Sunday, April 3, 2011

Goldstone's Reconsideration

Richard Goldstone is a good man in need of a good editor. His report would never have attracted so much lightning had it not started off the way it did, trying to chronicle the terrible events of the Gaza operation, along with all the preliminary allegations of war crimes, before getting to context, testimony, caveats, and definitions (see especially pp. 10-26). By the time you got through the first section, you either had to be furious with Israel or with him.

Now Goldstone says in the lead of his Washington Post op-ed piece what everybody will remember, but which he does not really go on to prove, that to have known then what is known now would have meant a materially different report, hence, a different reaction to the Gaza operation.

In effect, he is apologizing for reporting that Israeli soldiers intentionally harmed civilians. He is saying, now, that he's looked at Israel's own investigations into the matter, and third party confirmations, and concluded that "intention" could not be ascribed and is perhaps implausible; that had the Israeli government cooperated with him, reasonable doubt about IDF actions would have emerged earlier.

Hamas missiles, he adds, were of course war crimes. Hamas has not investigated its own actions at all. As to Israel, "our fact-finding mission had no evidence on which to draw any other reasonable conclusion." You get the idea that Israel was wronged.

Needless to say, Benjamin Netanyahu is on the offensive and Alan Dershowitz is clearing his throat for the I-told-you-so tour of the talk shows. Sadly, what Goldstone does not regret is a report that distracted from the wrongness of Cast Lead in the first place.

I NEVER COMMENTED on the Goldstone report--though (like my colleagues at J Street) I believed its various allegations should have been investigated--because it left me frustrated in the same way that internal criticism of the Israeli military by philosopher-framers of the IDF code of conduct left me frustrated. In the former case, we were invited to believe that IDF commanders in the ground intentionally targeted civilians as a matter of policy, in the latter, that IDF commanders on the ground did not do enough, including risk their soldiers' lives, to protect civilians. In both cases, the criticism missed the point.

I argued at the time that, irrespective of anyone's intentions, a military action like Cast Lead could not be undertaken without assuming in advance that civilian casualties would be very high. Israel's military strategists had made it plain that the operation was meant to "reestablish deterrence" ("lekasaiach et ha'deshe" or "mow the lawn," as the phrase du jour had it); that the way to handle Hamas missile attacks was through destruction of Hamas "infrastructure," which could lead to only one result.

Once young Israeli soldiers were put in harm's way--with this mission, in that context--asking them to behave differently from the way they did was unfair and hypocritical. The idea that we need a judge to determine if the targeting civilians was intentional suggests that it is important to distinguish between trying to cause, and merely being cavalier about, Palestinian suffering.

ISRAEL SHOULD NEVER have come close to undertaking an operation of this kind, where loss of innocent life was bound to be so grim, since it had not come close to exhausting every possible diplomatic avenue for achieving an overall settlement. Yes, there were missiles. Yes, this was a crime against Israeli civilians that had to be stopped. No, (most) Israelis are not cruel. But when the historian Barbara Tuchman coined the phrase "march of folly," it was to this kind of situation she referred.

By the time December 2009 came around, prior decisions, and failures of nerve, had limited everyone's options. Political leaders were inevitably drawn into a military action whose goal, other than to "make a statement," was uncertain but whose consequences were predictable. Some 400 children were eventually killed, and many more were injured or traumatized. That is just the worst of it.

Historians will not wonder why Hamas launched missiles. The organization thrives on confrontation and missiles were their sucker punch. Historians may well wonder why Olmert's government had not long before taken all steps to discredit Hamas; stopped all settlement activity, or fought publicly for principles Olmert secretly agreed to in talks with Abbas, or renounced targeted assassination and invited Hamas to renew the cease-fire, or invited it to reiterate its prior commitment to respect any deal Abbas concluded and submitted it to a referendum, or agreed to an international monitoring force, which Hamas had asked for.

If you are serious about peace, you see, there was an alternative track all along to military tit-for-tat. The point to debate after the operation should not have been whether Israeli soldiers committed war crimes but whether the continued occupation, and a continuing policy of vendetta, were only prolonging contravention of international law and getting Israel deeper into an international ditch. (The unilateral withdrawal of settlements from Gaza did not resolve this matter, since it was expressly done to consolidate Israel's hold on the West Bank.)

Ironically, inevitably, Goldstone's report, focusing as it did on the conduct of the Israeli military after the attack was launched, only obscured the larger tragedy. The hyperbole in the report ("intentional targeting of civilians," etc.) made it the target of people who were only too happy to look at three months and not at two decades. Goldstone's report made it more difficult for the peace camp to bring a sense of history to the question. So will his reconsideration.

32 comments:

Michael said...

I actually understand and appreciate the point you're making. However, taken to its logical conclusion, something you may even agree with, we shouldn't even be here in the first place. After all, why only zoom back 20 years when you can zoom back 120 years to the first aliyah? As we say אין לדבר סוף.

So from a theoretical geopolitical perspective it's always important to look at the big picture, but from a strategic perspective, in the here and now, that may not be so prudent.

We're fast approaching a replay of the events that lead up to Cast Led. Do you honestly believe that coming to agreement with the PA would do anything to impede the behavior of Hamas? Is Hamas interested in a settlement that doesn't include Tel Aviv and Beit Shemesh?

My family and I are pretty much in range of Hamas's latest weaponry. I'm not interested in risking their lives to protect the lives of those their elected enjoy using as canon fodder. In another version of the "big picture", a decisively devastating blow to Hamas, while costly in the short term in human terms, would benefit the people of Gaza most of all.

I'd prefer that nobody got hurt and the people of Gaza took a cue from their Arab brethren and ousted Hamas. If the Palestinians truly ousted the evil from their midst and embarked on a true path of non-violent protest. Many, including myself, who redouble our efforts to come to terms.

Anonymous said...

I understand and do not agree with your position. The Goldstone Report Goldstone's imprimatur, was supposed to investigate alleged war crimes and human rights violations, and to determine whether Israel was able to investigate itself. The world used the Report, including most of your blogging "allies", to suggest that Israel was somehow a barbarian among the civilized world, because Israel intentionally targeted civilians in Gaza.

Goldstone's retraction is significant in addressing the above. Your argument about whether Cast Lead was a good idea seems to be beside the point, at least with respect to Goldstone, and glaringly deflective.

Michael said...

Good point anon. I hope nothing I wrote didn't give the idea that Goldstone is not culpable for fraud on a massive scale.

The damage he did to Israel and the Jewish people in general is irreparable. He has created a new blood libel that will live on in the minds of millions of medievil Muslims who have no way of, or desire to, validate information that doesn't fit their world view.

The UNHRC has no concept of what is "Human" or "right" they are the embodiment of evil in the world and Goldstone acted as their "front man". There is nothing he can do to undo the damage he's done, but he should spend the rest of his miserable life prostrating himself on every media outlet he can find.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, I was referring to Bernard's argument, which I think is deflective, not your argument Michael!

bacci40 said...

im sorry, but goldstone is an evil little, self serving troll, the left is filled with jew haters just waiting for a reason to demonize israel...and none of you have a moral compass.

israel had every right to defend its citizens, and there is no negotiating with terrorists...not that you useful idiots will ever figure that one out

oh...maybe you will...when your family ends up like the fogels

Potter said...

This is an excellent blog entry Dr. Avishai- flawless in it's moral take, and clear.. The links, readers, should be followed; they offer more clarity about choices available at that point in time, roads not taken. There was once a time that I believed that Israel's hand was outstretched sincerely always looking for ways to a peace. No more. I don't believe it now, if it ever was so.

I disagree with the above comments and abhor the use of that dog that always seems to hunt, the existential argument, which serves ironically ( think Greek tragedy) to deflect Israel from a secure path.

ISRAEL SHOULD NEVER have come close to undertaking an operation of this kind, where loss of innocent life was bound to be so grim, since it had not come close to exhausting every possible diplomatic avenue for achieving an overall settlement.

Potter said...

Unfortunately I think the results of Goldstone's "reconsideration" we are seeing already will be "spinning" of it by others to further deflect and then discredit any criticism or accountability on the part of Israel for Cast Lead. This may also make Goldstone seem like he is caving to gain acceptance, to rehabilitate himself with the Jewish community after having been shunned and so mistreated.

Anonymous said...

Potter:

This time the spin you complain of is well-earned. One has to live in an ivory tower to ignore that the Goldstone Report has been used to place Israel into a moral category below all other nations. That Israel erred in going into Gaza is a legitimate position to take. To assert this position now, and to say that Goldstone interfered with the focus on Israel's threshold choice, is not only beside the point, but is nothing other than to dismiss the hate that Goldstone's report has engendered against the State of Israel. Bernard's essay, however well drafted, is boiler-plate deflection of a point that fits not into his worldview. A jester prank.

Mitchell J. Freedman said...

Folks, I'm with Bernard. But I'd say it this way:

Goldstone needs an editor because he is so easily misunderstood. His reconsideration is not a reconsideration as much as the same subtle legalistic framing that characterized the initial report. He now has read additional information and is no longer willing to say there was sufficient evidence of intentional targeting. Before he said there was reason to believe there was intentional targeting of civilians and called for further investigation.

All very subtle, which seems to be a dangerous thing when talking about Jews and Arabs.

Mitchell J. Freedman said...

Here is a link of an interview with Goldstone from October 2009 (!) where he says pretty much what he said in the new op-ed in the WaPo:

http://www.forward.com/articles/116269/

And here is something interesting where Goldstone says an internal Israeli investigation would put pressure on Hamas to do the same, which explains why Goldstone has NOW said Hamas' failure to investigate should be noted and criticized:

http://fr.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1255694848458&pagename=JPost/JPArticle/ShowFull

Too bad the braying Likudniks who claim to speak for Jews in America are going to have their field day...

Draper said...

I don't get why some of you here - including Mr. Avishai - want to give Goldstone a pass for his blood libel against the Jews. What he did against Palestinian Gazans is even worse, as he covered/whitewashed Hamas' cynical use of human shields and pretended it didn't happen, giving Hamas a green line and a wink to do it once again. He's a disgusting man - an unrepentant apartheid hanging Judge who covers for 3rd world far right extremists like Hamas and their Iranian masters. You guys are completely missing the point - and it appears deliberately so. WHY?

Potter said...

"Blood libel against Jews" is another dead dog that should be buried but, limp, is pathetically dragged out to the hunt one more time. It may work as part of the victimology still needed to get the rally going. Out of the woodwork, like clockwork, comes the above example of the kind of rhetoric that the judge has suffered for his part in this justified inquiry.

That Goldstone was accused of such a thing adds emphasis to observations that the man has been beleaguered by his own people for seeking the truth.

The report called for further investigations- which are now still NOT complete or thorough enough to exonerate Israel certainly not from the moral judgement about this entire operation, what good purpose all this death and destruction served.

And-- why was Israel, if so justified, NOT cooperating when Goldstone needed it for his report?

Now, of course, Netanyahu wants the WHOLE report trashed (the opportunist spinning- and we should believe he works for peace.) inferring that israel was right to launch this war that we know killed well over a thousand people, including a few hundred children in what is essentially a fishbowl. To gain what? Deterrence? To get rid of Hamas? To destroy (non-Hamas) infrastructure? The spin, with yahoos pushing, will work or it will serve to allow us to all look again at that war, what Israel accomplished, whether it was justified, or whether criminal. Goldstone may have inadvertently in his reconsideration get us all to consider again, to remember what Israel should hope we forget.

No military, not Israel's, not any, can be trusted to investigate itself fairly, especially not with re policies and how they are carried out- not when it's war and framed as an existential matter.

Stan Racansky said...

I am sorry to say I have to agree with Dapper, although I disagree with use of "blood libel" description. As I had blogged during the Cast Iron Gaza war, I would have finished it then and there and fast,with the Hamas leadership, whatever it would take,not because I am blood thirsty but this stupid fighting has to stop. Israel is military stronger, to play political games is waste of time and it cost lives of innocent people.

Howard Adelman said...

Bernie;;



You should have headlined your piece: "The Retraction Is A Distraction". And it may very well be for the larger picture of inadequate and always too late Israeli efforts in pursuing the peace option. But in pushing that view, you make a number of very questionable claims that seriously detract from your main thesis.



You may claim that Richard Goldstone may need a good editor on reading his report but on what evidence do you claim he is a good man? I thought he was a good man even as I faulted the report in my investigation of it, but I subsequently learned a great deal to suggest that he is a self-centred man with a huge ego and a love of the limelight, which partially explains why he accepted the assignment. Do you have contrary evidence supporting your claim that he is a good man?



Secondly, editing could not have prevented the report from being controversial given the process by which the commission was set up, the conflicts of interest among some commissioners and the main charge that Israelis deliberately embarked on a war against civilians. No editing job could disguise that claim.



Third, Goldstone continues to provide excuses. He was not at fault for the faulty report. Israelis were. Had they cooperated, the report would have been different. If you believe that, then you can believe in the tooth fairy.



Fourth, in your main claim that the Goldstone Report distracted from the charge that Operation Cast Lead was wrong in the first place because military officers should have known in advance that civilian casualties would be very high, you neglect to note:

1. The Report did not restrict itself to ius in bello assessments as it claimed was its mandate but did address ius ad bellum evaluations and found a pattern of Israeli targeting civilians;

2. Much to my own surprise, civilian casualties were NOT very high relative to other wars of this type;

3. Failing to take sufficient prudence to protect civilians, or, in your stronger language, being cavalier, is itself a war crime – one does not intentionally have to target civilians;

4. Adopting a low risk strategy with respect to one's own troops is neither being cavalier nor remiss in prudence; one may question adopting such tactics, but context and other factors determine its prudence, ethical and legal evaluation;

5. Last resort is a very contentious area, but it does not mean "exhausting every possible diplomatic avenue". You may argue for such a path, but not taking that path does not make what happened criminal or unethical according to established international norms.

6. Your claim that "400 children were eventually killed" adds to the misrepresentation and lack of context. The anlaysis of the ages of the dead "children" suggest most were likely involved in military or para-military rolls. That does not justify Operation Cast Lead but it changes the understanding when the age of the children and their roles are brought into the equation in contrast to simply saying 400 children were killed, which connotes small children innocently playing at home. I suggest that you as well as Goldstone need an editor.



Fifth, why do you join other critics in calling Israel a continuing occupier of Gaza?



Finally, just because you bring a different sense of history to the analysis, does not mean that others neglect to bring history into the analysis as well, though they may arrive at different conclusions.



Most of your blogs are far superior to this one. Is this one so bad because you are simply using the Goldstone quasi-retraction to push your own thesis and therefore getting mired in the same quicksand of misrepresentation and distortion?



Your friend.



Howard


Howard Adelman
howardadelman@rogers.com
64 Wells Hill Ave.,
Toronto, ON.
M5R 3A8
416 533 5012

Potter said...

Mr. Adelman- yours are questionable claims as well:

If Goldstone is self-centered with big ego and he likes limelight (pretty much the same complaint) - does that disqualify him from also being a good man? I think not.

If Gaza is not still under occupation- does that mean that Cast Lead was an invasion of another sovereign territory in response to it's unprovoked attack? So how much control or freedom do Gaza’s leaders and inhabitants have? Who controls the borders? the airspace, their seas? Does Israel's military not invade regularly and maintain a siege? The UN maintains Gaza is occupied. The US Government maintains that Gaza is occupied….

