Palestine

Written By: - Date published: 10:17 am, July 14th, 2014 - 333 comments
Categories: International, war - Tags:

So Palestine is in the news again.

Ever since the end of the second war and the creation of the Israeli state the Middle East has experienced difficulties.  The creation of the state of Israel over part of what was previously the state of Palestine has made peace very unlikely.  An attempt at cohabitation was made but in 1967 the Israelis pushed out its boundary in a display of defiance to the surrounding Arabic nations and since then there has been an incremental grabbing of Palestinian land until now when, apart from the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, Palestine has gone.  The land under Palestinian control today is only 11% of Palestine’s original land.

The main stream media has been fixated in reporting this dispute as a battle between two sovereign nations where each is giving as good as it receives.  The reality is that what is left of the Palestinian state is on its last legs and Israel is systematically undermining and destroying Palestinian hopes for their sovereignty.

John Pilger has documented and recorded the struggle for decades.  His 1977 documentary Palestine is still the issue contains the following passage:

If we are to speak of the great injustice here, nothing has changed … what has changed is that the Palestinians have fought back. Stateless and humiliated for so long, they have risen up against Israel’s huge military regime, although they themselves have no army, no tanks, no American planes and gunships or missiles. Some have committed desperate acts of terror, like suicide bombing. But, for Palestinians, the overriding, routine terror, day after day, has been the ruthless control of almost every aspect of their lives, as if they live in an open prison. This film is about the Palestinians and a group of courageous Israelis united in the oldest human struggle, to be free.

That documentary was released 37 years ago.  Recent events make it clear that his comments are relevant now as they were then.

The body count is brutally one sided.  On the Palestinian side more than 160 Palestinians had been killed including many children.  More than 1,000 injuries had been caused.  To date not one Israeli has lost their life because of these latest battles.

The technology being applied shows the stark difference in resources.  One one side are tanks, missiles, air fighters and drones.  On the other side are home made rockets that are crude and ineffective.

The comparative death rates show how one sided the battle has become.  In 2002 the Palestinian Israeli death ratio was 1:2.5, in 2007 1:25, and a couple of years ago it was 1:68.  Can anyone see a trend?

Clearly the Israeli authorities want to destroy the Hamas organisation.  But it should reflect that people living in terror and fighting for their lives will almost inevitably respond with violence.

Customary International law requires the response of a state nominally acting in self defence to be proportionate to the threat.  Israel is clearly in breach of this.  Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has said that his government would not be deflected by criticism from abroad and he vowed that there would be more air strikes.  He has also refused to rule out a ground offensive.

National’s response to the crisis is unknown.  I guess that Murray McCully has other things to worry about …

333 comments on “Palestine”

  1. “An attempt at cohabitation was made but in 1967 the Israelis pushed out its boundary in a display of defiance to the surrounding Arabic nations …”

    In defiance of what? Egypt closing the Straits of Tiran? Mobilising its army and air force? Massing troops on the border? Your description omits that context.

    There is fault on both sides in this sorry story.

    • Enough is Enough 2.1

      Greg omits a lot in his description. The opening line is a beautiful dismissal of centuries of violent history and “difficulties”.

      “Ever since the end of the second war and the creation of the Israeli state the Middle East has experienced difficulties.”

      Greg who was displaced first? The Hebrew nation or the Palestinians?

      • Zorr 2.1.1

        I posted a comment elsewhere regarding this. In respect of this argument though, it breaks down to this:

        The atrocities of the past are no excuse for the atrocities of the present. At the moment the Israeli state is murdering Palestinian civilians that have been trapped in a security state that would be better described as a gulag. The fact that this provides a breeding ground for new generations of extremists willing to join Hamas should be unsurprising to everyone and, in fact, the Israeli government relies on it to continue their aggression under the cover of “we’re responding in kind”.

        It is too late to try and apportion blame for the past because everyone bears some responsibility for the current state of affairs. However, pointing to the past as an excuse for the current actions of Israel ignores the fact that we can change the future and part of that is actively condemning the excessive aggression and violence of the Israeli state towards the remaining Palestinians. As much as they rely on the narrative of “they’re trying to wipe us out so we have to fight back”, the current situation speaks volumes to which side is trying to wipe out the other… and it seems like the Israeli government won’t stop until the Palestinians are gone.

        They are also the only nuclear power in the Middle East. Funny how that never gets mentioned when Iran is being pressured by the West to not develop its own.

        • Liam Hehir 2.1.1.1

          That’s the problem with proliferation, though. Once a country does get them – they are de facto legitimised as members of the club. It’s like a ratchet-effect (noting the unique case of South Africa).

          • Zorr 2.1.1.1.1

            Agreed Liam. I am fully for nuclear disarmament – but it’s hypocritical to tell others to not join the club when you are unwilling to revoke your own membership 😛

      • mickysavage 2.1.2

        In the context of a typical blog there is not enough space to even begin to give the history any proper analysis.

        I mentioned the second world war because the development of International Law since that time makes behaviour that was not unusual to now be illegal.

        I am sure that a compelling case can be made for one party to be aggrieved.

        But because of the current state of International Law Israel’s behaviour is not only barbaric but also illegal.

        • Gosman 2.1.2.1

          Israel always counches it’s behaviour in terms of reacting to existensial threat . Trying to counter this by imposing onerous sanctions against it will only solidify that view.

          • Morrissey 2.1.2.1.1

            Trying to counter this by imposing onerous sanctions against it will only solidify that view.

            The answer is simple: enforce international law. Israel has been a scofflaw state for more than sixty years, protected at all times by the United States.

            One of these days the U.S. will stop its automatic support for this particular pariah state, just as it eventually was forced to ditch similar protectorates in apartheid South Africa, Saddam Hussein’s Iraq and Suharto’s Indonesia.

            • Gosman 2.1.2.1.1.1

              You misread both the situation in South Africa and Israel if you think that they are similar and that the US could actually influence matters majorly in Israel. The major difference is that the Apartheid state was not sustainable and that the Europeans living in their realised they needed to make and acconodation with the majority. Israel is sustainable and will not make any accomodation that will threaten the existance of the Israeli state no matter what sort of pressure is applied to them.

              • Morrissey

                You obviously have done little or no serious investigation of this topic. Your statement that the US can hardly influence matters in Israel would be funny if I thought you were joking.

                Here’s a little starter for the reading you so clearly need to embark on….
                http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article39071.htm

                • Gosman

                  Ahhh. Good old Chomsky. The intellectual shepherd of the left. You will forgive me if I don’t agree fully with the position he takes on this topic I hope given his ideological bias.

                  • felix

                    Ideological bias, eh? Shouldn’t stop you from pointing out the flaws, surely.

                    Looking forward to that.

                    • Morrissey

                      He clearly has not read a single thing by Chomsky, as evidenced by his absurd claim about “ideological bias”.

                      The only reading poor old Gosman has done about Chomsky is what he has come across on Whaleoil’s site.

                    • felix

                      Yes the nice thing about Chomsky is that everything is so meticulously referenced and cited that anyone genuinely disputing the facts as presented can easily get directly to the point.

                      Gosman wouldn’t know this for obvious reasons.

      • Draco T Bastard 2.1.3

        The Hebrew nation was displaced two thousand years ago by Ancient Rome. They have no claim to Palestine now.

        • Gosman 2.1.3.1

          Any number of countries have been created and/or recreated over the centuries and in the recent past. There may very well be a case to be made for a Kurdish state even though none has EVER existed before. Trying to claim that events 2000 years ago somehow preclude something today become a reality is both ignoring reality and plainly idiotic. The Israel state exists and is recognised by the majority of the rest of the world. End of story.

        • Enough is Enough 2.1.3.2

          At what point in time do you forget about displaced people and claim they have no right to their homeland.

          2000, 1500, 500, 100 years?

          • Gosman 2.1.3.2.1

            The Palestinians aren’t even the people with the greatest number of displaced people or the latest in this long list of people displaced from their homeland that they previously occupied for hundreds of years. The Armenians used to live in large parts of the middle east prior to WWI. Ditto the Greeks in Egypt and Western Anatolia. Georgians were actually the majority in Abkhazia till it brok away in the 1990’s and around half a million had to leave. 6 million Germans used to live in what is now Poland and the Czech Republic but were expelled after WWII. I don’t see too many lefties jumping up and down about these displaced people.

            • Foreign Waka 2.1.3.2.1.1

              web page ifamericansknew.org/history/forget.html

              Maybe something to think about…

            • Murray Olsen 2.1.3.2.1.2

              Maybe lefties don’t jump up and down about things that happened in the past because they can’t be changed and we prefer to concentrate on things that need changing today. I realise that you RWNJs may find this hard to understand, given your obsession with blaming everything on Helen Clarke.

              The fact that a majority of countries recognise Israel is totally irrelevant when it comes to approving or condemning the crimes against humanity and international law committed by the Zionist regime.

          • Draco T Bastard 2.1.3.2.2

            When someone else, who arrived after the original people left, are living there.

            • Gosman 2.1.3.2.2.1

              Eh??? What does that have to do with anything?

              • Draco T Bastard

                The Jews left Palestine, the Arabs moved in. Thought that would have been obvious even to a RWNJ such as yourself.

                Israel is nothing but an invasion of another country – one protected by international law.

                • Enough is Enough

                  “Israel is nothing but an invasion of another country – one protected by international law.”

                  As is Australia, Canada, United States, perhaps even New Zealand depending on your interpretation of how the treaty was breached.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    As is Australia, Canada, United States,

                    All of which happened before international laws against such invasion.

                    perhaps even New Zealand depending on your interpretation of how the treaty was breached.

                    The Treaty was a result of those, although immature, international laws that I keep mentioning. Yes, it was then breached but we seem to be coming to a peaceful co-existence anyway.

                • Gosman

                  That is exactly the same argument the Afrikaners used when they moved north as part if the Great trek. However it is irrelevant anyway. The reality is that the State of Israel would be impossible to unmake. Like it or not it is likely to be with us for a while.

        • Populuxe1 2.1.3.3

          You heading back to Europe any time soon, Draco?

    • mickysavage 2.2

      OK Liam what about the current situation? If we put to one side the historical context, and I am sure there are different views of that, the current situation appears to be that the Israelis are killing civilians and targeting civilian areas in an attempt to eradicate Hamas. Do you think this is right? Isn’t the one sided body count cause for concern?

      • Enough is Enough 2.2.1

        Hmmm, and the missiles being fired and civilian targets within Israel are right?

        The one sided body count has a lot to do with defence systems and military capabilities. It has noting to do with one side being more righteous than the other.

        • greywarbler 2.2.1.1

          Righteous doesn’t come into it at this moment in time. It’s body count and destruction by Israelis’ overwhelming firepower deep and intense and grimly, callously determined. They are willing to pound Palestine and kill off its attempted defenders on spurious grounds.

          Israel is a failed state. They Israelis haven’t learned how to run their country, make diplomatic and trade agreements, and do the iron hand in a velvet glove thing after all these years of occupation. Now acting jointly with the United States, they have created not a Jewish State but an Unstable Middle East State broken into confused warring unhappy unsustainable nations.

          • Enough is Enough 2.2.1.1.1

            I can’t believe anyone is picking sides here based on body count. It is like a score being kept where whoever loses more is the moral winner in the eyes of some.

            Both sides are committing war crimes and you can’t condemn one side without looking at the intentions of the other.

            http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4542765,00.html

            • mickysavage 2.2.1.1.1.1

              Of course body count is relevant. These are human lives. The fact that the number of humans being killed on one side is so large shows how disproportionate the Israeli response is.

              • Enough is Enough

                And you continue to ignore the crimes being committed on the other side of the fence.

                Does that mean if I fire two hundred missiles at your wife and kids, but miss every time, I haven’t committed a crime?

                • mickysavage

                  So “they are naughty too” justified genocide?

                  • Enough is Enough

                    Absolutely not!!!

                    You are missing the whole point of my rant with your one sided post.

                    They are both “naughty”. They are both committing war crimes. And they both deserve condemnation.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      One of the crimes committed by the state of Israel is illegal annexation of neighbouring territory.

