Criminalizing criticisms of Israel


Assaf Gavron, a former member of the Israeli Defense Forces, has written an opinion piece in the Washington Post titled Confessions of an Israeli traitor arguing that the harsh occupation by Israel of the West Bank and its brutal treatment of people there and in Gaza is destroying Israel. He said that things have changed a lot since the days when the IDF soldiers responded with merely tear gas and rubber bullets to angry teenage stone throwers. The use of violence against protestors is much harsher and more lethal now.

He describes the rise of Jewish fundamentalism and the current horrendous levels of hostility and intolerance and violence perpetrated on anyone (leftists, Jews, and Arabs) in Israel who challenges the brutal policies of occupation. The inciting rhetoric, led by prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, has reached levels of absurdity, such as his claim that the idea of exterminating Jews did not enter Hitler’s mind until it was suggested by Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, an idea that has been widely ridiculed but is seen as a deliberate attempt by him to inflame anti-Arab passions. And Netanyahu has now said openly what many of us knew for a long time, that Israel has no intention of ever releasing the Palestinians from their current apartheid-like state of subjugation, which means that its already high levels of brutality against the Palestinians will only increase.

Gavron concludes that the writing is on the wall for the Israeli state.

And the increasingly intolerant, boiling, racist tone of the Israeli conversation is — there is no other way to put this — a result of 48 years of occupying another people: of Israelis receiving a message (or at least understanding it as such) that we are superior to others, that we control the fate of those lesser others, that we are allowed to disregard laws and any basic notions of human morality with regard to Palestinians.

The cumulative effect of this recent mindless violence is hugely disturbing. We seem to be in a fast and alarming downward swirl into a savage, unrepairable society. There is only one way to respond to what’s happening in Israel today: We must stop the occupation. Not for peace with the Palestinians or for their sake (though they have surely suffered at our hands for too long). Not for some vision of an idyllic Middle East — those arguments will never end, because neither side will ever budge, or ever be proved wrong by anything. No, we must stop the occupation for ourselves. So that we can look ourselves in the eyes. So that we can legitimately ask for, and receive, support from the world. So that we can return to being human.

Whatever the consequences are, they can’t be worse than what we are now grappling with. No matter how many soldiers we put in the West Bank, or how many houses of terrorists we blow up, or how many stone-throwers we arrest, we don’t have any sense of security; meanwhile, we have become diplomatically isolated, perceived around the world (sometimes correctly) as executioners, liars, racists. As long as the occupation lasts, we are the more powerful side, so we call the shots, and we cannot go on blaming others. For our own sake, for our sanity — we must stop now.

But unlike in the case of apartheid South Africa, the leaders of western nations are actively aiding in Israel’s descent into being an outright racist state by trying to suppress criticisms of it such as the calls for support of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

You may recall the grand show of support for free speech after the murder of the Charlie Hebdo cartoonists when the leaders of many nations (including Netanyahu) marched in the streets of Paris to show their determination to not allow speech to be censored.

But Glenn Greenwald writes that they do not view all speech the same way, and that while some western nations talk loudly about the right to freedom of speech, they then turn around and criminalize criticisms of Israel. He describes what just happened in France where people were convicted simply for urging the boycott of Israeli products.

The absurdity of France’s celebrating itself for free expression was vividly highlighted by this week’s decision from that nation’s highest court, one that is a direct assault on basic free speech rights. The French high court upheld the criminal conviction of 12 political activists for the “crime” of advocating sanctions and a boycott against Israel as a means of ending the decades-long military occupation of Palestine. What did these French criminals do?

The individuals arrived at the supermarket wearing shirts emblazoned with the words: “Long live Palestine, boycott Israel.” They also handed out fliers that said that “buying Israeli products means legitimizing crimes in Gaza.”

In France — self-proclaimed Land of Liberté — doing that makes you a criminal. As The Forward reported, the court “cited the French republic’s law on Freedom of the Press, which prescribes imprisonment or a fine of up to $50,000 for parties that ‘provoke discrimination, hatred or violence toward a person or group of people on grounds of their origin, their belonging or their not belonging to an ethnic group, a nation, a race or a certain religion.’” Because BDS is inherently “discriminatory,” said the court, it is a crime to advocate it.

The French court ruling is part of a worldwide trend. As more and more people around the world recognize the criminal and brutal nature of the Israeli government, its loyalists have been increasingly trying literally to criminalize activism against the Israeli occupation. For that reason, “pro-Israel” activists this week celebrated this French assault on basic free speech rights.

The odious campaign to outlaw activism against the Israeli occupation extends well beyond France. In May, CBC reported that Canadian officials threatened to prosecute BDS activists there under “hate speech” laws, and after those officials denied doing so, we obtained and published the emails proving they did just that. The February Haaretz article described this troubling event in the U.K.: “In 2007, the British University and College Union said it would drop plans to boycott Israeli institutions after legal advisers said doing so would violate anti-discrimination laws.” In 2013, New York City officials joined an (ultimately failed) Alan-Dershowitz-led campaign to threaten the funding of Brooklyn College for the crime of hosting pro-BDS speakers.

So you can freely call for boycotts against Russia or Iran or North Korea and the western governments will even aid you. But call for boycotts against Israel and you could lose your job or end up in jail.

When Gavron calls himself a ‘traitor’, he is not indulging in a rhetorical flourish. He is currently in the US but he says that people like him who have said similar or even milder things in Israel have been labeled thus. What this suppression of the BDS movement and criticisms of Israel is doing is giving the green light to the Israeli government and the most hard line reactionary elements in Israeli society to continue down the path it has chosen to becoming, as Gavron says, a “savage, unrepairable society” where its claim of being a democracy will be seen as increasingly hollow.

Comments

  1. Dunc says

    But unlike in the case of apartheid South Africa, the leaders of western nations are actively aiding in Israel’s descent into being an outright racist state

    On the contrary, those same “western nations” actively supported apartheid South Africa for a surprisingly long time. Looking back on it now it seems that everyone was anti-apartheid, but that is historical revisionism. Both Reagan and Thatcher practised what they termed “constructive engagement” with South Africa, regarded the ANC as terrorists, and opposed sanctions.

  2. Mano Singham says

    Dunc,

    That is true but I do not recall them going so far as to actually criminalizing calls for boycotts. At least they gave lip-service to the idea that apartheid was bad and needed to be changed but that ‘constructive engagement’ was the way to change things. Of course, this was a cynical and hypocritical posture but the need for hypocrisy shows that they could not publicly argue in favor of the South African regime.

  3. Dunc says

    Mano

    No, I don’t think they went quite as far as actually criminalising calls for boycotts, although there was a lot of pretty active suppression of the anti-apartheid movement (police surveillance, heavy-handed policing of protests, and so forth). However, I think it took quite a long time (several decades) to eventually get to the stage where apartheid was officially regarded unfavourably, and the fig-leaf of “constructive engagement” was adopted. For much of the history of the international anti-apartheid movement, they were widely regarded as terrorist-sympathisers (and probably communists), and treated as such.

  4. says

    Greenwald:

    Because BDS is inherently “discriminatory,” said the court, it is a crime to advocate it. […] The odious campaign to outlaw activism against the Israeli occupation extends well beyond France. In May, CBC reported that Canadian officials threatened to prosecute BDS activists there under “hate speech” laws, and after those officials denied doing so, we obtained and published the emails proving they did just that.

    “Opposing oppression is a form of oppression.” That sounds exactly like fundy christians who whine about gay marriage.

    During the cold war, criticizing the apartheid regime in South Africa (or any US-backed fascist regime) could get one labelled a “communist”. Reagan, Bush 1 and other loud pro-fascists voices of that era (e.g. Pat Robertson, participant in the war crimes of former Liberian president Charles Taylor) unwaveringly supported the apartheid regime until its very last days. It was only when the regime imploded that US foreign policy changed, not when it was ethical or right.

    But call for boycotts against Israel and you could lose your job or end up in jail.

    Which is exactly what happened during October Crisis of 1970. Canada was effectively a police state for three days, but the suspension of civil liberties and free speech lasted for several months. Over four hundred were arrested and held without access to a lawyer or any legal protection of habeas corpus for extended periods of time without any charges being laid. The RCMP engaged in rampant abuse of people’s rights, including forms of physical abuse, mental abuse and possibly torture of citizens for as little publicly supporting the FLQ and Quebec separatism. A hundred postal workers were fired without just cause after a protest for Quebec separatism.

    The same attitudes continue today, with students at some Canadian universities living under threat of expulsion for using the words “Israeli apartheid” on campus.

  5. Lesbian Catnip says

    I can usually figure out how most conservative types arrive to their arguments, but conflating “I condemn the actions of the State of Israel” with “kill all Jews!” is one argument that is beyond me

  6. says

    From the Gavron piece:

    Since the start of last year’s Gaza war, there have been several incidents of anti-leftist violence to go along with the attacks aimed at Palestinians:…

    Ali Abunimah’s The Battle for Justice in Palestine, which I recommend, has a section about the coordinated efforts to shut down criticism of Israeli policies on US campuses. It was striking how the organizations involved have adopted a thoroughly rightwing attitude toward education itself. Because students are more likely to hear critical views from leftwing professors and in the humanities and social sciences, for example, the gutting of these programs and the growth of professional-vocational programs and for-profit colleges is celebrated. There isn’t really even much of a pretense of a wish for open debate – the basic elements of a democratic education are viewed as threatening.

  7. Excluded Layman says

    It’s also extremely ironic, since the conflation strongly implies that Jews are necessarily and inherently the problem. IE. The argument is literally that mere Jewish existence is fundamentally inseparable from — and implicitly responsible for — the actions of the Israeli government.

    Which is absurd on its face. They might as well be making the excuse that “Men Jews just can’t control themselves like normal people, you have to be understanding!” (And not give them any responsibility, they tellingly elide…)

  8. StevoR says

    I don’t agree with censorship or silencing opinions but I do think that incitement to hatred and anti-Semitism is wrong and that the BDS campaign by singling out all Israelis as evil and collectively punishing them is wrong and should be stopped and condemned for the anti-Semitic undercurrent it reflects on the Israel-bashing Left.

    He describes the rise of Jewish fundamentalism and the current horrendous levels of hostility and intolerance and violence perpetrated on anyone (leftists, Jews, and Arabs) in Israel who challenges the brutal policies of occupation.

    I don’t think that is factually accurate -for instance what about this cafe which is trying to get both sides to talk peace with this good initiative?

    http://www.takepart.com/article/2015/10/21/israeli-cafe-gives-jews-and-arabs-discount-if-they-eat-together?cmpid=tp-fb

    I think the left needs to do more like that engaging with both sides rather than just demonising the Israeli one.

    .. But unlike in the case of apartheid South Africa, the leaders of western nations are actively aiding in Israel’s descent into being an outright racist state ..

    That too is simply factually incorrect. Israelis come from all around the world and Jews of every race are welcome there whether they are from Russia, the Arab lands they were generally expelled by force from, or Europe, or Ethiopia or America or indeed were born in Israel.

  9. Nick Gotts says

    the BDS campaign by singling out all Israelis as evil – StevoR@9

    The expected barefaced lies from StevoR – the BDS campaign does no such thing, any more than the anti-apartheid campaign condemned all South Africans as evil.

    Jews of every race are welcome there whether they are from Russia, the Arab lands they were generally expelled by force from, or Europe, or Ethiopia or America or indeed were born in Israel. – StevoR@9

    This is just bizarre. It is the preference given to Jews – defined in terms of descent, not religion – and the exclusion of Palestinian Arabs including those born in Israel – that justifies calling Israel a racist state.

  10. StevoR says

    @6. Lesbian Catnip :

    “I can usually figure out how most conservative types arrive to their arguments, but conflating “I condemn the actions of the State of Israel” with “kill all Jews!” is one argument that is beyond me.”

    Here’s a clue then, short answer it is to do with the historical context of Israel’s struggle for survival against repeated Arab attacks and attempts to destroy and as far as possible delegitimise and deny it. Plus the very nasty company it puts one in.

    To expand on that, well, read some history books on the history of Israel and those who keep trying to exterminate it.