Where is the proof or evidence that the children killed were "most likely" combatants? This is an unproven justification to brush over that.

Other rationalizations astonish also for their sheer callousness-about norms and casualties for other wars of "this type".

In no way did Israel exhaust other avenues to avoid engaging in a war that it can't have NOT known would cause excessive loss od life and damage.

I really do hope this all gets rehashed now after reading these posts. Netanyahu will help to bring it on as well. He is clueless… maybe even self-centered. I read in today's NYTimes that Goldstone will be asked to help this new campaign to change international public opinion. The problem, you see, is opinions.

Neil Kitson said...

1. If you think Goldstone needs a good editor, you should should spell "lightning" correctly.

2.There were three other authors of the Goldstone Report, and I'd like to hear what they have to say.

3. Having read the Goldstone Report in its entirety, I have yet to read of any significant flaws. Goldstone's "retraction" has the flavour of a Moscow Show Trials "confession."

Bernard Avishai said...

Neil. I've corrected the spelling. Want a job?

Anonymous said...

Neil Kitson wrote: "Goldstone's "retraction" has the flavour of a Moscow Show Trials "confession.""

That is my view too. The dead give away was the reference to the Fogel murders. What on earth has that to do with Cast Lead? It is very odd, given that the murderer is unknown - though clearly assumed from day one to be Palestinian. The murder of the Oshrenko family show the flaw in this presumption. Goldstone was reading a script written for him.

Anonymous said...

The entire Cast Lead operation was a crime--whatever the soldiers did was a crime within a crime. Pointing to Hamas as the villain is only another way of justifying an illegal and immoral occupation. There would be no Hamas if there were no occupation--and the daily killings and humiliations that feed contempt for the Israeli apartheid state. The leaders of Israel are committing worse atrocities than Hamas and their pathetic weapons. Get rid of the settlements, stop demolishing homes and olive groves, and stop murdering civilians. That will solve your "Hamas problem."

scottindallas said...

Your article fails to mention that Israel started the hostilities. You condemn Hamas' bombs, which are defensible for an occupied people. But, despite their right to lob missiles, they didn't until Israel broke the cease fire. As another noted, Israel controls all borders, trade and is starving, humiliating, oppressing and dominating an entire people.

I suppose you've done ok for a Jew. I am able to criticize my country, as an American, I really don't see what is so hard for Jews to criticize Israel. This is the same intellectual flaw. It is exacerbated by the "chosen" nature of Judaism and the belief that many Jews hold that Jews are superior. Again, Americans suffer this same flaw and you probably see their folly more clearly--you're just as foolish.

Some accuse Israel of not exhausting all other measures. You should be ashamed for such mealy mouthed claims; Israel rushed to war, broke the cease fire, how did they do anything but rush to war. And, the US rushed them more bombs, as we did in Lebanon.

You have yet to learn the lesson of empathy, your political leaders NEVER want you to go there. NEVER should you open your mind and your heart to the lesson that Rabbi Hillel taught. No, you're being taught the Book of Joshua, kill all men, women and children and lie and deceive to do it. By the way, the Quran and Islam have nothing in them or their tradition or history that compare to the rank genocide advocated there and NEVER condemned in the press. Just as Joshua, Bibi, had no qualms, no hesitation, killing and stealing land.

I agree that few gentiles can argue effectively, but few Zionists are worth a crap either. The morally incomplete arguments here prove my case. Until you are willing to extend the same, and more leniency to your enemies as yourselves, you've yet begin to understand the Golden Rule.

Jeff Davis said...

I got to this site through Antiwar.com. When I saw the header, my default expectation was "Another Zionist using Zionist mythology to justify Zionist crimes."

.....Not hard to figure out my perspective. Old pinko Hippie, anti-Israel, pro-Palestinian, Noam Chomsky progressive. But I also have to add -- correcting for my non-Jewish name -- that I'm an American and a Jew. ....

Then I read the piece, and was pleased to find out that Mr Avishai seems able to rise above tribal loyalties, and think clearly. I'm going to bookmark this site, and visit again, because I've been looking for a place where I could talk with other Jews -- but Israelis in particular -- so as to get a feel for the reality of the Israeli "mindset". Perhaps I should say, recognizing that there is substantial diversity in that "mindset", that I want to find out what fraction of Israelis are as thoughtful as Mr. Avishai.

The comments sections of Haaretz, The Jerusalem Post, and Ynet leave me despairing of finding any "Israeli" forum not dominated by the frothy, paranoid, "Kill all the Arabs" Likudnik mindset.

In my view, Israel is a geo-political crime-in-progress, on the road to the same inevitable endgame that Jews have suffered in their five-thousand years of attempted "suicide-by-Goy". The Jews are a treasure for humanity, and the self-destruction of Israeli Jews would be an almost incalculable tragedy. Add to that the accompanying loss of tens or hundreds of millions of others -- "collateral holocaust" seems darkly apt -- Arabs mostly, but not exclusively if the MADness (as in Mutually Assured Destruction) of "The Sampson Option" is employed.

So as an American and a Jew, and mostly as a witness sitting on the sidelines watching the tragedy unfold, I have to consider what, if Israel cannot be saved from itself, should be my fall-back position? How do I save my family and friends, my fellow American Jews, and my fellow American non-Jews from the global consequences of Zionist criminality?

Anonymous said...

Ah, Goldstone. What a ... piffling kerfuffle.

It does not matter whether the Jews murdered a 1000 innocents or merely took their lives while trying to kill others. They killed them, then proclaimed all manner of justification and dispensation which the entire world knew the Jews themselves did not believe.

Israel is the blight of the Middle East. There will never be peace as long as there is a Jewish state.

Atlanta Roofing said...

That’s good enough for me–it’s also what Goldstone could have said if he’d wanted to, but he chose not to. I don’t personally see much of a moral distinction between targeting civilian infrastructure and using indiscriminate firepower and “targeting civilians”, but I won’t quibble about it unless someone says that Hamas rockets are supposed to be worse than what Israel did. In that case, they must want Israel to suffer what Gazans suffered in the next war. I’m sure the more bloodthirsty Hamas members would be happy to accommodate if they could.

Dan Kelso said...

Anonymous said...
The entire Cast Lead operation was a crime--whatever the soldiers did was a crime within a crime.

So Hamas can fire hundreds of missles at Israeli civilians and Israel should do nothing.

Please, you probably want Israel to be in Arabic to.

Hamas fires missles at Israel, then hides behind civilians, which Islam calls for. Then you condem Israel for firing back.
What would any country do if terrorists were firing hundreds of missles at them?

You remind me of the far left that condemmed Israel for going into Jenin and stopping the Palestinians homicidal campaign against Israeli civilians in 02.

Tell Hamas to stop firing missles and using civilians as human shields.

http://www.nydailynews.com/opinions/2011/04/04/2011-04-04_look_whos_blasting_hamas.html
Even a Palestinian humanitarian organization condemns Hamas' willingness to spill innocent blood
Editorials Monday, April 4th 2011,
Hamas is a terrorist organization that uses the Palestinian people as pawns in its bloody game.
Who says so? Not just Israel.
Not just the United States. A Palestinian humanitarian organization also says so.

The Palestinian Center for Human Rights, which has condemned no shortage of Israeli actions, investigated rocket explosions in Gaza - including one that wounded a 22-year-old woman and her 7-month-old.

The group discovered that locally produced armaments were to blame. They had exploded in storage facilities where they were kept or in factories where they were made - all far too close to innocent Palestinians.

The Hamas government, says the report, "should take measures to protect Palestinians and their property." It condemns the fact that "members of the Palestinian resistance continue to store explosives or to treat such explosives in locations close to populated areas," saying, "this poses a major threat to the lives of the Palestinian civilians."

Making weapons in such close proximity to noncombatants - near mosques, homes,
schools or hospitals - is classic terrorist behavior. So that when legitimate military action tries to take out such facilities, families and kids are put in harm's way, the better to win sympathy and brand the enemy as murderers.

It's what Hamas has always denied doing. And it's what Hamas has clearly never stopped doing.

Meanwhile, the terrorist organization's interior ministry says Israel is responsible for the landing of Palestinian rockets on Palestinian targets. Because Israel is to blame for a cloudy day.

Dan Kelso said...

Anonymous,
Judea and Samaria and all of Jerusalem are liberated Israeli Land.
Tell us when did it ever belong to Palestinians? Answer Never.
It was never a Pal land to
begin with, so your question is invalid. The Palestinians never governed or controlled any land before 1993. To make it simple, please tell me one
Palestinian President before 1948?Keep thinking. The Palestinians want a capital which they never had, in a country that never existed.

Israel existed 1500 years before Muhammad was born. Look at Islamic countries and look at
Sharia laws. Its a brutal, violent and an intolerant religion. It produces the most inhumane people on this planet. Besides Saudi Arabia the
entire Middle East and North Africa was never Arab or Muslim. The thieving Arabs stole all the land from the Native peoples in the Middle East in the 7th century and forced everyone they colonized, to become Muslim. Anyone that didn't convert, had there heads cut off. The Jews resisted the terrorist Muhammad and didn't convert.

There is a primary historical fact, that must be established now. There has never been, I repeat NEVER been, a civilization, Entity, or a nation referred
to as "Palestine" There was never a Palestinian tribe, and there was never a Palestinian country in the Land of Israel to begin with! Arab culture that allows honor killings to be legal. Israel is not for sale. It is not a pie to be sliced up and served to a clan of killers and their supporters.
1: When did Jerusalem serve as a capital to any Arab Country ? Never.
2: When did Jerusalem serve as a Palestinian capital ? Never.
3: Only Israel have had Jerusalem as there capital in
Ancient and modern times. Jerusalem was never in history an Arab capital and never will be one.
4: How many times is Jerusalem mentioned in the Koran? Zero. Was Mohammed to so badly educated, he could not utter the word
"J-e-r-u-s-a-l-e-m"

Dan Kelso said...

Jeff Davis, I'm trying to understand your anti Israel message.
The leftist Jews happen to forget that when a Palestinian terrorist blows up a bus, he does not care how many leftist Jews are in it.

Potter said...

The leftist Jews happen to forget that when a Palestinian terrorist blows up a bus, he does not care how many leftist Jews are in it.

Killing 1400 Palestinian men women and children in Cast Lead recently and many many more others ( much many more others than Israeli's have lost over the years in various incursions) regardless of their guilt or innocence is okay? Is this because this kind of killing is not done by terrorists? Is the Israeli killing therefore justified as defensive whereas from the other side it is not justified nor defensive?

Dan Kelso said...

Earth to Potter, all Israel did was respond to thousands of Hamas missles fired at them.
The majority of Palestinians killed are used as human shields by the Palestinians.
THE REAL ESSENSE OF ''MIDEAST'' CONFLICT''
Arabs want to destroy Israel, but Israel doesn't want to be destroyed.

Dan Kelso said...

What the PA says

Well let's see.
http://www.imra.org.il/story.php3?id=49762
"The Jews were persecuted by the Nazis because of their great love of money"

http://www.solomonia.com/blog/archiv...id/index.shtml
"Jews are Satanic evil, we should kill them all"

Potter said...

MJ Rosenberg on TPM Cafe notes the article in the Forward:

Goldstone Flinched...Social Pressure

This is why it's so very hard not only to"punch out" but to simply tell the truth as you see it if it is different from the accepted narrative that bullies are waiting to pounce on you for if you diverge. You have to be willing to suffer a great deal of emotional pain- the withdrawal of love and approval.. and then you begin to realize how conditional that love was. What a complete turn-off.

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