                      Apparently it’s ok when they do it, and so far this wondrous US foreign policy has given the world it’s well loved sons, the PLO, Hamas, Al Quaeda and ISIL (speaking of borders). What will it spawn next?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Enough is Enough you are so full of shit on this count that it stinks to high heaven.

                      As if your next door neighbour’s kid shooting out a window of your house with an air gun is now justification for you taking a flame tank on to your neighbours property and burning his family and livestock out alive.

                      And then you calling both events equivalent crimes. Bullshit.

                      Just remember – the hapless unguided rockets that are being fired into Israel is a RESPONSE to the air strikes, drone attacks, artillery fire, commando raids and naval bombardment that Israel has launched upon neighbourhoods of civilians.

                    • Enough is Enough

                      FFS calm down.

                      I am not condoning Israel. For the avoidance of doubt, I condemn their illegal brutal assault on the Gaza strip

                      However it would be hypocritical to call one side out and not also lay into the other.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Calling both sides out as if the atrocities committed by both sides against civilians were anywhere near comparable? Nah, they’re not.

                    • Enough is Enough

                      Riiiight. So Hamas has done no wrong?

                  • Gosman

                    Whoah there. Noone is claiming genocide here. Sure you can justifiably attack Israel for excessive use of force leading to the deaths of civilians but that is a far cry to being genocidal.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  So the thing to do is fire missiles back?

                  • Colonial Viper

                    No, the thing to do is to launch ethnic cleansing on a massive military scale, and clear out the pests once and for all.

                  • Gosman

                    The Israelis haven’t launchede ethnic cleansing on any scale. If they so desired they could clear out the West Bank and Gaza in a matter of months. The fact they haven’t suggests they have no plans in this direction.

                    • Weepu's beard

                      The Israelis have clear plans in their constant expanding of settlements on unused Palestinian land which would have been marked for a future Palestinian state in a fair and forward thinking world. You are not fair and forward thinking, are you?

                    • Foreign Waka

                      OMG – Please read up on historical facts, Israel have committed genocide in Lebanon’s refugee camps and this was very well documented. If I am not mistaken, Mr Netanyahu was a military commander at the time. The international community condemned this.
                      Today’s settlers have a good portion from the north east certainly not Germany or USA.
                      If this expansion is continuing, the state of Lebanon, Syria and Jordan are next given that the land of Asher, Juda, Naphtali are smack in these countries.
                      I wonder what all the Arabs are going to do when the land/water resources are getting tight as they are now. Most wells with drinking water belonging to the Palestinians are being emptied by the Israelis.

                    • Gosman

                      The Israelis did not commit genocide in any reugee camp in Lebanon. The massacres were committed by Lebanese Christian militia. A Israeli military unit was responsible for allowing the massacre to occur but that is very different to a systematic and organised plan to wipe out an entire people.

                    • felix

                      “If they so desired they could clear out the West Bank and Gaza in a matter of months. The fact they haven’t suggests they have no plans in this direction.”

                      Cousre they don’t. Why would anyone ever think the Israelis were trying to wipe Palestine off the map?

                      http://whatreallyhappened.com/IMAGES/mapstellstory/jews_stealing_palestine.png

                    • Gosman

                      Nice bit of biased propaganda there. If it was being entirely accurate that Map shoulkd have shown Israeli taking over the Sinai and Southern Lebabnon and then giving it up voluntarily.

                    • felix

                      Yeah and how come we never hear about all the countries that Israel hasn’t invaded at all?

                      Soooo biased. 🙄

                    • swordfish

                      Poor old Gossy. He’s heard one or two official Israeli soundbytes and is forced to repeat them ad infinitum.

                      I’ll take, as an example, his repeated suggestion on this thread that Israel obviously has no interest in other nations’ territory because after all didn’t it happily give up the Sinai at Camp David after inadvertently occupying it from 1967 ?

                      Sinai

                      Israel finally agrees to give up the Egyptian territory of the Sinai (captured by them during the 1967 Six Day War) after Egypt – much to the shock of the Israelis – comes remarkably close to winning the 1973 War.

                      Here’s a simple outline of the diplomatic record for Gossy to mull over….

                      • In the immediate wake of the 67 War and UN Resolution 242, a Special Mediator (Swedish Diplomat, Gunnar Jarring) is appointed by the UN to try to resolve this conflict.
                      • Jarring starts some shuttle diplomacy, moving back and forwards between the Israelis and the Egyptians, asking what they need in order to solve this conflict. The Egyptians say ‘We want our territory back’. The Israelis say ‘We want Egypt to recognise us in a formal treaty’. Egypt replies ‘We’ll deposit a document in the UN saying we recognise Israel, but we’re not going to have any formal recognition, no treaty’. Israel, in turn, replies ‘We’re not leaving’.
                      • But then, in 1971, Epypt’s new leader Sadat says ‘OK, We will sign a treaty with Israel that recognises Israel if Israel withdraws from the Sinai’. Jarring says ‘OK, now we have some movement on the issue’ and he goes back to the Israelis. He tells them that Sadat has now agreed to their terms and will sign a separate formal treaty with you. And the famous answer from the Israeli Cabinet in February 1971 was ‘No’. They refused to return to the pre-June 1967 borders. At which point Sadat replies, ‘Well in that case, we are going to go to War’. To which Israel, long sceptical of the Arabs ability in War (and with their easy victory in 1967 still very fresh in their memory) simply scoffed.
                      • 1972 – Egypt again makes it clear to the UN that it will go to war with Israel unless it gets its land, illegally occupied by Israel, back. U Thant, the then Sec-General of the UN, formally warns Israel that if they don’t withdraw from these territories in exchange for a Peace Treaty, then you are seriously risking war. Once again, the Israelis scoff, certain that it’s never gonna happen. The Arabs, they believed, had no military option. Israel, by this stage was building its settlements in the north-east Sinai and making it clear that it intended to keep more than one third of the Sinai peninsula for itself.
                      • So, it was really the most publicly-broadcast build-up to a War in history. For two whole years, Egypt issued warning after warning, hoping the Israelis would see sense. And finally in October 1973, Sadat did just that. Except that he didn’t attack Israel itself. He simply moved Egyptian troops from the West bank of the Suez Canal to its East bank (ie to that part of the Sinai Peninsula that Israel was illegally occupying).
                      • Not one Country in the World, including Israel’s closest ally, the US, condemned Egypt for aggression on this. The consensus throughout the world (as revealed in UN General Assembly votes and by leading US politicians like Kissenger) was that Egypt had the right under International Law to recover its sovereign territory, stolen by Israel.
                      • And its clear that Israeli society, not just its politicians or military, were dealt a devastating blow by the Arab attack. In the opening days of the 1973 War, the Israeli military were in absolute disarray (as one of the Country’s most adept propagandists, Abba Eban, fully admitted). The Israeli Government was reportedly in full panic mode. Those first few days of the war are often considered to represent the worst defeat in the history of the Israeli army and it was only slowly that Israel began to match the Egyptian forces. (In the end, Egypt achieved a kind of territorial draw with Israel). The initial shock remained for Israelis for many years and many have talked in memoirs about it being a shattering experience.The Country went from an exaggerated arrogance to a fundamental lack of confidence within a few weeks.
                      • So the balance-sheet at the end o the war was a sobering one for Israel. Its leading military historians accept that the October War had radically changed the whole political and psychological balance of power in the Middle East to Israel’s disadvantage. Some have gone as far as to suggest Israel suffered from a massive post-war trauma. It had also significantly enhanced the prospect of another round of hostilities – with Israel’s tacit “victory” in 1973 at best uncertain.
                      • So under these new conditions, Israel was forced, against its will, to move towards a political settlement against the one Arab power that was clearly able to give it a bloody nose. But equally, importantly, the strength of the Egyptians in the War forced US policymakers to rethink the prevailing attitude in Washington. As a result, the US, really for the first time, began to commit its top diplomatic resources to a search for a political settlement. Or, to put it another way, in order to count, you had to be able to speak the language of force. And that’s just what Egypt had done. The US aim essentially became to neutralise Egypt.

                      That’s what forced Israel to finally make the fundamental concession in 77 that it had withheld for a full decade. What made a diplomatic settlement possible in 1977-1979 but not back in 1971 was the breakthrough, not of Sadat’s journey to Jerusalem (the official Israeli version, where he supposedly suddenly changes his belligerent attitude and finally accepts Israel’s “never-ending peace initiatives” in 1977), but the breakthrough of Egyptian troops in 1973 and its diplomatic aftermath.

                      • However, although formally agreeing to restore Egypt’s sovereignty, Israel haggled until the very end to retain parts of the Sinai. Specifically, it sought to maintain control of the settlements, airfields and oil refineries that it had built over the previous 10 years. All of which led to some intense and often extremely bitter negotiations at Camp David in 1978.
          • Populuxe1 2.2.1.1.2

            Israel is guilty of terrible war crimes, but I don’t think you talking bullshit is going to help.

            Israel is a failed state.

            Um, no it’s not. It is many things, but failed isn’t one of them.

            They Israelis haven’t learned how to run their country, make diplomatic and trade agreements, and do the iron hand in a velvet glove thing after all these years of occupation. Now acting jointly with the United States, they have created not a Jewish State but an Unstable Middle East State broken into confused warring unhappy unsustainable nations.

            Facepalm Israel has peace treaties with Jordan and Egypt. It has trade agreements with many countries and many huge international companies are Israeli owned. They are number 16 on the UN Human Development Index.
            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economy_of_Israel

            They may be guilty as fuck of awful things against some of their neighbours, but they are entirely stable, very prosperous, and highly developed. Come back when you’ve stopped babbling nonsense.

        • Poission 2.2.1.2

          the Israeli defense systems such as air raid sirens have preconditioned inhabitants to expect incoming and protect your young.That is the elephant in the room.

        • Murray Olsen 2.2.1.3

          You worship bullies. What a surprise. It is up to the side that is almost invulnerable and holds all the advantages to show a little understanding and a desire for peace. Instead, Bibi and his mouth breathing allies, some of whom would not be out of place in SS uniforms, do everything to provoke and kill the inhabitants of Gaza.

          The Hamas rockets are a weapon of desperation and were used after the IDF ran rampant through the West Bank, arresting any number of Palestinians. They have not managed to kill one Israeli. In contrast, Israelis who are worthy of nothing but contempt sit above the Gaza strip, cheering as bombs explode. Pre-adolescent children are allowed into secure areas to write hateful slogans on bombs and shells. Others call for the extermination of all Arabs.

          Thankfully, a growing number of Israelis are standing against the bullshit. They are refusing conscription, and participating in activities with Palestinians. Because of them, I have some hope. Of course, they get labelled as self-hating Jews, whereas it is Bibi and his fascist mates that hate all the traditional values of Judaism.

      • Liam Hehir 2.2.2

        Excuse me, you’re the one who introduced historical context, in your post. It’s not my fault that it did so in a way that, on its face, essentially painted the 1967 conflict as a war of aggression by Israel.

        In an ideal world, I agree that we would set aside the history – there are too many lives at stake. Then again, I’m generally in favour of letting go of past grievances in the manner of the Athenians following the overthrow of the Thirty Tyrants. It would be a much better world if we could do that more often.

        The problem is that validating only one side’s historical grievances doesn’t help.

        • Liam Hehir 2.2.2.1

          I’m not actually just trying to score partisan points here – the ongoing situation is a depressing human waste.

          I just think a more neutral way of saying it would be: “but in 1967, Israel’s victory in the Six-Day War concluded its occupation of large swathes of surrounding Arabic nations.”

        • swordfish 2.2.2.2

          The June 1967 War ABSOLUTELY WAS a “war of aggression by Israel”.

          You really don’t know what you’re talking about, Liam.

          Israel launched its offensive at the precise moment that Egypt was entering a very promising peace initiative brokered by Washington. The US made it abundantly clear that they expected the initiative to be successful. A close look at the record of peace diplomacy over the immediate weeks running up to Israel’s June 1967 attack makes it crystal clear that Israel had refused each and every one of the initiatives and offers made by the US and the UN, while Egypt had accepted not just some but all of them.

          Make no mistake: Israel badly wanted that War and they’d spent the previous 5 years doing all they could to provoke it (copiously attested to by everyone from UN observers, US politicians through to Israeli soldiers involved in these operations (spilling the beans years later in memoirs) and right on through to Israeli Defence Minister Moshe Dayan himself (a man known for his candour – much to the embarrassment of Israel’s official apologists and propagandists).

          Apart from wanting to give Nassar a bloody nose (and hence re-establish Israel’s dominance and hegemony in the region), Israeli leaders had long coveted the West Bank, East Jerusalem and (to a lesser extent) Gaza. The overriding objective of Zionism (as it came to be practised in pre-Israeli state Palestine) had always been to militarily carve out an enlarged Greater ( Eretz ) Israel, ethnically-cleansed of as many of its Palestinian inhabitants as possible. Hence, the invasion and (now 47 year) brutal Occupation of the Palestinian Territories represented the fulfilment of the Zionist dream.

          • Liam Hehir 2.2.2.2.1

            I don’t agree with that interpretation. Maybe it means I know nothing, but there you go.

            This is what I believe:

            • Egypt, acting on bad Soviet intelligence regarding Israeli actions in Syria, mobilised its army along the border. Verification of the incorrect intelligence came too late and Nasser didn’t want to face the humiliation of a military climbdown.
            • Egypt expelled UN forces from the Sinai Peninsula.
            • Egypt closed the straits of Tiran.
            • Israel tried to confine matters to the Egyptian front and not involve a wider conflageration involving Syria or Jordan.
            • Israel was very lucky to be able to destroy the Egyptian airforce on the ground. Had it not been able to do so, things might have been very different.
            • Colonial Viper 2.2.2.2.1.1

              inconsequential tactical details. Israel had wanted the war for a long time and used the opportunity to capture and hold the land that they had always wanted for themselves.

              • I’m not sure it is all that inconsequential when you consider that Israel has always believed that it cannot afford to lose on the battlefield a single time without being destroyed.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Israel has always believed that it cannot afford to lose on the battlefield a single time without being destroyed.

                  Israel suffered a major defeat in the field in Lebanon in 2006. And don’t seem to have been destroyed as a result. So maybe the existential insecurity is really just an excuse to use disproportional force against a weak, walled off people.

                • Populuxe1

                  They are only inconsequential in so far as they get in the way of CV’s narrative of perfidious Israel. I have no doubt that the then Israeli government was only too happy to take advantage of the opportunity offered by Nasser, but they didn’t make the first move.

            • Gosman 2.2.2.2.1.2

              What rot Swordfish. The Egyptians had escalated the conflict right through 1966 and 1967 to the point they requested the UN Peacekeepers to leave. You don’t request peacekeepers to leave if you are not planning on having a war. Nasser got the war he was looking for. He just lost it very very badly.

            • swordfish 2.2.2.2.1.3

              Ahhhh, yes, the Official Israeli version of the Six Day War. By all means stick to that and ignore all the copiously-detailed, widely-sourced evidence to the contrary. Much more comforting. Particularly for those on the political Right who see Israel as some sort of valuable ally.

              Let’s just take one of your arguments (above) as an example. Namely: Israel tried to confine matters to the Egyptian front and not involve a wider conflageration involving Syria or Jordan

              I’ll start by pointing out that, at the close of the 1948 War, the Armistice agreement stipulated the creation of demilitarised zones along the common Israeli-Syrian border.

              All of the independent eyewitnesses and observers on the ground in these DMZs in the early-to-mid 60s, made it clear that (to use the words of the UN’s then Chief of Staff in the Middle East, Odd Bull) “The status quo was all the time being altered by Israel in her favour” with whole Arab villages in the DMZs demolished and their inhabitants ethnically-cleansed.

              As then Israeli Defence Minister Moshe Dayan revealed in an interview that caused a massive stir in Israel at the time “I know how at least 80 percent of all the incidents there started…We would send a tractor to plow in the demilitarized area, … if they (the Syrians) did not start shooting, we would inform the tractor to progress farther until the Syrians, in the end, would get nervous and would shoot. And then we would use guns, and later, even the airforce, and that is how it went. We thought we could change the lines of the ceasefire accords by military actions that were less than a war. That is, to seize some territory and hold it until the enemy despairs and gives it to us.”

              These illegal, highly-aggressive and largely successful Israeli Land-grabs are at the heart of the escalation that ultimately led to them launching the June 1967 Six Day War. They encompassed the massive Israeli attack on the Jordanian village of Samu in November 1966, increasingly seen as the turning-point that led to war. These staged provocations to illegally alter the border also directly provoked a serious aerial battle in April 1967 in which Israel shot down a series of Syrian planes. That major engagement, in turn, led numerous leading Israeli officials to call for massive retaliation, with the Israeli Cabinet reportedly deciding in early May that a full Israeli attack on Syria was inevitable. (This at a time when (as the documentary evidence now shows) both Israeli and US Intelligence Agencies as well as leading officials from both Countries were privately reporting that Israel’s security situation was just fine, if not steadily improving, and that Israel would win a quick and easy victory no matter who initiated hostilities).

              The fact is: Israel was desperately seeking a useful pretext that would allow them to attack Syria. Israeli elites had been contemplating an invasion and ultimate annexation of Sinai, the West Bank, East Jerusalem, Gaza and the Golan Heights for many years and meticulously planning for it for at least a decade..

              • swordfish

                My reply (above), incidently, was to Liam. Gossman’s comment hadn’t yet turned up like a bad penny when I started composing it. It’s been a long, tiring day and I don’t know if I can be bothered explaining things to Goss. Maybe tomorrow, if the debate’s still going.

              • Gosman

                Then the Arabs foolishly provided them with their excuse they were looking for.

                • Colonial Viper

                  The Arabs were breathing. That’s about as much of an excuse as the Israelis needed.

                  • felix

                    Note Gosman’s admission re: looking for an excuse.

                    • Gosman

                      No, I stated if the analysis was correct then the Arabs gave the Israelis the excuse they needed. However if you read about the birth of the state of Israel most of the leadership was happy with the UN partition proposal and there was no huge desire to conquer the entire area. Even in 1967 they made a proposal to Jordan to keep them out of the conflict. The King rejected it thus sealing the Palestinian’s fate.

                    • felix

                      Nope, you said the “excuse they were looking for”.

                      Fucking idiot, it’s only about 80 pixels above your lie.

                    • Gosman

                      I predicated it with the word ‘Then’. The point I was making was if the views expressed were correct (which I don’t agree with) THEN the Arabs were stupid enough to provide the Israelis the justification they needed to invade. The point is there are two sides to this conflict and neither side is perticularly clean or innocent. This despite leftists like you trying to paint the Arabs as the poor victims in all this.

                    • felix

                      Your admission is that it’s warmongering either way, moran.

            • Foreign Waka 2.2.2.2.1.4

              Israel wanted the land and with the help of the USA got a good junk. This is not a finished issue by far and by Israels intention it will be going on for as long as the theoretical tribes map is being fully realized.

          • Colonial Viper 2.2.2.2.2

            And for anyone with any remaining doubts how vicious and inhumane the Israeli ruling elite have always been, just look up former PM Ariel Sharon’s involvement as an officer in Unit 101 and also the Sabra and Shatila massacres.

            • Gosman 2.2.2.2.2.1

              Equally I could point you to what happened to captured Israeli soldiers during the Yom Kippur war to highlight the nature of the Arabs to the Jews.

              • Or the murdering and kidnapping of Israeli teenagers this year.

                This tit for tat does nothing for anyone.

                • Gosman

                  Yep. The trouble for the left is that they want a simple bad guy versus oppressed poor good guy situation. As such they over simplify things and focus on all the negatives of the Israelis and largely ignore all the bad from the Arab side. This is quite funny as many leftists criticise US foreign policy for soing something similar.

                  • Enough is Enough

                    Hey I am as left as they come. Don’t bring us all under that generalisation

                    • Gosman

                      I stated many leftists not all. There are many who take a more balanced and reasonable approach to this topic.

                      What I find is that many of the others on the left see the Palestinian-Israel conflict as an extension of the fight against what they perceive as American neo-imperialism. Hence why many argue that Israel is a US client state that does the US bidding and all it would take is for the US to withhold military and economic aid and it would collapse. This is such a misreading of the situation it isn’t even funny.

                    • greywarbler

                      Are you? Don’t you know when enough is enough.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    As such they over simplify things and focus on all the negatives of the Israelis and largely ignore all the bad from the Arab side.

                    No we don’t. We just recognise where the issues began and it wasn’t with the Palestinians but with the Israelis.

                    • Enough is Enough

                      That’s a bit simplistic. The British created this mess.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      The British, The US, NZ – in fact, the entire founding countries of the UN who refused to accept the fact of Palestine. Sure, it was the British who decided that they could take Palestine and give it to the Jews against the wishes of the Palestinians but they actually needed the authority of the UN to even do that.

                      But then, The Zionists had been working on that idea since the middle of the 19th century.

                    • Gosman

                      Rubbish. Have you not heard or read about the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem?

                    • Gosman

                      Is torturing and killing POW’s not a serious war crime in your book?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      According to the USA they were only enemy combatants so it doesn’t count.

                    • Gosman

                      Does this mean you agree with how enemy combatants as opposed to POW’s were treated?

                    • Populuxe1

                      Facepalm
                      One can call out Israel’s war crimes and still note that Hamas is a terrorist organisation. The whole binary view of the world is evidence of a rather crude and unsophisticated mind.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Or the murdering and kidnapping of Israeli teenagers this year.

                  This tit for tat does nothing for anyone.

                  Which should have been handled as a CRIMINAL matter. Not as an excuse for the Israelis to launch collective retribution and military ordinance into Palestinian neighbourhoods.

                  This “tit for tat” will continue to be pointed out in extreme and graphic detail because Israel is the side winning the military fight – but losing the moral one.

                • Molly

                  “Or the murdering and kidnapping of Israeli teenagers this year that gets such widespread international coverage it paves the way for indiscriminate violence.” FIFY.

                  The numbers and some names of Palestinian children are here if you can be bothered to look.

                  And cannot find it at the moment, but recently read that Israeli forces kill on average two Palestinian children a week. But they are not reported in the international news, and we do not know their names or their prowess at soccer…

                  Do they count for you?

              • Colonial Viper

                Equally I could point you to what happened to captured Israeli soldiers during the Yom Kippur war to highlight the nature of the Arabs to the Jews.

                Those were civilian settlements the Israelis massacred, or allowed to be massacred. No equivalency there at all.

  2. The fault lies with the Zionists who claimed the right to occupy someone else’s country on a nod from God.
    Just when the colonial world was de-colonising in Africa and Asia, the Zionists colonised Palestine.
    The Arab states run by Kings and Dictators could never seriously defend Palestine without creating a powerful army that would remove them from power.
    Today, however, a number of revolutions are under way that can change that, and for the first time unite the Palestinian struggle with that of powerful movements for social change in Egypt and Syria and Iraq.
    Watch that space!
    http://redrave.blogspot.co.nz/2014/07/for-socialist-palestine.html

    • Gosman 3.1

      Most Zionists were secularists who were merely looking at resolving a problem where Jews were constatly being discriminated and killed in the countries they were living in. Moving to Palestine was but one option. Another was setting up a state in Africa such as Uganda. And before anyone discusses the ‘evils’ of colonialism remember the ancient Egyptians and people in the Levant did not speak Arabic. This only happened after the Arab conquest and colonisation post 632 C.E.

    • Foreign Waka 3.2

      And all these mentioned states plus Lebanon (also constantly in the news) are claimed to be historical Israel tribe lands.

  3. infused 4

    You may want to have a look what’s actually happening.

    • mickysavage 4.1

      You mean that Palestinian’s are deliberately putting themselves in harm’s way and their murder is somehow justified? They are trying to protect their homes.

      How is the Israeli response proportionate to the threat?

    • karol 4.2

      Where are the people to go? They have been told to evacuate north Gaza. But there is not enough space elsewhere in Gaza to accommodate them all. Israel has a captive population that they are trying to herd into an even smaller space. There are concerns there will be an incursion by Israeli ground forces into the border regions of Gaza.

