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'I realized violence came from settlers, not Palestinians'

On the occasion of 10 years since the founding of Breaking the Silence, a former IDF soldier talks about how he came to understand the immorality of the mission his country sent him on, and Israeli society’s silence surrounding it.

By Shay Davidovich

The drive down Highway 5, heading east into the Occupied Territories, can be deceptive. The wide road and pastoral landscape almost succeed in obscuring the barbed wire fences and heavy military presence. I know this road quite well. It leads to the settlement of Ariel, where I grew up and lived most of my life. Much of Israeli society considers Ariel to be no different than any other city, but for me and my friends there settlement ideology and sense of purpose were an inseparable part of our childhood.

I grew up knowing full well that this is home, that “Greater Israel” was not merely a mantra but a vision I would strive to bring to fruition. With such righteous belief in our cause, there was no question of whether or not to enlist as an IDF combat soldier when I turned 18 – our home must be defended. I did many things during my military service without question; yet today, in hindsight, I can’t help being doubtful about the justification for my actions.

Nothing about what I did went beyond the routine activity of the IDF in the Occupied Territories, which every combat soldier is surely familiar with. We trained inside Palestinian villages and disrupted their daily lives endlessly. We directed our firepower at areas, which to this day I cannot say were not populated by civilians with any certainty (I trusted and assumed that someone else along the chain of command with a better view of the area would call for us to hold fire if civilians were detected). Even when doubts arose occasionally, I didn’t ask questions. I remained silent and did what I was ordered to do.

One of the incidents that for me symbolizes the distorted reality we were enveloped in seemed relatively negligible at the time. Nobody really talked about it. It took place during my first time entering the territories as a soldier, four months after I was drafted. We had just completed our basic training and my company was assigned to secure the settlements in the South Hebron Hills.

This was our first combat operation. It took place just one year after the end of the Second Intifada, and our commanders leveraged that to aggrandize the complexity of the mission for days upon days beforehand. The adrenaline among us was palpable. We were on our way to a region that we knew could be hostile.

Within a few days, I found myself at a post on a hill inside the settlement of Susiya, directly opposite the Palestinian village of Susya. The countryside was beautiful and reminded me of home. But already in my first few days in the field, the belief that I was here to defend Israeli citizens against our enemy became muddled. I quickly realized that the primary source of violence and menace in the region originated not from the Palestinians but from the settlers.

File photo of settlers threatening Israeli activists and Palestinians with sticks in front of the Ma´on settlement, South Hebron hills. (Photo by: Oren Ziv/Activestills.org)

File photo of settlers threatening Israeli activists and Palestinians with sticks in front of the Ma´on settlement, South Hebron hills. (Photo by: Oren Ziv/Activestills.org)

I was standing at my post when suddenly I heard someone shouting: “Soldier! Soldier!” It took me a few seconds to realize that the clamor was coming from the Palestinian side. I suddenly saw a group of young settlers running down the hill toward the Palestinian village, bellowing threats and racist epithets. The situation flooded me with a deep sense of shame that only intensified as the days went on. I had never before seen the sort of violence the settlers unleashed against their Palestinian neighbors during the short time I was posted in Susyia. But even during those moments, the Palestinians remained “the enemy” and our mission to defend the Israeli settlers was unchanged.

Looking back, I am able to see the distorted nature of things that appeared quite trivial at the time. For example, the fact that I was sent not only to defend the violent settlers but also to obediently do their bidding. On my very first shift, the settler security officer (SSO) – a civilian settler appointed to the settlement’s security detail – barked at me to join him on a chase. In practice, my team and I considered our SSO to be our commander on the ground, so I did as he commanded.

I found myself running around the hills with him, gun drawn, excited, waiting for the run-in with the terrorist threatening to infiltrate the settlement. After running for a while, certain that at any moment a firefight with terrorists would ensue, our “target” came into view. We were chasing a little boy, perhaps five years old, completely naked, and running away from us in a frantic panic. After we chased the boy away, the SSO explained to me that the he had been on the grounds of the settlement – forbidden to all Arabs. Somehow, this was ample reason for the two of us to chase this five-year-old child, loaded guns at the ready. I returned to my post and continued my guard shift.

This was far from my harshest experience in the Occupied Territories, but I consider it a significant moment in realizing how twisted my grasp of reality was at that time. This distortion has become so deeply rooted in our society, that we – myself included – tend to immediately turn our backs on depictions of the world that undermine our understanding of it. My parents, veteran Likud supporters whom I had always considered to be open-minded people, were quite skeptical about the stories I passed on about my experience in the army. Even as I was speaking, and raising questions about the morality and necessity of what my friends and I had done, I ended up telling myself that there must be a larger explanation justifying all this.

Two years ago I came across an invitation for a tour to the South Hebron Hills with an organization called Breaking the Silence. A portion of the tour entailed visiting the Palestinian village of Susya. I felt compelled to go back there, see what had changed, and in particular to hear the residents’ perspective about what was happening around them. I met the very same “Arab-terrorists” I had defended the settlement against and couldn’t help feeling ashamed. After hearing dozens of testimonies by other combat soldiers who served all over the territories, I understood for the first time that this distorted reality was much larger in scope than I had originally realized. The looks of surprise on the faces of the other Israelis on the tour made it clear to me that other soldiers’ parents were at least as skeptical as my own. They had no idea what their sons and daughters were doing.

Yehuda Shaul of the Israeli activist group Breaking the Silence leads a tour group on Shuhada Street in the West Bank city of Hebron, March 7, 2014. (Photo: Ryan Rodrick Beiler/Activestills.org)

Yehuda Shaul of the Israeli activist group Breaking the Silence leads a tour group on Shuhada Street in the West Bank city of Hebron, March 7, 2014. (Photo: Ryan Rodrick Beiler/Activestills.org)

We have been exerting our military control over the Palestinians for 47 years now yet we have not stopped for a second to ask ourselves what that control actually looks like – what IDF soldiers are sent to do in our name and what moral price we pay for their actions.

For me, this is not a matter of being right wing or left wing, of whether or not to give back the territories. As far as I am concerned, imposing a military regime upon another people is immoral. Period. Most of all, however, it makes no sense to me that we – a society that I wholeheartedly believe aspires toward justice and equality – do not hold an honest discussion about what the reality in the Occupied Territories actually looks like and how to bring its oppression to an end.

I joined Breaking the Silence out of my decision to accept responsibility for what I had done during my military service and as part of a demand that my society stop for a moment and hear how we, IDF soldiers, implement military rule upon a people that does not want us there. I met with hundreds of other Israelis since joining the organization and the response is nearly always the same: “we didn’t know.”

But the silence we are breaking exists outside of Israel as well. Groups that claim to support my country label every attempt to deviate from complete support of Israeli government policies to be “delegitimization” or “self-hatred.” This distorted paradigm must be broken. Standing by Israel means standing by those who are calling for an end to the occupation. Gaining knowledge seems to me to be the most radical way to ensure we do not stand by Israel blindly.

This week marks 10 years since Breaking the Silence was founded and 47 years since the beginning of the occupation. Even if you cannot physically attend our event, I implore you to find your own way to break the silence and stand by those calling for end to the occupation.

Shay Davidovich is the educational activity coordinator at Breaking the Silence. He served in the IDF’s Combat Intelligence Collection Corps from 2005 – 2008.

Related:
Public reading of soldier testimonies to be on anniversary of occupation
Why soldiers don’t ‘break the silence’ to the IDF
‘How speaking out about the occupation nearly landed me in jail’

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      • kate

        weren’t you in the habit of claiming that BtS testimonies were anonymous? Guess that bit of hyperbole got blown out of the water, do keep trying it gets more desperate by the minute

        oh and perhaps you missed it but the author is himself the son of settlers was raised in a settlement and you which American city do you come from? Hmmmlet me guess does it start with a B lol

        Reply to Comment
      • Jan

        Oh my God, GInger. How horrible for anyone to divulge what the IDF is doing. This is totally disgusting. The IDF should be able to do whatever they want and no one, especially former IDF members, should have the right to say anything about it. Kill a Palestinian? Don’t talk about it. Ransack a Palestinian home? Keep your mouth shut. Destroy thousands of Palestinian homes and olive trees? Don’t let any one know about it.

        I remember just a few years ago watching a Breaking the Silence member testifying as to how the IDF would go into a village to, as he said, “make a provocation.” They would roll into the village with their heavily protected vehicles and when kids who have lived their entire lives under the Israeli jackboot predictablly came out to throw stones at the tanks and armored vehicles, the oh, so brave IDfF members would respond with tear gas and rubber bullets. If a kid got killed, what did that matter. it was only Palestinian blood and that blood doesn’t count. The only blood in the world that counts is Jewish blood, right Ginger?

        No one’s blood should be shed whether Jewish or not Jewish but you don’t seem to care and you don’t seem to understand why you and other Israeli Jews are not loved and worshipped by the Palestinians. After all, you are the “chosen” people and the world owes you everything.

        Ginger I am angry. I am angry at what our people are doing to another people whose land our people have taken, who we have brutalized. I am angry at people such as yourself who are furious with funders of Israeli groups who expose what Israel is doing but likely praise the groups that help to fund the illegal settlements and right wing Israeli NGOs.

        I am grateful for groups such as Breaking the SIlence and other Jewish groups in Israel that are working with and not against, Palestinians. They do not come to the West Bank with guns and tear gas or to take the land of the Palestinians or to destroy their homes. Those are the Jews who redeem what Israel has destroyed in Judaism and there are more and more of them.

        Reply to Comment
      • Jan

        “The men the American people admire most extravagantly are the greatest liars: the men they detest most violently are those who try to tell them the truth.” – – H. L. Mencken – (1880-1956) American Journalist, Editor, Essayist.

        I think that goes for Israelis as well.

        Reply to Comment
    1. Ginger Eis

      One of the incidents that for me symbolizes the distorted reality we were enveloped in (…) took place during my first time entering the territories as a soldier (…). This was our first combat operation. “I was standing at my post when suddenly I heard someone shouting: “Soldier! Soldier!” It took me a few seconds to realize that the clamor was coming from the Palestinian side. I suddenly saw a group of young settlers running down the hill toward the Palestinian village, bellowing threats and racist epithets. The situation flooded me with a deep sense of shame that only intensified as the days went on. I had never before seen the sort of violence the settlers unleashed against their Palestinian neighbors during the short time I was posted in Susyia.”

      This is another fabricated lie by Bts. Here is why: (a) Mr. Davidovich does not how many settlers (maybe 2-3 boys?) that ran downhill towards the “Palestinian village”, because it never happened as he claims; (b) Mr. Davidovich does not know when (time, day, month and year) the alleged incident took place, because he made up this story; (c) Mr. Davidovich claims that the “settlers” were “bellowing threats and racist epithets” but he is unable to tell you what the “settlers” actually said and why such constitutes threats and racism, because the story is fictitious; (d) Mr. Davidovich tells you that “the clamor was coming from the Palestinian side”, but he never actually saw any Palestinian and he has nothing to link the clamor: “soldier! Soldier!” to to any “Palestinian” seeking help against alleged settlers running down the hill; (e) in fact, Mr. Davidovic’s claim that he “had never before seen the sort of violence the settlers unleashed against their Palestinian neighbors” ever in his life, is completely NOT supported by A SINGLE fact. What exactly constituted those alleged violence and what makes them different from the occasional disagreement one would normally see among neighbors around the world? Mr. Davidovich has no answers for you, ladies and gentlemen, but he has the nerves to smear the IDF for money. What a crook!

      Reply to Comment
      • Elisabeth

        Why on earth do you assume that everything he says is fictitious?
        Earlier you told me that Israeli’s are morally superior to Palestinians because they do not rejoice in violent acts committed by their own side.
        That would be fair enough. But in your case this desire for your own side to behave in a righteous way only manifests itself in vehement denial that anything is wrong.
        Would it not be better to get active and prevent bad behavior on the Israeli side, rather than deny that anything is wrong?

        When I read your comments, the anguish and aggression that you show at any report of less than perfect behavior of Israel, makes me feel that you a good person, but that your anger is directed in the wrong direction: Towards the messengers who tell you about what is really being done by the country and the people that you care for so much, instead of towards the people who do these things and give your coutry a bad name.

        Reply to Comment
        • Ginger Eis

          Elisabeth (nice Jewish name btw), I have a lot to say and as such do not know where to begin. So I will just say two things: (1) as a matter of fairness, the burden of proof always rests on the shoulders of the plaintiff. Mr. Davidovich is the plaintiff in the instant case and he brought forward many allegations against Israel. But Mr. Davidovich has provided NO evidence to support his allegations. Accordingly, those allegations must be considered false. (2) Israel is a very small country that is surrounded by enemies and is at war and has always been since 1948. Israel exists today not because her neighbors accept her (on the contrary), but because she can – thanks to the IDF (and G-d). Over the past years, said war started mutating and has taken on the form of de-legitimization of the IDF with the same goal that existed since 1948: the demise of the Jewish State (using the South-Africa-method). On the one hand, Israel is not remotely anything like South Africa. On the other hand it is more than very easy to demonize Jews and convince very intelligent people that Jews kill Christian children and use their blood for Passover; that Israel is worse than South Africa; that Israel “detains Palestinian children for eating cherries”, that Jews are responsible for all the ills in the world, etc. This is a reality that has brought violent deaths, mass expulsions, exclusions, etc. to the Jewish people. Reason dies when it comes to Jews. Dehumanization and delegitimization of Jews/Israel are perfect weapons of war and the only thing I ask of you is not to believe anything against the State Of Israel until evidence has been provided to you. Any trace of immorality within the IDF will be stamped out not just because Jewish values demand it but also because the opposite will destroy the IDF from within.

          Reply to Comment
          • shachalnur

            Ariel Sharon is a nice Jewish name,but he’s not Jewish,just another Khazar massmurderer claiming to do this in the name of the Jewish People.

            Are you Jewish,or are you just whipping up hate against Jews and Israel by giving the impression all Jews and Israeli’s are collaborating with a racist ideology?

            there’s many like you on the net,Jew haters that lie and whitewash Israel’s crimes in order to make Jews and non-Jews hate Israel and Jews.

