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william james martin

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  • President of Israel declares Israeli Squatting in Palestinian West Bank a "Right", key to Zionism
    • william james martin 08/25/2015 at 9:47 am

      It is my understanding that "The Land of Israel" belongs to Jews by 'historical right" is universally accepted within Israel and that the Palestinians are interlopers who settled Palestine after the Jews were expelled in 70 CE (or 135 CE). Indeed Netanyahu has said as much many times.

      The archaeological and historical evidence is that no one, or virtually no one, was expelled from Palestine due to the Roman conquest in 70, or 135 CE, Jewish nationalist mythology to the contrary, and historical, linguistic (see Paul Wexler), and genetic evidence is that that modern day Jews derive from Russian -Slavo-Turks and not from ancient Judaeans.

      Imagine an attempt to write into international law the principle something like: "If some group celebrated your religion 2000 years ago and lived in a certain region of the world, but now others are living there, then you have the right to ethnically cleanse those people and replace them with people of that religion."

      Laughable certainly. But, of course, this is not the attitude of the Jewish-nationalist. Rather what right holds for Jews is not universal but applies only to Jews, and that international law is not applicable and does not subordinate the "Jewish right of Return."

  • Barak-- Netanyahu was on verge of Attacking Iran 3 Times 2010-12 (Why Listening to him on Iran Diplomacy is Daft)
    • Not only has Iran not attack another country in modern history but it listens and quietly absorbes Netanyahu's threats to attack Iran which come about every day while Mossad assassinates its nuclear engineers

  • How the Israel Lobbies hurt U of Illinois-UC & 1st Amendment (Salaita Case)
    • If I am not mistaken, Juan, you were also the victim of a intervention of the recent Israeli ambassador, Michael Oren, to prevent your being hired by the History Department at Yale.

  • How Iran Deal Could Change the Middle East
    • It is time we rejected Theodore Herzl's century old fundamental dogma that Jews and gentiles cannot live together and that anti-semitism is universal and omnipresent.

    • This compilation of optimistic generalizations goes a bit too far in suggesting the Israel will, anytime in the near or intermediate future , or any time at all, open its nuclear sites to international inspection. And the the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict settling at the two state solution does not look a bit closer even after the signing of the agreement with Iran.

      And the integration of Israel into the region does not seem to me to be desirable since Israel is a state built on the principle separation of of Jews and gentiles.

      One democratic egalitarian state is the only fair and stable solution to this century long conflict.

  • Obama: Opponents of Iran Deal are Warmongers
    • If Obama had really pulled no punches, he would have told the Republicans, and others in the US Congress, that they were acolytes and traitors and in the pocket of a foreign government.

  • Amnesty Visualizes Israeli War Crimes on anniversary of Gaza Black Friday
    • william james martin 07/30/2015 at 8:08 am

      In 1945, the US exploded the nuclear bomb, known as ‘Fat Man’ over Nagasaki. Fat Man had a blast yield of 21 kilotons of TNT equivalent explosive potential.
      Israel exploded the equivalent amount of explosive power over Gaza this past summer.
      Rashid Khalidi says in his essay, “The Dahiya Doctrine”: “During the latest campaign, stretching over fifty days in July and August of 2014, Israel’s air force launched more than six thousands air attacks, and its army and navy fired about fifty thousand artillery and tank shells. Together, they utilized what has been estimated as a total of twenty one kilotons, or twenty one thousand tons, of high explosives. The attack from air involved weapons ranging from drones and American Apache helicopters firing US-made Hellfire missiles to American F-16’s carrying two thousand pound bombs. According to the commander of the Israeli Air Force, there were several hundred F-16 attacks on targets in Gaza, most of them using these powerful munitions. A two thousand pound bomb creates a crater 15 meters wide by 11 meters deep and propels lethal fragments to a radius of 365 meters. One or two of these can destroy a multistory building …

  • No, Mr. Netanyahu, Iran isn't trying to Take over the world & it isn't ISIL
    • I might add that Iran showed considerable restraint when, in 1988, the US Navy shot down an civilian Iranian airliner killing 290 passengers, including 66 children and 16 crew. This event ranks eighth among the deadliest disasters in aviation history. (Wikipedia)

      Imagine if Iran had taken down an American passenger plain killing 290 American civilians.

  • Who does Jerusalem belong To?
  • Tom Cotton's 'Chickenhawk' Taunt at Iran FM Demeans Jeb Bush, GOP Field
    • The last president with significant military experience was Jimmy Carter who was a Naval officer, commander of a submarine, and nuclear engineer serving under Hymen Rickover who oversaw the conversion to nuclear power propulsion.
      Because he concentrated his presidency on peacemaking and the establishment of treaty regimes, his considerable military experience and military expertise is frequently overlooked, or not even known at all, nor factored in when analyzing many of his presidential decisions.

    • william james martin 05/03/2015 at 8:59 am

      The last president with significant military experience was Jimmy Carter who was a Naval officer, commander of a submarine, and nuclear engineer serving under Hymen Rickover who oversaw the conversion to nuclear power propulsion.

      Because he concentrated his presidency on peacemaking and the establishment of treaty regimes, his considerable military experience and military expertise is frequently overlooked, or not even known at all, nor factored in when analyzing many of his presidential decisions.

  • The Middle East Policy of President Bernie Sanders
    • william james martin 05/02/2015 at 2:28 pm

      You spoke of a disproportionate response by Israel to the rocket flux by Hamas.

      That, of course, assumes Hamas was the initiator and Israel, in its eternal innocents, was just 'responding'

      That is very much a false assumption.

      However that may be, consider the following:

      n 1945, the US exploded the nuclear bomb, known as ‘Fat Man’ over Nagasaki. Fat Man had a blast yield of 21 kilotons of TNT equivalent explosive potential.

      Israel exploded the equivalent amount of explosive power over Gaza this past summer.

      Rashid Khalidi says in his essay, “The Dahiya Doctrine”: “During the latest campaign, stretching over fifty days in July and August of 2014, Israel’s air force launched more than six thousands air attacks, and its army and navy fired about fifty thousand artillery and tank shells. Together, they utilized what has been estimated as a total of twenty one kilotons, or twenty one thousand tons, of high explosives. The attack from air involved weapons ranging from drones and American Apache helicopters firing US-made Hellfire missiles to American F-16’s carrying two thousand pound bombs. According to the commander of the Israeli Air Force, there were several hundred F-16 attacks on targets in Gaza, most of them using these powerful munitions. A two thousand pound bomb creates a crater 15 meters wide by 11 meters deep and propels lethal fragments to a radius of 365 meters. One or two of these can destroy a multistory building …

  • Obama with Drama: Translating his comments on Israel's Netanyahu from the Vulcan
    • There are those who are excited because of the Huffington Post interview in which Obama expressed his disbelieve that Netanyahu was seeking a two state solution and also suggested that there might be a new response to Palestinian initiatives in the UN Security Council.

      But it is also important to recognize what else he said.
      He said that America remained committed to the security of Israel and that financial and security and military cooperation between the two countries would not change.

      He also said that he believes that Israel was founded on the basis of its historic Jewish homeland and the need to have a Jewish homeland. Thus Obama again embraces the Zionist mythology of a two millennial long 'homeland' awaiting the 'return' of its children.

      He seems to be saying that his only problem is with Netanyahu and that everything else is just fine.

      Obama strikes me as woefully uninformed about undemocratic nature of Israel and of the many laws within Israel which privilege Jews and denies equal rights to the Palestinian minority inside Israel.

      He does not seem to me to even be keeping up with the day to day violence perpetrated against Israel's Palestinian minority or of those living under occupation.

  • Tom Friedman & funding ISIL: Israel/Iran Derangement Syndrome
  • Bad News for US Biotech: GOP's Scott Walker so anti-science he can't affirm Evolution
    • Ronald Reagan did not believe in evolution. He said it was a 'theory only' and was increasingly regarded with skepticism by the scientific community.

  • Why Obama is Right to avoid double standard about Modern Christian Atrocities
    • Let's not forget the slavery of New Hampshire and Rhode Island and that there have been slave burial grounds uncovered in New York City.

  • The Latest Blow to Israeli-Palestinian Peace
    • william james martin 01/24/2015 at 9:51 am

      This article is a synopsis of what everyone already knows who has followed this issue.

