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Guest post – Gaza

Written By: - Date published: 9:00 am, August 2nd, 2014 - 124 comments
Categories: war - Tags:

gaza mourning

This [showering a neighbour with rockets is an act of war, perpetrated by Palestine on Israel and Israel is quite entitled to take out the Hamas military apparatus] is a general argument I’ve often heard in the media, blogs, etc. over the past few weeks.

It assumes – for the present conflict – that the conflict was started by Hamas rockets. It wasn’t.

For better or worse, we have the official Israeli position that it was started by a kidnapping. Whatever Hamas rockets were entering Israel prior to that were obviously not sufficient to provoke the current offensive from Israel.

So, the first point is that the claim that this has something to do with Hamas rockets is factually incorrect – unless you want to argue that Israel used the kidnapping as a disingenuous cover for an assault they had already planned to make?

The second point concerns the implicit moral claim that Hamas rockets (and their ineffectual strike rate) are a greater provocation to mass violence than is the blockading of Gaza, the routine supersonic flyovers of Gaza over the last few years, the game-playing by Israel over the funds Gaza needs to survive, the predictable increases in illnesses and general deprivation and, most obviously, the frequent bombing of Gaza all of which have been clear causes of many, many Palestinian deaths (over a thousand dead just a couple of years ago in yet another short, sharp assault).

In that context, it is very hard to see how this ‘greater provocation’ argument can hold any water at all. Surely, provocations are in part to be judged by their effectiveness at killing, intimidating and oppressing? Israeli actions have achieved these goals to a much greater extent than have Hamas actions. So which side has been most ‘provocative’? (Remember,provocation relates to each action – it is not about ultimate ‘blame’.)

Third – and relatedly – it is often claimed that the terror induced by the Hamas rockets should help to explain the Israeli government’s reaction. That is, the question has been posed to critics of Israel ‘How would you like to have rockets raining down on you? Wouldn’t you want to retaliate?’

This unreflective plea misses entirely the obvious response in defence of Hamas launching their rockets. That is, ‘How would you feel if your children were dying through lack of sanitation, good nutrition, Israeli bombs, etc. on a regular basis? Wouldn’t you want to retaliate?’

In the current conflict, of course, the Israeli bombs (that, it should be remembered,preceded the current increase in Hamas rocket firing as they – the bombs – were a response to a kidnapping) are orders of magnitude more violent and more ‘effective’ than are the Hamas rockets.

Given that, Israelis who are suffering under the terror of Hamas rockets should understand entirely how Palestinians suffering under the terror of Israel bombs feel and, therefore, why they wish to fire their rockets. Shouldn’t they? Yet, in fact, they don’t appear to understand.

Aren’t both deliberate forms of terror? And isn’t one form of terror clearly far more ‘effective’ at terrorising?

Finally, Golda Meir once said “We can forgive the Arabs for killing our children. We cannot forgive them for forcing us to kill their children. We will only have peace with the Arabs when they love their children more than they hate us.

In the context of the disproportionate casualties that have always characterised the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians- and the extremely limited number of Israeli children killed by Hamas rockets – it would be hard to conjure up a more immoral justification for the current mass and indiscriminate killing of children.

It’s as if one is somehow ‘forced’ to kill hundreds of children should one child be killed. This can’t be true.

Such an overwhelming onslaught also seems like an extraordinarily ineffective way to encourage the Palestinians to love their (dead) children more than they hate Israelis.

Killing someone’s child is not usually the best way to make them hate you less.

But it is, of course, quite a good example of an act of terrorism.

Puddleglum

124 comments on “Guest post – Gaza”

  1. Grumpy 1

    Puds is my favorite commentator here and I am loathe to comment….but….surely she values the benefits of a Western civilization, tolerance, rights for women, gays, children etc? The rule of law, the concept of equity?
    All these are anathema to the Islamic movement. Does she really want a Taliban type patriarchal world.
    Hamas and ISIS, Boko Harum etc are a threat to our values, they need to be stopped. So far only Israel has the courage to attempt to do that, purely for them, as a matter of survival. We will all finish up on their side, sooner or later. With Europe set to fall under the Islamic Sharia veil within 20 years, is the left prepared for the consequences?

    • mickysavage 1.1

      Weird Grumpy. The only reason extremists are taking over in Palestine is because the Israelis are killing too many children. Here is a thought. How about no fighting, open the boarders and instead of spending money on armaments spent it on hospitals and schools in Gaza. Then the extremists will lose their power.

      • Grumpy 1.1.1

        And Syria, Libya, Iraq, Sudan, etc. oh, that’s right, not related – eh?

      • Grumpy 1.1.2

        Just a thought, maybe the extremists should take over in Iraq because ISIS are killing too many women and children…….oh, wait……

        • Colonial Viper 1.1.2.1

          The governments of Iraq and Syria were deliberately destabilised by the west, giving room for ISIS to grow into the power vacuum.

          Israel is now trying to destroy the Palestinian unity government which will open up the same kind of space for ISIS type organisations to grow amongst Palestinians.

      • Bazar 1.1.3

        That or you know, hamas will have a field day with unrestrained acts of terrorism.

        You must live under a reality dome, that destroys any attempts at realism.
        They have been at war for decades now, muslims have been attacking them since just after the israelis returned.

        The palestinians have repeatedly attempted genocide against the jews, and the jews have repeatedly crushed them.

        And now there is a racial hatred so divisive that it’d take generations of peace before its forgotten. And given islamic history i doubt thats easy to coexist even without the conflict.
        So to casually suggest that the reason for conflict is because of the hostilities is begging the question.

        Palestinians would love all the jews in israel dead, and will kill to make that happen.
        Its like having a repeated convicted mass murderer as a neighbour, and suggesting that he wouldn’t be so murderous if you allowed him to get close to you.

        Its stupidity that can only be believed when you’re imposing your belief on someone else.

        • Colonial Viper 1.1.3.1

          Of course, your hate filled lies must be countered.

          Israel has completed 80% of the ethnic cleansing of Palestine. Only Gaza and the West Bank remain. And as you can see, the Israelis are well on the way to getting those two remaining areas as well, and completing the dispossession of the Palestinian people.

          The palestinians have repeatedly attempted genocide against the jews, and the jews have repeatedly crushed them.

          You are making ignorant comments that you should be ashamed of. For starters Jews =! Israel.

          And given islamic history i doubt thats easy to coexist even without the conflict.

          You don’t know jack shit about Islamic history of course. But keep pretending you prick. Just try and remember its Israel which has poured ~50,000 advanced warheads and bombs on to Gaza.

          • Bazar 1.1.3.1.1

            As always, your inability for critical thought fills me with amusement viper.

            I’m aware of the difference between Judaism and the nation of Israel. They are closely linked.
            Its also not death to the israelis that terrorists chant, but jews.

            I’d also be interested in knowing how large a proportion jews make up the IDF.
            Since 75% of the israeli population are jews, 20% arabian. I would not be surprised to find that the IDF consists of about 85%+ jewish personnel as a result.

            So i’d say its a pretty fair statement to say that its been jews that have been doing the fighting, and its jews that the palestinians want dead. Israel is just the place the jews live, defend. and fight under.

            I’d also like to know why you think i should be ashamed for calling a jew a jew. Or is that politically incorrect to call a duck a duck

            “just try and remember its Israel which has poured ~50,000 advanced warheads and bombs on to Gaza.”

            Provide citation for these 50,000 warheads launched into Gaza or you’re full of shit.
            I also enjoy the fact that you make no mention of the 11,000 missiles launched into israel

    • miravox 1.2

      So we’ll turn a blind eye to Israel killing women and children so women and children can have rights?

      You have noticed in all the photos of Palestinian women that they’re not dressed as if Gaza shares the values of ISIS? It’s quite possible that Iran will have more to do with Palestinian values than fundamentalist, muderous revolutionaries, including those jihadists from the West.

      • Grumpy 1.2.1

        Hamas shares the values of ISIS. Talk to some of the Palestinians living in NZ, they did not leave because of Israel – I have one working for me.
        Are you saying the opposite of what you accuse me? That we should just sit back and let Islamists take over the world now? Better stock up on razor blades and burkas now, and get ready to behead those apostates and hang the gays from cranes as the charming Iranian government is so fond of.

        • locus 1.2.1.1

          Israelis carry a very large degree of responsibility for the horrors of the wars in palestine over the past 60 years. Your attempt to brand hamas as evil by an assumed belief that they are linked in some way with isis shows a lack of understanding of who hamas represent and why they are standing up for the palestinians in gaza.

          • jryan 1.2.1.1.1

            So you are saying that Hamas is not evil? This is a group that will not accept Israel. They lower themselves to store weapons in un safe areas, they fire from residential areas, they tunnel and attack and continually harrass. It shows they regard the Palestine people nothing less than convienant human fodder to manipulate an image to their advantage. Hamas, ISIS and the rest are all twisted by extreme religion. They hate the freedom the west offers and unless we thump them back into the middle ages from where their brains have never left, they will be a menace to all the free world.
            Imagine if they were not full of hate and worked along side each other. With all that wealth they should be one of the most wealthy areas on the planet. But no, year after year they plan and carry out the hate against western countries or whoever. They are one pack of sick asses.

            • locus 1.2.1.1.1.1

              jryan,

              did you notice that your prejudiced invective and suggested treatment of Hamas reveal you as very much like the portrait you have in your mind of islamic people?

              The issue here is not whether Hamas is evil or not. Nobody on this thread has attempted to defend Hamas for storing and firing rockets from a civilian area. Indeed this may well be proven to be a war crime. The focus here is on the slaughter and ongoing killing of children and civilians by Israel, and the need to get the ‘civilised’ western world leaders to make Israel stop… now.

              As for your assertion that Hamas does not recognise Israel. You are wrong. The unity government of Hamas and Fatah has accepted Israel’s right to exist. Hamas may not like it but have to accept it as they are part of a government which has made this clear.