    The Arab and Muslim worlds have just never accepted the Jewish states right to live in peace and security like other nations all get to do. Indeed many “critics” of Israel especially in and from the Arab world but also some of their misguided Western allies (& I’ve even seen it here) are so incensed at Israel’s mere existence as the worlds tiny and sole Jewish nation that they refuse to even use its name referring to it by things like “The Zionist Entity” or “The Crusader State” (like that makes sense!) instead of just calling it Israel. Its like hearing or reading or typing the name ‘Israel’ itself actually burns them or something!

    (Israel! Israel! Israel Humperdinck! Humperdink! Humperdinck! Israel! Etc ..)

    There’s a huge historical context here of anti-Semitism and the aim of hating on and destroying Israel – and the people and belief system (namely Judaism) which Israel represents and is a shelter and homeland for. There’s a lot of furious Arab rhetoric about “driving the Jews into the sea” meaning the complete and total slaughter of the eight and a half million Israeli population. Given the Jewish history its perhaps not surprising and indeed exceeding reasonable that the Israelis and Jewish people more generally have learned to take such threats vey seriously. They are literally fighting for and in fear of their lives.

    So in that historical context of their enemies constantly attacking Israel’s right to live, its probably to be expected that, yeah, they will be defensive about their homeland and right to just be and that they don’t take kindly to further excessive singling out by those who don’t know or appreciate their plight.

    Then, there’s the long list of Israeli “critics” who’ve got stuck into them since their 19348 War of Independence. (Or as the Arabs call it the Catastrophe – – i.e. Israel survived and became a Jewish state – that’s “catastrophic ” in their minds.) Arab dictators, Hamas, Hezbollah, Islamic Jihad, Al Quaida & Da’esh, all those Conspiracy Theorists who blame everything in the world on “Teh Jooz!!!”, Mel Gibson (Ok same grp), most of the Neo-Nazis, et cetera. Oh &, weirdly, Noam Chomsky who you’d think would be smart enough to know better but clearly has a whopping hate on for Israel as well as America that country where he, umm, lives. By choice one presumes. Plus the West generally, go figure. Maybe he isn’t as intelligent, logical and good as he claims to be, huh?

    Anyhow, point is if you are standing with people like those, knowing Israel already has more than enough “critics” singling the worlds one, only and tiny Jewish nation out for doing what any nation in its circumstances would do*, well, you might want tocheck if your hat or coat has skulls on it and ask if you are on the baddies side. Because, frankly, you would be.

    So there you have it. That’s why. Context which matters and the company you stand with – ditto.

    Not that I am conservative politically but then I don’t think you have to be conservative to support Israel and I don’t think progressives should avoid supporting Israel just because conservatives are also on the right side of this Israeli-Arab conflict issue. Nor do I think supporting Israel means ruling out peace or a better deal for the Palestinians either – but then the Palestinians do need to recognise and take a good offer when its given to them as they have tragically failed to do in their past.

    * NB Actually come to think of it, most nations on Earth would probably take far stronger and more extrme steps if they were in Israel’s place than Israel has done – and most nations would also cop far less shit for it too.

    (Compare & contrast the Partition of India & Pakistan and the Greece-Turkey conflict and division to Israel-Jordan & Egypt historically. Also what China does in Tibet and Xinjiang plus Indonesia in West Papua and o on to what Israel does and the relative levels of attention these seem to get.)

  11. StevoR says

    @10. Nick Gotts : “the BDS campaign does no such thing, any more than the anti-apartheid campaign condemned all South Africans as evil.”

    Umm, the Apartheid campaign condemned White Sth Africans not Black -the BDS BS condemns all Israelis regardless of colour -incl. even the Arab Israelis. So , what a (non) surprise you are in error factually as well as ethically.

    This is just bizarre. It is the preference given to Jews – defined in terms of descent, not religion – and the exclusion of Palestinian Arabs including those born in Israel – that justifies calling Israel a racist state.

    No, its pretty straightforward words have meanings and facts are facts and Israel is NOT legally divided into racial classes with some races treated as legally inferior to others.

    Also Arabs born in Israel are called Israeli Arabs and have full legal rights there and even have their own members of the Knesset. (Israeli equivalent of Parliament / Congress.)

    See : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Arab_members_of_the_Knesset

    & for once Nick Gotts, please do think and learn for a change! If only to surprise me.. Did you really not know and understand that already? Clearly not. Now you do. Know at least if not understand.

    There ya go -your argument there disproven & comprehensively rebutted in literally about five minutes. Well, ten but that’s because I’m trying not to type too fast for once.

  12. Nick Gotts says

    Incidentally, I am well aware that there are Arab citizens of Israel – which makes StevoR’s claim that the BDS campaign singles out all Israelis as evil even more absurd – but they suffer from various legal disadvantages, and Israel’s self-definition as a “Jewish state” – not a state belonging equally to all its inhabitants – is blatantly racist in itself.

  13. jws1 says

    Shorter Stevo: Israel can’t be criticized because doing so by definition is racist. Also, I can’t defend my opinions to anyone outside my tribe of reactionary fascist statists.

  14. says

    jws1 (#14)

    +1.

    Exactly. Which is why I don’t read his verbal diarrhoea.

    He should try working in the circus. No, not as a clown (though he probably could) but as a contortionist. He can twist anything to fit into anything he wants.

  15. says

    Its like hearing or reading or typing the name ‘Israel’ itself actually burns them or something!

    Reminds me a lot of StevoR’s old fellow traveller and his inability to type a certain name. Dang, I miss him sometimes.

    So, StevoR, if BDS is so evil, what other options do those of us who oppose Israeli Apartheid and the “settlements” have? Our governments are fine with with letting Israel do whatever it wants to the Palestinians so there’s nothing we can do there. Other than speaking out, that doesn’t leave us with a bunch of other options.

    At least I know now that you are stridently against Iranian sanctions because they single out all Iranians as evil and collectively punishes them.

  16. patrick2 says

    Criticising Israel amounts to standing with Da’esh? That’s up there with “You know who else was a vegetarian? HITLER!”

  17. StevoR says

    @ ^ patrick2 : That’s misrepresenting what I actually wrote. Please reread this time for comprehension.

    @Nick Gotts :

    Incidentally, I am well aware that there are Arab citizens of Israel – which makes StevoR’s claim that the BDS campaign singles out all Israelis as evil even more absurd – but they suffer from various legal disadvantages, and Israel’s self-definition as a “Jewish state” – not a state belonging equally to all its inhabitants – is blatantly racist in itself.

    Bzzzt! No. Words how do they work again? Racism is a word with specific meaning the situation of Israel does not fit that meaning therefore you are factually incorrect and erroneous as usual for you.

    As for you being aware of Israeli Arabs well, in that case why lie about Israel as you have done and continue to do? You are confessing there that you already knew you were wrong about the Jewish state were you I take it? Did you know specifically that Arab Israelis not only vote but are represented by their own parties and members in the Knesset which basically disproves all claims that Israelis “racist” or “Apartheid” like? Apartheid being another word you are misusing and seem not to realise means something other than what you think it does. Hint : It applies specifically to a certain racist historical system in South Africa and really not elsewhere much if at all.

    Incidentally as far as Arab Israelis go, I think you can argue that them not being legally compelled to join the IDF and do military national service as other Israelis do is a good bit of consideration for everyone and they are certainly better off than, say, anti-Hamas people living in Gaza and a lot of their problems could be resolved if for instance they’d stop going around trying to stab or run down or throw rocks at innocent Jewish Israelis. Also note that they are allowed to pray on the Temple Mount whereas Jewish citizens of Israel are not. Even despite the Arab Israelis frequently using the Al Aqsa mosque to incite violence and chuck rocks at the Jews worshipping below them. Well, gee, yeah, aren’t those Israelis nasty & unfair to them eh? NOT!
    ,
    (Frankly, the Arabs should count themselves very lucky the Al Aqsa mosque wasn’ t destroyed as soon as Jerusalem was recaptured from the Jordanians in 1967.)

    @16. Tabby Lavalamp : “Dang, I miss him sometimes.”

    I take it you mean Colnago80? Well, you should tell him so and invite him back. I gather Colnago80 is not actually banned here and it would be good to have some more diverse voices especially ones that usually include links and evidence to support their positions so, yeah, why not ask him next time you cross virtual paths? I’m sure he’d appreciate that.

    So, StevoR, if BDS is so evil, what other options do those of us who oppose Israeli Apartheid and the “settlements” have?

    See my comment #9 above. Both sides need to sit down and talk and agree to a peaceful settlement which won’t include everything either side has in its ambit claim. Pressuring the Arab side to reject terrorism and agree to end the hate on against Israel and learn to live in peace with it and see its people as human would be a good idea in my book. If we could get them to be non-violent and more realistic, well, that’d be ideal.

    Options? Well, lets start with engaging with Israelis politely and with respect to their side of this issue instead of trying to demonise and delegitimise their lives and cause. Maybe try listening to the Israeli case and position for a bit and meanwhile pushing to end all anti-Semitic campaigns and rhetoric from everywhere you can. Drop BDS, start dialogue, engagement and listening to the other people.

    Our governments are fine with with letting Israel do whatever it wants to the Palestinians so there’s nothing we can do there. Other than speaking out, that doesn’t leave us with a bunch of other options.

    I’m fine with people “speaking out” as long as it isn’t hate speech disproportionately excessive singling out and demonising of Israel. Plus Obama and his govt is the most openly hostile one to Israel the USA has yet seen so I think your assertion there is dubious.

    @14. jws1 : A strawmonster misrepresentation without substance. Sigh. That really the best you can do? Criticism of Isreal is often associate with anti-Semitism and I am neither reactionary nor fascist nor a statist. So you are just totally wrong on all counts there.

    @15. left0ver1under : So you don’t even read what I write but you still feel able to condemn me and pile on against me? Way to prove yourself a willfully ignorant bullying douchebag left0ver1under!

  18. Nick Gotts says

    StevoR,

    the Apartheid campaign condemned White Sth Africans not Black – the BDS BS condemns all Israelis regardless of colour -incl. even the Arab Israelis. So , what a (non) surprise you are in error factually as well as ethically.

    Repeating a lie does not make it true, StevoR. If it is not a lie, then you will be able to quote from a BDS document condemning all Israelis as evil.
    *crickets*

    Incidentally, the Anti-Apartheid Movement did not condemn white South Africans – it condemned the Apartheid system and those supporting and enforcing it. Many white South Africans opposed it and whites were among the leadership of the ANC; black South Africans such as the “homeland” leaders and their cronies in effect supported it. Just like you to ignorantly slander a movement you evidently know nothing about.

    Israel is NOT legally divided into racial classes with some races treated as legally inferior to others.

    Yes, it is. You didn’t read the report I linked to did you? But in any case, the fact that Israel is officially declared to be a “Jewish state” rather than one belonging equally to all citizens is enough to refute your lie.

    You are confessing there that you already knew you were wrong about the Jewish state were you I take it? Did you know specifically that Arab Israelis not only vote but are represented by their own parties and members in the Knesset which basically disproves all claims that Israelis “racist” or “Apartheid” like?

    No, bladderhead, Israel is officially declared to be a Jewish state, in two of its own Basic Laws. Of course I’m aware Arab Israelis can vote and have members in the Knesset – unlike you, I do actually know something about the political situation there, and respect the facts. Arab Israelis and their parties nevertheless suffer considerable restrictions on free political activity: for example, a party that does not accept Israel’s self-definition as a “Jewish and democratic state” can be prevented from taking part in elections. Again, read the report I linked to, numpty.

    Apartheid being another word you are misusing and seem not to realise means something other than what you think it does. Hint : It applies specifically to a certain racist historical system in South Africa and really not elsewhere much if at all.

    I’m not sure whether you’re lying again here, or are simply too stupid and careless to take note of who says what. I did not apply and never have applied the term “apartheid” to Israel, for precisely the reason that the term is historically specific.

  19. Nick Gotts says

    StevoR,

    Incidentally as far as Arab Israelis go, I think you can argue that them not being legally compelled to join the IDF and do military national service as other Israelis do is a good bit of consideration for everyone

    In itself, this blatant racial discrimination is enough to refute your lie that “Israel is NOT legally divided into racial classes with some races treated as legally inferior to others.” The aim of the law is quite clear, and absolutely successful: to ensure that the armed forces are overwhelmingly Jewish, and arms training goes overwhelmingly to Jews. Israelis who have done national service are granted considerable official benefits, such as assistance with housing costs.

    a lot of their problems could be resolved if for instance they’d stop going around trying to stab or run down or throw rocks at innocent Jewish Israelis.