  • Obama to GOP: More Iran sanctions lead to War (& 7 other Foreign Policy points in SOTU)
    • william james martin 01/21/2015 at 10:19 am

      Obama said, "When what you’re doing doesn’t work for 50 years, it’s time to try something new."

      Substituting '25' for '50' in this sentence, it might have occurred to him that this concept should apply to the Israeli-Palestinian 'peace talks'.

      And maybe he could refrain from using his veto at the UN Security Council in order to keep Israeli-Palestinian diplomacy in the same unproductive rut in which Israel continues its ethnic cleansing policies while the Palestinians get nothing but verbiage.

  • Israel's Syria Strike: Is it trying to Help al-Qaeda vs. Hizbullah & Iran?
    • william james martin 01/20/2015 at 9:22 am

      Israeli election year internal politics might be another reason, along with opportunity.

      And it is worth keeping in mind, Netanyahu is a not totally rational man, along with some of his friends.

  • Top 5 Five reasons 2014 was a game-changer for Palestine
    • william james martin 12/29/2014 at 10:55 am

      Ramzy Baroud has left out of his analysis the decision of the PA to ditch the so-called 'peace talks' and to pursue legal remedies in the UN and in international bodies, which, in my way of thinking, is more important than those he mentions. The voting in the UN Security Council stating that Israel must withdraw from all land conquered in the '67 War and to recognize east Jerusalem as the capital of the state of Palestine my come up this week. The US may veto it, but if it does, it and Obama will pay a price and the PA has said it will quickly pursue memberships in many other UN and international bodies and conventions.

      The so-called 'peace process' which has been ongoing for the last 25 years concomitant with the erosion of the right of Palestinians to live in dignity along with the erosion of their land and resources is a complete sham designed to gain time while Israel creates facts on the ground. It is a complete sham and everyone, but President Obama knows it.

      The decision to pursue legal remedies in international institutions and conventions is the only novel happening in this ongoing melodrama in decades.

  • The momentum to recognize a Palestinian State is unstoppable
    • william james martin 10/22/2014 at 6:00 pm

      Despite Obama's ramblings to the contrary, it is a complete myth that Jews longed for a homeland for 2000 years.

      During the 2000 year period, the numbers of Jewish pilgrimages to Palestine was minuscule compared to the numbers of such Christian pilgrimages.

    • Mr Balfour's motivation was not political, except perhaps secondarily.

      Mr Balfour was a true believer embedded in a religious Christian culture which favored the Zionist program from the time of the early Puritans well into the 19th and 20th century when Zionism was championed by such powerful figures as Lord Shaftesbury, and Prime Minister Palmerston and about every other English politician including, later, Winston Churchill and whose Zionist appeals appear in the English literature from Milton to George Eliot.

      In fact, Zionism is a creation of Christians, English Christian mostly, and not Jews.despite what Obama and Mr Netanyahu think. Zionism did not become a project of Jews until about the 1880's in the Russian Pale.

  • Israel's Gaza Campaign Endangers US Security: Why Obama & Kerry are Furious
    • william james martin 07/28/2014 at 7:43 pm

      Obama may or may not be furious. but he is still blabbing about "Israel's right to defend itself" and still calling Hamas a "terrorist" group and even using Israel's pet phrase. "Hamas's terrorist infrastructure".

      Anyone who thinks Obama is progressive on this issue should think again.

      Obama supports everything Israel is doing, he just want to keep the killing of Gazans down to a more manageable number.

  • Is Rula Jebreal right about US Media Bias against Palestinians?
    • william james martin 07/23/2014 at 1:12 pm

      Don't forget. The Flat Earth Society deserves its equal time also.

    • william james martin 07/22/2014 at 4:47 pm

      Well, part of his background, Juan, is that he is thoroughly committed Zionist. There are a number of Youtube videos of him defending the establishment of the State of Israel and it great value to the world.

      I have never heard of him giving any defense of a Palestinian state or anything Palestinian.

      He is a polished professional. But both he and CNN have a pronounced bias.

    • Do not forget the extreme pro-Israel bias of CNN's anchor, Wolf Blitzer, formerly of the Jerusalem Post.