              By shelling, bombing and killing civilains sheltering in a refuge which IDF commanders were well informed of, Israel has gone beyond merely immoral and evil acts. It has committed serious war crimes and Israel’s leaders must and eventually will be held accountable.

              What you should also ask yourself jryan, is why Israel has destroyed Palestinian hospitals, schools and homes, gaza’s only power station, public services and administrative buildings and is continuing to occupy and operate out of ordinary Palestinians’ homes

              Your proposal to ‘thump people back to the middle ages’ isn’t so far from what is tragically happening right now to hundreds of thousands of Palestinians in Gaza

              jryan, you suggest Hamas (who are Palestinians) “regard the Palestine people as nothing less than convienant human fodder to manipulate”. This is completely wrong, is more a reflection of your state of mind than anything else, and reflects a complete lack of understanding of people and the suffering of Palestinians.

              As for stopping hating each other, I can hardly imagine what it must be like for Palestinians who feel utterly powerless to stop what is happening and who see their families and their lives being destroyed.

              Do you see the how Israel has dehumanised the Palestinians? Will you continue to condone Israel as they use these methods to control and destroy the Palestinian people?

              • Colonial Viper

                Israeli Deputy Prime Minister Eli Yishai said:

                “We must blow Gaza back to the Middle Ages destroying all the infrastructure including roads & water.”

                Or as Haaretz puts it:

                Interior Minister Eli Yishai on Israel’s operation in Gaza: “The goal of the operation is to send Gaza back to the Middle Ages ….”

                And without putting too fine a point on it, this is exactly what Israel is doing. To the extent that cholera, dysentery, scabies, etc are now all active threats to surviving Gazans, 1/1000 of whom have now been killed by Israel.

                http://www.globalresearch.ca/israel-bombs-gaza-back-to-the-stone-age-as-collective-punishment/5394384

        • miravox 1.2.1.2

          Of course i’m not saying we should sit back and let Islamists take over. I’m suggesting you’re aiming you arrows in the wrong direction.

          A couple points
          1. Israel destroyed Fatah and got Hamas, if they destroy Hamas who do you think they’ll get? Your fears may be realised.
          2. You have no evidence Hamas intends to be an Isis. You only have the opinion of fundamentalist organisations. Even Forbes magazine reckons there will be a realignment of Hamas with Iran. (i would link but am using a tablet and it drives me nuts… Can google hamas +isis and it will come up).
          3. I can’t talk to Palestinians in NZ, I’m in Europe, but our local kebap man is pretty unhappy with Israel’s demolition of Gaza and plenty of Palestinian protestors along the
          Graben are too.
          4. An analogy, as much as i may respect the opinion of your Palestinian worker, I tell people here I’m upset NZ has lost it’s moral and democratic compass, does that make my opinion the only one they should take at face value?
          5. As above, is killing women and children an acceptable way to ensure women and children have rights?

          Sorry that was more than a couple…

          • Colonial Viper 1.2.1.2.1

            The “Islamists take over” when western armed and supported forces fuck over local power structures, overthrow secular Baathist governments, and cripple day to day civil administration.

            We see it over and over and over again.

            The US fucked Iran, installed the Shah, whose brutal rule was thrown out by a theocracy. The US helped Islamist fighters screw over the Soviets in Afghanistan (so very clever), then those same fighters became the Taliban and took over the entire country. Libya and Iraq were both secular states with advanced civil administrations (run by dictators) who got fucked over by the west, and now Al Qaeda, ISIS etc are running the table. The US has supported the brutal and illegal military occupation of Palestine by Israel for decades and the suppression of the local indigenous people by the Israeli government, including a military adventure invading Lebanon, Hamas formed as a response and Hizb’allah grew every stronger.

            Jordan and Egypt, both client states of the USA, have been very quiet while the Israelis screw over their supposed Sunni muslim brethren in Palestine.

            Western demand for oil feeds the Saudis billions and billions of dollars with which they have funded extremist Wahabi militancy throughout the world.

            I mean for fucks sake it’s like we’re amnesiacs who can’t remember a single thing about the Middle East.

            • Grumpy 1.2.1.2.1.1

              I certainly don’t support the stupidity of US policy in the Middle East. However, I find this, written 2 years ago interesting and goes some way towards explaining the situation.
              http://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/3472/hamas-sunni-shiite

            • miravox 1.2.1.2.1.2

              Of course I haven’t forgotten the west’s responsibiliity for the mess that is the Middle East, cv. I just wasn’t going to go there.

              But that’s about as off-topic as Grumpy’s assertion that Israel is saving the west from Islamist fundamentalists by killing civilans. in Gaza.

              Btw did you get to the second sentence before answering? If so, I guess i should have been clearer.

              • Colonial Viper

                Uh, sorry, my bad miravox, I was actually replying to Grumpy’s “take over” comment in 1.2.1

                I believe it is relevant because Grumpy is using the “falling dominoes” framing from anti-commie days in his arguments for anti Islamist action.

                btw every western army knows that the way you undercut extremists is to win over the hearts and minds of the citizens and hence remove support and recruitment for the extremists from the larger civil society.

                What Israel has been doing for decades is the exact opposite of that.

            • Chooky 1.2.1.2.1.3

              +100 CV ( at 1.2.1.2.1)

              ‘Gazan Human Rights Lawyer Pleads to U.S.: We Deserve to be Protected, Not Bombed with Your Weapons’

              http://www.democracynow.org/2014/8/1/gazan_human_rights_lawyer_pleads_to

          • Foreign Waka 1.2.1.2.2

            To Miravox – So are you in Vienna? Vienna is one of the major hubs of negotiations between Hamas and the Israelis since the 70’s if not earlier.

            • miravox 1.2.1.2.2.1

              Hi Foreign Waka, yes we’re still in Vienna. I’ve started discovering a little of Vienna’s intriguing post ww2 role in internatioal diplomacy. In part because there are a lot of meetings going on now with Iran nuclear talks. I think there’s a meeting here this weekend. The big players in this seem to have side meetings about Palestine at the same time.

              Similar for the Russia -Ukraine crisis. Interesting times here.

              • Foreign waka

                Yes, indeed. It is the hub of many international forums and negotiations. On a different issue; enjoy the food. Try the supermarket deli with their ready to go bread rolls and other delicatessen. Yum… I know it does not fit and some will say its inappropriate but food and Vienna are linked in my mind…

        • Tom Jackson 1.2.1.3

          Political Islam is a fairly diverse phenomenon ranging from Iran’s weird attempt to establish a modern Islamic Republic to Turkish political Islamism to the Taliban. Hamas, as a Palestinian resistance movement, differs from all of these. It’s unlikely that a successful Hamas could implement a wholly radical programme, simply because the people they would be trying to force it on would not stand for it. Hamas is popular in Palestine primarily because they are a lot less corrupt than the alternatives.

          Israel isn’t exactly a democratic utopia. 30 years ago Meir Kahane was banned from standing for election in Israel because his views were deemed racist and insane. Nowadays the ruling coalition is ⅓ comprised of openly racist parties who support Kahanist views, and the Likud party more or less supports them, but less openly.

          We’re no longer dealing with the Israeli politicians of yore, who for all their faults were at least rational. Israel has become a far right, authoritarian, and openly racist country. Were a politician like Bennett or Lieberman to stand for election in New Zealand or even the United States, they would correctly be denounced as racists and fascists.

          In the end I don’t care much about Hamas, because they have little real power and even if a Palestinian state comes into being, they will not be a threat. An increasingly fascist, racially intolerant, paranoid, nuclear-armed state is a whole different matter.

        • Murray Olsen 1.2.1.4

          Your Islamophobia and Zionophilia are so bad that I suggest you see a therapist.

    • Grumpy, at the time of me writing this comment there are 13 comments on this post and seven of them are from you, demanding that we ignore the plight of Palestinian civilians because of crude stereotypes about Islamic attitudes to women.

      I just have to say that I think it’s really grotesque to derail this conversation – when over 1,400 Palestinians have been killed, the vast majority of them civilians and over 200 of them children – and especially grotesque to pretend that you’re doing something noble (speaking up for human rights) in the process.

      I don’t honestly think you give a damn about the rights of “women, gays, children etc”, and your Daily Mail “Europe is falling to Sharia” talking points prove it.

      • Colonial Viper 1.3.1

        AFAIK 315 children killed was the death toll 24 hours ago. Horrific. And the US is currently helping the Israelis to re-arm and restock.

        • miravox 1.3.1.1

          315 kids killed and yet the US saved the word “barbaric” for the disappearance of an IDF soldier. Go figure.

          • Colonial Viper 1.3.1.1.1

            I am under the impression that the IDF shelled the last known location of that Israeli soldier thought to have been kidnapped and, unfortunately, he was killed. (“Hannibal Directive”)

      • Grumpy 1.3.2

        Got our early. Just going to watch grandson’s rugby now, it’s all yours.

      • swordfish 1.3.3

        “I don’t honestly think you give a damn about the rights of “women, gays, children etc””

        Just yesterday (Open Mike 1/8/14), dear Old Grumpers attempted to back up his on-going bullshit on Gaza by linking to a number of extreme, aggressively Neo-Conservative websites.

        Amongst which, was Breitbart, known (as more than one commentator has put it) for its “Muslim-bashing, conspiracy-mongering and Israel-boosting.”

        Breitbart’s uber-neo-conservative, pro-gun, liberal-hating Orthodox Jewish editor-at-large, Ben Shapiro, is also known for his conservative views on women and his antipathy to the LGBT community. He’s written about the “homosexual assault on traditional marriage”, that it’s “clear that in order to deny homosexual marriage, we must uphold …. the natural distinction between men and women”, writes for a site that has articles approving of “Women Against Feminism:Gaining Steam”, has argued that “If you pay your taxes, you’re sponsoring the militant homosexual agenda”, believes that the social views of liberal US University professors are “evil”…and so on and so forth….

