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Author Topic: The Apartheid State of Israel
Omega M.
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A quotation in the news today from Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak:

"People have a feeling of injustice. What's more, they see (Israeli Prime Minister Ariel) Sharon acting as he pleases, without the Americans saying anything. He assassinates people who don't have the planes and helicopters that he has."

What's the point? Would the "assassinations," if that's what they are, be any more justified if the Palestinians had the same "planes and helicopters"?

And, as a partial non sequitur, what does he think of the twelve years Saddam Hussein was "acting as he pleased" under the easily-violated U.N. sanctions?

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carmachu
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quote:
"People have a feeling of injustice. What's more, they see (Israeli Prime Minister Ariel) Sharon acting as he pleases, without the Americans saying anything. He assassinates people who don't have the planes and helicopters that he has."
Whats more amusing is the gentleman in question implies that what Sharon does is "wrong", but the palestinian terrorists who blow up women and children are ok....

carmachu

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drewmie
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Please. He said nothing of the kind. He's a jerk who calls Sharon's decisions "assassinations" because it sounds better from his blindly anti-Israeli position. Nothing in that statement justifies the terrorism.

BTW, the news is consistently calling them assassinations too. Bad call IMO. These men have declared war on Israel in word and in action. War is war. OTOH, Israel would be best served to make it a war against these terror groups, and distance themselves from any actions that look like a war on Palestinians generally. Naturally, that's easier said than done, but I think it would lead to better policies.

[ April 20, 2004, 11:58 AM: Message edited by: drewmie ]

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carmachu
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Nothing Drewmie, is said ina vacumn:

http://www.intellnet.org/news/2002/04/24/9068-1.html

relevance:

"Wednesday that "state terrorism" by Israel to crush what he called legitimate Palestinian resistance would fuel an appetite for revenge."

It isnt terrorism to him(the palestinians), its resistnace....resistance is "ok", terrorism is not.

carmachu

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Hannibal
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drewmie, do you know why there hasnt been a single terrorist attack in israel for over a month now?

because the israeli army has completley blockaded the palestinian territories since the begining of passover, and will remove the blockades after the independece day.

I promise you now, without knowing, that one day after the israeli army removes the blockades there is gonna be a suicide attack.

you said that israel should wage war on the terror groups not the palestinians, but it is imposible, you americans wage war on the terrorists in iraq right now, but believe me you are killing so many innocent civilians far more then we israelis do, we are simply much more televized. it is impossible to only wage war on the terrorists groups. maybe when we will have star trek transporters, and we could beam them directly to jail, but not till then.

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Sayeed
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Hello,

I'd like to ask a question about the first statement and response I consolidated from these posts.

-----
STATEMENT 1: Israel is an Apartheid state because it discriminates again Palestinians. It bulldozes their homes, restricts their rights, and restricts their entry and travel in the West Bank while not doing that for Jewish people.

RESPONSE 1: An apartheid state discriminates against people based on their race, while Israeli discriminates with people based on their ACTIONS. The Palestinians have committed crimes, therefore they are discriminated against.
-----

I understand punishing people for individual actions, but what is the justification for punishing a state for the actions of its individuals, or a family for the actions of its individual members?

For example, if a house of a known terrorist is bulldozed, his wife and innocent children and grandchildren and great great grandchildren and the community at large will be affected. How is that justified from the actions of the invidual members? In North America, they would arrest one member of the family instead of bulldozing his/her house.

Wouldn't this be the same justification used by suicide bombers? This Jewish person is responsible for the crimes of his compratriots, so I might as well kill him.

ma Salaam,

'Sayeed.

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drewmie
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I'm with you, Sayeed.
quote:
...that system is our enemy. But when you are inside and look around, what do you see? Businessmen, lawyers, teachers, carpenters - the minds of the very people we are trying to save. But until we do, these people are still a part of the system and that makes them our enemy. Morpheus, from "The Matrix"
This always sounded like typical terrorist philosophy to me, and "terrorist" is exactly what they call Morpheus. And rightly so, unless you accept that we live in an illusion.

I'm tired of hearing people adopt the terrorists' philosophy in order to combat terrorism. How do we separate ourselves from their evil if not by keeping a philosophical separation?

Hannibal, yes, innocent people sometimes get in the crossfire, and it's tragic. But we can either adopt the terrorists' group-judgement mentality, or we can take the high road which is definitely harder, and costs more of our lives. Lying to ourselves that such distinctions are "impossible" gives clout to the terrorist mentality.

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seagull
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quote:
I understand punishing people for individual actions, but what is the justification for punishing a state for the actions of its individuals, or a family for the actions of its individual members?
Sayeed, this is a very good question and a constant dilemma for those of us who try to do the right thing. Thank you for bringing it up.

Please do not mistake my explanation as a justification for house demolitions because I do not think what I say below justifies the action. I may be able to explain why it happens or why it even makes sense. But that does not make it just! If it did, the same argument could be used to argue that the multiple explanations given for why suicide bombers do what they do would make those “just” as well.

There are two main types of reasoning behind the house demolitions. One is the demolition of houses that are used as bomb factories, weapon hideouts and weapon smuggling tunnels. While the destruction of these houses has some deterrent value, it is probably not enough of a deterrent to make the owners (or innocent family members) expel the terrorists from their house. Compared with the threat of immediate and brutal force to be used by the terrorists the possibility that the house would be demolished is a too remote to make a difference to the victims.

In those situations, the owners have already lost their house to the “war effort” before Israel demolishes it. The destruction of the house can therefore be considered as a regrettable “collateral damage” of the war.

The other more disturbing reasoning is the demolition of houses that belong to family members of a suicide bomber. As Sayeed correctly points out, those family members may be completely innocent and those who are do not deserve having their house demolished. So why is it done?

The reason given for these demolitions is that they are one of the only known effective deterrents against suicide bombers. Once a suicide bomber completes their mission there is no way to punish them in this world and there is little point in trying. The only way to deter them and prevent it ahead on time is to make them realize that their “mission” will destroy not only their enemies and their own bodies but the lives of their closest family members as well. This is a horrible thing to do to the family. Sadly, it seems that this horrible action is effective at deterring potential terrorists from performing the even more horrible missions that their operators send them on. If there are other ways to deter them, they should obviously be used first. But the horrible thing about this situation is that destruction their families home is one of the few things that ARE effective at making the terrorists think twice.

-- Shalom Aliekhem
seagull

[ April 20, 2004, 10:56 PM: Message edited by: seagull ]

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Standback
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Sayeed raised:
quote:
I understand punishing people for individual actions, but what is the justification for punishing a state for the actions of its individuals, or a family for the actions of its individual members?
<snip>
Wouldn't this be the same justification used by suicide bombers? This Jewish person is responsible for the crimes of his compratriots, so I might as well kill him.

As seagull says, collective punishment is definitely more about effectiveness than it is about morality. You can't morally hold a collective responsible to the actions of each and every individual, but the individual may be deterred from acting if he fears for his friends and family, and/or if the worth of his actions will be diminished to the collective by dint the punishment they will suffer.

That said, one must distinguish between collective punishment and collateral damage. Killing five people at random is collective punishment, killing four civilians along with one terrorist is collateral damage, because the civilians are not the targets; given the choice they would be spared, and it is only the urgent need for action and the threat the actual target presents that make these people unfortunate casualities. One can argue that dead civilians are dead civilians, no matter how worthy the cause, but that's a false argument - killing five random civilians gains no goal other than five dead civilians, plus aforesaid fear and intimidation, whereas the collateral damage actually acomplishes some other purpose, for example preventing further deaths...
Not that Israel doesn't employ collective punishment, but in general, I see a whole lot of the damage Israel's blamed and condemned for as being collateral damage which is unavoidable in such an enormous task as preventing teror attacks.

The other thing is, I doubt this is the justification used by the suicide bombers. I don't think they generally differentiate between actual criminals and those who are merely responsible by association. I could be wrong, but I think they judge each Israeli Jew individually guilty, by dint of his own actions, particularly the being-an-Israeli-Jew one. It's a fine differentiation, but IMHO that's not collective punishment (though it is racism).

The other justification of suicide bombings is the strategical one - that enough suicide bombings can cause enough fear, doubt and desperation to get the enemy to cave in even though they're far stronger than you are. This however is a more "global" justification, from the point of view of the leaders and planners; the general suicide propaganda I've seen and heard tends to be on the lines of "killing the Jewish oppressor is a good thing, Allah bless you all!".

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RickyB
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House demolitions don't help prevent terrorism. Since we don't use it against Jewish terrorists, it can't even be justified as even handed retribution.
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Hannibal
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drewmie what does the matrix have to do with it, the terrorists defenetly dont see us as lawyers, carpenters, children, women or people whom they wanna save. they see us as land holders with a life value of less then zero. and their purpuse is to kill us all.

are we israelis the evil robots who want to kill the poor old palestinians? isnt it exactly the opposite?

in addition, you talk about, israel should withraw from the territories, and then if it gets attacked it should do what america did in afghanistan.

what do you mean by that? that we carpet bomb gaza? that is what you americans did in afghanistan. we try really really hard much more then your army tries, not to kill civilians. doing what you americans did in afghanistan and are now doing in iraq is exactly the opposite from that.

and now for a philosophical question about the suicide bombers....
the family, isnt it a bit responsible to the education, deminor/behavior/point of view of their children? right, the family themselves werent suicide bombers, but when most of them (i am not writing all because it is not politically correct but i think so) support and glorify their child act, i do think that they (the family) have a certain blaim for the suicide attack. and thus need to be punished.

add this to what seagull wrote and you will know why we demolish suicide bombers houses.

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drewmie
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So in other words, it's about deterrence (seagull) and punishment (Hannibal). Deterrence is at least practical. "Need to be punished" isn't even that. It's just retribution. Maybe it makes you feel warm and cozy, but it is based neither on what is practical nor on what is just.
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Sayeed
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Hello,

***Seagull***
I can see how home demolition might be seen as an effective deterrant. After, who can deny that if a terrorist knows that he might lose his entire house, he will think twice. However, do you think it is effective *over time*? When the family does not have a house, when they live on the streets, when they cannot afford to educate their children, does that not make for a fertile breeding ground of "terrorists"? For example, uneducated, they cannot "write" to fight oppression, so they will turn to other means. Even if the children do not become terrorists, isn't it likely there's a higher probability they will become terrorist leaders who encourage others to be violent, an environment which shaped them and which they grew up with. Is there any doubt that the entire family, instead of just the father, will likely grow more angry at Israel, and will denounce it strongly or more strongly, and encourage others to do so and perhaps take more violent means of resistance? Isn't this just like dealing with a symptom by making the disease worse?

In light of the above, does it make sense that home-demolition is not an effective deterrant even, but viewed wholistically ENCOURAGES more terrorism? Contrast this with arresting the single suspected terrorist.

***Standback***
It seems to me that you are saying that death or damage which occurs in the course of a necessary thing is "collateral damage" and that this damage cannot be avoided as the action is necessary, am I on track there?

So if in the course of punishing one, others are also punished, there can be no remedy for that unless punishment itself is avoided, right?

I guess what I am asking, a question I made clear in my response to seagull above, is whether others MUST be punished with the offending individual, when such punishments will tend to create more such offending individuals instead of fewer. In other words, is the FORM of punishment really necessary? Is it effective in reducing violence when seen as a whole? And if it DOES create more offenders than it prevents, then how can it be explained or justified? This seems especially important in light of the punishments used in most first world nations. Their collateral damage is far less.

***Hannibal***
Hannibal, I don't think all their purposes are to "kill us all" or that they necessarily see all Jewish lives as "less than zero." As a matter of fact, I think that most of them are concerned more with reaching Paradise for their actions. Many of them see their actions are right and necessary, because they are fighting against oppressors. There are a few, of course, who are rapid maniacs and want to kill every single Jewish person in Israel, but I don't think that's a significant amount. It is more likely they want to fight what they see as the good fight until they win. I think many of them hate the enemy, but I don't think they see Jewish life as less than zero, whether they murder them or not.

I'm not sure, but it seems to me like using language like "you americans" would sound like an ad hominem attack, and not necessary on this board, what do you think, Hannibal?

Hannibal, if you think something, I think you should speak it, politically correct or not, and seemed to me from the post that every man woman and child in a family in which their is a suicide bomber needs to be punished, is this correct? What are your opinions on what I wrote above in my response to Seagull, do you think that such punishment may create *MORE* terrorism, not less?

In addition, do you realize the state of Arab women in Palestine? Are you aware of the position of the woman in children in the household and their power relative to that of the dominant male? What do you think the affects of resisting ideology or action from him might be in such a situation? Is it really productive to give them "a certain blame" and in what ways is that productive?
-----

Comments welcome.

ma Salaam,

'Sayeed

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seagull
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Sayeed, thank you for the reply,
quote:
does it make sense that home-demolition is not an effective deterrant even, but viewed wholistically ENCOURAGES more terrorism?
Theoretically, I agree that your argument makes alot of sense. I used to think so myself.

But practically, it seems that this kind of sense works only in the first world countries you mentioned. In Places like Israel and Palestine when fear and threats play a much larger role in decision making, it seems that what theoretically SHOULD make sense does not.

What do you do when you face that kind of reality? Do you hang on to your theories, or try to find new ones that work better for your real life situation.

Much as I hate to admit it, putting those who advocate house demolitions in charge seems to reduce the number of fatal terrorist attacks on Israelis and even promote peace in the long term (as in "Only Nixon could go to China").

Having seen and heard enough of that skewed kind logic, I can even start to understand it. I can't say I like it, but this is life [Frown] Trying to stick to what makes theoretical sense to both of us in the face of reality is like burying our heads in the sand.

quote:
Contrast this with arresting the single suspected terrorist.
I wish that was possible, but
A. How do you arrest a dead suicide bomber?
B. What do you do when they demand the release of the ones who didn't die as a condition for a Hudna (a "cease fire" not even a Sulkha) and then proclaim them as heros when they get home?

This may not be PC but here it is anyway:
-- "A good terrorist is a dead terrorist"
Any objections?

[ April 21, 2004, 05:46 PM: Message edited by: seagull ]

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Benedict
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One man's terrorist is another man's freedeom fighter. It all depends on whose side you stand, wich story you choose to believe. You (and me) obviously consider the suicide bombers to be terrorists, but i can also understand people who lost their houses to the demolitions or who lost innocent family in the assasinations and raids of the IDF who consider the soldiers to be terrorists and thus the state of Israel to be a terrorist organization.

The only way out that i can see is that an Israeli government can find it in itself to reach out again to the Palestinian elected leadership and create a framework within wich peace becomes a possibility. The first move will have to come from the strongest partner in this equation, wich is without a doubt Israel. this is a very onerous and difficult task, i understand, but only if the Palestinian people can be given an economically viable state, a decent standard of living, some hope of a better life can you reach a common definition of terrorist. And once they have lost their popular base, they can be fully eradicated. Never in history has a guerilla movement with poppular support been annihilated, that is something to consider in your strategy.

The only other option, wich i hope nobody is considering, is the total destruction of the Palestinian people.

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RickyB
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Yeah, well, not that I don't hope for the same thing, but you're disregarding the fact that we tried that. Only theelected Palestinian leader decided to go back to terror. When you get more than your counterpart has ever offered, even if it's still not what you can settle for, you do not go back to terror - not if you want peace.

So yes, another attempt has to be made, but try to remember why the first one collapsed. I'm well aware of all the durty tricks and bad faith on our side, but still.

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Hannibal
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first to benedict.

as Ricky said, israel have "reached out" for the palestinans so many times in the past and they never gave any thing concrete in return. i am sorry but we are tired of the palestinan's leaders. we dont think that talking to them brings any good anyway, because the palestinans have so many organizations(i.e terrorists groups) that when a suicide bombers explodes and a new never heared before terrorist organizaion is taking the blame, we israelis come to the palestinans and they say, well we cant speak for all the organizations, dont blame us we do every thing we can.

this is the reality here ever sice we started negotioations with the palestinians. we allways give them some slack and then ruin it. well no more, we will end our occupation of the palestinians in our way, by unilateral seperation.

and if you think that IDF killing terrorists leaders and their body guards is " the assasinations and raids of the IDF " then what is there for me to talk with you about. you will obviously still think that way no matter what i say

drewmie you said :
quote:
"Need to be punished" isn't even that. It's just retribution. Maybe it makes you feel warm and cozy, but it is based neither on what is practical nor on what is just.
well what about people who are accomplists of some crime for instance shouldnt they be punished?
now we are not talking about a palestinan stealing a car, we are talking about a palestinian killing 20 people in a suicide attack.

a second ago you said that once israel pulls back to the 1949 borders and there will be a suicide attack we should act like you did in afghanistan and now you say that what israel does to terrorists families is unjust? and petty retribution?

sayeed,

for now i choose to back seagull's point of view on the "terrorism cycle" but i whould like to hear your thought at what israel should do after a suicide bomber killed 20 israeli civilians

by the way i loved how you wrote "terrorists" as if suggesting that the suicide bombers arent really terrorists, way to go.

any way, some comments to your post :
quote:
that they necessarily see all Jewish lives as "less than zero."
i defenetly said this about the terrorists, and i am sure that it is correct in relation to them, i didnt say that on the general palestinian population like you are saying here, falsifying my words so people here will think that i am and extremeist psychopath

quote:
I think that most of them are concerned more with reaching Paradise for their actions
couldnt they try to live for 70-80 years and then go to paradise?

quote:
I'm not sure, but it seems to me like using language like "you americans" would sound like an ad hominem attack, and not necessary on this board, what do you think, Hannibal?

what is hominem? i tried to check it in the microsoft word 2003, any way i think it is perfectly sound for me to say "you americans" because this is the same language drewmie used, he said that israel should do what "we americans" did in afghanistan. i used those words to make drewmie understand that israel tries very hard not to kill innocent civilians, and unlike in palestine, soldiers who do kill innocents get punished(small comfort as it is)
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drewmie
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quote:
Hannibal wrote: i defenetly said this about the terrorists, and i am sure that it is correct in relation to them, i didnt say that on the general palestinian population.
But your entire post consistently referred to "Palestinians." How else were we supposed to take it? I'm sorry if interpreted that incorrectly, but it was a reasonable interpretation of your post.
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Sayeed
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Hello,

***seagull***
Quote: "Much as I hate to admit it, putting those who advocate house demolitions in charge seems to reduce the number of fatal terrorist attacks on Israelis and even promote peace in the long term."

Are you sure about this? What part of my post exactly did you disagree with on a practical level? It seems to me very practical, that people who have lost a home will become angry, that will want to fight, that people who SEE this will feel oppressed, that it will ruin the economic situation of the family and even the community, and encourage more violence, that it will effect the education of the children, and prolong the cycle. Did one of those not sound like "real life?"

"A. How do you arrest a dead suicide bomber?"

If the man is already dead, should the goal really be to "arrest" him? Or should it be to make sure that these types things stop happening. Can we both agree on the latter? And do house demolitions contribute to stopping them from happening? I think I've brought up some facts that make it seem like they don't. What do you think about them?

***Benedict & RickyB***
I agree with RickyB, that it's been tried, and that it's failed. I don't think anything substantial has ever been offered, if you read the text of Oslo and Camp David, for example, you won't see the basis for a viable state. I don't think that matters though, because of what Hannibal said, who exactly *IS* the leader? The PLO? Hamas? Someone else? I've read interviews with suicide bombers (failed, of course) who said they would think twice if Arafat said to stop, but it wouldn't be that big a deal. Given that, what really is the point of negotiating with the Palestinians? What have they to offer? Their response is a result of their situation, and only changing that will change their response. If a person comes to a poker game with no chips, he REALLY can't play. That's what a negotiation between Israel and Palestine would be like, no?

***Hannibal***
Hannibal when I first read your posts they seem very defensive and angry to me. A problem with discussions about Palestine and Israel is that they often degenerate to incoherence, and the first step is people becoming angry. I don't want that to happen here. So I read the post and I decided, OK, first I need to convince this gentleman that I'm not his enemy, that I'm not trying to hurt him, that he doesn't need to be snide and sarcastic and defensive with me, because I'm only trying to learn from his experience and those of the others who post and my own and make the best attempt I can at getting to the truth from the valuable knowledge I gain in posting.

"by the way i loved how you wrote "terrorists" as if suggesting that the suicide bombers arent really terrorists, way to go."

How did I do this? I don't feel that this type of sarcastic remark helps Hannibal. Apart from the tone, which endangers this conversation, makes it more likely it will become tit for tat, it will become angry fight to be "right" instead of a cordial search for truth, instead of a productive discussion, apart from all of that, I don't understand to what you are referring. Please, do not treat me like your enemy, Hannibal, I am not.

"what israel should do after a suicide bomber killed 20 israeli civilians"

I'm hoping that after our conversation we will come to some sort of solution, or a way to judge current solutions.

"i defenetly said this about the terrorists, and i am sure that it is correct in relation to them, i didnt say that on the general palestinian population like you are saying here, falsifying my words so people here will think that i am and extremeist psychopath"

Hannibal, I am not trying to make you look like an extremist psychopath, and if that was the effect of my writing, I wish I'd said it in another way.

"couldnt they try to live for 70-80 years and then go to paradise?"

I'm sure they could, but it would take more time and effort. But why post this? Has anyone here disagreed with them living their lives instead of bombing suicidally? Are you implying that *I* think they SHOULDN'T or just asking why it is preferably to die immediately for them?

"ad hominem*, Hannibal, in Latin means "against the man." It refers to attacks against a person as opposed to against his concepts. I understand the point you were trying to make, but when you say "you americans" in such a fashion it endangers a conversation, and isn't the most friendly tone.

"well what about people who are accomplists of some crime for instance shouldnt they be punished?"

You punish accomplices in correspondance to the level of their proved involvement. What do you think that level of punishment should be, Hannibal? Do you believe that their house should be demolished if they don't opopse their husband/father, who holds all the power in the house and could expel them all or physically punish them if they didn't support him? Or do you remove the destructive influence arbitrarily? Or do you put him on trial? In first world countries, we would NEVER punish accomplices without putting them on trial, in fact, the same would go for the direct perpetrator of a crime. How is different treatment justified in Palestine?

***drewmie***
"But your entire post consistently referred to "Palestinians." How else were we supposed to take it? I'm sorry if interpreted that incorrectly, but it was a reasonable interpretation of your post. "

I can understand how one might see this in Hannibal's post, but I was actually referring just to the terrorists. I've read a few interviews, and talked to a few people, and from what I have seen I really don't think that all the TERRORISTS hate each and every Israeli. It's not necessary for them that they hate Israelies, just that they fight them, and they have been deprived of so much that they feel like attacking civilians is the only way they have. If they had as many apaches as Israel, they would be fighting the military alone.

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Standback
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Sayeed,

You bring up the point that Israel's attacks and operations, while stopping individual terrorists and suicide attacks, also provokes the Palestianians and/or leads them to desperation, thus creating more attacks, so there's no "net gain" like the one seagull and I mentioned.

To this, two responses. The first is, the short term's a factor too. It's very difficult to say, "Yes, mister Prime Minister, we think there's going to be a terrorist attack coming from over here. Say half a dozen'll be killed, and two dozen wounded. We can stop it before it happens - but then this case, along with hundreds of others, will breed more of the same." You can't really stand by and let suicide bombers happen - and if you do, you haven't really helped much, because if the suicide bombers actually get through a lot, if they become the ones scoring, that'll likely lead to an increase as well. So, you do what you can about each individual terrorist, because you can't let him actually carry anything through if you can stop it.

The second thing is, I think your argument makes the following assumption:

Current Palestinian Situation: Bad.
Palestinian Situation if Collateral Damage Continues: Worse.
Palestinian Situation if Collateral Damage Stops: Better.

I don't argue with the first two. But the third is iffy. If Israel withdraws, and doesn't retaliate or preemptively strike or use targeted assasinations, I'm not sure that leaves Achmed on the street too much better off. Well, of course their much better off - their homes aren't being demolished, and they're not being killed. But, they're still living in poverty and terrible conditions, under the less-than-gentle, not-quite-beloved Palestinian authority. They're left, in other words, with a situation rather similar to what they had before the Intifada started. And what came out of that situation? Well, the Intifada did... so leaving the Palestinians under the benevolent care of the PA is not quite certain to refrain from encouraging more hatred and bombers.

The fact is, Israel's a heck of a lot safer now than it was a year or two ago. There are a whole lot of attempted attacks, yes, but they're not as effective or well-planned or as well-backed, so almost all of them are caught and prevented. Israel's getting security at the expense of gaining hatred from the Palestinians. Even if Israel can just keep up the status quo, rather than actually forge peace in the Middle East etc. etc., that's not too shabby a trade-off if the Palestinians hated them and tried to kill them in any case. We may be paying a high long-term price here, but otherwise we'd have no short-term, and maybe it's a price we've already payed to begin with. I don't recall where it's from, but there's this quote that goes something like... "Once you get wet, you can't get wet again. You can only get wetter, which somehow isn't nearly as bad."

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Sayeed
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Hello,

***Standback***
That's an interesting post, but though you've addressed it to me I'm curious as to why?

"You bring up the point that Israel's attacks and operations, while stopping individual terrorists and suicide attacks, also provokes the Palestianians and/or leads them to desperation, thus creating more attacks..."

I wasn't referring to Israel's "attacks and operations" but with house bulldozing specifically, I apologize if I wrote something to give you the wrong impression. I would be obliged if you could address that specifically.

ma Salaam,

'Sayeed.

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RickyB
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Sayeed, I disagree that nothinng was offered. Oslo is not a final proposal and therefore cannot discussed in this context. I'm not trying to say that Camp David was a great proposal or whether Arafat should or shouldn't have accepted, but it did offer a viable Palestinian state. There would have been a few semi-enclaves of settlements left, but it was workable. I personally think it was refused for two main reasons:

1. Barak is autistic (and I'm only half facetious in my usage here). The man has no feeling whatsoever for personal dynamics. It's all lcockwork mechanics to him. He truly didn't understand that by presenting his proposal as an ultimatum, he was virtually guaranteeing it would be turned down.

2. Arafat is a repuganant little a$$hole who could not find it in him to let go of the damn war and move on to the next stage. When you get what is to date the best offer party B has ever made, and you have a sincere desire to reach a deal, you may say "sorry, this still isn't acceptable", but you you DON'T overturn the table and break the liquor bottle on the other guy's head.

Just my opinion, of course. But Camp David, to the best of my knowledge, was not a bantustan-type offer.

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Benedict
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Hannibal,

I know diferent Israeli government have reached out to the Palestian leadership in the past. The last attempt was indeed sunk by Arafat's boneheaded refusal to sell the right of return for the best price he was ever going to get for it. My point is just that how onerous it might seem, there simply is no other option but to reach out again if there ever is going to be a real chance at peace.

Also, it aren't just "the terrorist leaders and their bodyguards" who have died in the conflict. A lot of innocent people died too, only this morning an 4 year old-girl and an 11-year old boy died in a shooting incident. I think it is a given that this generates frustration and anger. It is the same helplesness that families of the victims of suicide bombers must feel.

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Sayeed
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Hello,

***Benedict***

Who should be reached out to, Arafat? Does he have any ability to stop the violence? If not, whom?

ma Salaam,

'Sayeed.

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Hannibal
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hello every body.
first i whould like to say that in two days israel turns 56 so HAPPY BIRTHDAY ISRAEL.

benedict, you said that israel should again reach out to the palestinians with an offer of peace.
sure, but the palestinians have allready said that they wont accept our best offer. we cant and wont offer them more then what Ehud Barak offerd. and look what happned to him, it was a complete political suicide for him to offer this, it caused his goverment to collapse.

so what good will it do to us israelis if we offer the same treaty again and again and again, still the palestinians will refuse it. No the palestinians whould like israel, each time israel tries to reach out to them, to give them more here, and more there. and that we wont do we simply cant any more.(and how the palestinians behave they dont deserve us to give them more) thats why we have this explostion the last 3 years.
its time for the palestinians to understand that their plan of destroying israel demographically will not work and step down from the "right of return", after all the palestinians will have a country to return to. after the palestinians will let go from this demand (which i believe they will never) the road to peace will be clear and short.

sayeed.

i agree we should all cool down abit.
now for the house demolition tactic.
i agree with seagull, this method is proven to reduce the amount of suicide bombers, you can argue that it can create potentional suicide bombers in the future but it also reduces the amount of people willing to secrifice so much.
it is an equasion, and i think that it is a "positive" one for the case of israel.

in general, the suicide bombers are not "husbands or fathers" but 17-23 year old young people whom are easily influenced. so why dont their fathers try to influence them? further more, when they are interviewd after the act of their child, they say that they are glad that he did what he did, and they hope more of their children will do so. and thus they deserve punishment.

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drewmie
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quote:
Hannibal wrote: further more, when they are interviewd after the act of their child, they say that they are glad that he did what he did, and they hope more of their children will do so. and thus they deserve punishment.
If Israel thinks someone's rhetoric calls for their house being demolished, we're a lot further from any kind of peace than I thought. To both sides: grow up.

[ April 23, 2004, 12:06 PM: Message edited by: drewmie ]

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RickyB
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drewmie, Hannibal, with all due respect to him, does not speak for all of Israel [Wink]
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Hannibal
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how do you menage to figure that out from what i said?

i mean the obvious thing to understand is that palestinians support suicide attacks and think that the best thing their child can do for himself is to suicide bomb himself.

but what you understood(at least that is what i think) is that they have some cynical wish for the israelis to destroy their homes.

i must say here that it isnt israeli television that interviewed those palestinian people, it was palestinian television, doing so in their propoganda broadcasts to urge other palestinians to suicide bomb themselves.

and as rickyB stated, there are 6 million people in israel, and there are 6 million different points of view in israel. Ariel sharon is not asking me what to do before he acts... so it is Hannibal that thinks this and Hannibal that thinks that. not israel.

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drewmie
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True, I should amend my statement. How about this:

To the people that wish to punish one another for rhetoric and dirt: grow up.

quote:
Hannibal wrote: i mean the obvious thing to understand is that palestinians support suicide attacks and think that the best thing their child can do for himself is to suicide bomb himself.
Yet another lumping of Palestinians with terrorists. If you mean terrorists/bombers, say it. I agree that there are a lot of different viewpoints in Israel. Give the same credit to Palestine.

Besides, even if a Palestinian family really believes this, they still haven't committed a crime. Do you really want to go down that road of punishing people for what they think?

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seagull
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quote:
Do you really want to go down that road of punishing people for what they think?
I don't remember which great Russian literary figure said it or what the exact quote was, but the gist of it was:

Americans are so "obsessed" with the freedom of speech that the have forgetten how to use a freedom that we have even here in the Soviet Union: the freedom of thought.

Drewmie, maybe you should think of doing some growing up yourself before you suggest it to others. At least try to practice your freedom of thought before you "speak".

Now if the question is about punishing people for what they SAY, you have to remember where they were when they said it!

Now obviously they also had freedom of speech in the same sense that Jefferson had when he wrote the declaration of independence and Partick Henry did when he said "give me liberty or give me death". Everyone has THAT kind of "freedom of speech" and no one can take it away from you except by killing you or trying to make sure that your speech is not heard!

In the case of people who live in PA controlled areas, one of the two is very likely to happen to you if you do not say what you are expected to say when interviewed By Palestinian TV crews!

Hannibal,
Do you really think that the father you saw on TV really meant what he said? Are you sure he wasn't handed a script to be read in front of the TV in return for the $10,000 reward for his son;s death? Or is it $25,000 now? What is the going rate for a Palestinian life these days?

Do you have ANY idea what that father says to his children in private after the TV crews are gone? I doubt that you know, and I doubt that you could know.

But even if one out of every three fathers of a suicide bomber really means it. Even if the $10,000 prize is not enough to compensate his family for the house and he wants some more of his kids to die so he has fewer mouths to feed and more money to do it with (Israel can't demolish the same house twice).

I wonder what the stats are on suicide bombers?
LR can you see how many are really family members?

Do you think that Palestinian TV would ever show the other two fathers who did not feel that way? Do you think that those fathers who blame Arafat and/or Hamas for their kids death would dare to say it in public even on International TV? Even if they didn't have to fear the night time execution of "collaborators" by masked hoodlums, they still send their other kids to low cost Hamas schools because that's all they can afford to do. They can;t afford to alienate Hamas - the real power broker in most refugee camps.

If you got close enough to talk to them in private they may tell you what they really think about the situation, but they'll be looking over their shoulders as they do making sure no-one else is listening. And you will NEVER see those opinions voiced on TV!

[ April 23, 2004, 03:56 PM: Message edited by: seagull ]

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Hannibal
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drewmie, stop calling israel's dispute with the palestinians, a dispute on "holly dirt" it is annoying and wrong.

it is a dispute about my life, my security and my home, as i said so many times, i dont give a **** about the "holly places" i want to live in peace in my country. the palestinians want to kill me for that, because they have proven that they dont want to live in peace in their own country, if they wanted a country of their own then it could have been 2-3 years old by now.

the Settlers, want to live in the holly territories, but my views and the settlers views are so apart that i dont even consider them my people any more
same goes for religious palestinians.

you make it sound when you say dispute on "holly dirt" that my country is irrelevant and it is annoying.

seagull, you live in israel right? did you see the friday news in channel 2 i think it was.
any way the "beit lechem institute of polls" that is the national palestinian polls institute, showed that 71% of the palestinians support suicide missions, and 31% of the palestinians will vote for the Hamas( biggest party).

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Standback
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quote:
***Standback***
That's an interesting post, but though you've addressed it to me I'm curious as to why?

Whoops. A valid question. As I recall I was responding to your:
quote:
I guess what I am asking, a question I made clear in my response to seagull above, is whether others MUST be punished with the offending individual, when such punishments will tend to create more such offending individuals instead of fewer. In other words, is the FORM of punishment really necessary? Is it effective in reducing violence when seen as a whole? And if it DOES create more offenders than it prevents, then how can it be explained or justified?
In which I now see you were talking specifically about the bulldozing. I was still reading in the context of your earlier "Wouldn't this be the same justification used by suicide bombers?", my response to which you were responding to, so I was still on attacks in general.

Will likely respond more to the point over the next few days.

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seagull
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quote:
seagull, you live in israel right?
Born in Israel and served in the IDF but that was more than 10 years ago. Haven't been home lately.

quote:
did you see the friday news in channel 2 i think it was.
No.

quote:
any way the "beit lechem institute of polls" that is the national palestinian polls institute, showed that 71% of the palestinians support suicide missions
How well does the "beit lechem institute" protect the privacy of the people being polled? Do people who give the "wrong" answers get punished for them in the long run? For that matter how do they choose their samples?

Just to give you an example of how polling can go wrong even in a more civilized place like the US, here is a rather funny one from Baltimore.

A poll of Jewish people who live in Baltimore asking them if they were:
1. Orthodox
2. Conservative
3. Reform
4. Reconstructionist
Found that only 5% of those polled were orthodox.

The Orthodox residents of Baltimore were rather surprised to be such a small minority until they found out that the survey was conducted by phone on a Saturday afternoon. Now they are wondering how the survey takers managed to find that many orthodox Jews who answered the phone on Shabbat.

quote:
31% of the palestinians will vote for the Hamas( biggest party).
Even if it was true, is that support for the suicide bombings or for the free schools and other "charities"?
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Hannibal
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come on. if Ehud Ya'ari israel's (and the world's maybe) leading expert on palestinians uses the data from the beitlechem institute then give it a bit more credit.
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RickyB
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Seagull, while I believe Hannibal's argument is rather simplistic at certain points (no offense, man), he does have a valid point:

Polls and surveys among Palestinians consistently show a high level of support for suicide attacks. This is a problem hindering any meaningful discourse.

Ed. to add: Hannibal, Ehud Ya'ari is a pompous gasbag and little more than an estblishment mouthpiece. He is of shockingly little value as a commentator. Oded Granot is much better, and so is Zvi Yehezkeli at Channel 10.

[ April 25, 2004, 12:20 PM: Message edited by: RickyB ]

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Sayeed
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Hello,

--------

***Hannibal***
"it is an equasion, and i think that it is "positive" one for the case of israel."

So I took it from your earlier comments. This implies, I suppose, that you disagree with some of the factors I listed earlier. So exactly WHY is it more positive for Israel? Which factors don't make sense? To quote my reponse to seagull, "What part of my post exactly did you disagree with on a practical level? It seems to me very practical, that people who have lost a home will become angry, that will want to fight, that people who SEE this will feel oppressed, that it will ruin the economic situation of the family and even the community, and encourage more violence, that it will effect the education of the children, and prolong the cycle. Did one of those not sound like "real life?" "

As to the poll results, I don't dispute them at all. But as someone else said earlier, to verbally and theoretically "support" attacks and to physically support them are two different things. Can there be any justification for knocking down the house of people because of polls? Again, why this instead of arresting the occupants? How can we justify doing something that we would not do in other countries? If the police did this in the United States, which has quite a high crime rate, there would be immediate negative public reponse.

***Standback***
As always, I look forward to your well-reasoned responses.

ma Salaam,

'Sayeed.

Comments?

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Everard
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Going straight to the source...

http://www.pcpsr.org/survey/polls/2003/p9a.html

and this years...

http://www.pcpsr.org/survey/polls/2004/p11epdf.pdf

Overall, I think its hard to say that the Palestinian people support violence as an abstract, however, there is a large degree of support for specific violence, and using violence as a means of furthering political agenda is viewed as the only way palestinians will get what they want.

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Hannibal
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the equation is very simple

Number of palestinians not wishing to become terrorits > Number of palestinians wishing to become terrorists.

Sayeed, demolishing one's home is not a proud act to do, but we israelis first look after our civilians, and then look after the palestinians, it is ok for us to do so, since we are israelis after all. if the palestinians signed for peace treaty 2 years ago, then they whould have a state by now, with no settlers and no demolished homes, the palestinians have chosen to continue fighting israel, because they think it will get them a better deal. it is not israel's fault that that is what the palestinians are thinking.

you gave a bad example about usa ruining it's own civilians homes, first of all.... they are not our civilians, second we are not talking about car thieves here, we are talking about a family of a suicide bomber.
two weeks ago, when terrorists took refuge in a mosq the USA without thinking twice dropped two 250 kg bombs on it, leveling it completely, so dont bring examples from the USA, the palestinians whould not want the IDF fighting them as the american army fights the Iraqis right now.

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seagull
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Sorry Sayeed, I must have missed this post earlier.

quote:
What part of my post exactly did you disagree with on a practical level?
I did not disagree with you. In fact the same things that make sense to you make sense to me as well. The practical problem is that it seems that what makes sense to both of us does not seem to match what happens in real life. Putting Sharon (and other hardliners) in charge does seem to have a positive effect on Israeli security. Even if their arguments made no sense to me at all (and some of them still don’t) I would still have to admit that they are much better at deterring and preventing terrorist attacks than Barak’s attempts at reconciliation.

quote:
It seems to me very practical, that people who have lost a home will become angry, that will want to fight, that people who SEE this will feel oppressed, that it will ruin the economic situation of the family and even the community, and encourage more violence, that it will effect the education of the children, and prolong the cycle. Did one of those not sound like "real life?"

I agree.
What the proponents of house demolitions say is that on the whole it takes much more than “just” having a house destroyed to turn someone into a suicide bomber. Suicide bombers are a minority even within the Palestinian community and they tend to fit certain psychological profiles. Those who are likely to become suicide bombers usually do not care about their own life or body and in some cases are looking for a way to end their own misery (similar profiles exist among teenagers in the US and Europe as well). The unique thing is that in Palestinian society, these children are recruited and trained to give their life to a “higher cause” instead of just slashing their wrists as so many teenagers do in other countries.

As long as they believe that this form of suicide will bring them honor and help the cause of their people, these sadly brainwashed individuals (who may not really that evil themselves) would willingly commit atrocities since they believe that once they are dead, they can no longer be punished for what they did.

What happens if they observe that the suicide of their co-trainees cause destruction not only to their hated enemy but to the families of the suicide bomber himself? What happens if they see that their family is likely to suffer more from their action than they are to gain from the monetary rewards offered by Saddam, Iran and Saudi-Arabia (the real largest human obstacle to the peace process)?

Seeing these things will NOT make them into happy well adjusted adults. But it may cause them to hesitate and kill only themselves like their counterparts in other countries. I can’t say that I like the implications of this kind of logic. I HATE it and I hate being forced to live with it by those who would cynically use the sick people of their own culture as human bombs to kill me.

But I can’t deny the statistics and the fact that the logic works. I don’t think it is good, I’d love to find something better. But I can’t see anything better myself and I really doubt that anyone who has not lived as part of the conflict (which I haven’t for the last few years) can come up with something better than what they have already tried.

If you really want to help people there, you have to be willing to go there and possibly sacrifice your own life (as a victim of random violence) to improve things. I admire people like RickyB who actually do so and I hope to go back and do my own share in the future. On the other hand, Sayeed, if you intended to go back there yourself, I would strongly suggest careful timing to make sure that your sacrifice is not wasted. It would be much more dangerous for you and for your family to voice a moderate vote in the PA than it would be for me (or even drewmie) to promote a more moderate approach in Israel. We need moderate Palestinians who want to live and let live to stay alive and gather enough strength that when they make a move they can make a difference.

Sadly the butchers of Hamas and Al-Aksa try to take you guys out one by one if you make too much noise. And there is only so much Israel can do to protect you without turning you into real collaborators.

"A. How do you arrest a dead suicide bomber?"

quote:
If the man is already dead, should the goal really be to "arrest" him?
I think you misunderstood my point. I was responding to your suggestion that Israel arrest only the suicide bomber instead of punishing his family.

quote:
Or should it be to make sure that these types things stop happening. Can we both agree on the latter?
We are agreed on that goal, in fact that was my premise to begin with.

quote:
do house demolitions contribute to stopping them from happening?
It seems that house demolitions are one of the few EFFECTIVE methods of reducing them even if they do not prevent them altogether. I agree with you whole heartedly, the fact that they are effective is horrible and it makes very little sense. I can not understand how God (or justice) can allow such terrible things to happen. But in the end I have to admit that there are many other things that I do not understand about God (or about justice). And I still want to live and learn to understand more.

quote:
I think I've brought up some facts that make it seem like they don't. What do you think about them?
I think what you brought up are ARGUMENTS rather than FACTS [Frown]
I even agree with your arguments, and as I said above, I do not understand why they do not translate well into real life in Israel/Palestine. But I would be a fool to think that these arguments (as strong as we both think they are) actually work. If they did, the conflict would have been peacefully resolved in the 1930s long before the UN partitioned the country that I hope Israelis and Palestinians will some day be able to share in peace.

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GaalD
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quote:
Regarding the argument that the rest of the region is worse... give me a break. Of course they're worse. And any Israeli who has to fall back on this pathetic comparison is only acknowledging the truth of the critiques
I just read "The Case For Israel" by Alan Dershowitz , which is the best book I ever read, and it reminded me of this post. This is what he said:
quote:
Most importantly, I argue that those who single out Israel for unique criticism not directed against countries with far worse human rights records are themselves guilty of international bigotry...But when the Jewish nation is the only one criticized for faults that are far worse among another nations, such criticism crosses the line from fair to foul, from acceptable to anti-Semetic.
I could go on forever making amazing quotes by him in this book.
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