            As long as there’s no clear proof you represent a Jewish opinion ,I will treat you as a potential Nazi-collaborator and apologist.

            You completely fit the desciption.

            Reply to Comment
          • Ginger Eis

            Deranged, no? This is the type of unhealthy creatures attracted by the filth published on +972. Be my quest and knock yourself out, Sheik Al Noor (alians Shachalnur)!

            Reply to Comment
          • shachalnur

            Just as European Jewry saw 1897 Zionism as a greater threat to Jews than Hitler,1897 Zionists today are a bigger threat to Jews than all “anti-Semites” put together.

            The real anti-Semites and Holocaust deniers are people like you,and if modern Nazi’s like you don’t stop claiming you’re a Jew ,there will be a repeat of what happened 70 years ago,but this time on a world scale..

            That’s why 17 million people born Jewish have turned their backs on 1897 Zionist controlled Judaism since 1945.

            They are still Jews ,and are patiently waiting untill Nazi’s like you will shoot your own foot and Judaism can return to something 2/3 of people born Jewish can indentify with.

            Just kill yourself and get it over with ,so the world can go on trying to create a future for their children ,Jewish or non-Jewish.

            You’re not a Jew,you’re a confused Banker-slave running after an ideology that has nothing to do with Torah Judaism.

            You left Judaism when you decided to identify with this criminal maffia of mass murderers.

            I hope you choke on your hate.

            Reply to Comment
          • Elisabeth

            I saw the film Shoah by Claude Lanzmann more than once, and a lot of the testimony of survivors (which moved me deeply) does not include the kinds of details you demand of Davidovich, or about the two boys shot on Nakba day etc.
            But I would NEVER say about the testimonies in Shoah: “They have provided NO evidence to support their allegations. ACCORDINGLY, those allegations MUST BE CONSIDERED false.” That would we gruesome.

            Furthermore you write:
            “it is more than very easy to demonize Jews and convince very intelligent people that Jews kill Christian children and use their blood for Passover.”

            More than very eassy?? Very intelligent people?!!! Come on! I doubt that you could find more that a few demented old grannies from the Polish countryside who would believe that. I had never heard of it until a couple of years ago when I looked up the term ‘blood libel’ that I had come accross. It is in the same league as the medieval belief in witches. I am sure it is possible to find a few people who believe that too, but to think such beliefs are mainstream is just worrying yourself for no reason.
            You are certainly right that allegations of human right violations should be substabtiated, but please do not lable all criticism as equal to accusing Jews of using the blood of Christian children to make matzos….

            Reply to Comment
          • Ginger Eis

            @ Elizabeth, (1st post). The blood-libels made against Jews are well documented. The heart wrenching tragedies that followed are also well documented. The people who brought said tragedies upon their Jewish neighbors/populations were NOT old grannies or demented people or even mentally challenged people, no, they were normal men and women like the normal men and women of today (and thus per definition “intelligent”)! ‘Reason’ is always the first casualty when it comes to allegations against Jews as a People and people are (unconsciously) all too ready to believe the worst about their Jewish fellow citizens and bring death and destruction upon them. See for example: http://www.zionism-israel.com/dic/blood_libel.htm. You can also research other non-Jewish sources if that helps, for example ‘encyclopedia Britannica.

            Reply to Comment
          • Elisabeth

            You were speaking in the present tense (“it is more than very easy to demonize Jews and convince very intelligent people that Jews kill Christian children and use their blood for Passover.”), so I assumed you were talking about NOW.

            Reply to Comment
          • Ginger Eis

            @ Elizabeth, (2nd post). Also, the evidence re the Shoah is well documented in several Nazi-laws, public speeches and publications, in documents signed by the Nazis themselves, on tapes made by the Nazis themselves, on tapes made by allied forces who liberated the dying from the death industries and took locals to see for themselves what was done in their names, by confessions of those who committed the crimes directly, the mountains of dead bodies, the mass graves, etc. In fact, the evidence is massive, overwhelming and corroborated, and withstands all kinds of empirical tests! When I put the story of Mr. Davidovich under the slightest empirical pressure, it explodes into pieces. That’s how to empirically establish a lie. Again, I can assure you that 99.99% of Israelis do not want immorality within the IDF and will never tolerate crimes committed in their names. We are human like every other People. We feel injured and pain when accused of crimes. Like every other People we want evidence. As a matter of law and fairness, we are entitled to evidence. Where we are wrong, the perpetrator will get his/her deserved punishment, the victim will get his/her deserved compensation, and we will work to heal the damage caused to the IDF. All Israelis ask for is evidence. Nothing more. Nothing less.

            Reply to Comment
          • Felix Reichert

            Actually, 99.99% of the people do not even care in the slightlest about crimes commited in their names, if their not directly affected. Jews or not.

            You have an incredibly distorted view of reality.

            Reply to Comment
          • Ginger Eis

            Felix Reichert, on the thread “Unilateral withdrawal makes a comeback in Israeli politics” by Noam Sheizaf, you posted several FABRICATED quotes. I and others demanded you post the PRIMARY SOURCES of the fabricated quotes, but you refused and ran away like a chicken never to be seen again. And now you think that the coast is clear and that it’s ok to once again emerged from your hole with another idiotic comment? Now, tell me, Mr. Reichert: ‘why should anyone listen to you i.e. a crook and a fraudster, or even accord you the courtesy of a response’?

            My statement about the 99.99% stands as stated. know I care whether or not crimes are committed in my name. I know others care whether or not crimes are being committed in your name. The readers here will read your claim and make up their own minds. For the rest, I have tolerance for a crook. Get lost!

            Reply to Comment
      • Jan

        You are so fast to claim that anything said against Israel is false.

        You claimed over and over again that the girls who ate cherries and who were taken to the police station were not detained.
        People do not have to be arrested to be detained. These girls were held for several hours and denied food or drink.

        Here is a video of them in the Israeli jail house. Note how they were asked by the police to sign a paper written in Hebrew, a language they do not read nor write.

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WAhKqjPo00s

        You also should know, though you will try to deny it, that Palestinians are often detained, never charged or tried, and given “administrative detention, ” a sentence that can be renewed over and over again leading to several years in prison. Detained and imprisoned with no charges, no trial. Is this the vaunted Israeli “democracy?”
        Oh, I forgot. You don’t seem to know that there are two kinds of laws in the Occupied Territories. The Jewish settlers get Israeli law which is pretty good. In the West Bank, Palestinians are subject to draconian military law which is pretty bad. But hey, justice doesn’t mean anything to you when it comes to Palestinians, does it?

        Reply to Comment
        • Ginger Eis

          1. NO girls were “detained for eating cherry”! Get it through your thick head.
          2. The video is NOT a video of the girls “in a jail house” or Israeli police station! The people interrogating the girls are NOT Israeli official! The video is a paliwood production! Do you see how you lie and spread lies against Israel?
          3. When it comes to Jews and Israel, you (a) shut down your reason/thinking faculty and are more than willing to- and in fact do believe every bad, disgusting, nauseating stuff WITHOUT EVIDENCE – as evidenced, among others, in this instant case and your claim that “Palestinian girls were detained for eating cherries”! That’s what anti-Semites do. IMO, you are an anti-Semite! I have always thought that you are just consumed by the passion for justice/fairness, but I think I was badly mistaken about you.

          Reply to Comment
          • Jan

            Not an anti-Semite. Just someone who hates what Israel is doing. Because I am Jewish there is no law written anywhere that I have to support what the country that claims it is my “homeland” does. Because I am Jewish does not mean that I owe allegience to Israel especially when it goes against what my Jewish parents taught me was right and good about being Jewish. To me, I see Israel as a country that while pretending to be a “democracy” is a democracy primarily for Jews. I see Israel as a country where its citizens are not identified as Israelis but as Jews, Muslims and Christians. I see Israel as a country bound and determined to make life miserable for the Palestinians in the West Bank so that eventually they will leave. I see Israel as a country that has demolished well over 25,000 Palestinian homes, destroyed perhaps a million olive and fruit trees, stolen more and more land etc. etc. I see Israel as a country of which I could be proud but their human rights violations make pride impossible.

            Had I been a German when the Nazis were in power I would have hated what they did. Would that have made me anti-German?

            I hate a lot of what my country, the US, has done and does today but that does not make me anti-American.

            You Ginger, cannot stand any criticism of your beloved Israel. You refuse to look at facts and condemn as anti-Semitic anyone who raises the issue of Israeli human rights violations. Open your eyes Ginger.

            BTW, I wish that you could live for a year as a Palestinian. Maybe then you would open your eyes.

            Reply to Comment
          • Ginger Eis

            1. Jewish Israelis criticize Israel and everything Jewish ad nauseam!
            2. Non-Israeli Jews and non-Jewish supporters of Israel criticize Israel where necessary!
            3. Your criticism of Israel does NOT make you an anti-Semite, BUT the fact that you (a) shut-down your thinking-faculty on issues re Jews, (b) knowingly and willfully accept WITHOUT evidence EVERY disgusting accusation made against Jews/Israel as true while treating Israeli version with disdain and as propaganda and applying a different standard to others and (c) blindly blame Jews/Israel for EVERYTHING wrong! (If you are not an anti-Semite, you MUST have mental issues. There is no grey area there unless this is all a game for you in which you toy with us).
            4. NO one wants you in Israel!
            5. NO one wants you anywhere near Israel!
            6. NO one wants your allegiance or support!
            7. I put it to you that you are NOT Jewish. You are a liar. I have been carefully following and studying ALL your comments and have gathered enough material to state with a high degree of scientific certainty that from a forensic analysis perspective your logic is inherently Arab/Islamist. Now, be gone!

            Reply to Comment
          • Jan

            Whether or not you or anyone wants to believe it I am Jewish, albeit not a religious Jew. I was raised not in a Zionist household, thank goodness, but in a home where I was taught what I was told were Jewish values. I was taught to be proud of the good things that Jews did in the world. I was also taught not to keep my mouth shut when I saw injustice to ANYONE.

            In 1947 my dad who worked in Hollywood was approached by some Jews from Palestine who were doing what they could do end the occupation of Palestine by the Brits. They asked my dad to get some people together and raise money to fight the British occupation. They also told my dad, falsely of course, that the new state would be a bi-national one. The fund raising event was held in the Hollywood Bowl and raised thousands of dollars.

            A few years later, some of the now Israeli Jews came to see my dad. They left Israel, they said, because of the terrible racism against the Arab population.

            Ginger, there are many Jews in this world who feel as do I. I have one friend who used to consider herself a Zionist, who was raised with the JNF can in her house. She took a trip to the Occupied Territories and lost her belief in Zionism. Now she works to help Palestinian kids traumatized by Israeli bombings of Gaza. Her group has built playgrounds for those children. I have another friend, David G, who is the grandson of a rabbi who is outspoken in his criticism of Israel. There is also a group of religious orthodox Jews, Naturi Karta, who demonstrate fervently against the Jewish state.

            All of these people, including myself are Jewish. They, like I, will continue to criticize Israel has long as Israel behaves as it does. Too bad that you don’t like it. Live with it.

            Reply to Comment
          • Ginger Eis

            You would be a complete idiot, Jan, if you ever thought that I could be fooled by someone with your level of intelligence! You really make me physically sick, honestly. Just stop. Give it a rest.

            Reply to Comment
          • shmuel

            Ginger@
            You use a double standard also in this.
            “Pls. keep the discussion businesslike (i.e. no ad hominems, no emotions/sentiments… if you expect any response from me”.
            Jan, don’t lose time with this immoral human being.

            Reply to Comment
          • Jan

            Ginger, I am so glad that I make you sick. I would be very sad if I don’t make you even sicker until you come to the realization that Israel is often less than truthful and that their brutal actions against the Palestinians cause more and more hatred against Jews.

            Since you never answered any of my statements regarding home demolitions etc, I assume that none of that bothers you are all and that you would never criticize that. That makes you an accessory to crime, Ginger.

            BTW, what kind of a Jewish name is Ginger?
            I know a few other Jews named Jan but I sure don’t know any Jews with the name of Ginger.

            Reply to Comment
          • IlonJ

            Have you even been to Israel, Jan?

            I would hope the answer to that is a yes since you sound to be obsessed by us.

            Reply to Comment
          • shachalnur

            Every person not willing to bow to 1897 Zionism’s demands is called anti-Semite.

            And any Jew not willing to behave like a monster ,and willing to stick to real Jewish values is not a Jew.

            Exactly what European Jewry warned for over a hundred years ago;”1897 Zionism is not Judaism,Zionism is a sect hostile to real Torah Judaism and real Jewish values,and 1897 Zionism is a program to exterminate the Jewish People.

            17 million people born Jewish have turned their backs on 1897 Zionism controlled Judaism since 1945,and the Jews that are left and stick to real Jewish values are being demonized as self-hating and non-Jews by their confused converted Khazar brothers.

            Ginger and IlonJ are the kind of people that make sure 1897 Zionism will become an ever shrinking sect of maniacs,and Jews like Jan and many others(religious and non-religious) worldwide are the only hope left for real Judaism.

            If people like Ginger and IlonJ get their way,it will be the end of Judaism,like it was planned by 1897 Zionism and identified by European Jewry and Orthodox Jews over a century ago.

            Judaism has dealt with people like 1897 Zionism many times before during the past three millenia,but the threat to the survival of real Judaism has never been bigger than now,thanks to confused Bankerslave modern Nazi’s like Ginger,IlonJ,Rab,Zu Sick,Tomer and the other racist maniacs.

            Reply to Comment
    2. Ginger Eis

      “Nothing about what I did went beyond the routine activity of the IDF in the Occupied Territories, which every combat soldier is surely familiar with. We trained inside Palestinian villages and disrupted their daily lives endlessly. We directed our firepower at areas, which to this day I cannot say were not populated by civilians with any certainty (I trusted and assumed that someone else along the chain of command with a better view of the area would call for us to hold fire if civilians were detected). Even when doubts arose occasionally, I didn’t ask questions. I remained silent and did what I was ordered to do.”