        Grumper’s Breitbart source is an organisation in which one of its recent “contributing journalists” wondered aloud (in a tweet that was later deleted) if it wasn’t time for “Americans to start slaughtering Muslims in the streets, all of them.”

        So, yeah, Grumpers, reading and regurgitating far-right, socially-conservative uber-zionist nutters and cheerfully cheerleading the IDF’s mass murder of more than 1200 men, women and children (whilst safely sitting on his arse a few thousand miles away), clearly doesn’t give too much of a fuck when he sheds his crocodile tears for women, children, gays, human rights and “the Taliban type patriarchal world”

        • Colonial Viper 1.3.3.1

          I think it’s over 1600 killed now. 90 alone today since the ceasefire fell apart.

    • Foreign Waka 1.4

      You have obviously taken all the “right” propaganda to heart. Israel wants the Gaza strip and more land further out – part of Lebanon, Syria and Jordan. This has been pursued for a long time and it is interesting to see where the instability in the last 5 years have been greatest. Yes, indeed.
      The Islamic religion as all religions for that matter is once more used to wage a war of large proportions. This is necessary for the weapons industry in the US to have continued growth in that industry. And they will do what ever it takes (please note that I mean this with emphasis) to have more growth in this industry as all other avenues of generating money is wilting away.

    • Hi Grumpy,

      Thanks for the compliment.

      I suppose all I would say in response to your other comment is that I don’t support oppressive environments of any sort but I don’t see how that is relevant to this issue.

      Are you suggesting that killing large numbers of innocent Palestinians – including children – is a justified or, even, effective way to liberalise the Muslim world?

      Moderation and liberalisation does not tend to emerge from unjust and disproportionately violent actions.

      [i’m having a family day today so may not be able to respond to comments as much as I would like.]

      • Harriet 1.5.1

        “……Moderation and liberalisation does not tend to emerge from unjust and disproportionately violent actions…..”

        LOL Paddlepop.

        We burnt Horishima to the ground to get the message across!

        Are you really saying Japan is not moderate or liberal? Last time I looked Japan were best mates with the US!

        Anyway, what don’t you understand about the need for an Israeli PM to draw all of Helen Clark’s workmates a picture of a bomb?

        The last I read Israel’s new friends at the UN are all the countries of Africa.
        Y’know, the ones being invaded by muslim hoards – and killing the likes of school girls.

        The UN is derelict in it’s duty and kids have died because of it.

        13 yrs chanting a slogan ‘show restraint’? Unfucken believable!!!!

        • tricledrown 1.5.1.1

          The Reason why Muslims like bin laden radicalized was because of Israel’s treatment of Arab Israeli’s .
          harriet you have been on national TV before for fermenting racism.
          there is no answer to the Israeli problem fundamentalists are only aggravating the problem.
          the not so funny thing is at the heart of both religions peace love and humbleness its all BS the lunatic fanatics have taken over.harriet you are one of the lunatic fanatics!
          New Zealand needs to keep out of this.

        • Colonial Viper 1.5.1.2

          We burnt Horishima to the ground to get the message across!

          Are you really saying Japan is not moderate or liberal? Last time I looked Japan were best mates with the US!

          Burning Hiroshima to the ground huh. Nice. Japan is re-arming, with the encouragement of the USA. And as a culture it remains as xenophobic and insensitive as ever.

        • Psycho Milt 1.5.1.3

          The UN is derelict in it’s duty and kids have died because of it.

          Harriet managed a true statement in one of her comments! Sorry, it’s such a rarity I felt obliged to point it out.

        • Murray Olsen 1.5.1.4

          Harriet, if you see nuclear devastation as a worthwhile pedagogical tool, you are also very sick. Maybe you and grumpy could ask a therapist for a bulk discount?

        • Puddleglum 1.5.1.5

          Hi Harriet,

          That’s an interesting analogy with post-WWII Japan and the American occupation of it.

          The first difference between the two situations is that Japan was occupied for only seven years – both before and immediately after the occupation Japanese people had full sovereignty.

          The occupation also involved active efforts by the occupying allied force (essentially American) to restructure the society along democratic lines. (see this American university summary of the occupation).

          This restructuring included land reform so that farmers ceased to be tenants, making the emperor a ceremonial position, making the Diet the central political institution, reform of the education system, over-ruling the power of the male head of the household to determine children’s ability to marry and, importantly, ensuring a rapid economic recovery. Some reforms were revoked once sovereignty was regained.

          [As an aside, Dr Suess was impressed by the post-WWII reconstruction and restructuring of Japan with it in part inspiring ‘Horton Hears a Who’ – a paean to the power of individuals’ to be heard.]

          Compare this situation to the strategy that the Israeli governments have pursued during their occupation: still happening after almost fifty years; making the Palestinian economy dependent, controlled by Israel and heavily constrained; working against the development of democratic institutions; ensuring radicalisation by continued employment of force; rapid and extensive development of Israeli settlements in the occupied areas; privileging the security of those same settlers over that of the occupied people, etc..

          I don’t think the Israeli governments since 1967 have been modelling their actions on those of the Allies (U.S.) in Japan after WWII.

          The second difference of relevance is that the use of nuclear weapons – as horrific as it was – was part of a formal inter-state war. Israeli violent military offensives have been against an already occupied people.

          Imagine if the U.S. continued to drop Atomic bombs on Japan during the occupation when an occupying soldier might have been killed – to teach the local population a lesson. That would be close to an equivalent comparison. If the U.S. had acted in that way I’d suggest the occupation would not have turned out the way it did.

      • Weepus beard 1.5.2

        Well now, Grumpy has been shelling out compliments a lot today. First to vto on his mildly shocking but ultimately useless sound bite on slaves and the minimum wage, and now the wily old codger has buttered you up before attempting to coldly dismantle your heartfelt argument. Both of you swallowed it!

        Yes, it’s been a day of shelling and compliments from Grumpy. A bit like in Gaza…

        …without the compliments.

  2. karol 2

    Well stated, Puddleglum.

    Sometime in the last week on Al Jazeera, I saw Ron Prosor, Israel Ambassador to the UN, give an incredible (not credible) speech.

    It’s here on youtube: Published on Jul 27, 2014: UN Security Council Media Stakeout Mr Ron Prosor Israel After UN Decision – UN LIVE WEB TV

    Early on in the speech, he said not to listen to the Hamas propaganda, while delivering a speech that was blatant Israel government propaganda – emotive – trying to put listeners in the position of being victimised by Hamas’s “terror” campaign: a campaign that uses “terror tunnels”, kidnapping, and rockets to deliver terror to kindergartens and homes in Israel.

    As the speech progresses, Prosor kept repeating, “If it’s quiet in Israel, it’ll be quiet in Gaza”. He meant that if Hamas’s campaign of terror, with its terror tunnels and rockets was stopped, Israel would stop attacking Gaza. However, the catch cry could be taken in another way. If it’s “quiet in Israel”, it would mean Gaza had no way of giving voice against against the enslavement and oppression of people in Gaza.

    • Grumpy 2.1

      Any views on FGM as practiced in Gaza? Forced child marriage? Or would you sooner comment on their allies ISIS rapes, murders of women and children. We are heading to the point where the left will need to chose, submit to Islam or side with the West.

      • karol 2.1.1

        Are you saying Israel is fighting for the freedom of women in Gaza? Citations needed.

        • Grumpy 2.1.1.1

          Israel is a secular society with Western values, it is fighting for survival. They are the forefront of the fight between western civilization and a medieval theocracy. The left have to chose what they believe in, those values are shared by Israel, ruthlessly crushed by Islamists such as Hamas.

          • Colonial Viper 2.1.1.1.1

            Israel is NOT a “secular society” fighting for “western values”. Are you nuts?

            Israel is a apartheid security state where if you happen to be of the correct race and religion then yes, you get to live in a reasonably liberal democracy. However, if you are not, you’re screwed on a daily basis. Further more, the 10% of the extreme religious right wing dictate government policy on the destruction of Palestine and the ethnic cleansing of the country.

            How is that fighting for “western values” (unless of course you mean western colonial values).

          • Foreign Waka 2.1.1.1.2

            Grumpy, you are very wrong. Israel is run by Zionists and is very much a religious/military run state. Whether the left or the man on the moon, we all have to decide what IS RIGHT AND WHAT IS WRONG from a human point of view. If we can’t, we are as guilty as the ones bombing children. Its actually quite clear, but the political will is not there and the economic benefit of a war is just too sexy. 2 WW did not teach any lessons. Only this time it really would affect all of the globe.
            wikipedia.org/wiki/Eretz_Israel will give you some insight on the claim to land that Israel is claiming. Do you really belief that all other country leaders will sit on their hands while this is going on?

            • Colonial Viper 2.1.1.1.2.1

              FW, sitting on their hands while their Palestinian brethren are getting smashed appears to be exactly what nominally Muslim countries like Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Lebanon and Jordan are doing.

              • Foreign Waka

                This seem to be the case, indeed. But I wonder whether this will last.

                Saudi Arabia is “friends” with Britain who also gave the Zionists the land that is today Israel. Jordan’s principality is under pressure and threat to find the same faith as Irak or shall I say the formally known Persian kingdom. Egypt is in turmoil as was instigated and the northern most profitable land strip is being eyed by Israel. Lebanon is in constant was for decades and is also only a ‘short while” away for the pickings by Israel – whole and fully.
                Saudi Arabia is the homeland of the Wahhabi faith that is in effect the very faith that embodies radical Islam. This faith in turn is being implemented in a number of countries around the middle east and responsible for so much suffering.
                Any land loss to Israel also means a loss of the religious expansion of the radical Islamic movement. Naturally this concept is being sold as the war on terror and hence the killing of Palestinians is being condoned by so many. The question is for how long will this go on until the people who inhabit the middle east will say enough is enough. One needs to understand that they are a lot more anchored in their religious faith then the west will ever be.

                • Colonial Viper

                  The other dynamic is the politically deadlocked and gradually deteriorating physical and economic situation in the USA. The change there will affect the entire ME.

          • Tom Jackson 2.1.1.1.3

            Israel gradually stopped being a secular society with Western values sometime in the last decade and a half. The Knesset now contains a significant faction of openly racist and fascist parties. This isn’t your old Labor Zionism.

      • mickysavage 2.1.2

        Obviously genocide is an appropriate response to forced child marriage.

        • Grumpy 2.1.2.1

          When the Islamics hide amongst the civilian population, what other answer is there?

          • Stephanie Rodgers 2.1.2.1.1

            Lies.
            http://www.thenation.com/article/180783/five-israeli-talking-points-gaza-debunked

            In fact, only Israeli soldiers have systematically used Palestinians as human shields. Since Israel’s incursion into the West Bank in 2002, it has used Palestinians as human shields by tying young Palestinians onto the hoods of their cars or forcing them to go into a home where a potential militant may be hiding.

            Like Puddleglum says, if you think using civilians as human shields justifies aggression when Hamas (mythically) does it, you must agree it justifies aggression when Israel does it.

            • Grumpy 2.1.2.1.1.1

              Bigger picture Steph. Are you on the side of liberal egalitarian democratic society or a patriarchal theocracy which as a matter of faith abuses women, children and all those of the “wrong favour”.
              I note, as probably you do too, that a large numbers of leftie commentators here, many of them known for their impeccable left wing credentials and insight, refrain from commenting on this issue. It seems that the left is split on this one.

              • Colonial Viper

                As I said, Israel is an apartheid security state. If you are of the right race and religion, then yes, institutional and social privilege ensures that life is pretty good.

          • locus 2.1.2.1.2

            Hamas are not hiding in gaza. It is their country and the people they are amongst are their families. They are not extreme in any way that you suggest. The real extremists are the israelis who believe its ok to murder children and families in their homes schools and hospitals

        • mickysavage 2.1.2.2

          Wow you actually agreed with my proposition. And you think that genocide is appropriate.

          • Grumpy 2.1.2.2.1

            Once upon a time the left stood up for their core beliefs against fascism – Franco’s Spain. They knew the tide of Fascism needed to be stopped but were ahead of their time. Switch now to the tide of Islamism and Israel.

            • mickysavage 2.1.2.2.1.1

              What about fundamentalist christians who also have barbaric views on women. Should we kill them too?

              • greywarbler

                @ mickeysavage 10.02
                Can I ask that you leading commenters spend the extra seconds to give the pseudo and time/number (whichever is the shortest or available) of the person sparking your comment.

                I think that the blog has been going long enough to step up the practices for an even better value to regular members of the community. As there are more informative serious discussions there is need to indicate each source of their argument steps as I have above.

                This would not be used by those indulging themselves in simple slanging interchanges but they aren’t important anyway.

                • mickysavage

                  Sorry GW. Part of the problem with nested comments is you reply to the comment immediately above you and then a hundred comments suddenly appear in the discussion.

            • locus 2.1.2.2.1.2

              If israel really were a participating nation in the civilised world they would have complied with international laws, would comply with UN resolutions would not be controlling palestinians as a prisoners in a cage, and would value every palestinian child’s life as dearly as they do one of their own children. Grumpy, if your twisted world view were only 1% right which thank goodness it isnt, i would choose to be on the side that would never ever justify the slaughter of children whatever the supposed provocation.

            • Shona 2.1.2.2.1.3

              Zionism IS Fascism you moron. There are none so blind as those who will not see. After much research these last 10 years and having had a Christian upbringing , I do not accept or support Israel’s right to exist.

              • Colonial Viper

                I’d say there is an argument for Israel to exist within the borders set in 1947 and as agreed by the UN. Even then however, the Palestinians got an entirely raw deal, and Israeli propaganda at the time “A land without a people and a people without a land (referring to the Jews themselves)” was an utter lie making the indigenous Palestinians a non-people.

                • Murray Olsen

                  There is no argument acceptable to me that Zionist Israel should exist anywhere on the planet. That’s analogous to saying Nazi Germany had a right to exist after WW2. Germany did, but the Nazi bit had to be cleansed. It’s the same with Israel – whatever state ends up there needs to be secular and democratic, with equal rights for all citizens, whatever their ethnic origin. This will happen when Palestinians and reasonable Israelis realise that Zionism is their common enemy. The new state would probably need a new name, and would be socialist. I can’t see a two state solution working in any sense other than basically what we see at the moment – a jailer state and some prison camps, constantly shrinking in size.

          • Pascals bookie 2.1.2.2.2

            Yeah he does. Read his comments.

            I can’t see how, if he isn’t just trolling, he could disagree with Breivik’s actions.

            Breivik believed the West was facing an existential threat from Islamists, that western civilisation could not win against Islamist values in pluralist society and that sharia was coming to Europe. Laughable ideas, but he believed them, and that the ‘left’ were going to allow it to happen, so he did something about it.

            Because “what other answer is there?”

            • Grumpy 2.1.2.2.2.1

              Oh, save us. Is Breivic the new “Godwin”. There are lunatics everywhere, he would have found a great home in ISIS.
              Interestingly, the Scandanavian Nazis all seem to be fighting for the Ukraine Government now.

              • Pascals bookie

                Come on Grumpy. Which side are you on. Breivik believed all the stuff you’ve been saying here. Do you actually believe it, or are you just using the deaths in Gaza to troll lefties on a blog?

              • felix

                New Godwin? Oh, you mean a new excuse to run away from a discussion by demanding that no-one compare your horrible ideas to anyone else’s similar horrible ideas?

                Weird objection from the guy who advocates genocide, starting with the children.

      • Daveosaurus 2.1.3

        So, Grumpy at 2.1, what are your views on genital mutilation in general, and in particular that variation practiced in Israel?

    • swordfish 2.2

      @ karol (at 2)

      “If it’s “quiet in Israel”, it would mean Gaza had no way of giving voice against the enslavement and oppression of people in Gaza.”

      I read a careful, methodical, academic study a few years ago that showed conclusively that whenever there are extended periods of quiet for Israel / lulls in violence, Israel actually extends its occupation at a more rapid pace. Not, of course, surprising to many of us who know about Israel’s long-standing aims and objectives. But important to remember for those in danger of being taken in by the “If only they stopped raining rockets down on Israeli kids they’d have all the peace they could want” nonsense emanating from people like Grumpers.

      Another scholarly study came out shortly after Israel’s previous mass murder in Gaza (early 09) that found Israel was responsible for the overwhelming majority of breakdowns of both formal and informal ceasfires and lulls in violence. More than 80% if I remember rightly.

      Israel prefers, of course, to look for any old pretext it can find in order to launch attacks it’s been pre-planning for months, if not years.

  3. Glenn 3

    Over 1,200 deaths, with injuries to 2,000 children, 1,170 women, and 257 elderly. This is bloody butchery by the Israeli military.

    • Tautoko Viper 3.1

      Shame on the murderous Zionist government. Shame on the US for supporting and supplying weapons to Israel. Shame on our PM for not closing down the Israeli embassy.

  4. After living with Muslims for many years and never having been forced into marriage, wearing veils or stopped from drinking alcohol I have the greatest trouble with Grumpie’s assertion that just because in some Muslim countries different rules apply some of whom we don’t like it is OK to bomb them, their children or steal their properties.

    I remember the stories my mother told me when she made an epic journey through Turkey, Iraq, Iran and Afghanistan with her knitting in one hand and her suitcase in another with just public transport to get around with, on how she was invited into peoples homes for the night, fed wonderful meals and helped to her next destination by people she never had never met before and whom she would never meet again. She was never stoned, kidnapped, spat upon or otherwise abused because she was a lone woman, without a veil, smoking and possibly drinking knowing my mum and basically being an uncouth Western woman traveling all by her lonesome.

    That was of course before we started to bomb their countries and telling porkies about all their bad habits to justify the slaughter, destruction and DU pollution of their countries for oil and other treasure.

    Here are some links you might check up on:

    Who killed the three teens in the WEST BANK (not Gaza)?

    Russia (Oh oops the same one now accused of downing a plane) signs deal with Gaza to start drilling for Gas

    Hamas of course was a Israeli creation. Here is the global research article and here is a Wall street Journal article stating the same albeit in somewhat more careful wording.

    ISIS with all its incredible weaponry is a USA, Kuwait, Saudi creation to be used to split up Iraq into three separate entities and possibly to help split up Iran and Syria too. A nice follow up on the Balkanization of former Yugoslavia.

    Big united countries are after all hard to conquer or manipulate but small tribal areas? Hey, no problem. You just bribe the leaders or bomb the shit out of them.

  5. vto 5

    Well posted puddleglum.

    I fear for the jews when their nation state acts like this – murdering children. It gives excuse for those who wish to act on their bigotries towards jews.

    The jewish nation needs a Nelson Mandela, not a Netanyahu / H1tler.

    • RedLogix 5.1

      Yes. Everyone should study this Puddleglum post as an exercise in reasoning.

      Personally I feel awful for all the ordinary people caught up in this endless, maddening cycle of horror and grief on both sides. And most especially the people in Gaza who have suffered (in the most visceral sense of that word) for generations.

      If thought that by typing out how I felt about this it would make the tiniest difference I would.

      For a long time I have had some sympathy for the difficult situation Israel was born into, and has struggled with ever since. It’s neighbours have never been friends, it’s population and politics fractious and problematic.

      Yet now I see this desperately troubled nation, one that has absorbed a massively disproportionate share of attention (for all the wrong reasons) – bent on a course that cannot have a good outcome. Indeed it can only make a very bad situation worse.

      And morally bankrupt itself beyond all redemption for exactly the reasons Puddleglum has so clearly stated.