    Your own racism is blatantly on display here. You make it quite clear that you consider all Arab Israelis to be responsible for the actions of those who have attacked Jewish Israelis.

  20. Nick Gotts says

    I gather Colnago80 is not actually banned here and it would be good to have some more diverse voices especially ones that usually include links and evidence to support their positions – StevoR

    I’m not in the least surprised that you would welcome the shameless advocate of genocide (with the bizarre quirk of being unable to name Hitler) colnago80 aka slc1. Birds of a feather…

  21. aashiq says

    In California, Senator Dianne Feinstein’s husband billionaire Richard Blum threatened the Board of Regents at the University of California system that unless they expelled students critical of Israel that his wife would speak up. This was widely reported, including by Glenn Greenwald.

    The level to which the so-called pro Israel lobby with descend is beyond belief and totally corrupt.

  22. StevoR says

    @ ^ aashiq : Um, what? Someones partner saying something that, you would presume, she believes in (evdience for claiming otherwise?) in is now somehow “beyond belief” and corruption because .. Huh? WTF?

    Blum’s wife shouldn’t express her opinions why exactly?

    Mind you I do agree that nobody should be expelled from any university for stating their views too.

    @21./ #19. & #20. Nick Gotts : I do not think you are right about Colnago80. I recall him saying before that he does NOT advocate genocide and I think he deserves a fair go. I do think in several comments he acknolwged that the got some of what he once said wrong. As I also have done. As is human nature. Does it occur to you that *you* might be wrong and in any case it isn’t your blog to say? ‘Spose not. I think that says more about you than it does about anyone else incl. Mano Singham & Colnago80.

    Saying I welcome diverse voices here does NOT, incidentally, mean that I agree with everything those diverse voices say. For example, I don’t ask for your banning (always nice to be able to defeat and justifiably mock you) but I am happy to have you here as a comic foil & “straight man” to me.

    If it is not a lie, then you will be able to quote from a BDS document condemning all Israelis as evil.

    Or alternatively, better yet ,you can point to where the BDS does NOT apply to some group of Israelis. Can you do that?

    No, I didn’t think so.

    Incidentally, the Anti-Apartheid Movement did not condemn white South Africans – it condemned the Apartheid system ..

    Which does NOT apply to Israel since Israel does NOT have apartheid – hence all those Arab Israeli members of the Knesset and all the privileges and rights the Arab Israelis (who are far better off than most Arabs btw) have as already noted and you already confessed you know. Dumpkof!

    But in any case, the fact that Israel is officially declared to be a “Jewish state” rather than one belonging equally to all citizens is enough to refute your lie.

    Um, dude you really can’t tell the difference between religion and race? The f ..? Note one thing you have a say over and can choose, the other not-so-much. Big fan of Islam (Brand Hamas / Hezbollah) are ya eh? More importantly you are ignoring the historical context with the Jewish people and their history and present situation here as per usual -and that context and their circumstances is a very key thing indeed. That, as Yoda would say, is why you fail.

    No, bladderhead, Israel is officially declared to be a Jewish state, in two of its own Basic Laws. Of course I’m aware Arab Israelis can vote and have members in the Knesset ..

    Yet you insist on being wrong despite this admitted knowledge and do not see how it disproves what you claim? It does regardless of whether you acknowledge that reality or not of course. Israel is NOT what you slander /libel it as being.

  23. StevoR says

    Ack(bar!) Pressed the wrong button – meant to preview not submit. Oh well. Continued @ Nick Gotts multiple :

    Arab Israelis and their parties nevertheless suffer considerable restrictions on free political activity: for example, ..

    What? They are not allowed to slingshot rocks at innocent people potentially murdering them despite the Arabs desire to do so? Oh and, yeah, they occassionally succeed in murdering the odd Jewish baby and that doesn’t matter to you? Just how cheap do you hold Israeli lives precisely?

    I did not apply and never have applied the term “apartheid” to Israel, for precisely the reason that the term is historically specific.

    Well, if so that’s a start. Now have you ever pointed that out and told those who have done so here NOT to do so?

    The aim of the law is quite clear, and absolutely successful: to ensure that the armed forces are overwhelmingly Jewish, ..

    Or alternatively, y’know, to allow Arab Israelis a “get out of jail” clause so they don’t have to kill people they know and identify with which makes a lot more sense.

    Plus those who put their lives on the line for their nation should NOT be rewarded because .. well, why?

    “You make it quite clear that you consider all Arab Israelis to be responsible for the actions of those who have attacked Jewish Israelis.

    Bzzt. No I really don’t.

    But those who *do* do such things – and those who order those atrocities done?

    Well, *those* ones do have a responsibility for what they do and choose to do. Do you really claim otherwise? Also do you really think that and the virtual idol worshipping of such murderous “martyrs” reflects well on them and their culture? Seriously?

  24. StevoR says

    D’oh. Blockquote fail. Mea culpa & apologies . Sure wish I could edit comments here for even, say, five minutes. Preferably 15.

    Make that :

    ***

    Ack! Pressed the wrong button – meant to preview not submit. Oh well. Continued

    @ Nick Gotts multiple :

    Arab Israelis and their parties nevertheless suffer considerable restrictions on free political activity: for example, ..

    What? They are not allowed to slingshot rocks at innocent people potentially murdering them despite the Arabs desire to do so? Oh and, yeah, they occassionally succeed in murdering the odd Jewish baby and that doesn’t matter to you? Just how cheap do you hold Israeli lives precisely?

    I did not apply and never have applied the term “apartheid” to Israel, for precisely the reason that the term is historically specific.

    Well, if truly so then that’s a start.

    Now have you ever pointed that out and told those who have done so here NOT to do so?

    The aim of the law is quite clear, and absolutely successful: to ensure that the armed forces are overwhelmingly Jewish ..,

    .. Or alternatively, y’know, to allow Arab Israelis a “get out of jail” clause so they don’t have to kill people they know and identify with – which makes a lot more sense.

    Plus those who put their lives on the line for their nation should NOT be rewarded because .. well, why?

    “You make it quite clear that you consider all Arab Israelis to be responsible for the actions of those who have attacked Jewish Israelis.

    Bzzt. No I really don’t.

    Individuals are individuals. people are people. People are individuals. Yes, even poor brain washed Palestinians. Are people and individuals too – and, as such, choose for themselves & can think for themselves.

    But those who *do* do such things – and those who order those atrocities done?

    Well, *those* ones do have a responsibility for what they do and choose to do. Do you really claim otherwise?

    Also do you really think that and the virtual idol worshipping of such murderous “martyrs” reflects well on them and their culture?

    Seriously?

    NO. it does not.

  25. Nick Gotts says

    StevoR@23-25,

    I do not think you are right about Colnago80. I recall him saying before that he does NOT advocate genocide and I think he deserves a fair go.

    More lies from you. Colnago80 has called repeatedly for the nuclear bombing of Iran. This is advocacy of genocide. He has never apologized for doing so.

    I do think in several comments he acknolwged that the got some of what he once said wrong. As I also have done. As is human nature. Does it occur to you that *you* might be wrong and in any case it isn’t your blog to say?

    Indeed I can be wrong, and quite often am; but if this is demonstrated – or if I discover it myself – I admit it (you will find one example below). But I have never, unlike you and colnago80, called for genocide. You seem to think this is something that can be wiped out by saying “sorry”. It isn’t: it leaves an ineradicable stain on anyone who does it. Of course it isn’t my blog to say who should post here. I have never called for anyone to be banned from this blog or, as far as I recall, from any blog, for precisely that reason.

    If it is not a lie, then you will be able to quote from a BDS document condemning all Israelis as evil. – me

    Or alternatively, better yet ,you can point to where the BDS does NOT apply to some group of Israelis. Can you do that?
    No, I didn’t think so.

    Your failure to support your lie is, of course, a tacit admission that it was a lie: BDS does not and never has called all Israelis evil – which was the lie you told@8: “singling out all Israelis as evil” were your precise words, and you claimed that this included Israeli Arabs. If you had a spark of honesty and decency, you would retract this lie. You don’t, so I’m sure you won’t.

    However, this is from the page introducing BDS:

    The campaign for boycotts, divestment and sanctions (BDS) is shaped by a rights-based approach and highlights the three broad sections of the Palestinian people: the refugees, those under military occupation in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, and Palestinians in Israel. The call urges various forms of boycott against Israel until it meets its obligations under international law by:

    Ending its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands occupied in June 1967 and dismantling the Wall;
    Recognizing the fundamental rights of the Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel to full equality; and
    Respecting, protecting and promoting the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties as stipulated in UN Resolution 194.

    The BDS call was endorsed by over 170 Palestinian political parties, organizations, trade unions and movements. The signatories represent the refugees, Palestinians in the OPT, and Palestinian citizens of Israel.

    Clearly, then, Arab Israelis are regarded as part of BDS’s constituency. Moreover, there is no statement from BDS I know of – and if you knew of one you would certainly have produced it – that Jewish Israelis are evil.

    Incidentally, the Anti-Apartheid Movement did not condemn white South Africans – it condemned the Apartheid system ..

    Which does NOT apply to Israel since Israel does NOT have apartheid

    Your dishonesty is almost equally evident here. My comment was in response to your ignorant and offensive claim that the AAM condemned white south Africans as evil – and was immediately followed by my agreement with you that the term “apartheid” is historically specific and should not be applied to Israel, where state racism takes a different form.

    Yet you insist on being wrong

    Your claim was that Israel is not a Jewish state. Israel defines itself as a Jewish state. It is you who insists on being wrong, even at the expense of denying what the state says of itself.

    Um, dude you really can’t tell the difference between religion and race?

    Yes I can, unlike you. Israel’s “law of return”, under which any Jew can immigrate to Israel and be granted immediate citizenship, is defined primarily in terms of descent, i.e. on a racial basis:

    The law since 1970 applies to those born Jews (having a Jewish mother or maternal grandmother), those with Jewish ancestry (having a Jewish father or grandfather) and converts to Judaism (Orthodox, Reform, or Conservative denominations—not secular—though Reform and Conservative conversions must take place outside the state, similar to civil marriages).

    I admit that the criteria also include religious elements, which I failed to note above, but as you can see, the primary criterion has nothing to do with religion.

    What? They are not allowed to slingshot rocks at innocent people potentially murdering them despite the Arabs desire to do so? Oh and, yeah, they occassionally succeed in murdering the odd Jewish baby and that doesn’t matter to you? Just how cheap do you hold Israeli lives precisely?

    This is just a slanderous piece of crap – along with your suggestions that I am pro-Islam, support Hamas and Hezbollah (I condemn the violence and antisemitism of both), and deny the responsiblity of individuals for their own actions. I specified the main restriction in my comment (‘a party that does not accept Israel’s self-definition as a “Jewish and democratic state” can be prevented from taking part in elections’), and you dishonesty substituted an entirely different one. Incidentally, I notice that when you’re not thinking about it, “Israelis” to you clearly excludes Arab Israelis. Unlike you, I value the lives of all Israelis, Jewish, Arab and otherwise, at exactly the same rate as each other, and as non-Israelis.

    I did not apply and never have applied the term “apartheid” to Israel, for precisely the reason that the term is historically specific.

    Well, if truly so then that’s a start.

    Now have you ever pointed that out and told those who have done so here NOT to do so?

    It would be truly bizarre that you think you have a right to say which of things I disagree with I should actively dispute, if this were not just more of your attempt to distract from your own exposed stupidity, ignorance, racism and dishonesty. The only person here who has referred to “Israeli Apartheid” as such is Tabby Lavalamp@16. They will know from my #19 that I disagree with this usage. (Mano referred to the Israeli system as “apartheid-like” in the OP, without, oddly enough, any direct rebuke from you. I would say “apartheid-like” is fair enough, as the central features of Israeli policy are to maintain the supremacy of a particular ethnic group, and to regulate who can live where, and what political rights they have, in ethnic terms.