      Again, Mr. Davidovich, you lie and insinuate, and I will tell you why I said that: (a) you do not know the names of the “Palestinian villages” in which you “trained and disrupted their lives endlessly”, because you lie; (b) you have no idea as to when (time, day, moth and year) did the alleged trainings occurred “endlessly” because you lie and exaggerate, (c) if you have no evidence that you “directed your firepower at areas populated by civilians”, why on earth insinuate/suggest otherwise? Doesn’t that at the very least make you look dubious? What’s your goal/motive here? (d) In the IDF you are repeatedly told IN NO UNCERTAIN TERMS that the final decision whether or not to shoot is YOURS, based on YOUR conscience (and hundreds of missions have been called off at the last SECOND because of fear of harm to civilians) (!), why do you suggest otherwise and insinuate the opposite? What is the goal of all these innuendos? Why the bloodthirsty hate against the IDF, sir?!

      Reply to Comment
    3. berl

      Ginger Eis@ you know that he is a moral person and that what he writes is accurate. That’s why you look so nervous in these huge amount of ideologic comments that you are posting.

      Reply to Comment
      • Ginger Eis

        (1) Prove me wrong – if you can. That’s a challenge!

        (2) If you succeed, you get a $10 bill. That’s a promise!

        Pls. keep the discussion businesslike (i.e. no ad hominems, no emotions/sentiments and above all no mention of the Shoah (!) as you did the other time and pissed me off) if you expect any response from me.

        Reply to Comment
        • berl

          GingerEis@ I never mentioned the Shoah and this is the 1st time that I come across your name.
          “Prove me wrong – if you can”:You didn’t bring any argument, although you have a different impression.Your only argument is that Davidovich didn’t mention the names of the Palestinian villages and the dates. This is a silly comment:no one cares in this context to have these informations.This is an analysis from a person born and grown up in Ariel that witnessed the brutality and the immorality of the occupation, of which you are part of.
          Provide arguments, don’t post ideologic comments.

          Reply to Comment
          • Ginger Eis

            “You didn’t bring any argument, although you have a different impression.Your only argument is that Davidovich didn’t mention the names of the Palestinian villages and the dates. This is a silly comment:no one cares in this context to have these informations.”

            Of course you DON’T care about the specifics if you are in a rush to smear Israel! Of course you DON’T care about time, day, month and year if you willfully shut down reason and MORE THAN willing to believe the worst about Israel WITHOUT EVIDENCE! And we are NOT even just talking about the times, days, months and years the allegations occurred but rather MORE as I enumerated in my post (seems you cherry-pick!). When you have answered those questions I raised, you shall have established the (EMPERICAL) truth! That’s how it is done in academic circles, in Courts, etc. But I see that you demand a different, very low standard when it comes to Israel; you won’t survive the same standard applied to others and as such demand affirmative action to compensate for your weakness! If that is the (intelligence) level at which you operate, I would serious advice you to take your stuff to someone else because I have no patience for your ilk.

            Reply to Comment
          • Ginger Eis

            “This is an analysis from a person born and grown up in Ariel that witnessed the brutality and the immorality of the occupation, of which you are part of. Provide arguments, don’t post ideologic comments”

            Dude, do you even know what “analysis” and “arguments” are and mean? Essentially Mr. Davidovic is telling you that A killed B, but Mr. Davidovich is unable to tell you if B was a man or a woman, naked or wearing clothing/the color of the clothing, the time (day or night), day, month year, etc, that the alleged killing took place and you are willing to swallow the allegation line sinker and hook, because Mr. Davidovich lives in the house in front of which B was allegedly killed? Gee. You are really coming across as a dunce! And pls. get off this ‘“ideologic argument”-mumbo-jumbo’, because you are not making any sense at all. All I ask of you is to PROVE ME WRONG re the arguments I made in my posts. The questions you need to address are VERY VERY EASY if the story is not fictitious! The burden of proof rest on your shoulders. I hereby raise your prize to $100 bill! .

            Reply to Comment
          • Jan

            Ginger in one of your previous rants I seem to remember that you alleged that detainment leads to arrest and trial. Well that is not always true. There are many Palestinians in Israeli jails who have never been charged or tried or ever told what evidence the Israeli authorities have. Many of those rotting in your dank prisons have never committed an act of violence against your brutal occupation.

            Here is a plea from the son of a Palestinian who has been put away by Israel because he advocates for the rights of Palestinian farmers who, under your brutal occupation, are not allowed to have any rights because they are not Jews but Palestinians.

            “My dad, Abdul-Razeq Farraj, is the Administrative Director of the Union of Agricultural Work Committees, a grassroots group that helps Palestinian men and women small farmers survive under the Occupation.

            But because of his tireless work for basic fairness for farmers, he has been indefinitely detained in an Israeli prison, without charge or trial. In fact, he has spent a total of 8 years detained without trial. On May 1st, he joined nearly 125 other Palestinian administrative detainees in an open-ended hunger strike to protest administrative detention.

            It is now day 37.”

            So much for Israeli “justice.”

            What kind of a country do you have? I am more than disgusted and nothing you can say can take away my feeling of disgust. Because Jews are doing this doesn’t make it right.

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          • Jan

            Here is the text of a plea to Brigadier General Danny Efroni regarding the prisoners held under administrative detention who are now on a hunger strike. You will note that what Israel is doing is in violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention to which Israel is a signatory.

            To Brigadier General Danny Efroni,

            I am writing to you to demand that you permit family visitation and that you release Abdul Razeq Farraj and all other persons being held in administrative detention from prison immediately. The policy of arbitrary arrest and detention without charge or trial in the way practiced by Israel is a clear violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention, illegal under international law, and constitutes a grave human rights abuse.

            Abdul Razeq Farraj has been on hunger strike with hundreds of other prisoners of conscience since 30 April 2014 and his health is in critical condition.

            His transfer to solitary confinement in Ayalon Prison in a cell unfit to hold a human being, his denial of family visits, continuous raids and limited access to a lawyer are all further human rights violations.

            We demand that Abdul Razeq, all other prisoners being held without charge or trial, and all hunger strikers be permitted to see their families and that they be immediately released. Know that your illegal and inhumane actions are being monitored and scrutinized by the international community.

            Reply to Comment
          • Ginger Eis

            Jan, I told you I ain’t going to run around circles with you if you remain uncontrollably emotional, unable to remain on topic and are all over the map. If you have issues with an argument made on a different thread, you head back there and pour out your heart’s content. This is my last reply to you on this thread. If want to continue ranting, be my guest. Knock yourself out!

            Reply to Comment
          • berl

            Again Ginger, you have no arguments, as your answer to Jan confirms. The emotional and ideological one is you.

            Reply to Comment
          • Ginger Eis

            Berl, Jan’s post has NOTHING to do with the topic we are discussing and I want to have a structured argument on this specific topic (without anyone jumping chaotically all over the map and deviating to topics unrelated to the discussion here). That’s the right thing to do, but it seem to me you are rattled and looking for a way out, no? Ok then, the $100 bill is waiting for you. You know what to do to get it. Start now to make your legal arguments. My reply to Jan cannot and should not stand in your way – unless you want to run away like a coward after being slapped around by a girl? No sir, pls. don’t do that. Your honor is on the line. Defend yourself and collect the damn $100. The time starts now. The clock is ticking!

            Reply to Comment
          • rose

            legal argument? can I intervene?
            I paste and copy it from opinio juris:

            The Palestinian Territories represent a “sui generis case” among most of the “occupations” currently in place in different parts of the world. Not only in consideration of how long this occupation has been prolonged, but also because it represents one of the rare cases in which a military power “has established a distinct military government over occupied areas in accordance with the framework of the law of occupation.”
            In other somewhat similar contexts, such as, just to name a few, Abkhazia, the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) and East Turkestan, the occupying powers of these areas have created in loco nominally independent states (TRNC-Turkey, Abkhazia-Russia and so on), and/or are not building settlements in their “occupied territories” (Chechnya is just an example), and/or have incorporated the local inhabitants as their citizens: with all the guarantees, rights and problems that this entails.
            Some scholars have stressed out that the Golan Heights and East Jerusalem have been (unofficially, in the case of East Jerusalem) annexed by the State of Israel and that despite this, the EU Guidelines (discussed in the previous post) are to be enforced in these territories as well. Therefore, according to them, the comparison with other “occupations” would show that the Palestinian case cannot be considered “sui generis” and that the EU approach on the issue is marred by incoherence. These claims deserve a short preliminary clarification.
            Contrary to several other occupying powers, Israel has made no attempts to set up a nominally independent state with the aim of preserving maximum flexibility. In this way it doesn’t have to renounce sovereignty over any specific part of its occupied territories. Furthermore, the status quo ensures the exploitation of the Palestinian territories – as well as control of an area considered of strategic importance for defense purpose – without requiring additional “inconvenient responsibilities” for its local majority. By annexing East Jerusalem and the Golan, but not the whole West Bank, the Israeli authorities fulfilled several policy goals as well as ideological purposes. The West Bank is mainly perceived in demographic terms: how much land can be taken by new and old settlers without giving the impression that Israel has to take on responsibility for too many Palestinians?

            The “disputed territories” logic

            According to a research paper recently published by the Kohelet Policy Forum, the EU Guidelines “explicitly and erroneously refer to the pre-1967 armistice lines as borders, and implicitly and incorrectly insist not only that the EU does not recognize potential Israeli claims to sovereignty in the disputed territories but that Israel is not entitled to assert those claims. ”
            The lack of clear-cut borders, however, cannot be considered a valid objection. Neither Israel nor Palestine have agreed boundaries in the context of a peace agreement. Based on the same reasoning as presented by some Israeli leaders, Palestine, recognized as a non-member State by the UNGA on 29 November 2012, could theoretically start building settlements on Israeli soil.
            It is sometimes claimed that Jordan, because of its “unlawful acquisition” of the West Bank, was entitled at most to claim the status of belligerent occupant. In its 2004’s Wall advisory opinion, the ICJ ruled that the regulations on the matter of occupation applied to any armed conflict between High Contracting Parties and that it was irrelevant whether territory occupied during that conflict was under their sovereignty. The Israeli High Court of Justice itself established that the application of the regulations depends on the effective military control exercised from outside the nation’s borders, and not from previous sovereignty over the territory of a specific state (HCJ 785/87). Therefore, the fact that the West Bank was occupied by Jordan until 1967 – an occupation which was opposed by the local population at the time, most of all by Fatah militants, to the point that King Hussein felt obliged to impose martial law – does not justify the use of the expression “disputed territories” in place of “occupied territories.” Even more so considering that Israel, in Allan Gerson’s words, “never challenged the lawfulness of Jordan’s control of the West Bank” and tried to reach a peace treaty after the Six-Day War which would have returned, with modified borders, the West Bank to Jordan.
            The “disputed territories” logic is based on a selective use of international consensus. A good example is provided by the Palestinian village of Umm Rashrash, present-day Eilat. It was taken by the Negev and Golani Brigades on March 10, 1949, eight months after the United Nations Security Council’s resolution No. 54 called for a ceasefire, forbidding any acquisition of territory from that date on.
            It is only thanks to an established international consensus – expressed by 160 countries – that Eilat is today legitimately part of the State of Israel. The same international consensus established the illegality of settlements as well as of the occupation of the Palestinian territories. UNSC’s resolution n. 476 (1980) pointed out for example that the “acquisition of territory by force is inadmissible” and reaffirmed “the overriding necessity to end the prolonged occupation of Arab territories occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem”. This was a simple call for withdrawal, without reference to any condition. It is not possible to invoke international consensus over Eilat (and other areas), while disregarding it for the West Bank and East Jerusalem. The tendency to overlook the selective use of international consensus, while reducing every discussion to security, doesn’t fully take into account the complexity of the issue.
            This is even more the case when considering that Israel’s admission to the United Nations was not unconditional, but bound to its compliance with its assurances regarding the implementation of the UN’s Charter and other resolutions (Israel’s original application for admission was, not by chance, rejected by the UNSC).
            Furthermore, before the establishment of the UN, the right granted to the Jewish people to settle in the mandated territories was neither exclusive nor unlimited, but explicitly subordinated to the protection of the “rights and position of other sections of the population”. Those very same rights are currently being violated by the continuous funding allotted to new settlements and through the exploitation of local natural resources, a policy specifically prohibited by the Fourth Hague Convention of 1907. About 94 percent of the materials produced nowadays in the Israeli quarries in the West Bank is transported to Israel.

            (Mis)using Oslo

            The Oslo Accords explicitly preserve the positions of the parties without resolving the question of territorial sovereignty. That’s the reason why the already mentioned research paper released by Kohelet pointed out that “none of the agreements empower a third party like the EU to override the negotiations and impose its own views of sovereignty over the disputed territory”. However, to invoke the Oslo Agreements in order to undermine the EU approach on the issue is problematic.
            The Oslo Agreements – considered by several international lawyers as a legal anomaly in as much as they were not treaties concluded between states – provided that the interim period was not supposed to exceed five years (Article 1). It is still a matter of debate if the application of the Oslo Accords beyond its five-year interim period – a period characterized by the construction of a huge number of new settlements, by Palestinian terrorism and Israeli military operations – is compatible with the Palestinian people’s right of self-determination.
            Furthermore, as recently noted by Vera Gowlland-Debbas, not only is the legal status of the Oslo Agreements far from clear in that, not having been registered with the UN, they cannot be invoked before any organ of the United Nations, but also Article 103 of the UN Charter ensures that in case of conflict, the obligations of Israel under the Charter would prevail over any other agreement.
            Israel’s behavior as an occupying power is subject to several international customary laws (the “persistent objector” claim often mentioned to undermine these issues is “rather scant”: no case was decided on the basis of it). The Oslo Agreements did not supercede these laws: “Neither Party shall be deemed, by virtue of having entered into this Agreement, to have renounced or waived any of its existing rights, claims or positions (Article 31(6), Interim Agreement).”
            Finally, Article 31 of the Oslo Agreements clarified that “neither side shall initiate or take any step that will change the status of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip”. This statement is subject to different possible interpretations. However, in each round of negotiations the Israeli authorities require to the interested parties to take into account the new local demography. This can hardly be considered as an unintentional result of their policies in the area.