      • Colonial Viper 5.1.1

        I think you are being a tad too romantic. The founding of Israel and the ethnic cleansing required to set up the initial Israeli state in 1947-1948 (including civilian massacres by the Haganah etc., the forced displacement of 700,000 Palestinians, and the confiscation of all their lands, homes, factories and businesses) means that sympathy to Israel on moral grounds should be sparse indeed.

        • RedLogix 5.1.1.1

          True enough CV.

          Yet none of that happened in isolation. It has to be seen in the context of two catastrophic World Wars that had been the cause of at least 80 million deaths and monstrous destruction globally.

          It’s too easy for us to judge from our more comfortable perspective half a century later.

          • Colonial Viper 5.1.1.1.1

            The context of WWII and the mass displacement, dispossession and massacre of civilian Jews during that time, and the world knowing the horrors which resulted from all that, makes what subsequently happened in Palestine morally worse, not morally better.

          • Chooky 5.1.1.1.2

            @RedLogix

            Jews for Justice would NOT argue that what happened to Jews in WWII..(and please , please lets not forget the others! eg Gypsies, Communists, those Germans and Poles and others who opposed Hitler , the disabled and handicapped , women who had abortions, Gays…who were exterminated as well as the Jews) …is justification for what the Israelis have done and are doing are doing to the Palestinians…in other words more ‘war crimes’.!

            Jews for Justice gives the History of Palestine and Israel

            http://www.wrmea.org/special-topics/366-special-topics/jews-for-justice/5695-the-complete-text-of-the-origin-of-the-palestine-israel-conflict.html

    • Colonial Viper 5.2

      The jewish nation needs a Nelson Mandela, not a Netanyahu / H1tler.

      Not quite. Israel needs an F.W. de Klerk.

      • Daveosaurus 5.2.1

        Israel had one, once. They murdered him.

        • swordfish 5.2.1.1

          If you’re talking about Rabin, Dave, that’s pure myth.

          The supposedly “dovish” Israeli Labour Party is no better than the Likudnik Right. Rabin has much to answer for (and I’m not only talking about his central involvement in the violent oppression and ethnic cleansing of Palestinians in 1947-48 and through the 50s, 60s and 70s) . The Israeli Labour-led Governments of the 90s (Rabin, Peres, Barak) were actually worse than the Likudnik Right in massively extending and consolidating the occupation of the West Bank, building that whole network of Israeli-Settler-only highways throughout Occupied Palestinian territory. All, of course, happened during the so-called “Peace Process”, which Rabin had always conceived of as a fundamental Arafat surrender to Israeli terms.

  6. Sanctuary 6

    Hamas is itself a product of Israeli terror. The Palestinians are not allowed to effectively organise a civilian government in peace. Every time they try, Israel assassinates it’s leaders and attacks the Palestinians. Hamas is part of the problem insofar as it is the deliberate creation of an Israeli policy designed to keep the Palestinian peoples fractured, leaderless, and radicalised. Israel knows “the Palestinians” can’t control Hamas. Hamas itself is kept in a constant state of disorder and factionalisation. The policy of Israel towards controlling the Palestinians is exactly the same as any racist slave holding state like the Confederacy or Apartheid South Africa has always been – keep the subjugated people ignorant, hopeless, leaderless, and supine and when the despair wells up in disorganised anger crush any revolt against their masters with ruthless and massively disproportionate force.

    People often compare Israel’s attitude to the Palestinians to a slower version of the Nazi genocide against the Jews, but I think a closer comparison is the fearful siege mentality and violent racism of the Confederacy or apartheid South Africa.

    • Colonial Viper 6.1

      Spot on. One of the key goals of this Israeli military campaign is to leave the Palestinians with no political voice or effectiveness. Hence the levelling of major Palestinian government buildings, including the Finance Ministry.

      And it was the prospect of having to negotiate with the new Palestinian unity government (Fatah + Hamas) whose Cabinet was sworn in on Jun 2 which IMO prompted Israel to launch this horrendous campaign against Gaza.

      Israel is not interested in a peaceful settlement with the Palestinians: other one where Palestinians are completely supine and the last 15%-20% of remaining Palestinian lands are handed over to Israel.

  7. greywarbler 7

    The radio has just given the news that President Obama has blamed Hamas for the latest breakdown of whatever was being slapped together as a pause in the blood-letting by the Israelis. How despicable from the United States of America. Are they united in this, all the States? Is there some decency left in pockets in that country.
    Not in the deep monetary pockets though, I am not referring to those.

  8. I guess we should actually be grateful to grumpy for helping illustrate the sheer irrationality of the defences people come up with for these reprisals against civilians by the occupying power in Gaza.

  9. Colonial Viper 9

    The Palestinians are living under armed occupation by a massively well funded and armed colonial state. In the formation of this state, multiple terrorist militia groups numbering in the tens of thousands of armed men took away from Palestinians their land and raze to the ground the towns and villages that they were born in. Multiple massacres of Palestinian civilians by terrorist groups occurred in the time 1947-1948 in order to facilitate ethnic cleansing of the land.

    Palestinian homes and farms were confiscated and given to Jewish settlers from Europe. The colonists are now militarily suppressing the indigenous Palestinians (calling it “self defence”), treating them as second class citizens subject to different laws and segregation, as well as forcing ritual and institutional humiliations upon them.

    However, this all makes more sense if you see that the founders of Israel started with the idea that Palestine should not exist in any form, and that the entire land mass from the Jordan river to the Mediterranean should be 100% Israeli controlled and dominated.

    In other words, what we are seeing play out now in Gaza is entirely consistent with the true history and attitudes of Israel.

  10. Observer (Tokoroa) 10

    Grumpy is correct in his reading of the issues. The Islamists do not demonstrate an interest in Peace. Rather, they are interested in assorted climates of terror. Terror is what they stand for. Bolstered by a Theocratic Fascism. Wherever they are, the war mongering Islamists are corrosive, untrustworthy, disruptive and murderous.

    It is therefore silly of Pud (or anyone else) to deny the Jewish people the right to effective self defence.

    If you have trouble with this, write down on a piece of paper the Arab countries run by Arabs, and list the brutal wars they rage.

    One further point. The big killer of children in the modern world is United States of America; Britain and her residual colonies under the patronage of Queen Elizabeth; Canada and Australia with verbal support from New Zealand. The English speaking nations are the big killers. Their pilots are fed happy drugs while they fly high in the sky bombing women and children without any hesitation whatsoever. Thousands and thousands and thousands of dead little bodies.

    They are the nations too, which set landmines that kill endless numbers of kids. Absolutely no problem to the English Speakers. They don’t even clean up their ballistic mess.

    By contrast, Israel defends itself without the incredible carnage fostered by the USA and Britain.

    • Colonial Viper 10.1

      The Israelis are not engaged in self defence. They are engaged in a brutal colonial suppression of local peoples whose land and homes they have forcibly and militarily taken.

    • Puddleglum 10.2

      Hi Observer (Tokoroa),

      It is therefore silly of Pud (or anyone else) to deny the Jewish people the right to effective self defence.

      Let’s consider, for now, the idea that this current assault is about self-defence.

      The present approach to ‘self-defence’ has been tried repeatedly by Israel and yet we are still at the point where Israel needs to defend itself. This means that this approach to self-defence hasn’t (yet) worked in achieving a long-term, secure situation for Israel. Israel has blockaded Gaza, patrolled its coast, regularly overflown its territory and periodically attacked it from the air and the ground. Yet, still, the will and the capacity to fire rockets remains.

      In other words, the current approach is not “effective self defence” since the threat has continued under that approach.

      And how could it be effective? After all, the degree of threat Israel faces from the rockets is minimal. By that I mean that it is the classic ‘asymmetric’ threat that is extremely difficult – because of its low-tech, low level scale – to completely eliminate. (If the threat came, for example, from a Palestinian air force Israel could just bomb the planes on the ground and destroy the air force.)

      The level of force being used by Israel to eliminate this low level of threat has, if you like, a diminishing rate of return, as it escalates, and that return will never get to the point of entirely eliminating this kind of threat.

      All the current offensive will achieve is the certainty that, at the least, just this level of threat and, hence, ‘insecurity’ for Israel will continue into the future.

      For this reason, I’ve come to the conclusion that this continual use of the same extremely brutal and indiscriminate strategy by successive Israeli governments cannot possibly be aimed at self defence or long-term security. To suggest it is would be to insult the intelligence of Israeli leaders.

      Such a complete level of security – one in which no rockets are ever fired – can only come through good relations with the countries and people of the region. It simply cannot be achieved through military might especially when that might seems designed systematically to destroy good relations with the populations in the areas closest to Israel and effectively under its control.

      Consider Europe. Until the last fifty to sixty years it was one of the most war torn of continents. Yet, today, at least West of the Balkans, formal war no longer occurs. Why? I think the answer is obvious. The degree of integration ensures that few interests are served by war anymore.

      Similarly, Israeli security ultimately depends upon that country’s integration into the region in which it exists. An integration that is economic, social, cultural and political (through formal agreements between sovereign entities). An integration that is comprehensive. Such integration would – as in Europe – ensure that few interests are served by conflict.

      The current strategy does not advance that integration.

    • greywarbler 10.3

      @Observer Tokoroa 11.46
      Just because you live in the country doesn’t mean that you can’t inform yourself of the reality of what is going on. Your rambling discussion taking pot shots at your favoured targets isn’t backed up with definite facts. They may be right but how do you prove that you know what you are talking about.

      And this statement smells to high heaven. (Do Jews believe in heaven?)
      By contrast, Israel defends itself without the incredible carnage fostered by the USA and Britain.

  11. The existence of Israel is both a provocation and a war crime in itself.
    http://redrave.blogspot.co.nz/2014/07/for-socialist-palestine.html

  12. Like shooting fish in a barrel. Nothing justifies this

  13. Red Rosa 13

    http://www.latimes.com/opinion/op-ed/la-oe-soueif-gaza-israel-20140801-story.html

    When opinion pieces like this run in the LAT, it is possible that a seismic shift in world attitudes is under way. This latest Gaza Massacre is getting real attention.