      It is pretty clear from his many remarks, introductions, summaries, etc that his perspective is that of an Israel.

      During the era of Palestinian suicide bombings, in the early 90's, CNN would provide all day long stories and pictures of the scene of the bombings, continually coming back to these scenes throughout the day, while the many more Palestinian deaths carried out by IDF under Ariel Sharon were ignored.

      Nor was there any context given for these suicide bombings which were usually responses to IDF assassination of Hamas leaders, including Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, head and founder of Hamas, and his successor, Dr Rantissi.

      Some saw in these assassination, a strategy of Ariel Sharon of intentionally provoking such Palestinian responses such as suicide bombings in order to reap political benefit knowing the CNN and other media would giver full coverage to the deaths or injuries of civilians in Israel while ignoring the provocations for it or the many more Palestinian deaths at the hands of the Israeli army and air force.

  • Gaza: 4 Dead Boys on the Beach & Israel's Precision War
    • william james martin 07/17/2014 at 9:05 am

      It may not have been an accident.

      Many Israeli soldiers, some of whom are philosophically aligned with the settler movement, Gush Emunim, ideals, and imbued with rabbinical talk of Jewish superiority and squatter Palestinians on Jewish land will happily kill Palestinian children. And they do so with complete impunity, or if it happens to be newsworthy, are given a slap on the wrist, and we learn that it is "under investigation."

      Witness the cold bloodied murder of two Palestinian youths shot through the heart while casually walking across the street and caught inadvertently on security cameras. I have not heard of any prosecution of the IDF soldiers who killed the boys.

  • The Map: A Palestinian Nation Thwarted & Speaking Truth to Power
    • william james martin 07/13/2014 at 8:01 pm

      The only concern of the Zionist movement for the Jews being slaughtered in Europe was fear that it might divert resources and attention from the effort to build a Jewish state in Palestine.

      This statement by David Ben Gurion is typical:

      "Ben Gurion who told a meeting of the Labor Zionist in December:

      If I knew that it would be possible to save all the children in Germany by bringing them over to England, and only half of them by transferring them to Eretz Israel, then I would opt for the second alternative. For we must weigh not only the life of these children, but also the history of the People of Israel.13"

    • william james martin 07/13/2014 at 7:56 pm

      Whatever their personal views, you are exaggerating the influence of Henry Ford and Charles Lindberg on the American political psyche, as you are distorting the motivations of the Christian Zionists.

    • The main reason the US mostly blocked Jewish immigration from Nazi German in the years before and during the Second WW was due to Zionist efforts to divert European Jews to Palestine.

      In particular, Rabbi and Zionist leader Stephen Wise testified before congress that the bill sponsored by Will Rogers Jr and Guy Gillette to allow a significant number of Jews to enter the US was seriously defective because it did not mention Palestine.

  • Bush Trifecta lands on Obama: Gaza, Iraq and Afghanistan Imploding
    • william james martin 07/10/2014 at 8:44 pm

      One cannot even imagine Obama engaging Israel the way Jimmy Carter engaged the Israeli leader Manachem Begin, and Anwar el Sadat at Camp David. Obama simply does not have the knowledge of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to engage Netanyahu in the same kind of extended debates which took place between Carter and Begin at Camp David in 1978.

    • william james martin 07/09/2014 at 5:38 pm

      Obama is not just cleaning up the mess that Bush left. Obama's inaction on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has allowed the situation to deteriorate, much like a physician leaving an open wound to fester while just wishing it would go away.

      During the Obama administration, Palestinian rights and property and resources have further diminished at an accelerating pace while the Israeli government has become more entrenched in its program of ethnic cleansing, and the settlers and settlements more entrenched in the occupied territories.

      Obama's consistent and predictable vetoes of any Security Council resolution attempting to bring Israel into compliance with international law sets the precedence of a Jewish state above the law and international norms.

    • william james martin 07/09/2014 at 10:41 am

      Obama wanted to 'pivot to the East' because he knows or understands or cares very little about the Middle East and just wants it to go away. He has not a clue what to do about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict except to hand it over to George Mitchell and then, when that failed, to hand it to John Kerry and to leave it to them to solve the problem without any guidance at all and without any presidential pressure being applied to Israel
      .
      On the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Obama accepts completely the Zionist narrative of people longing for a homeland for two thousand years and then creating a state because of Nazi oppression, amplifying the myth of expulsion of Jews from Palestine 70 AD, which did not happen, and that the of the ‘longing to return’ persisting over two millennia.

      In fact there was no longing of Jews to “return” to Palestine and the Jewish embrace of Zionism did not occur until the 1880’s. It did so in the Russian Pale because of the onset of waves of anti-Semitism.
      .
      The Jewish embrace of Zionism was preceded and conditioned by four centuries of Christian Zionism with almost the entire nineteenth century leadership of England exerting it best efforts to promote a Jewish ingathering in Palestine.
      The Zionist movement has never credited the contribution of the Christian Zionists in creating and then promoting Zionism.

  • In the Deaths of 3 Israeli Teens, Likud Policies are also Implicated
    • william james martin 07/01/2014 at 11:32 am

      The world is outraged by the murder of the three Israeli teenagers - from President Obama to Pope Francis to the UN Secretary General.

      In the meantime, while the Israeli Operation Whatever was going on, 10 Palestinians, mostly young people were murdered by the Israeli troops, two of them, on camera for the world to see, shot through the heart while doing nothing more than just walking across the street.

      According to the website, Ifamericansknew,org, which coordinates its figures with other human rights organizations, including B'Tselem, Israel has killed 1,523 children over the last 14 years, since Oct of 2000. That amounts to roughly 108 children per year, or roughly one Palestinian child killed every three days.

      Murder an Israeli Jew and world leaders go berserk. Murder a hundred Palestinian children, and they do not even bother to shrug.

  • Israeli Occupation Army harasses Palestinians on Pretext of Missing Settler Youth
    • With the US government, as well as the US president, focused on Iraq, Prime Minister Netanyahu is using the diversion of attention and the occasion of the three kidnapped teenagers to destroy Hamas in the West Bank.

      According to the Jerusalem Post, in November of 1989, Mr. Netanyahu, then Deputy Foreign Minister, told an audience at Bar Ilan University, that the government had failed to exploit internationally favorable situations, such as the Tiananmen Square massacre in June of 1989 when world attention and the media were focused on China, to carry out ‘large scale’ expulsions at a time when ‘the danger would have been relatively small’. Later, when Netanyahu denied making these statements, the Jerusalem Post produced a tape recording of this speech

  • Israel Accused of War Crime over Army "Execution" of Innocent Palestinian Teens
    • william james martin 05/22/2014 at 9:33 am

      More typically: From the Guardian, Nov 2005:

      "An Israeli army officer who fired the entire magazine of his automatic rifle into a 13-year-old Palestinian girl and then said he would have done the same even if she had been three years old was acquitted on all charges by a military court yesterday.

      "The soldier, who has only been identified as "Captain R", was charged with relatively minor offences for the killing of Iman al-Hams who was shot 17 times as she ventured near an Israeli army post near Rafah refugee camp in Gaza a year ago.

      "Palestinian witnesses said they saw the captain shoot Iman twice in the head, walk away, turn back and fire a stream of bullets into her body."

    • Taysir Hayb, Mark Koroi, was a Bedouin member of the Israeli army, not a Jew.

      No Israeli Jew has ever suffered any serious punishment for killing a Gentile.

  • Top Ten Ways in which it was Actually the Israeli Gov't that Derailed the Peace Talks
    • Netanyahu's demand that the Palestinians recognize Israel as a Jewish state has nothing at all to do with religion.

      It is rather a demand that the Palestinians recognize the validity of the Zionist project and Zionist movement.

      Netanyahu, to say nothing of Ben Gurion, Begin, Sharon, has said many times that Jews have a 'historical' right, not a religious right, to the 'land of Israel'.

      Netanyahu sees Jews, as did Jabotinsky, as a race of people related by blood. And he believe in a continuity of Jewish people from ancient times located in Palestine to the present. He most probably believes in a Roman expulsion of Jews from 'the land of Israel in 70 CE, or possibly 135 CE, though this scenario is unsupported by both historians and archeologists, and in fact is nothing more than a Zionist myth.

      The Zionist project, while having a Christian origin became a project of Jewish writers in the late 19th century. These Jewish writers, centrally Herzl, were secular and not religious.

  • On Iranian New Year, Russia hints it May Swing Support to Tehran over Crimea Sanctions
    • william james martin 03/20/2014 at 11:42 am

      One way that the Israeli/AIPAC control over American foreign policy has harmed the US and international diplomacy is that the severe Iranian sanctions, driven by Israel, which also sanction European firms who do business with Iran, has caused Europe to become dependent on oil imports from Russia which now supplies most of Europe's oil.

  • Israelis slam Kerry over "Jewish State" Remarks as Abbas Rejects Demand
    • william james martin 03/17/2014 at 10:18 am

      You misunderstand, Mark. Netanyahu's claim has little or nothing to do with religion. See my comment above, beginning with, "Nr Netanyahu’s insistence on Palestinian recognition ...", which you evidently did not read.

    • The problem is not that at all Peter Green. The problem is that Israel is determined to take over all of Palestine and to destroy the Palestinian people, as a people, as it has been programed to do since the invention of Zionism, mostly by Herzl, at the turn of the 20th century.

    • Nr Netanyahu’s insistence on Palestinian recognition of Israel as a Jewish state, meaning a state for the world’s Jews, is equivalent to Palestinian endorsement of the Zionist project initiated by Theodore Herzl at the end of the 19th century and consist of:
      1) That every Jew in the world is a citizen of the Jewish state and is free to live in Israel if he so choses.
      2) Jews, because of historical reason, involving that Jews lived in the land of Palestine 2000 years ago, have a natural right to repopulate Palestine.
      3) The internal structure and laws of the Jewish state is designed uniquely for Jews.
      4) That, for historical and biblical reasons, Jerusalem must be the undivided capital of the Jewish state
      Unfortunately, Obama, through inadvertence and general ignorance has already endorsed these principles. When speaking of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and its resolution, he has always spoken of its goal as a ‘state for Jews’ and a ‘state for Palestinians’ living side by side, as if these had mirror image meanings.

  • Assad Regime’s Drought Response Triggered Syrian War
    • Ms Chatel did an impressive amount of first hand research on the water and drought conditions, walking the land herself, interviewing farmers and those who fled the eastern rural areas for the cities in search of work. That was her focus.

      What was not her focus, or given a lot of consideration, was the political situation stimulated by the Arab Spring and the rolling effect of liberal revolutions, or apparent revolutions, in Tunisia, Egypt, and Yemen.

      Syrians attuned to Al Jazeera were as intimately knowledgeable with the daily revolutionary events in Tihrir Square as were the people of Egypt.

      As far as Ms Chatel's analysis goes, the Arab Spring may not as well have even existed and the Assad Alawi government may as well have been a liberal democracy which, however, mismanaged the water resources.

      But he Assad regime was not a liberal democracy. It was a repressive police state, in which political dissent was met with midnight arrest and incarcerations without due process which not infrequently consisted of torture and degrading conditions.

      It was a state dedicated to the control of the government by the Assad family and his Alawi clan.

      Many people of Syria felt it was their turn for democracy.

  • Israel Tries to Bully Europe over Criticism of Planned 1800 Squatter Units on Palestinian Land
    • Yaalon sarcastic remark about Kerry's efforts to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through negotiations reflects the exact view of the Israeli government: The Israeli government does not want a negotiated but prefers to continue their unilateral takeover of Palestinian land.

      Their strategy is at least since Yitzhak Shamir who said upon his electoral loss in 1992 after having served for longer than any Israeli prime minister with the exception of David Ben Gurion: "I would have carried on autonomy talks for ten years, and meanwhile, we would have reached half a million people in Judea and Samaria.” When reminded that the recent election indicated that there did not exist majority support for a Greater Land of Israel, Shamir said, “I didn’t believe there was a majority in favor of a Greater Land of Israel. But it can be attained over time. There must be a historic direction. If we drop this basis, there would be nothing to prevent the development of a Palestinian state."

