• I think both men will back off and accept a stalemate on the issue rather than risk losing it in the US Congress.  If one of them actually loses the AIPAC issue, then Netanyahu will see his ethnically-pure state fall, or B. Hussein Obama will be seen as anti-semitic.  They are both too politically astute for that to happen.  

  • Mainstreet is not a lone voice.  I am happy to join the chorus.

    The point that Americans dont care is well taken, but I disagree that only Israel can solve the problem.  South African apartheid was not solved internally, it was solved when the US decided (late 1980's) that it was no longer worth providing diplomatic coverage for the apartheid government of South Africa.  Then the (white) people of SA were faced with a simple choice: try to sustain the nation as a rogue nation opposed by world, or accept that fundamental change is necessary.  

    And so this issue will end the same way.  99% of UN nations, including all NATO allies, have voted in General Assembly that Israel is apartheid and that the occupation, including ALL settlements are illegal.  If the US adopted the same stance as our allies, then Israel would become a rogue nation, and it wouldnt last long as such.

    So Obama has massive immediate sticks to wield.  If the US stopped vetoing UN security council resolutions, then Israel is fucked and the internal political dialogue of Israel would morph dramatically.  

    Other subtle things can be done, and I hope are.  The BBC has a reciprocal exchange agreement with the American TV network PBS.  That is why Carl Sagan's Cosmos was shown in Britain, and why The Blue Planet was shown on PBS.  

    The BBC has produced about 20 documentaries about I/P for domestic consumption, but the were excluded under the Bush administration from the reciprocal exchange.  The reason.. they are "foreign propoganda."  If Obama allowed PBS to show these documentaries, then Americans may start to view the situation as something that is unfathomable to something that may be solved in time.  

  • Not to nit-pick, but the people of East Prussia are not stateless, they have citizenship rights, unlike Palestinians.  The point is that Israel will not even acknowledge that a conquered people are people, just a demographic inconvenience.  And Czechoslovakia ceased to exist on Jan 1, 1993.  Welcome to the 21st century.

    When will the US give New Mexico back to the Mexicans?  Well, if we pretend that New Mexicans (65% Mexican) are not subjugated people, but actually have full citizenship rights, like they can even run for president, maybe we dont have to give it back.  

    After all, a great American political philosopher once wrote, "Governments derive their just power from the consent of the governed."  Too bad American Civics is not taught in Israel.

  • In the early 20th century, Jabotinsky wrote:

    "Zionist colonization, even the most restricted, must either be terminated or carried out in defiance of the will of the native population. This colonization can, therefore, continue and develop under the protection of a force independent of the local population --an iron wall which the native population cannot break through. This is, in to, our policy towards the Arabs. To formulate it any other way would be hypocrisy." (Expulsion Of The Palestinians, p. 28)

    And this:

    "They look upon Palestine with the same instinctive love and true favor the Aztecs looked upon Mexico or any Sioux looked upon his prairie. Palestine will remain for the Palestinians not a borderland, but their birthplace, the center and basis of their own national existence." (Righteous Victims, p. 36)

    And:

    "Instinctively, they (the Palestinians) understood Zionist aspirations very well, and their decision to resist them was only natural." (America And The Founding Of Israel, p. 90)

    According to Wikipedia, about the founder of Irgun:

    In Israel, there are more streets, parks and squares named after Jabotinsky than any other figure in Jewish or Israeli history.

    So tell me Lak, should the Palestinian people accept that there is no place in Israel for native Arab Christians and Muslims, they may never return to the land from which they were expelled, under threat of slaughter, that they must forever live as a stateless people, forced by Israel to be beggars.  Knowing that broad international opinion favors the Palestinian people, as does international law, if you were Palestinian, would you accept this dark fate?

  • on a comment on Benjamin Netanyahu, peacemaker. over 4 years ago

    With the spoils (Palestinian territory) come its people.  Israel took the land and now makes it clear that it will not lose control.  I think that means that everyone in the West Bank get to vote in the next Israeli election.  

  • on a comment on Benjamin Netanyahu, peacemaker. over 4 years ago

    It was the disaster I expected and hoped was not coming.

