News Round Up (19 April 2009)

So long as the US stops the flow of arms to Syria, Hamas, and Hizbullah without stopping Israel from expropriating Palestinian and Syria land, the Arab goose is cooked. Obama’s Washington remains vigilant and decisive in its efforts to thwart Arab resistance to Israel’s expansion. The question is whether Obama can put together a policy that will also push forward the Arab Peace plan. If he cannot, all the promise will be unfulfilled.

Clayton Swisher’s report on Palestinian expulsions from Sheikh Jarrah in East Jerusalem Youtube (3 minutes) do not reasure us, although he does get a few words in with a US State Department official who was sent to monitor the expulsions.

Following its departure from an Iranian port, the Cypriot-flagged ship Monchegorsk was detained in Limassol, Cyprus in January, above, after U.S. intelligence suggested it was ferrying arms to Syria.

Following its departure from an Iranian port, the Cypriot-flagged ship Monchegorsk was detained in Limassol, Cyprus in January, above, after U.S. intelligence suggested it was ferrying arms to Syria.

WSJ, 2009-04-17 – by Jay Solomon

The Obama administration is pushing for a formal censure of Iran and Syria at the United Nations over an arms-smuggling case that U.S. officials see as highlighting the risks that Iranian weapons shipments pose to regional stability.

…The move …could impede the ability of Iranian shipping firms to deliver arms to militant groups such as Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas in the Palestinian territories, U.S. and other Western officials said…. Last month, a U.N. committee ruled that both Iran and Syria violated a Security Council resolution that bans Tehran from both importing and exporting weapons…..

Syria has charged that the U.N.’s actions amount to a double standard, because no efforts have been made to prevent American arms from reaching Israel. Damascus has also said the U.N. is seeking to block Syria’s right to defend itself against Israeli aggression….”

Senator George Mitchell meets with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

U.S. Envoy’s Two-State Push Meets Israeli Skepticism
Associated Press

JERUSALEM — Stark differences between U.S. and Israeli policy toward peace talks with the Palestinians emerged clearly Thursday in the first meetings between President Barack Obama’s Mideast envoy and top leaders of the new Israeli government.

The envoy, George Mitchell, stated clearly that Washington is aiming for creation of a Palestinian state. But Israelis avoided mention of Palestinian statehood, and the new foreign minister said past Israeli concessions have led to violence, not peace.

Mr. Mitchell met Thursday evening with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who has yet to unveil his policy on peace efforts but has spoken of shifting the emphasis to stimulating the Palestinian economy instead of supporting the process accepted by the U.S. and Israel up to now.

Mr. Mitchell made the administration’s goals clear to reporters while standing next to Avigdor Lieberman, the Israeli foreign minister, after their meeting.

“U.S. policy favors … a two-state solution, which would have a Palestinian state living in peace alongside the Jewish state of Israel,” Mr. Mitchell said.

In a statement, Mr. Lieberman questioned the basic premise that compromises by both sides would eventually lead to a peace accord.

“The historic approach has so far not brought any result or solution.”….

Has Israel won the 60 year war? (This article may convince you it has.)

MideastPulse

“..Rahm Emanuel told an (unnamed) Jewish leader; “In the next four years there is going to be a permanent status arrangement between Israel and the Palestinians on the basis of two states for two peoples, and it doesn’t matter to us at all who is prime minister.”

He also said that the United States will exert pressure to see that deal is put into place.”Any treatment of the Iranian nuclear problem will be contingent upon progress in the negotiations and an Israeli withdrawal from West Bank territory,” the paper reports Emanuel as saying. In other words, US sympathy for Israel’s position vis a vis Iran depends on Israel’s willingness to live up to its commitment to get out of the West Bank and permit the establishment of a Palestinian state there, in Gaza, and East Jerusalem.

U.S.-Israel Divide Emerges On Palestinian Peace Talks (The Washington Post)

JERUSALEM, April 16 — Stark differences between U.S. and Israeli policy toward peace talks with the Palestinians emerged clearly Thursday in the first meetings between President Obama’s Middle East envoy and top leaders of the new Israeli government.

New Liberal Jewish Lobby Quickly Makes Its Mark (By Dan Eggen, The Washington Post)

When a group of Jewish liberals formed a lobbying and fundraising group called J Street a year ago, they had modest hopes of raising $50,000 for a handful of congressional candidates….

Ben-Ami said he has no expectation that J Street will become as large as AIPAC, but he believes it can become influential enough to change the parameters of the U.S. debate over Israel policy. The group’s budget is slated to double to $3 million in its second year, he said, and J Street is preparing to launch an education arm focused on U.S. college campuses. …

Andrew Tabler in the Jerusalem Post – “Analysis: Why Mitchell is bypassing Damascus.” Andrew Tabler criticizes his old rivals, Sami Moubayed and Abdulsalam Haykal, for being “close to the Syrian regime” and for participating in a general Syrian over-optmism about Obama’s willingness to engage Damascus. ( For several years, Tabler edited “Syria Today,” the first English language magazine in Syria. Moubayed and Haykal started Forward which became “the other” English language magazine in Damascus.) Even though Tabler has graduated from his low paying job in Syria to a more lucrative post writing for the premier pro-Israeli think tank in Washington, he still cannot pass up a chance to send a zinger in the direction of his old Damascene competitors.

Tabler takes President Assad to task for “refusing to talk about cutting ties with Hizbullah, Hamas and Tehran.” He also takes umbridge at the way Assad criticizes Israel and recommends that the US not rush into engagement with Syria before Damascus gives up the allies it hopes will help pry the Golan from Israel.

Excerpts from the Middle eade Policy Survey thanks to “friday-lunch-club”

Mitchell’s trip to the Middle East this week does not include stops in Lebanon or Syria. On Lebanon, the Administration is treading warily in advance of its June Parliamentary elections. Although the US would prefer to see the current pro-Western government retain power, they are prepared for an Opposition victory, despite its likely enhancement of the already formidable power of Hezbollah [Although they will not follow the example of the British government which earlier this month decided to begin dealing with the “political arm” of Hezbollah — a move which surprised and infuriated Secretary Clinton]. They are even prepared for the formation of a national unity government, for as one State Department official says wryly, “To be Lebanese is to be expert in the art of compromise.”

Policy toward Syria will continue to evolve at a slow pace, say key US officials. “You will not see a `roll out’ of a Syria policy like we are doing with Iran,” explains one key US official. Even the return of the US Ambassador [who was withdrawn after the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri in 2005] is not considered imminent. “That move is still a couple of steps away,” says one well-placed official

Foreign Policy

“Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit said Wednesday that his Israeli counterpart, Avigdor Lieberman, is not welcome in Egypt. “His feet will not step on Egyptian soil as long as he maintains his positions,” Aboul Gheit told Russia Today TV. Lieberman sparked outrage in Egypt last year when he criticized its president, Hosni Mubarak, in a speech before the Knesset, saying that the Egyptian leader could “go to hell.”

The Economist

“… This blaze of Egyptian accusations underlines the frustration felt by the government of President Hosni Mubarak, which has borne withering opprobrium due to its refusal to open crossings into Gaza to relieve the besieged Palestinian territory. Egypt’s discomfort peaked during Israel’s 22-day assault on Hamas in Gaza earlier this year, when Hizbullah’s leader, Hassan Nasrallah, charged Mr Mubarak with complicity with the “Zionist regime” and dramatically called on Egyptian officers to save their country’s honour. Egypt has remained isolated in Arab public opinion as Mr Mubarak has subsequently cracked down on cross-border smuggling and struggled to strong-arm Hamas into sharing power with its secular rival, Fatah, by using the opening of the border as a lure.

Some of Egypt’s charges may be true. In a televised speech, Mr Nasrallah admitted that one of the arrested men was a party member engaged in logistical work to help “our Palestinian brothers”. But the Hizbullah leader, who has a reputation for frankness, said that no more than ten of the alleged plotters had any link to his party, and denied any intent to harm Egypt. “If aiding the Palestinians is a crime, then I am guilty and proud of it,” he said.

His deputy, Naim Qassem, said Hizbullah’s people had clear instructions not to take any action against Israelis in Egypt. He posed a rhetorical question. “How can Israel have the right to receive weapons and intelligence from all the world, while one small effort to lift the oppression of the Palestinians or supply basic necessities to keep their struggle going is condemned?”

This logic still appeals to many in the region. But just as Mr Nasrallah’s unsubtle call for Mr Mubarak’s overthrow annoyed even some of the Egyptian president’s foes at home, the revelation of Hizbullah intrigue raises questions about the group’s intentions. Though implicated in past acts of international terror, Hizbullah in recent years has declared itself concerned solely with Lebanese affairs, increasingly so as Lebanon’s general election due in June approaches. Its critics in Lebanon now have new cause to complain that the party risks enmeshing their country in regional squabbles they want no part of.”

Syria seen keen on new peace talks with Israel
Tue Apr 14, 2009 7:17am EDT
By Khaled Yacoub Oweis – Analysis

DAMASCUS (Reuters) – Encouraged by President Barack Obama’s overtures toward Washington’s adversaries, Syria is pushing to restart peace talks with Israel, diplomats and political analysts say.

Damascus has intensified its quest to relaunch the Turkish-mediated talks, diplomats in the Syrian capital said, despite the formation last month of a right-leaning Israeli government that has shown little interest in a U.S.-backed two state solution to the conflict with the Palestinians.

“The Syrians are sensing that (Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin) Netanyahu does not want a peace deal with the Palestinians and that he could restart the Syrian track as a way of deflecting pressure,” one senior Western diplomat said.

“They have dealt with Netanyahu before. More importantly they expect the Americans to try to salvage their policies in the Middle East by backing the Syrian track,” he added.

Obama sent two senior officials to Damascus last month to talk to Syria, in a break from a policy of isolation under his predecessor.

George W. Bush showed no enthusiasm for the indirect talks between Syria and Israel, which were formally suspended in December following the three-week Israeli offensive on Gaza.

The Bush administration also expanded U.S. sanctions on Damascus and criticized Syria’s human rights record, its role in Iraq and Lebanon as well as its alliances with Iran and militant groups in the Middle East.

One of the Obama administration officials who visited Damascus said Washington wants to see “forward momentum” on Syrian-Israeli talks, but the United States refrained from committing to any involvement.

Syria regards direct U.S. support to negotiations as a pre-requisite for a deal and the best guarantee that Israel would adhere to any peace arrangements.

Syria and Israel held almost 10 years of direct U.S. supervised negotiations that centered on the Golan Heights.

Israeli occupied the Golan in the 1967 Middle East War, displacing 100,000 Syrian residents in the water-rich territory. Around 40,000 people now live in the Golan, roughly divided between Israeli settlers and remaining Syrian population.

The talks collapsed in 2000 when Syria’s late President Hafez al-Assad, father of the current president, Bashar, turned down an Israeli offer to withdraw from the Golan but keep a narrow strip on the northeastern shore of the Lake of Galilee, which Assad regarded as Syrian territory.

Assad defined the occupied Golan as the territory Syria held on June 4, 1967, before the war broke out, including the northeastern shore of the lake, Israel’s main water reservoir.

Bashar has stuck to his father’s position, rejecting other geographical definitions, including one drawn by colonial France and Britain in 1923 that keeps Syria away from the water.

Assad said Syria and Israel were close to moving to direct negotiations before Israel launched its invasion of Gaza, and Syria had expected Israel to agree through Turkish mediators on the Golan boundary based on the 1967 line.

CALCULATIONS

Frederic C. Hof, who U.S. officials say is expected to join the team of Middle East Envoy George Mitchell, said it was far from certain that re-launching talks would achieve Syrian, U.S., or Israeli aims.

While Damascus seeks the return of the Golan, Israel and Washington want to see Assad separated from Iran, Lebanon’s Shi’ite movement Hezbollah and the Palestinian group Hamas, whose exiled leaders live in Syria.

Hof said in a report published by the United States Institute of Peace that American involvement in the negotiations was crucial for Syria to consider altering its alliances.

The report envisages a phased Israeli withdrawal to the June 4 line with intricate water, zoning and joint access arrangements to alley Israeli security, environmental and water supply concerns.

Cautioning that Syria would keep holding the alliances card close to its chest, Hof said Damascus could make “the requisite adjustments” to its ties with Iran and Hezbollah only if a peace treaty goes smoothly.

Syria has indicated that it was prepared to discuss a wide range of issues as long as Israel agrees to withdraw to the June 4 line, although Damascus remains wary of appearing to sell out its militant allies.

“Assad has let be known that the support of his people for a deal on the Golan might not extend too long into the future and the best solution would be for the United States to pursue a comprehensive Middle East peace covering the Palestinian and Syrian tracks,” one European diplomat said.

“It is far from certain that the United States will do this and it is still in a long policy review toward Syria, but one thing is clear, Assad wants to negotiate now a peace with Israel that would change the Middle East.”

Asked about the possibility of a deal with Netanyahu, with whom Syria negotiated with in his first term as Israeli premier in the 1990s, Assad told Qatar’s al-Sharq newspaper that Syria has a strategy for concluding peace and “whoever commits to them does not form a problem for us.”

The UNHCR just wrapped up an exhibition of Iraqi artists in Damascus, writes Frederick Deknatel for the UNHCR news site. It is part of a larger project promoting Iraqi refugee artists in Syria.

Syria prison breaks the mould with rehab scheme Middle East On-Line

50 prisoners participating in unique art therapy rehabilitation programme at facility in northern Syria.

Ehsani writes: American households have lost close to $11 trillion in net worth since the start of this economic crisis. This includes losses to their home values, stocks, pensions and mutual funds. This total is equivalent to 275 years of income for 20 million Syrians. In other words, American households lost in 2 years what Syrians are expected to make in 275 years. Or, the average American lost in wealth what an average Syrian is expected to make in 16 years of income. Sobering trivia. This is how economists spend their time!

Comments (42)


1. norman said:

Syria urges West to accept Iran N-rights

Sun, 19 Apr 2009 11:35:49 GMT
Syria says the key to break the deadlock over Iran’s uranium enrichment is for Western powers to respect Tehran’s nuclear rights.

In an interview on Sunday, Syrian President Bashar Assad said the time has come for Western countries to try a different approach towards Iran’s uranium enrichment activities.

“Iran has a right to peaceful nuclear technology,” said Assad. “The previous US administration was incapable of reaching that conclusion.”

The Wall Street Journal recently reported that as part of a policy review commissioned by US President Barack Obama, “diplomats are discussing whether the US will eventually have to accept Iran’s insistence on carrying out the [enrichment] process.”

The Obama administration has promised a ‘new beginning’ in relations with Iran and the US has vowed to engage the country in direct dialogue to help resolve the difference.

This is while the West, spearheaded by Washington, has accused Tehran of pursuing nuclear weapon development — an allegation that has been categorically dismissed by Iran, the UN nuclear watchdog, and senior weapon experts in the West.

“They (Iranians) don’t have one (nuclear weapon) and say they’re not interested in one,” assured Paul Kerr, an arms control expert at the Congressional Research Service on Friday. “The reactor is under safeguard. They can’t [create weapons-grade plutonium] without getting caught.”

SBB/MMN

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April 19th, 2009, 12:49 pm

 

2. norman said:

The HOME is not working at SC , it is not showing the recent posts.

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April 19th, 2009, 1:07 pm

 

3. norman said:

Syria asks UAE to Arrest Siddiq and extradite him
Published: Sunday, 19 April, 2009 @ 6:50 AM in Beirut
Beirut- Mohammed Zuhair Siddiq, a Syrian army deserter often described by the Arab media as the ‘King Witness’ in the murder case of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri , was reportedly arrested in the United Arab Emirates.

Reliable sources told As Safir newspaper that Syria lately asked the authorities of the Sharjah emirate through Interpol to arrest Siddiq and extradite him.

The sources said the man had a forged Syrian passport and was living in the city of Sharjah.

As Safir on Saturday quoted sources following the Siddiq case as saying several arrest warrants were issued in Lebanon and Syria against the man for providing false testimonies in the assassination case of ex-Premier Rafik Hariri.

The sources also said that Siddiq had lately become a burden on the political sides that at one stage were providing cover for him. Even sources in the Lebanese majority expected Siddiq to be jailed after it turned out that he was a “big lie.”

Justice Minister Ibrahim Najjar told LBC TV station that the Lebanese government has no information about Siddiq’s arrest.

Siddiq, who was under an international arrest warrant requested by a Lebanese prosecutor, was detained in October 2005 in a Paris suburb on grounds he gave false evidence to U.N. investigators.

He had been living in France under house arrest until he disappeared a year ago.

Newspaper reports in 2006 quoted Siddiq as saying that Syrian President Bashar Assad and his then Lebanese counterpart Emile Lahoud ordered Hariri’s killing in a massive Beirut car bombing.

King witness legally means an accomplice in a crime who turns against his partners, revealing their role in exchange for state pardon.

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April 19th, 2009, 2:00 pm

 

4. Akbar Palace said:

Another Headline the authors of Syria Comment overlooked:

Western boycott threatens U.N. racism forum

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20090419/wl_nm/us_racism_un_8

The naysayers start whining in 5…4…3…

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April 20th, 2009, 12:44 am

 

5. Akbar Palace said:

Ahmadinejad “has made Iran the odd man out,” Jonas Gahr Store said.

Apparently, not for “peace-loving”, Baathist Syria…

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090420/ap_on_re_eu/un_un_racism_conference_24

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April 20th, 2009, 3:58 pm

 

6. majedkhaldoun said:

Ahmadinejad went on to accuse Israel of being the “most cruel and repressive racist regime.”

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April 20th, 2009, 9:05 pm

 

7. SimoHurtta said:

Akbar if “they” are speaking about racism in U.N.’s forum and about Israel’s obvious and many times proven racism is not allowed to speak doesn’t it mean then that about racism in any other country and its problems are also not allowed to be mentioned. They have to condemn racism on an academic level without mentioning any country or any “problem”. Simply stupid and waste of time.

If racism is allowed in a “western” country like Israel, then the “west” hardly can whine about religious or race based racism in for example India, China, Sudan etc. Or are only “coloured countries” under criticism? The “west” did today loose the moral authority, not Iran and the less developed countries.

Sure Ahmadinejad is not the best envoy of human rights on such a forum, but Peres and Lieberman would sounded even more hypocritical if they would have dared to participate. Understandably they did not participate, what could they have been able to say in Israel’s defence?

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April 20th, 2009, 9:50 pm

 

8. Akbar Palace said:

Sim,

You’re the last person I would ever talk to about racism.

Come clean:

Sim promotes hate:

As an European Christian it is easier to understand why Palestinians hate Israeli Jews, than why Israeli Jews hate Palestinians/Arabs. Israelis seem to hate Palestinians because they do not voluntarily give their last lands and waters and some of them even want to resist using force.

To which “bar_kochba132” puts Sim in his place:

bar_kochba132 says:
July 3, 2008 at 7:26 AM
SimoHurtta,

Then I guess you European Christians feel it is justified for us Jews to hate you as well, considering how you treated us for centuries. I suggest you not go around judging us if you don’t know the whole story, as you clearly don’t.

Amen

http://www.richardsilverstein.com/tikun_olam/2008/07/01/sleeping-with-the-enemy-israel-style/

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April 21st, 2009, 1:15 am

 

9. SimoHurtta said:

Well Akbar isn’t it clear that one understands better the the occupied peoples motives for resistance than the occupants motives for their cruelty, violence and racism. Do you Akbar understand better the the Nazis or their victims?

Akbar as usual you are cherry picking with your quote and you did forget in you quote the essential:

SimoHurtta says:
July 3, 2008 at 12:23 AM

If I’ve learned one thing from living in Israel, it’s that there is no good/bad. Everyone is equally bad.

I have encountered this kind reasoning many times when discussing with Israeli an Israel supporting Jews. Well, equally could the Holocaust be nullified using such language.

Of course Palestinians (Israeli citizens and others) attitude towards Jews is determined by how the Jewish state treats and has been treating them. Who would like the cruel occupier turning his people as second class citizens or slaves (the non Israeli Palestinians) and seeing their lands being robbed and relatives killed and tortured.

As an European Christian it is easier to understand why Palestinians hate Israeli Jews, than why Israeli Jews hate Palestinians/Arabs. Israelis seem to hate Palestinians because they do not voluntarily give their last lands and waters and some of them even want to resist using force.

To bar_kochba132 (alias Akbar Palace) comment you quoted I would say that if the Europeans had treated Jews badly so badly as the “Jewish history” wants to remember, the Jews would not have become one of the wealthiest and best educated population groups in Europe. Sure there have been dark periods, but so has been the whole 60 years period of Jewish rule in Israel/Palestine. The difference is that the Palestinian Arabs have never been able to achieve the same prosperity and education level Jews managed to get in Europe. Why Akbar?

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April 21st, 2009, 5:24 am

 

10. Shai said:

Akbar,

Today is Holocaust Remembrance Day, and it would seem the worst time to bring up the idea of a Racist-Israel. Today such a statement hurts more than ever. But Simo is right – discussions at the UN Forum cannot include only 3rd-world nations and “obvious” cases. They can, and should, also include Developed nations and cases that are “less-than-obvious”, such as Israel. We’ve argued before over whether our treatment of 20% of Israel’s population, as 2nd-class citizens, is racism. Israel can quite easily argue with other nations, that it isn’t. Israelis tend not to argue with other Israelis over this point, because they know the truth.

But Israel will have a very difficult time arguing that treating Arabs differently from Jews at any of the 600 road blocks in the Palestinian territories, is not racism. Imagine at Hartsfield International Airport in Atlanta, separate lanes for Jews coming in. Now imagine road blocks throughout Georgia, separating between Jews and non-Jews. Non-Jews getting the “fast-lane” treatment. Jews, something else. So Jews in Helen, GA, begin throwing $10 rockets at Georgia residents, killing about 30 in 9 years. And now this racist-treatment is masked with the “obvious” terrorism by Jews.

I know you don’t accept this depiction. But the UN has a right, and indeed a responsibility, to argue it. If my Georgia-scenario was real, I’d certainly want the UN to discuss it, this time as the victim.

Today especially, we must not only recall our own families that have perished in the millions, but also those of others, and yes, even under our rule. The suffering of ALL people must end, so that not every human being will need his/her own Holocaust Remembrance Day.

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April 21st, 2009, 5:28 am

 

11. Akbar Palace said:

Today is Holocaust Remembrance Day, and it would seem the worst time to bring up the idea of a Racist-Israel.

It is not Holocaust Remembrance Day here in the US, however, and in spite of that, I think it would be an excellent time to discuss racism, in Israel or any other place, including racism in Palestine, Arab, or Muslim countries. Also, for me, EVERY DAY is Holocaust Remembrance Day. I don’t save it for 1 day out of 365.

But Simo is right…

Shai,

Not surprisingly (and more Orwellian) your friend Sim is a racist against Jews. I’m sure you’re familiar with the specific terminology. Don’t let that disturb your HRD.

“Racist-Israel”:

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

http://www.danielpipes.org/blog/2009/03/irans-representative-in-the-knesset-haneen-zuabi.html

The suffering of ALL people must end, so that not every human being will need his/her own Holocaust Remembrance Day.

“The suffering of ALL people” is usually caused by power-hungry despots and the ultruistic and naïve peaceniks these despots employ who prefer to look away or worse yet, “understand” why these evil leaders murder in the first place.

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

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/8007756.stm

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April 21st, 2009, 12:29 pm

 

12. Shai said:

Akbar Palace,

“Also, for me, EVERY DAY is Holocaust Remembrance Day.” That is part of the problem. You cannot let go even for a minute. You fully buy into Bibi’s “It’s now 1938 all over again.” There is a psychological reason why we do reserve this day for only once in 365 days. We move on during the rest of the year.

I’m not surprised you chose to counter my “Racist-Israel” argument with examples only from Israel’s 20% Arabs, and not with examples of those 600 road blocks I referred to earlier. I said myself that Israel can easily argue that it is not racist by referring to the 20%. Most nations and most foreigners couldn’t know otherwise. But neither Israel, nor you AP, could argue that 600 road blocks, treating Arabs very differently from Jews, are not evidence of racism. Remember the “Georgia fast-lane for non-Jews” scenario? Replace “Georgia” with “West Bank”, and recalculate. Tell us what you come up with.

“… naïve peaceniks these despots employ who prefer to look away or worse yet, “understand” why these evil leaders murder in the first place.”

First, as far as I know, I am not employed by any despot. Second, I think of the two of us, I’m not the one who “prefers to look away”. Third, “understanding” why Hamas lobs Qassam rockets into Israel does NOT indicate one accepts it, or will not fight it. When will you finally get that through your neo-con prism?

If you could, I’m sure you’d include “understanding our enemy” as a synonym to “siding with him” and “aiding him” and “betraying our nation” in your version of The Unpatriotic Act. It is easier that way to separate us “peacenicks” from you “nonpeacenicks”. Except, that I forgot the last time you sacrificed years of your life to defend your nation (or mine), nor the last time you declared your readiness to fight tomorrow morning to do either one. With all due respect, dearest AP, you haven’t a clue of what “Patriotism” means. Please don’t try to lecture me about it.

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April 21st, 2009, 6:17 pm

 

13. Akbar Palace said:

That is part of the problem. You cannot let go even for a minute.

Shai,

In that case, when you get your head out from the ass of your anti-Israel friends, why don’t you just tell them to “let go” of the Nakba while you’re at it.

“Even for a minute”.

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April 22nd, 2009, 12:05 am

 

14. Shai said:

Akbar,

“when you get your head out from the ass of your anti-Israel friends,”

My my… Your paranoid little mind is now drifting down to your tongue. Where will it get to next? 🙂

Current head of Kadima, Tzipi Livni, made a very strong statement in Tel-Aviv some months before the elections campaign began. In it, she addressed the Palestinians (my anti-Israel friends) saying: “You will have your state when you’ll remove the ‘Nakba’ from your lexicon…” Like you, she too found it incompatible to have two Catastrophes celebrated within the same land. After all, how could one people’s Catastrophe originate from another’s? She wanted exclusivity on suffering, and didn’t want unnecessary and annoying reminders of 1948.

A well-known psychologist in Israel responded at the time to Tzipi Livni, saying the following: “Israel will have ITS state, when it finally ADDS the ‘Nakba’ to our lexicon!” Labor MK Yuli Tamir tried, when she was Minister of Education, to introduce the Nakba as mandatory study in all Israeli schools. Bibi promised to swiftly undo this dangerous development. Like you, he too is tired of hearing the Nakba. I guess kind of like certain Palestinians are tired of hearing the Holocaust.

Maybe we should remove them both, AP? What do you say?

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April 22nd, 2009, 3:59 am

 

15. majid said:

Shai Said, “Like you, he too is tired of hearing the Nakba. I guess kind of like certain Palestinians are tired of hearing the Holocaust.
Maybe we should remove them both, AP? What do you say?”

Let me see. Is the equivalence valid here? I’m surprised SH didn’t catch this. But you’re not AP, so he doesn’t bother you much.

No Shai, you cannot remove them both. The Holocaust is in the past and present day Jews are NOT living in a holocaust. But the Nakba is still in the present daily life of the Palestinian. You can’t deny him that, especially after denying him his land or actually stealing his land while you could be living very comfortably somewhere else – remember you’re dual national. Did you also fall for the ‘Zionist dream’, and you’re trying your best now to avoid unnecessary reminders. It looks to me that your presumed humanism is more of a façade hiding behind some argument which is seemingly elegant but in reality is superficial.

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April 22nd, 2009, 6:02 am

 

16. Shai said:

Majid,

You know, for the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, hundreds of translators were brought in to help at the airport. And for months later, upon coming in you’d hear someone yelling “Ghanan Translator needed in booth 78!” I feel like I need such a translator right now, after your comment… 😉

My friend, do you think I’m serious about suggesting either the Holocaust or the Nakba should be erased from our memory? Do you honestly think I am not aware of the ongoing Nakba for your Palestinian brethren? Are you not just slightly confusing me with others here? I don’t know what “argument” my facade is hiding behind, so I’m not clear what you mean by that. I try to be as honest as I can (at times painfully-honest) not only with this forum, but also with myself. I’m not sure all members of this forum (some people you often refer to in particular) can say the same about themselves. If you feel like there’s superficiality behind my “facade”, of course that is your god-given right, and I will not waste your time arguing in my defense.

If I may say so, I think you’re jumping to conclusions too quickly.

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April 22nd, 2009, 10:09 am

 

17. Majid said:

SHAI,

I’m not jumping to conclusions. Your suggestion is clear.

Let’s not make long comments and try to make them short. You avoided the most important question in my previous comment:

DOES THE PALESTINIAN HAVE THE RIGHT OF SELF DETERMINATION ON HIS OWN LAND AND THE LAND OF HIS ANCESTORS JUST LIKE YOU GAVE YOURSELF THE RIGHT TO STEAL HIS LAND WHILE YOU COULD BE LIVING COMFORTABLY IN THE US WHERE YOU WERE BORN?

The answer is yes or no – I expect.

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April 22nd, 2009, 10:39 am

 

18. Shai said:

Majid,

Do you not know by now that OF COURSE I BELIEVE THE PALESTINIAN HAS A RIGHT TO SELF-DETERMINATION ON HIS OWN LAND! Where have you been this past year on SC? Are you serious, or are you joking with me??? Why do you think I’ve been talking about Israeli Apartheid? About racism? For “fun”?!?

(p.s. I am not an American citizen. I can live there, and become one, because my wife and two girls are American.)

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April 22nd, 2009, 11:17 am

 

19. Majid said:

Shai,
The last comment was longer than I expected. That’s fine.

Then, given that the right of self determination is granted, a GENUINE humanist would right away conclude the OCCUPATION by those who organize(d) the THEFT of the land MUST END, and the land should be returned to its rightful owner. You would say YES to that, won’t you, dear ‘humanist’?

(P.S. Shai in person is not the intended foreign-born ‘Zionist dreamer’ in these comments. It is used here just as a generic term.)

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April 22nd, 2009, 11:58 am

 

20. Akbar Palace said:

Majid,

A few responses to some comments you made:

The Holocaust is in the past and present day Jews are NOT living in a holocaust. But the Nakba is still in the present daily life of the Palestinian. You can’t deny him that, especially after denying him his land or actually stealing his land…

Majid,

I wouldn’t presume that one people are suffering or have suffered more than another. Yes, Palestinian suffering is now. Yet, the Jews not only lost land, they lost their lives too. In much greater number. Outside of the Holocaust, Jews have had to flee several times throughout history.

Lastly, we’ll just have to “agree to disagree”: no one “stole” land. A war was pushed on the Jews of Palestine, and we won.

Apparently, the same war will be fought again the way things seem to be going.

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April 22nd, 2009, 1:12 pm

 

21. Majid said:

AP said,

“Majid,

I wouldn’t presume that one people are suffering or have suffered more than another. Yes, Palestinian suffering is now. Yet, the Jews not only lost land, they lost their lives too. In much greater number. Outside of the Holocaust, Jews have had to flee several times throughout history.”

I can’t say no to that. Actually, I may have to say it is perhaps the first and most profound statement you made so far. However, Palestinians too lost many lives literally and figuratively. And they continue to do so.

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April 22nd, 2009, 1:36 pm

 

22. Akbar Palace said:

Majid,

The only reason I’m here is to tell a side of the conflict others may not hear too often (or don’t want to hear).

I’ve been on these Arab-Israeli blogs long enough to know a few basic facts:

1.) You can’t tell a people what their national aspirations can or cannot be.

2.) You can’t tell a people they have or have not suffered.

There may be a few other basic points but the above are ENGRAVED IN STONE.

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April 22nd, 2009, 2:52 pm

 

23. Shai said:

Majid,

I don’t know what ran across your path today, but your “style” is certainly different than it was previously. I respected the previous-Majid much more… sorry.

If you don’t like the length of my responses, don’t ask for a response. One-word answers you can demand of your children, not of me. If you had taken the time to actually read some of my comments over the past year, you’d know by now that I am absolutely FOR the end of our Occupation of Palestine, and for the return of the ENTIRE West Bank (not 97% of it) to their rightful owners. The same goes for the Golan Heights, to Syria.

The “humanist” in me doesn’t come here to be judged, certainly not by you. If you find my “humanism” not genuine enough for you, that is your problem, not mine.

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April 22nd, 2009, 5:43 pm

 

24. majid said:

Nothing ran into my path today Shai! And it is the same Majid you’ve been talking to.

Of course, I have the right t judge the ‘humanist’ in you, especially when you claim to be one.

I don’t need to see your whole comments over a whole year. I’ve only been here for few months. I’ll remind you of the most recent:

You referred to the Palestinian issue as a ‘mantra’ (in previous post) – A typical innovative dehumanizing term yet to be used by those who want to sweep the issue under the carpet like the sellers of the dream of the land without people to the people without land.

You refuse to acknowledge (also previous post) that the Palestinian issue is central to the Arabs and insisting you are the all-knowing about what goes on in the Arab world about this issue and most importantly what this issue means to the average Syrian, Lebanese, Jordanian, Egyptian, Saudi etc… My sources tell me otherwise. So we’ll have to disagree on this and I have to bring it up here because I didn’t respond to it in the previous thread.

And now you come up with this ridiculous suggestion which really uncovered the whole superficiality of your arguments.

You may have the best intentions and you may be deep down a genuine humanist. But you’re displaying the opposite by contradicting yourself.

That’s all Shai. If you can prove me wrong, I’ll be the first to admit it. But don’t continue to be obsessed with ideas that treat cancer with Aspirin!!!

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April 22nd, 2009, 7:08 pm

 

25. majid said:

Shai, you may want to have a look at this interview. I believe the speaker knows the Arab World quite well. Don’t you think?

http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/politics/2009/04/21/tsr.raina.interview.cnn

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April 22nd, 2009, 9:55 pm

 

26. Shai said:

Majid,

I can’t believe I’m actually spending this time responding to your ridiculous claims, but what the hell.

Since you based your claims on my comments in the previous post, let’s have a look at it. In comment Nr. 18, I said the following:

“I did not say a Comprehensive Peace should not be our goal – of course it should. And I absolutely agree that the root problem is the Palestinian one, and our Occupation of Palestine. But what I am saying, is that I don’t believe we can achieve a solution with the Palestinians BEFORE we do with Syria (and probably a few other Arab states that will follow). We can repeat the “Palestine-First” mantra until we’re blue in the face, but given the situation on the ground, and the fact that in reality, the Palestinian people are split into at least 4 parts if not more (W. Bank, Gaza, Diaspora, Israel), and most if not all of these parts are not working in coordination or agreement with each other, there is no “Palestinian side” to talk to. When there is, of course we should do it immediately. Until there is, we shouldn’t sit and wait. Withdrawal from the Golan (and hence peace with Syria) has nothing to do with the Palestinian people, and should not wait.”

Therefore Majid:

1. The “mantra” was certainly NOT used as some “innovative dehumanizing term to sweep the issue under the carpet…”, it was used in reference to US repeating it again and again, but to no avail at the moment given the situation on the ground. I said we should IMMEDIATELY return to the Palestinian track when it is possible to do so.

2. I specifically did NOT “refuse to acknowledge that the Palestinian issue is central to the Arabs…” In fact, I specifically DID acknowledge so.

3. I never claimed to be all-knowing about anything. Not about the Arab-street, not about the Jewish-street, not about my-street. I believe the Arab leaders have (unfortunately for the Palestinians) shown that while they are concerned for them, they will not stop and wait. This is what I am talking about. I’m not suggesting the Arab world is forgetting about the Palestinians.

4. I have never claimed to be a humanist. Others have attributed that description to me, and indeed it is a humbling one. Besides writing responses on SC, I also do a few other “real” things, including helping Arab-Israelis, and when possible, also the Palestinians in the Territories. I don’t feel I need to hold a Report-Card here on this forum, to prove how “genuine” I am.

If I want to have the “whole superficiality” of my arguments “uncovered”, I’ll either hire a PI or a Psychologist. I certainly do not need you to judge me, and I ask once again, that you cease from doing so. I don’t judge you, please don’t judge me.

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April 23rd, 2009, 4:39 am

 

27. Akbar Palace said:

Majid,

Apparently you read the Arab press. Therefore, can you give us an indication of the level of outrage expressed in the Arab Press from this incident in the UAE? Anything on Page 1, editorials?

http://abcnews.go.com/Blotter/story?id=7402099&page=1

As far as this blog goes, I didn’t read anything about it.

The man being beating is not a terror suspect mind you. He’s a grain farmer who owed the poor sheik a whopping $5000.

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April 23rd, 2009, 11:11 am

 
 

29. offended said:

Akbar Palace,

I come here after couple of months of absence and I see that you’re still trolling and frothing your false indignation. Let me assure you, the story you’ve referred to hasn’t percolated to the Arab press yet. Maybe it will soon. Maybe it won’t.

But tell you what, Akbar: since Condi Rice had apparently signed on the waterboarding orders, why don’t you come back and ask me about the ‘rage’ in the Arab press about a single incident, when there become a ‘rage’ in the transparent and free US MSM about the waterboaring and other assortments of CIA torture?

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April 23rd, 2009, 12:33 pm

 

30. Akbar Palace said:

Let me assure you, the story you’ve referred to hasn’t percolated to the Arab press yet. Maybe it will soon. Maybe it won’t.

Offended,

Thanks. This comes as no surprise. If an Israeli committed ANYTHING resembling these acts (and there have been plenty of cases), I’m sure it would be front page news.

But tell you what, Akbar: since Condi Rice had apparently signed on the waterboarding orders, why don’t you come back and ask me about the ‘rage’ in the Arab press about a single incident, when there become a ‘rage’ in the transparent and free US MSM about the waterboaring and other assortments of CIA torture?

As I think I’ve shown, Arab “rage” is a “One Way Street”.

But wait; there’s more!

1.) Waterboarding is only employed on foreign combatants, not just anyone like a grain farmer.

2.) Waterboarding has saved lives because it is almost exclusively used on suspects who are at war with the US, as in KSM case.

3.) Waterboarding used under CIA “rules” (and not the “rules” of some sadistic UAE Sheikh) does not result in any permanent physical damage.

http://www.csmonitor.com/2009/0420/p99s01-duts.html

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

Apparently Michael Ramirez agrees with most Americans (maybe not Hillary Clinton, but so what):

http://www.ibdeditorials.com/IMAGES/cartoons/toon042309.gif

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April 23rd, 2009, 4:40 pm

 

31. Off the Wall said:

AP
Your last post clearly shows your insincerity. Well, we are all outraged by the behavior of the UAE prince. But you seem to spare nothing to justify torture and to sanitize it if it is done by our side because it is not performed on citizens and because some doctors, who should be banned from that honorable profession have supervised it so that the victim remains alive for another round. How disgusting and repulsive.

Well if your beloved neocon criminals had it the way they wanted, your turn and my turn in the torture chamber would have come sooner rather than later. What a disgusting hypocrisy. Are you a student of Alan Dershowtiz? or professor Yu.

The US and the allies executed Japanese soldiers for carrying out water boarding. And now you go at length to justify it because it is being practiced on Muslims and Arabs. KSM is a despicable character, but how much better is what you are defending

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April 23rd, 2009, 6:01 pm

 

32. offended said:

Akbar Palace,

I am sure the story would have made front page if it was an israeli doning it, after all arabs are bunch of barbaric anti-semites, aren’t they? it’s not a perfect world.

but in a perfect world I’d also be able to arrest you, announce you an enemy combatant, get one of my cronies to sign a letter authroizing certain ‘interrogation techniques’ to be applied on you, which will include pissing down your throat and calling a stupid son of a bitch (an accolade you trully deserve given the stupidity and vileness you’ve demonstrated in your last comment), after all, all these techniques don’t have a long-lasting physical effect, do they?

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April 23rd, 2009, 6:05 pm

 

33. majid said:

Shai,

I too can’t believe that I’m also spending the time responding to your shallow analysis, but as you said what the hell.

1. When you agree that the root problem is the Palestinian problem then you treat the root problem and not the symptoms. Therefore call for end of occupation.
2. When you say there is no “Palestinian side” to talk to , the Palestinians would say likewise there is no Israeli side to talk to. Just a reminder: the Taba talks were one week away from striking a deal and the Palestinians would have signed. Sharon torpedoed the talks for electioneering purposes and ignited the second intifada – remember his attempt to storm al-Aqsa in a well publicized electioneering blitz. Just like the Palestinians can be easily divided on issues that would lead to a deal, the Israelis can also be divided on the same issues. Therefore the ‘mantra’ term can be applied on both sides and it is more appropriate to apply it on the aggressor (the Israeli) than the victim (the Palestinian).
3. You did claim that the wider picture in the Arab World is shifting towards a sense of getting tired of Palestinian in-fighting. On the surface this could be true, but no Arab leader or government could afford to ignore the Palestinian issue and expect to survive for long. The wider picture is shifting but not in the direction that you are suggesting. It is shifting in favor of radicalism which is the only option left to the Palestinians. And this could very well lead to the tide that I made a warning about in previous comments.
4. You still presume that other Arabs will join just because Israel would show willingness to return the Golan. This is the shallowest presumption I have ever come across. NO ARAB COUNTRY WILL JOIN IN A SINGLE TRACK APPROACH.
5. Knowing all the above, the right approach would be to insist on simultaneous multiple tracks that will advance in parallel, advance and conclude simultaneously culminating in the regional framework that will ensure everyone’s legitimate needs. And this should be pursued regardless of the obstacles. You would qualify as an entrepreneur in this case. I’ll come back to this later.
6. You may not have claimed that you are a humanist but others did, and you did not correct them. So judging you on this could be the correction you have missed to make, and it would be beneficial to those who had the impression that you are a humanist.
7. Our exchanges started with you presenting the similitude of the manager, the technician and the entrepreneur. I took the offer assuming that you have an enterprising spirit. I know now that you don’t. The best I could say is that you are a technician waiting to be promoted to a manger. I believe I have the right to make judgment on this.
8. We still haven’t said anything yet about your latest nonsense of your suggestion of denying the Palestinians of their right to learn about the Nakba which is still in their daily lives and equating it with a holocaust which belongs in the past. Perhaps, Israel would do well to serve its own interests by ACKNOWLEDGING that Nakba to have been caused by its creation on a land that doesn’t belong to it and assume responsibility. And that probably should be done before you continue with the mantra of “there is no “Palestinian side” to talk to”

AP (#27)

You’re not insinuating that the police should arrest the Emir, I hope. We have seen similar videos in the US of police beating suspects before arrest – not much happened as a reaction, mostly a storm in a teacup

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April 23rd, 2009, 6:24 pm

 

34. Off the Wall said:

AP
The despicable shiekh is enabled by us here in the US and Europe. Our government protects him and his clan. But obviously you did not have a clue. Your objective was mainly to demean all Arabs by the actions of this sadistic AH, whose power we guarantee.

Many of the abuses committed by Royalties, and families of “west friendly” rulers from around the world during their legendary European and American vacations are brushed aside. It is the west that has been enabling these despots to commit heinous acts of crimes. Where is the official outrage about the mistreatment of an American citizen by the same sadistic monster or on his behalf? Had the US government indicated that it will stop all police and law enforcement training programs of UAE police forces. Where was the demand for justice and accountability by the state department which issued an insultingly weak press release after our own embassy official advised the American business man to get out of the country, but never inquired about him when he was being mistreated.

Your problem is that you use these tapes only to justify similar criminality by others. A true call for human rights can not be relative. Not by you, not by Natenyaho, the Israeli Medical Association, or by our Emir friends. Dignity is universal, and torture is wrong no matter how much cool aid Dr. Alan manage to make you drink.

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April 23rd, 2009, 6:42 pm

 

35. Shai said:

OTW,

Interesting response. Just today a psychologist was interviewed in Israel on the radio, and asked how he could explain why some members of the EU remained to hear Ahmedinejad’s speech (calling Israel a racist state), while others got up and left, and what could and should Israel do about it. Naturally, he proceeded to give a psychological analysis of Ahemdinejad, and of his effect on many, including and especially those who stayed.

But what was even more interesting, was his analysis of what goes on between two Israelis who bring up the issue of racism in Israel, suggesting that while neither will accept hearing this from the Iranian president, they can accept it from each other, mainly because they agree with it to a degree. But his best comment, was to suggest that no one in Israel should expect us to be able to fight (diplomatically) these claims against us, while racism against Arab-Israelis and Palestinians exists to the degree that it does. He made it clear that until we address this crucial issue internally, we will continue to lose the battle outside, on the diplomatic front.

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April 23rd, 2009, 6:52 pm

 

36. Off the Wall said:

Shai
In 2002-2003, there was a sgnificant movement by some Israeli Doctors to take the IMA to task for its position on “interrogation tactics”. The discussion was brought to the pages of the Lancet. Due to copyright laws, I can not post the relevant articles, responses by IMA, and by the WMA to the request by Derek Summerfiled for the suspention of IMA’s membership in the WMA, and the counter argument to the IMA and WMA by Derek himslef

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April 23rd, 2009, 7:09 pm

 

37. Shai said:

OTW,

What is even more sickening, is not only the doctor knowing he/she is there to enable horrific physical abuse of a fellow human being (terrorist, murderer, or not), as close to torture as possible but “just short of it”, but also that he/she is there essentially to protect the abuser not the abused!

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April 23rd, 2009, 7:30 pm

 

38. Akbar Palace said:

Well, we are all outraged by the behavior of the UAE prince. But you seem to spare nothing to justify torture and to sanitize it if it is done by our side because it is not performed on citizens and because some doctors, who should be banned from that honorable profession have supervised it so that the victim remains alive for another round. How disgusting and repulsive.

OTW,

I’m glad you are, but do you speak for others? Certainly not for the Arab press, which you said did not cover this. OTW, I made a distinction: those the CIA capture and waterboard are off the battlefield and could be planning or have knowledge of future attacks. IMHO, there is no “moral equivalence” here. The prince was beating a lousy grain farmer according to the news source.

Let me just say, that I used this article to bring home the usual 2 pet-peeves I have:

1.) Arab “rage” is a One-Way Street. Arabs don’t care and are not outraged by abuse from other Arabs.

2.) The “moral-equivalence” argument is weak at best.

As a Zionist sympathizer, this is the narrative I remind the readership here of. There are many examples – this “prince” is just another.

What a disgusting hypocrisy.

I disagree. I find NO hypocrisy.

The US and the allies executed Japanese soldiers for carrying out water boarding.

Send me a link and I’ll be happy to apply MY moral compass on whatever occurred.

…after all arabs are bunch of barbaric anti-semites, aren’t they?

Offended,

As much as I dislike generalizing, I do have feeling the the ME and most arab governments are “behind-the-times” to put it nicely. Of course, I know the Arab world is made up of so many flavors of people one cannot generalize. There are those who are very modern and well-off and well-educated and there is the opposite. I think those who tend to be “behind-the-times” (I’m not going to use “primitive” because that is a pejorative) are the poor and uneducated, and frankly, I think this makes up a large portion of the “Arab Street”.

You’re not insinuating that the police should arrest the Emir, I hope.

Why not? Bill Clinton was impeached. President Nixon was too. What about Rabin, BB, Olmert, Sharon, or the Israeli president before Peres? They’ve ALL been investigated and some were punished. In a democracy, no one is beyond the law.

We have seen similar videos in the US of police beating suspects before arrest – not much happened as a reaction, mostly a storm in a teacup

Majid,

Which police got away with a beating?

http://www.groundreport.com/US/Four-Officers-In-Philadelphia-Beating-Will-Be-Fire

http://newsone.blackplanet.com/nation/seattle-police-beat-15-year-old-girl/

http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0207/10/ltm.14.html

The despicable shiekh is enabled by us here in the US and Europe.

OTW,

With all due respect, don’t put the blame on anyone else like the US or Europe. It is sad you feel the need to do this and take the responsibility away from the individual who did this with his own hands.

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April 23rd, 2009, 10:08 pm

 

39. majid said:

OTW,

When it comes to Israeli/Palestinian issues, human rights cannot be addressed simply on the basis of how Israel or its tools (like Israeli Doctors and IMA) deal with Palestinians. The Palestinians as well as the Israeli Arabs fall under the category of OCCUPIED people whose land was illegally STOLEN by foreigners who came from all corners of the earth to claim a land that does not belong to them, thereby creating a historical anomaly of unimaginable proportions. The issue is more fundamental than human rights. Demanding the application of human rights, and stopping at that without calling for an end of occupation, from an occupier on the occupied is a tacit approval of the occupation. This is not different than begging a thief to return the crumbs of his THEFT. It is a LEGAL issue before it is a human rights issue. Intelligent Arabs like you must be aware of this pitfall and they should make sure not to fall into it. AhmediNejjad or his likes may well turn out be right and they are preparing the groundwork for the time when they will apply true Islamic Justice on the perpetrators of this historical anomaly. Did you hear about the latest conference of Islamic jurors who met in Tehran to try Israelis for crimes committed by Israel? The West always absolves Israel of its crimes. Would you be surprised if the Muslims eventually turn to their legal system instead of the flawed so-called human rights of the ‘decadent’ West?

We did not empower the emirs or any of those regimes in the area. They have existed before the US came into the area and they will continue to exist even after the US moves out. The West needs them more than they need the West. China is on the horizon and so is Russia and India. None of these powers really care about human rights (in the distorted Western sense). They care more about business and they have dealt with the Arabs for ages. The Arabs know that very well. Certainly Iran knows this and it played its cards very well.

The sands are shifting once again!

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April 23rd, 2009, 10:35 pm

 

40. Akbar Palace said:

Unimaginable Anomalies and other UFO sitings

The Palestinians as well as the Israeli Arabs fall under the category of OCCUPIED people whose land was illegally STOLEN by foreigners who came from all corners of the earth to claim a land that does not belong to them, thereby creating a historical anomaly of unimaginable proportions.

Majid,

Kudos for the colorful language and hyperbole. I especially like the phrase, “…thereby creating a historical anomaly of unimaginable proportions.” A+. Now let’s parse the words.

“Anomaly” is another jihadist/Ahmadinejad weapon-word used to make the State of Israel illegitimate.

According to my little Webster’s dictionary:

anomaly: (n) 1. a deviation from the common type, rule, arrangement or form. 2. someone of something abnormal, unusual, or irregular.

and then, of course the phrase “unimaginable proportions”.

The fact of the matter is, people have migrated and moved all over the world to create new states and new nations.

I can vouch for that as an American. Country after country have been created and destroyed by invaders or by other peoples for a multitude of reasons. Egypt was overtaken by Arabs! Was that an anomaly? Jewish immigration to Palestine is nothing “unimaginable” in terms of world history, except that it took so long; 2000 years.

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

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

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

http://www.socyberty.com/History/Fall-of-Egyptian-Civilization.587997

http://www.infoplease.com/ce6/world/A0858115.html

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

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

And then, what about Arab immigration to Palestine? Was that an “anomaly” of “unimaginable proportions”?

Pleeease!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palestine#The_question_of_late_Arab_immigration_to_Palestine

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April 24th, 2009, 1:18 am

 

41. Off the Wall said:

Majid
I fully agree with the anomalies you have described. I am not demanding human rights and stopping at that. But even occupiers have responsibilities towards their victims.

My argument was only to demonstrate the double standards and outright self deception ideologues have to go through in order to defend an indefensible moral and legal positions. Not a single one of us will defend the piece of crap royal mafioso, AP knows that, but he still talks as if we are applauding that type of torture.

Granted, I have said it many times that occupation is the worst assault on the human rights of any group. The collective nature of the assault is beyond any legal mechanistic remedies. And this is why the world recognizes the right of people under occupation to resist it. Its only remedy is in its end. However, international norms also require that occupying forces adhere to a set of standards, which includes the protection of the human rights of their victims, among many other things Israel continues to violate. I recognize the intellectual and legal ramification of demanding that occupiers not violate the human rights of the occupied as it is akin to asking a rapist not to batter his victims. But recall that one can be charged for the main crime and for any other crime committed during the commission of the main crime. There are aggravating factors that are taken into account during the sentencing phase.

AP
Saying that the Emir’s clan is protected by the US does not absolve him from his crimes.

Saying that Arab rage is a one way street is not honest. The press may be intimidated, but I assure you that most of the people, are probably saying, oh my god, the emir is acting like Israeli soldiers knowing well that his government will whitewash his crimes exactly like the “internal investigation” we get from Israel.

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April 24th, 2009, 1:29 am

 

42. Akbar Palace said:

And this is why the world recognizes the right of people under occupation to resist it.

OTW,

Can you show us how you determined that “the world recognizes the right of the people under occupation to resist it”?

After you find that, can you show us where the world recognizes the right of the people under occupation to employ terrorism as a method of resistance?

Just curious.

but I assure you that most of the people, are probably saying, oh my god, the emir is acting like Israeli soldiers knowing well that his government will whitewash his crimes exactly like the “internal investigation” we get from Israel.

OTW –

This is where you are wrong. The emir didn’t act like an Israeli, he acted like an emir. Today 70 Iraqis died by backward, murderous jihadis. What are most of the people blaming that on? Israelis?

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April 24th, 2009, 3:07 am

 

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