JEWISH CEMETERY ON THE MOUNT OF OLIVES, AND IT REMAINED SILENT WHEN JORDAN ENFORCED APARTHEID LAWS
PREVENTING JEWS FROM ACCESSING THE TEMPLE MOUNT AND WESTERN WALL.

As a matter of fact, these issues were discussed during the time, as evidenced by letters from the Israeli representatives to the UN at the time.



Jim Seth Brown - 8/20/2006

Look 18 points and you are dwelling on the times of exiles. It shows you missed the whole point, and that you failed to confront the other 17 points that might show you why Israel is the way it is.


Mark A. LeVine (UC Irvine History Professor) - 8/19/2006

the story that i wrote about it can be found here:

http://www.ocweekly.com/news/news/the-danger-of-google-history-in-a-time-of-war/21106/

the link is not available on the internet because it was never archived, but it was available through a lexisnexis search.

best
mark


Philip Tuley - 8/17/2006

I kept promising myself I wouldn't pay any more attention to your inanities. Do everyone a favor, go visit http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/Judaism/jewhist.html and revisit all the dates you've listed. Then look at the exile times, and then tell me again about the history of Israel.


Jim Seth Brown - 8/17/2006

You are ridiculous


Philip Tuley - 8/17/2006

OK, first off, the Ottoman empire WAS a muslim empire, so you might want to check yourself there.

The facts, including, I might add, the Torah, say that the Jews were carried into captivity on numerous occasions. And that Jerusalem was destroyed by the Romans. You keep skipping all this, why?

"Founding" means creating. Your statement was that David founded Jerusalem, not that David went to Jerusalem, took it over, and then built a temple. BIG DIFFERENCE.

Muhammad never visited a mosque in Jerusalem, and I never claimed he had. I said that, according to tradition, the rock upon which the Dome of the Rock mosque was built was where Muhammad ascended into heaven during his night flight. And that's no more farcical than believing that Jesus walked on water, or Moses parted the Red Sea.

You're all over the map, you still don't have a clue about ancient history when it comes to Israel, and I strongly suggest you go open a few books. I'm done responding to you.


Jim Seth Brown - 8/17/2006

First of all Mr. Tuley you would be wrong again.

1&3. First of all you are wrong again for these. The facts say Israel was founded then and ruled for a thousand years which is true and then, had a continuing presence, also true. Also their were no islamic kingdoms until after 570 C.E because Mohammed hadnt been born yet.
2. First of all Palestine is not an established geographic term from 1194 B.C. http://www.levitt.com/essays/palestine.html. First of all the term was not used until the Church historian Esebius mentioned in 300 A.D. It was made as a way of taking away the natural Jewish right to the land.
4. Israel was not ruled by a Muslim country except for the brief time during the crusades when the church came to take it back. Other than that it was under byzantine and ottoman empire control.
5. Jerusalem was founded by David in that he procured the area for the building of the temple, which created Jerusalem as the capital.
6. http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&;lr=&q=is+Jerusalem+mentioned+in+the+koran. The results speak for themselves.
7. Mohammed coming to Jerusalem another farce. Their was no mosque in Jerusalem at the time of his night journey to the farthest mosque, only rubble from the last Jewish temple.
8. Just shows they already have their holy city.
12. The Jews assimilated fine. Thats why they have a refugee problem as bad as the arab countries do. NOT.
14. And who cares of the weaponry of the Palestinians, if they are trying to kill innocent Israeli's their should be no stopping Israel in their force to use.
15. Were talking about how great the Jordanian occupation of Jerusalem was not Christian issues thousands of years ago. And if you havent already noticed Jews and Christians have made amends unlike Jews and Muslims.

So their you have it all of your farces have been countered all of your misinterpretations have been pointed out. The points you didnt counter show that you even cant excuse the appalling behavior that is and was exhibited to Israel and might help you to understand their predicament. And it will show you that these people that threaten Israel must die.


Philip Tuley - 8/16/2006

First off, you're wrong about the Palestinian thing. I knew your post looked familiar, I ran across it a long time ago on a USENET group, and replied to it back then. Feel free to take on any of the points I make below, but be ready to document your stance, otherwise kindly stop making wildly inaccurate claims of a historical nature.

>
> 1. israel became a state in 1312 BC, two millennia before Islam;
&
> 3. After conquering the land in 1272 BC, Jews ruled it for a thousand
> years and maintained a continuous presence there for 3,300 years;

Wrong. There were a variety of jewish kingdoms and states, starting in
about 1200 BC, the first mention in writing of Israel is in an Egyptian
stele from 1210, and appears to be referring to the tribe, not a location.
The kingdoms and states were intermittent, thanks to things like the
Babylonian captivities, among other interruptions. While, in 1030, Jacob
united the tribes of Israel and declared a kingdom, the kingdom did not
remain unified, splitting in 920 BC into the northern kingdom of Israel and
the southern kingdom of Judah. Cyrus the Great (576 - 529 BC) released the
Jews from the Babylonians, after defeating the Babylonians, and permitted
them to return to the region. So, to claim a continuous, uninteruppted
kingdom of Israel would be fallacious. At the time that they were conquered
by the Romans, they had only been in charge for about 300 years. Then, of
course, Jerusalem was razed in 70 AD, and the diaspora began. The state of
Israel was no more, until modern times.
>
> 2. Arab refugees from Israel began calling themselves "Palestinians" in
> 1967, two decades after (modern) Israeli statehood;
Palestine, as a geographical term, existed by 1194 BC, and anyone living in
the area, or from the area, could be called, and were, "Palestinians."
There were numerous examples of this, but if you are trying to say that the
term was only used after 1967 you would be incorrect, as they were referred
to by the British in the early 1900s as Palestinians. If you are trying to
say that the term "Palestinian" as referring to the refugees took on an
exclusive meaning in '67 to refer to only Muslims, you would also be wrong,
since the term still means "a person from the area of Palestine." There are
quite a number of Palestinian Jews and Christians that would take offense at
such a statement.
As to the issue of a state of Palestine, it was originally called for in the
1919s, and most notably called for in 1920 by the Second Congress of
Muslim-Christian Associations in a letter to the League of Nations.
Palestine, as a state, was never realized at that time, but the idea that it
somehow arose in response to the re-establishment of the Jewish homeland is
a bit of revisionist history. It is true that the 1967 war and the Israel
occupation of the various territories brought the issue back into
prominence, but Palestine as a country had been discussed long before WWII.
> 4. The only Arab rule following conquest in 633 BC lasted just 22 years;
Oh, dear, you really don't know your history, do you? Jerusalem, with a few
minor episodes, was ruled over by a variety of Islamic states until 1517,
when it became part of the Ottoman empire, where it remained until the end
of WWI, when the entire region was then divided up as protectorates and
colonies of the victorious Allies.

>
> 5. For over 3,300 years, Jerusalem was the Jewish capital. it was never
> the capital of any Arab or Muslim entity. Even under Jordanian rule,
> (east) Jerusalem was not made the capital, and no Arab leader came to
> visit it;
Let's talk a bit more about the history of Jerusalem, shall we? Jerusalem
was first founded, as near as archeological records can place it, in 3000
BC, by the Caananites.
Oddly enough, during the period of domination by the Byzantine Christian
empire, Jews were not allowed in the city. Once it was captured by the
Muslims, the city was opened to Jews and Christians, although they had to
pay a poll tax. They were allowed to practice their religion, and were
legally protected as dhimmis. Then, in 1099, the First Crusaders, defeated
the defenders of the city and slaughtered most of the Jewish and Muslim
inhabitants. After a period of back and forth ownership, in 1244 the
Ayyubids of Egypt captured the city, and it remained part of the Islamic
world until the end of the Ottoman empire.

Given Salladin's conquest of the city, among others, it is specious to claim
that it was never visited by any Arab leader.

>
> 6. Jerusalem is mentioned over 700 times in the Bible, but not once is
> it mentioned in the Qur'an;
Not using the name "Jerusalem," but it is referred to several times in the
Qu'ran, including the famous night flight and ascension from the rock in
Jerusalem.
>
> 7. King David founded Jerusalem; Muhammad never set foot in it;
See above. King David most certainly did NOT found Jerusalem, he conquered
it many centuries after its foundation, and Muhammad, according to
tradition, did set foot in Jerusalem, hence the Dome of the Rock. (And
before you argue that there is no way that such a thing happened, consider
that the same argument, with the same validity, could be made against all of
the miracles of Christ, the burning bush, and a whole host of other miracles
throughout the Torah and New Testament. Given that we're talking about the
same God here, that's a stance that you should only take if you are willing
to admit that all miracles are questionable.)
>
> 8. Jews pray facing Jerusalem; Muslims face Mecca. If they are between
> the two cities, Muslims pray facing Mecca, with their backs to
> Jerusalem;
Yes, because the longest extant shrine to God (Allah being the Arabic word
for God) is the Kaaba, established by Abraham during his sojourn in Egypt.
Why would they prey to Jerusalem, unless it is your stance that God somehow
only lives there?

>
> 9. In 1948, Arab leaders urged their people to leave, promising to
> cleanse the land of Jewish presence. 68% of them fled without ever
> setting eyes on an Israeli soldier;
I can find no documentation for this assertion, for what it's worth. Not
that it really has anything to do with the discussion.

>
> 10. Virtually the entire Jewish population of Muslim countries had to
> flee as the result of violence and pogroms;
Not true. Until recently there was a large and thriving population of Jews
in a variety of Islamic states, most notable among them was Iran. And this
isn't a stone that should be thrown by Europeans or those whose families
come from Europe, since there were many restrictions and expulsions of Jews,
right up until WWII.

>
> 11. Some 630,000 Arabs left Israel in 1948, while close to a million
> Jews were forced to leave the Muslim countries;
Documentation, please?
>
> 12. In spite of the vast territories at their disposal, Arab refugees
> were deliberately prevented from assimilating into their host
> countries. Of 100 million refugees following World War 2, they are the
> only group to have never integrated with their co-religionists. most of
> the Jewish refugees from Europe and Arab lands were settled in Israel,
> a country no larger than the state of New Jersey;
Also, a bit overglossed, in that only about 1/3rd of the entire Jewish
population lives in Israel, and within the US the number is larger than that
of Israel itself. The Jewish population in the US increased as a result of
their fleeing persecution throughout Europe.


>
> 13. There are 22 Muslim countries, not counting Palestine. There is
> only one Jewish state. *Arabs* *started* *all* *five* *wars* *against*
> *Israel* - *and* *lost* *every* *one* *of* *them*;
Yes, that was then and this is now. We know of at least one Muslim country
with extremist ties that owns nuclear bombs, and that would be a bad thing
to see brought into play against a country that would pretty well be
destroyed by a single blast, given its land size.

>
> 14. Fatah and Hamas constitutions still call for the destruction of
> Israel. Israel ceded most of the West Bank and all of Gaza to the
> Palestinian Authority, and even provided it with arms;
Yes, Israel ceded most of the land it acquired during the '67 war. Yes,
their constitutions call for the destruction of the state of Israel. Yes,
Israel gave them some weapons. What you conveniently do not mention is that
the weaponry held by the Palestinians is minimal compared to that of Israel.
It's like bringing a knife to a gun fight.

>
> 15. During the Jordanian occupation, Jewish holy sites were vandalised
> and were off limits to Jews. Under Israeli rule, all Muslim and
> Christian holy sites are accessible to all faiths;
Under Christian rule Jews weren't even allowed in Jerusalem. Your point?
Let's go further here, under Islamic rule, Christians and Jews were allowed
access to their holy shrines and sites. The time frame you are speaking of,
18 years long, occured during what was a cease-fire between Jordan and
Israel. Not that it excuses it, but it is a little bit different than just
stating that Jordan refused the Jews, since it also refused the Christians
at the time.


Philip Tuley - 8/16/2006

Um, you're missing the point. Most historians would NOT accept your post as being correct. I've just spent the past four years putting my wife through a rigorous history program at UC Davis, I know quite a few professors personally, and several that specialize in Middle East history, both modern and ancient, and none of them thinks your post makes much sense.

Honestly, you really need to go read something other than the blogs that you've been taking as gospel. You need to go do some honest research. The vast majority of that post that you put out is blatantly false.

It's really sad that you haven't a clue about how to study history, and then you try the cheap shot tactic of changing the subject when you realize you're out of your depth.

To put it simply, you're wrong in your history, you're wrong in your assumptions based on that history, and you're in wayyyy above your head.


Jim Seth Brown - 8/16/2006

Mr Tuley. Wether you choose to accept these facts is on your conscience. If you disregard them it shows your blatant ignorance, because any historian would validate these as true. The point is that the palestinian conflict, the lebanon conflict is all part of the Islamic world's one goal. The destruction of Israel. Come on palestinians didn't exist until 1968.


Jim Seth Brown - 8/16/2006

Just because their had been short periods of times where it was not under the control of Jews, doesn't mean that it wasnt their capital. And Islamic occupation of Jerusalem happened one other time than Jordan's occupation of Jerusalem. That is the very limited scope of Islamic presence in Jerusalem.


Philip Tuley - 8/16/2006

I got my information from various websites associated with Israel's government, Middle Eastern history, and from a variety of text books. Where did you get yours?
Did you forget about the Babylonian captivity? Did you forget about the destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans? In short, you really haven't a clue as to Jewish history.

You've ignored the diaspora, you've ignored the years upon years of Islamic occupation of the city, in short, you've shown nothing but ignorance when it comes to history.

Reread the title of the website, would you?


Jim Seth Brown - 8/16/2006

I dont know where you get your information because all that is factual information. The truth for change. Maybe if you read unbiased information you would know that all that I posted is true.


Philip Tuley - 8/15/2006

You've been had! The last is a bunch of inaccuracies that have been making the rounds of the internet for a long time. Mixed in with a few facts are a lot of inaccuracies. For example, the claim of a founding year of 1312 BCE for the "state" of Israel is bogus, there is no known records that give such a date, especially since, at that time, Israel was a tribe, not a kingdom.
David did not found Jerusalem, he took it from the Jebusites around 1010 BCE, roughly 10 years after the jewish kingdom, which was not called Israel, was founded by Saul.
Jerusalem was NOT the capital of the Jews for 3300 years, especially since they did not have a capital for many centuries, such as during the Babylonian captivity, after Rome raised it to the ground in 70 CE.

Beyond that, the whole thing is bogus. Most of your "facts" are wrong, or deliberately distorted.

This is a history site, don't embarrass yourself by quoting bogus material, and, for pity's sake, go learn how to do research.



adam richard schrepfer - 8/14/2006

Mr. LeVine,

I have no reason to disbelieve that you found the article that Mr. Pager accused you of not writing. Having found it in the newspaper it would be easier for all of us who want to read more of your articles if you would post a link to that particle article. Or maybe you could put up the article on your website with an attatched link saying that Mr. Pager doesn't keep his promises.

Adam



Jim Seth Brown - 8/13/2006

Ehud Olmert's Speech.
This speech identifies the true issues
in the middle east.

Ladies and gentlemen, leaders of the world. I, the Prime Minister of Israel, am speaking to you from Jerusalem in the face of the terrible pictures
from Kfar Kana. Any human heart, wherever it is, must sicken and recoil at
the sight of such pictures. There are no words of comfort that can
mitigate the enormity of this tragedy. Still, I am looking you straight in the eye
and telling you that the State of Israel will continue its military campaign in
Lebanon.

The Israel Defense Forces will continue to attack targets from which
missiles and Katyusha rockets are fired at hospitals, old age homes
and kindergartens in Israel. I have instructed the security forces and the
IDF to continue to hunt for the Katyusha stockpiles and launch sites from
which these savages are bombarding the State of Israel.

We will not hesitate, we will not apologize and we will not back off.
If they continue to launch missiles into Israel from Kfar Kana, we will
continue to bomb Kfar Kana. Today, tomorrow and the day after
tomorrow. Here, there and everywhere. The children of Kfar Kana could now be
sleeping peacefully in their homes, unmolested, had the agents of the devil not
taken over their land and turned the lives of our children into hell.
Ladies and gentlemen, it's time you understood: the Jewish state will
no longer be trampled upon. We will no longer allow anyone to exploit
population centers in order to bomb our citizens. No one will be able
to hide anymore behind women and children in order to kill our women and
children. This anarchy is over. You can condemn us, you can boycott
us, you can stop visiting us and, if necessary, we will stop visiting you.

A voice for six million citizens Today I am serving as the voice of six million bombarded Israeli citizens who serve as the voice of six million murdered Jews who were melted down to dust and ashes by savages in Europe. In both cases, those responsible for these evil acts were, and are, barbarians devoid of all humanity, who set themselves one simple goal: to wipe the Jewish race off the face of
the earth, as Adolph Hitler said, or to wipe the State of Israel off the
map, as Mahmoud Ahmedinjad proclaims.

And you - just as you did not take those words seriously then, you are
ignoring them again now. And that, ladies and gentlemen, leaders of
the world, will not happen again. Never again will we wait for bombs that
never came to hit the gas chambers. Never again will we wait for salvation
that never arrives. Now we have our own air force. The Jewish people are
now capable of standing up to those who seek their destruction - those
people will no longer be able to hide behind women and children. They will no
longer be able to evade their responsibility.