    I had no doubt that this was coming.  Just suprised that it came so soon.  Netanyahu is going to use every little rhetorical trick to deflect attention away from the fact the he never allow a Palestinian state with sovereignty.  

    I dont expect him to ever change.  The US now has to start leveraging its influence.  We will see shortly if the Obama commitment to a true disposition for the Palestinian people is real, or will be placated by lies.  

  • Al Jazeera shows Palestinians living in Israeli settlements?  Document it.  Al Jazeera is criticized harshly if it acknowledges that Israel is an independent state.  I know.  I watched it.    

    Israel is not apartheid?  So non-Jews can buy a house in Tel-Aviv?  And a non-Jew can marry a Jew and the marriage will be recognized by the state?  And a family whose house was seized by the Stern Gang in 1948, can move back to the neighborhood?  Or, in fact, are all those things are made legally impossible by the free, liberal state of Israel?

    The Palestinian Arab people, thru their leadership and selves have never expressed desire to truly be in the Jewish State of Israel.

    Yeah, and never expressed the desire to sacrifice themselves or their families at the altar of ethnic cleansing.  

    Side-note, my favorite Palestinian, and I am sure you agree, is Hanan Ashrawi, who is a women, well-educated female English literature professor, and Christian.. like me.  Although, I am not religious, and don't think religion should enter into the discussion.  Although she once was the official spokesperson for the Palestinian Authority, it is too bad that now Israel has refused to allow her to enter the West Bank.

  • You can look at Israeli settlements on the West Bank using google earth.  They look like Californian subdivisions, with tile-roofed houses, and community centers with swimming pools.  The Palestinian towns look like third-world refugee shit-holes.  So using google earth, could you send me map co-ordinates of houses owned by Israeli citizens, governed under civil laws enforced by police, and then the co-ordinates of the Palestinian houses, whose citizens are subjugated by a brutal military occupation, without civil process to speak for them?  Take a look.

  • Oh.. so Palestinians get to pay taxes, but dont get representation.  How un-American.  I haven't fully considered the issue but I think I am probably opposed.  

    Dude, seriously.. future tips:   dont quote right-wing moonie newspapers and dont blame Dukakis on Sarah's grandfather, Jimmy Carter.  You don't have to kowtow to Carter, but at least acknowledge the accomplishments of Nobel Peace Prize laureates like Nelson Mandela, Yasser  Arafat, Jimmy Carter and Al Gore.  

  • the same year, so they MUST be linked!

    The heart of the matter is analogous.  When SA came under increasing international pressure over its apartheid system, it attempted to deflect attention by creating fake nations within its borders in order to exclude a race of people from participating in its "democracy."  

    These nations had no sovereignty as we understand it, very similar to the psuedo-state that Netanyahu is attempting to set up: a state with no international borders, no rights to control airspace, water aquifers, airwaves, no rights to a military, and no ability to engage in independent diplomacy.  

    The point is that we have seen these fake states set up in other apartheid nations, and everyone called bullshit.  What's different now?  

    You advocate Jimmy Carter? Who meets with Islamist terror group Hamas? just like how he always dances with the dictators? No wonder his image is so piss poor across party lines.

    As to President Carter, this isn't FreeRepublic, friend.  Jimmy Carter is widely revered on the Left Blogs.  Jerome used to show his picture in the Icon Link.  His granddaughter blogs on this very site.  I am a member of the Carter Center, and receive President Carter's newsletters.  At times, dictators have attempted to use his name to bring legitimacy to their actions, and he has aggressively called them out.  He describes many other stories in his books - Haiti, North Korea, Nigeria.. you should take a look.  

    In fact, he is not the characticture that Rush and the Freepers pretend that he is.  I am a little embarrassed that I have to say that on MyDD.  

    So you say Jimmy Carter dances with dictators and has a piss poor image across party lines, and I say he is a Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, and former Democratic President of the United States.  Of course, on this website, general opinion would favor my position.  

    Actually, not every one of our NATO allies votes to slander Israel every year.

    You are absolutely correct in this.  I didnt mean to say that all of our allies each and every year vote to condemn Israel in General Assembly for its illegal occupation and apartheid policies.  Occasionally one misses the vote.  But if you look over the past few years, all of our NATO allies have voted several times to recognize these facts.

    that is a dumber argument than all the rest.

    Not to be overly critical of your comment style, but your statements are poorly thought-out and lacking in specific documentation.  They tend to be reductionist, instead of honestly addressing the key points made by other community members.  You have used right-wing talking points as a rhetorical crutch, without addressing the apparent incredulity of doing so on a website founded to counter these points.

    After reading the thread, you don't overwhelm me with a convincing argument as to why the Palestinian people, who have international opinion and international law on their side, should accept this formulation of fake, bantustan homeland.

  • No, I agree with you that those are weapons.  

    The tone of your comment was strange in several ways, suggesting that if this peace plan was established, and Palestine was effectively disarmed, Israel could attack with impunity if the new free independent nation of Palestine did something that Israel did not like (had their own TV station), and you seemed to suggest that that would be acceptable.  

    Also strange in that it invoked memories of the vicious attack on Gaza, while at the same time, citing Gaza in an ironic way, not aware of the fact that a non-Israeli might view the reference as insensitive.

    Also, while I acknowledge that homemade rockets and self-immolation devices should be considered arms, I would also say that if a nuclear-armed regional superpower invaded and attacked a free and independent nation, prohibited from having national defense, and whose people had only these devices to defend their lives, and the lives of their children, then this too should be considered a massacre.  I am sure you agree.

  • It is a completely apt analogy.  The current government of Israel, and the government of apartheid South Africa were both formed in 1948, and neither governments recognize (or recognized) indigenous claims to the land, but rather served the interests of the European colonists.  

    As to the details, I really don't care what terms the Israelis and the Palestinians work out.  What infuriates me is that MY NATION, the US, actively obstructs international diplomacy as other nations work for a disposition for the Palestinian people.  Every single one of our NATO allies (and 99.5% of nations on earth) vote every year in UN General Assembly that Israel is apartheid, and that it's occupation is illegal.  And due to US veto power in the Security Council, no binding resolutions can be passed.  

    So, I don't have a particularly strong opinion as to how a real peace should be worked out.  As long as both sides broadly agree, and my government is not obstructing peace, I am happy.   But if someone asks me my opinion, I would advocate a Jimmy Carter model over a Menachem Begin model.  

  • Yeah, it's easy for national armed forces to achieve a quick victory against an unarmed opponent, but technically that would not be an "armed conflict."  It's called a massacre.  

  • You are so right.  I did some reading on South African apartheid last night, and the homelands analogy is right on.  When South Africa was under pressure to justify massive citizen disenfranchisement, it simply claimed that those people were not citizens of South Africa, but of bantustans.

    South African blacks were stripped of their citizenship, legally becoming citizens of one of ten tribally based and nominally self-governing bantustans (tribal homelands), four of which became nominally independent states. The homelands occupied relatively small and economically unproductive areas of the country.

    I remember Netanyahu explaining in very clear terms to Wolf Blitzer (mid-90's, after Rabin's assassination) that the state of Israel is not compatible with an independent Palestine, and he would never allow it.  This is just more of the same delay and defer tactics, "lets talk about it in another generation."

    I say as Americans, we advocate starting from Jimmy Carter's baseline, which respects the right of return, and move negotiations from there.

  • The UN wanted a disposition for the Arabs and Jews, but was coordinating the end of the British Mandate, not exactly friendly to these fascist elements.  I think the newly created UN thought that it could bring diplomatic pressure to ensure that all people of the area would have basic rights.  

    The UN commissioner sent to Jerusalem in 1948 was assassinated by right-wing Israelis, (future Israeli prime minister Yitzhak Shamir took credit for this crime) and since then, the UN has been unfriendly to Israel and has sought sanctions with the overwhelming majority of member nations, including all our NATO allies.  Security Council resolutions would be binding if the US stopped vetoing them.  

    Because of this, Israeli propaganda sites like Mideast Facts, conclude that the UN is anti-semetic.  I like to think that the UN is just anti-fascist.

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