Blogs > HNN > Gaza's Insanity, and Ours

Mar 3, 2008 10:20 pm


Gaza's Insanity, and Ours



Mr. LeVine is professor of modern Middle Eastern history, culture, and Islamic studies at the University of California, Irvine, and author of the forthcoming books: Why They Don't Hate Us: Lifting the Veil on the Axis of Evil; and Overthrowing Geography: Jaffa, Tel Aviv and the Struggle for Palestine, 1880-1948. He is also a contributor, with Viggo Mortensen and Pilar Perez, to Twilight of Empire: Responses to Occupation. Click here to access his homepage.

10 dead, 45 dead, 116 dead. Babies, children, old men, women, dead.

Americans, and the world more broadly, have grown so used to the disastrous dynamics operating between Israelis and Palestinians today that they have assumed an aura of normalcy in our minds, reflecting a situation we imagine ourselves to be powerless to help change. This only adds to the tragedy unfolding in the Occupied Territories, and Israel as well. In fact, the causes of the present fighting are easy to discern, and the solutions not much harder to imagine or implement.

Israel has said that it has left Gaza, and uses the continued Palestinian violence emanating from the Strip to justify its claim that Palestinians are unwilling or incapable of making peace. The reality is that Israel never left Gaza; rather, it withdrew civilian settlers and then threw away the key to what has become the world's biggest prison.

For most Jews Gaza has never had the same emotional and historical resonance as the biblical heartland of Israel in the West Bank. That's why former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, architect of the settlement movement, was willing to sacrifice Gaza to insure Israel held onto the major settlement blocs of the West Bank, which today are home to upwards of 250,000 settlers, almost double that number if one include the Jewish settlements in East Jerusalem.

Unless you travel through the West Bank it's hard to imagine how extensive are the settlements, whose population doubled during the years of the Oslo "peace" process without a whimper of complaint from the United States, despite the fact that even before Prime Minister Rabin was assassinated in 1995 Palestinians leaders were warning that the continued settlement expansion was "killing" the peace process and would sooner or later lead to a "revolution" from the street.

As important is the matrix of control Israel have imposed over the West Bank, as the presence of well over 100 settlements has been accompanied by--indeed, necessitated--the declaration of 80 percent of the West Bank off limits to Palestinians, the destruction of thousands of homes and hundreds of thousands of olive and fruit trees (the backbone of an otherwise closed Palestinian economy), and the creation of a network of bypass roads, military bases, and a "separation wall" that pierce deep into Palestinian territory, cutting into at least three isolated cantons.

Together, the settlement system has made the idea of creating a territorially and economically viable Palestinian state impossible implement, or even imagine. (In fact, this situation was anticipated even before the first intifada erupted in 1987, when the former Deputy Mayor of Jerusalem, Meron Benvenisti, concluded his well-known "West Bank Data Base Project" report by arguing that the West Bank settlements were, even then, too integrated into Israel to separate them as part of a peace deal.)

With the eruption of the al-Aqsa intifada in September 2000 whatever infrastructure of peace had been created during Oslo was quickly dismantled by both sides. By mid-2002 Israel began deploying a strategy of sponsored, or at least managed, chaos, in which a near total closure of the Territories, coupled with a destruction of much of their economic and political infrastructure, had turned the intifada into what Palestinians term an "intifawda," a neologism that brings the violence of the intifada together with the chaos, or "fawda," of a society living in a barely functioning state and economy.

Israeli planners gambled that by splitting the West Bank from Gaza, deepening the occupation of the former while freeing itself of the settlements in the latter, and routinely deploying disproportionate violence (including tanks, helicopter gunships, F-16s, and heavily armed troops) against all signs of resistance--non-violent as well as violent--Palestinian society would collapse, or at least begin turning on itself.

That is precisely what has happened with the recent "civil war" between Fatah and Hamas. Indeed, Israel hoped for just such a conflict when it clandestinely supported the emergence of Hamas two decades ago, with the goal of building up a rival to the PLO that would keep Palestinians buy fighting each other rather than figuring out more successful strategies of fighting the occupation.

Yet even as Palestinians fight each other, resistance to the occupation has continued. Most of it is comprised of various forms of non-violence (marches, sit-ins, attempts to stop home demolitions or replant uprooted fields or groves) that are rarely covered by the international media, and are usually met with violence by the IDF or Israeli settlers.

Fairly or not, however, it has been Palestinian violence, and especially suicide bombings and now rocket attacks on civilians, that has defined their resistance to the ongoing occupation. And in this regard the actions have been nothing short of suicidal. Indeed, throughout the Oslo period, and particularly since the outbreak of the current intifada, Palestinian "resistance" to the occupation has seemed to be scripted by Israel, so well has it suited the interests of the Israeli governments in power since 2000. As Haaretz columnist Bradley Burston recently put it in an insightful Oped:

"The Palestinians have kept their ultimate doomsday weapon under tight wraps for 40 years... Israeli senior commanders could only pray that the Palestinians would never take it out and put it to actual use... non-violence. This is one reason why, for decades, Israel did its best to head off, harass, and crack down on expressions of Palestinian non-violence."

If Palestinians en masse ever decided merely just "get up and walk" to the Erez Crossing separating Gaza from Israel, to the major West Bank check points like Qalandiya that have become de facto borders, or to any part of the 250-mile long, 25-foot high, wall that is slowly surrounding the West Bank, and, with hammers and picks and music and singing, tear them down, there would be almost nothing Israel could do, short of a massacre in full view of the world's cameras, to stop them.

But Palestinians have become so stuck in the ideology of summud, or staying put--which naturally become a national imperative after a million Palestinians were uprooted in the 1948 and 1967 wars--that they have rarely taken the strategic or moral offensive. When they did just that with the first intifada, Israel's harsh crackdown coupled with the the assertion of PLO authority over Palestianian politics with Oslo insured the depoliticization and disempowerment of the first "intifada generation."

More than a decade later--indeed, less than two weeks ago--when a few brave Palestinians tried to organize a non-violent march to the Erez border crossing to build on the momentum gained by breaching the border fence between Gaza and Egypt, only a few thousand people joined in. Worse, they were stopped far from the border--not by the IDF, but by a line of heavily armed Hamas policemen. Soon after, the day's ration of rockets was fired into the nearby Israeli town of Sderot, wounding two Israeli children, which brought a new rounds of attacks by Israel, killing and wounding more Palestinians.

A few years ago, in a particularly violent moment of the intifada, I interviewed a senior Hamas leader at his office in Gaza. After the usual boiler plate questions and answers, I finally grew exasperated and said to him, "Look, let's put aside the question of whether you have the right to use violence, particularly against civilians, to pursue your ends. The simple fact is that the strategy hasn't worked."

His response stunned me with its honesty: "We know the violence doesn't work, but we don't know how to stop."

One could imagine that in the years since then Hamas would have spent some energy thinking up more creative and effective ways of fighting for Palestinian independence; especially once it decided to enter the political field. But that never happened. In a mirror image of Israeli strategic thinking, Hamas has remained unable to break free of the dangerously outdated paradigm that says violence, particularly against civilians, can only be met by even more violence until the other side yields.

Aside from the moral turpitude of such thinking by both sides--not to mention blatant illegality according to international law--the reality, at least in the near term, is that Israel can afford to pay a far higher human and moral price for such a policy than can Palestinians, who have very little time left before their dreams of independence are crushed for good.

Of course, as Prime Minister Olmert has himself admitted, the day Palestinians give up on the dream of an independent state will be the day Israel will "face a South African-style struggle for equal voting rights, and as soon as that happens, the state of Israel is finished."

Yet so dysfunctional are the current dynamics that neither side seems willing to take the first step away from the abyss into which both sides have indicated they have no desire to plunge. In such a situation, only a strong outside party can force the warring sides to stop the violence and make the hard compromises necessary to achieve a just and lasting peace.

This was the job that the United States signed up for in 1993, when President Clinton witnessed the signing of the first Oslo agreement on the White House lawn. But we have failed miserably in our self-appointed role as "honest broker."

It's not just that United States has unapologetically taken Israel's side on almost every major issue since then. As important, during the Oslo years the US worked hand in glove with the Israeli and Palestinian security services to stifle dissent within Palestinian civil society, or the Legislative Council, to a process that most people on the ground understood was moving away from rather than towards a just and lasting peace.

And with the militarization of American foreign policy after September 11 and our own sullied occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq, Israel has had even greater carte blanche to inflict precisely the kind of damage upon Palestinian society we are witnessing now in Gaza, with no risk of criticism--never mind sanctions by--the United States or its EU, UN and Russian partners in the risibly ineffective "Quartet."

Yet by refusing to press Israel--as many Israeli commentators urge--to negotiate with Hamas (which has declared its willingness to accept a two state solution, albeit under conditions to which Israel has little incentive to agree to) we have not just enabled the current violence, but are directly responsible for it. The blood of the Israeli and Palestinian children that are nightly filling are screens is on our hands too.

It would be nice if we could imagine that the next President will have the courage to "change" this dynamic. But there is little chance of that. The only hope is that Israeli and Palestinian societies can come together to stop the violence their leaders keep inflicting on them before the delusions of victory cross the line into psychosis, totally divorced from the reality of the lives, hopes and dreams of most Palestinians and Israelis.

But with Hamas declaring "victory" as Israel warns of even harsher measures, and both sides firing rockets into each other's territory, its seems certain that the IDF and Hamas's hallucinations of victory are going to become a living nightmare for an ever larger share of the two societies. And the rest of us will be left to pick up the pieces of a war that our own moral and diplomatic laziness helped bring about, with disastrous consequences for the two peoples, the Middle East, and the world.




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Elliott Aron Green - 3/16/2008

Sally, you write about the so-called "palestinian people" as if it were some sort of historical nation, like the Jews, Armenians, Persians, Chinese, etc.
Indeed, expert witnesses testifying on behalf of the "Arab Higher Committee for palestine" before the Anglo-American Committee of Inquiry [1946] testified that there never was such a place as palestine in history. It was just part of Syria.

The world public did not begin to hear about a "palestinian people" until the early 1960s, more so after the establishment of the "palestine liberation organization" [PLO] in 1964, and even more so after the Six Day War of 1967. When they couldn't defeat Israel as Arabs, as the united pan-Arab nation, then they separated out a part of themselves --of the Arabs-- and renamed them a "palestinian people." Al-Zahar of Hamas recently confirmed this in late January 2008.


Sally Gee - 3/15/2008

My God. Greene and Eckstein trading idiocies. After all the pain over the millenia, have we really been reduced to this? Is this how we are fated to be seen by the rest of the world? How demeaning is that?


Sally Gee - 3/15/2008

And you depict yourself as a complete nincompoop, Mr Multi-Retarded and, try as I might, I can find no justification for you whatsoever.


art eckstein - 3/9/2008

Mr. Greene:

You are definitely on the right track.

1. Gee's claims that Israel is somehow violating the Geneva Convention are lies. She can't prove a single one of the Convention's points, because Israel isn't violating any of them.

1a. Those who intentionally use civilians as shields to fire hundreds of rockets at the other side's civilians--they, and only they, are guilty of a war crime. That is: Hamas.

2. Gee's assertions that the Israelis are committing "genocide" in Gaza is another lie. The population of Gaza in 2003 was 1,320,000 or so. The population in 2007 was 1, 450,000 or so. This is what one calls a population increase. The oppose of what occurs in a situation of genocide, I believe.

Palestine is not in a desperate situation. The living standard in Gaza and the West Bank is higher than in surrounding Arab countries, infant mortality is lower, and the education and healthcare systems are better.
While their life is not super, it can hardly be called “desperate” unless you also consider life in Egypt or Jordan “desperate” and expect Egyptians and Jordanians to kill each other and citizens of neighbouring countries as well.
The desperation theory of terrorism is a myth. Truly desperate people, like the hungry in Africa do NOT commit acts of terrorism. Darfurians are dying at a rate of 100,000/year but are not committing acts of terrorism. We are dealing not with "desperation" but with the murderous and death-cult pathologies of Palestinian culture.

When the border to Egypt was open, the Gazans literally bought the north-east of Sinai empty. Prices for everything went up by 400%. Egyptians went into Gaza and were surprised how rich Gaza is. Yes, Gaza is poor, but only when compared to Israel and the west. Compared to Egypt Gaza is rich--and the Egyptians were stunned, since it was so contrary to the propaganda they'd been being fed--but soon took advantage of the situation.

As for Gee she has shown herself to be a conscienceless anti-semitic propagandist, who is ready to say anything. Lately, she's taken to justifying the Jerusalem Yeshiva attack (see the threads below). All she has is slander, which she endlessly repeats. And when asked to back up her assertions with evidence, the answer is always personal vituperation in response.


Elliott Aron Green - 3/9/2008

Since Sally likes to throw the Geneva Convention around so much, misrepresenting it of course, what does it say in fact?? The Geneva Convention IV provides that 1) the presence of "protected persons" [non-combatants] does not foreclose military action against a location containing military targets; 2) private property can be destroyed when there is a military necessity for doing so [See articles 28 and 53 of Geneva Convention IV]. So I suggest that Sally read over Articles 28 & 53 of Geneva IV. Then she can come back and talk. I refrain from dealing with all of her falsehoods, distortions, misrepresentations, etc, because of the sheer tediousness of such an exercise.

Just one more point: modern Israel was founded on a national-historical principle, not a "theological principle" as Sally claims. To be sure various religious aspects are recognized as part of Israeli history and law. By the same token, the founders of the United States stated their respect for God. Moreover, there are dozens of Muslim states throughout the world which keep non-Muslims in a legal state of inferiority, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Pakistan and Sudan for example. Pakistan was founded purely on the principle of carving a Muslim state out of India for the sake of Indian Muslims. Sudan has been perpetrating genocide against non-Muslims [mainly in the South] ever since independence in 1956. Millions have been murdered there. Sally shows no concern over the Sudanese genocidal acts, nor over the oppression of non-Muslims in Muslim states generally. We may thus deduce that she indeed favors genocide, perhaps relying on the paramount principle of whose ox is gored.


Elliott Aron Green - 3/9/2008

Sally, your comment #120295 clearly implies that you wish to see Friedman prosecuted under the Geneva convention for things he written on his site. So you consider his writings to be actionable as war crimes, denying him freedom of the press.

Now, incitement to murder/mass murder is a war crime. Hamas does it every day over their radio & TV transmitters in Gaza. Why aren't you first of all concerned with the Hamas-Fatah-Islamic Jihad mass murder incitement and war incitement??? Aren't you aware of what they broadcast, not only in Gaza but in Ramallah?? If not, check the MEMRI and IMRA websites.

Another problem is the avowed commitment to mass murder in Article 7 of the Hamas charter, which cites a medieval Muslim fable about the Muslims slaughtering Jews at Judgement Day, not to mention endorsement of the forged "Protocols of the Elders of Zion" and other mass murder incitement. Do you endorse the Protocols, Sally? Can you respond to us about your interpretation of the Hamas charter and the Protocols and as to whether Hamas ought to stand trial for war crimes on those grounds?? Of course, the Arab-Muslim potential to commit mass murder has already been demonstrated by pogroms against Jews in Arab lands during the Holocaust [ie, the Baghdad Farhud in 1941, etc] and by the participation of Haj Amin el-Husseini, British-appointed mufti of Jerusalem in the Holocaust, urging the Germans and their East European satellite states to send Jewish children to Poland where, he said, they would be "under active supervision."

Next, Sally, let's get to the Geneva convention IV and its implications for Israeli military actions in Gaza. The Geneva Convention IV provides that 1) the presence of "protected persons" [non-combatants] does not foreclose military action against a location containing military targets; 2) private property can be destroyed when there is a military necessity for doing so. See articles 28 and 53 of Geneva Convention IV.

Sally & LeVine need to bear in mind that Israel was responding to attacks directed specifically against Israeli civilians [in Sderot & Ashqelon] with no reasonable grounds for a pretext that Hamas et al. were aiming at military targets.


art eckstein - 3/8/2008

1. How can the school be the ideological cradle of the settler movement on the West Bank when most settlers are secular? Though carelessly cited by Gee as a fact, this is an OPINION by Jeremy Bowen, not a fact--and it is belied by facts. (BBC, of course, is well known for its pro-Palestinian biases.)

2. As for justification, here is what Gee wrote this morning:


Re: Barbarism (#120558)
by Sally Gee on March 8, 2008 at 10:19 AM
"Targeting religious students - clergy - is barbarism."

An alternative view, to which I feel we must give sufficient weight, is that in a state founded on a theological principle and engaged in acts of illegal occupation and genocide, religious students may well be considered as much combatants as soldiers. From this vantage point, it is less pathetic, as you would have us believe, Mr Friedman, than strategic.”

And later:



The Mercaz Harav shootings (#120590)
by Sally Gee on March 8, 2008 at 4:25 PM
Three extracts from the BBC’s website which support the realist perspective on the Mercaz Harav shootings…

These include:
Graduates serve as rabbis and rabbinical judges in Israel and Jewish settlements
School has played a major role in ideology and theology of Israeli religious settlement movement
Key figures linked to the school were strongly opposed to Israeli pull-out from Gaza”

But this is the point that really stands out:

“A student reportedly shot the gunman twice before an off-duty Israeli army officer killed him.” A gunpacking student at a yeshiva? Now what kind of rabbi will he make?


And later:

Re: The Mercaz Harav shootings and Porath Yosef Yeshiva (#120597)
by Sally Gee on March 8, 2008 at 5:33 PM

All of which would seem to support realist position which I suggested is worthy of a balanced consideration in response to Mr Friedman's histrionic sloganising.



I will leave it to readers to decide whether this is not Gee offering various justifications for the attack. These range from the school being an "ideological center", to her evocation of pistol-packing rabbis. I repeat: according to Agence France Press, most of the dead were 15 and 16 years old. I am confident what any reader will decide on this issue.


Sally Gee - 3/8/2008

"3. And in any case it turns out, despite her assertions, most settlers on the West Bank are secular, not religious. Which takes away her "realist JUSTIFICATION" for murder."

Which may be the case for West Bank settlers but not for apprentice rabbis and, reportedly, their alleged killer. Being a West Bank settler occupying Palestiniance land illegally provides a very different set of circumstances where the degree of either secularity or relgious feeling is irrelevent to the crime which is being committed by then and any retaliatory act performed against them.

For the record, I have never argued in support of a ""realist JUSTIFICATION" for murder." I have never used the term justification in relation to this crime other than to confirm that I do not and cannot justicy it. The trouble is, if intemperate posters are prepared to distort and lie about what is before our eye, how can we trust them on matters whose documentary sources are not before us? My solution to this problem is to give myself the benefit of the doubt and disbelieve them utterly.

Still, I think is is advisable, if nothing else, for non-loony analysts to make use of the realist perspective to enable us to check the flood of Zionist flights of rhetoric, hysteria, and religio-ethnic hate fantasies against an already brutalized Palestinian people in support of Israel's genocidal plicies. After all, the only harm may be that we may find it easier to get to the truth of the matter sooner and more or less guff free.

But back to the shcool, After all is said and done, "The BBC's Middle East editor Jeremy Bowen says that the school was no ordinary seminary. It was the ideological cradle of the settler movement in the West Bank, which could be the reason it was targeted.

“Many of its students are on special courses that combine religious study with service in combat units in the Israeli army.“
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/7282948.stm


art eckstein - 3/8/2008

Gee depicts this place as a nest of pistol-packing rabbis.

Most of those killed were 15 or 16 years old.

She justifies the murders "on realist grounds".


art eckstein - 3/8/2008

Gee: “A student reportedly shot the gunman twice before an off-duty Israeli army officer killed him.” A gunpacking student at a yeshiva? Now what kind of rabbi will he make?"

Case closed on "military hotspot."


art eckstein - 3/8/2008

1. As this last posting shows, Gee is justifying the murder of students in a religious school.

2. But Yeshiva Porath Yosef, which was also apparently targetted, is not a special center of West Bank ideology.

3. And in any case it turns out, despite her assertions, most settlers on the West Bank are secular, not religious. Which takes away her "realist JUSTIFICATION" for murder.


Sally Gee - 3/8/2008

All of which would seem to support realist position which I suggested is worthy of a balanced conderation in response to Mr Friedman's histrionic sloganising:

""Targeting religious students - clergy - is barbarism."

"An alternative view, to which I feel we must give sufficient weight, is that in a state founded on a theological principle and engaged in acts of illegal occupation and genocide, religious students may well be considered as much combatants as soldiers. From this vantage point, it is less pathetic, as you would have us believe, Mr Friedman, than strategic."


Sally Gee - 3/8/2008

"According to Gee's philosophy as propounded here, the Israelis would now be justified in A-bombing Mecca and Medina--the religious sources of jihadist ideology."

Wouldn't this have to be cleared by the United States government first, or is this the Samson option Plan B?

Anyway, where's Tehran in all of this? After all, isn't that Plan A?

And, as for:
"If this place was such a military hotspot, Gee, how come there was only ONE student with a gun, eh? You think it's unusual, do you, for schools in israel to have people with guns in them? Maybe it's because Jews just love to carry guns, eh--no other reason..." No suggestion has been made, as far as I know, that it is a military hotspot, rather an ideological training ground for fanatics whose aim is to ethnically cleanse the Palestinians from their lands. Maybe there is a real problem of delinquency and criminality amongst apprentice rabbis at Mercaz Harav and the real motive for the shootings may well relate to that issue rather than any other. At this stage of the investigation, who knows, and you yourself were the first to link the shootings to Israeli intelligence on this very website, as I recall.


art eckstein - 3/8/2008

Another Jerusalem yeshiva was saved from Palestinian attack four days before Mercaz Harav murders
March 8, 2008, 9:02 PM (GMT+02:00)


Second Jewish religious institution targeted


DEBKAfile’s counter-terror sources reveal that just four days before a single Palestinian killer murdered 8 Mercaz Harav students in Jerusalem on March 6, two Palestinians were frightened away from another Jerusalem yeshiva, Porath Yosef, on March 2. The pair were challenged March 2 by armed security guards on the door and they are still at large.
The Jerusalem police failed to sound the alarm after the guards reported the incident. The guards described two Palestinians who appeared at Porath Yosef demanding entry with a large carton like the one in which Ala Abu Dhaim carried his assault rifle, guns and ammo four days later. They claimed they had been commissioned to do some work in the institution and quoted the names of people associated with the yeshiva. But when asked by the guards to open the box, the two Palestinians backed off saying they were going to pick up tools from their vehicle. They were not seen again.
Responding to the guards’ call, the police dismissed the incident as a misunderstanding. No alerts were circulated and Mercaz Harav did not post security guards. It was only after the massacre Thursday that the police recalled the Porath Yosef incident and realized they had missed a danger signal.
They were also forced to conclude that one or more Palestinian terror cells are on the loose in Jerusalem and could be targeting any of the hundreds of Jewish religious institutions in the city.

The graduates of this seminary have various ideologies. One of the two most famous is Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, who has been an important voice in israel in favor of trading land for peace (or he was, until the Second Intifada).


art eckstein - 3/8/2008

In any case, despite Gee's distortions, the NY Times reports today that the vast majority of the West Bank settlements are SECULAR.

So much for this school being the center of the West Bank settler movement.


art eckstein - 3/8/2008

I don't like the settler movement. But Gee believes that those who disagree with her ideologically (a) should be slaughtered while studying the Bible in a library without any concern from her, while (b) have no right to defend themselves from their murderers.

If this place was such a military hotspot, Gee, how come there was only ONE student with a gun, eh? You think it's unusual, do you, for schools in israel to have people with guns in them? Maybe it's because Jews just love to carry guns, eh--no other reason, like that they are TARGETS of barbarism.

Agence France Presse says that most of those killed were 15 and 16 years old.

According to Gee's philosophy as propounded here, the Israelis would now be justified in A-bombing Mecca and Medina--the religious sources of jihadist ideology.


Sally Gee - 3/8/2008

Three extracts from the BBC’s website which support the realist perspective on the Mercaz Harav shootings:

“ The BBC's Middle East editor Jeremy Bowen says that the school was no ordinary seminary. It was the ideological cradle of the settler movement in the West Bank, which could be the reason it was targeted.

“Many of its students are on special courses that combine religious study with service in combat units in the Israeli army.“

As does the summarised backstory:

“MERCAZ HARAV SEMINARY
Founded in 1924 by influential Rabbi Avraham Hacohen Kook
Some 500 students enrolled in Talmudic study
Students mainly high-school age and young adults
Graduates serve as rabbis and rabbinical judges in Israel and Jewish settlements
School has played a major role in ideology and theology of Israeli religious settlement movement
Key figures linked to the school were strongly opposed to Israeli pull-out from Gaza”

But this is the point that really stands out:

“A student reportedly shot the gunman twice before an off-duty Israeli army officer killed him.” A gunpacking student at a yeshiva? Now what kind of rabbi will he make?

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/7282948.stm

As I said in my earlier post in response to a statement made by Mr Friedman:

Re: Barbarism (#120558)
by Sally Gee on March 8, 2008 at 10:19 AM

"Targeting religious students - clergy - is barbarism."

"An alternative view, to which I feel we must give sufficient weight, is that in a state founded on a theological principle and engaged in acts of illegal occupation and genocide, religious students may well be considered as much combatants as soldiers. From this vantage point, it is less pathetic, as you would have us believe, Mr Friedman, than strategic."






art eckstein - 3/8/2008

1. As I have had tiredly to explain to Omar, half those killed were terrorists. The other half were their human shields, cynically used by the terrorists.

2. Omar has yet to even try to answer Michael Walzer's argument: when terrorists intentionally shoot rockets at enemy civilians, while hiding among their own civilians and using them as human shields, the responsibility for what occurs from the ineivtable counterfire lies with the terrorists--AND ONLY THEM. They--and ONLY THEM--are responsible for the civilians among whom they hide while shooting rockets at civilians.

Omar should answer this argument.

He cannot answer the argument that the Library Massacre was an example of racism: those young people who were killed were civilians who were intentionally and specifically targetted and killed, and they were killed while studying the Bible, and they were targetted and killed ONLY because they were Jews.


omar ibrahim baker - 3/8/2008

To see "barbarism" in killing 8 young men and fail to see it in the killing of 120 men, women, children , oldsters devoid words of their meaning.

It is not ONLY racism that we have here it is BLINDNESS; real, actual, pathological inability to see!


art eckstein - 3/8/2008

I urge readers to read Gee's posting # 120558, posted at 10:19 a.m.

Gee wrote:

N.F. feels the murder of religious students is barbaric. She responds: "An alternative view, to which I feel we must give sufficient weight...etc., etc., etc,"

AN ALTERNATIVE VIEW, TO WHICH I FEEL WE MUST GIVE SUFFICIENT WEIGHT...

And what IS that alternative view, to which Gee feels we must give sufficient weight? It is that because of the Nazi-religious basis of israel (according to Gee) these religious students, peacefully studying in their library (and ineligible for the army) "may well be considered as much COMBATANTS as soldiers." I am QUOTING Gee. "Soldiers, combatants" are legitimate targets.

Gee can't escape what she wrote.


art eckstein - 3/8/2008

Omar, as usual, can't read. He misunderstands the point.

The point is that these young students were not engaged in any activity conducive to the security of the Israeli State. They were NOT studying military tactics, for instance, or training for the army. They were in a seminary, studying THE BIBLE. The particular people of this group do not SERVE in the Israeli army. It could have been any peaceble study, Omar. It happened, however, to be young people studying THE BIBLE. THEY were intentionally targetted And their DEATHS were celebrated by Hamas, and by the Gazans handing out candy to children.

To target such peaceable people for murder is (a) barbaric and (b) a message of genocide--not even Jews who don't serve in the army and who are peacefully studying the Bible are immune from intentional murder by Palestinians,

Well, Omar should answer the following question, though of course I doubt that he will: what could be more RACIST than such an act, targetting young people who don't serve in the Israeli army and are peacefully studying the Bible? They were killed BECAUSE they were Jews, Omar, and ONLY because they were Jews, not because they were doing anything.

I dare Omar to defend this racist act.


art eckstein - 3/8/2008

Gee wrote:

N.F. feels the murder of religious students is barbaric. "An alternative view, to which I feel we must give sufficient weight...etc., etc., etc,"

AN ALTERNATIVE VIEW, TO WHICH I FEEL WE MUST GIVE SUFFICIENT WEIGHT...

And what IS that alternative view, to which Gee feels we must give sufficient weight? It is that because of the Nazi-religious basis of israel (according to Gee) these religious students, peacefully studying in their library (and ineligible for the army) "may well be considered as much COMBATANTS as soldiers." I am QUOTING Gee. "Soldiers, combatants" are legitimate targets.

Gee can't escape what she wrote.


Sally Gee - 3/8/2008

This is the comment I made on an equally witless post a few minutes ago:

Re: Wow! Gee now JUSTIFIES the Library Attack! (#120572)
by Sally Gee on March 8, 2008 at 12:45 PM

As a simple matter of fact, and as you well know, oh bottom feeding, hyper-hysterical, Multi-Awarded one, I have not justified, nor have I sought to justify, nor have I suggested that I believe that I can, in any way, personally justify this crime, or any other act of criminal violence, whether committed in the name of Israel or in the name of a free Palestine. Murder is murder.


Sally Gee - 3/8/2008

As a simple matter of fact, and as you well know, oh bottom feeding, hyper-hysterical, Multi-Awarded one, I have not justified, nor have I sought to justify, nor have I suggested that I believe that I can, in any way, personally justify this crime, or any other act of criminal violence, whether committed in the name of Israel or in the name of a free Palestine. Murder is murder.


omar ibrahim baker - 3/8/2008

According to the herd some lives are more spendable, more disposable, than others.

For example: killing students engaged in religious studies seems to be more reprehensible than killing students doing, say, Chemistry or Law!

Why that is so is never explained although if we follow the particulars of the issue one would reach the conclusion that killing students doing religious studies in this particular case is , if anything, LESS reprehensible than, every thing else being equal, killing students doing Architecture or Medicine or, say, Arabic Literature!

Nonetheless the whole absurd edifice , whose foundations were laid by Mr. Friedman and whose superstructure is being "developed" by side kick, multi awarded Professor Eckstein, who, true to form, did NOT contribute a milligram of originality of anything, is however ridiculously sickly and pathetically idiotic.

Why is a certain human life more valuable than another IF it happens to be that of some one doing X while the other is doing Y studies ???.

It is well known and completely understandable that RACISTS, being the mentally deformed and psychologically perverted people that they are, are always on the look out for methods and criteria with which to evaluate , to appraise, the relative value of a human life versus an other, particularly when it comes to wasting it.

So they chose the white over the coloured and the Jew over the Goyim but now that they are faced with the more taxing Jew versus Jew (Jew versus goyim was a pleasure) they have developed the theory of "Branch of Study"!

Well for a doctrine that insists that their should be a hierarchy of death ability , a pecking order of victimization such idiotic
conclusions and deranged
classification is only to be expected.

Particularly if and when we recall that its religious fountain head has different punishments for the same crime if committed by a Jew or a Goy!


art eckstein - 3/8/2008

Translation: she has no answer to Mr. Friedman's argument.


art eckstein - 3/8/2008

I have three responses.

1. Since Gee is saying that state sanctioned murder is the worst form of barbarism, then she is saying that the Hamas govt, which not merely sanctioned but celebrated these murders, is guilty of the worst form of barbarism.

2. There is no doubt that intentionally going into a library and killing young people who are peacefully studying and who belong to a group that doesn't even serve in the army--that is intentional murder.

3a. But the key term IS murder. As with most terms, Gee refuses--for propaganda reasons--ever to be exact in her thinking or expression. She calls it "nit-picking". (So if she wants to call Gaza genocide though the population has increased in the last hree years, she does.) Murder is the intentional killing of innocent people.

3b. In one sense all war is murder, but that is to equate all violence with murder. But when the Israelis hit back at terrorists who are targeting their civilians with 800 rockets, that is not murder, but war. And the responsibility for civilians deaths lies with the terrorists who intentionally hide among civilians while targetting targetting. Gee has never yet responded to this argument of Michael Walzer, one of the West's leading political philosophers, and a man of the Left.

4. But HERE is the real kicker: above, in a posting written about 15 minutes later than the one here at #120556, Gee, so concerned with murder, now JUSTIFIES the Library attack. I quote:

First she quotes Friedman: "Targeting religious students - clergy - is barbarism."

Then:

"An alternative view, to which I feel we must give sufficient weight, is that in a state founded on a theological principle and engaged in acts of illegal occupation and genocide, religious students may well be considered as much combatants as soldiers. From this vantage point, it is less pathetic, as you would have us believe, Mr Friedman, than strategic."

I thought Gee couldn't get any lower than she'd gotten. I was wrong.


art eckstein - 3/8/2008

In response to these barbaric murders, Gee twice previously issued statements demurely deplored the loss of innocent life on both sides. Quite the opposite of her quivering outrage at the Israelis daring to shoot back at terrorists who had fired 800 rockets at civilians in the past two months, but still...she deplored the violence.

But NOW she changes her position, and she justifies--on the basis of proven lies-- the murder of the students peacefully studying in a library.

You know, I thought Gee couldn't go any lower than she'd gone. But...she has.


art eckstein - 3/8/2008

1. If Omar is saying that the 120 people killed were all merely civilians, and killed because the Israelis like to kill civilians, then he is a liar.

2. There were civilians killed in Gaza, because the terrorists intentionally hide among them. As for those poor civilians, Michael Walzer writes: when those who shoot rockets at innocent civilians do this while intentionally hiding among their own civilians themselves, intentionally employing them as shields, then the people morally responsible for the civilian casualties that occur when there is the counterfire are those who fire the rockets from among civilians, using them as shields. THEY are responsible for those causalties-- and NO ONE ELSE.

3. Omar needs to address this point, made by the scholar acknowledged in the West as one of the leading philosophers of politics, a man of the Left, a socialist.


Sally Gee - 3/8/2008

"Targeting religious students - clergy - is barbarism."

An alternative view, to which I feel we must give sufficient weight, is that in a state founded on a theological principle and engaged in acts of illegal occupation and genocide, religious students may well be considered as much combatants as soldiers. From this vantage point, it is less pathetic, as you would have us believe, Mr Friedman, than strategic.


Sally Gee - 3/8/2008

Rhetoric, Mr Friedman, bad rhetoric.


Sally Gee - 3/8/2008

My view, for what it is worth, Mr Friedman, is that state sanctioned murder is the worst form of barbarism. And you may be quite right. It is probably a terribly reactionary point of view but, as you have already noticed, it is not at the service of genocide.


omar ibrahim baker - 3/8/2008

To see "barbarism" in killing 8 young men and fail to see it in the killing of 120 men, women, children , oldsters, devoid words of their meaning.

It is not ONLY racism that we have here it is BLINDNESS; real, actual, pathological inability to see!


art eckstein - 3/8/2008

By the way Omar,

1. You talk above of "the killing of 120 men, women, children , oldsters" as if the fact was not that half of those killed were actually terrorist adults according to all newspaper accounts.

2. As for the other half, the poor civilians, as Michael Walzer writes: when those who shoot rockets at innocent civilians do this while intentionally hiding among their own civilians themselves and intentionally employing them as shields, then the people morally responsible for the civilian casualties that occur when there is the inevitablecounterfire are those who fire the rockets. THEY are responsible for those causalties-- and NO ONE ELSE.

3. There is a world of difference between such retaliatory actions and the intentional targetting for murder of students peacefully studying in a library.

4. I'll make a deal with Omar: WHEN he has Israelis intentionally attacking a religious school and killing the students who are innocently studying, AND the response of the Israeli government is to call this act a "blessing', AND the Israeli population is gleefully handing out candy to their children in celebration--THEN Omar could talk not about special israeli evil but about moral equivalence in Israeli and Palestinian actions. But not until then.

5. And if Omar dares to bring up Baruch Goldstein's atrocity of 1994 (there is only one such act like this, by the way), just remember that one result of Goldstein was 300,000 in the streets demonstrating against his act. AGAINST it, Omar--not CELEBRATING it. Because to celebrate such acts is, as N.F. says, barbarism. The grotesque barbarism of Gaza.


art eckstein - 3/8/2008

As Michael Walzer writes: those who shoot rockets at innocent civilians while intentionally hiding among civilians themselves and intentionally employing them as shields the people morally responsible for the civilian casualties that occur when there is counterfire. THEY are responsible for those causalties-- and NO ONE ELSE.

Case closed.


art eckstein - 3/8/2008

Gee writes:

"c. As for the 'implementation of genocide", Gee: once more I ask for EVIDENCE." We call it the stuff that appears on the BBC TV News, and is written about in The Guardian, The Financial Times, etc. Oh, and there's Vilnai's speech. Mustn't forget that."

1. The so-called "evidence" of Gee is merely vague references to violence, not genocide. Where is the EVIDENCE, Gee, that the intention of the Israelis is that Gaza population is being systematically destroyed, i.e., that it is ceasing physically to exist? In fact, the Gazan population has increased by 140,000 since 2003. In a similar three year period in Europe, the Jewish population was slaughtered by two-thirds, with a LOSS of six million lives EVIDENCE that something similar is happening to the Gazans, Gee!

2. In fact, Gee has none. Because it isn't happening. Her assertion about the Geneva Convention is pure BS--a lie. The Geneva convention, written in the shadow of the Holocaust, is NOT talking about ordinary violence and war but about the intentional physical destruction of an ethnic, religious or national group. "Destruction" is not a metaphor. Physical destruction of an entire people means reducing it from, say, 9 million to 3 million in a three year period. There is nothing like this in Gaza--just the opposite, the Gazan population is increasing.

3. An example of Gee's intellect at work is her intentional employment of a mistranlation of Vilnai over and over, when it has been shown to her in every possible way to be a mistranlsation, and when Der Spiegel, for instance--no lover of Israel--did NOT mistranslate it. This is now simply yet another lie by Gee.

4. Gee has no evidence for any of her vile assertions, she never has. Asked over and over, she has never produced anything specific. Never.

5. Meanwhile Gee is morally and emotionally indifferent both the slaughter of seminary students at study in a library,, indifferent to the celebratory response of the Gaza government and people. Similarly, she is indifferent to the REAL genocide in Darfur, with its 400,000 deaths in two years at a minimum.

6. My conclusion is that Gee is simply a vile, emotionally corrupt and intellectually worthless propagandist. She employs terms such as "Nazi" and "Genocide" against Israel not because they have the slightest relationship to reality bu merely as a vicious pyschological and propaganda weapon against people who have suffered a real genocide at the hands of real Nazis.




art eckstein - 3/8/2008

Gee writes:

"c. As for the 'implementation of genocide", Gee: once more I ask for EVIDENCE." We call it the stuff that appears on the BBC TV News, and is written about in The Guardian, The Financial Times, etc. Oh, and there's Vilnai's speech. Mustn't forget that."

1. The so-called "evidence" of Gee is merely vague references to violence, not genocide. Where is the EVIDENCE, Gee, that the intention of the Israelis is that Gaza population is being systematically destroyed, i.e., that it is ceasing physically to exist? In fact, the Gazan population has increased by 140,000 since 2003. In a similar three year period in Europe, the Jewish population was slaughtered by two-thirds, with a LOSS of six million lives EVIDENCE that something similar is happening to the Gazans, Gee!

2. In fact, Gee has none. Because it isn't happening. Her assertion about the Geneva Convention is pure BS--a lie. The Geneva convention, written in the shadow of the Holocaust, is NOT talking about ordinary violence and war but about the intentional physical destruction of an ethnic, religious or national group. "Destruction" is not a metaphor. Physical destruction of an entire people means reducing it from, say, 9 million to 3 million in a three year period. There is nothing like this in Gaza--just the opposite, the Gazan population is increasing.

3. An example of Gee's intellect at work is her intentional employment of a mistranlation of Vilnai over and over, when it has been shown to her in every possible way to be a mistranlsation, and when Der Spiegel, for instance--no lover of Israel--did NOT mistranslate it. This is now simply yet another lie by Gee.

4. Gee has no evidence for any of her vile assertions, she never has. Asked over and over, she has never produced anything specific. Never.

5. Meanwhile Gee is morally and emotionally indifferent both the slaughter of seminary students at study in a library,, indifferent to the celebratory response of the Gaza government and people. Similarly, she is indifferent to the REAL genocide in Darfur, with its 400,000 deaths in two years at a minimum.

6. My conclusion is that Gee is simply a vile, emotionally corrupt and intellectually worthless propagandist. She employs terms such as "Nazi" and "Genocide" against Israel not because they have the slightest relationship to reality bu merely as a vicious pyschological and propaganda weapon against people who have suffered a real genocide at the hands of real Nazis.




omar ibrahim baker - 3/8/2008

Mr. Friedman
To see "barbarism" in killing 8 young men and fail to see it in the killing of 120 men, women, children , oldsters, devoid words of their meaning.

It is not ONLY racism that we have here it is BLINDNESS; real, actual, pathological inability to see!

That is why talk is futile and were it NOT for the odd chance that an interested third party is going over these words, yours and mine, I would NOT have bothered with your kind.

The important development is that the ratio of the "blind" in Israeli society is increasing which is OK for the non blind never ever had the slightest chance to effect things positively!

Soon it will be Netanyahu, a worthy successor to the criminal band of Begin, Sharrett (both officially classified as "terrorists" by Great Britain, no less) and Sharon.
That, I deem it positive, for these are the TRUE FACE and SOULL of Israel.


N. Friedman - 3/8/2008

Omar,

Targeting religious students - clergy - is barbarism. It does not get lower.

And, yes, your barbarian friends do have a choice in targets. They chose, among the possible targets available, to kill students - religious students at that - in a seminary whose students do not even participate in the military.

Those involved were, so that you understand it in Islamic terms, clergy and not engaged in supporting any war. Which is to say, your friends should be judged depraved by Islamic law. That such does not occur tells you just how loathsome Palestinian Arab society has become - a society of barbarians.

My suggestion to you, Omar, is that Israel, in fact, still makes moral choices. However, it could, like your society, choose barbarism. Were it to do so, the F16s and Apache gunships could be used at civilian targets. Is that really the war you want for your people? Perhaps it is. Your people intentionally place their children with combatants so that the children will be killed. That is the sign of a people who has no respect for life - a people who hates their own. Pathetic brutes.

As for the weapons argument you make, it is a phony argument. The lack of such weapons is no excuse for targeting students. The failure to understand that basic point is the sign of a mind that has descended to barbarism.

Pathetic.


omar ibrahim baker - 3/8/2008

"I knew it! It WAS the Jews' fault! Thanks for clearing this up, Gee. I guess those Jews left the Palestinians NO CHOICE but to attack Jewish kids studying in a library. "

(Re: In view of today's terrible events, Israel requires to be disarmed (#120432)
by art eckstein on March 7, 2008 at 9:34 AM)

...........................
What I love most about Eckstein , the multi awarded Rambo of the Word and the INTELLECT,is his "innocence" and his "straight forwardness".
He uses words boldly , eloquently and truthfully!!
Consider his latest gem above:

-"I guess those Jews left the Palestinians NO CHOICE but to attack
Jewish kids studying in a library. "


Of course the Palestinians had the choice to :
1-use their F16s and Apache gunships in selective air raids on Israeli airbases
2-deploy their Abrams tanks to confront the amassed might of Israeli armour facing them.

With such armour and options at their disposal , their failure to use either or both is a sure sign of cowardly "IslamoFascism"!

BUT the worst part is that their targets were "Jewish KIDS" ;teeny, tiny little KIDS: small,innocent, finger sucking ,baby faced cherubims studying in the library of their "kindergarten".

That is the beauty and force of Eckstein :Dish it out truthfully as it is!
Seldom was such calibre of intellect lodged with such a truthful heart; in only one person!
WOW!!!


N. Friedman - 3/7/2008

Art,

I think that we have gathered enough samples of Ms. Gee's methods and mindset to have exhausted her value as a comment poster. She has made her point clear. She could care less when Jews are massacred. Why? Because it is all politics for her. Hence, the worst forms of barbarism do not even phase her.

Perhaps, when a massacre kills someone she loves, she will realize just how low those who celebrate and bless massacres have descended. In the meanwhile, she will cluck, cluck her reactionary views in the service of barbarism.


art eckstein - 3/7/2008

Readers:

Gaza population in 2003 according to the UN:
1,300,000.

Gaza population in 2007 according to Index Mundi:
1,480,000

So much for Gee's "genocide."


N. Friedman - 3/7/2008

Ms. Gee,

Part of judging what is foreseeable is to judge what happens. In this case, what you think is foreseeable and what occurred are exactly opposite to each other. Hence, your view of what is foreseeable may simply be wrong. I should add: I do not just think it is wrong, I think that the entire premise is idiotic.

As for the book you cite, what is the point you have to make in citing it? And, what evidence in the book you cite supports your contention? Please quote from the book so there is no question about what you have in mind.


N. Friedman - 3/7/2008

Ms. Gee,

We are not speaking of one event. We are speaking of two categories of events. And the terms I chose were not based on their legality - which is a different question. My comment was directed to the morality of the deaths under distinguishable circumstances: in one case, children killed who are located too close to combatants; in the other case, children targeted intentionally by combatants.

I care very little about the legalities here as this situation raises more important issues than the legalities involved. I might add: there is no doubt that targeting seminary students in school is the gravest of grave violations of International law. Evidently, such acts do not violate Gazan law where, by means of a moral inversion, such acts are blessed and cheered by barbarians who live in Gaza.


Sally Gee - 3/7/2008

But how can the same crime have two different meanings, Mr Friedman? Isn't holding that belief the reason why we hung Nazis and their gofers? What makes the Zionists so different? Or their gofers?




N. Friedman - 3/7/2008

No, Ms. Gee,

No one here posts whole articles. That is the way it is here.


N. Friedman - 3/7/2008

Ms. Gee,

You write: What is the difference between a "terrible" thing and an "abominable" thing Mr Friedman?

Answer, according to my dictionary:

"Terrible" = "Causing great fear or alarm; dreadful."

"Abominable" = "Unequivocally detestable; loathsome."

Two different words with two different meanings.

I enjoy hearing, as you say, that I "meant to be better than this!" That is true for nearly all human beings. It seems to me, if you stand with barbarians who shoot up children in school, you evidently were not meant to be better than you are; rather, you have no moral compass at all.


Sally Gee - 3/7/2008

What is the difference between a "terrible" thing and an "abominable" thing Mr Friedman? Semantics? Etymology? Vacuity?

I think you love your own rage too much, my friend, and you are the one I fear most - not the neo-Nazis, not the Christians, not the Muslims or Islam, but you - because you were meant to be better than this!


Sally Gee - 3/7/2008

1. Grow up

2. It is not a question if it is specifically Israel's policy but of it being a foreseeable consequence of Israel's conduct as an Occupying Force. Difficult one for you, heh?

3. Try Arab Political Demography by Onn Winckler, Sussex Academic Press, 2005 ISBN 1902210700, It is a college level text which may, hopefully, be within your grasp (at a pinch, anyway), Oh Mighty Multi-Awarded One


N. Friedman - 3/7/2008

Ms. Gee,

I have just noticed your bizarre posts. I gather that you prefer to employ tu quoque responses as opposed to admitting that intentionally shooting up a school with students in it is abominable and that those her cheer and bless such events act abominably.

The fact that this is all politics to you is, with the above in mind, noted.

You should now take my point clearly in reply. When children are killed by Israelis in an effort to kill actual combatants, it is a terrible thing. I do not like it and I wish it would never happen. But, it is not remotely the same sort of thing as intentionally targeting children. Further, blessing and cheering such acts is not remotely the same thing as noting and analyzing the unfortunately and surely terrible reality that civilians sometimes die when combatants locate themselves where civilians are living.

Intentionally targeting children is always the act of a barbarian. There is no excuse for it, without regard to who does it or the excuse used to justify it. The cheering and blessing of such acts by Palestinian Arabs renders those with such state of mind into barbarians.

Mark my words: Palestinian Arabs have lowered themselves to the level of true barbarians.


art eckstein - 3/7/2008

1. Gee offers no evidence that Israel is guilty of genocide under the definition of the Geneva Conventions--NONE. All she offers, once again, is personal abuse when she is asked (gasp!) to substantiate her assertions.


2. Regarding (d): EVIDENCE that this is Israeli policy?

3. Regarding (d): EVIDENCE that this has had the effect that Gee says it has?


Sally Gee - 3/7/2008

Most of your points are as loony as usual, Herr Loopy but I must point out that, "(d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group" is a real goer if the Occupying Force has deliberately witheld supplies which has had the effect of increasing dead births and increasing mortality in the first twelve months of life.


Sally Gee - 3/7/2008

"2. But note, readers, the reference to "the Reichstag Moment" and "the recent threat and implementation of genocide in Gaza". Both are attempts to depict Israel as a Nazi state."

I think you are finally cottoning on Mr Multi-Awarded. I'm saying, "stop it before it gets any further, and reverse it" and you're saying. "keep it going, keep it going, it's fun and it gives meaning to my otherwise empty and meaningless life".

"The "Reichstag Moment" indicates, if she really is seeking a parallel and not just a smear, that she is implying that the latest Palestinian disgusting barbarism was actually a put-up job by israeli intelligence."

Not so, but then I'm not convinced that the Nazis started the Reichstag fire either. They merely used it as a ratchet to enable them to pursue their purposes even more ruthlessly. But then, why do you automatically assume that, specifically, I imply that it "was actually a put-up job by israeli intelligence"? Is this some form of pre-emptive denial? Do you know something to which we are not privy?

"c. As for the 'implementation of genocide", Gee: once more I ask for EVIDENCE." We call it the stuff that appears on the BBC TV News, and is written about in The Guardian, The Financial Times, etc. Oh, and there's Vilnai's speech. Mustn't forget that.

"THEN Gee deploys the terms "genocide"! NOT to describe the murder of students in a library--No no! But to describe Israeli retaliation against terrorists firing at Jewish civilians." Well, the murder of students in a library is self-evidently not genocide but it is something which should be treated as, as you yourself say, as murder.

But, then, when "retaliation" takes the form of the mass murder of a civilian population following a public threat of genocide, and Israeli behaviour in Gaza complies with at least three of the five conditions stipulated in the Genocide Covention, 1948, towards a population under military occupation, figuring out that it's genocide is a bit of a no-brainer.


A. M. Eckstein - 3/7/2008

1. Gee, please read all of the Article 2. "Killing members of a group "doesn't mean killing ANY members; it has to be systematic elimination of the entire ethnic, national or religious group. That is, killing on a mass scale--like the Nazis actually did. That's not going on in Gaza. It IS what the Palestinians intend for the Jews.

2. Same with "serious bodily harm": it's not ANY serious bodily harm (say, attendent upon war), it's systematic infliction for the purpose of elimination of the ethnic, national, or religious group. That's not going on in Gaza. It IS what the Palestinians intend for the Jews.

3. Inflicting of conditions leading to destruction of the entire group? At least in this one, Gee recognizes that this has to be the intended goal. But who is doing that? Certainly not the Israelis, as is proven by:

4. "Intending to prevent births"? What was the population of Gaza in 1967? In 2001? Today? Ridiculous.

As I have often pointed out, Gee needs to learn how to read things carefully. But you know, somehow I don't expect she will.


Sally Gee - 3/7/2008

Mr Friedman, when you say "Westphalia Treaty of 1648", which one do you mean precisely? There were 30 or so individual treaties which collectively became known as the Westphalian Peace. Your historical awareness and understanding seems alittle shaky, but can I take it that you are referring specifically to The Treaty of Osnabrück and the Treaty of Münster, both of 1648, or do you mean something else altogether? Can you remember?

You do seem to be a remarkably inattentive fellow, though. Page three of "Illegal Occupation: Framing the Occupied Palestinian Terrority", 2005, 23 Berkeley J. Int'l L. 551, clearly states: "The underlying principle of the international legal order rests on a presumption [*554] of sovereign equality between states. n13 Current international law understands sovereignty to be vested in the people, giving expression to the right to self-determination. n14" The article is a thorough exploration of this position and I suggest that, if you disagree with its conclusions, your time would be better spent preparing a refutation for the Berkeley Journal of International Law rather than wasting your ideas on poor little me, whose immediate response, after all, is to question your wisdom, your knowledge and the quality of your advice. But, then, I'm just an old fashioned empricist


art eckstein - 3/7/2008

1. Translation: as usual, she has no response other than yet more personal vilification. No facts, no logical argument.

2. But note, readers, the reference to "the Reichstag Moment" and "the recent threat and implementation of genocide in Gaza". Both are attempts to depict Israel as a Nazi state.

a. The "Reichstag Moment" indicates, if she really is seeking a parallel and not just a smear, that she is implying that the latest Palestinian disgusting barbarism was actually a put-up job by israeli intelligence.

b. The "threat of genocide" reference refer to a mistranslation of "shoah" (as opposed to "HaShoah") which has been SHOWN to be a mistranslation on another HNN thread (the term wasn't mistranslated by, e.g., Der Spiegel--not a magazine in love with Israel), where Gee was made to appear a fool, but she persists in mistranslating. Now it cannot be out of ignorance. It is therefore out of sheer malice.

c. As for the 'implementation of genocide", Gee: once more I ask for EVIDENCE.

3. Readers, I note that in response to the latest Palestinian barbarisms (not just the murders of the students but the official and popular celebrations of those murders), all we got from Gee was a demure and even-handed "I deplore the fatalities on both sides." But regarding Israeli retaliation for 800 rockets fired in the last two months at Israeli civilians, THEN Gee deploys the terms "genocide"! NOT to describe the murder of students in a library--No no! But to describe Israeli retaliation against terrorists firing at Jewish civilians.




Sally Gee - 3/7/2008

Well, Mr Multi-Loopy, the government of Israel are doing pretty well at covering three of the "..acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:

(a) Killing members of the group;

(b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;

(c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;"

and it's not to difficult to build a case that it's covering a fourth almost as well:

"(d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;".

I also find it hard to believe that you believe that the UN voted to establish a genocidal Jewish State which incorporated the whole of the Palestinian Mandate. But, as they say, anything is possible in America...



Sally Gee - 3/7/2008

My dear Mr Multi-Awarded, I don't think it is appropriate to use so many deaths as an excuse for your own personal Reichstag fire moment. If it's not been done for you already, I really think it is in your own best interests to step into that straightjacket voluntarily.

Perhaps if there were enough straighjackets to go around, we may yet have peace in Israel and the Occupied Territories. It is possible that the illegal nature of this occupation, its duration and the associated ethnic cleansing, not to mention the recent threat - and implementation - of genocide in Gaza may possibly have had something to do with the killer's motives.


Sally Gee - 3/7/2008

But then why shouldn't he have agreed when you obviously misled - no, I think I prefer the more neutral term, lied - about the BBC's terms of use.

I am sure he has had the wisdom to contact the BBC and establish its position for himself. I'm also pretty sure he will have used the opportunity to promote HNN in the UK on the coattails of this blog to great effect. I must make a pint of catching the BBC's Six O'Clock News broadcsst this evening.

I also have no doubt that the editorial staff as a whole at HNN abhor censorship as much as I do, and quite as much as the strength of your wish to impose it on honest journalism of record which is not to your taste.


art eckstein - 3/7/2008

1. Folks, here is what Article 2 of the Geneva Convention, to which Gee refers in her constant accusations of Israeli genocide, ACTUALLY says


Article 2

In the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:

(a) Killing members of the group;

(b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;

(c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;

(d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;

(e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.

2. The govt of Israel is doing none of these things. Period.

3. If Gee believes it IS doing some of these things, Gee needs to provide (dare I say it?) EVIDENCE that is.

4. Gee apparently thinks that the establishment of Israel (i.e., "the occupation of Palestine") was a violation of "the Geneva conventions" (that's what she wrote at 4:31 AM). But Israel was legally established on the basis of a vote in the United Nations General Assembly. On November 29, 1947, the United Nations General Assembly passed a resolution calling for the establishment of a Jewish State in the Palestine Mandate.


art eckstein - 3/7/2008

I knew it! It WAS the Jews' fault! Thanks for clearing this up, Gee. I guess those Jews left the Palestinians NO CHOICE but to attack Jewish kids studying in a library. And it's the fault of the JEWS that Palestinian society is now such a death-cult that the government "blesses" this operation and Palestinians hand out candy to children to celebrate the murder of other children.

Thanks for clearing that up, Gee.


Sally Gee - 3/7/2008

Good morning my skulking little Zionist Forces of the Power of Utter and Complete Unreason.

Mr Friedman, don't tell me you haven't noticed that there seems to be organised elements of the Israeli-Jewish Lobby throughout the English speaking world whose primary purpose is to react negatively to true stories which are critical if Israel's illegal occupation of Palestine and it genocidal and ethnic clensing policies. Why, they even try to censor the of use BBC articles for private, non-commercial use when they are quoted on scholarly websites, despite the BBC's clear terms of use, to further restrict accurate and truth-based debate. Whoever would have thought it possible?

Oh so they didn't put you in a straightjacket after all, Herr Multi-Award. As I have always made clear , the occupation of Palestine is illegal under the Geneva Conventions and Israeli is acting in contravention of Article 2 of the Genocide Convention 1948 and you have had adequate evidence of the truth of these statements from me and others.


N. Friedman - 3/6/2008

Omar,

What new ballgame?


N. Friedman - 3/6/2008

Quite likely, Art.


art eckstein - 3/6/2008

I guess Gee's response to me means that as usual she HAS no evidence to support her position, and moreover deeply resents my asking her to present any.


N. Friedman - 3/6/2008

Ms. Gee,

The posters on the comment article you posted to disagree vehemently with the article, including pointing out that the article misunderstands the word "shoah." Moreover, at least one of the posters noted the intransigence of the Hamas movement - a vile group which is unwilling to make peace.


Sally Gee - 3/6/2008

My own view is that Deputy Defence Minister Vilnai gave away all the evidence we need in what he said, and this was confimed by the subsequent murderous behaviour of the IDF in Gaza.

I take it, Mr Multi-Awarded Bloodlust, that you, unlike the civilised world, continue whimsically to choose to deny that, "It beggars belief against the background of the Jewish holocaust that a senior member of the Israeli government can see fit to use the process of annihilating a nation of people as an open threat and attract so little international condemnation. To describe it as repugnant is an understatement. Yet it reflects a danger that Israel has gone beyond a point where the rationalities and basic underpinnings of humanity and civilisation are respected. The relentless bombardment of the Gaza Strip under the risible excuse of self-defence is a brutal part of a broader assault, which in its callous disregard for the difference between combatants and civilians, is a purge against the nation of the Palestinian people."
http://www.tribunemagazine.co.uk/2008/03/06/tribune-comment-israel%E2%80%99s-gaza-atrocities-continue/

Perhaps it all depends on what we mean by evidence and psychotics have much higher - and certainly different - standards than the rest of us.

Oh, and as I have said on more than one occasion, the definition of genocide in Article 2 of the Genocide Convention, 1948, adequately covers what is happening in Gaza.

I cannot imagine why you think that a rise in population will somehow magic away the crime of genocide. It has rather less to do with the birth rate than with the rate of mortality and the other factors specified in Article 2. It is just such a weird thing to say. Really, really weird, and not in a nice way, I might add.

And that Nazi jackboot crashing into my face again: "What is it now? EVIDENCE, Gee!". Pure psychosis, and you really need help if you want my honest opinion. Approach one of your university's counsellors and they will give you good, effective advice on how you may best get help before things get too far. It will all be absolutely private and confidential unless, of course, they feel they have to call security to ensure their own immediate personal safety and the safety of others. In that event you'll probably never be allowed near a keyboard without close supervision ever again so, on the assumption it will all go pearshaped for you, as I'm on London time, I'll say goodbye now in case we never have an opporunity to
debate together again - well, for a few years at least, I expect. Nighty, night, as we say in Britspeak.


N. Friedman - 3/6/2008

Ms. Gee,

The editor of HNN agreed with me when I complained.

As for your view, your use on a website is not personal use. It is a public, not a personal, use. So, your argument is, to be frank, stupid.


A. M. Eckstein - 3/6/2008

That's not only a lie, that's a double lie.

1. Prove "genocide" is occurring. EVIDENCE.

2. Obviously, I do not support genocide, not anywhere. Gee, on the other hand, is indifferent to the 400,000 dead in Darfur.

Also, Gee needs to define "genocide" before throwing the term around. What is your definition, Gee? Are you speaking normal English or anti-Israeli Doublespeak? Helpful Hint #1: This doesn't mean "war". Helpful Hint #2: what was the population of the West Bank under Jordan and Gaza under Egypt? What was the population in 2001? What is it now? EVIDENCE, Gee!


Sally Gee - 3/6/2008

Well, no. In much the same way that I don't approve of Israel's genocidal policies in the Occupied Territories. But you do. Odd that. Paradoxical, one might say, Herr Multi-Award.


art eckstein - 3/6/2008


Do you approve of this operation, Gee? Do you "bless" it, as Hamas does? Do you "understand" it, though of course...tsk-tsk?

In ANY case, how is Israel supposed to deal with a Hamas government that overtly "blesses" the murder of seminary students in a library, or a population that celebrates the slaughter of innocents by shooting guns in the air?


art eckstein - 3/6/2008

Trnslation: Gee can't answer your questions, Mr. Green.


Sally Gee - 3/6/2008

I think Tribune, the British weekly, has managed to capture the situation in a short article which I an sure they wil be happy to have me post in response to Mr Friedman's fluffy puff advocating the maiming and murder of a civilian population - men, women and children - by a military force which has occupied their land illegally for forty years.


Tribune Comment: Israel’s Gaza atrocities continue
March 6, 2008 2:29 pm admin comment, frontpage

HOLOCAUST is not a word to be bandied about recklessly and there are laws in many countries to protect the integrity of its historic and global meaning. So, when Israel’s Jewish deputy defence minister Matan Vilnai threatens Palestinians with a “holocaust” if they do not stop firing home-made weapons into Israel, it is reasonable to assume that this was delivered with considered rather than reckless intent, though reckless it certainly was. The chilling warning exemplifies the collective psychosis which has reached an advanced level in the Israeli government.

It beggars belief against the background of the Jewish holocaust that a senior member of the Israeli government can see fit to use the process of annihilating a nation of people as an open threat and attract so little international condemnation. To describe it as repugnant is an understatement. Yet it reflects a danger that Israel has gone beyond a point where the rationalities and basic underpinnings of humanity and civilisation are respected. The relentless bombardment of the Gaza Strip under the risible excuse of self-defence is a brutal part of a broader assault, which in its callous disregard for the difference between combatants and civilians, is a purge against the nation of the Palestinian people.

The Gaza Strip is already one big prison camp. Since Hamas was elected two years ago to the displeasure of Israel, the United States and the European Union, Israel – with the support of the US and the EU – has imposed a punitive economic blockade on trade, essential supplies, electricity and water. The mass breakout in January across the Egyptian border was followed by further punitive military strikes. And slaughter.

The reaction from the British and American governments has been to join Israel in blaming the Palestinians for bringing it on themselves. Foreign Secretary David Miliband condemned the firing of rockets from the Gaza Strip as terrorist acts, defended Israel’s right to self-defence and blamed the slaughter on the Palestinians on the “significant rise” in Palestinian rocket attacks.

Yet there is a disparity in the missile exchanges which makes the Israeli “response” glaringly disproportionate. At least 120 Palestinians – one in five of whom were women and children – have been killed in the past week. Three Israelis were killed in the same period, two of whom were military personnel involved in attacking the Gaza Strip. In the past seven years 13 Israeli civilians have died as a result of the Palestinians’ erratic home-made devices. Israeli human rights group B’Tselem calculates that 379 Palestinians died in the past year alone as a result of Israeli military action. From 2000 to 2005, at the height of the intifada, four Palestinians were killed for every Israeli. It is now running at more than 40 to one.

Yet Britain and America condemn the Palestinian terrorists and place a protective diplomatic arm around Israel. The refusal to accept, and negotiate with, the democratically-elected government of Hamas can only draw out the conflict and lead to greater bloodshed. The Israeli cabinet is split over whether to continue the present “targeted” bombardment or to go for a full-scale invasion of Gaza.

Israel is already in breach of more than 30 United Nations resolutions on its occupation of Palestinian land but receives “special case” status in the international community. Will the world stand by and allow a Palestinian pogrom to be part of that special case? Washington appears unwilling to show any sign using its weight and influence to achieve a solution until it achieves its primary aim, which is a change of government in the Gaza Strip. It is prepared to use the threat of further deaths as a means to that end, as Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice’s sabotaging of putative talks involving Hamas indicates. Britain should have no part in that, yet is implicated by its lack of an independent foreign policy.

In the absence of any serious international effort at the only possible long-term solution – the establishment of two independent states and the return of Palestinian territories – the US, with its passive allies in tow, is continuing to press for the only foreign policy it truly understands: regime change.

http://www.tribunemagazine.co.uk/2008/03/06/tribune-comment-israel%E2%80%99s-gaza-atrocities-continue/


Sally Gee - 3/6/2008

You must be an incredibly incompetent lawyer, Mr Friedman. These are the relevant sentences in the BBC's terms of use:

"You may not copy, reproduce, republish, disassemble, decompile, reverse engineer, download, post, broadcast, transmit, make available to the public, or otherwise use bbc.co.uk content in any way except for your own personal, non-commercial use. You also agree not to adapt, alter or create a derivative work from any bbc.co.uk content except for your own personal, non-commercial use. Any other use of bbc.co.uk content requires the prior written permission of the BBC."

Note the phrase "except for your own personal, non-commercial use"? Posting in a debate on Israel's genocidal policies on a site like HNN devoted to historical scholarship is precisely what the BBC means by "your own personal, non-commercial use". Isn't it amazing that you failed to spot it when you transcribed the "BBC's stated policy"? I would have thought that even a tenth rate shyster might have got that right. Or am I missing something here? I think you may have an 'ickle, 'ickle problem with free speech and a nasty tendency to deceive. This is probably why they Nazis failed too.


N. Friedman - 3/6/2008

Note this item from today's news:


Two gunmen infiltrated a Jewish seminary in Jerusalem and opened fire in a library Thursday night, killing at least seven people, police and rescue workers said.

How ought Israel to respond?

This is what Hamas says about the incident: "In Gaza, Hamas welcomed the terrorist attack. 'We bless the [Jerusalem] operation. It will not be the last,' Hamas said in a statement." (Emphasis added).

Would anyone other than a barbarian "bless" such a ghastly massacre? Is that the behavior of a legitimate freedom fighters? Is this a
legitimate form of warfare? Is this not wanton barbarism?

Note also the reaction of Gazans: "In Gaza City, residents went out into the streets and fired rifles in celebration in the air after hearing news of the attack on the seminary."

How can anyone support people who celebrate a massacre? How can anyone claim that just war theory supports a movement which blesses and celebrates massacres? How can anyone support a movement which relies, as a central means, on massacring civilians - seminary students!!! -?

In response to Professor LeVine's article, there can be no peace with Hamas. It is a barbarian movement that aims at genocide - just as it says in the group's covenant. As Sari Nuseibeh claims (source: Dissent Magazine, Fall 2002):

We're telling the Israelis that we're going to kick you out: it's not that we want liberation, freedom, and independence in the West Bank and Gaza, we want to kick you out of your home. And in order to make sure that the Israelis get the message, people go into a disco or restaurant and blow themselves up.

That is the truth. And that is why there needs to be a blockade.


N. Friedman - 3/6/2008

Ms. Gee,

It is good to see that the blockade is working. That is the will of the International community with regard to the lunatic religious fanatic government of Hamas and its lunatic religious fanatic supporters. They are the religious equivalent of the fascists.

Further, the article shows clearly that there is only a crisis, not a holocaust. So, your post does not support your contention anyway.

Lastly, your posting of the article is in direct violation of the BBC's policy regarding copying. That is illegal. I think that your posting entire articles is a matter to take to HNN for consideration because you are creating a problem. The BBC's stated policy is:

Except where expressly stated otherwise, you are not permitted to copy, broadcast, download, store (in any medium), transmit, show or play in public, adapt or change in any way the content of these BBC web pages for any other purpose whatsoever without the prior written permission of the BBC.


omar ibrahim baker - 3/6/2008

I am sure Mr Friedman you would dearly love to see more of the "genocide" in what is going on in GAZA and more genocides!

"Surely, you realize that Palestinian Arabs, were they merely to give up their fight against Israel, would not be killed off en masse. "
True enough except that "give up their fight" should have read "submitted to Zionist colonialism" and then their battle, had they stopped fighting would be to thwart the Zionist "Ethnic cleansing" that always follows Israeli victories.

Now however, I promise you, it is a new "ball game"!


N. Friedman - 3/6/2008

Ms. Gee,

Again, Ms. Gee, one needs to understand the law to understand the article. I do not think you understand what you posted.

I shall, to make you happy, humor you by discussing part of the article. Here is my substantive reply. According to what appears: "said sovereignty is vested in the population under occupation." Actually, that initial premise of the article you cite is contrary to International law as it has been understood since the Westphalia Treaty of 1648.

Sovereignty vests only in states. Further, a state, absent other legal doctrines that may be specific to a dispute, which occupies land due to a war becomes a belligerent occupant of the land conquered; notwithstanding, sovereignty in that conquered land remains in the state that was the former sovereign on that land. That is, frankly, black letter law over which there is no doubt.

Note: occupation is a doctrine of states, not of peoples, as suggested in the article. Hence, Israel, if it has, legally speaking, occupied land, has occupied the land of some sovereign state. Which is to say, the premise of the article is contrary to black letter law over which there is no serious dispute.

Now, there is a further question about the law. Some Israelis hold to the view that the land conquered in 1967 is rightfully Israel's. That is not my view but it is, in fact, a serious legal argument - and does not require one to make believe that the law says something it does not say.

The view that the land belongs to Israel is based on the view that, in fact, there was no sovereign state, at the time of Israel's belligerent occupation, that ruled the noted land as a sovereign. And, such view points to the fact that the UN Charter retains the Palestine Mandate as integral to the Charter and valid because no state ever became sovereign on that land. And, the Palestine Mandate calls for Jewish settlement on that land.

In any event, there is no real legal issue concerning the legality of the occupation - about which there is no doubt unless one ignores the fundamental black letter premises of International law - but whether Israel has any permanent right to claim the land it conquered in 1967. That is something also judged by, at least in part, UN 242 which makes the issue one of negotiation between Israel and Jordan and, as to the Golan Heights, Syria. UN 242 calls on the state parties to come to terms on what would become recognized boundaries between such states.

So, I would take UN 242 as providing that Israel could, by negotiation, permanently retain portions of the conquered land, to the extent consistent with obtaining "secure" and "recognized" boundaries - as noted by UN 242. That makes the issue one of negotiation, not of legalities.

I might add, the ICJ in its advisory opinion about Israel's barrier, notwithstanding the fact that the issue was raised by Judge Nabil Elaraby of that court, chose not to term Israel's control of the land as an illegal occupation. Rather, that court called it an occupation.


Sally Gee - 3/6/2008


Here’s an item that will lead to the usual splutters of denial by Messrs Friedman, Eckstein, Furnish, Green, Hamilton, Craigen, et al - which can only mean that the world’s fabulist creativity quotient will rise by about 10 percentage points and probably push global warming beyond its tipping point:

BBC NEWS
Gaza's humanitarian crisis

A group of UK-based human rights and development organisations have called for fundamental policy changes towards the Gaza Strip by Israel, the international community and the West Bank-based Palestinian leadership.

Their report details what are calling the worst humanitarian crisis in the strip since Israel occupied it in the 1967 war, and describe it as a man-made disaster resulting from the isolation and blockade of Gaza after its take-over by Hamas militants last June.

The following are the main points in the report, sponsored by Amnesty International, Care International UK, Cafod, Christian Aid, Medecins du Monde UK, Oxfam, Save the Children UK and Trocaire.

POVERTY LEVELS

More than 80% of Palestinians in Gaza rely on humanitarian assistance, with UN food aid going to about 1.1 million people - three quarters of the population.

The number of families dependant on the UN agency for Palestinian refugees (Unrwa) has increased tenfold since 1999.

Household monthly incomes dropped by 22% in less than four months (June-September 2007). The number of households earning less than $1.20 per person per day went from 55% to 70%.

The UN appeal for humanitarian aid in 2008 is $462m, more than twice the 2006 appeal and the third largest UN request after Sudan and Congo.

RESTRICTIONS ON MOVEMENT

Israel prevents the import of a list of specific essential humanitarian goods requested by aid agencies, including some fuel supplies, spare parts, cement, technical assistance and cotton for hygiene items.

Travel in and out of Gaza is all but impossible and supplies of food and water, as well as sewage treatment and basic healthcare can no longer be taken for granted.

Food prices are rising and wheat flour, baby milk and cooking oil are increasingly scarce....

[HNN Editor: This article has been truncated to avoid infringing on the BBC's copyright.]

Story from BBC NEWS
The full report, The Gaza Strip: The Humanitarian Implosion, is also available as a download on this page:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/1/hi/world/middle_east/7191359.stm

Published: 2008/03/06 11:22:55 GMT

© BBC MMVIII


N. Friedman - 3/6/2008

Omar,

No. There have been numerous genocides. However, there is no genocide being committed against Palestinian Arabs - a people who have a growing population and are not being wiped out. Their situation needs to be contrasted with what happened to Rwandans, Sudanese Christians, Jews, Gypsies and Armenians where there was a concerted effort not just to defeat them (with people dying in the process) but to remove them from the face of the Earth - as in an effort to kill all of them.

Surely, you realize that Palestinian Arabs, were they merely to give up their fight against Israel, would not be killed off en masse. Otherwise, why do Palestinian Arabs from the territories go to Israel for medical care? How do you explain that?


N. Friedman - 3/6/2008

Ms. Gee,

No, I have not relied on legalisms. I have noted facts. There was no such thing as "Palestinian territory" 40 years ago. That is a simple fact.

As for China, I think you overestimate China's interest in supporting Palestinian Arabs against Israel. Israel has friendly relations with China and they are becoming friendlier because Israel has useful technology that China has little prospect of obtaining elsewhere. And, China cares about China, not Arabs, not Americans, not Europeans, not Indians, etc., etc..

In any event, any power which hopes to control or dominate the Middle East region needs to balance the interests of all involved. Otherwise, there are always competitor nations willing to step in to whatever cracks to that hegemony may exist.


Sally Gee - 3/6/2008

Mr Green, in the context of an illegal occupation, none of your points have merit and any response would merely be idle gossip. You may have time to waste; I do not.


Sally Gee - 3/6/2008

Mr Green, in the context of an illegal occupation, none of your points have merit and any response would merely be idle gossip. You may have time to waste; I do not.


Sally Gee - 3/6/2008

Well no, Mr Green. I thought rather of conspiracy to commit war crimes and conspriacy to commit crimes against humanity. Simple really.


Sally Gee - 3/6/2008

"Words like "legal" and "illegal" require an understanding of the law. So, I would say - and this is my comment to you as a lawyer"

Well, perhaps this is why I insist on taking advice from those more qualified than you on this matter. This, of course, does not seek to detract in any way from the acheivements arising from Mr Green's personal commitment to total idiocy which continues to be respected for what it is. So back, then, to ambulance chasing, Nr Friedman!:

“The intrinsic legality of an occupation is to be measured in relation to three interrelated fundamental legal principles: (a) Sovereignty and title in an occupied territory is not vested in the occupying power; under contemporary international law, and in view of the principle of self-determination, said sovereignty is vested in the population under occupation; (b) The occupying power is entrusted with the management of public order and civil life in the territory under control. In view of the principle of self-determination, the people under occupation are the beneficiaries of this trust. The dispossession and subjugation of these people is thus a violation of this trust, and (c) The occupation is temporary, as distinct from indefinite. The violation of each of these principles, as distinct from the violation of a specific norm which reflects an aspect of these principles, renders an occupation illegal. Further, these principles are interrelated: the substantive constraints on the managerial discretion of the occupant elucidated in principle (a) and (b) respectively, generate the conclusion that it must necessarily be temporary, and the violation of the temporal constraints expressed in principle (c) cannot but violate principles (a) and (b), thereby corrupting the normative regime of occupation. This occupation is illegal. This is the nature of the Israeli occupation. The extrinsic legality of an occupation is to be measured by its exceptionality. Once the boundaries between the exception and the rule are blurred, the occupation becomes illegal. The Israeli occupation has thus blurred these boundaries”

Ben-Naftali, Orna, Gross, Aeyal and Michaeli, Keren , "Illegal Occupation: The Framing of the Occupied Palestinian Territory" . Berkley Journal of International Law, Vol. 23, p. 551, 2005 Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1098483


omar ibrahim baker - 3/6/2008

"To call what is going on in Gaza genocide is to devalue the experience of those who have lived though one. "
"Re: Barely more entertaining than professional wrestling (#119986)
by Keith Halderman on March 3, 2008 at 1:01 PM"

..................................

What we have here is very serious and alarming, and this is something to confront fully!

This is a new disease, a psychological perversion, a psychic aberration , a mental deformation and a subtle new business theory re monopoly!

"Genocide" and "Holocaust" have been such horrid events, and lucrative business domains , that touching them or either of them will NOT only reawaken the agony behind them that fostered and nurtured the disease in the first place BUT will also affect their market value and blunt their
"market penetration".

And that is no mean task nor joke ; that would be as much of a general emotional upset and as a severe business blow!

That they have failed, hitherto, to "copyright" both terms for their own exclusive, emotional and other, use baffles me.

They would, at least, be collecting royalties from all and sundry including from the Palestinians!


Elliott Aron Green - 3/6/2008

Sally, I refute your claims about "occupation" in my comment below of 5 March 2008, at 9:14. By the way, Security Council resolution 242 of 1967 agreed to Israeli occupation of territories taken in the Six Day War. So if Judea-Samaria & Gaza were occupied, then this occupation was approved by the UN security council. However, the Security Council did not delineate which territories were "occupied." Israel also took the Sinai Peninsula in that war which had never been part of Israel or of the Jewish National Home. It could thus be considered occupied, whereas a number of international law experts [David Ruzie', Howard Grief, etc] refute the label of "occupation" applied to Judea-Samaria & Gaza. I also remind Sally that the Allied states victorious in WW2 annexed huge areas from Germany that had been recognized parts of Germany [or its predecessor states, i.e., Prussia] for centuries. The USSR & Poland took Silesia, Pomerania, East Prussia. The USSR took eastern Finland as well as much of eastern Poland and parts of Czechoslovakia and Rumania. These annexations were mainly justified by WW2 German aggression. Why shouldn't Israel have the right to lessen the danger of future Arab aggression and punish past Arab aggression by annexing Judea-Samaria & Gaza, even if these areas were "occupied", which they are not?? These areas are minuscule compared to the post-WW2 annexations in eastern Europe.


Elliott Aron Green - 3/6/2008

Sally, now now, please calm down. Do you show your respect for freedom of speech and the press by threatening Friedman with prosecution for expressing his beliefs that are contrary to yours?


Elliott Aron Green - 3/6/2008

Sally, can't you make any substantive response to my arguments or that of RR Hamilton?? Why do you fall back on ad hominem insults about our intelligence??
Do you deny, for example, that the Hamas charter, Art. 7, contains genocidal incitement against Jews?? Do you deny that Hamas shares the Muslim Brotherhood worldview?? Or that this worldview favors universal jihad??

As to what happened in Gaza, are you unaware that more 7,000 rockets, not to mention mortar shells, have been fired at Israeli towns, cities, and farming communities [qibbutsim] since January 2001, especially since Sharon's foolish withdrawal in 2005?? How should Israelis feel about these rocket attacks? It is true that relatively few --miraculously few-- Israelis have been killed in these attacks. However, each such attack is an act of attempted murder of civilians since they are shot at civilian areas. The town of Sderot has been especially hard hit. Many or most inhabitants of Sderot are Moroccan Jews, including Mayor Eli Moyal. Jews were living in Morocco before the Arab conquest of the 8th century. They were increasingly oppressed and exploited throughout the centuries of Muslim rule. Charles Foucauld described the Jews as living in conditions of serfdom or worse in Morocco in the late 19th century. What do the Moroccan Jews owe the Arabs or Muslims? Why should they tolerate this situation of constant terrorism directed against them??

LeVine points to the many more Arabs than Israelis killed in the Gaza area in recent weeks. But this was due to unbearable provocations by the Hamas. Further, the high death toll among the Arabs is also due to their religious belief in death as a positive good [The highest joy in Islam is to kill & be killed --both Khomeini & arafat said it]. So they don't mind their own civilians getting killed. Especially if it brings political support from fanatics abroad like certain American professors. Thus they deliberately violate the laws of war by shooting rockets at Israel from among civilians and storing heavy weapons [katyushas & Qassam missiles, etc] in civilian locations. They also liberally use human shields; all this clearly violates Geneva Convention IV. I think that LeVine would do well to be less emotional and to consider facts that gainsay his theses, such as the Hamas commitment to jihad, the pro-Arab bias of Western mass media, the history of Jews as dhimmis and the consequent Arab sense of superiority to Jews, including the feeling that they have a license to kill Jews as rebellious dhimmis or kuffar. What other attitude lay behind the Armenian massacres of WW One, by the way??
And Sally, try to more substantive in your responses next time --and less ad hominem.


Sally Gee - 3/6/2008

More stupid "legalisms" which fly in the face of the Geneva Conventions and the Genocide covention, Mr Friedman, and which relies increasingly on the most stupid and far-fetched word plays which only the dimmest half-crazed Zionist hatehead will find in any way convincing.

When the Chinese realise their global economic role, given their dominance of the international financial system, and they take responsibility for financial and economic leadership from the United States and US support for Israel slips away, I suspect we will have many opportunities to see your arguments tested both by national courts in many countries and by the International Criminal Court. I can certainly see a role in the dock for you.

I think what transpires between you and the Guardian' executives in private is a matter for consenting adults, so as you will, Mr Friedman, as you will.


omar ibrahim baker - 3/6/2008

It could be a coincidence or an adroit and timely editorial collation of posts that Levine's article re Gaza was shortly preceded by Chomsky's "Terrorists Wanted" which is still here online at :(http://hnn.us/roundup/entries/47883.html )

All that Chomsky’s historical rundown and Levine’s update of the Israeli/Zionist record of sheer:
* barbarism,
**innate criminality
***inborn-doctrine nurtured racism
and
****US collusion thereto and justification thereof ;

all indicate a severe case of a seriously sick artificially implanted "nation" confronting the overall surrounding rejection of the implant aided and abated by a no less sick USA!

Their utter blindness to their own criminality, to the violation of the rights of other's, to the tremendous suffering they cause millions in the service of their declared doctrine, the Zionist/Imperialist axis, is only matched by their arrogance and their short sightedness.

Human kind , and the American public, will NOT tolerate that nor
with them for much longer!


N. Friedman - 3/5/2008

Ms. Gee,

There were Arabs living in Gaza 40 years ago but that does not mean there was any such thing as "Palestinian territory." Before Israel conquered Gaza in 1967, Gaza was ruled by Egypt. Before that Gaza was ruled by Britain. Before that Gaza was ruled by the Ottoman Empire. UN 242 makes no mention of any "Palestinian territory."

My point, in short, is that it is not true that Israel has occupied "Palestinian territory" for 40 years because the idea of "Palestinian territory" - much less the reality of such a thing - is something of recent vintage. It is, I should add, not true to say that Israel occupies Gaza now, because legally speaking, Israel clearly does not and, I should add, the rulers of Gaza agree with that assessment.

Regarding your copying and pasting an entire copyrighted article, would you like me to check with The Guardian to see if that publication wants you copying the paper's copyrighted material - entire articles, at that? Somehow I doubt they would be happy with you.


N. Friedman - 3/5/2008

Ms. Gee,

Words like "legal" and "illegal" require an understanding of the law. So, I would say - and this is my comment to you as a lawyer - that you have not made a substantive comment. Rather, you have stated your personal preferences against Israel as if your preferences were the law, something you have insufficient knowledge about which to express any opinion.


Sally Gee - 3/5/2008

That's a comment truly worthy of your intellect, Mr Hamilton.


R.R. Hamilton - 3/5/2008

Most of the "Arab world" exists permanently is what is called the APU -- Arab Parallel Universe. A helpful description of the APU is found in this (Egyptian's) blog: http://www.sandmonkey.org/2005/01/06/the-7-rules-of-the-apu/

The first five of the seven rules of the APU are worth remembering here:

1) Arabs never make mistakes, and they rarely lose wars.
2) The Zionists and the Americans are always to blame for everything that is wrong in the APU.
3) If there is any credit at all that can be contributed to Arabs in any way, they will take it.
4) Good leadership is inversely related to how US-friendly a leader is!
5) Any media that is not the official state-owned [Arab] media is filled with Zionist, Jewish, American, Christian, imperialist, anti-arab influences and they LIE ALL THE TIME!

Ms. Gee is a naturalized citizen of the APU.


Sally Gee - 3/5/2008

Do you mean there were no Palestinians who owned and lived on this territory 40 years ago, Mr Friedman? Presumably the Palestinian people who are there now are equally illusory. Perhaps this is why you feel so free to deny that the Israeli deputy minister of defence (who one would have thought had a pretty good idea of what he was saying and why he was saying it, even if only on a sub-Freudian level) when he threatened a Holocaust on the Palestinians.

You seem to play with the meaning of words quite a lot - with varying degrees of imprecision - but you have very little understanding of reality. Everyone has some personality quirk or other but I find that some are less disagreeable than others and, well, on a purely personal level, I find it preferable to engage with reality more or less continuously (although, I must admit, reading your comments gives me a some sense of what it must be like to be permanently disengaged, and let me tell you it gives me a very queasy feeling indeed, but I grin and bear it to further my understanding of the absurdities of which the human species is capable).

I'm sure that the Guardian understands that the article is presented in this thread for the purposes of private study and the furtherance of scholarship, and that anyone who reads it is more likely than not to get onto the Guardian website in double-quick time for further fixes of clarity, objectivity and truth. Now, that is real!


Sally Gee - 3/5/2008

Mr Friedman, the only matters of fact of any significance are that Israel illegally occupies Palestinian land and that it continues to pursue its policies of ethnic cleansing and genocide on that land, and you are an apologist for Israel's war crimes.

Substantive enough for you?


N. Friedman - 3/5/2008

Ms. Gee,

I see that you know how to copy and paste an entire article - it would seem in violation of the copyright laws. I do not see any contribution by you.

As for the opinion piece you quote in its entirety, it is filled with factual errors. Palestinian Arabs simply do not have the right to fire missiles indiscriminately into Israel, no matter what justice anyone thinks may be with Palestinian Arabs and without regard to what Israel does. Moreover, no one threatened a holocaust. That is a bald faced lie. And it is untrue to claim that Israel is on "Palestinian territory" for 40 years. There was no Palestinian territory to be on 40 years ago. If you do not believe me, read UN 242.

And it is incorrect to claim that Gaza is a prison, most especially one kept prisoner by Israel - as if Egypt did not close off part of Gaza. Moreover, it is a lie to insinuate that Israel has no right - legally or morally - to close its border.

Which is to say, you have published a nonsense article.


N. Friedman - 3/5/2008

Ms. Gee,

I ask a series of questions and made a number of related comments; you respond by attacking me. If you have a substantive answer to what I write, I would read it carefully. Otherwise, I shall note that you have no answer to my questions and no facts or other substance to bring to the table.


Sally Gee - 3/5/2008

An interesting mistake. Mr Dilley - almost as interesting a mistake as it would be if I were to treat Mr Friedman's half-crazed Zionist propaganda rants as if they were intended to be a serious contribution to a grownup debate. After all, would you have expected, say, Winston Churchill to answer Dr Goebells' malignant, intellectually and morally corrupt, points one by one? No, I think not. Merely pointing to the fact that the fellow spouting this nonsense can only be a self-evident rascal is enough, and if you are unable to see this I can only wonder why. By dignifying Zionist guff with a considered response, we can only give it a credence it does not deserve, and I am sure you do not wish for that to happen.


Charles K Dilley - 3/5/2008

My mistake, my comments are directed to Sally Gee and not Elliott.


Charles K Dilley - 3/5/2008

"your half-crazed Zionist propaganda rants. I'm sure it can't be very good for your blood pressure - or your mental stability."

Elliott Aron Green, you do yourself a great disservice with attacks because they are a weak intellectual response to Mr. Friedman's questions. Either persuade by arguing against one of his points or simply disagree with his perspective, but attacking him personally will never move the conversation forward.


Sally Gee - 3/5/2008

You're working wonders for the morale of Western idiotophobes, Mr Green.


Elliott Aron Green - 3/5/2008

The Arabs and their many claims & grievances, true or exaggerated or totally invented, serve as convenient pretexts for Western judeophobes to not only continue their Jew-hatred in a self-righteous way but to help finish Hitler's work, through the instrumentality of the Arabs, especially those now fashionably called "palestinians."


Elliott Aron Green - 3/5/2008

LeVine's anguished screech or harangue proves that one does not have to tell the truth about history in order to be a professor of history. Since my time is limited, I shall mention three problems in his screed, mainly of omission::
1-- The oppression & exploitation of Jews by Arab-Muslims in all lands that the latter controlled, including the Land of Israel. The Jews' status of oppressed victim in Arab-Muslim society was called dhimma and also affected Christians and others, although in Arab-ruled lands it appears that Jews were usually treated worse than other dhimmis.
2-- Judea-Samaria & Gaza were never "occupied" by Israel in any legal sense since these areas were part of the Jewish National Home juridically erected by the San Remo Conference & the League of Nations [1920,1922]. The UN General Assembly partition recommendation of 11-29-1947 was not law & did not eliminate the Jewish National Home which remains the legal status of these areas till today.
3-- LeVine overlooks the aims of Fatah, PLO and Hamas as clearly spelled out in their charters. N Friedman already raised the point of the Hamas charter which is clearly genocidal towards Jews. Its Article 7 quotes a medieval Muslim fable about Muslims slaughtering Jews at Judgement Day. LeVine ignores this fact.


Sally Gee - 3/5/2008

And this is how Seumas Milne of the Guardian sizes it up:


To blame the victims for this killing spree defies both morality and sense

Washington's covert attempts to overturn an election result lie behind the crisis in Gaza, as leaked papers show

* Seumas Milne
* The Guardian,
* Wednesday March 5 2008

The attempt by western politicians and media to present this week's carnage in the Gaza Strip as a legitimate act of Israeli self-defence - or at best the latest phase of a wearisome conflict between two somehow equivalent sides - has reached Alice-in-Wonderland proportions. Since Israel's deputy defence minister, Matan Vilnai, issued his chilling warning last week that Palestinians faced a "holocaust" if they continued to fire home-made rockets into Israel, the balance sheet of suffering has become ever clearer. More than 120 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza by Israeli forces in the past week, of whom one in five were children and more than half were civilians, according to the Israeli human rights group B'Tselem. During the same period, three Israelis were killed, two of whom were soldiers taking part in the attacks.

So what was the response of the British foreign secretary, David Miliband, to this horrific killing spree? It was to blame the "numerous civilian casualties" on the week's "significant rise" in Palestinian rocket attacks "and the Israeli response", condemn the firing of rockets as "terrorist acts" and defend Israel's right to self-defence "in accordance with international law". But of course it has been nothing of the kind - any more than has been Israel's 40-year occupation of the Palestinian territories, its continued expansion of settlements or its refusal to allow the return of expelled refugees.

Nor is the past week's one-sided burden of casualties and misery anything new, but the gap is certainly getting wider. After the election of Hamas two years ago, Israel - backed by the US and the European Union - imposed a punitive economic blockade, which has hardened over the past months into a full-scale siege of the Gaza Strip, including fuel, electricity and essential supplies. Since January's mass breakout across the Egyptian border signalled that collective punishment wouldn't work, Israel has opted for military escalation. What that means on the ground can be seen from the fact that at the height of the intifada, from 2000 to 2005, four Palestinians were killed for every Israeli; in 2006 it was 30; last year the ratio was 40 to one. In the three months since the US-sponsored Middle East peace conference at Annapolis, 323 Palestinians have been killed compared with seven Israelis, two of whom were civilians.

But the US and Europe's response is to blame the principal victims for a crisis it has underwritten at every stage. In interviews with Palestinian leaders over the past few days, BBC presenters have insisted that Palestinian rockets have been the "starting point" of the violence, as if the occupation itself did not exist. In the West Bank, from which no rockets are currently fired and where the US-backed administration of Mahmoud Abbas maintains a ceasefire, there have been 480 Israeli military attacks over the past three months and 26 Palestinians killed. By contrast, the rockets from Gaza which are supposed to be the justification for the latest Israeli onslaught have killed a total of 14 people over seven years.

Like any other people, the Palestinians have the right to resist occupation - or to self-defence - whether they choose to exercise it or not. In spite of Israel's disengagement in 2005, Gaza remains occupied territory, both legally and in reality. It is the world's largest open-air prison, with land, sea and air access controlled by Israel, which carries out military operations at will. Palestinians may differ about the tactics of resistance, but the dominant view (if not that of Abbas) has long been that without some armed pressure, their negotiating hand will inevitably be weaker. And while it might be objected that the rockets are indiscriminate, that is not an easy argument for Israel to make, given its appalling record of civilian casualties in both the Palestinian territories and Lebanon.

The truth is that Hamas's control of Gaza is the direct result of the US refusal to accept the Palestinians' democratic choice in 2006 and its covert attempt to overthrow the elected administration by force through its Fatah placeman Muhammad Dahlan. As confirmed by secret documents leaked to the US magazine Vanity Fair - and also passed to the Guardian - George Bush, Condoleezza Rice and Elliott Abrams, the US deputy national security adviser (of Iran-Contra fame), funnelled cash, weapons and instructions to Dahlan, partly through Arab intermediaries such as Jordan and Egypt, in an effort to provoke a Palestinian civil war. As evidence of the military buildup emerged, Hamas moved to forestall the US plan with its own takeover of Gaza last June. David Wurmser, who resigned as Dick Cheney's chief Middle East adviser the following month, argues: "What happened wasn't so much a coup by Hamas but an attempted coup by Fatah that was pre-empted before it could happen."

Yesterday, Rice attempted to defend the failed US attempt to reverse the results of the Palestinian elections by pointing to Iran's support for Hamas. Meanwhile, Israel's attacks on Gaza are expected to resume once she has left the region, even if no one believes they will stop the rockets. Some in the Israeli government hope that they can nevertheless weaken Hamas as a prelude to pushing Gaza into Egypt's unwilling arms; others hope to bring Abbas and his entourage back to Gaza after they have crushed Hamas, perhaps with a transitional international force to save the Palestinian president's face.

Neither looks a serious option, not least because Hamas cannot be crushed by force, even with the bloodbath that some envisage. The third, commonsense option, backed by 64% of Israelis, is to take up Hamas's offer - repeated by its leader Khalid Mish'al at the weekend - and negotiate a truce. It's a move that now attracts not only left-leaning Israeli politicians such as Yossi Beilin, but also a growing number of rightwing establishment figures, including Ariel Sharon's former security adviser Giora Eiland, the former Mossad boss Efraim Halevy, and the ex-defence minister Shaul Mofaz.

The US, however, is resolutely opposed to negotiating with what it has long branded a terrorist organisation - or allowing anyone else to do so, including other Palestinians. As the leaked American papers confirm, Rice effectively instructed Abbas to "collapse" the joint Hamas-Fatah national unity government agreed in Mecca early last year, a decision carried out after Hamas's pre-emptive takeover. But for the Palestinians, national unity is an absolute necessity if they are to have any chance of escaping a world of walled cantons, checkpoints, ethnically segregated roads, dispossession and humiliation.

What else can Israel do to stop the rockets, its supporters ask. The answer could not be more obvious: end the illegal occupation of the Palestinian territories and negotiate a just settlement for the Palestinian refugees, ethnically cleansed 60 years ago - who, with their families, make up the majority of Gaza's 1.5 million people. All the Palestinian factions, including Hamas, accept that as the basis for a permanent settlement or indefinite end of armed conflict. In the meantime, agree a truce, exchange prisoners and lift the blockade. Israelis increasingly seem to get it - but the grim reality appears to be that a lot more blood is going to have to flow before it's accepted in Washington.

s.milne@guardian.co.uk

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2008/mar/05/israelandthepalestinians.usa


Sally Gee - 3/5/2008

Dear, dear Mr Friedman. I can only imagine how your eyes roll wildly when you go into one of your half-crazed Zionist propaganda rants. I'm sure it can't be very good for your blood pressure - or your mental stability.

Mr LeVine offers an excellent and balanced - and, I hope, over-pessimistic - account of the dynamics of Gaza. The wild, rolling eyed Mr Friedman, of course, contents himself with demonstrating why these dynamics persist.


N. Friedman - 3/4/2008

Professor,

One. Hamas offers a hudna - a mere truce. Why, if the Israelis have the upper hand you suggest they have, would Israel accept such? It seems to me that if you have the upper hand, you stick to your terms. For what it is worth, it seems to me that Israel actually does not have the upper hand although Israel's hand is improving due to changes in attitude - for the better, from Israel's point of view - in European governments about Israel.

Two. Why, if Gaza is to be part of a separate country, should Israelis let Gazans into Israel? The Palestinian Arab proposal, after all, is that Jews ought not be allowed to live on land controlled by Palestinian Arabs? Should this not be mutual?

Three. What makes you think that you can trust what the Hamas official told you? Perhaps, in fact, he and his group actually believe what appears in the Hamas covenant - that they fight because they believe it to be their religious duty? Is that not possible?

Four. Why do you not believe that the Hamas covenant represents the real thinking of Hamas?

Five. The West Bank and Gaza have different rulers. Yet, the cantons you speak of are all located in the West Bank while the rockets come from land ceded by the Israelis. Does that not suggest that Israel, were it to cede land in the West Bank, would have rockets fired into Israel from the West Bank as well?

Six. What if, in fact, the Hamas rejectionist position really is the controlling position of Palestinian Arabs because a determined group - whether or not a majority being rather irrelevant - are unwilling, for religious reasons, ever to make peace with Israel.

Seven. What if the reason that Palestinian Arabs do not adopt peaceful protest as their main strategy is that their goals require violence? Which is to say, maybe the goals of the Palestinian Arabs - considered collectively - is different than you believe. In this regard, I am reminded of this comment made by Sari Nuseibeh, some years ago:

We're telling the Israelis that we're going to kick you out: it's not that we want liberation, freedom, and independence in the West Bank and Gaza, we want to kick you out of your home. And in order to make sure that the Israelis get the message, people go into a disco or restaurant and blow themselves up.


Maybe, Professor Nuseibeh is correct about this. Is that not possible?