Every place from which a Katyusha is fired into the State of Israel
will be a legitimate target for us to attack. This must be stated clearly and
publicly, once and for all. You are welcome to judge us, to ostracize
us, to boycott us and to vilify us. But to kill us? Absolutely not.

Four months ago I was elected by hundreds of thousands of citizens to
the office of Prime Minister of the government of Israel, on the basis of
my plan for unilaterally withdrawing from 90 percent of the areas of
Judea and Samaria, the birth place and cradle of the Jewish people; to end most
of the occupation and to enable the Palestinian people to turn over a new
leaf and to calm things down until conditions are ripe for attaining a
permanent settlement between us.

The Prime Minister who preceded me, Ariel Sharon, made a full
withdrawal from the Gaza Strip back to the international border, and gave the
Palestinians there a chance to build a new reality for themselves. The Prime
Minister who preceded him, Ehud Barak, ended the lengthy Israeli
presence in Lebanon and pulled the IDF back to the international border, leaving
the land of the cedars to flourish, develop and establish its democracy
and its economy.

What did the State of Israel get in exchange for all of this? Did we
win even one minute of quiet? Was our hand, outstretched in peace, met
with a handshake of encouragement? Ehud Barak's peace initiative at Camp
David let loose on us a wave of suicide bombers who smashed and blew to pieces
over 1,000 citizens, men, women and children. I don't remember you being so
enraged then. Maybe that happened because we did not allow TV
close-ups of the dismembered body parts of the Israeli youngsters at the
Dolphinarium? Or of the shattered lives of the people butchered while celebrating the Passover seder at the Park Hotel in Netanya? What can you do - that's
the way we are. We don't wave body parts at the camera. We grieve quietly.
We do not dance on the roofs at the sight of the bodies of our enemy's
children - we express genuine sorrow and regret. That is the monstrous
behavior of our enemies. Now they have risen up against us. Tomorrow
they will rise up against you. You are already familiar with the murderous
taste of this terror. And you will taste more.

In a loud and clear voice

And Ariel Sharon's withdrawal from Gaza. What did it get us? A barrage
of Kassem missiles fired at peaceful settlements and the kidnapping of
soldiers. Then too, I don't recall you reacting with such alarm. And
for six years, the withdrawal from Lebanon has drawn the vituperation and
crimes of a dangerous, extremist Iranian agent, who took over an entire country
in the name of religious fanaticism and is trying to take Israel hostage on
his way to Jerusalem - and from there to Paris and London.

An enormous terrorist infrastructure has been established by Iran on
our border, threatening our citizens, growing stronger before our very
eyes, awaiting the moment when the land of the Ayatollahs becomes a nuclear
power in order to bring us to our knees. And make no mistake - we won't go
down alone. You, the leaders of the free and enlightened world, will go
down along with us.

So today, here and now, I am putting an end to this parade of
hypocrisy. I don't recall such a wave of reaction in the face of the 100 citizens
killed every single day in Iraq. Sunnis kill Shiites who kill Sunnis, and all
of them kill Americans - and the world remains silent. And I am hard
pressed to recall a similar reaction when the Russians destroyed entire villages
and burned down large cities in order to repress the revolt in Chechnya.
And when NATO bombed Kosovo for almost three months and crushed the
civilian population - then you also kept silent. What is it about us, the Jews,
the minority, the persecuted, that arouses this cosmic sense of justice in
you? What do we have that all the others don't?

In a loud clear voice, looking you straight in the eye, I stand before
you openly and I will not apologize. I will not capitulate. I will not
whine.
This is a battle for our freedom. For our humanity. For the right to
lead normal lives within our recognized, legitimate borders. It is also
your battle. I pray and I believe that now you will understand that.
Because if you don't, you may regret it later, when it's too late.

ISRAEL AND JERUSALEM FACTS
1. ISRAEL BECAME A STATE IN 1312 B.C, TWO MILLENNIA BEFORE ISLAM;

2. ARAB REFUGEES FROM ISRAEL BEGAN CALLING THEMSELVES "PALESTINIANS"
IN 1967, TWO DECADES AFTER (MODERN) ISRAELI STATEHOOD;

3. AFTER CONQUERING THE LAND IN 1272 B.C., JEWS RULED IT FOR A
THOUSAND YEARS AND MAINTAINED A CONTINUOUS PRESENCE THERE FOR 3,300
YEARS;

4. THE ONLY ARAB RULE FOLLOWING CONQUEST IN 633 B.C. LASTED JUST 22
YEARS;

5. FOR OVER 3,300 YEARS, JERUSALEM WAS THE JEWISH CAPITAL. IT WAS
NEVER THE CAPITAL OF ANY ARAB OR MUSLIM ENTITY. EVEN UNDER JORDANIAN
RULE, (EAST) JERUSALEM WAS NOT MADE THE CAPITAL, AND NO ARAB LEADER
CAME TO VISIT IT;

6. J ERUSALEM IS MENTIONED OVER 700 TIMES IN THE BIBLE, BUT NOT ONCE IS
IT MENTIONED IN THE QUR'AN;

7. KING DAVID FOUNDED JERUSALEM; MOHAMMED NEVER SET FOOT IN IT;

8. JEWS PRAY FACING JERUSALEM; MUSLIMS FACE MECCA. IF THEY ARE BETWEEN THE TWO CITIES, MUSLIMS PRAY FACING MECCA, WITH THEIR BACKS TO JERUSALEM;

9. IN 1948, ARAB LEADERS URGED THEIR PEOPLE TO LEAVE, PROMISING TO
CLEANSE THE LAND OF JEWISH PRESENCE. 68% OF THEM FLED WITHOUT EVER
SETTING EYES ON AN ISRAELI SOLDIER;

10. VIRTUALLY THE ENTIRE JEWISH POPULATION OF MUSLIM COUNTRIES HAD TO FLEE AS THE RESULT OF VIOLENCE AND POGROMS;

11. SOME 630,000 ARABS LEFT ISRAEL IN 1948, WHILE CLOSE TO A MILLION
JEWS WERE FORCED TO LEAVE THE MUSLIM COUNTRIES;

12. IN SPITE OF THE VAST TERRITORIES AT THEIR DISPOSAL, ARAB REFUGESS
WERE DELIBERATELY PREVENTED FROM ASSIMILATING INTO THEIR HOST
COUNTRIES. OF 100 MILLION REFUGEES FOLLOWING WORLD WAR 2, THEY ARE THE ONLY GROUP TO HAVE NEVER INTEGRATED WITH THEIR CORELIGIONISTS. MOST OF THE JEWISH REFUGEE S FROM EUROPE AND ARAB LANDS WERE
SETTLED IN ISRAEL, A COUNTRY NO LARGER THAN NEW JERSEY;

13. THERE ARE 22 MUSLIM COUNTRIES, NOT COUNTING PALESTINE THERE IS
ONLY ONE JEWISH STATE. ARABS STARTED ALL FIVE WARS AGAINST ISRAEL, AND
LOST EVERY ONE OF THEM;

14. FATAH A ND HAMAS CONSTITUTIONS STILL CALL FOR THE DESTRUCTION OF
ISRAEL. ISRAEL CEDED MOST OF THE WEST BANK AND ALL OF GAZA TO THE
PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY, AND EVEN PROVIDED IT WITH ARMS;

15. DURING THE JORDANIAN OCCUPATION, JEWISH HOLY SITES WERE VANDALIZED AND WERE OFF LIMITS TO JEWS. UNDER ISRAELI RULE, ALL MUSLIM AND CHRISTIAN HOLY SITES ARE ACCESSIBLE TO ALL FAITHS;

16. OUT OF 175 UNITED NATIONS SECURITY COUNCIL RESOLUTIONS UP TO 1990,
97 WERE AGAINST ISRAEL; OUT OF 690 GENERAL ASSEMBLY RESOLUTIONS, 429
WERE AGAINST ISRAEL;

18. THE U.N. WAS SILENT WHEN THE JORDANIANS DESTROYED 58 SYNAGOGUES IN THE OLD CITY OF JERUSALEM. IT REMAINED SILENT WHILE JORDAN
SYSTEMATICALLY DESECRATED THE ANCIENT JEWISH CEMETERY ON THE MOUNT OF OLIVES, AND IT REMAINED SILENT WHEN JORDAN ENFORCED APARTHEID LAWS
PREVENTING JEWS FROM ACCESSING THE TEMPLE MOUNT AND WESTERN WALL.