            Conclusions

            A few weeks ago President Barack Obama praised Nelson Mandela saying that he “freed not just the prisoner, but the jailer as well”. We cannot rely on any Palestinian or Israeli Mandela. The only chance to overcome the current stalemate is through the direct intervention of the international community. The EU Guidelines barring loans to Israeli entities established or operating in the Palestinian Territories, although very limited in scope, represent one relevant step in that direction. The recent EU-Morocco Agreement, beside being wrong from a political and moral point of view, risks to undermine these efforts.
            There are only two bad alternatives to the multilateral approach underpinning the guidelines approach. The first one is the sadly well-known “aggressive unilateralism” that Israelis and Palestinians showed in so many occasions. The second is what the Austrian-born Jewish philosopher Martin Buber termed “monologue disguised as dialogue”, i.e. the dialogue “in which two or more men, meeting in space, speak each with himself in strangely tortuous and circuitous ways and yet imagine they have escaped the torment of being thrown back on their own resources”. Buber wrote these words in 1947. At the beginning of 2014 they look truer than ever.

            http://opiniojuris.org/2014/01/09/eu-adopting-double-standards-approach-toward-israel-palestinian-territories-part-2/

            Reply to Comment
    4. Rab

      So some guy with a gun had you chasing a 5 year old? Even if true, why would you learn anything about the settlers from this story? At most, you learned something about one settler. It’s a ridiculous story from any perspective and teaches us nothing about settlers or the majority of settlers.

      As for “We have been exerting our military control over the Palestinians for 47 years now yet we have not stopped for a second to ask ourselves what that control actually looks like – what IDF soldiers are sent to do in our name and what moral price we pay for their actions…”

      That’s an absurd and false statement. The question is asked and discussed all the time in Israel in all sorts of forums and formats.

      In fact, that’s what makes the name of your group so preposterous. You are not breaking any silence because the discussion in Israel is open, ongoing and robust. There are no secrets and there are no mysteries.

      In fact, the reason your group is so irrelevant in Israel is that the vast majority of soldiers who served just like you, don’t perceive the situation to be morally wrong or corrupt. Many of them also wish they didn’t have to pull this service any more, but they recognize that it’s necessary. Perhaps you think you have insights that they don’t have or that you’re more moral, but that would be quite a presumption on your part so let’s assume you’re not that self-absorbed. Then again, considering your quote about how Israel hasn’t considered for a second what “control actually looks like” it’s very possible that you do have such delusions.

      Here’s an interesting question for you to consider. This magazine, 972mag, published for years in English before deciding to launch a Hebrew equivalent. How does that play out for you when it comes to Israelis not discussing the presence of Israel in Judea and Samaria (and other issues) openly? To me this suggests that the writers here knew this was already well-traveled territory in Israel and that they would have little effect on what is already a robust debate. So they targeted foreign audiences first, in the hope of influencing them instead of Israelis, who already know what’s what.

      Reply to Comment
      • rose

        Israelis dont “know what’s what”. Most of them never met once a Palestinian in the occupied territories if not with an uniform.

        And “the question” is not asked and discussed all the time in Israel in all sorts of forums and formats. On the contrary,most of the people prefer to put their heads under the sand ignoring what it’s really happening beyond the green line. Be jewish, be moral.

        In fact, that’s what makes the name of your group so preposterous. You are not breaking any silence because the discussion in Israel is open, ongoing and robust. There are no secrets and there are no mysteries.

        In fact, the reason your group is so irrelevant in Israel is that the vast majority of soldiers who served just like you, don’t perceive the situation to be morally wrong or corrupt. Many of them also wish they didn’t have to pull this service any more, but they recognize that it’s necessary. Perhaps you think you have insights that they don’t have or that you’re more moral, but that would be quite a presumption on your part so let’s assume you’re not that self-absorbed. Then again, considering your quote about how Israel hasn’t considered for a second what “control actually looks like” it’s very possible that you do have such delusions.

        Here’s an interesting question for you to consider. This magazine, 972mag, published for years in English before deciding to launch a Hebrew equivalent. How does that play out for you when it comes to Israelis not discussing the presence of Israel in Judea and Samaria (and other issues) openly? To me this suggests that the writers here knew this was already well-traveled territory in Israel and that they would have little effect on what is already a robust debate. So they targeted foreign audiences first, in the hope of influencing them instead of

        Reply to Comment
    5. Average American

      nsttnocontentcomment

      Reply to Comment
    6. Tomer

      The settlers ARE the so-called ‘fakestinyans’. Just a bunch of Jordanians who illegally settled OUR land in the 7th Century.

      That’s why your words don’t make any sense!!

      Reply to Comment
      • Meraxes

        The Israeli law states that if Palestinians don’t use their land for 3 years (even if this is because the Israeli authorities deny them access to it), it can be declared Israeli State land. How can you then pretend to “get back” land you haven’t used for 1400 years?

        Reply to Comment
        • shmuel

          meraxes,
          the concept of ‘state land’ in the palestinian context is used for political purposes and it’s more complex than this:
          http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/13530194.2013.878518
          Second, why do you refer to 1400 years ago?
          As carl wrote above, mentioning Maxim Rodinson…
          ‘It has been said that since the Arabs took the country by military conquest in the seventh century, they are occupiers like any other, like the Romans, the Crusaders and the Turks. Why therefore should they be regarded as any more native than the others, and in particular than the Jews, who were native to that country in ancient times, or at least occupiers of longer standing? To the historian the answer is obvious. A small contingent of Arabs from Arabia did indeed conquer the country in the seventh century. But as a result of factors which were briefly outlined in the first chapter of this book, the Palestinian population soon became Arabized under Arab domination, just as earlier it had been Hebraicized, Aramaicized, to some degree even Hellenized. It became Arab in a way that it was never to become Latinized or Ottomanized. The invaded melted with the invaders. It is ridiculous to call the English of today invaders and occupiers, on the grounds that England was conquered from Celtic peoples by the Angles, Saxons and Jutes in the fifth and sixth centuries. The population was “Anglicized” and nobody suggests that the peoples which have more or less preserved the Celtic tongues – the Irish, the Welsh or the Bretons – should be regarded as the true natives of Kent or Suffolk, with greater titles to these territories than the English who live in those counties’.

          Reply to Comment
          • JennieS

            @shmuel brilliant and true comment!

            Reply to Comment
      • carl

        Tomer@ I quote a giant of the last century, Maxime Rodinson:

        “The Arab population of Palestine were native in all the usual senses of that word. Ignorance, sometimes backed up by hypocritical propaganda, has spread a number of misconceptions on this subject, unfortunately very widely held. It has been said that since the Arabs took the country by military conquest in the seventh century, they are occupiers like any other, like the Romans, the Crusaders and the Turks. Why therefore should they be regarded as any more native than the others, and in particular than the Jews, who were native to that country in ancient times, or at least occupiers of longer standing? To the historian the answer is obvious. A small contingent of Arabs from Arabia did indeed conquer the country in the seventh century. But as a result of factors which were briefly outlined in the first chapter of this book, the Palestinian population soon became Arabized under Arab domination, just as earlier it had been Hebraicized, Aramaicized, to some degree even Hellenized. It became Arab in a way that it was never to become Latinized or Ottomanized. The invaded melted with the invaders. It is ridiculous to call the English of today invaders and occupiers, on the grounds that England was conquered from Celtic peoples by the Angles, Saxons and Jutes in the fifth and sixth centuries. The population was “Anglicized” and nobody suggests that the peoples which have more or less preserved the Celtic tongues – the Irish, the Welsh or the Bretons – should be regarded as the true natives of Kent or Suffolk, with greater titles to these territories than the English who live in those counties.”

        Reply to Comment
        • Samuel

          Let us assume that Maxime Rodinson was right and, I’ll be generous, let’s say ALL Palestinian Arabs are Arabised descendants of people who lived here before the 7th century invasion of the Arabs. This is highly unlikely of course bet let’s pretend that it is so.

          Even then, why argue about that? We are not the ones who were historically against the two state solution. The Arabs were. The Arabs were against it and therefore as Tzutzik said, they violently resisted the influx of Jewish refugees to Palestine. That is a well documented historical fact that only the likes of Dr Irving would deny. You know, who Dr Irving is? A revisionist historian who denies that the Holocaust happened.

          Reply to Comment
          • carl

            Samuel, I think that Shmuel answered quite well about these issues.
            I would add that settlements, just to remain to the present, speak louder and clearer than words.
            Israel never voted in favor of the 2 states solution, nor ever recognized in an official way the right of the Palestinian to this land.
            At least Minister Naftali Bennett has been clear since his first talk at the Knesset:
            “There is no room in our small but wonderful God-given tract for another state”.

            Reply to Comment
    7. Tzutzik

      No doubt the writer of this article is a man of conscience. He is also myopic.

      I liken his blaming of the settlers for violence to blaming gravity for the murder of a man who is thrown off the balcony of a skyscraper by a murderer, instead of blaming the murderer for doing it.

      Why?
      Because the history of violance was started by Palestinian Arabs. Human nature then kicked in and like gravity, the settlers then responded to Arab violence, now they too initiate violence.

      Pointless? Probably. But to shift the blame onto the settlers for violence is either ignorant or dishonest or both.

      Reply to Comment
      • tod

        Tzuzik,
        “The settlers then responded to Arab violence”: you mean that the hundreds of thousand of settlers,mainly arrived in the West Bank in the last 20 years from the US and Russia without asking anything to anyone and exploiting on a daily bases the local natural resources,should be considered the victims?
        Are these stealers the victims?

        Reply to Comment
        • Tzutzik

          Ahh just give it a break, Toddie.

          According to you guys Jews returning to live in the Jewish quarter of East Jerusalem 19 years after Arabs kicked them out from there in their 1948 war of agression are settlers?

          Don’t you know that Jews lived in East Jerusalem continuously for 2000 years except for those brief 19 years between 1949 and 1967? Does the term JEWISH QUARTER mean anything to you?

          Jews returning to live in Gush Etzion 19 years after the Arabs kicked them out in 1948 are settlers?

          Oh, and not only did they kick Jews out of there but the ones they captured alive, prisoners of war, they murdered in cold blood with their hands tied behind their backs.
          Yes, the peaceful Palestinian Arabs did that.

          Reply to Comment
          • tod

            Tzutzik@
            ‘Jews returning to live in Gush Etzion 19 years after the Arabs kicked them out in 1948 are settlers?’:
            The symbolic case of the Gush Etzion block, in many respects unique, does not prove you point.
            True, the population settled in the block, where a small community of Jews arrived in 1927, was indeed expelled in the course of the 1948 war. However, all the settlements within the block, apart from Hadar Betar and Kfar Etzion, have expanded by more than 100% in the last 20 years. The block includes today also eight unauthorized outposts that further contribute to hinder the ability of Palestinians to access their natural resources.
            To conflate this massive state-funded project of colonization with “the reestablishment of a Jewish presence in the West Bank” risks to simplify a complex issue.

            “According to you guys Jews returning to live in the Jewish quarter of East Jerusalem 19 years after Arabs kicked them out from there in their 1948 war of agression are settlers”:
            Today we are witnessing something different in districts such as Sheikh Jarrah.

            Katamon, Malha, Silwan, Ayn Karim and MANYother districts in West Jerusalem were fully all almost fully Palestinian. Thousands of Palestinians were expelled in a brutal way.
            So if you ask that Jews can settle in East Jerusalem you should also be consistent and struggle so that Palestinians can have their houses back.

            “those brief 19 years between 1949 and 1967”
            In the course of the 1948’s war Israel’s forces occupied five mixed cities and nine cities entirely Arab. More than this, 500 Palestinian villages were razed to the ground.
            West Jerusalem, the part that remained under Israeli control, accounted for 84,13 percent of Mandatory Jerusalem. Between 1948 and 1967 , only 11, 48 percent remained in the hands of the Arabs , since the remaining 4.39 percent was the buffer zone between the two sectors. In West Jerusalem Jewish’s properties did not exceed 30 per cent. Israel justifies its conquest of Jerusalem East in 1967 with the fact that between 1948 and 1967, the Jews had no right of access to the Wall Wailing . This refusal , which lasted twenty years , did not have any Muslim motivation, as Jews had free access to Jerusalem in the previous twelve centuries of Muslim rule the city, while the same access they had been forbidden under Christian domination , both Byzantine crusade. The question of the Wailing Wall is a consequence of 1948’s War. In the course of the war Jewish forces occupied the five mixed cities, nine cities entirely Arab, and five hundred Palestinian villages were razed and mainly distributed to settlers. On the other hand the ethnic cleansing deprived of the house 750,000 Palestinians , Christians and Muslims , the inhabitants of these villages and towns.

            And while between 1948 and 1967, Jews were forbidden access to the Wailing Wall, for those refugees Palestinians and their descendants there was and remains the prohibition of access to their lands and their homes in Israel .

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            You know what Tod? One point at a time.

            First admit that Jews returning to the Jewish quarter of East Jerusalem and to the old perimeters of Gush Etzion are not settlers (in a pejorative sense) but a people returning to their old homes. Contrary to Arab (and their sympathisers) claims.

            Otherwise there is nothing for us to talk about.

            Reply to Comment
          • tod

            Tzuzik
            It doesn’t make any sense to “admit” that “Jews returning to the Jewish quarter of East Jerusalem and to the old perimeters of Gush Etzion are not settlers” if in the same sentence it is clarified also that:
            A)
            Katamon, Malha, Silwan, Ayn Karim and MANYother districts in West Jerusalem were almost fully Palestinian. Thousands of Palestinians were expelled. So if you ask that Jews can settle in East Jerusalem you should also be consistent and struggle so that Palestinians can have their houses back.
            B) all the settlements within the Etzion block, apart from Hadar Betar and Kfar Etzion, have expanded by more than 100% in the last 20 years. The block includes today also eight unauthorized outposts that further contribute to hinder the ability of Palestinians to access their natural resources.
            To conflate this massive state-funded project of colonization with “the reestablishment of a Jewish presence in the West Bank” risks to simplify a complex issue.

            Reply to Comment
      • shmuel

        tzutzik@ I think that we already discussed this: “Because the history of violance was started by Palestinian Arabs”
        The violence was started by the ones that wanted to import the ‘avodah ivrit’ logic and fought hard to create “a Jewish milieu and of a Closed Jewish economy, in which producers, consumers and middlemen shall all be Jewish”.
        The local majority,the 9/10th of the total population,didnt fight enough,and now you are also accusing them of being the aggressors?