      • Colonial Viper 4.2.1

        Let’s call it what it is, a programme of ethnic cleansing, removing entire peoples from entire areas under threat and execution of violence.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 4.3

      How does that tell us ‘what’s actually happening’?

      Right Wing politicians on both sides are bent on violence and justified by bigotry, as usual. The pre- and post-1948 maps tell the wider story.

  4. Draco T Bastard 5

    this article from 2012 is worth reading:

    OK, then, you kill the bad guys and try not to kill too many good guys. Nope; there are no good or bad guys in Gaza, just goin’-on-two-million people who’ve been harassed and humiliated and driven clean out of their minds till they’re ready to see their own neighborhood flattened on the off chance they might take a few of you with them.

    OK, then, you win them over.

    Nope. Just plain nope.

    And we in the West need to realise that all this conflict in Palestine is our fault (and, yes, that includes NZ as we were a founding member of the UN). It was us who, through the auspices of the UN, took Palestine and gave it to the Israelis despite doing so being against the UN charter even at that time. The UN charter calls for the inviolable borders of countries and that the world will respond to protect those borders against invasion. Such a response we saw in the 1990s when Iraq invaded Kuwait but, for some strange reason, one we just don’t see as Israel takes ever more of Palestine.

    • Tom Jackson 5.1

      I don’t think that matters any more.

      The only real roadblock to at least a stable peace in the region is the United States, specifically the bought and paid for congress. Most Americans don’t care about Israel that much, and most of them don’t see why their taxes should fund Israel’s wars.

      But until it’s possible for an American politician to campaign on the idea that the US government has been bought and paid for by de facto citizens of a foreign country, it won’t change.

      Defenders of the lobby will just accuse them of dual loyalty accusations, which in truth are false, since most are more loyal to Israel than the US.

      • Draco T Bastard 5.1.1

        I don’t think that matters any more.

        I think it does. I think we in the West need to take responsibility for our actions. And, yes, some in the West need to take more responsibility than others.

        • Tom Jackson 5.1.1.1

          Wow three identical posts. You must really think we ought to take responsibility. 😉

          [System is playing up and sometimes posting comments on a number of occasions. I have deleted the extraneous copies – MS]

          [lprent: Should be back to normal now. I had a caching problem that was causing issues. ]

        • Populuxe1 5.1.1.2

          Draco, I’m pretty sure you haven’t been very complementary about the west taking responsibility for our actions in Kosovo and Bosnia – unless, of course, you are going to try and claim the Austro-Hungarian Empire wasn’t western.
          Iraq has been the west’s fuck up for a very long time. Would you like us to keep “taking responsibility” there a few more times?

  5. Weepu's beard 6

    Reckon Germany has a lot more to answer for on this.

    Would I be correct in assuming Israel would not have been “created” at all if it were not for the holocaust, an event laid squarely at the feet of the German state? Many giant German companies grew from armaments manufacturing during WW2. The modern German state could be said to have had its foundation built upon the industrial war industry of WW2. That same state was responsible for the murder of 6 million Jews.

    So a Jewish state was created and that state has been difficult and murderous ever since because dumping one country right on top of another doesn’t really work.

    I can understand why Germany does not want to get involved in any of this because they have cooked their diplomacy chips by starting two world wars and any action taken against Israel will immediately be seen to be holocaust mk2 but they, and Britain, created this mess so I think they ought to start thinking hard about a solution.

    • Draco T Bastard 6.1

      Would I be correct in assuming Israel would not have been “created” at all if it were not for the holocaust, an event laid squarely at the feet of the German state?

      It wasn’t just Germany that wanted the Jews out of their country.

      • Liam Hehir 6.1.1

        Zionism predated the Shoah.

        That’s not to say that the terrible crimes committed against the Jewish people did not give impetus for their seeking national self-determination.

        • Colonial Viper 6.1.1.1

          So what are they seeking now?

          • Liam Hehir 6.1.1.1.1

            To defend that homeland from enemies they perceive are pledged are destroy them.

            • xtasy 6.1.1.1.1.1

              Defending the “homeland” that they reclaimed by sole chauvinistic and imperial meausres? What about the damned people that lived there for the last 2000 years???

            • Colonial Viper 6.1.1.1.1.2

              To defend that homeland from enemies they perceive are pledged are destroy them.

              More crying bullshit. Firstly its not their homeland. Secondly, militarily taking and then occupying others land and then suppressing the locals by military force is not “defence.”

              Further, the Palestinians have no means whatsoever to destroy Israel. Israel has nuclear warheads and the latest in multi-million dollar weapons platforms. The Palestinians have rocks, and a handful of ad hoc cobbled together 1950’s style rockets.

              • Gosman

                It is their homeland now. Most Is raise have nowhere else to go. Unlike the Arabs.

                • felix

                  Palestinians can go where, exactly?

                  Lemme guess. Anywhere there’s towelheads cos they’re all the same. Or just piss off into the desert, because, um, fuck em. Or the Israeli solution, just piss off and die.

                  No?

                  • Colonial Viper

                    I hear Syria and Libya are both nice this time of year.

                  • Gosman

                    Name me one other country where Hebrew is spoken widely and the majority of the people are Jewish. I can name at least a dozen countries where this is the case for Arabic and Arabs. Even the concept of Palestinian is a modern invention. Palestine as an independent Arab run country has never existed.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      ‘A district of Syria’. Herodotus.

                      ‘Again if, as is fabled, there is a lake (λίμνη) in Palestine, such that if you bind a man or beast and throw it in it floats and does not sink, this would bear out what we have said. They say that this lake is so bitter and salt that no fish live in it and that if you soak clothes in it and shake them it cleans them,’ Aristotle.

                      Those crazy Modernists!

                    • Weepus beard

                      There’s almost no political invention more modern than Israel.

                      Anyway, from a lay person’s point of view, I think the expansion of settlements has been, and will always be the primary problem. Can’t figure out why this has not been addressed by the international community.

                    • Populuxe1

                      Um, no – they don’t all speak the same dialects of Arabic and many don’t speak classical Arabic at all, nor are they all quite the same kind of Muslim. So that wouldn’t work, but I quite agree that Israel exists by fait acompli and any solution is going to have to accept that and work around it.

                    • RedLogix

                      Palestine as an independent Arab run country has never existed.

                      Palestine existed as a province of the Ottoman Empire from around 1516 to 1918 and was populated by various Arabic, Turkish and Druse groups. Certainly it did not have a political life as an independent state – but it did exist as a homeland for these peoples.

                      That’s true for many, many modern nations – their political history may have taken many different shapes and incarnations – but nonetheless the people who have lived and occupied the area regard it as their home.

                    • Gosman

                      As stated Palestine as an independent political entity has never existed. You have also missed the Jews and Christians (Both Arab and non Arab) that liven in Palestine pre 1918. The Jewish presence was not just as a result of the Zionist movement either.

                    • RedLogix

                      No-one ever claimed Palestine was an independent political entity.

                      Neither did Maori tribes who lived in NZ pre-1844 exist as a independent unitary nation in the modern sense – but that does not preclude their rights to live here, nor nullify their legitimate ownership rights.

    • Enough is Enough 6.2

      I would put more blame on the British. Look at the Balfour declaration.

      • Populuxe1 6.2.1

        Igrun and the Stern gang wore them down. Incidentally, I wonder from which example the Palestinians got the idea that acts of terrorism can get you your own state?

    • Foreign Waka 6.3

      It is amazing how history is being forgotten. Antisemitism has a long line in history and apart from the first persecution in Egypt, the Spanish inquisition, the polish deluge in 1648, England had the blood libel in the Middle ages and Britain was the first county in Europe to expel Jewish people in 1290. And how many statesman have met with Hitler to discuss trade terms and conditions?
      Not that any of it is right but as many political and ethical issues today the origins are going often far back. It is always the holocaust that is being mentioned but for many ethnic communities it is today’s reality – ref Palestinians.

  6. Tiger Mountain 7

    Pro Israeli views here are seemingly beyond logic and disgusting on a human level because the Israeli military and their supporters are behaving so close to how the Germans did in WWII it is difficult to see much difference if any. There, it has been said.

    • Colonial Viper 7.1

      During WWII the Nazi military forces had a simple approach to dealing with civilian partisan resistance, whether it was in occupied Serbia, France, Greece or the Ukraine. The specific numbers varied but this was the common formula:

      • For every German soldier wounded, the Nazis would murder 50 local civilians.
      • For every German enlisted man killed, the Nazis would murder 100 local civilians.
      • For every German officer killed, the Nazis would murder 200 local civilians.
  7. Tiger Mountain 8

    The Israeli military machine and its supporters are behaving like the Germans in WWII so closely there is little discernible difference. They obviously want to reduce the little of Palestine that remains to rubble but they are losing previous world sympathy by the day.

    And these butchers quote the Holocaust and Warsaw Ghetto at anyone that dares criticise them?

    • I think that Nazi or Wehrmacht comparisons are basically trolling. There are plenty of other analagies to other countries or militaries which are more apt and which dare not essentially a reductio ad Hitlerum.

      Why choose the one comparison likely to get people’s backs up?

      • Tiger Mountain 8.1.1

        Have supported the Palestinian cause all my adult life and seen the hundreds of UN resolutions and peace declarations gather dust as once residents of the whole of Palestine have been turned into an exiled and now highly endangered group zoned off and divided by their very own version of the Berlin wall and pass laws!

        People that still somehow manage to engineer equivalence between barely armed oppressed and nuclear armed oppressors supported by the US war machine, need the strongest of applicable examples.

        Kia Ora Gaza from NZ joined a flotilla several years back delivering civilian aid to Gaza which was attacked in international waters by Israeli troops. Israeli security forces roam the world knocking off who they desire and pass through NZ from time to time. The least we can do is offer solidarity to the Palestinians imo.

        • Liam Hehir 8.1.1.1

          Good for you, you evidently have the wisdom to cut through the issues other people struggle with to see which side is evil and which is pure.

          That doesn’t validate the Nazi comparison, of course. Especially since the Nazis didn’t construct the Berlin Wall.

          • Te Reo Putake 8.1.1.1.1

            Your last sentence doesn’t make sense. What were you trying to say?

            For me, the comparison is apt. Just as beaten children grow up to beat their own children, Israel has learned nothing useful from the holocaust. Sure, they are limited in how far they can go in terms of genocide, but the removal of all Palestinians from Palestine is clearly the goal, as the maps CV provided earlier shows rather well.

            • Liam Hehir 8.1.1.1.1.1

              I said that I disapproved of the Nazi comparison I think is inflammatory and inaccurate. This is the defence I received:

              “the whole of Palestine have been turned into an exiled and now highly endangered group zoned off and divided by their very own version of the Berlin wall and pass laws!”

              Clarify?

              • Te Reo Putake

                Cheers, Liam. I think you’ve conflated two different things, as TM wasn’t saying that the Berlin wall was from the Nazi era. The imprisoning of the Palestinian people does bear some comparison with the Berlin wall, though the motivations for each are different. I’d say the more apt comparison is the Warsaw ghetto, which was the kettling of a population until another solution could be found.

                • Colonial Viper

                  which was the kettling of a population until another solution could be found.

                  There is only one logical solution.

              • Colonial Viper

                I said that I disapproved of the Nazi comparison I think is inflammatory and inaccurate. This is the defence I received:

                The highest levels of government have decided to use a highly armed and professional military force to wall off, starve, and massacre civilians. It doesn’t matter if you think it’s “inflammatory and inaccurate” because that is what Israel is actually doing.

            • Liam Hehir 8.1.1.1.1.2

              Look, I get that people here think Israelis are evil and expansionist, but even if, arguendo, those traits were granted – that wouldn’t mean the Nazi comparison holds up.

              The signature evil of the Nazis was the Holocaust – being the Final Solution of the Jewish Question. This wasn’t a matter of national borders or Lebensraum. It was a deliberate attempt to eradicate the Jewish population from the contintent of Europe – on the basis of ethnic hatred.

              Whatever criticisms of Israel may be valid – and I agree there are many – there is no rationale for imputing that desire to them. Those Palestinians who live in Israel itself (rather than the occupied territories) enjoy full civil liberties protected by a fiercely independent judiciary – members of which have included Palestinians at the highest levels.

              They serve in the IDF – even as generals, work in the civil service, have full voting rights, are represented in the Knessset and benefit from affirmative action.

              Was that the situation Jews faced in Nazi Germany? The comparison obviously has superficial appeal to some but quickly falls apart.

              • Actually, here you go: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arab_citizens_of_Israel

                What Jewish people enjoy reciprocal rights in neighbouring countries? Actually, what Palestinians enjoy these same rights in neighbouring countries?

                How can it be that Palestinians in Israel enjoy greater civil rights than do Palestinians in Jordan?

                • swordfish

                  Got woken up at 4.30 this morning. All I want to do is get my head on that pillow and have an early night. But I can’t because I feel obliged to at least make some sort of effort to correct the complete and utter crap emanating from you, Gossman and one or two others.

                  But Ohhhh where to start ?

                  Well, let’s begin, shall we, with those remarkably rose tinted specs you’ve got on.

                  “Those Palestinians who live in Israel enjoy full civil liberties protected by a fiercely independent judiciary…have full voting rights, are represented in the Knesset and benefit from affirmative action.”

                  What a fairy-tale existence Palestinians in Israel must lead.

                  Except of course: (and this isn’t even remotely an exhaustive list, I haven’t even begun to mention the decades under martial law, the second-class education system, the way that fiercely independent judiciary is anything but when it involves Arab versus Jewish interests)…

                  • No less than 30 Israeli Laws specifically privilege Jews over Arab and other citizens, including in the vital areas of employment, ownership of and access to land, immigration rights and naturalisation. These laws ensure that Jewish citizens enjoy a highly privileged status in Israel. At the heart of it is the denial of a common Israeli nationality – the linchpin of state-sanctioned discrimination against the Arab population. As one British journalist put it “There are few places in the world where governments construct a web of nationality and residency laws designed for use by one section of the population against another. Apartheid South Africa was one. So is Israel.”
                  • Indications of Arab nationality on ID cards carried by Israelis make it easy for officials to discriminate / Palestinians in Israel have long been targeted by Israeli police and government officials for harsher treatment
                  • Several hundred communities in Israel are open only to Jews.
                  • Only Israelis from the same religious group are allowed to marry inside Israel. Otherwise, they’re forced to wed abroad.
                  • Israeli Universities have escalated a crackdown on Palestinian students right to peaceful protest over recent years, including police harassment and the on-going arrest of student activists
                  • Israeli Governments that regularly (indeed now almost permanently) include Cabinet Ministers from Far Right parties known for their virulently anti-Arab views, including the demand for the expulsion of the Palestinians from both Israel and the Occupied Territories (a demand that is becoming disturbingly mainstream in large parts of Israeli society). They are part of an ever-widening circle of Right-wing Israeli politicians who want an “Arab-free” Knesset.
                  • Indeed, with the help of a highly partisan body called the Central Elections Committee, Zionist politicians have made concerted efforts to disqualify the main Palestinan-Israeli parties.
                  • Provocative Far Right Settler marches through Palestinian towns in Israel, protected by the Police.
                  • Incidently, it’s the Druze and Bedouin who serve in the IDF, not the Palestinians.
                  • On the issue of Arab representation in the Knesset, the Right have found support from Israel’s domestic intelligence service, Shin Bet, which has warned that Palestinian minority’s demands for equal rights constitutes “subversion.”
                  • All of the Arab parties in the Knesset have faced attacks from both the Zionist parties and the Israeli media for what is seen as their “treasonous” behaviour in supporting the human rights of Palestinians in the Occupied Territories.
                  • Apartheid-style discrimination in town-planning, urban policy and city council governance, curtailing Palestinian house construction and development, entire Palestinian neighbourhoods in East Jerusalem with crumbling roads, rubbish uncollected, no sewage system, no new schools or medical clinics – the overwhelming share of council investment going into the Jewish neighbourhoods. Israeli laws written to confiscate property for one purpose: to transfer land and homes from Arabs to Jews.

                  Just skimmed the surface and haven’t done the full horror of the Palestinian-Israeli experience justice. And so to bed…

              • Te Reo Putake

                Some good points, but I’d say you’re arguing the degree of oppression, rather than the nature of it. Maybe you’d be more comfortable using the term apartheid? And Arab Israelis are very much second class citizens, despite the occasional exception. Even now, Israel discriminates against other arab peoples, who are not entitled to the rights extended to citizens of other countries if they, for example, marry an Israeli citizen.

                • Gosman

                  As the Arabs do in their nations against non Muslims and/or Arabs. I agree that does not make it right however it does place the actions in a geographic context. Arabs in Israel have far more rights and protections than Jewish people in most Middle Eastern nations. This is why most Jews fled their homes in the Middle East (if they weren’t expelled) and settled in Israel.

                  • Te Reo Putake

                    Two wrongs don’t make a right, Gozzie.

                    • And yet for some reason only one of these countries gets compared to the Nazi Germany or aparthied South Africa.

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      Yes, and that reason is the aptness of the comparison.

                    • I don’t take your meaning…

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      The others may not be pleasant either, but I’m struggling to think of an arab state that is currently imprisoning and bombing the people whose stolen land their new nation is built on.

                    • Gosman

                      Arabs were not the indigenous people in much of the middle east. Egypt was not Arab before the Arabs invaded around a thousand years ago.

                  • Weepu's beard

                    Israelis in the middle east before 1947? There’s a new one.

                  • Populuxe1

                    Except for that large Jewish community in Iran.
                    And the main reason the Jews left Lebanon was that the Israelis bombed the shit out of it and then invited them to Israel.

                    • swordfish

                      During their 1982 aerial bombardment of Lebanon, Israel’s destruction of Beirut was so frenzied that they actually bombed the hell out of Beirut’s main Synagogue, killing a significant number of Lebanese Jews in the process.

              • Draco T Bastard

                It was a deliberate attempt to eradicate the Jewish Arab population from the contintent of Europe Palestine – on the basis of ethnic hatred.

                Corrected for present Israeli actions.

                • What efforts has Israel made to expel the 1.6 million Arab citizens within the State of Israel?

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    Are you really that blind?

                    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palestinian_refugee
                    http://whatreallyhappened.com/WRHARTICLES/mapstellstory.html

                    Oh, wait, of course you are – willfully blind.

                    • Ummmm…

                      You do realise there is a difference between Palestinian refugees living in areas under military occupation and Palestinian citizens of Israel living in the State of Israel, right?

                      How many Jews did the Nazis appoint to the judiciary? How many decrees did Hitler promulgate requiring State Owned Enterprises appoint Jews to the boardroom?

                  • joe90

                    No doubt they’ll be offered a deal they can’t refuse.

                    //

                    Israel’s foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman, has commissioned a confidential legal opinion that argues it would be legal under international law to transfer Arab-Israeli citizens to a new Palestinian state by shifting the border.

                    The internal foreign ministry document, leaked to the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, makes clear that the controversial proposal, which the rightwing foreign minister has been promoting for some years, would only be in line with international law if executed with the consent of those being transferred, and if it did not leave any of those transferred without any kind of citizenship.

                    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/mar/25/transfer-arab-israeli-citizens-palestinian-state

                • Colonial Viper

                  Well, the Israelis aren’t really eradicating the Palestinians yet, just walling them off in a ghetto, starving them, limiting fuel and water, plus killing off families a few at a time here and there as warnings to the rest of the population. No parallels to the Nazi occupation of Europe there.

          • Populuxe1 8.1.1.1.2

            No, but they did build the walls of the ghettos, which is probably the closest historical analogue I can think of

    • Gosman 8.2

      What nonsense. While there are certainly actions that breech conventions for dealing with compantants and civilians in a war zone they in no way approach anything like what the Nazis did during WWII.

      • deep throat 8.2.1

        well why dont you, gosman tell us all what the official national party line on this issue is.

  8. RedLogix 9

    The point is – regardless of the historic context and it’s many rights and wrongs – Israel is on a strategic course that ultimately has only one foreseeable outcome.

    The mass murder of the entire Gaza population.

    And that will leave them with no more moral legitimacy than the Nazi’s. Not even the Americans could stomach that – and this in turn would be the finish of Israel.

    Now there are very many clever people involved in this who surely understand this plain logic – you never light a fire standing downwind of it. So exactly what the hell is going on – or has it already spun out of control?

    • Colonial Viper 9.1

      entire nations enter periods of collective insanity, RL. At those times, it appears that being smart or educated has nothing to do with it, because it is wisdom, sanity and conscience which is what has gone into hiding.

    • Tom Jackson 9.2

      The mass murder of the entire Gaza population.

      I can’t see that happening. More likely that they will be shunted further south and then gradually nudged out into the Sinai, probably with Egyptian co-operation. From their warped point of view the Israelis dodged a bullet when Morsi was overthrown (and to be honest, they probably had something to do with that).

      The new tactic in the west for dealing with this seems to be to avoid talking about it. Several mainstream sites I go to have seemed to me to have radically cut back their coverage of the Palestine issue – certainly they’ve cut back on the comments they allow. I can’t even see an article about it on the front page the Herald serves me. Perhaps people have grown tired of it.

      I don’t see what can be done. Every Israeli I’ve met in the last 10 years is an insane racist.

    • Wayne 9.3

      I am absolutely certain that Israel has no intention of mass murder of the entire Gaza population. You have let your prejudice against Israel run completely out of control.

      The problem now is that the sensible solutions no longer have appeal to many of the people of both Israel and Palestine.

      So the Israel thinks they can put settlements throughout the West Bank, and Hamas thinks they can fire rockets at Israel without a response (and I mean the rockets fired over the last several months). And both seem to expect no consequence, or if they do they do not think there is any need to modify their behavior.

      There was a glimmer of a chance for a new beginning when Israel first left Gaza, but whatever hope that had been seems to be long gone.

      A ceasefire now seems to be the only sensible way forward. But Israel at least (and perhaps Hamas as well) seems to have rebuffed President Obama’s offer to mediate.

      Surely it must be possible to have a ceasefire on an agreed basis.

      • Draco T Bastard 9.3.1

        And both seem to expect no consequence

        Israel never has had any consequence of their invasion of Palestine. In fact, they’ve been encouraged by the British, Hitler, and then by the UN. All along, all the Palestinians have done is try to defend their homeland against that invasion – and have been pilloried for it.

        The problem now is that the sensible solutions no longer have appeal to many of the people of both Israel and Palestine.

        If anyone had ever been after a sensible solution then Israel would never have come into being.

      • Colonial Viper 9.3.2

        I am absolutely certain that Israel has no intention of mass murder of the entire Gaza population. You have let your prejudice against Israel run completely out of control.

        Tell me Wayne, do you think that Israel will manage a killscore of over 300 Palestinian civilians by the end of next month?

        Would that tally of 300 then be sufficient for you to class it as “mass murder”? OK, admittedly its not mass murder of the “entire Gaza population” but in your eyes, would it still be mass murder nonetheless?

        • Wayne 9.3.2.1

          A fair question.

          The reason why war is so terrible is that people, both combatants and civilians, get killed. It is the only human activity where people are not accountable (in a legal sense) for the deaths of innocents, even though a likely consequence of their actions is that innocents will die.

          It is not as if the death of civilians is literally an accident like say a careless driver might cause. In this instance lethal weapons are being used against Hamas with a known likelihood that civilians might also be killed.

          But war is legal provided it is self defence of an attack against ones own country (or collective self defence. So Israel argues they are justified in attacking Hamas to stop them firing missiles against Israel, (which they have been doing for some months).

          Now I know you know all of this. So the moral question is, can Israel justify their attacks against Gaza knowing that civilians will die, when they can defeat the missiles with the Iron Dome.

          That is why I say a ceasefire is imperative. That Israel should listen to President Obama and not ignore him. The US will be able extract a commitment from Hamas not to fire missiles. The challenge is enforcing the ceasefire. The old solutions will not do.

          • Colonial Viper 9.3.2.1.1

            War crimes perpetrated against civilian populations are not without legal recourse, Wayne. As for Israel’s tired trope of ‘collective self defence’. Firstly Israel are the hostile occupying force, not the other way around. Therefore their actions are not defensive but more closely resemble those of a belligerent colonial occupier against a disempowered and ghettoised indigenous populace. Who surprise surprise, will fight back, even if it is mostly with rocks and burning tyres.

            And even if the rationale of “self defence” was valid, there are these quaint concepts of ‘proportional response’ and ‘reasonable force’. Adhering to them would make it actually look like “self defence” was what was happening, as opposed to ethnic cleansing of entire geographical areas. That Israel will promptly drop more settlements on.

            • greywarbler 9.3.2.1.1.1

              @colonial viper
              Well said.

            • Wayne 9.3.2.1.1.2

              You are of course right in “proportionality” and “reasonable force”, and these were implicit in my reply. But even under these precepts civilians are killed without legal recourse. Israel will argue that it does it can to avoid civilian deaths, but they still occur. If you fire a missile or drop a bomb, and we have all seen the huge explosions then civilian deaths are inevitable.

              The campaign against land mines was precisely because of the disproportionate civilian deaths. Isn’t it time to outlaw aerial warfare where there is a real risk of significant civilian casualties? That by their inherent nature ariel bombs are too indiscriminate.

              And particularly when Israel has the Iron Dome.

              Actually the Israeli special forces attack was far more discriminate.

              • RedLogix

                I am absolutely certain that Israel has no intention of mass murder of the entire Gaza population.

                I’m sure that is true for today. But ultimately you cannot imprison and bomb a population into peaceful co-existence.

                We agree totally a ceasefire is the only way out – but that alone will not resolve the situation of the Gaza population who cannot ever be reconciled to their situation.

                Thus my comment above – while Israel may not be expressing a desire to murder the entire Gaza population – it is the only logical end-game of their current strategy.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Is this all about oil and gas?

                  Pepe Escobar:

                  That Bibi is able to get away with this is all the Arab street – and most of the Global South – needs to know about America’s battleship/aircraft carrier in the Middle East. What most people don’t know about is those 1.4 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, worth at least $4 billion, discovered 14 years ago off the Gaza coast.

                  It’s easy to forget that at the time of Israel’s previous invasion of Gaza – Operation Cast Lead – gas fields in Palestine were outright confiscated by Israel. This “operation” was already an energy war, as Nafeez Ahmed analyzed here.

                  Then there is the Bigger Picture – the 122 trillion cubic feet of gas plus the potential 1.6 billion barrels of oil in the Levant Basin spread over the territorial waters of Israel, Syria, Lebanon, Cyprus and – of course – Gaza. These waters are as incandescently disputed as rocks and shoals in the South China Sea. Needless to say, Tel Aviv wants it all.

                  And to complement the picture, Israel faces an upcoming energy security nightmare, detailed here.

                  http://rt.com/op-edge/172524-bibi-punishing-gaza-ethnic-cleansing/

                  • Gosman

                    Why haven’t they simply taken over the Gaza strip again then? There would be little militarily to stop them.

                    • JKV

                      Good question Gosman. Don’t expect an answer from Viper. In fact I seem to remember Israel withdrawing from Gaza. Funny that.

                    • felix

                      Because there are a lot of people living there who haven’t been murdered yet.

                    • Populuxe1

                      Then they wouldn’t have given Gaza away in the first place – they simply would have occupied it with settlements, probably with US backing. So no, I don’t think so.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Why haven’t they simply taken over the Gaza strip again then? There would be little militarily to stop them.

                      My good man, if you look at what has been happening over the last 50 years, a complete geographical “take over” is what has been in process.

                    • swordfish

                      Sharon’s real goal in pulling the small number of settlers (around 8,000) out of Gaza in 05 was candidly admitted by one of his advisors, Dov Weisglass.

                      As Weisglass happily conceded to the Israeli Press, the objective behind Israel’s “disengagement” from Gaza was to silence the growing pressure from the International community to come to a proper peace agreement with the Palestinians and thus, as Weisglass boasted, to firmly place the “peace process” in “formaldehyde”. Withdrawal from Gaza would not only save the IDF the hassle of having to look after the tiny number of Jewish settlers (for example, ensuring they received more than 50% of Gaza’s water resources, despite comprising a tiny – and, of course, illegal – minority of the territory’s population), but the goodwill generated within the international community would also allow Israel the political space it needed to continue its expansion of the vast array of illegal Jewish settlements on the Occupied West Bank with impunity, a far greater prize than a few measly, expensive-to-run communities in Gaza.

                      And, of course, Israel continues to maintain absolute control over Gaza’s land borders, coastline and airspace and the Israeli army continues to enter Gaza at will. Hence, under International Law, Gaza is still considered to be Occupied by Israel. As Human Rights Watch has pointed out “Whether the Israeli army is inside Gaza or redeployed around its periphery, and restricting entrance and exit, it remains in control”. The withdrawal simply reinforced the occupation of Gaza by making it much more economically and (at least in Israeli eyes) diplomatically viable.

                      So Gaza remains very much an imprisoned enclave, suffering what UN envoys have described as a massive humanitarian crisis created by Israel’s crippling sanctions. And the Israeli military bomb the living hell out of the place on a routine basis, including, of course, the massacre of 1300 Gazans (overwhelmingly civilians and disproportionately children) in 2008.

                      As another of Sharon’s close advisors, Arnon Sofer, smirked at the time of withdrawal in 2005, “….when 2.5 million people live in a closed-off Gaza, it’s going to become a human catastrophe. Those people will become even bigger animals than they are today….”, before going on to say that“we will have to kill and kill and kill. All day, every day.”

                      And here’s Weisglass, once again, on Israel’s Gaza sanction regime, restricting food, medicine, electricity and water, “The idea is to put the Palestinians on a diet, but not to make them die of hunger.”

          • Murray Olsen 9.3.2.1.2

            It’s not a war, Wayne. Saying that it is a war is like claiming that if you had your arms and legs broken and were hung off a rope to be bashed by Mike Tyson, this would be a boxing match. While some might like to watch it, it would be a sadistic atrocity. That’s what we see happening in Gaza now – a sadistic atrocity. Many, if not most, Israelis are busy losing their humanity while they take Palestinian lives. They are becoming so extreme that calls to exterminate Arabs are now commonplace. Carrying on like this, how long can it be before they make expelling everyone from Gaza official policy?

      • North 9.3.3

        Oh what a fetidly devious man you are Wayne with your ‘New Zealand lounge-room’ tones. – top marks for this one –

        “A ceasefire now seems to be the only sensible way forward. But Israel at least (and perhaps Hamas as well) seems to have rebuffed President Obama’s offer to mediate. Surely it must be possible to have a ceasefire on an agreed basis.”

        Obama ‘offers’ ? While he presides over the continuing $US3,000,000,000 – THREE BILLION US DOLLARS MILITARY AID THE US PAYS TO THE ZIONISTS ANNUALLY.

        Which you know all about.

        Please. Give and keep on giving high-tech armaments to Nazi lunatics whose fascist proclivities scream and in the same breath talk ‘sensible’ and ‘mediation’ ?

        ‘Lounge-Room-Wayne’, reflecting The ‘Honest Broker’ Obama dons the korowai of
        ‘Sensible’. Which is actually sympathy for and encouragement of – extended with postured PR spin for cover – until the next time.

        A multi-faced sooth-creep you, Wayne. To be straight-up. You think we don’t see that ?

        .

    • Gosman 9.4

      What nonsense. While there are certainly actions that breech conventions for dealing with combantants and civilians in a war zone they in no way approach anything like what the Nazis did during WWII.

  9. Colonial Viper 10

    Loss of Palestinian land 1946-2010

    • Draco T Bastard 10.1

      It’s the 1946 map that tells the story of where the aggression is truly coming from.

    • Gosman 10.2

      They were on the losing side in two major conflicts involving the Israelis. It isn’t surprising they lost their land.

      • Draco T Bastard 10.2.1

        Ah, the might is right excuse of the psychopath.

        We have international laws regarding the inviolability of state borders and Israel have been breaking them from the beginning. They have never been held accountable for these violations despite the fact that other nations have been.

        • Gosman 10.2.1.1

          Actually we don’t have laws stating borders are inviolable. You just need to see Chinese actions in Tibet and Russian actions in the Caucasus’ and Ukraine to see that.

          • Draco T Bastard 10.2.1.1.1

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Annexation

            Seems fairly clear to me.

          • felix 10.2.1.1.2

            Hey Gosman, I guess we don’t have laws stating that stealing cars is a crime either. You only need to see the actions of car thieves all over NZ to see that.

            🙄

            • Gosman 10.2.1.1.2.1

              Ifyou think borders are inviolable I presume you are against the breakup of nation states or the absorbtion of post colonial left overs like Goa and Hong Kong?

              • felix

                Last time we had this discussion you claimed there was no law against waging war.

                You’re not just a cretin, you’re also a total moran.

              • Draco T Bastard

                Border are inviolable by outside forces. The people within them can choose different borders.

                The Palestinians were never given that choice despite telling every body that they wanted independence and doing so before the UN forced Israel upon them breaking those international laws that they were set up to enforce.

      • Colonial Viper 10.2.2

        They were on the losing side in two major conflicts involving the Israelis. It isn’t surprising they lost their land.

        You mean it isn’t surprising that the Israelis took the land and settled their own people on it. Now they want the rest.

        • Gosman 10.2.2.1

          If they wanted the rest they wouldn’t have given up the Sinai and Gaza and be willing to negotiate with the Arabs. Remember it was official Palestinian policy till just before the Oslo accords were signed that the state of Israel should cease to exist. This seems also to be the policy of some leftists here as well.

          • Colonial Viper 10.2.2.1.1

            Fuck did you just mention the Oslo Accords? Seriously? That was in a previous century mate. The Israelis killed their own Prime Minister in order to kill that dead.

            Remember it was official Palestinian policy till just before the Oslo accords were signed that the state of Israel should cease to exist.

            And now the Israelis are actually doing it for real to the Palestinians, using drone strikes and naval shelling.

      • North 10.2.3

        And three cheers for that aye Gosman ?

  10. A reader of my blog send me a link to a Palestinian poet. Her poem: We Teach Life, Sir, says it all. It broke my heart but then so did the photo of a little girl dying with her guts fallen out of her tummy after being hit by a drone which our Prime Minister is easy with!

    • Te Reo Putake 11.1

      Thanks for the link, travellerev. The poem is very moving. Where did the photo of the girl come from?

  11. xtasy 12

    Why do you not speak it out as it is? The state of Israel, as it is, is an ILLEGAL state, it has no right to exist under international law as it was written in history. The only reason it exists is by brute Zionist force, none else, and that was supported by the Zionist lobby in the US, who hold the US government to account, i.e. blackmails the state there and also globally!

    The idiocy of people here, and the “west” is incredible, do any here actually study what is behind that conflict? I see and read NADA. It is dumbed down dumb comments by dumb and ignorant and apologist commenters, who are misleading others.

    Israel is a construct of Zionism, financed largely by US jewry, who want to maintain it, it is not about self determination of a people. The Settlers set up a system denying the rights of locals, destroying land and book records, and claiming land they say was “owed” to them “due to heritage” and “historical rights”.

    In that sense, ALL Maori should do the same right now, and claim ALL Land back, and ask for Pakeha to be disowned, there is NO difference in the approach.

    Why are Kiwis so cowardly silent on all this?

    [lprent: Warning. xtasy got steadily more incoherent as time went on and eventually earned a 4 week ban for going way off the topic and getting more abusive. Please treat his comments as probably being done under the influence of something.

    Since so many people “fed the troll”, I’ll leave the comments in place. ]

    • Enough is Enough 12.1

      You need to explain yourself a bit better.

      “The state of Israel, as it is, is an ILLEGAL state, it has no right to exist under international law as it was written in history”

      157 countries (including two border neighbours Jordan and Egypt) have official diplomatic relations with Israel. They are recognised by the UN. To call them an illegal state is just dopey. You can be opposed to their brutal and illegal tactics without resorting to lying.

      • Liam Hehir 12.1.1

        Let’s not forget that the State of Israel was created, after all, by a resolution adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations.

