Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Is there an israeli connection?

Hey,

I don't want to seem ultra-conspiratorial, but as a political being, I can't help but notice that many of the biggest powers in WHIG, and those outside who helped them, were Jewish-American Zionists. I realized that a statement like this might be seen by some as anti-Semitic, but I don't think it is. If we demand that Republicans join the "reality based" community, then we should be a part of it as well. It's pretty clear that among the men in WHIG were a large proportion of Jewish American Zionists (JAZ), including Libby and Wolfowitz who were central to the scheme and a number of other equally important (JAZ) at lower levels in State and the DOD.

This is not a conspiracy theory, it is reality. Now, the objection might be made that the views these people hold are political views related to their political allegiances, rather than ethnic loyalties, and that images of aspen sharing their roots and all “turning at the same time” are mere bad poetry. This may be, but I am not convinced.

I grew up in a community of Greek-Americans. Most Greek Americans in our community would have moved heaven and earth to get the Turks out of Cyprus. I would go so far as to say that if they were at cabinet levels of our government, U.S. policy towards Turkey and Cyprus would be a lot different. That doesn’t mean that all Greek Americans are pro-war, or that they are traitors, but given the opportunity, some of them would have become traitors, and sold out U.S. interests in keeping Turkey happy for a better deal for Greece.

The very uncontroversial idea I advance here is that after 9/11, Jewish American Neocon Zionists decided that their opportunity had come. They settled on a very rational approach. They lobbied aggressively to get Bush to invade Iraq and remove one of Israel’s most powerful and antagonistic opponents. Of course this was what Bush & Co. were planning on doing anyway so it was an easy sell. However, the JAZ players had one angle that the Christian extremist lacked. Sure the Jesus Freaks had Fox News and a number of other outlets, but they didn’t have a respected source through which a seemingly legitimate case for war could be made. Judy Miller and the owners of her paper have always been violent supporters of Israeli rights over Arab rights. The Zionist leanings of the paper are no secret but the paper has a sterling reputation as the paper of record for over one hundred years. What better source to sell a phony war? Can we connect the dots? Unfortunately for everyone else at the New York Times, this partnership turned out to be a lot less successful than the originators might have hoped.

Okay, just think about this. It’s not anti-Semitic, it’s merely reality based. There are an awful lot of Christian Fundamentalists in the political apparatus of the Republican Party. It’s no secret that they have a strong hand in creating the retrograde social policies of this Administration. It should therefore come as no surprise to learn that a core unit of Jewish American Zionists in the Bush Administration has had a strong hand in the direction of our international policy. That’s not to say that Bush and Cheney were not responsible for the choice to go to war, they were. I would hate to see anyone try to paint “all Jews” as being part of this disturbing phenomenon, but I think it’s dangerous for us to ignore that our national interests are being placed second because of a coalition of Christian and Jewish radicals. If the cabinet in Washington were Greek-Americans and they were acting out of a greater concern for Greek Cyprus than for America, I would be very upset. However, I wouldn’t be surprised. In the reality based community, we must face uncomfortable truths every day. One of these truths is that religious and ethnic loyalties run deep. Like the Aspen, we have our roots sewn together. When one of us turns, we all turn.

13 Thoughts:

Blogger pawlr said...

I think it would be helpful to find more evidence about this alleged 5th column beyond simply "they're Jews" - I agree there is a lot of overlap between AIPAC, PNAC, and WHIG, but I just don't think you can boil down the agendas of the PNAC people to be the same as the radical proponents of "Greater Israel".. There is a case to be made that they are "in cahoots", yes. But it might just be a marriage of convenience.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005 10:07:00 PM  
Blogger Demotiki said...

That's all politics is, marriages of convenience. In this case JAZs and Neocons joined together to sell the war. That's not disputable. The only question is how well organized Jazs are and if they are really putting America first. I find it very hard to believe that the massively overproportional number of Jaz in the decision making apparatus of washington had nothing to do with the US going to war against Israel's number one enemy. I hope Fitz uncovers the role of AIPAC in supplying false information for Cheney to use to sell the war. There's a log of back and forth there that I think the American people have a right to know about.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005 10:29:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

In addition to what Paul wrote, I think that you've made a key assumption:

That "JAZ's" considered the safety of Israel to be primary -- i.e., more important than -- or even different from -- American primacy or safety.

I think that's the unproven part.

You slide between "Israelis" in the title to "JAZ's" in the body, as though JAZ's are pro-Israeli only, and not particularly concerned with America.