        Reply to Comment
        • shachalnur

          “War is peace,
          Freedom is slavery,
          Ignorance is strenght”(George Orwell)

          “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it,people will eventually come to believe it…..the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie,……and the greatest enemy of the State”.(Josef Goebbels)

          Did you ever hear about Professor and modern day Prophet Yeshayahu Leibowitz?

          Watch “un juif extraordinaire”(7:42 min) on youtube,and hear him explain what a “Jewish Nazi” is and how they came into being.(“Judeo-Nazi”)

          I was lucky enough to be able to attend his classes at Jerusalem University in the early eighties,and a country that blacklists and demonizes great minds like his,has no future.

          The greatest and noblest Jew that has lived in Israel for the last 2000 years,marginalized by 1897 Zionism,proving 1897 Zionism has nothing to do with real jewish values and Judaism.

          Reply to Comment
        • Tzutzik

          We have already discussed this Shmuel? Not really. You did not answer my question when I asked you to elaborate.

          “The violence was started by the ones that wanted to import the ‘avodah ivrit’ logic and fought hard to create “a Jewish milieu and of a Closed Jewish economy, in which producers, consumers and middlemen shall all be Jewish”.

          Excuse me? How can you equate that with violence?

          By the way, are you going to claim with a straight face that Arabs did not operate as a closed economy?

          “The local majority,the 9/10th of the total population,didnt fight enough,”

          The 1929 Hebron massacre of Jews was not hard enough? The Arab revolt of the 1930s when the murdered Jews anywhere they could find them was not enough?

          “and now you are also accusing them of being the aggressors?”

          Of course I do. At every turn in history the Arabs were the agressors. You guys in here live in a bubble. In a universe of your own. Trying to change and spin history. I would not be surprised if some of you would be willing to assert that the earth is flat. The scary thing is that many of you actually believe exactly that.

          Reply to Comment
          • shmuel

            Sorry Tzuzik,
            I thought I had clarified these aspects.

            The one of Ruppin&co., like the settlements today, are clear forms of violence. Violence can express itself in many different ways. And settlements, with their ability to exploit most of the Palestinian natural resources and disrupting the daily life of millions of human beings, are pure forms of violence.

            “By the way, are you going to claim with a straight face that Arabs did not operate as a closed economy?”;
            Arab-PAlestinian didnt have any interest in employing a little minority of new immigrants without agricultural skills and limited, if any, knowledge of the language spoken in the region. The comparison doesn’t stand.

            “The 1929 Hebron massacre of Jews was not hard enough? The Arab revolt of the 1930s when the murdered Jews anywhere they could find them was not enough?”:
            Thank you for bringing this. Actually hundreds of Jews were saved by local Palestinian families.
            Hans Kohn, a very active Zionist at the time. Read what he wrote about it to Berthold Feiwel on November 1929:

            “I cannot concur with [official Zionist policy] when the Arab national movement is being portrayed as the wanton agitation of a few big landowners. I know all too well that frequently the most reactionary imperialist press in England and France portrays the national movements in India, Egypt, and China in a similar fashion – in short, wherever the national movements of oppressed peoples threaten the interest of the colonial power. I know how false and hypocritical this portrayal is. We pretend to be innocent victims…

            Of course the Arabs attacked us in August. Since they have no armies the could not obey the rules of war. They perpetrated all the barbaric acts that are characteristic of a colonial revolt. But we are obliged to look into the deeper cause of this revolt. We have been in Palestine for twelve years [since the British mandate] without having even once made a serious attempt at seeking through negotiations the consent of the indigenous people. We have been relying exclusively upon Great Britain’s military might. We have set ourselves goals which by their very nature had to lead to conflict with Arabs…We ought to have recognized that these goals would be the cause, the just cause, of a national uprising against us. ..Having come to this country [as immigrants], we were duty bound to come up with constitutional proposals which, without doing serious harm to Arabs right and liberty, would have also allowed for our free cultural and social development. But for twelve years we pretended that the Arabs did not exist and were glad when we were not reminded of their existence (Hans Kohn, Letter to Dr. Feiwel, Jerusalem, 21 November 1929, cited in Paul Mendes-Flohr, ed. Martin Buber, A Land of Two Peoples.)”

            If you want to understand this conflict you are obliged to go deeper.

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            Shmuel

            As I said, Jews were not the only ones who favored employing Jews over Arabs. It worked the other way too;

            In 1947 the UN Special Commission on Palestine summarized the situation:

            The economic life presents the complex phenomenon of two distinctive economies – one Jewish and one Arab, closely involved with one another and yet in essential features separate. […] Apart from a small number of experts, no Jewish workers are employed in Arab undertakings and apart from citrus groves, very few Arabs are employed in Jewish enterprises […] Government service, the Potash company and the oil refinery are almost the only places where Arab and Jews meet as co-workers in the same organization. […] There are considerable differences between the rates of wage for Arab and Jewish workers in similar occupations.[20]

            Both sides had good reasons to favor employing their own nationalities. But in any case, by any stretch of the imagination, such policies cannot serve as an excuse for actual physical violence. Yet it is a matter of historical record that Arabs were the FIRST to resort to physical violence against Jews. Jews then had EVERY RIGHT to retaiate in kind. And we still do. Is it wise to do so today? Not necessarily but to blame us and us alone for the violence that Arabs started is outrageous. Nothing short of outrageous!

            Reply to Comment
          • shmuel

            Tzutzik

            You write, once again, that “Jews were not the only ones who favored employing Jews over Arabs”:
            I explained you that Arab-Palestinians didnt have any interest in employing a little minority of new immigrants without agricultural skills and limited, if any, knowledge of the language spoken in the region. The comparison doesn’t stand. Can you understand this point?

            The local majority tried to retaliate against an aggressive external aggression. In my eyes, the fact that you have the impression that the ones that wanted to extra-territorialised the land and create “a Jewish milieu and of a Closed Jewish economy, in which producers, consumers and middlemen shall all be Jewish” were actually defending against the locals is simply beyond any comprehension.

            You were raised with these ideologies. Although quite weaks, you will keep them until your last day. So it is just a waste of time.

            Reply to Comment
        • Samuel

          The Avodah Ivrit policy was based in part on the need for places of work for the large number of Jewish immigrants arriving in Palestine, in part on socialist ideals of the redemptive power of labor and of making the Jews into a “normal” people who had a Jewish proletariat, and in part on a desire not to become exploiters of Arabs. Ben Gurion explained:

          “We do not want to create a situation like that which exists in South Africa, where the whites are the owners and rulers, and the blacks are the workers. If we do not do all kinds of work, easy and hard, skilled and unskilled, if we become merely landlords, then this will not be our homeland” (David Ben-Gurion to Palestinian nationalist Musa Alami 1934), quoted in Shabtai Teveth, Ben-Gurion and the Palestinian Arabs: From Peace to War, London: Oxford University Press, 1985, p. 140).

          Reply to Comment
          • shmuel

            Samuel, good point.
            But the Avodah Ivrit policy created a system of exclusion, physical and mental, that cannot be fully assessed if not in the context of the KKL’s policies (very different from the ones of the PICA). The process of extra-territorialization, in which the avodah ivrit should be places, was described in these terms by the Simpson Report:
            “The result of the purchase of land in Palestine by the Jewish National Fund has been that that land has been extra-territorialised. It ceases to be land from which the Arab can gain any advantage either now or at any time in the future.”

            Why the local majority should have had accepted these kind of aggressive policies (I just mentioned 1 of them)? You would have accepted it?

            These policies brought to the analysis written by Hans Kohn to Berthold Feiwel in November 1929, that I mentioned above to Tzuzik:

            “I cannot concur with [official Zionist policy] when the Arab national movement is being portrayed as the wanton agitation of a few big landowners. I know all too well that frequently the most reactionary imperialist press in England and France portrays the national movements in India, Egypt, and China in a similar fashion – in short, wherever the national movements of oppressed peoples threaten the interest of the colonial power. I know how false and hypocritical this portrayal is. We pretend to be innocent victims…

            Of course the Arabs attacked us in August. Since they have no armies the could not obey the rules of war. They perpetrated all the barbaric acts that are characteristic of a colonial revolt. But we are obliged to look into the deeper cause of this revolt. We have been in Palestine for twelve years [since the British mandate] without having even once made a serious attempt at seeking through negotiations the consent of the indigenous people. We have been relying exclusively upon Great Britain’s military might. We have set ourselves goals which by their very nature had to lead to conflict with Arabs…We ought to have recognized that these goals would be the cause, the just cause, of a national uprising against us. ..Having come to this country [as immigrants], we were duty bound to come up with constitutional proposals which, without doing serious harm to Arabs right and liberty, would have also allowed for our free cultural and social development. But for twelve years we pretended that the Arabs did not exist and were glad when we were not reminded of their existence (Hans Kohn, Letter to Dr. Feiwel, Jerusalem, 21 November 1929, cited in Paul Mendes-Flohr, ed. Martin Buber, A Land of Two Peoples.)”

            Reply to Comment
          • andrew r

            Of course I do. At every turn in history the Arabs were the agressors.

            While the Zionists did not begin going to Palestine armed with their own weapons, they were able to do so in the first place because the threat of European state violence was around to back them up. Ottoman law required foreign settlers to obtain Ottoman nationality, and several groups – Zionist Jews and also the German Templars – flouted the law by establishing colonies while retaining their old citizenship.[1] This was made possible by the system of Capitulations which granted foreign nationals certain privileges and was open to abuse as the Western Powers used their influence to get their own nationals, or even the nationals of other states off the hook.

            Herzl attempted in 1901 to obtain a German protectorate over Palestine under which a chartered company would operate – which means he was seeking military occupation. And as we already know, Weizmann obtained the promise of a “national home” from Britain on a territory that hadn’t been captured yet. So it’s disingenuous to say violence wasn’t part of their toolkit until the Arabs started rioting. They knew a Jewish state wasn’t happening without at least the threat of violence. Also that they weren’t going to get for free what took other colonial regimes bloody wars of their own.

            Ben-Gurion: We do not want to create a situation like that which exists in South Africa, where the whites are the owners and rulers, and the blacks are the workers

            Which he was going to accomplish by removing Arabs from employment in any Jewish-owned enterprise. Now, think long and hard about this: If the WZO and Labour Zionist leadership planned on Jews becoming the majority population of Palestine, what would happen to the Arabs’ ability to make an economic living?

            [1] geography.huji.ac.il/.upload/RuthPub/Num%2039%20Changing%20Patterns%20of%20Land%20Ownership%20in%20Nineteenth%20Century%20Palestine.PDF

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            Andrew

            Read what I said above to Shmuel. I ain’t repeating myself even for you (sarcasm).

            Reply to Comment
          • Samuel

            The thesis propagated by Arab Palestinians and anti-Zionists since the inception of the Zionist movement, that Zionist settlement of Palestine was aimed at dislocating the Arabs and would have that effect. The unspoken reasoning behind the thesis was that Palestine was like a full box. If one person was put into the box, another would have to be taken out.

            But this thesis is not supported by facts. The Arab population of Palestine grew at a tremendous rate between 1922 and 1948. In 1922, at the start of the British Mandate there were some 589,000 Muslim Arabs and 71,000 Christian Arabs in Palestine, a number that is probably an overestimate. By 1945, there were well over 1.2 million Arabs in Palestine and perhaps over 1.3 million by 1948. The Arab population of Palestine had about doubled during the years of the mandate. If the Zionists were plotting and planning to evict the Arabs of Palestine, the supposed Zionist policy would have to be judged a miserable failure. At the same time, the Jewish population grew to over 600,000. The land that had held 753,000 people in 1922, held about 1.9 million in 1948. The “full box” of Palestine turned out to have very elastic walls. As it has done elsewhere in the world, immigration to Palestine stimulated the economy and resulted in a higher standard of living for everyone. The immigration of Jews and the investment of Palestine were due directly to Zionism and its impact.

            Reply to Comment
          • shmuel

            Samuel,
            “that Zionist settlement of Palestine was aimed at dislocating the Arabs”: It’s not my thesis, the topic is far more complicated.

            “The unspoken reasoning behind the thesis was that Palestine was like a full box…The Arab population of Palestine grew at a tremendous rate between 1922 and 19482one. The immigration of Jews and the investment of Palestine were due directly to Zionism and its impact”:

            1) At least until the 1920s the growth of the Arab population — not an isolated case in the region (in Iraq, for example, between 1867 and 1905 the population went from 1 million 250 thousand to 2 million 250 thousand) — had, in reality, little to do with Jewish immigration. As Justin McCarthy noted, “the province that experienced the greatest Jewish population growth (about .035 annually), Jerusalem Sanjak, was the province with the lowest rate of growth of Muslim population (.009).” The increase in Palestine’s Arab population was mostly due to high demographic growth: a phenomenon which started already in the middle of the 1800s, thus prior both to the first wave of Zionist immigration and the first construction company founded in the 60s in Jerusalem by Yosef Rivlin.

            2) Justin McCarthy indicated the number of residents in Palestine in 1860 as 411,000, the overwhelming majority of which (around 90 percent) Arabs.

            From a Eurocentric perspective these numbers might seem negligible. To get an idea, one has only to think that when Paris reached one million inhabitants in 1846, Jerusalem and Haifa numbered, respectively, little more than 18 thousand and a bit less than 3 thousand. It would, however, still be wrong to choose countries on the Old Continent instead of those in the Oriental Mediterranean area for a reliable comparison. It is more logical to compare Egypt at the start of the 1800s with Palestine in the same period. It is estimated that the first one had at the time a population of around three million inhabitants: today it numbers 77 million. The second, inhabited at that time by 250,000/300,000 people (therefore 225,000/270,000 Arabs), registers today little more than five million individuals. In comparison, these data demonstrate substantial “comparative convergence” between Palestine and the historically most important, as well as most populous Arabic country.

            Reply to Comment
          • andrew r

            It’s also notable that a British report from 1946 mentioned the fertility rate among Palestinians remained unchanged for the previous 50 years. The rate of natural increase was concealed by Turkish conscription and epidemics keeping the mortality rate high. For that matter, immigration counted very little for the increase of the Muslim population.

            http://www.palestineremembered.com/Articles/A-Survey-of-Palestine/Story6652.html

            Reply to Comment
          • shmuel

            Samuel,
            So, following what I wrote above (or below), the point is not that “If one person was put into the box, another would have to be taken out”.
            The point is that through the extra-territorialisation of the land and the policies of Ruppin&co., the local majority was prevented to have the natural growth that was experienced in Iraq and in most of the rest of the region. From your perspective this could look as a little aspect, for the then local majority this was (and in fact became) a nefarious threat.

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            Actually Shmuel, I wrote this …

            “Both sides had good reasons to favor employing their own nationalities.”

            But you will go to the end of your days blaming ONLY us. And you will also go to the end of your days excusing THEM for starting PHYSICAL VIOLENCE against us.

            Why do you do that? I’ll answer in three words: IDEOLOGY and DOGMA.

            Reply to Comment
          • shmuel

            Tzutzik but to write that “Both sides had good reasons to favor employing their own nationalities”, is wrong and misleading. You are putting on an equal level a local majority (about 90% of the total) that, understandably, didnt have any interest in employing a little minority of new immigrants without agricultural skills and limited, if any, knowledge of the language spoken in the region, and, on the other, a new coming growing minority that had the moral duty to integrate and not to exclude the local majority.

            I think that Hans Kohn’s words express the topic much better than me:

            “[…] But we are obliged to look into the deeper cause of this revolt. We have been in Palestine for twelve years [since the British mandate] without having even once made a serious attempt at seeking through negotiations the consent of the indigenous people. We have been relying exclusively upon Great Britain’s military might. We have set ourselves goals which by their very nature had to lead to conflict with Arabs…We ought to have recognized that these goals would be the cause, the just cause, of a national uprising against us. ..Having come to this country [as immigrants], we were duty bound to come up with constitutional proposals which, without doing serious harm to Arabs right and liberty, would have also allowed for our free cultural and social development. But for twelve years we pretended that the Arabs did not exist and were glad when we were not reminded of their existence (Hans Kohn, Letter to Dr. Feiwel, Jerusalem, 21 November 1929, cited in Paul Mendes-Flohr, ed. Martin Buber, A Land of Two Peoples.)”

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            Shmuel

            The only thing wrong and misleading is to have double standards. And people with your ideology seem to be guilty of that all too often. This is just another instance of many of your (collective) double standards. You judge Israel/Jews by one standard and the Arabs by a different standard for the very same thing again. Not cool!!

            Moreover, I still say: the only excuse for physical violence is self defence. And the fact is that it sounds somehow disingenuous for a majority to resort to physical violence because the minority prefers to employ their own nationality to theirs. Particularly since that same majority too was guilty of employing mainly their own kind. The reasons are not important. In the minds of both, each had very good reasons to favor their own.

            That’s why we won’t have a meeting of the minds.

            Reply to Comment
          • shmuel

            Tzutzik
            you continue to ignore Hans Kohns’s words and the fact that to equate a local majority (about 90% of the total) that, understandably, didnt have any interest in employing a little minority of new immigrants without agricultural skills and limited, if any, knowledge of the language spoken in the region, with a new coming growing minority that had the moral duty to integrate and not to exclude the local majority, is beyond any reasonable approach.

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            Yes Shmuel and you continue to ignore historical facts.

            The real underying reason for Arab violence was the same 100 years ago as it is today. They opposed and they still do, the establishment of a Jewish nation state in part of Palestine. The idea that they started their violence because of the Avodah Ivrit policy is just a silly excuse designed to shift blame.

            Reply to Comment
    8. Tzutzik

      Not only the, Shmuel, you continue to ignore our valid reasons for the Avoda Ivrit policy. Samuel said it. That’s why I did not repeat what he said. But since you keep on repeating yourself about why you think it was ok for Arabs to exclude Jews, I will quote Samuel’s above post (I hope he won’t mind).

      SAMUEL:
      “The Avodah Ivrit policy was based in part on the need for places of work for the large number of Jewish immigrants arriving in Palestine, in part on socialist ideals of the redemptive power of labor and of making the Jews into a “normal” people who had a Jewish proletariat, and in part on a desire not to become exploiters of Arabs. Ben Gurion explained:

      “We do not want to create a situation like that which exists in South Africa, where the whites are the owners and rulers, and the blacks are the workers. If we do not do all kinds of work, easy and hard, skilled and unskilled, if we become merely landlords, then this will not be our homeland” (David Ben-Gurion to Palestinian nationalist Musa Alami 1934), quoted in Shabtai Teveth, Ben-Gurion and the Palestinian Arabs: From Peace to War, London: Oxford University Press, 1985, p. 140).”

      Reply to Comment
      • shmuel

        Tzutik

        This is what I answered to Samuel about the point that you just raised (by the way, why with the inclusive approach of the PICA we didnt witnessed any clash? ask to yourself why the 1st clashed were in Jaffa in 1907,where Ruppin established his “Palestine Office”):

        But the Avodah Ivrit policy created a system of exclusion, physical and mental, that cannot be fully assessed if not in the context of the KKL’s policies (very different from the ones of the PICA). The process of extra-territorialization, in which the avodah ivrit should be places, was described in these terms by the Simpson Report:
        “The result of the purchase of land in Palestine by the Jewish National Fund has been that that land has been extra-territorialised. It ceases to be land from which the Arab can gain any advantage either now or at any time in the future.”

        Why the local majority should have had accepted these kind of aggressive policies (I just mentioned 1 of them)? You would have accepted it?

        These policies brought to the analysis written by Hans Kohn to Berthold Feiwel in November 1929, that I mentioned above to Tzuzik:

        “I cannot concur with [official Zionist policy] when the Arab national movement is being portrayed as the wanton agitation of a few big landowners. I know all too well that frequently the most reactionary imperialist press in England and France portrays the national movements in India, Egypt, and China in a similar fashion – in short, wherever the national movements of oppressed peoples threaten the interest of the colonial power. I know how false and hypocritical this portrayal is. We pretend to be innocent victims…

        Of course the Arabs attacked us in August. Since they have no armies the could not obey the rules of war. They perpetrated all the barbaric acts that are characteristic of a colonial revolt. But we are obliged to look into the deeper cause of this revolt. We have been in Palestine for twelve years [since the British mandate] without having even once made a serious attempt at seeking through negotiations the consent of the indigenous people. We have been relying exclusively upon Great Britain’s military might. We have set ourselves goals which by their very nature had to lead to conflict with Arabs…We ought to have recognized that these goals would be the cause, the just cause, of a national uprising against us. ..Having come to this country [as immigrants], we were duty bound to come up with constitutional proposals which, without doing serious harm to Arabs right and liberty, would have also allowed for our free cultural and social development. But for twelve years we pretended that the Arabs did not exist and were glad when we were not reminded of their existence (Hans Kohn, Letter to Dr. Feiwel, Jerusalem, 21 November 1929, cited in Paul Mendes-Flohr, ed. Martin Buber, A Land of Two Peoples.)”

        Reply to Comment
    9. Tzutzik

      Yes Shmuel more excuses for them. How hard it was to take for them everything we did.

      And letting them off the hook for what they were doing to us. How logical it was for them to do it to us and that we should have just taken it on the chin. Boring.

      And this bit that they had no army. That already then we were a world power? What BS. Sure, we were well organised. We were highly motivated but we did not even have an airforce, a significant number of the Jewish army were untrained holocaust survivors who virtually just got off the ships. Heavy artillery? We virtually had none except towards the end of the war when we were supplied by Cheslovakia.

      And who did we face? Seven Arab armies the most professional of which was the British trained and led Jordanian Arab legion. All the Arab armies had tanks and heavy artillery. Admittedly only the Arab legion was well led.

      So, pullllleeeeeeze, stop tugging at my heart. The Palestinians were not underdogs in 1948. The reason the Arabs lost the war was because they were over confident and we had nothing to lose so we fought like there would be no tomorrow. And yes, then too and throughout the last 100 years, the Arabs started the violence against us because they thought ALL of Palestine as Arab land and they didn’t want (they still don’t want) a Jewish state to be here no matter what size Jewish state. No matter how small. They wanted ALL of Palestine to be Arab. Tell me that it isn’t so. Go on, just tell me I dare you to …

      Reply to Comment
      • shmuel

        Hans Kohn to Berthold Feiwel, November 1929:
        “Of course the Arabs attacked us in August. Since they have no armies the could not obey the rules of war. They perpetrated all the barbaric acts that are characteristic of a colonial revolt. But we are obliged to look into the deeper cause of this revolt. We have been in Palestine for twelve years [since the British mandate] without having even once made a serious attempt at seeking through negotiations the consent of the indigenous people. We have been relying exclusively upon Great Britain’s military might. We have set ourselves goals which by their very nature had to lead to conflict with Arabs…We ought to have recognized that these goals would be the cause, the just cause, of a national uprising against us. ..Having come to this country [as immigrants], we were duty bound to come up with constitutional proposals which, without doing serious harm to Arabs right and liberty, would have also allowed for our free cultural and social development. But for twelve years we pretended that the Arabs did not exist and were glad when we were not reminded of their existence (Hans Kohn, Letter to Dr. Feiwel, Jerusalem, 21 November 1929, cited in Paul Mendes-Flohr, ed. Martin Buber, A Land of Two Peoples.)”

        Reply to Comment
        • Tzutzik

          Boring

          You repeated that passage at least four times Shmuel.

          Jews started returning to Palestine nearly 150 years ago. But a small remnant of Jews lived in Palestine since even before the Arab invasion.

          150 years ago, the country was virtually empty so certainly there was room in there for the returning Jewish people. And certainly the sovereign powers saw the potential benefit of Jewish immigration. That is why they allowed it.

          By 1948, the Jewish population of Palestine represented a third of the population. Compare that to India around that time which was also partitioned into two states, one Hindi state and one Muslim state, Pakistan. That partition involved an even smaller Muslim minority, 12% of the population which was granted it’s own independent state. So the partitioning of Palestine into a Jewish state and an Arab state certainly did not set a precedent.

          However, as I too said at least 4 times now, because I can repeat myself too, the Arabs did not accept the right of the Jewish people to have our own state so they resorted to violence again to try and stop it.

          Shmuel is pretending (by repeating himself constantly with his quote of one person’s opinion) that had the Jews pursued a different policy, the Arabs would have given up their own nationalism and they would have acceded to a Jewish state.

          Frankly, I don’t know and he cannot know either. But if I was a betting man, I would bet that he is wrong. He is wrong because we are talking of two competing nationalist movements. And nationalist movements are not in the habit of giving up lands which they think they own 100%. The emphasis in that last sentence is on the word ‘THINK’. And on that aspect there is NO doubt whatsoever. At every turn, the Arabs asserted that all of Palestine is Arab land. Moreover, they firmly believed that they had the power to enforce their belief because they outnumbered the Jews and they felt that they would be able to choke off the Jewish state at birth. That is why they resorted to violence. And it wasn’t the first time in the history of that conflict that they did that. They he’d a strident nationalist leader, the Mufti of Jerusalem, Sheik Husseini, who led a long history of incitement against the Jews of Palestine. An incitement which culminated in many bloody attacks against Jews.

          All of what I said in this post and before is a matter of historical record. It isn’t conjecture or opinion. And I am prepared to repeat this as often as Shmuel will force me to …

          Reply to Comment
          • shmuel

            Justin McCarthy indicated the number of residents in Palestine in 1860 as 411,000, the overwhelming majority of which (around 90 percent) Arabs.

            From a Eurocentric perspective these numbers might seem negligible. To get an idea, one has only to think that when Paris reached one million inhabitants in 1846, Jerusalem and Haifa numbered, respectively, little more than 18 thousand and a bit less than 3 thousand. It would, however, still be wrong to choose countries on the Old Continent instead of those in the Oriental Mediterranean area for a reliable comparison. It is more logical to compare Egypt at the start of the 1800s with Palestine in the same period. It is estimated that the first one had at the time a population of around three million inhabitants: today it numbers 77 million. The second, inhabited at that time by 250,000/300,000 people (therefore 225,000/270,000 Arabs), registers today little more than five million individuals. In comparison, these data demonstrate substantial “comparative convergence” between Palestine and the historically most important, as well as most populous Arabic country.

            Quite problematic the part about Pakistan.
            In Uri Avnery’s words: “No one asked the Arab Palestinians whether to accept or reject anything. If they had been asked, they would probably have rejected partition, since – in their view – it gave a large part of their historical homeland to foreigners. The more so, since the Jews, who at the time constituted a third of the population, were allotted 55% of the territory – and even there the Arabs constituted 40% of the population.”
            Hardly this applied to Pakistan, where there was a strong Muslim majority (just in belucistan 92% were Muslims). It would be also important to broaden the discussion including refugees, because the difference between the indian and pakistani refugees and the palestinian arab refugees is that the former chose to leave without any expulsion or pressure by either government, and, most of all, they do not wish to return; but in the case of the Palestine Arabs, they were mainly expelled and are not permitted to return, despite their desire to do so.

            Superficial also the part about “They he’d a strident nationalist leader, the Mufti of Jerusalem, Sheik Husseini”:
            http://www.storicamente.org/05_studi_ricerche/al_husseini_kamel.pdf

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            “they would probably have rejected partition”

            Probably????

            That’s just too funny. They DID reject partition. It is a matter of historical fact. On the very day after the vote for partitioning Palestine passed at the UN. The Palestinians rioted and murdered several Jews.

            Like I said: the Palestinian Arabs were the ones to resort to physical violence against Jews at every opportunity.

            Reply to Comment
          • shmuel

            Tzutzik,
            You know what is the difference between us? To me, Israelis had the full right to self-determinate their lives, and, at the same time, Palestinians suffered a huge injustice. The two things are not in contradiction. For you, Jews had the full right to have their own state and so Palestinians cannot but be barbarians seeking for blood that deserved to be humiliated.
            As for the rest:
            1) They would have rejected it if someone would have asked him their opinions about it, as avnery pointed out.

            2) “The Palestinians rioted and murdered several Jews”:
            Both resorted to violence, as the Haifa Refinery attack of December 1947, when the Irgun threw a number of grenades at a crowd of 100 Arab day-labourers, confirms.

            3) “Palestinian Arabs were the ones to resort to physical violence against Jews at every opportunity”.
            This is what you need to believe to justify why 500 villages have been razed to the ground and several hundred of thousand of human beings have been expelled from their homes and prevented to go back.

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            “You know what is the difference between us? To me, Israelis had the full right to self-determinate their lives, and, at the same time, Palestinians suffered a huge injustice. The two things are not in contradiction. For you, Jews had the full right to have their own state and so Palestinians cannot but be barbarians seeking for blood that deserved to be humiliated.”

            Thanks for putting words in my mouth.

            Here is a challenge for you: i have been posting here on + 972 for maybe about two years. I defy you to find even one post anywhere on this site where I did not favor the two state solution.

            Reply to Comment
          • shmuel

            But to be “in favor of the two state solution” in itself is meaningless. Also Netanyahu is for the 2 states solution, while continue to fund thousands of old and new settlements.
            Also Bennett wants to provide to the Pals “autonomy on steroids”, while annexing what he likes.
            In your comments you continue to deny that the aggression started when new comers, often opposed also by the Jews that were residing in the region since centuries if not millennia, wanted to create a “closed society” and for you the local majority was supposed to accept and be happy about it. This is immoral.
            Than we turned to other issues, and you always failed to see the broader picture and continue to depict the arabs of palestine as barbarians. Who cares if at the end you claim to be “for the 2 states solution”?
            The bottom line of all the discussion should be this:
            Israelis had the full right to self-determinate their lives, and, at the same time, Palestinians suffered a huge injustice. The two things are not in contradiction

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            “The bottom line of all the discussion should be this:
            Israelis had the full right to self-determinate their lives, and, at the same time, Palestinians suffered a huge injustice. The two things are not in contradiction”

            The Palestinians too had the full right to self determination. But In 1947 they chose to reject partition because they wanted to deny Palestinian Jews their self determination.

            Even after they lost the ensuing war. After 1948, the Arabs controlled the West Bank and Gaza. They could have therefore established their Palestinian state then if they wanted to. But they did not. What they really wanted was to destroy the Jewish state. No Arab at that stage, including Palestinian Arabs were really interested in a Palestinian state. They were happy to be part of Jordan and Egypt respectively.

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            “1) They would have rejected it if someone would have asked him their opinions about it, as avnery pointed out.”

            I don’t know what you and Uri are on about. They were asked. And they rejected partition both in word and deed. Moreover after the vote they rioted and attacked Jews. Are you even reading what I posted?

            “2) “The Palestinians rioted and murdered several Jews”:
            Both resorted to violence, as the Haifa Refinery attack of December 1947, when the Irgun threw a number of grenades at a crowd of 100 Arab day-labourers, confirms.”

            You are right about the fact that the Irgun was quick to retaliate. But retaliation is not the same as starting the violence.

            Fact: the Jews were celebrating partition. They had no need to start violence.

            Fact: The Arabs were against partition. That’s why they started violence.

            “3) “Palestinian Arabs were the ones to resort to physical violence against Jews at every opportunity”.
            This is what you need to believe to justify why 500 villages have been razed to the ground and several hundred of thousand of human beings have been expelled from their homes and prevented to go back.”

            It isn’t a matter of belief. It is a matter of historical record.

            I think you are the one with beliefs that we are 100% villains and the Arabs are just poor innocent babes who are our victims without any provocations on their part.

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            Justin McCarthy indicated the number of residents in Palestine in 1860 as 411,000.”

            Today there are about 10 million people living in the same area and there is still room for more people.

            Reply to Comment
          • shmuel

            “Today there are about 10 million people living in the same area and there is still room for more people”:
            It is more logical to compare Egypt at the start of the 1800s with Palestine in the same period. It is estimated that the first one had at the time a population of around three million inhabitants: today it numbers 77 million. The second, inhabited at that time by 250,000/300,000 people (therefore 225,000/270,000 Arabs), registers today little more than five million individuals. In comparison, these data demonstrate substantial “comparative convergence” between Palestine and the historically most important, as well as most populous Arabic country.

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            What Egypt has to do with it, I know not.

            My point was that there was and still is room in historic Palestine for two states. One Jewish and one Arab state.

            The Jewish state is the only state in the world that is Jewish, the Palestinian Arab state would have been ;would be) the 23rd Arab Muslim state. Moreover, the Jewish state occupies about 0.5% of the land area that the combined Arab states occupy already. But they need that small area too to be Arab. And according to you we are the greedy villains?

            Reply to Comment
          • shmuel

            “What Egypt has to do with it, I know not”:

            It means that to write that “150 years ago, the country was virtually empty” is ideologic propaganda, or you have to claim the same about Egypt and the rest of the region:

            It is more logical to compare Egypt at the start of the 1800s with Palestine in the same period. It is estimated that the first one had at the time a population of around three million inhabitants: today it numbers 77 million. The second, inhabited at that time by 250,000/300,000 people (therefore 225,000/270,000 Arabs), registers today little more than five million individuals. In comparison, these data demonstrate substantial “comparative convergence” between Palestine and the historically most important, as well as most populous Arabic country.

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            So what is your point with Egypt? That we Jews who needed a state in order to be able to live in dignity like other nations should have chosen Egypt for our state instead of our ancestral homeland?

            By the way, please stop distorting what I said. I did not say that Palestine was empty. I said that Palestine had room to accommodate two states for two peoples.

            Or are you against a Jewish majority state?

            Reply to Comment
    10. Tzutzik

      “the difference between the indian and pakistani refugees and the palestinian arab refugees is that the former chose to leave without any expulsion”

      You are joking, right Shmuel? Please tell me that you are joking.

      The low estimate of deaths in the Indian partition is 200,000 people. The high estimate is 1,000,000 people. And there were 14,000,000 refugees roughly an even number of Muslims to Hindus.

      So, are you serious Shmuel? 14,000,000 people just packed their bags, chose to leave everything behind without pressure?

      Can I suggest that each set of people, Muslims and Hindus, fled because they were petrified that they would be murdered if they stayed behind? Murdered like the 200,000 to 1,000,000 people who were less wise and who either stayed or were too sliw to flee.

      Palestine was a Sunday school picnic compared to what happened to people in the partition of India.

      Reply to Comment
      • shmuel

        “And there were 14,000,000 refugees roughly an even number of Muslims to Hindus”:
        I didnt tell you that Pakistanis (or Indians) didnt suffer. I wrote you that these people preferred to move in their huge new country, in which they were a big majority, and that today no Pakistanis would ask to leave Pakistan to go to India (while this is not the cade for Palestinians). In Palestine, a much more small context, the then local majority didnt have a huge portion of their country were to move and were to fell at home.
        In Pakistan there was a strong Muslim majority (just in belucistan 92% were Muslims). How can u compare it to Israel and Palestine?
        “In the aftermath of partition, a huge population exchange occurred between the two newly formed states. About 14.5 million people crossed the borders, including 7,226,000 Muslims who came to Pakistan from India while 7,295,000 Hindus and Sikhs moved to India from Pakistan.”

        Reply to Comment
        • Tzutzik

          “I didnt tell you that Pakistanis (or Indians) didnt suffer. I wrote you that these people preferred to move in their huge new country, in which they were a big majority”

          Yea, right Shmuel …

          And the 200,000 to 1,000,000 murdered Muslim and Hindis had nothing to do with their decision to move? Not much, right?

          Please continue to feel free to delude yourself and make it appear that we Israelis are the worst villains in the history of mankind and anywhere in the world.

          Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            You know Shmuel? My guess is that you are Jewish. Maybe you are even Israeli? If you are, I am embarrassed for you and even embarrassed for us Jews. Do you know why? Because after two millennia of persecutions, through natural selection, some of us became apologists for others and we are now our own worst critics. That sort of trait stood us in good stead in the galut. It enabled many of us to survive because we became non threatening objects of pity. Let me give you an example of where you exhibited that trait in your discussion with me:

            TZUTZIK:”“The 1929 Hebron massacre of Jews was not hard enough? The Arab revolt of the 1930s when the murdered Jews anywhere they could find them was not enough?”:

            How did you respond to that?

            SHMUEL:”Thank you for bringing this. Actually hundreds of Jews were saved by local Palestinian families.”

            What were you trying to say? That because some Jews were saved by some decent Palestinian Arabs (yes, I too believe that there are such Palestinian Arabs), because of that, the massacre of Jews did not take place by other non decent Arabs?

            You know what? During the Holocaust, there were some Jews saved by decent Germans, Poles and others too. Does that mean that we should not bring the Holocaust up? Does that mean that many other not so decent Germans should not be mentioned?

            Really, Shmuel. There is a limit to being nice. You are willing to be just too nice at our expense. You are forgetting that we too have dignity now and we are not just tolerated Jews in someone else’s land. That is the beauty of having our own state. There is a limit to bending over backwards just to try to impress others about how reasonable we are. Instead, you are bending so far backwards that you are now being unreasonable towards us. Enough already!!!

            Reply to Comment
          • shmuel

            “My guess is that you are Jewish”:
            My religion is a private matter between me and my god.

            “Because after two millennia of persecutions, through natural selection, some of us became apologists for others and we are now our own worst critics”:

            To be Jewish means to be moral.

            “You know what? During the Holocaust, there were some Jews saved by decent Germans, Poles and others too”:
            Ideological comparison. Most of the Jews (435) in Hebron were saved by Palestinian families. 6 millions of Jews were killed by the Nazis. That few thousand of them were saved by “decent germans” is not particularly relevant. This comparison is weak and also doesn’t take into account the context of hebron in 1929:

            “Hebron had, until this time, been outwardly peaceful, although tension hid below the surface. The Sephardi Jewish community in Hebron had lived quietly with its Arab neighbors for centuries. The Sephardi Jews (Jews who were originally from Spain, North Africa and Arab countries) spoke Arabic and had a cultural connection to their Arab neighbors. In the mid-1800s, Ashkenazi (native European) Jews started moving to Hebron and, in 1925, the Slobodka Yeshiva, officially the Yeshiva of Hevron, Knesset Yisrael-Slobodka, was opened. Yeshiva students lived separately from the Sephardi community, and from the Arab population. Due to this isolation, the Arabs viewed them with suspicion and hatred, and identified them as Zionist immigrants…”
            http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/History/hebron29.html

            “There is a limit to being nice”:
            it’s not a matter of being nice, but of being moral. Again and again, Israelis had the full right to self-determinate their lives, and, at the same time, Palestinians suffered a huge injustice. The two things are not in contradiction.

            .

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            “My religion is a private matter between me and my god.”

            Actually my question wasn’t about religion. It was about heritage. Being Jewish is not just about religion. We are also a people.

            “To be Jewish means to be moral.”

            I would have thought that being moral is a duty of every human being not just for Jews.

            “Ideological comparison. Most of the Jews (435) in Hebron were saved by Palestinian families. 6 millions of Jews were killed by the Nazis. That few thousand of them were saved by “decent germans” is not particularly relevant. This comparison is weak and also doesn’t take into account the context of hebron in 1929:”

            Oh bother. Now I wish that I should have left out the holocaust comparison. Once again it just allowed you to sidestep the point that I made which stands on it’s own merit, even without the Holocaust.

            “Hebron had, until this time, been outwardly peaceful, although tension hid below the surface. The Sephardi Jewish community in Hebron had lived quietly with its Arab neighbors for centuries. The Sephardi Jews (Jews who were originally from Spain, North Africa and Arab countries) spoke Arabic and had a cultural connection to their Arab neighbors. In the mid-1800s, Ashkenazi (native European) Jews started moving to Hebron and, in 1925, the Slobodka Yeshiva, officially the Yeshiva of Hevron, Knesset Yisrael-Slobodka, was opened. Yeshiva students lived separately from the Sephardi community, and from the Arab population. Due to this isolation, the Arabs viewed them with suspicion and hatred, and identified them as Zionist immigrants…”
            http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/History/hebron29.html

            Yes Shmuel, you are being true to yourself again. Making excuses for a massacre of Jews by Arabs.

            Repeat after me: A massacre is a massacre is a massacre … No excuses for it.

            By the way, some of the murdered Jews in Hebron were Sephardis.

            “it’s not a matter of being nice, but of being moral. Again and again, Israelis had the full right to self-determinate their lives, and, at the same time, Palestinians suffered a huge injustice. The two things are not in contradiction.”

            I already answered this point of yours. Why do you keep on repeating yourself? Go read it above and respond to it. Don’t just ignore what I said about it.

            Reply to Comment
    11. shmuel

      “The Jewish state is the only state in the world that is Jewish, the Palestinian Arab state would have been ;would be) the 23rd Arab Muslim state”:
      No one cares about to create a “23rd Arab Muslim state”. For the Arab-Palestinians this is and was the only home (“Filastin biladuna”) that they know/knew. It’s not a matter of “another Arab Muslim” state. You confirm to be “blind” due to an ideological background.

      Reply to Comment
      • Tzutzik

        Sad, Shmuel, sad …

        You are not responding to my points. You are only responding to your own straw men.

        Good luck with that …

        Reply to Comment
    12. shmuel

      “Actually my question wasn’t about religion”: You asked me about my religion, or at least you implied that I am jewish. I answered saying that this is none of you business. And I add that “after two millennia of persecutions” there is no need to humiliate and occupy the land of other human beings that already paid a huge price, a price that you fail to see.

      Your point about Hebron “does not stands on it’s own merit”

      I quoted the Jewish virtually library: if you dont trust me, at least trust them and Hans Kohn. Why for centuries Jews and Arabs did not have any problem in Hebron? this is what you need to ask. A massacre is a massacre and I condemn it. But without context it becomes just a propaganda tool.

      Reply to Comment
      • Tzutzik

        TZUTZIK:“Actually my question wasn’t about religion”:

        SHMUEL:”You asked me about my religion, or at least you implied that I am jewish. I answered saying that this is none of you business.”

        From that answer of yours I gather that you don’t consider the Jewish people to be a nation. According to you we are just a religion, right?

        SHMUEL:”And I add that “after two millennia of persecutions” there is no need to humiliate and occupy the land of other human beings that already paid a huge price, a price that you fail to see.”

        No, there is no need for us to humiliate them. But there is a need for us to ensure that we won’t end up being so vulnerable that we would need to have THEIR mercy just to stay alive.

        SHMUEL:”Your point about Hebron “does not stands on it’s own merit”

        It does too. I said that they massacred a bunch of innocent Jews in Hebron and all you could say about it that they didn’t massacre all of them because some of them were saved.

        That’s all well and good Shmuel, but some of them WERE massacred. Being a moral person, you should be outraged by that but you don’t seem to be. Why?

        SHMUEL:”I quoted the Jewish virtually library: if you dont trust me, at least trust them and Hans Kohn. Why for centuries Jews and Arabs did not have any problem in Hebron? this is what you need to ask.”

        I did not dispute your quote from the Jewish virtual library. Where did you see me disputing it?

        I was however surprised to see that you omitted to mention that Sephardi Jews too were murdered in that massacre.

        You also omitted to mention that the mob responsible for the massacre were incited by none other than Haj Amin El Husseini. The very leader whom one of your quoted texts tried to suggest that he wasn’t really a leader of the Palestinians. I wonder then how did he manage to incite that mob to such an extent?

        Selective quoting from a source, Shmuel, is also a favorite tool of propagandists. Don’t you think?

        “A massacre is a massacre and I condemn it. But without context it becomes just a propaganda tool.”

        Bingo! I agree with you 100%! Now you are talking my man. You said the magic word “CONTEXT”. Congratulations.

        This brings us to a full circle. Read my first post to which you responded on this thread. That is the EXACT point that I tried to make about settler violence. I tried to convince you good people that there is a historical context to their behaviour too. Although I too said that their actions are not wise.

        Reply to Comment
    13. shmuel

      “This brings us to a full circle. Read my first post to which you responded on this thread. That is the EXACT point that I tried to make about settler violence. I tried to convince you good people that there is a historical context to their behaviour too”:
      Settlers and the local Palestinian majority at the beginning of the 20th century=another misleading comparison. As Nazmi Jubeh once wrote on this site:
      “When Israel was created, the Palestinians were already here, and accounted for the vast majority of the local population. This is why there are now over one million Palestinians in Israel, many of whom are known as ‘internally displaced persons’ [IDPs]. In constrast to this, settlers arrived in the Palestinian territories through violence and incentives received in recent years from Israeli governments. Equating the former to the latter is not only simplistic, but also morally reprehensible.”

      “From that answer”: I implied that my religion is not a matter of discussion.

      “But there is a need for us to ensure that we won’t end up being so vulnerable”:
      What is happening beyond the green line,
      has little if anything to do with security. Even today, as confirmed by many detailed reports and filmed videos, dozens of quarries are currently active in the West Bank, providing some 12 million tons of stone, gravel, and dolomite annually, 75 percent of which is used for construction inside Israel. Millions of Palestinians are deprived of their freedom of movement, due partly to dozens of checkpoints throughout the West Bank. Moreover, in the Palestinian territories, new drilling of aquifer systems for the consumption of settlers and Israeli citizens are being built. Finally, in about 60 percent of the West Bank, there is exclusive control of Israeli authorities over every aspect of civil life. Each of these aspects represent a different form of “violence” and only a simplistic approach, or one marred by bias, could accept such a reality in the name of “security”.

      video: http://electronicintifada.net/blogs/adri-nieuwhof/cemex-tries-reason-away-complicity-israeli-violations-international-law

      “they didn’t massacre all of them because some of them were saved”: the big majority of them were saved by other pals. I condemn any killing. But if you don’t consider the context you are cheating yourself.

      As late Rabbi Baruch Kaplan, who was a principal of the Beis Yaakov Girls School in Brooklyn, and who was a student in the Hebron yeshiva (religious school) in 1929 at the time of the killing of a number of Jews by some Arabs, explained:

      “When I was in Hebron in 1929, there occurred the tragic massacre of over twenty yeshiva students, great scholars, plus another forty members of the Jewish community. I would like to describe the error that has circulated in Jewish communities – a horrible error, that accuses the Arabs in Hebron of being murderers who attacked the Jews simply because the Arabs were “bad people.” In order to correct the record, this error must be corrected. The Arabs were very friendly people, and the Jewish People in Hebron lived together with them and had very friendly relations with them. They worked with Jews, and everybody got along just fine.
      To take just one example, I used to have the habit of walking a mile or two out of town all by myself to visit a tree that was believed to be the tree where our patriarch Abraham met the three angels, as described in Genesis. I especially enjoyed visiting the tree in the summertime. Along the way I would talk to the Arabs, though it was mostly using our hands because I didn’t speak any Arabic. Interestingly enough, no one in the yeshiva ever told me it was dangerous to go by myself among the Arabs. We just lived with them, and got along very well.
      I have also seen a letter from the Grand Rabbi of the Gerrer Hassidim of those days, Rabbi Avraham Mordechai Alter of Poland, regarding his trip to the Holy Land during the days when people were talking about emigrating to Palestine. He wanted to find out what kind of people the Palestinians were, in order to be able to advise people whether to move there or not. He wrote in his letter that the Arabs were a very friendly and fine people.
      Therefore it’s necessary to set the record straight about the accusations that the Palestinians were terrible killers who liked attacking Jews. This was never the situation at all!”

      “I did not dispute your quote from the Jewish virtual library. Where did you see me disputing it?”:
      With your claims.

      “I was however surprised to see that you omitted to mention that Sephardi Jews too were murdered in that massacre”:
      A tiny minority, they were not the target, as Kaplan explained. This doesnt justify the killing but, again, the context is everything in this discussion,

      “I wonder then how did he manage to incite that mob to such an extent?”:
      If you really would have read the article, or at least the conclusions, you would know the answer.

      “Selective quoting from a source”: which one?

      Reply to Comment
      • Tzutzik

        TZUTZICK:“This brings us to a full circle. Read my first post to which you responded on this thread. That is the EXACT point that I tried to make about …”

        Context is never misleading even when one writes about your favorite bogeymen, Shmuel, “the settlers”

        What was it you said?

        SHMUEL:”But without context it becomes just a propaganda tool.”

        Your own words, Shmuel. So given that you are only interested in context when it is time to talk about Arab massacres of Jews, your attitude, is NOT misleading. You favor making propaganda against Israel. Whenever you talk about why Israel does what it does, you fight tooth and nail to supress context or to swamp it with factoids which support the Palestinian Arab narrative.

        But when one reminds you that there is other context and that there are two sides to history, you do your darnest to shut down discussion on what we the Jewish people have to say and the context in which we do what we do.

        You are an apologist for those who want to erase Jewish nationalist aspirations and replace it with Arab nationalist aspirations.

        In other words, there is nothing moral about you Shmuel. You are just another partisan anti Israel propagandist. But hey, I don’t want you to feel bad about it. You are in good company. There are lots of people like you out there. For instance, Jihadis, communists, most of the Arab world, many in the Muslim world, neo Nazis, the KulKlux Klan, and many many other ignorant people who don’t bother informing themselves about both sides of history.

        TZUTZICK:“I did not dispute your quote from the Jewish virtual library. Where did you see me disputing it?”:

        SHMUEL:”With your claims.”

        Let’s see, what did I claim? You tried to make it appear that those who carried out the massacre of Jews in Hebron, did it only against Ashkenazi Jews who were stand offish (as if that is a valid excuse for a massacre). But I pointed out that the murderers murdered Sephardi Jews too.

        What else did I say? I said that the real reason for the massacre was incitement by the leader of the Palestinian people at that time, that Nazi collaborator, the Mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin Al Husseini.

        TZUTZICK:“I was however surprised to see that you omitted to mention that Sephardi Jews too were murdered in that massacre”:

        SHMUEL:”A tiny minority, they were not the target, as Kaplan explained. This doesnt justify the killing but, again, the context is everything in this discussion,”

        A tiny minority … they were not the target … context …

        Yea, the context was an out of control frenzied mob, full of hatred and incited by the Mufti of Jerusalem by false rumors about what other Jews supposedly did or were planning to do in Jerusalem.

        TZUTZICK:“I wonder then how did he manage to incite that mob to such an extent?”:

        SHMUEL:”If you really would have read the article, or at least the conclusions, you would know the answer.”

        Yes, I know it as you see above. But you were obviously going to keep quiet about it because talking about it puts a lie to your previous attempt to claim that the Mufti of Jerusalem, that Nazi collaborator who hated Jews, was not the leader of the Palestinian Arabs.

        Ofcourse he was. The fact that they listened to him and acted on his wishes, proves it.

        Was every Palestinian influenced by the Mufti? No! But the vast majority of them were. Yes, the demonstrably listened to him and acted on his behalf afainst Palestinian Jews. They carried out massacres and murdered Jews. Those are just plain facts backed up by all mainstream historians. That too is context Shmuel.

        SHMUEL:“Selective quoting from a source”: which one?”

        From the link that you quoted. The Jewish virtual library one. Why are you pretending to be silly?

        Reply to Comment
        • shmuel

          “Context is never misleading”: 100% true. And in fact this is the context:
          “When Israel was created, the Palestinians were already here, and accounted for the vast majority of the local population. This is why there are now over one million Palestinians in Israel, many of whom are known as ‘internally displaced persons’ [IDPs]. In constrast to this, settlers arrived in the Palestinian territories through violence and incentives received in recent years from Israeli governments. Equating the former to the latter is not only simplistic, but also morally reprehensible.”

          “But when one reminds you that there is other context”: you didnt provide any context. You simply equated present settlers and the local Palestinian majority at the beginning of the 20th century: a rather stupid comparison. This is not context.

          “erase Jewish nationalist aspirations”: the eploitation of the palestinain territories has nothing to do with “jewish nationalist aspirations”.

          “There are lots of people like you out there”:
          Ye I am a terrible human being like the Palestinians that you tried to de-humanize with your weak ideologic arguments.

          “leader of the Palestinian people at that time, that Nazi collaborator, the Mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin Al Husseini”:
          and I showed you through that article, that you didnt’ are, that you have no clue about this issue.

          “The fact that they listened to him and acted on his wishes, proves it”: read it and then, in case, write something rational.

          Sorry, I stop here. You grew in an ideologic environment. I will not change anything about it, so keep living in your parallel world.

          Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            “Equating the former to the latter is not only simplistic, but also morally reprehensible.”

            I did not equate anyone to anyone. I merely stated a historical fact. Arabs started the cycle of physical violence against Jews.

            And your excuse is that the Arabs were here? That is no excuse. Because some Jews never left this place, we had a history in this place abd 150 years ago we started returning to this place. We had the right to do so because the sovereign authorities at the time said so and there was plenty of room for us to be here. We did not come to displace the Arabs. We came here to live alongside of them. But they did not like that so they started their violence against us hoping to intimmidate us. But it backfired on them. That is context.

            If you deny that Shmuel. You deny history.

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            Now lets talk about “Settlers” (using your pejorative sense about them) Shmuel:

            You consider “Settlers” to be the devils incarnate. But just who are these settlers?

            If you ask most Arabs, we, all Israelis are settlers. And they want to kill or expell all of us.

            Some of the Arabs and people like you Shmuel (perhaps?) consider that any Israeli living beyond the green line is a settler. But is even that true? Why are israelis who live in the Jewish quarter of East Jerusalem settlers? We used to live there for thousands of years till 1948 with an interruption of only 19 years after your Arab friends expelled us from East Jerusalem in 1948. So Jews had every right to return to East Jerusalem and not be called “settlers” in the pejorative sense that you refer to that term. The same applies to Jews who returned to Gush Etzion from which we were expelled by Arabs in 1948.

            As for the rest, we are talking about 4% of the West Bank. They are near the green line and we are there to improve our security. Had the Arabs not been threatening us for 100 years, perhaps we could do without those places but as it is, we will keep them thank you very much. But two of our past prime ministers offered the Arabs land swaps as compensation but surprise, they did not accept. You know why not? Shmuel, dear? Because this conflict is not about a few settlements here or there. It is about the Arabs wanting ALL of historic Palestine to be Arab and none of it Jewish.

            Thats context for you too Shmuel!

            Reply to Comment
          • Tzutzik

            “You grew in an ideologic environment. I will not change anything about it, so keep living in your parallel world.”

            And where did you grow up Shmuel? You grew up in a world which excuses every Arab misdeed against us and which blames us for even being alive. A world of make believe, full of double standards. Here are just some of your claims just on this thread which amply illustrate exactly that.

            – You acknowledged that Arabs operated a closed economy in which they hardly employed Jews. You had a valid excuse for that, ok.

            – But you were not so forgiving with us for preferring to employ our own. You expected us to leave Jewish newcomers unemployed and to employ Arabs instead. You would have had no problems seeing those newcomers starve.

            – To top it off, you claim that Jews running a closed economy was equivalent to physical violence. But Arabs running a closed economy was ok? In any case, running a closed economy is nothing like physical violence.

            – Talking about Arab violence, you are in virtual denial about it. It took me several posts to force you to admit that there is no excuse for massacres such as the 1929 Hebron massacre of Jews.

            What about context? You are falling over invoking context about the Hebron massacre and other massacres. In fact, you are in virtual denial about it. According to you, it involved only a handful of Palestinian Arabs and the rest of them really loved us that’s what you seem to to set out to prove. Context is everything you say …

            Well Shmuel, I don’t disagree. Context is indeed important. I have no problems with you invoking context. The only problem that I have with you is that you insist in ignoring context when it comes to our behavior. Why? Because you operate under double standards. One standard for Arabs and since you consider us to be less than human, a different standard for us.

            I for one will not stand for it Shmuel. I will continue to challenge immoral people like you at every turn till you get sick of me, ok?

            Reply to Comment
      • Tzutzik

        Very interesting and revealing Rab. Thanks for that link.

        Reply to Comment
    14. shmuel

      absolutely revealing, this completely undermines the work of Breaking the Silence:-) lol

      Reply to Comment
    15. Tzutzik

      Actually what it reveals is their attitude. It is the same as yours Shmuel.

      They only hear what they want to hear. Their attitude is not funny at all. Nor is yours, Shmuel. Fascist attitudes are never funny.

      Reply to Comment
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