        • xtasy 12.1.1.1

          The corrupt UN, dominated by one Security Council, that sets the rules, of major powers, and even they did not fully agree!

        • Draco T Bastard 12.1.1.2

          Against the UN charter and international laws guaranteeing self-determination and inviolable borders.

      • xtasy 12.1.2

        You are as bright as an IDIOT, like so many here, no info, no education, no brain, and yet you try to challenge someone like me, get a damned life.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Israeli-occupied_territories

        Get your damned BRAIN sorted, if you have one!

        • Enough is Enough 12.1.2.1

          Back up the truck. Calm down and stop shouting.

          Israel is not an illegal state. As I said you can be opposed to their illegal actions without resorting to making things up, by claiming they have no legal right to exist..

      • xtasy 12.1.3

        There has NEVER been a full acceptance and acknowledgment of the “State of Israel”:
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Israel

        It has been disputed from the day of conception, and it was only tolerated by UN nations, due to force by US and other Jewish lobbies, it is hardly accepted as a “state’ in the Middle East’, and it has NO historic right to exist, as the first terrorist administrators of Israel did all to deny Arabs their rights, and wiped their historic records off the face.

        That is called COLONIALISM and IMPERIALISM, in short. get a damned life, thanks!

        From Wikipedia:

        “In its Basic Laws, Israel defines itself as a Jewish and Democratic State; it is the world’s only Jewish-majority state.[8]”

        “On 29 November 1947, the United Nations General Assembly recommended the adoption and implementation of the partition plan of Mandatory Palestine. On 14 May 1948, David Ben-Gurion, the Executive Head of the World Zionist Organization[9] and president of the Jewish Agency for Palestine, declared “the establishment of a Jewish state in Eretz Israel, to be known as the State of Israel,” a state independent upon the termination of the British Mandate for Palestine, 15 May 1948.[10][11][12] Neighboring Arab armies invaded Palestine on the next day and fought the Israeli forces.”

        • Liam Hehir 12.1.3.1

          There’s no need to shout.

        • Gosman 12.1.3.2

          It has as much right to exist as any other State in the World. Trying to claim it has no right to exist is like trying to claim that North or South Korea have no right to exist.

          • xtasy 12.1.3.2.1

            Koreas have a history and admin record of having been populated and governed by their own people for thousands of years, ISRAEL, or rather PALESTINE, may prove this for the ARABS living there, not for the JEWS, so what is your damned point???

            • Gosman 12.1.3.2.1.1

              North Korea and South Korea didn’t have this history Korea as a whole did but not as two separate countries. As for the Arabs in Palestine, do you know who ran Palestine prior to WWI and had done so for hundreds of years? It wasn’t the Arabs. Have you not seen Laurence of Arabia?

              • Paul

                The Ottoman Empire

              • Draco T Bastard

                As for the Arabs in Palestine, do you know who ran Palestine prior to WWI and had done so for hundreds of years?

                Yeah, I do – it was the Arabs.

                • Gosman

                  Not really. The Israeli government is not interested in taking over these lands anyway even if some Israelis want to. That is why they gave up the Sinai.

              • deep throat

                thats just a movie you twerp.
                i.e. not real.
                like hollywood dude.
                so what is the National party plank on Israel gosman or are you here just to make trouble as per usual.

                • Gosman

                  A movie was made about it it us true however it was based on historical facts. There was an Arab revolt against the Turk run Ottoman Empire.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Those arabs were then given lots of money by the British and the Americans, who then used it to fund 9/11 and ISIS!

                    Great movie.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    And one of those reasons the Arabs revolted against the Ottoman Empire was that the British promised self governance to Palestine. A promise that they promptly reneged upon.

              • Murray Olsen

                The majority of the people living in Palestine were Arabs. It was administered by Turks, but was not settled by them. I don’t know what sort of point you are trying to make with your question.

                • Gosman

                  The point I am making is that Palestine has never been a separate independent country and was never run by the local Arab population. It has always been part of a wider geographic entity or empire.

                  • Murray Olsen

                    And I use a nail clipper to cut my toenails. That’s about as relevant. The speed limit in my street is 40 km/h. So bloody what? The Rolls Royce Merlin engine had a 1,650 cubic inch swept capacity.

                    There, I can be irrelevant too.

                    • Populuxe1

                      It is relevant if you are going to bring historical geopolitics to justify a position, you dolt. Grow up.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      It is relevant if you are going to bring historical geopolitics to justify a position, you dolt.

                      Israel has never existed as a geo-political entity whereas Palestine has.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    There’s this thing, guaranteed by international law, called self-determination.

                    Want to know something else? The US was never an independent nation – until it decided to become so.

                    Basically, what you’re denying is a peoples right to the land that they’ve occupied for centuries (millennia in many cases) and the right for them to decide for themselves. And all so another people can come in and take that land.

                    • Populuxe1

                      When did Palestine exist as a geopolitical entity? Under the Romans? As part of the Ottoman Empire? As BRITISH Mandate Palestine? Israel’s claim lapsed millennia ago and Palestine’s never existed in the first place.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Well, the map from 43CE shows Palestine existing then. Sure, it was region within the Roman Empire but it did have it’s own governor which would make it a geopolitical entity. One that has been there ever since despite changing hands every now and then. And, yes, even when is was As BRITISH Mandate Palestine it was still it’s own political entity.

                      Or are you going to tell the denizens of Otago/Northland/Auckland etc that they’re not a political entity and should just do what Wellington tells them?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Arguments about Palestine being an ‘independent geopolitical entity’?

                      Simply stopping naval shelling and aerial bombardment of Palestinians and ceasing blockading every aspect of their daily economic survival would be a start.

      • xtasy 12.1.4

        What “diplomatic relations” are you talking about, many do NOT accept Israel, but simply see a “need’ to administratively deal with people from that “state”, for admin purposes, none else. It does not mean states fully and truly respect and accept Israel!

        • Enough is Enough 12.1.4.1

          Here’s an idea for you. Read the link you sent at 12.1.3. You know the one that you used to support your argument/lie that Israel is an illegal state.

          Scroll down and have a little read about their foreign relations.

          And as you are a fan of Wikipedia go and read this link. And then come back and shout at us again about the state being illegal.

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foreign_relations_of_Israel

        • Gosman 12.1.4.2

          Israel is far more part of the international system than a number of other nations e.g. Taiwan. Just because YOU don’t like them doesn’t make them illegitimate.

          • xtasy 12.1.4.2.1

            Self determination of peoples, where is that right???

            • Gosman 12.1.4.2.1.1

              What right are you meaning?

              • xtasy

                The right of the people ordinarily and rightfully living and resident in geographic areas, Mr Gooseman

                • Enough is Enough

                  You are flipping all over the show chief.

                  What has that got to do with whether Israel is recognised as a nation state atinternational law.

                • Gosman

                  Not all people have a right to self determination. To argue they do would lead to the break up of a large numbers of the world’s nation states.

                  • xtasy

                    The right exists, so it should be Gooseman!

                    [lprent: Godwin warning. Please don’t, especially when it is pointless.

                    In fact looking at your comments, you’re pretty incoherent, largely off the topic, and appear to be trying to start a flame war.

                    Banned 4 weeks. ]

                    • blue leopard

                      lprent,

                      I am prepared to risk being banned myself in order to state that Xtasy’s comments may have been passionate but are certainly not incoherent. I may not agree with everything Xtasy put forward yet I note Xtasy supplied more links to justify their points than anyone else arguing with them here.

                      Xtasy is well informed on the NZ welfare system amongst other things and speaks out strongly for those most vulnerable in this country and I think it is a travesty to lose Xtasy’s voice for this amount of time over the election season.

      • xtasy 12.1.5

        Enough and Enough, state to me and others, HOW many states have fully recognised the existence of the state of Israel, thanks!

        • Enough is Enough 12.1.5.1

          Africa:
          Algeria; Chad (1960–1972); Comoros; Djibouti; Guinea (1959–1967); Libya; Mali (1960–1973); Morocco (1994–2000); Mauritania[19] (2000–2009); Niger (1960–1973, 1996–2002); Somalia; Sudan; and Tunisia[1] (1996–2000), all of which have a Muslim majority.(Algeria,[20] Libya,[21] Somalia[22][23][24] and Sudan[25] do not recognise Israel.)Americas:
          Bolivia[26] (1950–2009); Cuba,[25][27] (1950–1973); Nicaragua[28] (1948–1982, 1992–2010) (relations currently suspended, not severed[29]); and Venezuela[30] (1950–2009).East Asia:
          North Korea.[31] (Does not recognise Israel as a state.)[32]Middle East:
          Bahrain (1996–2000)[citation needed]; Iran (1948–1951, 1953–1979); Iraq; Kuwait; Lebanon; Oman (1996–2000); Qatar[19] (1996–2009); Saudi Arabia; Syria; United Arab Emirates; and Yemen.(Iran,[33] Iraq,[34] Kuwait,[25] Lebanon,[25] Saudi Arabia,[25] Syria,[25][35] United Arab Emirates,[36] and Yemen[25] do not recognise Israel.)South and Central Asia:
          Afghanistan; Bangladesh; Bhutan (which has diplomatic relations with only 25 countries[37]); and Pakistan.(Afghanistan,[38] Bangladesh,[39] and Pakistan[25] do not recognise Israel as a state.)Southeast Asia:
          Brunei; Malaysia;[25] and Indonesia,[25][39][40](None of these countries recognise Israel.)

          • Enough is Enough 12.1.5.1.1

            Edit didn’t work, rather than set out a long list of countries that recognise Israel, I have set out those who have a bit of trouble recognising them

          • xtasy 12.1.5.1.2

            Flawed BS, contradicting much of what you claimed!

            • Enough is Enough 12.1.5.1.2.1

              What part does it contradict. I answered your question.

              I have claimed Israel is a nation state recognised by International Law. How does that list of dysfunctional nations contradict my claim?

  12. xtasy 13

    Those here criticising Palestine and Palestinians are mostly biased racists, I dare to allege, either having own Jewish ancestry, or feeling aligned to it for wathever reasons, and otherwise they may be apologists, of a “liberal” mindset. They all fail to acknowledge, or intentionally refuse to acknowledge the damned truth about what really went on in history, and you find more info here:

    http://jafi.org/JewishAgency/English/Jewish+Education/Compelling+Content/Jewish+History/Service/Early+Operations+of+Israeli+Intelligence.htm

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haganah

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mossad

    The truth is that Jewish Nationalists conquered the now Israel state territory, for their own imperial purposes, and they broke all rules and laws there were, justifying it with their questionable means. There were Haganah and oterh members, who killed innocent people for their own ends, and who supported and facilitated the take over of Palestine by new well financed circles.

    To consider this “legitimate”, you have to be either an IDIOT, a traitor or collaborator, and that is where Gosman fits in well, I suppose.

    • Gosman 13.1

      What bollocks. That is like someone claiming anyone who dares criticise Israel is an antisemite or at least anti-Jewish.

    • Liam Hehir 13.2

      Yes I have (some) Jewish ancestry. What are the implications of that?

      • xtasy 13.2.1

        I am by confession a Christian, others are Muslim, others are Hindu, others are Buddhists, others are non cofessional, some are Jewish, NONE need a state territory to justify their “faith”, I do not, so do others not! So what is the “special need’ for Jews to have a “territory” to claim???

        It is not a matter of faith, race or anything else, or you may as well justify Hitler and his “need for ethnic space”!

        • Liam Hehir 13.2.1.1

          So am I. I am a Roman Catholic.

          But I do some Jewish ancestry as many people do – remembering that Jewishness is a nationality as much as Judaism is a religion.

          Why does that invalidate my opinion that, in the same way that the Turkish, Mongolian, French and Romanian nations are entitled to their own state, so too is the Jewish nation?

          • xtasy 13.2.1.1.1

            You are a divisive subversive element, a saboteur, I suggest, go and get fucked, doubly!!!

            [lprent: See your ban. ]

          • Te Reo Putake 13.2.1.1.2

            Your four examples are ethnicities. Israeli is not an ethnicity.

            • Liam Hehir 13.2.1.1.2.1

              It is, however, a Jewish state.

              • Te Reo Putake

                So what?

                • So the essence of Zionism is the idea of self-determination for the Jewish people in the form of a nation-state. That is the raison d’être for the extistence of the State of Israel – which is named for the descendents of Jacob, traditionally considered to be the father of the Jewish people.

                  So no, Israel isn’t called “Jewland” but it is no less an ethno-state than
                  Turkey, Mongolia or France are.

              • xtasy

                Yes, no wonder that the Israeli government wants to make it a “condition”to be Jewish to be a true and full member of Israel, as a citizen, and that they want Palestinian Arabs to forego their own citizenship or ethnic background, and become Israelis, or rather Israelised “Arabs”, as they do NOT want any ARABS in their territory, same as the Nazis did not want NON Arians in Germany. So spot the difference, perhaps?

          • Draco T Bastard 13.2.1.1.3

            The Jewish nation hasn’t had any land associated with it for 2000 years. The land that they’ve taken belongs to another people.

            And it is that which precludes them from having their own state. The only way that they could have their own state is if a people were willing to give them some of their land – and no one seems willing.

    • Liam Hehir 13.3

      Actually xtasy, did you know that our Prime Minister is Jewish, his mother having been an Austrian refugee. Do you think that disqualifies him from having a hand in setting New Zealand’s Israel policy?

      • xtasy 13.3.1

        I do honestly not care a damned shit whether my PM is Jewish, Muslim, Christian, Buddhist, Hindu, and Atheist or whatever, I expect him and his government to be HONEST, fair and reasonable, and also advance the “nation” but he does not, so do not waste my time with side tracking me, thanks.

        • Liam Hehir 13.3.1.1

          I’m sorry, but you are the person who brought other people’s race into it.

          • xtasy 13.3.1.1.1

            Hah, “race”, when did I bring RACE into it, it may rather have been you or your like minded supporters, to do that. I never did that, bringing Israel into discussion was the head topic and so what, that is NOT about race.

            It is about “race’ what the Israeli government is doing, so get to them and address it with them dear friend, you are losing touch with reality!

            • Liam Hehir 13.3.1.1.1.1

              “Those here criticising Palestine … I dare to allege, either having own Jewish ancestry …”

              • xtasy

                Palestine is a territory with history and traditional habitants, want to ignore it, may as well ignore the holocaust also.

            • Enough is Enough 13.3.1.1.1.2

              “Hah, “race”, when did I bring RACE into it”

              Comment 13 me thinks

              “Those here criticising Palestine and Palestinians are mostly biased racists, I dare to allege, either having own Jewish ancestry, or feeling aligned to it for wathever reasons, and otherwise they may be apologists, of a “liberal” mindset”

      • Te Reo Putake 13.3.2

        Key’s not Jewish in any practical sense. Apparently if your mum is Jewish, you’re claimed by that religion, but he doesn’t give it a second thought. Pretty much his attitude to NZ, as well, come to think of it.

        • Liam Hehir 13.3.2.1

          Do you think he is a rootless cosmopolitan?

          • Morrissey 13.3.2.1.1

            Somebody’s trying to be clever. Careful, Te Reo, this bloke will label you as an anti-semite any time now.

            • Murray Olsen 13.3.2.1.1.1

              Isn’t he just. Rootless cosmopolitan? How original.

              These days an anti-semite is anyone that the Zionists don’t like. It’s lost all meaning.

          • Te Reo Putake 13.3.2.1.2

            No. I think he’s rooted. Just not in a religious sense.

            • Liam Hehir 13.3.2.1.2.1

              Well Jewishness isn’t (only) a religion. The age-old question of “Who is a Jew” turns on much more than religious observance. It’s the culture, as much as the religion, that claims him.

              • Te Reo Putake

                But he doesn’t claim it, Liam. He’s not Jewish just because his mum is any more than I’m Christian coz my mum was. We have free will round these parts.

                • Populuxe1

                  In the eyes of Judaism, though, he is – it passes through the maternal line

        • bad12 13.3.2.2

          Who do you think controls the US bankster cartel that Slippery was up to His eyeballs in in His previous life…

    • Enough is Enough 13.4

      More explanation required for us idiots sorry. Who would such a person be a traitor against?

      • xtasy 13.4.1

        The biggest “Traitors” in this country are the better off Middle Class members, who vote a traitor called John Key, and sell the future of their own country, of their children, and who do not give a crap about the less fortunate, and who vote National. Feel damned ASHAMED for that, you traitors, I have NO time for you!

        • Enough is Enough 13.4.1.1

          Are you drinking.

          Your comment was “To consider this “legitimate”, you have to be either an IDIOT, a traitor or collaborator, and that is where Gosman fits in well, I suppose.”

          How on earth does that marry up with people who vote for John Key being traitors.

          And more to the point, why would you think I vote for John Key.

          • xtasy 13.4.1.1.1

            It is easy to vote John (Whiskey) Key and others, and claim all innocence, but in fact, when you sell your country, you betray the people living in it, do not bet me started you dippo.

            [lprent: This appears to have nothing to do with the post and I see your other comments like this are much the same. I suspect that you’re under the influence. Bad idea. See your ban. ]

        • Wayne 13.4.1.2

          Xtasy,

          Calm down.

  13. Gosman 14

    Muslims also want a nation state based on religion. That is why Pakistan was created.

  14. greywarbler 15

    What is the point in so many posters trying to relitigate the past, in a Back to the Future scenario. The saddest words in the English language are If only…followed by some wishful melancholy comment often.

    Knowing what happened in the past is useful to understanding the present. Get on with thinking about 2014 and how we can make it be over by Christmas. The Israelis that are still able to have visions of peace would be able to cope with a holyday of the Christians if it came with true Peace on their earth. Can’t we get a slightly tense but stable relationship where infringements go to an outside court, perhaps the Hague, and the USA stops using the Middle East to test their nasty weapons.

  15. Colonial Viper 16

    Israeli propaganda machine hard at work

    National Information Directorate in the Prime Minister’s Office and the Foreign Ministry, together with the IDF Spokesman, work together to explain Israel’s side of the story, coordinating messages and talking points.

    Director of the National Information Directorate Yarden Vatikai explained he has representatives in meetings at the highest levels so public diplomacy goals match the decisions made in the security cabinet…

    “The prime minister invests in public diplomacy and deals with it all the time,” Vatikai said. “Netanyahu and the Security Cabinet are currently dealing with four fronts: Military, diplomatic, the home front and public diplomacy.”

    The Foreign Ministry has websites in five languages and websites for each of Israel’s missions abroad has a website in its local language, plus the ministry reaches millions of followers on social media. The Israeli mission in China alone has more than a million online followers in its various social media outlets, Koll said.

    The Prime Minister’s Office has a volunteer “war room” of university students using social media to promote Israel’s cause, and Bar-Ilan University and the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya students are taking part in similar online activities.

    After Operation Pillar of Defense, the Foreign Ministry produced You- Tube videos showing children and elderly people in everyday situations, when suddenly an air-raid siren goes off. The videos were only posted online once Operation Protective Edge began.

    http://www.jpost.com/Operation-Protective-Edge/Public-diplomacy-a-central-front-of-ongoing-military-operation-362663

  16. deep throat 17

    so what is john keys position on this?

  17. Lloyd 18

    Some observations.
    Israel has always attacked the most effective Palestinian political force and has worked actively with assassination, bombing, war, and propaganda to destroy that organisation. The result is that every new political organisation that evolves to replace the one that has been destroyed is even more toxic towards Israel. What a surprise! Its evolution in action.

    Prediction. If Israel keeps on breeding nastier and nastier opposition, eventually they will breed one nasty enough to destroy the state of Israel. What happens to the rest of the world during this process doesn’t bear thinking about.

    The analogies between the Warsaw ghetto and the Palestinian state are so amazing it is surprising that some Israelis aren’t joining the Palestinians in sympathy with their grandparents’ situation.

    Israel is positioning its armoured bulldozers to enter Gaza and destroy Palestinian housing. Eventually I would guess to replace with nice kosher Israeli apartments. The reason given for this is to stop Israelis being killed by Hamas’ rockets. 330 Israelis were killed in car accidents in 2012. No Israelis have been killed by Hamas rockets this week. Why aren’t the Israelis lining up their armoured bulldozers outside car dealers? If they stopped selling cars and just let the rockets keep on coming Israel would be a demonstrably safer country.

    • Colonial Viper 18.1

      The leadership of Israel appear to have been slowly going insane over the last 20 years. I wonder if this renewed urgency on their part signals a lack of faith in the long term prospects of their major global sponsor, the USA.

      • Draco T Bastard 18.1.1

        The leadership of Israel appear to have been slowly going insane over the last 20 years.

        Nope, they’ve been insane since the 19th century when they decided that Palestine belonged to them no matter the fact that people were actually living there and they weren’t.

  18. North 19

    It is impossible to engage rational discussion with Zionist Israel or its apologists including those on this site. Zionist Israel is blessed with Exceptionalism you see. Exceptionalism justifies a limitless ‘anything’. It is a repugnant notion but it is justified on the basis of……you got it……Zionist Israel’s Exceptionalism.

    • Gosman 19.1

      Simple question for you. What is your proposed solution to the Israel-Palestinian conflict then? The issues you have to deal with is that the pre 1967 ceasefire line (not border) means many areas that are now majority populated by Israeli Jews would fall outside the State of Israel and this is unacceptabel to the Israelis. As is to the demand of many Palestinians for the right of retun to their homes in Israel that they occupied pre 1948.

      • Colonial Viper 19.1.1

        Simple question for you. What is your proposed solution to the Israel-Palestinian conflict then?

        Let’s start with Israel not destroying water pumping stations and apartment blocks in Gaza, shall we?

        • Gosman 19.1.1.1

          That is not really a solution though. It is a step to arriving at a solution but I have asked you what your prefered outcome is given the obvious contraints that exist in the Middle East.

          • RedLogix 19.1.1.1.1

            The only solution I can see is radical, but it would work.

            Form a ‘Union of the Levant’ – combining the states of Israel, Syria, Jordan and Lebanon governed as a UN Protectorate for at least 60 years.

            Disarm everyone and put in an international peacekeeping force. Establish a Commission of Reconciliation to slowly work through land and resource grievances. Clearly recognize core homeland areas for each ethnic group – but allow movement of people and resettlement to occur so as ordinary people can reestablish normal lives.

            Give the cities of Jerusalem and Haifa special status and governance aimed at guaranteeing religious freedoms, rights and stability.

            Gain recognition of the legality and legitimacy for this new Protectorate from all the other major ME nations, Egypt, Saudi, Iran etc.

            An optional extra would be to negotiate with Turkey, Iran and Iraq to accept the formation of a distinct Kurdish homeland – as an adjunct to this new entity.

            Of course this will never happen in the current climate – and it’s instructive to think of the reasons why.

            • Gosman 19.1.1.1.1.1

              Yes I suspect you a a tad ambitious with the proposal. I myself like the concept of a one state solution but with a confederation between the Palestinian and Israeli territories, The Palestinians could have sovereignty over the areas they are in the majority and the Israelis have sovereignty over the areas where they are in the majority. There could be an option for shared sovereignty over any contentious areas such as East Jerusalem. The country would consist of separate cantons that would be either primarily Israeli or Palestinian.

  19. SPC 21

    Security

    Superficial analysis

    This is about the transfer of hundreds of more advanced missiles into Gaza during the Morsi era in Egypt.

    Depleting the supply by provoking the firing of them and destroying as many as they can via air strikes and via IDF raids into Gaza.

    Deeper Level analysis

    This is a test of Iron Dome from the lesser threat from Gaza – for a more major threat from Lebanon.

    Diplomacy

    Superficial analysis

    Palestinians posed as a threat to Israeli security to diminish

    1 opposition to Israeli territorial expansion into the West Bank (settlement growth within the security fence capture of West Bank land)
    2. support for recognition of a Palestinian state

    Deeper Level analysis

    Israeli conflict with Hamas ruled Gaza makes Palestinian unity more difficult. Gaza disconnect from the PA ruled West Bank means no peace partner and no peace partner means no Palestinian state and no Palestinian state means de facto annexation of settlement land.

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