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on Oct 24, 2007
One only has to be familiar with some of the pronouncements of PPJC, the speakers that they invite to talk about the Mideast issue, the statements of people affiliated with PPJC and their constant one-sided criticism of Israel, while ignoring any fault of the Palestinians in the current conflict in the mideast to know that they are anti-semetic.
Paul George can complain until he his blue in the face and continue to maintain that the issue is far from over.
Paul George can say whatever he wants about Israel and the middle east (and obviously he does that ad infinitum heaping blame and scorn on Israel). He should realize that we have the same right to criticize his group as anti-semetic.
Get over it George.
Marvin, you have a right to be wrong. The actions of the Israeli government are not in the best interest of citizens of the United States, Jews in the Diaspora, or ordinary citizens of Israel, Jewish and Arab alike.
American Jews oppose the United States' occupation in Iraq in the same, or higher numbers, than Americans at large. I think you'll find they also think Israel's invasion of Lebanon shouldn't have been supplied by the United States.
We have no official voice, we American Jews who consider ourselves Americans, not Israelis in absentia.
Carol--as you said, you have a right to be wrong and a right to your opinion. The question is do you think that the actions of Hamas and Fatah are in the best interest of Israel? (To me, firing rockets into Israel from Gaza, following the withdrawal of Israel from that area does not exactly seem the right thing to do. But that is just my opinion).
ALso I think you should look at what started last year's war in Lebanon and see who is at fault for that.
Do not just follow PPJC's line that it is always Israel's fault.
Who is right in the ongoing fight between Palestinians and Israeli's never will be decided here, or in any other forum, with any degree of consensus.
I took the real point of Kazak's story to be, "What in the world is the HRC, an organ of the city government, doing by inserting itself into this insolvable argument?"
I don't know if Blum is right, if he's wrong, or if he's lying. But I wish he'd resist the urge to aggrandize himself with columns like the one he wrote.
Ben W--you may have a good point. Is it the HRCs role to get involved in this issue?
Also, according to the article the chair of the HRC apologized and Blum thought the matter was closed (sounding like he got some grief during his meeting with the mayor and George about it).
Maybe Paul George and his cheerleader Don kazak need to let the matter go.
It's difficult for American Jews who identify themselves as Jews, but not as Israelis, because our own government has made Israel's government an American military outpost.
The loud voices in the Jewish community belong to those who confuse Israel's interests with the interests of Jews as a people. My grandfather was an orthodox rabbi, and he opposed the idea of a national state for Jews. My father was a non-believer, and he bought bonds for Israel. Their arguments were intense and emotional.
I think we have to cut ourselves some slack on this. Even Marvin. Even Jeff.
As an American, I think our policy in Israel has been destructive. As a student of Israeli military history, I know that Israel's bargain with the US has been destructive.
Israelis know that the Saudi royals virtually created Hamas, with our government's knowledge and silence. I don't think the Saudis were acting in the best interests of anyone but themselves, but I'm an American. My concern is with America's policies, America's interests.
I think that Carol Mullen's post reaches the right conclusion, and that if we all concluded that, "..I'm an American. My concern is with America's policies, America's interests," we'd be a better country.
One might reasonably argue what policies are in American interests (Maybe supporting Israel is the right thing for America as well as for Israel.), but as long as we're all discussing the same goals, we can have an honest discussion.
Of course there are some - and we'll probably hear from them here - who think we should be above all this nation-state pettiness, and be citizens of the world. Hard to know how to deal with them.
But the worst of all are those who hide their agenda as Israel or Palestinian or Armenian..supporters when they really place American interests in subordinate positions.
CArol, you have a right to be wrong.
Maybe we need to stop thinking about just what is good for america and look at the what is good for the world as a whole.
We have seen what the Bush/Cheney policy of "what is good for america" has accomplished in the last 6 years
Tomas, I didn't mean that I am not interested in other countries or the world at large, or that I believe other people's interests should be sacrificed to ours. That's George Bush, not me.
I am fascinated by what is going on in South America, and the extreme changes, environmental and economic, that China is experiencing. Also the health crisis in Africa, and the slow changes in women's rights.
I meant that I can only hope to influence one country, my own, and very little at that.
I shouldn't use the words "America's interests." It's become, as Margarita Lopez Maya reminded us, an empty signifier.
I meant the interests of America's people. Not its government, not the corporations using its flag. The victims of Katrina, not the vultures who profited from it.
I'm surprised Paul George is surprised that an Israeli supporter tried to smear the Peace Center as being anti-semitic. That's such an old tactic, the last resort of Israeli supporters when they can't think of any other way to try and support Israel's actions, that's I'd think Paul was familiar with it.
He's lucky the Peace Center depends on individual donations, if it or he were funded by a business or educational institution, Blum and Marvin would be trying to get the funding stopped or him fired.
Trudy--maybe Paul George knows it and is just doing an "outraged indignation" act in order to raise funds from his supporters.
It is always good to claim that you are under attack when trying to squeeze money out of your supporters
Thank goodness this issue has been reopened, because some weeks ago I saw a video presentation about a very creepy group known as Common Purpose, and I couldn't help but wonder if our Human Relations Commission (HRC) isn't up to the same type of mischief.
Here's the video: Web Link
I have no doubt that Marvin, and many others, genuinely believe that all Jews are endangered if Israel is destroyed. It's a deep conviction, it's not a conspiracy.
I think they've got it wrong. I think Israel is in great danger of being destroyed, and is doing things which endanger all Jews, as well as Israel's enemies.
If you want creepy conspiracies, look at the program in the United States government, Christian Embassy.
One thing the founders of the United States got right; separation of church and state.
Carol, you have a right to be wrong.
israel is not doing anything that endangers Jews everywhere. One has only to look at what happened to the jewish populations that existed in all of the arab countries surrounding Israel to realize that the existence of Israel is not the problem--the presence of jews period in the middle east is a problem for many of these countries.
Anyway, why shouldn't Israel do things that endanger it's enemies?
Maybe in PPJC's and Carol's world Israel should sit still and let the militant arabs steamroll them into the sea--not going to happen.
Israel and the jews will not be pushed around anymore.
Marvin, Ehud Olmert is not Israel, anymore than George Bush is the United States. Olmert's popularity rating went to 2% (within the margin of error for zero.) Corrupt and stupid.
All this belligerent posturing has simply made life so dangerous in Israel that 200,000 Israelis are now living in New York City alone.
Jews have always been an endangered people. Those of us living in relative safety should not be egging on those in the battle zone.
I do not know if anything will save Israel, but I'm fairly sure that the United States is not helping.
And by the way, the surrounding countries haven't been very welcoming to the Arabs who now call themselves the Palestinians. Like Israeli Jews, they too have nowhere else to go. Many have been kicked out of Jordan, they were kicked out of Kuwait, Egypt would not take back Gaza because it didn't want Palestinians.
Somehow, somewhere there should be a consensus on life as better than death.
We have backed the Saudis, overthrown the Iranian government of Mossadegh, installed the Hashemites in Jordan.
Amazing how nothing succeeds like a history of failure.
Carol, you have a right to be wrong.
If the Israeli population is unhappy with Olmert they will vote him out of office.
I hardly think that protecting yourself from Hezzbolah invasions in the north and constant rocket attacks in the south is "belligerent posturing".
The fact is that Israel has always been willing to live in peace with it's neighbors--witness the agreements with Egypt and Jordan. unfortunately certain elements in the Palestinian movement refuse to recognize Israel's right to exist--tough to negotiate it based on that.
What exactly does "Like Israeli Jews, they too have nowhere else to go."--you stated that 200,000 Israeli jews are living in NYC alone--so they have somewhere to go--also unlike some it's neighbors Israel has always welcomed jews from anywhere and gone out of their way to get them there.
BTW, the majority of the population of Jordan is Palestinian so there already is a palestinian state in the middle east
Finally, do not worry about Israel surviving--they will--naysayers like yourself, Carol, are ignored by Israel.
Do you think the United States would take the entire population of Israel? Particularly those without money? If so, that will probably happen. I don't think American public opinion would support that, but we may see.
A few Palestinians have come to the United States, gone to Syria, back to Egypt. There is nowhere the great bulk of the population will go, and they will continue to fight with desperation for that reason.
Yes, Jordan is a majority Palestinian population. Palestinians don't control the government. The Palestinians who were thrown out of Jordan cannot go back.
If Israel uses her nuclear arsenal, there will be no where fit to live within Israel or the surrounding states.
Carol Mullen's and Marvin's very interesting dialogue is a case lesson on why the US should wash its hands of the whole Israel/Palestine issue. This has been going on for decades. The fact is that both sides want the same piece of real estate, and there is no "settlement" to be had via "negotiation".
The US does not need to be enmeshed in this endless blood feud. I do not know nor do I really care who is "right" and who is "wrong". I don't think the US has a horse in that race, and so we should take our marbles (and our millions of dollars per year given to both sides, as well as to the Egyptians and who knows whom else) and go home.
We have enough domestic and international problems without making the Israel/Palestine problem ours as well. I understand the strong feelings on both sides, and I grieve for the people killed on both sides. But this isn't settle-able through our intervention.
Marvin, I was referring to the belligerence of people living in safe places, including fundamentalist Christians awaiting the Rapture, when all Jews in Israel will become Christians or toast.
Olmert is under investigation now for taking a large bribe in the form of a discount on his house. You should keep up with current events. Israel is not an idea - it's a real place, with real people living in it, and they all need peace and economic opportunity.
Carol, you have a right to be wrong.
I am well aware of what is going on in Israel and the Middle East. I am well aware of the issues surrounding Olmert--he is under investigation. When said investigation is done, decision will be made whether he will stand trial or not. He or his party will then decide if he should remain as prime minister and whether elections should be called.
You do need to lecture me about Israel. I am an Israeli citizen and lived in Israel for many years.
BTW, you seem to be unaware of it, but Israel is doing quite well economically considering what is going on in the region.
There will be peace in the middle east when Israel finds a partner among the Palestinains to make that peace.
perhaps you should refrain from relying too much on Paul George and PPJC for your information regarding Israel--nothing Israel ever does is considered right by them and their minions.
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Marvin: interesting that you're not living there. I don't get any information from the PPJC or Paul George, but I have nothing against them. I've met Paul George, many years ago. and if you've met him, you'd know he's not an anti-Semite. I did think he should quit smoking cigarettes. But that, like everything else, is opinion.
If you have facts, you don't disclose them.
A member of my family manages investments in Israel's IT and Biotech. I suspect I know more about Israel's economic climate than you do. Including the anxiety provoked by the war in Lebanon, for which Israel was not prepared. Suckered by George Bush, in fact, into testing weapons and tactics.
Some people in Israel are doing very well. Including the children of former government officials.
Israel's economy as a whole is quite another matter.
There is a difference between legitimate criticism of Israeli policies and singling the Jewish State out for condemnation. I agree that some of Israel's actions in the past have been harmful, however one must compare those actions with the actions of others in the region. If the PPJC were simply criticizing specific Israeli policies, that would be part of a healthy debate. However, when I attended a PPJC event, its members led me to conclude that the group denies Israel's right to exist. This denial and singling out of Israel constitutes anti-Semitism, in effect if not in intent; the message is basically that other groups have the right to immigrate to a region as they please, but that Jews do not. That other groups have the right to defend themselves, but the Jews do not. I leave it to Palestinian supporters to explain this duplicity.
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Abolish Israel NOW: I wonder what you mean by "threaten to stop free speech?" Do you mean the freedom to incite hatred of an ethnic group? Because that is not protected by law; it's a crime. Pro-Israel groups welcome sensible debate about Israeli policies. The problem is that most debates, such as the one on this forum, turn into anti-Israel rants, mostly denying Israel's right to exist. Israel exists as the dream of the Jewish people to escape prejudice. If you are against that, I wonder what you are for?
Stephen Fisher: Consider American history, American standards, American actions.
When the British forced all the Jews out of 3/4 of the Mandate, and established Transjordan, the United States raised no objection about the displaced Jews. It offered no sanctuary.
When the armed revolt of the Jewish population in the rest of the Mandate turned British opinion so that England was ready to give up the rest of the Mandate to form the state of Israel, the United States refused to recognize Israel. It was the Soviet Union which recognized Israel, and gave the new country the weapons with which to fight the Arabs.
Shortly thereafter, Israel offered her services to the United States and turned her back on the Soviet Union.
States have no permanent friends and no permanent enemies.
The Arabs objected to having Jews flee the holocaust into the Middle East, and the Great Powers gave in - but neither the United States nor Britain were interested in saving the Jews. Only a few extraordinary individuals.
[Portion removed by Palo Alto Online staff.]
Abolish: I didn't say Jews need Israel. Israelis (Jewish and Arab) need Israel. Moving millions of people causes unlimited death and destruction. The great majority of Jews and Arabs have no escape of Israel. I wish that the members of the Jewish and the Arab diasporas would stifle their personal vanity, and encourage peace and fair dealing.
As a Palestinian doctor I knew said "Oh, they're so eager to hold our coats while we fight to the death." The Kuwaitis had expelled her, then begged her to return. When last I heard from her, she was in Portland, OR.
I do not think the United States will offer safe harbor. I do not think Jews or Arabs will survive the expulsion of the other. Most of all, the children will die.
Carol Mullen: While I agree that alliances between states are temporary constructs, it would seem that, according to modern standards, any group of people who legitimately form a government recognized by the UN (as was Israel) has a right to exist. I realize that this is an idealist view of things, and that, realistically, no state or person has a fundamental "right" to be, but if we are talking about international law, then both Israel and the Palestinians have the right to their respective states.
Abolish: About half of the world's Jewish population are citizens of Gentile states because they do not want to leave their homes. Israel exists as an insurance policy for these people. Unfortunately, Gentile countries have a bad record with regards to their Jewish citizens. Jews need a place to go when their native lands turn their backs on us. [Portion removed by Palo Alto Online staff.] Israel did not back the Iraq war; in fact, Israel argued against it, saying that Iran was the real threat in the region (how prophetic). While Israelis were happy to see Saddam go, they realized there were bigger fish to fry, so to speak.
[Portion removed by Palo Alto Online staff.]
For what it's worth, I predict loads of Jews will leave in disgust when Palestine becomes a democracy for the first time.
Abolish: The only way to what? If you destroy Israel, where will the Jews go? Back to the lands that persecuted them, or to the ones who did not want to save them while they were being killed? The only way to peace is for people to accept that both Israel and a Palestinian state must exist together. The Jews are not going to leave Israel, not when their alternative is either death at the hands of Hamas or exile in states that do not want them.
Sharon, Netanyahu, Barak, Olmert, Peres... ALL URGED USA TO ATTACK IRAQ.
So did think tanks and policy institutes, including the ADL, AIPAC, JINSA, CSP, CSIS, CPASS, WINEP, PNAC, AEI, CFR, RAND, Hoover Institute, Hudson Institute, Manhattan Institute, Foreign Policy Research Institute, Middle East Forum, Heritage Foundation, Aspen Strategy Group, Brookings Institute, Havard's Olin Institute, Shalem Center...
They all endorsed attacking Iraq, too.
Go look them up: They ALL have a disproportionately large Jewish membership.
I am not a Jew. What is wrong with the attack on Iraq?
On the whole Iraq was a relatively peaceful, relatively harmless, relatively innocent nation.
They, like all other Arab/Muslim nations NEVER EVER attacked or threatened to attack USA.
We had no business destroying their country and deposing Uncle Saddam.
We know the Iraqis weren't involved in the 9/11 attack. Yet we still don't know why a 47-story steel-framed building THAT WASNT TOUCHED BY ANYONE collapsed onto itself in a perfectly symmetrical pile on the evening of 9/11.
Why doesn't anybody complain that there are already 57 Muslim majority nations in the world (with that many votes in the UN) or that 22 of these Muslim nations are Arab (the Arab League). These states treat their minority populations - those that are left - dismally. Israel, a nation of 6 million Jews, has a million Muslim citizens. Why did Jews have to leave Gaza? Why does the West Bank have to be free of Jews? Why does nobody (especially the PPJC who is concerned with justice) ever mention the 900,000 Jews who were expelled from 10 Muslim countries from 1948-1970 and deserve recognition and compensation for loss of property, jobs and lives.
There's a mountain of evidence that indicates Jewish terrorists bombed Jewish homes and businesses in Yemen and Iraq in order to force Mizrahi Jews to move to Israel and fight Arabs for the rest of their lives.
How amusing! Let's see, Saddam did not attack Iran, right? He did not attack Kuwait, right? He did not use WMD on his own people, right? He did not masacre the Kurds, right? Not to mention the
Shias. He wasn't trying to develop nuclear bombs, right? He wasn't firing rockets at U.S. planes, right? He held free and fair elections, right?
After the U.S. invasion, Saddam was gone (caught and killed, too!). Iraq has voted, and will vote again, free and fair in the context of the times. The Arabs are geting a taste of freedom. The Kurds are free at last. The Iraqi Shias are out from under the Sunni yoke. The Sunnis are coming to understand that they need to participate. It's HAPPENING in Iraq! That must burn your butt!
I think that you are forgetting that that sweet innocent dictator Sadaam Hussein was filling mass graves with his own people, his sons were raping women who they took a fancy to at stop lights, torturing members of the Iraqi soccer team for losing games, invaded a neighboring country, was violating his agreements as to the no fly zones, was thumbing his nose at weapons inspectors and supporting the families of Hamas suicide bombers to the tune of $25,000 per murderer. He did nothing to allay my fears that he was building weapons to use agains us. The UN and its oil for food scam members did nothing to help either. Other than that Iraq was a perfectly harmless, friendly little haven.
Yeah right Abolish. Let's see the evidence. There is way more evidence that Yemen and Iraq Muslims murdered, robbed and expelled Jews all by themselves.
Saddam NEVER EVER attacked USA or threatened to attack USA.
If our planes were invading Iraqi airspace, what do you expect? Flowers and sweets?
As for Saddam attacking Iran... We're the ones (and the Brits) who supplied BOTH SIDES with arms for 11 years.
As for Saddam killing Kurds and Shia... He did it after USA urged Kurds to attempt a murderous coup. What do you expect him to do? Offer therapy to assassins?
As for Saddam murdering innocents... Where is the deep study? How many did his murder and how? Have we the faintest idea even?
Germany never EVER attacked the USA. So what?
Jewish terrorists have a lengthy history of false-flag attacks that dictate they were entirely capable of attacking Mizrahis and blaming it on Arabs.
Sort of like they tried with the King David Hotel bombing (1946), the Lavon Affair (1954), and the attack on the USS Liberty (1967).
Germany declared war on USA a few days after USA declared war on Japan.
Saddam was shooting at our planes for years. Those planes were enforcing the no=fly zone that he agreed to when he got his butt kicked in Gulf War I.
Germany was quite willing to sign a neutrality agreement with the USA. FDR would have none of it...he wanted war with Germany, and signalled it in many ways, including illegal shipments of arms to England. FDR fought Hitler, because Hitler needed to be defeated. GW Bush fought Saddam, because Saddam needed to be defeated. Simple as that. They were both moral acts.
If you are going to blame the Jews for siding with moral acts, at least give them credit for it.
Our enemies from within tricked USA into all of this mischief with Iraq.
We shouldn't have supported Saddam's regime, we shouldn't have given him bioweaponry, we shouldn't have enforced that screwy embargo and no-fly zone mess.
What a nightmare.
Probably 3-5 million Iraqis have perished since 1991 thanks to Americans being a bunch of brainwashed suckers who believe anything they're told by a bunch of evil traitors, who hate our guts and who think nothing of destroying USA for their own putrid, misguided interests.
Take a breather. You're hyperventilating.
We didn't give Saddam WMD, in any form, including bio-weapons. Urban myth stuff.
We did give him some intellignece vs. Iran, when Iran counterattacked aginst him, after he atacked them. It is the principle of the lesser evil (Saddam vs. Ayatollah).
Your arithmetic, since 1991 is off by about an order of magnitude. Rack it up to Saddam...he would be proud to have the numbers.
Life is too short to have nightmares. Try yoga.
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