    “You make it quite clear that you consider all Arab Israelis to be responsible for the actions of those who have attacked Jewish Israelis.

    Bzzt. No I really don’t.

    Liar. You said, of Arab Israelis:

    a lot of their problems could be resolved if for instance they’d stop going around trying to stab or run down or throw rocks at innocent Jewish Israelis. Also note that they are allowed to pray on the Temple Mount whereas Jewish citizens of Israel are not.

    The start of the second sentence makes it absolutely clear that you are referring to all Arab Israelis “trying to stab or run down or throw rocks at innocent Jewish Israelis”. Since I give you the benefit of assuming that even you do not believe that all Arab Israelis do this, clearly you are attributing collective guilt to them for the actions of a few.

    It’s not your dishonesty that’s remarkable, StevoR, but your stupidity. Anyone can see, by comparing what I have said to your responses, that you systematically distort and misrepresent my position, and refuse to take responsibility for or retract false statements – which makes them lies, even if they were originally made through ignorance.

  26. StevoR says

    @ ^ Nick Gotts :

    More lies from you. Colnago80 has called repeatedly for the nuclear bombing of Iran. This is advocacy of genocide. He has never apologized for doing so.

    Colnago80’s advocacy of nuking Iran is correct but I’m not sure how much of it is serious and how much simply an “in-joke” or doen to wind you up. Not sure how serious he is about it given that Colnago80 has stated that he no longer supports nuclear attacks and prefers a negotiated settlement :

    http://freethoughtblogs.com/singham/2014/05/07/boko-harams-atrocities-in-nigeria-increase/#comment-2117077

    Colnago80 : “. I have backed off my previous position of using nuclear weapons because I don’t think it will be necessary, provided that the US attacks with bunker buster bombs, which will minimize collateral damage. … (snip) .. All in all as Mr. Kavah puts it on his blog, a negotiated settlement is greatly to be preferred and is really in everybody’s best interest.

    There are other examples too where Colnago80 has admitted a nuclear attack on Iran would be the wrong thing to do and should be avoided – I’ll also note that its a bit unfair of you to refer to a former(?) commenter who apparently cannot defend himself here. Anyhow, that would shows that it is you is the one telling porkies here, Nick Gotts,

    Indeed I can be wrong, and quite often am; but if this is demonstrated – or if I discover it myself – I admit it (you will find one example below). But I have never, unlike you and colnago80, called for genocide. You seem to think this is something that can be wiped out by saying “sorry”. It isn’t: it leaves an ineradicable stain on anyone who does it. Of course it isn’t my blog to say who should post here. I have never called for anyone to be banned from this blog or, as far as I recall, from any blog, for precisely that reason.

    Seems we’re basically in agreement although I disagree with assertion that mere words leave an “ineradicable stain” on anybody. I do think that when someone says they no longer believe X and no longer call for X that that should be accepted and we should move on and let bygones be bygones and appreciate that opinions have changed. I do think Colnago80’s past comments and mine should be forgotten or at least not constantly harped on about. Its not like any of us actually committed any actual real crime and even criminals once their time is served and they have reformed and rehabilitated get treated equally – or should be. So yeah, you can be wrong Nick Gotts, and in this instance, you are again.

    As for the BDS issue – I’m not the one who is lying on in the wrong here – see :

    http://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/4171/bds-immoral

    ‘Ten reasons why the BDS movement is immoral and hinders peace’ by Alan M. Dershowitz
    (February 12, 2014 at 12:00 pm) -which i think is largely correct and make sa very good caseand also note .

    In a candid 2012 interview, long-time pro-Palestinian activist Norman Finkelstein denounced the “cult” of BDS and its three tiers. “They know what the result of implementing all three is… there’s no Israel… But if you say it, you don’t have a prayer in reaching a broad public,” said Finkelstein. “There’s a large segment of the movement, component of the movement, which wants to eliminate Israel,” said Finkelstein. The son of Holocaust survivors was once the darling of the pro-Palestinian circuit. Since this 2012 interview, he said in a New Republic interview this week, he has suffered complete ostracization.

    Source : usual starter www (dot) timesofisrael (dot) com / 10-years-later-how-bds-became-the-politically-correct-way-to-delegitmize-israel/

    Moreover, there is no statement from BDS I know of – and if you knew of one you would certainly have produced it – that Jewish Israelis are evil.

    But the BDS *is* anti-Semitic and does treat them all that way – and see quotes and article linked above.

    Yes I can, unlike you. Israel’s “law of return”, under which any Jew can immigrate to Israel and be granted immediate citizenship, is defined primarily in terms of descent, i.e. on a racial basis:

    Except note that converts are allowed and that it isn’t about “race” in terms of skin colour, superficial physical features etc .. Note /remember again as I’ve said before that jews come from almost every ethnic group and racial background and look up Shephardhim, Ethiopean Jews etc .. Therefore NO, Israel is NOT racially based and saying otherwise is a vile lie.

  27. StevoR says

    Continued @ ^ Nick Gotts :

    On the BDS a French court has proven you wrong as explained in this article here :

    http://www.timesofisrael.com/french-high-court-bds-activists-guilty-of-discrimination/

    France’s highest court of appeals confirmed earlier rulings that found promoters of a boycott against Israel guilty of inciting hate or discrimination.

    & also from there :

    n France, several dozen promoters of a boycott against Israel — including through the Boycott, Sanctions and Divestment Movement, or BDS —- have been convicted of inciting hate or discrimination. In addition to the law on the press, some activists have been convicted based on the Lellouche law, passed in 2003, which extends anti-racism laws to the targeting of specific nations for discriminatory treatment.

    In the US Jewish university students have been bullied and forced to live in fear :

    hose incidents followed a student senate debate over an Israel divestment resolution in February. The bill passed on a second vote, after failing in a first round. “The night of the first vote, one of the pro-divestment students got up and shouted ‘Long live the intifada’ and stormed out of the room,” Kadisha recalled. “That was extremely disturbing.” After the resolution passed, more than 150 current and former faculty members and researchers signed an open letter condemning the “single-minded ferocity” of the divest-from-Israel campaign on their campus. Its goal, the letter claimed, “wasn’t to open up discussion on these complex matters but to dictate simple, outright excoriation.” … (Snip) ..

    &

    … A survey by the Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under Law found that 54 percent of Jewish college students experienced or witnessed anti-Semitism on their campuses during the 2013-14 school year, including incidents of harassment, violence or a “hostile environment.” Incidents can range from swastikas scrawled on frat houses to student committees questioning whether Jewish students are fit to serve in student government. .. (Snip) ..

    &

    … nonprofit StandWithUs, employs a litmus test to determine whether criticism of Israel veers into anti-Semitic speech: the “three Ds” of delegitimization, demonization and double standard. Those are key parts of the State Department’s official definition of anti-Semitism.

    “If you apply the three Ds, you can see that [BDS] does qualify,” Rothstein said. “The movement targets [only] Israel, blaming it for the lack of peace. The movement conveniently does not discuss its goal, which is not peaceful coexistence.”

    Rothstein points to some of the more extreme examples of imagery seen in anti-Israel protests: posters that replace the six-pointed Jewish star with a swastika, blood-spattered Israeli flags, or political cartoons that contort Israeli leaders into hook-nosed ghouls out of the pages of the Nazi propaganda sheet Der Stürmer. “The Jewish star to the Jewish people signifies their religion,” she said. “It’s very scary. People don’t understand how egregious this is.”

    Source : (usual starter) crescentcityjewishnews.com/special-report-bds-on-campus-when-does-anti-israel-become-anti-semitic/

    Clearly Nick Gotts you would be one of those people – at best.

    “What? They (Arab-Israelis) are not allowed to slingshot rocks at innocent people potentially murdering them despite the Arabs desire to do so? Oh and, yeah, they occasionally succeed in murdering the odd Jewish baby and that doesn’t matter to you? Just how cheap do you hold Israeli lives precisely?” -StevoR
    This is just a slanderous piece of crap -Nick Gotts

    Dude, don’t you ever watch any news broadcasts about this issue?! Seriously?

    I have already provided a link some threads ago to an incident where stone-throwers ended up murdering an Israeli Jewish baby.

    So, no, it wasn’t “slander or crap” but fact and asking you a question which you still have NOT answered – just how cheap do you hold Israeli lives?

    along with your suggestions that I am pro-Islam, support Hamas and Hezbollah (I condemn the violence and antisemitism of both)

    You do? When and how often relatively? Yet you keep supporting their side in this issue it seems – why? I asked the question as to whether you “were a big fan of Hamas /Hezbollah” in # 23. because you appear to be taking their positions and side here and overlooking all the Israeli points and facts and realities and their geo-politico-historical context which has been repeatedly pointed out to you. Would it kill you to just back off for a bit and admit I’ve made some good points and you need to actually rethink your stance here instead of ignoring that and insulting and attacking me instead? if you’re truly NOT a Hamas / Hezbollah fan and you keep getting confused for one by taking positions too much in agreement with theirs and too frequently unfairly bashing Israel maybe you need to check your cap & coat for skulls..

    I specified the main restriction in my comment (‘a party that does not accept Israel’s self-definition as a “Jewish and democratic state” can be prevented from taking part in elections’),

    A party that wants to abolish democracy and the nation in which it lives should be welcomed and encouraged and embraced? Er ..no. I think its pretty reasonable that a terrorist group that seeks the extermination of a nation and the actual genocide of its peoples (didn’t you call that an “ineradicable stain”? Or was that Holms?) probably shouldn’t be legal in any situation including Israel’s one.

    I don’t think its a huge “restriction” on people living in an officially Jewish democratic state that they simply accept that they are living in an officially Jewish and democratic state and if they choose not to live in a Jewish Democratic state they can always leave and go to one of the many and larger neighbouring non-Jewish totalitarian states – or anywhere else really for that matter.

    you dishonesty substituted an entirely different one. (1) Incidentally, I notice that when you’re not thinking about it, “Israelis” to you clearly excludes Arab Israelis. (2) Unlike you, I value the lives of all Israelis, Jewish, Arab and otherwise, at exactly the same rate as each other, and as non-Israelis. (3)

    Bzzzzt! No. I agree with and strongly support your sentence (3) there about the equal value of human life. You are also wrong about my views regarding (2) because I was referring to ‘Arabs’ not ‘Israeli-Arabs’, IOW the Palestinians in Gaza and Arab dicatorships and also those Arab-Israelis who attack innocent Jewish Israeli people with knives, bombs, cars, etc .. because those people are who they are clearly forfeit the right to call themselves ‘Israeli’ citizens de facto if not de jure. As for (1) well, it was a misunderstanding not dishonesty. I didn’t realsie quite how specifically you were intending your argument there to be. Now its answered above -and I still think my broader argument against your broader point stands.

  28. StevoR says

    Part III @ Nick Gotts : ^ For clarity here – If you murder Israelis for being Israeli its pretty ridiculous to then say you should be counted as and thought of as being properly Israeli. Arab or otherwise.

    “I did not apply and never have applied the term “apartheid” to Israel, for precisely the reason that the term is historically specific.” -Nick Gotts #19
    “I would say “apartheid-like” is fair enough, as the central features of Israeli policy are to maintain the supremacy of a particular ethnic group, and to regulate who can live where, and what political rights they have, in ethnic terms.”

    Aww, you were doing so well for once then you had to spoil it!

    See Israel contains *many* ethnic groups – Ashkenazi, Sephardi, Ethiopian Jews, Russian Jews, American Jews, Druze, Samaritans, Israeli-Arabs, etc .. Now I won’t claim here that Israel is perfect &free of all inter-ethnic conflicts and issues – no nation is – but really most of those groups get on pretty well and are treated a lot better than say, Shia vs Sunni Arabs in much of the Arab world. No human group or nation is perfect in its laws and institutions but Israel is in actual fact better than most. So, you are really wrong to claim otherwise and certainly wrong to call it anything like apartheid. As is Mano Singham, FWIW. It also looks like you have just contradicted yourself. “Apartheid liek is inessence saying like Apartheid – and Israel is NOT.

    It would be truly bizarre that you think you have a right to say which of things I disagree with I should actively dispute,

    Okay I guess – if stripped of your hyperbole – but when you are taking a certain sdie in an issue where one of your allies keeps using an offensive term that is clearly wrong and inapplicable then I think its kinda fair for others to note that and ask why – especially if you quietly admit teat offensive term is wrong but keep overlooking itslouad usage by others. Imagine for a second that Tabby Lavalamp was using not the “Apartheid” word but the n-word or c-word & I doubt you’d be so willing to let it slide.

    “You make it quite clear that you consider all Arab Israelis to be responsible for the actions of those who have attacked Jewish Israelis.” -Nick Gotts
    “Bzzt. No I really don’t.” -StevoR
    “Liar. You said, of Arab Israelis:
    “a lot of their problems could be resolved if for instance they’d stop going around trying to stab or run down or throw rocks at innocent Jewish Israelis. Also note that they are allowed to pray on the Temple Mount whereas Jewish citizens of Israel are not.”
    The start of the second sentence makes it absolutely clear that you are referring to all Arab Israelis “trying to stab or run down or throw rocks at innocent Jewish Israelis”. Since I give you the benefit of assuming that even you do not believe that all Arab Israelis do this, clearly you are attributing collective guilt to them for the actions of a few. – Nick Gotts

    No, I was referring to the Arab-Israelis who do committ acts of terrorism like stabbing Jewish Israelis as causing their own problems – and creating an environment and situation where various measures to prevent those attacks are necessary.

    This does NOT mean I blame all Arab Israelis for them all for those who committ those attacks nor do I hold all of them repsonsible for those attacks.

    Those many Arab-Israelis who are NOT committing such atrocities are clearly innocent and I do NOT blame them for those atrocities committed by the Arab-Israelis who have and so commit such atrocities and yet their lives are affected and negatively impacted on by the necessary life saving measures imposed to prevent those attacks. (Eg Security fences, checkpoints , barriers, etc ..) Its not their fault and they aren’t responsible for the problem but the problem was caused by those of their group who did cause the problem i.e. the terrorists who do wage their counter-productive, terrorist “Intifada.”

    So we have :

    1. Terrorists Arab (Israelis) = causing the problem for all Arab-Israelis, responsible for the problem (Bad people.)
    2. Non-terrorist Arab Israelis = victims of the terrorist “Arab-Israelis who did cause the problem but not responsible for it. (Good people. )

    My sentences in the paragraph we both quoted above referred to those who are in group 1 causing the problem for group 2 and those in group 2 being the victims of a situation created by group 1 – and I thought that was crystal clear.

    Its just like we *all* have to have tougher airport checks now (collective punishment / necessity) because of terrorism and can’t take items through customs because are all effected by it despite the fact that we aren’t responsible for it and the terrorists are.

    You accuse me of dishonest / lying /misrepresenting you and most of all stupidity for this pretty basic and straightforward fact based logic!? Seriously? You really needed me to to spell out as I’ve just done above how what I’;ve said there makes sense and is perfectly consistent with my other comments here? Then have the insulting gall to say that I’m the stupid one here? Sheesh.

  29. says

    Once again, the sociopath displays his obsessive/compulsive disorder and verbal diarrhoea, none of it worth reading. It’s another convincing argument for a three comment limit per article.

  30. StevoR says

    @ ^ left0ver1under : Who? Besides I thought diagnosing over intertoobs was frowned on on FTB?

    If you meant me in a typical ad hominem fallacy then, no, I’m not at all sociopathic.

    As for comment number restrictions, from what I gather more comments is a good not a bad thing and one long comment would just get a tl;dr response from many hence breaking mine into smaller sections addressing and demolishing the illogical, unsupported and biased crap spewed by Nick Gotts. OTOH, at least he actually bothered to actually say something substantial as well as spouting the mere insults you vomited out there.

    I also note you have provided no reason or evidence or links that rebut my arguments here.

    I observe factually that my comments above are much more worthwhile and substantive than yours based on the comparative evidence available.

  31. StevoR says

    PS. Yes I bet you’d love to restrict responses and comments from those who disagree with the Israel-bashing orthodoxy here. Its “great” when you can all just pile on and insult and abuse and make erroneous statements and one sided arguments but then restrict the sole dissenting voice to a mere trio of replies only eh? Thing is, don’t even you see this as a bit unfair and authoritarian of you? 7777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777 77777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777

  32. Nick Gotts says

    StevoR@various,

    Almost all your verbal diarrhoea above consists of either further lies, or dishonest attempts to change the subject. You will note, if you can be bothered, that I have not issued any general support or defense of BDS. I am not a member of that movement, and am certainly not going to defend everything it or its members say and do. I simply challenged your lie about them, which even now you lack the basic decency to retract, even though I met your challenge to show that it was false after you failed to produce evidence that it was true.

    I’ll also note that its a bit unfair of you to refer to a former(?) commenter who apparently cannot defend himself here. Anyhow, that would shows that it is you is the one telling porkies here, Nick Gotts

    You simply show what an idiot you are by defending colnago80. It is true he says different things at different times, but as I said, to my knowledge he has never apologised for advocating genocide (so you are lying when you accuse me of lying about that) , and the most recent comment I have seen from him on Iran (on Ed Brayton’s blog) was:

    Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran.

    Moreover, AFAIK he could comment here if he wished.

    I do think Colnago80’s past comments and mine should be forgotten or at least not constantly harped on about.

    Of course you do, since they show what a pair of utter shitbags you are.

    Except note that converts are allowed and that it isn’t about “race” in terms of skin colour, superficial physical features etc .. Note /remember again as I’ve said before that jews come from almost every ethnic group and racial background and look up Shephardhim, Ethiopean Jews etc .. Therefore NO, Israel is NOT racially based and saying otherwise is a vile lie.

    This is so stupid it’s difficult to believe it’s not more dishonesty, but I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt. Race, or ethnicity, do not have to be about skin colour or superficial physical features. Jews are an ethnic group, although of course there are subgroups within that group. You would agree, presumably, that a state which made it particularly difficult for Jews to immigrate to it, or defined itself as a “non-Jewish and democratic state” would be acting in a racist fashion. It must then follow that a state which makes it much easier for Jews than for others (and virtually impossible for Palestinian Arabs) to immigrate, and defines itself as a “Jewish and democratic state” is also doing so.

    Apartheid liek is inessence saying like Apartheid

    Setting aside the illiteracy, no, saying something is “X-like” is not the same as saying it is X. I laid out why Israel’s system is reasonably described as “apartheid-like” – it is designed to ensure the supremacy of one ethnic group (Jews), and places ethnic restrictions on where people may live, who may immigrate, and the conditions of citizenship.

    On the BDS a French court has proven you wrong

    Er, no. A court decision does not prove anyone wrong; only evidence and argument can do that.

    based on the Lellouche law, passed in 2003, which extends anti-racism laws to the targeting of specific nations for discriminatory treatment.

    If that is an accurate description of the law, then it is an extremely bad law. It would have prevented the anti-apartheid movement calling for boycotts of South Africa, for example.

    learly Nick Gotts you would be one of those people – at best.

    Listen, you slanderous lying scumbag, I’ve stood up in a conference of the left where antisemitic statements were made in the course of discussion on the Palestinian issue, denounced those statements, and walked out. I’m not taking that sort of filthy accusation from the likes of you. Come out and accuse me of antisemitism using your real name, you cowardly little shit.

    What? They (Arab-Israelis) are not allowed to slingshot rocks at innocent people potentially murdering them despite the Arabs desire to do so? Oh and, yeah, they occasionally succeed in murdering the odd Jewish baby and that doesn’t matter to you? Just how cheap do you hold Israeli lives precisely?” -StevoR

    This is just a slanderous piece of crap – along with your suggestions that I am pro-Islam, support Hamas and Hezbollah (I condemn the violence and antisemitism of both), and deny the responsiblity of individuals for their own actions. I specified the main restriction in my comment (‘a party that does not accept Israel’s self-definition as a “Jewish and democratic state” can be prevented from taking part in elections’), and you dishonesty substituted an entirely different one.-Nick Gotts

    Dude, don’t you ever watch any news broadcasts about this issue?! Seriously?

    I have already provided a link some threads ago to an incident where stone-throwers ended up murdering an Israeli Jewish baby.

    So, no, it wasn’t “slander or crap” but fact and asking you a question which you still have NOT answered – just how cheap do you hold Israeli lives?

    I’ve restored (in bold) the sentences you dishonestly omitted from what I wrote, so that everyone can see what a slimy little turd you are. It is absolutely clear from those sentences that I am accusing you of slandering me, by a dishonest substitution of one thing for another so as to make it appear I had objected to people who throw stones at babies, or support doing so, being excluded from elections. This kind of dishonesty by omission or substitution is a favourite trick of yours.

    if you’re truly NOT a Hamas / Hezbollah fan and you keep getting confused for one by taking positions too much in agreement with theirs and too frequently unfairly bashing Israel maybe you need to check your cap & coat for skulls.

    I know you are so stupid that you cannot conceive of anyone who opposes oppression and terrorism whoever does it, but those whose opinions I care about do not share this stupidity.

    I specified the main restriction in my comment (‘a party that does not accept Israel’s self-definition as a “Jewish and democratic state” can be prevented from taking part in elections’)

    A party that wants to abolish democracy and the nation in which it lives should be welcomed and encouraged and embraced? Er ..no. I think its pretty reasonable that a terrorist group that seeks the extermination of a nation and the actual genocide of its peoples (didn’t you call that an “ineradicable stain”? Or was that Holms?) probably shouldn’t be legal in any situation including Israel’s one.

    I don’t think its a huge “restriction” on people living in an officially Jewish democratic state that they simply accept that they are living in an officially Jewish and democratic state and if they choose not to live in a Jewish Democratic state they can always leave and go to one of the many and larger neighbouring non-Jewish totalitarian states – or anywhere else really for that matter.

    Again, your dishonesty is manifest. It is not necessary at all for a party to be terrorist or anti-democratic to fall foul of this law. A party that wants Israel to become a fully democratic state, belonging equally to all its citizens is liable to exclusion simply for that reason. But I see you are quite happy with racially-based restrictions on democracy. As for “they can always leave”, why should they? It is their home, they and their ancestors have in many cases been there for centuries. And incidentally, your “or anywhere else really for that matter” shows exactly the combination of ignorance and callousness we have come to expect from you. Do you really think that Israeli Arabs could emigrate to wherever they want?

    those Arab-Israelis who attack innocent Jewish Israeli people with knives, bombs, cars, etc .. because those people are who they are clearly forfeit the right to call themselves ‘Israeli’ citizens de facto if not de jure.

    Your dishonest attempt to wriggle out of what you q. And somehow you omitted to say the same of Jewish Israelis who attack innocent Arab Israelis.

  33. Nick Gotts says

    /contd

    Accidentally pressed “Post Comment”. To resume, restoring the incomplete last sentence:

    Your dishonest attempt to wriggle out of what you quite clearly said is noted. And somehow you omitted to say the same of Jewish Israelis who attack innocent Arab Israelis.

    If you murder Israelis for being Israeli its pretty ridiculous to then say you should be counted as and thought of as being properly Israeli. Arab or otherwise.

    Don’t be so absurd. Israeli nationality is a matter of law, either someone is an Israeli, or they are not.

    As for (1) well, it was a misunderstanding not dishonesty. I didn’t realsie quite how specifically you were intending your argument there to be.

    Given your systematic use of such substitutions and omissions to distort my position, I don’t believe you.

    As for your long explanation at the end of #30 about how you didn’t mean to blame all Arab Israelis for the acts of terror carried out by a few, let’s just have one more look at what you actually said:

    a lot of their problems could be resolved if for instance they’d stop going around trying to stab or run down or throw rocks at innocent Jewish Israelis. Also note that they are allowed to pray on the Temple Mount whereas Jewish citizens of Israel are not.

    There is nothing at all here to distinguish between Arab Israelis as a whole, and the terrorist minority. It’s quite clear that when your attention is not drawn to what you are doing, you do attribute collective guilt to the former. Of course, when I point it out to you, you backpeddle – but I don’t think you’ll fool anyone other than yourself.