  • Top Ten Ways Ariel Sharon Ruined Israel and the Middle East
    • william james martin 01/12/2014 at 11:10 pm

      ... in negotiations over the withdrawal of the PLO the thorniest issue had always been the guarantees which Arafat demanded for the safety of the he Palestinian civilians the fighting men were to leave behind. To the end, he had been agonizingly aware of the inadequacy of those that he finally accepted. True, the US had given its 'word of honor' that the Israelis would never enter West Beirut, and special envoy Habib had written to the Lebanese prime minister, Safaq Wazzan:

      "The government of Lebanon and the United States will provide appropriate guarantees for the safety ... of law-abiding Palestinian non-combatants left in Beirut, including the families of those who have departed ... The United States will provide its guarantees on the basis of assurances received from the government of Israel and the leaders of certain Lebanese groups [I e, the Phalangists] with which it had been in contact."

      -- David Hirsh, 'Beware of Small States', p153

    • In 1978, on the occasion of president Jimmy Carter's presiding over a meeting of the Israeli Cabinet-the only non-Jew to have ever chaired such a meeting-Carter was told by then minister of agriculture, Ariel Sharon, that there already was a Palestinian state, that it was Jordan, and that Carter could take for granted that within the next few years there would be 2 to 3 million Jews living in the occupied territories. Sharon added that "even as we speak, Jewish families are migrating into Judea and Samaria."

  • Did Ariel Sharon get a pass on War Crimes because he was White?
    • That is, at best, an allegation, which I think no one has ever heard of. Sharon's crimes were on display for the entire world.

    • william james martin 01/13/2014 at 6:26 pm

      What's your source for that, Mark. And what possibly could have been Arafat's motivation?

      I think that is a fantasy.

    • Sharon was concerned that he might be hauled of the criminal court in Belgium. Some allege that he had Elie Hobeika, commander of the Christian Phalanges that entered the Sabra and Shatila refugee camps in Lebanon, taken out with a car bomb in 2002.

  • Top Ten Things Bob Gates was Wrong about, Some Criminal
    • I do not believe there is a straight line connection between the covert support for the mujahidin, which included bin Laden, initiated by the Carter administration following the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, and al Qaeda as it emerged in the mid eighties, nor do I believe the Carter administration was responsible for the mujahidin's evolution.

      Three central concepts underlie the evolution of bin Laden's thinking as Sept 11, 2001 approached.

      They were, 1) the continuing occupation of Palestinian territories by Israel and the underlying anger of toward the West for imposing the state of Israel in the middle of the Arab world. This attitude has always been a subtext of Arab sentiment beginning well before Carter.

      2) The Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 1982 which included the deaths of approximately 20,000 Lebanese and Palestinians civilians, occupation by Israel of an Arab capital, and it summer long shelling and corresponding destruction, and then the massacres, orchestrated by Ariel Sharon, at the Sabre and Shatila refugee camps in Beirut of which the US had given its pledge to protect after the evacuation from Beirut of the PLO fighters.

      3) The Gulf War of 1990 in which the Americans were given permission by the Saudi government to use its air bases from which to launch attacks.

      These were historical events, two of them at least, which occurred after 1980 for which the Carter administration bares no responsibility and for which there is no direct causal relation to the evolution of al Qaeda as it evolved over the next two decades.

  • Recognizing Israel as a Jewish State is like saying the US is a White State
    • william james martin 01/07/2014 at 4:00 pm

      what does Rabbi Akiva have to do with anything?

      Rabbi Akiva was a footnote to history, and a minor one at that?

    • william james martin 01/07/2014 at 1:20 pm

      People seem to have forgotten this statement by outgoing Prime Minister Ytzhak Shamir, Israel's second longest serving Prime Minister upon his electoral loss in 1992:

      ‘I would have carried on autonomy talks for ten years, and meanwhile, we would have reached half a million people in Judea and Samaria.”
      When reminded that the recent election indicated that there did not exist majority support for a Greater Land of Israel, Shamir said, “I didn’t believe there was a majority in favor of a Greater Land of Israel. But it can be attained over time. There must be a historic direction. If we drop this basis, there would be nothing to prevent the development of a Palestinian state.”

    • william james martin 01/07/2014 at 11:27 am

      Formally recognizing the existence of a Jewish state cannot be squared with Enlightenment liberalisms as articulated by John Locke, Thomas Jefferson, John Madison and those who created the ideas that formed the basis of our country as well as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, ratified by the United Nations.

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