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1 shutdown  Tue, May 17, 2011 3:27:17pm

What a shame the article is so "J Street-y". It touches on some very important points, but fails to develop them, choosing instead to focus on whatever faux-progressive agenda is being put forward. The interests of American Jews, Christian "Zionists" (such as CUFI) and those of Israeli Jews are increasingly misaligned. I find that many American Jews subscribe to a '70s, rah-rah, hora dancing brand of Zionism that is selectively blind as to current reality. AIPAC may mean well, but its focus probably needs a little fine tuning - along with that of many American Jews.

2 Vicious Babushka  Tue, May 17, 2011 3:40:18pm

J Street is far more dangerous for Jews than AIPAC is or ever could be.

3 Buck  Tue, May 17, 2011 4:06:50pm

Just another "evil Israel Lobby" article in a far left publication (website). Echoing previous articles of the same sort of thing in Media Matters, TPM, and one written by George Soros himself.

It wasn't too long ago when Harvard professor Stephen Walt and University of Chicago professor John Mearsheimer said this sort of stuff, we all agreed it was anti-semetic.

However they are massaging the words ever so slightly, and now it is almost acceptable to say it.

4 Michael McBacon  Tue, May 17, 2011 4:11:32pm

Locker, do you agree with the author of this article?

5 researchok  Tue, May 17, 2011 5:15:17pm

What utter bullshit.

Yes, Israel receives aid- virtually all of which is spent in this country. This is virtually unprecedented among US foreign aid recipients.

That means long term jobs, stability and growth for American companies and workers.

Further, much of the aid Israel receives in the form of long term loan guarantees. Israel has never defaulted on a payment, ever.

That hated 'occupation' has been the most benign military occupation in history.

Ms Rothschild and her ilk want to turn the discussion into one about borders, settlements and resettlement. What she won't tell you is that the Palestinians could care less about those things, They care only about the eradication of the State of Israel and worse. That isn't conjecture- that is both Hamas and the PA in their own words.

Do all or even most Palestinians think along those lines? Probably not. Unfortunately, they have very little say in the matter.

The rest of the drivel spewed by Ms Rothschild is a monumental testimony to her stupidity.

6 windsagio  Tue, May 17, 2011 6:36:32pm

until we get a page like this its easy to forget that LGF is an extreme rightwing site as far as Israel goes >>

7 BishopX  Tue, May 17, 2011 6:48:14pm

re: #6 windsagio

Rightwing certainly, I don't think it's terribly extreme.

8 Timmeh  Tue, May 17, 2011 7:06:40pm

Can somebody explain to me why Israel needs to have settlements in the West Bank?

It seems like withdrawing the settlements from Gaza was the right idea. Now just do the same thing in the West Bank and it would be easy for me to support Israel (I support Israel, just not the settlement/occupation policy or religious discrimination).

9 researchok  Tue, May 17, 2011 7:34:52pm

re: #8 Timmeh

Can somebody explain to me why Israel needs to have settlements in the West Bank?

It seems like withdrawing the settlements from Gaza was the right idea. Now just do the same thing in the West Bank and it would be easy for me to support Israel (I support Israel, just not the settlement/occupation policy or religious discrimination).

Israel does no need West Bank settlements. They were built because decades of negotiation were formally rejected by both the Palestinians and the Arab world.

To be clear, border negotiation is not now and never was a real issue. Israel has always to wanted to negotiate land for peace (and to be clear, that is very different from land before peace) an idea that was unacceptable to everyone else in the region. To this day the principal goal of the Palestinian leadership is the eradication of Israel. Israel's withdrawal from Gaza resulted in only more terror. The land was and remains irrelevant to the Palestinians.

Have you ever wondered why there were never any demonstrations against the building of the now infamous settlements? Can you imagine the PR value of a hundred terrorized little school girls, sitting in the road and blocking a bulldozer? The reason for the marked lack of protest against settlement building in the West Bank is because PA ministers own the construction companies that build those settlements. It’s been going on for years and only recently, has the matter been discussed in the Arab press. Sadly, ‘Cementgate,’ as the story was called is no longer on the Arab press agenda. Israeli settlements are being built by Palestinian companies, owned by PA ministers and big wigs- on land that was mostly purchased from Palestinian landowners. That is another reason the Palestinian at the top are in no rush for a peace deal- the Israelis pay. Arab nations that promise money do not. Besides, other Arabs might make unreasonable demands- such as accountability and transparency.

When it comes to money and aid to the Palestinians, the words of Charles De Gaulle come to mind- ‘We shall stun them with our ingratitude.‘

Lastly, what is left unsaid is quite thunderous. Why are the settlements so offensive? Why won't the Palestinians tolerate those who have bought and paid for the land, even within the confines of a Palestinian state? What is it about these settlers that sends these noble and righteous Palestinian 'victims' into a frenzy?

I wonder what that might be.
/

10 Buck  Tue, May 17, 2011 7:35:44pm

re: #8 Timmeh

Can somebody explain to me why Israel needs to have settlements in the West Bank?

It seems like withdrawing the settlements from Gaza was the right idea. Now just do the same thing in the West Bank and it would be easy for me to support Israel (I support Israel, just not the settlement/occupation policy or religious discrimination).

Withdrawing the settlements from Gaza was the right idea? Are you aware that Gaza is used as a missile launch site, terrorizing innocent civilians?

Also... there are NOT settlements in the west bank. There are jews living in what is commonly known as Jerusalem.

11 jaunte  Tue, May 17, 2011 7:42:13pm

re: #6 windsagio

until we get a page like this its easy to forget that LGF is an extreme rightwing site as far as Israel goes >>

It's certainly full of commenters who have a lot of accurate information to share on the subject.

12 researchok  Tue, May 17, 2011 7:43:46pm

re: #6 windsagio

until we get a page like this its easy to forget that LGF is an extreme rightwing site as far as Israel goes >>

How on earth is supporting Israel considered 'Right Wing' as opposed to moral?

13 Slumbering Behemoth Stinks  Tue, May 17, 2011 7:45:30pm

re: #6 windsagio

Until we see a comment like that, it's easy to forget that LGF has some extreme leftwing goobers, as far as Israel goes, commenting here.

>>>

14 Bob Levin  Tue, May 17, 2011 9:33:09pm

re: #1 imp_62

It does sound like a high school essay, doesn't it?

15 Bob Levin  Tue, May 17, 2011 9:35:00pm

re: #6 windsagio

Are we agreeing that the goals of Hamas and the PA is genocide? If so, what's wrong with fighting that? Where do wings even come into this discussion?

16 Timmeh  Tue, May 17, 2011 11:31:26pm

re: #9 researchok

Lastly, what is left unsaid is quite thunderous. Why are the settlements so offensive? Why won't the Palestinians tolerate those who have bought and paid for the land, even within the confines of a Palestinian state? What is it about these settlers that sends these noble and righteous Palestinian 'victims' into a frenzy?

I wonder what that might be.
/

I always assumed that it's not about where Jews are allowed to live, but about where Palestinians are allowed to live. Jews are allowed to settle in the West Bank, but Palestinians are not allowed to move to Israel or the settlements, or move freely about the West Bank or between the the West Bank and Gaza. The Jewish settlements are offensive because Palestinian settlements are forbidden, and Palestinians who own land in Israel or resided there are not allowed to return to it.

17 Bob Levin  Wed, May 18, 2011 12:58:55am

re: #16 Timmeh

I'm pretty sure everything you wrote isn't true. I'm saying that you are mistaken. I don't believe you were being deceptive. You wrote the standard stereotype.

I'll just say that Lawhawk is very knowledgeable about the ins and outs of various treaties and agreements. There are no laws prohibiting those in the West Bank from moving into Israel proper. It's probably not done very often, but it could be. Israel has a large Arab population, Arab being the word for whoever lived in the region before the term 'Palestinian' came into being. The earlier meaning of a 'Palestinian' actually was a term for a Jew living in the British Mandate of Palestine.

Throughout history, there are many reasons for populations shifting. I don't think I could go back to a remote area of Poland and claim it as my land. Everyone in America came from somewhere else, and no one thinks that they have any right to whatever homes or land that is back in the old country.

Settlements are cities. If you could, name some settlements you feel are offensive, then take a look at their buildings, infrastructure, population, educational facilities. These are located in what is known as Area C, which was formed in the Oslo Accords. Jews are not allowed to live in Areas A and B. Why is that?

I'm curious, but are there any bits of information, things you might find out in a history book or a reference book that would cause you to change your mind, to change your perceptions of the conflict? If so, what kind of information would you need?

18 researchok  Wed, May 18, 2011 2:30:21am

re: #16 Timmeh

I always assumed that it's not about where Jews are allowed to live, but about where Palestinians are allowed to live. Jews are allowed to settle in the West Bank, but Palestinians are not allowed to move to Israel or the settlements, or move freely about the West Bank or between the the West Bank and Gaza. The Jewish settlements are offensive because Palestinian settlements are forbidden, and Palestinians who own land in Israel or resided there are not allowed to return to it.

Why should Palestinians be allowed to move en masse to Israel? They are 'occupied' only because the Arabs started a war in 1967 and have refused peace since then.

Every sovereign nation, including Israel has it'sown immigration policy. Iraqis do not have the right to move here just because that country is 'occupied'.

Further, freedom of movement for Palestinians does not trump security concerns. For decades, the primary target of Palestinian terror have been civilians. Israel has to tightly control movement between Gaza and the West Bank because of security concerns.

When a society institutionalizes and celebrates terror,murder, mayhem, bigotry and racism, being wary and careful is probably a really good idea.

One can criticize Israel and Israeli policies all day long (and there is what to be critical of) but endorsing the PA, Hamas, etc,. is a tacit admission of racism. Yes, racism.

If your neighbor loves puppies and kittens and wants to save all the orphaned puppies and kittens in the world and is a wonderful cook and decorator and clothes designer and oh, by the way, also firmly believes in the eradication of the Jews, gays and others (and that is not an exaggeration. See Palestinian and Arab state sponsored media, school curriculum and a lot of religious instruction)- if you support them over Israel, you are a bigot.

Support Hamas and you support the KKK. There isn't a whole lot of difference between them.

19 Buck  Wed, May 18, 2011 8:39:09am

re: #16 Timmeh

I always assumed that it's not about where Jews are allowed to live, but about where Palestinians are allowed to live. Jews are allowed to settle in the West Bank, but Palestinians are not allowed to move to Israel or the settlements, or move freely about the West Bank or between the the West Bank and Gaza. The Jewish settlements are offensive because Palestinian settlements are forbidden, and Palestinians who own land in Israel or resided there are not allowed to return to it.

Don't assume.

FACT is that about 100,000 Palestinian refugees have returned over the decades under the terms of Israel’s family-reunification program. Arabs who lost property in Israel are eligible to file for compensation from Israel's Custodian of Absentee Property. Millions of dollars have already been paid by Israel in settlement of individual claims of lost property. No money has been given to any of the Jews who lost property in any of the arab countries.

Are you aware that the West Bank never belonged to the “Palestinians” and only came into Israeli possession as a result of the 1967 six day war in which Egypt, Jordan, Syria, and Lebanon all massed forces at Israel’s border in order to “push the Jews into the sea”?

A great majority of that land has been given back, but only to countries who have made peace with Israel. There is NOTHING in international law that says land should be returned while hostilities continue. Make no mistake about it, hostilities continue because the Palestinian leadership wants it to continue.

THE only EXCEPTION to that is the time you point out, when they gave back Gaza, without a peace treaty. And since then has suffered constant continued hostilities from Gaza.

From a different time on this site here is a quote I really like:

"The Arabs lost and Israel took control of the land. Do you agree that if countries don’t want to lose territory to Israel, then they shouldn’t start wars? Do you agree that there is justice that Israel, who as far back as 1948 has always sought peace with her far larger neighbors, should live in prosperity - making the desert bloom - while the residents of 19 adjacent Arab countries who are blessed with far more land as well as oil wealth have for generations been caught in a cycle of tyranny and despair and radicalism?"

You should also be aware that there is NO institutionalized religious discrimination in Israel. That would be illegal. Of course there is discrimination of one sort or another in every country. However unique to Israel and in contrast to the most advanced democracies -- the Jewish state gives the languages and religions of its various minorities official status. Thus, Arabic is an official language alongside Hebrew, and Muslim and Christian holidays are considered official holidays.

20 Bob Levin  Wed, May 18, 2011 12:50:38pm

re: #19 Buck

And here is another myth, that is has legal control of the West Bank. They don't. It is presently a land without sovereignty. However, two peoples have to live there, and this is what the Oslo Accords were about.

Israel did annex all of Jerusalem. That's it.

I'd still like an answer to my question, though. What information would you need to find that would change your view of the situation? I would hope that being properly informed would be a part of that.

21 Dark_Falcon  Wed, May 18, 2011 8:30:05pm

re: #20 Bob Levin

And here is another myth, that is has legal control of the West Bank. They don't. It is presently a land without sovereignty. However, two peoples have to live there, and this is what the Oslo Accords were about.

Israel did annex all of Jerusalem. That's it.

I'd still like an answer to my question, though. What information would you need to find that would change your view of the situation? I would hope that being properly informed would be a part of that.

I can't speak for Buck, but he's got no reason to change his views on the situation in Israel, since his views reflect the reality over there.

22 SanFranciscoZionist  Wed, May 18, 2011 8:49:30pm

re: #6 windsagio

until we get a page like this its easy to forget that LGF is an extreme rightwing site as far as Israel goes >>

Windy, I hate to tell you, but you wouldn't recognize an extreme rightwinger on Israel unless one bit you.

23 SanFranciscoZionist  Wed, May 18, 2011 8:50:48pm

re: #16 Timmeh

I always assumed that it's not about where Jews are allowed to live, but about where Palestinians are allowed to live. Jews are allowed to settle in the West Bank, but Palestinians are not allowed to move to Israel or the settlements, or move freely about the West Bank or between the the West Bank and Gaza. The Jewish settlements are offensive because Palestinian settlements are forbidden, and Palestinians who own land in Israel or resided there are not allowed to return to it.

PA law carries the death penalty for anyone who sells land to a Jew.

Get real, please.

24 SanFranciscoZionist  Wed, May 18, 2011 8:52:22pm

re: #19 Buck

Don't assume.

FACT is that about 100,000 Palestinian refugees have returned over the decades under the terms of Israel’s family-reunification program. Arabs who lost property in Israel are eligible to file for compensation from Israel's Custodian of Absentee Property. Millions of dollars have already been paid by Israel in settlement of individual claims of lost property. No money has been given to any of the Jews who lost property in any of the arab countries.

Are you aware that the West Bank never belonged to the “Palestinians” and only came into Israeli possession as a result of the 1967 six day war in which Egypt, Jordan, Syria, and Lebanon all massed forces at Israel’s border in order to “push the Jews into the sea”?

A great majority of that land has been given back, but only to countries who have made peace with Israel. There is NOTHING in international law that says land should be returned while hostilities continue. Make no mistake about it, hostilities continue because the Palestinian leadership wants it to continue.

THE only EXCEPTION to that is the time you point out, when they gave back Gaza, without a peace treaty. And since then has suffered constant continued hostilities from Gaza.

From a different time on this site here is a quote I really like:

"The Arabs lost and Israel took control of the land. Do you agree that if countries don’t want to lose territory to Israel, then they shouldn’t start wars? Do you agree that there is justice that Israel, who as far back as 1948 has always sought peace with her far larger neighbors, should live in prosperity - making the desert bloom - while the residents of 19 adjacent Arab countries who are blessed with far more land as well as oil wealth have for generations been caught in a cycle of tyranny and despair and radicalism?"

You should also be aware that there is NO institutionalized religious discrimination in Israel. That would be illegal. Of course there is discrimination of one sort or another in every country. However unique to Israel and in contrast to the most advanced democracies -- the Jewish state gives the languages and religions of its various minorities official status. Thus, Arabic is an official language alongside Hebrew, and Muslim and Christian holidays are considered official holidays.

Also, and this is key, Jordan has made peace with Israel, but instead of accepting their land back, in 1988, ceded the West Bank to the PLO.

25 Bob Levin  Wed, May 18, 2011 9:49:33pm

re: #21 Dark_Falcon

I wrote that question (changing views) for Timmeh. I also agree with Buck about Israel. My bad.

26 Flavia  Wed, May 18, 2011 10:56:06pm

Wah! Nobody left me anything to say! Seriously, Bob, Buck, reasearchok, SF Zionist, Dark Falcon (did I miss anyone?) - all you guys: fabulous! & far more polite than I might have been.


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