  34. Holms says

    PS. Yes I bet you’d love to restrict responses and comments from those who disagree with the Israel-bashing orthodoxy here. Its “great” when you can all just pile on and insult and abuse and make erroneous statements and one sided arguments but then restrict the sole dissenting voice to a mere trio of replies only eh? Thing is, don’t even you see this as a bit unfair and authoritarian of you?

    You are by far the least honest of all the regulars on this blog, with the lowest content-to-noise ratio of all of us, so yes the less of your lying by omission, slander, deliberate subject conflation et-fucking-cetera the better.

    And as for authoritarian… is this yet another example of your dishonest engagement? A blog owner moderating their comment section by imposing rules is technically authoritarian by its very nature – rules being imposed by the sole authority – and they’ve had rules of some sort all along, and you’ve accepted that without comment up until the suggestion of reducing posting volume. Yes, that would cut into your habitual quad-posting single issue fanaticism, but that’s a good thing.

    I for one would actually be ok with simply banning your lying, slanderous arse altogether.

  35. StevoR says

    @ ^ Holms : I bet you would douchebag. Looks like the point of my post has whooshed right by your head and, no, I’m surprised in the least by your failure to recognise the line between your mere opinion and actual reality. Where you are, y’know, totally wrong as usual.

  36. StevoR says

    @ 33 & #34. Nick Gotts :

    You will note, if you can be bothered, that I have not issued any general support or defense of BDS. I am not a member of that movement, and am certainly not going to defend everything it or its members say and do. I simply challenged your lie about them, which even now you lack the basic decency to retract, even though I met your challenge to show that it was false after you failed to produce evidence that it was true.

    In fact, I produced quite a bit of evidence to show my assessment of the anti-Semitic BDS movement was correct in comments #27 & 28 above. You call my statement of fact a “lie” but it is you doing the lying there as the evidence and links on this thread shows. Nick Gotts wrote :

    BDS does not and never has called all Israelis evil – which was the lie you told@8: “singling out all Israelis as evil” were your precise words, and you claimed that this included Israeli Arabs. If you had a spark of honesty and decency, you would retract this lie. You don’t, so I’m sure you won’t. – #26. Nick Gotts.

    If it was a lie then I would retract it and, indeed, not say it in the first place. However it is a fact so I will NOT do so – your unsupported opinion to the contrary notwithstanding. Of course the BDS singles out all Israelis and this also hurts Arab-Israelis and Palestinians who are for instance deprived of a livelihood as a result of the BDS rubbbish – see :

    “It would be simple for SodaStream to simply close the “West Bank” plant and put all this mess behind it. But CEO Daniel Birnbaum has explained several times that there is one overriding reason he has rejected the “easy way out”: it would put nearly 1,000 Palestinians out of a job, and a job that pays far more than they could earn elsewhere, at that. And right there is the reason that the whole SodaStream scandal actually debunks the BDS movement, and demonstrates how it is actually exploiting average Palestinians for the sake of a nationalist, anti-Israel agenda. A simple look at the numbers and the firsthand testimonies of Palestinian employees proves that far from being exploitative, SodaStream is providing the kind of jobs and incomes that Palestinians could only dream of in areas under the control of the Palestinian Authority. SodaStream employees, both Arabs and Jews, earn an average Israeli salary, which is roughly triple that of the average Palestinian Authority salary.

    Source : http://www.israeltoday.co.il/NewsItem/tabid/178/nid/24415/Default.aspx

    More proof to add to the pile I have already provided you all of which can be found with a basic google search.

    You simply show what an idiot you are by defending colnago80. It is true he says different things at different times, but as I said, to my knowledge he has never apologised for advocating genocide (so you are lying when you accuse me of lying about that) ,

    Colnago80 is responsible for himself. He was however an alternative dissenting voice who got slammed and seemingly driven off here. I think the way he was treated here was excessively mean and he like I have generally provided evidence to back up our views. I disagree with him on some things and agree with him on others. You seem incredibly intolerant of those who disagree with you here. Y’might wanna work on that. (Holms too.)

  37. StevoR says

    ^ Continued :

    “I do think Colnago80’s past comments and mine should be forgotten or at least not constantly harped on about.” – StevoR
    Of course you do, since they show what a pair of utter shitbags you are.

    Its being a “shitbag” to note that people change, opinions evolve and things don’t always stay as or what they are? You’d rather deny the possibility of change and keep dredging up the past ignoring current different realities because .. ??? Move on, dude. Get with the present.

    his is so stupid it’s difficult to believe it’s not more dishonesty, but I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt. Race, or ethnicity, do not have to be about skin colour or superficial physical features. Jews are an ethnic group, although of course there are subgroups within that group. You would agree, presumably, that a state which made it particularly difficult for Jews to immigrate to it, or defined itself as a “non-Jewish and democratic state” would be acting in a racist fashion. It must then follow that a state which makes it much easier for Jews than for others (and virtually impossible for Palestinian Arabs) to immigrate, and defines itself as a “Jewish and democratic state” is also doing so.

    I think I’ve already pointed out how the Jewish history and experience is unique and a special case. I also think you’ve ignored that historical geo-political context. Read some history, do some (proper) research, see the other side of this issue and you’ll see I’m right here as are the Israelis.

    “Apartheid like is in essence saying like Apartheid” – StevoR (typos fixed)
    Setting aside the illiteracy, no, saying something is “X-like” is not the same as saying it is X. I laid out why Israel’s system is reasonably described as “apartheid-like” – it is designed to ensure the supremacy of one ethnic group (Jews), and places ethnic restrictions on where people may live, who may immigrate, and the conditions of citizenship.- Nick Gotts

    Israel is a sovereign nation like China or Iran or the USA or anywhere. It gets to set its rules for its citizens. The Vatican gets to say who lives in Vatican city,The UK gets to have its established faith of Church of England, Israel gets to say it is a Jewish nation.

    Don’t want to be part of that nation, well, you do not have to live there. That simple.

    As for illiteracy well, no, sucking at typing and having typographical errors in one’s comments does NOT equal being lilliterate. That’s a low and cheap and easy shot of ya to take there. Proud of that are ya?

  38. StevoR says

    ^ Still continued (avoiding tl:dnr from folks who don’t want to face reality?) :

    “On the BDS a French court has proven you wrong.. ” -StevoR
    Er, no. A court decision does not prove anyone wrong; only evidence and argument can do that.- Nick Gotts

    Oh geez , ya got e there I mean its not like court decisions are ever based on evidence and arguments ..Oh wait! Yeah, they actually are. The evidence and arguments have been assessed (by y’know experts in assessing evidence and arguments) and the BDS crap has been proven to be racist as fuck. Go figure.

  39. StevoR says

    @ ^ Ah y’all know who ..

    based on the Lellouche law, passed in 2003, which extends anti-racism laws to the targeting of specific nations for discriminatory treatment.” – Cited source above.
    If that is an accurate description of the law, then it is an extremely bad law. It would have prevented the anti-apartheid movement calling for boycotts of South Africa, for example. -Nick Gotts.

    Well, that’d be your opinion Nick Gotts. You a lawyer? Nah, didn’t think so.

    Listen, you slanderous lying scumbag, I’ve stood up in a conference of the left where antisemitic statements were made in the course of discussion on the Palestinian issue, denounced those statements, and walked out. I’m not taking that sort of filthy accusation from the likes of you. Come out and accuse me of antisemitism using your real name, you cowardly little shit.

    Well, thankyou. Thankyou for admitting at last that the Israel-bashing cause is anti-Semitic. (Oh what a surprise there!) Well done. So you say you walked out on a conference that spewed anti-Semitism. That’s bloody good and nice of you.

    Except ..what are you doing still supporting that anti-Semitic cause here eh? You have just confirmed what I’ve been saying all along that the Israel-bashing cause is anti-Semitic. So much so that even you will walk out on them -literally -but you still argue their case here knowing that dude? Why? Why do that? Knowing I am right by your own testimony above why keep attacking me and defending them?

    Really Nick Gotts? You know as well as I – even better maybe (I never attended their meetings) -that these bastards are anti-Semites – yet you still (seem to?) stand by them? Because .. ???

    Oh well, thanks for backing me up & confirming what I’ve said anyhow.

  40. Holms says

    @ ^ Holms : I bet you would douchebag. Looks like the point of my post has whooshed right by your head and, no, I’m surprised in the least by your failure to recognise the line between your mere opinion and actual reality. Where you are, y’know, totally wrong as usual.

    The point of the post I replied to was directly addressed:

    You wrote:
    “PS. Yes I bet you’d love to restrict responses and comments from those who disagree with the Israel-bashing orthodoxy here. Its “great” when you can all just pile on and insult and abuse and make erroneous statements and one sided arguments but then restrict the sole dissenting voice to a mere trio of replies only eh? Thing is, don’t even you see this as a bit unfair and authoritarian of you?”

    My reply pointed out that the nature of moderated discussion is inherently authoritarian, and thus your complaint of authoritarianism here while accepting it without complaint elsewhere, purely because it would cut into your quad-posting single issue fanaticism, demonstrates a double standard.

    Oops, did I say quad post? Make that quint post now.

    In fact, I produced quite a bit of evidence to show my assessment of the anti-Semitic BDS movement was correct in comments #27 & 28 above. You call my statement of fact a “lie” but it is you doing the lying there as the evidence and links on this thread shows.

    Actually, what you’ve done is move the goalposts. The OP discussed BDS by contrasting it to other boycott movements. It was pointed out that boycotts are considered to be acceptable in all cases except that of Israel. The discussion looked at the troubling aspects of this double standard.

    The fact that there is such a double standard is undeniable even for you, so you breeze right by that point and attempt to pretend that it is bigoted. You state that BDS ‘condemns all Israelis as evil and collectively punishing them’ even though by that logic boycotting Russian or North Korean products, or indeed any national boycott at all, is exactly as discriminatory… but I don’t see you whining about that. Instead, you have as usual singled Israel out for special, kid glove treatment.

    Oh and ‘collective punishment’ dear god I would laugh at that if it weren’t so sad. Obviously the accusations of supporting Israel’s collective punishment against Gazans in particular left a mark. This is Cargo Cult mentality as applied to argument: simply go through the motions that you witnessed other people do in the last round of argument, repeating whatever fragments of their arguments that you recall and hope it enables you to win this round.

    Nick Gotts wrote :

    BDS does not and never has called all Israelis evil – which was the lie you told@8: “singling out all Israelis as evil” were your precise words, and you claimed that this included Israeli Arabs. If you had a spark of honesty and decency, you would retract this lie. You don’t, so I’m sure you won’t. – #26. Nick Gotts.

    If it was a lie then I would retract it and, indeed, not say it in the first place. However it is a fact so I will NOT do so – your unsupported opinion to the contrary notwithstanding. Of course the BDS singles out all Israelis and this also hurts Arab-Israelis and Palestinians…

    And here we see another moving set of goalposts. You disapproved of BDS for “singling out all Israelis as evil” as Nick Gotts notes, but your reply omits the truly stupid ‘as evil’ bit because it is unsupported anywhere.

    Also I continunue to note, as the OP did, that even if boycotting Israeli stuff is bad, you show a distinct lack of giving a shit about applying this to boycotts in general. Are you going to complain that the call for boycotting Russian goods over their anti-gay laws is also ‘singling out all [Russians] as evil and collectively punishing them’ for example? No? You have selected ‘blatant double standard’ for your answer.

    As for your tangent into the wonders of kindly SodaStream giving jobs to Palestinians in their West Bank plant, this is undermined just a tad by the fact that it is built on land expropriated from Palestinians in the first place: “The territory comprising the settlement was taken from the villages Abu Dis, al-‘lzariyyeh, al-‘lssawiyyeh, a-Tur, and ‘Anata. Other expropriated lands are property on which the lahalin and Sawahareh Bedouin tribes once lived. … The settlement – with all the ‘regional services’ that it offers – is closed to all Palestinian residents of the area, except for those holding a special permit to entor for work only. The Bedouin who lived in the area also lost their homes and the land on which they were constructed, and were expelled from the area by threats and physical force.” – and on and on and on.

    So, SodaStream magnanimously keeps 1,000 Palestinian employees? Big fucking deal, given that those thousand had their homes and previous livelihoods destroyed in order to make that facility possible in the first place.

    (As an aside, I’ll note that your continued disingenuous tangents and non sequiturs have had the benefit of leading me to research and learn ever more of the scumbag acts of Israel’s illegal expansion.)

    Colnago80 is responsible for himself. He was however an alternative dissenting voice who got slammed and seemingly driven off here. I think the way he was treated here was excessively mean and he like I have generally provided evidence to back up our views. I disagree with him on some things and agree with him on others. You seem incredibly intolerant of those who disagree with you here. Y’might wanna work on that. (Holms too.)

    Its being a “shitbag” to note that people change, opinions evolve and things don’t always stay as or what they are? You’d rather deny the possibility of change and keep dredging up the past ignoring current different realities because .. ??? Move on, dude. Get with the present.

    “Get with the present”? He still wants the nuclear obliteration of Iran, so no, I’m not feeling very tolerant of him at all. I guess that’s one of my deal breaker lines in the sand or whatever. The fact that you can overlook that naked endorsement of fucking genocide does not speak well of you.

    I think I’ve already pointed out how the Jewish history and experience is unique and a special case. I also think you’ve ignored that historical geo-political context. Read some history, do some (proper) research, see the other side of this issue and you’ll see I’m right here as are the Israelis.

    ^ In which historical grievances are used as an excuse for modern criminal acts. Haha, nice try.

    Israel is a sovereign nation like China or Iran or the USA or anywhere. It gets to set its rules for its citizens. The Vatican gets to say who lives in Vatican city,The UK gets to have its established faith of Church of England, Israel gets to say it is a Jewish nation.

    That’s such a stupid reply it’s not even wrong. The fact that Israel is a sovereign nation does not address the point that sovereign nations that make laws “designed to ensure the supremacy of one ethnic group (Jews), and [place] ethnic restrictions on where people may live, who may immigrate, and the conditions of citizenship (-Nick Gotts)” can reasonably be described as ‘apartheid-like’. A direct equivalent would be if someone described Russia as homophobic; pointing out that it is a sovereign nation able to set rules for its citizens does not address the criticism in the slightest.

    But I bet you wouldn’t even bother coming to Russia’s aid with that particular defense, even though it makes precisely the same amount of sense (zero). No, that will be yet another special exemption for Israel only I’m sure.

    ^ Still continued (avoiding tl:dnr from folks who don’t want to face reality?) :

    Just the pettiest drivel.

    Oh geez , ya got e there I mean its not like court decisions are ever based on evidence and arguments ..Oh wait! Yeah, they actually are. The evidence and arguments have been assessed (by y’know experts in assessing evidence and arguments) and the BDS crap has been proven to be racist as fuck. Go figure.

    So you’re saying that a court ruling is infallible? That’s a bold move, especially as I’ve seen you disagreeing with court rulings on e.g. Dispatches before. Oh wait, this is another Israel only special case argument, my bad.

    Well, that’d be your opinion Nick Gotts. You a lawyer? Nah, didn’t think so.

    Same deal here; when it suits StevoR, i.e. when he is defending Israel, suddenly only lawyers can criticise legislation. Even though he has done exactly that previously.

    Thankyou for admitting at last that the Israel-bashing cause is anti-Semitic.And lastly, a sterling example of dishonest twisting of words. Nick Gotts stated that one particular conference on the topic of Israel / Palestine contained anti-semitic comments from participants; StevoR misrepresents that as ‘all critics of Israel are anti-semites’. Lying in aid of slander, right there, obvious as you please.

    StevoR, you are a blatant liar, a war crimes apologist, and just the pettiest single issue wonk imaginable. I am saddened by the fact that I probably live within 100km of you.

  41. Nick Gotts says

    StevoR the shameless liar and slanderous coward@various streams of verbal diarrhoea,
    Holms@41 – to whom, my grateful thanks – has dealt ably with most of your latest lies and distortions. There certainly is antisemitism among opponents of Israel – I have never denied it, and have opposed it when I encounter it. But like so many apologists for that state, you dishonestly go on to identify any criticism of Israel that you disagree with as antisemitic. Many such critics are in fact Jews: a friend of mine, for example, is active in the organization “Jews for Justice for Palestinians” along with 2,000 other British Jews, and there are predominantly Jewish human rights organizations in Israel such as B’tselem which are similarly highly critical of Israel’s vile treatment of the Palestinians. Some of your fellow apologists for Israel have come up with the ploy of referring to such Jews as “self-hating Jews” – without, of course, feeling the need to provide any evidence for that description beyond the fact of their criticism of Israel. But you may find that lie useful in your future career of dishonesty and slander.

    You refer repeatedly to the Jews’ particular history. Given the astounding ignorance you showed on a recent thread about the founding of the state of Israel (you made clear you thought the whole area of British mandate Palestine was inhabited by Jews and supposed to go to Israel, which was never the case), I suspect I know a good deal more about that history than you do. You know very well – because on this thread you agreed with me – that I know something of the historical significance of European and Christian antisemitism. I have also had close personal relationships with Jews who have suffered from antisemitism, and in one case lost family in the Shoah. I know that even for those Jews who don’t wish to emigrate there, Israel can be seen as a potential refuge “if it happens again”. But none of this justifies either the terrorism involved in the founding of the state of Israel, nor the ongoing dispossession and mistreatment of Palestinians who were not the authors of the Shoah, nor of any of the antisemitism suffered by most of Israel’s founders – who were overwhelmingly European Jews. In respect to its origin Israel resembles apartheid South Africa – and indeed, Australia and the USA: that origin is that of a European settler state, displacing much of the existing population and seizing their land (although Israel has since received Jews from many other areas, including those shamefully ejected from Arab states). Nor, of course, do the crimes of Zionist terrorists or the state of Israel justify antisemitism in Europe, in Arab countries, or elsewhere; and nor would it be in any way acceptable for Israeli Jews to be forced out of the country, any more than for Americans or Australians of European descent to be forced out of theirs. But the “poor little Israel” narrative beloved of its apologists won’t wash. Israel is one of 8 (possibly 9) nuclear-armed powers; on one ranking, which does not take account of nuclear weapons, it is the world’s 11th strongest military power, ahead of any regional power other than Turkey, which is not considered a likely enemy. And behind it lies the military, political and economic might of the world’s sole superpower. The conflict between Israel and the Palestinians is hugely one-sided; if there is ever to be peace, this vast imbalance must be reduced – else Israel has shown that it will not make serious concessions, such as abiding by international law by removing the illegal settlements from the West Bank. Boycott – whatever the flaws of the BDS – is one of the few peaceful means available to do this.

    Its being a “shitbag” to note that people change, opinions evolve and things don’t always stay as or what they are?

    It seems you can hardly manage a single sentence without indulging your favourite habit of dishonestly substituting what someone else has referred to with something else that you think enables you to score a point. What I said shows that you and colnago80 are shitbags is that you have both advocated genocide at all, something you give the impression of thinking anyone might find themselves doing. Now, you appear to have stopped doing so, and I don’t deny that is progress of a kind. But it’s evident that you still view this as a mere “opinion”, which you can say you’ve changed, and everyone, including all those whose murder you called for, should be ready to (metaphorically) shake hands and say no more about it. If you really showed any sign of remorse, if you stopped your habitual lying, your slander and misrepresentation of others, your whining about what a nice guy you are and how badly everyone treats you, maybe that might have some chance of happening – although it’s not for me to forgive and forget on behalf of the targets of your hate.

  42. Nick Gotts says

    (Repost without links to Jews for Justice for Palestinians and B’tselem)

    StevoR the shameless liar and slanderous coward@various streams of verbal diarrhoea,
    Holms@41 – to whom, my grateful thanks – has dealt ably with most of your latest lies and distortions. There certainly is antisemitism among opponents of Israel – I have never denied it, and have opposed it when I encounter it. But like so many apologists for that state, you dishonestly go on to identify any criticism of Israel that you disagree with as antisemitic. Many such critics are in fact Jews: a friend of mine, for example, is active in the organization “Jews for Justice for Palestinians” along with 2,000 other British Jews, and there are predominantly Jewish human rights organizations in Israel such as B’tselem which are similarly highly critical of Israel’s vile treatment of the Palestinians. Some of your fellow apologists for Israel have come up with the ploy of referring to such Jews as “self-hating Jews” – without, of course, feeling the need to provide any evidence for that description beyond the fact of their criticism of Israel. But you may find that lie useful in your future career of dishonesty and slander.

    You refer repeatedly to the Jews’ particular history. Given the astounding ignorance you showed on a recent thread about the founding of the state of Israel (you made clear you thought the whole area of British mandate Palestine was inhabited by Jews and supposed to go to Israel, which was never the case), I suspect I know a good deal more about that history than you do. You know very well – because on this thread you agreed with me – that I know something of the historical significance of European and Christian antisemitism. I have also had close personal relationships with Jews who have suffered from antisemitism, and in one case lost family in the Shoah. I know that even for those Jews who don’t wish to emigrate there, Israel can be seen as a potential refuge “if it happens again”. But none of this justifies either the terrorism involved in the founding of the state of Israel, nor the ongoing dispossession and mistreatment of Palestinians who were not the authors of the Shoah, nor of any of the antisemitism suffered by most of Israel’s founders – who were overwhelmingly European Jews. In respect to its origin Israel resembles apartheid South Africa – and indeed, Australia and the USA: that origin is that of a European settler state, displacing much of the existing population and seizing their land (although Israel has since received Jews from many other areas, including those shamefully ejected from Arab states). Nor, of course, do the crimes of Zionist terrorists or the state of Israel justify antisemitism in Europe, in Arab countries, or elsewhere; and nor would it be in any way acceptable for Israeli Jews to be forced out of the country, any more than for Americans or Australians of European descent to be forced out of theirs. But the “poor little Israel” narrative beloved of its apologists won’t wash. Israel is one of 8 (possibly 9) nuclear-armed powers; on one ranking,/A>, which does not take account of nuclear weapons, it is the world’s 11th strongest military power, ahead of any regional power other than Turkey, which is not considered a likely enemy. And behind it lies the military, political and economic might of the world’s sole superpower. The conflict between Israel and the Palestinians is hugely one-sided; if there is ever to be peace, this vast imbalance must be reduced – else Israel has shown that it will not make serious concessions, such as abiding by international law by removing the illegal settlements from the West Bank. Boycott – whatever the flaws of the BDS – is one of the few peaceful means available to do this.

    Its being a “shitbag” to note that people change, opinions evolve and things don’t always stay as or what they are?

    It seems you can hardly manage a single sentence without indulging your favourite habit of dishonestly substituting what someone else has referred to with something else that you think enables you to score a point. What I said shows that you and colnago80 are shitbags is that you have both advocated genocide at all, something you give the impression of thinking anyone might find themselves doing. Now, you appear to have stopped doing so, and I don’t deny that is progress of a kind. But it’s evident that you still view this as a mere “opinion”, which you can say you’ve changed, and everyone, including all those whose murder you called for, should be ready to (metaphorically) shake hands and say no more about it. If you really showed any sign of remorse, if you stopped your habitual lying, your slander and misrepresentation of others, your whining about what a nice guy you are and how badly everyone treats you, maybe that might have some chance of happening – although it’s not for me to forgive and forget on behalf of the targets of your hate.

  43. Nick Gotts says

    (Sorry Mano: re-repost without links to Jews for Justice for Palestinians and B’tselem, and with later link closed.)

    StevoR the shameless liar and slanderous coward@various streams of verbal diarrhoea,
    Holms@41 – to whom, my grateful thanks – has dealt ably with most of your latest lies and distortions. There certainly is antisemitism among opponents of Israel – I have never denied it, and have opposed it when I encounter it. But like so many apologists for that state, you dishonestly go on to identify any criticism of Israel that you disagree with as antisemitic. Many such critics are in fact Jews: a friend of mine, for example, is active in the organization “Jews for Justice for Palestinians” along with 2,000 other British Jews, and there are predominantly Jewish human rights organizations in Israel such as B’tselem which are similarly highly critical of Israel’s vile treatment of the Palestinians. Some of your fellow apologists for Israel have come up with the ploy of referring to such Jews as “self-hating Jews” – without, of course, feeling the need to provide any evidence for that description beyond the fact of their criticism of Israel. But you may find that lie useful in your future career of dishonesty and slander.

    You refer repeatedly to the Jews’ particular history. Given the astounding ignorance you showed on a recent thread about the founding of the state of Israel (you made clear you thought the whole area of British mandate Palestine was inhabited by Jews and supposed to go to Israel, which was never the case), I suspect I know a good deal more about that history than you do. You know very well – because on this thread you agreed with me – that I know something of the historical significance of European and Christian antisemitism. I have also had close personal relationships with Jews who have suffered from antisemitism, and in one case lost family in the Shoah. I know that even for those Jews who don’t wish to emigrate there, Israel can be seen as a potential refuge “if it happens again”. But none of this justifies either the terrorism involved in the founding of the state of Israel, nor the ongoing dispossession and mistreatment of Palestinians who were not the authors of the Shoah, nor of any of the antisemitism suffered by most of Israel’s founders – who were overwhelmingly European Jews. In respect to its origin Israel resembles apartheid South Africa – and indeed, Australia and the USA: that origin is that of a European settler state, displacing much of the existing population and seizing their land (although Israel has since received Jews from many other areas, including those shamefully ejected from Arab states). Nor, of course, do the crimes of Zionist terrorists or the state of Israel justify antisemitism in Europe, in Arab countries, or elsewhere; and nor would it be in any way acceptable for Israeli Jews to be forced out of the country, any more than for Americans or Australians of European descent to be forced out of theirs. But the “poor little Israel” narrative beloved of its apologists won’t wash. Israel is one of 8 (possibly 9) nuclear-armed powers; on one ranking, which does not take account of nuclear weapons, it is the world’s 11th strongest military power, ahead of any regional power other than Turkey, which is not considered a likely enemy. And behind it lies the military, political and economic might of the world’s sole superpower. The conflict between Israel and the Palestinians is hugely one-sided; if there is ever to be peace, this vast imbalance must be reduced – else Israel has shown that it will not make serious concessions, such as abiding by international law by removing the illegal settlements from the West Bank. Boycott – whatever the flaws of the BDS – is one of the few peaceful means available to do this.

    Its being a “shitbag” to note that people change, opinions evolve and things don’t always stay as or what they are?

    It seems you can hardly manage a single sentence without indulging your favourite habit of dishonestly substituting what someone else has referred to with something else that you think enables you to score a point. What I said shows that you and colnago80 are shitbags is that you have both advocated genocide at all, something you give the impression of thinking anyone might find themselves doing. Now, you appear to have stopped doing so, and I don’t deny that is progress of a kind. But it’s evident that you still view this as a mere “opinion”, which you can say you’ve changed, and everyone, including all those whose murder you called for, should be ready to (metaphorically) shake hands and say no more about it. If you really showed any sign of remorse, if you stopped your habitual lying, your slander and misrepresentation of others, your whining about what a nice guy you are and how badly everyone treats you, maybe that might have some chance of happening – although it’s not for me to forgive and forget on behalf of the targets of your hate.

  44. Holms says

    Something just occurred to me. If we take StevoR’s own appraisal of the anti-apartheid campaign vs. BDS:

    Umm, the Apartheid campaign condemned White Sth Africans not Black -the BDS BS condemns all Israelis regardless of colour -incl. even the Arab Israelis. So , what a (non) surprise you are in error factually as well as ethically.

    Note that in his view, the anti-apartheid movement condemned people along racial lines (i.e. the very definition of racism), while BDS targets people along political lines (i.e.situation normal for political activism). And somehow, anti-apartheid is team Good, BDS is team Bad. Yet another example, as if we needed more, of the convoluted and backwards logic employed by Israel apologists.

  45. patrick2 says

    Holms@45. That ties to another point I was going to make about criticism of Israel being motivated by anti-semitism. There’s no question that a sizeable portion of anti-Israel activities involve anti-semitism, but a much larger part is simply treating Israel like any other country. No country in the world that could do what Israel does in terms of occupying another people indefinitely, taking their water resources, etc, and not get severe criticism. It seems it’s more apologists for Israel who want to single it out for different treatment.

  46. TTT says

    But the “poor little Israel” narrative beloved of its apologists won’t wash. Israel is one of 8 (possibly 9) nuclear-armed powers

    America has a black president; does that mean racism is over? Or even less serious than it used to be?

    No sober-minded leftist would ever entertain such an idea, it’s a caricature of wingnuttery. Yet its mirror image is all over the left when it comes to Israel: “Look at how many helicopters the IDF has, so, antisemitism isn’t a real factor here.”

    I think it’s transparently obvious that the claims of an “Israeli apartheid” are false, and in most cases are motivated by ignorant antisemitism. For those who are actually speaking in good faith, I would remind them that at the absolute maximum of Apartheid South Africa’s political and military power, it was never more than 22% white, and all of those whites had other white countries to which they could flee if and when their system collapsed. Israel is the exact opposite – 76-80% Jewish depending on which polls you use. And since practically ALL of the Jews of Israel are the descendents of refugees – from antisemites in Europe, in the Middle East, in Ethiopia, in Russia, in South America – they know full well they have nowhere to go. No other country could be expected to take Jews in. There is no confidence that America would take a large number of refugees – the gates were sealed during the Holocaust, who would be fool enough to think that’s changed now? So even if you think their system is “apartheid,” the same tricks that finished off South Africa will not work here.

    Critics of Israel have got to get over their sense of privilege and entitlement, because they really DON’T have the right to a conversation magically free from suggestions that they are antisemitic. As David Schraub noted, it is A GOOD THING that there are a lot of tripwires of racism around discussions of Israel, because discussions that boil down to Christians and Muslims declaring what rights Jews may have, where Jews may live, and what sort of government Jews may build is always going to either be actually racist or be extremely close to racism and able to veer into racism at any time.

    Sheriff Joe Arpaio swears he is just arresting criminals, but to most observers he looks like an anti-Latino bigot. Israel critics are the Arpaio in this conversation, and if they think it is beneath their dignity to defend themselves from accusations of antisemitism they are free to leave the conversation and find another hobby at any time.

  47. TTT says

    No country in the world that could do what Israel does in terms of occupying another people indefinitely, taking their water resources, etc, and not get severe criticism

    Taiwan set up a single-party dictatorship that lasted half a century and killed over 140,000 people and you couldn’t even discuss this in public until well into the 1990s. Nobody, I’m sure, asked the Formosan aborigines their opinion on the Taiwanese government – and we know what China thinks.

    Indonesia has been occupying Western Papua for decades, to the tune of 500,000 deaths, and the settler-colonialist transplantation of ethnic Malay Muslims into a historically black Christian or animist region. Barely anyone even in Australia cares, let alone the outside world.

    Turkey has maintained a military occupation over Cyprus for over 40 years, complete with ethnic cleansing and forced population transfers.

    Spain has maintained walled-in settler cities in Africa for ages and actually had a shooting war with Morocco over them in the 21st century.

    And those are just the American-allied, American-aid-receiving democracies. There are many other, less “respectable” cases I could cite.

    The difference is that none of them involve Jews. Even the less “respectable” cases like China/Tibet or Morocco/Western Sahara do not involve Jews. That really, really is the reason why people are obsessed with Israel. That really, really is the reason why Europe and the Arab world – each of which have been boycotting Jewish institutions more or less nonstop since the 1930s under one guise or another – are primed to continue the process now.

    And if you can’t even begin to think that maybe this could be true, perhaps you ought to check your privilege.

  48. Holms says

    But the “poor little Israel” narrative beloved of its apologists won’t wash. Israel is one of 8 (possibly 9) nuclear-armed powers
    [- Nick Gotts]

    America has a black president; does that mean racism is over? Or even less serious than it used to be?

    No sober-minded leftist would ever entertain such an idea, it’s a caricature of wingnuttery. Yet its mirror image is all over the left when it comes to Israel: “Look at how many helicopters the IDF has, so, antisemitism isn’t a real factor here.”

    But Nick Gotts’ comment that you quote was not addressing the question of whether anti-semitism exists, he was addressing the frequent apologist talking point that Israel is engaged in a struggle to survive against serious threats to its very existence. It isn’t, and the fact that it has the most powerful military in the region PLUS the fact that it has the backing of the world’s largest military carries the point.

    You are refuting something Nick Gotts did not say; a strawman.

    I think it’s transparently obvious that the claims of an “Israeli apartheid” are false, and in most cases are motivated by ignorant antisemitism.

    This is most likely why the OP did not explicitly call Israel ‘apartheid’ but rather ‘apartheid-like’ due to have some similarities and also some differences.

    For those who are actually speaking in good faith, I would remind them that at the absolute maximum of Apartheid South Africa’s political and military power, it was never more than 22% white, and all of those whites had other white countries to which they could flee if and when their system collapsed. Israel is the exact opposite – 76-80% Jewish depending on which polls you use.

    A complete irrelevence to the question of whether Israeli policy contains racist elements. Which it does.

    And since practically ALL of the Jews of Israel are the descendents of refugees – from antisemites in Europe, in the Middle East, in Ethiopia, in Russia, in South America – they know full well they have nowhere to go. No other country could be expected to take Jews in.

    Note the point mentioned at the start of this post, reiterating Nick Gotts’ point: Israel is not engaged in an existential crisis, both because it is the dominant regional power and also because it has the backing of the world’s only remaining superpower.

    There is no confidence that America would take a large number of refugees – the gates were sealed during the Holocaust, who would be fool enough to think that’s changed now?

    And this is just a load of bollocks. If you truly believe American politics does not give special consideration to Israel, you are the fool.

    Critics of Israel have got to get over their sense of privilege and entitlement, because they really DON’T have the right to a conversation magically free from suggestions that they are antisemitic. As David Schraub noted, it is A GOOD THING that there are a lot of tripwires of racism around discussions of Israel, because discussions that boil down to Christians and Muslims declaring what rights Jews may have, where Jews may live, and what sort of government Jews may build is always going to either be actually racist or be extremely close to racism and able to veer into racism at any time.
    [Idiocy]

    If you want to establish that someone is anti-semitic, you need to do more than throw the accusation out there. Simply being critical of Israel for its policies is not anti-semitism.

    Your next post has even less of substance. The only thing you needed to say was that “No country in the world that could do what Israel does in terms of occupying another people indefinitely, taking their water resources, etc, and not get severe criticism” is needlessly absolute. Not that it really matters, as the fact that other regimes have been awful does not excuse the one currently under discussion.

  49. Nick Gotts says

    TTT@47,48

    So even if you think their system is “apartheid,” the same tricks that finished off South Africa will not work here.

    Interesting that you put it that way. My impression is that South Africa still exists, and in economic terms, its white population is still a great deal richer on average than the remainder of the population. Not one of them has been expelled, or needed to flee the country, so we don’t know whether other “white countries” (a rather telling phrase in itself) would have received them.

    As for the insinuation that effectively all criticism of Israel is motivated by antisemitism, and the “whataboutery” of #48 – all you’re demonstrating is your own moral and intellectual bankruptcy; we heard exactly the same litany of distraction when I was active in the AAM in the 1980s. The OP is primarily about the criminalisation of criticism of Israel, going as far as actual criminal convictions in France, with the threat of legal action being used in Canada and the UK, and a systematic attempt to block college funding in the USA. What is your view of such attacks on free expression? Can you show that any parallel cases in those countries against critics of Spain, Turkey, Indonesia or Taiwan?

  50. Nick Gotts says

    Incidentally, TTT, have you noticed that the two writers Mano Singman quotes are both Jewish, and one is an Israeli? More of those “self-hating Jews”, I suppose.

  51. TTT says

    the “whataboutery” of #48 – all you’re demonstrating is your own moral and intellectual bankruptcy

    You love “whataboutery” as long as it’s anti-Israel. #48 was in direct response to the assertion that “no other country” could behave the way Israel allegedly does. This was a claim that can be engaged by contradictory facts, and so I have provided them. You ignored these facts because you don’t actually know very much about this issue, and you failed to grasp the context of the question because you are too epistemically closed to comprehend that the points on your side can possibly be challenged at all.

  52. Holms says

    As pointed out in my #49, it remains that the only thing you needed to point out was that “No country in the world that could do what Israel does in terms of occupying another people indefinitely, taking their water resources, etc, and not get severe criticism” is an unnecessarily absolute statement.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *