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The heroine vs. the terrorist: A case study in brainwashing

How the ‘newspaper of the nation’ reported on a Border Policewoman’s killing of a Palestinian teenager who was found to have been carrying a toy gun. 

Yedioth Ahronoth’s picture of border policewoman who shot a Palestinian in Hebron. The writing: “Heroine of the day”

Yedioth Aharonoth’s coverage of Wednesday’s killing of a Palestinian teenager in Hebron tells you pretty much everything you need to know about how Israeli brainwashing works. And Yedioth, the country’s most widely-read, influential newspaper, is considered relatively liberal, which it is in the sense that it often criticizes Netanyahu and the right, but when the story is Israel vs. the Arabs, particularly the Israeli army vs. the Arabs, then Yedioth, the “newspaper of the nation,” becomes as crude, dishonest and gung-ho a war propagandist as can be. It tells the public what it wants to hear, and whenever it’s Us Against Them, what the public wants to hear is Us Good, Them Bad – which is what the army and the government are only too happy to tell them. When that’s the story, Yedioth, like every other major news medium in the country, except for the left-leaning Haaretz (where I work as a copy-editor), takes the army/government line, kitsches it up real good, and serves it to an eager mass of consumers. Brainwashing – by popular demand. You see it here constantly. Yedioth’s coverage of Mohammed Sleima’s killing by Border Policewoman “N.” in Hebron is a perfect example.

The tabloid’s front-page headline on Thursday read: “Border Policewoman kills terrorist.” Her pixilated photo was tagged: “Heroine of the day.” Opening up the paper, the page two headlines, against an ominous black background, went as follows: “Fourth clash of the week in the territories; Border Policewoman shoots terrorist near Cave of the Patriarchs – and kills him; The fear: A third intifada; Border Policemen in Hebron yesterday notice a suspicious Palestinian youth and demand his identification; In response he attacks one of the troops and pulls a pistol on him; Female commander of the post reacts calmly: She pulls a pistol and kills the terrorist.”

It’s only when you’re almost halfway through the page two story that you read: “At the end of the investigation it turned out that the pistol [Sleima] had on him was fake.”

The photo on the following page shows N. on duty with her back turned, and is tagged: “The heroine from the Border Police.” The caption is a quote from an interview with her after the killing: “I love being in the field.” Below that is a small photo of Sleima holding an unidentifiable flag, with the caption reading: “Celebrated his 17th birthday yesterday: The terrorist.”

In the accompanying story, N. describes how after she and her partner stopped Sleima, she went to get a form to fill out and “suddenly I heard them fighting. I saw the Palestinian knock the soldier down and point a pistol at him.” She tells how she “had no time to think, I had to act in a split second or my partner would have been hurt,” and it’s only afterward, near the end of the story this time, that the detail about the gun being a toy is mentioned.

The last paragraph is a standard Israeli tabloid exercise in puffery about the heroic soldier, presenting her or him as a role model. “The soldier explained that she had wanted to do her military service as a fighter in a meaningful capacity, so she went into the Border Police. ‘I love being in the field. It didn’t suit me to be a clerk in an office. Our duty isn’t scary, although seeing a terrorist point a gun at your partner definitely isn’t an easy thing to go through.’ She plans to take an officer’s training course and is even interested in becoming a career soldier.”

In this whole two-and-a-half page extravanganza, the one sentence that challenges the official Israeli version of the shooting is this: “According to [Sleima's] parents, he was only going out to buy a cake for his birthday.” The idea that a Palestinian teenager attacked an armed Border Policeman with a toy gun is swallowed whole, then regurgitated as a Wonder Woman comic, with Mohammed Sleima as her evil nemesis.

This is the newspaper of the nation, this is the “fiercely independent” Israeli media, and this is what sells around here. So you see, Mr. Congressman, how can we ever have peace when the Palestinians keep inciting their people against us?

Related:
Why was 17-year-old Muhammad killed?

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  • COMMENTS

    1. Other reports — of Palestinians, internationals, and Israeli human-rights-niks — challenge the official Israeli story (which itself appears to have morphed a bit). The observers had their cameras or film destroyed and were beaten, or so it is said. This strongly — to me — suggests that the Israeli official story was a pure after-the-fact-of-murder fabrication.

      Reply to Comment
    2. aristeides

      Not seeing any Israeli news reports doing anything but repeat the official line.

      Reply to Comment
    3. rose

      disgusting

      Reply to Comment
      • Oscar

        I hope the “progressives” here find this disgusting too?

        “The Al Kuds Mark of Honor, the PLO’s highest medal, will be given to two female terrorists who helped kill Israelis, Israel Radio reported Wednesday. Ahlam Tamimi, a Hamas affiliate serving a life sentence for driving the suicide bomber who exploded himself in the Sbarro restaurant in Jerusalem, killing at least half a dozen people, including a whole family and Amra Muna, who seduced Ophir Rahum over the Internet and then lured him to Ramallah where he was murdered, will both be awarded the medal. Conferring the Al Kuds Mark of Honor is decided at the discretion of the Palestinian Authority’s president, and he alone has the final say when choosing the Palestinians to be honored with the medal”

        http://www.mererhetoric.com/2008/04/15/abbas-to-award-pas-highest-medal-to-hamas-terrorist-responsible-for-sbarro-massacre/

        Plenty more cases like that but I guess, that isn’t worth commenting on is it?

        Reply to Comment
        • aristeides

          Get back to me, Oscar, when Israel stops electing its terrorists to its highest offices.

          Reply to Comment
          • Oscar

            “Get back to me, Oscar, when Israel stops electing its terrorists to its highest offices”

            Who said I am interested in getting back to petty little haters like you, Aristid?

            By the way, talking about terrorist leaders, how come you did not object to that arch terrorist Arafat who was the leader of your precious Palestinians?

            Reply to Comment
        • The case you site has no bearing on that of this 17 year old. The only reason for siting it is to create a racial calculus. But has not racial calculus been used against the Jews for centuries? It is time to abandon this primate primitive part of our minds.

          Reply to Comment
          • Oscar

            I beg to differ. The case I cite is highly relevant to this story.

            Read the article. It is critical of Yediot Ahronot for calling this young woman “heroine of the day”. If that is wrong when neither you guys or us Zionists know for sure what happened, then the actions of the PLO and that “peace maker” Abbas are certainly wrong for honoring convicted terrorist murderers who murdered Israeli civilians.

            Don’t you think so Greg?

            Reply to Comment
          • No wrong act is justified by prior acts, wrong or right. The outcome which quashed this boy’s life is completely independent of the events you site. In a court of law, only facts germaine to the actual act causing death are admitted. This young woman soldier cannot site the praise of other “terrorists” to justify her act. But beyond this, there will be no independent determination at all. If the rule of law fails elsewhere it is no shield within Israel. A paper which calls this woman “heroine of the day” implies no oversight is necessary. And that is to Israel’s long term loss.

            Reply to Comment
          • Oscar

            “No wrong act is justified by prior acts, wrong or right”

            Sigh. You just go on fighting your windmills, Don Quixote. Oops, Greg.

            I did not comment on the rights or wrongs of this case. I commented on :

            1. The fact that you dudes automatically assume this young woman guilty of unprovoked cold blooded murder.

            2. I pointed out that if Israeli society glorifies this young woman soldier and you condemn that. Then you should look at hour darling Palestinian society who do much worse. Yet you NEVER DO.

            Why don’t you Greg? Care to tell me why?

            Reply to Comment
          • The Trespasser

            Don’t you know, Oscar?

            Arabs are allowed to do as they please because they are Arabs while Jews are not allowed to do as they please because they are Jews.

            Simple, isn’t it?

            Reply to Comment
          • andrew r

            “Arabs are allowed to do as they please because they are Arabs while Jews are not allowed to do as they please because they are Jews.”

            And you think Jews are so innately entitled to Eretz Palestina nothing they’ve done to obtain it can be held to scrutiny. Zionists should be treated like adults and held responsible for the conflict they started because they wanted the land.

            Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            “And you think Jews are so innately entitled to Eretz Palestina”

            You got all your facts wrong Andrew. It is called Eretz Yisrael. The land of Israel. The ancestral home land of the Jewish people.

            The word Palestina is a word made up by ancient European invaders, the Romans, who disposessed the Jewish people of their land.

            Then, for 2000 years, people like you used to tell us to go back to Palestine. But now that we are back there you want us to get out of there.

            You know what Andrew? You can put your advice yo know where? A place where the sun does not shine. OK?

            Reply to Comment
          • andrew r

            “The word Palestina is a word made up by ancient European invaders, the Romans, who disposessed the Jewish people of their land.”

            Jews and Muslims who were chased out of Spain 500 years ago, their next of kin have a legitimate grievance against Spain, which is going in the direction of making it easier for Sephardic Jews to become naturalized. That’s one thing. On the other hand, claiming the land belongs to you because you’re Jewish and forming a paramilitary to steal someone’s house at gunpoint is not okay. If it was bad when it was done to Jews in Europe, it’s probably bad when Jews do it to someone else.

            http://www.jpost.com/JewishWorld/JewishNews/Article.aspx?id=293702

            (The comments below are pretty stupid considering 100,000 Israelis have a German passport.)

            “Then, for 2000 years, people like you used to tell us to go back to Palestine.”

            You know, history is a bit more complicated than Team A: The Jews, Team B: Everyone else.

            Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            “You know, history is a bit more complicated than Team A: The Jews, Team B: Everyone else”

            Wow Andrew, are you listening to yourself? Just how wrong can you be?

            We are not against everyone else, just people like you who push your big noses into our affairs and always want us to be elsewhere. Anywhere else other than where we are.

            But now that we are back in our ancestral home land you cannot do it to us any more. Is that your problem with us?

            Well then listen and listen carefully. We don’t want to (at least most of us) don’t want to return to Spain and Germany. Not even if you tell us that you miss us and you yearn for our presence. We are happy where we are, so just get over it. OK Andrew?

            Reply to Comment
          • andrew r

            “We are not against everyone else, just people like you who push your big noses into our affairs and always want us to be elsewhere. Anywhere else other than where we are.”

            Can you even quote me telling you to go somewhere else?

            You need to acknowledge that you do not only want to remain where you are; you also want to keep the Palestinians who were expelled in 1948 from returning to their land. To superimpose the persecution Jews suffered in Europe onto Anti-Zionism is self-serving logic when Zionism can not succeed without racial persecution.

            If you have to leave Palestine, it will be on your unwillingness to live in a desegregated country, not your pet scapegoat.

            Not to mention who does “we” refer to when more Jews live outside Israel.

            Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            “Can you even quote me telling you to go somewhere else?”

            Are you denying it? OK then I take it you have no problems with Jews living in Eretz Yisrael?

            Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            “Not to mention who does “we” refer to when more Jews live outside Israel”

            Really?

            Care to tell me what proportion of those Jews who don’t live in Israel, live now in Arab countries?

            I wiil tell YOU: Nearly zero proportion. Do you know why? Because about 900,000 Jews from Arab countries fled from there because of pogroms and persecutions carried out by both Arab governments and hate filled mobs. Many if not most of those Jews from Arab lands ended up settling in Eretz Yisrael.

            Reply to Comment
          • The Trespasser

            >you also want to keep the Palestinians who were expelled in 1948 from returning to their land

            1 – There is no reason why hostile population must be allowed into any territory.

            2 – In 1948 there were no such nation as “palestinians”
            TO be exact – everyone who resided inside Palestine was called a Palestinian – Jews, Arabs, Armenians and others.

            3 – You are not seem to be bothered by the existence of other groups of refugees.
            Is it because you are moved by antisemitism rather than by humanism?

            Reply to Comment
          • andrew r

            Arieh: “Because about 900,000 Jews from Arab countries fled from there”

            Anyone who was forced to flee a country has the right to return there. That goes for Palestinians and Jews. Even if most Jews don’t want to leave Israel, that doesn’t mean they have the right to keep out the Palestinians.

            Trespasser:

            1 – You have different rules for yourself. If you seriously held that as a principle, you’d see the Zionists were the hostile population intending to replace the Palestinians with themselves. What you’re really saying here is, might makes right, finders keepers, I stole it fair and square.

            2 – The British civil administration granted Palestinian citizenship to the Zionist immigrants as well as the native Palestinians, which included Jews as well. However, the Zionists physically expelled most Arabs from the armistice lines and stripped them of citizenship on a racial basis.

            3 – You seem to not possess the ability to read English. Did I not say, “Jews and Muslims who were chased out of Spain 500 years ago, their next of kin have a legitimate grievance against Spain,”? Pay attention, now.

            Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            “Anyone who was forced to flee a country has the right to return there.”

            Today, 20% of Israel’s population is Arab. They are the descendants of Arabs who chose not to flee. The other Arabs who fled, they fled as a result of a war that the Arabs started. Had their side not started a war, they need not have fled. But since they did, they now cannot return. One cannot turn the clock back and pretend that nothing happened. In addition to the security threat that the Arabs would represent, Israel since 1948 also absorbed as many Jewish refugees from Arab countries as the number of Arabs who fled from what is now Israel. And guess where those Arab refugees ended up? In the very Arab countries from which the Jews were kicked out.

            Therefore, the only viable solution is a population exchange. Which already took place. It is not unprecedented. It happened between India/Pakistan, Turkey/Greece and even Germany/Poland. And everybody got on with their lives after the initial shock wore off.

            So Andrew, get over it. Stop trying to turn the clock back where it obviously won’t go and just mind your own business. Unless of course you are one of the descendants of Arab refugees. In which case you can choose to continue fighting us, the Jews you hate so much, or learn to get on with your life like we Jews had to do so many times after we became refugees. Your choice. But if you choose to continue with your war, then don’t be surprised if you too will suffer because of war.

            Reply to Comment
          • andrew r

            Instead of writing a full response to this, I’m just going to link several things I posted on tabletmag, since it basically covers the hasbara themes here:

            1. Zionist-Israeli armed groups only removed the Palestinians because they started a war.

            http://www.tabletmag.com/jewish-news-and-politics/117705/defeat-hamas-there-i-said-it#comment-724227387

            Excerpt: “There is a litany of quotes from major and minor Zionist figures that propose transferring the Arabs going back to Herzl. One good example is a letter of Arthur Ruppin’s from 1914: [quoted section follows] So while Ruppin here is proposing a less overtly violent way to get rid of the Arabs, this letter still shows getting rid of them was part and parcel of creating a Zionist state, irregardless of what they’ve done to Jews.”

            2. The Palestinians would not have been removed had they not started a war.

            http://www.tabletmag.com/jewish-news-and-politics/114256/an-arab-maverick-in-israel#comment-688173354

            This whole comment is an excerpt from p. 91 and 97 of ‘Birth Revisited’ by Morris, which explains how Deir Yassin went to great lengths to avoid any fighting with the Yishuv. Of course we know what that village received for its trouble.

            3. There was a population exchange between Israel and the Arab states (See first link). Many Arab states like Morocco, Lebanon and Tunisia do not have a policy of keeping out Jews who left these countries, unlike Israel vis-a-vis the Palestinian refugees. So it is in fact a dishonest argument to claim a population exchange took place between these countries and Israel, since Jews from these countries have the option of returning. That they don’t choose to exercise the option does not validate foreclosure on someone else’s right.

            —–

            Okay, I can’t resist responding to one thing directly.

            “Stop trying to turn the clock back where it obviously won’t go and just mind your own business.”

            Right. I could post an essay on why Israel should expel every last Palestinian and you wouldn’t say word one about minding my business.

            Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            “Right. I could post an essay on why Israel should expel every last Palestinian and you wouldn’t say word one about minding my business”

            Wrong again. I have often argued with your mirror image idiots on the right against any such ideas.

            Reply to Comment
          • andrew r

            1. There was a population exchange between Israel and the Arab states.

            Many Arab states like Morocco, Lebanon and Tunisia do not have a policy of keeping out Jews who left these countries, unlike Israel vis-a-vis the Palestinian refugees. So it is in fact a dishonest argument to claim a population exchange took place between these countries and Israel, since Jews from there have the option of returning. That they don’t choose to exercise the option does not validate foreclosure on someone else’s right.

            2. Zionist-Israeli armed groups only removed the Palestinians because they started a war.

            There’s a mountain of evidence that Zionist historical figures wanted the Palestinian Arabs removed. One good example is a letter of Arthur Ruppin’s from 1914:

            “In May 1914, to note one example, 255 he submitted his plan for the transfer of Arabs from Palestine to Syria. In a letter to Dr. Victor
            Jacobson256 he wrote: “We are considering a parallel Arab colonization. Thus, we are planning to buy land in the regions of Homs,257 Aleppo etc. which we will sell under easy terms to those Palestinian fellahin who have been harmed by our land purchases.”258 Ruppin to Jacobson, [12 May 1914],
            pp.1-2, (CZA L2/34ii); extract reprinted in: (Alsberg 1955/6, 206-07).
            [Bloom 363]”

            So obviously, to imply the Zionists were just trying to build a settlement peacefully alongside the Arabs, and only removed them by military force because they attacked first, doesn’t wash. The motive for removing them was clearly established well before the Zionist-Arab conflict started claiming multiple fatalities.

            3. Everyone else except the Palestinians got on with their lives. Pretty dumb notion considering the violent conflicts between Turkey-Greece and India-Pakistan and the existing tensions between them. Maybe that population exchange you think is supposed to work actually caused more problems.

            4. I should mind my own business. Right, this is another case of changing the rules based on the situation. Israel did not get where it is today because people outside the region minded their own business.

            Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            “Many Arab states like Morocco, Lebanon and Tunisia do not have a policy of keeping out Jews who left these countries”

            Who cares? Since Jews were kicked out of there, Jews don’t want to return there because they don’t want to risk persecutions there again. Kapish?

            Reply to Comment
          • andrew r

            Who cares? I don’t know, maybe the Israelis who took the trouble to get a German passport or the Soviet Jews who went to Germany. Never say never.

            Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            Good luck to them Andrew. I hope they will enjoy a good life in Germany and become fully respected citizens.

            It is their choice and the German people’s choice. But there are many other Jews who prefer to live in their own state. Don’t deprive us of that human right for self determination by advocating the elimination the ONLY Jewish nation state in the world.

            Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            “2. Zionist-Israeli armed groups only removed the Palestinians because they started a war”

            Boooooriiiiing …

            Go read a reputable historian and his account of what really happened. Someone like Benny Morris. He does not pull any punches. He is hard on both sides not just on the Jews.

            It is obvious that you like your historians to be more like David Irving, right Andrew?

            Reply to Comment
          • andrew r

            “Someone like Benny Morris. He does not pull any punches. He is hard on both sides not just on the Jews.”

            Sure, here’s something Morris wrote (‘Birth Revisited’ p. 60):

            “My feeling is that the transfer thinking and near-consensus that
            emerged in the 1930s and early 1940s was not tantamount to preplanning
            and did not issue in the production of a policy or master-plan of
            expulsion; the Yishuv and its military forces did not enter the 1948 War,
            which was initiated by the Arab side, with a policy or plan for expulsion.
            But transfer was inevitable and inbuilt into Zionism – because it sought
            to transform a land which was ‘Arab’ into a ‘Jewish’ state and a Jewish
            state could not have arisen without a major displacement of Arab population;
            and because this aim automatically produced resistance among
            the Arabs which, in turn, persuaded the Yishuv’s leaders that a hostile
            Arab majority or large minority could not remain in place if a Jewish
            state was to arise or safely endure. By 1948, transfer was in the air. The
            transfer thinking that preceded the war contributed to the denouement
            by conditioning the Jewish population, political parties, military organisations
            and military and civilian leaderships for what transpired. Thinking
            about the possibilities of transfer in the 1930s and 1940s had prepared
            and conditioned hearts and minds for its implementation in the course of
            1948 so that, as it occurred, few voiced protest or doubt; it was accepted
            as inevitable and natural by the bulk of the Jewish population.”

            So basically, according to Morris, Zionism did in fact aim to transfer the Arabs and this aim produced resistance which in turn made the Arabs responsible for what the Zionists did.

            “It is obvious that you like your historians to be more like David Irving, right Andrew?”

            Well, since you now know Morris admitted transfer was inevitable and inbuilt into Zionism, he has no doubt joined the ranks of Irving.

            P.S. The excerpt I posted above is from Etan Bloom’s thesis on Ruppin.

            Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            “expulsion; the Yishuv and its military forces did not enter the 1948 War,
            which was initiated by the Arab side, with a policy or plan for expulsion.
            But transfer was inevitable and inbuilt into Zionism”

            Thank you Andrew. The above pretty much confirms what I said. Benny Morris did not pull any punches against either side.

            And what is he saying above? He said there was no DELIBERATE policy of transfer by the Zionists. Was there a desire for Transfer? Yes, I am sure there was. But transfer can mean lots of things. It need not be expulsion by force. it could also mean transfer by financial incentives.

            But once the Arabs started the war, were some of the Arabs kicked out in 1948/49 By force? Of course they were. But so were some of the Jews. The Jews of East Jerusalem and Gush Etzion were kicked out by the Arabs.

            Were ALL the Arabs kicked out? Of course NOT. Some fled as many civilians flee from war zones. Not because they were specifically kicked out.

            Herre is a little puzzle for you Andrew: How come 20% of Israel’s citizens are Arabs? If Israel had a policy of kicking out ALL Arabs, how come those Arabs are still Israeli citizens?

            Reply to Comment
          • andrew r

            “It need not be expulsion by force. it could also mean transfer by financial incentives. ”

            No shit, Sherlock, I discussed such a financial incentive in a passage you called “borrrriiiing” and likened to David Irving. Of course, the end is still the same as if it was accomplished by military force, and it is still a racist aim.

            “Herre is a little puzzle for you Andrew: How come 20% of Israel’s citizens are Arabs? If Israel had a policy of kicking out ALL Arabs, how come those Arabs are still Israeli citizens?”

            In short, the IDF spared Druze villages, many Palestinians who were not expelled across the armistice border were nevertheless internally displaced and today live in unrecognized villages, and most non-Jewish Israeli citizens live in areas of fixed size.

            Now, as to why Israel does not simply expel all Arabs from the Green Line, even though there are certainly politicians and Jewish electorate calling for such an action, the number one factor is probably that it would result in open conflict with Egypt and Jordan.

            However, I lost the ability to support Zionism (In as much it was there) when I figured out transfer was inbuilt, and it didn’t take Morris to clue me in.

            “I was talking about “different populations with historical hatreds”. And you truncated that to “different populations”. Please don’t pretend not to know the difference.”

            Mostly because I didn’t feel like spelling out that “historical hatred” is a silly trope. If that’s enough to cause a conflict the United States is in big trouble.

            Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            “Now, as to why Israel does not simply expel all Arabs from the Green Line, even though there are certainly politicians and Jewish electorate calling for such an action, the number one factor is probably that it would result in open conflict with Egypt and Jordan”

            Really Andrew? I was asking you why didn’t Israel expel ALL the Arabs in 1948 and that was your answer?

            Now who is not even half educated? Didn’t you know that in 1948/49, Israel was ALREADY engaged in open conflict with BOTH Egypt and Jordan? So the Zionist Israelis could have expelled ALL the Arabs then. But they did not. To me that confirms what Benny Morris said: there was no policy of expulsion by force. Were there some expulsion by force? Yes. And the Arabs were guilty of doing it to Jews too (that was a repetition for your benefit because it seems that you are not allowing any ideas to penetrate into your head which contradict your pre-existing prejudices).

            As for your accusations of Racism against the Zionists. All I can say to you is this:

            WHATEVER, ok? How do you want us to behave against those who are racists against us? The idea of Zionism is that Jews will no longer be willing to be victims of racists. If that to you is racist then I say to you that most people are racists. Including you unless you claim to be a passive individual who turns the other cheek. But that seems to me to be unlikely, judging by your language.

            Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            “3. Everyone else except the Palestinians got on with their lives. Pretty dumb notion considering the violent conflicts between Turkey-Greece and India-Pakistan and the existing tensions between them. Maybe that population exchange you think is supposed to work actually caused more problems”

            Dumb? Surely not as dumb as what you advocate, the one state solution?

            Whatever problems they had and still have in Pakistan/India, Greece/Turkey and Germany/Poland. Those problems are nowhere near as bad as the problems experienced in Rwanda, Yugoslavia and Lebanon where people like you squeezed two or more different populations with historical hatreds towards each other into a single state.

            But for you guys, ideology trumps common sense, doesn’t it Andrew?

            Reply to Comment
          • andrew r

            “Those problems are nowhere near as bad as the problems experienced in Rwanda, Yugoslavia and Lebanon”

            Are you really so half-educated you’re unaware different populations living together is more the norm for history than population exchanges? Also, you might want to clarify exactly what Yugoslavia’s problems were, because according to your logic about population exchanges, Milosevic, Karadzic and Franjo Tudjman were the solution to Yugoslavia’s problems.

            It’s also a common trope among half-educated people that Jews and Arabs have been fighting over the holy land forever, but that didn’t stop early Zionist settlers from employing Arabs as workers and guards. Oh sorry, am I boring you again?

            Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            “Are you really so half-educated you’re unaware different populations living together is more the norm for history”

            Andrew, if I am half educated then you are simply dishonest.

            I was talking about “different populations with historical hatreds”. And you truncated that to “different populations”. Please don’t pretend not to know the difference.

            Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            “It’s also a common trope among half-educated people that Jews and Arabs have been fighting over the holy land forever, but that didn’t stop early Zionist settlers from employing Arabs as workers and guards. Oh sorry, am I boring you again?”

            OK, lets have it your way, the enmity has been deepening and getting worse for the last 100 years.

            Am I therefore half educated for saying that it is now a historical enmity? What does it make you though? I will be kind, I will just say that it puts you into denial.

            By the way. There have been periodic explosions of Arab hatred and periods of persecution, culminating in pogroms against the Jewish population in various Arab countries, for hundreds of years. However, Jews have only been able to fight back in Palestine for the last 100 years or so. And that just entrenched the already existing prejudices and hatred against Jews in the Arabs mind. Consequently, Do you deny that TODAY there is full blown hatred amongst wide segments of both populations against each other?

            Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            “Also, you might want to clarify exactly what Yugoslavia’s problems were”

            Are you really that half educated, Andrew?

            You have not heard of the civil war that ensued in Yugoslavia? The ethnic cleansings? The mass murders? The atrocities committed against each other by the various sides?

            Go read up on what happened in Sebrenice for example.

            Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            … and that was just Yugoslavia Andrew.

            Now are you also going to pretend ignorance about ahat happened in Rwanda and Lebanon too?

            HINT: 1 million Tutsis were murdered in a frenzy of butchery by Hutus in Rwanda.

            ANOTHER HINT: Go study up what happened to the various different ethnic groups at various stages of the Lebanese civil war.

            Actually, if you want to argue this point further, I can bring up some other examples too in other countries. But it isn’t a nice topic.

            Reply to Comment
          • andrew r

            “You have not heard of the civil war that ensued in Yugoslavia? The ethnic cleansings? The mass murders? The atrocities committed against each other by the various sides?”

            That’s what I was talking about, you twit. How do you think population transfer is accomplished. What do you think was the point of that civil war? Why do you think I name-checked Karadzic, for his herbal medicine?

            Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            “That’s what I was talking about, you twit. How do you think population transfer is”

            Language … Andrew …. mind your language.

            You might have been talking about it you twit. But you did not mention why the atrocities happened.

            So let me enlighten you, you twit: It happened because disparate peoples with historical hatreds were artificially forced to be citizens of the ONE state. After Tito’s death, those disparate groups wanted to break away from that artificial ONE state solution. But the dominant group, the Serbs did not like it so a very nasty little war ensued.

            Do you get it now, you twit?

            Oh and you still keep on ignoring Rwanda and Lebanon where the same thing happened and in the case of Lebanon will happen again because of a similar solution that you advocate, you Twit.

            Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            “4. I should mind my own business. Right, this is another case of changing the rules based on the situation. Israel did not get where it is today because people outside the region minded their own business”

            I know that people like you are not happy chappies about the fact that people outside the region allowed Jews to return to their ancestral home land and join fellow Jews who never left Eretz Yisrael. But what else did those outside people do? Oh yea, they voted for a two state solution which the Jews accepted but the Arabs rejected because they claimed that everything is theirs. But is it? Most certainly it wasn’t and still is not. They were just too greedy. There was and still is room in historic Palestine for two states. One Arab one Jewish. For the Jews, it is their one and only state. For Arabs/Muslims it will be their 25th state.

            And what are you trying to do Andrew? Reverse it all? And get the Jews back to places where they were subjected to genocide? OK then, you are therefore our enemy. And I certainly feel the right to tell you to stop telling us what to do and mind your own business. But if you want, go and talk all you want to your Arab friends instead, I am sure they want to hear what you are saying. Enjoy each other.

            Reply to Comment
          • JG

            >It is called Eretz Yisrael. The land of Israel. The ancestral home land of the Jewish people.

            >The word Palestina is a word made up by ancient European invaders, the Romans, who disposessed the Jewish people of their land.

            @Arieh, you are aware thtat something in your opinions doesn’t fit together at all?

            >One cannot turn the clock back and pretend that nothing happened.

            Reply to Comment
          • Arieh

            OK I take your point JR. So let me say what I really should have said:

            One can’t turn the clock back and pretend that nothing happened. Unless you are willing to pay the price for doing it.

            And after what happened to the Jews for 2000 years, culminating in the holocaust, us Zionists and many other decent people in the world decided that re-establishing the Jewish state along side 25 Arab/Muslim states was worth paying the price.

            The Arabs didn’t think so and they still don’t think so. It was and still is their choice but they better make sure they won’t have to pay an even bigger price for trying to destroy the last hope of the Jewish people. They have other reasonable options other than turning the clock back all the way to their good old days of glory at the sixth century. We don’t. We are no longer willing to be victims.

            Are you happy now JR?

            Reply to Comment
          • Nikki

            fanned!

            Reply to Comment
        • Rauna

          If i m not mistaken, an army general who approved the massacre of innocence civilians in Shabra and Shatila had been elected as your PM.

          Reply to Comment
          • Nuar

            You mean the massacre carried out by a Christian Phalangist militia?

            mmmmmmmm

            Reply to Comment
    4. Piotr Berman

      I think that even Oscar agrees that the story of an attack with a plastic gun is strange. Of course, strange things do happen. But sometimes they are audacious coverups. Unfortunately, in the absence of witnesses (and ordinary Palestinians do not count as such, not in Israel) there is no limit on the audacity of government lies.

      You can search for “Guantanamo suicides” and find a horrifying story by Scot Horton on alleged triple suicide of Guantanamo inmates in June 2006. A ranking general announced that it was a coordinated action to harm USA by a propagandistic coup. In fact, it was a crime so terrible that nobody can be punished, botched torture that should not happen (they were scheduled to be released) in a facility that is not supposed to exist.

      Reply to Comment
      • “in the absence of witnesses (and ordinary Palestinians do not count as such, not in Israel) there is no limit on the audacity of government lies.” : without judicial oversight through trial (which is a priori considered impossible by the Israeli State), any organization with a legal monopoly on force will begin to abuse that monopoly. One case: an LA police elite anti-gang unit, which began to manufacture crimes to obtain convictions. Under an occupation where most residents cannot even provide credible witnessing, one can expect the same–and more. If Israel wants to retain any semblance of morality and fairness, it must embark on a transparent procedure for trials. But, at present, moral value is defined solely through a national right effective electoral majority.

        Reply to Comment
    5. aristeides

      The thing that strikes me is how, in the total absence of real evidence in this case, everyone reverts to their own preconceptions. Israeli apologists assume unquestioningly that the official version must be correct. Anti-zionists are immediately dubious.

      Reply to Comment
    6. “terrorist,” “infiltrator,” “leftist”: the words have become dislodged from meaning, used to gag, incite anger and hatred, repell all self doubt.

      The Middle Ages Catholic Church spoke of the merit of the blood of Christ, which could absolve present sin. Did the suicide bombings bestow such merit onto the State, absolving its actions through the earned merit of “terrorist?”

      Reply to Comment
      • Oscar

        ““terrorist,” “infiltrator,” “leftist”: the words have become dislodged from meaning, used to gag, incite anger and hatred, repell all self doubt”

        The only word you forgot to mention is “Zionist”. You guys vilify us so don’t be surprised to find yourself vilified.

        Here is a thought for you. I find it hard to imagine that this young woman decided to kill a teenager just because she felt like killing someone. Do I know that for sure? Of course not. But you guys who jump on the opposite conclusion because she is a Zionist, don’t know for sure either.

        Reply to Comment
        • You are a child, Oscar. I adhere to the Israeli Declaration of Indpendence, which enshrines the free ingress of Jews into the State without bar. In my view, this is a matter of Israeli constitutional law–or should be. I don’t have to talk about Zionism. Free ingress within Israel is guaranteed, in my view. I doubt you have read this founding document, nor know the later history of its failed implementation.

          Do you really think their will be a fair trial of the present case? Do you really think any monopoly of power will not devolve into abuses which are shunted out of light absent independent oversight? Do you really understand the importance of courts in the US? Consider the post by Noam S. of today.

          You have no idea of what I am. Go play cowboy and indians somewhere else.

          Reply to Comment
          • Oscar

            “You are a child, Oscar”

            Really Greg? Was that meant to upset me?

            Try harder Greg. In the meanwhile you have not adressed a single point that I made.

            Reply to Comment
          • No, Oscar, a fact. Read your Declaration. Well, not yours. Israel’s.

            I’ve let this devolve. For a test, try articulating what you think I believe.

            And we seem to have forgotten about the death of a young man.

            Reply to Comment
          • Oscar

            “And we seem to have forgotten about the death of a young man”

            BS Greg. I forgot about nothing. But it irks me that you guys automatically judge this young woman guilty of unprovoked murder.

            By all means, demand a thorough investigation. I have no problems with that. But to pretend that this woman just committed cold blooded murder because maybe she had a bad hair day and because she is a Zionist is nothing but a blood libel.

            But why am I surprised about that? God knows I should not be. You dudes specialise in such libels here don’t you?

            Not only that, but you are highly sensitive when some of us here dare to remind you what your dear Palestinians are up to. Right Greg? That to you is never relevant.

            Reply to Comment
        • YiddishFalafels

          “Here is a thought for you. I find it hard to imagine that this young woman decided to kill a teenager just because she felt like killing someone. Do I know that for sure? Of course not. But you guys who jump on the opposite conclusion because she is a Zionist, don’t know for sure either.”

          Why do people in Gaza fire rockets into Israel, Oscar?

          Because they “felt like killing someone”?

          Reply to Comment
          • The Trespasser

            >Because they “felt like killing someone”?

            Yes. But not just someone – a Zionist.

            Reply to Comment
          • Oscar

            “Why do people in Gaza fire rockets into Israel, Oscar?

            Because they “felt like killing someone”?”

            What a stupid analogy. Ask Hamas. They will give you a clear answer. They fire from Gaza because they want to get rid of ALL Jews.

            Ask this young woman why she did it. She too gave a clear answer.

            Spot the difference?

            Reply to Comment
    7. Aaron Gross

      I liked the way lots of the retweets of your post uncritically repeat the charge of “brainwashing.” It’s almost as if they’d been…

      Reply to Comment
      • directrob

        But it is a case study in brainwashing… Projecting in peoples mind that a young female hero soldier saved her partner by killing a Palestinian terrorist, while being fully aware (and for the careful reader actually also writing) that the truth is that she killed an unarmed kid (not something heroic, at best an honest mistake).

        Reply to Comment
        • aristeides

          There is simply no way, even if the official story were correct, that the victim could be correctly described as a “terrorist.”

          But that’s how the meme has been framed, and that’s how it will be remembered in Zionist minds. And that’s how they want it to be remembered, the truth notwithstanding, hence the trolls emerging from their holes, as we see here, to besmirch any efforts at clarification.

          The establishment now has an interest in keeping it that way. Any truth to the contrary is undesirable.

          Reply to Comment
    8. mindRider

      It was not a “toy gun” but a “replica gun” impossible to tell the difference in a split second when one thinks to save a colleague. The Arab was a teenager at 17 according to the author, what is an Israeli soldier at 19 and what about a 15 year old suicide bomber as where known to have operated? Highly biased article !

      Reply to Comment
      • aristeides

        Source, Mindrider?

        Reply to Comment
      • Leo

        You’re right.

        But meanwhile, it does not exactly help (neither Israel nor the Palestinians).

        Reply to Comment
      • Why do you automatically believe that the Border Police is telling the truth? Doesn’t it sound a little strange that a boy should attack a Border Policeman holding a loaded rifle, who’s there with his similarly armed partner, when all he’s got is a toy gun? I mean, it’s possible that’s what happened, but it’s sure as hell not likely – especially considering the Border Police’s very long-standing reputation for viciousness against Palestinians.

        Reply to Comment
        • Kiwi

          “Doesn’t it sound a little strange that a boy should attack a Border Policeman holding a loaded rifle”

          Teenegers have been known to do very strange things. They are impulsive creatures who do things first and think about it later.

          Any parent of a teenager knows that.

          Reply to Comment
          • TobyR

            “Teenegers have been known to do very strange things.”

            Like shooting people for no good reason except being riled up by hatred for Arabs, you mean?

            Well, I don’t want to throw around accusations. We have two testimonies, from the Border Police who killed the guy and said he had a toy gun, and from his family who said that he did not possess one.

            I am sure that the competent Israeli authorities will clear up the matter by answering questions such as:
            - Where is this toy gun now and can we see it?
            - Were the deceased person’s fingerprints on the toy gun? Where on it? Were there other peoples’ fingerprints on it? Whose? How about other traces?
            - Where did he conceal the toy gun before he approached? Was it his back pocket as claimed in one report? Was there any residue from his back pocket on the toy gun?

            Reply to Comment
          • The Trespasser

            Whatever the family claims must not be taken into an account:
            1 – They would not tell the truth
            2 – There is no way for a family – any family – to know what every teenage boy of that family possesses
            3 – Boy might’ve acquired after he left his home.

            Reply to Comment
          • Oscar

            “I am sure that the competent Israeli authorities will clear up the matter by answering questions …”

            Answer to to whom? To lynch mobs such as in sites like these?

            No matter what evidence they will produce for you, you will still ask more questions, accuse them of forgery and you will find them guilty no matter what.

            And if the Israeli court investigates it and exonerates the border police, you will be in denial. Even though there have been cases when the Israeli court ruled against individual members of the IDF.

            There is no winning with you dudes. When the subject is Israel. Oh well, enjoy your petty little hatreds.

            Reply to Comment
          • TobyR

            “Answer to to whom?”

            A press conference attended to by journalists from Israel and abroad would do nicely.

            “No matter what evidence they will produce for you”

            Ah, the famed Pzionic mindreading powers again. What number am I thinking of?

            Reply to Comment
          • The Trespasser

            Since quite a lot of people until today still believe that IDF soldiers had shot dead Muhammad al-Durrah – in complete disregard of absence of even tiniest bit of proof – it does not take to have pzionic abilities to foresee something so easily predictable.

            “The controversy centers on two areas: the raw footage and its interpretation by Enderlin, and the lack of any investigation into the boy’s death. There is confusion about when the incident occurred, how much footage was shot, why it was blurred at the moment the shots were fired, why France 2 cut the final scene, and what time the boy arrived at the hospital. No ballistic tests were conducted.[58] Within days of the incident, the IDF demolished the wall and concrete cylinder the al-Durrahs had sheltered against; they said they did this to remove hiding places for snipers.[59] There is no evidence that bullets were recovered, whether from the scene, from the bodies, or from Jamal. There was no full autopsy, though a pathologist did examine the boy’s body.[35] In an interview with Esther Schapira in 2002, Abu Rahma, the cameraman, said bullets had indeed been recovered. He suggested Schapira ask a named Palestinian general about them. The general told Schapira that he had no bullets, and that there had been no Palestinian investigation because there was no doubt as to who had shot the boy. When told the general had no bullets, Abu Rahma said that France 2 had collected bullets at the scene. He said: “We have some secrets for ourselves … We cannot give anything … everything.”

            Having viewed the footage, Jeambar and Leconte wrote in Le Figaro on January 25, 2005, that there was no scene in it that showed the boy had died.[83] When Enderlin said Muhammad was dead, they wrote “he had no possibility of determining that he was in fact dead, and even less so, that he had been shot by IDF soldiers.”[25] While they did not believe the scene was staged, they said the footage did not show the boy’s death throes. “This famous ‘agony’ that Enderlin insisted was cut from the montage,” they wrote, “does not exist.”[84]

            Reply to Comment
          • Oscar

            “Ah, the famed Pzionic mindreading powers again. What number am I thinking of?”

            No need for mindreading powers. Just read what the posters have been saying here. They are a lynch mob who act as judge, jury and executioners.

            As for your press conference idea, I think it is a good one. But I also think it won’t solve anything because you guys already convicted this woman soldier in “your minds”. Again, if you doubt it, just read the comments from many of you here.

            Reply to Comment
          • TobyR

            “They are a lynch mob who act as judge, jury and executioners.”

            That is one of the most bizarre misapplications of words I have ever witnessed.
            But it is quite typical: I ask for facts. You respond with insinuations, because you have no facts. I argue based on reality, you argue based on fantasy.

            Reply to Comment
          • Oscar

            “I ask for facts. You respond with insinuations, because you have no facts.”

            Oh dear.

            Are you saying that in the absence of any evidence, one way or the other, many posters here didn’t convict this woman soldier in their minds?

            They DID. That is a fact. You want more facts? I haven’t got any yet. Have you?

            Reply to Comment
        • The Trespasser

          There could not be any better birthday present than shahada for a son and a brother of terrorists.

          Reply to Comment
        • KiwiPisces

          “Doesn’t it sound a little strange that a boy should attack a Border Policeman holding a loaded rifle”

          Larry you might want to study up on the psyche of teenagers.

          “This article proposes a framework for theory and research on risk-taking that is informed by developmental neuroscience. Two fundamental questions motivate this review. First, why does risk-taking increase between childhood and adolescence? ”

          http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2396566/

          Reply to Comment
    9. Quentin Holt

      Good to see Leftist Larry working for a reputable newspaper. I was writing to the Jerusalem Post when Mr Derner still worked there and since he’s left its become a gutter tabloid thats been hijacked by the extreme right.

      Reply to Comment
      • Good to hear from you, Quentin.

        Reply to Comment
    10. Bryan

      The heroine vs the terrorist: a case study in self-defense. http://youtu.be/ybw9gT1oFpE

      Reply to Comment
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