More perspectives on Israel conflict

January 10th, 2009 at 9:45 am by David Farrar

Fran O’Sullivan writes in today’s Herald, criticising :

The reality is Israeli excesses helped pave the way for to become a power in the first place. Israel is not alone in facing provocations from “terrorists”. But the extent of its retaliation will simply empower its enemies further as Palestinians react against the loss of life. At the end of the day, the moral arguments used by both sides to promote their excesses will not have much currency.

Israel does often over-react but it is easy to criticise imperfect reactions from the “armchair” so to speak.  But when the Red Cross is concerned, we should be also:

Even the International Committee of the Red Cross says: “The Israeli military [has] failed to meet its obligation under international humanitarian law to care for and evacuate the wounded.”

That is not good.

What will matter is the consequences that result from the Gaza War. If Israel’s onslaught destabilises the further how much longer will it be able to count on the United States for unwavering support?

In this case though, there has been considerable support for Israel’s right to try and stop the rocket attacks. Russia and China have been muted – not just blaming Israel. The EU and most western states have been careful not to just blame Israel or call on them to stop unless Hamas will agree to stop also.

Even in Canada, the new Liberal (centre-left) party leader is taking a balanced view:

Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff says Israel is justified in taking military action to defend itself against attacks by Hamas from the Gaza Strip.

“Canada has to support the right of a democratic country to defend itself,” he told reporters in Halifax on Thursday after speaking to a forum of business leaders on the economy.

“Israel has been attacked from Gaza, not just last year, but for almost 10 years. They evacuated from Gaza so there is no occupation in Gaza.”

And I can only quote approvingly from Chris Trotter:

To the Israelis, however, a more persuasive precedent might well be found in their own history. After all, in ancient Judea, wasn’t it the Jews who found themselves in exactly the same position as present-day Palestinians: under the heel of a brutal army of occupation? Was not the Great Jewish Revolt of 66-73AD, and the second, far more destructive Jewish-Roman War of 132-35, the intifada of their time?

And what was the outcome of those revolts? Massive retaliation: countless deaths, towns destroyed, lands seized, and, in the wake of that final, cataclysmic defeat, the “ethnic cleansing” of Judea – the 1,900-year Jewish Diaspora.

“Impossibel!” you say. “Unthinkable!” Not really. What, after all, was the policy of the Allied Powers regarding the German speakers of Eastern Europe at the end of World War II – if not “ethnic cleansing”? The intractability of the problems caused by ethnic Germans living amongst Poles, Czechs, Hungarians and Rumanians led to the wholesale uprooting of entire communities. Families which had lived in the same towns, farmed the same land, for hundreds of years were simply put on trains and “resettled” in the West. Under the auspices of the “Big Three” – the USA, the USSR and the British Empire – Eastern Europe was ruthlessly, and very effectively, “cleansed” of its German-speaking population.

The Germans, of course, had sent six million of Europe’s Jews in the opposite direction, to an altogether more permanent kind of “resettlement”.

And can anyone seriously doubt that, should Hamas “win”, their “final solution” would be any different?
It’s a fascinating day when you have Fran O’Sullivan and taking positions that people might expect to be reversed. Just shows how complicted the Middle East is!
UPDATE: Also a good post by Vibenna on why he is pro-Israeli:

The blogsphere is alive with a surfeit of outrage against the Israelis, so it seems appropriate to explain why, despite the Gaza incursions, I am pro-Israeli.

Well, it’s an old chestnut, but you can’t get past the Holocaust. In living memory there was the attempted genocide of all European jews, and nearly six million of them were exterminated. This is living memory. When I was a kid in Wellington, I lived next door to a woman who had a concentration camp tattoo on her arm; she showed me it one day …

Now, Hezbollah has as one of its primary goals the elimation of the Jewish state, while Hamas states that judgement day will not come until muslims kill all the jews. (Except for those hiding behind cedar trees. I know, it’s weird, but that’s religion for you.) You can’t tell people who have been through a holocaust just to lie down and take that.

Does that mean Israeli has a right to attack its neighbours? Absolutely not. Does it mean they have to put up with attacks from Hamas, Hezbollah, or associated splinter groups? Absolutely not.

But is the Israeli response disproportionate?

It is tragic, but I don’t think it is disproportionate. They are at pains to avoid civilian casualties, and have even sacrificied Israeli soldiers to minimize these in previous ground operations. Civilian casualties were far higher in WWII in the Ruhr, or in Dresden, or even among French civlians; over 15,000 French civilians were killed in the Battle of Normandy, for example. In contrast, Israel’s opponents go out of their way to cause civilan casualties.

That is the stark reality for me. Hamas try to maximise civilian casualties, Israel does not, and tries to (imperfectly) minimise such casualties.

But here’s the kicker. Israel is a democracy with reasonable equality for women. Its opponents are typically corrupt dictatorships that opppress women as point of religious principle. So I’m going for the Israelis, thanks. If you want to count up the civilian casualties, how about counting up the honour killings, beatings, murders and internecine strife amonst its opponents? Where are the outraged photographs of the 200+ people killed in Hamas:Fatah faction fighting? Where is the outrage over the suicide bombings in Israel? Where is the outrage over the state of women in the Arab world?

Well said.

Tags: , , , ,

87 Responses to “More perspectives on Israel conflict”

  1. Danyl Mclauchlan (1,071 comments) says:

    srael is a democracy with reasonable equality for women. Its opponents are typically corrupt dictatorships that opppress women as point of religious principle. So I’m going for the Israelis, thanks.

    Well said? Are you hung over DPF? This makes no fucking sense whatsoever. What does the electoral system or woman’s rights have to do with the Just War debate?

    [DPF: Whether countries are democracies that have basic human rights is a pretty big factor for me in deciding who to empathise with]

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  2. LUCY (359 comments) says:

    Excellent post DPF. It does make you think.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  3. adamsmith1922 (890 comments) says:

    I read Trotter’s piece several times and am still not sure what he was trying to say.

    As I have read more and more on the current Gaza mess, I have found myself seeking more information, especially on the concept of Just War Theory, particularly when discussions occur regarding proportionality.

    The link is to just one site seeking to deal with this issue, there are others

    http://www.justwartheory.com/

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  4. Southern Raider (1,831 comments) says:

    I’m getting pissed off with the lack of historical knowledge being banded around by journalists and letter writers in general.

    Hagganah was created because
    1) British stopped Jews escaping the aftermath of WW2 from emigrating to Palestine (note the area as it wasn’t a country) and this including thousands of orphans forced to live in internment camps.
    2) Arabs at the direction of the Mufti were robbing and murdering Jews and the British stood by and watched

    1948 was when the new nation of Israel was attacked on multi-fronts by most of the Arab nations. People seem to be implying Israel just starting randomly moving Arabs around in 48. It was a war. When Israel was attacked they had no real standing army and were poorly armed as the British had stopped them for ordering any guns and the ones they had were smuggled. The Arabs on the other hand had countries with existing armies and even the Trans Jordan wing of the British army sitting in Jerusalem. The British agreed to handover their forts in each area to the side with the highest percentage of residents, but in reality they handed most over to the Arabs and you had Arab armies in forts overlooking large Jewish towns.

    1967 when once again the Arabs started massing troops on the borders and Meir decided not to risk more Israeli lives and to do a pre-emptive strike. Yes land was seized but that is what happens when you pick a fight.

    1973 on the holiest day of the year (imagine the uproar of attacking a muslim country on Ramadan) when most Israelis would have been fasting they got attacked again. Israeli was crushed in the first few days and most international leader conceded that Israel as a country would not exist at the end of the week and yet no one (apart from the US with guns not soliders) came to her aid.

    Golan Heights. Imagine living in Wellington CBD and Mt Victoria is controlled by your enemies. This is s defensive move on Israels part to retain this land. It has no over value than to provide a safety net.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  5. goodgod (1,348 comments) says:

    … This makes no fucking sense whatsoever. What does the electoral system or woman’s rights have to do with the …?

    [words removed because no war is Just. There is just war. That’s all it’s ever been.]

    Here’s a fuckin’ first, I agree with you!

    I’m growing tired of cowards in armchairs thousands of kilometres away and divorced by layers of culture telling who should die based on their favourite political grindstone. Totally unacceptable. It’s cowardice, plain and simple. It reflects an ignorance of real life, and a neglect of humanity I haven’t seen for quite some time.

    And they wondered how the holocaust could happen without anyone saying enough – well here’s how it happens people.

    The War to End all Wars could be played out again this century – the people are ready to do it. Plenty of old men in pubs ready to condemn young men to die for their own self hate.

    We’ve forgotten, and we don’t care we’ve forgotten, we’ve discarded our self respect. We love ideas and not our own.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  6. JC (973 comments) says:

    Here’s one for you to ponder..

    Under International law, of which Israel is a signatory, genocide must be prevented and punished.

    http://www.unhchr.ch/html/menu3/b/p_genoci.htm

    Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide

    Article 1

    The Contracting Parties confirm that genocide, whether committed in time of peace or in time of war, is a crime under international law which they undertake to prevent and to punish.

    Article 2

    In the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:

    (a) Killing members of the group;

    (b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;

    (c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;

    (d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;

    (e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.

    Article 3

    The following acts shall be punishable:

    (a) Genocide;

    (b) Conspiracy to commit genocide;

    (c) Direct and public incitement to commit genocide;

    (d ) Attempt to commit genocide;

    (e) Complicity in genocide.

    Article 4

    Persons committing genocide or any of the other acts enumerated in article III shall be punished, whether they are constitutionally responsible rulers, public officials or private individuals.

    Article 5

    The Contracting Parties undertake to enact, in accordance with their respective Constitutions, the necessary legislation to give effect to the provisions of the present Convention, and, in particular, to provide effective penalties for persons guilty of genocide or any of the other acts enumerated in article III.”

    As Iran, Hamas and Hezbollah all have the intent for genocide of Israeli Jews, and Hamas and Hezbollah have it written into their founding documents, then the Convention applies.
    If Israel is considered the “Occupier” of Gaza, and many so assert, then Israel has the specific obligation of ” prevention and punishment of genocide”.
    If people thus hastily conclude that Israel is not an occupier after all, then the UN is responsible for punishing Hamas.

    Lets see how well the UN has carried out it’s responsibility under the Convention..

    http://tinyurl.com/7eqldv

    *Gaza is one of the top per capita recipients of aid in the world
    *The UN is a major funder
    *UNRWA (the UN funding agency) is domiciled in Gaza
    *UNRWA has 24,000 staff funding 4.5 million Palestinian refugees
    *The rest of the UN has 6,300 staff funding 11 million refugees world wide
    *99% of those 24,000 UNRWA funders are Palestinians

    Some “punishment”. As the article shows, Hamas and the UN are joined at the hip and have personal stakes in formenting genocidal ambitions, unrest, Israeli retaliation and world wide hate of Israel.

    That’s the real story of Gaza and the Palestians in general.

    JC

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  7. PhilBest (5,125 comments) says:

    # Danyl Mclauchlan (401) Vote: Add rating 1 Subtract rating3 Says:
    January 10th, 2009 at 10:32 am

    “Israel is a democracy with reasonable equality for women. Its opponents are typically corrupt dictatorships that opppress women as point of religious principle. So I’m going for the Israelis, thanks.”

    “Well said? Are you hung over DPF? This makes no fucking sense whatsoever. What does the electoral system or woman’s rights have to do with the Just War debate?”

    Danyl McLaughlin, have you EVER read anything on the principle of “just war”? The value of the principles that each society involved in the conflict holds, and the lengths to which it would be moral to go, to preserve the more valuable principles from being lost in the event of a defeat of the society that holds those values being defeated by the one that doesn’t?

    “Just War”? That IS one of the main things that “just war” is all about. You obviously don’t have a friggen clue.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  8. Southern Raider (1,831 comments) says:

    Exactly JC its like a drug company having any interest in finding a cure when they can just continue selling the medicine.

    The UN is corrupt beast that has no driver to better any situation.

    With 24,000 people in Gaza you think they would have been able to control the situation better.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  9. PhilBest (5,125 comments) says:

    JC, those are points well made. Mark Steyn retorted to someone recently, who said that Gaza was like Auschwitz, “Hamas must be the concentration camp guards, then……..”

    It just happens that HAMAS itself slaughters more of its own people in witchhunts for “collaborators” and “apostates” and “loose women” and the like, than Israel kills as collateral damage.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  10. PhilBest (5,125 comments) says:

    Southern Raider at 11.17; well said, man. We need more knowledge of the facts; most of the anti-Israel mob are ignorant people who have been propagandised by the media’s bias and have never realised just how much more hasn’t been told them; it is a shame when quite intelligent people like Reid fall into that category.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  11. PhilBest (5,125 comments) says:

    DPF:

    “….In this case though, there has been considerable support for Israel’s right to try and stop the rocket attacks. Russia and China have been muted – not just blaming Israel. The EU and most western states have been careful not to just blame Israel or call on them to stop unless Hamas will agree to stop also…..”

    One factor here, is that the international community knows that Benjamin Netanyahu’s party looked likely to sweep the next election because Israeli’s were sick of just turning the other cheek to Hamas all the time and wanted a tough government that would be prepared to do something about it. But the current, moderate government is trying to address that concern, a bit like Helen and Mikhael caving in and offering tax cuts because NZ-ers wanted them and it was going to cost them the election.

    The international community is being careful not to condemn what the moderate government of Israel is doing, because they don’t want the Netanyahu mob to get in; which would be a much bigger headache.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  12. PhilBest (5,125 comments) says:

    A fascinating analysis from Edward Luttwak in the Wall Street Journal:

    “Yes, Israel Can Win In Gaza”

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123146309313766581.html?mod=djemEditorialPage#printMode

    “……Another familiar Palestinian experience is that the extremists can always prevail politically over the moderates, but in so doing they split Palestinian society. A key metric of this disunity is, in fact, the success of Israel’s current war against Hamas.

    Consider: According to Gaza sources, until the ground fighting started some 25% of the 500 dead were innocent civilians. The Israelis claimed that 20% of the casualties from the aerial attack were civilians. Either way, this was an extremely accurate bombing campaign. (Even in the 1991 and 2003 U.S. air campaigns against Iraq, when most of the bombs were already precision-guided, gross targeting errors killed many civilians.)

    A targeting accuracy of 75% — by the lowest estimate — cannot have been merely obtained by overhead photography from satellites or reconnaissance aircraft, because few Hamas objectives were classic “high-contrast” targets such as bunkers or headquarters. Most targets were small groups of people in nondescript civilian vehicles that blend in with traffic, or inside unremarkable buildings. Nor could telephone intercepts have yielded much intelligence, because all Palestinians know that the Israelis have long combined voice recognition with cellular-grid location in order to aim missiles very accurately at single vehicles in traffic, or even at individuals standing about with their cellphones switched off.

    So how did Israel do it? The only possible explanation is that people in Gaza have been informing the Israelis exactly where Hamas fighters and leaders are hiding, and where weapons are stored. No doubt some informers are merely corrupt, paid agents earning a living. But others must choose to provide intelligence because they oppose Hamas, whose extremism inflicts poverty, suffering and now death on the civilian population for the sake of launching mostly ineffectual rockets into Israel. Hamas completely disregards the day-to-day welfare of all Gazans in order to pursue its millenarian vision of an Islamic Palestine.

    Some in Gaza must also resent Iran’s role in instigating the barrage of rockets fired on Israel. And all must know that the longer-range rockets are supplied by Iran along with money for Hamas leaders, while ordinary Palestinians languish in poverty. Senior Hamas leader Nizar Rayan, killed on Jan. 1, was a poorly paid academic, yet he died with his four wives and 10 of his children in spacious quarters. He obviously had enough money to heed the Quranic injunction against marrying more wives than one can afford. That too must arouse bitter opposition among poor Palestinian civilians, inducing some to help Israel target Hamas. Perhaps these informers include Fatah members, further antagonized by persecution. Last week alone, some 50 were reportedly tortured by Hamas.

    Hamas won the 2006 election because it was the only available alternative when a majority of voters were disgusted by Fatah’s blatant corruption. Since then, many nonfundamentalist Palestinians have been oppressed by the puritanical prohibitions imposed by Hamas, while all Gazans have been greatly impoverished.

    There is no evidence that support for Fatah has therefore increased, or that its surviving leaders could still rally their followers. This reality sets an upper limit on what Israel can achieve by ground combat — it cannot change the regime.

    What Israel can do is weaken Hamas further in its current ground operations by raiding targets that cannot be attacked from the air — typically because they are in the basements of crowded apartment buildings — and by engaging Hamas gunmen in direct combat. Simply reducing the combat strength of Hamas is crucial, as it was in 2006 against Hezbollah, because while many like to parade dressed in the robes of martyrs, when there is actual fighting enthusiasm rapidly wanes.

    With few exceptions, Israeli ground forces are not advancing frontally but are instead mounting a multiplicity of raids. If their target intelligence remains as good as it was during the air attack, they will run out of targets in a matter of days. That is when a cease-fire with credible monitoring would be possible and desirable for both sides as the only alternative to renewed occupation.

    Hamas will claim a win no matter what happens, but then so did Hezbollah in 2006. And yet, for the most part, Hezbollah remains immobile and the Israeli northern border with Lebanon remains quiet. If Israel can achieve the same with Hamas in Gaza, it would be a significant victory…..”

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  13. PhilBest (5,125 comments) says:

    That article by Edwin Luttwak is a very good, detailed analysis about the very point I made broadly a couple of days ago, that for the first time in the history of warfare, the real enemy who is guilty of causing the trouble in the first place may be able to be beaten comprehensively WITHOUT just flattening whole towns; thanks to technology and Israel’s ethics.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  14. PhilBest (5,125 comments) says:

    Ah, the great man David Horowitz has weighed in…..

    “The War Against The Jews”

    http://www.frontpagemag.com/Articles/Printable.aspx?GUID=ED3F303D-47FE-424E-A236-E38064C655B9

    I am not going to try and copy and paste bits of it, the whole thing is too good; and I am not going to piss everybody off by pasting the whole thing. Everybody, follow that link, that is a “must read”.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  15. PhilBest (5,125 comments) says:

    I WILL copy and paste THIS, though….

    Operation Just and Necessary
    By Dr. Earl Tilford
    FrontPageMagazine.com | Friday, January 09, 2009

    “As soon as Israeli air strikes began striking Hamas-controlled Gaza, many American church leaders started calling for an immediate ceasefire based solely on human suffering rather than the political realities of the situation. Operation Cast Lead, Israel’s ongoing effort to end indiscriminate rocket and mortar attacks on surrounding Israeli towns and villages, is necessary, morally justified, and legitimate, despite the calamitous cacophony from the loquacious Christian left.

    Hamas chose not to continue the six-month cease-fire. When the ceasefire ended on December 18, Hamas sent a barrage of Qassam rockets and Russian-built and Iranian-supplied Smerch (NATO codename “Grad‘) rockets into Israel. Short-range Qassams hit nearby Sderot and Ashkelon while Grads slammed into Beersheba 25 miles west and fell on the southern suburbs of Tel Aviv to the north. Neither of these rockets can inflict critical damage on hardened military targets. Grad anti-personnel missiles, designed to kill soldiers on the battlefield, can damage or destroy homes, apartment buildings, schools, automobiles, and buses. Hamas rarely attacks Israeli forts or military units stationed along the border. Rather, these terrorists fire rockets and missiles indiscriminately at nearby towns and cities to kill civilians. This is a war crime.

    Hamas is guilty of other war crimes. It locates offices, munitions factories, and storage areas in and among the Palestinian citizenry. Combatants who use civilian populations as a shield are responsible for any harm inflicted upon them by an enemy. While the majority of casualties, even by Hamas’ accounting, are terrorist fighters, there have been and will continue to be regrettable loss of life among innocent civilians. Hamas alone bears responsibility.

    Under international law, the occupying power is obligated to protect the occupied population. Claims by the Christian left that Israel is “the responsible occupying power” are incredulous. In 2005, Israeli forces pulled out of Gaza, forcing thousands of Jewish settlers out as well. Soon thereafter, Hamas conducted a coup d’état, killing hundreds of opposing Palestinian political leaders. Hamas, which occupies all of Gaza, bears responsibility for protecting the population. Furthermore, Hamas’ rocket and mortar attacks forced the Israeli response.

    Israel’s attacks focus on Hamas-controlled and security-related institutions, including the police and local security agencies. Claims that Hamas’ police are a civilian entity separate from Hamas are specious. Hamas’ Gaza police are as much a part of the same Hamas terrorist organization as were the SS and Gestapo in Nazi Germany. Killing them is no less illegitimate (or morally reprehensible) than was killing Reinhard Heydrich.

    The Christian left continues to condemn any military action by Israel while ignoring Hamas’ conduct that compelled Israel to initiate Operation Cast Lead. It condemns Israel for a “disproportionate response” while failing to set the context in which Hamas, from its inception, has been—and remains—committed to the total destruction of Israel.

    As for the “disproportional” response, on December 30, a Grad rocket blasted a hole in the roof of a primary school in Beersheba. If school had not been cancelled, that Grad would have slaughtered a classroom full of children. Every such rocket fired by Hamas into Israel, whether a “little” Qassam or a Grad, is fired with the intent of killing and maiming Jewish civilians: men, women, children, young and old alike. Israel builds shelters and provides a warning system to protect its citizens. Hamas, by contrast, places weapons in its mosques, hides terrorists among hospital staff, locates its offices in apartment buildings, and places its munitions factories and storage areas in neighborhoods. Nevertheless, Israel uses precision-guided munitions and makes every reasonable effort to minimize collateral damage and civilian casualties. Hamas, by contrast, almost exclusively targets civilians.

    Israel undertook Operation Cast Lead as a last resort. Political realities in Israel compelled the current government to take action or face possible replacement by the more conservative Likud Party. Uncertainty over the level of commitment to Israel forthcoming from the United States after January 20, 2009, likely played a role as well.

    Israel must continue Operation Cast Lead to its culmination point. To inflict civilian casualties without destroying Hamas would be regrettable. Israel—and only Israel—can free Gaza from Hamas’ occupational stranglehold. Doing so will facilitate the peace process and make possible a just and lasting peace with an independent Palestinian state. And the world, including the Palestinian people, will owe Israel gratitude.”

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  16. s.russell (1,646 comments) says:

    A wise person said: “War is a tool for making your enemy change their mind.”

    Will this war achieve that purpose? This seems unlikely.

    But until Palestinian minds are changed, there will be no end to the fighting.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  17. billyborker (1,102 comments) says:

    Actually, s russell, until palestinian AND Israeli monds are changed there will be no end to the fighting. And to change those minds requires both sides to stop clinging to their desert myths, eschew their petty gods and become fully developed humanists.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  18. kiwiscouse (4 comments) says:

    At the time of Abraham (or Ibrahim) two or three thousand years ago, the peoples of what is now Palestine were one, but they split. Some went to Egypt to live, became slaves, and eventually escaped under Moses. Moses died on the way back to the “promised land”, but what is now Israel was seized by the Israelites from the Jebusites, and the Israelites then founded Jerusalem. The Babylonians later got sick of the Jews and carried them off, but they were allowed to return by Cyrus King of Persia (now Iran). The Jews then rebuilt their temple in Jerusalem. They were occupied by the Romans at the beginning of the Roman Empire but were left practically self-governing. At the time of the Crucifixion the orthodox Jews insisted on Jesus dying on the cross. Shortly afterwards the Jewish king, Herod Antipas, who had been educated in Rome and was sick of the corruption there, declared independence of the whole of the Eastern Roman Empire under his leadership. He also claimed to be the Messiah, as he had been born by accident in Bethlehem. The Romans put down the rebellion, destroyed the Temple at Jerusalem and dispersed the Jews over the then known world. They remained dispersed for 1900 years. Meanwhile Jerusalem became a Christian city, until the Moslems were allowed 500 years later to build their Mosque on the site of the Jewish Temple. During the Crusades 1000 years ago the Moslems won Jerusalem from the Christians and it remained under Moslem control for 700 years, which was as long as the land had formerly been under the control of the Israelites. The Ottoman empire collapsed at the end of the 1st world war and the League of Nations gave Palestine to Britain to look after. The United Nations allowed the Jews to form a state in Palestine against the wishes of the Arabs, and the rest is in the newspapers.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  19. reid (16,636 comments) says:

    I’m getting pissed off with the lack of historical knowledge being banded around by journalists and letter writers in general.

    Hagganah was created because
    1) British stopped Jews escaping the aftermath of WW2 from emigrating to Palestine (note the area as it wasn’t a country) and this including thousands of orphans forced to live in internment camps.
    2) Arabs at the direction of the Mufti were robbing and murdering Jews and the British stood by and watched

    1948 was when the new nation of Israel was attacked on multi-fronts by most of the Arab nations.
    1967 when once again the Arabs started massing troops on the borders and Meir decided not to risk more Israeli lives and to do a pre-emptive strike.
    1973 on the holiest day of the year (imagine the uproar of attacking a muslim country on Ramadan) when most Israelis would have been fasting they got attacked again. Israeli was crushed in the first few days and most international leader conceded that Israel as a country would not exist at the end of the week and yet no one (apart from the US with guns not soliders) came to her aid.
    Golan Heights. Imagine living in Wellington CBD and Mt Victoria is controlled by your enemies. This is s defensive move on Israels part to retain this land. It has no over value than to provide a safety net.

    Agree with the accuracy of everything you say, SR and these facts are relevant in the sense that they implement what Paul Buchanan referred to last night as a “garrision mentality.”

    I see what you’re saying however, as a historical context and not a cause nor a justification. See today, Israel is protected from the threats that gave rise to what you referred to. In every way. Times have changed, since then.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  20. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    “99% of those 24,000 UNRWA funders are Palestinians”

    JC, do you mean 99% of the UNRWA staff?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  21. BR (83 comments) says:

    The Palestinians must be the nastiest, most hate filled people on Earth.

    It’s not as though they are the only people who have a border dispute with their neighbour, but they are the only people who take it to such extremes.

    So intense is Palestinian hatred for Israel that Palestinian parents will gladly send their sons and daughters into Israel as human bombs with the express purpose of killing as many Israeli civilians as possible.

    Are they are only in it for the 72 virgins? If the answer is yes, then perhaps it is high time that Israel took the gloves off and delivered them the martyrdom they so desperately crave.

    Meanwhile, the brave Hamas warriors hide behind the skirts of women and children. They have no shame, they have no dignity. It is disappointing that Israel has not made it a stated priority to obliterate Hamas from the face of the earth, even if that does mean some civilian casualties in Gaza. The likes of Hamas and those who support them need to be made an example of.

    Bill.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  22. Sean (301 comments) says:

    The solution is simple, as Hamas have indicated. All Israel needs to do is some carbon sequestration. Simply replace the barrier with cedar trees. Then Hamas won’t be able to see Israel and will assume its been eliminated in a puff of logic…

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  23. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    Southern Raider.

    “Hagganah was created because
    1) British stopped Jews escaping the aftermath of WW2 from emigrating to Palestine”

    Haganah was created in 1920

    “2) Arabs at the direction of the Mufti were robbing and murdering Jews and the British stood by and watched”

    I hardly think this is a fair description of what went on in that time. Here are some examples:
    November 6, 1944. The Irgun/ Stern Gang directed by Menachem Begin and Yizak Shamir assassinated the British Minister Resident in the Middle East, Lord Moyne, in Cairo.
    July 22, 1946, they blew up the King David Hotel.
    October 1, 1946. The British Embassy in Rome was bombed, the Irgun claimed responsibility.
    September 3, 1947. An Irgun postal bomb addressed to the British War Office exploded in the post office sorting room in London.
    ……and so on.
    Count Bernadotte was assassinated on 17 September 1948 by the Irgun. He was the author of the partition plan.

    1937:
    “British forces, supported by 6,000 armed Jewish auxiliary police, suppressed the widespread riots with overwhelming force. The British officer Charles Orde Wingate (who supported a Zionist revival for religious reasons) organized Special Night Squads composed of British soldiers and Jewish volunteers such as Yigal Alon, which “scored significant successes against the Arab rebels in the lower Galilee and in the Jezreel valley” by conducting raids on Arab villages. The squads used excessive and indiscriminate force. The Jewish militias the Stern Gang and Irgun used violence also against civilians, attacking marketplaces and buses.

    The Revolt resulted in the deaths of 5,000 Palestinians and the wounding of 10,000. In total 10 percent of the adult male population was killed, wounded, imprisoned, or exiled. By the time it concluded in March 1939, more than 5,000 Arabs, 400 Jews, and 200 Britons had been killed and at least 15,000 Arabs were wounded. From 1936 to 1945, whilst establishing collaborative security arrangements with the Jewish Agency, the British confiscated 13,200 firearms from Arabs and 521 weapons from Jews.”
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_Mandate_of_Palestine#The_Great_Arab_Revolt_.281936.E2.80.931939.29

    “1948 was when the new nation of Israel was attacked on multi-fronts by most of the Arab nations. People seem to be implying Israel just starting randomly moving Arabs around in 48. It was a war.”

    This is simply not true. At least 250,000 Palestinians were driven off their land before the Arab League acted on 15 May 1948.
    Benny Morris confirms this and also confirmed that there were orders from the top to clear the Pals out:
    “To my surprise, there were also many cases of rape. In the months of April-May 1948, units of the Haganah [the pre-state defense force that was the precursor of the IDF] were given operational orders that stated explicitly that they were to uproot the villagers, expel them and destroy the villages themselves.”
    http://www.logosjournal.com/morris.htm

    March 2 Israeli forces attacked the village of El Manara (490 Arab inhabitants), chased its inhabitants out, destroyed some houses, and left leaflets behind warning the inhabitants not to return because the village had been mined. On April 10, they attacked the adjoining village of Nasr-ed-Din (with 90 Arab inhabitants) and destroyed all its houses, killing most of its inhabitants, including women and children, and expelling all the rest. The siege of Tiberius was April 3 – 16, Deir Yassin April 9 ….and so on. The siege of Jaffa began on April 25. This is particularly significant because it was outside the proposed Jewish State.
    I repeat, all this happened before the Arab League acted on 15 May 1948.

    “1967 when once again the Arabs started massing troops on the borders”

    I have already dealt with this in detail on another thread. Suffice to quote General Peled, Israel’s chief of staff “The thesis that the danger of genocide was hanging over us in June 1967 and that Israel was fighting for its physical existence is only bluff, which was born and developed after the war.”
    ….and Yitzhak Rabin: “I do not think Nasser wanted war. The two divisions he sent to the Sinai on 14 May would not have been sufficient to launch an offensive against Israel. He knew it and we knew it” (Le Monde, 29 February 1968)…..Menachim Begin: “The Egyptian army concentrations in the Sinai approaches do not prove that Nasser was really about to attack us. We must be honest with ourselves. We decided to attack him” (Jerusalem Post, 20 August 1982).

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  24. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    kiwiscouse

    I do not think that Shlomo Sand, Professor of History at Tel Aviv University would agree with your version.

    “But during the 1980s an earthquake shook these founding myths. The discoveries made by the “new archaeology” discredited a great exodus in the 13th century BC. Moses could not have led the Hebrews out of Egypt into the Promised Land, for the good reason that the latter was Egyptian territory at the time. And there is no trace of either a slave revolt against the pharaonic empire or of a sudden conquest of Canaan by outsiders.

    Nor is there any trace or memory of the magnificent kingdom of David and Solomon. Recent discoveries point to the existence, at the time, of two small kingdoms: Israel, the more powerful, and Judah, the future Judea. The general population of Judah did not go into 6th century BC exile: only its political and intellectual elite were forced to settle in Babylon. This decisive encounter with Persian religion gave birth to Jewish monotheism.

    Then there is the question of the exile of 70 AD. There has been no real research into this turning point in Jewish history, the cause of the diaspora. And for a simple reason: the Romans never exiled any nation from anywhere on the eastern seaboard of the Mediterranean. Apart from enslaved prisoners, the population of Judea continued to live on their lands, even after the destruction of the second temple. Some converted to Christianity in the 4th century, while the majority embraced Islam during the 7th century Arab conquest.”
    http://mondediplo.com/2008/09/07israel

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  25. PhilBest (5,125 comments) says:

    OK, OK, Spoff, at 2.03 that’s your charge sheet against the Jews. For the OTHER side of the story, as I already have posted in response to you before; THIS:

    “Jew Hatred and Jihad; From Medina to Mumbai”

    By Andrew Bostom

    http://www.newenglishreview.org/custpage.cfm/frm/29599/sec_id/29599

    And it is a much lengthier, much more heinous charge sheet………

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  26. PhilBest (5,125 comments) says:

    Oh, and yours of 2.13; Sounds to me, a bit like Holocaust denial only on a different time scale.

    Read what David Horowitz says about Jews who are on the side of the enemies of their people…….there were such a thing even under the Nazis……..how low can you go……

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  27. PhilBest (5,125 comments) says:

    BR (9) 1 2 Says:

    January 10th, 2009 at 1:42 pm
    “The Palestinians must be the nastiest, most hate filled people on Earth.

    It’s not as though they are the only people who have a border dispute with their neighbour, but they are the only people who take it to such extremes……”

    Absolutely, BR.

    There have been numerous cases around the world, of competing claims by different races or cultures, to the same piece of land. We have bits of land between Germany and France, between Serbia and Bosnia, between Russia and Poland, between India and Pakistan; to name but a few. In some cases, ancient hatreds seem to have been buried and peaceful coexistence achieved, irrespective of the issues of which nation possesses the disputed territory.

    In other cases, it has been necessary for a compromise solution to be imposed by the international community through the UN. These compromise solutions involve a physical separation of the incompatible peoples, with the displacement of significant numbers of both. Obviously, the solution designed will attempt to be as fair as possible, and draw borders that require the minimum amount of displacement of peoples. This was the case with the UN-designed “1946 borders” of Israel and Jordan and a “Palestinian State”. However, this solution assumed a peaceful coexistence, and did not allow for defensibility of the borders of the new Jewish State; in fact one would even wonder if the Europeans involved had any intention of the new State surviving at all, when the facts on the ground at the time are considered. I mean, a State that over a significant amount of its length, is 15 miles wide, between the Mediterranean sea and its sworn enemies………get real?

    OK, the Jewish State embarrassed its creators by daring to survive, and in the process, taking defensive positions beyond its original borders while reasonably awaiting end-of-conflict non-aggression agreements. Note that NO JEWS remained in “Palestinian” or Arabic areas, while several hundred thousand Arabs remained within the borders of Israel. This should tell us a lot about the moral status of the adversaries; but no, Israel’s detractors choose to focus solely on displaced Arabs, rather than displaced Jews and their legitimate fears in the event that they remained in Arab dominated areas.

    The point that I find is crucial, when discussing these issues with New Zealanders, is that almost everyone has no concept of the size of the territories in dispute. This is not France and Germany; or India and Pakistan. We are talking about a State, Israel, that is about the size of the lower North Island of NZ from Wanganui to Wellington, only, at its narrowest point, no wider than the Kapiti Coast. We are talking about territories disputed by the “Palestinians”, that are about the size of the Hutt Valley. Imagine the Kapiti Coast being populated by Jews, and the overlooking ranges being populated by “Palestinians”. Would you deny the Jews the right to hold onto at least the first range of hills overlooking their towns, in the absence of clear, sworn, and demonstrated peaceability on the part of the Arabs? What we are talking about here, is a tacit “Final Solution” that you can either endorse or reject; what you choose says a lot more about you than it does about Israel.

    There are surrounding nations that are kin to the “Palestinian” Arabs; Jordan, Syria, Egypt, Saudi Arabia; these nations are in total a hundred times the size of Israel, hundreds of thousands of square kilometers. Yet the possibility of the absorption of the displaced “Palestinians” by these nations never comes up; the focus is entirely on 18,000 square km Israel being demanded to relinquish 4,000 square km of strategic territory that virtually cuts it in half, to people who remain avowedly devoted to Israel’s destruction. (NZ is 300,000 square kilometres).

    I have said this before and will keep saying it. If the “Palestinans”, and Jordan, Syria, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia were all Christian, or Buddhist, or Hindu, or anything except Islamic, the descendants of the displaced “Palestinians” would all long since have got themselves a life in the land to which they had been displaced and welcomed with open ams; in many cases merely a few kilometers from where they originally lived. Are there ANY territorial disputes anywhere in the world where Islam is involved, where this has happened? Cyprus? Bosnia? Kashmir? East Timor?

    Look at India and Pakistan. How many Hindus in Pakistan? Nix. Nada. Nil. How many Muslims in India? Tens of millions. Which country still has trouble with the other side attacking it, demanding that their rights be acceded to? How many Hindu demands for a right to live in peace in Pakistan where their ancestors came from, backed up with terror attacks in Pakistan? Ever?

    The international blindness to the existential threat that is Islam, in favour of an obsession with the so-called crimes of the tiny, imperilled Jewish state, can only be explained by reference to the biblical and the supernatural. It is not explicable on rational, humanist grounds. And the inability of “liberal” “humanists” to acknowledge this, merely strengthens the case against them.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  28. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    PhilBest
    I read the Bostom polemic last time you posted it. It is a lengthy diatribe about what people, mostly obscure extremists have said. I do not regard it as History. As I have pointed out previously, there is bellicosity on both sides:

    “The spiritual leader of Israel’s ultra-orthodox Shas party, Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, has provoked outrage with a sermon calling for the annihilation of Arabs.

    “It is forbidden to be merciful to them. You must send missiles to them and annihilate them. They are evil and damnable,”
    ……Rabbi Yosef is one of the most powerful religious figures in Israel”

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/1270038.stm

    I have never thought it productive to put too much reliance on the diatribes of religious figures. There are verses in the Torah and Talmud that make anything in the Koran look like a book of etiquette.

    Horowitz is correct, Yitzak Shamir was a member of the NMO (the Zionist Military Organisation) when it offered its forces to fight on the German side in WWII. He is unreliable on other stuff however. For instance, he had to stop using a picture of a muslim girl being stoned after it was pointed out to him that it came from a Bollywood movie. He has been booed off nearly every campus in America.

    I am happy to debate the History of this conflict. Polemics written by Islamophobes are not of any interest to me for the simple reason that for centuries, until the trouble in Palestine inflamed Arab/Jewish relations, Jews lived and attained high office in Muslim countries. For this reason I believe the conflict is political. The director of the Political Bureau of Hamas also makes this point:

    Our message to the Israelis is this: we do not fight you because you belong to a certain faith or culture. Jews have lived in the Muslim world for 13 centuries in peace and harmony; they are in our religion “the people of the book” who have a covenant from God and His Messenger Muhammad (peace be upon him) to be respected and protected. Our conflict with you is not religious but political. We have no problem with Jews who have not attacked us – our problem is with those who came to our land, imposed themselves on us by force, destroyed our society and banished our people.
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2006/jan/31/comment.israelandthepalestinians

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  29. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    PhilBest

    We have all read the above lengthy post at least twice.
    This reasoning:

    There have been numerous cases around the world, of competing claims by different races or cultures, to the same piece of land. We have bits of land between Germany and France, between Serbia and Bosnia, between Russia and Poland, between India and Pakistan
    … is flawed.
    In these cases, the partition was implemented between factions of an indigenous population. In the case of Palestine, the indigenous people were pushed aside to allow an immigrant population to take their place.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  30. PhilBest (5,125 comments) says:

    In other words, Spoff if we are to choose who are the honourable people and who are the ones practising deception and two-facedness, you would pick Hamas and the various Islamist and Pan-Arab movements as the honourable ones.

    Have you heard of the term; “Taqiyya”? The principle originated with Mohammed himself, as did the concept of the “Dhimmi”, second-class citizen; that is what an Islamist means when he refers to the Jews “living peaceably” in Islam; paying usurous tax rates and having no property rights, and so on. Very like the Blacks in Apartheid South Africa, which no-one seems to be prepared to justify.

    Horowitz gets booed off campuses……well, campuses are left- wing- dominated, utterly illiberal institutions, aren’t they. You need to read Horowitz’ many essays on this. So he used a picture from a movie……do you seriously believe that was because no women get stoned in real life Taleban situations?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  31. PhilBest (5,125 comments) says:

    I recommend Melanie Phillips Blog to everybody: lots of hard-hitting threads:

    http://www.spectator.co.uk/melaniephillips/

    And Whale Oil is a really good NZ one on this topic. Pop over there, Spoff, and take him on…….

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  32. reid (16,636 comments) says:

    I got this in an email last night, I really like it, cause it’s true. Both sides are wrong.

    Both sides can draw and paint some very convincing portraits of injustices and wrongs by the other side. That is NOT the issue. That is why people keep resorting to their color war mentality. Look at the points I have. Hey. stop. Look at the points, I have says the other side. Both sides stink. Both sides truly make me sick. No one will make the effort to see the truth of their roles whether pawns or poodles or designer victims of those that manipulate and despoil everything around us today.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  33. Ukulathiest (3 comments) says:

    Cough… splutter… ‘Israel…tries to (imperfectly) minimise such casualties.’

    I’m sure Israel has the equality of Muslim women high on its list priorities and is only bombing the fuck out of them for their own good.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  34. grumpyoldhori (2,362 comments) says:

    Bloody hell, reading the postings of Israelis they are trying to make out that the Arab armies were good in 48 and 67, they were a bloody rabble.
    The Israelis would have people believe that they had been fighting against a combination of the NZ 2, the Aussie 8th, the 90th light, and the German paras.

    The IDF is the best Arab army, which is not saying much.
    The Israelis were lucky that all the Muslims in the Middle east did not get involved, they would have found the Turks a bloody sight better than the Arabs.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  35. Danyl Mclauchlan (1,071 comments) says:

    Wow . . . how much of DPF’s archives consist of cut ‘n pastes by Phil Best that nobody else has bothered to read? I suspect Mr Best takes up considerably more disk space than DPF does.

    Whether countries are democracies that have basic human rights is a pretty big factor for me in deciding who to empathise with

    I tend to empathise more with the citizens whose governments deny them human rights – and I tend to sympathise with people who are being bombed, rather than the people who are bombing them. By this algebra my sympathy right now is roughly 99.5% Gaza, 0.5% Israeli.

    That aside, the original point is totally nonsensical. Israel is not particularly democratic – Jews in the west bank can vote but Arabs cannot – nor do Orthodox neighborhoods or settlements treat women particularly well. Does that mean that if Denmark, say, decided to reduce Tel Aviv to rubble you’d back the Danes?

    I also think its telling that people who ‘support Israel’ tend to say just that – they see the conflict in terms of a sports game in which you back one side over the other, no matter how things play out. This binary approach is not a very useful way of understanding what’s going on in a horribly complicated conflict.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  36. radar (319 comments) says:

    “Israel does often over-react but it is easy to criticise imperfect reactions from the “armchair” so to speak.”

    Wow. DPF just labelled the killing of hundreds of civilians an “imperfect reaction”. Can’t really say much to that that it doesn’t say for itself.

    “That is the stark reality for me. Hamas try to maximise civilian casualties, Israel does not, and tries to (imperfectly) minimise such casualties.”

    While Hamas has managed to kill a handful of Israelis in how many years? And Israel has managed to kill how many hundreds of civilians in a couple of weeks?

    I can’t help but think if the roles were reversed here and Hamas was lobbing hundreds of rockets into Israel resulting in as many deaths as the people of the Gaza strip have suffered, there would be far, far more outrage about this.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  37. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    “While Hamas has managed to kill a handful of Israelis in how many years? And Israel has managed to kill how many hundreds of civilians in a couple of weeks?”

    Why would it matter ……”a handful” ….ten………ten thousand, What does it matter to the MSM and the left wing?

    They don’t give a toss about Israelis living every day with the prospect that a terrorist rocket may come though your bedroom, or some insane genocidal maniac terrorist may decide to blow themselves up on your bus.
    If Israel have become skilled in defending themselves from this daily crap then don’t complain because their body count isn’t high. To do so is pretty sick

    Defining a ‘Civilian’ in Gaza would be like sorting the an ‘innocent villagers’ from the Vietcong during the Vietnam war – almost impossible to distinguish.

    The comparative high count is because the gutless terrorists hide behind the ‘civilians’.

    However incompetent Hamas are, the fact remains they would kill Israelis by the millions given the chance

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  38. OECD rank 22 kiwi (2,754 comments) says:

    Danyl Mclauchlan says at 5:22 pm:

    I also think its telling that people who ’support Israel’ tend to say just that – they see the conflict in terms of a sports game in which you back one side over the other, no matter how things play out.

    Then from a Christian perspective the score must be 2-0. :D

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  39. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    “So he used a picture from a movie……do you seriously believe that was because no women get stoned in real life Taleban situations?”

    Quite frankly I don’t know if “women get stoned in real life Taleban situations?”
    I dare say there are as many loony fundamentalists in that society as there are loony Christians.
    For instance, here is a story about a 17-year old Muslim girl, abducted by a middle-aged fundamentalist Christian man. He bundled her into a white van and drove off to a local park where he tried to “save her soul” by demanding at knifepoint that she convert to Christianity.
    As she refused, petrified and crying, he cut little crosses into the back of her hands and sides of her arm, small scars that have started to heal but will remind her forever of this terrifying ordeal.
    http://www.iol.co.za/index.php?click_id=24&art_id=ct20040409232620616U25245511&set_id=1
    This was in England.

    My point is that there are bizarre stories out there and there are people who use them to demonise the colour, religion or race of the perpetrator. This used to be called racism. I just wish that posters would question the information they are channeling before regurgitating it.

    Some poster up above was banging on about children being used by the Palestinians as suicide bombers. Now I don’t believe they do. The youngest suicide bomber I ever heard of was 16. We have, here in New Zealand, a kid of twelve who was locked up for accessory to murder. Kids do stupid things and I can imagine a Palestinian kid might well see martyring himself as a meritorious thing to do. I can also see some evil prick putting him up to it but I would not demonise a race of people on the basis of one or two idiots any more than I would say that New Zealanders teach their kids to be murderers on the basis of that celebrated case.

    One of the filthiest smears aimed at the Jews is the so-called “blood libel”. This piece of racism had it that Jews mix the blood of Gentile kids in their Passover Matzoh. For many years, this smear was roundly condemned as a lie and a hateful one at that. Well it turns out that a Rabbi and Professor of History at Bar Ilan University turned up some evidence that a loony sect in the middle ages did, in fact, commit such an act.
    https://www.haaretz.co.il/hasen/pages/ShArtStEng.jhtml?itemNo=825351&contrassID=1&subContrassID=1&title=%27Bar-Ilan%20turning%20aside%20pressure%20to%20fire%20author%20of%20blood%20libel%20book%27&dyn_server=172.20.5.5

    Now. Should anyone go about the place alleging that the Jewish People “must be the nastiest, most hate filled people on Earth” on the basis of what some lunatics did?

    I hope you take my point. It is simply wrong to characterise a people by what one or two might have done. That is what Horowitz and Phillips are prone to do.
    I’m not saying you shouldn’t read what they say but I think you owe it to both yourself and others to check out exactly what facts lay behind their assertions.

    Another case in point is the homosexual hanging in Iran. I traced this story back to the source – Iranfocus. Not only is Iranfocus run by the Mujaheddin el Kalq, a “terrorist” group according to the CIA, bent on gaining Western help in overthrowing the Government in Iran, the guy they hanged had killed a 13 year old boy in the course of a rape by sodomy.

    This is why I demand to see the evidence of these allegations.

    Horowitz is, in my view, a discredited source. He presented a picture taken from a movie as evidence of brutality but the girl in the picture was an actor. He tried to smear all Muslims with that picture of brutality. As there are between 1 and 1.8 billion Muslims in the World, if such practices were common among even 1% of them, I don’t think Horowitz would have had difficulty finding a genuine picture.

    Here is Patrick Starr chiming in with more alarmist nonsense.

    “They don’t give a toss about Israelis living every day with the prospect that a terrorist rocket may come though your bedroom, or some insane genocidal maniac terrorist may decide to blow themselves up on your bus.”

    Given that over 100 times more Israelis die on the roads each year than die from such attacks, I wonder how they sleep at all, worrying as they must do about the road toll. Nothing is said, of course, about the Palestinian who runs a far greater risk per capita, of being shot or bombed by the IDF.

    I must confess I am astonished at the attitudes of you (I assume) young Kiwis. If a bunch of immigrants threw me off my land, fenced me in about 14 kilometres away then brought a bunch of their mates in to settle on my land, I would have hoped you would lend me a hand in making a few rockets to fire on them.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  40. getstaffed (9,186 comments) says:

    Given that over 100 times more Israelis die on the roads each year than die from such attacks, I wonder how they sleep at all, worrying as they must do about the road toll

    Feels easy saying that doesn’t it… when you are I are nowhere near the [random civilian] targets of those rockets. I suggest you emigrate into the firing line and then repeat that statement. It’ll carry more weight. And before one hits, you may be able to convince a few Jews about the charity of Islam and the futility of refusing to allow 200 million Arabs drive them into the sea.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  41. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    Here we go again:
    “the futility of refusing to allow 200 million Arabs drive them into the sea.”

    If anything should ignite the Arab World one would think that this attack on Gaza would. Anybody seen the Arab World move?

    What is with all this alarmist crap.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  42. billyborker (1,102 comments) says:

    The Right luuurves to be alaaaarrrrmed.

    Its the only thing that sustains them in the long dark tea times of their souls.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  43. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    ” I would have hoped you would lend me a hand in making a few rockets to fire on them”

    define “them” spoff, because what you are saying right now is you support terrorist random murder against innocent civilians.
    ………..so dont hold your breath – (come to think of it, please do hold your breath)

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  44. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    Patrick Starr

    I think this illustrates the point rather well.

    If a bunch of immigrants threw me off my land, fenced me in about 14 kilometres away then brought a bunch of their mates in to settle on my land, I would have hoped you would lend me a hand in making a few rockets to fire on them.

    You say this makes me guilty of supporting terrorist random murder against innocent civilians.

    Well no not really. You see I would first say get off my land. If they refused I’d probably say get off my land or I will call the police, no wait, it is their police who have me lpenned up in this stinking ghetto. So I would appeal to a higher authority like say the U.N.
    If they still refused to let me back to what is mine after the U.N. said they must, it is then that I might decide that I will make it difficult for them to stay on my land.
    60 years later I am going to be pretty pissed off if I haven’t been allowed back on to my own property and I’m probably going to be hard to convince that those people occupying it are innocent. If the only form of resistance available to me were a piece of water pipe filled with whatever incendiary I can devise, yep, I’d probably lob as many as I could make. My intent is still not to murder innocents, they have the option to move off my frigging land, in accordance with the U.N. declaration which, each year, the U.N. dusts off and re-states.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  45. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    Who the F#@K is this numpty called Spoof?

    “Given that over 100 times more Israelis die on the roads each year than die from such attacks, I wonder how they sleep at all, worrying as they must do about the road toll”

    On this basis we should not be at all concerned about child homicides like Lilly-bing, Tamati Pokai, Coral-Ellen Burrows, Tangaroa Matiu, Ngatikaura Ngata and the Kahui twins, because these only average 4 per year whereas our road toll averages about 400.

    “Another case in point is the homosexual hanging in Iran. I traced this story back to the source – Iranfocus. Not only is Iranfocus run by the Mujaheddin el Kalq, a “terrorist” group according to the CIA, bent on gaining Western help in overthrowing the Government in Iran”

    If you think Iran is such a wonderful place then perhaps you would be happier there?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  46. radar (319 comments) says:

    “Defining a ‘Civilian’ in Gaza would be like sorting the an ‘innocent villagers’ from the Vietcong during the Vietnam war – almost impossible to distinguish.”

    If a group of children have been buried under the pile of rubble that was once their school I think it’s safe to assume they aren’t card-carrying members of Hamas.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  47. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    Patrick Starr

    “On this basis we should not be at all concerned about child homicides like Lilly-bing, Tamati Pokai, Coral-Ellen Burrows, Tangaroa Matiu, Ngatikaura Ngata and the Kahui twins, because these only average 4 per year whereas our road toll averages about 400.”

    Wrong analogy again. We are concerned about such homicides and we take action. We do not bomb the houses in the neighbourhood however.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  48. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    “If a group of children have been buried under the pile of rubble that was once their school I think it’s safe to assume they aren’t card-carrying members of Hamas.”

    No, and I agree. one single child death is one too many, however if Hamas chose to hide their weapons in the school, and fire their mortars from the roof of the school then it is Hamas who are using children as human shields – so who is the real bad guy here?

    If a single IDF soldier were found to have deliberately killed an innocent Palestinian child he would face the full force of military justice system.
    If a single Hamas terrorist were found to have deliberately killed an innocent jewish child he would be treated as a hero

    Speaks volumes for me anyway

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  49. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    “We do not bomb the houses in the neighbourhood however.” well the only proof we have of that is that Hamas randomly fire the rockets into the Israeli neighbourhoods. They dont care who it hits, provided it’s a jew

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  50. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    UN Relief and Works Agency spokesman Chris Gunness reported this evening that the Israeli army is privately briefing diplomats on the fact that its previous claims about their attack on a UN-run girls’ school in the Gaza Strip, which caused over 100 civilian casualties, were baseless.

    The attack occurred yesterday, when Israeli mortars deliberately fired three shells at the school, which was filled with hundreds of displaced civilians at the time, killing at least 46 and wounding 55 others. As international outrage began to well over the enormous civilian toll of the attack, Israel declared the killings “according to procedures” and claimed Hamas had fired rockets from the school’s courtyard, making the attack on hundreds of innocent civilians self-defense.
    http://news.antiwar.com/2009/01/07/un-israel-admits-claims-about-attacked-school-baseless/

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  51. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    I would believe the word of a UNRWA person about as much as I’d believe Hamas. They support Hamas and are filled with people like you. Liars

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  52. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    well the only proof we have of that is that Hamas randomly fire the rockets into the Israeli neighbourhoods. They dont care who it hits, provided it’s a jew

    I don’t think they give a rat’s arse if anyone is killed. It is an act against property – the buildings that are erected on the land that was stolen from them. As I said, the people occupying Sderot have the option of checking the title to the land on which they dwell. If it is not legal, they should move out and they will no longer be in harm’s way. Perhaps you should address this question. Who owns the land upon which Sderot sits?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  53. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    They support Hamas and are filled with people like you. Liars

    Before one can correctly be accused of being a liar, it is necessary to be caught in a lie. Please point to a lie that I have told.

    I believe you are beginning to splutter.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  54. Danyl Mclauchlan (1,071 comments) says:

    Then from a Christian perspective the score must be 2-0.

    Heh.

    One of the things that bugged me about being in Israel is that people kept referring to me as a Christian.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  55. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    If a single IDF soldier were found to have deliberately killed an innocent Palestinian child he would face the full force of military justice system.

    Approximately 1200 Palestinian children have been killed since September 2000. According to the British Medical Journal, the majority were killed by “the sniper’s wound”. This implies targeting.
    How many IDF soldiers have been up on charges during this period?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  56. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    and I believe you are beginning to fester. Accusations don’t require the necessity of the smoking gun, grow a brain, however if I could be bothered going through your largely unsubstantiated left wing anti semitic propaganda and diatribe, on either your 2:03 or your 7:25 I could expose plenty

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  57. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    “According to the British Medical Journal, the majority were killed by “the sniper’s wound”. This implies targeting.”

    Link please??????????????????

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  58. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    I could expose plenty

    Why then have you not done it?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  59. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    Link please? (One question mark is sufficient)

    “I noted that two thirds of all Palestinian child fatalities had been caused by small arms fire (from relatively close range), in fully half of the cases to the head or upper torso—the sniper’s wound. My statement that “clearly, soldiers are routinely authorised to shoot to kill children in situations of minimal or no threat” has now been confirmed in emphatic fashion—the authority being Israeli soldiers who have committed these acts themselves.”

    http://www.bmj.com/cgi/content/extract/331/7518/699?HITS=10&sortspec=relevance&hits=10&stored_search=&author1=Summerfield&maxtoshow=&andorexactfulltext=and&FIRSTINDEX=0&fulltext=Israeli&resourcetype=1&searchid=1127601519980_8774&RESULTFORMAT=

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  60. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    Here’s an easy one

    “If the only form of resistance available to me were a piece of water pipe filled with whatever incendiary I can devise, yep, I’d probably lob as many as I could make. My intent is still not to murder innocents”

    Youre clearly implying Hamas are not trying to kill innocent civilians

    Hamas: “We’ll kill Jewish children anywhere”

    http://www.jihadwatch.org/archives/024252.php

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  61. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    Here’s an easy second one. You state”

    “Approximately 1200 Palestinian children have been killed since September 2000. According to the British Medical Journal, the majority were killed by “the sniper’s wound”. This implies targeting”

    Your link has no reference to 1,200 children and states “Palestinian child fatalities had been caused by small arms fire (from relatively close range)”

    Bullshitting again spoff ?

    These are probably kids who wouldn’t strap on their bomb belt

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  62. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    Hamas: “We’ll kill Jewish children anywhere”

    This alleged statement was made in the heat of battle subsequent to the current bombing attack which has taken around a hundred Palestinian children’s lives. It is sourced from a rabid Islamophobic site yet, even if it were reliable, it is understandable under the circumstances. I too, given these circumstances, would probably forget my usual reserve and lash out.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  63. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    Your link has no reference to 1,200 children

    Btselem, the Israeli Human Rights organisation, counts the Palestinian child deaths at over 1000 for the period up to the current atrocity. I stated “approximately” because we do not yet know how many child deaths will result from this bombing of civilian areas which is, by the way, a war crime.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  64. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    This has been reported by the MSM worldwide.
    “The Hamas leader Mahmoud Az-Zahar called to murder Israelis and Jews worldwide, including children. “The Israelis have sentenced their children to death… They have legitimized the killing of their people all over the world,” he said. Hamas’ platform calls for all Jews to convert to Islam or be killed, based on an Islamic saying (Hadith)”

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  65. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    Link please.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  66. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    So by taking some approximate number based over the entire decades old conflict, and associating it with the unrelated BMJ report you claimed the majority of approximately 1,200 were killed by sniper fire?

    Advice to Spoff, – when your in a hole – STOP DIGGING

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  67. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    some approximate number based over the entire decades old conflict,

    The figures are from September 2000. A decade has not yet passed

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  68. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/israel/4127907/Hamas-leader-Revenge-for-Israels-Gaza-assault-will-be-murder-of-Jewish-children-across-the-world.html

    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/middle_east/article5454204.ece

    http://www.stoptheaclu.com/archives/2009/01/06/hamas-az-zahar-kill-the-jewish-children/

    do you want all of them of do you get the picture?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  69. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    so where’s you link to 1,200 children since September 2000?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  70. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    This has been reported by the MSM worldwide.
    “The Hamas leader Mahmoud Az-Zahar called to murder Israelis and Jews worldwide, including children.

    Link please

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  71. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    Seems we are getting a little overlap here.

    Mahmoud Az-Zahar is a co-founder of Hamas and a member of the Hamas leadership in the Gaza Strip. Since the formation of the Hamas/”Change and Reform” government in the Palestinian National Authority in March 2006, az-Zahar has served as foreign minister in the government of prime minister Ismail Haniyeh. Prior to that he was seen as a major candidate among the Hamas members elected to the Palestinian Legislative Council for prime minister, as he was at that time the most senior official within the organization. In the end the party decided to go with the then-unknown Haniyeh because az-Zahar is considered the leader of the movement’s radical wing.

    The leader of Hamas is Haniyeh. the statements made by Mahmoud Az-Zahar are probably as reliable as those of Rabbi Ovadia Yosef:

    “It is forbidden to be merciful to them. You must send missiles to them and annihilate them. They are evil and damnable,”
    ……Rabbi Yosef is one of the most powerful religious figures in Israel”
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/1270038.stm

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  72. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    so where’s you link to 1,200 children since September 2000?
    …there are plenty. Note that these detail the deaths prior to this latest atrocity. I have already qualified this.
    http://www.ifamericansknew.org/
    http://www.btselem.org/English/

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  73. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    “Rabbi Yosef is one of the most powerful religious figures in Israel”………………….ummm, so what? Hamas have no recognised leadership they confess to. The ‘radical’ wing of a terrorist organisation doesn’t say much, except they are the ones doing the fighting, therefore leading the charge.

    besides a religious figure in NZ is Father Burns – does he speak for the NZ government – or the people? Nope!

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  74. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    Hamas have no recognised leadership they confess to.

    They have a Prime Minister elected in what Jimmy Carter described as the most scrupulously fair elections he had ever witnessed.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  75. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    “…there are plenty. Note that these detail the deaths prior to this latest atrocity. I have already qualified this.”

    Yeah right, Like any figures from Catherine Cook could be reliable http://www.pcdc.edu.ps/pal_children_and_intifada.htm

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  76. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    so on the question of leadership and collateral damage can I draw an anology?

    In 1932-33 (?) Hilter was voted into power and formed a minority govt. Did the german people know he was a genocidal maniac when they voted for him?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  77. Southern Raider (1,831 comments) says:

    Spoff what about Hamas saying they supported a ceasefire where Israel would stop the offensive, open the blockades etc, but even if Israel followed the ceasefire terms to the letter Hamas would still reserve the right to fire more rockets.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  78. Spoff (275 comments) says:

    The ‘radical’ wing of a terrorist organisation doesn’t say much

    This is where the nub of the problem lies.

    To the Germans during WWII, the Marquis or Resistance was a “terrorist” outfit.

    My main concern in this affair is not the rights and wrongs of the Palestine region. It is that young fellows like you, my countrymen, have come to accept that a label can be put upon an organisation and, as soon as that label has been applied, it is no longer deserving of an audience, due process of law (be it International Law or otherwise) and it’s political figures can be assassinated and innocent bystanders can be bombed and strafed on the flimsiest of excuses.

    Hamas is not a “terrorist outfit”.

    They have offered a meaningful truce and made their agenda very clear.

    The following is a large post. Whether or not you believe it to be sincere, I suggest that if Israel wanted peace, it should have been tried. If it was broken in anything but a token way by radicals, I would join you in condemnation of Hamas.

    “We will not sell our people or principles for foreign aid
    Palestinians voted for Hamas because of our refusal to give up their rights. But we are ready to make a just peace”

    It is widely recognised that the Palestinians are among the most politicised and educated peoples in the world. When they went to the polls last Wednesday they were well aware of what was on offer and those who voted for Hamas knew what it stood for. They chose Hamas because of its pledge never to give up the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people and its promise to embark on a programme of reform. There were voices warning them, locally and internationally, not to vote for an organisation branded by the US and EU as terrorist because such a democratically exercised right would cost them the financial aid provided by foreign donors.

    The day Hamas won the Palestinian democratic elections the world’s leading democracies failed the test of democracy. Rather than recognise the legitimacy of Hamas as a freely elected representative of the Palestinian people, seize the opportunity created by the result to support the development of good governance in Palestine and search for a means of ending the bloodshed, the US and EU threatened the Palestinian people with collective punishment for exercising their right to choose their parliamentary representatives.

    We are being punished simply for resisting oppression and striving for justice. Those who threaten to impose sanctions on our people are the same powers that initiated our suffering and continue to support our oppressors almost unconditionally. We, the victims, are being penalised while our oppressors are pampered. The US and EU could have used the success of Hamas to open a new chapter in their relations with the Palestinians, the Arabs and the Muslims and to understand better a movement that has so far been seen largely through the eyes of the Zionist occupiers of our land.

    Our message to the US and EU governments is this: your attempt to force us to give up our principles or our struggle is in vain. Our people who gave thousands of martyrs, the millions of refugees who have waited for nearly 60 years to return home and our 9,000 political and war prisoners in Israeli jails have not made those sacrifices in order to settle for close to nothing.

    Hamas has been elected mainly because of its immovable faith in the inevitability of victory; and Hamas is immune to bribery, intimidation and blackmail. While we are keen on having friendly relations with all nations we shall not seek friendships at the expense of our legitimate rights. We have seen how other nations, including the peoples of Vietnam and South Africa, persisted in their struggle until their quest for freedom and justice was accomplished. We are no different, our cause is no less worthy, our determination is no less profound and our patience is no less abundant.

    Our message to the Muslim and Arab nations is this: you have a responsibility to stand by your Palestinian brothers and sisters whose sacrifices are made on behalf of all of you. Our people in Palestine should not need to wait for any aid from countries that attach humiliating conditions to every dollar or euro they pay despite their historical and moral responsibility for our plight. We expect you to step in and compensate the Palestinian people for any loss of aid and we demand you lift all restrictions on civil society institutions that wish to fundraise for the Palestinian cause.

    Our message to the Palestinians is this: our people are not only those who live under siege in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip but also the millions languishing in refugee camps in Lebanon, Jordan and Syria and the millions spread around the world unable to return home. We promise you that nothing in the world will deter us from pursuing our goal of liberation and return. We shall spare no effort to work with all factions and institutions in order to put our Palestinian house in order. Having won the parliamentary elections, our medium-term objective is to reform the PLO in order to revive its role as a true representative of all the Palestinian people, without exception or discrimination.

    Our message to the Israelis is this: we do not fight you because you belong to a certain faith or culture. Jews have lived in the Muslim world for 13 centuries in peace and harmony; they are in our religion “the people of the book” who have a covenant from God and His Messenger Muhammad (peace be upon him) to be respected and protected. Our conflict with you is not religious but political. We have no problem with Jews who have not attacked us – our problem is with those who came to our land, imposed themselves on us by force, destroyed our society and banished our people.

    We shall never recognise the right of any power to rob us of our land and deny us our national rights. We shall never recognise the legitimacy of a Zionist state created on our soil in order to atone for somebody else’s sins or solve somebody else’s problem. But if you are willing to accept the principle of a long-term truce, we are prepared to negotiate the terms. Hamas is extending a hand of peace to those who are truly interested in a peace based on justice.

    · Khalid Mish’al is head of the political bureau of Hamas

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2006/jan/31/comment.israelandthepalestinians

    I shall cruise this blog in the morning. Until then – goodnight.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  79. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    Spoff the answer to my 10.58 is no, The German people, by and large did not know.
    Did Germany get their arse kicked? Yes
    Did Germany suffer major collateral damage? Yes
    Did the world feel sorry for Germany -Nope

    So in 2006 did the Palestinian people know Hamas were terrorists and would continue conflict with Israel when Hamas won a landslide victory? Of course they did.

    “Hamas is not a “terrorist outfit”. Now youre talking more bullshit. The EU, USA, Australia, Canada to name a few all declare Hamas a terrorist organistaion. Even the HRW stated that Hamas’ leaders “should be held accountable for the war crimes and crimes against humanity” that have been committed by its members.

    “They have offered a meaningful truce and made their agenda very clear”, Yeah right. The cease fire only applies to Israel. Hamas reserve the ability to contiue firing rockets into civilian targets in Israel

    You’ve got more crap in you than a christmas turkey

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  80. unaha-closp (1,180 comments) says:

    Hamas is extending a hand of peace to those who are truly interested in a peace based on justice.

    This conflict is an exercise in defining “justice”. If Khalid Mish’al wants “justice” to align to the principles of that press release he best get himself better weapons than a few outdated rockets.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  81. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    Is it just me, or is the reporting from Gaza getting more outrageous by the day?

    “More than 100 members of one extended Gazan family were allegedly herded by Israeli soldiers into a house that was subsequently shelled, killing up to 30 people and leaving others wounded and living with the corpses for three days”
    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/middle_east/article5485150.ece

    considering this is the most densely populated area on earth that’s one big house …….and one big family

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  82. Glutaemus Maximus (2,207 comments) says:

    2 million Gazans killed by one Israeli Sniper Bullet, all infant children, all at a UN school, hiding from Apache gunship which had 5 minutes previously killed all the older children..

    Pallywood have produced ‘real film’ of 5 million fathers in brown jackets saving the same remaining child.

    The one with the painted on wounds.

    Must be true because the Lefty Twats like Minto say so. Un confirms Minto as hero, and also awards honor to Mugabe for best Country Governance. Second Prize goes to Sudan

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  83. Glutaemus Maximus (2,207 comments) says:

    The real worry is that the Hamas declared intent is actually impossible for them to fullfil.

    But just suppose they achieve their aims and delete Israel?

    What would they actually do then?

    The ridiculous, and totally dispropotionate amount of UN aid should stop. ( It never will, because the UN is a business)

    They haven’t got a fuckin clue how to run a Country.

    They are F all use, and infact their own erradication by way of Crucifixion might make a good film.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  84. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    It’s pretty worrying alright. Especially when you consider the terrorist support from that other lovely example of a ‘civilised society’- Iran

    “The student groups claim that more than 70,000 people throughout Iran have registered as volunteer suicide bombers since Israel launched its assault against Hamas-ruled Gaza on Dec. 27”
    http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5g17vMkxq9PE5fEhjqDPVpjI70xxgD95KETBO0

    always amazes me how they seem so outraged about death, yet all seem so keen to bring about their own

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  85. Patrick Starr (3,674 comments) says:

    A good article from Greg Sheridan of The Australian

    “Apart from its repeated and blood-curdlingly clear rhetoric, the Hamas Charter shows that it has no negotiable aims. It wants the destruction of Israel and the death of the Jews. …….
    From Israel’s point of view, it is very clear that if it leaves Hamas alone, Hamas will gather more and better rockets, long-range and with better guidance systems.
    Hamas and Hezbollah together can then present two types of strategic threat to Israel, beyond merely killing its citizens. They can shut down vast swaths of Israeli society and industry with a rocket offensive. Or they can hit strategic targets, at least from Dimona to Haifa.
    Israel had no alternative but to act, although how it will restore a future equilibrium in Gaza remains deeply unclear”
    http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,24877778-5013460,00.html

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  86. ross (1,437 comments) says:

    > Hamas try to maximise civilian casualties, Israel does not.

    Oh, David, you’re killing me with this pro-Israel nonsense. It would be laughable were it not so serious. The UN gives the IDF the coordinates of a school where many kids are sheltering and what does the IDF do? It bombs the place! Talk about shooting fish in a barrel.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote