Assassination Accusations Abound in Lebanon - Syria Comment

Assassination Accusations Abound in Lebanon

As the Lebanese Presidential deadline of November 12 approaches and tension mounts, everyone is accusing others of plotting assassinations. Here are some of the latest.

Lebanon's parliamentary majority leader, Saad Hariri, said he has evidence that a senior Syrian official has been plotting to assassinate him and Lebanon's Prime Minister Fuad Siniora. Hariri was in Cairo and responded to a reporter who asked whether Syrian military intelligence chief Assif Shawkat was behind the alleged plot.

"We have information about this, and it is accurate, " he said. He said Lebanon's security services are following up on intelligence about the alleged assassination plot, which he said also targeted Prime Minister Siniora.

Alex writes:

The secretary general of the youth movement of George Haoui … who was one of the “Lebanese martyrs” supposedly assassinated by Syria (god nows why!) … is now publicly accusing the Saudi fundamentalists of killing the Late Hariri and accusing the Mossad of killing his idol, George Haoui.

Last month, Nasrallah committed for the first time publicly, to a clear position … Syria is innocent.

Both men did not do so in the past … they reached this conclusion lately.

t_desco replies:

Alex,

I think that it is possible that Zarqawi ordered the assassination, based on the link discovered by Nibras Kazimi. Having said that, the testimony by Faisal Akbar is not without problems. I am planning to write about it and the “cell of 13″ (and also about Fatah al-Islam as both are linked to the Dinniyeh group), but I am kind of hoping that Nibras Kazimi will comment on the contradictions between the various testimonies which I find rather confusing. It is regrettable that there is not more discussion about this.

The "confessions" printed in al-Akhbar have been well translated by Nibras Kazimi

Hawi’s family sues Mossad for assassination
The Daily Star Thursday, October 25, 2007
 by Lebanon Daily Star staff

BEIRUT: The family of slain former Lebanese Communist Party leader Georges Hawi announced on Wednesday that it had filed a lawsuit against Israel’s Mossad intelligence agency accusing it of plotting his assassination on June 21, 2005.

Speaking during a news conference at the Bristol Hotel, Hawi’s step-son, Raffy Madayan, lashed out at the Lebanese authorities for “overlooking the issue of political assassinations and focusing on the murder of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri solely.”

Hizbullah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, in his latest speech, accused Israel of plotting the string of political assassinations which took place over the past few years; the March 14 Forces, meanwhile, holds Syria responsible.

Madayan accuse el-Qaëda de l’assassinat de Hariri, L’Orient-Le Jour,

M. Rafi Madayan, secrétaire général de « la jeunesse de Georges Haoui » (ancien secrétaire général du Parti communiste libanais assassiné à Beyrouth en juin 2005), a tenu hier une conférence de presse au cours de laquelle il a notamment accusé « le fondamentalisme saoudien représenté par el-Qaëda d’avoir commandité l’assassinat de Rafic Hariri et les autres assassinats politiques (perpétrés depuis le retrait syrien), alors que le gouvernement libanais pointe un doigt accusateur en direction de la Syrie ». « L’Arabie saoudite désire-t-elle accuser la Syrie afin de détourner l’attention de tout suspect saoudien ? s’est interrogé M. Madayan. Qu’en est-il en outre des informations faisant état d’un financement libanais visant à mettre sur pied un parti syrien opposant qui œuvrerait à partir du Liban ? » Après avoir demandé à Mme Nazek Hariri d’« intervenir afin de mettre un terme à ce conflit syro-libanais, chiito-sunnite et libano-libanais », M. Madayan a accusé le Mossad d’avoir assassiné Georges Haoui.
 Al-Akhbar, As-Safir

Sayyed urges authorities to probe Al-Qaeda link to Hariri killing, from Daily Star

"Why are the printed confessions of a 13-member group called Al-Qaeda in Balad al-Sham admitting their involvement in Hariri's killing completely disregarded?" Sayyed asked in a statement released by his lawyer, Akram Azoury.

Sayyed was referring to a series of articles on the confessions published last week by the local daily Al-Akhbar, entitled the "The group of 13 and assassination of Rafik Hariri."

The articles included lengthy excerpts of the alleged confessions and details outlining how the statements were extracted under torture, as well as the names of the members belonging to the Al-Qaeda splinter group.

Local media outlets circulated unconfirmed reports that the excerpts were actually

taken from the notes of a preliminary investigation by the former public prosecutor, Adnan Adoum.   

Israeli Minister: Israel is ready to return Golan for peace

Science, Culture and Sport Minister Raleb Majadele said Friday that Israel is ready to pay the price of peace with Syria, which he described as a withdrawal from the Golan Heights in exchange for peace with the entire Arab world…

“Israel will not be able to normalize relations with Arab nations without paying the price of anything related to the Palestinian issue,” he said…

He reiterated that he doesn’t rule out the possibility that “the fate of the settlements in the West Bank will be the fate of the settlements from the Gaza Strip,” referring to Israel’s 2005 withdrawal of settlements from the coastal territory…

Also don’t miss: Speakers in UN General Assembly Second Committee call on Israel to stop destroying infrastructure, causing environmental damage in occupied Arab lands

Fadlallah slams Bush's pursuit of 'hellish objectives'

Comments (75)


why-discuss said:

Is it that Hariri junior and Siniora are very incomfortable with the french opening toward Syria and the growing rumours doubting Syria government’s involvement in several murders in Lebanon, including Hariri Sr’s.
Accusing with no published proofs except according to Siniora “Information we obtained from reliable source that we are examining” seems a very desperate attempt to undermine the growing awareness of the international community that isolating Syria is creating more problems than it solves. Is the 14 Mars group running out of munitions to use such tabloid-like declaration?

November 1st, 2007, 1:06 am

 

Losing Hope Quickly said:

Lebanon is only going one-way and that’s towards civil war – anti-Syrian jibes by Hariri Junior and Siniora are not only desperate attempts by these “politicians” to undermine Syria’s recent ‘revival’ on the int. stage, but are designed to further exacerbate the socio-religious divisions inherent in Lebanese society.

This situation will only continue for a limited period of time before it will collapse once again…The re-arming of militias across the Lebanese political spectrum is testament to this…let’s hope I’m very very wrong.

November 1st, 2007, 1:42 am

 

majedkhaldoun said:

If anyone knows who killed Hariri, it would be Brammertz, but he is quiet lately, USA prefer to see Syria abandone their alliance with Iran, but more important is to abandone HA,in return they will drop the Hariri tribunal,this may be difficult for Syria to do,considering HA is strong.
some of the assassination talk is misinformations, however what will happen if Saad hariri is assassinated?the tribunal will go away, so he better stay in Paris, most likely USA will sell him out.
I suspect Fares Buez will be lebanon next president.

November 1st, 2007, 4:18 am

 

ausamaa said:

They Feb 14 crowd are running for their political lives actually. They now see the possibilibility of being abandond by their ineffective new and old sponsors, both local and outsiders, and the prospects do not look that promissing.

They were given to beleive that the “other side” would be taken care of for good and destroyed, when that did not materialise, nightmares became a regular occurance and the significance of the word “disposable” took on a real-life meaning. BEcause in their stupidity, they saw their survival as a function of “destroying” the others. Which, again, does not look like a possibility now.

Actually, an assination of someone there by Israel or by some other “friendly” patron or local force seems to be a real possibility to ensure that Lebanon does not see stability and remains an “open front” from which their “friends” can continue to put presuure and to pick on Syria.

How would anyone feel being in their place now????

November 1st, 2007, 4:22 am

 

MSK said:

Dear all,

If you look at the latest in the Al-Akhbar confession installments, you’ll see that the guy (Faisal, the Saudi) has now retracted everything he’s previously “confessed”.

So much for THAT.

Of course, an Islamist group may have been able to pull off this assassination. But in that case, the question is “Why go for Hariri?” In spring 2005 he wasn’t exactly high on the list of targets for Salafist extremists. And following, why keep killing only anti-Syrian Lebanese? Why no attack on, say, the Aounis, or Hizbullah (which, after all, is alleged to be training Shi’ite militias in Iraq who are slaughtering Sunni Arabs)?

A theory I have heard here, from people who are quite sane and neither hate nor glorify Syria and its current regime, is that the group may have been told that the target would be Iyad Allawi, then Prime Minister of Iraq, who was visiting Beirut around that time. (Indeed, there is a story circulating that none other than Nabih Berri had warned Allawi of a plan to assassinate him while in Beirut.) Thus, the theory goes, Islamists were used as tools to kill Hariri. The question “And who were the ones who used the Islamists?” was then answered with “Well, most likely the Syrian regime.”

We may have power cuts and it’s hard to find a restaurant with good service in the Middle East, but at least it never gets boring … 😉

–MSK*

November 1st, 2007, 7:58 am

 

Youssef Hanna said:

WHY DISCUSS,

MP Hariri accused an identified dignitary, of the Syrian regime/family in power, of a plot to murder him, and to murder the Prime Minister of Lebanon.

When asked about the veracity of MP Hariri’s very grave accusation, his “3abd el Ma’mour”, the Prime Minister of Lebanon, backed it: «Make no mistake. Trusted information came about an operation under preparation to assassinate me; we condemn these operations and those who think of perpetrating them and are continuing to take caution. We persist in our principles of independence and sovereignty and always wish to weave relations with all arab states built on respect and trust”.

Up till now, the confirmation of the accusation by a Prime Minister was met with sheer silence.

By a two-line official SANA insert, Hariri was challenged to exhibit his evidence; this was the response, according to SANA, made by a ….”Masdar I3laami”.

Why so soft voiced an anonymous response? why not, instead, like the Syrian regime did with Hariri’s MP colleague Joumblatt when he incited to invade Syria, a penal libel suit?

Would you accept less if you were accused of a plot of murder?

Best regards

November 1st, 2007, 10:07 am

 

Alex said:

Youssef,

Because Syria has been very careful for the past few months not to give any gifts to those who are going to look for opportunities to claim or demonstrate that Syria was interfering in, or threatening or bullying Lebanon’s freedom fighters (the M14 group).

If they mess up with their upcoming presidential elections, you will not easily blame it on Syria this time.

MSK,

If you go back two years to my comments on the Hariri assassination (which used to be the one and only discussion topic for us at the time) you will see that I suggested that even if they find out who was the suicidal driver in the van … there will be at least two more layers to uncover before they find who “gave the order”.

And that’s why I always said … I doubt anyone will find out who killed Hariri.

November 1st, 2007, 11:49 am

 

MSK said:

Ya Alex,

العجلة من الشيطان و التأنّي من الرحمن

Eventually, like everything else, it will be found out.

–MSK*

November 1st, 2007, 12:30 pm

 

Youssef Hanna said:

Alex,

Is it an interference in Lebanon affairs, a threat and bullying of Lebanon’s freedom fighters, for A. Shawkat to file a libel suit, in the most civilized manner, before the Egyptian competent court, against a person who harmed his reputation by fabricating that he, A. Shawkat, plotted to murder him?

If the person who claims A. Shawkat was planning to murder him then retreats behind his parliamentarian immunity, what a victory for the Syrian regime.

Compared, a challenge through self owned SANA appears unusually timorous, confirmatory, and “sovietic” at the same time, by someone who does not give his name, a so-called “Masdar I3laami”.

Best regards

November 1st, 2007, 12:57 pm

 

IsraeliGuy said:

In recent weeks, there’s an ongoing dialogue between Syrian opposition figures and the Israeli public.

This dialogue has been working through an Israeli news and analysis site, called Omedia, which has both Hebrew and English versions.

Here’s the recent article by Farid Ghadry:
http://www.omedia.org/Show_Article.asp?DynamicContentID=2680&MenuID=603&ThreadID=1014010

The Hebrew site has a section named ‘Free Syria’, which includes articles by Syrian opposition figures who write to both the general public and policy makers in Israel.

Needless to say, this site has been blocked by the Syrian regime.

I’ve been reading some of the stuff there and it’s fascinating.

November 1st, 2007, 2:32 pm

 

AnotherIsraeliGuy said:

Farid Ghadry is the Man. Wow!
What a great idea to let the Alawites keep control of the army and move to a Turkish model. This could actually work and is a template for change without bloodshed.

Alex, could you ask Mr. Ghadry to write for Creative Syria?

November 1st, 2007, 2:45 pm

 

why-discuss said:

I believe that Hariri jr’s declaration is a cheap provocation to weaken Hezbollah in the wake of the election, especially that HA had taken side on Syria in the assassinations in Lebanon.
Accusations are abounding in Lebanon, they seem to be a technique to create an enduring impression and let the gossips loose: Maybe Hariri jr and Joumblatt got this advice from Bush and Bolton when they were in the USA.
A french say” mentez, mentez, il en restera toujours quelque chose”
“Lie, lie, something will still remain”
In any case. I don’t think Syria is the only one who would not want Hariri to become, as the saudis and their allies in Lebanon are planning, the next prime minister..

November 1st, 2007, 2:50 pm

 

MSK said:

IG,

Yes, Omedia is interesting. But the Syrian opposition people on it, first & foremost Farid Ghadry, still don’t matter.

Look, think of them like the Syrian equivalent to those ultraorthodox anti-Zionist Jews or the Samaritans on that hill next to Nablus or even the Lubavitcher Jews. Are they “interesting & fascinating”? Sure. Do they matter to the domestic Israeli discourse or its foreign politics? Not really.

Meaningful Syrian opposition figures don’t “dialogue” with Israel, for a number of reasons. They want to avoid giving the regime an easy way to discredit & persecute them. They don’t want to run the risk of alienating the Syrian citizens by being perceived to be cozy with what the vast majority of Syrians thinks is the Big Enemy. They agree with the regime & the vast majority of Syrians that the only thing to Israel about is when the Golan is going to be returned. They don’t see talking to Israelis as particularly high on their agenda.

The only moment when Farid Ghadry is going to matter in Syria would be if he were to be installed in a post-War government, like Ahmad Chalabi in Iraq. Let’s hope that this won’t happen, mainly ’cause I think that one bloody civil war in the region is already one too many.

–MSK*

November 1st, 2007, 2:51 pm

 

AnotherIsraeliGuy said:

MSK,
Sorry, I don’t buy that. If Asad himself wants to dialouge with the Israel, why can’t Ghadry do it.

And until there is freedom of speech in Syria, your categorical opinions on what Syrians think are just that, opinions.

I don’t think Syrians in general love Israel, but they certainly do not want war with it and would be delighted to transition to democracy without bloodshed. Furthermore, I believe that most Syrians are not willing to sacrifice for the Palestinian cause.

November 1st, 2007, 3:07 pm

 

Alex said:

Thank you MSK : )

I have been trying in the past to explain to IG that Mr. Ghadry is not significant in any way. Your example was the perfect one. Kust like the anti-Zionist ultra-orthodox Jews who visited Ahmadinejad in Tehran… although those at least are good human beings.

AIG … I did not check that forum, but if Mr. Farid is now advocating giving Alawites the Army, and following the Turkish model … guess who gave him this idea? … someone you argue with a lot here.

So I am happy you finally found at least one idea to be “Great”

Farid used to have a blog that he called … Syria Comment Plus. That should give you an idea how good he is at borrowing ideas from others.

I spent few weeks on his blog arguing with him and his assistant (I forgot his name)… Even you would have laughed at their ideas and opinions at the time. By now, they had enough time to borrow ideas from many other pro-regime Syrians… the ones who do what I do … tell you why you can’t have democracy today that easily.

Here is what I suggested on Ammar’s blog last year:

about sharing power in Syria

The point is, with my approach, which none of you can tell me what is wrong with it, we can start introducing the concept of democracy to Syria step by step … establishing new parties, training them on politics (by Europeans for example), then eventualy free pariamentary elections leading to an elected Prime miniter as strong as Lebanon’s Prime minister, or French prime minister co-existing with a minority president (Alawite hopefully).

I was having a discussion with many anti-regime people, or regime critics…. like Ehsani for example, and an israeli blogger. Over 100 pages of comments in that thread are good reading if you want to investigate the difficulties of my “great idea” that your hero Farid is claiming now.

November 1st, 2007, 3:37 pm

 

ausamaa said:

ANOTHERISRAELIGUY,

Saying :I don’t think Syrians in general love Israel” is the Mother of all Understatements!

The right way to phrase it: ALL SYRIANS HATE ISRAEL and all what ISRAEL stands for, starting from stealing the land of the Palestinians and kicking most of them out in 1948, ending with the Israeli State criminal acts ever since.

I hope this can help you understand how “Syrians in general” feel about Israel, the mini-South African State (the Apparthaid one I mean)!

Cheers,,,

November 1st, 2007, 3:40 pm

 

why-discuss said:

AUSSAMAA,

While they certainly dislike Israel as a colonialist country, Syrians and arabs in general have no problems with Jews and any other religion as long as the religion is not used as a political pretext to violently oppress and confiscate land

November 1st, 2007, 3:57 pm

 

AnotherIsraeliGuy said:

I love how some people know what Syrians think even though Syria is a police state.

Don’t you understand the inherent contradiction? If the Syrians agree with Bashar and with each other, why is the regime afraid of free speech? Because most Syrians may not like Israel but do not view it as anywhere high on their priority list. And do you think the Kurds hate Israel?

And how do you know ghadry is not popular? Were there free elections like in Israel? Of course not. It is jut your thoughts and opinions. If ghadry is so insignificant and lacks support, why is he censored in Syria? Actions speak louder than words.

In Israel, do we stop the neturei karta from going to Iran or voicing their opinion? Of course not. But Syria does censor ghadry. See the difference? What are they scared of?

November 1st, 2007, 4:01 pm

 

Youssef Hanna said:

WHY DISCUSS,

1 – his reputation has been all too seriously harmed by accusations of having murdered the father, for him to only borrow the mysterious mouth of SANA’s Masdar I3laami to challenge the new accusation, of plotting to murder the son.

2 – First accused of assassinating a Prime Minister, he is now accused of plotting to assassinate another Prime Minister.

ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.

There are courts, in the Egyptian capital, to impede a liar from successfully tarnishing the reputation of an honest man. Long from the time when they daringly ordered liberated Ikhwans jailed by the Mokhabaraat, Egyptian courts are known for being proof resistant to political meddling and U.S & French truth trafficking.

By filing a defamation suit against Hariri Jr, who accused him, from Cairo, of organising a plot to murder him, and to murder the Prime Minister of Lebanon, he would make him pay the price of trying to weaken HA at the expense of innocent people’s hard won reputation.

He is not a coward, savage, and hiding murderer, is he? He will dare take off the self serving SANA mask of the Masdar I3laami, and get down to the judicial arena on the most neutral of grounds. Sure He will. Time has come for Truth, and Truth shall set us free.

November 1st, 2007, 4:20 pm

 

Alex said:

AIG,

You are absolutely right.

What are you doing on this forum? … if EVERY SINGLE PERSON here told you that Ghadry is a big zero in Syria and outside, even those who hate the regime told you the same … even MSK (A German who is not a fan or the regime) is telling you the same …

My friend .. you believe that everyone here is either a liar or an idiot … and you, Another Israeli guy, can help all these Syrians to understand who Farid Ghadry is.

Why do they ban him in Syria? … because he is a crook. Rime Allaf is in Syria and she criticized the regime as much as Ghadry did. Why do they not bother her at all?

If I were in their shoes, I would allow him and welcome him in Syria. He would be his own worst enemy.

November 1st, 2007, 5:09 pm

 

IsraeliGuy said:

Alex, let me ask you the following question.
Why not having totally free elections?

Let me give you a totally fictitious example (just to make my point).
Let’s say we have elections and the following parties participate:

– The Sunni party
– The Alawite party
– The Christian party
– The Kurd party

As I said, this is just an example and I’ve made up some parties for the sake of my example.

Now, there will be elections and everybody will be allowed to vote.

If the Sunni majority will indeed vote for the Sunni party, they will get most of parliament seats and rule the country, due to the fact that they will have the majority of seats.

How does it sound to you?

Israel is a very diverse country and anybody can run for parliament.
For example, nobody is trying to artificially limit the number of actual Arab seats in the parliament.

If they get 10% of the total vote, they also get 10% of the seats.
Same goes for any other party in Israel.

Don’t you feel that such a system is more fair and better represents the wish of the Syrian people?

November 1st, 2007, 5:17 pm

 

IsraeliGuy said:

********
“Why do they ban him in Syria? … because he is a crook.”
********

Oh, so they let the “decent” Syrian opposition figures to express themselves freely in Syria and ban only the “crooks”?

November 1st, 2007, 5:22 pm

 

Alex said:

sraeliGuy said: Edit

********
“Why do they ban him in Syria? … because he is a crook.”
********

Oh, so they let the “decent” Syrian opposition figures to express themselves freely in Syria and ban only the “crooks”?

No sir. I have explained more than once before that these things are on a case by case basis … you are asking me for the rules guide. there is no such thing.

In the case of Ghadry I assure you they are not afraid of him. In the case of Ikhwan leaders who have many followers … you can say that the regime would rather not risk letting them communicate freely inside Syria.

And to prove to you that these things are on a case by case basis… Rime Allaf is happy in Damascus even though she is not a fan of the regime. But she is very patriotic and the regime can’t find any fault in her positions to use against her if they wanted to.

Please do not come up with other exceptions … I am already explaining that it all depends.

We are not a democracy … we know that, no?

November 1st, 2007, 5:51 pm

 

Alex said:

Israeliguy,

Educated and secular Syrians hate your suggestion:

– The Sunni party
– The Alawite party
– The Christian party
– The Kurd party

Israelis like that. We dont

This will lead to another Lebanon… only after we have calm in the Middle East would I accept the idea of religious parties… the bad idea of religious parties.

Look … I have problems with four regimes … the Iranian, the Saudi, teh Israeli, and the Texan one we now have… they are all mixing religion and politics… they are the source of most of the regional problems in the Middle East … in my opinion… I’m sure you have your own reasons to advocate religious parties and mixing religion with politics.

The issue of gradual political reforms is complex. I really suggest you read those 100 pages at Ammar’s blog I linked above. You have all the details as to why there is a way.

November 1st, 2007, 5:56 pm

 

Innocent Criminal said:

IG & AIG,

you two are having a completely different argument than Alex. For one, even he will admit that there is no political freedom in Syria. But I also find it interesting that the party names you created for your example are religiously based. Funny enough this would probably be the case if there was real freedom of choice in Syria. And this is exactly the type of thing that makes people stick to the current leadership, (i.e. to avoid sectarian parties). I am one of them, ill take a semi-secular authoritarian leadership any day over a sectarian-democracy (if there is such a thing).

now about Farid Ghadry, i think you have the misconception (i dont blame you) that he is a decent man & politician maybe even a potential peace partner. But I assure you, he is a complete moron and an insignificant footnote in history at best. so forget him, he will never be a player even he had the backing of America/Israel and all the money at their disposal, it simply aint gonna happen. And FYI, he is not censored cause he poses any danger, the guy is not even on the radar map because of all his screw ups (his visit to Israel alone is a cardinal sin). You need to remember that EVERYONE is censored in Syria, people that are smarter and make more common sense than Ghadry. Only this circus monkey knows a bit about western PR, and utilize it to get some attention. Unfortunately for him & fortunately for the rest of Syrians he seems to know nothing about Middle Eastern PR.

November 1st, 2007, 5:59 pm

 

Atassi said:

It will be very interesting to find out why would the parliamentary majority leader, Saad Hariri and the Prime Minister Fuad Siniora RISK their local and international credibility if they were falsely accusing the Syrians of the alleged plot to assassinate them. !!!
if the claimed facts NOT credible, They are going to face a very difficult days ahead with regards to the International court!!!

November 1st, 2007, 6:10 pm

 

Innocent Criminal said:

I disagree Atassi, its a lot harder to prove one’s innocense than guilt in such situations. and there are enough believers out there to support them

November 1st, 2007, 6:24 pm

 

Atassi said:

I kind agree with you, but please keep in mind, it’s a very risky move since the other parties “ The American and KSA” did not explicitly joined the beat !!!

November 1st, 2007, 6:37 pm

 

Observer said:

For IG and AIG: I do think that many in the Arab world would benefit from seeing a democracy at work. I read of how proud you are of the democracy that Israel represents. I read of how proud you are of the fact that the Arab citizens of Israel were given their rights and citizenship in 1987 and how they thrive in this democracy. Please do tell us then if this minority has the right to ask for family reunions with the Palestinian diaspora, just as I am able to do with my family here in the US. If this is a democracy and the Israeli citizenship is not contigent on belonging to a certain religion or sect, then this loyalty to the national identity should trump any other loyalty just as the Norwegian Americand and the Irish Americans and the Italian Americans are Americans first and ethnic second. In that case you should be able to allow for the majoirty of the displaced Palestinians to return and embrace the Israeli citizenship and enjoy the fruits of the great democracy that was built there. Why would you be so afraid of their return if they are to be members in full rights and responsibility towards the great Israeli democracy. This would be a step up for them and a great asset for Israel as 90% of them are educated and with many skills. You could easily do this over the next 10 years so as not to tax the services associated with their absorption. What a neat idea this would be, for Israel to evolve into the original PLO idea of a secular non sectarian democracy.
Now for Syrian opposition, it is truly laughable were not so pathetic to think that Ghadry, Khaddam, Bayanouni and their associates have any weight or influence or audience in Syria. The feeling of Arab identity is extremely strong and the Islamist revival in Syria is not dampening it in my opinion to the contrary it is reinforcing it. Those countries that chose their local nationallis agenda at the expense of their Arab solidarity such as Jordan and Egypt have become marginal.

November 1st, 2007, 6:38 pm

 

IsraeliGuy said:

Alex, the sample that I gave was totally fictitious (and I said so).

If it makes it easier, let’s say there are 5 parties:
– Party A
– Party B
– Party C
– Party D
– Party E

Naturally, there’s room for any type of party (like the Democrats/Republicans in the US and many others).

But hey, if people want to form a party, based on their religious or ethnic affiliation – it’s their right, isn’t it?

You’re talking about what educated and secular Syrians hate – but this is exactly my point: anybody will be able to form a party and their future (or the lack of it) will depend on the popular vote.

If some of the people will like them, they’ll get votes and seats and if the people hates them or their platforms and ideas, they won’t get votes.

Don’t you agree?
Isn’t it the best system for Syria that will represent what the Syrian people genuinely want?

I often see people here use phrases like “the Syrian people want…” or “Syrians prefer…”.

But isn’t the only way to really know what the Syrian people want, love and hate is to allow it to speak its mind freely and openly?

Don’t you feel they deserve this, like any other normal nation?

November 1st, 2007, 6:38 pm

 

IsraeliGuy said:

Observer, Israeli Arabs are entitled to ask for family reunions.

In order to do so, they need to file an application with the Israeli Ministry of Interior.
Such a process does exist.

The law was more flexible in the past, but since the 2nd Intifadah broke out, family reunion laws were toughened up after some reunions were exploited for terrorism.

The situation in your example is different from the situation in Israel.
Norwegians, Irish and Italians pose zero threats to the US and the US administration doesn’t see them as a security risk.

When it comes to Arabs and Muslims, things changed a lot after 9/11, not only in the US, but elsewhere too – in terms of airport security checks, visas, immigration etc.

I’m sure that when the security factor will not be there anymore, Israel will go back to the far more flexible policy it had regarding family reunions.

Regarding the broader issue that you raised: Palestinians will indeed return – but to future Palestine, their country, not to Israel.

Regarding which Syrian opposition leader holds weight inside Syria and who doesn’t – well, it has some good reasons, doesn’t it?

How can an opposition figure gain weight, influence or audience in Syria, if he’ll meet the Mukhabarat and the nearest Jail cell, the second he opens his mouth?

That’s the tricky part, isn’t it?

November 1st, 2007, 7:19 pm

 

AnotherIsraeliGuy said:

Innocent Criminal,

Try as I may I cannot understand what you are saying.
In a democracy if people want to create a party they are usually allowed to. There are some rules, but you have to be racist or preach violence in order to be denied.

Now, if people want an Islamic party in Syria, like the one in Turkey for example, why would you stand in their way?

Democracy is accepting that other people may think differently than you. I despise the neturei carta that kiss the Iranians but I love democracy more and accept that this is their right.

You seem to be denying this right to people because you don’t like religious parties. You are just being authoritarian and anti-democratic.

In any case, your solution is just temporary. The poor, radicalized and unemployed young Syrians will overwhelm the current regime within 10 years. It is better to move purposefully to democracy than to have everything blow up in your face. Then there will be a real bloodbath. But Bashar is doing nothing, only making the situation worse.

November 1st, 2007, 8:41 pm

 

SimoHurtta said:

Regarding the broader issue that you raised: Palestinians will indeed return – but to future Palestine, their country, not to Israel

And when will it be IG? Livni rejects timeline for peace deal

Israel only wants to speak about a potential peace, but not from a timetable, borders etc. Who are you kidding? Nobody believes that the theocracy Israel wants peace or leave the occupied areas voluntarily. Only when the USA’s and EU’s need of better relations with Arab countries and of oil gets enough desperate there will be peace. And the time for that desperation level seems to be near.

By the way Israeli guys don’t you find it little moraly “difficult” that Jews are demanding their lost properties in Europe and substantial compensations and have got most of them, but Israel is not willing pay anything for Palestinians or give their lost properties back? At least I find that rather strange. Maybe you Israelis trust that Americans and Europeans pay the compensations you owe to Palestinians. That would be a world record in international “diplomacy”.

PS.
Your democracy advices to Syrians and trust in the democracy level of Hareidistan have made me laugh several times. That is like listening two slave owners lecturing about humanity and democracy. Thanks guys for entertaining reading moments.

November 1st, 2007, 8:41 pm

 

Zenobia said:

IG said:
“Israel is a very diverse country and anybody can run for parliament.
For example, nobody is trying to artificially limit the number of actual Arab seats in the parliament.

If they get 10% of the total vote, they also get 10% of the seats.
Same goes for any other party in Israel.”

ahh dear IG,
i simply don’t think you can sit in Israel and preach about the benefits of democracy. you are down to the details of whether permission for reunions will be back normal when there is no security threat…. so sad.
what about the whole of it.
If Israel was really interest in democracy or proportional representation, why didn’t (as Observer pointed out) they simply annex the territories when they had the chance- make all of Palestine into Israel, and give the new citizens their one man one vote civil rights.
Proportional representation didn’t look so good then, i guess. And the only other outcome in that case would have been the complete inability for Israel to call itself a democracy.
Now, you are left in limbo. A pseudo democracy. A democracy that has a few million non-citizens on the side who don’t interfere with your democracy demographics. And yet- your people just can’t quite decide to set them free with the land going too.
It is a sad story.

Syria may be a not so great story either at this point. But, the people are not convinced of what they are willing to sacrifice and the responsibilities they have to take on… to have the fabled democracy.
Just like the Israelies.

November 1st, 2007, 8:46 pm

 

AnotherIsraeliGuy said:

Sim,

You lapse into antisemitism again.
Do you know how much property the 3 million+ Jews of Poland had? There were several large cities that were 50%+ Jewish. Poland has not paid Israel anything. The property of the Jews in Poland is worth hundreds of billions. Not one cent of compensation was given nor was the property returned

There were 6 million Jews murdered by the Germans. Let’s say that their family is allowed $100,000 for wrongful death. This is very much on the low side. The Germans owe the Jews then: $600,000,000,000
in words 600 billion dollars. They paid in total less than $20 billion in todays dollars. This is before we discuss the property of the Jews in Germany.

So please, take your antisemitism somewhere else.

November 1st, 2007, 9:25 pm

 

AnotherIsraeliGuy said:

Zenobia,

Why distort fact? The Palestinians in the occupied territories are not citizens of Israel and they will soon have a state of their own.

The 1.2 million Israeli Arabs have more rights that any Syrian and are on average 6-7 times more rich than any Syrian. Tough to face, but it is the truth.

November 1st, 2007, 9:26 pm

 

IsraeliGuy said:

Dear Zenobia,

First, I don’t see myself as preaching (in the negative sense of the word) – however, is there anything wrong in advocating for democracy and rejecting totalitarian regimes?

I think it’s legitimate.

Regarding annexing the Palestinian territories, as you know, Israel and the Palestinians are trying to reach a 2 state solution which is the preferable solution to both Israel and the Palestinians.

I didn’t hear any serious call from the Palestinian Authority which expresses a will to be annexed to Israel.

There’s a peace conference soon in Annapolis and the 2 parties have been in serious dialogue for the past year or so.

Abu Mazen himself said in a recent interview that Olmert is serious about reaching a deal.

If you’ll ask the average Palestinian, what does he prefer, being annexed to Israel or being a citizen of an independent Palestinian state, I think most will choose the latter.

November 1st, 2007, 9:30 pm

 

AnotherIsraeliGuy said:

As for the compensation to the Palestinians, the Arabs will pay it to them in exchange for Israel forgiving the compensation owed to the 800,000 Arab Jews that had to leave their countries. It is only right that Syria pay its Jews because it did not stop the pogrom in Allepo in 1947 for example. Also, the Jews usually had to leave their property behind when they left Syria. But Israel will not demand this money, and the Arabs will pay the Palestinians directly. They also owe them because of the bad way they fought the war in 1948 and for not giving them a country in the west bank and gaza between 48 and 67.

November 1st, 2007, 9:33 pm

 

annie said:

IG you never stop; Farid Ghadry is nobody. I had recognized his arguments in some of your comments. (Don’t deal with a dictator etc.).
Try and see your country with Arab eyes : why would Arabs feel anything but dislike or hatred for what you have been doing for 60 years.
It is impossible to decide that 48 is a thing of the past; it goes on and on and there is no end in sight.
The above comment about compensation of Palestinians is very valid; why you and not them ? Your argument according to which one ousted Palestinian equals one ousted Moroccan Jew is mixing apples and oranges.Plus most Jews left willingly prodded by zionist propaganda.

November 1st, 2007, 9:37 pm

 

why-discuss said:

IG

The 1.2 million Israeli Arabs have more rights that any Syrian and are on average 6-7 times more rich than any Syrian. Tough to face, but it is the truth.

“DO YOU KNOW….

… that non-Jewish Israelis can’t buy or lease land in Israel.

… that Palestinian license plates in Israel are color coded to distinguish Jews from non-Jews.

… that Jerusalem, both East and West, is considered by the entire world community, including the United States, to be occupied territory and NOT part of Israel.

… that Israel allots 85% of the water resources for Jews and the remaining 15% is divided among all Palestinians in the “territories”? For example in Hebron, 85% of the water is given to about 400 settlers, while 15% must be divided among Hebron’s 120,000 Palestinians.

… that Israel is the only country in the Middle East that has nuclear weapons.

… that Israel is the only country in the Middle East that refuses to sign the nuclear non-proliferation treaty and bars international inspections from its sites….”
http://sabbah.biz/mt/

November 1st, 2007, 9:41 pm

 

AnotherIsraeliGuy said:

Why,
Do you know that you do not know?
that non-Jewish Israelis can’t buy or lease land in Israel.
False as false can be. Foreigners and Arab Israelis of course own land. Where do you find your crazy stuff?

If you believe the following you are an antisemite:
that Palestinian license plates in Israel are color coded to distinguish Jews from non-Jews.

Arab Israeli plates are like any other in Israel. What are you smoking?

And, please show me proof that Israel has nuclear weapons. I wan’t proof just as good as you want in order to be convinced that Israel bombed a nuclear site.

Israel does not have to allow inspections exactly because it didn’t sign the NPT.

November 1st, 2007, 9:48 pm

 

AnotherIsraeliGuy said:

Sorry Annie. If one refugee is to be compensated then also another needs to be compensated. The “zionists” were not to blame for the murder of Jews in Allepo in 47. The Syrians were responsible. Why would Jews stay after that? A morrocan Jew deserves to be compensated just as much as a Palestinian. What is the difference? Sorry if it is not convenient to your world view.

November 1st, 2007, 9:51 pm

 

why-discuss said:

Atassi

It will be very interesting to find out why would the parliamentary majority leader, Saad Hariri and the Prime Minister Fuad Siniora RISK their local and international credibility if they were falsely accusing the Syrians of the alleged plot to assassinate them. !!!

Hariri jr has been claiming loud that Syria murdered his father and all the other victims in Lebanon. When and if they will find out (after a few years..) who are the murderers, do you think anyone will come back with today’s statement to confront Hariri? Credibility is a forgotten word in today’s diplomacy.

I think Hariri felt left on the side when it was announced there were murder plots on Olmert, Nasrallah, Poutine….

November 1st, 2007, 9:53 pm

 

Zenobia said:

I didn’t say that the Palestinians in the Territories were citizens. that was precisely my point.
and yes today…and in recent times… the two state solution is accepted and desired by everyone.
but let me recall for you that when the PLO was first formed and for many years…. they were completely against the two state idea. They wanted one state…. a state in which they were citizens, albeit it wasn’t imagined to be an israeli state but a mixed state.
It was the Israelis who were not prepared for that reality.. and therefore were forced to come to the conclusion after years of struggling with occupation …to come to accept the idea of two state.
Unfortunately, you are too optimistic that the moment is at hand.
you act like the meetings taking place are something new.
These types of negotiations have been going on for more than ten years. And the Israelis have stalled and stalled…while more land is gobbled up….and big walls are built.
and you will remind of us the failure of Arifat in 2000. But really…. there is an impossible impasse around Jerusalem. the Palestinians demand a meaningful capital. And the Israelis want it all for themselves.

do you really think this is going to be resolved in the newest talks. No Way. Israel is still not prepared to get specific and give the Palestinians their capital. They want to give them a suburb and call it Jerusalem…. ha ha. nice.

these things were being negotiated years and years and there is nothing new here being offered.

November 1st, 2007, 10:07 pm

 

SimoHurtta said:

Sim,

You lapse into antisemitism again.

How did I do that AIG? What is anti-Semitism in pointing out the moral problem with the compensations? In any case Germany and others have been paying. That what is essential. Demanding that Arab countries pay for the Jews who left from Muslim countries, that is a problem between your nation and those countries, but that has nothing to do with Palestinians. Palestinians were/are not form Syria, Iran, Turkey etc. You stole Palestinians land and property, simple as that.

I am getting bored to your anti-Semitism blaming. If you guys can constantly critizize Syria and Arabs, why cant I critizize Israel and some Jews (notice some)? Well your are obviously Sharon’s “children”, it is OK for Israelis to criticize everybody else, but nobody is allowed to critizize Israel. A good democratic opinion for democracy teachers, isn’t it guys.

Anybody with brains can read from the Israeli press and opinions that a fast solution with Palestinians is not what Israel wants. No sensible state invests billions in occupied areas (for Jews not for the real local people), creates settlements with governmental loans etc to give it up.

If Annapolis doesn’t provide real and fast solutions Israel is in real troubles. The big brother in the west is getting skinnier every day and it has to choose and fast. Keep continuing injecting billions to that small problem country or trying to save in much bigger interests what can be saved. If you Israeliguys can’t see what is happening around you that is your problem. Every day the dollar falls, US economy slows down and the oil gets more expensive (in dollars not so much in euros) is a day nearer with the two state solution (or a major war). Eretz Yisrael is history.

November 1st, 2007, 10:14 pm

 

IsraeliGuy said:

Dear Zenobia,

You have an interesting way of seeing things : )

Indeed, in the past, the Palestinians wanted a one state solution – called Palestine.

The original PLO Charter outlined goals that included the destruction of the State of Israel via armed struggle.

November 1st, 2007, 10:17 pm

 

Alex said:

Israeliguy,

We keep going through this same argument again and again. I am not against democracy. All the Syrian expats here got hooked on living in democratic societies and would be happy to see the same take place in Syria.

But … tell me exactly what are you proposing in practice? … a revolution? .. you know that the regime will not leave voluntarily. Do you want the Syrian people to demonstrate in the streets by the hundreds of thousands? … when THEY want to do that, THEY will do that… exactly like the Lebanese did in 2005 when they did not get scared from the Syrian army and intelligence.

Until then… the Syrian people have Iraq and Lebanon and Palestine on their minds. The 1.6 million Iraqi refugees in Syria … the Pathetic show of Lebanese democracy which never works… and the poor Palestinians who suffer everyday at the hands of your soldiers who are having more and more psychological disorders …

Let me explain: If you are healthy but all your family members are struggling with serious diseases … will you pray to god to help you make more money? .. or will you thank god for the good health that you have?

Besides, so far every democracy in the Middle East turned out to be a negative experience … Israel (sorry) is the worst. Iran is bad, Hamas is not my type either … Lebanon is a disaster … without an agreement from outside, they are not able to decide on anything.

I love Sweden or Canada … but … they are not in the Middle East.

But why is it that both of you are so interested in democracy in Syria? … instant democracy! .. through a revolution if necessary.

I understand you would prefer to sign peace with a democratic Syria .. but we all know that a revolution will lead to another failed middle eastern democracy … You will have the Kurdish party wanting to separate … no, you will have two Kurdish parties … one from the old Syrian Kurds who want to remain Syrian, and the other one for the new Turkish Kurds who want to become part of Kurdistan. In that same are you have the Assyrian party .. the Assyrians are very small in numbers but many believe they deserve to reestablish their kingdom.… which is overlapping Kurdistan very nicely.

I am definitely not saying we should not look for ways to become more democratic. AIG loved my suggestion (only because it came from Farid Ghadry) … so, you agree with my “great idea”… I hope we can discuss it, instead of your instant democracy which no one is willing to die for in Syria… as you can see … I hope you don’t ask me again “how do you know” .. I know from what did not happen .. no one is willing to die for democracy… for now it is laughable to many Syrians and Arabs … This administration really destroyed the respect for “democracy”.

Oh … By the way … Ghardy two years ago wanted to send the Alawites back to the mountains. If you want to know HIS original ideas. Here is his article titled “Why the Alawites must go back to the mountains

Keep him, love him, respect HIS “great ideas” … and don’t believe anyone of us here… keep asking us “how do you know he is not popular in Syria” …

November 1st, 2007, 10:25 pm

 

AnotherIsraeliGuy said:

Sim,

Whatever. I really don’t understand what you are saying anymore. If you are saying that a two state solution is coming, I agree with you.

When it is convenient the Syrians are leaders of the Arab nation and when it is not convenient there is just the Palestinians. We will not play this game. As part of the peace treaty the Arabs will compensate the Palestinians. It is only fair and makes a lot of sense given the history of the conflict. Syria owes its Jews tons of money. We don’t want it. Give it instead to the Palestinians.

You want a court to decide how much each Palestinian is owed? No problem. The same court will decide how much each German, Polish, Syrian, Iraqi etc. Jew is owed. Justice is justice. I am all for this process because it will bring hundreds of billions to Israel.

November 1st, 2007, 10:26 pm

 

IsraeliGuy said:

Annie, you know, I find it real strange that Farid Ghadry is like a red flag for so many posters here.

I have no idea, why this guy is the target for so much fire, slander, hate and contempt on this blog.

You know what, let’s try a different approach.
Let’s forget about Farid Ghadry the person.

What’s so horrible with Farid Ghadry’s vision, ideas and opinions?

If I’ll bring Farid Ghadry’s ideas to ordinary Syrians, without mentioning Ghadry’s name as their source, how will they respond to them?

November 1st, 2007, 10:26 pm

 

Zenobia said:

yeah, and Israel wasn’t asking for two states either.
they wanted something called elimination of all the Palestinians in our new State….which will include… all of former Palestine.
so tit for tat.

Yes, the PLO was against dividing more, and they didn’t want Israel. they wanted a one state that both people could live in.
I guess now is the part where you tell me that the PLO wanted to push the Israelis into the sea.

November 1st, 2007, 10:32 pm

 

AnotherIsraeliGuy said:

Alex,
How can you with a straight face that Israel’s democracy is the worst? Look at the UN development reports. Look at the Freedom House reports. Stop living in denial. Israel has a better democracy than several European countries.

Fact: Israeli Arabs have more rights and are 6-7 times richer on average than the average Syrian. Please explain that.

Okay, live happily in a democracy while supporting a tyrant in Syria. If you can’t see how ridiculous your position is, that is your trouble. Instead, you should insist that Bashar will come up with a plan of giving up power over 10 years. Anything less is cowardice.

November 1st, 2007, 10:33 pm

 

SimoHurtta said:

And, please show me proof that Israel has nuclear weapons. I wan’t proof just as good as you want in order to be convinced that Israel bombed a nuclear site.

AIG you trust ISIS with nuclear issues don’t you? Well form their page:
http://www.isis-online.org/mapproject/country_pages/israel.html

Israel has a weapons program which began before 1970, and is still ongoing.

Military Stocks of Fissile Material, end of 2003 (in kilograms)1,2
Unirradiated Plutonium 580 (510-650)3
Highly Enriched Uranium (HEU) ?
Number of Weapons 110-190

AIG it would be strange that you would think ISIS is right with Syria’s nuclear reactor but wrong with Israeli nukes. Is this proof enough? 🙂

November 1st, 2007, 10:34 pm

 

why-discuss said:

AIG

My statements were picked from a web site that used the following misconceptions as clarified in
Israel Backs Off Bill to Curb Arab Home Buying NY times
Can Arabs Buy Land in Israel?

….More recently, speaking on National Public Radio’s All Things Considered, William Quandt of the University of Virginia charged that

Israel was established as a state for Jews. It has of course an Arab minority who have citizenship rights, but the specific way in which land is owned in Israel is predominantly that the Jewish Agency purchases land on behalf of the Jewish people and then leases it out to its Jewish citizens.
Arabs cannot have access to that land that’s owned by the Jewish Agency. They can keep land they have privately owned before the State of Israel was created. There’s a small amount of private property that can be traded and Arabs can buy that as well as Jews, but most land is held in trust for the Jewish people, so yes there is a legal basis for what we would flat out call discriminatory practices.

Rashid Khalidi, director of the Center for International Studies at the University of Chicago and president of the American Committee on Jerusalem, repeats the same argument, saying that in Jerusalem

non-Jews are barred by law from purchasing or leasing most properties (Jewish National Fund property, “state land,” and land under control of the Custodian of “Absentee” Property—i.e., stolen Arab land).8

Journalists picked this argument up from academics. The Washington Post’s Barton Gellman reported that because

the Zionists devised formal and informal mechanisms to prevent Arabs from acquiring Jewish land that persist today … [the Palestinian death—penalty law] is not without parallels, penalty aside, in Israel.
Commentators such as New York Times columnist Anthony Lewis took up these same ideas:

In Israel today most land is still held in trust by an agency devoted to furthering the Jewish homeland. As a practical matter, land used by Israeli Jews for home or business or farm is hardly ever sold to Arabs. So the idea of Palestinians wanting to keep what land they have is not unusual.

While often repeated, these assertions are based on misconception, error and outright invention. In fact, most of the land in Israel is government-owned, and it is equally available to all Israelis, whether Jewish or Arab….

November 1st, 2007, 10:41 pm

 

IsraeliGuy said:

*******
“Yes, the PLO was against dividing more, and they didn’t want Israel. they wanted a one state that both people could live in.
I guess now is the part where you tell me that the PLO wanted to push the Israelis into the sea.”
*******

Precisely, the PLO wanted to push the Israelis into the sea – not exactly the one state solution you were referring to – right?

As I said, the original PLO Charter outlined goals that included the destruction of the State of Israel via armed struggle.

November 1st, 2007, 10:42 pm

 

Zenobia said:

it is obvious AIG….that Alex says that, I say that, and Simo Hurrta says that….because…..
drumroll please……
we count the Palestinians in the territories….as part of the evaluation!…. no shit.
you can’t have a whole group of people living under your control….and just because you dont’ call them citizens…. they aren’t considered a reflection of your society!…. you legislate over them….you hold the gun over them. you put them in jail when you want. you make the laws…
this is obvious.
so you keep looking at only what you want to count, and call it a fine democracy..
but you are like the Romans….. with the slaves in the background.
give us a break.
i have to say good night now….thanks.

November 1st, 2007, 10:43 pm

 

Alex said:

AIG,

I think it would help if you stop picking and choosing from everyone’s arguments.

Let me first get your opinion on Ghadry:

1) He used to call for sending the 10% Syrian alawites to the mountain.

What do you think about his mental stability?

2) HIS great idea is not his … it is MY idea. I gave it to him on his blog, and on many blogs .. I have been suggesting the same a hundred times. And his people on his “Syria Comment PLUS” made fun of my idea at the time.

So how do you like MY ideas? .. are they still great of do you only trust them from Farid Ghadry?

3) By the way .. what do you think of HIS idea to call his blog “SYRIA COMMENT PLUS”??

If he did not take it down, you would have read the jokes that he had there before he was trained … you know why you get the red flags when Ghadry’s name is mentioned? .. in my case it is beacuse it reminds me of the dangerous world we live in … this American administration wanted to prepare a random Washington DC idiot called Farid Ghadry to lead Syria … this is a scary administration that still has one more year to go.

And .., you are a scary enemy. You are totally in denial … you really want Syria to be destroyed just like Iraq, and you through the power of denial to convince yourself that ALL THE SYRIAN here are scarred from the powerful democratic ideas of Ghadry! … YOU are right and all of us are wrong .. or all of us are liars.

You represent the scary part of Israel … it is obvious that there is no hope communicating with you.

And this is coming from one of the most friendly Syrians you will meet.

You can only work with an obedient crook like Ghadry.

We will never give you a Gahdry… keep dreaming.

November 1st, 2007, 10:49 pm

 

Zenobia said:

I was being ironic and sarcastic.
Lots of Palestinians imagined a one state that did not involve eliminating the jews living in what became Israel.
if you repeat a myth…”they want to push us into the Sea” enough….people cease to think… and only react…
you have to go pretty far back in time- to get to the point where the PLO was still preaching the destruction of Israel or the idea that somehow….jews will leave … that is absurd.
in contrast…. I think a fair portion of Israelis still think that Palestinians can just be moved back into smaller and smaller pieces of land…and eventually into Jordan.
that was the equivalent idea. Palestinians will be Jordanian.

did i say i was going to sleep…..oh yeah…. it is still calling to me.

November 1st, 2007, 10:54 pm

 

why-discuss said:

aig

It is impossible to call democracy a country that uses one religion as a national identity. Israel is more a theocracy like Saudi Arabia and Iran. The difference is that Iran and KSA are 95% moslem while Israel is only 75% jewish and this number is bound to decrease. The day Israel will renounce to the idea that the country belongs to a specific ethnic and religious group, then they can claim to be a democracy and it will be natural to create a federal country with the neighboring arab countries for the good of all.

November 1st, 2007, 10:55 pm

 

IsraeliGuy said:

Zenobia, you use the phrase “lots of Palestinians”, which is very vague and fluffy.
What’s “lots of Palestinians”?

You’re calling it a myth, while I stick to the facts: the PLO, the formal representative of the Palestinian people called for the destruction of Israel.
Am I wrong? Am I not telling the truth? Am I misleading anybody?

This was written quite clearly in their charter.
If you want to contradict what I just said, be my guest, but saying that “lots of Palestinians” thought otherwise is not very convincing.

I expect better from you, Zenobia.
You’re obviously an intelligent guy.

Zenobia and Alex, one more thought, wasn’t France a democracy during the time it controlled Algeria?

November 1st, 2007, 11:07 pm

 

Alex said:

Israeliguy

You are very wrong

Zenobia is … : )

And I am not interested in the Israeli democracy debate … I only mention it when AIG tried to talk to me as if he is moral and I am a thief.

November 1st, 2007, 11:16 pm

 

IsraeliGuy said:

Oops, my apologies, Zenobia : )
Sorry for my mistake.

But here’s the good news: at least you know that I’m not spying on you via my PC.

(Alex will understand the joke…)

November 1st, 2007, 11:30 pm

 
 

AnotherIsraeliGuy said:

Sim,
Ok. Let us agree that ISIS is right on both counts. Israeli has nuclear weapons and Syria tried developing them. Right?

November 2nd, 2007, 12:03 am

 

Observer said:

IG
I think that by allowing the Palestinian refugees to return you would certainly limit any threat. The Arab American community has been perfectly law abiding in the vast majority of the cases. To claim that the Arabs and Muslims represent a threat is nothing more than an excuse, just as the internment of the Japanese Americans during WWI into concentration camps was totally unjustified. A slow absorption of the Palestinians into Israel over 10 years would be perfect. As for the law of family reunion, there is also the law that forbids an Arab in Israel from marrying an Arab in the West Bank and Gaza. The reality is that as long as the citizenship in Israel in preferentially if not almost exclusively based on religion, the state of Israel will remain a unique anomaly: namely a theocracy and not a democracy. What are you afraid of: don;t you think that we Arabs want to be in a Westernized Democratic society? Allow the Palestinians to return to their homes and rejoin their families and show them the wonders of Israeli democracy. Once they are busy building lives and insuring the future of their children there will be no Intifada or violence. They will join you on the beaches of Tel Aviv and trek in the Galilee and eat at McDonalds and KFC and fly kites. The excuse of security concerns does not hold. There is no other solution in my opinion than a secular non sectarian democratic state where citizenship does not depend on religion, race, color, creed, ethnicity, tribe, family. I would urge you to ask your reprsentatives to sit down and write a constitution and define once an for all what boundaries do you wish Israel to be in. This first step would go along way towards strengthening the shining democracy and perhaps may even attract Syrians and Lebanese to abandon their citiszenship and opt for the Israeli one. Why not, many have a second nationality at hand already.

November 2nd, 2007, 12:54 am

 

AnotherIsraeliGuy said:

Observer said:
There is no other solution in my opinion than a secular non sectarian democratic state where citizenship does not depend on religion, race, color, creed, ethnicity, tribe, family.

First implement it in Syria since it is such a good idea in your opinion. After all, that is what IG and I have been saying. If you agree, why aren’t you doing something about it? Why are you supporting Bashar? How can we believe your sincerity if you won’t embrace a democratic solution in Syria?

November 2nd, 2007, 1:09 am

 

why-discuss said:

AIG

Are you doing something for Israel to become an example of democracy for the arabs. Today it Israel is a jewish theocracy and no modern arab wants to have a system like yours or Iran’s or KSA’s…

November 2nd, 2007, 3:19 am

 

AnotherIsraeliGuy said:

Why,

It is a fact that Arabs in Israel have much more rights than Arabs in Syria and are 6-7 times richer on average. They are also better educated and have freedom of speech and uncensored access to the internet. Learn to live with it. Israel is a democracy for all its citizens.

November 2nd, 2007, 4:02 am

 

why-discuss said:

AIG

Whatever rights the arabs or the christians have in Israel, repeating that Israel is a democracy won’t make it a real one as long as its whole system is based on the supremacy of an ethnic group on the others. Do you know any democracy based on religion other than Israel in the world? We call this kind of democracy: enlightened colonialism.

November 2nd, 2007, 4:49 am

 

ausamaa said:

Why-Discuss,

Why waste your time? Do you really beleive ISRAELIGUY and ANOTHERISRAELIGUY do not know what Israel IS and what crimes it has been committing since the sad story started?

Come on, they read and watch TV as the rest of us do…!!

They just think that they are playing to the usual uninformed and unsuspecting American crowd, which they are destained to lose eventually as they have lost the Eouropean and the whoile World crowd.

So why waste serious energy on “informing” them of what they do know?

November 2nd, 2007, 7:34 am

 

Observer said:

AIG
I am not Syrian but even if I were why not do it in both countries? You are presumably much more advanced and much richer and more civilized and you have light years of experience and institutions that are already an asset so in your case it would be much easier to do and implement. By the way please inform me how I can become an Israeli citizen: where I live right now is not so great and I am afraid my freedom will be curtailed. I am not asking for political refugee status; but I am willing to convert to Judaism if this is what it takes. Please tell me how to do it, at present I am agnostic but I inquired and found out that to be a Muslim you have to declare the unicity of God and the belief in his prophet, for Christianity you have to accept Jesus the son of God as your saviour, for Buddhism you have to detach yourself from this miserable money driven life. As for my wife and 7 children aged 9-24 well they will have to decide, if I become Israeli, can they keep their faith as my wife is a devout catholic and my children old enough to decide for themselves are agnostic.

November 2nd, 2007, 2:02 pm

 

Akbar Palace said:

MSK* said:

Let’s hope that this won’t happen, mainly ’cause I think that one bloody civil war in the region is already one too many.

Translating the above statement from liberal double-speak into English it reads:

“Let’s hope that this won’t happen, mainly ’cause I think that the several civil wars that have plagued the region are fine, unless the US and Israel are involved.”

MSK*, ata maskim iti? Saper li et ha’emet.

As far as the Syrian opposition is concerned, I agree that there is none and there will be none. Unless, of course, there is a “job opening”. I wouldn’t dismiss the eventual possibility.

November 2nd, 2007, 4:14 pm

 

AnotherIsraeliGuy said:

Observer,
Find yourself a Rabbi where you live. Go to him and say you want to become Jewish. He will explain the process to you and figure out if you are really sincere and want to tie your destiny with that of the Jewish people. If Sammy Davis Junior and Marylin Monroe could do it, so can you. It is not impossible. I wish you best of luck and hope to see you soon in Israel. Leshana haba’a byerushalaim habnuya!
Here is a list of converts to motivate you:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_converts_to_Judaism

November 2nd, 2007, 4:24 pm

 

norman said:

I got the solution to the middleast problem , All Palestinians should become Jewish and have Israeli citizenship and equal rights , They can pray anyway they want in their homes.

I doubt that they will find any Rabi who will convert them , They do not have money like other converts.

November 2nd, 2007, 5:53 pm

 

AnotherIsraeliGuy said:

Norman,
Your antisemitism is showing. Now only rich people can become Jewish. How low can you go? You did not even notice how despicable what you say is.

November 2nd, 2007, 6:09 pm

 

xiana – Accusations of Political Assassination in Lebanon said:

[…] Josh Landis writes of a recent flurry of accusations and counter-accusations concerning political assassination in Lebanon, featuring Saad Hariri, the late Rafik Hariri, the family of slain Lebanese Communist Party leader Georges Hawi, al-Qaeda, Syria, and the Mossad. […]

December 7th, 2007, 4:20 am

 

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