  14. blue leopard 14

    Thanks for the post, Puddleglum – I enjoy your thoughtfulness on a lot of subjects.

    What is going on is a complete war crime. It is unbelievable that it has been allowed to continue this long without seriously firm interjection by many countries.

    I just really don’t think this would be happening if America and Israel didn’t have the symbiotic relationship that they do.

  15. blue leopard 15

    I wonder how the heck we can stop this from occurring?

    There is an Avaaz petition on this for anyone who hasn’t already signed it. It is to apply pressure on companies that involve themselves in the illegal settlement process.

    https://secure.avaaz.org/en/israel_palestine_this_is_how_it_ends_loc/?slideshow

    So far 1, 590, 530 people have signed it.

  16. joe90 16

    The mask slips.

    http://blogs.timesofisrael.com/1-samuel-1518/

    (Both the deleted post and the second are part of user generated content much like Stuff’s awful your views.)

  17. Ad 17

    I don’t see anything wrong with blowing up tunnels that funnel rockets. It’s also morally very helpful to have the cruelty of war scrutinised in detail by television reporters – few are as embedded as the tv reporters in Iraq or Afghanistan. Most wars are morally indefensible. Israel has lost the propaganda war.

    So now put yourself in the shoes of the Israeli Prime Minister or his advisors, even now.

    The region from Libya to Iraq to Sudan is in flames. All around Israel every country has decades ahead in which governments and societies are accelerating into entropic chaos, extremism, minimal and tyrannical states, economic collapse and the dissolution of most civil society. This is the Shell Scenario in which the centre does not hold, etc.

    The religious proxy war in Syria between Saudi and Iranian-backed militants may still collapse into permanent and even broader civil war. Saudi Arabia could weaken enough for the royal family to fracture. The UN will not intervene and will only provide humanitarian aid. The US is conflicted right across the region and cannot decide who on any side is the more extreme, and so fails to propose the same strong intervention it managed to find for Iraq and Afghanistan (objectionable as they both were).

    Would you in that context advise the Israeli PM an otherwise clearly disproportionate military response to ensure the whole of the Hamas military capacity is eradicated? How long do you keep going with the military operation when the whole of the muslim world and its media, and many of the western media, are going to burn your global reputation for years and years? Is this like the Six Day War where they kept pressing into Syria close to Damascus until the final text of the UN resolution had passed? How long do you keep going?

    • Colonial Viper 17.1

      Until the campaign of ethnic cleansing which begun in 1947 is finally completed, and the Hebrew land of Israel spans without interruption in it’s rightful place from the Jordan River right through to the Mediterranean, as the Kingdom of David once stood.

      • Murray Olsen 17.1.1

        Eretz Israel has expanded now, CV. They claim from the Mediterranean to the Euphrates, and well into Egypt. Stopping at the Jordan was that weak liberal Menachim Begin’s idea. God has promised Bibi more. They are mad, aggressive, and think they are untouchable. I hate to think how extreme they’ll be in another 10 years.

        • miravox 17.1.1.1

          “I hate to think how extreme they’ll be in another 10 years.”

          It would make complaining about an islamic caliphate a bit redundant (note to some – to spell it out, this sentence does not in any way shape or form express approval of the idea of an islamic caliphate).

          I guess if the the left wants to support liberal egalitarian democratic values it needs to support liberal egalitarian democratic States, not Israel.

  18. Glenn 18

    “IDF’s Gaza assault is to control Palestinian gas, avert Israeli energy crisis
    Israel’s defence minister has confirmed that military plans to ‘uproot Hamas’ are about dominating Gaza’s gas reserves.”
    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/earth-insight/2014/jul/09/israel-war-gaza-palestine-natural-gas-energy-crisis

    1.4 trillion cubic feet of natural gas discovered in 2000 off the Gaza coast, valued at $4 billion and the Palestinians aren’t able to exploit it.

  19. locus 19

    “I don’t see anything wrong with blowing up tunnels that funnel rockets”

    The tunnels in gaza were dug to break the inhumane blockade of food medicine concrete etc into what is to most peoples minds a large prison camp. The tunnels allow people to have access to the basic staples of life that we in free countries take for granted.

    Yes the tunnels will also be used by fighters as well as civilian palestinians. But the best solution available to israel is not to bombard everywhere and then claim that all the civilian killing is a necessary collateral).

    Israel could open up the borders, help repair the schools and hospitals and homes they have destroyed, then use their massive technical resources to search find and justifiably seal the tunnels

  20. joe90 22

    Another example of the outright lies perpetrated by dishonest RWNJ’s and racists – this image posted on FB late last year of a man abusing two kids is purported to show children as human shields.

    (H/T to the bloke who found the photo on FB dated December 2013).

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    Stuff has more details on what New Zealand First's slush-fund has been funding, with much of the spending directly benefiting the party. Which makes it look a lot like hidden donations, rather than the completely-innocent-giant-pile-of-cash Winston is trying to portray it as. The Electoral Commission is now investigating, but Simon ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • The APEC police state enabling bill
    I've joked before about how hosting international summits effectively turns part of your country into a police state for the duration. Well, New Zealand is hosting APEC in 2021, with events throughout the year in Christchurch, Wellington, and Auckland. And the government has put up a bill to give itself ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Why coastal floods are becoming more frequent as seas rise
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz I saw an article claiming that “king tides” will increase in ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 day ago
  • The cost of a range clearance.
    It has been revealed that firing ranges used by the NZDF while deployed to the Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) in Bamyan Province, Afghanistan, contained unexploded ordnance that caused numerous deaths and injuries after the NZDF withdrew the PRT in April 2013. In 2014 seven children were killed when an unidentified ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 day ago
  • Still denying responsibility
    Stuff's story on NZDF's negligence around its Afghan firing ranges has produced a result, with a commitment from the Prime Minister for an urgent cleanup. But this doesn't mean NZDF is accepting responsibility for the deaths and injuries that have occured - they're still refusing compensation. Which given that the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • A corrupt practice
    Last week RNZ broke the news on NZ First's mysterious "foundation" and its dodgy-looking loans. The arrangement seemed to be designed to evade the transparency requirements of the Electoral Act, by laundering donations. But now Stuff has acquired some of their financial records, and it gone from dodgy to outright ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Democracy “A Bit Bonkers” – Thoughts Inspired By Lizzie Marvelly’s Latest Co...
    Didn't See It Coming: NZ Herald columnist Lizzie Marvelly's latest column merits serious scrutiny because such a clear example of anti-democratic thinking is encountered only rarely on the pages of the daily press. Which is not to say that the elitism which lies at the heart of such social disparagement ...
    2 days ago
  • Colombia: historic memory, massacres and the military
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh Initially it was reported that in an aerial bombardment that took place on August 30th seven children were massacred; the figure then went up to eight and then on November 11th Noticias Uno reported that, according to people from the community in close proximity to the ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    3 days ago
  • On the road to Net Zero, the next step is to update our UN pledge
    A lot has happened since the UN’s report on 1.5ºC was released in October 2018. New Zealand’s Zero Carbon Bill has passed, and enshrines the 1.5ºC goal in law. The UK and France have also legally strengthened their targets to Net Zero 2050. The School Strike For Climate and Extinction ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    3 days ago
  • Corruption as usual
    Next year is an election year, and Labour needs money to fund its campaign. So naturally, they're selling access:Labour is charging wealthy business figures $1500-a-head to lunch with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern at its annual conference later this month. [...] On the weekend beginning November 29th, around 800 delegates will ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Fairer rentals
    Yesterday the government announced its changes to tenancy laws, including an end to no-cause evictions, limits on rent increases, and anonyminity for tenants who defend their rights against bad landlords (sadly necessary because landlords are scum who maintain blacklists of "uppity" tenants). They're all good moves, and have resulted in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Another NZDF coverup
    In 2003 New Zealand sent a Provincial Reconstruction Team to Afghanistan to support America's doomed war there. While there, they conducted regular weapons practice on local firing ranges, littering the landscape with unexploded ammunition. These ranges weren't secure - they're on land used by locals for animal herding - so ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • A loss for the Greens
    Green MP Gareth Hughes has announced he will retire at the election. Its understandable - he's been there ten years, and wants to actually see his children grow up rather than miss it while drowning in the toxic parliamentary sewer. But his departure is also a huge loss for the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • New era for Ngāti Kuri and Auckland Museum
    Words and images by Jacqui Gibson Gone are Auckland Museum’s days of doing science using a museum-centric academic approach, after Māori land rights holders Ngāti Kuri gave the museum an ultimatum.
    Tom Trnski holding a fossilised whale tooth from the Far North.Aussie-born Head of Natural Sciences at Auckland Museum ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    3 days ago
  • Circling vultures: Why MediaWorks TV is really in trouble
    MediaWorks announced in October 2019 that it intended to sell off its struggling television business and cancel or cut back on several popular local programmes, including New Zealand Today, Married at First Sight New Zealand and 7 Days. Its radio and outdoor advertising arms are currently performing well, but MediaWorks’ ...
    Briefing PapersBy Peter Thompson
    4 days ago
  • Scary Opinium Poll
    Westminster voting intention:CON: 44% (+3)LAB: 28% (-1)LDEM: 14% (-1)BREX: 6% (-)via @OpiniumResearch, surveyed this weekChgs. w/ 08 Nov— Britain Elects (@britainelects) 16 November 2019 This, of course, doesn't look good.  Labour have been chucking big, headline grabbing policies left, right and centre ... Well, maybe not right.  Left, left ...
    4 days ago
  • A coward’s ploy.
    Some readers may remember that I mentioned last year that I was applying for NZ citizenship. I filled out the paperwork and had my original citizenship interview in February. Everything went well until they discovered that, because I had spent five months in the US in 2017, I had not ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    4 days ago
  • Left censorship and exclusion against gender-critical women: a Marxist critique
    by Deirdre O’Neill It is becoming quite acceptable for certain sections of the left to declare that people like me – women who are ‘gender critical’ – should not be allowed in leftist or anarchist spaces. Leaving aside the arrogance and implicit authoritarianism of this claim, its lack of critical ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    4 days ago
  • “Uncertainty” can be better solved with a better grasp of life’s inherent complexities…
    There is an article in The Conversation, written by Jeremy P. Shapiro (Adjunct Assistant Professor of Psychological Sciences, Case Western Reserve University), about what he sees as the psychologically-based underpinnings of three main matters that seem to vex people all around the planet. The article is titled “The Thinking ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    5 days ago
  • Citizens vs the Rogue Deep State
    . .   Blogger Martyn Bradbury has won his case against unreasonable search and surveillance against the NZ Police; and subsequent Police attempts to produce evidence in secrecy, in a closed Court. His case highlights a disturbing growing trend in Aotearoa New Zealand for State power to be used against ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • Massey University’s free speech policy double-plus-good
    The Committee of Disobedient Women has intercepted an email from Dr Emma Eejut, Senior Lecturer in Sociology, Massey University to the university’s Vice-Chancellor, Jan Thomas. Dear Jan, Thank you for your courageous move.  I think 10 pages of blether** should tie any of the students game enough to try holding ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • Unacceptable
    That's the only response to the findings of the Ombudsman's investigation into LGOIMA practices at the Christchurch City Council:My investigation identified serious concerns about the Council’s leadership and culture, and its commitment to openness and transparency. In particular, Council staff raised concerns with me about various methods employed by some ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • There is what corruption looks like
    NZ First seems to be nakedly trying to enrich itself from public office:A powerful New Zealand First figure helped establish a forestry company that then pushed for money from two key funding streams controlled by a New Zealand First Minister. An RNZ investigation has found Brian Henry, lawyer for Winston ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Escape from Manus Island
    Behrouz Boochani is an award winning author and journalist. He is also a refugee, who for the past six years has been detained in Australia's offshore gulag on Manus Island, and in Papua New Guinea. But last night, with the cooperation of the WORD Christchurch festival and Amnesty International, he ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • When World’s Collide.
    Different Strokes: If a multicultural immigration policy imposes no obligation on immigrant communities to acknowledge and ultimately embrace their host nation’s most cherished traditions and values, then how is that nation to prevent itself from being reduced to a collection of inward-looking and self-replicating ethnic and cultural enclaves?THE COALITION GOVERNMENT’S ...
    6 days ago
  • Could There Be Method In Massey University’s Madness?
    Protective Zone: Reading the rules and guidelines released by Massey University, it is impossible to avoid the conclusion that its governing body considers the whole concept of free speech a disruptive threat to the orderly imparting of orthodox academic knowledge.IN TRUE ORWELLIAN fashion, Massey University has announced its commitment to ...
    7 days ago
  • Climate Change: We need more trees, not less
    Farmers held a hate-march on Parliament today, complete with MAGA hats, gun-nut signs, and gendered insults. While supposedly about a grab-bag of issues - including, weirdly, mental health - it was clear that the protest was about one thing, and one thing only: climate change. And specifically, forestry "destroying" rural ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The IGIS annual report: Dead letters and secret law
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security released their annual report today, and I've been busy reading through it. In amongst the usual review of what they've been doing all year, there's a few interesting bits. For example, a discussion on "agency retention and disposal of information", which points out that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A referendum on bigotry
    The End of Life Choice Bill passed its third reading last night, 69 - 51. Thanks to a compromise with NZ First - which looks to have been necessary on the final numbers - the commencement of the bill will be subject to a referendum. Given the ugliness of the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Why municipal waste-to-energy incineration is not the answer to NZ’s plastic waste crisis
    Trisia Farrelly, Massey University New Zealand is ranked the third-most-wasteful country in the OECD. New Zealanders produce five times the global daily average of waste per person – and they are getting more wasteful, producing 35% more than a decade ago. These statistics are likely to get worse following China’s ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Political parties and GMOs: we all need to move on
    Recently more than 150 post-graduate students and young scientists presented an open letter to the Green Party via The Spinoff, encouraging them to reconsider their position on genetic modification. Their target is tackling climate change issues.[1] Can any party continue to be dismissive about genetic modification (GM) contributing to ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    1 week ago
  • Class, Identity Politics and Transgender Ideology
    by Deirdre O’Neill Under Thatcher and then Blair and continuing up until our contemporary moment, the working class has seen its culture slowly and progressively destroyed. The change from an industrial society to a service society produced a marked shift in focus from the working class as the backbone of ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Irony
    Since 2013, the Australian government has detained refugees without trial in Pacific gulags, where they are abused, tortured, and driven to suicide. The policy is not just an abuse of human rights and possible crime against humanity; it has also had a corrosive effect on the states Australia uses as ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • An age of protest.
    It seems fair to say that we currently live in a problematic political moment in world history. Democracies are in decline and dictatorships are on the rise. Primordial, sectarian and post-modern divisions have re-emerged, are on the rise or have been accentuated by political evolutions of the moment such as ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Another captured agency
    Last month, Greenpeace head Russel Norman surrendered his speaking slot at an EPA conference to student climate activist Sorcha Carr, who told the EPA exactly what she thought of them. It was a bold move, which confronted both regulators and polluters (or, as the EPA calls them, "stakeholders") with the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • NZ First’s dodgy loans
    The core principle supposedly underlying New Zealand's electoral finance regime is transparency: parties can accept large donations from rich people wanting to buy policy, but only if they tell the public they've been bought. Most parties abide by this, so we know that TOP was wholly-owned by Gareth Morgan, and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day: The choice on End of Life Choice
    Today is a Member's Day, probably the second-to-last one of the year, and its a big one, with the Third Reading of David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill. last Member's Day it was reported back from committee, after MPs voted narrowly to make it subject to a (rules TBA) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • How growth in population and consumption drives planetary change
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz The growth of the human population over the last 70 ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • The disappearing Women …
    by The Council of Disobedient Women In her excellent oral submission to the Abortion reform select committee on 31st October on behalf of Otago University’s Department of Public Health, historian and public health researcher Hera Cook stated: “We would ask that the committee not use the term ‘pregnant persons’ and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • “A Passage to India”: enduring art in changing times
    by Don Franks In 1957, E M Forster wrote, of his greatest work: “The India described in ‘A Passage to India’ no longer exists either politically or socially. Change had begun even at the time the book was published ( 1924) and during the following quarter of a century it ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Contemptuous
    The Referendums Framework Bill was due back from select committee today. But there's no report on it. Instead, the bill has been bounced back to the House under Standing order 29593) because the Committee didn't bother to produce one. They probably tried. But given the membership of the committee (which ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Zero Carbon: It’s not just a good idea, it’s the law
    Two years into New Zealand’s Labour-led government, the long-delayed Zero Carbon Bill became law on 7 November. Passed essentially unanimously, the lengthy public debates and political manoeuvring faded away until the final passage was even anticlimactic: Flipping through the @nzstuff @DomPost I was starting to wonder if I’d dreamt ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: What happens next?
    Now the Zero Carbon Bill is law, what's next? Obviously, the ETS changes currently before select committee are going to be the next battleground. But we're also going to get a good idea of where we're going, and if the progress the Zero Carbon Act promises is good enough, during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate change will fuel bush fires
    Grant Pearce The effects of the current Australian bushfires in New South Wales and Queensland (and also again in California) are devastating and far-reaching. To date, the fires have resulted in several lives being lost and many homes and properties destroyed. Here in New Zealand, the impacts have been only ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Participation rates
    A passing comment in a post the other day about the labour force participation rates of older people prompted me to pull down the fuller data and see what we could see about various participation rates over the decades since the HLFS began in 1986.   As it happens, the ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Reddell
    1 week ago
  • Not So Much “OK Boomer” As “OK Ruling Class”.
    Distract And Divert: The rise of what we have come to call “Identity Politics” represents the ideological manifestation of the ruling class’s objective need to destroy class politics, and of the middle-class’s subjective need to justify their participation in the process.THE RELIEF of the ruling class can only be imagined. ...
    1 week ago
  • Asking for it …
    "I saw a newspaper picture,From the political campaignA woman was kissing a child,Who was obviously in pain.She spills with compassion,As that young child'sFace in her hands she gripsCan you imagine all that greed and avariceComing down on that child's lips?" ...
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand’s Poor Pandemic Preparedness According to the Global Health Security Index
    Dr Matt Boyd, Prof Michael Baker, Prof Nick Wilson The Global Health Security Index which considers pandemic threats has just been published. Unfortunately, NZ scores approximately half marks (54/100), coming in 35th in the world rankings – far behind Australia. This poor result suggests that the NZ Government needs to ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Thank Winston
    The Zero Carbon Act is inadequate, with a weak methane target designed to give farmers a free ride. But it turns out it could have been worse: Climate Change Minister James Shaw was so desperate to get National on board, he wanted to gut that target, and leave it in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Illicit markets and Bali Booze
    The Herald reprints an Australian story on a couple of tragic deaths in Bali from drinking cocktails that had methanol in them.  The story argues that methanol is likely the result of home distillation. But what the young tourists were experiencing was far from a hangover. They’d consumed a toxic cocktail ...
    SciBlogsBy Eric Crampton
    1 week ago
  • This is not what armed police are for
    Last month, the police announced a trial of specialist roaming armed units, which would drive round (poor, brown) areas in armoured SUVs, armed to the teeth. When they announced the trial, they told us it was about having armed police "ready to attend major incidents at any time if needed". ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Spain’s failed electoral gamble
    Spain went to the polls today in the second elections this year, after the Socialists (who had come to power in a confidence vote, then gone to the polls in April) rejected the offer of a coalition with the left-wing PoDemos, and instead decided to gamble n a better outcome ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The astroturf party
    National has finally rolled out its "BlueGreen" astroturf party, fronted by an array of former nats and people who were dumped by the Greens for not being Green enough. Its initial pitch is described by Stuff as "very business-friendly", and its priorities are what you'd expect: conservation, predator-free funding, a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • How to cheat at university
    A couple of days ago I attended (and spoke at) the University of Waikato’s “LearnFest” event. There were lots of talks and sessions on very diverse aspects of teaching, mostly at tertiary level. One was by Myra Williamson from Te Piringa Faculty of Law here at Waikato, on Contract Cheating ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    1 week ago
  • How NZ was put on world maps using a transit of Mercury
    There will be a transit of Mercury – the planet Mercury will pass across the face of the Sun – taking place at sunrise in New Zealand on Tuesday, 12th November. It was by observing such an event 250 years ago that James Cook and his scientist colleagues were able ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago
  • Georgina Beyer: We need to be able to talk without being offended
    Since becoming the world’s first openly transexual mayor and member of parliament, Georgina Beyer has been recognised as a trailblazer for trans rights. Daphna Whitmore talks with her about where she sees the current trans movement We start out talking about legislation the government put on hold that would have ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • The anti-fluoride brigade won’t be erecting billboards about this study
    If FFNZ really put their faith in “Top Medical Journals” they would now be amending their billboards to recognise new research results. Image from FFNZ but updated to agree with the latest research. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Chosen To Rule? What Sort Of Christian Is Chris Luxon?
    National Messiah? Chris Luxon identifies himself as an evangelical Christian. If he is genuine in this self-characterisation, then he will take every opportunity his public office provides to proselytise on behalf of his faith. He will also feel obliged to bear witness against beliefs and practices he believes to be ...
    2 weeks ago
  • War of the worms
    I'm going to make a Reckless Prediction™ that the Tories have 'topped out' in the 'poll of polls' / Britain Elects multipoll tracker at about 38%, and in the next week we will start to see Labour creep up on them.In fact, we might just be seeing the start of ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Marvelly shows us how to be a feminist without feminism
    by The Council of Disobedient Women Lizzie Marvelly: “I may have missed this… has @afterellen gone all terf-y? Or am I reading something incorrectly? “ https://twitter.com/LizzieMarvelly/status/1191840059105742849 After Ellen is a lesbian website that is unashamedly pro-lesbian, as you’d expect. So why is Ms Marvelly so bothered about lesbians having their ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Out of the past – Tories to revive racist laws from the 16th century
    Did you know there once was a time when it was illegal to be a gypsy (aka Romani) in Britain?That was between 1530, when the Egyptians Act was passed, and 1856, when it was repealed.Amongst other things, the act forbade the entry of 'Egyptians' into England, ordered those already there ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 1000 of these now
    Some days I sit and think, “what will I write…?” What do you say when you get to 1000 posts? Maybe you just start where you are, diverge to where this all began, then offer a collection of reader’s favourite posts, and a few of your own? (And throw in ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    2 weeks ago
  • Has Shane Jones Just Saved NZ First?
    Counter-Puncher: The “activists” and “radicals” (his own words) from the Indian community who took such strong exception to Shane Jones’ remarks about Immigration NZ’s treatment of arranged marriages, may end up bitterly regretting their intervention. Jones is not the sort of person who turns the other cheek to his critics.SHANE ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: As predicted
    Yesterday, when National voted for the Zero Carbon Bill, I predicted they'd gut it the moment they regained power, just as they had done to the ETS. And indeed, they have explicitly promised to do exactly that within their first hundred days in office. What would their amendments do? Abandon ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Let this never be forgot
    In the spirit of Remember, remember the fifth of November, let's keep this in mind FOREVER.
    Oh dear. Extraordinary interview on PM with Andrew Bridgen and @EvanHD just now. Bridgen was defending Jacob Rees Mogg’s Grenfell comments. Evan asked him if JRM had meant to say he would have left ...
    2 weeks ago

  • New high tech traps will reduce the need for 1080 poison
    New Zealand First are celebrating the announcement of an investment of $3.5 million into five new trapping devices. These are a range of bait and trap devices, all designed to be left unattended for long periods of time. NZ First conservation spokesperson Jenny Marcroft says that this latest development will ...
    7 hours ago
  • Cowboy clampers will be stymied
    Clayton Mitchell, Spokesperson for Consumer Affairs The ‘wheel clamping’ Bill that will cap clamper fees to $100 passed its third reading in Parliament today. New Zealand First welcomes The Land Transport (Wheel Clamping) Amendment Bill to combat predatory wheel clamping behaviour in what is currently a largely unregulated business. Cowboy clampers are: gouging ...
    1 day ago
  • Mental Health Commission back on track
    Jenny Marcroft, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First welcomes the passage of the Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission Bill through its first reading in Parliament. “Today’s progress takes serious action on the mental health and addiction crisis the country is facing,” says New Zealand First Health Spokesperson Jenny Marcroft. “The re-establishment ...
    1 day ago
  • New Zealand’s key assets are not for sale: national interest test delivered
    Mark Patterson, Spokesperson for Primary Industries Today the Government announced the delivery of the promise to protect New Zealand interests by applying a new National Interest Test to the sales of our most sensitive and high risk assets to overseas buyers. This further strengthening of the Overseas Investment Act will ...
    2 days ago
  • National interest test added to protect New Zealanders’ interests
    The Coalition Government is delivering on its promise to protect New Zealanders’ interests by applying a new national interest test to the sales of our most sensitive and high-risk assets to overseas buyers. Under current Overseas Investment Act (OIA) rules, assets such as ports and airports, telecommunications infrastructure, electricity and ...
    2 days ago
  • Electoral law breach allegations
    Rt Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First Allegations raised this morning by Stuff Limited / Fairfax concern a party matter but I am confident that New Zealand First has operated within electoral laws, now and for the last 27 years. Declarable donations were declared to the Electoral Commission. Our ...
    2 days ago
  • Wayne Brown hits back at critics: Ports of Auckland has to move
    The chairman of the Upper North Island Supply Chain Strategy (UNISCS) working group, Wayne Brown, has hit back at critics of his group’s recommendations to relocate the Ports of Auckland cargo operations to Whangarei’s deepwater port of Northport. The working group's recommendation to close Auckland waterfront to all but cruise ...
    3 days ago
  • Week That Was: Supporting our schools
    We're setting our young people up for success, investing in education around the country.  ...
    3 days ago
  • Kiwis to have their say on End of Life Choice
    Jenny Marcroft MP, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First backs the public to decide on the End of Life Choice Bill via a referendum at the 2020 General Election. The Bill, with New Zealand First’s referendum provision incorporated, passed its final reading in Parliament this evening. New Zealand First Spokesperson for ...
    1 week ago
  • Addressing miscarriages of justice
    Darroch Ball, Spokesperson for Justice New Zealand First is proud that a key Coalition Agreement commitment which will provide for a more transparent and effective criminal justice system has been realised. Legislation to establish the Criminal Cases Review Commission, an independent body focused on identifying and responding to possible miscarriages of ...
    1 week ago
  • Week That Was: Historic action on climate change
    "Today we have made a choice that will leave a legacy... I hope that means that future generations will see that we, in New Zealand, were on the right side of history." - Jacinda Ardern, Third Reading of the Zero Carbon Bill ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Tax-free deployments for Kiwi troops
    Darroch Ball, New Zealand First List MP A Member’s bill has been proposed that would provide income tax exemptions for all New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel while on operational deployment overseas. The Income Tax (Exemption for Salary or Wages of NZDF Members on Active Deployment) Amendment Bill proposed by New Zealand First ...
    2 weeks ago
  • A balanced Zero Carbon Bill passed
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, New Zealand First Leader New Zealand First is proud to have brought common sense to the Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill, which passed its final reading in Parliament today. Party Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters says months of hard work went into negotiating a balanced ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Paramedics’ status to be recognised
    Jenny Marcroft MP, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First has listened to calls to recognise paramedics as registered health professionals under the Health Practitioners’ Competence Assurance Act (the Act). Today, the Coalition Government announced plans for paramedics to be registered as health practitioners under the Act, and the establishment of a ...
    2 weeks ago

  • Milestone of 1800 new Police officers
    The Coalition commitment to add 1800 new Police officers to frontline policing has been achieved with the graduation of 59 constables from the Royal New Zealand Police College today. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters say today’s graduation means 1825 new Police have been deployed all ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • PM appoints business leaders to APEC Business Advisory Council
    Ensuring APEC work gets input from diverse New Zealand business and trade interests is behind three new appointments to the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC), Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says. Rachel Taulelei, Malcolm Johns and Toni Moyes have been appointed to represent New Zealand on the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • PM speech notes for Trans-Tasman Business Circle
    Nau mai, haere mai. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā tatou katoa. Thank you for having me to speak today. To start, I’d like to acknowledge Sharron Lloyd, the General Manager of the Trans–Tasman Business Circle, the partners for this event Westpac’s  David McLean, and Derek McCormack from  AUT, and, of course ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • Otago Regional Council given deadline for freshwater management plan
    A four-month investigation by former Environment Court judge Professor Peter Skelton found that Otago’s freshwater planning system is not fit for purpose to manage the region’s rivers, lakes and aquifers and that the Council has inadequate rules for the taking of water and the discharge of nutrients.   “Existing planning provisions ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • LGNZ Rural and Provincial Sector Speech
      Introduction Thank you for the invitation to speak to you today. This is the first opportunity I’ve had to speak to an LGNZ meeting since the local elections, and I’m delighted to see the fresh faces of newly elected mayors. To returning mayors here today, as well as chief ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • New Zealand to attend G20 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Japan
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters departs New Zealand today to attend the G20 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Nagoya at the invitation of this year’s G20 President, Japan. “This is the first time New Zealand will attend a G20 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting and we are deeply honoured that it is at ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • Ambassador to the European Union announced
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