As I've said umpteen times, I'm not defending those in the neocon clique who've taken control. I just don't think "neocon" = "'JAZ'" = "traitors". By writing, "That doesn’t mean that all Greek Americans are pro-war, or that they are traitors, but given the opportunity, some of them would have become traitors, and sold out U.S. interests in keeping Turkey happy for a better deal for Greece", you basically accuse "JAZ's" of being traitors. I'm not sure I'd call Bush or Cheney a "traitor" -- why that term for Jewish-American Zionists?

Like Paul, I think I need to see some more evidence than an already-posted list of Jews in the admin before I accept that a cabal of Jews stabbed the country in the back.

One can be against people's actions without recourse to aspens turning together based on some perceived traitorous loyalty to Israel.

Thursday, October 27, 2005 9:18:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

1. Was Iraq seen by Israelis as their number-one enemy? Provide reality-based evidence.

2. Is the presence of "JAZ's" in the decison-making process truly "massively overproportional"? I asked for a list, not yet forthcoming, of non-Jewish neocons and the like.

3. Answer your own question, with evidence: How well-organized are your "JAZ's"? Do they or do they not put American first?

Keep in mind that in the video you posted of Hersh on torture (ACLU speech), he himself discounted exactly what you're describing here.

But of course, he's Jewish...so he must be providing cover.

Yes, that's sarcastic, but you have been intent on "proving" this assertion ever since 9/11 -- it must serve some purpose for you.

Well, prove it. I realize that my insistence, along with my Jewishness (such as it is), proves that I'm also simply providing ethnic-loyalty-based cover, and thus can be dismissed, but give it a shot, anyway.

Thursday, October 27, 2005 9:32:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

However, I do welcome your focusing of the "enemy" down to a more proper group: Jewish-American Zionists who have a hand in the current admin's foreign policy decision-making process.

Now you have to identify those people, show that their motivations are Israel-first, treasonous, and somehow more or equally treasonous to non-JAZzers in the current admin's foreign policy decision-making process.

I would say that there is a connection to be drawn between Straussian post-Trotskyites who responded to the Holocaust in a particular fashion (far different from, say, Norman Mailer or Susan Sontag or Stephen Jay Gould or Noam Chomsky, et al) and those JAZzers who are now either in power or close to power.

But their argument must be extra-ethnic, or else Powell, Rice, Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, et al, wouldn't have either been preadapted to accept it or happily independently invented the same.

Like I said earlier, you cast the net far too narrowly; why you do so, I don't know. You'll find that determining motivations in others is actually quite difficult, but that the shortcut of assuming that some group identity (which just has to be there, given that they're part of said grouping) drives behavior depends on prior belief in the motivating power of ethnic identity in general and in those people in particular.

Making an analogy to Greek Americans isn't proof -- it isn't even proof of what most, some, or any Greek Americans would have done had they been in positions of power re: Cyprus.

One thing I will grant is that neocons tend to use imagery from WWII, including Hitler (or, more accurately, "Hitler") and the Holocaust in their propaganda. Even non-neocons, like Bush Sr., did when describing Saddam, and even, I think, Noriega. Furthermore, as Normon Solomon has pointed out, the use and abuse of the Holocaust, a very real genocide, to justify actions by Israel and to squelch debate in this country (but not, interestingly, in Israel itself), is at least generally valid.

Your thesis, then, would be strengthened with fewer assumptions, more evidence, and a bit more specificity -- along with a clearer understanding (not excusing, understanding) of what can provisionally be assumed to motivate the neocons, Jewish or not, Zionist or not (well, they all seem to be Zionist, at least by your definition).

Otherwise, your now four-year-old argument smacks of a strong desire for it to be true that outstrips any demonstration of its truthfulness. The motivation for that is hidden from us, and perhaps even from you, but certainly you're the only one who could possibly know.

Thursday, October 27, 2005 10:45:00 AM  
Blogger Demotiki said...

Doug,

I really don't think I can change your mind on this subject, anymore than I could change Allen's mind on this Administration. You seem willing to twist yourself into pretzels to protect people who you openly assail for other reasons every chance you get. Somehow you can't accept the incredible weight of evidence that a large part of the misinformation campaign conducted against our people was conducted by people who have divided loyalties.

In addition to your continual efforts to paint me as an irrational anti-Semite, who’s views must be rejected for who he is rather than for what he is saying, you raised three factual questions. These were:

1. Was Iraq seen by Israelis as their number-one enemy? Provide reality-based evidence.

I find this objection laughable. First of all, it doesn’t really matter if Iraq was the “number one” foreign policy objective of Israel. It clearly was for some in the Sharon Government. Secondly, there is a plethora of press reports and government press releases supporting both the prior Gulf War and this one. I don’t know if you remember, but the last country to attack Israel proper was Iraq (using SCUDDs during the first Gulf War). However, here are a few links that you might find informative about the JAZ link, a term used in Jim Lobe’s piece is “American Likudnik” which I think is may be better since it shows a loyalty to the Likud party rather than to Israel proper.

War on Iraq - Conceived In Israel
Jim Lobe, ' Neoconservatives Consolidate Control over U.S. Mideast Policy,' Foreign Policy in Focus, December 6, 2002
Joshua Micah Marshall, 'Bomb Sadddam? : How the obsession of a few neocon hawks became the central goal of U.S. foreign policy,' Washington Monthly, June 2002,
Kathleen and Bill Christison, 'A Rose By Another Other Name: The Bush Administration's Dual Loyalties,' CounterPunch, December 13, 2002,
See also Christopher Matthews, 'The road to Baghdad,' San Francisco Chronicle, March 24, 2002
Holger Jensen, 'Pre-Emption, Disarmament Or Regime Change? Part III,' October 7, 2002

Here’s a quote that might interest you from the Current Concerns article:
“The Israeli commentator Akiva Eldar recently observed frankly in a Ha'aretz column that Perle, Feith, and their fellow strategists 'are walking a fine line between their loyalty to American governments and Israeli interests.' The suggestion of dual loyalties is not a verboten subject in the Israeli press, as it is in the United States. Peace activist Uri Avnery, who knows Israeli Prime Minister Sharon well, has written that Sharon has long planned grandiose schemes for restructuring the Middle East and that 'the winds blowing now in Washington remind me of Sharon. I have absolutely no proof that the Bushies got their ideas from him . But the style is the same.'”

2. Is the presence of "JAZ's" in the decison-making process truly "massively overproportional"? I asked for a list, not yet forthcoming, of non-Jewish neocons and the like.

Despite your claims to the contrary, I did provide a list of American Lukidniks who fought for a war in Iraq. However, here it is again although it is not exhaustive and it doesn’t account for people like Judith Miller or Crystol who worked on the case for war from outside the administration.
Jews in the Bush Administration - from the Jewish virtual library

Jews make up less than 2% of the national population. If we are to credit your contention that they are not massively over-represented in the decision making process that lead us to war in Iraq, we would have to believe there was less than one American Likudnik was in WHIG. I will list just a few to prove conclusively that there WAS more than one: Pearle, Wolfowitz, Libby, Feith, Abrams and many more. . .

3. Answer your own question, with evidence: How well-organized are your "JAZ's"? Do they or do they not put American first?
There is plenty of evidence of organization. The American Likudniks blanketed the talk shows hitting exactly the same talking points over and over again. This was not an accident. As for putting America first, it is demonstrably false that the War in Iraq was in the interest of the United States. However, it accomplished the stated interests of the Sharon administration and removed the greatest single threat to Israeli security.

I don’t have time to continue this debate; I have a massive memo to do. However, try to keep an open mind about this. It’s an important issue and you will never hear about it on MSM because it’s verboten to discuss the motivations of any Republican, let alone raise the outlandish idea that someone's deeply held ethnic or religious loyalties might cause them to place America second. Political correctness cuts both ways.

Thursday, October 27, 2005 2:10:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

1. Never said that you were an anti-Semite. Just don't understand your motivations. According to you, they must emanate from your ethnic background, and must be easily knowable. I cannot divine them, so I leave it to you to figure it out and report back, if you like.

2. Comparing my supposed intransigence on this topic, which you refuse to define in any way other than your own definition, thus ignoring anything I actually write, by comparing me to Allen's intransigence on the Bush admin on other issues could be construed as insulting, considering what you've written about and to Allen. I said "could," but I am not really insultable on this issue.

3. You haven't demonstrated "divided loyalties," nor have you shown that my interpretation -- and Paul's, for that matter, who you somehow exempt from criticism, even though our assessment of your post is essentially the same -- which is that there are non-JAZzy neocons and that neocons as a whole see, I think, American dominance as primary, and Israel mostly in that light, as a kind of imperial outpost, remains unresponded to.

4. Declaring something "laughable" doesn't an argument make. Who in the Sharon government thought Iraq to be a threat? Are you sure they weren't just going with the American neocon flow? You're making a causal argument -- what caused what, then?

5. I see the links, and I'll read them.

6. "'I have absolutely no proof that the Bushies got their ideas from him. But the style is the same.'" That's not a particularly strong factual basis, but I'll read all the links.

7. Interestingly, you misread "non-Jewish" for "Jewish" re: a list of neocons. I've seen your list thrice now. How about one for non-Jewish neocons? This is a bit of a side issue, but the proper comparison is to Jewish representation in sociologically comparable professions, not to the percentage of the US population as a whole.

8. You are making a key error in so cavalierly entering into the minds and motivations of others. You, me, and many people may see the war in Iraq as not in America's best interests. That does not mean that the architects, including non Jews, agreed. Are we actually to believe that this was all a big favor to 2% of the electorate -- or, rather, 25% of 2% of the electorate that actually voted for Bush? That after 9/11, worries solely about Israeli security would trump worries about American security? You got a lot of 'splainin' to do.

9. Since I pay very little attention to MSM, except to critique it, I don't see how I'm a dupe, but your key contention that ethnic loyalties run deep needs to be proven in this specific case. Of course, you ignored the final comment I made on the Straussians, which I think is closer to what you're getting at, but as you see yourself, I guess, as utterly sure that I am somehow deluding myself -- for what reason? because of my unadmitted ethnic roots that make me sway unconsciously with my Jewish (or JAZzy) brethren? -- you need no other proof. My mere disagreement with you is proof that I am somehow complicit in covering up for my coreligionists, no matter how nuanced a disagreement I give.

That's just sloppy thinking, which we all have the right to partake in. But I don't have to agree with you.

I honestly think that your focus on this slice of the issue is more due to your tendency to jump to simplistic monocausal answers to complex problems and your tendency to state your answers as certainty. What else motivates you, I really don't know.

Thursday, October 27, 2005 2:49:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Your links:

1st. On Dr. Sniegoski's article: He fails to convince me that the two most obvious reasons for Iraq -- oil reserves and extension of American empire -- aren't still the most obvious reasons. Of course, this is proof only of my blinkeredness, not worthy of your reconsideration of your position, as will any response from me other than total acquiescence to your position, regardless of force of argument or marshalling of evidence. For more of Sniegoski's "scholarship," see his excoriation of Einstein here.

2nd. Yes, neoconservatives have hijacked American foreign policy. Not the question at issue here.

3rd. I think I read this back in the day.

I find this quote interesting, on epistemological grounds:

"Richard Perle could not be more different. Dubbed the "Prince of Darkness" during the Reagan years for his hatred of the Soviets and his eagerness to confront them, he radiates a cool, effortless intelligence which is both cocky and oracular. He doesn't know many of the details about Iraq or the Middle East. But, he works you like a used car salesman, avoiding questions he'd prefer not to or cannot answer, responding to uncomfortable queries (what if Saddam's Republican Guards stay loyal to him and fight?) with best case scenarios (don't worry, they won't). When asked what would happen if America encountered an embittered civilian population after fighting a grisly battle for Baghdad, Perle replied with a question: "Suppose the Iraqis are dancing in the streets after Saddam is gone?" His arguments tend to rest on abstractions and mechanistic reasoning: Saddam is bad. Ergo the Iraqis hate Saddam. Ergo they like us. That might be true. But if such arguments were chairs you would hear them creaking beneath you."

There's nothing in this article to support your thesis, Andrew, except, perhaps the following, which comes early: "Most [hawks] are acolytes of Perle, and also Jewish, passionately pro-Israel, and pro-Likud."

Of course, the next sentence is: "And all are united by a shared idea: that America should be unafraid to use its military power early and often to advance its interests and values."

So, how does this support the "treason/divided loyalty" argument? Did I miss something in the article?

4th. This article, which I take at face value, is a much better support for your argument. You might want to take this quote to heart: "Whether being pro-Israel, even pro right-wing Israel, constitutes having dual loyalties ­ that is, a desire to further Israel's interests that equals or exceeds the desire to further U.S. interests ­ is obviously not easy to determine, but the record gives some clues." Although this is obviously lip-service given the context of the article.

I note that these articles tend to quote the same sources, e.g., Akiva Eldar's Ha'aretz column.

In any event, when the authors ask, essentially, "So what?" they tellingly ignore 9/11 and the fact that folks like Cheney, et al, may have been a bit shaken up by that move (and driven into the "paranoia" Wilkerson mentioned), and latched onto neoconservatism even more than in their PNAC days.

I think their conclusion speaks for itself -- these guys are just sure of how the neocons rank their loyalties, and how the other obvious (to me) reasons for going into Iraq just don't measure up. It's called "cherry picking":

"These two strains of Jewish and Christian fundamentalism have dovetailed into an agenda for a vast imperial project to restructure the Middle East, all further reinforced by the happy coincidence of great oil resources up for grabs and a president and vice president heavily invested in oil. All of these factors [--]­ the dual loyalties of an extensive network of policymakers allied with Israel, the influence of a fanatical wing of Christian fundamentalists, and oil [--] ­ probably factor in more or less equally to the administration's calculations on the Palestinian-Israeli situation and on war with Iraq. But the most critical factor directing U.S. policymaking is the group of Israeli loyalists: neither Christian fundamentalist support for Israel nor oil calculations would carry the weight in administration councils that they do without the pivotal input of those loyalists, who clearly know how to play to the Christian fanatics and undoubtedly also know that their own and Israel's bread is buttered by the oil interests of people like Bush and Cheney. This is where loyalty to Israel by government officials colors and influences U.S. policymaking in ways that are extremely dangerous."

I don't know how they could know that (bolding mine). The sentence before the bolding seems to me to be far more convincing and fits the evidence far better. It's nothing more than what I've been saying for years now. But that's not good enough for these authors or, I guess, for you. There has to be one overwhelming cause, and even though evidence is hard to come by, I guess the absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.

5th. A broken link. I guess you either had it bookmarked for a long time or just followed some footnotes in other pieces. Provide the article and I'll read it.

6th. Again, I don't see much that supports your specific argument here. In fact, I agree with the following:

"The US strategy of dual containment of Iraq and Iran, pleases Israel – which is most threatened by them – but violates the logic of realpolitik and alienates most of America’s other allies. Beyond the region, U.S. policy on nuclear weapons proliferation is undermined by the double standard that has led it to ignore Israel’s nuclear program while condemning those of India and Pakistan."

Lind goes on to say that "the kind of informed, centrist criticism of Israel which can be found in Britain and the rest of Europe, a criticism that recognises Israel’s right to exist and defend itself, whilst deploring its brutal occupation of Palestinian territory and discrimination against Arab Israelis, is far less visible in the U.S.

"'Most Americans would support Israel’s right to exist and to defend itself against threats even if the Israel lobby did not exist. However, in the absence of the Israel lobby, America’s elected representatives would surely have made aid to Israel conditional on Israeli withdrawal from the occupied territories. It is this largely unconditional nature of U.S. support for Israel that compromises its Middle East policy" – something that George Bush has yet to grasp."

Do you?

So, even granting how buys you are now with your brief/paper, you've had four years to flesh out your position, and it seems, again, as blinkered and narrow as it ever was. You even go beyond "dual loyalites" -- you state that "...someone's deeply held ethnic or religious loyalties might cause them to place America second..." which is not dual loyalties, but treason. I'm not sure any of your sources even go that far.

Anyway, there are plenty of examples of dual loyalties in American foreign policy -- just look at how Federalists and Republicans split over the French Revolution; Hamilton was almost certainly a British spy.

So, I'm not so naive or ignorant as to think that this cannot happen. Nor, despite what you seem to need to think, am I so root-connected (in some Jungian fasion?) to my coreligionists to refuse to turn where the evidence demands. I think that the Likudnik neocons, or whatever you want to call them, are one reason we're in Iraq.

That they could be the only or even the most important reason, and against all other possible (and to me, obvious) reasons -- whether you agree with them or not (which is beside the point) -- is simply to posit some kind of massively seductive, massively powerful, and massively treasonous group who is stabbing the nation in the back for its own purposes, duping Powell, the Senate, Rumsfeld, Bush, Rove, Cheney, and all the other non-Jewish neocons or "fellow travellers" you refuse to list.

What your motivations are for cherry picking among all the manifold and obvious reasons for our misadventure in Iraq escapes me, as it always has, ever since 9/11.

So, wrap yourself in the wounded, hounded guise of rightwing political correctness, a beacon of light and truth for all us ethnically blinded or PC-silenced progressives, all you like. I need more than this to change my mind.

Yes, that will obviously be taken as evidence of my unconscious ethnic/racial loyalties, as we all know blood is thicker than water -- or neurotransmitters. That argument itself could be taken as at least racialist -- can no one really overcome his or her cultural inheritances? I think not.

Thursday, October 27, 2005 4:05:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Clarification: "Do you?" was meant to refer to the fact that I agree with Lind's analysis. Do you agree that Israel has a right to exist, but that doesn't mean carte blanche to do whatever it likes with American acquiescence re: its deplorable treatment of Palestinians?

I know that requires a bit of nuance, but it seems a pretty rational position to me, unless you want to side with either the Iranian president or with your worst nightmare of a "JAZ". Surely, there is a middle ground. One must shed one's absolute moral certainty, though.

Thursday, October 27, 2005 4:11:00 PM  
Blogger pawlr said...

Demo, look like interesting articles, I plan to read them soon - still at work now so it requires more time than I have at the moment.

I actually enjoy these dust-ups on the Israeli question..

To make my own position clear, for what its worth - I think Israel probably did not have a "right" to exist in Palestine. Historical claims to the land are as equally (il)legitimate as any other group that decided a historical past from 2000 years ago entitled it to any peice of land, given the complex claims that had been made on the same land in the time since.

If the colonial powers ruling the region felt that the Jewish people were owed a homeland based on Holocaust guilt - the right way to handle it was to give up some of their OWN land for that purpose, not to offer up someone else's. Although inconceivable now, as I understand it, it was actually not an accepted platform of Zionism that the homeland be in Israel - there were factions that considered a homeland in Montana for instance, or in other places.

That said, name me ONE nation that was ever founded with a real "moral" legitimacy - "moral" and "just" in the sense that it wasn't founded through some acts of violence and brutality by an emerging state. You just won't be able to, because such a nation doesn't exist. Which means that "as a nation" Israel currently has as much right to exist as any other nation-state. I realize there are some pretty serious normative/prescriptive confusions here about whether the fact that nations are naturally formed through occupations by fiat or not justify them being done in the future.

So it comes down to this compromise - Israel exists, and it should be allowed the right to defend its established pre-expansion borders. Anything beyond that is a land-grab and should be de-incentivized at the very LEAST by withholding financial and military support.

Thursday, October 27, 2005 4:26:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Paul -- you're right about the land not having to be in Palestine. And you're right about the birth of nations -- it ain't ever pretty.

However, as to whether the JAZ-tail is wagging a dog that consists of the largest empire the world has ever seen is the topic, and I can't see any reason for accepting that.

Which means that after this apparently periodic "dust-up" is over, the position comes down to what you wrote in your first comment -- the Likudnik (or whatever) group's desires is one reason -- and it's not totally clear that they see America's security as anything different from Israel's security, or vice versa. We can all disagree on this (and I would), but we're talking about their "categories," not our own.

Thursday, October 27, 2005 4:51:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"this" meaning the total identity of Israeli and American security, fyi...

Thursday, October 27, 2005 4:52:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

One other thing -- and this has no real bearing on current issues in I/P -- the deal originally was for two states in Palestine. The Zionists accepted that. The rest of the Arab world did not; war ensued.

The point? The place has been covered in blood for decades. I'd frankly like to see one state not based on any ethnic or religious feeling -- but even France wants to keep its "Frenchness" -- as though one can stop change.

And check out the minutemen militia on the border in our own lovely nation -- and its history of genocide and slavery and colonialism. Should the US be wiped off the map?

Right.

So, when the dust settles, you still have to live with each other -- or commit mutual suicide.

Folks with all kinds of agendas will strut about with all kinds of moralistic reasons for why one or the other side is totally (or mostly) at fault. They are noise; the ones making the music are the ones trying to figure out a way to coexist.

Ergo, Geneva Accords, Tikkun, etc., etc....I think we've been here many times.

The return of the repressed in these discussions is another topic on which one can only speculate. Unlike Demo, I don't have superior knowledge of even my friends' motivations -- let alone the motivations of people I don't know.

I judge people by their actions, not by group identification and posited group-determined behavior.

Yes, believe it or not, an anti-Zionist like Edward Said could be blisteringly critical of Hamas and the PA. Imagine that. And a Jew who lived through the Holocaust (at a distance) like Noam Chomsky, can be anti-Zionist (by current definitions) and still realize that anti-Semitism is real, and can even be friends with Said!

How, pray tell, did they uproot themselves from their arborial neighbors?

How did the courageous Palestinians and Israelis manage to work out a decent treaty in Geneva, rootwork notwithstanding?

How does anyone ever forge a new thought outside of one's family unit or self-understood ethnic group?

Why are we not totally irrational?

Two words: critical thinking.

Spread it around.

Thursday, October 27, 2005 5:04:00 PM  

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